A Look at Gotham- Season 3, Episode 4: “Mad City: New Day Rising”

Now, to follow up where we left off with Jim pursuing Jervis Tetch’s sister, all while he deals with inner turmoil made all the worse when Leslie Thompkins returns.  “New Day Rising” follows up on “Look Into My Eyes” and gives us another look at the madness of the Mad Hatter.

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The episode begins with Alice in GCPD custody with Bullock questioning her on Jervis.  She ran as far away from him as she could and somehow ended up in Gotham, which was fine until Hugo Strange found her.  Alice maintains that she’s not a monster, and then warns Bullock to be mindful of Jervis, as he can be his own kind of monster.

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Speaking of, Jervis is with a brainwashed minion at an abandoned theme park.  The only thing that kept him sane when Alice left was the hope that he would reunite with her.  If all goes well, that day is today.  But a reunion like this needs to be a private affair.  So Jervis has the man lay his head down on a game so Jervis can smash his head with a mallet.

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Nygma is brought on board with Penguin’s campaign and cannot thank Oswald enough for getting him out of Arkham.  Nygma believes that Arkham has made them both stronger.  Oswald agrees, which is why the release certificates have been framed.  Nygma asks Butch about the men he was speaking with, but Butch doesn’t answer.  Instead, Butch warns Nygma to keep his nose out of his business.

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At GCPD, Jim explains how Jervis came to him about finding Alice.  Leslie is to draw some samples and Jim wants to find Jervis so he can be brought in for questioning.  Barnes doesn’t want Jim’s interference with the investigation unless he wants to get arrested, but Jim will pursue Jervis anyway.

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Alice tells Leslie about her condition- if someone comes into contact with her blood, it changes them.  Jervis believes it brings out a person’s true nature.  Jervis himself isn’t infected, though.  He believes that the two of them are connected.  Alice’s way is the blood, but Jervis, the mind.  It goes beyond hypnosis- he preys on anger, fear, and regret.  Once he’s in your mind, you’re doomed.

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Jim goes to cross the street, but he hears the sound of Jervis’ voice.  The world around him becomes distorted and he starts walking blindly into the street, right into the path of an oncoming truck.  A citizen manages to pull him back to the curb.

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At Wayne Manor, Bruce and Alfred learn that the Rolls Royce has been totaled.  Bruce wonders if the clone went into the city to look like him, but there’s no telling where he would go.  Bruce then figures that the clone is going to see Selina.

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On that, we cut to Bruce 2 and Selina walking the streets and talking about Ivy, as well as Sunny Gilzean.  They arrive at a restaurant that Selina frequents in order to rob people.  She enters and instigates a fight because people in Gotham City are idiots.  As the fight continues, she slips into the back and taking money when two men enter and stop her.

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Penguin holds a campaign event and speaks of his dear mother, who believed him when he didn’t even believe in himself.  Seeing the people of Gotham reminds him that there’s nothing people can’t do when they put their mind to it.  Together, Penguin and the people will Make Gotham Safe Again.

Nygma spots a man speaking with Butch.  Turns out the man was given an envelope of money.  From a distance, Butch tells a man to keep an eye on Nygma.

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Jim stops by Barbara’s club to ask about Jervis Tetch, as his number has been disconnected.  Barbara doesn’t like Jim barging in anytime he needs something, but this time, Jim needs a favor.  This gets Barbara’s attention.  She tells Jim that Jervis came in earlier to hire some muscle for a performance.  Well, it’s Gotham.  Everyone has flair.  Barbara’s words, not mine, but she’s not wrong.

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As night falls, we cut to Jervis interrupting a wrestling match.  The wrestlers, turns out, are the Tweedle Brothers.  He has a job that suits their particular skills in order to rescue his sister.  In exchange, Jervis shows the brothers his watch.

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Rather than just kill Selina, the men tie her up instead.  Selina offers to be useful, but before the men can get to work taking off her fingers, Bruce 2 enters and dispatches of one of the men.  Did no one notice the kid just walking into the restaurant and into the back?  Anyway, he frees Selina, who is shocked by what she’s seen and scurries off.

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Back at GCPD, Jim tells Barnes that he needs to speak with Alice Tetch for five minutes.  She’s being moved to a facility upstate, though, but Jim can’t wait.  He tells Barnes that Jervis might have done something to him, as he’s having thoughts.

Barnes wants Jim to make peace with the decisions that he’s made, but Jim doesn’t know if he can.  Barnes doesn’t want Jim to wake up and realize that 20 years have passed. He agrees to give Jim five minutes.

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Selina asks Bruce 2 about what the hell happened at the restaurant.  But the clone is feeling light-headed, so Selina checks his stomach and notices the scars and bleeding.  Selina demands to know who the hell she’s dealing with right now.

