Batman – The Enemy Within – Episode 4 has easily one of the best opening sequences of the Batman Telltale series so far. A heist with literal high stakes, big betrayals, and shocking moves that left me wanting more. And though most of the rest of the episode didn’t live up to that great start, “What Ails You” most certainly set everything up for a potentially epic finale.
Game Name: Batman: The Enemy Within – Episode 4: What Ails You
Publisher(s): TellTale games
Developer(s): TellTale Games
Release Date: January 23rd
Price: $24.99 | Steam (Whole Second Season)
The biggest crux of the episode was that after infiltrating The Pact, Bruce finally had to blow his cover in order to stop Harley, Bane, and Freeze from getting the virus. But what surprised me was the intent of the virus. Quite ironically, they didn’t want to terrorize the city, or hold it for ransom. All they wanted…
…was to cure themselves, or someone they cared for. Harley feared she was getting a mental illness because of her father. Bane wanted to be rid of the addiction of Venom. And of course, Freeze wanted to cure Nora. It’s a very simple play, but one that has a lot of impact when you think about it. Yes, they went to extreme lengths to get this “cure”, but the fact that they were acting selfish for honest reasons was pretty powerful.
Of course, a certain other twist made it clear that this “fairy tale” ending wasn’t going to happen. But that in itself just compounded certain other elements of the story. Mainly, Waller went full Suicide Squad in the episode, as we find out that she wanted to use a certain aspect of the virus as ransom to get Harley, Freeze, and Bane working for. Sure, they didn’t say “Suicide Squad”, but you knew that’s what the end goal would’ve been.
Seeing Bruce try and work out what to do at the right time was fun and challenging. The heist scene was very well choreographed, including an epic scene featuring a minigun. Though…you do have to wonder why none of them asked Wayne how he got those moves in the first place.
After the heist scene, Batman – The Enemy Within – Episode 4 was honestly all about the fallout of Harley escaping with the virus. Which led to a big story for “John Doe”. TellTale has been teasing it for a while, but John throughout the episode is turning into the Joker. Yet, very compelling, he’s struggling with what that means. In one scene, he kills four agents, and yet he panics when he thinks about what Bruce will say when he finds out. This is a truly different take on Joker, and by the time the finale comes around, it makes for an arrival you won’t want to miss.
The scenes between Bruce and John were easily some of the best dialogue scenes in the episode. Your own temperament will determine how John reacts to what you do. I personally continued to play the “friend card”, even trusting him in one case to find Harley on his own. And then during a certain ransom situation, I trusted John again. What resulted was both entirely my fault, and yet, not my fault at all.
Sadly, some of the other aspects weren’t as compelling. While I like that Avesta was given more to do here, including building her connection with Bruce, I wonder how far TellTale is going to take her in the finale. What’s more, Alfred, depending on how you play things, had a fairly underwhelming arc here. I thought at one point he had been attacked by someone (which would’ve made sense given the storyline). Turns out, he just collapsed…because reasons.
Finally, there’s Tiffany Fox, who decided to create her own vigilante suit…because reasons. She also apparently didn’t know that Batman didn’t use guns. It was odd to say the least.
All that being said, I do look forward to seeing how everything ends this season. They’ve got a perfect setup, now let’s see if they execute it.
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Batman: The Enemy Within - Episode 4 Review
While not the best entry in the season, and the shortest of the season by far, “What Ails You” did a good job of shaking things up in exciting ways.