Comic book tv shows

Tip of advice for Gotham: Subtlety is key.

david mazouz gotham bruce wayne batman

I think we need to be a little bit more subtle than this guys…


So Barbara Kean is a drug addict now. Something we found out through clunky exposition between her and Renee Montoya. It’s shit like this that makes me cringe at Gotham. But it can be easily improved upon.

One of the biggest issues I have with Gotham is their lack of subtlety. Everything is bluntly stated, and not threaded throughout the story and dialogue in an organic way, and the concept of foreshadowing is apparently not fully understood by the writers of the show. Let me give you an example. Barbara Kean. She was all nice and innocent, with hints of her lesbian past, but all of a sudden she is some troubled drug addict as well. I don’t know if I missed something but this was totally out of the blue for me. We just see her with her stoner face, weed in hand, with Renee Montoya talking about her long troubled issue in an obvious piece of clunky exposition filled dialogue. It was like, hey we don’t really have time to introduce this properly so let’s just get her to sum it up in 30 seconds or less. Which is what happened, and it didn’t feel right to me. Also their whole lesbian relationship feels forced to me anyways, but that is besides the point.

barbara kean gotham

Here’s another thing the writers aren’t subtle about, “hey audience! This guy (looks at Bruce Wayne) is going to be Batman! Did you know that? Did you know?”. Yes we did know that, but you know what doesn’t make sense, a kid, who has just lost his parents, being totally strong about it and just casually training with his butler. A major part of the Batman mythology is that Bruce Wayne had to completely break down before he could build his way up again, and be as strong as he is now. He really shouldn’t be playing detective now. Which by the way, that whole thing about him acting as a detective, grrr double cringe! Obviously you want to showcase that you have Bruce Wayne on your show, and apparently the only interesting way to weave him into the story is by getting him to act all Batman like, but being a detective and training when he is still just a kid who just lost his parents, makes no freaking sense!

And don’t even get me started on all the vigilante talk, the whole ‘who is gonna take Balloonman’s place’, with Bruce staring at the tv watching the news report. And Gordon talking about the possibility of people taking the law into their own hands etc etc. Drop one “hey he is going to be Batman” hint in the episode, not a billion. Because it is foreshadowing after all, and foreshadowing is done best when it is subtle, and not in your face.

Now let me take you back to my gripe about clunky exposition. We all know bad guys like to monologue, that’s nothing new. But Balloonman’s lengthy speech that conveniently correlated to the inner existential and moral struggles Gordon was having was a bit much, “who are you finally?”, he asks Gordon. Urghh.

Who knows, maybe I’m just grumpy today, but those little things in the show pissed me off today. But overall I guess I did enjoy the episode. Cobblepot as always was a standout, and Gordon and Bullock’s dynamic is really shaping up.

So are you like me and have an issue with Gotham’s lack of subtlety? Or do you have any other issues with Gotham? Let me know!

5 replies »

  1. Gotham is not at all what I wanted from the show thus far lol. The Flash however, 1 episode deep, is exactly what I want for a superhero show.


  2. There is a component to Gotham that feels like I being told fairy tales: “And this is why the Penguin waddles”, “And this is why Catwoman falls in love with Batman”, etc. It’s okay in small doses, but it is quickly starting to wear thin.

    Liked by 1 person

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