Monday 8 p.m.
The origins of Commissioner James Gordon (Ben McKenzie) and the villains who made Gotham City famous on “Batman” (including the Riddler, the Penguin, Catwoman, the Joker and Two-Face) is the focus of this “Batman” prequel. The cast includes David Mazouz, Camren Bicondova, Sean Pertwee (Alfred Pennyworth), Robin Lord Taylor (Oswald Cobblepot / Penguin), Zabryna Guevara, Erin Richards, Donal Logue and Jada Pinkett Smith as Fish Mooney, a notoriously sadistic crime boss.
-Competition: “Dancing With the Stars” (ABC), “The Big Bang Theory”/”2 Broke Girls”/”Mom” (CBS), “The Voice” (NBC), “The Originals” (CW)
Producer Bruno Hello on the balance moving forward after using four different villains in the pilot episode:
“You kind of have to front-load the pilot with the best that you’ve got, because that’s the way you have to open big. As the show rolls on, we’ll be far more careful with how we roll out the villains in what way. And there will be more fun and more surprises and tricky ways of getting them in, rather than just presenting them. These are the origin stories of these guys. So the Penguin comes pretty much fully-fledged in front of us. For that reason, you have to show your best cards up front here. But as we roll on, like I said, slower rollout.”
From a competitive standpoint, the competition is fierce, with the temporary arrival of CBS’ “The Big Bang Theory” as the Monday anchor (until Thursday Night Football on the Eye net is over) another reason why “Gotham” has its work cut out. But “Gotham” is set in the “Batman” universe, which all but guarantees interest. And the early hype and promotion makes “Gotham” a large contender in the world of social media.
While the traditional ratings on paper may not be stellar, the other deciding factors (time shifting and social media, in particular) makes “Gotham” a safe bet to succeed. Expect plenty of attention at the upcoming Comic-Con gathering, and expect Fox to rollout a mammoth promotional effort. The network is in dire need of a new hit, and “Gotham” is that very show.
-Odds of Survival for “Gotham” (Based on 1-1 to 10-1 odds): 2-1
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