Gotham is set to debut this autumn, but in the meantime they are piling as many character actors into they can into the series. Today it’s been announced that two more roles have been cast: Carol Kane, probably best known to our audience for Annie Hall and The Princess Bride, is the Penguin’s mother; Kyle Massey, a Disney Channel regular (most notably That’s So Raven) and former Dancing With The Stars contestant, will also have a recurring role.
Kane will play Gertrud Kapelput, “a proud and faded beauty with delusions of grandeur” according to reports from TVLine. If you’re anything like me, that last name immediately raised some giant Ivy-Pepper-sized red flags, but relax: Robin Lord Taylor’s character is still called “Oswald Cobblepot” just like in the comics, which means that they might be playing with some themes of immigration, identity, and possibly (fingers crossed) how ethnicity and class might intersect. That’s exactly what I want from a Penguin origin, to be perfectly honest. Damn it, Gotham, I was so ready to dismiss you again and you pulled me right back in!
Massey, on the other hand, appears to be playing a new character — “Mackey,” a homeless kid with a family history of abuse who lives on the streets of Gotham. Just as long as he doesn’t, like, befriend Bruce Wayne and show him all about street smarts only to die tragically and further fuel the kid’s sense of vengeance. Although I guess it’s better than Selina Kyle showing him the streets. That would be way too tidy of a storyline.