Gotham is an American crime television series developed by Bruno Heller. The show’s premise follows characters that appear in the DC Universe, specifically those unique to the Batman franchise. Originally, the series would serve as a look at an earlier, pre-Batman version of the Gotham Police Force, but has since evolved to include the early stories of several Batman villains. The first season originally included 16 episodes, the first of which premiered on September 2014. Later, the series was extended to include additional episodes, for a total of 22 season 1 episodes. The series was renewed on January of 2015 for a second season.
The story follows new GCPD recruit James Gordon, who’s paired with Harvey Bullock to investigate the murder of Thomas and Martha Wayne. During his investigation, he meets the young Bruce Wayne, now in the care of his butler, Alfred Pennyworth. Having seen the distraught child, Gordon is further compelled to track down the Waynes murderer and bring whoever it is to justice. In doing so, of course, he earns the ire of several mafia families station in Gotham. He’s forced into an unlikely alliance with the young Bruce Wayne, one that eventually shapes Bruce’s future as the Dark Knight.
Gotham has received generally positive reviews. Rotten Tomatoes has a rating of 90% based on 86 critic reviews. The average score was 7.3 out of 10. The site’s consensus stated “High production values, a talented cast, and an appealingly stylized approach to the Batman mythos help Gotham overcome its occasionally familiar themes.” Similarly, Metacritic and IMDb have rated the show highly, giving a score of 71 out of 100 and 8.1 out of 10, respectively.
David Hinckley of the New York Daily News praised the first episode of Gotham, grateful it played more like “a 45-minute movie, with stunning visuals that never feel like a shrunken TV version of the Batman films against which it will inevitably be measured.” He further praised Donal Logue’s performance as Harvey Bullock, praising him a scene-stealer.
The television series specifically excels at presenting Gotham in all of its moody glory. It’s akin to cities and towns run by gangsters, where the wrong word can find someone lying dead in an alleyway. Moreover, the series paves the necessary groundwork that justifies the need for everyone’s favorite caped crusader. While other superhero television shows may fail to tell their own story while belonging to a larger universe, Gotham clearly defines itself as a prelude to everything that is Batman.
Similar to other Batman themed stories, Gotham begins with the tragic murder of Thomas and Martha Wayne. However, instead cutting straight to the Bruce Wayne becoming Batman story line, Gotham allows the audience to understand just how important the Waynes were in maintaining the unspoken balance between good and evil. With the fall of the Waynes, Gotham City plummets into despair, unhinged and overrun by gangsters and mafia families all struggling in the vacuum of power left behind in the wake of the Waynes’ deaths.
Gotham serves as more than an origin story for many of Gotham City’s primary villains. It’s a story that creates a universe and begs for salvation. Look at these awesome Charter Cable TV Deals to find more television entertainment options