cryptic laughter

@ people that say the fandom should stop complaining about Jerome’s death

We as a fandom have all the right to be pissed. The Gotham writers made a shit move that has all the right to be criticized. 

First off some people have been saying that the fandom was complaining that the writer’s were trying to give the Joker a backstory and that he should not have been written in the show at all. Newsflash, that wasn’t gonna fly from the get go. Batman is a pop-culture icon that has many villains. But do you know who’s the most famous of all the villains? That’s right: the Joker. He’s batman’s arch-nemesis and the villain that everyone (especially those who aren’t huge batman fans) recognize. The Gotham writers tried to write the show in a way that can attract fans of the DC comics as well as those who are not fully versed in the DC universe. With this being said you can obviously see why they’d need to include the Joker. People would constantly question why he isn’t on the show and would eventually lose interest if he failed to show up. Simply put, you can’t have Batman without the Joker.

People have also said that we shouldn’t complain because the Joker is meant to be an ambiguous character. Uh…no, he isn’t. The Joker is a character with an ambiguous backstory, but he has always been one person. He is an inspiration of mad crime, yes, but he is not an imitation or a legacy. To write the “real” Joker on the show as a cheap impostor to someone who represented the pure spirit of everything the Joker stands for is frankly a disgusting insult to his character. And the Joker is ambiguous in the sense that there are many different origin stories written for him, but no one knows which one is true (though many choose to reference The Killing Joke as the closest thing to canon). He is not ambiguous in the sense that there is no backstory for him at all. So why is it a problem that he does have a backstory in this case? It’s not even in the comic universe, so it’s far from holding any canon ground. Jerome Valeska is just another origin story in the sea of potential interpretations that is already written for the Joker so why would people ever feel threatened by his presence?

But the most important thing out of all this is that it was a terrible writing move. You introduce this character who from his introduction fits the Joker to a T. Many thought Jerome was a red herring at first, but the fact that the brought him back and expanded upon his character engraved into our minds that this was the Joker. There are many things that confirmed our suspicions he was the Joker: his overall personality, his murder of Sarah Essen (albeit it came much too early in the story), his antagonistic clash with Bruce Wayne, etc. While the writers do sometimes break from the comic canon, these are all things that coded Jerome as the Joker. Red herrings are only good if they bring up suspicions in the story as to possible ways the writing could go. If you drag out a red herring plotline the audience begins to get attached to it and accepts it as a truth only to feel cheated and annoyed when it ends up not being what was anticipated to be final. It doesn’t bring freshness to the story, it just pisses everyone off which is exactly what’s happening here. People have gotten attached to Jerome, and believe that Cameron Monaghan portrayed him extremely well. He captured his eccentric nature, his charm, and his twisted sense of humor all on top of looking exactly what you’d expect the young Joker to look like. No one can top Cam’s amazing performance and the fact that they’re trying to replace him with someone else cheapens the Joker’s character as a whole and makes the fandom feels cheated. No one’s gonna love the new Joker as much as Jerome. The fact of the matter is that whoever replaces him will only feel like a weak imitation that no one will get attached to. Even if they don’t choose to replace him it still leaves us at an unsatisfactory ending for the Joker plotline and disappointingly fails to tie into the show from there on out. The Gotham writers made a huge mistake which can only make us wonder why they would do it in the first place. Even if a lot of the fandom remains we will still feel betrayed by their poor decision making they made in the writing and will feel uncomfortable in the way the show has decided to turn.

If you try to tell me, “Hold on we don’t know anything for sure! Jerome might come back!” I’m just gonna say, “I don’t think so.” Jerome’s death was too symbolic to be taken as a plot twist. Why would they show him lying in the morgue with the creepy smile on his bloodstained lips, with cryptic laughter in the background, and a repetition of his father’s words while it cut to clips of random civilians who are enticed in watching his performance and choose continue his mad reign of terror. If he does come back it only reinforces my belief that the show writer’s are making bad writing decisions by throwing away what was meant to be interpreted as a symbolic death and making it into “nah he was alive all along lol” or “hey through some cryptic science shit we brought him back to life lmao!” With all this in mind, I think we can all agree that at this point that the show writers have driven themselves into a corner for the rest of the season and possibly the entire show.

So yeah don’t try to tell me to “get over it” because I have the right to be salty. And the Gotham writer’s better get their shit together or else a huge part of the fandom is just gonna walk out the door.