Gotham "A Dead Man Feels No Cold" Review: True Love Never Fries (It Freezes)

Gotham S02E13 “A Dead Man Feels No Cold”

Despite the knowledge that Victor and Nora were destined for a less than happy ending, Gotham still managed to stomp all over my feelings with that ending—and who could miss the parallels between Nora and Leslie’s stories? No one. No one could miss them because subtlety is not Gotham’s thing, even in episodes that are otherwise strong. How many times was Nora going to lament letting Victor turn into a killer for their “greater good” while Leslie internalized the implications of her own non-actions toward Gordon? 

At least this seems to signify Gotham’s willingness to paint Gordon in some truly unflattering light. It’s time, Gotham. It’s time. 

“A Dead Man Feels No Cold” had so many delicious layers, like a cake made of sadness and hallucinogens. Weird little Brucie decided that he would find Matches Malone and kill him for—supposedly—killing Martha and Thomas Wayne. Alfred, Selina, and literally everyone who came in contact with Gotham’s favorite traumatized son, pointed out that killing someone—even someone who totally deserves it—was the sort of decision that changed a person forever with no option for a do-over. 


Bruce was okay with it. Alfred made Bruce promise to let him kill Malone when the time came, and Bruce obliged, because Bruce always told the truth except for when he’s the other Bruce, who didn’t. 

Sometimes, people can be two things at the same time, and that was so true and so creepy when it came out of the mouth of a soft-spoken thirteen-year old. Gotham’s Bruce Wayne is one bad day away from drowning kittens in the Batcave and Gotham’s Batman shares the same coin with Patrick Bateman. 

Bruce is so unsettling since his “recovery” from Galavan’s antics. I love it. You know Brucie’s moving in the right direction when his crazy freaks Selina Kyle out. She hangs out with people like baby Poison Ivy and the queen of WTF-ARE-YOU-THINKING, Fish Mooney, but prep-school dropout Bruce Wayne made her uncomfortable. 


As Bruce began his descent into questionable decision making territory, Gordon only went deeper down the hole he’s been steadily digging since last season’s finale. The old Jim would have (maybe probably) balked at the idea of using a dying woman as bait to lure her desperate murderous husband into a fortified mental hospital run by Hugo Strange and Nurse Ratched. This Jim Gordon knew that freedom ain’t free and nothing was sacred in pursuit of justice. This Jim no longer seemed to struggle with the weight of his actions during the siege against Galavan’s cult so much as fret over the potential punishment he’d face if the truth about Galavan’s death ever came out. He was cleared of any wrongdoing and as long as Penguin was trapped in Arkham and discredited as a madman, then Jim Gordon’s name was clean to everyone except those who know him best… and none of them appeared ready to make any moves. 

Except for Leslie, of course, and after watching Morena Baccarin be so fierce and awesome and perfect in Deadpool, I am more than ready to see Leslie Thompkins grow a backbone and start holding Jim Gordon to the same accountability she demands from everyone else around her—including comatose psycho killer exes chillin’ in Arkham. Do not mess with Leslie. She’s the only one on this show with a lick of common sense. She’s also currently the only character who seems able to rise above the inherent crazy that Gotham City breeds. It’s not that she’s incorruptible; I’m sure there’s something that would get to her. There always is and once that wee Gordon baby pops out, one guess on what Leslie’s weakness will be—but for now at least, Leslie can see beyond the blinders Gotham’s unnerved psyche drops on unsuspecting ne’er-do-wells and silver spooned sons. She’s the only stability we have in Gotham’s increasingly unstable world and her constant prodding to get Jim to leave with her and find another city to protect (maybe even one that wants to be protected and appreciates the effort) is prophetic. Leslie will fall or she will leave. She’s the partner Gordon needs but not the one he deserves: that would be Batshit Barb. 


“A Dead Man Feels No Cold” was dark—one of the darkest episodes Gotham has aired. Even the comedic moments with the great Oswald Cobblepot reduced to playing children’s games with his wacky roomies were sufficiently depraved enough to silence the laughter. “I’m not a goose, I’m a penguin,” was not the righteous indignation of one of Gotham’s most brilliant underworld princes, but the disjointed ramblings of a man who knew that somewhere inside, he’s something special, dangerous, and powerful; but can’t figure out how or why he needed to articulate it. 

