Gotham Episode 19: Beasts of Prey Review

By simply being in Gotham City, you are standing on some very thin ice. You are agreeing to live in a colony of cutthroats, criminals and gangsters, some of them living no more than mere houses from you. While it may not seem like it on the surface, Gotham is an ant hill of tunnels, all closely interconnected like a network. No matter how much you may deny it, how much you may tell yourself it’s not true; you’re a part of it too. Jim Gordon just wants to solve his next case, another small yet important step towards making Gotham city a better place to live. Like always, he expects some degree of danger, but he has no idea of the hornets nest he’s plunging himself, as well as others, into. Everything you do has a consequence, and you’re not the only victim. After all, there’s only a slim sheet of ice separating you from the vicious sharks below… and not much pressure needs to be applied for it to crack.

When I was greeted by the familiar face of Jim Gordon at the start of this episode, I expected Jim’s arc this episode to sail the recognisable and weathered course it almost always sails. How wrong I was. A police officer who looks up to Gordon tells him about a case he might be interested in solving. Surprisingly, Jim was hesitant to look into it at first but eventually he agrees to give it a look. Much of the evidence is missing but after Jim sets Nygma on the case, he solves the riddle like he always does and makes a shocking discovery. Bullock is horrified and tells Gordon that they’re dealing with a deadly serial killer known as ‘The Ogre’. Somewhat of a ‘Jack the Ripper’ of the modern era, ‘The Ogre’ only targets women. Instead of simply killing them, he holds them in captivity for varying amounts of time before eventually taking their life. Harvey then begs Gordon to drop the case as ‘The Ogre’ is known for getting back at the people who try to stop him by choosing their lovers as his next target.

We learn more about ‘The Ogre’ mainly through a number of flashbacks throughout the episode. Personally, I don’t really like the villain so far but my mind could easily be changed in future episodes. While the flashbacks we do see are horrifying revealing him to have kept the last of victims for over a month torturing them with some real-life ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ searching for his “true love” the concept seems stupid to me. Bullock mentions that the reason his case hasn’t been closed yet is because of the whole ‘your lover will be next thing’ but what if the cop that tries to hunt him down doesn’t have a lover? I can dismiss this because of how corrupt and uncaring most of the cops in the GCPD are but I still think the quirk to him isn’t all that interesting and is most likely going to be used to further the plot. The arc ended(well, not really) on a high note with Gordon threatening Loeb right in front of his fellow officers after he found out the policeman that asked him to investigate the case was sent by Loeb to try and get back at him for taking his daughter hostage in the previous episode. Gordon may be a hard-ass most of the time, but he can also be just as badass as Harvey sometimes.

Apart from that, Fish Mooney finally executes her plan to escape the Dollmaker this episode. After stepping outside and meeting ‘The Catcher’, the island’s guard, she realises there are only two ways off the island: a boat and a helicopter. Quickly, she formulates a way to escape and boy is it awesome when she executes it. First of all, she persuades the toughest bruisers in the basement she needs them to escape. When they make their break for it, she tells them she’s sentimental and is going back to get Kelly while they get to the boat. When they come to a locked gate, they realise Fish lied to them and was simply using them as bait for ‘The Catcher’. As they’re gunned down, Fish, Kelly and a bunch of prisoners from the basement get to the helicopter and manage to escape, not without sacrifice however. Mooney was unfortunately shot while piloting the helicopter into the air. While the jailbreak was exciting and enjoyable to watch, if Fish dies now this entire arc has been for nothing. Hopefully she’ll be back in Gotham for the finale because although she isn’t the best character, it won’t be the same without her.

I was delighted to see more of Reggie this episode… at least for a while. Alfred wanted to go deal with him but was too injured from the stab wound to do so. Bruce decides to go with Selina and carry out Alfred’s will before Reggie skips town. The confrontation is somewhat dramatic, but chilling nonetheless. They steal his medicine to get him to talk and tell them Wayne Enterprises are the ones who hired him. After Selina throws it out the window, it lands on a nearby ledge and as he tries to reach for it, Bruce gets ready to push him out. When he hesitates however, Selina pushes him out instead, killing him. I like the development this shows in Bruce. He’s certainly got more mature and gutsy throughout the season but he’s still a long way away from being a cold-blooded killer. What was once a whiny, emotionless kid is now starting to look and act more and more like the Batman. Isn’t enough to stop my anger at Reggie being killed off so soon though.

Overall, this was a pretty good episode though not as good as the previous episode in my opinion. The pacing for the start of Gordon’s arc was painfully slow, Reggie was killed off like I feared and Penguin was condemned to the simple act of breaking a guitarists fingers and buying a bar so he can make an attempt on Maroni’s life. However, Mooney made a daring escape, we got some backstory for what could be an interesting villain and we got to see how Bruce has evolved this season. Everyone is rapidly converging on what could be a spectacular finale, and I can’t wait to see what happens next.

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