RJ Debuts DC Villains TimepiecesBy Keith W. Strandberg
Following its successful partnership with Warner Brothers Consumer Products/DC Entertainment with the Batman watches, RJ is now bringing the dark side of DC Comics to the forefront with the launch of its first two Villain timepieces: The Joker and Two Face.
Both of these watches are housed in 45mm titanium ARRAW cases and are limited to 100 pieces, and both feature elements inspired by the characters they represent.
“RJ started this exclusive collaboration four years ago, celebrating Batman 75th anniversary,” details Marco Tedeschi, the CEO of RJ, in an exclusive interview with Revolution.Watch. “The response for the limited-edition watches was remarkable and cemented the brand as the pre-eminent creator of unique watch collaborations and a true and reliable partner for DC Comics and Warner Bros. Entertainment.
“Introducing the ‘Villains’ to the collection felt very logical and gave us a great platform to express our creativity,” he continues. “These highly complex characters, The Joker and Two-Face, allowed the brand to explore its dark side, paying tribute to the ‘enemies’ rather than the usual superheroes and the intricacy of the villains turned into an inexhaustible source of inspiration. Overall, we wanted to create watches with subtle references to the characters which could appeal to any audience, from the most educated fan to any watch fan and at the same time, keep the RJ spirit with the impeccable finishing of the ARRAW models and the abundant detailing.”
In the Joker timepiece, each dial is individually hand-painted, meaning no two Joker watches will have the exact same make-up. The watch dial itself is a stylistic interpretation of the Joker’s own face, with a finish that is airbrushed to evoke the make-up of the Gotham villain: two black eyes sit at the center of the dial which fades to white at the edges.
The ARRAW hands on the Joker watch are also uniquely stylised with playing card Aces at their tips. The same Aces are used as dial markers while the chronograph’s second hand is finished in Joker Purple with a stylised “J” at its base. The bezel is intricately laser-engraved with a chaotic motif.
On the back of the case is a laser-engraved portrait of the Joker, and each watch in the edition is individually numbered as a “One of 100 Limited Edition.”
Every RJ Joker watch comes with three interchangeable straps – one in purple, one in bright green, these two with contrast stitching, and a black rubber strap. The straps are easy to change out by pressing the Batman logo release screw on the watch lugs. As part of the collectors’ edition, each watch will be presented with an exclusive deck of Joker playing cards.
Two Face was first Gotham City’s District Attorney, Harvey Dent, an ally of Batman. The sulfuric acid attack that disfigured Dent drove him insane and his face was split in two. Using this dichotomy as inspiration, the left-hand side of the watch is clean and structured, while on the right side, the three-layer skeleton movement is exposed to show the inner workings of the watch, as if the acid used on Dent had burnt away the outer casing and dial. The bezel is also split, as is the strap. The famous coin that Two Face uses to make life and death decisions can be seen on the left side of the dial.
“Two-Face is such a complex character that only a watch with an equally split personality can truly do justice to his malice and tricks,” says Tedeschi. “To recreate his scarred face and exposed features has been a fantastic challenge and has forced us to push the envelope of what is possible when the worlds of horology and comic culture collide.”
In conclusion, RJ’s Tedeschi points out what a coup it is for the brand to work with Warner Brothers and DC Comics: “It is a statement of confidence in RJ’s place in both popular culture and watchmaking that Warner Bros and DC Entertainment have collaborated with us to bring their most infamous villains to life as rare, limited edition collectors’ watches. The villains of the DC Comics universe have always appealed to audiences around the world for their evil brilliance and ability to shock and thrill in equal measure. We believe that our first two DC Comics Villains watches will be a fitting tribute to their spirit of anarchy and disruption.”
Can’t wait to see what’s next in the Villain theme. My guess is Bane, or maybe The Penguin…
RJ Arraw The Joker
RJ2042 self-winding chronograph with 42 hours’ power reserve
45mm grade 5 titanium, 100m of water resistance
Interchangeable “ARRAW” straps in alligator leather, and black rubber