Warning: This article contains spoilers from Gotham Season 3.
Gotham may be based on the Batman mythology but it has never been one to follow comic canon and that's definitely something worth admiring as viewers couldn't possibly predict what's coming next. However, that's not going to stop us from trying. Season 3 of the hit #superheroes prequel series has seen several exciting storylines including the arrival of the villainous Mad Hatter, a familiar face from Ed's past who could clearly pose a threat and several links to the Batman mythology that have yet to be explored.
One of the most interesting things about Season 3 is the current storyline involving Nathaniel Barnes — Captain of the GCPD. Earlier in the season, Barnes was exposed to Alice Tetch's blood — which as I'm sure you know is extremely poisonous and can be deadly. The latest episode of the hit #TV series saw Barnes lose what little control he had left over the deadly infection as he released his rage on two criminal suspects, killing them both.
Barnes new found strength and blood infection connote similarities between himself and DC Comics character Bane. Although it wouldn't be following comic cannon, I can't help but think that Gotham is laying the groundwork to turn Captain Barnes into the most sinister and unstoppable of all the Batman villains.
Poison Pumping Through His Veins
The first major comparison between Barnes and the comic book character Bane is the fact that both have toxins pumping through their veins. After getting infected with Alice Tetch's blood, Barnes has never been the same and the effect of the toxin has allowed him to completely recover from his shotgun injury, suggesting we don't know the full extent of what the dead girl's blood is capable of.
This was just the beginning — once the police Captain finds himself getting angry or frustrated he is consumed with an uncontrollable rage, giving him unfathomable strength that has allowed him to rip a human's head from their shoulders, fire people through walls and cause injury without exerting himself. His rage has become unstoppable and there is no stopping the captain once he gets angry. This sounds a lot like Bane of you ask me.
Barnes Can't Control Himself
Barnes has always been a man with a strict code of values and morals, following the law right down to the last detail. We've seen in past episodes how he dislikes Jim for sometimes following the not so moral "bad cop" route during investigations. Barnes' morality is what makes his current predicament not only ironic but also very clever on the writers' part because his morality and his need for justice conflict with one another.
One thing that became noticeable in the latest episode of Gotham was just how severe that lack of control is when Barnes brutally murdered two criminals in his pursuit of justice. I have a feeling that we've only scratched the surface with his new found strength and that as the season continues, Barnes will lose control in much more chaotic ways.
It's A Tragic Downfall
Barnes is arguably the most moral person in Gotham and he is completely aware of the fact that there is a fine line between being a police officer and being a vigilante – something he's always been able to differentiate. However, the moral compass of the show is headed for the worst downfall of all, Barnes is about to become what he detests the most – one of the bad guys.
As any comic fan is aware, the best super villains are usually the ones with the tragic backstory and what could be more tragic than a good cop becoming a great criminal? It's the ultimate twist for the good-hearted police captain.
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It's A Different Take On Bane
Gotham has made a habit of constructing its own narrative, much to the dislike of some of the die-heard comic fans, but in reality it's a rather brave move and one that for the most part definitely pays off. Without the restriction of following comic cannon, Gotham has been allowed to follow their own path and go in a direction that the writers think best suit their versions of the characters. Cameron Monaghan became a fan favorite with his performance on the show as the chaotic Jerome Valeska and although the character appears to have been killed, the confirmation of his return has sparked rumors that the deranged character is set to become Gotham's version of the Joker.
There is no reason why Barnes cant be Gotham's version of Bane and if the storyline continues the way it has been going over the past few epsidoes then it's entirely possible that he will become Bane. Bane's backstory was altered for The Dark Knight Rises so Gotham should be free to use the character in the best way to suit their version of the Batman story.
Clue In the Name?
It could be nothing but I find it rather interesting — and rather humorous — that you can actually spell Bane" out of the name "Barnes." Could Gotham have been playing us the whole time with a rather large clue that we all missed? It's possible — Gotham has fooled us before and there's no reason to believe that they wouldn't do it again.
Again, it could be nothing but what are the chances that the name similarities is just a pure coincidence? The clue was right in front of our noses the whole time and we just missed it.
Check out a preview of next week's episode:
Regardless of whether Barnes becomes Bane or not, his storyline is certainly set to come to a head in next weeks' episode but will there be any causalities? Gotham has certainly surprised us all in the past so it's impossible to predict what the showrunners have up their sleeves for us. Even if Barnes does find his way back to redemption, one thing's for sure — he will never be the same now that he's crossed that line. The city had better watch out now that Barnes is on the loose — the citizens of Gotham could face their worst foe yet.
Gotham airs Mondays on FOX. Do you think Captain Barnes is destined to become Bane on Gotham? Tell me your thoughts on the matter in the comment section below.