Gotham ‘A Bitter Pill to Swallow’ Review

Gotham ‘A Bitter Pill to Swallow’ Review

Penguin and Nygma are the best. Forget about Jim Gordon and the assassins! Don’t take me wrong. It was fun to watch Jim fighting off a horde of crazy hitmen, but the highlight of the 9th episode of Gotham’s season 2 was how Penguin was drawn out of his despair by Nygma’s slow dance. This is going to be a great bromance. At the end of the previous episode, Nygma had asked Penguin for his aid, but this was definitely not what he was expecting. Maybe Penguin thought he was going to die and it could be something he would welcome. Instead, he is absolutely miserable when he wakes up and realizes he is in Nygma’s home.

He is most definitely unlike the Penguin we love because this man is broken. He is still not over the loss of his mother, but Nygma has a huge well of patience, which eventually wins out. Nygma’s reaction was amazing when he told Penguin that he has killed people. It’s like watching a kid at Christmas. He is immensely proud that he has murdered three people, but Penguin doesn’t seem much impressed. The look on his face is just priceless as he continues to wallow in self-pity.

Nygma uses a bunch of tactics to draw Penguin out and even goes so far as to kidnap one of Galavan’s lackey so Penguin can find some solace in revenge, but the latter is in no mood to cooperate. He is acting just like a petulant child and he only wakes up when Nygma tells him that his mother was the whole reason behind his weakness. We have to hand it to Nygma. He didn’t even flinch one bit when there was a knife at his throat as Penguin finally reacts. On the other hand, Jim was all kinds of busy in ‘A bitter pill to swallow’. Tabitha hires an assassin for killing Jim after entering a secret club.

The Lady sent a lot of hitmen against Jim, who fell really short of hitmen standards because none of them were able to take down their target. Is Jim superhuman or what? It could be because he has all that rage inside of him or maybe he is simply letting out his dark side. There was a definite Dark Knight vibe when Jim almost shoots Flamingo in the mouth and lets out a rebel yell. It is getting more and more difficult to believe that Jim is a good cop because he is crossing so many lines. He should have just killed Flamingo.

However, then we wouldn’t have gotten to see perhaps the most gruesome scene of not just the episode, but the show and that was when Parks is killed by Flamingo. The face-eating popular DC villain just chomped down on our lovely Officer Parks. Perhaps it was made even creepy by the fact that we watched her die from the immense blood loss. The camera just hovered there in slow motion until she passed away; a tragic death. This was just a gory scene and reminded us of a horror movie with all the blood spurting. There was a lot of blood shedding from Barnes as well. For a moment, it seemed as he was done for when the pretending to be dead assassin stabbed him in the leg. Obviously, Jim decided not to kill Flamingo and do the right thing because he was influenced by Barnes’s war story.

Nonetheless, it is doubtful that Jim is going to stick to the straight and narrow road for long because it is simply not his nature, even if the comics say it is. It was disappointing to find that Tabitha hadn’t sent assassins after Jim on Galavan’s orders. She was simply doing it to avenge Barbara, which didn’t quite ring because even though they were together, it never seemed too serious. We also got to see some Bruce and Alfred camaraderie. It is about time that Alfred stops taking his orders from the brat and starts acting like the guardian he is supposed to be.

He not just kicked Silver out of the house, but also banned Bruce from seeing her, something he should have done a long time ago. It was also funny to see Bruce acting like a normal teenager when he tried to fool Alfred by telling him that he was going to bed early. It was heartwarming. Another touching scene that totally sent out the future Batman vibe was when we see Bruce’s slicked back hair and his Bruce Wayne type ensemble. We just hope he is prepared when the crazy monks arrive on his doorstep.

Talking about monks, it was incredibly ridiculous to see all those monks taking down a single security guard at the docks. What kind of guard just walks to a dozen guys and demands to see their IDs? That was plain stupid. Regardless, while most of the assassins weren’t notable and only Flamingo made an impact, the threat came off as quite real. This episode did a really good job in establishing the fact that the rookies are in over their heads in this situation. In addition, we finally get to see Barnes develop as a character as he confesses why he is so rigid when it comes to the law; he accidentally ended up killing a POW in the war and that has haunted him for a long while.

Watching Nygma and Penguin bond over drinks, riddles, murder and songs was really great. It was exactly what Penguin needed to get back to his game and also molded Nygma into a much better and motivating villain. The question is, what will the show do about Leslie and Jim? Will something bad happen to her, sparing Jim the embarrassment of having her leave him? Also, how will Jim react when he finds out that Parks was killed by the guy whose life he chose to spare? In short, it was an eventful and violent episode of Gotham with Park’s death being the highlight.

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