Gotham’s midseason finale leaves us wanting more

FOX

I hate the way Fox treats Gotham. We’re now exactly halfway through the fourth season and … now we have to wait an indeterminate amount of time before the second half of the season plays out. All Fox will say is “Spring”. Sadly the move to Thursday hasn’t done much for the show’s ratings either with the fall finale finishing on a low note. And that’s really too bad because this was one crazy, fast paced episode that seemed to end just as it was getting started.

Thankfully this week, we only got a taste of the brat Bruce Wayne has become since he “killed” Ra’s al Ghul (and is he really dead, because Alexander Siddig’s name is still in the opening credits — but Nicholas D’Agosto was also a “regular” as Harvey Dent and only appeared in a handful of the season’s 22 episodes). Poor Alfred can’t do anything to snap him out of his reckless temper tantrum, and all the thanks he gets for his years of caring for Bruce is fired. Bruce had emancipation papers drawn up and dismissed Alfred from his life. But sooner or later he’ll regret his actions. And hopefully sooner because I don’t like this side of Bruce. It was, however, very satisfying to see Alfred punch the kid in the face even if that was the action that got him canned.

This week’s episode title is a tricky one, “Queen Takes Knight”, because the knight in question is not the Dark Knight of the season’s subtitle. No, the knight is Gotham’s true protector, Jim Gordon, and the Queen is Sofia Falcone, who has been playing him like a fiddle (and Penguin as well) to regain her family’s hold over Gotham’s crime underworld. And boy, did things take a hairpin turn here with the unexpected arrival of Sofia’s father Carmine, returned to Gotham (where he remarks the sun never shines) to bring honor back to the family name, give Sofia a good dressing down and promising to get her out of the city.

FOX

And it all seems like the dying gangster will get his way until … a black van drives up and starts shooting, killing Carmine and injuring Sofia. A shocking turn of events to be sure. I was never really certain if Carmine was actually dying or if he was just tired of his life of crime, especially after having to deal with the Court of Owls last season as well as the death of his son, something both surviving Falcones still hold over Jim’s head even though Mario was infected with the Tetch virus and about to kill Lee. But now Carmine is dead and Jim refuses to go after the prime suspect, Oswald Cobblepot, because he doesn’t have enough evidence. Really, Jim, since when did you need evidence to go after someone? I know Gordon is supposed to be Gotham’s White Knight, but he’s a bit of a hypocrite as well.

Even if she failed to get the GCPD and Penguin to wage a war on her first try, Sofia is still working that angle and gives Jim the proof he needs to bring Penguin in — the “death” of Martin. Now that’s something that gets Jim’s blood pumping so he goes after Penguin, who can see right through Sofia’s game and reveals to Jim that Martin is not dead. When he orders his henchman Victor Zsasz to corroborate the story of Martin’s escape, Victor … lies and tells Jim the kid is dead! That’s enough for Jim and Penguin is hauled off to jail.

At Gotham Central, Jim gets a surprise visit from Harvey Bullock. Jim reminds him that his leave is almost up and he hopes to work with Harvey again soon, but Harv’s not really feeling it. In fact, he tells Jim that everything that’s happened in Gotham since Sofia had him installed at the captain is actually Jim’s fault. And it turns out Harvey’s right. Sofia wasn’t in Gotham to put the Falcone name back where it belonged, she was there to exact vengeance on Jim for killing her brother. She pitted Jim against Oswald, she brought Lazlo Valentine to Gotham to throw Jim off his game, she had her own father killed to pin it on Oswald to try to get that war started again. Unfortunately, she also killed Pyg but she now has one Victor Zsasz on her side. The Sirens as well, perhaps, although Barbara was caught off guard to see Carmine again. But with her father dead, just how far is Sofia willing to go to bring down James Gordon?

FOX

Speaking of the Sirens, Tabitha decided to try to knock some sense into Grundy’s head, literally. She saw a little something in his eyes when the two had their fight at Cherry’s place so she figured if she could hit him hard enough, it might jar something loose and he’d remember her again instead of addressing her as “pretty lady.” But no matter how many times she hit him, there was nothing happening inside his brain. But … after she gave up and left, Grundy saw his reflection in a puddle and said, “What the hell happened to me?” Butch, it appears, is back.

The episode ended on the moment we’d all been waiting for as Penguin was locked away in Arkham. That’s not the moment we’d been waiting for, it was the conversation Penguin had with his next door neighbor with a very familiar laugh. Yes, folks, Jerome Valeska is back … and now we have to wait months to see what kind of mayhem he and Penguin will be cooking up. Stay tuned!

Gotham will return in Spring 2018 on FOX.

What did you think of the fall finale? Let us know what you think in the comments section below.

 

 

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