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TV REVIEWS: FTN Reviews Gotham Season 1 Episode 17: Red Hood

February 24th, 2015 by Todd Black Comments

Red hood

After what was dubbed “the beginnings of the origin of Joker”, Gotham took another step towards its destiny with the introduction of the Red Hood Gang. For the record, the Red Hood Gang is a group of thieves, robbers, murderers, etc. that Joker actually joined/led (depending on the continuity) and inevitably fought Batman as a part of the group in the Ace Chemicals factory. Which led to him being The Joker. You follow?

So seeing the group here was no doubt a tip off to what will soon come. What I wasn’t personally expecting was an interesting look at the power of symbolism. Something that, again, Gotham will become famous for.

To me, it was hilarious how the red hood became a symbol. It was accident. One of the robbers simply wanted to “shake things up” when robbing a bank. Then, quite smartly I might add, he brought the attention of the people to him, and goaded them into thinking he and the gang weren’t doing anything wrong. One Robin Hood act later, and they were home free, and the Red Hood Gang was born.

Some might think this cheesy, but in fact, that’s how this stuff happens. Think about it. Why did Bruce choose to be a Bat? Because he saw one, and it terrified him, and he wanted to instill that same fear upon others. It could’ve been anything else, but because of that one moment, it clicked. The same thing here with the red hood happened.

Then, to one up the symbology factor, the gang started fighting over who wore the mask. Not because they wanted to be leader or anything (at least not at first), but because they believed in the power of the red hood. The quest to stop the gang was actually intriguing, especially cause Gordon and Bullock got to show off their detective skills to catch these guys.

The shootout at the end was very well done, even if it was a bit unbelievable until the end. Yet, much like in the beginning, the guy believed in the hood. Did you notice he didn’t stutter when he wore it? Because he felt it made him powerful. What did Ra’s al Ghul once say about theatricality…

Red hood2

Moving on, the other big storyline involved Alfred “reconnecting” with a former SAS buddy. This storyline too could’ve been something simple, and a thing we’ve seen before. And in parts it was that, but truly though, Reggie’s involvement allowed us to glimpse the darkness of what Alfred saw in his military days. Many Batman incarnations don’t embrace what Alfred did in the service, hopefully Gotham will continue to do so.

Then, the twist of Alfred getting stabbed was very expected, albeit, we knew he would live. However, with Bruce almost losing another parent (or at least a parental figure), this will no doubt expedite his desire to train and become one who can stop these things from happening. And with board of directors now with their eyes on Bruce, ready to kill him, things will certainly pick up.

The other storylines were very short, and it points…well pointless. Penguin’s struggle with the nightclub continued, but now with Butch at his side, things may turn around. I did like the line about “tired of being a sidekick”, cause that’s very much what Penguin is tired of being. I hope he and Butch make moves soon for the big picture, cause him running the club is quickly losing luster.

Fish’s storyline took a drastic turn, as she tried to prove she’s not one to be messed one. Her taking out her own eye was…impactful…and very gross. It did show her resolve though, so I’ll give her that. The question is…where do we go from here?

Barbara, Selina, and Ivy continue to bunk together. I like that these three are in a storyline, cause it gives it potential. And I like how Barbara was kind of being a big sister to Selina, trying to show how she can be a “princess” and use it against people. Selina again stole the scene though with her quick retort, “how’s that worked out for you?” I hope these “bonding” moments continue, cause it could give new life to these characters.

In the end, “Red Hood” took an interesting look at what the power of symbols can have on a city. With the red hood still in play, I wouldn’t be surprised if someone else took a shot at making a statement soon.



Todd Black is reader of comics, a watch of TV (a LOT of TV), and a writer of many different mediums. He's written teleplays, fan-fictions, and currently writes a comic book called Guardians ( He dreams of working at Nintendo, writing a SHAZAM! TV series, and working on Guardians for a very long time!