When I first heard about Gotham being a series on Jim Gordon’s rise to commissioner I was a bit skeptical. Sure, fans of the Batman books generally love Gordon, but to have a show that revolved around him. I figured that to be a tough sell. Now after watching the pilot I still have those same feelings, kind of.
The city of Gotham as many would know is a scary place to live. Low-life’s and criminals at every corner. At least in this pilot I didn’t get the feeling of the city being that unsafe. For one they didn’t show much of the city life on the streets outside of the opening sequence where we are introduced to a young Selina Kyle stealing from a few people and then witnessing the murder of Bruce Wayne’s parents. I hope in future episodes they show a much darker side of Gotham, as of right now it was just a lot of talk about “how bad” Gotham is. Showing mobsters doing their deeds on their own properties does not equate to being a rough city, that’s more of out of sight, out of mind.
Gordon was introduced in a very fitting way. Showing he’s a man of action, while using his brain. Very quickly they got the point across he is a good cop in a sea of crooked one’s. Not backing down from the high profiled case handed to him and his partner Bullock (the Wayne’s case) while also not taking the easy way out. The role of Gordon here not only feels like it was casted properly, but the way he’s been written so far feels right.
Now of course with this being a show about the city of Gotham, the home of one of the most beloved superheroes ever Batman, you would figure to see some familiar faces. Of course some of these familiar faces are from his rogues gallery. To state a few: Oswald Cobblepot, Edward Nygma, Selina Kyle and Poison Ivy. All of which are young with Selina and Ivy being the youngest around Bruce’s age. Some of the scenes with these characters came off a bit heavy-handed. The one that sticks out most in my mind that induced major eye rolling was the only time we see Edward Nygma; it was a bit much.
However with that being said about those characters I did find Cobblepot’s setup story to be intriguing. As they clearly laid the foundation for us to be witnessing the rise of The Penguin throughout this series. Of course he has a few major players in his way to the top like Carmine Falcone and new for the series Fish Mooney. Fish definitely has a ruthless vibe about her and can be a very interesting addition, then again I can see her being one of the major players getting the axe by the end of the season.
There was one scene in the episode that came off a bit odd to me and I for one hope they don’t go this route because it would come off as a very forced type of storyline. I am referring to Barbara and Montoya’s friendship and their past. In their brief scene Montoya came off like an overprotective ex with there being some slight tension. If they do go this route it just seems unnecessary with the writer’s trying to add a little bit of progressive flair. In short it’s lazy writing.
I did of course see some good in this pilot, as I mentioned earlier the main character to the show is the best part about it. Bullock adds a nice dynamic to the whole good cop / bad cop routine. With some interesting villains to boot. At first glance this might look like a procedural cop drama but from how the pilot went I don’t think that will be the case and hopefully not. As long as they build on what they gave us in the pilot I can see some good things coming from Gotham but as it stands right now I’m giving this show 3 to 5 episodes to really get me hooked (or I’m out) as the pilot failed to do so.