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ElectricBoogaloo

S04.E01: A Dark Knight: Pax Penguina

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Gordon fears Jonathan Crane is still alive and back in Gotham, when The Scarecrow's signature MO is used in a series of robberies. Meanwhile, Penguin's "licensing" of crime in the city backfires during the grand opening of his new Iceberg Lounge. Also, in the aftermath of his encounter with Ra's Al Ghul, Bruce begins his vigilante watch.

Edited by ElectricBoogaloo

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Two random thoughts

Penguin's hairline is receding. 

And...David is growing SO tall.  He'll be towering over most of the cast by the end of the season! 

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b0746fb3a967635de4c58623f4c7026b--letter

If this were simply a show about visuals and moments- it'd be A+ material. Because it was stunning to look at...and moments like Vigilante!Bruce darting in and out on Gordon and Mr. Penn, or Oswald at his new club or Bruce and Selina on the rooftop (line of the night- Alfred: why can't you two just go to the cinema like regular teenagers?)...they were great.

I also think the idea behind this episode was great.

However- as it almost always seems to be the case with this show- the story and the plotting leave a lot to be desired.

Central to it was those licenses- there just seemed to be no rhyme or reason to them, and thus I couldn't muster up any reason to care about the criminals' plight. If I had learned that Penguin had a list of pre-approved victims whom he felt needed "a lesson" or if the licensees were acting against someone who screwed them over (such as, perhaps, being allowed to rob a landlord that evicted you) I could get behind the licenses.

...but as it stands? I just can't. This just felt like the writers wanted an excuse to have as much random violence as they wanted, which, by this stage in the show's history, is just tired and grating. I already know Gotham is a cesspool of violence and misery- I don't need more crime to show that.

I'll be honest. I was here from the beginning, from the opening credits of the first episode. I watched Jim Gordon and Oswald and Ed and Harvey and Bruce and a lot of other well nuanced characters and watched as the show built a wonderful narrative. That first season was appointment television. Since then, it's been hit or miss, and lately, it's just been missing, since the show has now largely forgotten about characterization to focus on buzzworthy moments (like Penguin putting Ed on ice) that may deliver a temporary high but ultimately add nothing to the story. I've watched as plots- like Oswald rising to the top only for him to fall- get repeated as the writers seemingly have made the decision that they care more about shock value than actual storycraft.

Through it all, I've said- "I've been here from the beginning, and David Mazouz could be Batman one day, so I'm sticking this to the end." I still want to do that...but tonight really tested my patience. A few more clunkers like this and I don't know how badly I'll care about witnessing the end of this series.

The Bullock Meter:

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Harvey Bullock had a lot of screentime. A lot of lines. He was also remarkably rational, deftly explaining to Jim that, "yeah, Penguin's reign sucks...but it's working and that's what matters". Times like that made me think I'm watching the old Harvey that I fell in love with. Then the episode wore on and he did little more than just recite his lines. Now, perhaps Donal Logue had his mind on other things (I won't bring up what) when the episode was filmed, so, while it wasn't sterling Bullock, it was understandable.

Edited by Danielg342
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Bwah, Penguin's reign didn't last long. I love that Ed is his nightmare monster, may he haunt him forever. That guy looked so much like Steve Buscemi, I knew he had to be his brother. I cracked up when he looked at the ring and told the husband that he was cheap and later when he busted out laughing at Penguin all scared. Zasz looking at the ring and saying "really" followed by "best wedding ever" has got to be the most hilarious beginning of any episode.

David Mazouz got so tall over the break. He is such a talented actor. Love him. He is turning into a nice young Batman. He and Selina still have chemistry, but it is good that there is distance between them.

Ben McKenzie is handsome and Jessica Lucas is beautiful as ever. She is simply stunning.

Edited by SimoneS
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My goodness, NBA teams are going to be knocking on Mazouz's door.  The dude's going to be 7 feet tall by the end of the season.

Scarecrow was freaking badass, Ivy's moving towards the gray area, Bruce has begun sneaking up on Jim and disappearing without a sound, Zsasz continues to be Zsasz, and we got rick rolled.  Really good premiere.  And on a shallow note, Jessica Lucas is beyond gorgeous.

