SPOILER WARNING! The following recap contains spoilers for tonight's Gotham episode, "Stop Hitting Yourself."
The last two episodes of Gotham, we've primarily focused on one main character, but interestingly the main character of "Stop Hitting Yourself" is not a character but a place -- the Narrows. Most of this episode takes place in that specific setting and shows that the Narrows (and the residents themselves) are poised to have a massive impact on the rest of Gotham.
As Sofia Falcone continues to manipulate Penguin into doubting himself, all the while setting up Gordon as her go-to captain of the GCPD, the Narrows is the one place she's not looking. She really should be. Penguin wants to control it through its de facto leader, Cherry; Ed is weaving an anti-Penguin narrative there through the fights in the ring; and, oh yeah, Solomon Grundy is winning every fight in said ring by ripping the arms off his competitors and then beating them to death with their own appendages.
And the fans love it. The residents of the Narrows are looking at Grundy, looking at the rich of Gotham, and looking at their own selves and thinking, "How's about we rip off the rest of Gotham's collective arms maybe, huh?" So that seems ... relevant.
Barbara, Tabitha, and Selina all get pulled into trying to drag Ed from the Narrows back to Penguin, but instead find themselves with a grudging respect for the place, and even, ultimately, turn coat on Penguin and protect Ed from Firefly. The team-up is of mutual benefit, but it yields the death of current leader Cherry and introduces the woman who seems destined to become the ruler of the Narrows -- Lee.
That's a pretty big deal, fellow homeboys and girls of Gotham. Think about it: You got Sofia Falcone trying to take down Penguin, you got Barbara teaming up with Tabitha and Selina to run guns and profit to build their own empire, and meanwhile Dr. Leslie Thompkins with the good hair is already the leader of Gotham's very angry poor. And Ed's her sidekick? And Grundy is her muscle? It's a wacky scenario, folks, but it's really working somehow.
Wow, why is Gotham so good lately? You don't suppose it might be that they've actually given the women stuff to do, is it?
HUMOROUS OBSERVATIONS TO ELICIT SOFT CHUCKLES FROM THE READER
- Only on Gotham could a character like Penguin seem really endearing because he wants to help teach a psychopathic mute child how to be a better murderer.
- Lee cold-cocking Barbara is fun, but so is Barbara telling Lee that she thought she'd changed, but "it turns out you just got a new hairdo." Can they Step-Brothers this situation and be best friends already?
- Hair-related: Once again everyone's hair continues to volumize to new levels. This week it's Grundy and Ed with hair teased to the point of no return.
- Gordon is Captain of the GCPD. I know he's been better this season, but I still had to pause the episode and keep repeating the word "captain" for a while like I was Khan on Ceti Alpha V and I just found out Kirk is an admiral now.
- There's no better moment in this episode than Tabitha getting in the ring to fight her former boyfriend, Butch, realizing he might brutally kill her, and then accepting a bat with hammers in it from Barbara. Truly, only on Gotham, friends.
- Grundy ripped the arm off of a competitor named "Murder Face"; was anyone else disappointed that we didn't get more from a character named Murder Face?