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GOTHAM Does It For The Children

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GOTHAM: Logo.
Episode 110 “Lovecraft”

[Photos: Jessica Miglio/FOX]

This one’s mostly about the kids.

Bruce and Selina take an unexpected trip into the city. Harvey teams up with Double-Oh-Alfred. Gordon tracks down a leak and gets a suspect … well…

Spoilers_GothamBatmanThis hour starts with assassins showing up at Stately Wayne Manor. Their target: the witness no one is supposed to know about. And after Alfred recognizes the danger of the young woman showing up at his door pretending to have been in a car accident, we get our first full-on Beware the Batman and Earth One Alfred Pennyworth — the butler who used to be a spy. And I couldn’t help but wish (again) that Pertwee would consider bringing some Venusian aikido to Doctor Who as the Third Doctor. Especially after seeing him in his Halloween costume this year…

sigh

In any case, the attack leads to Selina and Bruce on the run into the mean streets of Gotham City. And as many have noted, this is the payoff for everyone who wanted to see Bruce in a situation other than the library getting his Bat-brooding on. It’s interesting to see how he adapts from being a rich isolated “fish out of water” to adaptable street kid. There are echoes of Bruce as Oliver and Cat as the Artful Dodger in this. There’s even a Fagin analogue with Clyde the Fence. And even though Clyde sells them out, the parallels are there enough to inform the visuals and pieces of the story.

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The trip starts with Selina trying to ditch Bruce, mainly because he wants to call home and she wants to be back in her world. She understands the dangers of going back to Stately Wayne Manor, and is ready to do what she does best: disappear into the woodwork. But when Bruce chases after her, and even manages to jump across rooftops after her, she takes him down the “The Flea” — the homeless mall, as it were. First things first, they get Bruce into more appropriate attire so he doesn’t stand out in his preppy rich kid clothes. Of course, he needs to stop being so polite and introducing himself to people — like Ivy Pepper, who’s also at the Flea after escaping the home Mayor James set up a few weeks ago.

Meantime, Gordon is looking for the leak. He confronts Harvey Dent and finds out the assistant district attorney leaked to a couple of “trusted” contacts in the media that there was a witness and Gordon was investigating. The good detective, of course, in incensed that Dent would put lives in jeopardy like that, but Dent’s trying to rattle cages because of his obsession with the takedown of the Lovecraft the Gangster.

Lovecraft, in the meantime, has gone to ground. No one seems to know where he’s disappeared to, and Gordon manages to find him in one of his hideaway houses across town. The conversation has many layers, as Lovecraft reveals that not only is everyone laughing at Gordon’s do-gooder crusade, but that he’s also got information secreted away regarding the Wayne murders. Turns out there was a big exchange of Wayne stock just before the prominent couple was killed, and of course the assassins show up just before Lovecraft is ready to spill everything. And it’s nice to see that Gordon’s not afraid to hit a girl, but it avails him nothing as she gets the upper hand. When he wakes up, the papers are gone, Lovecraft is dead, and Gordon’s gun was used to do it.

So, now Gordon faces blame for Lovecraft’s death.

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Harvey and Double-Oh-Alfred take the other side of the case, looking for Bruce and Selina. They first pull in Mackey, who doesn’t know Cat’s whereabouts, but after “Good Cop with Money” Alfred shells out some cash, Mackey ‘fesses up that Cat was running with a new fence named Clyde, and that Fish would be the one to know where to find him.

Fish is impressed with the smooth-talking Double-Oh-Alfred, who appeals to her “better nature” because surely she isn’t the type of person who would willingly put innocent kids in danger, right? She gives them Clyde’s location.

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As all of this is swirling around, Fish is dealing the fallout of blowing up Falcone’s money. Falcone is on a tear, first getting in Oswald’s face to learn that Maroni had nothing to do with it, then bringing all of his lieutenants to lunch. And then after shooting Ben for failing to protect his money, he announces a bump in tariffs, which Fish thinks is only going to drive more of a wedge between Falcone and his “family” — something she tells Butch will give them an opportunity.

Down at the Narrows, it all comes together — Bruce and Selina get trapped, the assassins show up to collect, and Harvey arrives with Double-Oh-Alfred for a shootout in the street. And Alfred is a crack shot. So when it looks like the kids have managed to escape through the skylight, it all comes off the rails. Harvey and Alfred clean up, and the butler is reunited with his charge. And an emotional reunion it is, giving us a strong step in the direction these two people will go through their lives.

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Gordon is not so lucky. The Mayor is furious, and decides that between Gordon and Dent, someone is going to have to be sacrificed on the altar of public perception. Since Dent knows how to play ball, and since Gordon won’t let go of his ethics, guess who gets the ax? Mayor James plays Lovecraft’s death as a suicide prompted by Gordon’s over-zealous investigations, and reassigns the detective to guard duty at Arkham Asylum.

So, that’s where we leave the mid-season. And Barbara continues to be MIA. Which is fine, until the writers can figure out what to do with her.

Best lines:

Harvey: “Now, I know this girl. She was grabbed by the child snatchers. And now she’s gettin’ attacked by assassins at Wayne Freakin’ Manor?!”

Bruce: “Please don’t run off again. I’m out of breath.”

Harvey: “Am I the only one in this town who waits for backup?”

Alfred: “If you die, who employs butlers anymore?”

 _______________

[Show Web Site at FOX]     [Previous Recap: 109 “Harvey Dent”]

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Jason P. Hunt

Jason P. Hunt (founder/EIC) is the author of the sci-fi novella "The Hero At the End Of His Rope". His short film "Species Felis Dominarus" was a finalist in the Sci Fi Channel's 2007 Exposure competition.

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