[Header Image: Cory Michael Smith as Edward Nygma | Fox]
This episode was split into three main stories. It starts at the GCPD where we find out that the young boy who showed up at the end of the previous episode was chained to other children and forced to do work for a gang who are situated over by the water. In true Jim Gordon fashion, he instantly decides that he is going to help them no matter what it takes.
He tries to get supplies from the mainland but once again they deny the request and even tell him he needs to keep his patch of territory safe and not bother with a rescue mission. This was absolutely hilarious to me. I couldn’t believe they had the audacity to give Jim orders after refusing to help him for months and apparently neither could Jim because he does call them out on it before going to do the recuse mission anyway.
Realising they need to get the supplies from somewhere else leads Jim to go to Barbara. The second he walks into Sirens everyone stops what they’re doing and watches him, knowing there’s a target on Jim and a reward from Oswald. Despite this, he still approaches Barbara and asks her for a favour, a couple of vehicles to help him get across to the other children. They discuss what happened in the previous episode, Barbara is angry that Jim did nothing to stop Tabitha from being killed and he didn’t kill Oswald afterward either. Their talk eventually leads to her telling him he’s welcome to the vehicles but she’s still clearly angry. That’s going to change soon enough considering she wants to work with him to kill Oswald. We know Barbara and Jim are supposed to share scenes this seasons so it would make sense that it’s to take down Oswald, the only other reason would be if the writers are planning to put them back together, something I wouldn’t be against. At least I wouldn’t be against the possibility for it to happen at some point in the Gotham timeline even if we never actually see it.
After they get the vehicles, the GCPD go to find the children. We see that they’re of differing ages and are all chained together being forced to dig a tunnel for a group who wear gas masks and use cattle prods. The GCPD surround them and while the gang is held at gunpoint, Jim goes in and frees the children. However, as they’re heading to the vehicles, a shoot out occurs. Most of the children are put into two of the vehicles and drive away but Jim, Harvey, Gabriel (one of the older kids), and two other children are stranded when the third vehicle gets a flat tire. They do get away but they’re forced to take shelter inside of an abandoned hotel.
Once they’re inside Harvey and Jim split up to look around when they suspect someone else is already there. The former finds evidence that people have been killed in the hotel and Jim finds a child who claims a ghost found him. When Harvey comes to warn them the little boy shuts him and Jim inside of a room where the lights go out. Flashing strobe lights come on along with a high pitched sound. The “ghost”, a figure we saw before who we find is called “Mother” appears and begins to fight with them. They get the upper hand when Harvey breaks the window, letting light in, and Jim questions her. She claims to be protecting the boy and teaching him to survive but before they can really find out much else she kicks Jim, cuts his hand, and then runs. I was curious about Mother after it was shown that she would be a part of season 5 and I quite like what we saw of her. I would be okay if this is all we got but I’m guessing this is only the beginning. With a limited season, I doubt we’ll get anything major but it does seem like we could see her again.
Wasting no time, they leave the hotel but while they’re outside trying to hotwire a car two gangs show up. One is the gang that had the children chained up and the others attacked the GCPD and their vehicles earlier in the episode. Another shoot out follows as the two sides want Jim for themselves so they can get Oswald’s reward but the whole thing is stopped when Barbara shows up in what is the best moment of the episode. I knew she owned that vehicle but I wasn’t expecting this to be the moment we first saw it and I do hope it makes more appearances. I’m also not surprised that Barbara had her own motives, which is to get Jim to work with her to kill Oswald. He does agree to talk to her so long as they get the children to safety so I’m curious to see where that leads. As I said before, they’re supposed to share scenes this season so it does make sense that she would come and help Jim in order to get him to agree to help her take down Oswald. Plus, it’s a shorter season so I doubt there’s going to be a lot of debate from Jim.
The GCPD section of the episode ends with Jim, Harvey, Barbara, Gabriel, and the two children arriving at a location where Lucius greets them. It’s a set of buildings and he explains that there are 250 apartments, running water (hot and cold), gas, but no electric. After they moved the children in, word got out that it is a safe place in Gotham so people are now making their way there meaning that it’ll be full soon. With the growing pressures on the GCPD and Jim already becoming a little more ruthless, I’m interested to see where things go from here.
