“Man, Bridgit somebody sure scrambled your eggs,” says Selina (Camren Bicondova), knocking out Firefly (Michelle Ventimiglia) after she tried to roast her alive in Bridgit’s enhanced fireproof room in season two episode 21 of FOX’s gritty, comic-book inspired crime thriller series, Gotham.
When Selina doesn’t show to meet Bruce (David Mazouz) up on the rooftop, he realizes she must have gotten caught and is now a prisoner of Dr. Hugo Strange (BD Wong). He quickly goes to the GCPD and arrives just after acting Captain Harvey Bullock (Donal Logue) finishes his uncomfortable and hilarious press conference regarding the death of Azrael. Bullock and Gordon (Ben McKenzie) disagree over how to pursue taking down Hugo Strange who they know is behind the resurrection of Galavan and turning him into Azrael but still have no proof. Bruce sees Gordon leaving Bullock’s office and tells him he needs his help regarding Selina.
At Wayne Manor, Alfred (Sean Pertwee) is yelling at young Bruce for involving Selina in the business of Dr. Strange and putting her in danger. (It seems Alfred has taken a liking to Selina since she only helped save Bruce’s life three or four times.) Also in the room are Gordon and Lucius Fox (Chris Chalk) who have come to help Bruce find a way to get poor Selina out of Arkham. As the four of them talk, Lucius and Gordon agree that Dr. Strange’s experiments could not be taking place in Arkham but most likely in a secret lab underground, underneath the mental hospital. So the four come up with a plan: Lucius and Bruce will go into Arkham asking for a tour of the place to make sure the Wayne Foundation donations to the Asylum are being well spent while Gordon will sneak in, find Selina, and get her out. Lucius also has a mini Geiger counter that should help find the secret entrance to the hidden lab.
At Arkham Asylum down in Indian Hill, Dr. Strange and Ms. Peabody (Tonya Pinkins) are getting ready to try to re-animate Fish Mooney’s preserved corpse. Hugo tells his employees to raise the voltage for Fish up to 200 and injects her with cuttlefish DNA. The attempt works and Fish (Jada Pinkett Smith) wakes up but unlike others before her, Fish knows who she is. She tells Dr. Strange, “My name is Fish Mooney, bitch, and you better tell me what the hell is going on.”
Lucius and Bruce arrive at Arkham and are greeted by Dr. Strange. After a brief talk, Hugo agrees to give them a guided tour. Bruce asks if it would be all right if Lucius inspected the hospital while he and Strange talked about the running of the mental ward and its funds in his office. Hugo agrees but insists that Peabody escorts Lucius around the hospital to ensure his safety. Gordon slips out of the trunk of the car unnoticed and sneaks into Arkham wearing a security guard’s uniform.
In Hugo’s office, Dr. Strange and Bruce first talk briefly about the hospital but the conversation soon turns to the death of Bruce’s parents. Hugo tells young Bruce that he reminds him of his father Thomas Wayne and that he knows Bruce would do or give anything to have his parents back again. He hints that he and Thomas Wayne had minor disagreements about life and the experiments at Indian Hill but as the conversation goes on Hugo practically admits to being involved in the murder of Thomas and Martha Wayne. Hugo tells Bruce not to follow the path his father did but to turn back for the sake of himself and those he cares about. Bruce tells Hugo that he’s right, he IS his father’s son with the same moral principles and values and he will stay true to his mission. So Hugo has his security team take Bruce, along with Lucius who found and marked the secret entrance to the elevator that leads down into Indian Hill, as well as Gordon who had just found Lucius’ marking on the entrance. (Not such a great rescue plan it seems.)
In Fish’s cell, she’s being given her dinner by one of the staff when she grabs his hand as he is putting it through the small opening to her cell and tells him to make her a grilled cheese sandwich. A weird wave of energy passes from Fish to the employee and a few minutes later he returns with her order. Fish asks why he made her the sandwich and he tells her because she told him to, and it’s almost as though he’s in a trance.
