The Best and Worst of Gotham Episode 10: Make Dick Lovecraft, not war edition

A heads up, episode 10 of Gotham is their mid season break, so I will use that time to catch up on recaps for episodes 7, 8, and 9. If anyone is reading this, leave a comment or discuss Gotham on Twitter with me, it helps keep me motivated to keep writing these!

That being said, I watched tonight’s episode and got all fired up so I decided to recap things out of order. Let’s get down to it!

WORST PORN DIALOGUE IS BACK

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In episode one, I lamented that the writing on the show sometimes strayed towards dialogue you might hear in a porno flick.

“Did anyone order a pizza?”

“That depends….did it come with extra….meat?”

“JIM, WATCH OUT, THAT PIZZA HAS A GUN!”

The show has remained inconsistent in relation to its writing throughout the season so far, but tonight it went back to its roots and really ramped up the adult film factor:

I actually had to physically pause the show when I first saw this scene to give myself a few moments to recover from it.

Not only is Chino (Gordon) delivering the line like he’s in grade 10 drama class, not only is he frowning comically as he delivers his last line, the dialogue itself is just a pile of poop.

It’s like a leprechaun celebrating a victory over somebody asking for a stupid non specific wish.

“I want to the ability to fly!”

*hands over a plane ticket*

“GOTCHA!”

I’m not asking for Breaking Bad levels of writing here, but come on, at least raise the bar above “Debbie Does Gotham” levels.

BEST SIGN IT’S ACTUALLY A PORNO FLICK

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One of the characters in the episode was named Dick Lovecraft.

Dick. Lovecraft.

If you’re in the adult movie business, how is that not a name you would use?

On top of that, he lives in a super clean, super white, super sterile apartment, devoid of pretty much everything but tables, sofas, and beds, ie surfaces you can have sex on.

Dick Lovecraft, noted Gotham pornstar. Still better than Goatman.

WORST CONSISTENCY OF LOGIC

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One of the worst things Gotham does is clumsily write its way through the early parts of the show to get to the end of the show.

What do I mean you ask? Well let’s say Harvey and Gordon have to solve the case of “Why did the chicken cross the road?”

In a normal world, they would discover the chicken crossed the road to reach water, after crossing the road and seeing the chicken was swimming in said water. This would take about five minutes, however, and the show would be over in 10 minutes.

In order to drag things out, they make Gordon and Harvey incredibly fucking stupid. They get blown away by theories that you would think would be common place on the police force.

“Wait….you mean there could have been a SECOND shooter??”

“Hold on, are you telling me, that you can just walk into any store out there and buy a KNIFE right off the shelf??”

Because of their stupidity, it allows them to drag out the episode to the proper length, so they can keep on working towards their over arcing story-line.

In a perfect world, this would be written better by having Gordon and Harvey stumped by actual hard to figure out crimes. Alas, Gotham writers get lazy, throw their hands in the air and say “FUCK IT” and decide that next week Gordon takes thirty minutes to interrogate a coma patient.

Which brings us back to tonight’s episode, where a hired contract killer is hunting down Puss ‘N Boots (who is staying with Lil’ Wayne at the moment), when she happens across a gardener. She kills the gardener, then cuts open his entire fucking chest, so she can put a few dabs of blood on her forehead to pretend she’s be in an accident to gain access to Wayne Manor.

Let’s start off with the batshit insane logic at use here:

1) Why pretend she’s been in an accident? Why not knock on the door and ask for directions? Or a cup of sugar?

2) Or why not knock on the door and shoot Alfred and whomever else answers the door?

3) Or break into the god damn house, like Cat Woman Jr. does every single week? Apparently every window in the damn house is always unlocked.

4) Why cut the gardeners fucking chest open for a tiny bit of blood? Cut his hand or something if you really needed blood that bad, don’t be so dramatic about it.

5) Why not put fake blood on yourself, why even involve the gardener?? Ketchup. Ketchup would have worked.

The worst part comes when the female Jean Claude Van Damme assassin (she was a big fan of slowly moving her legs through the air in this episode) is put in positions where she should, by rights, have just killed Lil’ Wayne and Jim Gordon.

“But why didn’t she kill Jim Gordon and Lil’ Wayne, Wyatt?”

Because, get this, they “weren’t on the contract.”

OK, so was the gardener on the contract then? You had no problem offing him for no reason, so I have to assume the gardener was taken out by someone who hates the idea of grass being cut.

WAIT A MINUTE POISON IVY IT ALL MAKES SENSE NOW.

