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TV Reviews: FTN Reviews Gotham Season 5 Episode 1: Year Zero

January 4th, 2019 by Todd Black Comments

This is the end. Gotham is coming to an end, and the countdown clock has come. And the theme of “No Man’s Land” is actually a very adequate way to end things for both the better and the worse. After all, we all know there’s no “happy endings” in Gotham, but we can try! “Year Zero” (outside of being a reference to the legendary Scott Snyder arc) did a very good job of setting everything up, and teasing that we don’t know how everything is going to fall.

Case in point, though teased heavily in the trailer, we see the GCPD (via Gordon and Bullock), Penguin and Riddler all teaming up to defend the sanctuary of the GCPD. The reason this worked is that it was clearly they all thought this was their last stand, and yet, by the end of the episode, all four characters are in their own worlds, so it’s unclear how they all come together. Naturally, we don’t see the end result, but that makes it all the more tantalizing that we’re going to come to that point eventually.

The true intent of “Year Zero” though was to set up what “No Man’s Land” was, and how it affected everyone. Though simple, seeing Gordon narrate how everything was breaking down was very entertaining. Especially since the government is bent on letting Gotham die.

The GCPD are the only “safe haven” in the city, and yet, they’re running out of everything. Food, water, supplies, medicine, and more. So when things start to get dark, they have to turn to a risky maneuver to help them extend life. You see the frustration that being cut off from the world for 87 days will bring. All the players interacting in a tentative fashion in order to fulfill their own goals was great.

And we’ve already had our first casualty in Tabitha being killed by Penguin after a failed assassination attempt on Penguin. The trailers all but confirmed that this was going to happen based on Barbara, but seeing her so close to revenge, only to fail because of a faulty bullet was very heartbreaking. It’s better to have such a kill to start off the season to prove that there will be no safe place this year.

Then, there’s Selina, who is not only crippled, but she has lost the will to live, even trying to kill herself. But now there’s hope via “the witch”, but as the trailers show, every victory has a price.

“Year Zero” was a great opening to the season. And with now only 11 episodes left, things are only going to get better.

4.5 out of 5 nerds

Todd Black is reader of comics, a watch of TV (a LOT of TV), and a writer of many different mediums. He's written teleplays, fan-fictions, and currently writes a comic book called Guardians ( He dreams of working at Nintendo, writing a SHAZAM! TV series, and working on Guardians for a very long time!