DC Comics has several shows on the CW. They’ve got Arrow, The Flash, Legends of Tomorrow, Supergirl, and more on the way on that network. Over on FOX, though, is a very different series disconnected from the others that plays with the origin of more comic book legends: Gotham.
Gotham is darker than its CW cousins, set in a city that rides the line of modern society and film noir. It’s as likely to see a bank robber wearing 1930s gangster garb as it is to see someone in a futuristic fireproof suit.
The series attempts to rewrite Batman’s story by focusing not only on Bruce Wayne in his youth, but also on the villains he’ll battle in the future, and the allies he’ll one day have. Alternating as it does between Bruce, Detective Jim Gordon, and future antiheroes like Selina Kyle, the show has picked up many a story or mystery before dropping them in favor of other plot points.
As a result, there are characters that have vanished, mysteries that remain unsolved, and stories the show has yet to circle back to. We’ve got a little bit of everything in Gotham: 15 Mysteries The Show Has Completely Neglected.
What you won’t find on this list is mysteries that the series will revisit in season four, like just how the character of Jonathan Crane, last seen in a hospital bed in season one, will become the iconic Scarecrow villain, or just why Cyrus Gold changed his name to Butch Gilzean.
15. Detective Gordon’s Path To Commissioner
Anyone who has heard of Batman, whether they’re familiar with the comics or not, is familiar with the Caped Crusader’s ally in Commissioner Gordon. With Gotham, young Jim is a new detective on the force, and he hasn’t yet found his path to power.
Season one saw Jim as a rookie with noble intentions who wanted to clean up his city, but he was surrounded by cops taking bribes from crime families and, well, anyone willing to hand them out. Corruption got him framed for crimes he didn’t commit, sent to jail, demoted to traffic cop, and more over the three seasons. He’s also left the idea of being the only good cop in Gotham behind while shooting people by the river, acting as a bounty hunter above the law, and threatening to blackmail his corrupt commissioner (though he never puts that plan into action).
Just how is a detective who has been the subject of a city wide manhunt and been hated by the majority of his peers supposed to climb the ladder to the top spot?
14. Valerie Vale’s Investigation of Gotham
Jamie Chung joined Gotham for a story arc in season three as Valerie Vale. After only a handful of episodes, however, her character vanished!
Valerie was created specifically for the show, though producers have confirmed that she’s the aunt of the existing comic book character Vicki Vale. Both Vale women are investigative reporters, and Valerie journeyed to Gotham after hearing about the shady dealings at Indian Hill, wanting to investigate.
After a few times teaming up with Jim Gordon (and sleeping with him), she ended up in a hostage situation, was shot, and then broke things off with him – only to disappear from Gotham, seemingly forever. A bad experience with Jim couldn’t have scared her off her dream job forever, so what happened to her?
This is one mystery that might go unsolved, since Chung is now a series regular on the upcoming series The Gifted as the Marvel mutant Blink.
13. Fish Never Killed Oswald
One of the most perplexing mysteries of Gotham has got to be just why Fish Mooney allowed her umbrella boy to keep on keeping on after he attempted to steal her power right out from under her on so many occasions.
Oswald Cobblepot spent a lot of energy during his early time on the show trying to pit members of the crime families against one another, so that he could climb the organized crime ladder. Fish was his first employer, and often the person most suspicious of him. She complained about him, she gave him an arched eyebrow or two, but she never out and out tried to kill him until it was nearly too late, which is odd, since she’s displayed a willingness to shoot people just for annoying her.
Fans know that Oswald Cobblepot is protected nearly as much as Bruce Wayne. He goes on to become supervillain Penguin, a moniker he’s already using on the show, and battle Batman. Regardless of how many people try to kill him, he’ll make it out alive, but it sure would be fun to watch them try.
12. The Wayne Murders
Batman, no matter the incarnation, has the same origin story: the death of his parents prompts him to seek justice in Gotham. The television series goes that same route, though it allows more detail for Bruce’s path. He spent the first two seasons of the show trying to solve the murder of his parents.
