Well that was bad.
Much like Arrow, I’m assuming Gotham is going to experience some growing pains before it really starts knocking our comic-book socks off on a weekly basis. Because after a decidedly impressive pilot, Selina Kyle was a misfire on practically every level.
First off all, why would you call your episode “Selina Kyle” if you’re barely going to showcase our young Catwoman at all? Little Miss Kyle felt like an afterthought, and we were offered barely any insights into what makes her tick. The only things we did learn is that she (predictably) scratches people’s eyes out like a cat when threatened, and her mother is out there somewhere. You’re going to have to do much better than that writers!
The episode’s villains were also a flop. Patti and Doug were probably envisioned as a pair of hilariously dark antagonists, but they ended up being far from threatening. As for their boss, The Dollmaker, we met the villain on Arrow last season, so I’m wary of the show producing a unique twist on the notorious villain.
On the bright side, Bruce’s journey is being handled in a well enough (albeit expected) manner. The boy has a penchant for self-mutilation, but also wants to help the unfortunate as evidenced by his offering clothes to the homeless at the end. I’m less convinced of Alfred’s characterization; it feels like the writers still haven’t decided if he’s going to be a loving butler or a tough-as-nails ex-marine. But maybe a combination of these two will be good for Gotham. And I do appreciate that he’s not being hostile towards Gordon (he actually invites him over to check on Bruce).
Robin Taylor Lord is still doing great work as The Penguin. I enjoyed his murderous rampage, although the final scene where he unsuccessfully tried to bribe one of his victim’s mothers felt pointless. Speaking of mothers, Carol Kane made a brief appearance as Oswald’s mother and she was suitably bizarre.
And finally, I was not thrilled with the episode’s cliffhanger as Selena revealed that she knows who killed the Waynes. The pilot made it pretty clear that the attacker was masked, so the writers better be careful around this plot point. But I guess if it keeps her interacting with Gordon, then I’m all for it.
– The juxtaposition of a couple having dinner in a fancy restaurant with the homeless kid being chased outside on the street was very cool.
– I still like Gordon as a character and his idealistic expectation of everyone around him. Bullock however is starting to get on my nerves with his attitude.
– Oswald stabbing the guys who picked him up with a beer bottle was brutal.
– Edward Nygma (The Riddler) only had a brief scene this week, but I enjoyed it immensely. He was goofy and geeky, AND he introduced Arkham Asylum which apparently the Waynes were planning on reopening. This could be good.
– Standout scene: Falcone visiting Fish and beating up her waiter boyfriend. Jada’s performance as she screamed at everyone to get out was pretty chilling. But give her more to do please!
– Fish vowing to kill Falcone with her bare hands and teeth sounded like genuine foreshadowing. Who wants to bet that’s how Falcone will die in the finale?
– I still don’t like the casting of Barbara. But her calling the newspaper against Jim’s wishes and giving them the anonymous tip was a good step towards changing that.
– The dog barked at Selina. Get it? GET IT?
– So Gotham’s Mayor is corrupt and has absolutely no problem locking up children. Charming.
– Hilarious moment: Pattie telling the dude with no eyeball (VERY grotesque shot) that “it’s just a scratch” before shooting him dead. Heh.
– Maybe it’s a bit too early to judge, but is Camren Bicondova kind of not so great as Selina? Also, I refuse to call her Cat – no need to pound it over our heads writers. I think we all cracked the code from your promotional materials.
Cracks From Gotham
Falcone: I heard you had a lover.
Fish: Well, if you’re referring to the boy that I keep around for exercise… My lover he is not.
A clunky and ill-conceived second hour. I still love the world of Gotham, and I desperately want the show to succeed. It’s just unfortunate this episode felt like such a missed opportunity where “Cat” was concerned. Do better show.