If I am being honest here, I was a little worried about a show that centered around Batman’s butler. Sure, I know that he has had his badass moments in the comics, but would that be a show worthy topic? After watching the pilot to this new series, I have to say I was pleasantly surprised with what I saw. There was a plot I think could really carry the show at least a few seasons, a great cast, and beautifully cinematography. While the show only scored a 65% on Rotten Tomatoes with critics, the audience seems to agree with my thoughts with a 95%.
Well first off, we are introduced to a character that I am already fond of even if she is a “bad guy”, Bet Sykes. She brings in a Lord Longbrass who is part of this political group called the Raven Society. Except we find out when he talks with Lord Harwood and is extensively tortured and his bastard son is threatened, that he has talks about the Society to an outsider. This is the equivalent to talking about the Fight Club, you just don’t do it. The person he talked to? Thomas Wayne.
This brings us to Alfred Pennyworth. He served in the British Military and we see a few times throughout the episode that he has flashbacks to the war. Now, he is working at a nightclub as security and living with his parents. At the night club, he meets Thomas Wayne when he arrives to take his sister out of the Night Club and ship her back to the States. They exchange information after she hits Alfred in the face, and this is the link that now binds them.
Inside the nightclub he meets Esme who he fancies and as asks on a date. His home life is interesting. His father is pushing for him to become a butler, but Alfred has his sights set on running his own security business.
The date with Esme was ridiculously adorable, although they find out early that they do have some major differences where opinions are involved. In the meantime, Thomas is hunted down and almost killed. Bet Sykes looks through his apartment after and finds Alfred’s business card which is what drags him into this mess.
Later Esme comes to dinner at the Pennyworth home and realizes that maybe her and Alfred’s differences are just too much to overcome. After they leave, she breaks up with Alfred but then is immediately kidnapped. Bet tells Alfred as he chases aftger them that he can get Esme back in exchange for Thomas Wayne. The issue is that he doesn’t even remember Thomas Wayne.
Alfred heads to the police with the note that was left but when he sees the raven logo he gets up and leaves. Then the phone rings as the lobby clears out. It is Bet on the phone she reminds Alfred that he isn’t getting Esme back without having “The Yank”. This clue tips Alfred off to who is Thomas Wayne.
He then finds Thomas Wayne at a farm after tracking down the electrician that was on the card that Thomas gave Alfred. Thomas comes with him easily. Alfred reaches out to Bet and sets a time for the exchange. Thomas explains that he is a financial Forensic analyst and he found something that he thinks leads to something big and that is why important people are after him. At the meeting, they show without Esme, which is an obvious set up. Alfred brought back up though, his two friends from the military, Bazza and Dave Boy. They take out all but one to get the location of Esme. Meanwhile, Esme waits with Bet until she attempts to make a break for it. She interrupts a dinner party where no one even bats an eye when she says that she has been kidnapped. She is just taken back to the basement where she then meets Lord Harwood’s torturer. he exchange.
Alfred shows at Lord Harwood’s to get Esme and decides that he will be going at it alone. If he isn’t out in an hour his friends are to take Thomas to the US Embassy. Lucky for him, Dave isn’t a good listener as Alfred is quickly captured. While Lord Harwood attempts to lure Alfred to his side, Dave makes a distraction outside. I am not going to go into the nitty gritty here, but I rather enjoyed this scene. I think the most important thing we learn is that the Raven Society is attempting to overthrow most of the government.
Eventually the Police show, and Alfred meets Detective Inspector Aziz who has been following the trail of bodies this has been leaving behind. When Alfred returns home after this ordeal, he finds his parents at gun point by Bet. She wants Esme and for a bit Alfred can claim that he doesn’t know. This of course only works until Esme shows at this house. Bet is upset about the way that Esme treated her. Basically, here the Pennyworth’s kick their asses and Alfred and Esme are still together.
The end of the show has some scenes I think we will find important. For one, the Prime Minister seems to be the one running the Raven Society. Thomas Wayne offers Alfred a contract, but Alfred denies. The Alfred gets a medal for taken out Lord Harwood but is then asked to keep it all a secret making me think that maybe the Queen could be in on it. I guess we will see.
All in all, I think this was a solid opener and excited to watch the rest of this series. I watch this on the Epix website and log in with my cable provider, but they have other log in options available. If you want to check it out on Sundays at 9 P.M. on Epix.