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The 15 Most Annoying Plot Holes In Gotham

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The 15 Most Annoying Plot Holes In Gotham

Gotham season 3 did a lot of stuff. It was one of the busiest seasons of television we’ve ever seen. As a result, it felt like the writers forgot about half the plot threads they introduced. It’s remarkable how many obvious set-ups that were the focus early in the season never had any kind of pay off or explanation. It’s normal for a show not to answer every question, but not to this extent. This season, characters were dropped without a second thought, key plot elements were never explained and several important turns made absolutely no sense.

RELATED: Gotham: 15 Reasons Season 4 Needs To Be The Show’s Last

Gotham is without question one of the most fun shows on TV, and the latest season in particular was an incredibly exciting watch. On the initial viewing, we were delighted by the great characters and fun set pieces. But after a rewatch, the glaring unanswered questions left us frustrated. We swear our dying words will be, “Okay, but what even was Isabella?” Since Gotham won’t return until September, we have no distractions from these plot issues, so we’re left with no choice but to nitpick them because we care. Here are the 15 most annoying Gotham season 3 plot holes, in no particular order.



When Gotham introduced a character who looks exactly like Kristin Kringle, we weren’t bothered. With a clone of Bruce Wayne wandering around and Clayface on the loose, there were plenty of logical explanations. But, then the entire season happened and they never did explain anything. In fact, they acknowledged Isabella’s mysterious resemblance to Kristin so little that we were left wondering if it really was just a wild coincidence.

We buy a smitten Edward Nygma overlooking how suspicious Isabella’s existence is, but why would anyone else? Isabella was brought up a lot, but there was not a single time when Oswald Cobblepot snapped and put forth the obvious observation that Isabella probably wasn’t even a real person. Even when her dead body was brought into the police station where Kristin used to work, no one wondered about the coincidence.



Jim Gordon called Oswald Cobblepot right after the Court of Owls set off a bomb with a 15-minute timer. Inexplicably, Oswald made it from his house on the outskirts of town to the center of the city in time. Maybe this seems like a small quibble but it points to a larger problem with Gotham season 3. The finale had to pack an absurd amount of action in. So, the writers cut corners like this. They should’ve just parsed their story down a bit.

Because of the sheer number of different plot threads the finale covered, Oswald had to practically teleport all over Gotham. The Court of Owls hyped up plan was brought down with a quick, messy, and unsatisfying solve. Rushing through a plot about a city-destroying bomb is perhaps the biggest testament to how this finale tried to pack way too many things in.



Victor Zsasz openly tried to kill Jim. The case is pretty open-and-shut since he fully admitted to Jim that he was trying to kill him. You’d think a cop might consider reporting this at some point, but Jim just seems to move on without concern for the hired gun who’s willing to kill anyone for the right price walking around his city. Jim had a lot on his plate, but surely he could’ve taken a moment to report it.

At the very least you’d think Harvey Bullock, the acting police captain who witnessed the attempted murder of his best friend, might be inclined to do something about it. It seems like Jim and Harvey decided that the mob hit getting called off just resolves this, but it doesn’t change the fact that they witnessed Zsasz firing at them first hand.


When Oswald first discovers that Ivy Pepper has a perfume that can essentially make men do anything, he’s rightfully delighted. It’s a huge turning point for his character, who previously felt apathy towards Ivy and scorn for the idea of freaks with powers. The idea that Oswald has an army of superpowered freaks, as opposed to simply being another gangster whose associates use guns, seemed like a major hook for the end of the season.

Yet, Ivy’s power never comes into play again. There are plenty of times Oswald could’ve used someone who can bend men to her will, but he mostly chooses uninspired methods like knocking Ed over the head. It’s even more noticeable because Ivy is always around. If he’s not going to use her incredible power, why partner with her at all?



It seems Ivy Pepper saved Oswald Cobblepot’s life solely because she’s lonely. We understand Ivy’s desperation for friends; it’s a great character trait that can explain a lot of her weirder actions. But we’re supposed to believe her immediate plan to make friends was to patrol the river for corpses, bring one to life, and be fast friends with him regardless of their total lack of previous association.

It seems weird to jump to that move instead of just, for instance, calling up Selina Kyle or Bruce Wayne to see if they want to hang out. Or even creating her own clique of people hypnotized by her powers. Why did necromancy have to become part of her plan? What is it about Oswald specifically that made her so determined to befriend him?



Tabitha Galavan murdered Oswald Cobblepot’s mother; he’s killed people for much less. Early in the season, Oswald claims that he’s refraining from killing Tabitha because of Butch Gilzean’s feelings for her. This already felt like a huge stretch. How could Oswald possibly care that much about Butch’s feelings? But even this flimsy explanation quickly goes away as Oswald and Butch’s relationship becomes more strained. They even end up on opposite sides of a turf war and, still, Oswald doesn’t remember Tabitha’s crime and become particularly set on killing her.

Yes, he was dealing with a lot of feelings for Riddler, but his grief for his mother couldn’t possibly have completely left Oswald’s mind. They could’ve put in a scene where Oswald attempts to murder Tabitha and she fights back, showing she can’t be killed that easily. That would be much more believable than Oswald simply becoming too busy to bother.



What happened to Captain Nathaniel Barnes? Did he get cured along with everyone else who caught the Alice Tetch virus when the airborne antidote was released, or did he leave town before that could happen? Did his health deteriorate enough that it was too late for him and he couldn’t be cured? Or even enough to kill him? Most importantly, will we ever see him again?

