*The following article was written by Stacey Lannigan and can also be found on The Nerd Daily website*
Whether you’re a fan of the DC Universe or not, we all know the origins of the Gotham vigilante, Batman. However, what about the other beloved DC characters? Over the course of five years, Gotham brought to life all the heroes and villains of this city in exactly 100 episodes, each as gripping as the next! So what is it that makes the show so successful? We came up with ten reasons as to what makes Gotham such a great show and exactly why you should add it to your ‘must-watch’ list!
1. Complete Series
There’s nothing better than when a new episode or season of your favourite show airs, making the hiatus all worth it. However, if you are one of those people who hate having to wait then Gotham might just be the show for you! Having aired from 2014-2019, Gotham is now complete with a total of five seasons ready to be binge-watched and available via multiple viewing streams such as Netflix, Google Play Movies & TV, DVD and more. . .
2. The Cast
A successful show would be nothing without the cast which brings its characters to life and the cast of Gotham do an amazing job at doing just that! The individual talent of the cast members, combined with their on and off-screen chemistry, allow for them to effortlessly bring to life the DC characters we love so much. No cast member performs halfheartedly and it is a privilege watching them work and grow on screen. From recurring cast members such as David Mazouz (Bruce Wayne), Ben McKenzie (James Gordon), and Sean Pertwee (Alfred Pennyworth) to those who appear only in a couple of episodes, the devotion which these talented performers put into portraying their characters makes for just as an intriguing a viewing experience than witnessing the story itself.
3. The Fandom
With great shows come great fandoms and Gotham is no exception! These dedicated fans of the show are ready to welcome any newcomer to the fandom family across nearly every social media platform. From fan accounts on Twitter and Tumblr; video edits available on YouTube and Instagram; FanFiction published on Archive Of Our Own and Wattpad, to apps like Amino, there is nowhere that the Gotham fans have not infiltrated. Now that the show itself has come to an end, it is the fans who keep the show’s popularity going and so what better time to join such a devoted family down in the abyss that is fandom-life?
The origin of the Batman is a tale well told, but if you’re reading this and thinking to yourself “not another Batman origin story, I’ve seen enough of those!” then stop right there. . . Whilst the series shows the evolution of Bruce Wayne into the Dark Knight, Gotham’s focus is on more than this billionaire boy’s journey into manhood. Through a clever combination of comic canon and the shows own originality, Gotham introduces to viewers a mass number of characters and plotlines that will have even the hardcore comic fans curious as to what is going to happen next! So whether you’re that hardcore fan or a newbie interested in exploring the story, Gotham is a show that anyone can sit down to enjoy.
5. The Plot
From season 1 to 5, Gotham follows James Gordon on his journey as he comes face-to-face with some of DC’s most infamous and memorable villains in his attempt to clean up the streets of Gotham city. Each season is packed with mystery, adventure, and even humour, thus providing viewers with a compelling story to witness on screen. With each episode comes a new series of twists that is sure to have you hooked and craving more as you delve deeper into the story of what happened during the years in between the murder of Thomas and Martha Wayne and the rise of the bat of Gotham.
Just as much as the story itself, one of the aspects of the TV show Gotham that makes it such an engrossing series to watch are the themes which occur throughout all five seasons. Love, loss, betrayal, and hope are all key themes that can be found in the show, as well as exploring the difference between right and wrong, good and evil, and how the line between each can sometimes blur. Amongst the gripping action sequences and nail-biting suspenseful scenes, the creators of Gotham do well at using these themes to insert some of the more touching and inspirational moments. These moments help to convey some of life’s most important lessons such as standing up for what you believe in, the importance of hope, and how being who you are is more important than trying to be what others want you to be.
7. The Characters
A previous reason listed for watching Gotham was the cast because of how successfully they bring the DC characters we all know and love to life on screen. Well, it is those characters who lie at the heart of what makes the show so lovable! Watching the individual characters interact with one another and their relationships evolve on screen is half the entertainment. So don’t be too quick to judge when it comes to the citizens of Gotham: the protective cop may just have a dark side and the harshest of villains may just have the softest of hearts. . . Regardless it is clear to see whilst watching Gotham that both the crew and cast of this TV show have ensured that each character who graces our screen is as well-rounded as the next and each have their fair share of the lime-light.
8. The Villains
The villains of this show and city deserve their own shoutout! Throughout the entirety of the show’s five seasons, a mass of villainous characters are introduced and each of them bring their own panache to Gotham. One thing that makes the villains especially so interesting are the backstories and motivations which make up each of their characters: from Penguin’s desire for power and revenge, to the desperate attempts by Mr. Freeze to save his wife, these villains are scarily likeable and even relatable! As each of these individual villains arrive and even as they form their alliances, the question of what makes a villain is posed as even our principled characters come to discover that the line between good and bad is one which is easily crossed.
9. The Relationships
The below GIF easily describes the relationships between the characters in Gotham. Whether platonic, familial, romantic, or something in between, each relationship explored between the characters make for great dramatic viewing whilst watching the show. From the budding romance between Bruce Wayne and Selina Kyle; the unrequited love of Penguin and Riddler and the loss of loved ones as relationships meet their untimely end, these relationship rollercoasters allow fans for some of the most entertaining and heart-wrenchingly beautiful shipping known to fandom life.
10. The Amazing Finale!
As the final season of Gotham brings the show to a close, viewers are presented with an unexpected alliance to be reckoned with. As Gotham becomes a war-zone like never before, characters who had fought so long to rid Gotham of crime find themselves allying with our all-time favourite criminals of Gotham to save it. This explosive final season featuring only 12 episodes ends with the ironically named episode ‘The Beginning…’ which connects the story that we, as an audience, have viewed with the one which we know all so well: Gotham under the protection of Batman.