Jerome Valeska is probably the most anticipated guest character on Gotham. His impact in one episode from season 1 made you want to see Jerome again in season 2. Jerome’s death by Galavans own hand was a surprise so early on but his resurrection in season 3 caused a wave of excitement. With being put away in Arkham Asylum season 4 certainly guaranteed we would see Jerome again. But this episode brought a lot more to the table then just Jerome. A beautiful darkness definitely describes this episode directed by John Stephens and there was a huge amount of creme de la crazy.
Ivy Pepper isn’t just sitting around growing plants she is on a mission with Selina in which Selina believes they are just robbing rich people. A lady answers the door and Ivy soon puts her under her hypnotic state by waving her wrist in front of her nose. Ivy asks her to move in a very abrupt tone which she obeys. Ivy and Selina have interrupted a family dinner, Ivy hypnotises the rest of the family with her scent but it’s Roland Charles phd that works for Wayne Enterprises Ivy is here to see. Selina is impressed with how under Ivy’s instructions she has forbid them to move so Selina decides to find what is worth stealing. Ivy explains to the Roland under his hypnotic state that she knows he tortures plants in the name of science. His Wayne Enterprises brief case has been left on a side table, Ivy sees this opens it and seems satisfied with what she finds. Ivy asks Roland if he has any idea how it feels for the plants but he will soon know. As Ivy uses her fingernails to scratch the side of Roland’s neck Selina arrives back and wittiness Ivy murder Roland as the poison ivy spreads through his body and grows out of his mouth.
Luicus Fox and Captain Jim Gordon arrive at The Charles house. Lucius briefs Jim about Roland and the similarity of the crime to the tweaker that was found dead in last weeks episode. Roland’s family confirm that two women a redhead and a brunette but it was the redhead who used the hypnosis and the brunette carried a whip which Jim instantly recognises as Selina. Jim is surprised as murder isn’t Selina’s thing. Luicuis briefly hesitates when he discusses the briefcase with Jim. As soon as Jim is gone Lucius calls Bruce leaving a voicemail telling him that someone has killed Roland Charles and they may have a problem. I really like this moment with Lucius because he isn’t willing to share everything he knows about Wayne Enterprises with Jim.
Selina paces up and down whilst Ivy goes through the briefcase finding the information she needs. It turns out that Roland Charles needed clearance in a top secret bio tech experiment called Project M. Selina doesn’t really care about this information but she does care that she watched Ivy kill a man in front of his family. Ivy explains he had it coming but she wants to find out as much as she can about Project M. Selina still pacing decides to leave and have nothing to do with Ivy as she thought a robbing spree would of been fun with Ivy. Ivy looks surprisingly hurt at Selina’s decision she decides that she can do this on her own and Bruce is the next person to visit.
Bruce Wayne wakes up after another evening of partying, sometime during the evening Bruce purchased a Cockatoo which in a very funny scene is repeating “Pour me another shot, party time.” Ivy is already waiting for Bruce, he recognises her from The Sirens nightclub. Naturally Bruce wants to know why she is in his house. Ivy explains she had come to speak out for others that can’t speak for themselves to speak for the plants. Bruce isn’t in the right frame of mind to talk about plants, so Ivy reveals that she knows about Project M which does get Bruces attention. Bruce questions how does she know, this is where Ivy reveals her identity as she leans forward and calls Bruce billionaire boy. Bruce now knows its Ivy and she plants a kiss on his lips with she has infused with her hypnotic perfume. Now Ivy has Bruce in her control and ready to tell all about Project M. Under his hypnotic state Bruce admits to Ivy that she is so easy to talk to. The information Bruce has given Ivy is unexpected. Bruces name is the head of the company and responsible for murdering her green friends. Bruce apologises as he would not want to upset Ivy, she understands that Bruce is just one person but Ivy considers Bruce to be guilty. Ivy lightly scratches his neck leaving a small cut. Ivy tells Bruce as he starts gasping that it will be slow and painful but he deserves it.