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*cracks knuckles* it feels good to be back! Let's do this:

Pros:

  • I thought the episode was pretty well-paced
  • I like the selina/tabs pair team-up
  • Surprised ivy's already getting tired of penguin's diva ways. I liked their odd friendship, so i hope things don't go too far south concerning their friendship (for the time being)
  • liked the rooftop scene with batcat
  • The zsasz is back and is as amazing as ever! Good to see ya, zsasz!
  • Poor jon :( he does not deserve any of this 
  • Harvey has returned to grace my screen once more :') i've missed you. 
  • It seems like we're getting some good homages to batman begins and i'm loving it!
  • I saw that smirk between alfred and zsasz!! I saw that!!!
  • Love how bruce has sneaking up behind jim down pat
  • Just harvey and jim doing gotham cop stuff. No dumb romance drama thrown in (as of yet)
  • ra's lurking and being a creeper

Cons:

  • Jim being jim. Classic jim. You've got to wise-up, lad.
  • The bad guy group involved with the jon crane stuff. Meh. So pointless. The guy reminded me of a cheap steve buscemi knockoff
  • The license plot-line was kinda weak, but it didn't bug me too much
Edited by HoodlumSheep
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To review: Bruce is playing vigilante. Oswald has organized crime to a science. Ed is still on ice because of his brain tumor (wink, wink). Jim is still a bit of a dick on his high horse. And Harvey since being captain has clearly broken him. Oh, and a Buscemi is one of the main guest stars. I never realize how much I miss Gotham until it comes back.

Seriously, I reckon that this show is the guilty pleasure comic genre show at its best, and I'm okay with that. How do the writers not laugh out loud creating the scripts? And how do the actors not crack up reading the lines. It's not all bad, it's not 1966 campy, and it's sure as shit not Schmaucher-level awful, but I can get the exasperation. I felt that Smallville would have lasted five seasons on an actual network, and I wouldn't blame anybody for making the comparison. I mean, the fun isn't seeing Bruce kick mook ass. No, it's him seeing the Criminal License card. With the umbrella in the corner. And Zsasz shoots a dude's pinky off, dispatches the unlicensed assholes, then brings in sanctioned goons to rob the wedding. Also, the poor schmuck groom gets dissed on ring selection. Twice.

Jonathan Crane = Tweek from South Park, but with fear gas instead of coffee. I like the transformation: your demon can't haunt you if you wear its skin. Can't wait to see the other characters' fears. Alfred would see criminals drinking beer without using coasters. Jim would meet the League of Embittered Exes: Barbara, Leslie and Valerie. Bullock would find himself commissioner.

Is Richard Kind done with the show? I'm probably gonna miss Mayor Bing Bong James.

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I actually like the license for crime idea, its kind of an interesting concept to play with. It reminds me of the Thief's Guild in the Discworld books, where all thief's have to be guild members to rob people, and can only take so much and from people who can afford to lose some money, or they are...dealt with. Works pretty well for them! The head of the Thieves Guild is even a member of the citizen Watch group! I dont see it being a long term solution for Gotham though. 

I am so glad I decided to catch up on this crazy show and its crazy world. This seems like a pretty good start to the show, I am super interested in seeing Scarecrow unleashed on Gotham. Poor Jonathan. Plenty of villains have been somewhat sympathetic on the show, but he is really more of a tragic victim than a criminal. 

Love the scene between Bruce and Selina, glad that they seem to be getting to a slightly better place, even if they still have some distance. Plus, Alfred approves! "Couldn't you just go to the cinema like normal teenagers?!?!" 

Glad they are focusing on Jim and his crime fighting and his partnership with Harvey instead of romances. I would be fine with Lee coming back if she is like she has become more like she was originally, but I think its a good idea to back off the romance with him. He and Harvey are so much fun together, and he is basically the most consistent person in Jim's life, so why not focus on that? I loved them teaming up with interrogating the insane asylum creep. They work really well together. 

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23 hours ago, tennisgurl said:

I am so glad I decided to catch up on this crazy show and its crazy world. This seems like a pretty good start to the show, I am super interested in seeing Scarecrow unleashed on Gotham. Poor Jonathan. Plenty of villains have been somewhat sympathetic on the show, but he is really more of a tragic victim than a criminal. 

