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Last week’s episode of Gotham, “Spirit of the Goat”, is the first episode I feel should define the show. Gotham isn’t strictly Batman Without BatmanArrow was that two years before Gotham, and it’s the show currently using Ra’s al Ghul – but the five episodes previous to “Spirit of the Goat” feel like a show that doesn’t know in which direction to run.

Batman will be rehashed, multiversed and Elseworlded as frequently as Bob Kane taking credit for something he didn’t actually do, but early Gotham has the problem of wasting three-quarters of its running time on mob wars, and how Oswald Cobblepot uses them to further his career. The other quarter is spent on a throwaway villain with a dumb gimmick taken from, I don’t know, Metal Men or whatever title the Gotham writer glances at that week.

“Spirit of the Goat” is more of the same – Ben Edlund taking the piss out of the Bat-mythos, I guess, as Crazy Steves are brainwashed and told to put on a Bat Goat-Cowl. The main differences are Gotham focusing on characters that aren’t Fish Mooney, allowing the villain of the week to be the definite A story, and committing to more mature storytelling. I know Beware the Batman catches shit for not being Batman: The Brave and the Bold, yet Gotham is a prime-time live action series, and it feels more camp and childish than the Batman shows made for children. It’s a weird trend.

This week, Victor Zsasz appears, played by Anthony Carrigan. Carrigan was The Mist in the third episode of The Flash (2014), if you’re keeping score, and I’m sure the hardcore DC followers are. Things you can’t outrun, and all that.

C. Archer
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