Bruce obsessively followed every clue and found numerous people who might be to blame for the deaths of his parents, but he never completely unraveled the mystery. What he found were more questions than answers, until the Court of Owls got ahold of him and used meditation to help him shut out his pain, making him completely uninterested in the truth of who was ultimately responsible.
It’s likely that if the series revisits this particular mystery, the writers will just add more villains to the mix instead of giving a concrete answer. Is it the crime bosses, Hugo Strange, the Court of Owls, or someone the audience has yet to meet who made the ultimate call? We may never know.
11. Harvey Dent’s Road To Two-Face
Audiences last saw District Attorney Harvey Dent in season two, but Harvey was introduced as an ally of sorts for Jim Gordon back in the first season of the show. He was interested in cleaning up Gotham just like the detective was, but audiences didn’t get to see very much of him.
Comic book fans will know that Harvey Dent doesn’t remain an attorney with a penchant for a two-headed coin forever. Eventually, he becomes a supervillain who goes by Two-Face. In some incarnations, that name is simply a reference to a face damaged by chemicals, while in others, it’s more of a reference to dissociative identity disorder.
Like many of the characters who have disappeared in the middle of their origin stories, this one is down to the actor getting another gig. Nicholas D’Agosto was cast in the recurring role before he became a series regular on another project. Hopefully, this particular storyline will return.
10. Kristin Kringle’s Double
When Gotham began, future Riddler Edward Nigma appeared to have a harmless crush on his coworker, Kristin Kringle. That crush became an obsession as he killed her abusive boyfriend and started a relationship with her. After accidentally killing her as well, he covered it up, but was (seemingly) rewarded with her doppelganger Isabella entering his life.
Isabella’s appearances on the series were shortlived, however, as their relationship abruptly ended when Oswald had her killed, but he was quickly found out. The mystery here is just who (or what) Isabella was. Was she a clone of Kristin, like the one Bruce had in season three? Or was she a resurrected Kristin with a whole new set of memories? Scientists at Indian Hill were able to pull that trick off as well.
9. Ivy and Penguin Team Up
After Ivy Pepper was aged up a few years thanks to a former Indian Hill resident trying to kill her, Ivy didn’t really have anywhere to go. She made an alliance with Oswald after saving his life with her extensive knowledge of plants.
Ivy and Penguin didn’t even know one another before deciding to team up, and with neither of them really trusting one another, the pairing seems even more odd. Is Ivy just looking for somewhere to belong, or does she have a bigger scheme in mind?
The bigger mystery here is just when (and how) Ivy learned to derive a mind control perfume from the plants she loves so much. We’ve seen her grow different varieties of mushrooms for a gang in the past, but creating your own perfumes is definitely a step up. Also: why doesn’t Penguin take advantage of that perfume more since he’s partnered with her?
8. Even More Indian Hill Creations
Before audiences were able to get specifics on just who was being cared for and experimented on in Indian Hill, Gotham teased quite a few of Dr. Strange’s creations in camera shots that panned examination rooms or the doors of cells – and those teases were never revealed as characters!
Amongst the characters teased for the audience was a bulletproof man, a woman who could endure high levels of electricity, someone with only four elongated fingers, a person with eyes like a snake, someone wearing a set of goggles, and more! There were so many characters teased that could have used as comic book Easter eggs or that could have emerged as part of Fish Mooney’s new gang, but were instead never seen again.
7. Silver St. Cloud Went Out The Window
To spice up young Bruce Wayne’s love life, Gotham introduced the teenage Silver St. Cloud in season two. She wooed Bruce on behalf of her uncle, Theo Galavan, who really wanted to kill him, and later, she regretted her part in him getting kidnapped.
When Silver tried to help Bruce, she only ended up angering her uncle, who was ready to allow her to be arrested for his crimes. Tabitha Galavan turned on her own brother to save herself and Silver, though, giving Silver a parachute and pushing the young woman out a window – and that was the last audience members saw of her.
Natalie Alyn Lind has since moved on from Gotham to become a series regular in The Gifted, just like Jamie Chung, so the chances of her returning are slim. But a mention from Tabitha of her vanished niece would be a nice way to tie up loose ends, of nothing else.
