If you didn't watch last night's new episode of Gotham titled The Last Laugh, be warned! There are massive SPOILERS ahead! Many believed that Cameron Monaghan's Jerome would become The Joker. But fans were shocked last night when Theo Galavan brought the young man's life to a sudden and shocking conclusion. While it seems Jerome isn't the Joker that will eventually torment Batman, he does have a hand in setting up the future villain. And guess what? That villain might be a female.
Yes, showrunner Bruno Heller isn't ruling out a gender swap for this iconic DC Comics super villain. And it might be a good turn considering Jared Leto is set to unleash a very terrifying version of the character on the big screen in next August's Suicide Squad. While Jerome doesn't appear to be a prime candidate for the Joker mantle any loner, the clown prince of Gotham will be showing up in some form before the series runs its course. Though, who knows when that will be. About the Joker becoming a woman, ComicBook.com got this surprising answer out of Bruno Heller.
"100% possible. One of the central themes of the DC world is transformation and revelation. Absolutely, those kinds of - I wouldn't want to call it playing with people's expectations or gender expectations - but we've absolutely considered the possibility of a female Joker, and we haven't...nothing is too strange or too bizarre or too shocking for us to consider."
The Joker has been present in some form or another in almost every incarnation of the Batman mythos. From the original serials, to the TV shows, to the animated series, and through the movie series. But he's always been a white male. Having a Clown Princess would turn things on their head, without a doubt. But how loud will the fan outcry be? Or will they gladly accept this possible twist?
Gotham Season 2 has been subtitled Rise of the Villains, but they all seem to be falling just as quickly. And because of this, some have started to speculate that The Joker won't be something we've ever seen before. In creating Jerome, Cameron Monaghan brought in quite a few iconic traits, and he had the Joker's evil laugh down with his own unique signature stamped on it. Most believed this was The Joker. No questions asked. But his death has ended that popular fan theory without question.
That said, this death also drew sudden attention to the character of Barbara Kean. She has turned from Jim Gordon's finance to a villain, and is continuing to show a wild streak that indicates she may have a bit of Joker hiding inside her. She has her own signature crazy grin that is on par with Jerome's former smile, and she seemed to hold some admiration for the fallen bad guy. The possibility that Barbara Kean is going to be the new Joker is certainly starting to fuel some fan conversations.
The Last Laugh, which is only episode three of this new season, ended with Jerome's laughter inspiring a whole city of lowlifes to go on their own killing sprees. It's possible that Gotham will offer up a whole slew of Joker wannabes to leave audiences guessing. After all, it was said early on, that the 'real' Joker might not show up until Season 8 or 9, if the show lasts that long. And he might only emerge as Bruce Wayne transformers into Batman. Ben McKenzie has previously stated that won't happen until the very last episode. So, the series final could be The Joker Vs Batman. About Jerome's role in helping bring the real Joker out of the woodwork, Cameron Monaghan had this to say.
"I think he's the Joker in that he represents the idea, the greater concept. And somewhere, some kid or some person watched [his videos/the news coverage] and it burrowed into their mind, and one day it will snap and take them over. The idea of this person will possess someone completely new. So, I love that idea - something about it really is chilling and excited me when I read the episode."
Some fans don't believe Jerome is dead. But everyone involved with the series claims that he is truly gone, and won't be reemerging. Cameron Monaghan had initially signed on for only one episode in Gotham Season 1. And it was never a sure thing that he was coming back for Gotham Season 2. What do you think? Will you be okay with a female Joker? Or should Gotham not even attempt to go down that path of thinking?