Elated to see "Gotham'"s producers have redelivered Cameron Monaghan's Jerome Valeska to the show, now with scary scars and all. We were promised the return of the Maniax's guffawing leader before the third season's start, but seeing is believing. (I still wasn't convinced this was going to occur, even with the tease in "Ghosts", but now that Frankenstein experiment entitled "Smile Like You Mean It" has concluded, how can I deny the obvious?) Still, we really got burnt with a vicious mislead in the early phases of Season 2, for which I (and it appears many other fans) haven't been too forgiving.
It remains debatable whether resurrected Valeska is, in fact, the Joker-to-be. He might simply be a demented guru to Gotham's would-be, greasepainted thugs, from out which the veritable Joker will grow. (If it's the latter, we end up with a foreshadowing of "Batman Beyond" and all those futuristic Jokerz, but for chronological purposes, that rather distorts things.)
All the same, why clown around with us? We got our young Penguin, Riddler, Mad Hatter...Catwoman. It's only right we get our fledgling version of Batman's arch-foe. (Rumor has it that Harley Quinn might appear as well by season's end, but that doesn't grab me: too much projection, far too soon. Let's focus on the Joker right now, and substantiate his presence beyond a doubt.)
Monaghan is a damn good actor, and his absence from "Gotham" has been one of the most embarrassing miscalculations to hit a series in quite some time. At least Jerome's return is a step in the right direction, even if he might yet dash our Clown Prince of Crime hopes.