In the latest episode of Fox’s Gotham Oswald Cobblepot has returned to Gotham, despite warnings not to. Detectives Montoya and Alvarez continue their investigations into Cobblepot’s disappearance going as far as confronting Fish Money and later Detective Gordon about it. The villain of the episode, known as Balloonman, is hunting high profile criminals and launching them into the stratosphere with weather balloons until they come tumbling back down. Young Bruce Wayne, thanks to Balloonman, sees his first taste of vigilante justice.
This episode spent a little more time developing our characters and less chasing the bad guys. We see more of the relationship between Barbara and Montoya while getting some idea of what happened. As has been speculated they were indeed lovers at one point. Gordon is trying to hide what a straight arrow he is among all the corruption in the GCPD. Fish starts making her moves against Falcone as well, going as far as ordering his girlfriend attacked, and telling Montoya and Alvarez what she knows about what happened to Cobblepot. The resident madman seems to be Oswald “Penguin” Cobblepot as we see him kill with little to no provocation some more. He also begins trying to develop a relationship with Maroni, Falcone’s competition in the organized crime racket. Which gives us our first look at Maroni, played by former Dexter Alum David Zayas. We see a little more of Selina “Cat” Kyle and learn that she may have something truly special about her as she guides Gordon through what happened the night of the Wayne murders.
Where things really seem to get interesting is between a seemingly troubled young Bruce Wayne and Alfred. Alfred is trying to engage Bruce with fencing, and food, but Bruce is far too obsessed with the news and crime in Gotham. You can definitely see the beginnings of Batman happening. He sees his first vigilante in the Balloonman who he obviously seems awed with as he reads the paper’s accounts of his crimes. Later he condemns him for killing his victims. Alfred seems worried and frustrated by Bruce’s obsessing and refusal to eat. It’s becoming apparent how Bruce will later convince him to go along with the whole Batman thing.
Over all another solid episode, though slower paced than we’ve been seeing. They have crammed so much in here it’s a wonder you don’t get a little lost, but they seem to be pulling it off very well. The villain this episode is a bit weak, but as the one they based him off of from the comics was as well, I feel like they chose well. It was simply a tool to further the development of these characters, and give a read on the state of Gotham’s citizenry who are primed to embrace vigilante justice. This Villain was a means to an end, so don’t expect much action, but something tells me this is a pivotal episode for the rest of the season. I think we will be seeing a lot of things come from what was established in this episode.