Gotham – How Will Penguin Save His Mother?


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On Gotham‘s Season 2 “Strike Force” episode, we saw Theo Galavan display his devious method of control in getting Penguin to kill the opposing candidates for mayor.  When Penguin initially refuses, Galavan reveals that he’s holding Gertrud, Penguin’s mother, as a hostage for leverage.  A reluctant Penguin, left with no other options, agrees to help Galavan ascend to power.

Later, after some prodding from right-hand man Butch Gilzean, Penguin admits to him that their murder spree was for the guarantee of his mother’s safety.  Butch then promises to find his mother.  However, by the end of the episode, Butch is unsuccessful, and we see Penguin crying and screaming in frustration while watching a live closed-circuit feed of his mother in her prison.

The question now is how will Penguin save his mother?  This seems like a new position for Penguin, as in the past, he’s always held the cards.  This is certainly a reversal of sorts.  How desperate will Penguin get?  After all, this is his mother we’re talking about, and we’ve certainly seen how close he is to her.  Added to the fact that Penguin never really takes things sitting down, we can expect some pretty extreme measures from Gotham’s newest crime lord.

One theory I’m taking a stab at deals with the introduction of Penguin’s father, who was just announced this week and will be played by Pee-wee Herman actor Paul Reubens.  Perhaps the reentry of his father back into his life will lead the two to team up against Galavan.  Though this would seriously deviate from the source material (it doesn’t really matter now since the show has already taken so many liberties), it would at least introduce a new dynamic.

Another theory would be Penguin now owing Jim a favor.  Season 2, so far, has Jim pretty much in the red with Penguin.  The future commissioner needs a serious reset after his multiple Faustian bargains with the bird.  Plus, with the new arrival of hard-hitting Nathaniel Barnes, it would be in Jim’s favor to help Penguin out, so as to get the upper hand and not be at the beck and call of a known criminal.  It would be interesting, if the writers can pull this off, to see Jim take his newly formed paramilitary Unit Alpha, which are now tasked with hunting down Penguin, to find Gertrud and, perhaps, dig deep enough to see what Galavan is up to.  This would definitely inject some much needed conflict into the current storyline.

The taking of Gertrud as a hostage is a wise move by the writers.  For far too long, Penguin has been untouchable and has been a crutch for every little pickle Jim has gotten himself into.  I think the methods by which Penguin will use to find his mother will be quite interesting.  If the writers can pull this off and really make the characters work for their goal, this show just might turn out to be interesting this season.

Fox’s Gotham airs on Mondays at 8:00PM EST.

Next: Catch up on Gotham with a review of 'Strike Force'

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