Fox’s “Batman-without-Batman” soap opera is the most amazingly weird show on television. For every episode this season, Deadshirt’s own Sarah Register, Kayleigh Hearn and Max Robinson discuss the good, the bad…the beginning? of little Bruce Wayne, skinny Oswald Cobblepot, and Jim Gordon sans ‘stache as they try to find their way in the misery-soaked, work-a-day world of…GOTHAM.
Max: This episode was pretty great! And also very sad! But also pretty funny. GOTHAM!
AH SO GOTHAM CITY HAS A BOUTIQUE SLAVERY AUCTION? COOL, COOL.
Kayleigh: This episode is a rollercoaster of emotions. Human trafficking is the kind of creepy real-world evil I’d like Gotham to stay away from, but I did like how it was used to show the difference between Bridgit and Selina. Bridgit’s fueled by her anger, and after enduring her shitty firebug brothers’ abuse, she can’t let other women be turned into chattel. Selina still preaches a more selfish, “You gotta look out for number one!” philosophy, but she can’t let go of her friendship with Bridgit, much to her later sorrow. I really liked these girls.
Max: Yeah that was kind of a heavy beat in an episode that was already kind of heavy. Selina and Bridgit’s friendship was a good centerpoint for the whole episode. Liked Selina being cynical and world weary while also being like “uh nobody tried to *get* me” during their last conversation.
Sarah: Selina puffing her chest and saying you gotta look out for yourself and then breaking down and hugging her friend is SO Selina. I loved the show’s understanding of the character in this episode. And yeah, the sex slave auction was kind of awful. I want more Bad Guy Costcos and less human trafficking.
Max: I hope we get some kind of super-villain themed brunch spot next episode.
Kayleigh: I want an episode about Selina and her preteen girl gang.
BUTCH HAS A MALLET HAND NOW
Max: Man remember when I was joking about the robot eye? What a wild ride this season has been for Butch.
Kayleigh: Tabitha and Barbara joking about sticking random weapons to his stump, followed by the reveal of his mallet-hand, got such a huge laugh out of me. By the end of the season Butch will not only have the robot eye, but also a peg-leg, metal teeth, and little helicopter blades that come out of his back to let him fly away while he carries Penguin in his arms.
Sarah: This was by far the sickest and most hilarious thing they’ve done to Butch yet.
Kayleigh: Everything in my life until now has been leading up to a MALLET/WHIP FIGHT.
Max: It was surreal to see him swinging that thing around. Poor Butch. Dude is going to lose his damn mind.
Sarah: I will be immensely upset if Butch ends up dying. I would rather they augment him for eternity.
BULLOCK KICKING THAT BURNT GUY THOUGH
Sarah: “I hate that it smells like good barbecue in here.” This was a good episode for Harvey quotes.
Max: Bullock getting scared by the crispified Pike brother grabbing at him and just weakly kicking him is maybe the single best Bullock moment of the show. “THIS ISN’T ON ME!”
Sarah: Not just kicking him, but kicking him repeatedly, possibly to death.
Kayleigh: The Pike Brothers are that “What are you going to do, stab me?” picture in human form. (Just replace “stab” with “burn us into crispy barbecue because you have a flamethrower and we are stupid, stupid men.”) Good riddance.
Max: It’s cool because nobody really gives a shit that they’re dead but everyone acknowledges that Bridgit crossed a pretty fucked up moral rubicon there. Also, loved Bullock playing candy bar dealmaster with special guest star/no-good snitch Ivy Pepper.
Kayleigh: Never forget: Poison Ivy sold out Selina for a goddamn candy bar.
ALRIGHT WELL THE NYGMA/KRINGLE THING WE KNEW WAS GOING TO HAPPEN HAPPENED
Kayleigh: THIS WAS SO FUCKED UP. Knowing that this was the inevitable end to Nygma’s obsession with Kringle didn’t make it any easier to watch, and the scene itself (post-coitus, Kringle still in her negligee) had this air of sexual violence that was really disturbing. I’ll miss Kringle and her adorable retro 1950s outfits, but man, it is so frustrating that this character was created just to be abused and killed by the men around her.