Batman’s greatest mythology circles around the psychology of its world and the grotesqueness of its players—including the city itself. The Gotham that has returned in this half of the season is a Gotham that is trying to grow up, relying less on the goofy antics of colorful villains and more on the psychosis of a cursed city full of deeply flawed people. 

Can we please ditch the 8PM show time, already? 



NOTES FROM THE BATCAVE


— I can’t wait for Penguin to get his groove back and burn Arkham to the ground. It’s gonna be great. 

— Since Jim decided to leave Penguin in the lurch, can we have another bromantic outing with murder-besties Oswald and Edward? It would be the best jailbreak ever. 

— Speaking of Eddie Nygma, how’s that body count going? 

— Hugo Strange and Mrs. Peabody seriously creep me out and he’s a bastard and I love it. 

— He needed to grow on me, but OMG I love Sean Pertwee’s Alfred. XOXO

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Mar 13, 2016
Pathetic writing
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Mar 09, 2016
"I'll free my boot up his frozen ass."
poor Penguin!
I like Hugo! him locking up the cops was fun to watch!
Mrs. Peabody creeps me out more.
Someone mentioned on another site Mr. Freeze looked like a discounted Buzz Lightyear they were right!
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Mar 09, 2016
I guess someone had a growth spurt--Bruce is now able to look down to Selina (and give her the Batman look). It also showcased his future ability to focus, as last season's Bruce would have been a babbling mess at seeing Selina lounging on his couch.
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Mar 09, 2016
I loved the scene between Bruce and Lee (see what I did there?). It set the stage for their future relationship, how Lee will always try to use her surrogate mom/therapist approach to try to make Bruce see how maladjusted his tactics are, but the outcome is always that Bruce is even more convinced of his path and how it is his new normal.
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Mar 09, 2016
Victor Fries made cryo grenades. HE MADE FUCKING CRYO GRENADES THAT TURNED THE RIVER INTO AN ICE SKATING RINK. THAT WAS SO BADASS. Interesting that Nora chose to sacrifice herself here, and it was very heart-wrenching to watch. I believe in the canon, Fries had succeeded in preserving his wife (but I could be wrong, I'm going off of Batman:TAS). This is my first time viewing the Dr. Strange character, but he is such an evil genius, he is actually fun to watch. Unlike Dr. Dulmacher (Dollmaker), that guy is a scary dick. And HOLY SHIT, Strange wants to reanimate Jerome and Gallavan, shit is about to get REAL.
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Mar 09, 2016
- "He needed to grow on me, but OMG I love Sean Pertwee’s Alfred. XOXO."

a la Felicity Smoak: "Remember that time when he slapped the crap out of Selina? Yep, good times."
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Mar 09, 2016
Bruce Wayne isn't thirteen years old anymore, he's fifteen.The promo specificallly references that two years have passed since the Wayne murders. Please correct this.
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Mar 09, 2016
We can easily recognise Galavan and Jerome in the final scene, but does anyone know who are the other two ? Especially the one handed man ...
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Mar 08, 2016
This year's focus on the villains is sooooooo good. The origin stories are so well crafted, they don't even feel "comic-y." And the very, very slow burn of Bruce turning into the Bat is exquisite. Now just please do something that turns Gordon into something other than that ass kicker persona that is ruining the show and everything will be perfect.
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Mar 08, 2016
This episode was creepy and scary cool at the same time. I loved it! I don't know much about that doctor and nurse, but if Penguin ever gets his hands on then, they're toast. And Jim really should've been more sympathetic to Penguin, at least long enough to calm him down. The doctor now has the goods on him, no matter the reliability of the source.
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Mar 08, 2016
I didn't mind Nora dying, though I can sympathize with some of the commenters that do. If this were a different show it would probably more, but I accepted during season 1 that Gotham isn't really building towards the age of Batman, and that's not necessarily a bad thing. They're not so limited by canon now because the show is ending well before Bruce officially becomes Batman, so they can tweak things and do the unexpected.

