Monday Morning Gotham: Lines

This is more of a Monday “Night” Gotham. Reason being, went and saw WWE Royal Rumble last night in San Antonio and didn’t get back till late today. And of course, the winter finale for Gotham. What can I say that hasn’t been said already, or rather what can I feel that all of you out there already have experienced? So instead of going into the episode proper…let’s talk about one of my favorite lines (and I’m sure it’s someone else’s too).

“I will not kill.” – Bruce Wayne                                                                                                    Season 3: Episode 14: The Gentle Art of Making Enemies

Some people look at others and say ‘holier than thou’. Others look and say ‘morally corrupt’. All of us have standards and practices that we try to follow. But regardless where we fall on the morality scale, there are still some universal things that should be understood across the board. But even then, with racial lines, cultural lines and especially religious lines…what’s understood is not always what’s agreed upon. I love that Bruce established his line as he prepares to become the Dark Knight someday. Having one set up in place keeps us from going too far. When a person has no limitations place upon him, sometimes circumstances or just sheer force of will can make someone redefine what their limits are or even if they should have any at all. In my opinion that only makes you reckless. We all should strive to place limiters on our lives to keep us from just doing any and everything without considering how this affects you and the people around you.

Some things you just can’t come back from…you can’t step back over the line. So show love and appreciation for the people you see everyday.



Monday Morning Gotham: Faceless

The biggest motif about superheroes, (and for those of us with hero complexes) is the need to hide our identity behind a hood, cowl, or mask. But what happens when the “face” we put on overtakes the person we are trying to be? Is that even a bad thing? Tonight’s Gotham sees Dwight, one of Jerome’s biggest disciples, become such a component in his “reanimation” that he literally will wear Jerome’s face as a mask…surrendering with his hands up.

Poor, blind baby. It’s always hardest to see what’s right under our noses.” – Barbara  Season 3: Episode 11 – Beware the Green-Eyed Monster


Sometimes the idea of taking on a persona becomes stronger than the very ideals we try to uphold. I mean look at Batman…the line between the Bat and Bruce Wayne has blurred and sharpened drastically over the long history of the character. A lot of us have to be more than just our regular old selves to get through certain aspects of our day. Does that make us faceless? Should we be able to be just ourselves and let that be the end of it? The truth is that all of us have an innate desire to do more, to be more. We all want to be better, stronger than we were before. To do that, some of us have to look deep inside of ourselves and tap into something that may or may not have existed. Others may have to just change altogether. I know what that’s like. Being seen one way and placed in this fixed position can leave you feeling under-valued, unappreciated. That becomes the seed that grows into the desire to want to break out from up under one’s former characteristics.

I don’t have a secret identity. Yet, the mask I wear does differentiate me from the man I once was. Sometimes, we don’t always lose ourselves in our new personas…we might even gain an identity in of itself. To have a mission, to have purpose, to have reason to keep putting one foot in front of the other…maybe we aren’t so faceless after all?


Monday Morning Gotham: Deciding Factor

The big takeaway for tonight’s episode is the return of Jerome.

“I said Jerome’s in the house…watch ya mouth!” Wrong show, but seriously who else has been waiting for this. Hugo Strange’s resurrection program as it were, combined with Jerome’s murder (by Theo Galavan) last season…should be some interesting developments but I’m not here to talk about any of that. Let’s go back a bit and quickly analyze a line from Mr. Valeska’s more memorable messages.

“Why be a cog…be free, like us!” – Jerome Valeska sending a message to the GCPD

Season 2, Episode 2: Knock, Knock (Rise of the Villains)

So what exactly is the deciding factor when it comes to the decisions that we make? It is family, personal gain, pride, loyalty? The expression, “Freedom ain’t free” makes a lot of sense when you factor in the military overtones it serves. But what about for regular people who just work a normal job…people who make up the framework behind some of these big companies; the cogs in the huge machines. Does being free mean not having to be a little man amidst a bigger plan? Yes. Key word not having to be. The true cost of being free lies in an even greater power source: choice. The deciding choice that determines winners, losers, victories, defeats on a daily basis. I know I can be viewed as a cog, a spoke on the wheel and am at the mercy of my employers. Sometimes it’s not about bringing down the machine in order to be free. I think Jerome, in the Gotham sense wants to prove that while he may be a part of grander design, he can still operate independently, apart from whatever said plans may or may not have for him. When you are good at what you do, somebody will be willing to compensate for your services. Knowing this, means that while you may be a cog, you can be one that can exist in any machine and that is a level of freedom that pays for itself.

What is your next big decision? Will it allow you to be more restricted or offer you more flexibility? Let that be you deciding factor.


Monday Morning Gotham: Two Steps Back

Gotham was a show that I really wanted to get into when it first came out…and it was a chore to get through when it first started. It ended up turning me off the show all together. Season 2 happened, I caught one episode and it pulled me back into its universe and now I find myself looking forward to the show each week like some of my other favorite superhero related shows. I thought about reviewing Gotham week to week, talking about the episode proper and what to look forward to next. But there are so many little aspects of Gotham that I really like thematically and rather than try to explore them within the Gotham universe or even the Batman-related universe itself…I’m going to give perspective on individual lines or scenes from different episodes and briefly talk about them in a more real-world format. I really want to give people a reason to think about certain aspects of their own lives and how they can be explored.

Season 3, Episode 4: New Day Rising

Selina says to the Bruce Doppelganger after he assumes she doesn’t know what it feels like to be alone, “People are overrated.”

