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Brothers and sisters. Look at you. Prisoners, all of you. My father would have freed you. But he was killed. Murdered by the GCPD. Men who couldn't understand. But they will. For you will be my army. And those men who killed my father shall truly know fear!
~ Jonathan Crane to the prisoners of Arkham Asylum.
Jonathan Crane isn't here anymore... it's just the Scarecrow!
~ Jonathan Crane's transformation into the Scarecrow.
No, Not Hell... Hell is what's coming!
~ Scarecrow announcing what is coming in Gotham.

Jonathan Crane, also known as the Scarecrow, is a major antagonist in the FOX television series Gotham, appearing as a reluctant accomplice and supporting antagonist to his father Gerald Crane in the Season 1 episodes "The Fearsome Dr. Crane" and "The Scarecrow". He returns as one of the secondary antagonists in the fourth season, acting as a supporting antagonist in the final arc and a henchmen for Jerome and Jeremiah Valeska, and later also for Oswald Cobblepot. He returns as a supporting antagonist in the fifth season as he leads his own army of the fearsome scarecrows.

He is portrayed by Charlie Tahan and later portrayed by David W. Thompson and acts as the show's adaptation of the Batman supervillain Scarecrow, as well as the character's origin.

Biography

Background

Jonathan lost his mother Karen in a house fire when he was just a young boy, and was left in the sole care of his father Gerald Crane. Gerald was also traumatized over his wife's death, and looked for a way to eliminate fear in order to face up to it. Gerald began kidnapping people at a support group he attended under the name of "Todd" and exposed them to their greatest fears and then killed them. He extracted their adrenal glands as part of a plot to create a serum to eliminate fear. He got Jonathan to assist, although the boy was reluctant.

Assisting His Father

Gerald's killing spree draws the attention of the Gotham City Police Department, with detectives Jim Gordon and Harvey Bullock looking into the case.

Gerald kidnaps a therapist named Scottie Mullins from the support group and exposes her to her greatest fear - drowning, which he carries out at a swimming pool. Jonathan arrives on the scene to inform his father that the meter where they have parked is about to run out. He is shocked by what he sees, although aware of his father's plans. Gerald assures his son it will be alright, and gives him money to feed the meter.

In the midst of drowning Scottie, Gordon and Bullock arrive on the scene, with Bullock saving Scottie and Gordon giving chase. However Gerald manages to escape with Jonathan.

Gerald kills another victim and extracts their adrenal glands, and manages to create his serum which he uses on himself, which causes him to hallucinate a fire and his burning wife. Having gone through this hallucination, Gerald's fears are eliminated. He tries the serum on Jonathan, but in panic, Jonathan flees the scene and into a nearby cornfield. Gerald gives chase and while running away, Jonathan dismisses his father, claiming that he is unafraid and does not need the serum. Nonetheless, Gerald injects his son with the serum. After overdosing, Jonathan looks up at a scarecrow and begins to hallucinate it as a monstrous creature, causing him to scream in terror. Bullock and Gordon arrive, and Gerald (having had his fears eliminated) opens fire on the officers, but ends up being shot dead.

Jonathan is taken to the hospital, where a doctor informs him that as a side effect of the serum, he will be in a constant state of fear. Strapped down on his hospital bed, Jonathan hallucinates a monstrous Scarecrow creeping around the bed before finally swooping down on the boy and "attacking" him.

Birth of the Scarecrow

Years later, Crane is visited at Gotham Asylum by a criminal gang. One member once was an orderly at Asylum and reveals their leader that Crane used to talk about the fear formula of his father. The warden reveals that the fear serum injected into Jonathan's system overloaded his fear response and created the fear of a certain boogey man inside Jonathan. The warden claims that this will be useful to control him and then allows the gangsters to take Jonathan with them.

Crane At Arkham

Crane at Gotham Asylum.

Jonathan leads them to his former home, where he shows them several flasks of his father's serum hidden underneath a floorboard. Although he helps them get the serum, Jonathan then panicks and begs the men to allow him to leave, as he cannot be there after dark. The men ignore this plea, however, and the gang leader orders him to take his father's notebook and create as much of the fear gas as the leader demands. To keep him compliant, the gangsters take the scarecrow off from the nearby field and wave it around near Crane - who completely panicks and agrees to their orders.

