Five Thoughts on Pennyworth’s “The Hangman’s Noose”

By | March 30th, 2021
Posted in Television | % Comments

Lots going on this week with Alfred and crew. Even the Queen gets some action and it’s not just Jessica Ellerby doing the best accent on the show. Read on and remember spoilers ahead.

1. They Think Salt is Reasonable

The episode starts with a meeting to plan a meeting. Aziz and Alfred meet up with Sir John Salt and General Thursday to pitch a meeting for peace talks. You can tell there is some tension between Salt and Thursday, but they maintain a unified front. This could be the crack Gaunt needs to break the military’s allegiance to Salt.

Salt asks if they can bury Harwood in the family plot in London. Seems like a reasonable request, but the show hints multiple times that it’s a trap. Salt later comments he’s counting on no one showing up to the service, which to me was a major red flag. But the funeral goes off without a hitch. Salt gives the eulogy complete with some crocodile tears. We get to see every main character roll their eyes at Salt’s speech.

Aziz is pleased that Salt has taken over. He seemed like a lower level operative when he was the season’s first kidnapping. Aziz reasons that Harwood was the madman and Salt is someone they can work with. He thinks the threat of Stormcloud is gone and these peace talks will be successful. Little does he know that Salt is the real villain here. When we get to the real peace talks Salt tells Aziz and the Queen they have 48 hours to surrender or they will unleash Stormcloud.

2. What’s So Funny ‘Bout Peace Love and Understanding?

We all knew it was coming. After spending the season getting worse and worse Alfred has finally begun to turn it around. His decisions this episode aren’t the self-serving destructive ones we’ve come to expect.

He’s staying in England to fight for what’s right. He doesn’t immediately admit this to Aziz instead making some excuses to sound cool. But when he has another one of his conversations with a dead friend (a returning Bazza) he says he wants to make a difference. He wants to make it a happy, peaceful country again. Alfred says that he believes his dad was right, you have to serve something or someone. Someone like the Waynes, Alfred?

His idea to make things right with Gully might not have been his smartest move, but it wasn’t to gain something for himself. He knows that his mother won’t be able to sleep soundly with a guy like Gully out there gunning for them.

Alfred goes to make amends with Gully which everyone knows will not be a peaceful chat between two old army buddies. After getting caught in a trap they bring Alfred to the woods, stab him, and give him a five minute headstart. Gully is playing the most dangerous game here.

After some running, bleeding, and fighting Alfred prevails over Gully and hobbles back to the car. Close to death he’s rescued by a new world’s finest duo. The Gully subplot has been my least favorite this season so it’s nice for it to be wrapped up.

3. Dave Boy and Mary Pennyworth team-up

This is an interesting pairing. Two characters that have been strung along by Alfred all season get together and have really fun chemistry. Dave Boy is ostensively there to protect Mary, but she can take care of herself. When she realizes that Alfred went to confront Gully alone she takes charge. We see where Alfred gets it when she punches one of Gully’s goons right in the nose. This gets them the information they need to go rescue Alfred at the 11th hour.

4. Casual Sexism

Throughout the episode we are treated to some sexism that I had to call out. We expect it from Gully. He’s a wife beater and basically horrible person. But the way he acts like Alfred stole his property is gross. His comment that she’s glad Melanie left the country because killing a woman is a weakness was also pretty low.

But no folks, he’s not the only one. Alfred’s mom is rightfully disappointed in him for sleeping with Melanie, but when she calls Gully a cuckold that might be a bit too much.

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Finally, when Thomas Wayne finds out about Martha’s pregnancy (Baby Bruce!) he is mad she stayed in England to fight. Does he think Martha is more valuable now that she is with child and it wouldn’t still be a tragedy if she died not pregnant? Thankfully, he gets over this fast. Then a moment later insists on marriage. Of course Martha isn’t pleased. You’d think at this point after all he knows about Martha he’d know she wouldn’t take too kindly to being ordered into something like that.

The show balances it out with Bet being completely awesome all the time. Our kidnapping this week is Bet and Peg taking Salt’s girlfriend Vikki. Once they get her back to Syke’s Pain Supplies Katie interjects. I knew she’d get in trouble with Katie for getting violent. This relationship with Katie really is enough to get Bet to change. Vikki ends up in another gimp suit in the window of the shop, which is a great compromise.

5. Daddy Issues

Alfred’s dad gets brought up a couple times throughout the episode. I noted it while it was happening, but thought nothing of it. He was important to Alfred even if he isn’t mentioned all the time. Well there was a deeper reason behind all the dad mentions this week. He shows up as a member of the Raven Union council, still alive, and pretty much a cyborg. He casts the final vote for Salt as their new leader. Salt who, by the way, says he is asking humbly to be their leader while wearing an actual cape. I’m sure the return of dear old dad more fascist than ever is going to cause some problems for Alfred and crew in the next two episodes.

The Queen’s action you ask? A kiss with Aziz. Though not the most unexpected moment of the episode.

Join us next week for the penultimate episode: “Paradise Lost.”

//TAGS | Pennyworth

Matthew Vincenty


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