Posted by Stephen Patterson @mr_sjpatterson
Verified writer at Movie Pilot. Follow me on twitter: @mr_sjpatterson
Stephen Patterson

Warning: This article contains spoilers from Gotham Season 3.

The third season premiere of Gotham set the stage for further exploration of the Batman mythology and every episode since has continued this trend. With the Mad Hatter terrorizing the city and the Penguin running for mayor, it’s as if Gotham city is ready for Batman already. However, no depiction of Batman is complete without a Joker character and in this case — it’s Jerome Valeska.

Executive Producer John Stephens has already confirmed that actor Cameron Monaghan will reprise his role as Jerome at some point in the third season and recently Monaghan himself teased his return on social media. We were all pretty devastated when the crazy character met his demise in Season 2 and we’ve been anticipating his return ever since. As Gotham continues its descent into darkness there are several reasons to believe that Jerome’s return is more imminent than we first thought. I have a feeling that the psychopathic trickster could return in next weeks' episode.

David Mazouz Teased Jerome’s Return On Social Media

David Mazouz — who plays Bruce Wayne on the show — took to social media recently to suggest that a fan favorite villain will be returning "sooner than you think."

It doesn’t take the Riddler to figure out who Mazouz is referring to now does it? The “HAHAHA” signature that is so closely associated with comic book character the Joker — and of course Gotham’s Jerome — clearly means that Mazouz is referring to Jerome’s return and how it is possibly far sooner than we expected.

It begs the question: why would Mazouz post this caption after a recent episode has aired — could he be insinuating that Jerome's return could be in next week's episode? With so much changing in the city at the moment it would be the perfect time for the villainous Jerome to rear his head. It must be in the next episode!

Penguin Promises To Get Rid Of The Monsters

Could Penguin take on Jerome? (via FOX)
Could Penguin take on Jerome? (via FOX)

Penguins whole mayoral campaign relied on his promise to dispose of the monsters within Gotham. Monsters, by Penguin's definition, refers to the genetically modified humans that Hugo Strange created at Indian Hill. As we know, Jerome’s laugh could be heard during the Season 2 finale when the inmates escaped, suggesting that he was resurrected by the insane doctor.

Furthermore, the preview for next week’s episode features a team of shooters wearing red hood masks attacking the citizens of Gotham during one of the penguin's mayoral speeches. Some have suggested that Jerome could be one of those in the red hood mask.

But what would Jerome have against a fellow criminal like Penguin, you may ask? Now that Penguin has been officially elected into office he will likely follow through on his promise and start the hunt for the “freaks.” If so, then I doubt Jerome will sit idly by and allow himself to be hunted — in fact, Jerome is the kind of guy that would come out of hiding and make public appearances to taunt the new mayor. A pre-Joker vs Penguin showdown is the kind of rivalry that Gotham needs.

The character of the Joker also has a close association with the Red Hood gimmick seen primarily in The Killing Joke. Using this logic, then it is almost certain that Jerome is one of those Red Hoods — he could be attacking the Penguin to send a message.

Jerome has what it takes to take on Oswald. (via FOX)
Jerome has what it takes to take on Oswald. (via FOX)

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As Of The Latest Episode, Gotham Is Missing A Big Bad Villain

With Jervis Tetch gone, who will fill his boots? (via FOX)
With Jervis Tetch gone, who will fill his boots? (via FOX)

The third season of Gotham has juggled from bad guy to bad guy and instead of having one antagonist, the show has decided to give particular villains an arc that takes place over several episodes. Fish was initially the primary villain but Penguin let her escape with Strange in tow. After Fish’s departure, newcomer Jervis Tetch took over as Gotham’s resident bad guy and did an excellent job of terrorizing the city and the viewers at home. After the death of his sister Alice, he is now in the wind. It’s likely that he will hide in the shadows for a while which means that there is an opening for a new villain to take his place.

Who better to fill this void than the guy who has the potential to become the biggest bad that Gotham has ever seen? It’s likely that Jerome’s early reign of terror has inspired a cult meaning that he has what it takes to give Penguin and the city a run for it’s money. Although Jerome doesn’t care about money or popularity — he wants to instill fear and terror. Let's not forget that Jerome could also have been altered due to Strange's experiments — perhaps he will be even more insane than before. Jerome represents the ultimate corruption of the city and an appearance from this character next week would be exactly what Gotham needs to keep fresh.

Jerome really is the ultimate bad guy (via FOX).
Jerome really is the ultimate bad guy (via FOX).

As Gotham continues to explore the Batman mythology we can expect to see the appearance of many more Batman characters — we've already seen hints of Man-Bat and a full on Poison Ivy this season, it’s inevitable that more characters will be seen before the end of the season. We were all bummed when Jerome was killed off and with all the chaos going on in the gothic city, now would be the perfect time for the criminal clown to come back into the game. Mzouz's Instagram post has put my anticipation for next week’s episode through the roof.

Do you think Jerome will rear his pretty little (psychotic) head in next week’s episode of Gotham? Tell me in the comment section below.