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Nygma asks Penguin if he knows about Butch paying campaign officials.  Oswald knows, and Ed figures that Penguin can win this election fairly.  Nygma insists that Jim call off Butch.  Just then, a young girl thanks Penguin for getting rid of all of Gotham’s monsters.  Penguin uses this as proof that the people love him, but turns out that Nygma paid her.  Even still, Oswald wants to be mayor and warns Nygma to stay out of this.

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Jim asks Alice how to find Jervis.  When the trance is broken, Jim should be fine, but it’s still happening to Jim.  There’s usually a trigger that brings on the hypnotic state.  Jim remembers the last thing being Jervis’ clock, so anything resembling a tick will trigger the hypnosis.

When the two were young, Jervis did it to Alice.  At first, he did it to control her, but then he put other thoughts in Alice’s mind.  Thought a brother shouldn’t have.  This is why Alice wants him dead.

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The wrestlers somehow enter GCPD and play a carnival announcement.  Why is no one stopping them?  I don’t know.  The wrestlers get to work battling the officers.  Before Jim and Alice can leave, Jervis enters and tells Jim that he can’t be killed until that trigger is out of his head.  Jim implores Alice to leave.  However, Jervis pulls out his watch and the familiar ticking gets to Jim, who finds himself pointing his gun at his own temple.

Jervis bids Jim farewell as he leaves with Alice in tow.  Before Jim can blow his brains out, Barnes knocks him out.

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The Bruce clone tells Selina that he didn’t even know he looked like Bruce until he went to Wayne Manor.  As for why he’s pretending, the clone saw the way that Selina looked at Bruce when she came by the manor.

Selina denies looking at him a particular way.  The clone just says that he didn’t have a friend.  Selina says he’s better off without friends since people are overrated.  After all, she never had a friend.  One is at the bottom of a river and other burned.

She tells the clone that he’s more normal than he thinks.  And with that, the clone goes in for a kiss.  For whatever reason, Selina isn’t enthralled, despite the many times in Season One that she asked Bruce to kiss her.

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Jim finds himself handcuffed to a chair.  He asks Leslie to un-cuff him, but she refuses, saying she doesn’t know what she’d do if anything happened to him.  Yes, Leslie moved on, but she didn’t have a choice.

She went through a painful period of her life alone.  Like an idiot, she hoped that Jim would show up, but he never did.  Mario was there when Leslie needed someone.  After everything that’s happened, all Jim has to say is that the past is the past.  Barnes has put Jim on a 48 hour suicide watch.  Leslie knows the past can’t be changed, but there’s a difference between moving on and letting go.

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Butch holds a meeting with some followers and tells them that when Penguin is mayor, these men will run the city.  Then Butch gets a call and assembles the group into action.

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Bullock asks one of the remaining brothers where Jervis is taking Alice.  He plays the sympathy card, saying how the brother lost two, but Jervis gained a sister.  Hardly fair.  Bullock knows all about the wrestling team and threatens to burn the luchador masks.  The brother finally agrees to tell Bullock about the location.

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Back at the abandoned carnival, Jervis has Alice looking more like…well, Alice from Alice in Wonderland.  He forgives Alice for everything, but needs her to understand the consequences if she leaves again.  He reveals several syringes and injects one into Alice.

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Jim is transported not home, but into Bullock’s hands instead, thanks to Leslie.  Looks like the boys are back in action.

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Bruce and Alfred confront the clone, who tells them that Selina is safe.  The clone tells Bruce that he has no idea what he actually wants, managing to get under Bruce’s skin.  He then tells Bruce that he won’t be seeing him again.  He doesn’t know why he was created, but he doesn’t belong in Gotham, so he steps onto the railing and jumps off…then landing on a truck.  He flees further into the city.

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Having drawn enough blood, Jervis plans to create a few monsters with Alice’s blood.  Jim and Bullock arrive and demand that Jervis free Alice.  Jervis offers to free Jim if he lets him and Alice leave.  Then, Jim can live a long life.  Jervis asks one question: does Jim hear the ticking?  He does, as he begins to lower his gun.

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Jim finds himself frozen in fear as Jervis’ ears echo throughout his mind.  He tells Jim to stop fightina and just let go.  But then Jim remembers saying that the past is the past, as well as Leslie’s words about letting go.  With that, Jim shoots the machine and stops the ticking.  Alice still won’t go with Jervis, but she doesn’t have to, as she falls off the ledge and ends up impaled.  Well, that sucks.

Alice’s body is sealed in a body bag as Bullock tells Barnes that he followed Leslie’s lead.  Barnes warns Bullock that Jim may get him killed, but until that day, Bullock will never turn his back on Gordon.  Well, at least someone’s loyal.

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Meanwhile, it’s time for the election results.  Butch tells Penguin that Nygma took back the money from election officials, and Penguin isn’t pleased with this betrayal.  Before Butch can kill Nygma, it turns out that Oswald Cobblepot has won the mayor’s election by a landslide.  Yes, Penguin still won and the people really want him as mayor.

Then Penguin figures out the answer to Nygma’s previous riddle- I can’t be bought, but I can be stolen with one glance. I’m worthless to one, but priceless to two.  The answer? love.  The people love him.  If Penguin would have bought the election, he never would have known.

