GOTHAM Season 1 Episode 7 Recap/Review – “Penguin’s Umbrella”
This geek has some real issues with this week’s Gotham. On the one hand, holy cow did they turn a huge corner and go all out by having Jim Gordon stand his ground and shoot it out with hired Falcone henchman Victor Zsasz (inside the GCPD headquarters of all places!) AND THEN go on and invade Carmine Falcone’s compound with only two really big machine guns and Harvey Bullock, but on the other hand, I fear they “jumped the shark” on the overall all Gordon vs. Organized Crime story line. Let me explain:
The character of Jim Gordon in this new show Gotham is 100% true to his beliefs; he’s an anomaly among a police department full of officers that’s corrupted to its very core. It’s a premise that’s little over the top, but it has worked up until this point. However, this week not only did they have Gordon’s wife Barbara play the usual damsel-in-distress role, costing Jim everything he had worked for up to that point, but they also had Gordon go face to face with Falcone this early in the show, and have him lose in a huge, huge way: disrespected, future indebted to Falcone, and made to look the fool for even trying to arrest Falcone. This was so frustrating, and in large part because it’s happened so soon in the shows run.
But the episode was actually really good overall, I’m just nitpicking and this is only my angry opinion. But we are learning that Harvey Bullock has a soul, and that Don Carmine Falcone has taken Oswald Cobblepot under his wing and made him a double-agent against Maroni. The Russian factor has also been eliminated in Gotham’s organized crime world, and Bruce Wayne, it’s revealed, truly cares for Jim Gordon, finding in him someone else who honestly believes Gotham City can be saved.
The show has made great strides since its pilot episode, which was a nice effort for a new television series, but I fear this week that has all changed. I am still undecided how I feel about the episode as a whole, and I may never decide.. but what I do is that Ben McKenzie is making for a pretty badass Jim Gordon, The Penguin is getting more and more interesting each week, and there’s now a war coming, something Penguin had foreseen since Day One of Gotham.
Your Gotham Easter Eggs: Victor Zsasz arrives, another true Batman Rogue – the Danny-Elfman-esque music that’s played as we watch The Penguin walk, a sure nod to Danny Elfman’s Batman Returns score from 1992 – Alfred holding a member of GCPD’s Internal Affairs unit at knifepoint, a nod to the Batman: Earth One version of Alfred from the graphic novel published in 2012 which has Alfred portrayed as a more violent character who is highly influenced by his military past.