Somehow, FOX’s Gotham keeps getting darker. In the early “tween” stages of Bruce Wayne/Batman’s life, the focus is on Jim Gordon (Ben McKenzie) as a cop trying to right wrongs in a morally ambiguous city. In the third season, the first fourteen episodes are subtitled “Mad City,” and the final eight are subtitled “Heroes Rise.” But be warned, the heroes may be struggling with their perspective – even as the villains seem to solidify their grip of terror on Gotham.
Blending old school DC stories like the death of Wayne’s parents with new (technically, The New 52) stories like The Court of Owls, and the assassin Talon, Gotham roars out of the events of the second season: Gordon is disgraced from the police department, now a bounty hunter; Fish Mooney (Jada Pinkett Smith) has become a more dangerous killer in the hands of Dr. Hugo Strange (B.D. Wong); Cobblepot AKA Penguin (Robin Lord Taylor) becomes mayor. Things are upside down indeed!
While there a cast of evil characters already existed, the new batch is deviously twisted. Of course, the Talon appears in “Better to Reign in Hell” as the first iteration of the Court of Owls’ number one killer. There’s also Jervis Tetch (Benedict Samuel), the villain known as the Mad Hatter, who uses his powers of persuasion (hypnosis) to control others, mystical adversary The Shaman (Raymond Barry), and then there’s Alexander Siddig’s turn as Ra’s al Ghul (who in some versions ends up being Wayne’s father-in-law!) Needless to say, with the additions, plus Mooney, Penguin, Selina Kyle (Camren Bicondova), Riddler (Cory Michael Smith), “Poison” Ivy Pepper (Maggie Geha), Zsasz (Anthony Carrigan), and Mr. Freeze (Nathan Darrow), the darkness rises.
But the beauty of Gotham is that the light rises, too.
While Gordon may not be the wise, old man of the DC legends of Batman of old, and Wayne may be just a kid (David Mazouz), the heroes find themselves up against it … and refuse to give in. You can have your pick of quotes that make sense: “Darkness can’t drive out darkness, only light can do that” (Martin Luther King Jr.) or “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing” (Christian Bale as Batman quoting Edmund Burke). Regardless of how you’d classify it, the truth is that the evil may earn the moment, but they can’t win in the long run.
Special features include a look at the especially dangerous Court of Owls in “The Dark Within the Dark,” “Madness Rising” and a look at the new villains this season, and a look at McKenzie’s director debut in “These Delicate and Dark Obsessions.” Deleted scenes and a look at the 2016 Comic-Con Panel also add to the Blu-ray/Digital HD Combo Pack available now.