Gotham Episode 219 Recap: Meet Azrael
Galavan is going crazy. Locked in the resurrection cell with the dead guards, Galavan rambles to himself and writes nonsense on the walls in blood. Strange and Peabody have been watching him, noting that he is strong as an ox, fast as a snake, and mad as a hatter. Strange doesn’t think he is crazy, he just has no sense of self. His ramblings have come from the Will of St. Dumas, trying to build a whole self.
Strange is called away when Jim shows up, claiming to have been hired to “look into something.” He shows Strange the picture of Karen, a test subject at Pinewood, who mentioned that Strange was involved. He admits he was involved, long ago, in the project, which was started by Thomas Wayne in an attempt to cure problems on a genetic level. He claims to have worked in research, and had no knowledge of the monsters that were being created until it was too late. Strange swears that he forced Thomas to shut down the program, but Jim doesn’t believe him. He asks about Victor Fries, and gives him a court order to exhume the body. Strange claims he was cremated.
Ed does a surprisingly good job of calming down the inmates he is locked up with. He sees Jim leaving, but is annoyed when Jim doesn’t offer him friendly chitchat. Ed assures him this is a puzzle; he will find his way out. Jim leaves, but soon Strange and Peabody walk by, talking quietly. Ed interjects and offers to help them take down Jim Gordon, promising he can manipulate people. “Everybody has a story; they just want to be heard,” Ed says. Strange thanks him – that is actually helpful.
Strange finds the story of Azrael in the book of Dumas and risks going into the cell with Galavan. Galavan is crazed, threatens to kill Strange. Peabody is about to call the guards; Strange insists she not. To Galavan, he calls him his son, which causes him to drop Strange. Strange insists he is Azrael, and Strange is his father. But Galavan remembers another name, a sister, a high tower. Strange insists those are false memories, and he is Azrael. Galavan accepts this, and Azrael is born.
Jim and Bullock visit Bruce at home. Bruce wants Jim to be more proactive, especially since he is no longer a cop. The two speak in private, and Jim insists they need to do this “the right way.” Bruce doesn’t believe they will get justice unless he “does what you did to Galavan.” That was the wrong choice, Jim insists, and tells Bruce that if he acts like Jim did, it will make him more like the evil he is trying to fight. Jim promises they will put Strange away; he just needs more time.
Azrael is watching a filmstrip on his namesake while Strange explains to Peabody that Azrael was a fabled 12th century knight who served Dumas, died, and was brought back to life. Strange hopes that this story will give his mind focus. The only way to test it, see if it holds, is to send him out “into the wild” with a simple task.
Peabody retrieves Helzinger from the cage and takes him down the hall. Ed slips his newspaper into the jamb, preventing it from clicking closed. He follows Peabody and Helzinger down the hall, but is greeted with a dead end.
Peabody has taken Helzinger through the secret door and put him in the room with Azrael. Strange tells his “son” that he is a demon who must be destroyed. He presents Azrael a metal case and tells him the case contains what is needed to defeat the demon. Azrael picks up the case and bashes Helzinger with it. “Pretty good, but try opening the chest,” Strange tells him. He reveals that in the case is the Sword of Sin, wrecking vengeance for centuries (even though it was really made yesterday to solidify Azrael’s “story”). Strange tasks Azrael with killing Jim Gordon. “He dies tonight.”
Barnes is at a crime scene at a construction site: four unidentified men have been killed and strung up upside down. He gives a statement to the press, then goes to Jim, Bruce, and Bullock, hanging out on the edge of the crowd. After some argument, Barnes relents and will listen to what they have to say. Jim fills him in, alone, and Barnes recaps: “So Hugo Strange is making monsters out of dead people in his free time. It sounds insane!” A shadowy figure drops down. Azrael has donned a mask and armor, and announces Jim’s “penance has come.” He pulls his sword; they pull guns. Azrael is fast, and he dodges every bullet. Bullock comes in with backup, but they still don’t make a dent in Azrael’s armor. He escapes into the rafters. Bruce watches, fascinated, and the costume for Batman is born.
Barnes plans on dropping a dragnet on the city to find this mystery man. Jim insists that Bruce go home. “I can’t make the moves I need to make if I’m worried about you. Go home, Alfred will look after you.” Back at the police station, Barnes briefs his men and orders Jim to remain in the station for his own protection. Jim refuses, so Barnes puts him in lockdown, arrested for breaking Karen out of prison.
Azrael heads down an alley and sees an old Galavan for Mayor poster. He has flashes of his previous life. The power goes out in the police station, and Azrael makes his grand entrance, flying through the big window. Azrael, being a man of honor, will allow Barnes and his men to leave without harm, if they turn over Jim Gordon to him. Barnes won’t agree, so Azrael starts killing officers. One of the officers lets Jim out, but he is killed for his effort. Azrael grabs Jim, tries to shoot him with an officer’s gun, but finds it empty. Barnes empties a clip into Azrael, but the bullets just bounce off his armor. Deciding they need a bigger gun, Barnes will lure Azrael up to the roof while Jim finds a bigger gun.
On the roof, Azrael easily break down the rooftop door, and demands Barnes turn over Jim. “It is too late to spare your life; the most I can offer is a painless death.” Barnes grabs a piece of rebar and battles with him. Azrael’s sword breaks, which surprises him – after all, it is supposed to be hundreds of years old. This throws him off his game, allowing Barnes to hit him a few times and knock his mask off. He is shocked to see Galavan beneath the mask. “You’re dead!” “Not anymore,” Azrael asserts and stabes Barnes with the broken hilt of his sword. Jim shows up with a bigger gun and is shocked to see he is fighting Theo Galavan – again. Jim shoots him with enough gunfire to knock Azreal off the building. He plummets to the ground, where he lands on a van, right in front of the press. The news reporter is stunned when she has to announce that the “former mayor is alive and dressed in a weird costume.” Barnes is alive, but barely.
Butch and Tabitha are watching TV with Barbara, who is back on the crazy train, channel surfing fast. She goes to make cocktails, allowing Tabitha to regain control of the TV. She puts on the news… and sees that her brother is still alive. Penguin watches the news report, too, sitting with Grace’s rotting corpse. Alfred and Bruce see this, and Alfred supposes Galavan was never really dead. Bruce isn’t so sure, but he is certain Strange is behind this.
Back at Arkham, Ed has obtained a bobby pin, ammonia, and a bug zapper. He uses his tools to check every inch of the “dead end” and discovers fingerprints. He finds a hidden lock, picks it, and an elevator appears. He takes it downstairs and finds a hall, filled with patient rooms and the insane screams of those trapped on the other side.
Above the city, atop a bridge, Azrael stands in a total hero shot.
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