Gotham continued its crazy train ride to destruction this week, as Theo, Barbara, Gordon and Bruce look to settle their collective beef. Was tonight the night? Well, kind of – let’s find out how things unfolded.
In a world of moral greyness, Barbara surely stands out as one of the not-so-complex characters. There may have once been some good in her, but now she is just bat-crap crazy (excuse the pun). Case in point: get a load of her Freud-meets-Lovecraft-on-acid dream to start the episode. She’s marrying Gordon, but it looks more like a funeral by the way everyone is dressed. Then, for some reason, Penguin shows up out of nowhere (Penguin?!). Damn, this girl is starting to get interesting – too bad she’s going to die this season.
Or is she? The episode seems to be setting us up for a final, “only one of us comes out alive” showdown between Barbara and Gordon, as she convinces him to go on a little drive through crazy-town with her in the back seat. Side-note: was Lee ok with Gordon kissing Barbara in the interrogation room? It seemed like it at first, but later she is as cool as Mr. Freeze with Gordon – these two seem to be in trouble. I hope I am wrong.
Moving on, Gordon, Harvey and Barbara all go in the car so that Gordon can get to the real enemy, Galavan. First of all, I am not sure what I think of Gotham’s liberal “borrowing” from other pop culture landmarks. Previously, we saw Edward channel Golem pretty obviously in his inner battle between good and evil. Now, this week, Gotham takes us back to Se7en, with Barbara playing the Kevin Spacey role (no offense to Kevin Spacey, but Erin Richards is a lot easier on the eyes). Hell, Galavan even gave her a mysterious box at the start of the episode. On one hand, I love the references to stories I loved from the past. On the other hand, it isn’t exactly original narrative sometimes. At any rate, Gordon doesn’t seem to have seen the movie, because he is determined to go with Barbara no matter what. Typical.
The inevitable turn of events is perhaps a bit too predictable. Barbara manages to get Gordon tied up in the exact same Cathedral where her nutty “dream wedding” took place. And – hello – here comes Lee duct-taped to a chair right on cue. Well, at least it wasn’t her head in a box. But what wasn’t predictable was Barbara’s incredible – almost unbelievable (wink wink) – luck, when she lands on a bush after she jumps out the window. Come on Gotham, Barbara had her moment, she was entertaining in her cooky way – but I am not sure I want to do this all over again next season.
I will confess that when I saw the title for tonight’s episode, “Tonight’s the Night,” I immediately assumed that meant Penguin getting his revenge on Galavan. Yes! Get him Penguin, kick his little greasy-haired ass! But no, that was not to be this week – Galavan does receive a huge setback, though. Gordon gets the proof he needs about Galavan from his little Barbara adventure, and he goes straight over to Galavan’s office and cold-cocks him in the face without so much as a “how’s your mother.” Sweet – I have been wanting to do that for a long time myself. And, even better, Gordon arrives just in time to save Bruce from making a very, very bad move – although to Bruce’s credit, he does have second thoughts before Gordon even walks in. But Galavan, ever the slimeball that he is, quickly throws the envelope containing the identities of whoever murdered Bruce’s parents onto the fire – NOOoooo! That envelope must have been soaked in gasoline or something, ’cause damn that thing burned up fast. Poor Bruce will have to wait to find his answers – as must we all.
So the question is, where the heck was Penguin throughout all this? Ok, hold on. Because of course, this episode kept the Edward Nygma plot warm with a couple of check-ins on his horrifying/funny/sad circus of insanity. He’s trying to bury Kristen, the love of his life whose body he has neatly packed into a small Samsonite. Naturally, he is having a little picnic while he digs, and some local rube walks up asking questions. Damn, now Edward has to fit two bodies in one hole (side note – another idea “borrowed,” this time from Joe Pesci in Casino). Oh, the burdens of being a psycho killer these days.
Coming back to his picnic blanket, Edward notices a trail of blood leading away into the forest. Great – now three bodies. Sighing in exasperation, Edward goes off to find the person dripping all this blood. I must admit, I had forgotten about Penguin by this point, so I was genuinely surprised to find out it was him who Edward found at the end of the trail. It turns out that Penguin has been living in a trailer all this time, still bleeding profusely from his last confrontation with Galavan and Tabitha. Now, how Penguin managed to go shopping for a trailer, and have it moved out here in the forest (with electricity and all), I won’t ask. But I kinda just did. Anyway, Penguin comes running out of the trailer, begging Edward for help. Wow, what does the show have in mind for these two? A Penguin-Riddler tag team? Penguin blackmailing Edward? Edward holding Penguin captive? There are so many directions this could go, I can’t begin to guess.
So, the main villain this season, Galavan, appears to be on the ropes. But there is no way I am going to believe that he is out yet. There is still lots of season left, and I am sure this little weasel has some more up his sleeve. I also have a bit of a hunch too: Fish is not dead. Yes, that’s right, I don’t think we have seen the last of Fish. We didn’t actually see her die, and in shows like this, unless you actually see the person blow up, into small pieces, they aren’t dead (sometimes even blowing up isn’t the end either). So I bet you we see Fish before this season is over. My ultimate fan-wish would be to see Fish return and team up with Penguin to bring down Galavan. Now that would put things into a perfect balance once again. Let’s keep watching to find out.