Jim goes to The Sirens looking for Selina. She casually arrives back but as Selina sees Jim runs to the roof top. Jim asks why is she running? Selina in her own polite way answers “because a jerk with a badge is chasing me.” Jim confronts Selina about being at the Charles house and she makes it clear she was only there to rob it. Jim doesn’t believe her when Selina tells Jim it was Ivy Pepper the redhead who murdered Roland Charles. Selina continues to explain that Ivy has changed as she now uses plants to hypnotise and poison people. Jim then realises Lucius lied to him about the secret project that Ivy is now obsessed with.
Luicuis Fox is my character of the week. The moment Ivy steps inside of the medical room at the GCPD where Lucius is examining the tree which has grown out of Roland Charles he knows he could possibly be in danger. As Ivy walks towards him, Luicus presses record on a tape recorder. Ivy comments on what a beautiful bloom from just the scratch of her fingernails. Luicus asks nervously what Ivy wants from him. He denies knowing about Project M but having confirmed information from Bruce only Luicus know the location as it was kept secret for his security. Ivy waves her wrist past Luicus’s face and like her other victims they will do anything Ivy tells them to do.
Jim and Selina arrive at the GCPD. Selina is complaining that Jim has her arm held to tight. Jim asks a very smiley and relaxed Detective Harper if Luicus is in his office. Harper gladly tells Jim that Luicus left with lovely Ivy in which all the officers including Alvarez who is drawing his name in a heart with Ivy, agree what an amazing person Ivy is. Jim can’t understand what is wrong with them all and calls Ivy a psychopath which doesn’t go down well with Ivy superfans at the GCPD. Jim confirms with Selina this is how people act under Ivy’s hypnotic perfume, Harper wants to know what Jim meant when he called Ivy a psycho? Jim using his charming wide grin which we don’t often see to often tells Harper to hold that thought and takes Selina to the medical examiner room.
Whilst trying to look for anything that Luicus might have left in his whereabouts with Ivy. Selina warns Jim that they should off left, but Jim hears the tape recorder click and rewinds some of the tape which gives the location of where Luicus has gone with Ivy. Harper comes into the medical room with two officers and they are concerned with the way Jim talked about Ivy. I found this scene to be genuinely funny as it made me laugh out loud. Selina instantly tells Jim that they should have gone sooner, Jim is trying to convince Harper that by calling Ivy a psycho its a term of endearment. He loves Ivy, Jim thinks she great! Harper then asks Selina who isn’t as convincing wishes she were Ivy. Jim tells Selina that she wasn’t really selling it in which Harper tells Jim he wasn’t either. At this moment Jim tells Selina to run as he sprays Harper and the officers with a fire extinguisher.
Luicus and Ivy arrive at a large construction at the edge of Cape park outside of Gotham. Luicus looking all smiley and goofy as he leads Ivy through a corridor to a secure container holding Project M. Luicus types in his password for Ivy to get a closer look at the glowing liquid in a glass jar. As Lucius hands it to Ivy he confirms it is also called Lazarus water which used to belong to a man called Ra’s al Ghul and it stimulates cell and growth renewal which they have yet to figure out how. So Ivy has got it completely wrong the humans at Wayne Enterprises have not been killing plants but growing them. Ivy sees the Lazarus water as something beautiful and should not be locked up. Luicus ask eagerly what Ivy is going to do with it? Well Ivy is going to make miracles happen?
lvy and Lucius are on their way out of the location of Project M when Jim arrives with his gun drawn. Ivy instantly puts her fingernails to Luicus neck. Jim asks how this new Ivy in front of him is possible, she certainly isn’t the child Jim knew the day he and Bullock shot her father. From a seed to a sprout and finally bloomed Ivy explains that unless Jim drops his gun Lucius will also become a flower arrangement, while Lucius looks at Ivy with the dopiest smiles of someone who is infatuated. Jim agrees but Ivy knows that Jim is tenacious will come after her with gun or no gun. Jim asks Luicus if he is okay and his response is the funniest yet as whilst being in the embrace of one of his favourite people ever Luicus considers himself to be absolutely fine. Ivy gets Jim’s attention again by informing him that Bruce could die if he doesn’t let her walk away. Ivy places the antidote in Lucius pocket, Lucius tells Ivy he loves her as she leaves and takes the Lazarus water with her. Jim amused by Lucius hypnotic state asks for the antidote but Lucius wants to wait until Ivy is at a safer distance. Jim threatens to punch Lucius but with Lucius revealing he is a black belt in Jujutsu which Jim doesn’t believe that Lucius takes evening classes (Chris Chalk actually is a black belt in Jujutsu) so Jim punches Lucius which breaks his hypnotic infatuation with Ivy.
