- "A revolution is knockin' on Gotham's door!"
- ―Oswald Cobblepot to Bruce Wayne[src]
The Penguin is a secondary antagonist in Batman: The Telltale Series. A powerful criminal in the United Kingdom, his true identity was Oswald Cobblepot, a member of one of Gotham's most influential families. Forced into a life of crime due to the manipulations of Thomas Wayne and his allies, Penguin sought revenge against the Wayne family and the current generation for this. To achieve this, Cobblepot joined the terrorist organization Children of Arkham and would become a key player in their schemes against Gotham's elite.
Oswald Cobblepot was the son of Theodore and Esther Cobblepot. His family was once a large influence on Gotham, owning a large portion of the city's land and building a park for the city's public. At a young age, Oswald became friends with Bruce Wayne. According to Alfred Pennyworth, the two were "as thick as thieves", though Oswald would take this quite literally in later life.
Whilst still a child, Oswald's family lost their fortune to events set in motion by Thomas Wayne, Carmine Falcone and Hamilton Hill. Whilst running for mayor, his father apparently committed suicide, whilst his mother was forcefully sent to Arkham Asylum by Wayne to gain control of the land she legally owned. Due to his mother's perceived mental illness, Oswald would often be bullied by other children, but would be protected by Bruce.
At some point after his family's fall from grace, Oswald moved to the United Kingdom to attend boarding school in England. After finishing education, he joined the military, though was dishonably discharged after some time. Cobblepot went on to establish himself as a professional criminal in England's underworld, making a number of illegitimate enterprises including illegal boxing matches, arms dealing and receiving stolen property. He would use the alias "Penguin", using a bird-like gas mask in his dealings and crimes. Oswald was also arrested many times, once by the Essex Police Department, and served a number of prison sentences.
At some point, Oswald came back to Gotham for unspecified reasons, possibly in the hopes to take revenge on the Wayne family (despite Thomas and Martha being dead), Falcone and Hill. He joined the group known as the Children of Arkham, though it is currently unknown whether he joined before returning to Gotham. Oswald later contacted Mayor Hill and blackmailed him into compiling information about Falcone and the Wayne's illegal activities. Unknown to Hill, Cobblepot planned to turn on him and kill him once he had released this information. Oswald also hired famed cat-burglar Catwoman to steal the information from Hill and help members of the Children of Arkham find the psychogenic chemical that drove his mother, and hundred of other citizens, insane.
Oswald was first seen by Bruce at a fundraising event for Harvey Dent's campaign as Mayor. He, having possibly gatecrashed the event, was seen drinking at a table, though did not converse with any of the guests. As he left, he met with Bruce's butler Alfred Pennyworth, leaving arrangement to meet at Cobblepot Park at 6am in the morning.
A short time before he arrived, Bruce received a text from Oz saying that he'd be late. When he arrived, Oswald found that Bruce was being set on by two muggers. He interfered and brutally beat them up, telling them that "lowlifes" like them were the reason places like his park were ruined. Afterward, he and Bruce conversed briefly about their pasts since their last meeting. Oswald showed disdain for the park and how badly his family's legacy had fallen. Oswald also mentioned seeing Falcone at the fundraiser and expressed his disdain towards the mob boss, even stating that he would like to see Falcone fall from power. He also warned Bruce about a "revolution" he was planning, warning Bruce to "be on the right side" when it started. He then left to [organize the revolution].
The next morning, Oswald and his men arrived at the Skyline Club, following the murder of Falcone at Renee Montoya's hands, through drugging by a member of the Children of Arkham. It is possible that he was responsible for this, though very unlikely. Blackmailing one of the late crime lord's henchmen into bringing him to the club, he looked around for evidence linking either Thomas Wayne and Hill to Falcone's organization. Whilst investigating the office with Roland Desmond, the criminal he blackmailed and a number of his own men, he was confronted by Batman.
When the vigilante pressed him of knowledge of Falcone's murder, Oswald admitted to having organized this and that his death sparked the beginning of his revolution. As they argued on how Oswald was fighting for the same cause as Batman, he was drawn away by one of his men, who revealed that they had located Catwoman. Letting the vigilante know that he had arranged for her to be murdered, Oswald left, with Batman being apprehended by Desmond whilst the group escaped.
