DC TV Watch: How 'Gotham' Inched Closer to Batman's Arrival

Gotham 501_DCTvWatch - Publicity - H 2018
Courtesy of Fox

Welcome back to The Hollywood Reporter's weekly DC TV Watch, a rundown of all things DC Comics on the small screen. Every Saturday, we round up the major twists, epic fights, new mysteries and anything else that goes down on The CW's Arrow, The Flash, Legends of Tomorrow, Supergirl and Black Lightning and Fox's Gotham. This week, THR breaks down all the epic moments from the premiere of Gotham's final season.

The big news: Gotham's fall into total anarchy has pushed the origin story of Batman even further. Bruce Wayne (David Mazouz) incorporated night vision into his arsenal for the first time while trying to save medicine from being stolen by gangs while Jim Gordon (Ben McKenzie) lit up the giant spotlight (albeit sans Batman logo) to instill hope in the darkest moment of the city's history.

What it means: These two moments may have seemed small in the grand scheme of things in the season premiere. "Year Zero" started with a time jump of over a year, with Gordon and Harvey Bullock (Donal Logue) teaming up with the enemy, Penguin (Robin Lord Taylor) and the Riddler (Cory Michael Smith) dressed like their full comic book counterparts, against what looks like an entire army launching a full scale attack against the GCPD. The series then turned the clock back nine months, showing the city three months into "No Man's Land," with Gordon and Bullock fully separated from Penguin and the Riddler as gangs have all divided up what used to be Gotham into smaller territories. The city has been abandoned by the outside government and Gordon is working with what remains of the GCPD to protect all the innocent people stranded in the chaos. 

But the small moments of Bruce using night vision for the first time while Gordon lit up the pre-Bat signal spotlight in the sky signaled another giant step forward toward the official arrival of Batman. With only 11 episodes left in the series (and with the showrunner's promise that Batman will be featured in the series finale), there's not much ground left to cover in making Bruce into Batman. All he's missing is the cape, cowl and logo. And with Bruce conspicuously missing from the epic flash forward fight scene with the heroes and villains teaming up against an unseen/unknown force, perhaps that's the biggest sign of all that he's only nine months away from being a solo vigilante and leaving his alliance with the GCPD in his rearview. 

Other noteworthy moments: But with Bruce taking another giant leap forward in his journey toward becoming Batman, Selina Kyle (Camren Bicondova) couldn't be further from her own destiny of becoming Catwoman. Three months after being shot by Jeremiah (Cameron Monaghan), Selina was still in the hospital. Paralyzed from the waist down, she tried to commit suicide as she was now cut off from what previously defined her. Both she and Bruce blamed Bruce for her injury, since Jeremiah shot her to hurt Bruce. He vowed to do whatever it took to make things better for her, and a nurse told him rumors of a "witch" who could help her. Could this "witch" be Lee (Morena Baccarin), who wasn't seen at all in the premiere? Her doctor skills paired with whatever changes Hugo Strange (BD Wong) did to her after she was stabbed in the finale could have given her the "witch" reputation. 

Gotham's first major casualty of the season came early when the premiere featured a tense standoff for supplies, ammunition and food between Gordon and the GCPD, Penguin, Barbara (Erin Richards) and Tabitha (Jessica Lucas). In the chaos, Tabitha tried to get revenge on Penguin for killing Butch (Drew Powell), but before she could kill him, he stabbed her right in the heart. Watching Tabitha die destroyed Barbara, who continued the revenge cycle by vowing to kill Penguin. She only got away alive because Gordon shot Penguin, right in his recently-healed leg. The Penguin limp returns!

And while no one had seen nor heard from Jeremiah since he created No Man's Land, his right-hand woman Ecco (Francesca Root-Dodson) seemed to have transformed over the past three months into Harley Quinn. She snuck into the GCPD right under Gordon's nose to leave a giant, "HA HA HA" message on his map of the city. Has Jeremiah transformed into the Joker now that Harley is leaving the classic Joker calling card for Gordon?

Looking Ahead

Gotham returns next week with another new episode, featuring not one but two major Batman icons.

Note: The Flash returns Jan. 15, Supergirl on Jan. 20, Arrow and Black Lightning on Jan. 21 and Legends of Tomorrow in April. Gotham airs Thursdays on Fox.