Gotham, Season 1 Episode 22 Review: “All Happy Families Are Alike”

(Beware, spoilers below!)

We finally arrive at the season finale of Gotham as Fish Mooney returns to Gotham soil, briefly meeting Selena. In Wayne Manor Bruce Wayne is pacing, thinking about his father. He smashed the frame but he doesn’t find anything. Bruce works out that his father’s secret is in the study and goes searching. As Falcone goes looking at chickens in the docks a motorcyclist rides up and bomb’s Falcone’s car. In the GCPD Jim looks on grimly and in Dr Tompkins room he finds Barbara, all physically fine but is clearly still unhinged. In a dingy hospital room somewhere Don Falcone wakes up – just as Penguin comes to visit. He reveals he was behind the gang war all along but just as he’s about to kill Falcone Jim shows up.

Jim is prepared to save Falcone for the sake of the city and Loeb shows up with Moroni’s men to eliminate Falcone . This leads to a shooting war between Jim and the men with the former ultimately victorious. Just then Harvey shows up and Jim confesses that because he owes Penguin a favour he’s got to save them too. Back at Wayne Manor him and Alfred have taken the books off the shelves in order to try and find Master Wayne’s secret. In a warehouse Falcone and co get off the escape ambulance and Selina reveals herself – with Fish. Dr Tompkins talks to Barbara in her apartment who is still terrified after her ordeal with The Ogre and ends up talking to Leslie about her relationship with Jim.

Back in the warehouse Fish confronts her captives. She frees Harvey but condemns the others to die and we see she’s grown very fond of Selina. Penguin tries to warn Fish about what Maroni will do to her once she dispatches Falcone, but to his chagrin they just about manage a very tense agreement. But when he pushes it too far – she shoots Maroni in the head and the warehouse erupts with violence and Jim manages to flee with Falcone. Carmine states that he wants to leave the business and the city for good which isn’t what Jim wanted. They just about manage to flee until Selina cuts off their escape and brings them back to Fish. However, Penguin manages to grab a machine gun and annihilates the remaining survivors because he’s after Fish once and for all. Jim, Harvey and Carmine manage to escape in a car.

Barbara talks about confronting her parents with all her old childhood issues. She tells Leslie that she stabbed her parents, not Jason and Leslie realises that Barbara  is about to stab her. The doctor flees to the bathroom but Barbara gets in and the women end up aggressively fighting until Leslie knocks her out. On the rooftop Fish and Penguin tussle until Butch shows up. He shoots both of them and Penguin end up throwing Fish off the roof into the murky waters below. In triumph Penguin declares himself the King of Gotham. In the GCPD  Miss Kringle confronts Nygma about the note but he still denies everything. He laughs madly and begins to talk to himself.

In Barbara’s apartment Falcone gives Jim his knife, which he reveals was given to him by Jim’s father. He reveals they were once very close. Back at Wayne Manor Bruce figures out a clue which leads him to a remote in a book. He presses the button and the fireplace retreats, revealing a secret passage that leads deep down underground. Bats can be heard.

The season finale of Gotham was nothing if not action packed. Maroni’s death certainly puts a spin on the comic verse and was a great moment for the show. Wether or not Fish finally comes back, she was a great ballsy character. Even if her constant crazy recoveries seemed slightly stupid. Barbara was also given something actually good to do, turning it crazy Barbara with the neat twist that she ended up stabbing her parents and fatally killing them. As for a female character fail however, Selina’s involvement just seemed all a little odd. Why the weird hair and the determination that she suddenly had a really cool gig. As for other slightly strange things, for all the triggers to send Nygma into a psychotic self discussion, would something like discovering a little clue really be the straw that broke the camel’s back? I can reason it out if I have to but at the same time… I shouldn’t have to. The biggest arrow in Gotham’s finale arsenal was how much its changed the status quo to set up some great situations for Season 2. Let’s forget how awkward the show got to get there.

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