Gotham: The Begining…review S5 E12

Like I kind of figured, last week’s episode of Gotham was a more fitting series finale. The Beginning… was entertaining, but it was set up in a way to tease things the show could never deliver without a teaser for a full-fledged Batman series.

Bruce writes Alfred to tell him he’s good and will be away for a while presumably to begin his training. This was a smart way to include David Mazouz in the final episode before the 10 year time jump.

A decade passed and Jim Gordon finally got his mustache! Bad news? Everybody hates it so he shaves it off quickly. Boo! Nobody likes their heroes bowing to peer pressure, Jimbo. After a decade of running the GCPD as commissioner, Jim is ready to resign and do something else. None of us buy his “this time I’m really leaving” spiel but at least Lee humors him.

It’s taken a decade but a new Wayne Tower is opening. Bruce Wayne is coming back to the city and everyone is excited. Well, maybe not Ed, who’s spent the last decade in prison. What, did Arkham finally decide to improve their security all of a sudden? Jeremiah is there too, but he’s a vegetable and looks like someone who got dumped into a toxic waste vat. I get what they were going for here, but the lack of hair just throws the whole look off. Ecco springs Jeremiah while some other guys grab Ed.

gotham the beginning review - penguin and riddler

Ed finds a message from Oswald, who’s being released from prison today. He looks resplendent in his more comic book colors and attire right down to the top hat and monocle. Oswald kind of reminded me of Burgess Meredith’s Penguin attire from the Batman 1966 series. Not a bad thing at all for me.

Barbara is now a redhead — it’s a good look — and young Barbara Lee is doing just fine with split households. It definitely looks like motherhood has agreed with Barbara, who’s now a business tycoon after buying up a bunch of properties for pennies on the dollar when Gotham was in rebuild mode. She always was pretty shrewd.

Selina is now all grown up and being played by Lili Simmons (Bad Match). I appreciate Gotham’s willingness to cast new actors even for the series finale instead of trying to age up its younger actors. I dug Simmons’ take on Selina especially with her early Catwoman scene. Again, this was more frustrating in the sense that we’re getting all of these great teases that can’t be paid off.

gotham the beginning - barbara, riddler and selina

Harper and Alvarez are still with the GCPD and everyone’s unnerved when Bullock claims he killed an Arkham guard. Gordon isn’t wasting time buying it and calls out anyone who doubts Bullock.

Gordon and Harper investigate a murder scene and have a ‘run-in’ with Batman, who warns them not to touch the bodies as they’re booby trapped with C4.

Before Gordon can make much sense of it, Penguin forces him to go to the pier at gunpoint. We’ve probably seen this one time too many for it to still be effective and this time just feels like a call back for call back’s sake as Gordon leaps into the water while Penguin screams in a pointless scene.

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Time for a gala. Selina arrives dressed to kill and wants Alfred to tell Bruce to stop stalking her. She felt his presence when she made her last jewel heist. Selina doesn’t have time to wait around for Bruce though as she spots The Riddler dressed inconspicuously in his green question mark jacket. He’s got the mayor kidnapped and waiting on Bruce to trigger the bombs. Barbara and Selina team up to stop him easily, but there’s the matter of the real bombs hidden underneath the Wayne Tower model.

With Lucius’ guidance, Lee defuses it with a second to spare. I loved the off hand remark where Lucius mentioned he heard about Harvey. Shame we’ll never see Two-Face on the show.

gotham the beginning review - barbara and gordon

Penguin and Riddler are reunited and ready to start some mayhem, but Batman forces their car to crash and ties them up. They’re shook over the sight of a guy dressed as a bat.

That same guy shows up on a rooftop to talk with Selina. She’s pissed at him for leaving. Bruce tries his lip service, but Selina isn’t hearing it. Before vanishing, Bruce tells her to return the diamond she stole. Selina’s defiant response really shows how well Gotham set up the Batman/Catwoman dynamic.

Lucius is in the inner circle of Project Batman, but asks Alfred why Bruce won’t tell Gordon. That’s a fair point considering their bond in this series. BTW, sorry EPIX, but there’s no chance I’m getting down with Pennyworth.

Jeremiah and Ecco go after Barbara and Barbara Lee. For her trouble, Barbara fatally stabs Ecco — she’s really good at that! — and Jeremiah finishes off the job to open the door fully for future Harley. Gordon rescues Bullock, who he now knows was terrified of the news Jeremiah was back.

gotham the beginning review - jeremiah

Gordon goes after Jeremiah at Ace Chemicals where he’s got Barbara Lee strung up and ready to toss in the chemical vat. Jeremiah is still working on his new name and spitballing Jack or Joe. There’s something about a J name though… Jeremiah has been waiting on Bruce to return, but his brain is fractured just enough that it’s easy to see him not connecting Batman with his old pal Bruce.

Gordon barely saves Barbara Lee, but is wide open to Jeremiah’s attack. Good thing someone else is there with a bat shaped weapon to stop Jeremiah.

Alfred makes it out to the unofficial lighting of the GCPD signal with Gordon and Bullock. In the distance, they spot a figure watching them. While his bat theme costume is startling, Gordon is sure he’s a friend. We get one quick look at a pretty decent Batman before Gotham ends for good.

The Beginning… didn’t need to tie up any loose ends for the series. That was accomplished last week. This was a fun tease of what could have been the future of this show if it went on a few more years. I’d gotten invested enough that this was a little frustrating, but it was still a good episode.

Rating: 8 out of 10

Photo Credit: FOX

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