Ivy is back at her borrowed residence and the owners also have arrived home from their trip away and they want to know where all the plants have come from. Ivy is busy mixing her own blood with the Lazarus water which makes a flower bloom incredibly fast. She picks the flower and turns towards the couple and blows on the petals which make the couple collapse dead on the floor. More of the beautiful red but deadly flowers bloom out of their torso’s and Ivy delighted to see her beautiful new friends.
Ivy has had two very strong storyline since Gotham returned and I am enjoying watching this fully grown villain take on Gotham.
Oswald Cobblepot has spent six weeks in Arkham Asylum and doesn’t look to be coping that well. His prison uniform is dirty, ragged and noticeably far to big for him. Oswald is in line for his usual lunch and purposely avoids his Arkham inmates as much as possible. Oswald chooses to sit on his own at a table but a playing card with the joker on is thrown at him and Jerome Valeska now with a sharp looking buzz cut and his scars where his face has been stitched back on decides to join Oswald. Jerome confesses to being a big fan of Oswald’s and soon as he got locked up in this loony bin Jerome expected great things from him. Maybe a murder or two, an attempted prison break but all Oswald has done is mope about. Oswald attempts to leave but Jerome uses one of the inmates he has control over to stop him from leaving because he wants to know why Oswald hasn’t attempted to escape Arkham. Oswald tells Jerome it’s none of his business. Jeromes heavy applies pressure to Oswald’s bones and he gives up the information easily that Sofia Falcone is holding someone important to him captive and she will kill him if Oswald escapes from Arkham. I am assuming Oswald means Martin. Jerome yawns at this boring story and that’s one thing Jerome can’t stand a boring person, as the last person to bore him was Dietrich. Jerome turned up the juice on his shock therapy session and now involtary can’t hold his bowels anymore. As Jerome steals Oswalds jelly he tells him that he will cure him of this attitude as he knows there is an entertaining guy inside of Oswald as Jerome believes they will have so much fun together.
Later in the day Oswald gets dragged into the communial area of Arkham the guards who also seem to be in under control by Jerome don’t intervene. With a sack bag over his head Oswald stands on one of the tables. Jerome is waiting to cure Oswald of his mopping with the laughing cure, he demands Oswald to make him laugh. Jerome uses a very deep sinister tone to say this. Oswald looks horrified as a clown outfit is forced upon him. Jerome puts down his popcorn to remind Oswald that he is trapped inside a prison and Jerome is offering him the key. Jerome commands he dances which the other inmates uses sticks to whack his legs in which makes Oswald do a funny kind of clown dance. Oswald is furious and lunges himself at Jerome but lands on the floor where Jerome kicks him in the face and Jerome will try again the next day. The rest of the inmates carry on beating Oswald.
Oswald may not be innocent in a lot of the crimes he has committed but the reason he is in Arkham this time Oswald isn’t actually guilty of. It actually really quite sad to see Oswald sat in his cell rocking backwards and forwards and scared. When a guard opens his cell door Oswald grabs his pillow to help defend himself. The guard is there because Oswald has a visitor much to his surprise. Ed Nygma is sat waiting in the visitors room. His wide gleeful grin spreads over his face when he sees Oswald looking the opposite of his usual smart tailored self. Oswald doesn’t look please to him and guesses Ed is there to gloat in which Oswald is correct. Oswald runs through the day to day activities including being pummelled by lunatics but one thing he is not is a moron like Ed. Nygma agrees that he may not be many things but he does have friends and a purpose and he wanted Oswald to see that. But Oswald knows Ed and he knows there is more to his visit. Ed still denies there isn’t another reason for his visit and gets up to leave. Oswald promises Ed when he gets out of Arkham he will wipe his smile off his face with a chainsaw. Ed points out that Oswald has no friends so how is he going to escape as he is utterly alone. Ed leaves a origami Penguin on the table it’s his visitors pass with a riddle written on the back. Oswalds reads it aloud and realises that the friend he once knew is still inside Ed. Nygma had come to the Arkham to tell Oswald he will find a way out for him.
