Directed by Eagle Egilsson
Cicero: "Your legacy will be death and madness."
Jerome: "Ha. Ha. Ha."
Well, I think we all knew it deep down and thanks to the events of this particular episode, there was no denying it. Jerome turned out not to be the Joker but boy, did he certainly go out with a bang as well as managing to inspire the man who would later take up the mantle of the Clown Prince Of Crime at some point in the future.
A part of me did think it was a shame that Jerome couldn't be the Joker but I did love that he really went for the jugular in this episode. He callously bumped off Cicero (who told him what his legacy will bring) before holding the most wealthy of Gothamites hostage along with the just as deranged Barbara as well.
Aside from the deputy mayor meeting a horrible end and both Bruce and Leslie initially as hostages, Jerome's end truly came in this one though. I thought it might have been Gordon to save Bruce/Leslie but it was actually Theo going off script and presenting himself as a hero to the city, something which for now everyone seems to have accepted a little too quickly. Shades of Penguin in Batman Returns anyone?
Jerome might have lasted four episodes but without a trace of doubt, he's easily become one of the biggest success stories of Gotham and I'm going to miss seeing Cameron Monaghan in the role. I think it would be wise to have a great distance before another potential Joker candidate rears his head on the show and when that person does show up, they're going to have a hell of an act to follow with Monaghan cementing himself so well as the Joker that could've been.
As for Barbara - well, she's getting nuttier and nuttier per episode. She's convinced herself that she can rekindle her relationship with Gordon with Leslie out of the way and she's also sexing both Theo and Tabitha. Considering the tension between the siblings, I have a horrible feeling that Barbara will end up regretting getting into bed with those two somewhere down the line.
As for the rest of the episode - I did love Bullock's confrontation with Oswald about Gordon and Fish. Not only was it a nice bit of continuity but it was also a nice way of reminding Oswald that Bullock will be one of many people coming after him now that he's king of the city. I also suspect that Falcone will re-emerge the moment Oswald gets too comfortable in his new role as well.
Also in "The Last Laugh"
There's also an episode of Batman: The Animated Series and a comic series of the same title.
Theo (re Tabitha): "My sister is a very special person. She seems so strong but yet she's quite fragile. Sugar?"
Barbara: "Yeah, sure."
Selina showed up to the magic act to steal from the rich but helped to save Bruce twice instead.
Jerome (to Cicero, re Theo): "There's this guy, he believes in me. He thinks I'm gonna be a star and tonight, all of Gotham will see that too."
Selina (to Bruce): "You wanna steal stuff it helps to go where the rich people are."
Alfred chatting up Leslie was both amusing and embarrassing in equal measures.
Theo (to Barbara): "What Gotham wants is a hero and tonight, I'm going to give them one."
This episode revealed Theo's plans of revenge. Barbara aside, do Theo and Tabitha make a habit out of sharing lovers?
Gordon (re Jerome): "He's just a kid."
Bullock: "Every evil bastard in the world was just a kid once."
Jerome (to audience): "By the way, nobody's getting out of here alive."
Nygma was a no-show in this episode and neither was Lucious. Nate debuts next week and we still have yet to see Dent back in action.
Selina: "I'm not going back."
Bruce: "I don't expect you to."
Jerome (to Theo): "You said I was gonna be ..."
Going by this 'Rise Of The Villains' story and last season's Scarecrow/Ogre plots, this mini-arcs actually work well in the show's favour.
Barbara: "Poor Jerome."
Theo: "Yes, very sad. Such a compelling character with limited knowing he'll never last long."
Chronology: Not long after the events of Knock, Knock.
A superb end to the Rise Of The Villains trilogy, The Last Laugh might have killed the chances for Jerome to actually become one of the most iconic villains of all time but it certainly set up the legacy to perfection while Theo has also emerged as a fairly interesting force to be reckoned with as well.
Rating: 9 out of 10