After last weeks near masterpiece, I was honestly expecting “Unleashed” to take it down a notch or two, and I was right. That being said, it was still enjoyable on many fronts.
Key among them was the numerous forces of good (and evil in some ways) converging on both Theo Galavan/Azrael and Hugo Strange. I’ve heard many complain about Strange and his “lack of a plan”. But that’s honestly not true here. For his plan is that what he’s doing is unexplainable, and how can you explain the unexplainable and prove he had a part of it? Remember, this is only the beginning for Gotham in terms of the weirdness and darkness that’s coming. Why would they think a shrink is behind it all, even if they saw it with their own eyes?
This was all but proven when Strange outsmarted both Gordon and Bullock when they tried to prove he was behind everything. As his “spring cleaning” was very thorough. And it forced them to go back to the square one in some ways. The scene at the GCPD was very cool, as Bullock got to show he can be a good leader at times. A stark contrast from where he started out when we met him at the beginning of the series. Seeing him react to everyone looking at him for guidance, and being egged on by Gordon was great.
Now, onto the action. Everything was truly about finding Galavan/Azrael and stopping him before more people died. It was really cool to see the personalities of both Galavan and Azrael kind of merge together and create someone even more terrifying. You wondered at times who was more dominant, making the threat that much more real. Then when he remembered his promise to kill Bruce, the tension got even more powerful.
To be fair, though Tabitha got stabbed (and survived…), we all knew neither Bruce nor Alfred was going down. But…leave it to the Gotham writers to once again show how epic Alfred is when the chips are down. The swordfight was pretty fun, but the joy of the ending trumped it in spades.
Penguin was truly back in all his splendid glory. From his tone, to his joke, to his dismissal of “Azrael” (seriously, it’s Gotham, just wear leather!) and then to the beautiful bringing of the ROCKET LAUNCHER!!!! I did not see that coming…and I’m so glad I didn’t, it would’ve ruined the moment. I was laughing so hard at the epicness of it. Why bring a gun when you can erase some with a rocket?!?!!?
Finally, after getting tired of waiting on Jim, Bruce got Selina to break into Arkham, which was pretty cool in and of itself. As she once again showed why she’s Catwoman in a few years. Her meeting Nygma was just as fun. But the twist was that Bridget was now fully Firefly, and was wanting to burn her to a crisp…with Strange watching!!!!
Now, the pacing was off at times here, and certain beats didn’t really work. But again, I wasn’t expecting another perfect episode. This one did a good job of bringing the fun, tying off another good storyline, and setting up the final two episodes.