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What should have been an exciting examination into the origins of an infamous villain becomes a tedious and polluted rendering of legendary Batman folklore in "The Scarecrow."
Therein lies the biggest problem with Gotham, a problem so paradoxical it almost seems impossible. The more Gotham delves into a character's back-story, the more it takes away from the depth of that character.
I'm not crazy about this origin story for Scarecrow. It's like the Scarecrow we all know and love is Scarecrow Jr. Gerald Crane seems to be the original Scarecrow.
Gotham finally came out and gave us the straight-up origin of a supervillain... but managed to squander most of what it did right in last week's episode.
Shows incredible promise for the future of this show... I'm not sure "The Scarecrow" really qualifies as a "great story," but it is without question the episode of Gotham that comes the closest to nailing everything it needs to.
Julian Sands put in a memorably tragic take on a man struggling to alleviate the guilt brought on by a fearful failure to save his wife, strongly aided by some unsettling visuals.
The fear motif was worked to death in Batman Begins, though, with the exception of the Cranes' story, it's used more subtly here.
While "The Fearsome Dr. Crane" was an elaborate setup for future events, "The Scarecrow" rushes to resolve outstanding problems with the most trite solutions.
"The Scarecrow" is the beginning of one of Gotham's greatest madmen, Jonathan Crane, and within the episode's 45 minutes, Gotham finally does an origin story right.
The show manages to stretch its most tedious and frustrating elements across two episodes, and the resulting conclusion to Gotham's hyped Scarecrow story ends up being just another meaningless and dull riff on the Batman canon.
The hour was a mixed bag, but the focus of the main villain of the episode kept me interested. But with every name drop or introduction of a future Batman villain, it makes me wonder how much of Batman's world will be introduced before Batman.