Raise your hand if the final shot of tonight’s Gotham gave you chills? If your hand isn’t in the air, then you’re a liar.
Gotham finally gave birth to one of the most iconic DC supervillains in tonight’s episode, “Rise of the Villains: Mommy’s Little Monster,” and you’ve got to give it to Cory Michael Smith: in just one scene, he transformed the Edward Nygma we’ve known and come to love for over a year now into the cold-hearted, psychotic, maniacal killer we know he will become, The Riddler.
But that’s how the episode ended–the hour actually began with Butch leading Penguin to a warehouse by the docks, where, lo and behold, his kidnapped mother actually was, alive and well! But it still was a betrayal, since Butch led him right into a trap where Theo and Tabitha Galavan were waiting for him. Penguin was forced to watch as Butch killed his henchmen–Tabitha figured out his brainwash trigger code word and “fixed” him so he doesn’t have to obey Penguin anymore–and while Penguin held his mother in his arms, Theo literally stabbed her in the back. Penguin barely escaped the encounter with his life, but he also got away with a renewed sense of motivation to kill Theo and his sister.
Knowing that Penguin will come after his head, Theo went straight to Captain Barnes to report that Penguin tried to kill him, in order to get the protection of the police and city legally. But Jim Gordon, thankfully, wasn’t buying what Theo was selling, and finally got suspicious of the politician after he implemented Marshall Law on the city.
Gordon and Bullock then track down Butch, who was holed up with a new crew, and confronted him about their suspicions that Penguin was behind the Wayne Enterprises fires. Butch proved Gordon’s suspicions right, but went one step further and confessed that Galavan was the one ordering Penguin to do it all. And just like that, Gordon finally realized that Galavan is the one behind everything going wrong in the city–just in time for Penguin’s army of henchmen to attack Butch and his new crew in retaliation. Penguin then sent his army to attack Theo and Tabitha at Theo’s victory party after he got elected mayor, but Gordon and Bullock were waiting for him.
Penguin revealed to Gordon exactly what Theo did to his mother, and even though they all know now the truth about what Galavan has done, Gordon and Bullock still had to protect him from Penguin. Tabitha shot Penguin in the shoulder, but he got away before anyone else could hit him. At least Gordon and Bullock know what kind of man Theo is! Now they can do everything in their power to protect the city from its new mayor, right?
Meanwhile, at his apartment, Edward Nygma woke up after his date from hell to find out his “alter ego”– his more murderous and confident side– hijacked his body while he had slept, and stole Kristen Kringle’s dead body and hid it, leaving question marked clues for himself to figure out where it is. The only catch: if he doesn’t find her body first, someone else will. Is this the birth of The Riddler?
After a frantic search, Nygma put two and two together and found Kristen’s severed hand in the vending machine at the GCPD, which led him to the rest of her body in Lee Thompkin’s morgue. The reason he put himself through all that mental torture? To feel the rush when he almost got caught by Lee, but managed to get away with Kristen’s murder. And when Nygma made the conscious choice of calling that feeling “beautiful,” his alter ego fused with himself, and he truly became The Riddler. This is going to be fun, ladies and gents!
But that wasn’t all we learned from tonight’s episode. Turns out that sweet, angelic Silver St. Cloud is just as messed up and manipulative as her guardians Theo and Tabitha-– she’s knowingly playing Bruce right into the palm of her hand. Or, in her own words, wrapped around her pinky finger. In just one day, she managed to make him cut all ties with Selina Kyle after she showed her true, evil colors to his former friend, and Selina tried to warn Bruce, but he didn’t believe her. Because Silver is beautiful, so she must be trustworthy. Wait, is that not how it goes? Poor Bruce is going to learn that lesson that hard way.
What did you think of this week’s episode, Gotham fans? Is The Riddler here to stay, or are we in for another red herring, just like with Jerome and the legend of The Joker? Hit the comments section below to weigh in now!
Gotham airs Mondays at 8 p.m. on Fox.