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Dr. Andrea Letamendi

‘Gotham’ Season 1 Recap, Episode 6: ‘Spirit of the Goat’

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If you’re still following the show every week, you’ve learned that Gotham offers many life lessons. Don’t bite the hand that feeds you. Steer clear of abandoned buildings. Rich orphans who live with their butlers don’t have to go to school. And of course, the most important Gothamism: Trust no one.

In fact, the most dangerous, vitriolic members of society happen to be those working in the health and science fields. Fields that traditionally serve and help citizens in the community; not harm them. In Gotham, it’s the social workers, psychotherapists, youth advocates, biochemists, professors and the like who find that their trades as brilliant innovators and altruistic helpers inevitably lead them to the same side-gig: Murder.

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Filed Under: , , Category: DC, Opinion, Television, TV Recaps

‘Gotham’ Season 1 Recap, Episode 5: ‘Viper’

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The news that actress Morena Baccarin (Firefly, Homeland) will be joining Fox’s crime drama Gotham, with a recurring role as the compassionate physician Dr. Leslie Thompkins, brings hope to a show currently heaving with villainy. Considered a surrogate parental figure to young Bruce Wayne, the good doctor appeared in over 200 issues of DC Comics and several episodes of Batman: The Animated Series. However, Dr. Thompkins has never been portrayed in a live-action film or television show. In the meantime, Bruno Heller’s Gotham appears to suffer from too much of the same motif: The murder of mother Martha Wayne and father Thomas Wayne was a catalyst, giving way to a city of “orphans” forming replacement relationships best described as disrupted, disloyal, or enmeshed.

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Filed Under: , , , , Category: DC, Opinion, Television

‘Gotham’ Season 1 Recap, Episode 4: ‘Arkham’

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Now that six additional episodes of the crime drama Gotham have been ordered by Fox, we’re looking toward a full 22-episode first season. Although ratings have dropped since the pilot (Sleepy Hollow, also on Fox, was one of only three shows ranked below Gotham Monday night), the series about Batman’s beginnings has managed to hold a firm grip on at least 75% of its audience.

One problem cited by critics familiar with the Batman mythos is Gotham’s inclusion of too many characters (with forced relationships) at the onset. Like an all-you-can-eat buffet, the overstocked spread leaves us inexplicably unsatisfied. On the other hand, whiffs of treats about the city itself – its cavernous sewer system, detached outskirts, and now, the Arkham District – keep us lingering around for something savory.

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Filed Under: , Category: DC, Opinion, Television, TV Recaps

‘Gotham’ Season 1 Recap, Episode 3: ‘The Balloonman’ – The Hero ‘Gotham’ Deserves

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When it comes to Gotham, two things are clear. One, the Fox crime drama purported to portray the origins of Batman and his criminal counterparts isn’t committed to much precision around the 75-year old mythos. Second, rather than tell the story of the unique and complex process of becoming Batman — a progressive evolution wherein a fearful, inexperienced but persistent youngster is shaped into an unlikely superhero — the show shortcuts to a nearly fully-formed Bruce Wayne in the body of an 11-year old kid.

Collecting police files. Testing endurance. Sneaking up on people. Unless we’re to believe the first three episodes take place in Bruce’s imagination as some part of a posttraumatic delusion, these are hardly behaviors we’d expect to see in a young boy immediately following parental loss — even for one who will grow up to be Batman. The only things missing are his cape and cowl. So for those who get a giggle out of watching a kid play detective and refuse psychotherapy, Gotham delivers. When it comes to villains, classic and original, the show has much more to offer.

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Filed Under: , , , Category: DC, Opinion, Television, TV Recaps

‘Gotham’ Season 1 Recap: Episode 2: ‘Selina Kyle’

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Oh, Gotham. You’re a show about the city that created Batman. The city that raised Poison Ivy, Catwoman, and the Penguin. With so much about these characters’ behavioral profiles already established by DC Comics, don’t you have at least a basic responsibility to teach us something about the development, manifestation and course of psychopathology? We’re watching because we want to know what led these characters down such crooked paths, and how Bruce Wayne rose out of his trauma to create the formidable crime-fighter we know as the Dark Knight. We already know the future’s end, so tell us something worthwhile about the beginnings. It’s the least you can do.

