Batman: The Telltale Series Children Of Arkham - Episode Two Review
Episode two of the Batman Telltale series is shorter in duration than the first episode, but its plot developments give Batman and the aforementioned characters some great context. It begins with Bruce Wayne mulling over the news surrounding his family and their involvement with the mob. As he attempts to remember long forgotten details about the night he lost his parents, he manages to recall the last words of his father before Joe Chill kills him and disappears into the night. “Tell Falcone he’s making a mistake.” These words are the driving force of this episode, bringing forth the realization that Bruce’s parents were not only murdered but they had a hit placed on their head by a supposed ally.
Immediately, Bruce moves into action, scheduling a visit with Falcone as he’s still recovering from his injuries following his violent encounter with Batman. There’s a lingering of hope here that Bruce might finally find some closure in the death of his parents. As he interrogates Falcone, the truth about Thomas Wayne’s corrupt ties begin to check out. Overcome with nostalgia, Carmine says, “You and me? We’re practically family.” and it's in this moment that he becomes more human and more relatable than we've ever seen him. The way he talks to Bruce is the same way a long lost uncle would talk to his nephew, and as much as his words sting, you can’t help but want to hear more.
The same way you manage to build a relationship with Falcone in a sheer matter of moments, is the same way that this strangely heartwarming moment ends. Just as Bruce is about to get to the bottom of who actually killed his parents, Falcone is murdered by a police officer gone rogue and the look on Bruce’s face is heart shattering. The good news is, the same police officer that kills Falcone, reveals evidence that points to Oswald Cobblepot and his henchmen as the perpetrators behind all of this. Batman finds the unsavory bunch sniffing around Falcone’s old hideout and discovers that they have some pretty big plans that don't end with the death of Falcone. Suddenly, everything in episode 2 brilliantly begins to fall into place.
It's worth mentioning that in the previous episode, Catwoman and Batman have a standoff over a hard drive that contained incriminating evidence about Carmine Falcone that landed him jail. Unfortunately, since Batman handed this hard drive off to the authorities, Catwoman is now on the hitlist for Cobblepot, also known as The Penguin. Batman takes responsibility for his actions and vows to protect and defend Catwoman, earning him a pretty cunning and resourceful ally. There's an awful lot of foreshadowing that leads me to believe something may come of these two in this series which I must say, is my favorite plot development yet because I totally ship these two.
Batman and Catwoman gear up to face the Penguin and his henchmen at the mayoral debate. The attendees are already being held hostage as the Penguin reveals more about the corruption that precedes the Waynes. Batman does his best to neutralize the situation but ends up having to choose between saving Selina or saving Harvey. The choice is ultimately yours to make. As usual, Telltale does a great job of setting the tone for these decisions in episode 2, making the player factor in the health of a relationship between two characters and making them prioritize which is more important to them.
Although this episode ends on a rather climactic turn of events, I will say that episode two of the Batman Telltale series does an excellent job of building up character relationships and solidifying their roles within the world of Bruce Wayne VS. Batman. Plot developments in ‘Children of Arkham’ may be considered fairly predictable, especially to long-time Batman enthusiasts, but its story unveils in such a way that still manages to capture the player’s attention and drive it forward. There was never a dull moment in episode 2 of the Batman Telltale series, and I’m eager to see what happens between the likes of Batman, Bruce Wayne, Harvey Dent, Catwoman and the Penguin.
For more great storytelling on Indie Obscura, be sure to read our review of Realm of Shadows from the Batman Telltale Series, view our selection of indies for this month, and read up on the these awesome scary games you can play with your friends.