Last week, Gotham teased us with the appearance of a character that most definitely could be the infamous Joker, or, at least, that’s what the show wants us to think. Besides the infamous clown, we also get teased with more characters from Batman lore (those Flying Graysons!). But, besides all these character introductions/tie-ins/appearances, etc, the story this week was a fun and engaging one with many plot and character advancements.
***** SPOILERS BELOW *****
Before we get to the main action, i.e. Jim and Leslie’s date, we check in on some of the other characters: Oswald is running his new club in his own unique way, by allowing his crazy mother to sing (much to the dismay of the grungy Gotham hipsters in the audience) and then beats (or kills?) anyone who laughs/boos at her. Clearly, his club is a hot spot. Meanwhile, Fish, sporting a new cap/head scarf thingy, is still in her prison, but at least she is in her element, as she is still in charge and ordering people around. Also, Barbara is back! Looking a bit drunk, she stumbles into her apartment calling for Jim only to be greeted by new residents Cat and Ivy!
But more on all of them later, we finally get to see Jim and Leslie, or Lee, as she prefers to be called, on a real date. At the circus. How romantic? Sense the sarcasm here. The circus act looks fun, but soon a brawl breaks out between the acrobat Graysons and the clown Lloyds. Jim, pulling the “I’m a cop” card, attempts to break up the fight, but it’s Leslie who finds out the fight is over a woman named Lila – the circus’ snakedancer! The two families have been feuding for years (apparently it started over a horse), but the real issue is the missing Lila.
Jim and Leslie are led to her son, a young ginger man named Jerome (Cameron Monaghan). He is Lila’s son and hasn’t seen her all night and is worried. The ringleader (James Monroe Iglehart) tries to play it off, but Jim isn’t buying it. He asks Jerome to release his mother’s large, terrifying snake and they easily follow it to Lila’s bloodied corpse! Jim Gordon, snake whisperer. Jerome breaks down crying as Jim starts lay down the law left and right. And soon the GCPD is overrun by the circus. The clowns joining the clowns of the GCPD!
Jim interrogates Jerome (who if you saw the preview, you, unfortunately, should not be surprised) about his mother. He talks a bit about sex and stuff, a bit odd. Hmm. He’s totally innocent, right? He also interviews the two feuding families, including John Grayson and Mary Lloyd, who reveal they love(d) each other before. They won’t get back together, will they? (Sarcasm again. Sorry, not sorry!)
Anyways, Captain Essen is baffled that Jim let the snake loose, but applauds his knowledge of snake smelling power. Both Ed and Lee give reports on the deceased, revealing that none of the Graysons or Lloyds could have killed Lila. Jim sends all the circus folk home, but not before giving them a lecture about fighting and feuding. Lee continues to be the best, flirting and poking at the stubborn Jim. Is she not just the most likable person, ever?
Paul Cicero (Mark Margolis), a blind psychic, comes in looking for Jim and tells him that he has a message from the dead Lila. Jim dismisses him as a fake, but Lee is a believer. Cicero tells them about a garden near some “iron sisters.” Jim continues to bump around, all stubborn. Later, Jim and Lee have dinner at her place. Lee has a revelation about Cicero’s message, realizing it means Gotham Bridge Park. She wants to go now and Jim, begrudgingly, agrees. Lee calls out Jim on his conflicting view of women: wants a strong woman but wants her to stay at home. UGH, she is so awesome! Call him out, Dr. T! Welp, Lee was right because they find the murder weapon, a bloody hatchet with some satanic Hellfire symbols on it.
Back at the station, the two continue to bicker, but Jim finally relents and together they interrogate Cicero again. Somehow Jim figured out that Cicero was really just protecting someone else and then Jerome is brought in. Jim also immediately deduces Jerome killed his mother and Cicero is Jerome’s actual father, who tried to cover for him. He makes a lot of baseless accusations, but, of course, they are true. Jim is never wrong! Jerome goes through a variety of emotions before breaking “down” into an awesome maniacal, very-Jokery laugh. Kudos to Cameron Monaghan! Excellent work. Cicero admits to being Jerome’s father and Jerome admits to killing his “nagging, whore mother.” So, win-win for everyone. Now, if Jerome is, in fact, the Joker…we shall see.
Meanwhile, Bruce is preparing for a meeting with the board of Wayne Enterprises. Alfred doesn’t think it is a good idea, but Bruce is going through with it. He tells the board his concerns and promises to find the truth behind any discrepancies and make sure his company is run honestly. Okay… sure. If anything, these scenes made me groan. Little kids acting so “adult” and “mature” hurts my head. I know Bruce is tortured and stuff, but come on. Plus, what were the point of these scenes? I sometimes feel like Bruce is on a completely different, unrelated show!
Victor Zsasz pays Penguin a visit, telling him Falcone is unhappy with the state of his club. To help, Zsasz brings in a newly brainwashed(?) Butch, who, according to Zsasz, will do anything Penguin says, including dancing. Odd, but okay. Also, Barbara has become an insecure mess, asking for fashion advice from two homeless children. I get that it is supposed to be humorous and stuff, but golly, Barbara is still the worst!
And then, yet again on a completely different show, Fish orchestrates a crazy plan trying to meet with the “manager” of her prison. She mobilizes with the other prisoners and somehow it works? I don’t get it. Apparently the guards need the prisoners alive to harvest their organs, so Fish’s solution: kill the prisoners they want. The head guard, Thomas Schmidt (Elliot Villar), eventually agrees to stay in her place while she goes to visit the manager, to assure both of their lives. Alrighty… don’t really care too much. This could happen off screen for all I care.
Back in Gotham, Jim and Lee, keeping it totally not professional, make out after the crazy investigation. Unfortunately for all, Barbara walks in and sees this before walking out. LOL! Oh, Barb. Later, John Grayson and Mary Lloyd thank Jim for solving the mess and apparently credit him with getting them together. They promise to name their future kid after Jim. SPOILER ALERT: They don’t! For anyone who isn’t up on their Batman lore, these are the future parents of Dick Grayson aka Robin!
Gotham was fun, but disjointed this week. It felt like the Fish and Bruce storylines were so unconnected to the rest of what was happening, that it was a little off putting to continue to have to check in on them. I’m also very weary of actually bringing Barbara back. I know it is canon, but please don’t ruin Jim and Lee when they have such a great chemistry (well, on Lee’s end) together. I just know Barbara is going to cause unnecessary drama. As for Fish’s drama, I really don’t think we need to see it. That being said, it was a fun-filled storyline this week and it was great to see both Jim and Lee working on a case.
What did you guys think of the episode? Thoughts on the return of Barbara or the, supposed, appearance of Joker? Let me know in the comments below!
Gotham airs Mondays at 8/7c on Fox.