Gotham “Heroes Rise: Pretty Hate Machine” Review
Everyone seems to be biting off more than they can chew in Gotham. Like any season before we find ourselves at that stage of imminent implosion when the big players are making their grab for the soul of this twisted city. Still that one development I can’t help but cringe at, but everything has a great build to it knowing that everything leading up to this episode is preparing us for next week’s two-part season finale.
From the start of this episode we are getting somewhere solid with this leader of the Court of Owls. I was definitely shaky on how I felt about this guy, but all it took was him getting what he wanted in order to drop the charade. This isn’t to say that Bruce doesn’t still find himself playing a predictable part alongside him. With both of them together I struggle a bit being sold on the big scheme to bring Gotham to its knees. The Shaman is a sinister guy, though from the start you do see that he fails in trying to use Bruce for something he can do himself. No matter how they try to twist it, when you see it that way it is hard to see it any other way than that. I could tell you just how I think this will end for The Shaman and Bruce and is a problem knowing that the chances are likely. Execution aside, they could probably have done better with this subplot.
I’m not going to lie, what grabs your attention more than what Bruce is doing with The Shaman, are the lengths Alfred is going to get him back. Whatever that area is lacking, he more than makes up for it with a passion for looking out for Bruce and the grief he can give anyone who isn’t doing their part to help him.
As I said, there was that one part I couldn’t help but dread because they just can’t be done with Lee. I don’t think anything they do at this point could shake the irritation at this character and her persistent relevance, but that doesn’t mean something good can’t come out of her being turned into the next psycho walking the streets of Gotham. The confrontation between Lee and Gordon was the only next step to take once he realized what she had come back to the GCPD to take. The suspense here worked considering this was another scene where Gordon faces a foe who easily overpowers him. This new situation for Jim was what redeemed this part. The only way to do something different for Gordon is to throw him outside of his comfort zone, a situation where there is no control for him. Invincible cop does not hold interest after too long, so this was a much needed change of pace. Lee as a villain admittedly is appealing. This was the first time I could believe the role she was playing in comparison to her many faces before.
Now the real excitement comes from the war between Barbara, Penguin, and Riddler. Things did disappoint considering the monsters managed to escape before a real fight could come, but it all comes down to Riddler and Penguin in the end. The way they kicked off their war was fun because no one aside from Riddler was taking the threat of Penguin seriously till they realized they were in the same boat. From there it was a scatter to make the first move and make it decisive. They didn’t waste time with this escalation of events and I appreciate this so close to the season finale. Even when the big moment came they managed to hit you with a twist that no other character could top. I unfortunately spoiled myself seeing who said character would pop up due to images, but that didn’t stop the execution from generating the right reaction to see this storyline through to next week when this was only a taste of what’s to come.
I will say you can see the trouble coming a mile away between Barbara, Tabitha and Bitch. Though with that said this is something I look forward to. Unlike other things going on that are predictable, this here you know you would love to see regardless since all the characters involved are likable.
Gotham “Heroes Rise: Pretty Hate Machine” had some issues here and there, maybe just some things personally too irritating to overlook, but the right set-up for a big finale next week. I’m assuming they are saving all the good stuff for those two hours and hopefully it is worth the wait. What Gotham goes through this time around took things up a notch