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TV Review: Gotham 1.9 “Harvey Dent”
Olympus Athens   |  

Gotham Logo Image

Gotham
Season 1, Episode 9: “Harvey Dent”
Written and created by Bruno Heller
Starring Ben McKenzie, Donal Logue, Jada Pinkett Smith, Sean Pertwee, Robin Lord Taylor, David Mazouz, Camren Bicondova, Erin Richards, Zabryna Guevara, Andrew Stewart-Jones, and Victoria Cartegena
FOX
Air Date: Monday, November 17, 2014, 8pm

Spoiler alert! Recap of Episode 8 “The Mask” Review of Gotham Season 1, Episode 9 “Harvey Dent” to follow!

There are residual effects to the whole precinct turning their backs on Jim Gordon (Ben McKenzie), including the Captain (Zabryna Guevara). Jim doesn’t think he needs them. Bullock (Donal Logue) is of a different mind, when Jim goes missing after investigating a “fight club” competition for a finance job. Bullock makes an impassioned speech on Jim’s behalf. He IS the best character on the show. Penguin (Robin Lord Taylor) goes and makes nice with Fish (Jada Pinkett Smith) who promptly stabs his hand with his gift to her. He re-gifts to his mommy who warns, “Everyone has secrets.” The ending of the episode was really enjoyable, albeit expected. And c’mon Barbara (Erin Richards)! Give the guy a break!

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TV Review: Doctor Who 8.12 “Death In Heaven”
Dr. Geek, Ph.D.   |  

Doctor Who Death In Heaven

Doctor Who
Season 8, Episode 12 “Death In Heaven”
Directed by Rachel Talalay
Written by Steven Moffat
Starring Peter Capaldi, Jenna Coleman, Samuel Anderson, Michelle Gomez
BBC America
Air Date: Saturday, November 8, 2014

The end has finally come and with it, reckoning. A number of threads were left hanging after “Dark Water” last week. What is Missy/The Master planning? Is Danny really dead? What will happen to Clara? How do the Cybermen fit in? It was all a bit of a mish-mash. It was difficult to see where the dramatic payoff would come from, and how it would finally let viewers look back at this season’s story arc.

While I believe this final episode, “Death In Heaven,” competently checked off all the boxes and answered everything, excellence came only in flashes. Michelle Gomez is responsible for much of it. The scene in which Missy finally pulls back the curtain to reveal the reason for all this to the Doctor comes to mind. The sequence between Missy and Osgood is also quite chilling. The rest of it merely services the arc. Give some credit to Steven Moffat for turning the Cybermen into zombies, and then a platoon of soldiers, but that’s all they are. Likewise, Danny’s part in the finale all fits, but it’s nothing spectacular for all its final flash. In all, it’s been a quality season that set the bar high. This finale meets that bar, but does not dramatically surpass it.

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TV Review: Gotham 1.8 “The Mask”
Olympus Athens   |  

Gotham Logo Image

Gotham
Season 1 Episode 8: “The Mask”
Written by Bruno Heller
Starring Ben McKenzie, Donal Logue, Jada Pinkett Smith, Sean Pertwee, Robin Lord Taylor, David Mazouz, Camren Bicondova, Erin Richards, Zabryna Guevara, Andrew Stewart-Jones, David Zayas, John Doman, and Victoria Cartegena
FOX
Air Date: Monday, November 10, 2014, 8pm

Spoiler alert! Turn away now if you don’t want to read the Gotham 1.7 “Penguin’s Umbrella” recap or the Gotham 1.8 “The Mask” review that follows!

Poor Jim! Everybody wants him dead or jailed. Penguin’s (Robin Lord Taylor) waddle into the station revealed that Jim (Ben McKenzie) morally lied about killing Penguin. Now, Harvey (Donal Logue) wants to kill him (but comes around). Fish Mooney (Jada Pinkett Smith) wants Penguin dead and Jim brought in. Falcone (John Doman) is gunning for him, and Montoya and Allen (Victoria Cartagena and Andrew Stewart-Jones) find themselves on the wrong end, but redeem themselves. Seems they just discovered that perfect hostage Barbara (Erin Richards) was right all along about Jim. But we knew that already.

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TV Review: Doctor Who 8.11 “Dark Water”
Dr. Geek, Ph.D.   |  

Doctor Who Episode 8.11 Dark Water and The Invasion BBC

Doctor Who
Season 8, Episode 11 “Dark Water”
Directed by Rachel Talalay
Written by Steven Moffat
Starring Peter Capaldi, Jenna Coleman, Samuel Anderson, Michelle Gomez
BBC America
Air Date: Saturday, November 1, 2014

What a difference a week can make, or a writer can make. After coming through an episode like “In The Forest Of The Night,” where everything felt like it was on unsure ground in terms of character and motivation, here we are on bedrock once again. Odd bedrock it is, however. The blows come fast and furious: first there is a death, then a betrayal, and then a mystery. Finally, the little snippets of the Missy story that we’ve seen make sense, and we know who Missy is.

Now whether you like what you see in this episode comes down, as it often does, to whether you like Steven Moffat‘s brand of storytelling on Doctor Who. In his favor, the trademark cleverness is here, and the economical knack for character. We definitely now understand how the crumb trail was left for us, the audience, across the season. The condensed plotting and the penchant for odd ideas that drive parts of the audience nuts are present here too.

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TV Review: Gotham 1.7 “Penguin’s Umbrella”
Olympus Athens   |  

Gotham Logo Image

Gotham
Season 1 Episode 7: “Penguin’s Umbrella”
Written by Bruno Heller
Starring Ben McKenzie, Donal Logue, Jada Pinkett Smith, Sean Pertwee, Robin Lord Taylor, David Mazouz, Camren Bicondova, Erin Richards, Zabryna Guevara, Andrew Stewart-Jones, and Victoria Cartegena
FOX
Air Date: Monday, November 3, 2014, 8pm

Gotham’s golden rule: No heroes! And…spoiler alert!

So who was the villain du jour on last week’s Gotham? Bullock (Donal Logue) thought he killed him ten years ago. Is this “Spirit of the Goat” a copycat? Milky rising from the grave? Gotham’s firstborn one percenters are being strung up and displayed surrounded by candles in tribute. Bullock’s layers are showing. He is more and more enjoyable this week. Nygma (Cory Michael Smith) cannot stop being awkward–first by telling Bullock bad riddles and then harassing his crush. Penguin (Robin Lord Taylor) is comforted by his mom (Carol Kane), and seems like they would be comfortable as members of the Bates family. The best moment of the episode was Gordon (Ben McKenzie) and Harvey’s old partner commiserating that Bullock always thinks he’s right. Montoya thinks she has enough to arrest Gordon. Ah, the dramatic irony! Who else LOVED the last second nose-to-nose moment of the episode?

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