The mixed received Gotham made its 2nd season premiere last night, in the wake of a pretty strong 2nd half to the 1st season, season 2 teased the rise of Batmans villains and the start of some true theatrical antics as Gotham begins to descend into more crime as Penguin rules the roost for the time being.
One thing that needed to be addressed with season 2 was the procedural, criminal of the week feel to last season that put a few people off and… the way things start off in the episode, you again get that feeling but I actually like it as it goes to show the type of crazies that inhabit Gotham, Jim Gordon is still one of the best things about the show and seeing his ongoing crusade for justice is a nice touch. Although things don’t quite go his way in the premiere, this new angle for Jim is an interesting one as he’s still such a moral force for good but working with Penguin temporarily, it was fun seeing him go rogue though. And speaking of going bad, Nygma is battling himself and has properly developed a split personality now, with his more wild side being present, it’s a clear push to get the character along towards being the Riddler but I did think it was a bit cliché and something like this would have better suited Harvey Dent/Two Face, I think I prefer Nygmas internal monologue/voice.
Another thing notable about season 2 is the new Barbara Keen, now supposedly crazy after some rough times, including being kidnapped in season 1, she’s in Arkham now and her transformation just seems a bit unbelievable to me, it’ll take time to get used to for sure. Though she’s already working Richard Sionis and trying to get favours out of him.That isn’t to say the new Barbara is all bad and her relationship with Jerome (possibly the Joker but probably not) could be a fun to watch, seeing how the two act out and try to assert themselves in Arkham.
Harvey’s back… well sort of, now working as a bartender and out of the force, though he still links up with Jim, I wonder if he’s really given up the badge for good though and I can’t see him being out of the action for too long as things progress. Back to Penguin and his new role is actually quite a fun one to watch, Robin Lord Taylor is in his element and he helps out Jim in return for that favour and shows how he can do pretty much anything to anyone in getting Commissioner Loeb to step down and Jim gets re-instated to the GCPD.
The episode ends with a Arkham breakout, including Barbara, Jerome, Richard Sionis and 3 other goons, while a new schemer is in play in Gotham, hoping to make a team of criminals with special skills to do some dirty work and the episode ends on Bruce finally breaking into the ‘batcave’ and finding a note left for him by his father, Thomas Wayne in an interesting future nod to what Bruce should do with his life. On the whole I quite enjoyed the premiere and it’s shown some signs of improvement on season 1, new dynamics in season 2 have proved interesting so far including Barbara and Jerome, Penguins new status and a re-shaped GCPD which will be further shaken up with a new police chief coming (Michael Chiklis), the over the top style of characters is again here and it’s fun for the most part.
And while some things are a bit unbelievable like Barbara being full psycho already, other villains are shaping up nicely, though the jury’s out on how Ed Nygma will turn out by the end of the season, the villains will be front and centre and them possibly going against the GCPD should prove for some fun plot arcs, solid start overall.