Overview: In The Penguin #2, Oswald Cobblepot aims to take back his claim to Gotham City in this semi-sequel to Batman: Killing Time.
Title: The Penguin #2
Writer: Tom King
Artist: Rafael De Latorre
Colors: Marcelo Maiolo
Main Cover: David Marquez
Variant Covers: Patrick Robertson, Diego Rodriguez, Otto Schmidt
Release Date: September 26, 2023
The Penguin #2 opens with Oswald Cobblepot (Penguin) visiting the Help. We first met the Help in Killing Time by Tom King, and he can be described as a ninja butler who we have seen go toe-to-toe with Batman (Bruce Wayne). Help is retired and now lives a peaceful life. Oswald asks him to join forces as Oswald tries to take back his place in Gotham City. The Help laughs at Penguin and invites to at least stay in his mansion, as he feels bad that the former crime kingpin came out all this way only to be denied.
The next day, the two go shooting. Help mentions how, many years ago, he was hired by the Queens to train their young son how to shoot. The son was brash and arrogant, and Help said how perhaps he should use a bow and arrow. Penguin tries to shoot Help as a way to motivate him to assist, but this leads to Help breaking Penguin’s nose.
The Help has servants of his own. He has 28 people working for him, and after his doctor fixes Osawald’s nose, Penguin kills the doctor. Oswald prepares to leave, and they share some wine. Help refuses one more time to help Penguin. Penguin then shoots Help’s butler, and Help realizes that he’s been poisoned. He wakes up to see that Penguin has killed all his servants and then Penguin beats him while telling him that he deserves no help and that “He is the help!!!”
The issue ends with the Help opening the door to Oswald’s limo as they are about to head to Gotham to take back the Penguin’s spot in the food chain.
The Help is an interesting character. He mentions that he is 92 years-old, and he is clearly in great shape for his age. He mentions “the pits,” which I assume means Lazarus Pits. The Help mentions training Oliver Queen (Green Arrow) when he was young and was planning on training with Lady Shiva before Oswald came around. The Help clearly has ties to the DC Universe outside of Batman’s world, and I hope we continue to find out more about his past. It’s interesting and intriguing, and obviously there’s already an enmeshed, deeper lore at play.
Now that Penguin has his Help, I assume we will get more action in the next few issues, something to liven up the pacing and let the artists play with this thriller-type storyline. In a similar fashion, now that Penguin is heading back to Gotham City, I assume a collision course with Batman is coming. We saw a tease of this in the opening of The Penguin #1. Adding fuel to the fire, I suspect that we will get a rematch between Batman and the Help as well.
Editor’s Note: DC Comics provided TBU with an advanced copy of this comic for review purposes. You can find this comic and help support TBU in the process by purchasing this issue digitally on Comixology through Amazon or a physical copy of the title through Things From Another World.