Welcome back Gothamites! This week, as much as it pains my lil heart, was the mid-season finale for Gotham Season 3, and what a finale it was! The drama and suspense kept me on my toes, but the ending? What a freakin’ finale! The episode was split into three separate, but vital story-lines, each one just as important as the other by it’s own right. So, let’s dive right in to what may well be one of my favorite episodes!
We’ll start this out with Edward and Penguin’s…falling out. We’ll call it that, even though Edward was the only one who fell out. Nygma, ever the faithful right hand man, was setting up the Mayor’s day when he gets a surprising visit from Barbara Kean. She tells him that, despite him chopping off Tabitha’s hand, she’s not there to kill him. The two exchange words, and she plants the idea in his head that Oswald killed Isabella, but when Ed questions the motivation, Barbara tells him it’s because The Penguin is in love with him. Edward laughs it off, but can’t seem to actually shake the notion that she might be right. He decides to confront Oswald, and with some carefully placed words, gets him to admit that yes, he does love Edward. Ed jumps away from him as if he’d been burned and tells the Mayor that there was a misunderstanding – He meant that he wanted to move their relationship from boss to employer to Partners in business. He stalks away, leaving Oswald in a sense of panic.
Later that afternoon, Oswald is giving an award to an author, and all Ed can do is day dream about murdering him in the background. The Penguin approaches him after the award presentation and apologizes to Ed, before telling him how much he cares for him, and how Ed is his best friend. Ed stiffly hugs him, before managing to grit out that Penguin is his best friend as well. He storms away after that, unable to contain his anger for long around his once dear friend. Edward eventually arrives at the Sirens club, seething and claiming that he wants to see Oswald torn from his pedestal and how he wants to take everything from the Mayor. Tabitha and Butch don’t take kindly to seeing Riddler, and immediately threaten his life. Barbara separates them, before allowing Ed to speak. He asks her what she wants out of this, and she tells him that once Penguin is gone, there will be a power vacuum. One that, with Edward backing her and voicing his support to the heads of the mob families, she can easily fill. Edward agrees, and (this is one of my favorite scenes) she forces Edward to apologize. Like a child who isn’t really sorry, he tells Tabitha he’s sorry for what he did. She lunges at him and Barbara pulls her back, telling everyone that they’ll work on it. As much as I hate to see one of my favorite pairings split and fight like this, I’m interested to see the dynamic between Ed and Barbara. Edward is cold and calculated, but Barbara is all emotion. She CAN be calculated, but her emotions are what her drive her. I can almost guarantee that it won’t disappoint.
Now we come to Bruce, Selina, and Alfred. The trio discover that their contact in the Whispers gang has died, and that The Court of Owls may very well be on to them. Bruce decides they need to continue as planned, and their new contact helps them scope out the building where this…potential weapon may be lurking. They find an unlocked window, and as they return to the mansion, Selina starts acting a little odd. The Whisper Gang informant goes over the maps with Alfred and Bruce, and they discuss how they intend to get past the laser-lights that cover the floor of the room. It’s determined that they’ll have to wire-walk across it to ensure the alarms don’t go off, which Bruce practices (and fails at) incessantly. Selina, unaware how obvious it is that something is bothering her, tries to sneak out of the mansion. Alfred stops her and she tells him that the entire time they were on the roof, scoping out their mark, she felt as though someone was watching them. The two exchange words about what this means to Bruce, and how he originally made a deal with The Court to protect her.
The day of the hit, Bruce and Alfred wait for their Whisper Gang informant to join them, but he never shows. What they don’t know is that He’ll never show, because The Court of Owls’ hitman, Talon, had captured him and murdered him. Bruce decides they need to continue with their plan, that it’s now or never. So they break in. He tells Alfred he’s going to do the wire-walk, but Alfred tells him he only got it right three times. Out of twenty. Selina shows up last minute and tells the two that she’ll do it. Alfred stands guard while Bruce and Selina get to work. In order to complete the wire-walk, Bruce brings along a sort of…crossbow that shoots a bolt across the room. The bolt has a wire attached to it that he has to hold taut from one end so that Selina can walk across it. She kisses his cheek and tells him to hold tightly, before walking to the end of the room a top the wire. She reaches the safe, unlocks it, and finds….a crystal statue of an owl. She places the owl in her bag regardless, and turns to make her way back to Bruce. But Talon has discovered them, and Bruce drops the rope. Selina sets off the alarms, and gains the attention of the hitman. She tries fighting him off, but he doesn’t see her as much of a threat. Bruce sets off a flashbang grenade, before he and Selina dart down the hallways.
Alfred tells them to run up the stairs and escape while he fights the assassin. Bruce decides he can’t leave Alfred to die and goes back down the stairs to defend him. Selina slides down the railing after her boyfriend-not-boyfriend, before getting interrupted by a masked stranger. Alfred manages to kill Talon (in a totally bloody and brutal way), before asking who the stranger is. She takes off her mask and goggles, and Selina tells them that the woman is her mother. They decide they need to return to the mansion, and so the four head out. Was Selina’s mom part of the court of owls? Why has she been watching them? I don’t know, but I’m so freaking excited. I can’t wait to see the reaction from the Court when they learn that their number one hitman was killed by a butler.