6. Victor Zsasz Will Kill Anyone
Zsasz has become a Gotham mainstay. Once, he was a hired gun for the mob, but now, he’ll be anyone’s hitman if the price is right. It’s nothing personal, just business. That means that Jim Gordon has been in his crosshairs a time or two.
Several members of the Gotham Police Department are familiar with who Zsasz is, and they’ve even witnessed him try to complete a contract on Jim Gordon’s life. So is Zsasz somehow immune to the justice system in Gotham? Even the sneakiest of criminals, like Oswald Cobblepot, have found themselves caught and thrown in prison on occasion.
5. Fish’s Mind Control Abilities
When Fish Mooney was killed and resurrected at Indian Hill, her DNA was combined with that of a cuttlefish to give her some nifty new skills. Among those were mind control abilities. When she touched someone, she was able to get them to do her bidding for awhile.
The side effect of those powers, as the escaped residents of Indian Hill discovered, was that every use of their abilities would age them further, leaving them just a bit closer to death. Fish was one of the lucky escapees. She was able to use her abilities to get Doctor Hugo Strange himself to cure her of that slow death.
Of course, that cure was short lived, as she ended up being accidentally killed nearly immediately after receiving her cure. How did the cure work? Did it eliminate her new abilities? Would it work on other Indian Hill escapees? Will we ever find out?
4. Bruce Wayne’s Clone
Among the many experiments at Indian Hill, one was a clone of Bruce Wayne. The clone was conditioned to feel no pain, and briefly posed as Bruce in season three while the Court of Owls got their talons in him.
Once Bruce was back on the Gotham scene, however, his clone vanished into the night without anyone trying to take him out of the picture. Will this clone play a bigger role as Bruce slowly becomes the protector of his city, or is this one character we’ll never see again?
It’s possible that the writers left his story open-ended simply to be able to give the audience a big twist in the future (once they’ve put the clone out of their minds) and throw everyone for a loop when the Bruce they thought they knew was replaced yet again.
3. Lee Thompkins Has Mob Pull
Dr. Thompkins was a fun love interest for JIm who appreciated his need to investigate every little detail of a case when she was first introduced. Over time, his need to solve crimes and bring bad guys to justice got in the way of their real life and she moved on – to the son of an organized crime boss.
When Jim Gordon killed Lee’s infected fiance on their wedding day, she hated him, and she didn’t care who knew it. She managed to convince Carmine Falcone to not kill Jim in revenge, though it’s not clear how.
Lee isn’t a member of the Falcone crime family (though she was about to marry into it), so how did she have so much pull? Has Lee started using her medical knowledge to help them out? Does she have something on Carmine himself? Or is this one mystery we’ll just have to let slide?
2. The Court Of Owls Had Plans For The Riddler
During season three’s big story arc, Edward Nygma found himself in hot water when he was captured by the Court of Owls. Interestingly, they didn’t kill him, but had plans for him.
Nygma had repeatedly (whether intentionally or not) ended up in the way of the plots of the Court, but when Jim Gordon revealed him to the members, there was no interest in killing the former forensic investigator. Instead, it was simply stated that they would “find good use” for him.
The Riddler was kept in a cell and fed regular meals until he broke out of the facility, but there was never any indication of just what that “good use” was. Has someone from the Court made their way into season four to continue whatever that unrevealed plan was?
1. Seriously, Why Does Anyone Live In Gotham?
The biggest mystery of the series might just be why anyone still lives in Gotham after all of the turmoil the city has seen.
The audience has witnessed Gotham’s high society raise money at charity events and celebrate in fancy clothes while the Red Hood Gang robs banks, or watched Bruce Wayne attend a gala while Selina Kyle picks pockets. The wealthy socialites of Gotham are just as common as the crime and violence.
Gotham has a corrupt police force, has seen people escape its prison and its asylum, has been warred over by rival crime families, and has criminals that can literally freeze people in the streets or set the world on fire. It just might be the most dangerous place to raise a family, so really, why would anyone choose to stay?
Perhaps there’s just no place like home.
Are there any mysteries you hope Gotham circles back to in its upcoming season? Did we miss a huge dropped plot point? Let us know in the comments!
The new season of Gotham premieres on its new night – Thursday – on September 21 on FOX.
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