Two of Arkham inmates sneek into Oswald’s while cell while he sleeps. They put another bag over his head and take him to Jerome. It’s time for Oswald to play the sudden death game unless he makes Jerome laugh. As Jerome puts a rope around his neck, Jerome sniffs him and realises it’s not Oswald but Dietrich. Oswald appears as Dietrich wets himself and puts a live wire to wet around his feet which causes a small electrocution which Jerome finds mildly funny. Oswald in desperation grabs a plastic fork which Jerome doesn’t see the funny in a spoon. It’s too late Jerome orders the inmates to lobotomise Oswald but in one last desperate attempt Oswald remembers that Jerome said that the prison is all in his mind but maybe Oswald is in a prison where Jerome can’t get to him and this gets Jeromes attention. Oswald performs a mime act which is so clever and genius’s how it was performed by Robin Lord Taylor. Jerome can’t but help join in and Cameron Monaghan himself make this scene between them very believable. As Jerome steps inside the imaginary prison Oswald knees him in the face. Oswald continues to kick and punch Jerome and cheers to a silent audience. Jerome starts to laugh as this proves that Jerome has cured Oswald but Oswald doesn’t want Jerome to flatter himself. Jerome asks for one more kick to the face which has already been pretty brutal Oswald rolls his eyes in disbelief.
Whilst sat at his table in his cell Oswald is writing. A guard opens his door and moves for Jerome to enter. Oswald stands up quickly as he quite apprehensive at what Jerome might do to him next. Jerome tells Oswald to relax as he gave Jerome what he needed the laugh of the century. Jerome makes himself comfortable on Oswald’s bed and this time it’s Oswald’s turn to ask questions. Oswald has noticed that Jerome has everyone under his thumb, Jerome puts this down to being a charismatic kind of guy. Jerome himself is quite capable of escaping at any time and with his wider then average grin confirms to Oswald that he is planning something. What Jerome is planning is something spectacular as he needs to find the creme de la crazy which is why he needs Oswald. With a short crazy laugh Oswald looks annoyed at being called crazy. The way Jerome sees it the world outside the Arkham walls will be the Asylum. Oswald thanks Jerome in a sarcastic tone for his kind offer as Oswald is confident that he won’t be Arkham for very long. Jerome places both his hands on Oswalds shoulders as he continues writing and quietly tells him that people always come around. Oswald waits for Jerome to leave and says “nope” aloud. Oswald finishes his letter which is addressed to Ed Nygma, Cherry’s, The Narrows, Gotham.
What really impressed me about the interactions between Oswald and Jerome it never turned out like the promo indicated. Oswald determined not to befriend this chaotic person really showed the strength and resilience Oswald needed to maintan just to survive Jerome. So how will Ed or The Riddler get Oswald out of Arkham and how does Jerome want The Penguin to be part of his spectacular plan?
Bruce Wayne is laid out on his drawing room floor experiencing a slow, painful hallucinogenic dream as punishment from Ivy. Dream Bruce wakes up on a medical table where Ra’s al Ghul is dressed as a surgeon. Bruce wants to know where Ivy is and Ra’s al Ghul claims he has never heard of her or Ra’s al Ghul because he is Dr Greenthumb and he wants to do some pruning with the dagger we saw earlier in the season. What Ra’s actually does is definitely creepy as he cuts of Bruce’s face and wraps his head in bandages leaving the area open where Bruce’s eyes would be. Bruce’s dream continues with him walking through wooden doors at Wayne Manor covered in ivy. There is a party happening the first familiar person Bruce sees is Selina. Jim is with Barbara they are laughing and Jim has a moustache. Bandaged Bruce asks Jim for help but in a very well to do accent Jim asks him if he cut himself shaving. Bruce is trying to convince Jim and Barbara that he is Bruce Wayne in which they laugh as Bruce is behind them talking to Leslie Thompkins who is dressed as Cleopatra and Oswald Cobblepot dressed as the iconic Penguin with cigarette, top hat but no monocle. Bruce confronts Bruce wanting his face back as bandaged Bruce claims he is the real Bruce. Dream Bruce warns bandaged Bruce not to touch his Italian velvet suit and he is ruining his fun. Dream Bruce pushes bandaged Bruce to the floor and he disappears. Harvey Bullock appears holding a clucking hen asking Bruce in a cockney accent if Master Bruce is okay which was one of the many laugh out moments in this episode.