I agree about Jonathan. He was first his father's victim and now these criminals have victimized him further. He is probably completely insane now.

Edited by SimoneS
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8 minutes ago, SimoneS said:

Why did Ivy take off the lights? Was that part of Penguin's plan or was she trying to sabotage him? I missed it.

She was basically screwing Ozzy. When she shut off the lights she called him a "twerp". So does this mean that Ozzy's going to have Eddie in his head all season like Baltar with Six in Battlestar Galactica? If so, yay!!

Totally agree with everybody's comments about Bruce's growth spurt. David just needs to hit the gym because he's way too slender right now to be Batman (he's still cute tho).  Also while he's getting the "disappear while they're not looking" thing down cold (better get used to that Jim!! *snickers*) he really needs to not put his weight on skylights until he gets the dramatic entrances down. Fifteen years from now he going to remember that and think 'Lucky....lucky amateur"

Charlie Tahan is also killing it as Crane. The moment they locked him in the closet I knew those guys were making a HUGE mistake. Also a nice call out to the Nolan trilogy with Scarecrow gassing the guy in the end with a wrist device.

Selina's training seems to be going well. But she should've held on to her whip while fighting those guys.

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1 minute ago, madhacker said:

She was basically screwing Ozzy. When she shut off the lights she called him a "twerp".

Thanks. He is a twerp so she nailed that one.

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Glad someone else got the Thieves Guild vibe.  I kept thinking the Patrician is going to clacks Penguin a 40 page list of everything he's doing wrong.

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Oh, Gotham!  You're so crazy, but I kind of love you for it.

Oswald's "License to commit crime" thing bizarrely makes sense in this bizarre world.  Gotham is clearly a fucked-up place no matter what and crime will never be ridden of, so why not try to unionize it, and have oversight in order to prevent random and likely more violent crimes?!  So insane, but again, it's so Gotham! Of course, everyone had to know Jim wasn't going to be down with that shit, but, of course, the rest of the GCPD would.  Granted, considering how many of them keep dying on this show (at the station none the less!), I almost can't blame them.

You know it's a new season of Gotham, when the cast listing is majorly different.  Looks like Butch (of course), Barbara, Barnes, and The Mad Hatter are no longer regulars and Ivy is only a guest, while Ra's not only is one, but Alexander Siddig gets the spiffy "and" billing.  Go Bashir!  Wouldn't be surprised if they show back up though.  I even wouldn't be surprised if Barbara magically comes back to life, complete with more of Erin Richards delightfully camping it up.

Jonathan Crane seems set-up to be the main antagonist this season, and I'm guessing a few more of the characters will get infected as well.  Not surprised Oswald's greatest fear is a vengeful Nygma.  At a time, it would have likely been Fish, but I can see Nygma being it now.

Tabitha/Selina are a fun duo.  But, of course, Bruce and Selina still can't quit one another.  At this point, Alfred probably would prefer they just go ahead and date, instead of finding them do random things like walking on a ledge of a very tall building!

Zsasz is the best.  I wish he was a regular, but hopefully he'll keep popping in and stealing his scenes.

Totally knew the guy playing the head of the unlicensed criminals was related to Steve Buscemi somehow.

No Lee, but I noticed Morena Baccarin is still being billed, so I'm wondering how she'll factor in this season.  At this point, I wouldn't put anything past this particular character.

Pretty fun start for the new season.

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I laughed so hard at Penguin rambling on and on to the frozen Ed about how he totally isn't "a slave to his emotions" anymore and how he is so totally over Ed and does not care about him one little bit, no sir...as he emotionally speechifies to the totally frozen over Ed (who Penguin froze in the first place) who he stuck in the middle of his new club. Yeah Ozzy. You are SO without emotions now and have obviously not given him a second thought.

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Jonathan/Scarecrow is the only antagonist I feel genuinely sorry for because of how his father and those criminals used him. I look forward to his character's evolution this season. 

Also, I love the set design and the exteriors so far. I made the connection that the scenery is brighter because the crime rate is down. 

Edited by Surrealist
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10 hours ago, tennisgurl said:

I laughed so hard at Penguin rambling on and on to the frozen Ed about how he totally isn't "a slave to his emotions" anymore and how he is so totally over Ed and does not care about him one little bit, no sir...as he emotionally speechifies to the totally frozen over Ed (who Penguin froze in the first place) who he stuck in the middle of his new club. Yeah Ozzy. You are SO without emotions now and have obviously not given him a second thought.

