Previously on Gotham, ‘Mr. Freeze‘
As Gordon, Bullock, and Barnes continue the search for Victor Fries, they use his wife Nora as unwilling bait. Meanwhile, Penguin is introduced to Hugo Strange’s rehabilitation program and Alfred makes an agreement with Bruce that Bruce has no intention of keeping.
Gotham was back last week with all new episodes. We got all new characters as well, like Victor Fries (aka can I have a burger with that, aka Mr. Freeze) and Dr. Hugo Strange. Now that is something to get excited about. I am excited to see how the show is going to weave these new characters into this Gotham world and if they can breathe some much needed new life into what has been a somewhat middling second season.
The episode opens with flashing GCPD vehicles heading towards a place where Victor may be getting his cryogenic chemicals. The place just happens to be a mainstay in the Batman universe: Ace Chemicals. You know, where another very important Batman villain gets his beginning. Victor is leaving frozen bodies in his wake with a message etched into one man’s frozen coffin: “Free my wife.”
Penguin finds himself in Strange’s rehabilitation program and he will now be the face of that program. Ms. Ethel Peabody (Tonya Pinkins), Strange’s assistant, will be administering his initial session. And it looks like they are using Google’s latest attempt at virtual reality to motivate Oswald. All of this to teach him how to play Duck, Duck, Goose.
Barnes decides to take Nora Fries to Arkham for safe keeping, and in an attempt to catch her husband. Strange is, of course, happy since he is attempting to determine how Victor’s freezing technique worked. Now he gets to lure the man right into his hands.
Gordon finds Penguin all vulnerable and Penguin asks for Gordon’s help. Gordon isn’t interested, but Penguin reminds him of the secret he’s keeping regarding who really killed Galavan. And someone is watching the whole thing on video. One guess who.
Victor decides to break his wife out of Arkham. With his new suit and toys he breaks into the asylum and lays waste to the police there. Strange also helps him into the building and gives Victor a way to escape with Nora… for a price: one container of his cryonic formula. Victor accepts and finds Nora with Gordon and Thompkins. He decides to take Thompkins to help with Nora and they get away in Strange’s car.
Nora does not want to live in a world with Victor in jail or dead so while he fetches a necklace she requests, Nora changes the cartridge in Victor’s gun. When he realizes it, it is too late, and he decides to join her in the frozen life beyond.
Bruce is back from his forced vacation to Switzerland. If we could all be so lucky. Anyway, he lets Dr. Thompkins know that he felt alive when he was held captive by Galavan.
“Do you think I am abnormal?” he asks, as he starts talking about dualities and how people can be two different things at the same time. Like a billionaire playboy and a vigilante maybe?
Later, Alfred brings Bruce some information he obtained about a possible suspect in his parent’s murder: Matches Malone. Alfred makes Bruce agree that he will not kill Malone when they find him, and he’ll let Alfred do it. Bruce is not too keen on the plan, but agrees. Afterwards, he recruits Selina to help him acquire a gun so that he can put a bullet in Malone.
Funniest Scene(s): Penguin playing Duck, Duck, Goose.
Honorable Mention: Dr. Thompkins discovers she and Nora will be sharing a room with Barbara, who is still fast asleep from her fall earlier this season. Ms. Peabody asks if there is a problem and Dr. Thompkins replies, “not at all…” but we all know better.
Best Scene: Penguin is being rehabilitated by Ms. Peabody. This scene was trippy with all the close ups and pulling in and out of character’s faces. It was very effective in bringing a sense of uncertainty and discomfort to the scene. And the way Penguin delivered his lines with crazed looks was priceless.
Honorable Mention: Nora tells Dr. Thompkins that she saw Victor heading down this path but did not do anything to stop him. See anything familiar there, doc? I think so because Thompkins tells her that “you close your eyes to the truth.”
Best Line: We go back to Oswald being rehabilitated. ”Know this woman, no one has yet failed to regret vexing the Penguin… and you are vexing me!”
Most Geeked Scene: The person of interest Alfred provided to Bruce as his parents possible murder was “Matches” Malone. Interesting fact: In the comics, Malone is an alias that adult Bruce Wayne uses when he wants to go undercover and infiltrate the criminal underworld in Gotham.
The episode comes to a close with Dr. Thompkins telling Gordon she knows he lied to her about Galavan’s death. Penguin gets another round of rehabilitation therapy as Strange looks on. Oh, and it looks like Victor is not dead, but… changed. Not sure how I feel about the white hair, but the White Walker eyes are pretty cool.
I enjoyed the freezing special effects with the bullets literally freezing out of the guns. The dialogue is getting better, especially with Barnes or Gordon and their one-liners. Strange and Peabody are an interesting pair and should be fun to watch for the rest of the second half of the season.