Gotham recap: Season 5, Episode 7, “Ace Chemicals,” Aired Feb. 21, 2019
Big things happening tonight in Gotham!
If the episode title, “Ace Chemicals,” didn’t clue you in, Bruce and Jeremiah did have a faceoff at the Ace Chemicals plant, famous for its part in the Joker’s backstory. With that, Jeremiah Valeska has almost officially morphed into the Joker.
I’m dying to jump right in (see what I did there?), so let’s do it!
Now that she’s back, Lee is working at a hospital in Gotham. Barbara came to Lee asking her to be her doctor through her pregnancy. They’ve both been in a relationship with Jim Gordon, and Lee was hesitant to take on this new patient. However, Barbara had a good point: Lee is the best doctor in Gotham, so the two embarked on this new doctor-patient relationship.
This is going to be amusing.
“Welcome home, Bruce”
Jeremiah engineered the whole scenario – tunnels to Wayne Manor, bombs, plastic surgery projects turned into Martha and Thomas Wayne, hypnotizing Alfred, playing Zorro – because the murder of Bruce’s parents was, as Jeremiah put it, the most important day of Bruce’s life, and Jeremiah wanted to be a part of it.
Essentially, Jeremiah forced Bruce to relive the day his parents were murdered. Bruce rejected Jeremiah’s friendship, so Jeremiah decided to bond himself to Bruce by hatred.
And a bonus for Jeremiah: If he can pull off his plan, Gotham will be forever cut off from federal aid.
Jim and Lee encountered the Ace Chemicals plant first, following some clues from a chemical attack on a gang from the Narrows. When they arrived, Jervis Tetch was in control, having hypnotized people to work at the plant. He commanded them to attack the visitors, and Ecco, of all people, came out (on roller skates) swinging. Together, with the help of the plant workers, they tied up Lee and Jim and hypnotized them.
Hypnotized, Lee and Jim ended up in the alley where Bruce’s parents were killed. Rather than kill the fake Martha and Thomas in front of Bruce, Jeremiah intended to kill Lee and Jim in front of his enemy. I WAS NOT READY FOR THAT TWIST!
“This ends tonight”
After a desperate “Bruce needs you” from Alfred, Selina came to Bruce’s rescue in the alley and saved Lee and Jim. With that taken care of, Bruce followed Jeremiah to the Ace Chemicals plant to end things once and for all.
I do wish there was a bit more to this faceoff, as the scene was very short after all that buildup.
But, yes, Jeremiah took the plunge into a vat of toxic chemicals. He’s still alive but has no brain activity. Welcome, the Joker.
Meanwhile, Jim drove a car Jeremiah and Ecco loaded with toxic chemicals off a bridge, thereby polluting the water. He saved the people from a chemical explosion, but now the chemicals are in the water. With that chemical spill, government help to Gotham is postponed indefinitely. You win some, you lose some.
Standing ovation for Cameron Monaghan. His performance in this episode, and throughout his time on Gotham, has been phenomenal. I hope we get to see him shine as full-on Joker. He deserves all the awards – all of them.
Second, I am LOVING this alliance between the Riddler, Penguin, and Barbara. I want so much more of that. SO MUCH.
Oh, and we got BatCat, Nygmobblepot, and Jimlee this week. Gotham is treating its shippers right.
What did you think of “Ace Chemicals”? Let us know at @PureFandom on Twitter!
Gotham airs Thursday nights on FOX at 8/7c.