Is The Penguin Really The Joker? Here's What Gotham's Robin Lord Taylor Says

Fox’s Gotham has so far been pretty blatant about the characters its villains are playing. There’s the Riddler, who tells riddles in his daily life, and then there’s Robin Lord Taylor’s Oswald Cobblepot, a rising criminal who is accused of walking like “a penguin” more than once during the first season of the hit series. Despite the completely straightforward nature of the network drama, fans have come up with a wild theory that Cobblepot might actually be the Joker, not the Penguin. This week Taylor has finally spoken out to tell us what he thinks about this theory.

First of all, Robin Lord Taylor is well aware of the fan theory. He reads the front page of the internet like everyone else. Unfortunately, he tells MTV that the theory is probably a little too over the top, even if he’s not officially on the writing staff for the show.

“I find it incredibly unlikely, but at the same time, I have no idea what could happen.”

So, there you have it. Robin Lord Taylor’s character was not created as a huge diversion to later turn into the Joker. At least, not to his knowledge. He does say, however, that he was impressed by the attention to detail that some fans of Gotham have been able to bring to their viewings of the series.

“I read it, and I was like, ‘Huh,’ I was like, ‘Nah.’ But then I was like, you know, so impressed at the detail that this person went into… I was just amazed at the amount of attention that people are paying to the show. I mean, he was looking at the colors of my vest and my suit, and extrapolating off of that.”

Whether or not Robin Lord Taylor is playing the Joker or the Penguin, I think we can all agree that Oswald Cobblepot has been one of the most intriguing additions to TV this season. While Donal Logue got a lot of the early credit for his portrayal of Detective Harvey Bullock, over the course of the drama’s first 11 episodes, Cobblepot has changed from a seemingly weak lackey to a man who is moving around his own chess pieces on the board, circling crime bosses Fish Mooney, Sal Maroni and Carmine Falcone like a hawk. He is just as capable at getting his hands dirty and killing individuals (in clever ways) as he is at verbally manipulating those around them, and Taylor’s portrayal of the calculated villain is too fabulous.

So, while he may not be the Joker, he’s still worth watching. You can catch new episodes of Fox’s Gotham on Monday nights at 9 p.m. ET. Find out when the rest of your favorite shows return with our midseason TV schedule.

Jessica Rawden
Managing Editor

Reality TV fan with a pinch of Disney fairy dust thrown in. Theme park junkie. If you’ve created a rom-com I’ve probably watched it.