However, during the first attack the gang performs with Crane's gas, Jim Gordon immediately connects the gas to Jonathan. The two head to Asylum to see Crane but the warden prevents them from meeting Crane. They keep the scarecrow in their makeshift lab. When the gang decides that they will use the gas to attack the opening of Oswald Cobblepot's newest club, they leave Jonathan behind in the building. They even lock him up in a small dark room, together with the Scarecrow.

While trapped inside the room, Jonathan loudly bangs against the door and begs the men to let him go. The men have left, however, and Jonathan screams in terror as the Scarecrow beast seemingly calls his name and attacks him.

Attack on the Asylum

When their plans have failed, one of the gangsters storms back into the house and demands that Crane fabricates more of the toxin. However, when he locks up the room they imprisoned Crane in, he finds no horrified boy there. Instead, he finds Crane clad in the rags of the former scarecrow. When the surprised man asks the person whether it is Crane under the rags, Crane replies that Crane is not here right now, just the Scarecrow. He then aims his arm at the gangster and, using a pipe attached to his arm, douses the gangster in fear gas. Although the GCPD learns of the location after the gang leader has been captured, they find the house abandoned when they arrive. In the backyard, they find the gangster Crane attacked - tied to the scarecrow and out of his mind in panic. The man loudly screams that the Scarecrow is coming but is too afraid to speak any more.

Scarecrow sees Gordon

Scarecrow at Gotham Asylum.

Meanwhile, Scarecrow infiltrated Gotham Asylum where he confronts the warden that sold him off. Crane asks whether Reed is trying to cover his dirty footprints but claims that it is too late - Reed's deeds have already stained him. Reed asks how Scarecrow managed to get into the building and Crane replies that he picked up a thing or two during his three-year long imprisonment. Surprised, Reed realizes that he is being confronted by Jonathan Crane. Crane confirms it but claims that he is no longer the frightened boy he was anymore.

Angry and bitter, Crane mentions that Reed did nothing to help his psyche, his ways of "treating" patients were ice baths and shock therapy. Reed tells Jonathan that he could just leave and promises that he would not tell anyone. Crane claims that he has no intention of leaving. He claims that he managed to cure himself - he was afraid of the scarecrow and now they are one. When Reed jumps towards his desk to get his gun from one of the drawers, Crane douses him in fear gas. While Reed is experiencing the drug, Crane tells the frightened man that his father was a genius, who did everything he did for Jonathan's sake - out of love. He states that Gerald Crane was trying to destroy fear and orders the warden to face his fears.

After the warden has fled, Crane heads into the cell blocks, where he talks to the men and women tied to their beds. He claims that they are all prisoners and that his father would have saved them all. He claims that his father was murdered by the GCPD and that the Gotham Asylum inmates will be his army. With his newfound army, which Crane covers in fear gas to make them compliant, Crane plans to storm the GCPD to show the men who murdered his father what it is like to experience true fear.

Scarecrow poisons

Jonathan poisons Gordon with fear gas.

When Gordon arrives at the asylum, having heard of the riot, Crane sees him on the security feed. He recognizes Gordon as the man who murdered his father and prepares vengeance. Using the controls of the asylum, Crane closes all escape routes for Gordon and also uses the loudspeakers to send the maniacs at Gordon. Addressing Gordon directly, Crane states that tonight Gordon will know true fear. After Gordon has defeated the henchmen, Crane attacks him personally and disarms Gordon with his scythe.

Aiming his scythe at Gordon's throat, Scarecrow claims that he did not believe in fate until out of all the policemen in Gotham, Gordon was the sole one to show up. Scarecrow removes his mask and Gordon asks what happened to Jonathan. Crane replies that it all started with Gordon murdering his father. Gordon tries to explain that Gerald Crane was insane and even tried to murder Jonathan but Crane does not listen and screams that Gerald was a pioneer that tried to save all mankind. Crane then gasses Gordon with his fear gas, causing him to panick. While Gordon is subjected to the gas, Crane wonders what it is that scares Gordon the most.