Sigh.

BEST ALFRED IS QUICKLY BECOMING THE BIGGEST BAD ASS ON THE SHOW

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Early on in the show, back when Alfred was intent upon crushing any and all dreams young Batman had, I was not a fan of Alfred.

He started winning me over when he let Batman kick the shit out of another kid and then basically threatened to let Bruce murder that kid if he ever retaliated.

He won me over more when he not only proved he is a better cop than Jim Gordon and Harvey Bullock, he also knows how to use a gun better than either of them. He also shrugs off bullets like they’re mosquito bites.

He made me a fan for life when he randomly punched Female Van Damme on the thinnest of premises that she might be a threat.

To recap, assassin lady shows up at his door pretending to be hurt from a car crash. Puss ‘N Boots and Lil’ Wayne walk down the stairs, Boots sees the lady and her eyes show the tiniest hint of alarm and –

BOOM, ALFRED PUNCHES YOU IN THE FACE.

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There could be plenty of reasons the lady is there. Maybe he’s a case worker trying to find Selina. Maybe she’s a reporter. Selina might just not trust any strangers and could be reacting with suspicion on that premise alone.

Regardless of all of that, Alfred decides the best course of action is probably just to punch the stranger in the face.

In a Gotham where Jim Gordon needs to sit down and plot out a flow chart of whether or not he should use his gun to stop a criminal, it’s nice to know some men in Gotham simply take action where needed.

WORST HARVEY NEEDS TO STOP SCREAMING

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Sometimes Harvey just walks into a room and starts screaming and generally over acting for no real reason. He even managed to drop a “compadre” into this scene because why the hell not.

Relax Donal Logue. You can act withdrawn. I saw you do it in Sons of Anarchy, don’t pretend you don’t have better range than this.

BEST BRUCE WAYNE IS PLAYING THE LONG GAME

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Riddler is not very good with the ladies, and at first glance, Bruce appears to be following suit.

To recap, Selina Kyle has a lady boner for Bruce Wayne, which is shown repeatedly either by her trying to spend a lot of time with him, watching him sleep randomly (super creepy), or by straight up asking him to make out with her.

Bruce responded to her latest request to make out by getting all logical and shit with her and basically calling her out for not being very nice. He turned down an easy make out session, which seems like a stupid move on his part.

Lil’ Wayne, however, is simply playing hard to get, and kind of being a dick, both of which are solid moves in trying to get somebody to like you even more. By the end of the episode Lil’ Wayne has Selina acting nicer, and she gave made the first move and gave him all the kisses, ALL OF THEM.

Game, set, Bruce.

BEST PENGUIN IS PLAYING THE LONG GAME TOO

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Penguin knows who is betraying Falcone, but hasn’t revealed it yet. The long game is always the way to go.

Nothing really new to report on Penguin, but I am enjoying watching him work his way up through the ranks. He’s been one of the bright spots of the first 10 episodes.

In a world without Batman, the bad guys HAVE to carry this show, because Jim sure as shit isn’t holding up his end of the bargain (one of the shows biggest flaws is how little I care about Jim Gordon, much less respect his character).

WORST OVER ACTING BATTLE OF THE HARVEYS

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Move over Donal Logue, you’ve got some company!

The first time we saw Harvey Dent (last episode), he did his best to portray the “Two Face” side of him by randomly screaming WAY over the top at Dick Lovecraft when he thought he was being threatened.

In this episode he didn’t do anything as bad, but he still has a very campy feel to him. On a scale of 1 to Mr. Freeze, he’s settling in at around a 7 on the over acting scale. Reign it in a bit, bud.

BEST WHAT IS THIS MACHINE CALLED, PEASANT?

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BEST ALFRED CONTINUES TO KICK ASS

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Alfred not only shakes down one of Fishes top guys and takes him down with a knife to his throat, he also charms Fish Mooney into helping him find Lil’ Wayne.

Alfred is now on the list of things that are better at being a policeman than Jim Gordon, joining young Batman, a turnip, and day old milk.

BEST POTENTIAL

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Young Poison Ivy made her second appearance on the show and she came off pretty damn unhinged, which is awesome. It’s hard to describe their conversation, but it came off super weird, but fit her character really well.

“Did you make my mother cut her wrists? Somebody did. But not him. How are you doing, you doing ok? I’m doing great, how do I look?”

Just a really odd talking style, but it really made her character seem like she was on the verge of being totally insane.

