ByKit Simpson Browne, writer at
Writer-at-large. Bad jokes aplenty. Can be gently prodded on Twitter at @kitsb1
Kit Simpson Browne

Say what you like about Gotham - and it seems to divide opinion more than any other superhero show around - but it is, as things stand, the only Batman TV series in town.

We almost, though, saw a very different Bat-series - one also called Gotham - that would have shown an entirely different side to the city, and a whole other set of characters.

I mean, we're talking full-grown Batman, Harley Quinn, a 21-year old female protagonist, and whole butt-load of Joker Venom, kind of different...

And, of course...

The Premise Was Way, Way Darker Than Our Gotham

As in, this was the synopsis...

"A world asphyxiating on its own blood and moral depravity, GOTHAM thrusts us into a community at its breaking point, barreling headlong into urban warfare with the greatest gallery of rogues known to man smelling blood in the water. Winter is upon the dark city, and its citizens are being ushered towards an inevitable confrontation against a most vicious threat… their own sins."

...and its lead character was a 21-year-old student, Olivia Sage, who'd returned to Gotham after the grisly murder of her younger sister - only to find that the city is practically drowning in a tide of Joker Venom, and her relationship with her police detective father was more strained than ever.

Wait, Joker Venom?

Yup, that's right - Joker Venom. The series was set to center around a variation of The Joker's iconic weapon-of-choice, which was, in this variation, a powerful hallucinogenic drug. Which, it seems, was running rampant on the streets of Gotham.

And that means...The Joker totally already exists in the show. Especially since...

Harley Quinn Was Totally In It

And, though she would have been incarcerated in Arkham at the series' start, she'd have made an appearance early on - and directly discussed The Joker. Her origin story - of Dr. Harleen Quinzel falling in love with The Joker - would have been retained, too.


The Riddler Was On Board (But VERY Different)

Specifically, he was set to team up with the main character to help take down those who were responsible for killing her sister. The reason? He had once set out to kill her himself (after her father helped put him in Arkham) but had been smitten with her intelligence and innocence, and decided not to - soon considering her his only friend.

Which is pretty darned different to the existing Gotham's Riddler...

Other villains who've appeared in our Gotham would've played a central role too, though there were some key differences...

Carmine Falcone Had a Junkie Son

Named Dominic 'Junior' Falcone, who was described as...

"Age 18, a natural-born hellraiser, and the resident bad boy of Brentwood Academy; he shares his father’s talent for getting involved in less than legitimate situations and managing to escape authority unscathed"

...and whose plot arc would have involved a descent into using Joker Venom, and prompting a serious gang war. And, from the sounds of it, bringing a slight touch of teen drama to the show.

The biggest difference, though?

Batman Would Have Been In It

As in, full-grown, adult, crime-fighting Batman. He'd have mostly been in the shadows, but it seems as though we would, eventually, have seen the Dark Knight on the small screen.

The Only Problem?

The show never even made it to its pitch meeting with Warner Bros.

Harry Locke IV, who had been working on the idea for most of 2013, had originally planned on turning the idea into a self-financed YouTube fan series, but was eventually convinced by his producing partners that the idea was good enough to pitch directly to Warners.

While getting ready to pitch the idea to the studio, though - and having already recruited the showrunner of Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman to bring the idea to the screen - the Gotham that's on our screens now was officially announced.

And, so, the Gotham-that-almost-was sadly fell at the first hurdle.

However, if you're intrigued, you can read more about the plot we would have seen, and the characters that would've taken center stage, right here.

The big question, though? What do you guys think?


Which version of Gotham would you rather watch?

via Geek Tyrant


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