Overview: In The Penguin #4, Oswald Cobblepot heads to Las Vegas to meet with his …. Ex-wife???
Title: The Penguin #4
Writer: Tom King
Artist: Rafael De Latorre
Colors: Marcelo Maiolo
Letterer: Clayton Cowles
Main Cover: Carmine Di Giandomenico
Variant Covers: Christian Ward & Arist Deyn
Release Date: November 29, 2023
This comic book review contains spoilers
We open with The Penguin (Oswald Cobblepot) nervously flying into Las Vegas, and the flight attendant thinks he is just a nervous flyer. In actuality, Oswald is meeting his ex-wife (Lisa St. Claire) who runs a hotel and casino in Las Vegas. Oswald has his Force of July team in ready positions as he plans his meeting with Lisa. Lisa knows that he is planning to kill her, but she still wants him to have a nice time as she rolls out the red carpet for him.
Penguin and Lisa meet and have their dinner. Lisa is a tall, beautiful blonde (go Oswald). Penguin and the Help have it all planned out. Penguin and Lisa will chat, but when Penguin laughs, Help will slit Lisa’s throat, members of the Force will take out security, all while other members get Oswald and Help out via helicopter.
Lisa reveals that she helped Oswald’s children rise to take his place in Gotham City, and it is then Oswald laughs; the plan is on. However, Help is stopped by Lisa’s bodyguard and smashed through a table. The rest of Penguin’s team is taken as the bodyguard narrates they were tipped off and knew the whole plan, including bribing Victory to betray the team. Lisa then shoots Oswald and leaves him bloody.
Sometime later, Penguin has recovered and is talking with Lisa. He knows that she knew about his plan and put it together that he is taking back Gotham City. She figures that now that he has soldiers and henchmen, he needs a consigliere. He tells her that all that she has accomplished means nothing because ruling Gotham is like nothing else. He then gets on a knee and proposes- “Gotham. City.” Lisa is ready for the blood and the fun.
As always with Tom King, it’s a slow burn, and the plot involves a plan within a plan. I thought it would’ve been cooler to leave The Penguin #4 on a cliffhanger of Penguin and Help laying bloody on the floor, but there wasn’t much tension as King and artist Rafael De Latorre resolved that double-cross a page later. Naturally, Penguin and Lisa are now teaming up, but having that cliffhanger ending would have offered a bit more tension and excitement between issues.
The art is solid as always. I feel like I keep writing about how there is not much action, so I am waiting to see Rafael De Latorre draw some cool action and fight scenes.
I hope we get more backstory on the relationship between Oswald and Lisa. How did they meet? Were their parents friends when they were kids because they both come from money? Or is Cobblepot so charming he can score any beautiful woman?
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.