‘Gotham’ Review: ‘Everyone Has a Cobblepot’
FOX’s Gotham detects its 18th installment in “Everyone Has a Cobblepot,” as Gordon re-teams with Harvey Dent (Nicholas D’Agosto) to investigate police corruption, while Fish Mooney locks wits with the deadly Dr. Dulmacher (Colm Feore), and Bruce deals with the aftermath of Alfred’s shooting.
Last week’s Gotham installment, “Red Hood,” saw a string of bank robberies bringing citywide attention to a masked criminal group, while Alfred suspected something amiss about his old friend’s return, and Fish laid eyes on her mysterious captor, so how does the latest episode of FOX’s Bat-prequel drama shine a light on the city’s villainous beginnings?
Read on for your in-depth review of everything you need to know about Gotham episode 18, “Everyone Has a Cobblepot”!
I’m going to keep this relatively brief, as Gotham didn’t make “Everyone Has a Cobblepot” available for press consideration, and to be frank, the show is barely worthy of attention as is. Odd too, considering that tonight’s hour represents the last of the series we’ll see until mid-April, and the main thread of tonight’s story proved much more taut than its silly episode title would suggest, once you get rid of the usual narrative clutter.
It’s of interest to note that Gotham itself began with a nascent pitch of Jim Gordon working to root out corruption in the GCPD, though Peter Scolari wasn’t introduced as a focal point for its villainy until after midway through season. Scolari’s Commissioner Loeb helps re-frame the conflict in a much more specific manner, considering the show’s already-weak premise of Gordon staving off Gotham’s descent into hell just long enough for the Batman to arrive. The prior introduction of Dash Mihok’s Arnold Flass similarly provided the benefit of a specific threat for Gordon to surmount, at least before quick incarceration, and while the character’s brief reappearance tonight seemed even more superfluous, his presence exposing Loeb’s leverage over all GCPD officers made for an interesting explanation of Gotham’s often-cartoonish cynicism toward corruption.
Moreover, the revelation that Bullock had been blackmailed into recanting his testimony to allow Flass’ release proved unexpectedly affecting, as Donal Logue always has a much easier time adjusting to Gotham’s unbalanced tone. Nevermind that the episode’s pursuit itself made little sense, incorporating Harvey Dent in a fleeting role to end up chased by knife-wielding accountants (no one had a gun?), only to reveal that Loeb’s own cached “blackmail horde” was nothing more than a daughter kept in seclusion, having years earlier killed the Commissioner’s wife; that’s just par for the course at this point. It got us to the point of Gordon getting one over on Loeb, even rising in the ranks a bit, and it’ll be interesting to see if Gotham keeps to its word of Jim promising a new day in the GCPD.
After all, that’s what Gotham really boils down to; a swirl of occasionally worthwhile ideas with almost zero connectivity. Take Bruce lording over Alfred’s recovery this week: a short, if insightful look at the evolving dynamic between he and his surrogate father, as well as a reminder of Bruce’s determination to investigate the board at all costs to his own safety, but not one that held any real thematic ties for inclusion this week. Also, Li’l Catwoman showed up. Sooner or later, the writers are going to give up even the flimisiest explanations of her presence.
The rest of the hour remained disjointed as ever, predictably copping out on Fish’s trauma by providing her a new (albeit distinctly colored) eyeball, and shifting gears to introduce the true overlord of their apparent hospital-prison-organ farm-resort, Dr. Dulmacher. Granted, although Fish’s exile seems more fully-formed than Penguin’s at the outset of the season, the fact remains that the plot is both figuratively and literally on its own island at this point, with any tangential connection to the outside world discarded when Dulmacher expresses ignorance of the Falcone crime family.
Finally, and peeling the very veneer of the barrel’s utmost bottom, Edward Nygma makes yet another play for Kristen Kringle, only to have another man beat him to the punch. Nevermind that this might be the sixth or seventh occasion in which Nygma’s entire appearance revolved around making glacial progress with his creepy crush, did Gotham ever even explicitly state that Kringle and Flass were an item?
I’ve already gone on longer than I’d like, even as “Everyone Has a Cobblepot” brought with it a few other bits of note, Penguin garnering yet another favor from Jim, or Becky Ann Baker appearing as the shotgun-wielding caretaker to Loeb’s daughter. Bottom line, Gotham does well in providing tangible obstacles for Gordon and Bruce to surmount, fleshing out the specific facets of the department’s corruption, or Alfred’s predicament with Reg, but the C and D-stories are exactly as expendable as Dr. Dulmacher views his patients: A collection of parts, with no interest paid to how they’re assembled.
AND ANOTHER THING…
- No Barbara this week, so always a notable uptick.
- Jeffrey Combs was apparently cut to pieces, and reassembled with mismatching appendages. If the visual of a respected actor and DC veteran given a bad CG makeover with a lady’s forearm and bright red manicure isn’t a lasting metaphor of Gotham’s regard for source material, I don’t know what is.
- How did discovering Miriam lead to discovering the actual file stash? Did Loeb retrieve Bullock’s file from the true location, and simply hand it over to Gordon? Strangely glossed over.
- Becky Ann Baker at one point knocks herself out by turning around and running into a dresser. In her own home. With a shotgun in hand.
- At another point, an organ-trafficking mastermind decides to institute a salsa night for his body part slaves. This was an actual exchange of dialogue.
Well, did Gotham’s 18th episode “Everyone Has a Cobblepot” help set the stage any further for Batman’s beginning? How did the prequel drama fare in Harvey Dent’s return?