Gotham “Worse Than a Crime” (Season 2 Episode 11)

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On the mid-season finale of “Gotham,” things came to a predictably insane closing, as the Order of St. Dumas prepared to sacrifice the “Son of Gotham,” Bruce Wayne, and Gordon joined forces with the Penguin to stop them and bring down Theo Galavan (James Frain), in “Worse Than a Crime.” But would they succeed? And could Gordon do so without losing his integrity? Or without becoming a criminal himself?

Well, you don’t have to be a rocket scientist to figure out the answer to the first question, as without Bruce, there’s no Batman, and be that as it may that the show isn’t afraid to play fast and loose with certain characters from the Batverse, making them their own, obviously they weren’t going to go so far as to kill off their raison d’être. So, it was a foregone conclusion that, one way or another, Bruce was making it out alive, which he certainly did.

The real question was: who else was? I mean, I’d like to think they weren’t going to kill off The Penguin, who remains the most vivid and entertaining character on the show, and the most consistent, both in his arc and performance-wise, courtesy of the excellent work in the role by Robin Lord Taylor. Thankfully, such was not the case, as the Penguin made it out alive, and got his revenge to boot against Theo Galavan for killing his mother and then some.

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Also emerging relatively unscathed were Tabitha Galavan (Jessica Lucas) and Silver St. Cloud (Natalie Alyn Lind), who managed to escape via parachute out the window, just as the cops and Penguin alike were closing in on them and Theo. Not so lucky was Theo himself, who was initially arrested by Gordon, after he hesitated to outright shoot him, and then was stopped outright by Captain Barnes.

Shortly thereafter, Barnes was knocked out by the Penguin, who then stuffed Theo in his trunk, and carried him out dockside, where he proceeded to beat Theo senseless with a bat before Gordon finally delivered the coup de grâce with a bullet to Theo’s head. The Penguin then finished the effort by putting forth the final touch- the cherry on top, if you will- shoving his trademark umbrella into Theo’s mouth and down his throat.

This is the condition in which Theo was admitted into the morgue by one Mrs. Peabody at Indian Hill, where he was to be given to Professor Strange to do who knows what to. (Perhaps he’ll be the one to turn him into Azrael?) Why do I have the feeling this isn’t the last we’ve seen of old Theo? Maybe not in the same condition, mind you, but in some way, shape or form, nonetheless. Perhaps as a resurrected super-villain?

Not sure who, but if he can be revived, then that means we might not have seen the last of The Joker, either, which would make much more sense, given how shocking his own death was. Granted, the latter hadn’t become The Joker in earnest as of yet, but given how previous incarnations have tended to involve actual facial disfigurement and the like, I wouldn’t be surprised if this Strange professor was in the business of creating freaks of nature of a sort.

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Now, this does involve one of my least favorite of the more current tropes of late: the whole “let’s make ‘em think someone’s dead, only to bring them back later on” thing. (See also: “Game of Thrones,” “The Vampire Diaries,” “Scream Queens,” et al.) However, I don’t mind it as much here, because it’s precisely that sort of thing that created a lot of well-known villains in comic books, whether it be falling into a vat of chemicals or getting zapped with radioactive energy or so on and so forth. For that matter, it’s what created a lot of superheroes as well.

So, I don’t mind letting it slide here because, if that proves to be the case, then we’ll get The Joker back, plus other presumed dead villains, only super-charged and even crazier, which is something I can get behind on a show that’s already bringing the crazy in spades as it is. Given that, why not bring someone back from the dead, only to make them even more of a threat? I can hang with that, no problem.

Beyond that, we had some character-building with Silver that was reasonably well-done, and certainly well-acted by Lind. Silver might not have fooled Bruce in the end, but she did a great job playing both the villain and the victim by turns, to excellent effect. She earned her escape parachute, to be sure. I can’t help but wonder if she might re-emerge as a known character in her own right, not unlike Theo, albeit to a lesser degree, not being dead and all. If so, I’m all for it, if it means keeping the actress/character around, because Lind is nailing it.

Ditto Lucas, whose Tigress finally stood up to Theo’s BS and cut him loose, after he ordered her around and treated her with disrespect one too many times. Good for her. I dig Tigress as well, so I’m all in favor of her sticking around. I don’t think we’ve seen the last of her, either, though I’m not sure why she or Silver would be compelled to return to Gotham after fleeing, what with both of them being wanted by the police, particularly Tigress, but we’ll see.

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Probably not returning would be the Order of St. Dumas, who, from the looks of things were wiped out in one fell swoop by Gordon and Penguin’s crew, with an valuable assist from Bullock, who took out head honcho Father Creel (Ron Rifkin), just as he was about to take out Gordon and/or Bruce.

Beyond that, Gordon proposed to Dr. Thompkins, who didn’t give an answer, or rather, the show cut away before she had a chance to, at least. We also discovered that she was pregnant, which works out, as I do believe actress Morena Baccarin is, also from actor Ben McKenzie, no less. Life imitates art and all that.

Other stuff: Lucius Fox fixed the hard drive on Bruce’s father’s computer finally; Alfred is apparently borderline indestructible (seriously, though: beaten, stabbed, buried under a junk pile and tased- what is he, Robobutler?); Gordon saw that The Penguin and Ed were buddies; Bruce’s favorite animal is…owls? ; Silver thinks dolphins can read minds- or hers, at least- perhaps she’ll come back as Dolphin Girl? ; also, Silver is not afraid to shoot a monk (!); and last, but definitely not least: the first appearance of fan fave Mr. Freeze! Oh yeah, the ice puns can’t be far behind, right? “Ice” to see you, Mr. Freeze. (See?)

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All in all, an action-packed episode, that featured a lot of cool moments, even if the Order of St. Dumas was pretty easily defeated overall. But I suppose that was sort of a necessary evil, in the grand scheme of things. It was a fall finale, after all- gotta break some eggs to make an omelet and all that. But Theo was obviously the big one, and even if he does return, it was a pretty bad-ass send-off, complete with an umbrella on top. I’m good with that, and I was good with this episode overall.

What did you think of the fall finale of “Gotham”? Were you impressed with Bruce’s grace under pressure? How about Silver’s emotional prowess? Or Tigress choosing Silver over her brother? Is Alfred actually made of titanium steel alloy? Will Theo be back? How about Jerome? Has Gordon gone completely over to the dark side? Will Dr. T. say yes to his proposal? Sound off on this and more down below and see you next year- same Bat-time, same Bat-site!