At the climax of Gordon's fear trip, Crane tries to manipulate Gordon into committing suicide. However, Gordon is able to overcome the effects of the fear toxin, allowing him to fight back against Crane. Outraged, Crane demands to know how Gordon overcame the toxin. Gordon throws Crane to the ground and disarms him, stating that he overcame his fears. Crane draws a knife and claims that it is impossible, one can only defeat his fear by becoming it - as Crane did. Gordon claims that Crane has a choice to make and offers to help. However, Crane spitefully claims that he will never become that weak boy again and hurls his knife at Gordon. While Gordon jumps out of the knife's path, Crane turns around and flees through a secret exit. Gordon follows him but Crane has already reached one of the main halls where he sends all the assembled lunatics to kill Gordon. While they fight Gordon, Gordon realizes that water is the counter-serum for Crane's fear toxin and activates the building's sprinklers. While the fear toxin is reversed, several men still attack Gordon, allowing Crane to flee from the asylum.

Alliance with Valeska and Tetch

At some point later, Scarecrow was recaptured and imprisoned at Arkham Asylum. Whilst locked up in Arkham, Jonathan managed to perfect
One of My Three Soups0399

Crane is together with Valeska and Tetch in Arkham.

an explosive liquid in his cell toilet. He formed an alliance with fellow prisoners Jerome Valeska and Jervis Tetch, and the three of them calculated a plan to break out of the asylum, which they managed by Tetch hypnotizing the guards and Jonathan destroying the lock of Valeska's cell with his new concoction. In doing so, they released over 50 inmates in the process. Whilst Jervis kept the police distracted, Jonathan was able to go undetected whilst he gathered what he needed for his fear toxin. After Jervis is apprehended, Jonathan and Jerome hijack the prison van he is being transported in and Jonathan gasses the security guard. They untie Jervis in the back and make off in the vehicle as they head to St. Ignatius.

Member of the Legion of Horribles

Scarecrow is then seen at Jerome's "mandatory brunch meeting." Scarecrow is asked about the "you know what" to which he says it's going "dreadfully." Crane is then seen at Xander Wilde's secret hideout. He is told by Jerome to go with Tetch to stop Jim Gordon and Harvey Bullock. Crane and Tetch fail and escape back to the hideout with Jerome. Having occupied the ingredients for Jerome's toxin, Crane has it complete and uses it on a test subject and he bursts out into contagious laughter until death.

Mandatory Brunch Meeting0338

Crane attends the meeting of Legion of Horribles.

Following the display of the laughing gas he had created to the legion, Scarecrow and the rest of the legion proceeded to kidnap the interim mayor Holden Pritchard and other powerful Gothamites as part of Jerome's plan. After obtaining the hostages Jerome presented the laughing gas to the terrified hostages by having Scarecrow gas a female member of the of the group.

Scarecrow was later seen alongside Mr. Freeze raiding a lab in order to make and obtain a large amount of laughing gas. During the commotion a staff member was accosted by Crane into doing the legions bidding after asking how much gas was required, Scarecrow had proceeded to show her the containers that would be filled and the amount required at the same time to the horrified lab staff. After the raid on the lab Scarecrow, Mad Hatter and Penguin were next seen at a hanger in which the legion planned to steal a blimp in order to disperse the laughing gas on the attendees of the music festival Jerome was holding hostage in Gotham. Noticing the unwelcome guests one of the pilots attempted to deter the members of the legion only to be gassed by Scarecrow whilst Mad Hatter proceeded to hypnotize the remaining pilot in order to pilot the blimp. Finally losing his edge, Penguin tried to put a stop to the plan by questioning Jerome's plan himself, which then revealed that Scarecrow knew that Oswald would go to Gordon and betray the group, as Jerome himself had also deduced and proceeded to command a thug to knock out Oswald and lock him in the Blimp.

