NYCC 18: The Cast of Gotham On Bane, Batman and Saying GoodbyeDC TV Comes to NYCC, Joaquin Phoenix’s Joker Grin & More DC News Stay on target The Court of Owls really are the worst villains Gotham has had all series. The fact that we know nothing about them would be scary if they actually did anything. We are told they’re powerful, but never see them do anything. They sit in a room with masks on and plan stuff. When plans get thwarted, it turns out they had a different plan all along. The only time the Court is anything close to cool is when we see that guy with the sword. When the henchman is scarier than the villain, you’ve got a problem.That’s why it was so much fun to see Gordon fighting a psychotic supervillain again. It was easy to accept the Court storyline that once again took tiny, reluctant steps forward. (Kathryn wasn’t the leader and the Court has secret locations around the city. Yes, we figured, thanks.) We could overlook the dullness of the Court because, even though it’s an old Gotham formula by now, it’s still fun to watch Gordon take on a villain. This time, it was Captain Barnes, who has become the Executioner. Basically, he’s a dude with an ax for a hand who’s read too many Judge Dredd comics and taken the wrong lessons from them. He’s working with the Court because, like them, he has judged the city and found it to be guilty. Oh, sorry. I mean GUILTY!!!GOTHAM: L-R: Ben McKenzie and Donal Logue (Cr: Jessica Miglio/FOX)It all leads to a showdown in the GCPD because of course, it does. It’s a miracle that building’s still standing after everything it’s been through. The police capture Kathryn and Gordon is interrogating her. So is Alfred, who has only just realized (thanks to Selina) that Bruce is missing. Alfred has some pretty great lines in this episode, none of which top “I’m not a cop, I’m a butler,” as he stabs Kathryn’s hand. Can that just be his catchphrase from now on? The interrogation is interrupted by The Executioner bursting in, yelling about corruption in the GCPD and knocking out everyone who gets in his way. For whatever reason, Gotham is at its most fun when it gets unnecessarily gruesome. This was one of those moments. Kathryn demanded that Barnes get her out of there, and he doesn’t take orders well. He cuts her head off with his ax and advances towards Gordon, who shoots his ax-hand off with a shotgun. Defeated though he is, he still insists that Gordon will pay. It’s just really funny to watch him gesture and threaten with his bloody stump.The B plot of the episode was a lot of fun as well. Even when The Penguin and The Riddler hate each other, Cory Michael Smith and Robin Lord Taylor work so well together, any scene between them is a joy. Both captured by the court of owls, they have to put aside their differences and work together to escape. Their hate for each other is electric, making it just as fun to watch them work with each other as against each other. Whatever their war ends up being, I can’t wait to see more from them. After escaping the Court, the scene where they brag about their respective armies is especially fun. As The Riddler brags about having all the gangs at his disposal, Penguin smirks about his Indian Hill cabal. It’s going to be gangs vs. monsters led by the two most joyful villains in the city. On. Board.GOTHAM: L-R: Cory Michael Smith and Robin Lord Taylor (Cr: Jessica Miglio/FOX)Then there was Bruce’s plot. So it doesn’t appear that this training is what makes him Batman. It could still be what sparks his desire to train and become a superhero later. For now, he’s a puppet. All the mind exercises are focused on getting Bruce to put away his pain. When he finally succeeds, the memory of his parents’ murder doesn’t hurt anymore. He also has no personality and will do whatever this old man says. Honestly, he really should have seen something like this coming. Bruce is a Talon now. He will destroy the Court of Owls, and then do whatever else this old man says. Great.As the episode ends, things go real bad for the GCPD. First, Barnes escapes from his Arkham transport. Then Lee, who’s been having dreams of Mario and asking about the Tetch virus, steals the GCPD’s sample of it. Wanting to understand her late husband, she injects the virus into herself. We just met our new villain. Who will she turn into? We only have two episodes of Gotham left, so I imagine evil Lee will carry us into the season finale. I guess we’ll see what she’s capable of next week, and she’ll team up with Barnes during the finale. It will come at the same time that the Court of Owls (finally) make their move, and Penguin and the Riddler start their war. That’s just how things work on Gotham. Everything happens all at once.Michael Chiklis (Photo: Screenshot via FOX)Gotham went back to its old formula, but there’s a reason it works. Last night’s episode was the most fun the show has been since it came back. The series is all about the villains, so it’s natural that its best episodes are the ones that put a spotlight on a single one of them. It’s fun to watch Gordon figure out how to deal with these characters, even when what he figures out is as inelegant as a shotgun to the wrist. Sure, Gotham has told this story many times before, but I don’t see myself getting tired of hearing it anytime soon.