Title: Gotham: “Look Into My Eyes”
Air Date: October 3, 2016
Genre: Crime, Drama, Action
Last week’s episode, Burn The Witch, introduced viewers to a newer and older Poison Ivy (Maggie Geha). However, the episode didn’t do much outside of revealing homicidal tendencies that seemingly came out of nowhere. Look Into My Eyes, on the other hand, introduces Jervis Testch a.k.a. The Mad Hatter (Benedict Samuel) and uses him to full advantage. Let’s face it, Burn The Witch introduced a new Poison Ivy but she had very little do with the episode in general. She was just kind of there. That being said, Look Into My Eyes does a great job at making this new character the main focus and a force to be reckoned with. As a result, it is one of the best episodes of Gotham in quite some time.
This episode sees Jervis Tetch making his debut at Barbara Keane’s (Erin Richards) night club as a hypnotist. Furthermore, he is able to make people obey his every command, even if that command is murder. It isn’t until later that Jervis reveals his true mission in Gotham; to find his sister, Alice (Naian González Norvind), a carrier of a rare blood disorder. It is then that he hires newly self-appointed Bounty Hunter Jim Gordon (Ben McKenzie) to locate her. Meanwhile, Bruce (David Mazouz) gets to know his doppelgänger, much to Alfred’s (Sean Pertwee) disapproval, and Penguin makes his bid to run Gotham as he announces his candidacy for mayor.
Things aren’t going so well for Jim Gordon. He’s sleeping with Valerie Vale (Jamie Chung) who seems to only want him for a story. On top of this, His ex-girlfriend, Leslie (Morena Baccarin) is back in town, working for the GCPD. Needless to say, this man is harboring a great deal of drama and resentment for himself. That all being said, this was the perfect time for Jim Gordon to confront The Mad Hatter. Through hypnosis, Tetch reveals something about Gordon that puts his newfound lifestyle in perspective; Jim Gordon wants to die. This leads to Tetch trying to get Gordon to kill himself after Gordon has found Alice. We all know this isn’t going to happen as Gordon is the focal point of the series. However, I am curious to see where this will all go in the next episode.
Benedict Samuel plays Tetch as a man who wants to benefit from his sister’s gift and won’t let anyone or anything stand in the way of reuniting with her. Whether he’s hypnotizing someone or having a mere conversation with them, Tetch is egotistical, frightening and beyond creepy. Samuel is obviously having a blast playing this character. He hams up every line and steals every scene he’s in. Honestly, he feels like an evil, egotistical version of Johnny Depp’s Mad Hatter. There’s a scene where we see him hypnotize Barbara Keane and it’s actually quite humorous. The Mad Hatter is undoubtedly one of the best-adapted villains Gotham has ever aired. Given the character’s skill-set, there’s no telling where this will go down the line.
However, The Mad Hatter isn’t the only villain in the Gotham spotlight, as The Penguin (Robin Lord Taylor) officially makes his bid to run for Mayor. Just on a side note, I totally called this when I reviewed the premiere. I don’t have a point to make, I just wanted to unload those bragging rights. The Penguin running for Mayor is nothing new and, at this point, is almost a staple of the character. He did it in the comics, The Batman TV Series from the 60’s and most notably in Batman Returns. Therefore, it actually makes sense for the show to throw its hat in the ring and do their own interpretation of it. It works even more now because of how many people The Penguin has on his side. I mean, he had a whole mob at his disposal in the last episode.
As we saw in Burn The Witch, Bruce has finally met his doppelgänger from Indian Hill. Feeling sorry for him, Bruce allows the doppelgänger to stay with him and Alfred, much to Alfred’s dismay. We can only assume (as it’s pretty obvious) that The Court Of Owls was trying to pull a Star Trek: Nemesis with this character, to replace Bruce with the doppelgänger. That being said, much like Shinzon in that film, it’s very easy to feel remorse for this doppelgänger. He doesn’t know who he is, why he was made or how he’s even alive. He just knows that he looks exactly like Bruce and while he was eating garbage, Bruce was living the good life.
This makes it especially interesting when Selina Kyle (Camren Bicondova) shows up asking Bruce for help involving Ivy’s sudden disappearance. Due to his current situation, Bruce can’t help, to which Selina brushes off as him just being selfish. This is, of course, not the case but it’s easy to see why Selina would see him that way three seasons in. Furthermore, the doppelgänger overhears this, steals one of the cars from the mansion and goes off to find Selina. This is something that could lead to some good drama, as both Selina and Bruce’s doppelgänger have reckless personalities. Therefore, despite Bruce’s obvious affection for Selina, it would make perfect sense why Selina could end up falling for his clone. I’m expecting good things to come from this on a dramatic level.
Overall, Look Into My Eyes isn’t a perfect episode. Valerie Vale is still a pretty pointless character and Falcone returns with his son in a pretty awkward and cheap manner. However, I will concede that this represents one of the best episodes in the series thus far. The Mad Hatter was great, there’s compelling drama with Jim Gordon and The Penguin running for Mayor could lead to some great things down the line. More, please!
- The Mad Hatter
- Penguin Running For Mayor
- Great Drama
- Good Performances
- Valerie Vale Is Still Useless
- Return Of Falcone Feels Cheap & Unnecessary