Gotham Review – The Balloonman

Gotham is continuing to make strides to being a good show but it’s still quite not there yet. In this weeks episode The Balloonman, the first vigilante of I assume many shows up on the scene, taking out prominent city figures who he feels failed the city of Gotham. His method of doing so is a bit terrifying, handcuffing the unsuspecting victim to a weather balloon and letting it float off into the city sky.

In the previous episodes Gordon has shown off his smarts, proving he is an excellent detective. Those smarts seemed to have left him in this episode. For one he seemed to be very hesitant in trusting Selina Kyle, as he should be. He even says it out loud when he finds out she was telling the truth of being at the scene of the crime where the Wayne’s were murdered. However in all this mistrust he decides to cuff her, a known street thief, in a silly way to a railing. Clearly a misstep on his part, but of course this was to keep us from finding out who really killed the Wayne’s so soon.

Another head scratching moment for Gordon was when Bullock and him were questioning one suspect in the Balloonman case. In this scene the man being questioned enlightened the detectives to what happens with the weather balloons when they hit a certain elevation. Both Gordon and Bullock blankly stared at him showing they had no clue. Which made me wonder where the hell did they think the balloons were going? Did they think the balloons just floated forever up into space? Clearly neither of them did their detective work on weather balloons and this doesn’t shock me Bullock was clueless on this, but Gordon, come on.

Oswald Cobblepot made his return back to Gotham failing to adhere to the words of Gordon as he goes about his plan to takeover as uno numero of crime bosses. This without a doubt is the storyline that has me coming back each week. We are seeing the creation of a psychopath while simultaneously he formulates his plan which feels impromptu on his part with little planning. That’s the thing I really like here though with Cobblepot, his planning is more of in the moment with some coincidental things falling his way. The writer’s of this show seem to be setting up Cobblepot/Gordon as opposites like Batman and The Joker are. Two different sides of the coin but each need one another to exist in some sort of way. Gotham is every bit about the rise of Jim Gordon to commissioner as it is about the rise of the Penguin as a prominent crime boss.

Bruce is continuing his quick strides into becoming Batman as we see him trying to hone his detective skills this week. At this point I am getting a very strong feeling we will be seeing Batman at some point during this series as they will forgo his long journey around the world learning different fighting styles and learning how the criminal underworld of the world works outside of Gotham. This is largely in do part to Bruce testing his abilities and tolerance already to fear and pain. Plus this week we had him “sword” fighting with Alfred so there is a high chance Alfred alone becomes the mentor of Bruce in terms of teaching him the art of hand-to-hand combat. Here comes teenage Batman… not quite sure how I feel about this.

The whole love triangle the show is setting up with Barbara, Gordon and Montoya is one they need to quickly move on from. I like the idea of Montoya not trusting Gordon, thinking he is a crooked cop but to reveal this week it is merely based on jealousy because he is with Barbara is pretty lame. It more than likely sets up the scenario that Gordon will not prove he is good to Montoya but she learns it through Barbara and her many attempts to convince her.

One character who I enjoyed in the pilot episode but since have grown very tired of (yes just three episodes in) is Fish Mooney, she just needs to go away. Her purpose on the show as I’ve always believed it to be was to be “fish” food for the Penguin. I am extremely hopeful this ends up taking place by the end of season one. The sooner the better.

Again I see plenty of good in this show. It’s a different telling of a city so many of us are very familiar with. A Gotham without Batman can be an interesting one and I hope this show proves just that.

Gotham airs 8PM EST Monday nights on FOX.

How are you liking Gotham so far? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below.

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