As the sunsets on the final episode of Gotham we have to reflect on a divisive, but mostly enjoyable series and ask the question, was that a good ending? Hold on to your hats we will try and keep this as spoiler free as possible.
What is it all about?
For the uninitiated Gotham is a show about the city of Gotham. It is the fictional city that originated from DC comics and plays host to the likes of Batman, The Joker etc. The show mainly focuses on Jim Gordon and his efforts to try and clear up the streets of Gotham. Although it also chronicles Bruce Wayne growing up and becoming Batman. In that respect, it is similar to the show Smallville although has a very different tone.
The shows run
The show has just completed its fifth and final season. It has a cult following and as many detractors as fans on the world wide web. Gotham has several awards to its name (but none of the really good ones!) and like most TV shows, unfortunately, has suffered a decreasing viewership as it’s progressed. It was clear that it has run its course but did it go out on a high?
The final series
The final series took a different approach to what had preceded it. It began showing an intense battle scene between the regular cast of the show and an unknown military force. It then takes us back to how such an apocalyptic event occurred culminating in the penultimate episode detailing that final epic battle. That episode could have easily been the final episode. However, the series concludes with an episode based 10 years later on.
In this final episode, we find out a lot of things. It ties up some story arcs and lets us get a sneak peek of a more recognisable version of The Penguin. The decade has not been kind on everybody’s favourite cowardly villain and he looks far more like the version of the character that we are used to. (Including the trademark monocle.)
Going through changes
One of the issues with skipping into the future is that everybody has to look ten years older. The way the show accomplished this seems a little uneven. To give credit to them at least they didn’t use the am-dram approach of just putting talc in everyone’s hair to make them look grey!
Some of the characters changed dramatically. Jim was given a moustache (which he shaves off midway through the episode! Technically a spoiler, but not sure it really ruins anything). Penguin looks considerably different from the last time we saw him with thinning hair and a far more rotund frame. They changed the actress playing Selina completely and while the casting was good the voice was so different that it didn’t scan well. Barbara Gordon had dyed her hair and most of the other cast were pretty much the same. It was all a bit jarring.
The episode is pretty much a standalone piece and the main antagonist is a Gotham favourite. His new incarnation is quite different and menacing. However he never really feels like posing a threat and you can’t help but wish they had made this final episode a double feature to at least cause a bit of tension.
The final scenes introduced us properly to Gotham’s version of Batman, stood stoically on top of a rooftop in a typical Batman pose and then it’s over. The series certainly had some lows and didn’t always do justice to its villains (figuratively and literally!) but I can’t help but feel that at times it was captivating and it deserved a better finish than the one it got.