Gotham 01×15 – The Scarecrow (SPOILERS)
This week on an abridged version of my Gotham blow-by-blow, we continue with Dr. Gerald Crane, and the delicious sight of him mushing up an adrenal gland so he can inject it into his body. Hope nobody was eating any processed meats at the time! He’s trying to vaccinate himself against fear, and wants to do the same with Jonathan.
Leslie starts her first day as ME at GCPD, and she gets a pass from Edward because she smells nice. Well, if she’s good enough for my Riddler, she’s good enough for me. Jim gets all bent out of shape because he’s a super macho dude, and hates that he gets made fun of by Bullock for kissing his girlfriend at work. Jim, I’m pretty sure Harvey would make fun of you for pretty much ANYTHING.
Oswald is pleading for Don Falcone to protect him from Maroni, having just escaped from the trunk of an almost crushed car. Falcone’s more worried about changing the decorations in Fish’s club to get rid of any trace of Fish. So, he changes it to Oswald’s, has an umbrella logo, and apparently makes it an emo club. That suits him so well, but it’s not exactly a roaring success. On that whole Maroni thing, he meets with Maroni, and gives him the gift of a ball-busting judge that they both hate. He’s in a room with a one-way mirror and a dominatrix punishing him, reading for whatever Maroni wants to do with him. Maroni’s very happy, but that doesn’t stop him from visiting the new Oswald club and pouring him the most threatening glass of champagne ever. If Falcone dies, then Maroni’s coming after him.
This episode also has my FAVE scene ever in it, where Oswald comes to the GCPD to give Gordon an invitation to the grand opening of his club, and Edward notices him. Edward totally creeps around and follows his every move, which Oswald is not impressed with, but which I’m DELIGHTED with. Edward tries to give him a riddle, and Oswald gets him to step back by threatening him. Hmm… I don’t think that will happen in the future of these two men. But I was squeeing because it’s the first time that my two faves have shared any real screen time together, and it was ADORABLE. Edward also can’t help but give out the helpful fact that male Emperor penguins warm the eggs on their feet. And he REALLY seems to enjoy it, too.
In a strange story twist, Fish is… somewhere. It looks like Thunderdome. So, is she Tina Turner now? Her manicure is still perfect, though. She has no clue where she is after being captured on her pleasure cruise, but it seems like a prison. She tries to make nice with the leader of the place, named Mack or something, and he makes the biggest mistake of his life in trusting a gal by the name of Fish Mooney, She stabs him with his own knife, and takes charge of Thunderdome. We get some more information when someone is brought in, and Fish’s new number 2 points out that she’s ‘back’. This girl has returned with no eyes. So… black market organ Thunderdome?
We also have Bruce making a hike that he and his father did every year. Of course, this is the first time he’s done it alone. Alfred fusses over him, but Bruce wants to go alone. He says he’ll be back by nightfall. So he goes on the hike and picks up rocks on the way. He gets to this little bluff where he and his father had piled rocks over the years of hiking. He then goes apeshit on this pile, chucking them everywhere, then breaking down in tears. After he collects himself, he promptly falls down a large hill. I totally thought he was going to fall into a bat cave, but he sprained his ankle instead. His Batman-ness kicks in, and he makes his own splint and drags himself up that hill for hours… to find Alfred waiting for him with a roaring fire. TOTALLY NOT HELPING HIM CLIMB THE HILL. Jesus, no wonder Batman is so fucked in the head. I know he wants to instill toughness in Bruce, but shit… there are less traumatic ways.
The episode’s main story is still going on among this, with Gordon and Bullock looking into Dr. Crane. He was a biology teacher, and wrote a paper on fear and conquering it. He said at the phobics group that he wanted to conquer his fear of failure, but it goes deeper than that. He’s doing his research out of the Creepiest House In Gotham©, where his wife died in a house fire that he couldn’t save her from. The whole crux of his research is to not see her burning in front of him over and over. He starts to get a handle on it, and stops feeling fear, so that’s when he goes and uses his son Jonathan as a guinea pig, too. Jonathan’s not really down with the whole thing, but his dad insures it’s for the good of humanity. Gordon and Bullock find the old house, and it causes Crane and Son to split out the back along with all the adrenal stash. Gerald wants to finish his work instead of getting away, so he injects a MASSIVE dose of this stuff into Jonathan, sending him into fits of terror under a scarecrow on their property that gets creepy fast. Since Gerald isn’t afraid anymore, he just keeps walking into bullets and dies. Jonathan is taken to the hospital, but all those chemicals (obviously not just adrenaline or it wouldn’t have been dastardly science) really did a number on his brain, so now he’s in permanent night terror mode, and it shows him constantly seeing that scarecrow crawling all over his hospital bed.
If you even slightly were afraid of scarecrows before this, I’m sure you’re not much cheerier on them after it, because it’s kind of mental.
One of the better episodes in the series, IMO. Lots of great villain stuff. I’d give the show a 12 out of 10 if I were just scoring the scene between Edward and Oswald, but I give it a solid 9.