If you would like to read a recap of last week’s episode, click here. Remember what I said last week about things moving too slow because of all the characters. This episode approached things a little differently, focusing heavily on one story. Will this narrowing of focus make the story better since we don’t have to worry about any other characters? Read below for more.
The episode starts off with a wedding that has just concluded. As the married couple approach their limousine, we notice that the Hatter is posing as their driver. Unfortunately for them, he intends on taking them somewhere other than their wedding reception and that their fates will depend on Gordon. There is also a boy riding in the front seat with him.
It’s a beautiful morning for Penguin. He tells one of his housekeepers, who can’t speak English, that he’s found someone. He has no choice but to confess his true feelings to Ed because his mother told him that life only gives you one true love.
Gordon and Vale are at a diner. Vale knows that Lee is running point in the Alice Tetch blood investigation for the GCPD and asks Gordon if he can set up a meeting between them. Gordon tells her that Lee won’t talk to her but Vale says that she can take care of it. She also asks him if he should still be a Private Investigator considering his record so far has not been the best.
After Vale leaves to go to work, a very pale man (Kieran Mulcare) approaches Gordon and gives him a message from the Hatter. He leads Gordon to a payphone near an underpass which then rings with Gordon picking it up. It’s the Hatter (obviously). During his absence, he’s been able to do some research into Gordon’s past, including his family history. He wants to force Gordon to confront who he really is.
To do this, he forces Gordon to choose who to save. He has to choose between the married couple from earlier or the boy. Either the couple will jump off the overpass, or the boy will be hit by a truck. Gordon chooses to save the boy. He reflects on what just happened and runs back to the phone. The Hatter sens him somewhere else for his next mission.
Lee is having a conversation with Mario. He is having some reservations about his engagement party and that he and Lee would be paraded in front of the whole city. Lee says they chose to make a life in Gotham and thinks that the party will be wonderful. Ed is working away as Penguin’s chief of staff when Penguin visits. Ed flatters him after Penguin complements him on the work he’s doing. Ed reveals that he still hasn’t found Butch since he’s probably hiding with his old gang. Penguin is struggling to share his true feelings with Ed and just gives up, pretending that it was nothing. Ed tells him that he’s scheduled to visit a school.
Bullock, Barnes, and the rest of the GCPD are investigating the earlier incident. The boy shares that he was saved by Gordon so Barnes wants to talk to him but he hasn’t responded. Bullock notices that Barnes no longer has his cane. They go over and talk to the hypnotized pale guy (HPG). He of course gives them nothing and just repeats that he has a message for Gordon over and over again.
Gordon goes to the new location and finds pictures of his family’s history on a board. The Hatter calls him again. Gordon toys with him by repeatedly hanging up, making the Hatter angry. He tells Gordon that he has Vale. Tabitha and Barbara talk about their future. Penguin will eventually figure out that Tabitha helped Butch escape but she’s not worried. Gordon visits them and Barbara reveals that the Hatter visited her prior where she gave him all the dirt she had on him, including his relationship with her and Lee. Gordon calls Lee but the Hatter answers and tells him to go to a power plant next.
Barnes attempts to interrogate HPG but gets nowhere. In his anger, he begins to trigger his new power and starts to bend the chair but is interrupted when Bullock comes in and tells them that they found Gordon. Gordon is at the power plant where the Hatter is now forcing him to choose between a famous reporter and a famous pediatrician. He doesn’t get to think long when the GCPD shows up. This makes the Hatter angry, causing him to kill them both anyway.
Penguin and Ed visit a third grade class. Penguin quickly spots a boy sitting away from the other children. He approaches him and asks why he’s not with the other kids. The boy is worried that they won’t like him. Penguin reassures him by convincing the boy to give them a chance and if they don’t like him, he can wait until their backs are turned and push them down the stairs. Penguin tries again to share his feelings for Ed by inviting him to dinner.
Gordon fills Barnes in on what happened and he reassures him by saying that there was nothing he could have done and that it was all the Hatter’s fault. Vale and Lee are back at her place and are chained up in a bathroom. Vale tries to talk to Lee about the blood anyway but Lee refuses because it wasn’t a good time. Vale offers to help if in return, Lee would give her some answers.
Back at the GCPD, Barnes puts the department to work in finding Lee and Vale. Gordon spots HPG and talks to him. He gives him his last clue and directs him back to Lee’s house. Mario barges in and confronts Gordon, as he’s leaving, about what happened. Gordon wants to go in himself because bringing in the cops would make it worse. Gordon asks him to trust him. He then realizes that Mario can help and decides to bring him along.
Vale and Lee are still in the bathroom where Vale asks Lee about why she came back to Gotham. Lee claims that Gordon was not her reason for coming back. The Hatter calls them over to the dining room. Gordon later walks in the house and approaches the dinning room where the Hatter asks him to sit down. Gordon wants to stand but eventually gives up his gun and sits down. The Hatter tells a story about him and his sister.
Mario gets a gun that was hidden in the basement. The Hatter reiterates Gordon’s choices when Mario comes in with the gun. The Hatter reveals that he found the gun earlier and unloaded the magazine. Gordon tries to stall by attacking the Hatter on a personal level and focuses on his warped relationship with his sister which makes him angry. Gordon offers to sacrifice himself as a result. This doesn’t work as the Hatter would prefer Gordon to be alive and suffer with whatever choice he makes.
Impatient, the Hatter forces Gordon to choose who he wants to kill instead of who he loves. He picks Lee but instead, the Hatter shoots Vale. Now the Hatter sees who Gordon really is. Vale is being rushed into surgery where Mario reassures Gordon that she will be fine.
Penguin is practicing what he’s going to say to Ed. Ed is in a wine shop, choosing something for the dinner. He strikes a conversation with a woman who reminds him of Kringle. She claims to not talk to very much people but there is just something about him. She gives him a riddle which he quickly solves and they begin to bond over it.
Bullock shows up at the hospital. Gordon tells him that he didn’t go to him because he was convinced that he could save them both. Lee reassures Gordon that everything will be okay. Gordon wants to explain his earlier choice but she will have none of it.
Overall, this was a great episode whose narrow focus made Jim’s story more engaging. The back and forth game between him and the Hatter was exciting, enough to forget that the season still hasn’t gotten anywhere yet. Of course, they’ll have to go back to the other characters eventually but this was a nice change of pace.