Episode Title: Mr. Freeze
Original Airdate: 2-29-16
It seems like it’s been a long time, but Gotham is finally back and has transitioned from the Rise of the Villains to the Wrath of the Villains starting with our good old friend Mr. Freeze. It also answers the age old question of how you properly pronounce his last name. While I’ve notoriously had my ups and downs with this show, it ended with last year’s midseason on a rather high note. But at the same time, I really had my doubts with how they were going to handle the rather large shoes to fill for someone who is honestly a variation of Flash and Legends of Tomorrow’s Captain Cold, with more tragedy and less humor. But I will say that for now I’m still on board. I just wish we had a little more time with Leslie Thompkins who I saw a whole lot more of last month in Deadpool, but I’ll just leave that over there for now.
The elephant in the room is how this show would handle Mr. Fries, and I think they worked him in rather well all things considered. He’s not quite the emotionless and expertly played villain that we saw way back in the animated series, but he’s also not the pun spouting muscles from Brussels. They did seem to work a little too hard to develop some quite pathos for him with his extremely sick wife, not to mention adding in the rather callous pharmacist in order to make it a little less evil when he comes back to freeze the guy. The biggest problem that I had with the whole freezing process was the reanimation part. A little knowledge is a dangerous thing, and I seem to recall that the problem with human cryogenics lies mainly in where the ice crystals form. During rapid freezing, the water that makes up most of the human body expands and forms ice crystals, and those expanding ice crystals cause cell damage, and I’m pretty sure that the cell damage isn’t severe enough to cause the body to dissolve into a puddle when it warms up. Instead, it’s mainly an issue with damaged brain cells. And while I’m not an expert, I would also imagine that once warmed up, the person would then need to be resuscitated and not just revive without any help whatsoever.
Aside from a little half-remembered science lesson, Fries was handled well enough. Another villain that I have zero connection with and also just so happens to share a name with another comic book character showed up in this episode. And while I knew he was on his way, I didn’t quite expect to see Hugo Strange show up so soon. And while Hugo Strange is a doctor, I doubt that they will be referring to him as Dr. Strange on a regular basis, if they include the Dr. they will likely also include the Hugo. But B.D. Wong was also a nice addition to the cast as well as the overall mystery in Gotham. He is not only the head of Arkham Asylum, but we get a return visit to Indian Hill and a slight update on Firefly’s condition.
And as often is the case, the last character to talk about is Jim Gordon himself. Most of the episode’s beginning is merely an audience recap as he is questioned about Galavan’s death. But since there is no evidence, he’s fully reinstated back into the status quo so the show can get back to normal, no questions asked. Though Captain Barnes isn’t quite convinced, even when Penguin is brought in and fully corroborates Gordon’s story, albeit with a little suspicious flair of “what did he say happened?” No update on young Master Bruce this episode, though we do get a hint of Cat as well as a brief scene where we find out that Butch is the new King of Gotham and Galavan’s sister is itching to be his new queen whether he likes it or not. And just a quick side note to cap things off, I just watched Jessica Lucas in Cloverfield for the first time this past weekend, and it was such a trip to see her play the overly nice and incredibly boring character in that movie after seen what she has been doing here on Gotham. Tangent over.