Starring: Ben McKenzie (“Southland”), Donal Logue (“Terriers”), Jada Pinkett-Smith (“Hawthorne”), Sean Pertwee (“Elementary”), David Mazouz (“Touch”), Zabryna Guevara (“Burn Notice”), Robin Lord Taylor, Camren Bicondova, Erin Richards (“Breaking In”), Cory Michael Smith and Victoria Cartagena
Genre: One-hour drama
Premiere Date: Monday, September 22, 8 p.m., Fox
Direct Competition: “The Big Bang Theory” (Sept. 22-Oct. 20) / “2 Broke Girls” (Oct. 27-) and “Mom” (CBS), “The Voice” (NBC), “Dancing with the Stars” (ABC), “The Originals” (CW)
Premise (in 140 characters or less): Rookie detective, James Gordon, and his partner, Harvey Bullock, work to solve the murder of Thomas and Martha Wayne.
Initial Reaction: The show takes itself too seriously, and outside of key casting, there’s nothing grabbing me here.
Conclusion: Lower your expectations, folks. If you’re expecting a really cool take on what the city of Gotham was like before the arrival of Bruce Wayne’s vigilante persona, you’re not getting it. I was shocked by how much “Gotham” felt like a basic crime procedural (with obvious fantastical exceptions, of course). McKenzie, Logue, Pinkett-Smith and Taylor are well cast as Gordon, Bullock, Fish Mooney and Oswald Cobblepot (a.k.a. The Penguin), but good casting rarely, if ever, can actually make up for a script as lacking as this one. The pilot’s almost all exposition, and I had to force myself to care about any of it. That’s not a good sign.
Watch Live, DVR, or Skip?: DVR this one if you’re a Batman aficionado. Otherwise, I don’t know what’s here for you. As someone whose knowledge of Batman spans little outside of the Christopher Nolan trilogy, I can’t say I’m in a rush to see more. If other critics I trust begin praising the show later on this season, I’ll make the effort to catch-up before season two.