It feels like the supervirus caused by Alice Tetch's poisonous blood has been gestating for weeks now on Gotham, with Captain Barnes still in the super-strong, super-powerful stage of the disease, and still nowhere near the mindless zombie stage. But things did progress in the Nov. 7 episode of Gotham when Captain Barnes killed Dr. Simon, a suspect who was transforming the faces of criminals in order to avoid capture, then began hearing voices telling him to kill more people in the crowd. I think what's interesting about this is that Captain Barnes isn't just killing anyone who crosses his path. For now, he's only attacking those who are "guilty," even if it violates the "protect and serve" code that the police are obligated to abide by.
Jervis, who seems to know more and more about Alice's dangerous power with every episode, warns Barnes (gleefully and in rhyme, of course) that as the virus progresses, he'll begin to hear voices. Surprisingly, the voices in Barnes' head aren't simply hallucinations, but actually expressions of his darkest desires to clean up Gotham City's streets without having to follow the rules. And it looks like Jim and Harvey will be the ones finding the captain and hunting him down, after Jim hears Dr. Simon clearly say that Barnes is the one who threw him out of the window instead of taking him in.
As he's attacking Simon, Barnes calls himself "Judge, jury, and executioner," the catchphrase associated with non-DC Comics character Judge Dredd. Dredd never inhabited the same universe as Batman/Jim Gordon, but perhaps the line was a direct reference to the type of no-nonsense vigilante both Dredd and Barnes are. And given that so many of the beloved characters on Gotham are organized criminals, having Barnes running around the city could put them in serious jeopardy.
The title of the episode, "Blood Rush," suggests that Alice's virus is quickly progressing through Barnes and he'll finally reach the totally unintelligible stage of the disease. If Lucius Fox and the rest of the Gotham PD medical department can't put together a cure soon, either Barnes will continue to cause carnage or Jim might have to make another tough decision about harming someone he cares about.
Images: Jeff Neumann/FOX (2)