Sarah: The scene was definitely disturbing and also incredibly sad. Cory Michael Smith’s initial reaction (before the literal shrieking) to murdering her actually pinged my heartstrings a little. It was heartbreaking, especially since I kept hoping that it wouldn’t happen so quickly and Krygma would have a few more fondue dates with Gordon and Lee.
Max: It’s been odd watching Nygma go from a character whose entire deal was “weird comic relief” to psycho-sexually strangling his girlfriend. Wonder if this means we’re getting The Riddler by the end of the season.
Kayleigh: It’s strange because I thought the “classic” Riddler’s driving force was his inflated ego, and his belief that he always had to be the smartest guy in the room, YOU PEONS! And it seemed that the first season was heading in that direction, with all the cops ignoring his riddles and pushing him around. But then Kringle happened, and instead of the scorned, bitter supergenius he’s just a “don’t call me crazy!” crazy guy who kills his girlfriend, and that’s much less interesting.
Max: Yeah the (seeming?) end of the Kringle plot-line really puts into perspective how “murderous Ed Nygma” as a take is sorta pointless.
Sarah: It also seems like they were trying to play up that whole split personality thing by having him not realize he was killing her while he was killing her? He’s incredibly inconsistent. I would have preferred three more seasons of him not killing people and just making Jim solve silly riddles to guess the cause of death of cadavers.
THEO GALAVAN IS MATCHMAKING 12-YEAR-OLDS FOR HIS OWN GAIN
Sarah: I couldn’t help but be creeped out that Theo invited Bruce (alone, sans Alfred) to dinner only to show off his shiny ward and then try to set up a shady business deal with a child.
Max: Tabitha is so horny that it’s creeping me out. Good showing from the Galavans in this one; Frain playing Theo with increasing smarm is a lot of fun.
Kayleigh: I’m kind of worried about Silver? Partly because so far she’s just a pretty cipher. But, like, where is she when all the whippings and hangings are happening at this penthouse? Does she have any idea what Theo and Tabitha are? Are Butch and his mallet-hand going to help her with her homework?
Sarah: Please yes. Let Butch babysit.
Max: Silver’s going to be an Amazo robot.
Sarah: Did anyone else get the feeling that Bruce wasn’t buying Theo’s quid pro quo offer? Maybe I’m just hoping. He’s got to become the world’s greatest detective eventually.
R.I.P. FIREFLY. CAN’T STOP THE SIGNAL OR WHATEVER
Max: I really like how this episode puts Gordon and Selina/Cat at odds over Bridgit. Gordon tried to do the right thing and help her but failed. And Selina, rightfully, calls him out on his shit when he tries to beat around the bush! It’s a really good beat that builds off their history together.
Kayleigh: This was the best Selina episode in a long, long time, and I’m glad the focus was her friendship with Bridgit and her distrust of Gordon instead of, say, more Bruce/Selina puppy love. (As cute as they are.)
Sarah: I’m glad that they finally delivered because not two roundtables ago we were talking about how Selina didn’t have anything to do this season (besides getting slapped by grown-ups). Suddenly the writers seem to really get what Selina Kyle would be like at thirteen. I’m sad that this probably means the end of any kind of trust between her and Gordon, but the irony is that they do still trust each other to an extent. Gordon walked into his apartment when Selina was holding Lee at gunpoint and then poured himself a drink. Both of them knew the other meant them no immediate harm, but it doesn’t bode well for their future.
Max: Gordon walking in, not saying anything, and getting a beer, was a surprisingly subtle bit of action for this show.
SIKE, FIREFLY ISN’T DEAD AND THERE’S A WAYNE INDUSTRIES-FUNDED SUPERVILLAIN FARM AT INDIAN HILL
Max: Holy shit what a reveal. ON A SHOW WITH MANY GOOD REVEALS! I was worrying this show was going to forget about the “Wayne Enterprises is super duper evil” plotline and now here we are.
Sarah: I actually said “holy shit” out loud. Just, holy shit, man. And this is tied to Wayne Industries? Was Thomas Wayne in on this?? I’m afraid that “Indian Hill” will be the first thing that Bruce sees when his dad’s computer finally boots up.
Kayleigh: I’m glad Bridgit’s alive, because if the show had killed her and Ms. Kringle, I would have been really fucking depressed?
Max: Now she’s The Living Hot Pocket. Gothammmm.
Gotham airs Monday at 8 p.m. Eastern on FOX.