Gotham: Legend of the Dark Knight 5.08 Nothing's Shocking
In contrast to the previous action-fuelled episode, Nothing’s Shocking arrives as nothing more than a ‘filler’ episode. That said, the episode name is very apt indeed.
With that gruesome opening in Barbara Kean’s bar with two former cops being sliced and diced by Harvey Bullock’s old partner Dix, everything suggested we were in for a treat. Nothing’s shocking was all about Harvey Bullock’s past – his hidden demons. No one thought of Harvey as a saint, and based on what we’ve seen in Gotham, most cops aren’t squeaky clean. Learning Harvey is no different, well there is nothing shocking about that.
The villain in this episode, otherwise known as the daughter (Jane Cartwright) of a felon Harvey and Dix put away, was a needless one. It had no relevance to the No Man’s Land fiasco currently beheld in Gotham. This massive tangent of diving into Harvey’s past didn’t seem to pay off, certainly not in this episode. The one interesting aspect was that the daughter had spent time in Arkham and had been experimented on by Hugo Strange, whom has come up with some very interesting and fascinating concoctions throughout the series. It’s great to have a Harvey-centric episode - they’re a rarity - but I wonder, why was this story injected mid-way into this final season? To try and create rift between Harvey & Jim in their time of struggle? Or simply as a filler? Some questions I sure hope are answered as we approach the finale.
Moving on from that disappointment, there was some progression in the whole Jim and Barbara debacle. Of course, Barbara is still as stubborn as ever, and certainly is reluctant to show any form of contentment towards Jim, but the more Jim presses, I think he may just tap into the good in Barbara. It will be interesting to see how the love triangle unfolds and whether Jim will end up with Barbara for the sake of the child or follow his heart and stay with Lee. With it being the final season, I would be surprised if there is a happy ending for all three parties involved.
The superhero genre is renowned for being able to recycle its characters and the very nature of ‘super’ allows for the return or revival of so many roles – and without it being questioned much. Gotham certainly fits the criteria and so seeing the return of Penguin’s ‘puppet’ Mr Penn was (in contrast to the episode title) quite shocking. We last saw Mr. Penn shot and practically on a death bed; here he woke up in a morgue. Of all things to pull out that suitcase, I did not expect it to be a Ventriloquist doll. It was actually quite a clever spin on the whole Penguin – Penn relationship (given that Penn was always just a puppet to Penguin), that Penn should return with a puppet. His return was so short-lived it was almost a waste of time, but it gave us a chance to see a wonderful partnership blooming in Nygma and Penguin - I do hope we get to see more of these two together before the finale. Nygma is obviously the brains, and well, the brawn too, but Penguin is simply exquisite at talking himself out of any dangerous situation, there is no one better.
Bruce and Alfred's sewer venture was probably the most relevant story to happen within Nothing's shocking as it came about as a direct result of Jim's actions. Dumping Jeremiah's truck into the water was always going to be a debatable move. It has turned out to be hugely consequential and Bruce's pursuit of how the water is affecting people and more notably those that are now residing in the sewer was clearly used as a good excuse for a guilt-ridden Alfred to express his sorrow over the loss of Wayne Manor. This scene showed a real maturity from Bruce in his wise response to Alfred; he has really been an incredible role model to the upcoming Dark Knight - everyone needs an Alfred in their lives.