Review: Gotham, Ep. 6 "Spirit of the Goat"

Review: Gotham, Ep. 6 "Spirit of the Goat"


Season 1, Episode 6

“Spirit Of The Goat”

Rating: B+
I find myself half-praying every time Gotham comes on, that this episode will finally unlock the show’s potential. I think, aside from the obvious ‘Batman-lover’ part of the equation, the other bit that bugs me just a bit is that this show keeps falling a little flat as Arrow, The Flash, and, so far, Constantine, all keep putting out episodes that, while they may not be flawless, are cool enough to not see the faults the first time you watch them.

I am, however, a sucker for a good scary serial killer story, and Spirit Of The Goat sets up a pretty decent one. A killer from Harvey Bullock’s past, who ranted and raved about the spirit of the goat being who and what he is before Harvey pumped him full of bullets, seems to be back, at least judging from the bodies that they keep finding on the waterfront. Aside from the obvious satanic implications of a killer moved by the spirit of the goat, there is also a biblical side to it, as he is targeting the first born of Gotham’s upper-upper crust. This puts a certain important character directly in the line of fire, which of course he does because this is Gotham and the fact that I’ve gone almost 15 minutes without even seeing Bruce Wayne is nothing short of miraculous for this show.

Harvey Bullock is getting better. Tonight, we got a flashback to his beginnings on the force, where he was something more of an optimist. We see his first partner get grievously injured, and we see the lesson he takes to heart from his first encounter with the Spirit Of The Goat, and we finally get something of an explanation to his cynical, do-what-it-takes attitude towards police work. Maybe Gordon can bring some of that goodness back. I really hope so. I don’t like thinking of Bullock as a dirty cop, even if he is one.

We spend a little more time with Nygma outside his job as Medical Examiner. It looks like he has a crush on the girl who runs the file room, which again throws the whole “WHAT TIME PERIOD ARE WE IN!?” into massive gear. In a moment of ill-advised helpfulness, perhaps interacting with Nygma’s own social ineptitude, he tries to re-organize the entire file room, after she had said that, despite it’s chaos, she knows where every single file is located. Poor Nygma, he was only trying to help.

Barbara goes to Montoya to beg for Jim’s innocence.  Barbara is caught between these two people’s love, and it’s an odd things to watch just because Montoya and Barbara have been such one-note characters thus far. Back to the whole ‘women-of-Gotham’ thing, this episode has done nothing to improve the way they are portrayed, and with Fish Mooney argely absent from this one in it’s entirety, it was really only Barbara and Montoya who had the chance to prove me wrong. It’s not that they proved me anymore right or wrong, it’s just that they were kind of mundane. Barbara begged Montoya to leave Jim alone, saying there’s something else going on beneath the surface that he won’t tell her. Montoya confirms the danger she’s in because of her relationship with Jim. The end, next scene.

Another typical player that is virtually absent from this episode is Penguin himself, Mr. Oswald Cobblepot. With Jim dealing with the killer stalking Gotham’s elite, there really wasn’t any time to deal with the mafia drama that Gotham has right now, so we get little more than a passing scene between

Oh, and Selina is back, breaking into Wayne manor and spying Bruce’s giant murder-wall as Bruce sleeps merely feet away. It was reminiscent of the last pointless Catwoman encounter we saw a couple of weeks ago, with her hopping down from a roof onto a car and pickpocketing someone in broad daylight in what has to be the worst example of thieving skills this side of a re-run of Cops. Oh well, maybe someday we’ll actually get Catwoman in an episode that has a point. Maybe they’ll even tie the strings they set up in the first couple of episodes. A man can dream.

Everything comes to a head when Barbara comes to Jim and begs him to run away with her, moments before the Major Crimes division knocks on the door to arrest Jim. While her time leaves much to desire, her sentiment was nice. Jim, however, is far too honorable a man to be outside the law, so he lets them take him away in cuffs, for the murder of a man who is being bathed across town by his elderly mother in a scene that recalls all the scarier and uncomfortable parts of Bates Motel.

Overall, this was a pretty great episode of Gotham. I really liked the way that they handled the how and the why of the killers who take the same name, same MO. Turns out, it all comes back to a therapist, a hypno-therapist to be exact. Weirdest way to make a serial killer, for sure, but it was a very nifty little twist. Especially when I was thinking it was going in a far more mystical direction. Her reasoning is nicely psychotic, telling Bullock that it’s not murder or madness, that it’s therapy, for Gotham. As in the city. Therapy for the entire city through killing rich kids.

Oswald makes quite the entrance at the end, straight into the GCPD, but sadly, we’ll have to wait until next week to find out how that pans out.

Stuff And Things

– “Gotham’s golden rule, Harvey, No Heroes.” Riiiiight

– UGH! NYGMA IS BACK WITH HIS DAMN RIDDLES! Oh well, at least it’s a good one. A man has to cross a river with a cabbage, a rabbit, and a fox. The platform he uses to cross will only fit one of these and him at a time. If he takes the rabbit first, then the fox, the fox will eat the rabbit while he gets the cabbage. Same goes for the cabbage and the rabbit. So how does he get all three to the other side of the river? (he says wolf but the tv show i last saw it on said fox and fox is a better mental image for those three things than a wolf in my honest opinion)

– The entire Spirit Of The Goat thought-process reminds me of the Kevin Smith-created character of Baphomet from his series Batman: Widening Gyre, albeit more immediately psychotic.

– “You got tangled in some hussy’s demon-purse!” Words of wisdom from Penguin’s Eastern-European-accented Momma.

– TV Tropes are so predictable. It can’t be a copycat? Why? Because you left that detail out of the papers so only the real killer could POSSIBLY know about the pennies in the skull part. “WE LEFT IT OUT OF THE PAPERS!”

– “Besides, why would the goat take me? There’s no one to take me from.” Bruce said, before he put in his Dashboard Confessional CD and combed his bangs into his eyes


Categories: Entertainment
Tags: Gotham, review