The expression “one step forward and two steps back” is always used to describe individuals who seemingly demonstrate some growth in their life but ultimately fall back into their old patterns, whatever they may be. Selina suggests that the Bruce Wayne clone is better off alone rather than him wanting to explore the idea of having a friend or at the very least someone actually caring about him. I hear so many people talk about how they need to mind their own business or want to be left to wallow in their own suffering because they feel its what they deserve. Most of us have experienced our own varying degrees of hardship and pain in our lives. So I do not disagree with the “overrated” quantifier when it comes to people in general.

I do ask this question. Is life really that much more interesting if we all just walked through it and not interact with nobody? It is very easy to grow tired of people. Work or play, people are almost always involved and sometimes you just want that feeling of being the center of your own universe. In the same breath, the universe is a big place and loneliness can rob you of all the oxygen in your atmosphere if you let it.

I have a “hero complex” admittedly and there are times where I feel like no one gets me and I’m all alone in places where everyone knows who I am. But are people themselves overrated? I don’t think so. For all the faults and stresses that humanity brings to the table…it’s still good to be seated and see someone across from you who’s just trying to get something to eat too.


Standing Outside of Time

Just the other day, his heart became heavy

Without understanding the bevy of emotions that would overtake him

As the oceans’ waves carry the tree limb of his arduous decision away

He wishes to stay, he wishes he could say

Yet these words carry an empty power

To influence but never change, to entice but not rearrange

It is far more lonely than just being alone

His moments simulate what he wants to be real

They stimulate how he wishes he could feel

Fleeting, is it not?

Needing, wanting, hoping for a spot, for a shot

Becoming light and weightless, remembering what faith is

And having to stand where time continues to go on

Top 10: Favorite Shows from PBS

10.) Reading Rainbow

The third-longest running PBS show (yes, the other two are on my list) that has my man LeVar Burton as the host. A show…about books, that wouldn’t work today. Good thing the 80’s didn’t subscribe to the idea that quality equals boring in this sense. Not for nothing, but this and all of the PBS shows for the most part had incredible theme songs.

9.) Bill Nye the Science Guy

Science Rules! Speaking of shows that pushed intelligence over entertainment…let me not lie, there was a lot of comedy and music in this show. As this list continues, you’ll see how I love my music-influenced shows but the one show that is so left of all the others actually has a lot of good tracks. Ranks very high in the theme song category.

8.) Mr. Rogers Neighborhood

The original PBS show for children. When I hear “Won’t You Be My Neighbor?”, takes me back. I remember the Neighborhood of Make-Believe and all of the puppets. I remember the music being very classical and even jazz influenced. Most of all I remember Rogers as someone who came across as genuine and earnest. It was right before I graduated high school that he passed away…very sad day indeed.

7.) Wishbone

One of the shortest lasting PBS shows (the shortest on my list) but left a memorable impact. To me this is the spiritual successor to Reading Rainbow. I say that because Wishbone always tries to find the parallels between classic literary arts and the current situation of the day. I always liked that the audience gets to hear Wishbone but the human characters around him can’t. (Bill Nye may have the catchier theme song, but it’s not better than this one) What’s the story?!

6.) Kidsongs

This show did your standard children’s job of teaching lessons and solving problems. For me, I loved this show as a kid for the music. All of the songs that would be done…I would walk to school instead of catching the bus just so I could watch this show. Good memories of this show.

5.) Sesame Street

The one show that everyone should have some familiarity with. Whether it’s the human characters, the actual Sesame Street characters or a particular segment…Sesame Street had to have left an impression on you if you were a kid in the last century. Musically, only Animaniacs compares when it comes to all of the different songs that were used. (I may do a Top 10 on Sesame Street songs honestly) We may not have know exactly how to get to Sesame Street, but it being on TV was the next best thing.

4.) Arthur

Who would of thought a cartoon about an aardvark would be so entertaining? Personally, the Christmas episode alone puts this high on my list. Grew up with the books and loved those, but never thought it would get turned into a show. Granted, I was out of that target demographic but like Disney’s Recess, I was able to get on board with this show. Buster even got a short-lived spin off out of this. (Honorable Mention to two other shows that I red as a child that got turned into cartoons; Clifford and the Berenstain Bears) You can’t help but do a little dance when singing this theme song!

3.) Magic School Bus

Considering how much I enjoyed school as a kid, “I knew I should’ve just stayed home today” always got me every time Arnold said it. Lasting just slightly longer this Wishbone, this was one of my favorite cartoons period at that time. At the library at school, we had “The Pit” which was a carpet-laced area into the floor where we could lay out and read whatever books we checked out. I member those paperback Magic School Bus books…You can’t go wrong with Little Richard singing your theme song.

2.) Lamb Chop’s Play Along

This puppet-inspired show hosted by the legendary Shari Lewis was worth waking up early for to watch. (Actually I was already up because Mr. Rogers came on before it). Big on music, loved the interactions of Lamb Chop, Charlie Horse, Hush Puppy…wow, these names, I’m just realizing it now. Lamb Chop always acted as somewhat of a foil to Shari which was funny. Even the Knock Knock jokes and Riddles segments I remember. Oh, and if you ever want to annoy someone, just sing, “This is the Song that Doesn’t End.”

1.) Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?

So why is a game show my number one? For one reason…DO IT ROCKAPELLA!!!