Later, at the debate, Oswald, as his criminal ego "the Penguin", attacked the Gotham City Mayoral debate. Murdering the moderator and "forcing" Vicki Vale on stage to host the event, he injected each of the potential mayors with the same psychogenic chemical that had been used to commit his mother. As they drew near to argument, Penguin and his men showed a video clip of Thomas Wayne committing his mother. As the GCPD tried to storm the debate, Oswald took Vale hostage as Batman appeared.
Vale threw a punch and fled, with Oswald firing blindly at her in rage. Batman, however, protected her from the gunfire and threw a Batarang at him. Whilst Roland engaged with the vigilante, Oswald turned his attention to Hill. Despite Hill's protests to spare him, even trying to claim that he had arranged the Waynes' murder because he believed he had gone too far, Oswald gunned him down.
Dent, who had tried to save Hill by attacking Penguin, was taken hostage and held at gunpoint whilst Batman and Catwoman confronted Penguin. In a bid to drive them off, he shot at the duo, injuring Catwoman. Oswald then threw Dent on the floor and tried to attack him with a stage light. Batman has the option of intervene or saving Catwoman from a group of Children of Arkham members. If the latter is chosen, Penguin disfigures Dent using the light. Regardless of the decision, Penguin successfully escaped whilst the GCPD distracted Batman, leaving only his mask behind.
During the time between the debate and Dent taking the role as Mayor, Oswald managed to infiltrate Wayne Enterprises, being hired into the board. Using ties he had, Oswald managed to create a false backstory about his business experience and covered up his criminal dealings. This managed to impress the Wayne Enterprises board, who considered hiring him as a replacement CEO, as they were considering a replacement for Bruce Wayne.
Oswald managed to find about Wayne Enterprises' use of telecommunications and managed to find a backdoor, to monitor the entire city's communications. Once implemented, the Children of Arkham were able to know what to expect and were able to prepare for oncoming threats. However, this was later rectified once Bruce Wayne and Lucius Fox discovered about it.
After a meeting discussing Bruce's future at Wayne Enterprises, the board decided to replace him with Oswald, though this role would only be temporary CEO. Following the meeting, Oswald visited Bruce in his office, subtly mocking him to avoid suspicions from Regina Zellerbach. As Bruce prepared to leave, he pick up an audient given to Bruce as a graduation present. Pretending to hand it back, Oswald dropped it on the floor as a way of aggravating Bruce. One of two actions can take place after this.
If Bruce is aggravated, he lashes out by punching Oswald, blackening his eye. He has the option of continuing the attack, blacking the other or calming down. As Bruce is escorted out of the building by security, Zellerbach checks that Oswald is fine.
If Bruce is able to refrain himself, Oswald gathers up the pieces of the present and gives them to Bruce, either to appear polite or at Bruce's "insistence". As Bruce departs, he listens to his final words and prepares for the IT department to set him up on the company's network.
The next day, Oswald appeared at the press conference held to announce Bruce's resignation as CEO. Greeting Bruce as he arrived, Renee covered how the event would proceed. If Bruce attacked him, Oswald will comment how he choose not to cover up his injury, as a way of showing how "brave" he was and to mock Bruce further. As the event began, Oswald commented on how the events that week had been coming true, as well as his intentions to take control of Wayne Enterprises. He also offered to reveal why Hill had killed his parent, which Bruce can either ignore or demand he told him. If the latter is chosen, Oswald reveals that they had been murdered because Bruce's mother had objected Thomas' use of Arkham and threaten to blow the whistle on the trio's operations.
As Bruce took his place, Oswald stood by as he spoke a self-indulgent speech that mocked the Wayne family. If Bruce tries to speak out of turn, Oswald will constantly tell him to "stick to the speech". Depending on actions taken by Bruce, he will either come up after Bruce has finish or call for security when he tries to warn Gotham about Oswald's ties to the Children of Arkham or defend his family's legacy. After finishing his admission speech, Oswald called Bruce up to congratulate. However, Bruce ran to the podium and brutally attacked him, having been injected with the Children of Arkham's drug by Vicki Vale. It's possible that Oswald was aware this would happen.
