Did Gotham & (Green) Arrow Reverse Polarities?

For a spell during season two of Gotham, Riddler & Penguin were rooming together & singing show tunes adorably as best friends are wont to do. This season upped the queerbait ante by having these two ex-Arkham inmates (DC would make a killing selling Arkham Asylum certificates of sanity signed by Hugo Strange!) be incredibly supportive & tender to each other during Coblepot’s successful mayoral campaign. The ambiguous bromance turned romance when Penguin realized he loves Riddler. I was surprised Gotham made the subtextual homoeroticism text since hooking up two of Batman’s top rogues on prime time TV would be the hugest deal since Korrasami. (I can count who isn’t a murdery bastard in this series on one hand, so another gay villain couple doesn’t seem homophobic in context.) It even looked like Riddler would reciprocate Penguin’s affections … until he stood up the Mayor’s candlelit dinner for a stranger that looks exactly like the ex-girlfriend he killed. GRODD DAMN IT, GOTHAM!

Arkham’s Razor says Kristen Kringle’s dead ringer is Clayface hired by Tabitha to break up Oswald & Ed. Or this Isabella is Kristen’s long lost twin who is going to be the show’s quasi-suicidal take on Bookworm. Wait … Bella & Edward? This is a Twilight riff too?

Hopefully this will just be a short road-bump in Penguin & Riddler being happy together. This show could use a romance that’s healthy, stable, & Gordon-free.  Unlike Hannibal Lecter & Will Graham, Penguin & Riddler would be a mainstream gay pairing that’s not toxic as Hell. (Hannibal was fantastic show, but that relationship was monstrously abusive.) I am worried they’ll use a woman-shaped plot contrivance to turn these best buddies into bitter enemies. Don’t you dare ruin this, Gotham!

This season has been milking a lot more mileage out of Mad Hatter than I expected, & he hasn’t even invented mind control hats yet! He managed to spike an important shindig’s wine with his sister’s madness-inciting blood … then snatched defeat from the jaws of victory by insisting the guests drink it at gunpoint rather than just serving it up innocuously. What a maroon!

I was down on the season five premiere of (Green) Arrow , but the episodes since have been solidly entertaining. I was optimistic about last season at the outset too, so let’s not get too excited yet. My main complaint was that it looked like Oliver was back to murdering henchmen, but it appears that he’s stopped. (Or at least they’re not drawing attention to it.) So that’s good, but I also wonder what the point of that scene was aside from a callback to the series premiere. Was Speedy chastising him once all that it took for Oliver to change his bloodthirsty ways? If he’s not killing anymore, then she no longer has an ethical reason to be off the team.

Murder relapse aside, Oliver feels less obnoxiously self-righteous than usual. He’s trying to compliment & respect his teammates more. Even him beating up his vigilantes in training seems endearing when it’s revealed he was just trying to motivate them to team-up against him.  I do disagree with his & Lyla’s plan to spring Diggle from jail against his will instead of providing him a competent attorney & evidence of his innocence. So it does feel like there’s an effort to move Green Arrow past stubborn brooding, which will most likely come undone by the time the season finale rolls around.

I like Tobias Church’s swagger, even if he’s essentially a non-whitewashed Brick. Who was his masked henchman supposed to be? I want to say Sportsmaster, since Young Justice pioneered turning him into a Deathstroke clone  to trick viewers into giving a tinker’s cuss about Sportsmaster. I’m still not impressed with Prometheus. This show has no business making up new baddies when they haven’t even done Printer’s Devil yet! Mercifully we’ve been spared more Malcolm Merlyn so far. Oh, Lexa Doig will be the grown-up version of Talia al Ghul (previously seen as a youngling in Legends of Tomorrow) since the writers only like using Batman villains.

I’m glad Felicity is fun again now that Olicity is over. It’s equally important, however, that she has acknowledged her guilt over nuking Haven Rock to Ragman.

Since the Darhks were killed last year without her involvement, Evelyn Sharp’s been a nonentity this season. Why isn’t she using her stolen Canary Cry anymore? If they’re not letting Sara Lance reclaim the Black Canary persona she originated (back when even Arrow didn’t have a color in his name), why not let Evelyn officially be the new one? Or call her Starling like in the comics instead of Artemis, who’s a different character? When did she suddenly become an expert archer? What’s the point of her when Thea was already filling the role with more panache as Speedy?

I already know who he’s going to be, but the new Star City DA doesn’t seem trustworthy. He’s like Ray Liotta as Harvey Dent.

The most intriguing plot development is the reporter noting Oliver hadn’t been stranded on a island for five years (via inexplicably verified photos of an incognito Human Target).

When Speedy returns to fight Printer’s Devil, then I’ll give this season a full recommendation.

Algernon Blackwood, whose “Wendigo” inspired an eerie Matt Fox double-page spread,  was born with a spectacular horror name. It’s much better than Manly Banister or Bunty Cutler, which seems like a Spoonerism for Cunty Butler.

This illustrated English translation of “The Shuraleh” by Gabdulla Tukay tells you how to defeat the titular tickle monster with better cunning than Odysseus. This strategy may no be effective any longer if these creatures have better memories than wits. The description of the Shuraleh sounds curiously similar to how a cat would describe the ticklely two-leggers it abodes with on Tummy Rub Tuesday.

Last week I brought punning into the physical realm, thereby dooming us all! At least I’ll be remembered for having changed the world.

Based on poor box office, producers have nixed a TMNT threequel. This isn’t necessarily good news, as I found TMNT:OOTS to be surprisingly fun. My concern is that when the franchise eventually gets another movie reboot it’ll be another origin story. That’d be as necessary as seeing the Waynes get murdered again as about 85% of what you need to know about TMNT is covered by their name & the rest by catchy theme songs. I’d prefer something like the 2007 CGI TMNT movie that hits the ground running, albeit with a plot that feels more relevant to the turtles. Odds are you’re not going to make a better origin movie than the the ’90 film, so why set your reboot up to fail like the latest one?

In other “why can’t we keep nice things?” news, Ecto-Cooler’s return from beyond the grave will be short lived. I guess we should stock up now for Gozer’s arrival.

In happier news, this Turkey Hill carton says rainbow sherbet is a source of vitamin C! Fruit’s services are no longer required!

Doctor Strange review coming up next!

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