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Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

When the freaks assemble, Gotham delivers in fun, unique ways

Illustration for article titled When the freaks assemble, iGotham/i delivers in fun, unique ways
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Because The A.V. Club knows that TV shows keep going even if we’re not writing at length about them, we’re experimenting with discussion posts. For certain shows, one of our TV writers will publish some brief thoughts about the latest episode, and open the comments for readers to share theirs.

  • Never Mind The Bullocks: There’s really no contest this week. As Bullock investigates the murder of the lead in a Shakespeare play by The Riddler, he has one comment. “Is this Hamlet? I guess he wasn’t meant to be.”
  • While it makes sense that Penguin would go back to Freeze and Firefly to begin building his Army of Freaks, it’s still a little disappointing that Gotham didn’t reveal any new faces. Perhaps that’s still to come though.
  • Confirmed: the show is still invested in having Nathan Darrow’s Freeze make bad puns à la Arnold Schwarzenegger.
  • The Lee Thompkins character is in a weird spot right now. On the one hand she’s totally justified in her view of Gordon as a destructive person who ruins people’s lives. On the other hand, she only ever pops up in an episode to get in Gordon’s face. It makes her come across as shrill and unreasonable rather someone dealing with some serious trauma, and that’s a shame.
  • Nygma is now all-in as the Riddler, and even the newspapers have started using the moniker. While some of the transformation arc has been iffy at best, it’s been fun watching Cory Michael Smith find that depth of character as Nygma slowly loses his hold on reality, along with any moral compass that he may have had previously.
  • Penguin has quite the sound strategy to recruit Firefly, who’s working in some sort of smelting mine: “I could kill your boss to sweeten the deal.”
  • Is the DoppelBruce feeling attached to Alfred now? I mean, who wouldn’t?
  • Selina may have told Bruce that she didn’t want to see him anymore, but when she tells DoppelBruce that real Bruce “would have tried to save everyone,” in Gotham she reveals that she still has feelings for him. Come back to her, real Bruce!
  • For awhile there it looks like the DoppelBruce is interested in Selina, and that he’s developing his own feelings as a clone. Then he pushes her out a window. Conflicting messages to say the least.
  • After Tabitha ruins the Riddler’s plan to kill Mayor James and expose the Court of Owls, there’s significant tension between her and Barbara. They used to have a vision of running Gotham together, but Barbara seems focused solely on her own goals.
  • Gotham is a show that’s continually at war with itself, its best and more unique elements always getting pulled down by the more ridiculous and trifling ones. Since the show came back from its lengthy hiatus it’s done a great job digging into Nygma’s psyche while setting up the power struggle with Barbara, Tabitha, and a back-from-the-dead Penguin. Dragging that down is the Court of Owls storyline, which feels overdramatic. As always, any arc involving Gordon seems to be the dullest the show has to offer.
  • Freeze’s “cold” puns are bad, but Penguin telling him that he can sleep in the freezer is fine by me.
  • This might sound like an obvious point of analysis, but it’s always good when Gotham has a streamlined story and clear structure. Some of the show’s worst episodes are the result of shoddy plotting and trying to tackle too many storylines at once. The search for The Riddler here provides a clear structure that keeps the episode from feeling sluggish or listless.
  • After handing over Nygma to the Court of Owls, Gordon is officially introduced as the newest member. All of this despite the fact that his undercover chops are seriously lacking.

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