[SPOILERS for Gotham season one ahead.]
Gotham‘s young Bruce Wayne may have years, even decades, to go before donning the iconic cape and cowl, but that hasn’t stopped the show from introducing most of the equally iconic rogues gallery, killing off an integral Bat-lore villain, and even opening the (potential) batcave – all in season one. While the series’ overall success has been loudly divisive and its campy-gritty tone consistently unsure, one thing is certain: Gotham is moving fast out of the gate. Or at least, its villains are.
The question we have posed time and time again here remains the same: is it wise to provide fans with a batch of full-fledged Batman villains when the hero himself is still battling puberty? Probably not, which is why the show would benefit from slowly and steadily developing its core rogues (Penguin, Riddler, Joker, etc.) while simultaneously exploring lesser known DC villains and crafting new, original enemies (a la Fish Mooney) for James Gordon to face off against in the next season.
According to TVLine, Fox is looking to cast a pair of new villains for season two: a “male DC villain” described as “intelligent, cultured and highly articulate,” “extremely attractive, both seductive and threatening” as well as a “sexy knowck-out” female villain in her “mid-to-late 20s”.
Although designating the former as a “DC villain” implies the character has his roots in comic book mythology, it is possible he will not be an early incarnation of Clayface or Mad Hatter – both promised to debut in season two – but rather, a less notorious foe ripe for exploration and expansion (especially considering the well of Batman rogues yet to be explored onscreen, big or small). The description is oddly similar, if not an exact match, to the Ogre’s character, but there’s hope the writers will make him more than just another relatively stereotypical, bland serial killer.
Similarly, with two thirds of Batman’s femme fatale trinity already introduced (Catwoman and Posion Ivy) – and Harley Quinn primed to be around the same age as or younger than future Joker, Jerome – it would seem the 20-something “knockout” will either be an original character or an obscure foe like Magpie. Both are promising options that will lend Gotham the show and Gotham the city a few new layers to dig into.
Overall, although the Ogre proved to be quite underwhelming in terms of creativity and motive, there’s no denying his multi-episode arc – and the mystery surrounding his character – brought an upswing to Gotham‘s latter half (as did the two-part Scarecrow spotlight). It also provided a breath of fresh air to the one-and-done “monster of the week” format that had monopolized many of the weaker episodes (i.e. “Harvey Dent” and “LoveCraft“).
That said, the series succeeded most when it emphasized side characters/villains and used them as catalysts for the main characters’ development. With two new foes on the horizon – along with the return of young Joker and a deeper, darker focus on Edward Nygma – Gotham has the potential and need to improve upon its opening act.
Gotham season two will air on Fox in late 2015/early 2016.