WORST FIRST ROUND BUST

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If Poison Ivy is a draft pick with untapped potential, Cat Woman is the first round bust who is only sticking around because she was drafted so high and way too much time has been invested in her to let her go without a fight.

Cat Woman is simply the worst cat burglar in Gotham. She gets caught repeatedly by the cops. She kicks open hatches and starts throwing fur coats into the air, so subtly is not her strongest suit. She jumps on top of cars and tries to steal shit directly in front of cops. She wears goggles that serve no purpose except to make her easily identifiable (I had prayed they were night vision goggles, but that dream has died.)

On top of that, she likes to think she’s this amazing street rat that knows how to live on the tough streets of Gotham. You know who a tough street rat is who knows the ins and outs of the streets? God damn Aladdin, that’s who.

Selina Kyle, in comparison, is an idiot. She knows assassins are trying to track her down, so what does she do?

SHE RUNS TO A WELL KNOWN HIDEOUT FOR RUNAWAY KIDS.

It would be like if I was hiding from assassins and I chose Rogers Arena as the place to hide. People will think to god damn look at your favorite spots.

On top of that, she then makes sure to talk to the well known fence of the area, you know, the guy who makes a living off of selling things, people, whatever.

For no reason mind you. Her original plan was to hide out at the flea market until dark, but at one point she decided to randomly sell some of Bruce’s shit to the fence. Why? I don’t know, maybe pigeons? Can we blame pigeons on this one?

WORST CHOKE HOLD

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That’s not a choke hold. She’s kind of pulling on his tie.

Kudos to Chino for selling the shit out of it, though. He sells better than John Cena.

BEST/WORST JIM CONTINUES HIS QUEST TO START UP A FIGHT CLUB

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Funnily enough one of the earlier episodes I haven’t recapped yet involved an actual fight club (which was basically porn for Jim Gordon), but once again Jim shows his hatred of guns.

Question, if a known assassin walks into an apartment (she just recently murdered a gardener that sadly nobody but me cares about) and she is intent upon killing a key witness in the room beside you, what do you do?

Remember, you have no reason to assume she won’t kill you. You are not aware of any fucked up “not on my contract and you aren’t a gardener” logic she may or may not live her life by which would protect you.

Do you a) take cover and shoot her if need be or b) come out in the open, willingly put your gun up in the air, then pray her helper walks by you so you can hit him in the head with your guy and then proceed to have a two on one fight?

If you chose b) then congratulations, you can work for Gotham PD.

BEST PLOT LINE DEVELOPMENT

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As a result of Dick Lovecraft getting killed, the mayor of Gotham needs somebody to take the fall. He has to decide between Harvey Dent or Jim Gordon, and Jim is the obvious choice, especially after Jim tells the mayor to kiss his ass. Politics, Jim, politics.

Regardless, he finds himself being transferred to Arkham Asylum to work as a guard.

This. Is. Awesome.

One, because it gets him out of Gotham PD, which is a shithole full of shit and I hate it there with a burning passion. There are only so many weeks you can watch stupid cops being stupid before you get burnt out.

Two, Arkham Asylum dives deeper into the Gotham world and should provide a ton of options for storyline options.

Three, it breaks up the Harvey and Jim team (for a bit I’m hoping) so I don’t have to see any more montages of them buying lunch.

Four, it’s god damn Arkham Asylum. It’s awesome. I am excited to see where they go with this.

BEST CO WORKER IN THE WORLD

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Riddles heard the news about Jim being transferred, and what is the first thing he does? He offers to write a letter to his boss demanding that Jim get his old job back. Then Nigma shakes off a hand shake and instead hands out a solid man hug, to let Jim know he has his back. He is basically being a kick ass co-worker in an office of people WHO WALKED OUT TO LET YOU DIE WHEN A GANGSTER SHOWED UP.

Jim and Harvey then proceed to basically make jokes about what a weirdo Nigma is when he walks away. Harvey jokes that Nigma should go with Jim. Jim warns Harvey he would miss him. Harvey scoffs at this and assure Jim he wouldn’t.

NIGMA SOLVES ALL OF YOUR CASES. Harvey would be fucked without him. Harvey would be without a job without Riddles. Harvey should be on his hands and knees worshiping the ground Riddler walks on for all he does for his career.

One day Riddler, one day you shall have your revenge…

 

 

 

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The Best and Worst of Gotham Episode 6: Goat Man? Yup, Goat Man.

BEST HEADS UP

I don’t know if it’s Gotham fatigue, writing fatigue, or just the fact for some reason I fell in love with Marvels Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and as a result, I only have room in my heart for one set of non super powered heroes, but I have not been feeling Gotham as of late.

