Take a first look at the final version of Cameron Monaghan's Joker in a new teaser for the Gotham series finale. A young Monaghan first appeared as Jerome Valeska in Gotham's debut season, playing a crazed murderer with a penchant for the dramatic, but there was no immediately obvious connection to the iconic villain known as The Joker. With each appearance, Jerome took on more and more of Joker's qualities: the garish dress sense, the sadistic modus operandi and an intensely personal rivalry with Bruce Wayne. After Jerome's (permanent) death, his chaotic mission was taken up by twin brother Jeremiah and it was here that Gotham's finally cemented the character as its unique version of The Joker.
However, Monghan himself has previously revealed that, due to restrictions from Warner Bros., Gotham isn't technically allowed to use the "Joker" title or employ certain other key elements such as the character's trademark green hair. Jeremiah was last seen on Gotham falling into a vat of chemicals after a fight with Bruce Wayne and has been in an unresponsive state ever since. Fortunately for Joker fans, Gotham's forthcoming final episode is confirmed to be primarily a flash-forward, showcasing familiar versions of Batman, Commissioner Gordon, Penguin and, indeed, Jeremiah Valeska.
Fox have now released a brand new poster and teaser trailer for the ending of Gotham that reveals their final Joker in all his unhinged glory. The poster depicts an older, almost bald Jeremiah, with only some wisps of white (green tinted?) hair to call his own. Joker's familiar purple coat forms the basis of the villain's costume design and the jagged pale skin reflects Jeremiah's chemical injuries. While the teaser doesn't give much away about Joker's role in Gotham's final episode, it does show him in a fight against someone throwing Bat-shaped projectiles, whoever that might be.
Jeremiah's final design is arguably the closest the character has ever come to looking like the classic Joker - certainly a fitting way for him to see out the series. The new look is also one of the more sinister live action incarnations of the villain to see the light of day and leans more into the character's grittier side by appearing almost inhuman. Judging from the teaser footage, Monaghan is also turning Jeremiah's personality up to 11 in Gotham's final episode.
It could be said that Gotham was dealt a bad hand with regards to its Joker restrictions but, the show has certainly made the best of the situation - largely thanks to the talents of Monaghan himself who has drawn praise from the likes of Mark Hamill and others during the course of the show. It'll be fascinating to see whether or not Gotham will be allowed to finally refer to Jeremiah as "The Joker" in its final episode, given that the show is coming to an imminent end.
Gotham season 5 continues April 18th with "They Did What?" on Fox.