Of all the current, superhero/comic-book adaptations on commercial television, "Gotham" remains the best and most honorable. It's not politically slanted in the sneaky way that "Supergirl" has become, nor does it get into the "I wanna marry my surrogate sister" motif of "The Flash", let alone pad itself with tiresome verbosity like "Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D."
As promised from the get-go, "Gotham" concentrates on young Bruce Wayne, and we watch his development through the versatile guise of David Mazouz. "Gotham" is also Jim Gordon's story; and thanks to Ben McKenzie, it never fails to be a rocky, realistic and engaging one.
In addition, Alfred Pennyworth (Sean Pertwee); Harvey Bullock (Donal Logue); Oswald Copplepot/Penguin (Robin Lord Taylor); Edward Nigma/Riddler (Cory Michael Smith); Ivy Pepper/Poison Ivy (Maggie Geha) and Selina Kyle/Cat Woman (Camren Bicondova) are equally developing souls, each in search of something elusive, but with an implied, fervid hope of fulfillment, whether good or bad in the ultimate run.
I suppose the same will be said of Jonathan Crane/the Scarecrow (Charlie Tahan) when he psychologically enters, as well as Ra's Al Ghul (Alexander Siddig) when he expands his influence, or at least tries to do so on our adolescent hero-to-be. It also seems destined that other favorites, new and old, will surface during the interludes, even if they're not yet publicized: After all, secrecy and surprise are part of the show's crafty scheme. (All the same, I'd love to see the Joker indisputably established through Cameron Monaghan's Jerome. Heck, wouldn't we all?)
Regardless of the various characters and their varying ways, it's imperative that focus remain on the Dark Knight's inevitable ascent. The path seems secure. "Gotham" is inherently Batman's tale, even if the Caped Crusader has yet to be seen or mentioned. However, the producers appear intent in mounting his reveal, for Season 4 (labeled "A Dark Knight" for its first half and for its second, "Dawn of Night") are culled from the comic-book sensations, "Batman: Year One" and "The Long Halloween".
While other superhero shows skirt around what they've promised to be, it's ironic that the once thought series-on-the-cusp is now the most faithful to its mythological core, both in heart and spirit.
As a Batman fan--as a superhero fan--I'm grateful that Fox is continuing its noble campaign. My gut tells me the best is yet to come; the vibes certainly feel sharp (and dark) enough.
Season 4 commences Thurs, Sept 21, one week ahead of its otherwise projected debut: further proof of the network's commitment to reward and widen its popular program's viewership.