Fox’s new television series “Gotham” made a riveting debut this past Monday, Sept. 22. The show is made out to be a prequel series to the DC Batman franchise, giving the origin stories of many popular characters such as Bruce Wayne, James Gordon, Catwoman, and several others. It is immediately apparent from watching the pilot episode that this series is going to be a big hit with Batman fans and non-fans alike.
The all familiar dark mood of the franchise is instantly established from the first shots of Gotham City, where the towering buildings loom and the night is seemingly eternal. Even scenes that take place during the day are dimmed with brooding black clouds. This gives an excellent foundation for the show’s plot, which is equally as sinister.
|Ben McKenzie as James Gordon|
Taking a different approach than most other media in the franchise, the plot of “Gotham” primarily follows the character James Gordon rather than Batman. Gordon, played by Ben McKenzie, is a young detective just getting his start on the Gotham Police Department. McKenzie fits the role perfectly, creating a character whose youth and strong moral compass help him to combat organized crime. He and the other actors do a fantastic job at creating realistic representations of the characters.
The storyline of the show is just as compelling as the actors. Starting out with the investigation of the murder of Bruce Wayne’s parents, it promises to be fast-paced and filled with surprises in each new episode. Curiously, there are many aspects of the show that are reminiscent of previous Batman films. One such example is when Mrs. Wayne is murdered and the camera focuses on the pearls from her necklace bouncing onto the asphalt. This same kind of shot was used in the 1989 “Batman” movie.
With its pilot, “Gotham” has proven to be a legitimate new Batman series. The show’s producers have artistically designed all aspects of it- from the foreboding Gotham skyline, to the intrinsic relations between the characters. Fox may find itself bringing in new fans to the Batman franchise with this new spin, as well as giving seasoned followers a new fixation. Gotham airs on Fox Mondays at 8/7 CST. Visit the series website to keep up-to-date on the show and to view other related media.