This week a lot of attention is spent on the bad guys. We get to learn about the background of Theo Galavan, which sounds pretty familiar if you are a reader of the Batman comics.
Penguin delivers a mysterious chest to Galavan. Penguin begs to get his mom back in exchange for the favor. Galavan coldly puts Penguin in his place. I have really enjoyed the character development of the Penguin, from holding the umbrella for Fish Mooney, to slyly taking over, to now being put in his place by the devious Mayor-to-be. At least I assume Galavan will be the mayor since all the other candidates were mysteriously murdered.
The chest is opened to reveal Mr. Bunderlsaw, whom we learned last season is not a nice guy and is involved with the shady dealings of Wayne Enterprises.
It’s cool though, they only need one thing from him. Apparently an eyeball.
Great, guys in tighty-whities counting money. I will save you from having to look at a screenshot. Gordon, Bullock, Captain Barnes, and the newly created strike force of GCPD Academy graduates bust them. Unfortunately, they brought guns to a rocket launcher fight. The good guys dodge the rocket and kill the shooter. Barnes asks “A damn rocket launcher?” To which Bullock replies “Welcome to Gotham, Cap.”
A messenger tells Penguin that the police hit his count house, and every dollar was taken, roughly $2 million. Penguin flips out and beats the guy nearly to death. He was much nicer when his mom was around.
Jim Gordon and Leslie Thompkins are bantering about date night when the ladies’ man that is Edward Nygma drops by to suggest they double date together. Fondue party at Dr. Thompkins!
Galavan shows up at the precinct to ask Gordon to endorse him for mayor. This is preceded, of course, by a sob story about how Galavan is having a hard time dealing with the fact that he killed a man for the first time a couple episodes back (Jerome, the would-be Joker). Gordon turns him down, but seems to be thinking it over.
Galavan’s sister shows up at Penguin’s place with a list of buildings to burn down. “Oh, and whoever starts the fire is going to need this.” She slides Penguin a box, the contents of which clearly surprise him.
Selina Kyle is awakened from her sleep. It is Penguin’s right-hand man, Butch. Butch wants Selina to connect him with the Pike brothers who apparently are fantastic arsonists. The Pikes are still loyal to Fish Mooney (even though she died last season), but Butch hopes that Selina can get him in with them since Selina was loved by Fish. Selina is probably my favorite character on Gotham. I want so badly for her to be good. Each time she does something good I hope that she is going to turn the corner, but then she sinks back into the underworld of Gotham. It’s illogical, I know. She is destined to be Catwoman, but I still hold out hope that she will be good. Of course, I still hope Anakin turns away from the Dark Side each time I watch Episode III, so what do I know?
Butch and Selina visit the Pike Brothers, whom they convince to take the job. Literally everything in their place appears to be something that can be used to make a bomb. When presented with the list, one of the brothers actually says “we’ll need more gear”. If someone dropped a match in this place it would probably blow up the entire city, and this guy needs more gear.
Selina used to run with Bridgit, the sister of the Pike brothers. When Bridgit has the nerve to get Butch a beer, but not a glass, he kicks her and makes her get some glasses. As she delivers the glasses Selina delivers an intense stare, and I am drawn right into the mythos of Catwoman and her hatred of abusive men. Butch passes the mysterious box on to one of the brothers. Selina tells Bridgit to take care of herself and be strong.
Sometimes I watch Gotham and think that it is a great drama with some cheesiness thrown in. Other times I long for the seriousness of the Schumacher Batman movies. Case in point: Did you know that there is a Costco for villains? It’s called The MERC. While one of the Pike brothers is shopping for explosives, the overhead announcer is heard saying “Welcome to MERC, your one stop shop for machetes, night vision goggles, and all your personal defense needs.”
Can you believe they want $499.99 for a stick of C4? Neither can the Pike brother, so he stuffs it down his pants. Always a great place to put explosives. Come to think of it, if you make a living selling to criminals, you have got to expect a lot of shoplifting. That must be why the prices are so high.
