Gotham Guest Review

Gotham 1×20 – Under the Knife

“If a bus hit me tomorrow, no one would care.”

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Barbara said what we’ve all been thinking for the past 20 episodes, and I think that line has now expanded to include every other character on this show except for Bruce and Alfred who, if you think about it, kind of seem like they’re on a different show. Even the Ed Nygma and Oswald stuff that happened this week felt like random disjointed bits. It’s like we have several mini-Gothams now. I know, imagine the horror.

Truthfully, this almost seemed like it was going to be a fine episode when it was clear that no one seemed to care what happened to Fish Mooney (I’m assuming she’ll make a ridiculously grand/cartoonish entrance in the season finale), but then the writers decided to juggle so many different storylines that I gave up halfway through the hour. Gave up as in I realized there’s no way the episode was going to be salvaged by hour’s end. And seriously, this was a long and poorly structured episode.

From that ending, it looks like the writers are getting their inspiration from Fifty Shades (that’s the only explanation to why the show has been terribly written so far) and while I almost could have liked the strength of that final scene, I remember that this is Barbara we’re talking about. The show won’t kill her off because the future commissioner’s wife is that important to the comics (sigh). And what’s even worse is that the Ogre taking her captive will probably create problems for Leslie and Jim, and I’m definitely not ready to say goodbye to Morena Baccarin yet.

The Bruce/Selina pairing once again surpasses everything else that happened this week (by far), but I’m sad to report that even this storyline felt a bit lackluster if only because there was a huge tonal shift as we switch from their amusing banter to the episode’s other subplots. I sure as hell could have lived without anything Oswald-related which is a shame because there was a time back during the show’s first few episodes where I liked the guy and his ridiculous ploys.

I probably sound like a broken record, but this show is seriously frustrating at every single level. The writers somehow managed to ruin even Ed Nygma’s character for me. The Riddler is supposed to be a ruthless yet clever villain, so I did not enjoy seeing that his transformation is sparked by a clichéd little jealousy. Plus, he really did seem very stalkerish in that car there.

Thankfully, in two weeks this nightmare will be over.

Bat Bits

– There’s something funny about watching Gotham while binge-watching Daredevil. Both shows are aiming for darkness, but only one of them succeeds (guess which one). And my goodness, the action scenes over there are FANTASTIC! A word I will probably never use to describe this mess over here.

– At least the show has removed its case-of-the-week format. So there’s that, I guess?

– On the other hand, watching Bullock and Jim chase the Ogre down was downright boring. I could not handle them spoon-feeding us every detail of the investigation.

– I hate Oswald’s mother and most of the times I can’t even understand what she’s saying. All I know is it’s not worth going back to.

– The Barbara/Selina friendship is still the single most awkward and cringe-inducing thing ever.

– Loved seeing Bruce in a tux and flirting with Selina.

– I want to give this episode a better grade than last week because there was no Fish but, I mean…BARBARA! I…just…can’t.

Cracks From Gotham

Selina: Everyone’s staring at us.
Bruce: Well, I am Bruce Wayne.

(Jim shows Selina a drawing of Justin/Ogre)
Jim: Was this the guy?
Selina: It’s kind of a crappy drawing.

Conclusion
Too many storylines crammed in one hour, all of which are not worth watching.

Chris Rating
C

5 comments

  1. The only part of the episode I actually felt was compelling was the scene between Oswald and his mother with him refusing to admit his dark deeds to her in fear that would change how she saw him and him out taking his pain and anger over what happened on someone else in a murderous fashion. From heartbreaking to bloody.

    I frankly don't care for any of the characters on Gotham, Barbara least of all. I wish the show had created a better version of her to be the woman who will one day be Commissioner Gordon's wife. Someone who's smart, tough, and cares about what Gordon stands for.

    I do detect some Fifty Share inspiration with the Ogre. I hate how BDSM is often portrayed in a negative light on television.

  2. I totally disagree with you on this one. The show might have some cheesy scenes, but it's too dark and awesome. It gives you the same mood as The Dark Knight. The story line isn't as bad as you state, Fish and Penguin plays their role perfectly (specially Penguin). It was better than I expected.

  3. I think it's the cheesiness of the dialogues that I have a huge problem with, and while it does have its rare moments I think comparing the show to The Dark Knight is a bit of a stretch. If the writers had stuck to one compelling season arc and followed through, it would have been better than cramming several different (unrelated) subplots into a single episode.

    Then again, there are many people who find the show compelling even now, so I guess it's a matter of opinion when it comes to this one! 🙂

  4. I did actually enjoy that scene too. The murder was shocking and yes, a good shift from heartbreaking to bloody.

    Barbara, on the other hand, is just bloody annoying.

  5. I agree, Chris. Gotham would be better off sticking to one season arc. It would make the overall season feel less disorganized. Honestly, it feels like the show is throwing in everything but the kitchen. It makes me wonder how long can the show possibly last after its first season is concluded.

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