Gotham fans were left shocked and also kind of confused by the cliffhanger of yesterday’s episode. Selina Kyle succeeded in getting her revenge on Jeremiah Valeska – by killing him. Yup, as confirmed by the promo for next week’s installment (see above), the man we thought was going to become the Joker is dead. Well, at least, temporarily.
This is Gotham after all, and if there’s one thing we’ve learned over the past five seasons, it’s that death is flexible in this city. In fact, while speaking to TV Guide, showrunner John Stephens revealed how Jeremiah can be dead but Cameron Monaghan will remain on the show. Apparently, we can expect another “transformation” for Monaghan in the form of a third iteration of his character(s) that’s an amalgam of both Valeksa boys.
“You never see a full transformation into the Joker, but you do see another transformation. Jeremiah undergoes another evolution in his character to become another amalgam of Jeremiah and Jerome that I think audiences are gonna look at and say, ‘If it’s not the Joker then it’s definitely an antecedent or a proto-Joker that lives there.'”
Monaghan played Jerome Valeska on Gotham‘s first four seasons and he was so good as the Joker-eseque villain that fans were sure he’d become the Clown Prince of Crime. However, we were repeatedly told that Jerome was not the Joker. It then started to make sense when Jerome died and Jeremiah took over his mantle. But it turns out it’s not as simple as one brother being the proto-Joker and somehow, Jeremiah will be resurrected as a blend of both of them.
This will presumably feed into episode 7, titled “Ace Chemicals,” which seems to be an all-important installment for establishing the origins of the real Joker. The title suggests that we’ll get some sort of version of the classic fall into the acid vat that gives Mr. J his permanent grin. Though we’ve previously been told not to expect the name “Joker” to be used on the show – due to WB’s upcoming movie starring Joaquin Phoenix.
In any case, be sure to stay tuned to find out how things develop on Gotham season 5, airing Thursdays on FOX.