Gotham returns to our screens for a third season next week, and the Batman-inspired police drama promises plenty of exciting new developments. After season 2 saw Hugo Strange’s monsters released on the city of Gotham, one of the biggest changes this season will be the inclusion of many more “superpowered” villains, and the return of some previously-deceased characters. Since, of course, death is never permanent in comic books.
One of the most anticipated resurrections for the show is that of Jerome Valeska (Cameron Monaghan), presumed to be the show’s Joker. Executive producer John Stephens thrilled Jerome fans last month when he confirmed that the character would definitely return to the show, and today we got a special teaser from Monaghan himself.
The actor took to Instagram this morning to post a video, captioned only “#GOTHAM.” The video shows us absolutely nothing, only a blank white screen. The audio, however, is the key part. In it, Monaghan growls “Hello, Gotham” before letting loose with a chilling laugh. Although it’s a very brief (and image-less) clip, it seems clear this is Monaghan’s way of confirming he’ll be making an appearance on the show sooner rather than later. Take a look (listen):
It’s not the first time that we’ve heard this cackle. In season 2 of Gotham, Jerome used the laugh while working for Theo Galavan (James Frain) as one of the Maniax. Theo tells Jerome that the laugh is good, and that he should use it in videos threatening the public — and it quickly became a signature for the deranged young killer.
Jerome was later killed by Theo as part of a publicity stunt. Jerome took over the stage at a theater, and Theo killed him in order to be seen as a hero of Gotham. After his death on the show we saw the rise of Jerome copycats, citizens of Gotham who followed his violent lead. Since then, we haven’t seen the charismatic psycho, and there was no hint that he would return until the season 2 finale when we heard that inimitable laugh echoing out when the “monsters” were freed.
This laugh seems to be becoming a signature for the character, which makes perfect sense for a future Joker. Monaghan’s portrayal of Jerome as an unhinged (yet strangely charming) killer is absolutely incredible, and many fans feel that he could become the breakout star of the series. His decision to tease fans with it, especially with his sinister greeting at the beginning, is definitely something that has us excited for season 3. Presumably, Jerome was resurrected by Strange, but with Theo Galavan out of the picture, we have no idea what he is going to do next.
While the clip is a fantastic teaser, it doesn’t actually tell us anything. This post still doesn’t officially confirm Jerome as the future Joker of Gotham, nor does it tell us exactly when Monaghan will be reappearing on the show. Although it suggests that he will be back in the game from the very start, this could simply be Monaghan’s way of reminding fans about the start of a new season, and he may not be making an appearance for several episodes. We’ll just have to watch to find out — and make sure to keep an eye (or should that be ear?) out for this incredible villain.
Gotham season 3 premieres September 19 @ 8pm on FOX.