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TV Review: Gotham 2.9 “A Bitter Pill To Swallow”
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Gotham 209-06

Season 2 Episode 9: “A Bitter Pill To Swallow”
Directed by Louis Shaw Milito
Written by Megan Mostyn-Brown
Created by Bruno Heller
Starring Ben McKenzie, Donal Logue, Sean Pertwee, Robin Lord Taylor, David Mazouz, Camren Bicondova, Morena Baccarin, Cory Michael Smith, Erin Richards, James Frain, Jessica Lucas, Chris Chalk, Michael Chiklis
Air Date: Monday, November 16th, 2015, 8pm

Last week’s Gotham was super crazy from the start with an insane Barbara (Erin Richards) dream sequence. She sets out to kill Jim (Ben McKenzie), by luring him into an ambush, and holding him and Lee (Morena Baccarin) hostage. They get away with the help of a smart Bullock (Donal Logue) and the GCPD. While chasing her, she falls and went into a coma. Galavan (James Frain) tries to get Bruce (David Mazouz) to sign over the company, but is arrested in front of him, after the cops find the Mayor James. Nygma (Cory Michael Smith) goes to bury Ms. Kringle, and ends up killing some random guy, and runs into Penguin (Robin Lord Taylor), who needs help.

Spoilers below.

Gotham 2.9 “A Bitter Pill To Swallow” recap/review: The headlines read “Mayor Galavan Arrested!” Yeah! I did not think that was going to happen that quickly. Tabitha puts a hit out on Jim at some kind of seedy, hidden killer den filled with debauchery.

Jim visits Barbara, then argues with Lee about it. It’s not jealousy. She does not understand why he goes into the darkness. She has a point.

Bruce invites Silver over to try to find out if she knows anything about who killed his parents. Alfred (Sean Pertwee), of course, disapproves, and thwarts his every move. Good job, Alfred. Bruce is acting like a little boy. What kind of hussy gives a boy a hotel room key? Selina (Camren Bicondova) also warns him and says she has proof to back it up.

Nygma took Penguin home to nurse him back to health in body and mind. Nygma wants murder advice. This whole dynamic between them – the crazy, quirky, funny violence is so perfect. We’ve known these two were meant to be after that one scene last season at the precinct.

Penguin is completely despondent over being so alone. “A man that answers to no one but himself, and that is the man I see before me. A free man.” Nygma gave Penguin the Rocky speech! I have never seen him so confident and manly. Penguin reacted appropriately, like the world lit up and has new purpose. I’m loving these new BFFs!

Barnes, Jim, and a couple of GCPD peeps comb through Theo’s house for evidence. This is where all the hits come. There’s a great elevator scene as a mild-mannered piano tuner disguised hit man tried to strangle Jim, juxtaposed against elevator music, and the tinkling indicator that the doors opened. That scene is below.

Piano guy isn’t successful, but more hit men keep coming, until the grossest one of all – Flamingo, a cannibal, with a giant smile and a Burt Reynolds mustache comes. He may not have been successful in getting Jim and Barnes (who almost bled out), but chewed on the neck of another cop. I called that one.

All Galavan’s monks come to Gotham and celebrate by stabbing a guy. Kudos to the sound editor! I felt those realistic stabby sounds.

This episode was such a mix. On one hand it was dark comedy at its finest. Between Nygma giving Penguin human presents and this hit lady hiring a cannibal to take out Jim, I could not stop smiling. But the bloody ick factor was quite high tonight.

Gotham airs Monday nights at 8pm ET on FOX.

Image Gallery


GOTHAM | The Dark Side from “Rise of the Villains: A Bitter Pill to Swallow”

Leslie worries about where Gordon is headed.

GOTHAM | My Feathered Friend from “Rise of the Villains: A Bitter Pill to Swallow”

Nygma tranquilizes Penguin.

GOTHAM | Thrilling from “Rise of the Villains: A Bitter Pill to Swallow”

Nygma helps Penguin recover and tells him a little secret.

GOTHAM | Small Talk from “Rise of the Villains: A Bitter Pill to Swallow”

Gordon’s elevator ride takes a turn for the worst.

GOTHAM | A Friend In Need

Robin Lord Taylor discusses the developing friendship between Penguin and Edward Nygma in GOTHAM.

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