Season 5, Episode 4: “Ruin”
Directed by Nathan Hope
Written by James Stoteraux & Chad Fiveash
* For a recap & review of the previous episode, “Penguin, Our Hero” – click here
* For a recap & review of the next episode, “Pena Dura” – click here
Fire and ash are in the air after Haven explodes. Everybody watches on as the buildings burn. Barbara Kean (Erin Richards) wants to take her chance and kill Penguin (Robin Lord Taylor), yet can’t bring herself to do it in the midst of tragedy. Captain Jim Gordon (Ben McKenzie) is rallying the GCPD trying to get triage and rescue happening. He has Harvey Bulock (Donal Logue) get the fire hoses, using the drinking water supply to quench the flames. “311” people were killed in the blast, and more injured.
Bruce Wayne (David Mazouz) is caught in that bloody pool on his own. He’s confronted by men in masks, part of Ecco’s (Francesca Root-Dodson) congregation. He gets a hand from Alfred (Sean Pertwee) turning up to get him out of his cuffs. Meanwhile, Selina Kyle (Camren Bicondova) has taken off to find Jeremiah Valeska (Cameron Monaghan). “You can‘t save her from herself,” the butler tells the young billionaire. And in spite of that, they go looking anyway.
Jim’s over at the club with Barbara, wondering why she took off after the explosion. She’s concerned the Siren’s Club could get attacked. She heard of a “shady guy” at Haven before the explosion and points Jim towards Harlow Park.
There are bigger issues at the GCPD, where Penguin and his new buddies have arrived with assault rifles and ammo. There has to be a catch, right? Penguin says no. He wants to avenge those lost at Haven, hoping he and Gordon can come together to “give the people some justice.” For the time being they’ll work as one.
What about ole Ed Nygma (Cory Michael Smith)? He and his alternate personality, the Riddler, continue to battle it out across his psychological landscape. He wakes up to find a message written on his hand and an empty suitcase waiting. The note indicates he needs to look through prison records for Inmate #1215 at Blackgate. He sneaks himself into the GCPD, only to get caught by Lucius Fox (Chris Chalk). Awkward situation. Fox decides to enlist Nygma in helping him investigate the bombing, in exchange for the file.
Penguin nearly gets everybody killed after calling out the psychopath who blew up Haven. A sniper begins firing onto the street. Cpt. Gordon tries to call him out, however, the gunman’s not going anywhere. Now we come to see the man behind the gun is Victor Zsasz (Anthony Carrigan). He says he didn’t cause the explosion. Jim has everybody lay down cover fire, allowing him time to sneak around inside the building to confront Zsasz and beat him down.
Selina follows Ecco back to the factory with the Soothsayers, where she finally lays eyes on Jeremiah again. There, Ecco and Jeremiah have a dance together, discussing various plans for Gotham. The Cat keeps a watchful eye on her prey.
“Not everybody can pass the .38-calibre test of faith”
Lucius and Nygma figure out an RPG was fired into the basement of Haven where it ignited the heating oil. It would’ve been fired from a rooftop close by, so this means Zsasz surely didn’t cause the explosion. Penguin’s unsatisfied. He takes the prisoner for a trial, in which the people play judge, jury, and executioner. Everybody votes Zsasz is guilty. Jim intervenes, telling everybody about the RPG and admitting they’re on their own without the government’s help but they have to keep some semblance of order: “This is not justice. It‘s not who we are.”
This changes nothing. The guillotine’s brought and Zsasz is strapped down to have his head lopped off. Bullock and Jim stop things before the execution occurs, just in the nick of time. They’re not letting Penguin run Gotham with an iron fist. The cap lets Victor go free in the streets out of his strong morality.
At the factory, Jeremiah’s pushing people to keep digging towards the mainland when he gets stabbed in the guts by Selina. She stabs a few times for good measure, then Bruce and Alfred bust in to stop/save her. They’re able to get away. But this won’t be the end of Jeremiah— you can BET on it!
Nygma sees an old woman’s apartment across from Haven. He goes to see if she knows anything about the explosion. The lady tells Ed it was him who shot the RPG. Oh, shit. She gives him a whack on the head that jogs his memory, and it all comes back in stark horror. Uh oh. First the old lady goes out the window in her wheelchair, next Nygma might try to cauterise things with Fox. Who knows what the Riddler will have him do.
“This city will never be what you want it to be, Jim.”
Giddy up! The plots are thickening.
“Pena Dura” is next time.