Gotham : Viper

The politics of Gotham really shined in the last episode (Arkham) bringing the big name gang families to the front. Falcone ended up on the losing end but unknown to Maroni he might have won the battle for Arkham but he’s been infiltrated by Oswald Cobblepot.

This week the politics take a back seat to the drug scene. The gangs take a backseat to Wayne Enterprises and Gordon still fails to grow his own unique personality.

Lets start with the drug of the week shall we? Stan Potolski has developed the drug Viper which makes you superhuman by eating away at the calcium in your bones. It means whoever inhales it will need to consume milk and cheese to build up the calcium but in the end (because there will never be enough milk and cheese at one time) your bones will crumble and you will suffocate.

Potolski had the makings of a great villain, once again though when his job had failed he jumped off a building. Such a shame. There have been a few interesting characters that we’ve lost in this short time and it would be much more interesting if one or two of these characters managed to get away, after all Gordon needs his own low key reoccurring villains, he can’t just rely on Batman’s before they are in their prime surely?!

If anything though the most important thing about Potolski is that he introduces the bad side of Wayne Enterprises. He worked for a subsidized company called WellZyn and by the ending scenes with Gordon Wayne Enterprises were behind whatever it was he was doing. The drug Viper might be gone but I see it returning in the future.

Talking of Wayne Enterprises this episode gave a lot more to the relationship of Bruce Wayne and Alfred, going as far as bringing Alfred to the fold. He finally realized if he can’t beat the kid then he might as well join him but not before David Mazouz gives a stellar performance. As Bruce he faced a condescending adult and came out the better of the two demanding to meet with the board of his parents company about matters it obviously surprised adults to find out he knew. I find these two, along with Bullock and Oswald (and a little Edward) the most interesting part of the series, and it is a shame I’m saying that because I was interested in the clean up of Gotham from Jim’s POV before the Bat showed up not really a origins story for the Bat. As it is they are now by far the more interesting of characters.

I can’t wait to see Bruce come face to face with the board. Mazouz is a great actor and I can’t wait to see his career bloom from this series because he is by far one of the best child actors I’ve ever seen.

Oswald Cobblepot is possibly too honest for his own good. Telling Maroni who he actually is, it didn’t quite backfire on him though as Maroni is now using him as a weapon and as long as he’s alive and with Maroni he’s winning.

As always Potolski is in the background to the war that is growing in the back ground. It was overshadowed slightly, and added to the upset that he didn’t survive the night, by to be honest the Families doing nothing. And I mean doing nothing. There was a lot of them on screen but not much happening. Falcone is being shown to be weaker then you’d ever expect, Maroni is a personality bigger then a small city like Gotham, Fish is as always strange and between it all there is little sense. It is a shame that such a good idea like Viper and Potolski were just background noise to a whole lot of nothing.

This all together meant that I was a little disappointed by the episode. It wasn’t a bad episode but it left me feeling that there just could have been more and as I think it through more and more the more I think it could have been great without the families, without Oswald and just focused on Bruce and Potolski.

What it has done though is build to this war and build these characters. You are now meant to care about the people in this war, well you do care about one or two but I guess there is a part of you that KNOWS. We KNOW who comes out top in this war and it is the only character so far I care about, but we KNOW what happens there. The same with the other characters that we KNOW about (Riddler, Cat Woman) and that is why we NEED Potolski’s. Gordon needs his own criminal masterminds, his own unique villains. We know Penguin wins so why should we care about the others?

I’d love for once that one of these guys took over as the main focus in Gotham and people like the Penguin fade (not disappear) to the background and not be the most important villain in the show, Penguins origin is brilliant to watch, not least because Robin Lord Taylor is one of the best actors in the show, but it could fall to the side like Bruce and we could actually have a unique and interesting villain just for Gordon.

We’ll have to see where it goes but if this feeling carries on it could be the big problem. Penguin, Riddler, Two-Face, Scarecrow… They are all names in this show (or that have been cast for the show) but they are all Batman’s villains, they are all villains who were made by events with Batman or that fight against Batman and Batman is a good 10+ years away from being the Bat. Its like everyone who wants the Joker in the show, I’d love to see what they do with the Joker, will they go for Arkham crazy Joker or Ledgers twisted (and in my opinion boring and over rated) Joker. The Joker is always interesting to watch but he’s BATMANS nemesis. Gordon needs his own.

We’ll see.

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