Gotham finally resolved the question of whether or not Jerome Valeska (Cameron Monaghan) is the Joker in the latest episode, “A Dark Knight: That’s Entertainment.” It happened as we predicted it would after the earlier surprise reveal of Jerome’s twin brother, Jeremiah Valeska aka Xander Wilde, because Gotham is like a soap opera if soap operas showed character deaths on screen and there were multiple deaths in every episode, half of them involving dynamite. (That’s not even an exaggeration. They showed two characters’ heads explode, on screen, in the last episode. And one of them was an archbishop. It’s bonkers.)
In the last episode, Jim Gordon shot Jerome multiple times, causing him to nearly fall off of a building. Rather than allowing Gordon to pull him up, Jerome chose to let go and plummet to his death (a seeming homage to Jack Nicholson’s Joker), but before he did, he said he’ll outlive Gordon. “I’m more than a man. I’m an idea. A philosophy. And I will live on in the shadows with Gotham’s discontent. You’ll be seeing me soon.” What he meant quickly became evident, as the episode ended with Jeremiah opening a gift he thought was from his new employer Wayne Enterprises. As seen in the video above, it was a dose of Smylex from Jerome instead, along with a recorded message:
“Hello, brother. Didn’t think you could get rid of me so easily, did you? See, my days were numbered but you, oh, you can continue on for me. Be my ultimate revenge. So, calm yourself. Breathe it in. This gas was a special mixture I made, just for you. Something to finally set you free. It’s time to have some fun. Burn it down, brother. Burn it all down.”
Jeremiah grabs his head in a visual right out of The Killing Joke, and then there’s some silly CGI to exaggerate his smile. The actor who plays both characters made a joke about the CGI on Twitter over the weekend, referencing both the creepy CGI-removal of Henry Cavill’s mustache in Justice League and the “Snyder cut” of the movie:
He followed that up with a tease of upcoming episodes, saying the “subtle,” post-transformation Jeremiah may be “the darkest, most frightening thing this show has ever done.”
There are four episodes left, suggesting the next episode isn’t going to tie up any threads from this new Joker’s storyline (and thanks to set photos like these and these, we know there’s going to be more Joker this season). It’ll be interesting to see what he does with all the research funding Bruce Wayne offered him in the last episode for an energy-generating device, and it’s only fitting that Batman himself gave Joker the financial backing for his first plot.
Finally, here’s a promo for this Thursday’s likely-Jokerless episode:
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.