Heh. Exactly. Not ruled by my emotions anymore, not at all. I'm just going to stand here in the dark and have a heart-to-heart with my frozen former bestie. And he's still deep down so desperate for approval and acceptance that Bruce barely has to butter him up and he's spilling the T about his operation all over the place. 

I thought he had actually gained some self awareness when he wondered if cutting himself off from emotions/relationships was costing him something (wondering if he is the one who is really frozen), but then he turns around and treats Ivy like dirt. And probably has done so all this time. Sooooo, his lesson from Ed is "turn off your emotions" but he completely forgot about the lesson he should have learned from Gabe to treat his underlings with respect if he expects loyalty. Figure out how to learn a lesson, Os. 

All the same, Ivy's motivations for what she did were kinda murky. I get she's mad at him for freezing her out when she's always wanted to be friends, but she seemed to disapprove of what he was doing with the gang. Is that not what he'd been doing for the past several months to get rid of the criminals that wouldn't comply with his licensing scheme? This can't be the first time she's seen him do something like that. But I'm more convinced than ever that she will be involved in unfreezing Ed.

Jim still bores me, but man, he's far more interesting when he's just being a cop and it's not about his love life so I was glad that there was no Lee. But I know this won't last. SIGH. But it's still hard to get on board with him. I mean, he's right, but...the GCPD suck and always have. They couldn't get their shit together so Oswald stepped in. And now he's concerned about the people not trusting them. Uh...yeah. Of course they don't. They suck. Oswald at least gets results. ALso? Going to a bar for your morning coffee? That's grim, dude.

For a little while, I was afraid that Bruce was moving too fast, but I was glad to see him make such a rookie mistake with the skylight. More of that, please. Yes, he's on the path to Batman, but he's got to make mistakes along the way. 

Poor Jonathan. I felt so sorry for him all episode. Next episode looks more like a horror movie, so that should be fun. 

Man, the Buscemis not only look alike, but they sound alike. 

Edited by Kostgard
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1 hour ago, Kostgard said:

All the same, Ivy's motivations for what she did were kinda murky. I get she's mad at him for freezing her out when she's always wanted to be friends, but she seemed to disapprove of what he was doing with the gang. Is that not what he'd been doing for the past several months to get rid of the criminals that wouldn't comply with his licensing scheme? This can't be the first time she's seen him do something like that. But I'm more convinced than ever that she will be involved in unfreezing Ed.

This might have been the first time that she saw Oswald about to execute somebody.  He was also rude to her earlier in the episode.  Speaking of Ivy wanting friends, why didn't she interact with Selina or Bruce?  All 3 are at the gala, but Ivy doesn't interact with either of them?  Come on, this is Ivy, she'd be excited to see them.  I guess I could see why they didn't have Bruce go up to her, the press would have a field day with that.  About the only reason I can see why they didn't interact, is that she wants Selina and Bruce off Oswald's radar as people he can hurt to get back at her.

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2 minutes ago, Jediknight said:

This might have been the first time that she saw Oswald about to execute somebody.  He was also rude to her earlier in the episode.  Speaking of Ivy wanting friends, why didn't she interact with Selina or Bruce?  All 3 are at the gala, but Ivy doesn't interact with either of them?  Come on, this is Ivy, she'd be excited to see them.  I guess I could see why they didn't have Bruce go up to her, the press would have a field day with that.  About the only reason I can see why they didn't interact, is that she wants Selina and Bruce off Oswald's radar as people he can hurt to get back at her.

 

She tried to talk to Selina (she walked up to her right after Zsasz walked away), but Tabitha was all, “Bye” so Ivy walked away and Selina didn’t try to stop her. Not sure why she didn’t approach  Bruce, other than she doesn’t know him as well as Selina, and she was in a bad mood after Oswald’s treatment and the Selina allowing Tabitha to tell her to bug off.

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I really, really enjoyed that opening episode.

Bruce and Selina in their respective destinies, it works well enough and it's nice to see them interact and that Bruce is making some mistakes but is still better at playing Oswald than Gordon certainly is to be honest.

