Gotham – Rise of the Villains, Episode 17: “Into the Woods”

Fox’s Gotham
Season 2, Episode 17: “Into the Woods”
Directed by Oz Scott
Written by Rebecca Perry Cutter

* For a recap & review of the previous episode, “Prisoners” – click here
* For a recap & review of the next episode, “Pinewood” – click here
IMG_0195Bruce (David Mazouz) and Selina (Camren Bicondova) are busy stealing from bad dudes, trying to get away without dying. From the rooftops, the young billionaire even tosses a ton of cash from the bag. Because he’s doing “research” not trying to get rich.
Now that Jim Gordon (Ben McKenzie) is on the streets again, things are wild at the GCPD. Captain Barnes (Michael Chiklis) is pissed, he believes Harvey Bullock (Donal Logue) had something to do with springing him from Blackgate. Things aren’t good. Then there’s Edward Nygma (Cory Michael Smith), watching, waiting to see what happens next.
From Bullock’s apartment Jim is piecing things together. Or, trying to; it’s difficult. Very hard to figure out who might be the real culprit. Jim has plenty of enemies, so it isn’t easy to see through it all and pick Ed out of the bunch. What’s his plan of attack? They’ve got to try getting into Internal Affairs evidence. Could be a tape with their suspect’s voice on it, calling in and pretending to be Pinkney. Well, this means Harvey’s got to pimp himself out while Gordon sneaks in to look for the right tape. And the framed detective does, only to run into cops on the street while he’s getting away.
IMG_0196Poor Elijah (Paul Reubens) has died, leaving Oswald (Robin Lord Taylor) without any of his family left. After losing his mother, Penguin is by himself, he has nothing at all anymore. Except a step-family who’s kicking him to the curb. Grace (Melinda Clarke) decides on keeping him around, to use as a servant. Until something happens to him, I guess. What a horrible existence. At dinner, the family uses their new servant for target practise with leftover food. Never thought I’d feel so awful for Oswald Cobblepot! He’ll get revenge, soon enough I’m sure.
In Arkham, Barbara Kean (Erin Richards) sits with other inmates in a psychiatric session with Director Hugo Strange (BD Wong). She speaks of her parents, the “terrible things” she’s done, including trying to kill Jim, et cetera. She feels less insane, more depressed now. The coma did her good. Do you believe it? I don’t, not for a second.
Jim and Harvey get listening to the tape of the call about a witness to the death of Mayor Galavan. The voice is disguised. However, they hear a strange noise; not a bird, but something identifiable. They’ll need a hand cleaning up the audio to hear it properly. At the same time, things are getting grim.
Although who does Dt. Gordon go to for help? None other than Nygma. Shit, he’s bringing the tape to him. Oh, my. This is just dastardly. Obviously the results will be manipulated. More of an abyss of evidence with which he’ll have to deal.
IMG_0197Naturally, Nygma’s tiptoeing around Jim with the tape. Simultaneously he’s taking offence when the detective talks of the “psychopath” framing him. Gets a bit touchy between the two men. Ed’s pushing it. The conversation turns to the murder of Galavan, just as the tape’s ready for cleaning. They listen to it once more, discovering the sound was mechanical: a clock. Jim pulls his gun, and soon the cuckoo clock in Ed’s apartment rings, confirming his suspicions. But with a chair “wired to the mains” the forensics expert zaps his friend into unconsciousness. Looks like they’re headed on a trip to the woods.
But Jim gets away, taking a bullet in the leg when Nygma catches him fleeing. Talking too much, the would-be Riddler mentions Ms. Kringle, too. He’s putting the whole puzzle together for Gordon himself.
Bruce can sew, he can cook, he can fight. Not bad for a supposedly spoiled billionaire. He and Selina stay together at her little hideout. They soon get a visit from their wounded, bleeding detective friend. This prompts Bruce to get in touch with Alfred (Sean Pertwee). The butler gets them both back to Wayne Manor.
It’s release day from Arkham for Barbara, she’s declared sane. Another one of Strange’s social experiments. He’s populating Gotham with lunatics, hoping to observe their behaviour. That will certainly get interesting, as he intends.
IMG_0198The plan is set, and Selina’s going to help. She goes down to see Captain Barnes, telling him she saw Gordon at her place recently. She feeds the cops information, involving things about where the “the bodys buried,” intended to drive Nygma into a frenzy. And it most certainly does. Can you say dissociation? Ed is so close to snapping entirely.
Sure as shit, the riddling forensics man goes digging in the woods for Kristin’s body. Leading Jim right to the spot where she’s buried. They have a confrontation while Ed rambles a bit, offering up “one last riddle.” He’s about to shoot Gordon when the rest of the GCPD emerge from the treeline, Barnes and the Strike Force with them. Looks like somebody’s going to Arkham Asylum.
Dinner at the Van Dahl home is set. Oswald’s prepared a roast for the family. Only Grace is there to have a bite to eat. Where are her kids? Hmm. Seems the mother didn’t think for a second her stepson might turn the tables on them. Sasha and Charles were cooked for supper, so it looks like the family’s all there! Holy shit. Gruesome, macabre. Just wild.
Everything Jim is settled. He gets his badge and gun back, the trust of Barnes. The captain also has Lee’s number, she’s working somewhere down South for a medical examiner’s office. But Gordon won’t do anything else before discovering all the truth(s) behind the murders of Thomas and Martha Wayne, he won’t abandon his promise to young Bruce.
Speaking of the billionaire, he’s discovering life might not be so easy, now that Lucius has fixed up Thomas’s computer. Alfred explains he has to make a decision, that if he’ll be fighting corruption, terrible people, it’d be easier to be remain unattached. Meaning Bruce has to say goodbye, again, to Ms. Kyle, as usual. And the young girl doesn’t understand, because why would she? It’s harsh.

With another inmate in Arkham, we’re seeing so many future supervillains in the making. Now that Oswald has taken his revenge, he’s also ready to get back to his old self again, too. Many, many things poised to happen around Gotham City. Not to mention whatever Bruce and Alfred will discover on the computer down in that secret passageway below the mansion. And Barbara showing up Jim’s doorstep.
“Pinewood” is our next episode.

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