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Gotham is back, with the first episode of its new season entitle Better To Reign In Hell. Our very own Leonard Marciano is here to break down all the action for you in our official ComiConverse Gotham review.
Gotham Better to Reign in Hell Review
The first episode of this season titled Better to Reign in Hell, begins with Gordon trying to see Lee only to discover that she has moved on. We cut over to Gotham and see a monster breaking into a pharmacy where he throws a pharmacist out a window. The monster looks like a Killer Croc-type and he follows the pharmacist he throws out the broken storefront window. We then see Gordon appear dressed all in black with a leather jacket. He attempts to fight this escapee from Indian Hill, but to no avail. Ultimately the escapee is done in by an incoming eighteen wheeler.
We then cut over to police headquarters where Captain Barnes has returned and is giving a press conference alongside the Mayor. We are also introduced to Valerie Vale a new reporter in town whom we can only assume is the older sibling to Vicki Vale (a future conquest of Bruce Wayne). The press conference is also interrupted by the Penguin and Butch. Penguin claims that the escapees are being led by Fish Mooney and that he has made the police aware of this. Meanwhile Jim and Harvey talk about the time lapse as Harvey asks Jim what ultimately happened with Lee. Jim refuses to talk about it and reaffirms that he is happy being a bounty hunter and working outside the police force..
The change in character dynamic for Jim is a nice change of pace even though it seems as though he is now playing the Batman character for the sake of the story. I’m willing to give it the benefit of the doubt as it flows into the story and it always seems that the creative team in Gotham is using the best of Batman stories both old and new to provide a good story.
The next part of our story follows Penguin as he pays a visit to Riddler in Arkham as well as Tabitha and Barbara in their club. We learn that Tabitha and Butch have broken up and that Tabitha is exclusively with Barbara now. We also learn that Penguin is offering protection to the girls in exchange for falling under his umbrella of his criminal organization. They decline his offer, but are later met by another gangster trying to shake them down. Things do not go well for that gangster as the girls get the jump on him and we find out Butch put him up to it in order to win Tabitha back.
Next up we are introduced to Fish and her new crew. They break into a chemical factory to try and steal a drug that helps ease the pain of whenever Fish uses her powers. They have a standoff with Gordon and get away. Later on in the episode they manipulate Valerie Vale into using Gordon to lead them to Ethel (Hugo Strange’s assistant) who is in police protection so that she can testify against Hugo Strange. Gordon knows it’s a trap but goes along with it anyway and Fish and her crew get away with Ethel, but not before Gordon is able to capture the Manbat type of escapee. Their depiction of Manbat seems more like a phantom of the opera running around. It is an interesting approach to the character since they seem to have a pretty good budget for special effects, but fits into their 80’s or 90’s feel of the era in their story.
We now see Bruce and Alfred return to Wayne Manor from Switzerland. Later we see them in Wayne Enterprises confronting the board. Bruce reveals to them that he has proof of an organization that has infiltrated his company’s ranks and gives them 24 hours to meet face to face or he will reveal the proof he has on them. Towards the end of the episode we see Alfred attacked by a Talon and Bruce kidnapped.
Throughout the episode we see Selina and Ivy talking and Ivy continues asking to join Selina in whatever adventure she has gotten herself into. Selina refuses and also gives the Indian Hill escapee Bruce Wayne some money without realizing who he is. Faux Bruce attempts to follow Selina as he appreciates the kindness he showed her, but Ivy confuses him by calling him Bruce. This seems to upset Faux Bruce as he becomes obsessed with trying to figure out who Bruce Wayne is. It is still too early to speculate what role he will play, but it appears to be that of Thomas Wayne Jr. (see Scott Snyder’s “Court of Owls,” storyline for more details).
Finally jumping back to Fish she interrogates Ethel and learns that her cellular structure has issues whenever she uses her powers and that she should stop using them as they are placing her life at risk. Fish is not happy with this answer and uses her power of persuasion on Ethel to reveal that Hugo Strange can possibly help Fish in fixing this issue. Fish then has Marvin (who can take the life force from anyone by merely touching them) kill Ethel. We then see Ivy appear as she was just following Selena. This does not make Fish happy and she sends Marvin after her. Ivy runs with Marvin chasing her and Selena in chase as well trying to save Ivy. Just as Marvin catches Ivy and tries to kill her with his ability, Ivy falls into a water pipe and we can assume this will lead to her becoming Poison Ivy and older based on future previews.
What did you think of Better To Reign In Hell?
Are you excited for Gotham‘s new season?
Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.
Leonard Marciano is a Contributor to ComiConverse. Follow him on Twitter: @LeonardTLM
This first episode was a good starting point for this season. It out down a good foundation for where our characters are after the time lapse of a few months after Season 2. Erin Richards seems to have hit her stride as playing a ‘just plain crazy Barbara’, and with the type of bender Gordon seems to be on, we could see them making a mistake together and us getting James Gordon Jr. with his mother’s psychotic tendencies. David Mazouz also did a great job playing Bruce and Faux Bruce throughout the episode. Overall the episode did its job in getting us excited for the rest of the season, but there was nothing major in terms of reveals.