Warning: the following article contains spoilers for Jujutsu Kaisen Chapter 169 "Tokyo No. 1 Colony, Part 9" by Gege Akutami, John Werry, and Snir Aharon, available in English from Viz Media.
Readers were just as surprised as the characters when Takaba Fumihiko appeared at the end of the previous chapter of Jujutsu Kaisen by jumping in front of Hazenoki's exploding body part to defend Fushiguro. However, jumping in front of an explosive has turned out to be the least surprising thing about that moment. It was Takaba's outfit and his outlandish behavior that truly stood out. It's safe to say he's not at all what anyone was expecting.
Takaba's appearance and demeanor came as large surprises, especially after Itadori's fight against Higuruma. The expectation was that Takaba would be an angry failed comedian out of his right mind, akin to Arthur Fleck from DC's Joker film. However, he's basically the polar opposite, and that works out perfectly for Fushiguro.
Takaba was first introduced in Chapter 146 as a struggling comedian. He was basically told by a colleague that he should quit being a comedian since he isn't funny, and it's too late to hope that he can get there since he's already 35 years old. The colleague in question didn't seem like he was being rude but instead just giving genuine advice. He even urged him to find something he's cut out for.
Another man in the room told Takaba that even guys who aren't funny can make it though because two types of comics will always be in demand. Comics who are funny, and comics who think they're funny. It's clear in Chapter 169 that Takaba is the latter, and he seems to have fully embraced that now. He told several terrible jokes throughout the chapter while Fushiguro, Reggie, and Hazenoki all pointedly maintained straight faces.
Fortunately for Fushiguro, Takaba's fighting prowess was far better than his comedic skills. Early in the chapter, he explained that his ridiculous costume is an homage to the hero who first made him laugh his guts out. He then proceeded to tell a terrible joke and briefly ranted when no one laughs. Afterward, he suddenly landed a dropkick in Hazenoki's face mid-sentence, too quick for anyone to react. The attack was also powerful enough to send Hazenoki flying through a building.
Reggie is so surprised that Fushiguro nearly caught him off guard with a sudden attack. Seeing how strong Takaba is, Fushiguro told him that he'd like him to take Hazenoki's points first if he's going to kill him. Takaba agreed but it's unclear if he intends to kill Hazenoki. He simply responded that whatever he does has to entertain. Of course, Fushiguro only cares that he wins regardless of how he does it.
Takaba has zero points in the Culling Game and it's clearly not because he's incapable of earning any, so it might be because killing is against his morality. He doesn't appear to be holding a grudge over his career and looking to take out his anger by killing people, which is what many expected. He genuinely just wants to make people laugh. It's a refreshing change of pace from Higuruma which keeps things interesting. Fushiguro told Takaba that he's glad he's not his enemy as he continued to beat Hazenoki around with seemingly little effort.
Curiously, Takaba has yet to actually reveal his Cursed Technique and the same remains true for Reggie. Now that Fushiguro doesn't have to worry about facing multiple opponents on his own, he can finally start fighting earnestly. However, he shouldn't underestimate Reggie. The fact that Reggie's technique is still a mystery and he hasn't actually fought at all this entire time probably means he's going to be a troublesome enemy. After all, his allies must have joined him for a good reason.