Gotham Recap- 'The Balloonman'

OswaldGreetings Gothamites! Welcome to this week’s Gotham Recap. The episode at hand is this season’s third episode “The Balloonman”. There is a lot going on in this episode with a lot of jumping back and forth. The episode recap is a bit longer and a bit more broken up due to this. But all that aside, let’s get to it (Super spoilers ahead, be warned)!

The Episode:

The episode opens on a noisy Gotham street, with Oswald Cobblepot making his way off the bus. He looks around and sees the typical corruption of Gotham and knows he’s home. He sees a news report about a trial for a Arnold Danzer, a vert wealthy man who stole a large sum of money from investors in a ponzi scheme. While yelling at his attorney on a cell phone; Danzer tries to sneak out the back of the courtroom to avoid reporters, but is stopped by a man in a pig mask pushing a balloon cart, who handcuffs him to a large balloon and lets him float off.

As usual this brings Gordon and Bullock the scene, Gordon is confused by the motive and Bullock doesn’t care, he thinks Danzer got what he deserved. Back at the station, Lt. Bill Cranston meets Gordon, he lets him know about his style of interrogation and that the honest system is not what works in Gotham. Let’s just say you don’t want to meet Sgt. O’Brien.

While Gordon and Bullock are discussing the case, Selina Kyle is brought in as part of her deal with Gordon. She takes him to the scene of the Wayne murder, where she tells him she briefly saw the man’s face before he put a mask on. To prove that she was at the scene of the crime she tells Gordon that she stashed a wallet in the sewer. Before he goes down to look he handcuffs Selina to a staircase rail of which she escapes, leaving him baffled in the sewer.

Meanwhile, Montoya and Allen come looking for Cobblepot at Mooney’s club. She tells them that Oswald is dead, and that it was Gordon who pulled the trigger, not her. Though she says that it was not Gordon’s idea, it was ordered by someone else. Montoya and Allen guess Falcone.

Elsewhere, Oswald is counting change, trying to find out if he has enough money for a sandwich. He is recognized by one of Mooney’s thugs who plans to sell him out to Mooney. Oswald stabs him and takes his money, then buys lunch.

At Wayne Manor, Alfred is teaching Bruce to fence (is anyone else seeing foreshadowing?). Alfred discovers that Bruce has a file on his parents’ murders, and is looking for clues. Alfred tells him to let the police do their job; he believes Gordon will try his best.

At a restaurant downtown, Oswald tries to get a job but is turned away for having the wrong shoes. Outside, he sees an employee from the restaurant and asks him what his shoe size is, he won’t be needing his shoes when Oswald is done with him.

In a dark alley, Lt. Cranston is beating on a drug dealer who didn’t pay him enough protection. As he moves away, he’s accosted by a man in a mask and fedora, who tries to handcuff him. Cranston gets the jump on him, knocking him to the ground, and finds a document on the man that confuses him. Before he can figure it out, though, the man cuffs a balloon to his ankle and watches him float away.

While leaving for work and talking to Barbara, Gordon is upset that nobody cared when Danzer was killed. He’s afraid that if people lose faith in the system Gotham will continue to get vigilantes.

In Essen’s office, she’s upset that the media is getting wind of the investigation (isn’t she used to this by now?). Gordon says they’re looking for Carl Smikers, who stole four weather balloons from his boss. Bullock is sure he can find Smikers, and takes Gordon out on the streets to look for him, shaking people down and talking to his usual contacts. Bullock brings Gordon to an apartment where they’ve tracked Smikers. A woman answers the door and tells Smikers to run, then attacks Bullock while Gordon gets Smikers in cuffs. Gordon has to hold her at gunpoint to keep her from dropping a TV on Bullock’s head, but they arrest the pair.

At Fish’s nightclub, Lazlo is worried about her well-being if Falcone finds out that she sent the police after him. She tells him not to worry, then calls another one of her thugs over. She orders him to get rid of Lazlo as he is bringing the place down. She also wants Falcone’s girlfriend Natalya to have an “accident”.

Montoya comes to see Barbara, letting herself in with the key while Barbara is in the shower; they argue, Montoya tells her that Gordon killed Oswald, and that she deserves better than Gordon. Barbara kicks her out.

Back in the interrogation room, Smikers says that he stole the balloons and sold them, but didn’t kill anyone, he just needed the money. He mentions that the bodies will eventually fall. While they’re finding one of the bodies that fell out of the sky, they find out that a third victim, a pedophile priest. This means there is only one balloon left. A CSI comes to see them, bringing a bag full of the contents of Cranston’s pockets, which includes something with Gordon’s name on it. Gordon says he knows who the Balloon Man is.

At the Italian restaurant, Maroni is conspiring against Falcone and Oswald overhears it. He smooth-talks Maroni into thinking that he is both Italian and harmless. Maroni gives him a bit of a pep talk, telling him he will get far if he just keeps his nose down and his mouth shut.

Davis Lamond, from child protective services, the man who brought Selina in earlier is now the leading suspect in the Balloonman Case. The form on Cranston’s body was the form that Gordon gave Lamond the day before.

Gordon and Bullock head to the old juvenile hall facility, which is ready for demolition, where they believe he might be. They get there and see a balloon; Lamond grabs Bullock, holding him at gunpoint. He tries to get Gordon to let him go because he knows that the city is too broken to help the children he works to save. When Gordon doesn’t agree, Lamond tries to shoot him and Bullock attaches Lamond to the balloon. Gordon grabs the man’s waist and forces Bullock to either shoot the balloon down or let Jim go with it.

The next evening, Falcone visits Fish Mooney’s club to check in with her. He tells her that he plans to make whoever mugged his girlfriend pay, and speculates whether it could be Maroni. There is all the talk of Arkham after all.

That night, Gordon goes home and talks with Barbara who worried about him. She wants to make sure Montoya’s accusations are false. He assures her that he isn’t and she offers to make him a drink, she is interrupted by a knock on the door. Oswald has come for a visit!

The Analysis:

So once again you can see that Gotham is quite busy. We are still left with last week’s questions unanswered and now have new ones:

  • Will Montoya and Allen find what they are looking for?
  • What is the story with Arkham already?
  • Will Maroni take Oswald under his wing?

Once again Oswald Cobblepot has stood out. His character is getting far more developed than any other iteration of The Penguin (though don’t call him that!). Interestingly enough he is typically one of my least favorite Batman villains. This show is changing that at a fast pace. His rise to power is very interesting and I love seeing this development.

The mafia wars in Gotham are also intriguing. The dynamic between Fish Mooney, Falcone and now Maroni is quite exciting. I am also still wondering how Arkham fits into all of this and if we will find out this season.

The Verdict:

Every week Gotham seems to get better and better. The stories are far more interesting and engaging each week. The cliffhanger at the end of each week makes me all that much more eager to watch the show. With all the different plots and characters it is easy to pick a favorite(s) and stay involved. Speaking of involvement, I’d like to take a moment to mention that the Gotham Twitter scene is amazing! The actors and show runners are highly involved and it making watching all that much more fun!

Until next time, Same Bat Time, Same Bat Channel!



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