Did the Show "Gotham" Focus on the Wrong Character?

My wife and I finally got caught up on the show Gotham last night, watching both last week's episode and last night's episode one right after the other.

As we did that, I found myself wondering if maybe the show, which tells Gotham City's backstory leading up to Bruce Wayne (David Mazouz) made a mistake when the show's creators decided to center the series around Jim Gordon (Ben McKenzie) as a Gotham City police detective.

Don't get me wrong, I like Jim Gordon and his "me against the world" saga as the police department's only honest cop does have some merit. But, other than the fact he is constantly up against Gotham City's future super criminals, there are plenty of times when this show isn't much different from other cop shows that we've already seen. Plus, to tell you the truth, he is kind of dull when compared to the bad guys he's chasing.

Not to mention, now that Bruce Wayne is older and starting down the vigilante path that will eventually result in him becoming Batman, I think Gordon's role will only get watered down as the series progresses.

The overall series, in my opinion at least, would have been better had the creators decided to start it earlier in Gotham's history, before Bruce was born, made his parents the focus of the series and shown the earlier power struggles that ultimately resulted in their murder. But, even without doing that, I do think they could have improved things considerably by, instead of focusing on Gordon, making Bruce's caretaker, Alfred (Sean Pertwee) the central character.

Alfred does, admittedly, get a somewhat prominent role already. However, we only really see him as part of Bruce Wayne's story. And, from that, I am confident his story could easily be expanded.

Bruce will, obviously, become the hero that saves Gotham City. Alfred, however, is the character that molds him into that hero and I personally think that is a better story than Gordon's rise to power as police commissioner.

One thing, in particular, I would have loved to see with an Alfred-focused television series is more of his past. It's obvious from the start he is more than just a butler, he also apparently has extensive combat training as well. Was that the reason the Waynes hired him? Did Bruce's parents hire him as a body guard? Did he have other, more covert, duties for Bruce's dad? That information, combined with the lessons he teaches Bruce (which are often more entertaining than what Gordon is doing), would give the series a different feel to it than it has now.

Heck, you wouldn't even need to get rid of Gordon. He could still be Gotham's most honest cop/best detective, be in on Bruce's secret and look the other way as Bruce and Alfred help him capture the criminals. He just would be a secondary character on a crime fighting drama focused, instead, on a future superhero being mentored by a man who may just be pretending to be a butler.


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