Posts Tagged ‘James Gordon’

  Batman Year One is Frank miller’s take on The Dark Knight’s rookie period, that’s told through a comparison of lieutenant James Gordon new arrival in Gotham as well.

In the sort of Miller-trilogy of books you could put this in first, then All-Star, and finally Dark Knight Returns, this one is definitely my favorite. David Mazzucchelli’s art is solid throughout the book, there aren’t a thousand panels of news casts like there are in Dark Knight, but you get all of the information you need, it’s certainly an evolution in Miller’s storytelling from the book about Batman’s end.

The story starts as both me arrive in Gotham, Gordon comes by train, thinking that is no way for him and his pregnant wife to get a good first impression of the city, they should have flown in, to see the lights and the skyline. Almost simultaneously Bruce Wayne is on a plain thinking he should have taken the train in to see Gotham as it is, like he needs to be on street level in his home city he hasn’t been in a dozen years. Throughout the book, it also has inner monologues from both Gordon and Batman. The future Gotham commissioner’s sound like a seasoned policeman, while Batman makes a bunch of rookie mistakes. However in their respective personal lives the opposite is true, James is never sure that bringing his wife was the right idea to bring to Gotham, and his affair with his partner Sara Eisen shows how rocky that life is for him at this point. While Bruce is determined to come into his city and clean it up from the ground up. And yes, his first night out he gets shot and injured, but technically he wasn’t Batman until that night when he was ready to die and give up, a bat flew through his window, fortifying his resolve to the city.

Which, if you think about, and I have, for a moment is strange. There Bruce was, bleeding out in a chair in one of the rooms of his mansion ready to give up and meet his parents in the after world, teetering on whether or not he should ring a bell to have Alfred come and save him. Then just on the moment of deciding Gotham can do it on its own, a disoriented bat crashes through his window, giving him just the right amount of inspiration to drive onward and make his parents proud. Lucky for him he still had enough conciseness left at that point to ring the bell.

After reading this for the first time, I have this forming opinion that, had there been told entirely from the perspective of James Gordon, and have Batman take a minor side story role might have been more interesting. Year One shows Gordon raising through the ranks of the Gotham Police Department, and Batman only shows up a handful of times. It would have shown a more Gordon sided perspective and kept The Dark Knight as an elusive entity, and you could play with the fact no one knows if this masked man is a beast or man, or good, or criminal.

All is good though, the two stories blend where they need to, and you see where James and Bruce are when they aren’t crossing paths, I never felt like there was ever a part where someone was in multiple places. There is an appearance of Selina Kyle, who starts out as a prostitute in a leather outfit, then becomes a jewel thief who dresses like a cat. Where one of if not only, minor complaint comes from. The decision of Selina to go from hooker to jewel thief was lost on me, especially the part where she thinks it is a good idea to dress up like a cat. Catwoman was just in it a few pages and maybe I missed something another reading would clear up.

Year One is well worth a read if you haven’t, it is an enjoyable time that show both the introduction of Batman to Gotham, and Gotham to its future police commissioner.


With that being said, this is the 52nd BatMonday post, making it a full year of Batman. Meaning, this is the last post for my year-long Batman project. I think I learned a few things for my next endeavor, whatever that is, like make things more clear where things are going. I would really like to write more Batman, there are tons of things I hadn’t gotten to, like A Long Halloween, or Arkham Asylum: A serious House on Serious Earth. A lot more characters to show a small spotlight on, I totally would have done Bat-Mite and Azrael if I had more time. I also had this idea of highlighting people who put on the cape and cowl, that werent’ Bruce Wayne. I still might, but I’m at least going to take a break beforehand.

If you have been here for the whole thing Thank You, hell, if this is your first time stumbling across my BAtman ramblings thanks for showing up there is plenty more if you liked what you read. I hope everyone liked anything I said, even in a small nondescript kind of way.

Good Luck and have Batman

~Jason

You know, when you see that whoever that puts television shows together decides to make a show based on the Batman universe, I get interested. When they say they’re looking to not have Batman on TV every week, a few ideas come to my mind. My first thoughts go straight to a Gotham Central type police procedural show. Gotham is almost that show, but then they go and do weird things.

First thing, the time. Gotham takes place just after Thomas and Martha Wayne met their end in an alley, and before Batman shows up. So naturally, a younger fresh transfer to a new city James Gordon and his partner who’s been there Harvey Bullock are the protagonists. Which is fine, but then every then every colorful character Batman deals with in the future should be younger, and they aren’t. Bruce and Selina Kyle are the same age. Selina was a convienent witness to the Wayne murders. Everyone else who is or could be part of the foes and allies of Batman are all older, either already plotting and scheming like Oswald Cobblepot, or in the background doing their thing like Edward Nigma, Gotham Police Science Man.

The dialogue is not good at times, and dipped with cheese in others. I’m not a fan that Bruce Wayne seems to be a part of the show, and it doesn’t help I don’t think the kid they have playing him is any good. Whatever he’s a kid, I’m sure he’ll do fine later. However the the girl playing the young Catwoman is a little bit better, and looks a lot like a young Michelle Pfieffer. That Penguin character might be the most interesting person in the whole show, and despite them toying with certain aspects of the Joker but never giving you anything concrete in other characters, it wouldn’t surprise me if they Arman Tamzarian the whole thing and make Oswald Cobblepot into The Joker. He does use a number of fake names and when Montoya and her partner were asking his supposed mother questions about him being missing she doesn’t use the name Cobblepot. (I am aware that really doesn’t mean that much I’m just thinking)

And then there’s the show.

The first episode served as the pilot episode. Which was all right. It did what it needed to do, set off Bruce down a path, introduce a bunch a players to the world, and set up the story of the show itself. So, with that in mind, the number of cameos and mention of Gordon’s girlfriend last name, just so people who know that would go, hey thats a small detail they looked into. But then, Harvey Bullock seems off, like he’s not supposed to be a corrupt cop. Harvey is a tough cop, who might bend the rules a little to make things go his way, which the show implies, but they often show him trying to look the other way, or not getting involved in certain cases because he knows it’s just going to bring him problems.

It wan’t a very good first showing, It didn’t make me want to watch the rest of the season to see what’s next, to see how things shape out. Their’s the beginnings of a mob war because the death of the uncorrupt Wayne’s imbalance the power between Falcone and Maroni houses. I just don’t care about it. The new spice of a character for this show is Fish Mooney, who seems to be trying to make a name for herself by playing Falcone, and becoming the big boss of Gotham. But really. If she’s a never before heard of character, and Batman has ties to both the Falcone and Maroni bosses in the future. The fate of Fish Mooney isn’t exactly sealed, but whatever happens isn’t going to be all that surprising either.

Gotham is five episodes in at this point, and I don’t feel compeled to see what happens next. Sure it’s kind of funny to see them use oddball characters like Balloonman, and it’s fun to see a live action portrayal of Renee Montoya, but in the end it’s all whatever, we all know what’s coming.

Gotham is one of those shows I can’t get into, but maybe once the show has it’s legs under it and knows where and what it’s doing is another story, and maybe then I’ll like it, just not currently.