Sometimes it's the little things that really make me appreciate the behind-the-scenes work that goes into something like Batwoman Season 1 Episode 17.
Specifically, the choice to play Madalen Duke's "How Villains are Made" in the final moments gave me absolute chills.
With everything that goes on, Alice finding her place in Arkham is a most worrisome and potentially dangerous development.
It's also weirdly cryptic what she does with the chess pieces in the last scene. Yes, she topples the king, which is typically the final move of a match. However, she topples him with his own queen.
Is this possibly foreshadowing her betrayal of Mouse? Rescuing him was the whole reason she came to Arkham. Admittedly, Kate's the reason she stuck around, but that's a whole other thing.
Meanwhile -- Holy Batwoman! -- did the team ever take some adventurous leaps in emotional depth.
Mary confronting Kate about being Batwoman was a crazy, panicked, in-the-moment, I-just-nearly-got-blown-up verbal slap in the face.
It was really cool to hear how heroic Kate had been in Mary's eyes all their lives together. We've seen so many flashbacks of Kate and Beth, but now I want to see how Mary and Kate got along when Jacob hooked up with Catherine.
Kate: I'm not a hero, Mary!
Mary: I'm not asking you to be a hero. I'm just asking you to keep going.
And no one, but no one, does the Look like Sister Mary when she wants to make a point.
Yay; set off the fireworks, Mary's in the know, and now Kate can stop being all standoffish to protect her.
There should be no more blowing off girls' night out without a good reason. Now she can just come out and say,"I'm hunting bad guys. Drinks later, K?"
Was anyone else amused by Faux Batwoman, and the fact she was the SECOND faker Mary had to patch up during one installment?
So, insider tip, my scissors should not be able to cut through your super-suit.Mary
Luke's personal arc came to its climax with the opportunity to kill his father's killer.
(To be fair, Robles has been telegraphing "BAD GUY" for a long while now. And his whole "only the real Detonator could be doing this" bit was harshly obvious.)
But as all the pieces fell into place and Luke got the full explanation of his father's murder, it revealed so many layers of tragedy.
For Luke to realize that his father's death was a botched shakedown and to feel at fault because his father attacked Robles to protect Luke, there was definitely a part of me that wanted him to pull that trigger.
It was an elegant -- if not super timely -- move to have Kate shake off her PTSD, open up about Cartwright's death, and talk Luke off the path she'd taken.
My only beef with the Kate and Luke interaction was that in the debrief the next day, when Kate made the comment about not wanting to disappoint Luke because he thinks she's incapable of doing the wrong thing.
Has she been aware at how blind-leading-the-blind they've been this whole series? It's one of the most endearing things about the show.
I audibly "pfft"ed at that comment and totally expected Luke to do it to.
So for him to instead come out and state for the record that Batman killed The Joker five years ago? Well, I'm interested to see what the canon experts will have to say about that.
However, it may also be a hard truth that everyone with blood on their hands has the potential to be a villain. The heroes might be the ones who come back from that darkness.
George Adler Jr(!)'s story about his father backs that theory pretty well. (and sounds a little like Two-Face's origin story, come to think of it.)
He snapped, okay? He wanted to show people that it's a lot harder to act like a hero when you're in the heat of it, staring down your own death.George Adler Jr.
Now, what exactly is going on with Sophie and Julia? Are they pairing off? If this supposed to be some sort of romantic triangle, I'm throwing down right now as Team Julia.
But you all knew that already.
You also know that the romantic plot threads are pretty meh all round. Not that I'm not open to a really exciting relationship dropping out of the sky, but everyone's got a lot on their plates these days.
What it does set up is some questions about Lucius Fox's "journals" and whether Tommy Elliot ever got his hands on any of them.
We also know that Mouse is worried about Safiyah and talks Alice into using Arkham as a temporary sanctuary.
Considering how often inmates break OUT of Arkham and the fact Alice broke INTO Arkham, the odds don't seem good that the Pirate Queen of Coryana is going to be deterred by some straight-jacket wielding orderlies and an ECT session or two.
Still, that brings us full circle to all the VOTWs that Batwoman has put away so far. Tommy is obviously alive and kicking (and stabby), while Magpie is pretty broody. Who else will we see recruited to Alice's court?
In comparison to the Alice-driven midseason shenanigans, I'm finding the faceless threat of something from the shadows more compelling overall.
Sure, Robles put a lot of work into covering up his mess, but the fact that it all tracks back to Tommy Elliot is a little mind-boggling.
When you watch Batwoman online, see if you can spot the moment all the Arkham inmates simultaneously decide to get "sparkly" when Tommy's having his rant. It's a really well-done bit of synchronization.
Like I said, it's those little things that show quality.
Did Luke's arc conclude satisfactorily for you?
What are your predictions as the season hits its final five episodes?
How long will Dr. Butler's face last as Mouse's last accessory?
Does Arkham actually have an ice cream cart? Fascinating.
Diana Keng is a staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.