In “Red Hood,” we got some pretty interesting stuff done with the Red Hood Gang and digging into Alfred’s past as he gets a visit from an old friend. Everything else, though, not so interesting.
The episode begins with a heist. Before heading in, one of the members, Gus Floyd, played by Michael Goldsmith, dons a red hood that he made himself in order to spice things up. The four enter Gotham Bank and rob it blind, though Floyd puts on a bit of a spectacle for himself and the crowd. An officer fires several shots at Floyd, but he somehow manages to miss every single shot. That’s quite an achievement on Floyd’s part, perhaps.
However, the robbers can’t make a quick getaway due to the cops speeding down a few blocks away. To create a diversion, Floyd throws some of the cash into the air, which sends the crowd into a frenzy. This gives the robbers just enough time to escape.
Sometime later, GCPD arrive. Gordon and Bullock investigate the scene. The robbers never went for the vault, just the registers. The bank manager’s secretary, played by Jenna Gavigan, finds the red hooded man nice for throwing out the money, never mind that the money belonged to the bank and he only did it to ensure his escape. One of the robbers kept track of the police’s response time as well. The only other time the silent alarm had been triggered involved a smoke bomb set off by the Mortgage desk. GCPD will need the footage from that incident.
A storm hits Gotham that night as Alfred receives an unexpected visitor at Wayne Manor: his old pal, Reggie Payne, played by David O’Hara. It’s been 20 long years since these two last saw each other. Reggie had been picked up by GCPD for trying to sleep under the Westbury Bridge, but he ended up talking with one of the officers who served as a marine. The officer took pity on Reggie after learning that he was with Her Majesty’s Special Air Service.
So what’s going on with Reggie? Well, Vanessa died, for starters. 11 years ago now. A year later, he lost the house, so he moved back to Gotham and took on a few jobs- nothing he’s proud of, though. Bruce enters and insists that Reggie stay for a few days.
Back to the not-plot, Fish is taken through an institution and introduced to the Office Manager, played by Jeffrey Combs.
At GCPD, Gordon reviews the surveillance footage. He notices that one of the members is wearing a jacket bearing the lapel of Kleg’s Auto.
We then cut to Kleg’s Auto where the robbers lounge around. Eager Floyd wants to refer to the group as the Red Hood Gang since he feels the hood protected him. As such, he thinks that the leader of the group should be the one to wear the hood.
Fair enough. So Destro, played by Jonny Coyne, shoots and kills Floyd before donning the mask himself.
Then back to Fish. The manager knows that Fish has been causing a fuss, but he isn’t the one calling the shots. The doctor owns the building. Fish goes to leave, saying that she’ll only talk to the real person in charge, but he’s away at a consultation in Gotham. We also learn the name of our faceless doctor- Dr. Dulmacher. Okay, I guess.
Back in Gotham, Fish’s former club still isn’t faring much better under Penguin’s ownership. The stand-up comedian isn’t winning the crowd and, even worse, the club is almost out of booze. Reason is, as Butch points out, because the booze belongs to Maroni, who isn’t exactly on good terms with Penguin. Maroni was willing to do business with Fish, sure, but Penguin is a different matter. Since Maroni supplies this side of Gotham, few would be willing to cross him just to help out Penguin. Butch is willing to help out, though. After all, he’s poured his blood, sweat, and tears into this building.
Gordon and Bullock show up at Kleg’s Auto. Bullock wants details on Gordon’s growing relationship with Leslie, but that conversation will have to come later, as Bullock finds Floyd’s body in the refrigerator. Figuring that this guy was the leader, the detectives conclude that they have seen the last of the Red Hood Gang.
So then the Red Hood Gang robs another bank. The customers ask if the gang will throw them money again. Destro, now donning hood, eventually relents and throws up some cash.
