Constar’s Pilot Watch: Gotham

I wasn’t sure what to expect from this one–it’s got so many big shoes to fill, but I enjoyed it.

Maybe it was a bit overly heavy-handed with introducing each of the villainous players, but it was nice to guess at them, right before a punny name drop, confirming who you think it is. I thought Ben MacKenzie was a nice Gordon–trying to do the right thing, but being tossed into this seedy world surrounded by awful people. His smarmy partner–played by Donal Logue who I know from the sitcom Grounded for Life (don’t ask, there was a ABC Family phase and that was in syndication) —was a great foil for MacKenzie. I think he plays his character perfectly, we’ll love to hate him.

I really like how much time Jada Pinkett-Smith gets, especially considering she’s a show original character? The fact that she’s such a boss and is helping these villains get their origins is cool. Helps that’s she’s feisty and powerful and has sexy/powerful outfits. Little Bruce Wayne was adorable and sad and I wonder where they’ll take his character, considering it’s such a long ways off from becoming anything even close to Batman. He’ll probably not appear too often, I don’t imagine they want to overload us with the one thing we can’t have from this show.

I liked the tone and the look of the show–seedy and dark and kinda greenish-gray, very 20s grimy New York, with some Art Deco feel to it too. Fish Mooney’s place was very French brothel or something. The art direction is really great; they’ve really filled it with film noir tones which kind of help with a timelessness of it. (Though, I noticed that Gordon has a flip phone—so cellphones exist, but not current ones? I think this show will probably be a bit of an anachronism stew… but that’s alright with me as long as it’s consistent.)

Verdict: Yup, I’m watching it. I got a better feel for this than I did from the Agents of SHIELD pilot, so that’s a good sign for this superhero show.

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Article Response: Paul Dini on Cartoon Network’s Programming Decisions and Why Boy Viewers Are Valued Over Girls – IGN

Click the link above and check out the article and transcript. I skimmed a lot of this, but basically a show got cancelled because more girls watched it than boys and the network didn’t want to adjust. Which is ridiculous. 

Below are some quotes that jumped out at me:

and that the executives don’t value female viewers, because they don’t buy as many of the same toys that are aimed at boys connected to these series.[…]

DINI: “They’re all for boys ‘we do not want the girls’, I mean, I’ve heard executives say this, you know, not [where I am] but at other places, saying like, ‘We do not want girls watching this show.”

SMITH: “WHY? That’s 51% of the population.”

DINI: “They. Do. Not. Buy. Toys. The girls buy different toys. The girls may watch the show—”

[…]

Like, just because you can’t figure out your job, don’t kill chances of, like, something that’s gonna reach an audi—that’s just so self-defeating, when people go, like… these are the same f***ers who go, like, ‘Oh, girls don’t read comics, girls aren’t into comics.’ It’s all self-fulfilling prophecies. 

The part about it being a self-fulling prophecy is SO true! If you have girls watching the show, then those girls WILL want to buy toys. There are grown women who buy “boy” toys based on comics. If you don’t give girls a narrative they are invested in, then no, they won’t by the toys. But if they are, then they will! It is so frustrating that they say they wont when they won’t give it a chance. If this is based on past marketing strategies (from what, the 1950s?) then clearly they need to update their marketing team on modern-day girls and modern-day adult women who also may watch and buy the show and the toys discussed here.

[same goes for PoCs. If you think a young black kid (girl, even) wouldn’t buy your toys, so you don’t give them a character to relate to or you cancel the shows they ARE watching, then no, they won’t buy your toys. fulfilling prophecy.]

via Paul Dini on Cartoon Network’s Programming Decisions and Why Boy Viewers Are Valued Over Girls – IGN.