On the finale of Gotham, Fox’s five-season-long prequel to the traditional Batman saga, the Dark Knight will rise — and so will his arch-nemesis.
Though showrunner John Stephens has always consistently cagey about Jeremiah and/or Jerome Valeska’s transformation into the one and only Joker, a preview of episode’s final and 100th episode arrived on April Fools’ Day to confirm the show would introduce the classic look before the show wrapped. Actor Cameron Monaghan appears in the traditional purple costume, with stringy hair that appears Joker-green in a one-sheet for the character.
Earlier this week, Gotham confirmed that the final episode of the series would jump ahead in time to find Batman in action. “He’s in the episode. He’s not just in a last scene,” Stephens revealed at the spring TCAs. “The last episode is one scene in the timeline of the rest of the season, and then the rest of the episode is in the future. It almost feels, in a weird way, like another pilot.”
Monaghan’s Joker plays like a mix of everything before him. There’s little bit a Caesar Romero in the original Batman TV series. Much like Gotham’s take on Bane, a lotta bit inspired by Heath Ledger in Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight, at least in terms of looks. And you can’t discount the impact of Mark Hamill’s work on Batman: The Animated Series — and who’d want to?
Monaghan officially slips into the Joker garb just in time for Joaquin Phoenix to debut his own take on the character in the still-untitled standalone movie DC has planned for the end of the year. The glimpses we’ve seen lean towards a more “realistic” look. Gotham leans closer to a shot of undiluted fan service — which is not a bad thing when you have an actor like Monaghan going for broke.
We’ll see who gets the last laugh when Gotham returns to deliver a two-part finale on April 18 and April 25.