Gotham: “Spirit of the Goat” Review

“Half of what you carry”

Harvey Bullock received a lot of character development in this episode as the story delves into one of his old cases.  The beginning of the episode gave us a flashback to Bullock, the young heroic rookie, his old partner Det. Dicks, and the Spirit of the Goat.  This partnership mirrors Bullock and Jim Gordon in the show where Bullock is now the experienced cop with the slogan “No heroes.”  As the case of the Spirit of the Goat is reopened, the episode delves into Bullock’s softer side as well.  One touching moment was when Bullock was discussing Dicks’ medical bills with the nurse.  Not only does Bullock take responsibility of his old partner’s accident, he takes financial responsibility for him as well.  This is one of those times where the audience sees that Bullock, deep down, is a good guy, but Gotham has changed his outlook to morally gray.

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“Gotham’s Golden Rule: no heroes.”

Partnership was the theme of this episode as it delves into Gordon and Bullock’s partnership, Gordon and Barbara’s relationship, and even Oswald Cobblepot and his mother.  I was happy we got to see more of Penguin’s mother in this episode.  The style of her whole apartment is out of the 1800s or something to that affect.  The weird mother/son relationship is the source for Oswald’s sense of entitlement which motivates him to take over the criminal underworld.

Barbara and Gordon finally open up to each other with truth that Gordon did not kill Penguin.  Montoya is the recurring curve ball for Barbara because Montoya is so dead set on getting Gordon.  The real evidence of the love Barbara has for Jim was seen when he was arrested.  She had the bags packed ready to run with Gordon from the cops.

Edward Nygma had a lot of screen time this episode as Cory Michael Smith delivered a great performance with that quirky, over compulsive nature.  His interaction with Kristen Kringle in the Records Annex was very enjoyable as they interact each in there own quirky ways.  I laughed at Nygma’s line referring to the organization of the records: “There’s a better way to do this.”  Of course, he ends up just making a fool of himself.  I look forward to more E. Nygma!  Also, that question mark on his mug was priceless.

The plot of the episode was very interesting as we see the Spirit of the Goat terrorize the upper class.  This depraved Robin Hood style of bad guys is probably going to be recurring, but I enjoyed the angle this one took.  Instead of a vigilante, the Spirit of the Goat was mentally challenged janitor that was coerced through hypnotherapy.  This mental or neurological type of bad guy is just the beginning.  Once Arkham Asylum is open, I expect we’ll see even more insane people and corrupt therapists (or ‘the rapist’).

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Guess who?

Bruce Wayne is back to not being much involved which isn’t a bad thing, but the show is making the character seem oblivious of the hurtful things he says.  The example of this episode was the conversation between him and Alfred who suggested they leave town until the Spirit of the Goat is caught.  Bruce says, “Why would he take me?  There’s no one to take me from.”  The look on Alfred’s face said otherwise.  This partnership is just forming, so their scenes in this episode highlight that point.

Overall, this was the most enjoyable episode for me since the pilot.  The introduction of the manipulative hypnotherapist was especially interesting (coming from a Hannibal fan).  Characters keep alluding to the idea that “Gotham needs therapy” and “Gotham doesn’t need a cop; it needs something else” *cough*cough*Batman.  And that ending was priceless!  If I’m ever presumed dead, I would walk up to my friends and family just like Oswald Cobblepot and declare “HELLO.”  It’s the only way.

4.5 out of 5 – Very Good

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