Bullock and Gordon review footage from the robbery and realize it will be difficult to pursue this gang when the people love them so much. Alvarez brings in a witness: Mr. Chaing, played by Lee Wong. He works at a restaurant a block away from the bank and saw the gang park their van nearby. He managed to get a look at one of the robbers- the one wearing the hood. At first, the detectives think to get a sketch artist, but they do already have the armed robbery files open. Maybe Chaing could look through them and see if he recognizes an associate of Gus Floyd.
Back at Wayne Manor, Reggie helps Bruce train through some alternative methods. He knocks Bruce down a few times, which gets Bruce angry, but this is part of Reggie’s lesson: never lose your cool because it can get you killed. He offers Bruce a free shot and Bruce throws a few, but they aren’t all that hard. Bruce’s reasoning is that Reggie is bigger, though Reggie doesn’t consider that a good excuse. If someone’s bigger than you, use your size to their advantage and make good use of the environment.
Alfred intervenes and reminds Bruce that discipline and hard work are effective methods. When Bruce leaves, Alfred tells Reggie that raising Bruce has been a challenge, but it’s obvious how much Bruce has helped him. For now, Alfred would prefer that the past stay in the past.
Penguin sees two workers loading booze and figures that stealing their alcohol will be a cinch, but the GCPD breaks up the shipping and confiscates the alcohol. It turns out that these guys work for Butch. After all, it’s cleaner than going in guns a-blazing.
I guess Barbara is perfectly fine with two random girls squatting in her house, since she likes having them around to the point that she offers both Ivy and Selina her clothes. She calls Selina beautiful and says that she can use her beauty to her advantage. It can be stronger than any weapon. In a moment I can’t help but appreciate, Selina asks Barbara what good that has done her. She has a good point, I must admit.
At the lineup, Chaing selects man number four. Even though it’s one witness’ word, Bullock and Gordon get the idea to turn the Red Hood Gang against each other.
Fish again. She asks the manager who the body parts are for, and we learn that they’re for personal experiments and clients all over the world. The manager thinks that Fish’s eyes would fetch for a good price. There are two options: kill her and everyone else in the basement, which is an acceptable inconvenience, or take her eyes now. Fish introduces a third option.
Yeah, she gouges out her own damn eye and then stomps on it. After this, she passes out. Why did she do this? I don’t know.
Bruce brings Alfred a bottle of wine from the cellar- a nice Burgundy from 1966 and one of Thomas Wayne’s favorites. Reggie downs his glass as he and Alfred begin swapping war stories. We learn that Reggie went on covert missions and never lost a man except one time during a sandstorm. The squad got separated. Two were captured. Alfred managed to fight off 12 before being overtaken. At this point, Alfred declares it a done night and sends Bruce to bed for the evening. Reggie, however, wonders why Alfred is hiding his lethal war past a secret from the boy.
Now another member of the gang needs the mask, as his girlfriend is ready to leave him. If he wears the hood, he figures that she’ll take him seriously. He then pulls a gun on Destro and demands the hood. Destro dares him to use the gun before he makes him eat it. As a result, he’s shot two times. I won’t lie, Destro’s line made me laugh.
Gordon and Bullock, stationed outside, rush in. They find a number of loan rejection letters, as Destro had inadequate collateral. What did Destro want to do? Why, open a pastry shop, of course, but the banks don’t care about people. He wanted to make them all see, which he planned to do with the last heist at the International Savings Bank of Gotham.
Fresh booze is brought into the club. Penguin and Butch toast to new beginnings and no longer being sidekicks. Penguin asks Butch if he misses Fish, to which Butch says that Fish got what she deserved. Despite what happened, though, Penguin still misses her. After all, maybe our enemies define us more than our friends do.
Alfred hears some clattering and finds Reggie trying to take a few things before leaving. He didn’t want to ask Alfred for money and is in some real trouble. He then stabs Alfred and leaves. Bruce enters soon after and calls for help.
