Written by Megan Mostyn-Brown
Directed by Scott White
Barbara (to Gordon): "You got to ride out the trip. Bummer, huh?"
Last week, there was a following of the white rabbit and this week, the red queen came into play for Gordon. Now, I was hoping for the title of this episode to refer to an actual person but it seems that it's more of accelerated drug version of Alice's blood that Tetch had a little bit of fun playing around with this week.
Determined to milk the Mad Hatter storyline for all it's worth (and last week really did feel like the last straw with that guy), Jervis somehow managed to get a hold of Alice's body and drain her blood for his own evil purposes and because he couldn't resist, Gordon also fell victim to the drug and went on something of a psychedelic for most of this episode.
I guess the show needed a way of Gordon to work through his issues as even Bullock and Leslie lost their patience with him (and Valerie dumped him) this week, so rendering Jim unconscious and having him take a tour of the fragments of his messed up life was the way to do it.
More to the point, the show managed to do something a little more useful with Barbara by having her take on the role of Jim's tour guide. Not only did this involve a few costume changes and a little mouth to mouth but it also had some of the best moments as Babs snarked on Gordon generally being a screw up as he navigated through things.
The sequences themselves were pretty well executed as well. We had a bloodied out GCPD with a sinister Bruce and Oswald as a comrade while the idyllic suburban moments with Leslie and the future kids were a little too shortlived for Gordon's liking. On a more relevant note, we also learned a little more about Gordon's family crest and saw the differences between Jim and his father during one brief meeting.
With Jim's little hallucinatory trip serving it's purpose, it seems that his bounty days are over with. By the end of this episode, he got reinstated into the GCPD and we managed to at least get one scene between him and Barnes that didn't feel repetitive at all.
As for Tetch though, he was a little better in this episode. I'm still eager for the show to move on from now but at least his attempts to poison all of Gotham with the Red Queen drug were actually stopped by the GCPD doing their jobs for once. I did however like the really tense scene between him and Oswald in this one too.
Speaking of Oswald, you have to give the man his props. He went for the subtle (for him) approach of trying to break up Edward and Isabella by telling the latter about Kristin Kringle. Except if anything that did more to bring the pair of them closer together much to Oswald's chagrin. If I didn't suspect last week that there was something off with Isabella, then I definitely do going by this episode and the trailer for next week's one.
Meanwhile the Court of Owls plot resurfaced this week as well. Kathryn made her presence known to Oswald and even told him that she would be coming for him in the future while Gordon's father also seemed to have some 'past' involvement with them as well. As for the mystery man who Kathryn was talking to at the end of this one, I bet we can all guess who he might turn out to be.
- Bruce and Selina's first date of sorts had a bit of tension in it when the latter showed up late. Nice little moment in the episode though.
- Tetch took some delight in realising that Barnes had been affected with Alice's blood. Tetch is also in Arkham but I imagine that won't be the case by next week though.
- Absent this week were Ivy, Tabitha and Butch.
- Chronology: From where Follow The White Rabbit left off.
Red Queen was a delightfully trippy episode. Yes, a lot of what we saw in Gordon was hardly a shocker but it did make for some diverting television and with the Court of Owls coming back into play, the strange Oswald/Edward/Isabella triangle and Tetch's arc soon coming to a conclusion, this was definitely a step up from last week's more disappointing affair.
Rating: 7 out of 10