Marvel fans may be abuzz tonight as ABC debuts Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., but DC has its place on network TV, with Arrow and possibly a Flash series at the CW. And it looks like Fox is getting in on the action as the network has given a straight-to-series order to a drama called Gotham. The title alone should give you at least some clue as to what part of the DC universe this story is exploring, but even more specifically, the series will center on Commissioner Gordon, a known ally of Batman.
Any chance they'll get Gary Oldman to reprise the role for the series? It's probably a long shot, but we can dream, right? Casting for the project might be thinking a little bit ahead, given that this news just broke. Still, TVLine reports that Fox gave this drama a straight-to-series order, and considering ABC just got Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. on the air tonight, Fox could be eager to push forward with their own super-drama sooner rather than later. TVLine's report mentions nothing specific about the timeline, only that it will center on Commissioner James Gordon, and that the one-hour drama series promises to explore "the origin stories of Commissioner James Gordon and the Villains that made Gotham famous." The Mentalist's Bruno Heller is on board to executive produce and write the pilot, and the series will be produced with Warner Bros. Television.
This seems like an opportunity for Fox to delve into a popular area of the DC universe without focusing directly on the city's best known hero, which is of course, Batman. In that way, the show won't tread over territory being explored by the DC films, specifically the Man of Steel sequel, which will feature Ben Affleck's Batman. We're seeing ABC do this right now with S.H.I.E.L.D., as the series focuses on the global law enforcement agency that's been featured in many of the recent Marvel films, The Avengers included. This approach allows the TV show to exist in the same reality of the films without having to tiptoe around whatever the film's have planned for their lead characters.
Solely based on his appearances in the movies, Commissioner Jim Gordon seems like an interesting character to focus on, especially with an origin story. And the mentioned "villains that made Gotham famous" will probably have fans of the comics speculating on who might be featured in this show.
In the meantime, does Gotham's series order decrease the likelihood that there will be a Gotham Central TV show anytime soon? Via ComicBook.com , USA Today posted a recent interview with Ed Brubaker, the co-writer of DC's Gotham Central, a police procedural comic book series, that focuses on the Gotham City Police Department. In the interview, Brubaker spoke about the possibility of a TV adaptation of the comics:
The book is actually more popular now than when we were doing it. There's been talk of Gotham Central on TV since when we were doing the comic even (in the mid-2000s). Everyone at Warner Bros. really loved it. Chris Nolan after they did Birds of Prey had asked them to just please not do any Batman-related stuff until he was done with his trilogy — looking at Birds of Prey, you can see why. It was not the world's greatest pilot.
As I understand it, Gotham Central is set after Commissioner Gordon's term, so it seems safe to assume that Fox's Gotham isn't directly related to Gotham Central. And if WB is looking to develop a Gotham-set TV series, it sounds like they found it with this Fox drama, at least for now.