The Red Hood Gang is now down to three members, but before the robbery can commence, GCPD arrive. A shootout takes place and the Red Hood bearer, having no fear, pulls a gun and his shot dead by the officers. Bullock needs a danish. No, seriously, that’s what he says. Jim gets a call.
He then heads to the hospital and joins Bruce, who can’t afford to lose Alfred.
We then cut to Wayne Enterprises, where Reggie reports to the board on Bruce’s crime web and the evidence he’s collected. It’s all just theories, he says, with nothing concrete. He gives Alfred a few weeks in the hospital. Now it may be time to make a move on Bruce.
Oh, and some kid picks up the Red Hood and dons it himself. Isn’t that evidence? You know what, never mind. Episode over.
Huh. This episode was decent. Nothing great or anything to write home about, but it had its moments. After last week’s was he or wasn’t he Joker plot, we get Gotham tackling the Red Hood and treating the actual hood as more of a charm. Anyone who wore it eventually end up with misfortune, as we see with each member of the Red Hood Gang that wore it. At the very least, these criminals were a bit entertaining to me.
Lloyd himself was full of energy- though his cackling felt like the show wanted to do another Joker red herring- and Destro struggling to get on top of the bank table to address the crowd made me laugh. Like The Balloonman, these were bad people that the citizens of Gotham City appreciated, but only because they got free money out of it. Sure, these guys won’t show up again, but they did leave an impression on me and I would have enjoyed more scenes of them interacting, to be honest.
Same goes with Alfred and Reggie. This is a much more militant Alfred than we’re used to from most interpretations of Batman, whether on the small screen or films, but this version has seen his fair share of carnage. Alfred feels grounded when he’s around Bruce and says as much when he finds Reggie trying to teach Bruce his methods. With Bruce losing both of his parents, he just has Alfred left. Bruce helps humanize Alfred after what he’s seen and endured, while Alfred gets to pass on life lessons to Bruce.
I understand why Reggie took the approach that he did when it came to training Bruce. Using your opponent’s size and the environment around you helped introduce Bruce to the very methods he will later utilize in his adult life.
Penguin still doesn’t get how to run a nightclub, which makes me wonder why Falcone entrusted it to him in the first place instead of just having Butch do it. Right now, Penguin just wants to keep the business afloat, but Butch, who we thought had been handled by Zsasz, seems to be just fine. His devotion is now less to Fish and more to the club. It’s a nice way to help flesh him out a bit, but it’s also good since we don’t hear much about the history of the club.
Barbara’s subplot is just as pointless as it has been. She still seems to have no issue with Ivy and Selina staying there, though. Again, she barely knows these girls and it’s a bit strange that she wouldn’t wonder where they came from.
They don’t exactly ground Barbara as much as just give her someone to talk to, though her talking to Selina about using her beauty to get what she wanted was…off-putting, to be honest. Though, if it had any upswing, it would be Selina’s response when she asked Barbara how that worked out for her.
As for Fish…the hell? No, really, why did she do that? She’s been able to maintain control ever since she took over, so I have to wonder what compelled her to take out her own eye? It came out of nowhere and felt like Gotham trying to inject some shock value for the sake of shock value.
Without any proper buildup, though, the moment just felt forced, in my opinion. I do appreciate that we’ll finally be getting a proper introduction of the Dollmaker, who was only briefly referenced in the second episode, but…come on, Gotham. The Dollmaker’s last name is Dulmacher? Seriously?
You know, Arrow may have the occasional blatant wink and nod with its references, but it didn’t give the Dollmaker such a blatant name.
Oh, and by the way- the kid at the end just happens to pick up the Red Hood when, again, that GCPD should have logged that as evidence. How did no cop keep watch of it after Gordon just discarded the damn thing. Why’d he get rid of it in the first place?
So next week should the first official introduction of Dollmaker. How will he deal with a one-eyed Fish Mooney? We’ll see. Hopefully it’s at least interesting.