Gotham: Season 3 (TV) (Blu-ray) [Blu-ray]
Blu-ray ALL - United Kingdom - Warner Home Video
Review written by and copyright: Rob Hunt (26th September 2017).
The Show

NOTE: This review is an expansion of the previous DVD review of Gotham: Season 3 (which can be found HERE).

Soon to be heading into its fourth season, by now most people will be familiar with Gotham - the TV series based around characters from the Batman comics, but set years before - whilst Bruce Wayne was still in his youth - and primarily centred around Jim Gordon. The series can be a bit of a love-it-or-hate-it affair, but it remains at least entertaining if nothing else. Coming into its third year, having focused on the rise of a number of villains in the second season, Gotham sees the focus shift to the effects the villains have on the city and sets the stage for the formation of 'the heroes'.

Unlike the second season, the third season was not split into two fairly neat 11-episode parts, but due to some bizarre scheduling by US network FOX, the first eleven episodes were aired in the autumn, followed by a further three after the winter hiatus, and then the remaining eight episodes after a three month gap. The show was also as good as dropped by the UK network Channel 5, with the DVD and blu-ray releases of this season marking the first time this has been made officially available to UK viewers.

From the consolidation of Penguin and the Riddler to the advancement of Bruce Wayne's story, there are some strong character progressions in this outing, which seems a bit more focused now that the core players have been introduced and settled in to their positions in Gotham. We meet a couple of scene-stealing villains that help to shape the overall season arcs - including the main arc that is a little overly neatly resolved in the final two episodes, but remains strong throughout the season. Some characters we have seen before appear again at various stages, and there's a reveal in the last episode that will likely play a part in episodes to come.

The third season of Gotham includes 22 episodes, spread across four discs (six episodes per disc for the first three discs, four episodes on the last disc - with the final two encoded as one video track):
- "Better to Reign In Hell..." (44:07)
- "Burn the Witch" (43:41)
- "Look Into My Eyes" (44:06)
- "New Day Rising" (44:05)
- "Anything for You" (42:43)
- "Follow the White Rabbit" (42:07)
- "The Red Queen" (43:57)
- "Blood Rush" (44:05)
- "The Executioner" (43:25)
- "Time Bomb" (44:04)
- "Beware the Green-Eyed Monster" (44:08)
- "Ghosts" (42:22)
- "Smile Like You Mean It" (42:30)
- "The Gentle Art of Making Enemies" (43:55)
- "How the Riddler Got His Name" (43:31)
- "These Delicate and Dark Obsessions" (42:41)
- "The Primal Riddle" (43:23)
- "Light the Wick" (43:48)
- "All Will Be Judged" (44:04)
- "Pretty Hate Machine" (44:06)
- "Destiny Calling/Heavydirtysoul" (86:05)

Video

Video is presented in 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen, encoded using the MPEG4 AVC codec. The show makes heavy use of darker and more muted colour palettes, but despite this the picture is crisp and sharp, and colours are well represented. The blu-ray does justice to the many darker scenes throughout the series, with excellent detail in scenes that are heavier on blacks and deeper greys. Skin tones are represented well and the fantastic work done by the costume and set departments are shown off through the added resolution available.

Audio

Audio is included in English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 as well as a Portuguese Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo dub, with optional subtitles in French, Portuguese, Spanish (Latin American) and English for the hearing impaired. For the purposes of this review, only English was used.

The show is predominantly dialogue-based, and this dialogue is always clear. There is effective use of surround sound too, though, such as for the more action-heavy sequences, and this is represented very well in the lossless DTS-HD audio track.

Extras

Warner has included a series of featurettes and deleted scenes for this release, spread across all four of the discs. (Disappointingly, each of the extras includes optional Portuguese or Spanish (Latin American) subtitles, but not English subtitles for the hearing impaired - especially strange as the DVD includes them.) Below is a closer look.

DISC ONE
This disc has two deleted scenes, one for the episode "Better to Reign In Hell..." (0:34) and one for the episode "New Day Rising" (0:25), which briefly add to the scene in the lab with Selina and Fish and the scene in the station with Jim and Alice Tetch, respectively.

DISC TWO
This disc has five deleted scenes, one for the episode "The Red Queen" (0:36), one for the episode "The Executioner" (2:29), one for the episode "Time Bomb" (1:36), and two for the episode "Ghosts" (2:09), as well as the featurette "Madness Rising: The New Villains of Gotham" (10:00). A number of the deleted scenes on this disc run for longer; whilst the first briefly adds to the scene of Jim trying to find Jervis Tetch, and the last features a brief clip of Xsasz, the remaining three scenes give two longer, more detailed backgrounds to Lee and Mario and one longer, more detailed background to Cobblepot. The featurette is meatier still, detailing the villains seen in the third season and how they were chosen.

DISC THREE
This disc has four deleted scenes, one for the episode "Smile Like You Mean It" (0:43), two for the episode "How the Riddler Got His Name" (2:36), and one for the episode "Light the Wick" (1:12). Included are a scene of extra dialogue with Dwight Pollard and the followers he has amassed, a scene giving further background to Barbara and Tabitha's dealings with Nygma, an extension to the scene where Lucius realises what Nygma is up to, and an expansion on a scene at the station with Lucius, Jim and Harvey talking about the virus.

DISC FOUR
This disc has one deleted scene, for the episode "Destiny Calling" (1:37), as well as three featurettes - "Gotham: 2016 Comic-Con Panel" (28:22), "Ben McKenzie's Directorial Debut" (2:20) and "The Dark Within the Dark: The Court of Owls" (12:02). The deleted scene expands on a scene with Jim and Harvey at the station. In terms of the featurettes, the Comic-Con panel is entertaining and includes some hints about what might be coming in the third season, the directorial debut is a little too short but gives a brief taste of what's involved, and the Court of Owls featurette is the most interesting, exploring the Court of Owls and how they link to the rest of Gotham.

Packaging

Packaged in a 4-disc Viva Elite keep case, with two trays inside, each holding two discs back to back. Initial pressings come in a slipbox. An HD UV digital copy is also included.

Overall

For fans of Gotham, this release is a no-brainer, especially as this release is the first time this season can be officially viewed by UK residents. The show continues to find new and interesting storylines, as well as some more zany ones, and maintains a steady progression for each of the key Batman characters. It remains an enjoyable watch, with a number of strong episodes, presented with very good HD video and audio. Recommended.

The Show: B+ Video: A- Audio: A- Extras: C+ Overall: B+

 


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