Gotham has been slowly bringing the Riddler out to play over the past two seasons on the show with Ed Nygma's gradual descent into madness. Now we have an idea of how this show's version of the infamous villain actually came about. And, if you think you know what drove Nygma to embrace his dark side after leading a, seemingly, normal and peaceful life, his portrayer, Cory Michael Smith, believes you probably have it wrong. Instead of blaming the Gotham police co-workers who teased him, or, you know, himself, for taking a big turn to the dark side, Nygma is convinced that fate itself has sealed his life into that of an evil-doer.
Cory Michael Smith spoke about this idea with Comicbook.com, revealing that Nygma had to split into two personalities in order to take his dark side fully to heart.
In case you've forgotten, Nygma's first kill was the boorish, and probably physically abusive, detective who briefly dated Kristen Kringle. After Nygma confronts him for not treating Kristen right, their confrontation eventually leads to Nygma stabbing the ever loving crap out of him, leaving the cop dead and his body in need of disposal. Nygma had no intention of killing him, but once he did, his darker side was unleased in a major way. His personality split, and according to Cory Michael Smith, this was the only way he could deal with the darkness that he found himself capable of.
So, how exactly does fate play a part in all this? Because, even from a casual perspective, Nygma is responsible for letting his anger get the best of him to the point where he kills two people and gets rid of their bodies. Well, Smith has an idea of how this came about, as well.
So, it seems that our soon-to-be Riddler feels like this is just his life now. He hasn't made the decisions that have brought him to his life locked up in Arkham Asylum; instead fate put situations in his way that his darker side couldn't help but respond to, and it did with ferocity. All Nygma feels he's doing is responding to what fate has presented him with in the only way possible.
I have to say, I think that reasoning might be brilliant, and even nuttier than what I could have dreamed up for why Nygma finally went from sorta weirdo to full-on murderous evil. And, it makes perfect sense. Bad guys almost always feel that they have been wronged and that the way they handle things is for the best reasons. There's no real reason for Riddler-light to feel any different.
We'll be able to watch Ed Nygma continue his trip down the dark road of murder and mayhem when Gotham returns to FOX on September 19 for Season 3.