Gotham. Episode 8: The Mask

No you won’t see the mad, green-faced character from the 1994 film, what we start with is two guys fighting each other in an office wearing balaclavas. Why? Who knows why? One emerges victorious and gives address to a security camera watching him. Meanwhile, a murder starts the day for Gordon and Bullock as they seem to find the man who was just seen beaten and he is covered in black ink and Edward Nigma is helping do his forensic touch with the body. Investigating the body, he finds a severed finger in the body of the corpse. The Penguin is seen in town and steals jewellery from a woman passing by. He visits Fish Mooney to agree terms of their deal which was made by Maroni and Falcone. He gives the jewellery as a gift, but stabs the hand of Penguin with a pin for his betrayal to her. Bruce Wayne finally goes back to school for the first time since his parents died, Alfred tries to convince him that he needs friends his own age and try to be “normal”. Gordon finds himself interviewing the mother of the dead man, he was at the time looking for a job in an office. Bullock reflects on the police force that walked out of the GCPD when Gordon was facing off with Victor Zsasz. The Penguin goes back to being Oswald as he presents the jewellery to his Mum as a present after taking it back from Fish. Mrs Cobblepot notices the mark on his hand and is angry that he is hurt.

The detectives go to see a doctor who had seen the man they found dead earlier. They arrest him after they see a link in the case. The detectives agree to let the doctor go and check the company that the man was at. Gordon walks into his apartment to find Barbara is there with a gun, he tries to reassure her that she won’t get hurt as she is still upset over the ordeal with Zsasz in the previous episode. Individuals are seen in cages wearing ties, shirts and braces. Being given balaclavas by a masked man, one of the caged men wants to know when they can go and he states that they know how they can go. Edward Nigma is about to do a thorough investigation of the dead man via autopsy, though it turns out he shouldn’t really be there as the real surgeon then walks in. Bruce is shown trying to get back to life at school, he is then greeted by some fellow students including Tommy, who asks about the deaths of Bruce’s parents and persistently torments Bruce. Fish Mooney meets with Liza in a church as its one of the private places they can talk. Mooney gives Liza a concoction which will make Falcone sleep and then for her to find some notes that Falcone has hidden in his desk as Mooney wants the information. Richard Sionis is then interviewed by the detectives, the owner of the company in which Lawson, the deceased man seen earlier, worked for. They investigate the office and see lots of warrior items and weapons. The mask seen earlier is shown in the office of Sionis, they get quite in depth in the chatter of murder and Gordon is convinced Sionis is the murderer. As they leave, Gordon notices a trail of blood leading to a bathroom. Gordon sees a man with a busted nose and another with his hand in bandages. After a small tussle, Bullock and Gordon are over the bandaged man as he tries to escape.

Back at the school, Bruce has another face to face with Tommy. He continues to torment Bruce and bullies him over the death of his family. Bruce finally snaps and smacks Tommy, to little effect. The Penguin gets his men to kidnap the new assistant to Fish to ask questions, he waddles to his seat and sits while his men beat the man up. When interviewing the man who tried to escape, the detectives discover that the injuries are from fights that the men had during the interview phase for their jobs. Edward Nigma discovers that the ink is actually printer ink and establishes the death was in an office, which the officers are now aware of. Their one man is taken away as Sionis buys a lawyer to intervene, the detective’s state they need to find where the fights are taking place to stop any more deaths from happening. Captain Essen is upset over leaving Gordon in the office alone with Zsasz, knowing she should have stood by him. Bruce Wayne comes out of school shaken and Alfred wants to help his young master. Gordon gets a call from Barbara but cuts it short as he and Bullock look to solve the case. Liza begins her plan to get the notes for Fish and places the concoction into his tea. Gordon walks into the office where the fights happen and find the men in the cages, only to be jumped by Sionis. We finally catch up with Selina Kyle, and she is caught shoplifting from a clothing store by the police. Bruce Wayne goes to the home of Tommy for a confrontation. Bruce brutally beats Tommy and leaves him bloodied as Alfred stops Bruce from going too far, but rewards him for standing up for himself.

Gordon is found in the middle of a fight with three potential employees of Sionis, he claims the person who kills Gordon will get the job and one million dollars. Knowing he must be in trouble, Bullock shouts out to the GCPD to help find him and they finally agree to help their fellow detective after leaving him previously. Gordon is seen to be fighting all three to stay alive; he manages to knock all three unconscious and comes to now fight Sionis who looks to kill Gordon himself. He looks to expose the killer in Gordon, but Gordon does not give in to that side of himself. The police find him only to see he survived the attack. Back at her club, Fish is watching a potential act for her club (does her club actually ever open anymore?) and she is then approached by Liza, Liza states that she wants out of the agreement, Fish Mooney won’t allow it and tells Liza about how Falcone had instructed the death of her own mother and that she was fuelled by this to kill Falcone. Fish Mooney gets the notes that she asked for from Liza, she promises she will look after Liza and kisses her with the promise of her protection. Meanwhile, the new assistant of Fish is still being held hostage by Penguin as he looks for information on her and what her plans are. He discovers that Fish has someone on Falcone, so he wants to find out who it is. Gordon thanks Bullock for his help and for rallying the police to his rescue, they share a handshake. Gordon is thankful and knows he is punching a lot out, but is doing it as he wants to clean Gotham once and for all. Fish is approached by the old woman and is apparently told she lied to Liza, is this elderly woman her mother? So, the episode is ending and Gordon is about to be re-acquainted with Selina Kyle, she smiles and says “Hey Detective, miss me?”. Bruce speaks to Alfred about his fight, stating he enjoyed revenge and feels angry all the time. After a quick chat, Alfred agrees to teach Bruce how to fight.

Wow, that was a lot to cover. So, still a good episode. Though it doesn’t reach the heights of last week, it is still a great episode to enjoy. Nice to finally see Selina Kyle is back and Camren Bicondova should hopefully get more screen time in the next episode. The “fight-club” aspect was good, it was more about the twisted mind of an individual who enjoyed his power than actually trying to make his mark on Gotham. Ben McKenzie shines as Gordon as he is shown to beat all those who stand in his way, literally. Finally the big praise goes to Jada Pinkett-Smith and Robin Lord Taylor as they continue to be big talking points. Jada’s Fish Mooney is really starting to grow on me and to see Taylor is now embracing his Penguin character to full force, what isn’t to enjoy? Also it is great to finally see young Master Bruce kick some arse! Can’t wait to see next week when a certain future District Attorney who may have a bit of a split-personality disorder turns up in Gotham!

Final Rating: 8/10

Written by Jonjo Cosgrove.

Episode 9 preview: Harvey Dent

gotham-8-black-mask

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