Well … last week I surmised that with Harvey Bullock’s downward spiral, Jim Gordon would have to take over the Captain’s office so that he could eventually ascend to the position of Commissioner. I didn’t think it would come as soon as this week though. Harvey screwed up royally last week — well, he’s been screwing up for longer than anyone realized by working for Penguin — by taking Penguin’s side over Jim’s when it came to storming a warehouse where they believed Professor Pyg to be with one of their officers. That mistake ended with the officer being shot by Harvey and Penguin’s men being gunned down by Pyg’s automatic weapons. When it came time for an informal ceremony to honor officers shot in the line of duty by giving them the bullet they were shot with, Harvey was a no show, unable to face the officer he shot and give her the bullet from his gun. Instead he left Jim to handle everything.
He didn’t know at the time that Jim had already been offered the captain’s position by the mayor, or that Jim had refused to sign the order. The mayor told him to hang on to it and sign it whenever he felt the time was right. But why would the mayor, who was also in league with Penguin, want to appoint the city’s one honest cop as captain of Gotham Central? Turns out Jim has a supporter in Sofia Falcone. She knows he wants to take down Penguin, and coincidentally she does as well, so who better to put in the captain’s chair than Jim Gordon? But he does not want to be beholden to her, swapping out one crime lord for another. But Harvey’s behavior and his refusal to even show his face to earn the respect of his men pushed Jim to sign the order making him captain. As his first act, he relieved Harvey of duty. Ouch. But Harvey warned him this promotion would come with a price and he’d better be ready to pay up when the bill was due.
And while it was a bad day for Harvey, it was an even worse day for Penguin as he learned that not only had Gordon been offered the promotion, but Ed was mocking him at a show down in the Narrows. Luckily while learning this news, Tabitha, Selina and Barbara were at Penguin’s having a dispute with the guy they robbed last week, the complaint being that they didn’t have a license to rob him. But when the news of Ed was revealed by Mr. Penn, the girls got a chuckle out of it. The other guy laughed too and Penguin stabbed him in the neck. He didn’t get to laugh because he didn’t know Ed. But now his debt has become Barbara and company’s, so to square things up, they had to go to the Narrows and bring Ed back by nightfall. Or else Penguin would unleash Firefly on them all.
The whole scene at the fight club was pretty epic with Ed donning a large pointy beak to portray Penguin and get the spectators riled up, then putting on an act with Grundy in which he “killed” Penguin. Needless to say, Tabitha and Barbara were more than a little shocked to see Butch in the ring, and Barbara was even more intrigued to see Lee at the club as well. Even though they had a job to do, the both ran off and left Selina all by her lonesome. Which was fine because she nabbed Ed all by herself while Tabby tried to jog Butch’s memory and Babs had a chat with Lee. It was interesting when Barb asked Lee what Jim thought of her new gig (and look) that she replied, “Jim who?”
Unfortunately, while they were trying to get Ed out, Grundy got in the way and Ed ordered him to kill the women. Tabitha felt Butch was still in there and tried to appeal to that part of him, and everyone was going nowhere fast. The only way to resolve this was to have the ladies’ strongest fighter square off against the club’s strongest fighter and the winner got Ed. Which meant someone would have to fight Grundy, and that someone was Tabitha. Trying to appeal to Butch, Grundy tossed her around like a rag doll until Barbara finally got her to take a weapon. Tabby managed to get a few whacks to Grundy’s noggin, knocking him out.
But with Penguin’s minions missing his deadline, Firefly shows up to roast them all — with Grundy as scared of fire as Frankenstein’s monster — but Lee manages to shoot her fuel tanks before she can do any damage and then revealed to the assembled spectators that Cherry was also working for the man they all hated the most, Penguin. That gave Barbara the opportunity to shoot Cherry in the head, and announce she’s no longer working for Penguin, and as Lee tended to Grundy still unconscious in the ring, she realized the crowd was still there, speechless. Ed told her that by her actions, she is now the leader of this ragtag group of people and she’d better say something before someone worse than Cherry takes over. “Drinks are on the house” was a good start.
One other little interesting bit of information this week came with Penguin and his visit to Sofia’s orphanage. Seeing a young boy being bullied and then watching him pour gas on the kids’ book bags, Penguin got his attention and told him that is not how to get revenge because they would know it was him. Penguin took the boy under his wing, so to speak, to teach him the sweet art of revenge. First lesson — pit your bullies against each other. The boy, Martin, let the girl bully cheat off of his math test since he knew both of his bullies were failing. She got an A+ and immediately became his protector. Martin then pretended the boy bully gave him a wedgie and his two bullies began fighting each other. Mission accomplished. Penguin also gave Martin some questionable guidelines on how to stab people in the heart. One thing Penguin told the boy was that he could never have friends because those friends would eventually stab him in the back (like Ed). When Martin, who is mute, wrote on his pad, “But I’m your friend,” Penguin tore the note off the pad and said they were not friends, they were conspirators. And they shook on it. But … Penguin held on to that note because it truly did mean something to him deep down.
But what happens next? Penguin will realize he’s been screwed when Barb and company don’t return with Ed, and he already knows Firefly has been incapacitated. He doesn’t know Cherry is dead, but he does know Gordon is the new captain. How long before he realizes that his new “friend” Sofia is the one who really screwed him over? And will Jim and Harvey be able to mend the relationship that’s been the foundation of Gotham from the beginning?
By the way, the title of this week’s episode, “Stop Hitting Yourself”, was pretty funny in context. That’s what the crowd would shout during a match when Grundy would rip off his opponent’s arm and beat them with it.
Gotham airs Thursday at 8:00 PM on FOX.
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