Gotham: Batman without Batman?


Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is coming back to UK screens soon, which I’m very excited about – but in the meantime, there’s more comic book-themed TV on, in the form of Gotham. When I first heard about this idea, I wasn’t too sure. I’d always thought of Arrow as a discount Batman TV series, and I lost interest in that partway through the second season. This sounded like another attempt to have something close to a Batman TV series without actually having Batman (I’ve heard there’s some legal issues preventing it, but correct me if I’m wrong). So, could it work?

Well, I watched the first episode on Channel 5, and I reckon there’s potential at least. Perhaps the main problem with it was that most of what happened felt quite generic – things you could see in any police drama, except this one happened to be set in Gotham City and concerned the murder of the Waynes. And when we got the obligatory cameos by future supervillains, it felt more forced than cool: those random appearances by the future Catwoman were irritatingly cryptic.

On the other hand, I did like Robin Lord Taylor’s performance as Oswald, and Sean Pertwee as Alfred. (But Gordon’s fiancée, not so much.) Some of the final scenes gave great potential for future developments, like Gordon’s conversation with Carmine Falcone and the paradox of the mobster wanting to retain some law and order in Gotham. I’m also hoping to see more of Gordon and Bruce, and how that relationship might tie in to what Gordon hopes to achieve.

Not much more I can really say, given that it’s just the first episode and it’s not as complex as Doctor Who, but yeah, let’s see how it goes.

About R.J. Southworth

Hi there. I've been blogging since January 2014, and I like to talk about all sorts of things: book reviews, film reviews, writing, science, history, or sometimes just sharing miscellaneous thoughts. Thanks for visiting my blog, and I hope you find something that interests you!
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8 Responses to Gotham: Batman without Batman?

  1. Screensage says:

    I agree the pilot of Gotham felt generic, that’s why I haven’t watched any new episodes and stopped there, I have no interest in this show whatsoever. The only saving grace of this TV show is Robin Lord Taylor as Oswald Cobblepot (AKA The Penguin). I don’t like the actor playing Jim Gordon, and it feels like Law and Order with Gotham as the backdrop. I’ll be watching Arrow and The Flash. If people want to watch a good Batman TV show, then they should check out Batman: The Animated Series, best interpretation I have seen of Batman.


  2. No arguments from me there – I love Batman: The Animated Series! I also like the Arkham video games as interpretations of Batman, but then quite a few of the same people were involved.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Screensage says:

    I agree the Arkham videogames are incredible interpretations of Batman!


  4. smilingldsgirl says:

    I thought the pilot was ok but the constant nods to the franchise were annoying and the acting bad. Of course I’m not their target demo by any means.


    • Yeah, most of the acting was nothing to write home about. I thought the woman playing Gordon’s fiancée was especially poor.

      Liked by 1 person

      • smilingldsgirl says:

        Agree with that and I never got the impression Gordon was so much older than Bruce from the movies or cartoons. I thought Jada Pinckett Smith was really bad
        I wish they hadn’t killed off Bruce’s parents so early. It would have been interesting to get to know them because nowhere else we’ve gotten to see that (at least in movies or tv, maybe in comic books?)


      • I think in the cartoon at one point, Bruce says that Gordon is about the same age as Thomas Wayne would have been.

        You are right, we don’t tend to learn too much about Bruce’s parents except that they were really nice, hardworking people. Maybe they do get some exploration in the comics somewhere.

        Liked by 1 person

      • smilingldsgirl says:

        Ah I never saw that. Interesting.


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