Another third of the episode follows Bruce who is seeking out the Witch in order to help Selina. I don’t think any of us are surprised that it’s Ivy and I do have to say that I can finally see Peyton List as the character. She definitely feels not just more like an evolved version of Ivy but actual Poison Ivy. There are still a few things that I think need to be done, however, this is the first time I enjoyed Peyton List in the role so I’m really looking forward to seeing her again this season. Which I hope we do see more of her because I’m still over not over the lack of Ivy we got in season 4, especially after they made such a big deal about transforming her again.
That being said, I really enjoyed that she was feigning innocence to get Bruce to help her. Claiming the plants killed the men in order to protect her but what was even better is that Bruce didn’t seem to be surprised that she lied and he wasn’t remotely scared of her. I also appreciate that Ivy agreed to help him get the seed even when she didn’t need him anymore. When they find the seeds she says that it can help to cure Selina if she’s strong enough but it can also unlock darker sides to her. Even though Ivy claims to not care about Selina anymore, I think a small part of her does so I do hope we see more of that friendship again.
Back at the hospital, Bruce tells Alfred about the seed and they have their doubts but Selina wants it. She points out that she wanted to die anyway so it really makes no difference if the seed kills her. She eats it and it doesn’t seem to do anything but at least she’s still alive. Selina then goes on to tell them the story of how she met Ivy and that she taught her to survive. She continued to check on Ivy even when she could look out for herself and, after all of that time together, Selina still sees Ivy as that little girl. I loved hearing that story and I loved how Bruce and Alfred were listening and smiling. It adds to my earlier wishes of wanting there to be more scenes between Ivy and Selina. The two (along with Harley Quinn) often team up in the comics and we know the two girls practically grew up together in the show so it would be nice for them to make amends before the season is over.
A seemingly happy moment of reminiscing is broken when Selina’s body goes into shock. Sometime later the Doctor tells Bruce and Alfred that suddenly, out of nowhere, her body simply stabilised. They had to sedate her because of the pain she was in so Bruce and Alfred decide to go home to get some rest too, however, when the former looks in on her one last time before they leave, he finds her bed empty. Worried, he rushes into the room and she appears behind him, walking. She claims that she feels different but there’s no pain, in fact, she feels better than before. Filled with relief, Bruce hugs her and we see that Selina’s eyes have turned green and look more cat-like. I’m so beyond excited to see Catwoman! Selina is one of those characters who has had a lot of calls to her comic counterpart throughout the entire series. She’s always been Catwoman to an extent but now she’s finally entering those final, bigger steps and I can’t wait to see it.
The third thing to happen this episode was Edward and I’m really glad we got to see more of him this week considering what little we saw last week.
After struggling with the fact that Ed has been taking over and wandering around the city, Edward chains himself down and wakes up thinking that he has remained there all night. However, when he goes to the toilet he finds someone tied up in the bath. He tries to reason that there’s no one there but it’s clearly real. He takes the duct tape off the man’s mouth and questions him. It turns out Ed had taken over once again, caught the guy and tortured him for information. Now that Edward can’t remember any of the information, he has to torture the man all over again.
Eventually the man caves and tells Edward that he was asking for the location of the Street Demons and wanted to know when their leader would be there. They make their way to the gang only to arrive to find everyone is dead. There’s a message on the wall proclaiming that Penguin was there but Edward realises that Ed must have done it. The man points that, regardless, whoever did it has now started a war. I’m mostly curious to see what they plan to do with all of this. I want to know what the writers have written and determined for Edward (and Ed and the Riddler) but also to know what the endgame is with this storyline. I’m guessing Ed wants full control again but starting a war between people in Gotham is going to go far beyond him getting control back. Another possibility is that Ed is done and if he can’t get control back then he’ll get Edward killed. The only other thing that springs to mind right now is if Ed still wants Oswald dead and is using his time in control to make that happen but honestly? If that’s the case, I’m done because I would really hate that from a writing standpoint.
All of that being said, I actually liked the episode. Last week’s episode was great from an action standpoint, establishing the current world, and setting things up. This one was very character driven which I really appreciated too. It also jumped around a lot less this time around. Hopefully, the coming episodes will jump less too but it would be nice to have a mixture of character-driven content and some action. We only have 10 more episodes and at least one of those is going to be after a 10 year time jump. Hopefully, if they’ve managed to keep similar structure and pacing of these two episodes, or even combine them, then there should be a good enough formula to make this a really great and well done final season.