REVIEW – Gotham Season 5 Episode 5 – “Pena Dura”

Photo: ©2019 Fox Broadcasting Co. Cr: Jeff Neumann/FOX


Help has arrived and the manhunt is on!  The heat gets turned up on Ed Nygma on Gotham this week once everyone finds out that he was the one responsible for blowing up Haven a couple of episodes ago.  I say that everyone is hunting for him, there is one person who seems more concerned than anything else.  When Oswald gets the news, it seems like he is more upset for Ed than he is wanting to be the one who takes him down.  As a matter of fact, we see Ed come face to face with Oswald inside his stronghold during the episode.  The was one of the best moments of the season for me, because of everything that these two characters have been through together over the last couple of seasons.  Two broken friends, and at time foes, have a real and emotional moment where Ed tries to figure out what Oswald could have done to cause his blackouts.  Turns out, Oswald didn't have anything to do with it directly, but he did have Hugo Strange save Ed from certain death at the end of last season.  We'll get back to Strange in a minute.

Let's talk about the fact that Special Forces have finally arrived in Gotham to assist in the battle for No Man's Land.  Eduardo Dorrance (Shane West) brings in a team that does not pull any punches.  He also served with Jim Gordon in the military, so there is some familiarity there.  Still, nothing can prepare you for what you're going to see in Gotham.  It didn't take long for Dorrance to fall in to one of The Riddler's traps and for Gordon to have to save the day.  When these guys do get a shot though, they take it and they do not mess around.  When they infiltrate Oswald's territory, they have no trouble bringing him in.  Think about the last time THAT happened!  They do eventually track down Ed, but it leads to a moment that I thought might take a little longer to develop.  Dorrance turns on Gordon, in a manner of speaking, because Gordon doesn't want things to turn in to a blood bath.  It appears the outside world doesn't share that same view of Gotham.  Not only does this show how much of a good cop that Gordon is, it's really another sign of how much Gotham really is his city.  No matter how bad the city is right down to the core, Gordon is going to fight for it and the people in it.  Not agreeing with Dorrance's brand of justice, it just adds another foe of sorts into the mix where there were already plenty to choose from.  We also find out that it's this task force that has been controlling Ed all along, which was the biggest shock of all.  It almost seems like Gordon, Bullock and Bruce Wayne are the only ones who don't want to see Gotham burn to the ground.

Speaking of Bruce, he is having a very hard time coming to terms with what Selina did to Jeremiah.  He's young and he's in love, it's easy to understand.  The light bulb may have finally come on when Selina reveals to Bruce that she was in the alley when his parents were murdered.  She also tells Bruce that she did nothing to stop it.  Bruce still wants to give her the benefit of the doubt, but Selina seems to just keep getting colder with each passing episode.  It's difficult to see Camren Bicondova like this, but that is also why she is doing such an amazing job this season.  Her transformation in to Catwoman is unconventional, and that is something that you have to love about Gotham.  While she is being celebrated as the one who killed Jeremiah, we see that (to no one's surprise) that Jeremiah lives.  It is a bit hard to believe that he was simply stitched up, but I won't tug at that thread right now.  Reason being, what we see at the end of the episode may be the most twisted plot by Gotham's Joker yet.  Did he REALLY somehow resurrect, or at least recreate, Bruce Wayne's parents!?  This may be the most twisted of twists on Gotham to date, and another indication that there is nowhere that they will not go in this final season.  They have really been pulling out all the stops, and somehow managing to tie it all together in this No Man's Land/Zero Year storyline.

Will we see Bruce come face to face with his parents?  How will he react?  If the task force controls Ed, does that mean Hugo Strange is working for them as well?  How will Oswald deal with being outgunned in the battle for territory?  Will we see Gordon and Barbara have another moment?  The last 3 episodes of Gotham have been incredible.  If they can finish this strong, then fans are in for a real treat for the finale.