So if I come across a bit more down on the episodes, I apologize. I am not being snarky to be edgy or cool, it’s purely just because I found myself not that into the latest episodes.

That being said, there have been some good things in the show, so let’s get this underway, shall we?

WORST BAD GUY

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Goat Man? Uh…

Sometimes I enjoy the bad guy on the show. I still remember fondly those two weirdos who were kidnapping children. Goat Man, though, was just sort of there.

In the end, he served a purpose as he turned out to be nothing more than a tool for the hypnotherapist, but they could have made him more interesting. Maybe he ties a pair of screwdrivers to his head and rams people. Maybe he climbs mountains for no reason. Do something to make him stand out, damn it.

Kudos on him for stealing the Christian Bale Batman voice, though. “I am the spirit of the GOAT. Rrrrrrr *munches on marbles*”

BEST I SEE WHAT YOU’RE DOING

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In this episode we got to see Harvey Bullock 10 years ago. In that flashback he was a young, eager cop who wanted to save the world. Much like Jim Gordon is today.

OH SHIT THEY’RE MORE ALIKE THAN WE THOUGHT.

Anyways, in the flash back, Harvey’s partner, Detective Dix (Yup, that was his name. I assume his first name was Anita, middle name Lotta) plays the grumpy, veteran cop who wants nothing to do with a go get ’em attitude.

OH SHIT HARVEY ENDS UP JUST LIKE THAT GUY.

And now we’ve come full circle.

BEST AT LEAST YOUNG HARVEY USED HIS GOD DAMN GUN

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Jim Gordon in Gotham does not enjoy using guns in situations that warrant them. He could be surrounded by four bad guys carrying swords and he’d throw his gun on the ground and try and attack them with loose baby carrots that were scattered on the floor for some reason.

Young Harvey ran into Goat Man, and after Goat Man randomly talked to Harvey about never dying, Harvey told him to “Come back from this!” (solid death line) and shot the ever loving fuck out of him.

This is how you kill bad guys.

BEST EDWARD NIGMA SHOULD BE KING OF GOTHAM

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For the record, Nigma is not only the best at his job, he is better at everyone else’s job as well. Case in point, the coroner said someone died at 3 am. Nigma knew better, boom, checked the blood coagulation, person died at 1 am. Check mate, Nigma.

Harvey was also having a tough time dealing with the surprise return of a killer he thought was long dead. Nigma asked him if he was ok, to see how he was doing, generally being the nice guy that he always is. Harvey’s response? He screams in his face.

Harvey later asks Nigma to call him when the autopsy is ready to start. Nigma asks him if there is anything in particular he wants him to look out for, Harvey lose his shit again.

Nigma, is the hero Gotham deserves, but not the one it needs right now. So they’ll hunt him. Because he can take it. Because he’s not their hero. He’s a silent guardian. A watchful protector. A Riddler.

WORST I JUST DON’T CARE

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I just don’t have it in me to care about Gordon and Barbara’s relationship strife.

I understand rocky relationships are a staple of TV. The whole “will they stay together or won’t they” is a draw a lot of the time. Hell, I wondered if Ross would end up with Rachael just as much as the next guy or gal.

With Jim and Babs, though, I just simply find myself wanting their scenes to end. It’s like a Jannik Hansen breakaway, I just patiently wait for it to end with no payoff, as per usual (for non Vancouver Canucks fans, Jannik Hansen is where dreams go to die when it relates to scoring a goal in the NHL).

One major part of it is how many soul searching conversations do they need to have? Can’t they ever just stay at home and have some dinner and have a few laughs? Play a couple of rock riffs over the scene as one of them loses at Jenga? They never have any fun. At this rate Gordon is going to leave the milk out by accident and Barbara is going to take that as a sign that he never wants kids with her because he wants her milk to go bad.

I think the other part of it is the fact they have zero on screen chemistry. Penguin had more chemistry with Barbara than Gordon does, and he is creepy and gross. Though to be fair, at least he doesn’t randomly drool like Gordon does.

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It also doesn’t help that we know they end up together anyways. Gordon could murder her at one point and I would know he would somehow bring her back to life and marry her zombie corpse, so all of this “will they or won’t they stay together” garbage seems like a waste of time.

There is a time and a place to tinker with back stories (like they are with the villains). Tinkering with their relationship back story by making it rocky is very boring.

I am actually starting to assume they will discover they are brother and sister, which will explain many of the questions I have about them.

