Skip to main content

'Gotham' Review (S1E12): 'What the Little Bird Told Him'

Enter the Electrocutioner
Gotham suffers a sort of identity crisis much like Harvey Dent himself. Not the hamfisted younger version introduced earlier in the series but the much more villainous future Two-Face of Batman canon. On the one hand, the show is a police procedural with sometime buddy cops Gordon and Bullock trading quips and arguing over how to handle a case. On the other, there's a gritty mob crime drama with riveting and cunning characters on the verge of destroying one another. Guess which show we'd like to see more of?


Compounding the show's dilemmas are the abundance of storylines vying for screen time. And not all them of them deserve their share. Take for instance, the odd appearance of Barbara Keen. After a falling out with Renee Montoya she heads home to see her parents who are disturbingly stoic and emotionless to have her there. I could not help but wonder, why am I watching this right now? 

There was no sign of young Bruce Wayne and Alfred this week after that relationship began showing some signs of purpose and chemistry. Perhaps if the show had originally planned for 22 episodes they could have prepared for these storylines to better evolve organically. Unfortunately, the initial order was for 16 episodes and after 'What the Little Bird Told Him' it certainly feels like things are coming to some sort of conclusion. 

The show begins with a great sequence of the Electrocutioner, now on the loose after escaping Arkham last episode, walking down the street with his mute accomplice in tow while Johnny Cash serenades the scene. It's the type of direction and camera work you'd see in a feature film. It works because it tracks the villain of the week demonstrating his ruthlessness in a way that is engaging and shocking. Unfortunately, the Electrocutioner devolves into a cartoonish baddie as the show goes on. Even his capture is astonishingly weak. I'm talking rage-throwing-the-remote weak. 

These mood swings in tone hamper the show from truly taking off. Gordon gets on the Electrocutioner case by bluffing and talking in some weird accent. He's suddenly overconfident, defiant and determined to get his man. His relationship with Dr. Leslie Thompkins is blossoming, but I can't for the life of me determine how or why. They've spent little time together and so far haven't shown enough sparks to light a match yet make out. This despite the best efforts of guest star Morena Baccarin who is radiant and charming but poorly served by the script. 

What keeps me coming back is the mob storyline that allows pros like Jada Pinkett Smith, John Doman and David Zayas to scheme and plot against one another with menacing glee. Breakout star Robin Lord Taylor as the Penguin gets to put a monkey wrench in Fish Mooney's plan to kidnap Liza and force Falcone to skip town forever.  A re-energized Falcone makes Mooney pay with Liza's life as the 'little bird' in question is the Penguin who informs him that he's been duped by the young admirer. It's a show of strength and power by the Don that resonates when he takes Mooney hostage after earlier considering retiring. 

If only the rest of the show's storylines took themselves more seriously or were at least as consistent as the mob plot. Gotham is really two shows in one. A thrilling mob crime drama surrounded by a schizophrenic police procedural dramedy. With a full season this year, plus a season 2 order, Gotham has the time and the support to continue to find itself. Hopefully, fans will stick around long enough for the show to reach its potential.

Check out scenes from next week's episode, 'Welcome Back, Jim Gordon.'




Comments

  1. Gotham lost this Batman fan. You hit it right on the money, the villains are cartoony as hell and their capture is usually uneventful. Personally, I've never been into mob dramas or procedurals. That's probably why this show failed to connect with me.

    Constantine deserves a renewal over this show 1k times more. Unfortunately, by fans continuing to watch this garbage the good shows get axed.

    So disappointed but hey atleast we've got The Flash!

    ReplyDelete
  2. It's wildly inconsistent from week to week. but i've always liked mob dramas and that part of the show i find most intriguing.


    Constantine has improved so much from the pilot it knows what it is and is just fearless and funny that it deserves another season.


    you're right at least we have The Flash. the best of the bunch.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

DC Comics March Movie Poster Variant Covers are Fantastic

DC Comics may have outdone themselves with their running themed variant covers for the month of March 2015. After some fun and gorgeous variants in 2014 like Darwin Cooke (December), LEGO (November), and Bombshells (June) to name a few DC Comics is continuing to bring some creative covers in 2015. January will feature Flash throughout the company line in celebration of his 75th Anniversary, February will bring everyone’s favorite wild card, Harley Quinn, on DC covers, and perhaps the best mash-ups of comics and famous movie posters will arrive in March.

WONDER WOMAN OF THE DAY: Fitness Model Gia Macool Embodies the Amazon Princess

The closest we'll ever get, probably, to superheroes in real life is through the great work of cosplayers. You see them at every pop culture convention from the very basic to extremely elaborate costume design. However, you don't have to be a cosplayer to enjoy dressing up as your favorite superhero from time to time. Take fitness model and entrepreneur Gia Macool for example. An accomplished fitness competitor and model, Macool is also a big fan of DC Comics' Wonder Woman. She shows her love of the iconic Amazon Princess in her fitness wear, meal prep accessories and even a full blown photo shoot in a Wonder Woman costume. 

For decades comics have featured very muscular superheroes, male and female, epitomizing the human form at its strongest. So when bodybuilders and fitness pros decide to suit up as these costumed heroes, they are the embodiment of those fictional characters in the flesh. Macool looks like she stepped out of the pages of a Wonder Woman comic with a suit …

'Aberrant Season 2' Promises Twisty '80's Inspired Action When the Political Thriller Returns

A new, delightfully twisted story arc of the much-lauded political action thriller is coming to you this February!



Rylend Grant has been busy. The screenwriter – whom has previously penned poppy action fare for folks like Ridley Scott, Justin Lin, John Woo, and F. Gary Gray – spent 2018 writing movies for the likes of J.J. Abrams and Hamilton star Daveed Diggs. He also somehow managed to find the time to put together a deliciously evil five-issue sequel to his critically acclaimed comic book, ABERRANT.

“I don’t sleep much,” says Grant, whom is also raising a gleefully rambunctious two-year-old.

To add fuel to his bone-tired fire, Collider recently announced that ABERRANT is being developed for television by 24 and Felicity executive producer Tony Krantz.

“Tony is one of the smartest people working in Hollywood today,” said Grant, who will write the pilot and produce the series alongside Krantz. “He has shown a uniquely genuine passion and enthusiasm for the book. I honestly couldn’t b…

PREVIEW: 'The Spirit: The Corpse-Makers' HC by Francesco Francavilla

A series of unexpected disappearances and deaths hit Central City. Initially, these cases seem purely unrelated; no apparent connection between the victims makes it easy for the police to just file them as runaways or natural deaths. But when someone close to Ebony White disappears, The Spirit is on the case!


The iconic masked crimefighter created by legendary comic book creator Will Eisner returns in an all-new tale by Francesco Francavilla... Eisner Award winner, master of crime noir, and worthy successor to The Spirit’s legacy!
The Spirit: The Corpse-Makers HC
writer: Francesco Francavilla artist: Francesco Francavilla cover: Francesco Francavilla
FC  |  128 pages  |  $19.99  |   Teen+ 












Fitness Women in Superhero Body Paint by J.M. Manion

J.M. Manion has long been a successful photographer covering the fitness and bodybuilding industry. He has photographed some of the strongest, well-defined physiques on the planet. He's also had a love of super-heroes and comic books. So much so that Manion began publishing his own comic book, Iron Siren Comics, featuring some of the fitness competitors he's covered as superheroes themselves. It's no wonder he sometimes incorporates superhero cosplay and body paint into photo shoots. Here are just some examples of his work: