Of course, that’s not to dismiss the idea of a female Joker. No, in fact it was done in Alex Ross’ Kingdom Come. But let us stop and roll our eyes as Gotham once again goes back to the Joker well after introducing Cameron Monaghan‘s Jerome last season, killing him off in the first few episodes of this season, and implying that the animus of the Clown Prince of Crime is some kind of mental virus that’s catching throughout pre-Batman Gotham City. So in that spirit, on next week’s episode of the show, we’ll meet Jeri played by Lori Petty. Guess who she wants to be when she grows up…
The 14th episode, called “The Ball of Mud and Meannness”, will feature the Tank Girl star in Joker make-up and hair dye. But is she supposed to be *the* Joker? Gotham creator Bruno Heller talked about the possibility in an interview last fall saying, it was “100% possible. One of the central themes of the DC world is transformation and revelation. Absolutely, those kinds of – I wouldn’t want to call it playing with people’s expectations or gender expectations – but we’ve absolutely considered the possibility of a female Joker, and we haven’t…nothing is too strange or too bizarre or too shocking for us to consider.”
That’s nice, but it’s highly dubious that it’s going to turn out that Petty’s Jeri is going to be the Joker, just as it was highly dubious that Jerome was going to turn out to be the Joker. Mystique is part of the character’s brand, not knowing where he came from or what his goals are (if he has goals) are core to the Joker’s appeal, but at this point when the Joker does finally appear in Gotham (or Gotham), he’s going to be seen as lame and derivative, a carbon copy of a dozen other criminals trying to make waves in Gotham City for 20 years. Penguin and Riddler will be making fun of him for sure.
Anyway, here are some more images of Lori Petty from Gotham.
And here’s a picture of James Gordon (Ben McKenzie) moshing for your out-of-context amusment.
Gotham airs Mondays at 8 pm on Fox. “The Ball of Mud and Meannness” will air next Monday.