WORST MAJOR CRIMES UNIT IS AS BAD AS THE GOTHAM PD

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“Let’s bust Jim Gordon for killing a man!”

“But what’s the worst way we could do it?”

“Find a homeless man who probably isn’t a credible witness, then show him a picture of Gordon only and not utilize a lineup method to ID him, thus ruining our case?”

“SCORE!”

WORST RIDDLER NEEDS TO WORK ON HIS GAME

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Admittedly, the scenes with him and the stereotypical “if only she would let her hair down!” secretary bordered on creepy at times.

If it just ends up as Riddles not reading people properly and not understanding how weird he comes across, then this is kind of awesome. He honestly just wanted to help make her better at her job while trying to get to know her better.

Yes, he could do with less hair smelling. Though part of me thinks he was just smelling her hair to check for toxins that could be poisoning her. He is that good of a guy.

If this ends up with Riddles becoming angry over being jilted at the hands of the ladies, I will get a sad. Riddles has one reason to turn evil, and its name is Harvey Bullock. Don’t stray Riddles down a dark path, you sons of bitches, he’s the only good man in Gotham!

WORST HARVEY IS BLOWN AWAY BY SIMPLE CONCEPTS

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Sometimes in life you are told to “think outside the box.” The idea being, you need to stop thinking of the easy concepts and try and attack from a different angle.

With Harvey, he has trouble thinking inside and outside of the box. Case in point: It took Harvey talking to Lotta Dix, his old partner, to even THINK of the idea that maybe more people might have been in on the killings. It actually made him angry to ponder the idea that more than one person might have been involved in ritual killings.

This is where Gotham fatigue sets in. I know they utilize people reacting to things in a dumb manner to push the plot forward at a pace they want (can’t have Jim and Harvey solving a case in five minutes), but after a while, it just feels like sloppy writing when you have a detective just dumbfounded by simple concepts.

BEST RIDDLER IN YO FACE

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One of the problems Gotham suffers from is not knowing how to be subtle. In the first episode, they practically laid out a power point presentation on which bad guys would be on the show this season.

In this scene, however, I loved it. It is so stupid that it’s kind of awesome. I’d much rather him have a cup with a ? mark on it then them trying to get Riddles to get Harvey to solve a well known riddle at a crime scene.

If they space out their over the top sight gags like this, it comes across better than the machine gun fire way they did it earlier.

Also, for the record, Riddles solved the case and got them the name of the suspect who was the new Goat Killer. Nigma wins again.

WORST JUST USE YOUR GUN JIM

gotham10Jim’s eternal quest to start a new fight club continues as he constantly jumps into fights without utilizing his gun.

You see a man, someone who has already killed people, towering over your partner. Just shoot him in the god damn leg. Hell, shoot him in the back. I know you can do it Jim, you once shot an old man right in the back when he was holding your partner right in front of him, so I know you don’t care about collateral damage.

BEST PENGUINS BATH TIME

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WORST PENGUINS BATH TIME

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BEST WOMAN BEHIND THE MASK

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The hypnotherapist being behind the mask was neat. I liked the fact she was masterminding it. I also liked the actress and how she switched gears the second Harvey figured her out. It was good acting on a show where that sometimes doesn’t happen too often.

Also, Harvey solved a case! He investigated and everything! Go Harvey!

WORST ENOUGH WITH THE GOTHAM PATRIOTISM

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Some people take pride in their city. Some people will go to great lengths to showcase this.

In Gotham, 50% of the population is apparently ready to go to homicidal lengths “for the good of Gotham.” Penguin and Falcone both profess a deep love of Gotham, even though they are inherently evil. Every other episode, the bad guy apparently murders people in order to right the good ship Gotham.

Tonight’s episode, Hypno Toad was killing off rich kids to teach the 1% a lesson about ruining Gotham.

What happened to the good old days when people just wanted money and power for the sake of money and power? Gotham looks like the worlds biggest shit hole yet everyone there loves it to death.

 WORST ROCKY HOMAGE

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The Major Crimes Unit rock solid case against Jim Gordon falls apart when Penguin shows up at Gotham PD.

Gordon, who was just being arrested for the murder of Penguin, based off homeless man’s testimony (I assume Gordon was also accused of flying spaceships into the homeless man’s shopping cart and stealing his eggs), was relieved, while Harvey, who knew they would be in trouble with Falcone due to the fact Popped Collars was still alive, got super angry.

They then went at each other in a Rocky like double knockout motion to end the show on a super cheesy note.

On the plus side, at least they didn’t yell at Nigma.