In Fox's "Gotham," when Theo Galavan broke a group of criminal lunatics out of Arkham Asylum, it became very clear the man had some bad intentions. Galavan revealed a part of his master plan in episode 3, “The Last Laugh,” which involved taking out a member of his crazy gang in an effort to deceive the entire city.
Episode 3 kicks off with Jim Gordon (Ben McKenzie) and Bullock (Donal Logue) trying to find Jerome Valeska (Cameron Monaghan), the man responsible for killing Capt. Sarah Essen (Zabryna Guevara) and nine other officers. Bullock thinks Gordon should go see Penguin (Robin Lord Taylor) because he runs the streets and may have heard something.
Barbara (Erin Richards) appears to have developed a thing for Tabitha Galavan (Jessica Lucas). Theo Galavan (James Frain) interrupts them as they kiss to talk to Barbara. He reveals that his family built the city but they were betrayed, and there is no part of the city honoring their memory, so he wants to take back what he believes is theirs.
Bullock finds out Jerome’s father, the blind fortune teller Paul Cicero (Mark Margolis), is in town, so they head to his apartment. Cicero arrives at his place, where Tabitha and Jerome are waiting for him. They tie him up and Jerome tells him how he plans not only to kill him, but also to pin the Arkham escape on him, when Gordon knocks on the door. Gordon hears a scream from inside the apartment and kicks the door in. He finds Cicero dead with a knife through his eye, while Tabitha and Jerome are gone. Bullock sees Jerome’s father has something under his hand, and as moves his hand away, a blue gas is released in the room, dazing Bullock.
Gordon drags Bullock out into the hallway, but the gas gets to him too. Though groggy, Gordon sees Jerome come down the hallway and tries to attack him. Jerome is able to wrestle away Gordon’s gun, but Tabitha tells Jerome to let him live and she knocks Gordon out with a kick.
Bruce Wayne (David Mazouz) and Alfred (Sean Pertwee) attend the Gotham Children’s Hospital Gala because Alfred wants him to return to some sort of normalcy. Bruce sees Selina (Camren Bicondova) there taking wallets and he goes to talk to her, but she’s cold to him and doesn’t say much before walking away.
Lee Thompkins (Morena Baccarin) is running the gala and introduces herself to Alfred and Bruce after she has heard about them from Gordon. Lee excuses herself to introduce the magic act the Great Rodolfo, which is actually Jerome and Barbara in disguise. Jerome and Barbara come out and start performing magic tricks. They select Bruce from the crowd for a trick in which it looks like they cut him in half. After this they call up the deputy mayor, and Lee recognizes Barbara in disguise. She calls Gordon, but someone grabs her from behind just as she tells him Barbara and Jerome are there.
Jerome tells the audience no one is getting out of there alive, and to prove his point he throws a knife at the deputy mayor's chest and kills him. The Maniax seize control of the gala and Alfred tries to protect Bruce. Alfred fights some of Jerome’s men, while Bruce runs off to make sure Selina is safe. As usual, Selina ends up saving him instead. Selina shows Bruce a back way out, but he refuses to leave without Alfred.
When Gordon arrives on the scene, he gets a call from Jerome on Lee’s phone. Lee is tied to a wheel while Jerome is being broadcast on TV. He gives Gordon a lists of demands and hangs up the phone. Theo Galavan approaches Jerome and pretends to be a hero by standing up to Jerome for all of Gotham to see. Barbara knocks him out from behind as part of their act, and Gordon decides it’s time for the police to go in.
Jerome and Barbara continue to mess with the guests, and Jerome calls Bruce to the stage. When he doesn’t come out, Jerome instructs his men to kill Alfred. Bruce, who’s behind a curtain, is about to turn himself over to Jerome when Gordon grabs him from behind. Bruce says he has to give himself up to save Alfred, which he does but not before he hands a gun to Alfred. Gordon pops out from behind the curtain and starts shooting down bad guys along with Alfred. In a huge plot twist, Theo stands back up on the stage, grabs Jerome and stabs him in the neck. He tells Jerome the plot now calls for a hero and he wants Gotham to think that he’s the hero as Jerome then dies onstage with a big smile on his face.
Other Major Moments From Episode 3
- Bullock decides to pay a visit to Penguin after hearing Gordon may have done a favor for him. Bullock is not at all happy with Penguin and would love to beat him up with a garbage can. Instead he tells Penguin he’ll always see him as the little boy holding the umbrella for Fish Mooney, that if he ever comes after Gordon he'll have to go through him first and that Bullock owes him for Fish.
- Despite Jerome’s death, he has made an impact of Gotham. Several people are acting mad and laughing. Jerome may not be the Joker, but now we know who will be the Joker’s inspiration when he arrives in Gotham City farther down the road.