Martin Carr reviews the tenth episode of Gotham season 3…
Two rival organisations, car bombs made to look like mob vengeance and Don Falcone back on crime boss form are just a few things which kick off ‘Time Bomb’. Episode ten of Gotham’s season three spends its time lighting fires under the arse of an audience potentially getting comfortable. With the arrival and revelation that another hub of criminal activity exists beneath the streets of Gotham, showrunner Danny Cannon has thrown yet another element into the mix guaranteed to raise eyebrows.
Using Bruce, Cat and Ivy as a neat segue into their introduction this Eastern European group of miscreants and shady types prove to be a high point. Implying a direct opposition to this so called Court of Owls, Time Bomb’s Whisper Gang have come out swinging and out for blood. Nutty as a barmpot Mario Falcone might be, but the sound gets turned down on his antics once there is a real threat on site. And as for Penguin who is plotting with the other families he suddenly seems like a small fish in an extremely large pond in comparison.
Truthfully this unrequited bromance between Penguin and Nygma is taking on a certain theatricality which makes it less engaging somehow. Ritual interrogation, tiny guillotines and car battery enabled questioning seem over the top. Smith gives it his best but since those being tortured are high profile characters things never seem serious or threatening. Which is why Barbara’s inclusion for rescue purposes feels entertaining if a little forced.
Similarly Ivy and her escape from Wayne Manor may demonstrate traits which remain true to her character, but ultimately these feel plot rather than character driven actions. This is not to say that our central cast fail to hold up their end of the bargain. John Doman’s Don Falcone, Mazouz’s Bruce Wayne and Sean Pertwee’s Alfred all work hard, as do others on the periphery. What remains true however is the fact that Gotham season three continues to be solidly entertaining.
Despite the theatrics on display in parts there is a certain grizzly satisfaction seeing the amount of claret and close up flesh wounds on show here. And what adds to this is the matter of fact way injuries happen without a need to water moments down. Our beloved GCPD may have Jim Gordon back on the force, but crime bosses are still prone to walking in with a steak knife to cause chaos. Barnes may be locked up in Arkham but we are promised a cure, which in my opinion can’t come soon enough for the son of a certain crime boss. Let’s just hope these writers don’t pull a ‘Red Wedding’ show stopper with our new rival gangs honing in on the same target. Only time it seems will tell.