Tim Burton's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory Has a Weird 1989 Joker Link

Charlie shares a small connection with the Chocolate Factory and 1989's Batman via an Easter egg that references the Joker's deadliest weapon.

The two films are uniquely linked due to Tim Burton's work on Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Batman (1989). In most respects, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is pretty much the polar opposite of 1989's Batman. However, a shared universe franchise proves that even disparate franchises can be connected.

In the film, Charlie's father, Mr. Bucket, works for a company called Smilex. It's a toothpaste company, further tying into the film's overall commentary on candy and dental hygiene. Smylex, spelled slightly differently, is also the gas that the Joker uses as a weapon to make his victims die and smile. It's the means by which Tim Burton's sinister plan in his 1989 adaptation of Batman and the way the Clown Prince of Crime bears some odd resemblance to the beloved children's book and movie.

Does Joker Use Smylex In Batman's Comic Stories?

Although the name Smylex was coined by Burton for the Batman films, it was based on the Joker's laughing gas from DC Comics. This poisonous gas is most commonly known as Joker Venom and made its debut in Batman #1 in 1940. laughing gas is still a A mainstay of the character, and permeated both animated and live-action adaptations of the Joker.

Joker's Smylex Plan In Batman '89 Explained

In Tim Burton's Batman, the Joker takes a parade float through Gotham City during the Bicentennial City Festival. The Joker starts dropping money on the streets of Gotham, then releases balloons filled with Smylex that pop and pollute Gotham. Smylex is also a makeup brand in Tim Burton's Batman universe, where the Joker uses it to create poison gas throughout the film. The streets of Gotham have turned deadly in chaos, greed and poisonous fumes. Here, Batman finally had his final showdown with the Joker, the murderer of the Wayne family.

Although the two films look very different, they both carry the meaningful symbolism of a smile. Where Charlie & The Chocolate Factory's imagery could be more medical and sincere, Batman '89 handles the material in a downright creepy and satirical way. Either way, Tim Burton found a way to connect the two with a sleek, understated Smylex-branded Easter egg.

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