This week’s episode of Gotham was packed with betrayal, backstabbing, and mystery and that was all just from one character! After last week’s tragic death of Kristen Kringle (Chelsea Spack) at the hands of her longtime admirer Edward Nygma (Cory Michael Smith), Edward’s split personality hides her body and then sends Nygma on a riddle-riddled scavenger hunt identical to the ones he is destined to leave for Batman in the future. Meanwhile, Penguin’s (Robin Lord Taylor) mother (Carol Kane) is killed by newly elected Mayor Galavan (James Frain) in order to turn his own emotions against him so that Penguin can finally be killed. Even Bruce Wayne (David Mazouz) had a storyline this week, which is weird to say about a show called Gotham.
Bruce continues to be wooed by Galavan’s niece Silver St. Cloud (Natalie Alyn Lind), and while it is creepy that Galavan is “using” his niece to seduce a young boy, it is a lot tamer than some things that happen in the Batman comics. When Selina Kyle (Camren Bicondova) accidentally crashes Bruce and Silver’s tea party, Silver acts like a perfect lady in front of Bruce and invites Selina to tea. As soon as Bruce leaves the room, Silver’s attitude instantly switches to evil succubus and insults and threatens Selina. So when all three are sitting down to tea and Silver has her innocent girl face on, Selina snaps and calls her a “two-faced slut” and is promptly scolded and rejected by Bruce. Never before have I seen an incarnation of Bruce Wayne who was so naive since Nolan’s The Dark Knight Rises.
While Penguin’s story remains small this week it’s still impactful as repeated attacks of vengeance on Galavan’s life not only solidify popular opinion with the residents of Gotham, but also start to cause James Gordon (Ben McKenzie) to get suspicious. He finally starts to realize that ever since this Theo Galavan came into the spotlight, everything that’s happened has led to him becoming Mayor, which is obviously not a coincidence. After Penguin confesses to Gordon that Galavan killed his mother, Gordon confronts the mayor and the REAL battle for Gotham begins.
The best part of this week’s Gotham, in my opinion, was Edward Nygma’s story arc. His split personality – let’s call him Riddle-man – hides the deceased body of poor Kristen Kringle and leaves a purple envelope with a green question mark on it for Edward on his bed. Edward knows that Riddle-man is just a part of him, and so the answers must lie somewhere in his own psyche. Edward goes through Bugs Bunny-style antics while on his search for Ms. Kringle’s body, such as having to pull her severed hand out of a vending machine in the slot for Lady Fingers confectionaries. Nygma finally discovers the body in the Medical Examiner’s (Morena Baccarin) office and has to play ‘Keep the doctor from seeing the dead body’s face’ until he can manage to get her out of the room. The entire ordeal is quite hilarious and keeps in step with Riddler’s portrayal in the Batman comic books: a stumbling buffoon of a genius.