After Bruce was committed to Arkham by a now insane Mayor Dent, Oswald took full control of Wayne Enterprises, but let his connection to the Children of Arkham remain secret. Using his position, he connected a Black Box to the network, planning to use it in order to help release inmates in Arkham Asylum. He also used Bruce's money to arm the Children of Arkham's mercenaries, and he attempted to purchase an island with Falcone's assets and name it "Falcone Island".
Oswald also took control of the R&D department, permitting the creation and use of various prototype weapons and gadgets, most notably a eyepiece that could interface with the network and drones similar to those used by Batman. Oswald also discovered Batman's computer network was connected to Wayne Enterprises, along with all his gadgets and technology. Finding the connection point, he had the Black Box break in to take control of the Batcomputer and disrupt the vigilante's equipment, along with learn all the information about the vigilante.
After hearing reports that Batman was at the Vale residence, Oswald sent a drone to kill the vigilante. Discovering him, he opened fire at the vigilante and made his presence known. He mocked Batman and had the drone open fire at him, forcing Batman to use a number of his gadgets. Whilst Batman was left open when his Bat-Stunner malfunctioned, Penguin sent the drone in for the kill, but it was forced to target the Vale's foster son when he attacked the drone with a baseball bat. Using the distraction, Batman destroyed the drone before it could harm the child.
After deducing how Penguin had entered the network, Batman is forced to decide between stopping him from disrupting his tech or stop Harvey Dent from attacking Wayne Manor, the two situations happening simultaneously.
If Batman decides to stop Penguin and the Children of Arkham from hacking his tech, he heads to Wayne Tower to confront him. After witnessing several of the Children of Arkham mercenaries and the drones fail to stop Batman, Oswald lashes out at the other members in ferocity. As Batman arrives, Oswald mockingly greets him, commenting how much of an advantage he and the other members have. As he reveals part of their plans, Batman attempts to plan for how he will defeat Penguin and his men or lets him monologue. If the former is chosen, Oswald, using his eyepiece, interrupts his attempts to plan out and destroys the simulations for possible attacks.
Following this, Batman takes out his guards and attempts to attack Oswald. He avoids his punch and has one of the drones knock him into a secret elevator to the R&D department. Having gained the upper hand, Penguin boards the elevator and sends it careening to the bottom of the shaft, holding Batman inside it to ensure he doesn't escape. Arriving at R&D, he reveals the Black Box to the vigilante and places on a pair of experimental gloves, hoping that they will give him the edge in their fight.
Despite Batman's knowledge of various martial arts and combat techniques, Penguin is able to use his speed and the enhanced strength provided by the gloves to fight and wound the vigilante. The lack of working gadgets also places Batman at a disadvantage, as he is unable to disable any of the tech he uses. However, Batman is able to knock off his eyepiece and, after dodging a punch, remove one of the gloves. Using a nearby hammer, which reduces the speed of his attacks, Penguin is disarmed and his second glove is badly damaged. Now at an advantage, Batman breaks his right leg, defeating him.
As Batman tries to force him to talk, Penguin refuses, claiming his loyalty to Lady Arkham. Batman mocks him, calling him a pawn in a much larger game and either restrains or knocks Penguin out. The vigilante then destroys the Black Box, saving his tech and stopping Penguin's attack on the Batcomputer. Penguin is then strung up in one of the stairwells and handed over to the GCPD. As they arrive, Penguin asks them to [cut him down].
If Batman chooses to stop Harvey Dent and his forces, he leaves his tech vulnerable to Penguin's assault. Having neglected his tech and unable to stop Penguin's hack, Batman is forced to shut down the Batcomputer to ensure the Children of Arkham can't access his tech.
Five days later, the Children of Arkham are now utilising technology provided to them by Oswald and his connections in R&D. Such gadgets include Batsuit disrupters and improved versions of the drones he utilizes. Following the assassination of Commisioner Grogan, Penguin's drones manage to locate Batman near Crime Alley. Communicating via hologram, Penguin greets Batman and mocks him for being unable to save Grogan's life, commenting that he relies too much on his tech. Ordering the drone to kill the vigilante, it is destroyed by Batman, who uses it's connection to the Children of Arkham's communications to listen in on his plans. Penguin communicates with other Children of Arkham members to let them know that he is preparing an ambush for Batman at his family's old park. Unknown to him, Batman as has access and know what he's planning.
