If it’s one thing that Fox’s Gotham hasn’t been shy about, it’s taking the incarnations of characters that Batman and DC fans are familiar with and turning them on their heads a bit. It is, after all, an alternate universe story, so you can’t sit around copying every last detail from the original comic series. That would be boring, right? So it’s no surprise when we hear casting news that gender-swaps one of the DC Universe’s more recognizable villains. In this case, it’s Firefly.
For those who may be watching Gotham without any previous knowledge of this particular villain, here’s a brief description of the traditional Firefly (courtesy of DC wikia):
Firefly is a pyromaniac super-villain who fights Batman. Formerly a visual effects expert working in the movie business, he turned to crime using a flame-proof winged suit after he was unable to stop his destructive compulsions. His obsession with fire is the result of an abusive childhood. He has been a member of the Secret Society of Super-Villains. Firefly was created by France Herron and Dick Sprang, first appearing in Detective Comics #184. (1952)
Naturally, a shift in gender means a shift in the character’s origins and the folks over at Gotham have their own story behind the emergence of this particular pyromaniacal villain:
…a reluctant villain, forced into her family’s predilection for arsonry. She’ll reportedly come into contact with the show’s Selina Kyle (played by Camren Bicondava), although a twist will have her defaulting back to her family’s evil ways.
The new version of Firefly will be played by Michelle Veintimilla, an actress who you may have seen roll through a few episodes of a few shows, but who is otherwise off the radar. The alter-ego of Firefly shall be known as Bridget Pike – a name unconnected to the original Firefly, so no cute nods from the Gotham writers to be found here.
Btw, here’s what Veintimilla looks like. You may recognize her, but probably not.
Of course, Firefly already showed his melted face on Arrow, another DC property, albeit on a completely different TV station. I guess this kills any chance of the two doing some sort of future cross-over? Oh well, what can you do? Just enjoy your half-dozen different DC Universe incarnations and hope that at least a few of them suit your tastes.
And you can see the new Firefly, along with a host of other Batman villains, when Gotham returns on September 21st.