Fox’s “Batman-without-Batman” soap opera is the most amazing weird show on network 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.
The Great Gotham Mob War rages on and we’re going to see a ton of moral compromises in this one, folks! Filling in for Kayleigh this week is our good friend Andy Niemann, who may or may not be Professor Pyg after black market plastic surgery.
WHO RUN THE WORLD? GIRLS!
Max: Sofia Falcone has teamed up with Selina, Barbara and Tabitha in what local experts are deeming a “’Bad Blood’ music video kind of deal.” Meanwhile Professor Pyg got a spiffy new face and is back on his Jigsaw bullshit!
Andy: I like this proto version of the Gotham City Sirens which is two Catwomans and Barbara just there to make quips and react to Sofia sleeping with Jim.
Sarah: If Jim was any kind of detective, a dying man wouldn’t have to point out a giant message written in dripping blood.
THE RETURN OF MACK
Max: It’s Special Guest Star John Doman back as Carmine Falcone! It’s Gotham, so naturally a dying old man slaps his adult daughter in the face for dishonorable mobstering.
Sarah: I turn into such a woo girl every time Falcone shows up.
Andy: It’s wild how Carmine has been around since the first season and still perfectly fits into the wacky show this has evolved into.
Max: “Solve a mob war by tattling to someone’s dad” is a pretty Penguin move, come to think.
PARTY MONSTER BRUCE WAYNE NEEDS JESUS
Max: Nobody’s getting laid under Alfred’s roof!!!!
Andy: I lost it when Alfred just poured water over hungover Bruce and his lady friends. You just know this is something Alfred does to Bruce even later in life.
Sarah: Yeah I feel like this is the scene they will fake recreate later in life to establish Bruce’s bachelor facade.
HEAVEN JUST GOT ANOTHER ANGEL
Max: Don’t you hate it when your crime lord in exile father forces you to abandon your plans of underworld conquest and you stop to admire a single rose, pricking your finger and metaphorically signalling the death of your dad via drive by shooting??
Sarah: Literally screamed “NOOOOO!” I knew this was coming, what with his looming illness and the shows dim reflection of Long Halloween/Dark Victory in some storylines, but it still stung.
Andy: Pour one out for the Don.
EVERYONE’S DEEP IN THEIR FEELINGS AT THE FALCONE FUNERAL
Max: I like that Zsasz seems genuinely upset that Don Falcone died? Many layers to our hairless onion.
Andy: He was like a father to him. Probably gave him his first hit.
Sarah: Zsasz looked so cool popping a bullet out of the chamber of his gun for the don.
Max: Meanwhile, Harvey Bullock’s rolling up on Gordon at a funeral for some vague menacing/advice giving. You know our dude is making a beeline for the reception open bar and finger sandwiches. ALSO: Notable that while the Gotham version of Sofia doesn’t at all resemble her comics counterpart, the wheelchair/neck brace she’s rocking here are definitely a reference to Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale’s aforementioned Dark Victory.
Andy: I love those little details.
PENGUIN WALKING INTO THE GCPD LIKE IT’S OPEN MIC NIGHT
Max: Robin Lord Taylor’s physicality is such a blessing, I LOVE how comfortable Penguin is just rolling up and bossing around some cops.
Sarah: The empty Desk Sergeant desk that Penguin swipes the mic from answers all my previous questions about how Gotham’s villains can just walk into the GCPD unperturbed.
Max: Gordon is giving a straight up inspirational Coach Carter speech to the entire police department.
Andy: Gotham does a great job of establishing Gordon as a natural leader.
OH YEAH PENGUIN YOU MADE PEOPLE THINK YOU’RE A CHILD MURDERER
Max: Penguin’s weird gambit to fake a child’s death is really blowing back in his face. ET TU, ZSASZ?
Andy: Oswald looked like he had been shot.
Sarah: Friend betrayal is Penguin’s ultimate poison and it happens to him on a monthly basis.
Max: Oh yeah and the not-Gotham City Sirens inherited the Iceberg Lounge, which was originally Barbara’s bar to begin with? Sort of a lateral move!
ALFRED’S TOUGH LOVE BOOT CAMP BEGINS
Max: I feel like this whole show has been leading to Alfred having a heartfelt fist fight with his surrogate son. Too bad Wayne Manor still only has like one room.
Sarah: Literally had this same thought as, before Alfred is booted from the premises, he sadly surveys…the only room in the house.
Andy: I always enjoy it when Alfred gets to kick the shit out of a child.
TABITHA KIDNAPPED HER MAN…FOR LOVE
Sarah: Selina and Barbara confusing Tabby with “left” and “stage left” during a gunfight was super cute.
Max: We get a few minutes of Nygma freaking out on some Gollum/Smeagol noise, but I like Grundy’s understated t-shirt and blazer look here, very Frankenstein chic. One Gotham signature knock out gas bomb later and he’s tied to a chair getting de-programmed by his ex-girlfriend.
Andy: There’s a lot of physical violence in this episode. Alfred kicking the piss out of his ward. Tabitha trying to beat a memory out of her former lover. The show beating a dead horse with the dissociative Riddler shtick.
SOFIA’S DEEP IN THE MUD WITH PYG
Max: Surprise! “Professor Pyg” and the drive by were inventions cooked up by Sofia to manipulate Gordon into the Captain spot! Hey Gordon, you really should’ve seen this coming!
Sarah: I accidentally spoiled myself on this plot point and then got mad that it’s so obvious in retrospect.
Andy: The Pyg stuff has been hit-or-miss this season, but I enjoyed Cerveris’ take on a ridiculous Grant Morrison character. It’s definitely weird that a lot of Batman’s future rogues gallery are dead and buried.
Max: Pour one out for the now-dead-from-a-duplicitous-gunshot-wound Lazlo Valentin, the rootin’est tootin’est steel-faced good ol’ boy Gotham City has ever seen.
ALFRED….DAD NO MORE
Max: Only in the universe of this show would “Bruce got emancipation paperwork after Alfred punched him in the face and kicked him out of the mansion” be seen as a dick move.
Sarah: I was really hoping Bruce’s temper tantrum would wrap up sooner than this, but now he’s just solidifying my stance that he’s the worst thing on this show.
Andy: Bruce is off to live with a girl named Candy and hitch a ride to Metropolis to become a street musician I guess.
Max: Bruce: Lost to the party lifestyle! Grundy: Remembers he’s Butch?? Gordon: Definitely covered up a murder! Penguin: Back in Arkham! And, of course, the return of the ultimate edgelord…JEROME.
Sarah: Don’t forget: a new day, a new Don Falcone.
Andy: Jerome is back on his Joker bullshit and I can’t wait for this Batman ‘66 ass team-up with Penguin.
Gotham airs Thursdays at 8 PM on Fox.