As we start to get further into Emmy season, there are inevitably going to be more questions asked about the worthiness of many different performers all across the board. Some will be recognized, whereas some others are going to be snubbed.
When it comes to Gotham star Cameron Monaghan, it’s pretty clear that he has fallen into the latter category in the past both on this show and also Shameless. Playing a villain on a comic-book show is never easy, especially when you are one that has the sort of history and legacy as the Joker. While technically neither Jerome nor Jeremiah on the Fox drama have been referred to with that moniker, it’s nonetheless clear that these two characters draw inspiration from the iconic Clown Prince of Crime. He is fantastic in both roles.
With Jerome this season, we saw his manic energy and capacity for great evil. This is a character who is angry, demented, chaotic, and unpredictable. Getting into his headspace, we imagine, is no easy task since you suddenly have to believe in a million or so things that you would not stand for otherwise. For a performer, that’s a challenge since you often like to have some sort of relatable touchstone to go back to. Maybe you can look back at Jerome’s history of being abused and tormented himself as an impetus for his actions; or, you can just say that this was in him all along and the actions of the past are the catalyst that caused some of this to finally come out. Either way, his life was painful and one full of suffering, both for himself and also the people of Gotham as a whole.
Meanwhile, with Jeremiah you had a character of a completely different flavor. He was someone who had a separate brand of psychosis, someone hell-bent on destruction in a way that was cold, calculated, and detached. Because of his intelligence and his organization, he felt that he could inflict actual harm in a way that Jerome never could. It was easier to see where Jeremiah was coming from as a character before being exposed some of Jerome’s toxins — he was a brilliant man so afraid of his brother, he went into hiding to protect himself. Some of that paranoia later contributed to his madness. Monaghan managed to inject a little bit of similarity to Jerome into this character; yet, there were enough differences that it also felt like a distinct entity and someone to be very much feared.
What are the odds of Monaghan getting a nomination? – It’s a longshot, much in the way that it is for any comic-book actor. Is he truly deserving? Absolutely, he really should get a nomination for his work, but this genre is unfortunately frequently ignored — as are many network shows in general.
One of the things we’re the most curious about this season is where Monaghan ends up submitting for this role. Last year, he submitted as a Guest Actor in a Drama Series — that felt appropriate, given that Jerome’s appearances were fairly limited. However, he had a larger role this time around and that could lean him more potentially towards Supporting Territory.
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