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: After last week’s Mr. Cupcake tour-de-force this episode was kind of a letdown, but don’t worry because a million things happened!
GOING TO AN ART GALLERY IN GOTHAM CITY IS JUST ASKING FOR A COLORFULLY-DRESSED MADMAN TO GAS YOU
Max: We’ve been joking about this show being Batman ‘66 for a while now, and uh, well, the cold open of this week’s Gotham COULD NOT HAVE BEEN MORE EXPLICITLY BATMAN ‘66: An art museum! A giant bomb! Signage!
Kayleigh: Funny that you say that this is pure Batman ‘66, because this opening actually gave me acid flashbacks to Tim Burton’s Batman, only the Riddler isn’t defacing paintings to win Kim Basinger’s crimped-hair love with Prince blasting from a boombox. Also: Riddler can just make bombs and shit now?
Max: Oh man it’s totally one “PARTYMAN” short of a Burton Batman scene. Riddler is doing full on riddle crimes; we’ve come a long way.
Sarah: Definitely got Burton vibes here. I also kind of loved that Gordon solved the Riddler’s first official riddle in about ten seconds.
PENGUIN BRINGS BUTCH CUPCAKES, AMAZINGLY DOES NOT GET THE BACK OF BUTCH’S ROBO-HAND
Max: Butch’s hands, to date: Hammer, Drill, Gold.
Kayleigh: I did appreciate Butch dressed like Thurston Howell III. And this has to be the only time Penguin has offered a man food without promptly killing them.
Max: I was amazed there wasn’t poison in that cupcake. Man, cupcakes are kind of a motif with this show?
Sarah: Is the non-poisoned food a sign that Penguin is actually cured? He almost seems genuine every time he proudly produces his “Definitely Sane [wink wink]” certificate.
IVY PEPPER LIVES
Max: This was like the first time Ivy’s been either fun or felt remotely like her comics counterpart. If they make Gotham continuity Ivy just a weird stoner drug dealer, it’ll be the best Poison Ivy ever.
Kayleigh: I’m always surprised when Ivy Pepper reappears. I keep expecting the show to quietly brush her into the “things from the Gotham pilot that did not work” dustbin with poor Renee Montoya and Crispus Allen.
Sarah: Her little j/k smirk after her murder joke won me over. I don’t mind her palling around with Cat and Bruce for a while, especially since she might be out of a job now.
PENGUIN MEETS HIS FATHER, WINCHESTER WEE HERMAN
Max: Over the last week, Paul Reubens has reprised his two most famous roles: Pee Wee Herman and The Penguin’s deadbeat millionaire dad. I can’t wait for Oswald to meet, then murder, The King of Cartoons.
Kayleigh: Paul Reubens as Robin Lord Taylor’s father is absolutely brilliant, and I can’t wait to see how this plotline unfolds. I’m already in love with the fact that the nice, brainwashed Penguin is apparently playing the role of the naive heroine in a Gothic thriller.
Sarah: The first son has succumbed to hysteria and is locked in the attic.
Max: Crimson Peng. I can’t wait until his weird rich family tries to eat him or whatever.
Sarah: For real, his new family was circling him like those Sunnydale students circled the Principal in that Buffy hyena episode.
I THINK A BATMAN IS BEGINNING HERE
Max: The force ghost of Alfred, who is still alive, spoke to Bruce and told him to openly antagonize Butch’s nephew, not-Jonah Hill.
Kayleigh: I think this is the first time I’ve noticed David Mazouz’s growth spurt? Anyway, it’s very satisfying to see Bruce out of Wayne Manor and actually starting to kick superstitious, cowardly lot ass. Selina as Bruce’s guide in the ways of the underworld is a great twist on his origin story and opens up a lot of storytelling possibilities.
Sarah: I liked his moment of empowerment after he realized he could win a fight, but he’s luckier than he realizes to have Selina around to keep him grounded.
Max: Last week was a great Bruce self-realization moment. This week’s was alright but it was hilarious how Bruce’s “badass moment” was Neil Degrasse Tyson-ing some low level crook while he gets his asskicked.
OH YEAH AND RIDDLER FRAMES GORDON FOR MURDER AND GORDON GOES TO JAIL ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Max: Gotham is the kind of TV show where its main character is put on trial for murder AND THE ENTIRE TRIAL IS OFFSCREEN AT THE END OF AN EPISODE. Like, what the hell??
Kayleigh: Gordon’s entire trial happening during a commercial break was so jarringly fast-tracked I thought it was going to turn out to be a dream sequence. Oh, and Barbara hears about Jim’s arrest and wakes up from her coma??? Such a hilarious soap opera twist, I cackled and clapped my hands.
Sarah: The news of Gordon’s conviction bringing Barbara back to life is so perfectly Gotham that it got me waking my neighbors with screams of “YASS.”
Max: What amazing super-power will Prof. Hugo Strange give our beloved Barbara? I hope she gets techno-organic bat wings. Harvey’s just been kinda hanging out in these last bunch of episodes so I hope the end of this episode, where he’s determined to prove Gordon’s innocence, means we’re getting some “Wolverine in the sewer under the Hellfire Club” badassery.
Sarah: Who can get our hero out of this weirdly efficient justice system quagmire: his doting partner/uncle/lover, a slightly sociopathic twelve-year-old, or his literally insane ex-girlfriend?
Max: We’ll find out hopefully next week…on Gotham.
Gotham airs Monday at 8 p.m. Eastern on FOX.