Friday, September 29, 2017

My Review of Gotham's 4x02: "The Fear Reaper"

Written by Danny Cannon
Directed by Louis Shaw Milito

Jonathan: "How did you do it? How did you defeat the toxin, it's impossible?"
Gordon: "I overcame my fear."

I just realised that I either should've rewatched Batman Begins or some of the Scarecrow episodes of Batman: The Animated Series before watching this episode. Not that it would've impacted my review or anything but more for funsies than anything else. As for this episode, it certainly had enough in it's favour but the main plot seemed a little underdeveloped.

I was really looking forward to seeing the Scarecrow wreak some proper havoc after the brilliant transformation Jonathan made at the end of last week and while there was some great moments during his invasion into Arkham, I kind of felt his overall reign of terror was cut a little too short by Gordon 'overcoming' his fears so quickly.

I guess like Bruce, Jonathan is in the early stages of his 'career' so it makes sense that his toxins aren't going to be completely effective as of yet and that water turned out to be a good way to combat them. On the other hand, Jonathan did manage to get his own back on that awful warden from last week while Gordon also got to outsmart Oswald and get over his demons about ruining Leslie's life, though I felt that latter bit had been dealt with last season. Overall, I liked the Scarecrow plot but wished it had been a little better fleshed out.

Speaking of Oswald, he really does need to get a clue at times too. He underestimated Gordon and got himself played. He's aware that a returned Barbara has a backer and continued to intimidate her and his treatment of Ivy has now seen the latter down some deadly toxins of her own so her own transformation into Poison Ivy is virtually complete. Also with Nygma's inevitable thawing out, Oswald is going to have more problems on his hands of his own doing soon enough, not to mention Gordon's game plan to get Falcone back into the mix.

Getting back to Ivy, I did feel a bit bad for her this week. Both Oswald and Tabitha treated her with disdain and while Selina and possibly Barbara seemed a bit sympathetic, neither one of them really stepped in to listen to her. Then again, with all the heavy handed hinting of this particular plot, all of them will probably be vying for Ivy's attention soon enough though.

As for Barbara, I liked that the episode didn't waste time in reintroducing her into the mix and I certainly liked the Sia-esque wig/hairdo she's rocking but her calmness seemed eerie to me. Both Oswald and Tabitha had no problem in threatening her throughout and Babs just took it with little reaction. That said, given that the episode gave no details as to how she's still breathing and given her silence over her backer, you don't have to be a genius to realise who's funding Babs's weapons for hire gig that Selina and Tabitha decided to join.

As for Bruce, well he didn't get hit with the fear toxin (maybe next time) but he was making a fair amount of mistakes in this episode and putting himself into repeated danger. I did love that Lucius saw through Alfred's rock climbing excuse and gave Bruce his own proto Bat suit, which to be honest, looked pretty great to be honest. This plot shouldn't work but it actually is for now.

- Aside from the hallucination, Leslie is still not back in the show and Tabitha is unnerved by Barbara being around, just wait until she catches up with Butch again.
- Zsasz really is getting the funny lines this season but I am hoping they delve a little further into him than that as well.
- Absences this week included Butch, Nygma and Ras. Sofia will be making her debut in next week's episode though along with Selina's proto-Catwoman look.
- Chronology: From where Pax Penguina more or less left off.

Not quite as good as the opening and my hatred for Oswald/Ivy's deteriorated friendship to one side, I did like enough of The Fear Reaper though. Babs's return was nicely enough, Crane vs. Gordon worked a treat, Bruce and Ivy embracing their destinies were highlights too but I do want to see more of Ras and soon too.

Rating: 7 out of 10

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