After setting up a trap for Batman, Penguin ordered the drones to find hostages and use them as bate for Batman. When Bruce Wayne turns up, Oswald is pleased, as the billionaire seems like the perfect hostage for the vigilante, though is suspicious about his appearance. Planning to murder Bruce once Batman arrives, Oswald converses with Bruce, unaware that Lt. Gordon of the GCPD is trying to slip past him.
Whilst distracted by Bruce, Gordon is able to slip past him and locate the Black Box, which has been relocated to the park by the statue of Theodore Cobblepot. Depending on choices made in the conversation, two possibilities play out. If Bruce is able to stall him for long enough, Gordon shoots the Black Box, destroying it and disabling all his tech. However, if Bruce is unsuccessful or Oswald becomes suspicious, he is able to locate Gordon and has his drones open fire at him. In the chaos, Bruce makes his attempt to destroy the Black Box, successfully doings so by smashing it with a rock.
Having had his tech destroyed, Oswald tries to kill Bruce in a moment of desperation. However, using a drone that is hurdling towards him, Bruce throws it at him, but he dodges the attack. However, the drone hits the statue of Theodore Cobblepot, severely damaging it. The statue falls apart, falling onto and crushing Oswald's legs. Cursing Bruce for his defeat, Oswald is taken away by paramedics, promising his childhood friend that Lady Arkham has not forgotten about him.
Since Bruce put himself in danger to help the GCPD defeat Oswald, his actions are seen as heroic and his reputation is restored in the public's eye. Oswald was presumably taken to Blackgate Prison, with charges of terrorism now added to his criminal record.
An article by the Gotham Gazette mentions that Penguin was serving a forty year sentence in Blackgate Penitentiary after his arrest, having plead guilty during his trial. During his time there, Oswald had become a model prisoner within the prison and was respectful to both staff and fellow prisoners. Batman also kept a display in the Batcave, containing his mask, "monocle" and experimental boxing gloves.
After the Joker's reign of terror as either a misguided vigilante or Gotham's most notorious villain, Batman's news feed would mention that Oswald was denied parole (which would've decreased his sentence to only twenty years) by the judge presiding over his case, after it was proven he was actively involved in Lady Arkham's plans and not an unwilling pawn as his lawyers claimed. The judge made a point to mention that, although Oswald's childhood was tragic and unfair, it did not give him the right to cause similar pain and misery to so many more throughout Gotham City, leaving many children orphans. As a result, the judge ruled that it would be an insult to the city's legal system to release Oswald any sooner than his sentence dictates.
Oswald would have to wait five more years for another parole hearing to determine if his sentence could be reduced. As the news article also displays an image of a clearly angered Oswald, it is greatly implied that his good behavior in Blackgate was simply a ruse to reduce his sentence.
Penguin seemed to be quite brash and arrogant, believing himself to have the edge during conflict and having full faith in his actions. He was easy to anger and quite brutal at times, as shown when he brutally attacked two muggers in his family's park for bringing shame to the area and when he was captured by the GCPD. To cover this, Oswald would put on a calm demeanor during meetings with others over his clearance, as he did with Regina Zellerbach and something he continued to use after being defeated by Batman.
As the Penguin, Oswald dressed in a smart suit and worn a bird-like gas mask. He would often wear these in criminal dealings, as a disguise and to prevent himself from getting identified by the police. Unlike most iterations of the character, he does not use a gadget/weapon filled umbrella, though does use a seemingly harmless one whilst setting up a trap for Batman in Copplepot Park. Oswald also does not wear the traditional top hat associated with other versions of himself.
During his tenure at Wayne Enterprises, Oswald used a Black Box to break into the system and gain access to all personal information. The device was capable of breaching the most fortified of firewalls, including the Batcomputer's. Oswald also used the Black Box to control the Wayne Enterprises drones he used, but would cease to work once destroyed. The Black Box is later destroyed either by Batman to save his equipment and technology or by James Gordon to neutralize an attack in Cobblepot Park.
After taking control of Wayne Enterprises, Oswald developed a special eye-piece that would allow him to control drones. Connected to a black box he had installed in the Wayne Enterprises system, he could remotely control them to attack enemies or perform other tasks he wished them to perform.
