In Review: Gotham, Episode 37 “Mad Grey Dawn”

This is the Edward Nygma and Bruce Wayne fans have been waiting for.

Gotham, Episode 37 “Mad Grey Dawn” Broadcast on March 21, 2016

Written by Robert Hull

Directed by Nick Copus

“Previously on Gotham“, Selena gives Bruce a gun, Leslie tells James that Kristen Kringle hasn’t picked up her final paycheck, Oswald receives shock treatment under Dr. Hugo Strange’s care and is declared sane, James asks Edward about Kristen (not knowing he killed her), Leslie goes to unconscious Barbara and calls her a bitch, Bruce confronts the killer of his parents, the man commits suicide without revealing who paid him to kill the Waynes, and Bruce leaves a letter for Alfred that says he’s living on the streets with Selina. “Trust me and honor my wishes. Don’t try to bring me back.”

At the Gotham Museum of Art, Edward activates a fuse on a sculpture of a bomb, emptying the building. With everyone gone, he cuts a paining out of its frame and sprays a neon green question mark in its place. Cue opening title sequence.

Video footage of the theft is shown to Gordon and Bulluck, who, as part of the bomb squad, are put on the case. Before Gordon leaves, Captain Barnes pulls him aside to tell him Internal Affairs has reopened the file on Theo Galavan’s murder. Before the detectives can dash off, Nygma shows up, saying he’s ready to be questioned by Gordon on Kringle’s disappearance. “Raincheck,” James says. Edward smiles as they leave, wishing them luck on catching the bad guy from the art theft. Elsewhere, the Penguin returns to his gangland home, now run by Butch. Tabitha Galavan wants him dead for killing her brother. Butch stops her because Oswald is now such a “pathetic loser” he poses no threat. Tabitha will have none of this. “He’s not leaving without some kind of punishment.” Back at the art museum, Gordon tells Bullock about the reopened investigation on him. He asks Harvey to talk to a friend in I.A. to find out what they have on him. Harvey’s not happy, but he’ll do it. They then learn from the director of the museum that the thief stole “Mad Grey Dawn”, which wasn’t worth much. However, he did deface two irreplaceable paintings. Looking at the two works, Gordon and Bullock piece together the clues and think they know the thief’s next crime. There’s a cut to Edward opening the trunk of his car to pick up a bomb in a backpack, which he grabs with a smile. Cue first commercial break.

This was an immensely enjoyable episode because Edward Nygma was in his element, creating his first series of crimes employing the clues the criminal is famous for. The fervor and glee with which he went on his way through the episode was incredibly watchable and Cory Michael Smith was the best actor of the episode. To watch his plans carried out was fantastic — this is what Batfans want! Ben McKenzie was also great as a man slowly realizing he’s being set up. His final scene with Morena Baccarin was great, as Gordon was willing to give up everything to save Leslie and their child. David Mazouz had his strongest scene ever, as glimmers of Bruce’s future life came forward, and his comments to Selina after the fact were awesome. The music as he spoke was also great. The return of another future villain was cool, and Clare Foley handled her scene well. The other great acting of the episode was Robin Lord Taylor as Oswald acting with Paul Reubens as his father (and that’s not a spoiler, it’s been on the Internet for some time). It’s great to see Reubens return to a role he originated for the films, though this dad is much different than the cinematic father. There was also a nice awakening near the episode and a neat arrival.

The good: Cory Michael Smith, David Mazouz, Robin Lord Taylor, Paul Reubens, and a great script by Robert Hull.

Fun lines: “I have the utmost faith in your abilities, Detective Gordon,” “Happy day! I’m sane!”, “Kidding,” “I’m on the case,” “These feathers aren’t as warm as they look,” “The me I am right now is kinda hitting my stride,” “Thanks for coming by,” “She never told me…that I had a son,” “…It’s kind of lame. I just came up with it on the spot,” “Put your gun down–Now!“, “I could take it. That he couldn’t break me. That no one can,” and “We move on.”

The bad: Harvey doesn’t do much but tag along and Penguin’s future at his new location is fairly predictable.

The final line: This is the Edward Nygma and Bruce Wayne fans have been waiting for. Both are becoming the characters fans are familiar with and it’s incredibly fascinating to watch them evolve. How will Gordon get out of this one? Overall grade: A-

Patrick Hayes was a contributor to the Comic Buyer's Guide for several years with "It's Bound to Happen!" and he's reviewed comics for TrekWeb and TrekCore. He's taught 8th graders English for 20 years and has taught high school English for five years and counting. He reads everything as often as he can, when not grading papers or looking up Star Trek, Star Wars, or Indiana Jones items online.
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