14th Apr2021

‘Batwoman 2×10: Time Off For Good Behaviour’ Review

by Jason Brigger

Stars: Javicia Leslie, Rachel Skarsten, Meagan Tandy, Nicole Kang, Camrus Johnson, Dougray Scott | Created by Caroline Dries

Batwoman is back this week and we are now in the second half of the season as Team Batwoman is fighting villains on multiple fronts for control of Gotham. Not only are villains revealing themselves around every corner, Team Batwoman has a new mantra to not only stop them but also improve the city they live in. Is this even possible?

What Happened This Week?


Batwoman is on a mission to take down the False Face gang and it’s drug distribution centers and what better way to get their attention than dropping a few gang members on top of a local news van? Batwoman talks to the local news reporter and issues a threat to any drug dealers that she is not the Crows, or the police and she will take them down. This does not make Black Mask happy.
Ryan visits her ex-girlfriend, Angelique, in prison and it’s implied some time has past since the last episode as Ryan updates Angelique about the community center they are opening in Gotham. Angelique becomes upset when Ryan pleads with her to turn on her former gang, but this only angers Angelique and she cuts their jail visit short.

At the community center’s grand opening, a community member’s speech is cut short by Horten Spence (Jaime Callica), a reporter from the Gotham Gazette questioning the logic of opening community centers in high risk areas. The reporter is shut down by the director of the center, Imani (Samantha Cole), advising him to write a story about how crime decreases, and graduation rates increase when centers are opened. Coincidently, a few moments later, the grand opening is interrupted by a hooded criminal, dubbed Killavolt (ugh) shooting a lightning gun, yes a lightning gun, inside the center and damaging the newly opened facility.

Team Batwoman suspects Spence is the criminal mastermind behind shooting up a community center and some investigation work confirms Spence was fired six months ago by the newspaper. Batwoman finds Spence walking down an alley on a rainy night (who doesn’t do that?) and is able to get more information from the reporter. It seems community centers are being targeted by an unknown benefactor and Killavolt is just the latest mercenary hired to complete the job. Before any more information is obtained, Killavolt arrives shooting his lightning gun and injuring Spence. Batwoman is able to take the lightning gun away from Killavolt, but he is able to escape.

Back in the Batcave, Luke begins to breakdown the gun and is able to pull a fingerprint that reveals the identity of Killavolt…Michael Kastrinos, aka Mickey K. Unfortunately, the lead doesn’t go anywhere as Mickey has been locked up in jail for the last two years and upon visiting him, Ryan is told to go away. Luke doesn’t think Mickey is Killavolt either as he tapped into the prison surveillance system, proving Mickey has never left his cell.

Luckily for Ryan, she has an inside source at the prison in the form of Angelique and asks her if there are any secret ways to escape the prison. Angelique gets her hopes up that Ryan might be attempting to break her out but when Ryan declines, she falls back into her defensive stance. Angelique, much to Ryan’s insistence that she will always protect her, is still reluctant to turn on Black Mask as he will assassinate her as Angelique and the recently deceased Ocean are the only people that now how to make Snakebite.

It doesn’t take long for Luke to realize the surveillance tapes show the same footage with different time stamps, proving Mickey K was Killavolt. Through more detective work, Luke discovers the correctional CEO, Ellis O’Brien (Derek Morrison) has been letting criminals out one night at a time to cause havoc on community centers. Mary asks the most obvious question…why? Seems community centers stop at-risk kids from falling into bad habits and eventually going to prison, which is not good business for prisons. Yes, that is the reason for O’Brien attacking community centers. The reason is the weakest reason for a villain to be a villain as the world will always have criminals, community centers or not.

At a creepy shipyard (is there any other?), Batwoman confronts O’Brien about his crimes and while he doesn’t deny it, he attempts to justify his actions. This is all a ploy to waste time in order for O’Brien’s henchmen, now all with lightning guns, to surround Batwoman. Things look bleak for our hero until Luke shows up with his own lightning gun and takes down O’Brien’s thugs. It’s nice to give Luke a “hero moment” as he doesn’t get many of those moments in the series.