The final story-line, and the one we’ve been waiting all season for, is what makes this the best Mid-season Finale I’ve ever seen. As you all well remember from the previous episode, Mario somehow came in contact with Alice Tetch’s blood, and the dark jealousy over Jim and Lee’s relationship came to the surface. This episode opens with the hematologist studying Alice’s blood. He leaves work and heads to a bar, intending to have a nice, quiet drink before heading home. He’s approached by Mario, who attempts to strike up a conversation about the Tetch virus. The scientist just looks at Mario like he shouldn’t know, and Mario tells him that he’s marrying the GCPD medical examiner, and sometimes she talks to him about her cases. The scientist tells him he can’t discuss it, before Mario pulls him to the back room. He literally squeezes the scientist’s head until it explodes, and then steals his key card. It’s the day of the Falcone-Tompkins wedding, and Jim is leading detective for the case of the murdered scientist.
He tries to convince Captain Bullock that this is a Tetch virus influenced attack, which Bullock refuses to believe until Jim pulls evidence from the victim’s wallet that proves he works at the lab where Tetch’s blood is being tested. Jim heads to the labs and tells the security guard to keep an eye out for the scientist’s key card in the logs, and that if anyone uses it, he needs to call immediately. The guard tells Jim that it was used 20 minutes ago, and that the intruder hasn’t logged out yet. Jim tells the guard to call 911, before heading to the labs. He finds a murdered lab tech lying on the ground, before Mario attacks him from behind. He throws Jim through glass, which knocks him unconscious, before writing the word “Arkham” on his hand. After coming to and being interviewed by Bullock, Lucius points out the word written on his hand. The trio first come to the conclusion that Barnes is at Arkham, but Jim tells Harvey that it’s not about Barnes. He interrogates Jarvis Tetch, who treats the entire thing as a game. He refuses to give Jim a straight answer, speaking only in rhymes, which frustrates the detective to no end. Finally, Jim decides to play along and speaks to Jervis in rhymes. Unable to resist, Tetch tells him that the monster he created will hurt the person he loves most, and Jim deduces that Tetch somehow infected Mario the night he drugged Jim with the Red Queen powder.
Jim has Mario arrested, and Lucius tests Mario for the virus 3 times, but each time it comes back negative. Jim is so determined to believe that Mario is the source of the Tetch virus that he claims Mario somehow found a way to beat the test. He goes to Lee’s home to convince her of what he knows, but Mario is sitting on the couch. He tells Jim that, if he were infected, how would it make Jim feel to know that Lee is going to marry a insane serial killer? Jim draws his gun on the doctor, who tells him that he brought a friend. Zsasz holds Jim hostage while Mario makes his escape, before telling him that he was free to go. Jim knocks Zsasz out and takes his gun, and then heads to the church. While Mario prepares for the wedding, Jim tries to convince Lee not to go out there and marry him. He tells her that Mario is infected, which she already knows. Up to that point, Mario told her everything (except for the part about Zsasz.) and she believes Jim is just desperate to see what isn’t there. In a last attempt to get her to see reason, Gordon tells Lee that he loves her. He tells her he should’ve gone to her the second he got out of jail, and he regrets not doing just that. He also tells her that he did eventually go to see her, and he saw how happy she was with Mario, so he just…came home. Lee slaps him and bursts into tears, damning Jim for telling her this now. Jim tells her that this is exactly what Mario wanted. He wanted Lee to hate the detective so she wouldn’t believe him. Lee tells him it’s working, before asking Don Falcone to have Gordon escorted off of the property.
As Jim tries to fight off the guards in the hallways, Lee and Mario say their final vows before the priest claims them to now be man and wife. At the GCPD, Lucius finds that there are a couple of drugs that one could take to beat the test for the Tetch Virus, and that a large dosage was found in Mario’s blood -which grants the police enough evidence to secure a warrant. They search Mario’s place and find empty vials of the needed drugs, which confirms that he “cheated” to beat the test. Bullock calls Jim, who tries to convince Don Falcone to help locate his son and daughter-in-law. Falcone refuses to help, telling Jim that if his son IS infected, he wants to send two of his goons to retrieve him. Jim shoots the two goons standing guard in the knees, before asking if Falcone would like to send anyone else. They strike up a deal that Jim won’t kill Mario, and that he’ll bring him in safely. Meanwhile, Mario and Lee had left the reception early to go enjoy their honeymoon at a remote cabin off of the lake. Mario takes her by the hand and asks if she has any feelings for Jim, and that it’s the only time he’ll ask. She tells Mario that some part of her will always love Jim, but that she CHOSE to marry him. Mario smiles and tells her that’s all he needed to know. Moments later, when Lee is on the deck, Mario grabs a knife. The Tetch virus has taken over, and all he can hear is how she said she loved Jim. He goes to stab her, but Jim runs around the corner in time to see it happening. He screams Lee’s name, before firing off two shots. They hit Mario in the chest and he drops the knife. It slides off of the balcony and into the lake water, which means there’s no attempted murder weapon to account for. Lee looks to Jim in horror, before the screen cuts black. That’s right, y’all. It ends with Mario dying by Jim’s hand, the knife disappearing into the lake water, and Lee only seeing a small portion of the big picture. I’m already heartbroken at the reaction she’s probably going to have to Jim killing her husband, and it won’t even happen until 2017! Just…ugh. The suspense is already killing me. That’s it for this episode, but don’t worry! It comes back on January 16th, 2017, so be sure to tune in!
Thanks for reading!