Gotham: Legend of the Dark Knight 5.07 Ace Chemicals
Ace Chemicals starts us off in the second half of Gotham's final season with one hell of an opening. Jeremiah sending chemical-filled fireworks towards some fleeing victims he had clearly tormented and tortured was so very Joker-esque. The criminally insane Jeremiah had a big master plan in the works so every little move he made meant something.
Let's get the episode's back story out the way first. Starting with Barbara, the very tiresome Barbara, she feels like a character with no real substance or importance to the outcome of the show anymore. I certainly wouldn't miss her character, alas, she seems to be a character desperate for screen time and has cemented her self so by getting herself pregnant with the show's frontrunner. Now, as exhausting as Barbara's new hold over Jim is, it has been given more purpose in Ace Chemicals with the return of Lee - given the history between her and Gordon it is clearly going be a problem for this love triangle. But let's face it; it is going to take a miracle for Jim and Barbara to reignite any substantial affection toward one another to make it work, so it would be great if this storyline gets wrapped up sharp and Jim's attention can get back to the revival of Gotham City.
Ace Chemicals was perhaps the most pivotal of the season so far, certainly for Bruce, for whom it was a true test of the man he has become. Throughout the entirety of Gotham, Cameron Monaghan has delivered incredible performances - especially given the pressure that comes with a character of such stature. This one could well be his finest yet.
Jeremiah's master plan was as fascinating as it was sickening and it was impressive the detail to which he has put in. It was pinnacle Joker genius to come up with the idea of recreating Bruce's worst moment; the night his parents died in front of him. Genius alone to come up with the idea, but he really did think of everything in his bid to bond with Bruce. The ongoing creation of the infamous Batman V Joker feud has been brooding across the entires series and has been managed perfectly. Jeremiah pulls off the obsessive, almost infatuated relationship with Bruce so believably, it is haunting - another testament to Cameron Monaghan's performance. I was intrigued to see how Bruce handled being put in front of his 'parents' again, as well as a hypnotised Alfred in Wayne Manor. Kudos, Bruce held his own, it was a battle of will of which he may have just come out on top.
This whole plan brought about the inevitable one-on-one confrontation between Bruce and Jeremiah. Even better, it emulated the comic book showdown in the Ace Chemicals building - for that reason I'll excuse the predictability of Jeremiah falling in the big pool of chemicals. It must be the birth of the Joker.
Every villain in Gotham seems to be recyclable so I suspect we will see Jeremiah again, just as we saw Jervis Tetch, conveniently back to aid in Jeremiah's master plan. The episode's cliffhanger of Penguin and Nygma asking Barbara who the father is was so very cliché; it's hardly even a cliffhanger as we know its Jim. Unless Penguin or Nygma intend to use this knowledge as leverage I don't see it having any worthy bearing on the story at all. Of course the baby could end up being named Barbara Gordon, otherwise known as Batgirl in the comics - wouldn't that be something?