'The Batman' Spin-Off Series Will Focus On James Gordon, Won't Adapt 'Gotham Central'

HBO Max's yet-untitled The Batman spin-off series has been purported to be about Gotham PD for months now, with the corrupt police force at the center of the TV show. It was even assumed that fans would get something of an adaptation of the acclaimed comic series Gotham Central, written by Ed Brubaker and Greg Rucka, with that series' diverse cast of characters finally getting their screen debut. But according to Brubaker, that won't be the case.

How do you make a Batman series without Batman? It's been done before to great success on comic book pages with the excellent 2002 comic Gotham Central, which centered on a group of Gotham detectives who work in a city where there also happens to be a crime-fighting vigilante on the loose. So it was assumed that Gotham Central would be the blueprint for the untitled Gotham PD series that would spin off from Matt ReevesThe Batman, acting as a prequel to the upcoming Robert Pattinson-led feature film. However, Brubaker, who recently recently appeared on Kevin Smith and Marc Bernadin's Fatman Beyond podcast, revealed that this The Batman spin-off will be more focused on James Gordon. Brubaker said:

"I was like 'maybe they're really going to make Gotham Central this time,' and so I reached out to a producer who works for Matt Reeves and he says, 'no, that's not really Gotham Central. They're making sure that they don't call it Gotham Central and it's more of a spinoff from the movie. It's like the James Gordon show."

But technically, didn't we already have "the James Gordon show" with Gotham, the FOX Batman prequel series which also drew inspiration from Gotham Central before flying off the rails to introduce a murderer's row of Batman rogues? Jeffrey Wright, who plays Commissioner Gordon in The Batman, is not yet confirmed to reprise his role in the HBO Max series, but this appears to suggest that he will at least appear in the show — or at least another actor will be playing a younger version of him.

In January, it was reported that Joe Barton would be taking over as showrunner for The Batman spin-off series, replacing Boardwalk Empire creator Terence Winter. Barton took to Twitter last month to tease the tone of the show, tweeting, "There are no good cops."

Gotham Central will be produced by The Batman producer Dylan Clark, and Matt Reeves will executive produce through his 6th and Idaho production banner along with Daniel Pipski and Adam Kassan, with Rafi Crohn serving as a co-executive producer.