[Header Image: Shane West as Eduardo Dorrance/Bane | Fox]
This episode of Gotham finally introduces us to Bane and gives us Walker’s true motives and real identity. The last we saw of Eduardo, he had been found by Walker and was being treated by Hugo Strange. With his mask on, we got a very small glimpse into Bane but it wasn’t until now that we finally saw him in action.
Things are finally looking up for Gotham which is exactly why it’s no surprise that things went downhill so quickly. The river is now safe and a call is made for the bridges to be rebuilt, allowing for the island to be reunited with the mainland. Not only that, but Jim got some extra good news when he finds out that Barbara has gone into labour but it’s all interrupted when Bane shows up.
After their encounter with Bane, Bruce and Jim find themselves in an abandoned mansion, tied to chairs. It’s revealed that Walker is actually there for Bruce and in order to really hurt him, she has Bane beat Jim repeatedly. It takes some time but Bruce eventually realises that she is doing this because of Ra’s al Ghul and it is revealed that Walker is actually Nyssa al Ghul, his daughter. Honestly, it’s a smart move to do something like this because it saves the writers time when they have very little episodes to work with but on the other hand, I wasn’t overly bothered by these moments in the episode. Maybe it’s because I had put Ra’s out of my mind and it felt like we had moved on from him. Bringing him back through Nyssa, I just found that I didn’t really care.
That being said, Bruce and Jim eventually escape. Every time we see Bruce defend himself and fight it feels more and more like Batman, I’m genuinely so hyped to see him actually don the name and whatever else during the 10 year time jump (maybe even before then). Anyway, the two of them along with an army General who was also kidnapped manage to get to a safe point where the rest of the army and Harvey are waiting but things just continue to go south. They assume that the General is safe but we are shown that he is in fact controlled by one of the chips. When he gets a secure line to the mainland, he calls in that Gotham has fallen and for the bombs to be dropped. Based on that opening shot we had in episode 1, it’s no surprise that it wasn’t that easy. We still have 2 episodes left so it makes sense that the penultimate one at least will be the final battle and the one where everyone bands together to keep Gotham safe.
While all of that is going on, we have Barbara who has gone to the clinic to see Lee so she can have her baby. Oswald and Ed are also there, realising that they can’t leave on their submarine because Barbara has stolen a regulator valve so that they can’t leave without her. I knew from the promo pictures/trailers that we were going to see the four of them together in some capacity this episode but it was so much better than I was expecting.
Watching Barbara shoot down bad guys while going through contractions was amazing. Her and Lee really do make quite the team and I honestly hope that both of them come out the other side so they can raise this baby together (with Jim). I particularly loved the moment where Barbara and Lee were laughing and talking about how the three of them would raise the baby together and the former referred to the latter as “Aunty Lee.” There was also that really great shot when Bane showed up, where Lee and Barbara hugged each other, keeping the baby securely between them. I did also appreciate the confirmation that Lee wanted to raise the baby as a trio. I don’t think she will stand for Jim or Barbara taking the baby from each other. At this point, Barbara’s fate is unknown, especially after how the episode ended, but I do hope we get to see them all be a little family, especially in the 10 year time jump.
While Barbara and Lee make their escape to the ambulance bay, Oswald and Ed are working together to keep Bane at bay. It’s so unbelievably nice to actually have the two of them working together and not being at each other’s throat. It does feel like it’s going to stick this time, even with some bickering here and there, it looks like they’ve finally put the past behind them.
By the end of the episode we still have a ton of things unanswered. Barbara and Lee have shown up to Sirens where everyone seems to be dead. Lee is knocked out, while Nyssa approaches Barbara and lightly touches the baby’s face. While that is happening, Selina and Alfred stayed behind at the clinic to hold Bane back. Fighting ensures but we’re left with Alfred being badly beaten. I don’t think he’s dead, the show likes to be dark and gritty sometimes but not to this extent. I’m guessing he’s going to be out of action and it will prompt Bruce to go full Batman finally. Which would make even more sense considering the final shot of the episode is Jim, Bruce, and Harvey watching as planes drop firepower over Gotham.
The next two episodes are going to be so important because they’re the final ones. The show really needs to close everything up and answer all questions. Sure, it doesn’t hurt to leave some things open. There’s nothing to say the show can’t be revived later or that spinoffs won’t happen, however, they can’t rely on that so hopefully, the final two episodes pay off. This one in particular was a lot of fun and it seems like the opening to what should hopefully be a really great ending to the show.