Batman is one of those characters that keeps coming back, in new movies, in TV shows, in comics. Even as one series of Batman movies ended, another series is starting up to include him – the Dark Knight returns, indeed.
As such, the very idea of Gotham is kind of refreshing. With so many instances of Batman out there, it’s nice to sit back and take a look at the famous fictional city before the Bat. A city full of greed and crime and corruption. A city run by organized crime. A city with a frightening place called Arkham Asylum that always ran a little too full.
I’ve been working through reading many of the iconic Batman comics in recent months, like Year One, The Long Halloween, and The Dark Knight Returns. In reading those, there is a strong point made that before Batman, crime in Gotham seemed pretty mundane – there was just a lot of it. Once Batman arrived on the scene, though, you started seeing super villains, and increasingly hear the psychological argument that it’s Batman who made this happen, made the crazies take over the crime business. You see this shift in the recent Dark Knight movie trilogy as well.
And it is this idea which I think Gotham is turning on its head, and I’m not sure what I think of that. So let me lay out the progression, but then you tell me what you think – is Gotham re-writing the script on Batman?