Assisting Jeremiah Valeska

Weeks after Jerome's death, Scarecrow allied with Jeremiah Valeska to help drive Bruce Wayne insane. They filmed there torturing of Alfred
One Bad Day2174

Crane is about to fight Selina Kyle.

Pennyworth and played the footage to Bruce as he traveled through their maze. When Selina Kyle came in to help Bruce, Scarecrow and his thugs battled her before escaping.

Claiming his territory

When Gotham City became a no man's land, all the villains started to claim territory. Scarecrow, took over a drug maker's lab and began to use his tools for his own experiments. Once the drug maker returned to his home, he immediately noticed that someone had invaded his laboratory. As he thought out loud asking 'what the hell', Crane suddenly appeared behind him. Scarecrow's response was 'no, not hell', before spraying the man with his fear gas, causing the drug maker to scream in dread. Right then, Scarecrow drew his scythe and used it to behead the man. Afterwards, Crane slowly lifted the severed head, before announcing that hell is what's coming.

Crane began to lead his own gang during Gotham's isolation from the mainland. Crane and his gang led an attack on the GCPD storage in order to steal the food supplies, with other members of the gang attacking the hospital and stealing medical equipment. Crane knocked out the power at the GCPD and ended up coming face to face with Gordon. Armoured with his scythe, Crane began to fight Gordon, however ended up hitting a pipe which caused steam to hit Crane, forcing him to retreat.

He later appeared as a dream while Jim Gordon was in coma.

Personality

In his teenage years, Jonathan Crane was shown to be a normal boy forced into his crazed father's wave of crimes. Although he was an accomplice in his father's kidnappings, Jonathan is shown to be disturbed and distressed at the situation; but he continues to remain loyal to his dad. As Gerald continues his quest to eliminate fear, Jonathan is pushed over the edge and attempts to abandon his father, showing opposition to his scheme and claiming that he was not even afraid.

After being injected with the formula, Jonathan suffered frightening side effects and began to hallucinate a monstrous Scarecrow stalking him, sending Jonathan into madness.

Having been forced to create his father's fear toxin for a gang of outlaws, as well as being exposed to a scarecrow in order to keep him in line, Jonathan's mind finally snapped and took on the identity of the monstrous scarecrow that had been tormenting him; going as far as to dismiss his identity as Jonathan Crane and rather as the Scarecrow.

Appearances

Season 1

  • The Fearsome Dr. Crane
  • The Scarecrow

Season 4

  • A Dark Knight: Pax Penguina
  • A Dark Knight: The Fear Reaper
  • A Dark Knight: One of My Three Soups
  • A Dark Knight: Mandatory Brunch Meeting
  • A Dark Knight: That's Entertainment
  • A Dark Knight: One Bad Day
  • A Dark Knight: No Man's Land

Season 5

  • Legend of the Dark Knight: Year Zero
  • Legend of the Dark Knight: The Trial of Jim Gordon (nightmare)

Gallery

Images

Videos

Trivia

  • This version of the character is the youngest incarnation of the supervillain Scarecrow.
  • Ben McKenzie (who plays Jim Gordon) had expressed interest during the third season of the show of Jonathan Crane being reintroduced and further exploring the character; which came true for season 4.
  • Unlike most versions of Scarecrow, this one is not a professor (due to his young age).
  • Jonathan's origin in the show takes elements from his different origins in the comics, although slightly changing them. In his Prime Earth counterpart, Jonathan was raised by his sadistic grandmother and never had contact with his real father Gerald (who in this continuity was not a villain) and had little contact with his mother Karen. When grown up, he attempts to get revenge on his father by killing him, but is stopped by Batman. In the New 52 backstory, Jonathan is experimented on by his father Dr. Crane as part of his research. When Dr. Crane dies, Jonathan is trapped in a darkened room and it takes a few days for authorities to find him as Dr. Crane's school reports him missing.
  • His costume in the second half of season 4 resembles the version from the Arkham videogame series.
  • It is unknown when and how Jonathan Crane ended up in Arkham Asylum in "A Dark Knight: One of My Three Soups" since he was able to escape the GCPD at the end of "A Dark Knight: The Fear Reaper".

External links

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