Donal Logue On Why GOTHAM Will Work Without BATMAN
There was a time when it seemed like we were learning new information or casting announcements for Fox‘s Gotham series every single day. Now that the cast is in place and filming for the pilot is well underway, things have gotten quiet for the time being. Today Donal Logue, who will be bringing Harvey Bullock to life on the small screen, ends the Gotham drought by opening up about the upcoming series in an interview with IGN. The star of Vikings discussed what makes Bullock tick and how the show will work without having Batman pop up every episode.
When Gotham was originally announced, many fans thought it was incredibly odd that someone wanted to make a show about Batman‘s city and Batman‘s villains without actually having Batman taking part in the festivities. Even though this is the story of the city after the murder of Bruce Wayne‘s parents, some people still aren’t entirely sold on the idea. Logue realizes that people have questions about a Batman-less Batman show, but he explains why he thinks it will work:
It’s interesting because people will say, ‘What good is Gotham? A Gotham without Batman is stupid!.’ What’s fascinating about Gotham is like, what happened in the 20 years before [the city] was so effed up that it needed a vigilante to come and save it — and those moral decisions have repercussions. Like, Gordon does stuff that seems to come from a good place, but you can do something and — this kind of goes back to the statecraft argument — say, in Vikings time, if I want to kill my enemy, I have to kill his kids. If I don’t kill sons, they’re coming after me and mine for the rest of our lives. So you’ve got to pull the root out. That’s something that Gordon struggles with, being that brutal. Then later, if some bad s**t goes down, you can say, ‘Well, that was your bighearted moment.’ It’s kind of mock politics, so it’ll be interesting to see. I’m super fascinated to see where a lot of these things go. The question is, how did we get there? How did we get to the point where we had to have a Batman? And look, There’s no one better than Ben McKenzie to play this guy [Gordon]. Besides being a great actor, he’s just a sturdy guy; he’s such a solid citizen. He is Gordon, you know? I also have to say, Robin Taylor is pretty amazing. When I look back, I was like, ‘Oh, I wonder who they’re going to cast?’ That was always a critical thing for me, was who was going to play the Penguin. He gave it this kind of gravitas that was pretty awesome to watch. The casting’s great.
Part of what makes Gotham so messed up is the police, and mainly Bullock himself. Logue says that the way Bullock looks out for only himself no matter who he has to run over creates a lot of problems. He may even have a hand in the way the younger versions of Batman‘s rogues gallery becomes as evil as they are. The actor teased, “I would say Bullock more than Gordon in a way… Because some of them are coming from both the ranks of the underworld and the police department…I think that Edward Nigma and Penguin and so on are people that. Whoever’s come into contact with them in this stage [haven’t been that helpful to them], and from my perspective, from the Gotham City Police Department, that would be Bullock… You know, if you’re mean to someone, if you’ve dismissed them or whatever, that might be the little bit of psychological scarring that causes them to make the decision that they make.” So Gordon sounds like the altruistic good cop who still tries to help out the people and perpetrators he comes in contact with, but Bullock is a little more jaded and world-weary. Penguin sounds like he may take on the brunt of Bullock‘s hate, so you can see how that doesn’t bode well for Oswald Copplepot‘s future.
Logue is something of a talker, but he gives great in-depth answers to every question. He describes the state of Gotham City after the Waynes‘ murder and how that sets the table for things to come:
What I loved about it was that — I’d read somewhere that they’d described Gotham, in the old comics, as something like, ’11:11pm on a cold night, and the wind is blowing down a dirty alley.’ Psychologically it has this feeling of a town that’s on the edge of anarchy. There were factors holding it in place. Whether it be the Wayne family — the wealthy parents of Bruce Wayne – or something else. So you catch this city just as things start to break, and this curmudgeon-y guy who’s managed to survive by sometimes having to pay the Devil a little bit to help keep the peace [Bullock], he meets this guy who’s actually a real principled do-gooder [Gordon]. But he’s a little more capable than the other do-gooders who’ve come before, who have just gotten crushed by the machine, the anarchy, that is Gotham. So I think he is won over by [Gordon]. Tonally, it’s interesting because the city of Gotham itself is almost like a psychological description of the Jungian shadow. So it can be anything, like, a doorway could lead to anywhere. It could be the ’20s, it could be the ’50s, it could be a Blade Runner-esque, futuristic thing. It was interesting finding out — tonally speaking, it didn’t really belong to a specific time or place. That’s what I kind of loved about it.
You can read a whole lot more from Logue, like how the death of Martha and Thomas Wayne creates a vacuum in Gotham, by clicking the source link below. While you may not be completely sold on the idea of the show, I think very few can argue that Logue isn’t a great choice for Harvey. It will be interesting to see how he and Ben McKenzie interact. What do you think about the actor’s comments? Are you intrigued about seeing the events that lead up to the things we know and love about Batman‘s world?
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Source : IGN