Note: There will be spoilers for the episode in this recap and review.
On this week's episode of Gotham, Fish Mooney returns to Gotham and Selina is the first to see her. Two weeks passes since then. Bruce smashes a picture to look for secrets around Wayne manor. Alfred talks to him about father. Bruce thinks there's some sort of secret within his father's office.
Falcone finds a chicken he likes. Someone pulls up on a motorcycle and tries to blow him up, it hits his car. GCPD is getting crowded with criminals. Barbara is in Leslie's office getting some sort of help.Leslie says Barbara needs trauma counseling, but Barbara says she's fine. Barbara wants Leslie to be her counselor. Leslie gives in.
Falcone wakes up in the hospital, strapped to a bed. Penguin and Butch pay him a visit. Butch has an automatic rifle. Penguin tells Falcone that he started the war. Penguin says he's going to be the king of Gotham. Falcone says Penguin will burn in hell. Gordon rushes in and tells everyone to freeze and arrests them both for attempted murder. Falcone is freed and says he can take control of Gotham again but he needs a couple days. Gordon calls Bullock and asks for help. One of Maroni's men comes in and asks what he's doing there, then walks off. Penguin begs for Gordon's help and says that Gordon owes him a Penguin. Commissioner Loeb walks in and tells Gordon to leave. Loeb walks off and Maroni's men and Gordon get into a shootout, where once again, everyone misses each other. Eventually, Gordon shoots two of the men chasing him and Bullock comes in.
Maroni and his men show up, but it's too late. Gordon, Bullock, Falcone, Penguin, and Butch have escaped.The ambulance they escaped in heads to a warehouse. Selina walks in with a new haircut and giant rifle. Behind her is Fish, also with a new haircut. Fish talks to Maroni on the phone. Falcone says he has a knife in his sock. Gordon questions why Selina is there, but she's sassier than ever.
Barbara and Leslie continue their counseling and Barbara seems to have a bit of the Stockholm Syndrome. Barbara is asking if Jim ever hits Leslie. Barbara is clearly unbalanced.
Maroni arrives at the warehouse and greets Fish. Penguin begs to save Falcone's life. There's some tension between Maroni and Fish. He talks down to her over and over and Fish looks pissed. He does it over and over again and Fish shoots Maroni in the head...wait... what? Hold on a second... What?
Barbara and Leslie talk over tea and cake. Barbara wants to know more about the relationship between Leslie and Jim.
Gordon, Bullock, and Falcone are hiding out and Selina finds them. Falcone tells Fish he's out and Fish can have Gotham. Penguin comes in with a gigantic machine gun. Penguin grabs a pistol and shoots a guys. He's looking for Fish. Gordon and Bullock get in a car an leave.
Barbara finishes up telling her story about the Ogre and killing Barbara's parents. Barbara confesses she slit her parents' throats. Leslie freaks out and stands up and Barbara pulls a knife. Leslie runs to the bathroom and tries to make a call. Barbara smashes a panel out of the door, much like The Shining. Leslie breaks the mirror and grabs a piece. The two start fighting after Barbara breaks the door. Leslie knocks her out and Gordon, Bullock, and Falcone enter the apartment.
Penguin is walking around with a gun, looking for Fish. Fish blindsides him and they start fighting. Butch has a gun on them. Both Fish and Penguin are asking Butch to shoot the other one. Butch shoots them both in the torso. Penguin hits Butch with something and Penguin tosses Fish off the rooftop and into the bay.
Nygma is hanging out and Ms Kringle tells him in the break-up note she got, the first letter of every line is a letter in Nygma's name. Kringle suspects something, as she should since Nygma got all stabby and killed the man. Kringle leaves and Nygma is mad with himself because he left a clue. He's having a breakdown of sorts.
Gordon and Falcone chat. Falcone says Gotham needs a lawman to take care of the city.
Alfred wants Bruce to stop searching around his father's office for something secret. Bruce finds a remote in an old book. Alfred says not to press it. Bruce presses it and the music for the office plays and the fireplace begins moving. There's a staircase.... The end.
The first season is over and the final episode really didn't pull any punches, did it? Seriously, there was some craziness going on here and let's just get right to the biggest part of the episode... Sal Maroni.
As you may be able to tell from the recap part of this piece, not only was I surprised, but my jaw was on the floor. Sal Maroni is dead... and I'm completely fine with it. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE Maroni and the actor that played him, David Zayas, and yes, Maroni doesn't die when Bruce is a kid, but we're in whole different universe right now, and killing off Maroni showed the audience that no one is safe. Yes, these are all based on characters we know and love, but that doesn't mean showrunners are going to play in the exact same sandbox with the exact same toys as the comic book does. Strangely enough, I actually applaud this move.
Speaking of death and whatnot. What's up with Fish? Is she dead or alive? Although many folks don't like her, I'm hoping for alive, for a few reasons. While Penguin may try to take the role of King of Gotham, he needs someone to butt heads with. Sure, it'll happen with Gordon, but he needs someone in the criminal element. In addition, Selina working for Fish was a great move, and it will help that character grow a lot from some random street rat, to someone rising in the criminal element of Gotham. I'm also very pro-haircuts for Fish and Selina.
What made the overall episode really work was the fact the "coming war for Gotham" had been building up since the start of the show. It doesn't pay off as huge as other episodic television shows, but they do a good job with what they got.
The ending was great/insanely frustrating. I'm talking about the Bruce Wayne finding his father's secret hideout. It's great to know Thomas Wayne had secrets of his own, but it's such a tease and it sucks that we have to wait to find out more. I was really hoping for like maybe an owl sculpture somewhere... Yes, I am really hoping Thomas Wayne was involved with the Court of Owls somehow. Anyway, the ending we were presented does really make me want to keep watching the show.
One of the strangest things here was just the pacing of the show and how scenes were stacked on top of each other. The Barbara/Leslie scenes were almost set up as these "set-up/punchline" moments where each character would get a line of dialogue, and then it would move back to Gordon and company. The resolution of Barbara's story should be pretty important, since it deals with a three-episode plot, but they kept it in these bite-sized morsels and it becomes this forgettable part of the episode.
The other big problem with the the pacing and how everything was put together is how they put the Fish/Penguin fight scene right after the Leslie/Barbara fight scene. The audience doesn't even have time to digest anything before they're thrusted right into a secondary plot fight scene.
Overall, this was a very solid season finale to a season that was easily one long roller coaster ride. Everything gets a nice conclusion to it and characters are adapting to some new roles. I'm very curious to see what the second season is going to bring now.