Gotham: Season 1 Episode 4 "Arkham" (REVIEW)

written by Omar Castillon (@omar_castillon)

Thank god this week was better suited than the wacky antics of last week. Instead this week there was a double murder of politicians and one of the main antagonists from season 7 of “24”. Maroni versus Falcone, it’s the mob show down that was predicted by Cobblepot earlier in the series. Sure it wasn’t so much a gang war but it was something out of a mafia movie that made this episode really work. 

The entire episode was focused on the district dealing with Arkham Asylum and how the city wants to reopen it for the mentally ill. Unfortunately this also means that both crime families in the city want a piece of the district for themselves. Essentially it becomes a political war involving none other than corruption among the city. Sure there was corruption or a sense of it earlier in the series but this episode really takes the audience through the process of how dirty politics can really ruin a city’s chances of redemption. 

As for the villain this week, we have a hitman that was hired to take out such politicians, Gladwell played by Hakeem Kae-Kazim. This guy is ruthless. He sticks a blade into a guy’s eye in the opening sequence. On top of that, he even attempts to assassinate one of the higher profile characters in the city. Although when you do see this part close to the end of the episode, you can judge for yourself to see if both Gordon and Bullock went too far or not. 

The side stories on the other hand were a bit more interesting. Fish Mooney held trials for future candidates to be used as “weapons.” As cool as that sounds, it’s actually pretty brutal. There were only two candidates that were used so either Mooney was extremely picky or for pacing’s sake it was just condensed to two ladies. She asks for both of them to seduce her and then afterwards she pits the two ladies to fight each other in some abandoned warehouse because she wants a “weapon.” 

Cobblepot had another fascinating week since he was promoted! He becomes the manager after a raid in the restaurant owned by Maroni has Cobblepot responsible for a fraction of the money that was being laundered is salvaged from the raid. Before that though, Cobblepot pays a visit to Gordon’s place freaking Gordon out but essentially being a reliable asset and becoming the eyes and ears of the underground crime scene. Flash forward to Cobblepot warning of the next mob hit on an important character to the city to Gordon and Bullock has his suspicion meter on high alert. The tension is shown briefly but nothing really comes up. 

As for Bruce, we get it, he’s investigating stuff about Arkham and how it was a dream his parents wanted to achieve but couldn’t since they are dead… Anyways moving on to other things, Barbara almost had the drop on Gordon this week since she was so close to getting some form of info on Cobblepot for her former roommate/partner/lover. It wasn’t such a big deal until she gives Gordon a ridiculous ultimatum about telling her about Cobblepot or she would leave him. This was a bit too soap opera status, but I don’t think I would see it be anything else except a break from seeing Barbara possibly next week. This is probably a good thing because to be honest, she is the weakest character in the series right now just being the shoehorned problem that Gordon has to deal with on top of corruption and almost getting killed every single day. Cut Gordon some slack Barbara, go smoke a joint or something to cut the tension. 

Anyways, I definitely recommend this week’s episode of Gotham mainly for the mafia style storyline and the crazy brutal assassin taking out all of those politicians. Also GOOD NEWS, Gotham was picked up for a full season so here is hoping this lasts longer than most people are expecting. Knock on wood that this is still not going to have the same fate as Firefly…knock on wood.