It’s a raid! The GCPD bust in! Gordon and Barnes chase the Pike brother out the back of the store and have him cornered. Pike pulls a gun and is shot multiple times. That reminds me, what about that stick of C4 in his pants? After Pike explodes, Barnes asks Gordon “What the hell are you packin’?”
Since the youngest Pike is dead, the older brothers coerce Bridgit into taking his place. They need someone small enough to crawl through ductwork. The brothers talk her through setting the first bomb and lighting the fuse. With 90 seconds until explosion, they make her go to a safe down the hall and retrieve the box from the bag. Yuck, it’s the eye! It seems awfully large relative to her hand.
Her brother actually says “Grody, right?” Gag me with a spoon. The safe, of course has a retinal scanner. Inside is an old knife.
Bridgit is going through some supplies. She seems to have caught the Pyromania bug! She sews herself a fire retardant suit. Selina drops by to pick up the knife for Penguin, and Bridgit says that starting the fires were exciting and she liked it.
Penguin looks over the knife. It has the Wayne family crest inscribed in it. He is trying to figure out what is important about the knife. Butch directs Penguin to the purveyor of an antique shop in his old neighborhood. She is clearly disturbed by the knife. The knife has a cursed history. 200 years ago it was used in a horrible crime. There were five families that ruled the Gotham high society, with the Waynes being the most powerful. Celestine Wayne was promised to the eldest son of the Elliot family. Caleb Dumas coveted her as well. One evening Caleb and Celestine were found together. Celestine swore that Caleb forced himself upon her. Celestine’s brother cut off his hand as punishment. The Waynes seized Dumas’ holdings and banished them. The Dumas family was wiped away from Gotham’s history. The family changed their name to Galavan!
Gordon figures out that all of the buildings that have been burned down are owned by Wayne Enterprises. The pattern leads to another building owned by Wayne Enterprises: The Gotham City Book Depository. Is it me or does that sound like something straight out of Batman ’66? I can actually hear the voiceover guy saying “Meanwhile, at the Gotham City Book Depository…” Bullock is excited about a stakeout, Gordon is concerned about chili dogs. There must be a good back story there.
Penguin presents Butch with his favorite drink, which Butch cannot refuse because of the conditioning that occurred last season. He can’t say no to Penguin! Penguin comes up with a plan for Butch to go to Galavan to infiltrate his organization. Butch is to tell Galavan that Penguin went nuts and accused him of setting up the count-shop raid, and that he is in fear of his life. Butch doesn’t think that Galavan will buy such a basic play. Penguin thinks that he will if they sell it properly. Inspired by the story of Celestine Wayne, Penguin pulls a knife and cuts Butch’s hand off!
Gordon and Bullock are staking out the book depository. The Pikes show up. Bridgit steps out of the van, clearly the Firefly of Gotham. Upon seeing the police, the brothers bail and leave Bridget to face them alone. After an impressive fire display, her torch jams. Luke, one of the new recruits, runs in to help. He is set aflame, allowing Bridgit to escape with Selina’s help.
Back at the station we learn that Luke succumbed to his injuries and died. Captain Barnes says that they will use every legal method at their disposal. It occurs to Gordon that working with Galavan could help. Conveniently Galavan is in the station. Galavan promises Gordon whatever he needs.
Galavan returns home to find Father Creel waiting for him. He says that their brothers, warriors the likes of which Gotham has never known, are coming from overseas. Gotham will be redeemed in blood. Bruce Wayne will die.
Final thoughts: I am not much for spoilers, so I do not know what is coming, but this sounds an awful lot like the Court of Owls. *edit: Mordechai pointed out the obvious to me, that it is the order of St. Dumas. I have not read anything related to them since Azrael took over for Batman in the 90s!*
I am excited to see where this goes next week!