Day One of the Motor City Comic Con 2017 has come and gone but the thoughts and memories have etched themselves into my brain. One of the many things that I did this day was attend the panel led by Aaron Sagers and featured our current incarnation of Oswald Cobblepot (The Penguin) for the show Gotham, Robin Lord Taylor. While my personal knowledge basis is more towards the first two incarnations, Burgess Meredith and Danny DeVito, I came to this panel to see this actor and see what he brings to the table (and because Kristel da Fangirl is a big fan of Gotham).
The panel started off with official news that Gotham had been official renewed for a fourth season which really made the crowd roar. Then there was much talk about the show and his portrayal of the Penguin. Robin mentioned that he was inspired by the performances of both previous actors, stating that he used to come home from school every day to watch Scooby-Doo and the ’66 Batman then repeatedly watch Batman Returns. When asked about the Penguin walk, he really tried to make it look like that every step that he was taking was painful for him since that’s what he would be experiencing. To help facilitate the walk, in the first couple seasons there was actually water bottle caps in the heels of the shoes until one day he could do the walk without the assistance. Finding out more about behind the scene facts, Robin told us that he had actually taken home some of the campaign materials from Penguin’s run for mayor of Gotham. Fans of the show would love to hear that a large portrait of Elijah Van Dahl (Paul Reubens) was made and it now resides in his dressing room which is also used by others so sometimes you will see Instagram pics of actors in this room with this huge painting on the wall.
People that have watched the show tend to wonder what decade or era the show takes place. The actor told the audience that the show really has a “animated, fantastic feel” and a timeless component that really takes it out of our world and puts it into a world of its own. He also couldn’t imagine any other actors playing the roles that they are cast in or even changing roles. Life on the set sounds like something perfect with all of the cast being equally friends, that he feels like he’s in “a really intense theatre group” and that he loves the people and crew most.
One of the things that Robin had said in the panel did get to me in a personal way. Like most panels, the guest is usually asked ‘What is your favorite episode?’ He gave us an answer that I didn’t know or have a clue about and I bet many other fans didn’t know this either. He told us that his favorite episode was season 2, episode 16 (Prisoners) in which Cobblepott’s father had died at the end. While it is his favorite episode, he will never watch the episode for a very heartfelt reason. Around the same time of the episode, he lost his real life father so the episode is really personal to him.
This panel with Robin Lord Taylor was something that I not expecting to get much from since my viewings of Gotham have been limited yet it was quite informative and somewhat emotional and it was a joy to attend. Perhaps it’ll be time for me to binge watch the three seasons prior to Season Four this fall.
Gotham will be moving to 8PM on Thursday nights starting in Fall 2017.
Motor City Comic Con will be held next year on May 18, 19 and 20, 2018