Gotham Review – “Arkham” S1E4

It’s really hard for me to realize that Gotham is so pre-Batman that what I expect/want/need out of it isn’t going to happen yet.  So when the episode was titled “Arkham” I was hoping for something closer to the video games.  But instead, we got an abandoned land that caused a turf war.  And why, other than the size of the land did that happen?  I’m not quite sure, but I do know that the only plot point driving this story forward at the moment is Oswald Cobblepot.

Even with that, it seemed very odd that the dishwasher, who was always being admonished, was promoted to the restaurant manager for keeping the money?  It seems that for a crime lord like Maroni, the money that Cobblepot saved would be a drop in the bucket compared to everything he had.  But, for a guy like Cobblepot, who has some smarts and some evil in him, its a good thing.  Honestly, I’m happy for him.  Is that weird?

Gotham - "Arkham"
Jim Gordon looks on wondering if the crime lords of Gotham have anything better to worry about than low income housing vs. a dump.

The “bad guy of the week” was the real star of this episode.  How could you not love Richard Gladwell?  He was acted well and did sinister so well. And his weapon was SO cool!  His weapon, although maybe in police custody right now, could be the addition to the umbrella that Penguin will eventually have. Richard Gladwell reminded me a lot of Jubal Early in Firefly.  What sucks about him is that he had to die in the dumbest way.  Getting shot from both sides seems really excessive police force.  But think of the possibilities of a guy like that running around Gotham?  He could have been a really good addition to the story line, but c’est la vie.

This week’s theme was all about war.  But what war?  A turf war over the Arkham land?  A war over who the real crime boss of Gotham was?  And the biggest thing that happened was a couple of politicians and a restaurant managers getting killed?  Yeah, I guess that could make national news, but I don’t care about any of it; the writers have given me no reason to care.  They didn’t even show Falcone in this episode.  I just don’t feel invested in what is going on in Gotham.  I have said earlier that this show could do well to take some advice from The Wire.  The world they have created is too large for the audience to really connect.  If they had started small and then gone bigger over time, I feel the story would be more successful.  Oh, and Sam Maroni’s victory steak that he ate in celebration over a compromise was pulled out of thin air.  And who eats steak like that?

Barbara Kean: manipulator, accuser, and all around bad girlfriend.
Barbara Kean: manipulator, accuser, and all around bad girlfriend.

“Arkham” solidified for me that none of the women in this show are likable.  Mooney is still way over the top. The “seduction” scene seemed like something only for fanboys who fap to women kissing.  And the girl fight scene near the end was proof that this was not a moment for story, but quite possible the start of The Fappening part 4.  Also, Mooney telling the singer Liza if she wants power and money, she has to seduce is basically saying that women can’t have both unless they use sex to get there.  The whole thing was just icky.  Then there is Barbara.  This is the most screen time we have gotten from Gordon’s wife/lover/girlfriend, but she is manipulative.  At the beginning she lets in a stranger.  Being a cop’s girlfriend would make her question that decision in actuality.  And then she used their relationship as an ultimatum for police business?  She doesn’t need to know police business.

And now for my rapid fire thoughts:

  • Bruce is in it because he has to be.  The motivational speech at the end was good, but unless we see Bruce grow into a real detective, it was worthless.
  • Nygma really likes his job.
  • Bullock is the worst cop ever.  He raided Gladwell’s desk without a warrant and used that as “evidence?”  Yeah, that’s totally illegal.
  • Jim finally called some shots to Bullock this episode.  It was fresh.
  • Does anyone else want a cannoli?

Hush Comics give “Arkham” a C for lack of development in characters, in story line, and for shoving promiscuous and badly written down our throats.  Ugh.

All photos belong to FOX and DC Entertainment.  They are credited to Jessica Miglio.

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Adrian Puryear

Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Joss Whedon, and Breaking Bad are the best things to ever happen to me. I'm only a Three on MeowMeowBeenz. I really want to be a Four.

2 thoughts on “Gotham Review – “Arkham” S1E4”

  1. Largely agree with your rating and might go a little lower even. There is so little in this show that is holding my interest and we’re just 4 episodes in! I don’t care about the turf war between the mob, Fish’s “seduce me” talent auditions were just stupid, Bruce’s additions in the last two weeks have been very forced and seem like they’re only included to keep reminding the audience. “Hey, remember this kid, he’s going to become Batman, so keep watching this garbage until he does”. Only thing I like on this show right now is Gordon. Cobblepot doesn’t strike me as smart at all, more like accidentally and unbelievably lucky. The show is losing my interest quickly.

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