After Ryan’s promise of protecting her, Angelique flips on Black Mask and is awarded immunity from the district attorney. That was quick. Ryan is allowed one last phone call with Angelique, as she is being sent to a safe house for her protection, but the phone call is interrupted as the police car Angelique is riding in is blocked by the False Face gang and the police are killed. Ryan hears Angelique’s screams as she is kidnapped by Black Mask’s gang and taken away.

Julia’s Mystery

The mystery of where Julia has been the last several months is solved as she looks at her expense reports and discovers she has been globe-hopping as she searched for Kate Kane. The new mystery is why Julia doesn’t remember anything from her trips. Before she can continue her detective work, she receives a mysterious letter stating a break-in occurred at Beth’s kidnapper’s farm.

Upon arriving, Julia is greeted by a knife-wielding Alice, but the veneer of Alice being dangerous is no more as Julia no longer fears her. In fact, Julia deduces that the since Kate is dead (allegedly!), Alice is lost in the world with no one caring about what she becomes. Alice does have something up her sleeve: a partnership with Julia to help her find Safiyah’s associate that can wipe minds and if Julia agrees, Alice will leave Gotham. We’ve heard this before and I’m not sure why Julia feels this time will be any different with Alice’s promises.

Jacob’s Addiction

Jacob is attacked in his car by a person in a metallic-faced mask (trust me, it’s creepy) and I begin to understand why the Crows are not a benefit to Gotham if their leader is so easily attacked. Later, Jacob wakes up in the driver’s seat of his car with two syringes of Snakebite sticking out of his arm, as whoever attacked him, wanted him to die of a drug overdose and tarnish his image.

Jacob realizing Snakebite is a highly addictive drug, requests the assistance of Dr. Evelyn Ryan (Laura Mennell), the Crows’ expert for the Snakebite Task Force. Jacob begins by asking general questions about the addictiveness of the drug and within minutes, Dr. Ryan knows Jacob has been using the drug. He comes clean and tells her what really happened, and she prepares him for the long road ahead as he is going to need help getting clean, even after only two doses.

Later on, Jacob is in therapy with Dr. Ryan and confesses his biggest regret in life is not being able to save Beth from her kidnapper. Jacob lives with the regret every day, but Dr. Ryan admits he cannot fix the past, but he can still try to fix his relationship with his still-living daughter, Mary. Jacob takes the advice of the doctor and offers to help Mary reopen the underground clinic with real doctors, but Mary declines the offer as she doesn’t want to deal with regulations and wants the clinic to be a safe space for anyone that needs help. That didn’t go as planned for Jacob.

At the Crows’ headquarters, Julia confronts Dr. Ryan and reveals she knows the good doctor is actually Safiyah’s henchman, Enigma. The doctor is the reason Julia cannot remember anything and if she is treating Jacob, then this proves Safiyah’s army has infiltrated the Crows. At this point, I feel the Crows might be the worst thing to happen to Gotham since the Joker. Get it together! Anyway, the doctor stabs Julia with a magical knife, causing her to forget the conversation ever occurred and Julia forgetting who Enigma really is.

Later on, Julia advises Sophie that she is leaving Gotham and transferring to the Berlin office. Wait, the dysfunctional Crows is a worldwide organization? No wonder the world is in trouble. Julia advises Sophie the sudden change is due to too many bad memories in Gotham and it’s better if she starts fresh somewhere else. That’s one way to write her off the show.

The episode ends with Jacob taking another hit of Snakebite as he cannot deal with failing all three daughters. The addiction storyline for Jacob is interesting as he has never addressed his “failings” as a father and since the drug causes hallucinations, Jacob can now hallucinate his failures into successes as a father. Plus, it gives Jacob something to do this season after spending much of the season without purpose.

Episode Grade: B- (Good)

Batwoman’s return episode was a little slow on the action but any episode that focuses more on Team Batwoman’s detective work is a good episode. The mid-season premiere opens up a few new storylines, including Jacob’s struggles with addiction, Julia leaving, and Alice searching for Enigma. It also expands on the existing storylines including expanding the power Black Mask has in Gotham, the infiltration of the Crows by Safiyah, and even Batwoman growing more as the hero of the city. Overall, it was a solid episode and has the series on the right path for the rest of the second season.

You can catch Jason Brigger on the geek-centric podcast, The History of Bad Ideas, as new episodes are released every week at www.nerdly.co.uk or subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Stitcher and other podcasting apps. You can listen to their latest episode right here.

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