After five seasons, Gotham City has found its Dark Knight. Bruce Wayne donned his iconic costume and assumed the mantle of Batman in the final few moments of the series. This is the moment we’ve all been waiting for – the climactic moment that was foretold long before Gotham ever premiered. In turn, Gotham delivered on its promise since the series premiere: we got a greater look into the early days of Gotham City that led to Bruce Wayne becoming Batman. Though, for a great moment like Batman’s debut, the Gotham series finale was only… good. A satisfactory conclusion, but one that didn’t blow us away.
Gotham’s decision to jump 10 years into the future was a smart choice. A lot happened in the final few episodes of season five that it wouldn’t have made sense for everything to resolve this quickly. The characters, the city, and the plots needed breathing room to recuperate and recharge after the last few years. Gotham City’s state had to return to the status quo for the villains to rise back into power and give Bruce Wayne a reason for fighting crime; all of that prep was essential. Plus, the characters had to grow and change, like Selina and Bruce aging into adulthood.
While it’s a shame that Camren Bicondova didn’t return to close off the chapter as Selina Kyle, her replacement did a good job. The adult Selina had the same fire and energy as her teen counterpart. And for anyone who says that the show could’ve simply “aged her up” and faked it, the effects would’ve made it unbelievable. Selina had to look older for her capture the vibe of a decade-long gap. Let’s remind everyone that this jump wasn’t a few years, like two or five – this was a 10 years gap.
Selina becoming Gotham City’s “It Girl” and a cat burglar suited her progression. With the chemical effects provided by Poison Ivy, Selina would use her newfound cat-like abilities to fund her life. She’s no longer a child who would pickpocket to get by; she could achieve bigger scores on grander scales. Though, some things never changed … and in this case, it was her feelings for Bruce.
I loved their rendezvous on the rooftop! Selina poured her heart out to him and he still watched over her after all this time. While the mantle of Batman and her eventual role as Catwoman will throw a wrench into the plans, there’s still hope that these two will reunite and be together. The “BatCat” ship lives on.
The Penguin got a raw deal in the time since the No Man’s Land plot. James Gordon totally backstabbed him and sent him to jail after all the goodwill that Oswald had done to save the people of Gotham City. Sure, their friendship jumped back-and-forth and Oswald had his share of illegal activities, but the aid he provided to the city should’ve wiped the slate clean. James Gordon should be blamed for the monster that Oswald becomes as the Penguin. Edward’s confinement to Arkham Asylum was the best course of action since they could never trust the Riddler, but Oswald’s anger was justified.
When the Penguin and Riddler’s car got ambushed and cloaked in darkness, you could tell exactly what caused it. Gotham barely had to spend any time on the scene to explain what had happened to the supervillains – we all knew it was Batman. Gotham’s series finale played on a lot of subtle hints toward who had arrived in the city, from effects like the cloaked car, moving shadows, and flying bat weapons. These light elements created a sense of mystery and eeriness that suited Batman’s dark tone.
Out of the two main conflicts that occurred during Gotham’s series finale, the return of Jeremiah and Ecco was the most interesting. Don’t get me wrong, the bomb threat wasn’t terrible, but the trope of “the heroes disarming the bomb” was expected from a plot standpoint. Gotham wouldn’t let a bomb kill everyone, especially since they had to move onto future plots.
Jeremiah’s arrival in his new Joker form created urgency because he had lots of revenge on the mind and wouldn’t hesitate to kill Barbara Kean to do it. Unfortunately, we lost Ecco from their tussle with Barbara, but his ending line of “other fish in the sea” gave a subtle hint to the future arrival of Harley Quinn. So, the goodbye wasn’t too sad. Harley Quinn is an incredible character; Ecco did a great job being the pre-cursor to Joker’s future leading lady.
It’s a shame that Jeremiah (or “J”) didn’t claim his Joker title. Having him assume his future moniker would’ve made the finale so much better because there IS power in a name, and the Joker is one that creates a sense of fear and excitement. Even his mannerisms as Batman attacked him with weapons or when Joker had Barbara Lee tied up above the Ace Chemicals container had all the classic nuances of the supervillain. If only we had more time during this stage of the characters’ lives.
“The Beginning…” closed the book on Gotham’s story with a nice hopeful note. Gotham City’s protector arrived to save the day, and the characters were prepared for what the future held. Compared to the high-paced action that came before in the previous episodes, the series finale paled in comparison. The story didn’t end off with a bang that captured the essence of the five year story. But with everything that we already knew that will soon come in Gotham City, Gotham’s hopeful ending set the tone that the heroes will always be there to save the day.