As for how Nygma knew, he believed in Penguin.  Oswald turns on Butch, saying that he never believed in him from the start.  Butch isn’t going away, though, as Oswald needs some muscle.

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Bruce asks Alfred if they’ll ever see the clone again, but that’s unlikely.  And still no telling why Hugo Strange created him.  Bruce does ask Alfred if Selina really kissed the clone, but Alfred, like any sensible person, doesn’t even entertain this question.

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As the GCPD is being cleaned up, Jim thanks Leslie for telling Bullock where to find him.  And whatever Jervis did to Jim has passed.  Then Jim tells Leslie that everything she said was true.  And after today, this is harder than he thought.  He’s happy for her.  Well, he’s trying to be, so that’s at least a starting point.

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Let’s wrap things up: the Bruce clone walks the streets, but soon finds himself kidnapped by the Court of Owls.  He’s soon kidnapped.  Penguin gives a victory speech and announces his first act is to introduce everyone to his Chief of Staff: Edward Nygma. And back at the crime scene, Barnes spots a trail of blood and looks up when a drop of it splashes onto his face.  Now he’s infected.  Well, that sucks.

Trust Gotham to think up ways to send mild-mannered, proto versions of villains over the deep end.  Whether Jerome, Barbara, and now Jervis, the show loves to turn these villains upside down, and it ends up involving a close relative.

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We didn’t spend that much time with Alice, so I think the show could have stood to keep her around much longer.  Or just have her either in custody or away from Jervis.  But at then again, how much time would Gotham have devoted to the Mad Hatter here before moving back onto another storyline?

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So though Alice is now gone, this does set up sending Jervis down a darker path and turning the Mad Hatter into something more sinister.  I like him now, but the death of his sister would be enough to drive him into madness.  I hope that’s the case and he returns later in the show’s run since, as far as I could tell, he wasn’t apprehended by GCPD.

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But at least he’s out of Jim’s head, and this was a good way not just to have Jervis tormenting Jim, but also have Gordon confront some of his inner turmoil.  His romantic relationship with Leslie is done and that’s been eating away at him to the point that Jervis just needed a little push to send him over the edge.

So after seeing Jim work as a vigilante, it’s nice to see him deal with all the bottled-up emotions that he’s had since last season.  And I hope, for now, that he and Leslie can work on reconciling instead of trying to rekindle old feelings for each other.  As they said, the past is the past, so my hope is they move forward with their lives and Gotham doesn’t give us some love triangle involving either Mario or Valerie.

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As for Barnes getting infected with Alice’s blood, why?  I would ask why that area wasn’t sectioned off or what Barnes hoped to gain from examining Alice’s blood since he’s not a doctor, but this is Gotham, where anyone can enter the GCPD at will and Jim Gordon can discard a red hood instead of logging it as evidence. But maybe this will give Barnes more to do instead of having him rant at Gordon for interfering with police investigations.

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I’m all for Nygma and Penguin having more screen-time as I like their chemistry, and good on Ed for realizing early on that Oswald could win this mayoral race without cutting any corners.  Again, have you seen the crowds that Penguin can summon at a moment’s notice?

No way would he have to cheat to win, so I’m glad that Nygma gave Oswald the confidence in himself to win a clean race, even though this was a quick election.  This only furthers the bond the two have and harms Butch’s relationship with Penguin.  I’m interested to see how, if at all, Butch may retaliate, if only because this gives Butch something to do other than stand at Oswald’s side.

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And it creates quite the dynamic for this trio.  Now that Oswald knows that he has Gotham’s support, will he try to play by the rules and avoid becoming a corrupt politician, or still bend the rules when necessary?  And would Butch remain loyal to Penguin despite getting chewed out by him, or will he revolt?  Who knows?  Either way, as long as Butch gets more to do this season.

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I thought the Bruce clone would keep up the charade for a good episode or two before Selina caught on, but he put himself out there to save Selina, got to bond with her a bit as he considered the possibility of having friends, and even told off Bruce when he said that Bruce didn’t know what he wanted.

Now the clone has been captured by the Court of Owls, so I’m sure we’ll see him again very soon.  And did I detect a hint of jealousy when Bruce wondered if Selina thought the clone was him when she kissed him?  I know the Bruce and Selina romantic stuff hasn’t been at the forefront, and for good reason, but with this, I wonder if Bruce will be more forward with how he feels.

Well, how he feels now, given that he wasn’t enticed by the idea of kissing her not too long ago.

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“New Day Rising” was a good continuation of the Mad Hatter storyline that kept the door open for him to return later.  It allowed Jim to confront his demons and hopefully put them behind him as he tries to pursue a bond with Leslie, if that’s possible.  And now that Penguin is mayor, I’m anxious to see how he’ll keep his promise to Make Gotham Safe Again.  Here’s hoping we haven’t seen the last of the Mad Hatter.

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