Let’s be real: There’s so many shows out there now – between Hulu and Netflix and Amazon and our dear old Cable – that there’s simply not enough time to watch it all. And even if you do start a new series, who’s to say what’s worth watching?
Well fret no more! Out new column “Why Aren’t You Watching” has got you covered, with weekly suggestions on some of the better shows all within binging distance!
Let’s be real: Marvel has been dominating the superhero blotter lately, with string after string of ensemble movies rolling out each year, but without a doubt, it’s DC that has my television heart.
“Gotham” stars Ben McKenzie as a young Detective James Gordon during the years of origin of all your Gotham City favorites. With the first episode kicking off with the death of Bruce Wayne’s parents, it’s obvious that the series is not focusing solely on the legend of the Batman, but on the more human side of the Batman Universe, showing how the “Good Guys” got good, and the “Bad Guys” went crooked.
The show puts a heavy emphasis on Gordon and the whole Gotham City Police Department, bringing the audience into the more inner workings of a corrupt government and justice system, while simultaneously introducing everyone’s favorite DC villains thriving in Gotham City’s not-so-secret underworld.
Gritty and grounded, yet still scattered with whimsy and surrealism, “Gotham” operates as a cop show, but don’t think for a second it’s anything like a serial “Law and Order” type deal; rather than each episode or season focusing on the origin of one character, each episode is part of a larger picture unfolding within the city. Each character – Gordon, Wayne, Penguin, Riddler, Catwoman, Poison Ivy, to name just a few – operates alongside the others in their own character arc on a daily basis, either to collaborate or to oppose, in order to further their own agendas.
With each season, this web of activity only grows larger, with each character holding more of a stake in the outcome, and the power struggle of the city growing tighter. It becomes a thrilling race, made even more so by the fact that there is no one character holding as the “True North” – that is, the one character who is concerned only with doing what is right, and having the moral strength to not give in to their darker needs, even if it will help their current situation.
These characters -the Joker, Harley Quinn, Gordon, Harvey, and even Bruce Wayne himself – are products of their environment: flawed beings with little moral high ground, navigating a corrupt and isolated city. Faced with desperate situations, they become desperate themselves, making tough choices that may even worsen their situations.
“Gotham” brings the characters from the black and white pages of the comics and pointedly righteous films and creates more dynamic storylines that the audience can connect with on deeper levels.
Last year, FOX announced that “Gotham” would end after its fifth season, airing January 2, 2019. This last season is teased as completing the origin of the official Batman legacy as well as closing everyone else’s stories up until what the audience was previously familiar with, leading them into the near-present.
All four seasons of “Gotham” are now streaming on Netflix, and are for-purchase on Amazon Prime.