Wednesday, April 4, 2012

WORD OF THE DAY! 4/4/12.

gumshoe [gumh-shoo]
1. Slang. A detective.
2. A shoe made of gum elastic or India; a show with a rubber bottom.
3. To work as a detective.
4. To tread softly, as if snooping or walking stealthily.

EX. James Gordon, most commonly known as Commissioner Gordon, debuted in the first panel of Detective Comics #27, making him the first supporting character in Batman's life. Gordon actually predates Aflred Pennyworth by several years and is almost as important in the greater scheme of Bruce Wayne's story. Like any character in comics, Gordon has a lot of incarnations and plays different roles in the various comics. Here is my personal impression of Gordon's life and his role as the goody gumshoe that reminds Batman that there ARE good cops.

DISCLAIMER: This is pretty much based on the story I have in my head of how Gordon should be interpreted.

James Gordon was just a rookie cop on the night Thomas and Martha Wayne were shot dead. In his mind, that day was the last in a golden age of Gotham. The Waynes brought prosperity and charity to Gotham. For over a decade, he watched his city decay into a shadow of what it once was, corrupted by politicians and police alike and picked apart by vulture predators. Gordon stood apart from the average Gotham cop- honest, incorruptible, and immovable in his stance against crime. Also, immovable in his position as a Lieutenant. Since he wouldn't take bribes and wouldn't bend, he was stuck in a dead-position.

Then, Batman arrived. He saw Batman as a criminal vigilante, as an obstacle to real justice, and, on some level, he projected his frustrations onto the Dark Knight. At first, Gordon was the most dangerous opponent of Batman.

Batman was powerless to stop Gordon. After all, Gordon represents everything that Batman aspires to protect. The personal connection they have to Bruce Wayne's defining moment make things even more complicated for Bruce. All Batman could do is play a game of cat-and-mouse game; until Gordon realized they should work together.

They two came to recognize that they were both on the same side and, together, they could work for a better future in Gotham. Gordon deputized the Dark Knight and created the Bat Signal so that he could summon the latter for impromptu meetings. As Batman became a more trusted symbol, fighting crime and corruption alike, with the help of some generous donations to the police by Bruce Wayne, Gordon finally ascended up the ranks to become Commissioner.

Over the years, their relationship is forced to change and evolve as Batman becomes victim to the sways of the people. One day, Gordon can be Batman's best friend and the next...his biggest nightmare.

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