When the Fox Network announced they would be producing a show called “Gotham”, set in Batman’s city, I was thrilled, as any fan of the Caped Crusader would be. However, I was not so thrilled when I found out the show would NOT feature Batman, but would follow the rise of Detective Jim Gordon (Ben McKenzie) years before the Dark Knight was on the scene. I scoffed at the very thought of such a premise. Nevertheless, when the show premiered in 2014, I decided to give the show a shot. After the premier I was in love. Yes, the show followed Detective Gordon, but also a very young Bruce Wayne (David Mazouz). Viewers saw the tragic murder of Wayne’s parents, and how Gordon took the young lad under his wing, and promised to always watch after him. So to me the show was a “Batman in the making” show. Over the course of five years the show covered the often tragic love life of Gordon, and his dealings with the Gotham City Police Department and his scruffy side-kick Harvey Bullock (Donal Logue). The show also followed the growth and development of the young Bruce and his interactions with his faithful butler and father figure Alfred Pennyworth (Sean Pertwee). Bruce also developed his famous relationship with Selina Kyle, a.k.a Catwoman (Carmen Bicondova), which often proved to be caring and violate. The show introduced us to Batman’s famous rouge’s gallery of villains, most prominently featuring Oswald Cobblepot/Penguin (Robin Lord Taylor) and Edward Nygma/Riddler (Cory Michael Smith). Many other villains appeared during the course of the show, including Poison Ivy (played by various actresses), Ra’s al Ghul (Alexander Sidding), Jarvis Tetch/Mad Hatter (Benedict Samuel), Victor Zasaz (Anthony Carrigan), Dr. Hugo Strange (BD Wong), Victor Fries/Mr. Freeze (Nathan Darrow). Jonathan Crane/Scarecrow (David W. Thompson and Charlie Tahan), Eduardo Dorrance/Bane (Shane West) and Firefly (Camila Perez) among others. Perhaps the most controversial villain on the show was Fish Mooney (Jada Pinkett Smith), whose character was created for the show. Fish was a crime lord who employed Penguin, who later became her rival in the criminal underworld. At times the character of Fish was a bit over-the-top, even for a show like “Gotham”, and her character didn’t make it to the shows final season. To me the best aspects of “Gotham” were the very theatrical cinematography, and the excellent actors, led by McKenzie. I remember McKenzie from is days as a troubled but heroic youth on the televison show “The O.C.”, so it was a natural progression for the actor to take on the mantle of the often troubled but heroic Gordon. His performance is one for the ages, and was always respectful of the character. The other standout, among many, would be Taylor as the Penguin. Taylor stole many scenes during the run of the show, and his hot and cold relationship with Nygma (The Riddler) was a highlight of the show, featuring their always entertaining bantering. Not to be left out, and perhaps the most amazing performance, came from Cameron Monaghan as twins Jerome and Jeremiah Valeska, Fans of the show knew he was The Joker, even though the show was not allowed to use that name for reasons I will not mention. His performance would peel paint off the wall. Monaghan’s take of the Clown Prince of Crime is one of the best ever, and if you have never seen the show, I encourage you to watch some of his clips from the show on YouTube, as they are chilling. Even the show just ended, fans were able to watch Mazouz grow, literally and figuratively from a frightened kid into Batman (in the season 5 finale). During its run, the show was never meek in presenting the violence of Gotham City and its famous villains, having many stomach churning scenes. However, despite such violence, the heart of the show was the fortitude of Bruce and his determination to protect his beloved Gotham. Up to this year, the show received 54 Emmy nominations, and won 6 of those. “Gotham” has provided fans of the Dark Knight a wonderful ride of thrills and chills, and while I am sad to say goodbye to “Gotham”, the show will always be there in various formats to relive its five years of episodes. There are rumblings of a possible spin-off featuring Catwoman, and that receives a big “meow” from me. If you have never ventured to this version of Gotham City, “Gotham” provides a fun way to celebrate Batman’s 80th anniversary as a hero. 🌟🌟🌟🌟
Strolling on MainCELTIC THUNDER’S EMMET CAHILL TO PERFORM CHURCH BENEFIT CONCERT IN JOHNSON CITY ON MAY 22
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