Gotham may have added a whole bunch of new characters for Season 2, but that doesn't mean it's forgotten about the minor players from Season 1. With so many heroes and villains to keep track of, you may have forgotten who Aaron Helzinger is on Gotham, besides one of several Arkham Asylum inmates broken out of the mental institution by Theo and Tabitha Galavan. Based on his history on the series, I think Helzinger was probably chosen for his strength, not his intellect. Whereas a bad guy like Jerome was picked because of his capacity for creative and cruel punishment, Aaron's brain was fried by experimentation. We saw all of this when he was featured in a long arc on Season 1, during which he also escaped from Arkham.
The character was based on DC Comics villain Amygdala, whose capacity for emotions is removed in hopes of controlling his rage. Obviously, things go horribly wrong and instead, he becomes a super-strong maniac. On Gotham, Jack Bucatinsky, also known as Jack Gruber or "the Electrocutioner," used Helzinger to aid him in an escape. Here Helzinger isn't manic, but has been working with some despicable people, using his uncommon strength to aid them in their crimes.
Just like Jerome, Helzinger is returning to join Theo's Season 2 collective after seemingly being dispatched by Jim Gordon. It looks like Jim and Leslie's abandonment of Arkham is coming back to bite them, since they left so many of these villains poorly attended, and now they're out with even more resources than they had before. This storyline also incorporates the classic Batman trope that Arkham Asylum is super easy to escape.
Helzinger's inclusion in this group, however, is particularly tragic. Before the Electrocutioner's experiments, Helzinger may have still been an unexpressive inmate in Arkham, but he was gentle and relatively harmless. It was only the Electrocutioner's repeated shock treatments that managed to turn him into a villain.
Even after Jack Bucatinsky was stopped, it seems like Helzinger has not reverted to his pre-Amygdala state, but he might still be a weak spot in Theo's newly formed villainous collective. With some help from Dr. Thompkins, he could perhaps be coaxed back into the gentle man he once was.
Until then, Helzinger is firmly in the grasp of the Maniax — and his strength and brutality will surely help them succeed in their goal of taking over Gotham City.
Image: Jessica Miglio/FOX