Gotham Recap

Still mourning the loss of Ginger Jerome, masterfully portrayed by Cameron Monaghan? Same here.

Gotham honored our grieving with a (relatively) quieter transitional episode this week, introducing new characters likely to play a major role in future battles and introducing a new side to a character we thought we knew.

Mob Boss Rules

Ginger Jerome may be gone, but he has not been forgotten. The entire city is still talking about him, including Penguin (Robin Lord Taylor). Jerome and the Maniax’s shenanigans were bad for Penguin’s business. Penguin cracks the proverbial whip on his squad, telling everyone to stick to his new rules and restore confidence in their brand. No more willy nilly killing or blackmailing without prior approval from Penguin.

Who Let her In?

As Penguin ends his lecture, Tabitha Galavan (Jessica Lucas) slithers up to him inviting him for a face-to-face meeting with her brother, Theo (James Frain). Not one to turn down an invitation from a millionaire, Penguin accepts. Upon seeing Barbara (Erin Richards) at Theo’s home, Penguin immediately puts it all together – Theo is the diabolical mind behind the Maniax.

Theo explains he wants to team up with Penguin, to use him as a “destroyer.” Naw, uh uh, even though Penguin has finally come to accept and embrace his Penguin nickname, he refuses to accept Theo this new characterization of him. Penguin says he’s a problem solver, not a destroyer. Yes, but, we all know you solve many problems with – MURDER.

Theo and Tabitha aren’t able to convince Penguin to bring his particular brand of problem solving skills to bear for the Galavan’s until they hit him in his soft spot – his love for his mother (Carol Kane). Theo and Tabitha have kidnapped her and are holding her in an undisclosed location. Either Penguin kills the candidates for Gotham mayor or the Galavans will kill Penguin’s mother.

 GCPD Boss Rules

It’s a new day, again. In a scene that parallels Penguin’s speech to his crew of mobsters, brand new GCPD Captain Nathaniel Barnes (Michael Chiklas) announces his new zero tolerance policy for police shenanigans. Cops who commit crimes will not just be fired, they’ll be arrested. Pause. Let that statement sink in a bit. The new GCPD policy will be that cops who commit crimes will be treated like criminals.

If Captain Barnes seems particularly convincing, it’s because Chiklas has lots of experience playing a blustery cop in starring roles on The Commish and The Shield. I didn’t watch those shows. So, when I first saw Captain Barnes walk into GCPD he reminded me motivational speaker Matt Foley (Chris Farley) from SNL (the 90s version).

Captain Barnes continues his loud “it’s a new day” proclamations by declaring that Jim will be his second in command. With Jim in tow, Barnes assembles “Unit Alpha of the GCPD Strike Force,” a team of top graduates of the police academy and places them under Jim’s command. Commissioner Barnes believes Jim to be one of the few straight-laced GCPD cops and he wants this team of idealistic, top baby cops trained by someone with a similar mindset. Jim and Unit Alpha are the Strike Force that will enforce Captain Barnes’ zero tolerance policies.

Poor Jim. Captain Barnes would have been preaching to the choir if he’d said these things to Season 1 Jim, who was singing a similar tune. Season 2 Jim has blood on his hands and a dead mobster on his conscience! He’s more than a little conflicted.

An Evil Egomaniac Runs for Public Office

But, we’re not here to talk about Donald Trump. This is the episode where Theo Galavan “reluctantly” enters the mayoral race. As we know from his meeting with Penguin, Theo’s not taking any chances, which is why Penguin and his crew reluctantly (without the irony quotes) spend much of the episode attempting to murder Theo’s competition. (They kill one, the other barely escapes, but not before Jim and the GCPD see that Victor Szaz, a member of Penguin’s crew was the one trying to kill the candidate). Captain Barnes declares that catching Penguin will be Unit Alpha Strike Force’s first mission.

Elsewhere in Gotham . . .

Alfred!? We’re not too sure what to make of Alfred’s bizarre violent explosion when he runs into Cat at Bruce’s school. Alfred slaps Cat, hard! A grown man, twice Cat’s size, slapped a teenager girl claiming it was retribution for what she did to Reggie.

Remember, Reggie? He’s Alfred’s “friend,” who while staying temporarily at Waynes’ Manor in Season 1 tried to kill Alfred. Between his barely contained on-duty lustful pursuit of Dr. Pretty last week and this week’s Cat abuse, we’re realizing we really don’t know Alfred, at all.

Lil Bruce Wayne. . . Just a Gigolo?

Lil Bruce Wayne is back in school, as he promised. And Alfred is helping Bruce toughen up, as he promised. Instead of picking Brucie up in the Bentley, Alfred drops off Bruce’s running shoes and instructs him that he can use those pristine kicks to run the 6 miles back to Waynes’ Manor!

Lil Brucie makes it home, with energy to spare for his dinner with Theo Galavan. Theo hits all the right notes to win over Bruce. Theo talks about how horrible it is that the GCPD never discovered the murderer of Bruce’s parents and ends the dinner by introducing Bruce to a new cute girl – Cat, who?

Dinner for Two at Chez Nygma (Or, Three if You Count the Voice in Nygma’s Head)

The episode shifts from one nerd making moves on a lovely lady to another one, Nygma’s on-going courtship of Miss Kringle makes some progress as we see Nygma cooking dinner for her while the song Just a Gigolo plays in the background. Despite one slip up (Nygma accidentally reveals something that eventually could lead Miss Kringle to realize Nygma killed her boyfriend), the evening ends well. Love is in the air for Nygma and Miss Kringle . . . this won’t end well. Until next week . . .

Gotham

Mondays 8 pm / 7 pm on Fox

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Harvard-trained attorney and long-time TV super fan, Terri James (TV Juriste) has worked at E!, NBCUniversal, BBC and for a TV personality, for television shows including, E! News, The Daily Ten, Live From the Red Carpet, Life in the Fab Lane, The Soup, Americans in Bed, Chicago PD, and Royal Pains, among others.Terri's All-Time Favorite TV Shows: The Wire, Seinfeld, Colbert Report, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Sex and the City, 30 Rock, SNL, Homeland (first season), Breaking Bad (final season), My So Called Life, Meet the Press (Tim Russert Years), and Lil Bush.

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