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GOTHAM Boss Bruno Heller Dishes on a ‘Darker, More Emotional’ Gordon in Season 2

Gotham season two may be the “Rise of the Villains,” but it’s actually the hero at the center of Fox’s DC Comics drama who is going to get darker than we ever expected.

Jim Gordon (Ben McKenzie) found himself on the wrong side of the law in the season two premiere, killing a club owner as a favor to the Penguin (Robin Lord Taylor). He ran before the cops found him standing over the man’s dead body, and he has yet to confess what he did to his girlfriend Lee (Morena Baccarin). He may have his badge back on the GCPD, but Gordon’s big secret is bound to come out at some point. A cop guilty of murder? Yeah, this isn’t going to end well for anyone involved.

Gotham executive producer Bruno Heller reveals that this isn’t Gordon’s lowest point, either.

“This is a season long journey for him,” Heller tells Nerdist. “I think that’s the essence of this world; the hero is struggling with the very fine line of when you’re a police officer, between doing good and doing wrong in a world like this, where even the most brutal of measures could be justified as appropriate depending on the situation. Gordon is essentially asking the same questions that Batman is going to have to ask himself later in history: how do you fight evil without becoming somewhat evil yourself? And once you’ve gone there, how do you come back? Can you be a bad man doing good things and conversely, do good intentions always trump bad outcomes?”

Heller knew he wanted to take Gordon in this direction to echo and anticipate Bruce Wayne’s future moral qualms.


“On a large scale, Batman and that whole world is really a morality play and a Gordon embodies that this season,” Heller says. “He gets darker and more emotional as the season goes on.”

But don’t expect this whole season to be heavy, either.

“That being said, Gordon also finds joy and lightness and positivity this season in a way that he didn’t have last year,” Heller says. “His personal life is going to get extremely complicated over the course of the season, and that’s aside from what he gets tangled up in at work. He’s becoming much more of a fully-rounded human being. He has responsibilities to other people. He finds love–and I’m about to give away big stuff that I can’t, sorry! Let’s just say that he will have a life-changing season. He gets very dark and then he gets light. It’s a real journey.”

As for Gordon’s ex, Barbara (Erin Richards), her trip to crazytown is a permanent one, and that particular plot was born from Richards’ acting.

“One of the things you have to respond to when you’re running a show like this is what the actors bring to the part, where their strengths are and what you can do with the character once they’ve inhabited it,” Heller says. “We always intended Barbara to be an ambivalent relationship with Gordon. When you first see them together, you wonder if they’re the right pairing. As the season unfolded and Erin showed her genius as an actress, it was very clear that the way we’re going with Barbara was just the natural, organic path. That discord of a crazy ex-lover is an archetype that she kills. You’ll see some amazing stuff as that plot line unfolds. It’s a brilliant, brilliant portrayal of someone descending into madness and causing chaos all around her as she descends.”


While Barbara has found a new home with the Maniax crew, young Bruce has a renewed sense of purpose in continuing his father’s work and figuring out what Wayne Enterprises is up to. But boys will be boys!

“Amongst other things, he’s also going to find young love,” Heller says. “But he’s also going to find out things about his family and Wayne Enterprises that will surprise not just him but the audience as well. Last season, he was very much a boy. This season, he’s becoming a young man. With that maturity comes doubts and turmoil. Leading to the creation of this iconic figure, the growth of that kind of character is never a straight line upwards.”

Heller reveals that Bruce’s storyline won’t be what viewers are expecting.

“What is surprising is how conflicted and ambivalent and dangerous the decisions he’s making are this season,” Heller says. “As much as he’s the strong, brilliant Bruce Wayne, he’s also just a kid. He’s going through adolescence, and every day of adolescence is a new experience, a new challenge. It’s a strange thing to say about a young man, but David is just bringing such wonderful profundity and soul to this. People are going to be blown away by his performance this season. It’s really great stuff.”

Gotham airs Mondays at 8 p.m. on Fox.

Featured image via FOX.

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