The Selina and Tabitha dynamic works pretty well too but I'm a bit disappointed that Ivy is turning on Oswald, even if I somewhat can see why as well. 

The licenced crime idea is good in theory but it's eventually going to fall apart though, so even though Gordon was being his usual reckless self, he was right to challenge the idea.

The return of Jonathan and birth of Scarecrow was incredibly well done in this episode too. Can't wait to see him in action next week.

A good few absences this week and Ras needs to do more than lurk in the background.

Loved Zsasz's one liners in this one too, 8/10

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I totally get the criticisms of this show but for myself, I take Gotham for what it's intended to be; pure campy goodness.  I can mostly forgive the sometimes lazy seasonal writing when the showrunners deliver on the things that i watch Gotham for and they are quite good at that.  With that in mind, I found this to be a very good season premiere.  We got to see Penguin doing his self destructive best, Harvey snark, and both Bruce and Selena really coming into their own.  Scarecrow seems like he'll be a compelling villain but that's no surprise since what Gotham does best is give life to the Batman Rogue Gallery.

 

Some notable moments:

Bruce becoming proto Batman was excellent.  I totally agree that the actor's size was a surprise.  He was just a waifish boy when this show started and now he seems almost a man.

Victor Zsasz was creepy cool as always and he had more substantial lines.  I particularly liked his stand off with Alfred and the pervy flirting with Tabitha.

Scarecrow.

It was just a flash but nightmare Riddler was genuinely freaky scary.  Well done!

Ivy's awkwardness continues to amuse me.

The unsung hero's of Gotham are the theme and set designers.  I cannot express enough how great a job they do bringing that much character to a TV show set.  Gotham looks amazing.

 

Overall grade:  Solid B.  As always, less Gordon brings a higher grade.

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Wait. Hold on. ????? Knockoff Buscemi is actually a Buscemi???????

Oh my gosh, i'm cackling. Sorry for calling you a ripoff, man. I didnt know!

I didn't know steve buscemi had a brother (let alone one who acts)

Edited by HoodlumSheep
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8 hours ago, Kostgard said:

 ALso? Going to a bar for your morning coffee? That's grim, dude.

 

Not that his hood is infested with Starbucks / Dunkin anyway...

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This show is pure crazy, campy, fun. That's why I enjoy it. This was a good priemere, I like seeing Baby Batman Begins with him learning from his mistakes instead of being perfect from the get go. Like taking his mask off before he leaves the scene and putting his weight on glass windows. However he has seemed to perfected the appearing and disappearing act. 

I loved seeing Selina finally kicking some ass with her whip. I like Tabitha as her mentor. She had Barbara teaching her how to use her sex appeal and Tabitha teaching her how to fight. Baby Cat is growing up.

"Why can't you two go the cinema like normal teenagers" Being on ledges and rooftops is going to to the cinema for them, Alfred. 

Jim is much more tolerable when he's being a cop fighting a now losing battle with the deep corruption of Gotham. We don't need to see him in a romance. 

The license for crime thing is weird but it works for a city like Gotham who seems to have an entire population of criminals. Of course it will not end well. But the cops of Gotham would propably rather have that then have the police station shot up every other day.

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1 hour ago, HoodlumSheep said:

Wait. Hold on. ????? Knockoff Buscemi is actually a Buscemi???????

Oh my gosh, i'm cackling. Sorry for calling you a ripoff, man. I didnt know!

I didn't know steve buscemi had a brother (let alone one who acts)

I saw the name in the credits, seconds after he came on screen. Uncanny, right? Kinda like when Robot Chicken spoofs a Tom Hanks movie and brings in his brother Jim to voice the character.

Anybody else see Bruce's first crime stopper outfit and think "Mini Midnighter"? The design is basically "Batman minus bat."

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Bruce is going to need to work on the voice.

He is growing up, by the end of the season his voice will probably be much deeper. 

Just have to hope that there isn't a Peter Brady voice changing moment while he is talking to the bad guys.

I am looking forward to the continuation of the scarecrow story line. 

Glad to see that Lee isn't around.  I hope she stays away for a while. 