After taking control of Wayne Enterprises, Oswald was able to take control of the system and gain access to the R&D departments. One of these contraptions were drones, similar to those used by Batman in the field. Through the drones, Penguin could attack enemies without having to physically meet them. However, these drones were operated by a black box that he had installed in the Wayne Enterprises system and would be completely shut off if this was destroyed.
During an optional fight with Batman, Oswald adopts a pair of work-in-progress gloves, which he wears during the fight. They granted him increases strength, capable of breaching Batman's armor and injuring the vigilante. Oswald compared the feeling he had wearing them to that which Batman felt when he put on the Batsuit.
Oswald and Bruce were best friends during their childhoods. However, after Bruce's parents died, the two became distant. Whilst he appeared to have a fondness towards him, he actually held a grudge against Bruce, after he learnt that Thomas Wayne forcefully committed his mother. When Oswald took over the job as CEO of Wayne Enterprises following Bruce's "resignation", he acted disrespectfully toward him, even going as far as to break a present from Alfred, to taunt or anger him, and write a disrespectful speech for him to read out during the press conference announcing this event.
However, Oswald held a great respect for Batman, as he believed that the two were fighting for the same cause; Justice in Gotham. However, unlike the vigilante, Oswald had no problem killing and willing to get his hands dirty in crime to achieve his goals. Due to this, Batman would see him as a danger and try to bring him down too.
Oswald anonymously hired the Catwoman to steal information of Falcone's activities from the Mayor's office and to show Children of Arkham mercenaries the containments for the psychogenic chemical that drove his mother and others insane. However, after she failed to retrieve the data and to turn up at the rendezvous point, their working relationship fell apart, prompting Oswald to place a bounty on her head. If Selina had known he had hired her, she may have never agreed, as she was fully aware of "the Penguin's" activities in the UK.
Oswald approached Hamilton Hill and blackmailed him into retrieving data about the Wayne family and Falcone organization. Using this, whilst Hill thought he could handle Oswald or that he would keep his end of the bargain. However, unknown to Hill, Oswald planned attack it anyway and murder him. During the debate between him and Harvey Dent, Oswald, as the Penguin, attacked the event with the Children of Arkham and, after showing footage of Hill and Thomas Wayne committing Esther Cobblepot, murdered Hill. This had been out of revenge for what Hill had done to his mother.
The Children of Arkham
Oswald, like other descendants of people unlawfully committed to Arkham, was approached by Lady Arkham or other existing members of the group to join the Children of Arkham. He was given a high position and would lead members on attacks on the Skyline Club and Monarch Theatre. However, its possible Lady Arkham never revealed her identity to him, as he took her alter ego (Vicki Vale) hostage during the attack on the debate and blindly fired at her, after she attacked him in an escape attempt. Oswald may also have a close connection to Roland Desmond/Blockbuster, as he acted as his right hand man during these attacks. Oswald also acted as an informant for the group for Wayne Enterprises. He was even being hired as CEO, with the group hiding or possibly destroying his criminal past.
- Penguin differentiates from other versions in in a multitude of ways, as he lacks disfigurements and bird-like qualities, isn't overweight or naturally deformed, doesn't posses the gentleman-like persona and use trick umbrellas or birds. Similarly, his family was not abusive or tied to organized crime.
- Penguin's appearance is similar to his Gotham counterpart, due to the lack of deformities and slim appearance.
- During the confrontation in "City of Light", Penguin can be seen waiting for Bruce with an umbrella, a reference to his comic counterpart's trick ones.
- Regardless of when the player chooses to deal with Penguin, his leg will be injured during their confrontation, although the circumstances will be different. This could possibly lead to him developing a "waddle", similar to other versions of the character.
- Though seen in the episodes, Penguin can be seen smoking cigarettes in concept art and a cigar on "New World Order" selection image.
- If the player chooses to stop Two-Face and confronts Oswald in Cobblepot Park, it is implied that he might have deduced or at least suspect that Bruce is Batman.
- Penguin serves as the main antagonist of "Children of Arkham", though serves as a secondary antagonist throughout the first season.
- This version of the Penguin possibly later insprired the character Ethan Cobblepot, who first appeared in the fifth volume of Batgirl