Gotham -- Viper

The newest drug in town is a real killer!

This show is really starting to fire on all eight cylinders. Even my least favorite storyline, the Bruce Wayne story, started to become interesting. Meanwhile, not for the first time, Gordon wishes he had just killed Penguin.

Former Wellszyn scientist, Stan Patowski, leaves a green vial in a street performer's guitar case. The guy takes it and it makes him incredibly strong. It also makes him incredibly thirsty for vast quantities of milk. When the store clerk has a problem with his going to the cooler and guzzling down milk, the street performer pulls the ATM machine out and takes off with it.

Gordon and Harvey are nearby and go to investigate the crime. They track the street performer to his lair. They get a taste of how strong he is, then before his eyes the drug he consumed seems to be consuming him. He loses all his strength and is crushed by the heavy object he was going to toss at Gordon and Harvey.

While this is going on, Young Bruce Wayne is building a police board, trying to figure out how Gotham works. He doesn't understand how the two biggest crime bosses in Gotham were allowed to get a piece of the Arkham project. Alfred wishes Bruce would throw it all away. Bruce perks up when Alfred says he's going to take Bruce to a Wayne Foundation function.

Over at Fish's place, she's training her weapon so she can sick her on Falcone. She makes her listen to opera. Then she gives her acting lessons on how to behave. When she feels the girl is ready she sicks her on Falcone. Falcone is in the park feeding the pigeons when the weapon comes strolling by humming opera. The same piece his mother used to sing. She offers to let him listen to the tape with her and like that the fish is on the hook, so to speak.

And over at Marone's club, Penguin makes a very bad mistake. He decides to tell Marone who he really is and that he sued to work for Fish and Falcone. His honesty earns him getting his head banged against the table. And it earns Gordon getting kidnapped and told by Marone that he'd better tell the same story as Penguin or he'll kill them both. So he tells how he was ordered to kill Penguin but didn't. Thanks to Pengy's big beak Marone now has something on Gordon to use against him. Gordon really should have killed him.

Penguin's gambit ultimately pays off. He tells Marone a way to sneak in a hit Falcone's casino. So his meteoric rise in the Marone syndicate continues. Like Fish, he feels he has a perfect weapon against Falcone to take him down.

Meanwhile Stan the man is giving free samples of Viper away to all the street people. It seems he's doing this to expose the Wayne Foundation and Wellszyn for what it is. Seems he went to the Waynes to get them to stop the research project and that after they died Wellszyn started it up again.

This gives yet another suspect in the murder of the Waynes. The whole mugging was obviously just a cover. You don't kill someone after you get what you want from them. You take your loot and leave them alive. They didn't even see the man's face. So the mugging was just a cover for the planned murder of Bruce's parents. Neither Falcone or Marone would have gotten a piece of the Arkham pie if the Waynes weren't dead. And Wellszyn would have had to stop their research projects on bio weapons. So quite a few people wanted the Waynes dead it would seem.

When Gordon and Harvey track down an old professor of Stan's he downs a vial of Viper and goes all Viper on them. Before being consumed by Viper he reveals that since killing all the street people with Viper didn't expose Wellszyn and the Wayne Foundation for what it is, he's going to take a more direct approach. This makes Gordon realize that Stan's next target is going to be an attack on the Wayne Foundation function where Alfred and Bruce have just entered the building.

At the Wayne function Bruce corners one of the Foundation executives, showing her that while he may just be a little boy, he's going to be a problem for them. He says he wants to talk to the Wayne Foundation board. Before the woman can fob him off, Stan's face appears on the monitor announcing that since killing street people hasn't exposed the Wayne Foundation for what it is, than maybe killing all the rich mucky-mucks will do the trick. After which he feels Viper into the air ducts to gas them all.

Alfred sees the Viper started to seem through the air ducts, puts a jacket over Bruce's face and gets him out of there. Afterwards, Alfred changes his tune about what Bruce is doing. He offers to help him find out what's going on.

As for Stan, before jumping off the roof he tells Gordon and Harvey to check out what's in Warehouse 39. Of course, when they do just that, the warehouse has been completely cleaned out. Whatever was in Warehouse 39 has been completely removed. It seems likely it was more chemical weapons like Viper.

As I said at the beginning, I felt this episode everything really started to gel together. I haven't really been interested in Young Bruce Wayne's story. Sorry, Batman enthusiasts. But it finally got interesting now that Alfred has gotten on board with getting in the thick of things. To be honest, Alfred is kind of the most interesting thing in the Bruce Wayne story. It's interesting watching him have to deal with this kid that has been mentally damaged by his parents murders in front of his eyes. It's also interesting in that Alfred isn't what one would call Father Knows Best. You kind of saw his love for the kid when the minute he saw the green gas coming out of the vents how he covered his face and rushed him out of the building before he could be harmed. The last scene echoed what would be the relationship in later years when Alfred would assist Bruce once he took on the persona of Batman.



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