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I thought Oswald "license to commit crime" was kind of clever and a very Gotham thing to do.  It pits the overtly rightous Jim once again against the the shady GCPD and his now partner Boss Harvey.   I liked the question of how far the license goes.  Does it include murder?  Can I get a license to kill a dude?  Plus the fact that Oswald has gotten crime to its lowest level was a nice touch.

Of course it was going to fail pretty quickly once Bruce gets into the mix.  Im plus I like the fact that Bruce and Selina are still showing up to all the same places but for very different reasons.

Barbara Keens name got dropped but no Barbara...epic fail!!!!!!     

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On Gotham, the Biggest Threat to the City by Far Is Jim Gordon

 

This episode review speaks to me. Because:

Quote

There are two people in Gotham that don’t support Penguin’s licenses. The first is Bruce Wayne, who even notes that if Penguin’s licenses had been around three years ago, his parents probably wouldn’t have been murdered. The other is Jim Gordon, because he’s irritated that people like Penguin’s effective plan more than the GCPD, who—as we have seen over the last three seasons—have never come close to being an effective deterrent against crime. So Gordon goads one of those few remaining gangs to attack the grand opening of Penguin’s new club, the Iceberg Lounge, specifically so he can stop them and show people the GCPD can stop crimes, too.

Let me reiterate: In hopes of ending Gotham’s historically low crime rates, Jim Gordon sends murderous thugs to a crowded club opening full of god knows how many innocent people. He sets a crime in motion solely to give himself a chance to look good at stopping crime.

Because he’s beaten up by fellow police officers who know he’s being an imbecile, Gordon arrives too late to stop the gang. Penguin stops them. At least until Poison Ivy turns off some of the club lights and the very mild darkness allows the gang to break free, shooting Penguin in the face with Scarecrow’s dad’s fear toxin, which gives Jim and Bullock their chance to punch them in the face.

Of course, the next day a terrified Penguin is on the cover of Gotham’s newspaper, which will undoubtedly cause everyone to lose faith in Penguin’s control of crime, thus ending his licenses, and returning Gotham City’s crime rates to normal, which is like eight crimes committed every second.

 

 

Seriously. Jim Gordon is a dangerous dumbass. He set up a crime to prove just how great the GCPD are when they totally aren't. And he probably just made crime a million times worse. Good job, Jim.

Edited by Kostgard
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I dunno...to me, accepting a system like Penguin's because it's Gotham is kind of like accepting your spouse is going to beat you anyway so you might as well sign a contract with them that spells out what they're allowed to beat you for and how hard. Like - okay, sure, it's better than completely uncontrolled domestic abuse, but if someone insisted they wanted to end the abuse altogether we wouldn't be shaking our heads at how impractical they are and wondering why can't they get with the program already.

So count me on Jim's side in this. Aim higher, city of Gotham.

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12 minutes ago, Miss Dee said:

I dunno...to me, accepting a system like Penguin's because it's Gotham is kind of like accepting your spouse is going to beat you anyway so you might as well sign a contract with them that spells out what they're allowed to beat you for and how hard. Like - okay, sure, it's better than completely uncontrolled domestic abuse, but if someone insisted they wanted to end the abuse altogether we wouldn't be shaking our heads at how impractical they are and wondering why can't they get with the program already.

So count me on Jim's side in this. Aim higher, city of Gotham.

I'm not saying Oswald's method is better or that they should just roll over and let it happen, just that Jim's method of stopping him was super-stupid and dangerous. Bruce had a MUCH better idea - he stole the list of approved crimes with the intention of stopping them before they happen. If Jim had thought of that, he could actually send the police out to stop these crimes making them look very, very effective to the public and they would easily transfer their trust to the GCPD. Instead he invited a dangerous gang to a crowded club in a situation he couldn't really control. That, to me, is why Jim is dangerous and dumb. And why I'm glad that Bruce is stepping into the hero role Jim never really fit for me.

Edited by Kostgard
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Well it seems to me if there was Oswalds "License to Crime"  Bruce's parents would still be alive and there would be someone around to tell Bruce he is being an ass so that is another point in Oswald's favor.  

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@Kostgard, I agree Bruce had a much better idea to fix it. To be fair to Jim, he's not allowed to stop it from happening - part of the licensing system is that police agree to look the other way.

