So I’ve been in the habit of saying that each episode of Gotham has been better than the last. I’m not going to say the same here. However, that doesn’t mean this episode was bad. In fact, I liked it almost as much as the last one, which was my favorite so far. All I’m saying is that this episode continued the level of quality we got in the last episode. The story was solid, the dialogue was great, and we finally get to see more awesome Penguin story.
This is the first episode without a villain-of-the-week scenario. Instead, all of the tension built up between the cops and the different crime families finally come to a head. The crap is finally hitting the fan, after being teased for six previous episodes. Penguin is finally revealed to be alive, and he’s in deeper than any of us knew. The revelation that he’s been working for Falcone this whole time was a shocker to me. It came right out of left field. It’s now hard to figure out just how Penguin is playing everyone. It’s a complicated web, perhaps a bit too complicated. However, we do get a really good look into how he thinks. The scene between him and Frankie was amazing! In that scene, he reveals how knowledge of a person’s passion can be their undoing, and he totally un-does Frankie in that scene. It was awesome!
I felt like Penguin was the star of this episode, and not Gordon, even though Gordon should theoretically have a big part. Instead, he spends most of the episode trying to intimidate people and somehow running around with more than one bullet in his body. Barbara, again, was too much. I hate to say it, but the actress playing Barbara is horrible. I absolutely hate her character, which is a major problem. She was starting to grow on me, but in this episode she makes one of the dumbest moves ever (trying to talk sense to Falcone), and I can no longer take her seriously.
“Penguin’s Umbrella” also introduced Victor Zsasz for the first time. His portrayal is reasonably similar to the comics, though he hasn’t been well portrayed on film/television before. Anthony Carrigan is perfect for the role. He played the character with the perfect mix of competency and insanity. It was chilling.
This episode felt like a mini-finale. It had a conclusion, and lacked a cliff-hanger ending like we’ve seen before. It’s still setting up the future of the season, but this one had a satisfying conclusion. I’m beginning to look forward to this show more and more each week, especially now that it’s starting to deliver.