RSS

Tag Archives: Camren Bicondova

QUICK REVIEW: Gotham Season 1

Howdy ladies and gents, time for a TV review and today I’m gonna be giving you my quick thoughts on Gotham. When I did my post on comic book TV shows from last year until this year, a person mentioned in the comments that I missed a show out and it was this one. I think that should say something about how I feel about this show, but I feel like I should clarify my thoughts on the show so here we go.

Gotham-poster

What bothers me about the show is that it showed so much promise. I mean sure the concept of a Batman show that didn’t have Batman in it and instead focused on the origins of James Gordon, the main villains and a young Bruce Wayne wasn’t exactly what a lot of fans were crying out for. However, the fact that it was giving us an origin to the villain-based characters and had a police drama element incorporated to it had me intrigued, and for the first few episodes, I was into it. I liked the combination of James Gordon and Harvey Bullock as the main cops, Oswald Cobblepot was an interesting sneaky little man, I liked the sassy yet stern nature of Fish Mooney, oh and the awkward yet hilarious Edward Nygma, and the list goes on. Basically, the show was making a lot of good moves by creating a grounded approach, with a slightly more adult tone and different style to what fans have seen adapted to screen in the past. The only problem is that the show never finds its footing.

Gotham-character-poster

Without going into spoilers, Gotham‘s first season seemed to be all over the place in terms of the tone. Sometimes it would emphasise humour, other times it would be super serious, sometimes the stories would be fairly light-hearted and other times there’s get violent and dark, and sometimes all of that would happen in the same episode. I thought the show was going to be cop drama focusing on James Gordon and a handful of villains, but the show gets lost in a sea of its stories, and after a while situations that were once engaging and compelling start to fall flat because they’re either drawn out or lead to bad changes that feel like they were made on the fly rather than being thought out.  As for the references to the source material, some of the name drops and visual easter eggs while interesting occasionally felt shoehorned in and not entirely necessary. Plus I got so uninterested in the show that I dropped it for like six weeks before I came back to another episode, then left it again for ages before I watched the final five episodes.

When it comes to the characters things get complicated because there’s a lot of characters not only at the start but also as the show progresses which leads to a lack of focus on who should have screen time. The focus would shift from one main character story to another when one was clearly more interesting than the other, and some minor characters felt like they were dropped into an episode just to remind you that they still existed. As for the cast, they’re a mixed bag. Some are good while others were never that interesting to begin with, so I’m just going to talk about the people worth mentioning briefly.

Ben McKenzie as James Gordon was good. He was tenacious and headstrong and wanted to do the right thing, but also had to learn about the facts of life and make comprises. Donal Logue as Harvey Bullock was great, this guy was a douche, but he was charming, aggressive and smart about the way things worked in the legal system. Gordon and Bullock have pretty good chemistry and their partnership is what mainly holds the show together. Robin Lord Taylor as Oswald Cobblepot/The Penguin was one of the strongest people in the cast, at first I loved his character, he was the underdog, intelligent and crafty, yet feeble and unable truly have anything he really wanted. As time goes on Oswald goes to some interesting places, but he eventually starts to become a little cartoonish and uninteresting. David Mazouz as Bruce Wayne was a mixed bag, sometimes he was smart and resourceful, but other times he felt naive and immature and some of that was due to the script other times it was due to Mazouz’s acting skills. Sean Pertwee as Alfred Pennyworth was pretty good, while it took me some time to adjust to the accent, but this version of Alfred was just as cool, active and smart and I had hoped for.