So if you're a struggling shop owner in Gotham who can't afford to pack up and leave to start all over again, you better hope someone's not using a licensed thief to clean you out - because you now have no recourse. Other than hope you've got enough cash left over to hire your own licensed thief to steal it back, of course. Good luck with the "licensed" system when those people start getting pissed off and desperate.

But it is a very ripe situation for a vigilante to metaphorically give the middle finger to both unionized crime and complicit policing and start meting out his own justice....

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37 minutes ago, Miss Dee said:

 

But it is a very ripe situation for a vigilante to metaphorically give the middle finger ...

because the lack of body armor makes confrontations metaphorical....

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20 hours ago, thuganomics85 said:

I even wouldn't be surprised if Barbara magically comes back to life, complete with more of Erin Richards delightfully camping it up.

Harvey lamposhaded this when talking about Jonathon's dad: "He's dead... as far as that means anything in Gotham City."

7 hours ago, Chaos Theory said:

I liked the question of how far the license goes.  Does it include murder?

Yes.  The first criminal (who introduced the license) was allowed to rob and kidnap, but the murder box (as well as grand theft, extortion, arson and several other boxes) was unchecked.

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1 hour ago, Miss Dee said:

So if you're a struggling shop owner in Gotham who can't afford to pack up and leave to start all over again, you better hope someone's not using a licensed thief to clean you out - because you now have no recourse. Other than hope you've got enough cash left over to hire your own licensed thief to steal it back, of course. Good luck with the "licensed" system when those people start getting pissed off and desperate.

Which is why I couldn't get behind the concept in the story. There seemed no reason for the local Gothamites to get behind Oswald's plan, because it just seemed to be "business as usual" except now criminals have a piece of paper.

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27 minutes ago, Danielg342 said:

Which is why I couldn't get behind the concept in the story. There seemed no reason for the local Gothamites to get behind Oswald's plan, because it just seemed to be "business as usual" except now criminals have a piece of paper.

Crime is at record lows.   The GCPD have already shown to have zero effect on crime.  Heck the police station gets shot up at least once a season.  I am guess the licenses do work on some sort of old fashioned protection racket.  You pay your protection to Oswald and you have your own do not touch license.   Otherwise open business to get robbed by a robber who pays for his license.  Which is why you really do need the guy with the list.  Probably a few of them.  

Then you have a guy like Zsasz who works as an enforcer or anyone Oswald need dealt with outside the list system.  

Edited by Chaos Theory

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12 minutes ago, Chaos Theory said:

 I am guess the licenses do work on some sort of old fashioned protection racket.  You pay your protection to Oswald and you have your own do not touch license.   Otherwise open business to get robbed by a robber who pays for his license.  Which is why you really do need the guy with the list.  Probably a few of them.  

Then you have a guy like Zsasz who works as an enforcer or anyone Oswald need dealt with outside the list system.  

Two things:

1) It would have been nice if the show actually explained that. I'm not going to infer and guess an explanation the writers could have easily given.

2) We only saw Zsasz as an enforcer- no one else. As good as Zsasz may be, he can't do it by himself. I might have liked it here if the GCPD was reduced to "license enforcement", since it would be a natural fit within the story.

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I loved the first episode and feel bad for Jonathan.

I also think the license crap is a dumb idea (but not for Penguin). Of course every upstanding citizen is living in fear still. You have no idea if you are the next victim, and you will be in more trouble than the instigator if you retaliate.

I would be on Jim's side here too.

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Even on a show as gonzo as this one, the whole licensed crime story was just...really?  I think what really bothered me about it was that Harvey bought into it.  Even if he thought it was just a temporary thing, Harvey never would drink the Kool-Aid like that.

I liked seeing all the wacky villains back in action, including Zsasz and Frozen Nygma.

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Miss Dee, I'm with you! The license thing was about  two thirds of a good idea in the universe of this show, but even the craziest twists have to have an internal logic, and this doesn't.

It's not that license for crime wouldn't be conceivable in Gotham--It basically existed under the old mob racket but in a "gentlemen's agreement", handshake-y way as opposed to actual records. That's probably where Penguin got the idea in the first place. So that's not the issue.

