Turn off the Lights

Gotham – The Pilot Review

"Gordon is on a mission to clean Gotham. "

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The anticipation is over as the premiere of Gotham has finally arrived. Setting up the city of Gotham is Selina Kyle (Catwomen), who as it happens resembles Michelle Pfeiffer but with a little more edge. Using her acrobatic moves, which mirror the moves of a feline, she runs through the city stealing milk and money. Milk, of course, to feed a stray cat and showing her soft side. She, inadvertently, witnesses the murder of Bruce Wayne’s parents.

As a result of this double homicide, the young James Gordon and his partner Harvey Bullock get assigned to the case. Immediately upon getting to the crime scene Gordon empathizes and connects with young Bruce Wayne, promising him that he will catch the man who murdered his parents. War hero Gordon is determined to bring justice to Gotham and restore the “light” to Bruce Wayne. It seems, young James Gordon shares the same characteristics as future Bruce Wayne. Surely, if Gordon had the resources Bruce Wayne does, then he would become Batman or some kind of masked hero years earlier. Of course, we all know the fate of these characters, but it makes sense why he is Batman’s ally in the future.

Cr: Jessica Miglio/FOX

Harvey Bullock, an obvious crooked cop, is described as a “cynic” but is a well-played cynic by Donal Logue. The Grounded for Life star Logue truly embodies the bad but cocky cop. Although, his belief that no harm can come to him gets him into trouble when he threatens Fish Mooney, he still manages to sliver out of that one. He doesn’t and hasn’t tried to be secretive about wanting Gordon gone, telling him that “nice guys” can’t live in Gotham, but his secret connections do get revealed by the end. In fact, it is revealed that all of Gotham police force is in cahoots with the mob. It would be fascinating to see if Bullock continues to try to corrupt Gordon in future episodes.

While every glimpse and trailer leading up to the premiere has revealed the origins of Batman and his villains, this is still the pilot. Meaning, it is still the beginning and we won’t see many turn into the villain or see Bruce put on that Batman suit. Indeed, we do see Wayne trying to conquer his fear by getting on the roof, but he won’t be jumping off any time soon.

Consequently, Owswald Cobblepot is out for power and he betrays ruthless Fish Mooney to do that. The future Penguin has shown his taste for violence when he gets off on hurting Raul. He is the only villain that begins his trail of evil. He was spared death by our hero Gordon but every action has its repercussions. If Gordon had heed Bullocks words “to do a bad thing [in order] to do good” then Cobblepot wouldn’t have murdered the fisherman and vowed to come back when he is stronger. As seen throughout the episode, Gordon is the good guy and murder isn’t in his list of morality, but I am curious to have seen the future if Gordon did murder the Penguin.

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Sadly, all the other future villains don’t get much camera time. Edward Nygma only gets 34 seconds of action as he tries and fails to give us a riddle. Sassy Ivy Pepper receives almost the same time and each time caring for her lovely botanical garden. Selina Kyle, on the other hand, gets more scenes but she has yet uttered a single word.

Currently, the bad guy is Jada Pinkett Smith’s character Fish Mooney, who is without a doubt a heartless, mad with power woman. Besides Raul, Cobblepot endorses Mooney’s wrath when she breaks his legs causing him to walk like a penguin for the rest of his life.

Final Thoughts
– The show gives the impression that Gordon’s failure to save the young villains will result in Batman cleaning up the streets of Gotham City.
– Selina Kyle might have a bigger role to play as she has locked her cat curiosity on the now orphaned Bruce Wayne. It is, also, not clear on whether she will become a villain.
– It is apparent that Gordon needed Bruce Wayne’s forgiveness and needed to ask for a second chance.

Rating
7.0

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