Cory Michael Smith as Edward Nygma was another person I liked, while he wasn’t necessarily evil, he had already gotten his Riddler-like personality traits and that was alright because he was quite fun to watch. Morena Baccarin was good as Leslie Thompkins, she was one of the few characters I didn’t hate because Baccarin brought a charm, elegance and endearing quality to her character. John Doman as Carmine Falconewas pretty good and I also liked David Zayas as Sal Maroni too. Jada Pinkett Smith as Fish Mooney was initially one of my favourite characters. She was smart, cunning, vivacious and doesn’t take shit from anyone, however after a while as her story becomes a little random and crazy and Smith started to go a little too over-the-top with this role and that’s what killed it for me. Camren Bicondova as Selina “Cat” Kyle was another character I started liking from the beginning, but eventually, she became annoying with random appearances in episodes and her schizophrenic like attitude towards Bruce and certain other characters got pretty tedious. Erin Richards as Barbara Kean was someone I never liked from the beginning, I found her dull, annoying and troublesome and while she became more interesting towards the latter half of the season I still never cared for her that much. And finally, Nicholas D’Agosto was fine as Harvey Dent but didn’t leave a lasting impression.

The one thing that Gotham gets right is the presentation. Visually the show looks nice with a solid use of lighting, colour and overall cinematography. Gotham City looks lovely and has a much better presence and style than the latter Chris Nolan Batman films.

Penguin_Umbrella_Gotham

In conclusion season 1 of Gotham, I wouldn’t say it was a complete waste of time, but at the end of the day, I just wasn’t that captivated by this show. It started it out well and had some interesting elements with the characters and certain plot points as well. However, tonal inconsistencies, drawn-out stories, boring characters and lack of “wow factor” culminated in a show that had ideas, but didn’t know how to properly execute them. Now I know there’s some people who liked this first season but for me it was just a bit meh.

Rating: 5.5/10

So have you season 1 of Gotham and if so what did you think of it? Do you feel I’m being too harsh on the show or am not being hard enough? Also if you’re a Batman fan how do feel about this approach the comic book mythos? Please leave your comments below and I’ll see ya in the next review, laters. 😀

 
2 Comments

Posted by on August 13, 2015 in Media, Reviews, Television, TV Reviews

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

My Thoughts on Gotham So Far

Howdy ladies and gents, with my recent look at how season 2 Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is going, I thought I would pass continue this semi-review style with another comic book show, Gotham. Now at first I was sceptical about there being a prequel TV to the Batman era of Gotham city, but when the early episodes had positive reviews I thought I’d give it a shot, and I’m glad I did.

Gotham-TV-Show-Fox-Logo

Story

The plot for the show is pretty good as it has a main overarching storyline but also has individual stories that develop the characters and expands the world of Gotham. We get tales of murder, kidnapping, drug-related incidents and corruption with the police, government and criminal underworld and it works well because the stories are pretty interesting and engaging with good dialogue and character moments. The cool thing about this show is that it is a show that exists within the world of Batman, but is able to function without the dark knight himself, instead what we are given in the origin stories of these key characters before they become the iconic people that we all know and love, and while some of these starting points seem a bit bizarre for comic book fans, after a while you start to see certain things unfold that give you an idea of where these characters will go in the future. Another great aspect of Gotham is the fact that it plays out like your typical police drama, it has all the basic codes and conventions, but enough unique plot elements and characters that it works in its own way. The only thing that concerns me is how long will the show be able to function in this pre-Batman era of Gotham before it gets dull? I’m not saying that there aren’t possibilities, but I assume there will have to be some kind of time skip if the show is to continue into a second and/or third season.

Tone

When it comes to the tone of this show it is very mature and doesn’t hide away from the very adult problems that reside within Gotham. You have violence, murder, prostitutes and while it’s not 15 rated material, it definitely feels like it’s edging in that direction. I just like how adult the show is, it doesn’t shy away from the problems within the Gotham city police department, the dodgy feelings with crime bosses and politics, and just one the streets of the city itself.

gotham2

Characters

But what is a good story and tone without a good cast? Luckily this show has a great cast and the good thing is that everyone is relevant, but there are certainly some stand-out performances.