Maybe we’ll find out next season, but there wasn’t any sort of tease indicating that the cliffhanger is intentional. Of all the people exposed to the virus, Barnes was the most important. In fact, there was an entire episode devoted to Barnes when he first got poisoned, so we feel they should have at least taken a moment to show what happened to him.



Early on, Gotham season 3 made a big point of the fact that Fish Mooney had gained mind control powers. She loved these powers and was intent on keeping them. It felt like a major plot point that we should be following. Yet, the rest of the season never even addressed whether the cure that saved her life robbed her of these powers or not. If she still had them in the latter portion of the season, she should’ve used them.

If she lost them, this should’ve been a big emotional plot point after the show established her obvious attachment to them. Fish was an extremely important character who was missing for a good chunk of the season. Her return should’ve been a big event that showed us everything she’s going through emotionally. Instead, her return was so brushed off that we didn’t eve get an answer to this basic question.



The major turning point in the final showdown between Oswald Cobblepot and Ed Nygma was the arrival of Mr. Freeze and Ivy Pepper. The fact that Oswald was able to contact them and tell them exactly where Ed would take him is silly, but we can let it slide. It feels way too sloppy that the last time we saw Mr. Freeze he was at a crime scene where Harvey Bullock was arresting everybody.

It’s not difficult to believe that superpowered Mr. Freeze would be able to escape a regular human officer, but it’s annoying that they didn’t show it happening. It made a major turn in the feud between Oswald and Nygma feel lazy. In the finale, it felt like characters were just popping up wherever it was convenient and this is a prime example of that.



Bruce’s clone was a major part of Gotham season 3 but his story never properly wrapped up. A character who was complicit in the main evil plot of the season and who tried to murder Selina Kyle should have a proper ending to their storyline. If the writers wanted to leave it open-ended intentionally, they could have put in a moment decidedly setting up the exciting possibilities of this clone still being out there, with a grudge.

Instead, he just stopped having scenes. If he died, we didn’t get to see it. What makes this more annoying is it feels like the writers are leaving it open-ended because of the convenience of having a Bruce clone in their backpocket in the future. We’re already cringing at the possibility that a future season will attempt a storyline with a sudden reveal that Bruce was once again replaced by his clone.



Valerie Vale’s storyline completely ended after she broke up with Jim Gordon, which makes no sense since she was first introduced not as the woman Jim is sleeping with, but as a determined reporter. How was she never around during huge moments for the town like a scandal in the Mayor’s office or the GCPD captain going mad because of a virus?

Every episode included a huge event that would definitely attract interested reporters. It’s lazy and downright sexist that she disappeared from Gotham season 3 the second she stopped sleeping with Jim. Why did the show even establish Valerie as a reporter if they were only going to use her as a brief love interest for Jim? He could’ve started hooking up with any woman.



This season set up that the Court of Owls has access to cloning technology at Indian Hill. Then, Kathryn Monroe learned that Oswald Cobblepot was in love with Ed Nygma. Then, a woman showed up who looks exactly like Ed’s beloved Kristin and was immediately DTF. Then Gotham proceeded to never once make the obvious connection between two of its most important plots.

Even if you write this off as them expecting us to make the connection on our own, there are still unanswered questions. For instance, exactly what was the Court of Owls’ plan? And did it work out for them? Isabella certainly set off a chain reaction that weakened Oswald, but it’s hard to say if the Court of Owls particularly benefited from it.



After Lee Thompkins decides to call off the mob hit on Jim Gordon, Carmine Falcone says that he’d have Jim killed if he could. Our question is: why couldn’t he? Isn’t he ultimately in charge of who the mob tries to kill? Jim shot a powerful mobster’s son. Why does Lee have the power to protect him? Shouldn’t Falcone’s love for his son and desire for vengeance be more important than Lee’s opinion on the matter?

Is Gotham expecting us to know specifics about mob etiquette that would lead to a grieving widow having ultimate authority? A little more explanation would’ve really helped with this. If there was a scene where Carmine said that Lee is like a daughter to him and is the only child he had left, then she said she’d never forgive him for killing Jim, this might make sense.


oswald cobblepot penguin robin lord taylor gotham

Oswald killed Isabella without a single thought to who he’d blame for it. Oswald is a character defined by coming up with schemes, so surely he could’ve picked some poor shmuck to frame. Instead, he expected Ed Nygma — an obsessive forensics scientist who was in love with Isabella — to simply not ask follow up questions. Furthermore, there was a line of dialogue stating that Oswald bribed someone at the Gotham City Police Department to rule this an accident, but who exactly did this on Lee Tompkins’ watch?

The GCPD is full of cops and forensic experts who were good friends with Kristin Kringle. Surely, Lee, at the very least, would be curious about who this Kristin doppelganger was and who murdered her. You shouldn’t use a throwaway line to explain something like this. The writers could’ve at least had Oswald’s plan involve making Isabella’s face unrecognizable.



When Jim Gordon brought in Ed Nygma, Kathryn Monroe told him that the Court of Owls would “find good use for The Riddler.” Since specifics were never brought up, this seems like an obvious, lazy explanation for the Court to not just kill Ed immediately. While Ed was in the Court’s custody, the writers never attempted to follow through on the idea that the Court had plans for him. The Court just locked him up and were mysteriously invested enough in keeping him alive to feed him.

Ed, who loves to solve a good mystery, was never curious about their plan or why they didn’t kill him after all the trouble he caused them. Revealing what the Court of Owls wanted with Ed could’ve made his escape more plausible. He could have acted as though he was ready to help them rather than just eventually getting out through brute force.

Are there any other loose threads from Gotham you wish they tied up? Let us know in the comments!

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