Gotham, Episode 7 “Penguin’s Umbrella” Broadcast November 3, 2014
Written by Bruno Heller
Directed by Rob Bailey
The obligatory series recap leads into a gleeful Penguin walking down the street, using an umbrella as a crutch. “He’s alive?” screams Fish Mooney in her club. She demands one of her minions brings Gordon to her–still breathing. “I want to talk to that son of a bitch.” James is at work, frantically cleaning out his locker, talking to Barbara on his cell, telling her to get out of the apartment. Before he can continue he’s knocked down by Bullock who pulls his gun on his partner. Gordon says he has a plan, but Harvey says he has to kill him and drag his body to Falcone and beg for mercy. Two officers unexpectedly distract Bullock, allowing Gordon to grab the gun and knock down the crooked detective. Meanwhile, Barbara’s cellphone continues to ring, but she cannot answer it as two of Mooney’s thugs are there. She realizes it was Cobblepot James was supposed to kill. Gordon arrives, pistol drawn, and orders the men to leave. The biggest goon says they’ll come back, kill him, and then the blonde. James then shoots one thug and knocks out the other. At the bus station he tells Barbara to leave town. She doesn’t want to, but he wants her safe. If doesn’t come to get her, she should never come back to Gotham. She relents and goes. Cue opening title card and the first commercial break.
This was a knockout of an episode. Several plot threats are wrapped up, expanded, and shot into new directions. The two crime families begin to go to war over ownership of Penguin. Maroni doesn’t want to give him to Falcone, and Fish is beside herself with fury at being unable to get the little snitch. Gordon is grasping at straws and doing everything he can to stay alive and keep Barbara safe. Alfred and Bruce have a quick scene, and it’s entirely appropriate considering what James is going through. Victor Zsasz appears briefly, and Anthony Carrigan plays him as the perfect creep. He even makes a scar in his skin to keep the fanboys happy. Robin Lord Taylor is devouring the screen as Cobblepot and there is a fantastic reveal in the last ten minutes of the episode. I was furious at some of the characters’ bizarre choices, but after this reveal I was stammering in joy. I didn’t see it coming and was floored and delighted at it. Mob war has begun in earnest.
The good: Mob war, Gordon on the run, Anthony Carrigan, Bullock the jerk, an excellent rescue from Zsasz, Sal and Fish’s face to face, passing the torch at Wayne Manor, a great phone ringtone, and Penguin’s final smile.
Fun lines: “This is my home. This was my father’s home. I’m not leaving,” “’cause we’re sending a message,” “Honk, Honk,” and “Your greatest passion becomes your greatest weakness.”
The bad: Nothing. This show hit all the right marks and for the first time I was yelling at characters on the screen.
The final line: This was a knockout episode that had every element honed to perfection. Fantastic! Overall grade: A+
Patrick Hayes was a contributor to the Comic Buyer’s Guide for several years with “It’s Bound to Happen!”, he reviewed comics for TrekWeb, and he currently reviews Trek comics at TrekCore. He’s taught 8th graders English for 20 years and has taught high school English for two years and counting. He reads everything as often as he can, when not grading papers or looking up Star Trek, Star Wars, or Indiana Jones items online.