Speaking of Bruce, I still couldn't get aboard young Bruce during this episode. His writing is just so inhuman. I get that they want to show that Bruce is gifted and intelligent as a character, bla bla bla, but, he's written like an internet commenter's idea of what's smart. I guess that might be the intention, to show just how out of his element he actually is, but then they convey that with his general actions and naivete, so I dunno. It's also been a running problem with all the young characters, were they feel like they're written a good 5 or 6 years older than they actually are.
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Mar 08, 2016
While I enjoyed the episode, I couldn't stop chuckling to myself whenever Mr. Freeze was on-screen. His "suit" was clearly just a modified pair of hockey shoulder pads (which kind of fits, since it's an ice-related sport).
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Mar 08, 2016
Hugo Strange and Mrs Peabody are awesome and creepy. Mrs Peabody looks like she'd bake you a cake and listen to all your problems, which makes her even scarier.
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Mar 08, 2016
It was one very interesting version/ approach to Mr. Freeze's story. Very good story - for a change!!! I didn't like the fact that they killed Nora. Freeze's undying love for her was what was a fundamental character key! What's his struggle will be about now, remains to be seen.

Good character development for young Bruce! I really enjoyed with his scenes with Alfred and Cat!

Hugo Strange remains the most fascinating and intriguing addition to the show! Great job!

Overall, finally, I have something positive to say about a Gotham episode! Very good and entertaining!!!
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Mar 08, 2016

#Gotham_Horror_Story_:_Undead_Show


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Mar 09, 2016
Did you look at tank #2? :)
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Mar 08, 2016
omfg the final scene! i cant wait to hear his laugh again, Jerome is the the Joker ! :) he's facing the other way because his face is messed up from dying with an evil grin. Saving the reveal later when he returns. Cameron Monaghan's Joker is just perfect. I'm really looking forward to seeing him back in the show. I got pissed off when Jerome died.
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Mar 08, 2016
I HATE that they killed Nora. A big theme for Mr. Freeze was his eternal journey to try to save his dying wife. While still a tragic villain, he no longer has that. I mean who knows, maybe they'll bring her back as the chronically frozen woman. Sounds absurd after all that ice cracking, but it wouldn't be the craziest thing to happen on this show. Not to mention Strange has been doing a bunch of work with corpses.

Besides that, this was a great episode. I love Bruce's character development and much like you said, the fact that he's able to unnerve Selina really says something. And I got to say, I was hesitant about the look of an Asian Strange. But so far, he's been great. MUCH better villain than Galavan so far (not that he set the bar that high).
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Mar 08, 2016
P.S. That whole Barbara cameo felt out of place. I was hoping they'd do something with that, but it didn't really go anywhere besides Leslie being vindictive. I wonder how the conversation with the actress went.

"Hey, we want you to come in to appear for this upcoming episode. But you'll only be on screen for two minutes and you'll be unconscious the entire time while Morena grabs your face and calls you a bitch."
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Mar 08, 2016
I'm guessing it's setting up her eventual return. I'd like to imagine they filmed more than that one scene with her, they don't always shoot in episidic order.
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Mar 08, 2016
Great review Sleasman! I agree w/ everything stated! Especially "Gotham’s Bruce Wayne is one bad day away from drowning kittens in the Batcave" Loll,LOL. GOT HAM? -U- so cray, CRAY;-P
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Mar 08, 2016
Wow. He went from a one shot wonder to multiple orgasms. Press the button...
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Mar 08, 2016
was a little worried about how they were going to approach Mr. Freeze when the tease from before the break made it seem like he was just a criminal with ice themed weapons. However, I liked how they depicted him here. he was still the tortured soul trying to save his wife only this time it was before he undergoes the mutation and now he will be left cold and with no hope since she is gone.

This is might not be the best version of the character, that is still one shown in The Animated Series but this is certainly a close second.

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Mar 08, 2016
And the text recap is up, as soon as it clears the cache.
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Mar 08, 2016
This show is now a thousand times better than it was in season one.
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Mar 08, 2016
I'd certainly rather see Mr. Freeze and Hugo Strange, then Fish Mooney and... the Balloonman.
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Mar 09, 2016
i think most people would rather see paint drying than Fish.
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