ByKit Simpson Browne, writer at
Writer-at-large. Bad jokes aplenty. Can be gently prodded on Twitter at @kitsb1
Kit Simpson Browne

Now, when most shows releases a video teasing next week's episode, we're pretty interested, sure. When Gotham, Fox's half-zany, half-dark-as-hell new pre-Batman show releases one, though? We get downright excited.

And when that video is teasing an episode named Arkham?

Well, let's just say we're looking forward to it.

So much so, in fact, that we thought we'd take a closer look at just what that magic word means - and how much Bat-mythology is coming to our screens alongside it. First, though, take a look at the newly released teaser video in question, and enjoy!

What about those implications, though?

Well, let's take a look at...

Arkham's History

Historically, when you say Arkham in the Batman universe, you mean one thing, and one thing only: Arkham Asylum.

Originally the Arkham family home, the building was converted into an asylum by Amadeus Arkham in the early 1900's after his mother, who had suffered from mental illness throughout her life, committed suicide.

Or, depending on who you ask, was euthanized by her son. It's that sort of place.

Over the years, the Asylum became a respected and essential part of Gotham's medical fraternity - even though, all the while, Amadeus Arkham himself was slowly descending into insanity - ending his life as a patient in his own asylum.

Arkham in the Movies

Despite brief appearances in Batman Forever and Batman & Robin, it wasn't really until Christopher Nolan's Dark Knight Trilogy that we got the chance to see Arkham on screen in all its creepy glory - with Jonathan Crane (a.k.a. The Scarecrow) using the asylum as a base for his twisted experiments in Batman Begins.

It then returned to relative obscurity, however, with only passing mentions in The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises. Thankfully, the animated movie Batman: Assault on Arkham brought the focus very much back to the Asylum (and the ever-awesome Suicide Squad).

Beyond the Asylum

All of this, though, assumes that Arkham in Gotham will principally be the Asylum. Which is certainly possible - as that's its traditional form - but far from a given. After all, all the talk so far has been about plans for its development - and has referred to the Asylum as being somewhat separate to that.

Which, intriguingly, means we're likely to see not only Arkham Asylum, but some variation of Arkham City - the Gotham slum made famous by Rocksteady's game of the same name.

The Inmates

The most interesting thing about Arkham, though, has never been the building itself, but rather the patients who dwell within it.

After all, the Asylum has long been home to some of Batman's greatest foes - and has grown into something much closer to a prison than a medical facility.

Past inmates include Mr. Freeze, Poison Ivy, The Scarecrow, The Riddler, Hugo Strange, Two-Face, Bane and, of course, The Joker. And pretty much every other Batman villain there's ever been.

Which of course means there's no real way to know who we're likely to see.

There is, though, one classic Bat-villain whose origins are inextricably linked to the Asylum.

Harley Quinn

The chaotic criminal known as Harley Quinn wasn't always a villain - she was once a psychiatric intern named Dr. Harleen Quinzel - at Arkham Asylum.

There, she met - and fell in love with - The Joker, and became the damaged damsel she is today.

Crucially, though, she could also easily be on her way to Gotham. After all, other than the much less famous Black Mask, she's far and away the most recognizable Arkham-associated villain - so surely any focus on Arkham in the show will only increase our chances of seeing a young Harleen Quinzel?

Either way, it looks like things are going to go down in Arkham - specifically, this coming Monday on [Gotham](series:1127075).


What do you guys think? Will we see Harley Quinn on Gotham soon?



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