Bruce and Lucius are put into a large room together and Bruce tells Lucius that he feels terrible that he got him, Gordon, and Selina into all this danger and that they might die here. But Lucius tells the young billionaire that he didn’t force them to do anything. They decided themselves to help him in trying to bring down Hugo Strange. Lucius also tells Bruce not to give up and that they will be missed and help will come.
Back in his office, Hugo is watching Bruce from a monitor and admits to Peabody that he likes the boy. “He reminds me of Thomas,” says the doctor who at one point it seems did care for Thomas before their friendship went bad. Suddenly a masked lady appears on Hugo’s screen and yells at him about his experiments at Indian Hill being failures. She reminds the doctor that she and his other employers paid him to invent a reanimation drug that would bring back the dead to life with their identity and memories intact and not create the brutal monsters he’s been letting loose upon Gotham. Hugo tells the masked woman that his latest experiment has been a success and he is sure he can repeat the process given time and funding.
Meanwhile, Selina is using one of the enhanced flamethrowers to try to break out of the fire resistant prison she’s locked in when Bridgit, aka Firefly, wakes up. Selina tries to restart Bridgit’s memories by talking about when they were kids and how she took Selina in when her mother ran off, but Bridgit has been reprogrammed to believe she is the fire goddess Firefly. Selina, fearing Firefly is going to try to cook her with her flamethrower, uses the one she took on Bridgit only to find out that Bridgit’s new outfit is fireproof. Selina quickly decides to save herself by playing along with Bridgit being the fire goddess and says she’ll need a servant to which Firefly agrees that Selina can be her obedient servant. (Whew, quick thinking Cat!)
After being caught trying to escape Ed Nygma (Cory Michael Smith) has been locked up with a cannibal who’s chained only inches away from Ed and is terrifying him. Hugo and Peabody decide to give Ed a chance to redeem himself and help them break Bruce. Nygma becomes the interrogator of Bruce and Lucius and tells them if they don’t tell him everything they know about Hugo’s operation, they will be exposed to a poison gas and that they have five minutes to decide. The two try frantically to look for a way out, but Nygma just laughs. Seems the Riddler is back…
Back at the GCPD, Alfred tells Bullock about the plan to save Selina from Arkham and that it must have gone wrong because he hasn’t heard from anyone and he should have by now. Bullock, being in charge, decides to use his authority to take an army of cops to Arkham to rescue Jim, Bruce, Lucius and Selina. At Indian Hill, Gordon is tied to a chair and exposed to a liquid substance while his head is in a device. When it’s removed he sees a patient of Arkham named Basil sitting across from him and Dr. Strange has his men put the same device and liquid on Basil’s head. When it is taken off, Basil looks just like Gordon. Dr. Strange puts a hair piece on Basil’s head similar to Gordon’s head of hair and Basil begins to mimic Gordon’s voice. Gordon yells at Hugo that he’ll never get away with it and Hugo just laughs.
Review of Gotham Season 2 episode 21:
Very dark, creepy, and at times unsettling, season two episode 21 titled “A Legion of Horribles” brings back to life a major villain from season one and puts most of the show’s heroes in deadly situations. It also changes the tone of the show from a gritty crime thriller to more of a suspenseful horror film.
The stand-out performance in this episode goes once again to David Mazouz as Bruce Wayne. He conveys so wonderfully the regret and blame he feels for having put Selina, Lucius, and Gordon into such a dangerous situation without overplaying his emotions. He also shines in the cat and mouse scene with BD Wong as Hugo as he finally gets the mad doctor to basically admit his part in the killing Bruce’s parents.
With Bruce and Lucius at the mercy of a crazed Nygma and Gordon about to be replaced by Basil aka Clayface, here’s hoping that Bullock, Alfred, Selina, and maybe even Penguin can help our heroes escape Indian Hill and bring down Dr. Strange.