Remember that scene in the middle of The Dark Knight Rises where Batman and Catwoman are riding in a horse-drawn carriage through Robinson Park? She says, “I wish we had met sooner. Just imagine: wouldn’t that have been wonderful if we had known each other when we were little? Little Bruce-y and little Selin-y.” And then there was the flashback dream sequence to when they were in a nursery as babies together.
And now we’ve got a whole show spun-off from that scene. It’s called Gotham, because “Batman Babies” wouldn’t have been as cool. And it features a little Bruce-y and a little Selin-y, plus a little Ossie and a little Eddie and a little Pammy and a little Jimmy. At least that’s how it feels. In reality, the upcoming series (which has just been picked up for a full season) that looks at Gotham City before Bruce Wayne grew up to be Batman is about a tradition and a trend. The former goes back many decades with comic books, as most popular characters have had “lil” and “baby” incarnations. Even Bat-Baby existed for an issue in 1962. The latter is the soon-to-be-over-saturated concept of giving movie villains their own prequel TV shows. There’s Hannibal and Bates Motel already. Oh, and it fits in line with the already over-saturating idea of filling the TV channels with superheroes.
I have no problem with what Gotham is doing, even if it does seem a little silly in theory. I liked Muppet Babies, Tiny Toon Adventures, Young Indiana Jones Chronicles and Young Sherlock Holmes. If only Gotham was a cartoon and/or involved Steven Spielberg, I guess. But it’s not the silliest Batman property to ever exist, even if little girl versions of future Catwoman (Camren Bicondova) and future Poison Ivy makes us cringe a wee bit. Maybe Gotham City does just birth evil, all villains being crooks or worse since they could crawl. At least the Caped Crusader has a few enemies who are much older than him so that the Penguin (Robin Taylor) and the Riddler (Cory Michael Smith) aren’t preteens. As for little Bruce Wayne (David Mazouz), there’s hopefully very little of him in the actual show, which focuses instead on pre-commissioner James Gordon (Ben McKenzie). In fat, I hope a lot of this trailer is to hint the connections that won’t be too often present in the real series.
We do see mostly Gordon and his mentor, Harvey (Donal Logue), and a primary adversary who isn’t from the comics: crime boss Fish Mooney, played by Jada Pinkett Smith. I bet adding the scene of Bruce’s parents gunned down in front of him is like showing a clip from The Avengers in an early spot for Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (I’m sure that happened). Because there are people out there who will want to look at these characters as children, while most of us just want a good cop show set in the gritty world of Gotham City with occasional fan service. Also, hey, is that Richard Kind as the Mayor of Gotham City? I’m sold.
Watch the Gotham trailer below and join us in checking the show out when it debuts on Fox this fall.