After all the build-up of Arkham all season long, you would think we'd get a lot of scenes and plots set there -- not just one episode. Unfortunately, you'd be wrong as Gordon and Bullock spend the entirely of this episode of Gotham
, "What the Little Bird Told Him," chasing Jack Gruber, the man who escaped from the last episode.
While we do get a few interesting, dynamic scenes with Fish, Falcone and Liza, this episode, like the mid-season premiere, feels like one that're more about missed opportunities rather than realized potential. A lot of what doesn't work in the episode -- and it is a lot -- comes down to one thing: a sense that producers are rushing to get somewhere.
Gordon Wants His Job Back
Gordon is determined to use his ability to capture Gruber as his leverage to get his old job back at GCPD. He even walks into the precinct and confronts the Commissioner, claiming he knows Gruber and knows how he thinks. Yes, he claims this even though he's known Gruber for all of one episode.
The Commissioner, clearly not caring what the Mayor would think, agrees to give Gordon his job back if he and Bullock can capture Gruber within 24 hours. If they fail, they both go back to working at Arkham. While I admire that Gordon tells Bullock he lied about knowing where Gruber would go next, this is yet another example of the show rushing to tell the story it wants to tell, rather than actually telling the story it needs to tell.
Nygma does some digging and identifies Gruber as Jack Buchinsky. Jack even manipulated the system so that he could wind up in Arkham. So it looks like I was wrong about him being Hugo Strange. Jack Buchinsky is, however, a different well-known DC Comics villain known as the Electrocutioner. (This isn't a spoiler exactly, given his weapon of choice.)
Bullock and Gorden eventually get another lead and wind up in Buchinsky's shop where he killed one of his henchmen earlier in the episode. Another one has had their brain fried and is writing "I will not betray my friend" over and over again on the wall.
Liza Gets "Kidnapped"
Falcone, meanwhile, starts off the episode as happy as can be as he walks the streets with Liza. He still doesn't see her as a romantic interest and offers to set her up with someone, but she says she wants to stay with him.
Later, Liza is kidnapped at gunpoint by masked men. Except, it's under Fish's orders and it's so Fish can finally make her move against Falcone. She calls Falcone using a voice masker and tells him that Liza has been kidnapped.
Penguin is across town having a meal and a good time with Maroni and his men when Falcone calls and tells him to come over right away because Liza has been taken. Penguin excuses himself and tells Maroni his mother is sick. He's electrocuted when he tries to leave and another henchman comes in and drops an electrical bomb that hurts everyone inside.
After the explosion, Gordon questions Maroni. He claims Maroni and Buchinsky were partners years earlier and Maroni double-crossed him after a robbery. Penguin wakes up in the ambulance while Gordon and Maroni are chatting and screams out that he has urgent business with Falcone. Because, yes, it's got to be that easy for Maroni to find out Penguin is a traitor.
Later that day, Maroni is joking around with the cops like he's an old friend at the precinct. Penguin finally regains consciousness and Maroni directly asks him about his relationship with Falcone. Meanwhile, Fish calls Falcone and offers to be an intermediary with the kidnappers, but he tells her he knows she's behind this scheme.
Fish tells him what she truly wants: leave Gotham, and even take Liza with him if he wants. He agrees.
Butch is happy, but Fish reminds him that she's actually doing him a favor -- someone else would have taken him out. She also reminds Liza that she can never tell him the truth.
While Falcone is happy to give himself up, Victor Zsasz is practically begging him to let him take out Fish's crew.
The Attack on the Precinct
Buchinsky heads to the police station with his henchmen and sends an electrical surge throughout the building. Everyone eventually passes out in what appears to be the second attack on the precinct in 12 episodes. Will we see it blown up in the season finale? Probably.
Gordon, however, was wearing shoes that I guess don't get impacted by electrical surges and is able to confront Buchinsky with his weapon. While he was smart enough to wear those shoes, he stupidly didn't realize his gun could be impacted by the surges. Aaron winds up attacking Gordon, but he is able to fight him off. (Also, please confirm that I'm not crazy -- did Aaron not even wind up speaking in this episode?)
And then how does Gordon wind up defeating Buchinsky? Much like Mel Gibson in the movie Signs, he merely throws a cup of water on him and shorts out his electrical box hanging around his neck.
Next thing you know, the Commission is taking photos of a captured Buchinsky and Gordon is receiving his badge back. That's right, Gotham couldn't help itself and only waited two -- just two -- episodes before it sent Gordon back to GCPD.
Fish's Plan Goes Awry
Penguin, meanwhile, goes to see Falcone and tells him Liza belongs to Fish. Falcone slaps him and refuses to believe it. When he confronts Fish and Liza, what he's most upset about is the fact that they used Falcone's memory of his mother to make him fall for Liza's lies.
Victor then enters Fish's place with plenty of henchmen. Falcone says he's sorry to Liza and then chokes her to death.
And then in a typical cliched idiotic villain move, he decides to leave Butch and Fish alive, albeit they will be imprisoned somehow. While he orders the death of all their henchmen, I'm sure there will be more nameless/faceless people who will come to help fight alongside Butch and Fish in the season finale.
Penguin enters, smirking and happy to see that Fish is finally getting what's coming to her.
Jim Makes a Move on Leslie
And then in another incredibly rushed plotline, Jim makes a move on Leslie when she comes to see him at the station. Unfortunately, they don't get too much time to make out before a cop comes in and tells Gordon that there was a big shoot-out at Fish's.
Other Odds and Ends
-- Barbara pops up in one scene, where she goes to her cold, non-emotional parents who are seemingly asking questions they don't particular care to have the answers for. They also don't seem too happy that she appears to be staying with them. She's pathetic and that scene just seems oddly placed in this episode, as if producers just needed something for her to do.
-- While the Barbara plotline felt really, really shoehorned in, I'm glad to say the producers didn't also do that with Bruce, Alfred or Selina.
-- I love the tiny little flashback of a young Falcone at a wake earlier in the episode. I hope we get more flashbacks with Falcone and even Maroni that show how they rose to power.
For Comic Fans (Or Those That Love the Mythos)
The following could be considered spoilers, depending on how much you want to know about Gotham characters and their comics counterparts.
-- If you want to learn more about Jack Buchinsky/The Electrocutioner, you can learn more about his character here
-- While no one has identified Kristen Kringle as a DC character yet, she is slowly forcing Edward Nygma more into his Riddler personality. He gives her a "riddle" this week (a cupcake with a bullet in it). He eventually has to explain it, after which a detective comes in and tells Nygma to get lost. Edward hears Kringle tell the detective, "He is so weird," after he leaves.
airs Mondays at 8pm on FOX.
(Image courtesy of FOX)