It’s time for a shotgun wedding.
Gotham writers make it increasingly more difficult to root for the good guys when they’re only as smart or as stupid as the episode plot demands.
Tonight, Gordon and the GCPD get an unexpected visitor when Barbara waltzes into the station. Her line of it being awhile would be far more meaningful if she hadn’t just popped in a few weeks ago at the GCPD massacre.
During her interrogation, Gordon decides to give her a passionate kiss to remind her he cares about her. Initially, I thought this was yet another Barbara dream sequence, but it was legit. That was a bizarre moment and completely out of character for Gordon.
It was just as weird for Lee, the medical examiner to be observing the interrogation, but presumably that was just for the overly dramatic bit where Barbara stands and comes to the glass right in front of her.
Barbara claims she has some information and will lead Gordon to it. Everyone knows it’s a trap, but Barnes dutifully offers up the latest Strike Force recruits to tag along. At this rate, if I’m a Gotham Academy recruit and I see Barnes, I’m heading the other direction. On the bright side, it gave us a rare moment of Barnes and Bullock interacting. Barnes holds Bullock accountable since he knows Gordon isn’t thinking clearly.
Sure enough, Bullock and Gordon’s car gets nailed by a truck. I could sorta buy Gordon driving and losing focus with Barbara taunting him in the back, but it was a stretch that Bullock would be so unaware of his surroundings to miss an oncoming truck. Predictably, Barbara gets away, but she and Galavan’s men also grab Gordon.
Tying in to Barbara’s earlier dream, Gordon awakens at a church where Barbara is strutting around in her old wedding dress. She calls Gordon out for walking into a trap. This scene would feel so much more meaningful if Ben McKenzie’s performance and delivery wasn’t so flat. He wasn’t conveying any sense of urgency or concern his life was in jeopardy. Maybe McKenzie took issue with how idiotic Gordon looked?
Even worse, Tabitha managed to somehow kidnap Lee as well. That’s just silly as Barnes certainly would have tripled protection around her with Barbara on the loose. Gordon breaks free just before Barbara stabs Lee and the GCPD arrive. Bullock remembered Barbara babbling about a church. Nice lucky guess.
Despite having her at gunpoint twice and she comes at him on both occasions, Gordon refuses to pull the trigger. This would be more understandable if the writers ever bothered showing Gordon struggling to cope with what happened to Barbara. Instead it came off like he couldn’t kill her because she has to remain on the show.
Barbara falls from a window only to land in enough trees to survive albeit in critical condition. Erin Richards’ has really turned the corner in terms of salvaging Barbara, but the writers need to stop putting her in these positions where Gordon really should take down this dangerous nutjob.
Of all the subplots on the show, the Bruce ones have typically left me underwhelmed. Tonight wasn’t the case as Theo Galavan was close to getting Bruce to seal the deal, specifically by signing over Wayne Enterprises so Theo could clean it up. In exchange for that, Theo would turn over the information revealing who killed Bruce’s parents.
Putting Bruce in these questionable logical decisions works as he’s a kid focused on one goal. Bruce’s heart to heart with Alfred trying to determine the best course of action was the highlight of the night. We don’t see enough vulnerable, grieving Bruce and this was an episode highlight.
In the end, Bruce opts not to sign the company over just as Gordon, Bullock and Barnes arrive to arrest Theo. Barbara did give up the Galavans stashed Mayor James, a curious move since she was selling out allies who hadn’t crossed her. I’ve no doubt Galavan has an escape plan, but at least everyone knows he’s a villain now.
Nygma, meanwhile continued his descent to psychotic mass-murderer as a hunter ends up stumbling across the grave he’s making for Ms. Kringle. Nygma realizes someone else walked through as well and follows them to a cabin in the woods that inexplicably happens to be where Penguin is hiding out. The promise of a Penguin/Nygma “team-up” is the most enchanting reason to tune in next week. Watching Gordon bumble around? Not so much.
Rating: 5 out of 10
Barbara running wild was fun, but Gordon again looked clueless for willingly sacrificing his fellow officers for some still undefined bond to his ex.