In an interview given with Digital Spy, Alexander Siddig talks a little bit about his role as Ra’s al Ghul. Alexander plans to play Ra’s as a more morally ambiguous figure, In his own words.
I really tried to be as ambiguous as possible. I’ve only done two episodes and as an actor in episodic television, I don’t know what the next script is, so I’m confronted with finding a way to play something really dark in a more ambiguous way.
“I suspect that kind of liquidity can only be fascinating. It certainly fascinates me, and I know I’m going to have fun for as long as I end up playing this character.”
Alexander also put his foot on how he plans to pronounce Ra’s al Ghul’s name.
“I looked at it and thought, ‘I’ll call him Raish’ – I just really liked the Aramaic element, that was kind of cool and added an ancient aspect to the character, which I believe is true anyway.
“We’ll see whether or not Warner Bros. or whoever the Gods are in that particular area are happy. I do believe the last incarnation with Liam Neeson who said ‘Razz’ – but I didn’t feel like a Razz!”
So we know Ra’s is in some way working with the Court, but if Ra’s is being played in a more ambiguous light compared to his more extremist portrayals, where does the Court fit in? Usually Ra’s is someone who wants to reshape a corrupt world, with sometimes an environmental bent to it. So is Ra’s using the Court or at least some of it’s Indian Hill projects to create better world, or to see if a hellhole like Gotham is somehow worth saving? It would make Gotham’s Court of Owls unusual in that the Court cares for it’s own power by keeping everyone else down, and Gotham crime ridden.
It also brings up the implication that is Ra’s coming to Gotham to keep an eye the Court in check and make sure they aren’t screwing up any further. The Court almost saw themselves get hijacked at least unknowingly by Theo Galavan and another shadowy organization in the Order of St Dumas and his plans for Bruce and Wayne Enterprises which the Court controls. They also they nearly fell victim to Jervis Tetch’s plans to ruin the city, again unknowingly. Worse yet, Bruce is aware of their existence, and willing to break the deadlock they have with one another if need be.
The Court’s actual track record isn’t all that good either. The Court’s Indian Hill facility got outed in “A Legion of Horribles” (S2 E21), and even after getting shut down has caused them no end of grief. Jerome was brought back by a former Indian Hill employee and he was able to cause a city wide riot in “The Gentle Art of Making Enemies” (S3, E14). While Fish Mooney and various other Indian Hill escapees are still around as well, with Hugo Strange forced to help them. So with friends like the Court of Owls, Ra’s doesn’t need enemies.
Gotham comes back on Monday April 24th @ 8pm EST.