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Filed Under: , , Category: DC, Opinion, Television, TV Recaps

‘Gotham’ Season 1 Recap, Episode 1: ‘Pilot’

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Fox’s most buzzed about new television drama, Gotham, premiered this week with its youthful James Gordon, li’l Bruce Wayne, and a handful of DC Comics scoundrels, outcasts, and criminals in their formative, pre-supervillain years—The Riddler, Catwoman, Poison Ivy, and the Penguin. Detective Gordon seems to be the golden thread that connects everyone together as he begins his journey through Gotham’s depraved fractures. But are the city’s inhabitants and their intertwined stories portrayed with psychological realism? Do their hardships, devastation, and violence rationally add up to the mythology that we know will inevitably create the Batman?

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Filed Under: , , , Category: DC, Opinion, Television, TV Recaps

The Arkham Sessions: Love Triangles And Alter Egos

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On this episode of The Arkham Sessions, we revisit the weird love triangle between Bruce Wayne, Selina Kyle and...Batman. Will Bruce ever win Selina's heart? Does he even really want to? And will he ever be able to look past her criminal history?

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The Arkham Sessions: Is Batman Emotionally Intelligent?

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In this episode of The Arkham Sessions, we revisit the relationship between Bruce and Dick. Once again, resentment is exhibited by Dick as he tries to deal with Bruce's perfectionistic and strict mentoring style. Dick may be on to something -- Bruce appears to be closed off when it comes to the expression of his emotions. In fact, he may have deficits in the area ofemotional intelligence, which is one's ability to perceive, understand, and manage emotions.

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The Arkham Sessions: The Laughing Fish, Harley Quinn, And The Joker’s Diagnosis

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When Gotham Bay is plagued by a mysterious toxin, boatloads of fish are turning up with a grotesque disfigurement: The trademarked Joker perma-smile. Batman -- working alone again -- is energized to be back on the Joker's trail, and soon learns that a binary compound of the toxin can affect humans, too. Written by Paul Dini and based on comic book stories by Dennis O'Neil and Steve Englehart, this episode of Batman: The Animated Series packs the kind of action and adventure the show is known for. How can you not love a shark wrestling scene?

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Stories of Suicide: Myths, Risks, and Help-Seeking in the Creative Community

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September 8--14 is National Suicide Prevention Week, an annual campaign sponsored by the American Association of Suicidology that recognizes suicide as a major public health concern and promotes the message that suicide deaths can be preventable. In the U.S. alone, nearly 40,000 people take their own lives each year. That's an average of 105 deaths per day. Yet, unlike the campaigns focused on the 9 other leading causes of death, suicide prevention isn't just about raising funds and improving treatment. Suicide is associated with stigma and misconceptions that often close the dialogue and prevent us from learning how we can overcome this epidemic. We don't talk about it. We are scared to ask about it. We simply don't know what to do.

It is undeniable that all of us are thinking about suicide. We thought about it when Hank Pym (Ant-Man) contemplated ending his life after years of stress on his constantly-morphing body. We thought about it when Roy Harper (Red Arrow) was tormented by his phantom limb pain and overdosed on painkillers. We thought about it when Bruce Banner confessed that he could no longer withstand the internal destruction caused by the Hulk, but when he put a bullet in his mouth, "the other guy spit it out." Everyone who's read Neil Gaiman's The Sandman can stand up. You've thought about it, too. Constantine. Deadshot. Mr. Terrific. Rorschach. Nearly every character in The Walking Dead. The list of narratives goes on, some more explicit than others.

Fiction is one of the most common ways we openly explore suicidality and connect with feelings of hopelessness, despair, and depression. Comics allow us to participate in the subversive in a way that is culturally acceptable. We break that rule and seem to enter a place of insecurity and isolation when we begin admitting our own feelings of anguish and thoughts of self-harm.

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