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Gotham: Season One

Review by CJ

Gotham - Season 1

Director:
Danny Cannon, Dermott Downs, TJ Scott, Tim Hunter, Rob Bailey, Paul Edwards, Karen Gaviola, Guy Ferland, Oz Scott, Eagle Egilsson, Wendy Stanzler, John Behring, Nick Copus, Jeffrey Hunt, Nathan Hope, Bill Eagles

Writer:
Bruno Heller, John Stephens, Ken Woodruff, Rebecca Perry Cutter, Ben Edlund, Rebecca Dameron, Sue Chung, Megan Mostyn-Brown, Danny Cannon, Jordan Harper

Starring:
Ben McKenzie, Donal Logue, David Mazouz, Jada Pinkett Smith, Robin Lord Taylor, Camren Bicondova, Sean Pertwee, Cory Michael Smith, Erin Richards, John Doman, David Zayas, Morena Baccarin, Victoria Cartagena, Andrew Stewart-Jones

Other notable appearances:
Richard Kind, Lili Taylor, Carol Kane, Jeffrey Combs, Frank Whaley, Anthony Carrigan, Nicholas D’Agosto, Chelsea Spack, Julian Sands, Clare Foley, Becky Ann Baker, Colm Feore, Milo Ventimiglia, Daniel Davis

Running time:
40-50 minutes per episode

Number of episodes:
22

 

Detective James Gordon (McKenzie) joins the Gotham City Police Department and is partnered with Detective Harvey Bullock (Logue). Their first case together is to solve the murders of Gothamites Thomas and Martha Wayne. During this and their following cases, Gordon learns that there is a price to be paid for every good deed in Gotham.

It took me a couple of episodes to really love Gotham. This is mostly because it took that long for me to realise that this isn’t another Batman origin story. Yes, Bruce Wayne and Alfred are main characters. Sure, Thomas and Martha Wayne are mercilessly gunned down in an alley once again. There are even young versions of well-known Batman villains before they snap and start dressing in green lycra. However, after a couple of episodes, I came to the conclusion that Gotham is a crime drama that just happens to be set in the same universe as Batman.

Similar to most TV crime dramas and most TV comic adaptations, Gotham does have a tendency to be dramatic and a bit over the top. This didn’t take away from my enjoyment of the series but it did make it difficult to binge watch.

The appearances of young Batman villains in Gotham are great fan service. They also let us see, alongside the rise of James Gordon and the transition of Bruce Wayne to Batman, the emergence of some of Batman’s greatest foes. Young Edward Nygma is one of my absolute favourite characters in Gotham.

Oswald Cobblepot is one of the main players in Gotham’s Gotham. Robin Lord Taylor plays the character brilliantly. From the walk, to the facial expressions and the devious yet snivelling way his character speaks. It is a sight to behold.

I would recommend Gotham to both fans of crime dramas and fans of the characters from Batman comics/films. I would though recommend to the former that they go into this suspending disbelief and expecting a certain level of the absurd that comes from the comic book source material.

Rating:
3.5 Stars

“Jim, you seem like a nice guy, but this is not a city for nice guys.”

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