What IS the issue is that A) The entire GCPD would be openly on board with this, as are the judges and mayor (good God!) thus handing ALL civic powers over to Ozzy, B) more actual criminals aren't throwing fits about it (Oswald, despite his best efforts, is no terrifying mob boss. Especially when he's openly weep-mocking his frozen love object in the middle of his nightclub) and C) Apparently every single random citizen seems fine with being the victim of constant and violent crimes as long as the person committing them paid a master criminal for a written okay! If the population of Gotham City is really that beaten down--and I wouldn't blame them if they were, mind--then the entire infrastructure of the place should have full-scale collapsed. Who would bother opening a business, a bank, a restaurant, a school, knowing that they're open and fair game for a bunch of robbers, rapists and thugs? Anybody who could do so would have left, and the rest of them formed feral gangs fighting it out in some Mad Max-ian hellscape! 

So yeah, Jim Gordon, the dummy, setting up that sting was ridiculous, but only because his astounding inability to read a room has remained completely intact, not because licensing is a good idea. 

Moving on!

 

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And...David is growing SO tall.  He'll be towering over most of the cast by the end of the season! 

It was hysterical watching Ben interact with him in their scene--"I'm supposed to treat this giant like a teenager? He's taller than I am!"

Bruce and Selina were adorable as always--especially when she dared him to climb up on the ledge and he hopped right on up. Her face was perfect "Oh, shit, he called my bluff." New Smooth Bruce--"you look lovely this evening"--clearly has her ankles in a quivery state!

Zasz is hilarious and his timing is top notch! I long for an extended scene with him and Barbara snarking together--can you imagine them both tearing up that ring? Barbara Keene does not sit still for cubic zirconia!

 

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All the same, Ivy's motivations for what she did were kinda murky. I get she's mad at him for freezing her out when she's always wanted to be friends, but she seemed to disapprove of what he was doing with the gang. Is that not what he'd been doing for the past several months to get rid of the criminals that wouldn't comply with his licensing scheme? This can't be the first time she's seen him do something like that. But I'm more convinced than ever that she will be involved in unfreezing Ed.

Ivy's being handled really well so far, in that the writers haven't forgotten that she's a little kid in an adult body. That means she takes every single thing personally, and doesn't have a huge amount of perspective on "the bigger picture." She wants Penguin to be her friend the way she wants Selina and Bruce to be--don't ignore me! Don't yell at me!  The whole licensing thing wouldn't mean too much to her--her particular pastimes means she can chemically entrance anybody into doing what she wants anyway--so as long as Oswald wasn't being mean to her she was fine hanging out and helping with his empire. She had somewhere to belong. 

But she also gets upset, insecure, and mad really quickly, and pays people back with the first method that comes to hand, such as switching off the lights. She basically didn't think beyond causing a ruckus and embarrassing Penguin the way he'd embarrassed her. And she'll definitely thaw Ed out if Oz gets her angry enough to "really show him."

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I still say the license was a good idea but I would have given it another (at least!) episode before blowing it up.    Explain better the dynamics of it and why everyone but Jim and Bruce were ok with it.   

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The licence issue is just a twist on Demolition Man / Robocop... where some criminals were above the law with the willing participation of government. Simon Phoenix & Clarence Boddicker are better than Oswald at this game....

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2 hours ago, Chaos Theory said:

I still say the license was a good idea but I would have given it another (at least!) episode before blowing it up.    Explain better the dynamics of it and why everyone but Jim and Bruce were ok with it.   

I would have liked the first episode to have been about establishing the license idea, with maybe Bruce investigating it and, at the end, he gets kidnapped or put in some other kind of peril, getting the GCPD involved. Perhaps then in order to save Bruce, Gordon has to go against the license, putting Bullock in between a rock and a hard place. It's here that Bullock enlists Sofia Falcone to assist Jim to take down the racket as surreptitiously as possible and rescue Bruce, a process that could easily take half a season.

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I laughed so hard at Penguin rambling on and on to the frozen Ed about how he totally isn't "a slave to his emotions" anymore and how he is so totally over Ed and does not care about him one little bit, no sir...as he emotionally speechifies to the totally frozen over Ed (who Penguin froze in the first place) who he stuck in the middle of his new club. Yeah Ozzy. You are SO without emotions now and have obviously not given him a second thought.

Penguin has so many projection issues he should open an art house theater.

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