TV: Review - Gotham Season 3 Episode 1

– by Mark Cook

Gotham: Season 3 kicked off its first episode on Monday at 8 pm on Fox.  Season 1 was mixed among viewers, but still earned itself a second season.  Season 2 changed the primary focus from Gordon and Bruce to Batman's rogues gallery.  Season 2 was definitely deemed a success and many have been anticipating the return of the show.  After Victor Hugo's plans were thwarted, and Fish Mooney escaped Indian Hill, viewers have much to look forward to as the Indian Hill creations are now loose, and The Court of Owls look to take center stage.  Check out my review of Gotham: Season 3 - Mad City - episode 1 below:

!!SPOILERS!!

 

The new season opens with Gordon coming to visit Lee.  He sees that she is involved with another man, which should definitely lead to a reoccuring subplot this season.

Next viewers flashed forward 6 months from Gordon's visit with Lee and are introduced to what seems to be Waylon Jones, aka Killer Croc.  He was teased at the end of Season 2 coming out of Indian Hill.  He is only in the episode briefly, but looked pretty good for TV, although his back scales seemed more stegosaurus-like than crocodile.  It was still great to see a TV incarnation of him.  Will we be seeing more of him, or is this a one-and-done?

Season 3 also introduces Valerie Vale at GCPD questioning a rehabilitated Captain Barnes.  Her questioning nature sets her up as a possible antagonist to the credibility of the GCPD. Vale also seems as if she may form an interesting relationship with Gordon.  Could this lead to something more, or is she merely concerned with her own agenda? As she continues to question Captain Barnes, Oswald Cobblepot enters in order to tell all in attendance that Fish Mooney is in charge of the Indian Hill gang (interestingly with Selina back as one of her allies like the end of Season 1).  Penguin's  entrance is wonderful as always.  Robin Lord Taylor's character has been the best part of the first two seasons for me, and looks to continue the trend this season!

Selina makes a great first appearance of the season by stealing Butch's wallet at the bar Barbara and Tabitha now run together.  Butch goes there with Penguin in order to offer 1 million dollars for Fish, dead or alive!  On Selina's way out, we see her with a still younger Ivy, pre-transformation like to set photos that have been released.  Selina gives the Bruce's doppelganger some money without recognizing him.  I'm still not sure what way they will go with the Bruce look-alike, but so far the focus of season 3 looks to be different groups fighting for control of Gotham.

Cory Michael Smith returns as Edward Nygma.  He is still stuck in Arkham, but Penguin comes to meet him in order to use his services.  Nygma may be my second favorite character in the series.  Smith does an amazing, believable portrayal of the extremely intelligent sociopath.

We are next subtly introduced to The Court of Owls as Bruce blackmails Wayne Enterprises.  He wants the truth behind Indian Hill or he states he will send his proof to various media outlets.  The result is the insider from Enterprises calling The Court of Owls and sending Talon, their lead assassin, after Bruce.  When I first saw Bruce I wasn't sure what exactly his role would be this season.  For me, his screen time has been the least interesting over the past seasons.  I am hoping his character changes this season and we start to see more of the Bruce Wayne we know.

Ms. Peabody makes her return from Season 2.  Viewers find that she didn't go to jail because she is going to testify against Hugo Strange.  The interesting part is that Fish and the Indian Hill gang are combing pharmacy's for drugs because they all seem to be weak.  Hugo must have been providing them with a drug they need to survive, and Peabody is the way to find out what that is.  She ends up disclosing that anytime the Indian Hill gang uses their powers, they weaken and cannot heal.  She ends up disclosing that Hugo Strange is the only way to a cure before she meets her demise at the hands of one of the creatures who rapidly ages her until she dies.  The same individual briefly touches a captured Ivy before she falls into the sewers.  This answers the question as to how Ivy ages.

The episode nears its conclusion by showing a deeply dark scene with Tabitha, Barbara, Butch, and Penguin.  Barbara and Tabitha prove their strength by taking care of some thugs that Butch tried to send in order to get Tabitha back.  Penguin shoots one of them in the head mid-conversation, which was one of the scenes I enjoyed the most in the episode due to the dialogue and interaction between the characters.

The episode ends on a cliffhanger as Talon arrives at Wayne Manor, fighting Alfred and capturing Bruce.

The good:

-The battle between Talon and Alfred. There should be much more to come from The Court of Owls as they look to be pulling all the strings in the city as many predicted.

-The power struggle between Fish, Penguin, Barbara and Tabitha, GCPD, and The Court of Owls behind the scenes. 

-The character dynamics.  A majority of the characters are really beginning to grow into their comic book counterparts yet with new, refreshing takes.

The weird:

-Gordon being a "bounty hunter".  I guess they are doing it so he can go "beyond the badge", but it still seems a bit odd to me.  

The interesting:  

-Bruce seemed much more confident when he was at Wayne Enterprises, yet once again was captured at the end, which seems to be repetitive at this point.  I am interested in his doppelganger counterpart who seems to not have a clue who he is, or what his purpose is.

-Watch for Barbara and Tabitha to be more than a subplot.  With their characters, I could see them fighting for power in order to be major players for the control of Gotham.  The scene where the destroyed the men Butch sent was not only dominant, but disturbing with Barbara's truly psychotic laugh.

-Penguin.  You never know what is coming with him.  He seemed fine talking to Butch, Tabitha, and Barbara, then in the same breath, shot a man in the head without batting an eye.

If episode 1 was any indication of what to expect for Season 3, I think we all are in for a fun, entertaining ride!

What did you think of Gotham: Season 3, Episode 1?  Are you looking forward to the remainder of the season or were you not impressed?  Leave your comments in the usual spot, and thanks for reading!

 

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