The hallucinations continue with Bruce telling a really bad joke to Selina, Harvey, Lee, Oswald and Barbara which they all laugh ridiculously over the top especially Penguin. Ivy hands Bruce another drink and he finds himself alone when Jim finds Bruce and asks why is he hiding? Jim turns Bruce’s face to the window and tells him that he will find him eventually, which Bruce doesn’t understand and Jim is gone. A smoke bomb comes through the window with the sound of a helicopter. Bruce is on the floor when Alfred swings through the window. Special Agent Pennyworth calls Bruce a scumbag and speaks into his wrist to confirm he has the package secure and requests extraction. With Bruce, Alfred swings back through the window. I absolutely loved this part of the dream sequence and how they finally let us see Alfred as a SAS agent. Thank you Gotham.
Bruce requests to be released. Alfred pulls him out of the trunk of the car, Bruce still shouting about being Bruce Wayne and he will give Alfred anything he wants. Alfred explains he can’t do that as he has a mission to bring Bruce to him. Which just happens to be a dark tall figure wearing a cape. Bruce is back in the alley where his parents were murdered. Bruce asks the dark figure why is he here? The dark figure answers “No. This is where I was born.” Bruce shouts no as the dark figure leaps at him.
Bruce wakes in a dripping cave to the sound of Bats squeaking. Bruce shouts help as he hears someone moving around and asks them to show themselves. The dark figure appears, again Bruce asks who he is. The dark figure is who Bruce cannot escape. The one that Bruce cannot kill. Bruce realises it’s himself. The dark figure tells him that he is scared and so he should be as he bursts into flying bats. Bruce wakes from the hallucinations as Jim gives him the antidote. Jim reassures Bruce he is going to be safe.
Bruce is stood thinking as Jim comes to tell him whatever he hallucinated wasn’t real and probably unpleasant. But Bruce believes he saw who he really is and what he saw was real. Jim considers Bruce to be lucky as most people go their whole lives not knowing who they are. Bruce quickly corrects Jim as he isn’t lucky. Jim sees his own darkness, he wants Bruce to know that he has people around him that care. Bruce needs to trust them and don’t fight alone. Before Jim leaves Bruce tells Jim that he saw him whilst under Ivy’s toxin and he had a moustache. Jim touches his top lip and claims that was a dangerous toxin. Bruce smiles as he leaves and decides it’s time for him to call Alfred as he needs his help.
This episode was outstanding. Whilst I recapped the episode it made me realise that Jerome was not the central character of this story. It was a strong Bruce and Ivy episode as their characters continued forward especially Bruce on his path of destiny.
Other scenes in this episode was between Jim and Sofia who haven’t seen each since the night she killed Professor Pyg. Jim had one of her men Chaz Charmichael in a holding cell at the GCPD who told Jim that he knew Sofia and he should be let go. Jim wasn’t going to take any orders because he runs the GCPD and Sofia is queen of the underworld. In a heated discussion Jim and Sofia discuss the deal they agreed. Sofia thinks Jim is worried that Sofia will reveal he brought Pyg to town but Jim disagrees as it was Sofia. Jim just wanted to stop Penguin but Sofia points out that Jim covered up her killing Pyg and if that ever got out Jim would be finished. But if Jim gets put away so will Sofia and Jim is sure she enjoys being Queen of the underworld.
Jim returns to the GCPD to find an embarrassed Harper with the other officers in how they acted under Ivy’s hypnotic state. Jim is relieved everyone is back to normal and puts out a APB on Ivy. Jim gets a call from Sofia admitting that she does like being queen of the underworld but there are other ways in which she can hurt Jim. Sofia hangs up and is seen sat by the fire enjoying a long overdue chat with Lee who is quite happy to be in the company of her sister in law.
The next episode of a Gotham airs on Thursday 15th March which is titled Reunion. Ivy picks her next target, leading Gordon and Lucius back to an old friend, as Selina tries to take matters into her own hands. Sofia wants full control of Gotham and turns to Lee about the state of the Narrows. Meanwhile, Bruce tries to make amends with Alfred, and Nygma visits Arkham.