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Saturday, 18 April 2015

The Week In Superhero TV...


Arrow - Broken Arrow: Roy Harper has thrown himself under the bus, to take the heat for The Arrow's "crimes" and ended up in Iron Heights. Meanwhile Team Arrow are under constant surveillance by the police and there's a new metahuman in town, robbing banks.

Hailing from Central City, Jake Simmons (Doug Jones) aka Deathbolt shoots Cyclops-like beams of energy from his eyes, but when Team Arrow accept that they can't move against him, Felicity calls in Ray Palmer, who is more than willing to climb into his Atom suit of armour again.

Unfortunately for Oli, Ray treats the whole thing like a big game - repeatedly calling it a "team-up" - and ends up getting pasted by Deathbolt.

And while there was no Flash this week in the UK, we did get a cameo by Cisco, and Ray passing comment on the human-rights-violating metahuman prison under STAR Labs!

The main plot in Broken Arrow was superb, up to the show's usual high standards and featuring an unexpected murder and a wonderful bit of smoke-and-mirrors deceit, but the flashback plotline - despite having an interesting revelation involving Waller - suffered an Arrow cliché of having Oli learn the exact same lesson he learned in the main story.

This, again, suggests that events in his 'old' life unfolded in the exact same order they do in his current life... which is just ridiculous.

Next Time:



Agents Of SHIELD - Love In The Time Of Hydra: Coulson and his team are still reeling from a shocking revelation that leaves the team fractured as they must decide what to do with one of their own. Meanwhile, Bobbi and Mack reveal their true allegiance to Hunter, while elsewhere, Ward and Agent 33 embark on a personal mission.

Daredevil: You can find links to all my reviews of the individual episodes of this impressive show here, which earned itself an impressive Enjoyment Ratings Average (or ERA... little nod to baseball statistics there) of 4.77 (out of five). This is my very unscientific guide to the overall quality of the season. For comparison the first season of Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. score 4.295, season eight of Supernatural a 4.04 and the last season of Merlin a 4.12

If you haven't seen the show yet here's a taste of how awesome it is in a Raid-meets-Taxi Driver hall fight sequence:


And here's a mini behind-the-scenes feature:


Here's a review video by the wonderful Amy Dallen:


Gotham - The Blind Fortune Teller: This was a new low for Gotham. To be honest if I didn't have a geek investment in seeing how the show progresses, develops and celebrates the comic book characters I love, this is the episode that would have stopped me watching.

Riddled with stupid, lazy writing, the few decent moments were soon forgotten in the torrent of nonsense that was mistaken for a good idea here.

While Fish Mooney is off in her own bubble universe of captive organ donors and Penguin is running his club into the ground by showcasing his own 'unique' musical preferences, an 11-year-old boy is addressing the board of a multi-national company... and this is considered okay.

Sure, it was Bruce's father's company, but why haven't the board sought legal measures to block a CHILD from trying to tell them how to tun their company (I know they're the baddies and he's going to be the freakin' Batman... but, at the moment, he is just a snot-nosed little kid)?

Then we had Gordon solving a  murder at a circus (where Dick Grayson's future parents were on opposite sides of a three-generational family feud over a stolen horse, all very Romeo & Juliet) by seemingly plucking a resolution out of the air, from a mere handful of clues.

And to round it all off, there was the heavy-handed attempt to shoehorn in a possible origin story for The Joker.

If ever there was a villain that didn't need an origin story, didn't need demystifying, it's The Joker. Part of what makes him so terrifying is the complete absence of a backstory. Once you have backstory you can start to understand a character - and The Joker is so frightening because he is beyond understanding.

If the Gotham team do decide to run with Jerome (Cameron Monaghan) as The Joker (which was very pointedly suggested by his warped smile and manic laugh) then they've cut off the major Batman antagonist at the knees.

Not that they really should be thinking of introducing The Joker anyway as his origin is intimately intertwined with Batman's.

But then, this is Gotham, not the Batman comics. Heck, we may never even have a Batman in this Gotham!

Craig Oxbrow nailed it when he wrote, this week, that of the Batman-like shows currently on TV, Gotham isn't even in the top three.

Next Time:

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