Warning: This article contains spoilers from Season 3 of Gotham. Read on at your own peril.
The third season of Gotham many have only just begun, but there have already been massive changes to the show and its primary characters. The season premiere episode set the stage for further exploration of the Batman mythology, most notably through Oswald Cobblepot who looks much more like his comic book counterpart than he has in previous seasons.
Cobblepot has been on quite a journey on Gotham and Season 3 looks like it will be the characters most important yet. Cobblepot — better known as the Penguin — may have started out as Fish Mooney's umbrella boy, but over the course of two years, he transformed into the criminal kingpin of the infamous city.
In Season 3 we find him at an important time in his life — he has the people of Gotham eating out of his hands. Watching the latest episode of the Batman prequel series, I couldn't help but notice how good Cobblepot has become at comforting the people of Gotham. With this in mind, I think it's possible that the producers are planting seeds for Penguin to become the mayor of the city.
Penguin Has The People's Vote
The Penguin has always been seen as a criminal of Gotham. In fact, it was only last season that a manhunt was underway with many of the city's residents hunting for the notorious villain at the command of Captain Barnes. However, we may be only two episodes into the third season, but the Penguin has managed to conduct some damage control on his reputation.
He's no longer feared or hated — the people of Gotham look to him for guidance and support. To be fair, Oswald is crafty and he knows what the people want to hear — he's taking advantage of the fact that Gotham is being terrorized by metahumans — he's feeding off the peoples fear and in doing so, it's making the people champion him for taking a stand.
What the people don't know is that Penguin plays games and the people of Gotham are mere pawns in his masterplan. It's quite possible that Penguin's manipulation of the people of Gotham is an attempt to get the entire city behind him. Mayor James' reputation has no doubt been called into question after he lied on the stand about Theo Galavan and put the entire city of Gotham in danger. Plus, Penguin is a victim of Galavan's reign — Galavan killed his mother — meaning that the people of the city are more likely to identify with him than they are with Mayor James.
The City Is In Need Of Guidance
Gotham hasn't quite recovered from all of the damage done last season — with the Galavan fiasco and Hugo Strange's Indian Hill monsters loose on the city — simply put: Gotham is worse than ever. We know that Bruce Wayne will become Batman further down the line, but that's a long way off and the city needs some stability now.
The Penguin is no hero by any means, but he does have the people's support — something that's hard to come by in this city. If there is to be another election, then there is no reason why the citizens of Gotham wouldn't vote for him. Again, this is Penguin that we're dealing with — he no doubt has ulterior motives, but if the city is to survive Strange's reign of terror then it needs someone who can save them from the monsters. He may not be the hero that Gotham deserves, but he's the one it needs right now — at least that's what Cobblepot thinks.
Are you a fan of Gotham? Check out these:
- Cameron Monaghan Hints At Jerome's Return, But Does Gotham Really Need The Joker?
- Gotham Season 3 May Bring The Biggest Changes Yet
- We're All Mad Here: Will Harley Quinn Be Officially Introduced In 'Gotham' Season 3?
The Penguin Is Adapting
The character of Oswald Cobblepot has a broad history with taking part in socialist affairs and interacting with people of power and it is incredibly likely that Gotham's next move will be to use the well-known mayor Penguin storyline to further the characters social status.
Season 2 saw Cobblepot become the kingpin of the criminal underworld which was a huge move for the character, but most adaptations of the Penguin feature him with class and elegance, throwing soirees and wearing the best clothing known to man.
We haven't seen this in Gotham's Penguin as of yet. Last season saw Penguin inherit his father's funds, meaning that he already has the power and monetary influence to get what he needs, now he just needs the social status. If he becomes mayor, Penguin has everything he needs to completely and totally run the city.
The Storyline Has Been Used In Previous Batman Adaptations
Gotham's public perception of the Penguin character is not the first time that such a story has been tackled. Cobblepot has been featured in the city's politics in many adaptations of the character over the years. Tim Burton's Batman Returns is arguably the most known version of a Batman story that explored Cobblepot attempting to take control of the city by running for Mayor. In this 1992 film, Danny DeVito's Penguin entered the race for mayor and quickly became the peoples favorite — similar to Gotham — however, his true intentions were revealed the world before he was elected and the entire city turned on him.
Another time that this storyline was explored was during an episode of the classic '60s Batman TV series which saw Burgess Meredith's Penguin enter into a mayoral race, going up against Batman himself. So, Gotham is not the first Batman adaptation to explore Mayor Penguin and it probably won't be the last — having control over the city is a huge part of the character's development and it looks like Gotham will be drawing influence from the past to make their storyline work for the present.
Check out a preview for Monday's episode of Gotham:
Gotham City may be struggling more than ever, but it's becoming more and more apparent with each passing episode that the Penguin will be taking on the challenge of making the city great again. Whether or not he has ulterior motives has yet to be revealed, but there is no doubt that if Penguin becomes mayor of the city things will never be the same again.
Gotham airs Mondays at 8/9c on FOX. Do you think Oswald will make Gotham great again? Tell me in the comment section below.