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GOTHAM (FOX) - The Ultimate Recap!

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Season 1 Episode 3

"The Balloonman"

Detectives Gordon and Bullock track down a vigilante who is killing corrupt Gotham citizens by attaching them to weather balloons. Meanwhile, Oswald Cobblepot returns to Gotham and gets a new job close to an influential figure in the underworld...[button color="black" size="small" link="http://www.fox.com/gotham/" target="blank" ]Official Site[/button]

Synopsis

Oswald Cobblepot gets off a city bus, back in Gotham and happy to see corruption and crime still afoot.

A breaking news report on a nearby TV tells us that a businessman is out on bail awaiting trial for a Ponzi scheme bilked a half a billion dollars. We cut to the man, Danzer, telling his lawyer to bribe whoever is necessary to get him off. He leaves and is accosted by a man in a pig mask selling balloons from a cart. The man IDs him, handcuffs him to a weather balloon and Danzer rises into the sky.

Gordon and Bullock go to investigate but there's not much to work with. Bullock thinks it's good riddance to bad rubbish. Meanwhile, when they get back to the precinct Gordon meets Lt. Cranston a crazy guy who likes to beat perps with a trophy and thinks Gordon is a "boy scout." Back at their desks Bullock says the guy is a legend. Gordon thinks he's a thug. Gordon wants to work the balloonman case but Bullock isn't interested. Gordon knows that Bullock thinks the same of Mario Pepper, the guy framed for the Waynes murder, and Oswald Cobblepot.

Selina shows up and Gordon signs her into his custody. She takes him to the alley and explains what she saw. He notes she hasn't told him anything that most people don't know and she can't prove she was there. She says she saw the killer's face before he covered it because she can see in the dark. She says she dropped the guy's wallet she snatched into the sewer. He cuffs her to a nearby railing and goes down in the sewer and finds it.

She uses the pen she stole from Bullock and undoes the cuffs and drops them down in the sewer with him and takes off.
Allen and Montoya go to see Fish Mooney who tells them Oswald is in fact dead and that she heard that Gordon pulled the trigger on the order of Carmine Falcone.

They confront Gordon back at the precinct-- who is scraping sewer muck off his shoes and calling Child Services to say he lost Selina-- and he wonders when they became Internal Affairs. He says he didn't kill Cobblepot and to come back when they have proof.

After a lively round of fencing in the study, Alfred finds police reports-- complete with gruesome photos-- about the Wayne's murder. He asks Bruce how he got them. He says it was easy and he's looking for clues. An angry Alfred asks if he found any. Bruce admits he didn't. Alfred tells him to let Gordon work on the case. Bruce wonders if he'll figure it out. Alfred says he knows he will definitely try.

Oswald is recognized on the street by a thug who knows Fish will pay big money for him. Oswald stabs and robs him and buys himself a nice tuna fish sandwich.

Later, when he tries to get a job as a dishwasher at an Italian restaurant and is turned down because they are staffed up and the manager notes he doesn't even have the right shoes, Oswald spies the dishwasher and his shoes. So later, off camera, he kills said dishwasher, takes his shoes and his job. The manager says he's a dishwasher and needs to know his place and be quiet. The manager meets a mafioso in the dining room and we realizes this is why Oswald wants to work there, to be close to mobsters.

The restaurant is called Bamonte's and he overhears a mobster talking trash about Falcone. The mobster sees Oswald and asks if he heard anything. He claims his name is Paolo and he didn't hear a thing. The guy gives him some money and winks at him.

Back at the precinct Gordon tells Bullock about Montoya and Allen confronting him about Oswald. Bullock tells him not to worry about it or Pepper or the Wayne's. Bullock tells him to let it go. They go to talk to a man who owns a weather balloon company about Danzer's flight. The guy says the balloon was stolen by a former employee named Carl, who stole four balloons.

The balloon man then strikes again, his next target: Lt. Cranston. Cranston roughs him up first and finds something interesting in his pocket and then he floats away.

Bruce reads the news with great interest. Alfred is worried he hasn't been eating. He wants him to keep his strength up. He says he's not hungry.

