Why Gotham season two is way better than season one

Midway through Gotham season one I almost gave up. It was not at all what I had hoped it would be and I was watching the episodes every week out of loyalty rather than actually wanting to know what happens next. I’m so glad I did because season two is bigger, badder and way more exciting. I actually look forward to new episodes now, and I have to credit the producers for that.

They basically read the general feedback about the show and realised that people didn’t really love that it was basically a police procedural with Jim Gordon (Ben McKenzie) and Harvey Bullock (Donal Logue) having a new case to solve every week. People were tuning into Gotham because it is supposed to be an origins story for Batman – but it was so far removed from that. It was mostly about a mob war with some random villains popping up every week and being taken out (although Milo Ventimiglia as a serial killer was awesome).

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So the showrunners overhauled the entire premise to put the villains front and centre with multi-episode arcs. It was a stroke of genius and so clearly what everyone wanted. The transformation doesn’t immediately hit you in the face as soon as season two opened, but from episodes 6-7, I was really getting excited about the storyline for the first time and I put this down to these factors:

1.  Theo and Tabitha Galavan (James Frain and Jessica Lucas) – Besides Fish Mooney and Penguin, we haven’t had lead villains last this long. They were introduced in episode 1 and are still around by 8. They orchestrate everything yet on the surface they seem very normal. Theo clearly has a bigger game plan and I can’t wait to find out what it is.

2. Edward Nygma/Riddler (Cory Michael Smith) – Nygma never really had much to do in season one until towards the end when he went psycho and killed Kristen Kringle’s boyfriend. In this series, we’ve really seen the character develop with his split personality and the actor does such a brilliant performance in both roles. It now seems like he will be working with Penguin, and I cannot wait to see the damage these guys do together.

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3. Barbara Kean (Erin Richards) – Again, Barbara was sidelined a lot in season one and didn’t have much of her own story until she was kidnapped by a serial killer at the end of season 1. Now she has gone totally batshit crazy (or it is a play?) and is hell bent on killing Jim and Leslie (Morena Baccarin). I personally love psycho Barbara – especially in the latest episode Mommy’s Little Monster in which she totally owns her crazy scenes. I enjoy them so much! I’m really intrigued to see how Barbara will eventually become Batgirl.

4. Oswald Cobblepot/Penguin (Robin Lord Taylor) – he was awesome in season 1, and even better this time around since he is out from under the control of others. He has power now, but has trouble holding on to it and seems to be outsmarted at every turn. But he is determined and a bit crazy. So I’m sure we’ll see more of him.

5. Bruce Wayne and Alfred Pennyworth (David Mazouz and Sean Pertwee) – I really enjoy scenes between these two, especially now Alfred is training him to become a fighter and Bruce is trying to unlock the secrets on his father’s computer. The banter between them when Alfred tried to hit on Leslie was absolutely brilliant. I have no idea what the timeline will be for him becoming Batman (if we will even see that?!) but I’m interested in following his journey.

I have really started to love the show and I’m glad I gave it a good chance to reinvent itself because the second season really is what one should have been. I like to think it’s redeemed itself and become what Batman fans wanted. I’m certainly happy!

What do you think of Gotham?

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