Oh, Theo. You done messed up now! At the end of last week’s episode, Butch arrived back at the lair of his master, The Penguin, and notified him that he had found the location in which Theo Galavan was holding Penguin’s mother hostage. Naturally this week opened with her rescue. Unfortunately for all involved, especially poor Gertrude Cobblepot (Carol Kane), things did not go well. While Penguin managed to get her freed from her cage, she was murdered in front of his eyes by the Galavans almost immediately after.
Theo might not know this, but having seen the first season, we certainly do: the only thing more dangerous than a desperate Penguin is one who’s out for blood. Like Fish Mooney before him, Theo Galavan is in the crosshairs of a vengeance-seeking Oswald Cobblepot. He might seem like a weak, limping, sniveling sack, but his resolve is unquestionable. Plus, you know, Robin Lord Taylor is fantastic in the role, so we automatically root for him anyway.
Making matters worse for Galavan and his maniacal schemes is the fact that, over the course of the episode, Jim Gordon and Harvey Bullock are now aware of Galavan’s unsavory side. Galavan might be the Mayor of Gotham now (ouch!), but he’ll soon have enemies coming at him from all sides now that yet another shoe has dropped. Poor young Bruce Wayne is still clueless as to the threat that Galavan, his sister, and the young Silver St. Cloud represent, but I suspect that shoe will soon drop as well.
Lucky for Bruce, in addition to Alfred, he has his pal Selina Kyle looking out for him and she absolutely senses the bullshit that Silver is slinging as she snakes her way into the lonely young Wayne’s life. It’s almost weird seeing such a standard seduction plot play out between pre-teen characters, but that also makes it more intriguing than it otherwise might have been if everyone involved was an adult. Will Selina awaken Bruce to what is going on? Of course she will, but the fun of it will be in the execution, not the outcome. The same can actually be said for this series as a whole.
Against all odds, this series continues to get more entertaining with each passing week, from the big political & gang war narrative to the seduction of young Bruce Wayne to the increasing madness of Edward Nygma. Along the way we get stylized dialogue, over-the-top performances, and occasionally hyperviolent bursts of action. The high heel-to-throat incident this week managed to be both simple AND gruesome; a feat deserving of applause. It’s amazing how things can change so quickly. Last year I was somewhat dreading each new episode of this series. This year, I looked forward to it. That goes double when “mommy’s little monster”, The Penguin, is finally unleashed and unhinged!