Holy pointless prequel, Batman! Gotham pilot not winning over critics
As Patton Oswald so brilliantly points out, prequels are inherently underwhelming. They’re filled with not-yet-awesome characters heading towards a future you already take for granted. Any surprises along the way smack of cheesy coincidence and transparent contrivance.
The new Fox crime drama Gotham promises to fall into that trap every week until its inevitable demise. Set in the Gotham City of Bruce Wayne’s childhood, the show is a cornucopia of Batman villains at a point in their lives when they’re not yet worthy of battling Batman, i.e., not yet worthy of being on TV.
How these villains came to be interesting and awesome is worth a scene, not a series.
Check out this review of the pilot episode by Comicbookresources.com:
You know there’s something off when the best thing about your Batman-based TV show is Jada Pinkett Smith’s newly-created character. […]
What we saw was a rushed, emotionally dull affair that is equal parts overcooked and underwhelming. In trying to service too many sub-plots, the hour leaves you unconvinced that you really need to see “Poison Ivy Begins: Age 8,” especially when it takes time away from exploring the trauma that brought Gordon and a young Bruce Wayne together.
It’s sad to see showrunner Bruno Heller, who created the brilliant HBO series Rome, wasted on derivative prequel crap like this. Especially since the criminal underworld plotlines on Rome were always the weakest part of the series.
Fox is betting the farm on Gotham being a hit. HTNP prediction: Gotham ratings crash throughout Season 1, a la Agents of SHIELD. The final numbers would be considered a smash on The CW alongside Arrow and Flash, but Fox demands more.
Fox > Fox Entertainment Group > 21st Century Fox (Rupert Murdoch, Chairman & CEO)