Gotham: The Birth of The Joker

After four seasons of speculation, rumors and crazy theories, Gotham has finally introduced us to The Joker and it’s not Jerome. Cameron Monaghan has wowed Gotham fans with his performance as Jerome since his first Joker-like appearance in season one episode The Blind Fortune Teller. The folks behind the show have always maintained that Jerome would not be the Joker but would be the inspiration of sorts to the man that would eventually become the Joker.

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The problem with that is that Monaghan is just too damn good at the role. Every time he is on screen as Jerome there is never any doubt that he is playing a young Joker and he got better at it with each episode. So when Jerome was killed off in season 2, fans went ballistic. There was so much outrage that he was eventually brought back to life and as time passed he became more and more the Joker we all know from his mannerisms to his permanent smile stretched across his face. In fact Jerome in season 4 is Joker in everything but name and green hair. He even created the infamous Joker Gas with the help of Scarecrow.

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However, the show’s producers in what seemed to be almost spiteful, refuse to give Jerome the title of Joker. So instead they throw in a twin brother, Jeremiah and crown him the Joker and kill off Jerome (again) in what turns out to be a good and bad thing. On one hand this allows Monaghan to be the Joker after all but hey, wasn’t he already? While the episodes that brought this about were the best of the series so far, throwing a brother in the mix that has never even been hinted at before is just lazy writing.

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Fans have had four seasons of character development to embrace Jerome as the Joker and now we have a new character (doesn’t matter if it is the same actor) that we have to accept in the role in only two episodes. Time will tell if we will grow to love this incarnation of Joker the way we embraced Jerome but I think that if anyone can pull this off it is Cameron Monaghan.

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The actor has said that Joker is the darkest character on the series and also described him as “more subtle”. Let’s just hope he can bring this character to life with the same level of passion as he has delivered playing Jerome. While I may feel that hastily adding a twin brother was a lazy writing choice, Jeremiah‘s transformation into the true Clown Prince of Crime was truly amazing. Check out the video above for the whole transformation.

Gotham airs on FOX · Thu 8/7 PM CT

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