Firstly there’s Ben McKenzie as James Gordon, at first I wasn’t sure if I was going to like McKenzie as Gordon, but now I really like him. This young version of Gordon is fresh on the scene and believes in justice, however starts to realise that the traditional means of police work does not apply Gotham. What you have to appreciate about this guy is that he’s righteous, tenacious and willing to do whatever it takes to get justice. Someone who is just as impressive is Donal Logue as Harvey Bullock, he’s Gordon’s partner, he been in the police game longer than Gordon and is already corrupt. He’s a dodgy detective who has very questionable morals and ethics and doesn’t really adhere to the proper ways of police work, however the guy is really funny and engaging. David Mazouz is decent as Bruce Wayne, in this show we see the early days of Wayne after his parents are murdered and how starts to start conquering fear and getting into detective work. While it is interesting to see this what young Bruce is up to, sometimes I feel like his appearance is shoe-horned in and not as interesting as other character stories. Also Sean Pertwee is a very interesting and different as Alfred Pennyworth, this version of Bruce’s butler has more a cockney accent which was the biggest thing I had to get over, but other than that he’s fine.

1db8a3d57c526c2f_Gotham_102_MooneysNightClub_0980_hires2.xxxlarge_2x Penguin_Umbrella_Gotham

Robin Lord Taylor is the really the star of this show as Oswald “Penguin” Cobblepot. At first I wasn’t sure if this character would be that engaging but now I LOVE him. He’s an underling with big ambitions and the gift of the gab and slowly but surely starts to show his true nature and my god, the stuff this guy gets up to is nothing short of captivating. He’s smart, cunning and calculated and to see him go from strength to strength is utterly fascinating and it helps that Taylor is such a fine actor. Jada Pinkett Smith is just incredible as Fish Mooney, this is a woman who is as elegant as she is deadly. She’s a powerful woman in the criminal world who has many connections and she works under Don Falcone, however wants to take him out because like more gangsters, she’s greedy. Smith has been in such an engaging role in years, but I’m loving her charisma. John Doman is good as Carmine Falcone, this man is respected but also feared, and has many connections throughout the city. And while he’s old and looking to be taken out by certain other parties, he’s not stupid, he’s pretty cunning and knows how to stay ahead of his enemies. And finally there’s David Zayas who is awesome as Salvatore Maroni, he’s the leader of his own crime family and is an opposing force to Falcone. This is a man who is very funny, larger-than-life and smiley, however he has a big temper, doesn’t like to lose and wants more from the city of Gotham. Camren Bicondova is good as Selina “Cat” Kyle, she witnesses the murder of Thomas and Martha Wayne and now has a connection with James Gordon and Wayne manner. Selina, while not the perfected thief, is good at stealing, acrobatics and hiding in plain sight and Bicondova is quite pleasant and amusing in the role. Cory Michael Smith is cool as Edward Nygma, his involvement in the show is small working for the police department as a coroner and forensics operative, but when he is on-screen he’s so fun.

Presentation

One thing that really helps this show is the production values, visually this show depicts Gotham as this dark, dreary and dirty city with a lot of shadows, muted colours and lovely cinematography. This is probably the best-looking version of Gotham City since Tim Burton’s Batman back in 1989, this version of the famous city has a look and style to it that’s unique and feels like a solid adaptation of the comic book source material. One of my main issues with the Christopher Nolan films is that after Batman Begins, Gotham lost its unique style and turned into generic-looking city with no style or substance, but this is not the case with this show, it looks great.

Gotham-character-poster

Conclusion

In conclusion Gotham is some really good stuff. It is a show not bound by its source material and can stand on its own feet with its original stories and nice interpretations of what we’ve come to expect from the Batman mythos. Only time will tell whether this show will be able to keep up this momentum, but so far so good, Can’t wait to see how things turn out at the end of this season.

So have you been watching Gotham and if so what do you think? Whatever your thoughts are be sure to drop them in the comments below and I’ll see you on the next review, laters! 😀

 
5 Comments

Posted by on November 10, 2014 in Media, Reviews, Television, TV Reviews

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

 
%d bloggers like this: