If you were wondering if Gotham is still bonkers, wonder no more. After last week’s episode seemed to introduce the Joker as Jerome’s twin brother Jeremiah Valeska (Cameron Monaghan), Gotham showrunner Danny Cannon gave interviews to clarify Jeremiah’s role and to tease a “reboot” of sorts coming in the season finale, “No Man’s Land.”
Despite the Mark Hamill-approved Monaghan looking very Joker-like in set photos like these and these, Cannon told Comic Book he doesn’t think they’ll be calling him (or any one specific person) “Joker.” He went on to explain:
“I think that just spawned the conversation of the idea of it, of the Joker not being a one person, but like I said, it’s a personality. It’s a way of thinking. It’s more powerful than just one person. [… If] the opposite of good, the opposite of Bruce Wayne, is somebody who just wants to destroy, and wants to do it in a chaotic way, then that could be anyone, because you are literally just going the opposite of your main character and take it as far as you can go. I don’t think that’s just one person. I think that is a way of life, it’s an ideology.”
Gotham, I will fight you.
Something less maddening and more conclusive came from that same interview. Cannon also said, “When we first did the pilot, we were trying to create a world where someone like Batman would be necessary […]. How far it can get, how bad it can get before someone dons that black suit, becomes a vigilante that will change the city forever?”
That doesn’t resolve Joker questions, but at least it resolves something else. In most Batman storylines, the question is raised whether Batman’s presence creates the supervillains or whether Batman is just a needed response to the insanity already present in Gotham City. On Gotham, that question is resolved; the city needed a vigilante long before Batman rose up.
In a separate interview, Cannon also revealed that a “cataclysmic event” in the Season 4 finale, “A Dark Knight: No Man’s Land,” is going to “reboot” storylines for the not-yet-official Season 5.
“The cataclysmic event that happens in the last three episodes not only will change Gotham, it not only combines so many characters that you don’t think will cooperate with each other, but it changes the face of Gotham forever, so that season five, it’s almost a reboot and a different show.”
He clarified that it’s a “reboot of stories,” not a re-casting of any characters, and he went on to say, “Just when you thought you knew people, something else will happen, and just when you thought your Season 5 would be like Season 4, Season 5 is completely different.” The title of the finale is a giveaway. Batman: No Man’s Land follows Gotham City after a 7.6 magnitude earthquake turns Gotham into a “no man’s land” cut off from the rest of the country by a military blockade. The premise served as an inspiration for Bane’s takeover of the city in The Dark Knight Rises. Although Batman was stuck outside Gotham in the comic, leaving him trapped in the city for a similar premise in Gotham would seem like the kind of thing that would require a vigilante…
It’s heartening to hear Cannon talking about Season 5, since the show hasn’t been officially renewed. It would be crazy not to renew it, though. Gotham‘s one season away from going into syndication, and it’s also one of the few original shows on Fox that wouldn’t be handed over to Disney if the buyout goes through.
Cannon seemed optimistic about a season renewal. “We’re building to something much bigger. It’s the biggest cliffhanger we’ve done. I mean, there has to be Season 5. Everything points to that because it’s set up in that way.”
Or they’ll end on a huge cliffhanger and I’ll fight them with knives.
On a more positive, less knife-fightey note, Fox chairman Gary Newman seemed set on renewing Gotham when interviewed last week. “We asked a lot of it this year moving to Thursday nights and I thought it did a pretty good job of opening up that night for us. I feel like Gotham should have a place in our schedule,” Newman told Deadline. He explained that it’s “purely be a matter of scheduling. Thursday is not available in the fall, so where do we use it? Hopefully there’s more years of Gotham.”
Or I’ll fight them with knives.
The “cataclysmic event” to come was teased in this promo for tonight’s episode, “A Dark Knight: To Our Deaths and Beyond,” in which a hooded robe-wearing, talking skeleton (this is fine) says, “I saw a vision of a cataclysmic event molding you into a dark knight of Gotham.”
Fox also released a synopsis which sounds like a completely different episode than the one in the video, but, yeah, it’s Gotham, so why not?
Gordon and Bullock try to figure out who the clever thief is behind the robberies of various bank branches in Gotham. Meanwhile, Barbara is put in danger, forcing Tabitha to recruit help in the all-new “A Dark Knight: To Our Deaths and Beyond” episode of GOTHAM airing Thursday, April 19 (8:00-9:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX.
This show is going to kill me.