Barbara asks Gordon is okay since he hardly slept and since the balloonman killed a cop, she wonders if he's in trouble. He says no, he's just troubled that nobody cared when Danzer floated away but now that it's a cop the investigation will get support and that's not only not fair it creates vigilantes. Everyone has to matter or no one matters. She points out that this is not his fault. She says he's giving people faith since he caught the Wayne killer and he's a hero. He kisses her goodbye.

A breaking news report has folks on the street excited and scared about the balloonman. The Captain is mad that it's on the news and wants to know how the case is coming. Bullock is convinced that the balloon thief is their guy. Gordon isn't convinced since the thief is an idiot. Bullock says he'll make the guy guilty. Gordon says the next victim will be known and corrupt. Bullock says they'll find him.

They go to talk to whores and thugs and food truck guys to try and ferret the guy out. Bullock actually gets a good tip and they find him. His Amazonian girlfriend roughs up Bullock while Gordon arrests the guy. After Gordon saves Bullock and he gets up and slugs the woman.

Fish instructs one of her thugs to kill some folks including Carmine's current side piece and her own boy toy that took the beating from Falcone's men.

Montoya lets herself into Barbara's apartment. Barbara is getting high. Montoya wonders if this is "all" she is doing. Barbara says it is and now that she's called her a drug addict she can leave now. Montoya tells her that Gordon killed Oswald. Barbara knows that she's jealous. Montoya says she's been sober for a year and although that doesn't excuse what she did she can't stand seeing her with this man and kisses her. Barbara tells her to leave. Montoya asks her to ask Gordon about where he was night the murder.

Gordon and Bullock interrogate the balloon thief who says he sold the balloon to a masked man. He then points out the balloon will eventually pop as we see Cranston's pocket come back down right on top of a woman on the street. As they head to the crime scene they hear that the third victim was a Catholic cardinal known as a "diddler." A piece of paper in an evidence bag from Cranston's pocket is handed to them and Bullock wonders why Gordon's name is on it. Gordon looks at it and says he knows who the balloon man is.

There's one balloon left.

Gordon figures out that the balloonman is the guy from Child Services who dropped off Selina. It turns out that he was known as a sweet, good guy. All the well known, corrupt officials are in hiding. The captain is mad. They have an APB out on the guy.

They deduce where he might have stored the balloons and head out to find him. They find the balloon and the guy pulls a gun on Bullock. The guy says the cops should be helping him. He monologues about the lack of justice and how he didn't make a difference as a caretaker of the lost children of Gotham so he decided it was time to teach the corrupt cops and politicians what justice really means. He gives up and shoots at Gordon. Bullock grabs him and attaches him to the last balloon asking how it feels to be hoisted on his own petard. Gordon aghast, grabs on to the guy. Bullock tells him to let go, Gordon says to shoot the balloon. Bullock shoots the ballone and they fall back to earth. Hard.

Carmine goes to see Fish. She asks after his girlfriend. He says she had an accident. Fish says she hopes the mugger paid with their life. Carmine says they will when they find him and whoever helped him. He asks if he heard anything Maroney's camp about Arkham. (The mobster mentioned Arkham in his conversation with Oswald.) He tells her to keep her eyes open.

As they put balloon man in the ambulance he tells Gordon there will be more. Gordon says he will try to achieve justice. Balloon man says Gordon had his chance. Gordon asks who his final victim was going to be.

Bruce and Alfred see the news report and Alfred notes that criminals must be sleeping well. Bruce points out that balloon man killed people so he was a criminal too. Alfred agrees. Bruce eats dinner and watches the news. The reporter openly editorializes now that balloon man is captured who will protect Gotham.

A bruised Gordon heads home. Barbara is relieved he's okay. She asks what's wrong and that he can tell her anything. He says the city is sick in a way that he didn't realize. When he asked balloon man who his final target was he said it didn't matter since everyone is on the take. Barbara says it's not true. Gordon says it doesn't matter it's the perception and if people take the law into their own hands there is no law and they will be lost. He says there are cops who do it. She says he never would right? He asks if she thinks he could. She says no, she knows him and she loves him. There is a knock at the door, it's Oswald.

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