Episode 7 of season 1 of Gotham was a vast improvement on how the show has been doing lately. Gotham started off strong but dipped recently, I was losing faith in it. I knew Gotham had a lot of potential that was clear from the first couple of episodes, it just wasn’t fulfilling this potential. Fortunately my faith in Gotham has been restored in the most recent instalment.
This episode moved at lightning pace, from the beginning the action was under-way. Even when there wasn’t a shoot-out or fight scene happening something important was going on between characters that would impact the character significantly. This was due to the fact that the events of last episode threw everything up in the air for this episode. From the beginning onwards the events of this episode were the aftermath of the previous episode. It felt like everything was happening at once, The Penguin revealing himself to be alive in the previous episode was a well needed injection of adrenaline into the storyline. This caused the qualities of each character to be sharper, more exaggerated than usual which led to some excellent drama.
The events of this episode painted Gotham as a truly lawless town, there appeared to be no regulations for the GCPD, Gordon and Bullock never called for backup or followed the rule book, they took the law into their own hands. Without Batman, the appeal of the show is that it fleshes out the history of Gotham. The draw of this show is that we can now watch or read Batman content and have a better understanding of the city’s past. It makes it more possible to submerge yourself in the DC Universe when you have knowledge about the wars and events that the iconic city is built upon.
Speaking of the Batman inflections, in some instances the soundtrack echoed the Batman themes that have featured in DC TV shows and movies. The appearance of Batman villain, Victor Zsasz was a nice addition, that entire scene was incredibly tense. Zsasz was an excellent on-screen presence, he appeared to be in charge despite being in a police station full of police officers. Victor and his henchmen marching into the police station and taking liberties with the officers, giving commands and calling the shots really illustrated just how in control of Gotham the crime families are. Montoya and Allen rescuing Gordon from Zsasz added something to the previously quite irritating characters. The fact that they saved Gordon and had to bring him to the dissection lab of a university felt very much like honest cops making do with little resources, it fit well with Gotham. In many Batman comics you will find story lines such as these.
Alfred collaring Allen believing him to be a criminal was a fun little moment, once again Petwee’s Pennyworth is magnetic on-screen. The following scene inside Wayne Manor was beautifully done, it was well judged, an appropriate moment for where the show is going. Penguin continues to be a fascinating villain especially now that they are getting an idea of the character’s theme in the soundtrack. There is something Joker-esque about the character’s theme, the score when Cobblepot is around has echoes of circus music.
This was a return to form for Gotham, the episode was fast paced with well choreographed action and some nice moments between characters. The closing scenes were tense, with excellent acting and a lot of reveals in relation to the true allegiances of key characters.