Gotham star Robin Lord Taylor calls critics of gay plot line ‘homophobic’
Robin Lord Taylor, who plays the Penguin in the hit TV show Gotham, has condemned critics of his character’s gay storyline, calling them “homophobic.”
In season three of the show, the Penguin declares his love for fellow villain the Riddler, in a series of episodes which also sees the Riddler risk his life to save his beloved.
Some have cast aspersions on the change in his backstory, but Taylor’s stance was very clear on the issue when talking to film site Collider.
“Penguin was raised by penguins, and that was apparently fine, and you know Jack Nicholson, the Joker killing Batman’s parents,” he said.
“I haven’t really seen a lot of people shitting their pants about that,” he observed.
“But, you know, when we introduce a queer storyline,” Taylor said, going on to imitate fans who are critical of the decision.
“‘Eh, we love you and we love the show, but this really bothers me because you’re really messing with the character’s origins.’
“And I’m like: ‘You’re homophobic, that’s homophobic. That’s it, right there.’”
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The actor, who said growing up overweight and gay in small-town Iowa in the 80s and 90s prepared him for the role, also praised Gotham for creating the plotline.
He calling the move “brave,” especially as the Penguin’s story has “been around for a very long time”.
And Taylor said that his “favourite thing” was finding interesting comic book storylines for characters through the years.
“That’s what I love because it reassures me that what we’re doing, even though we get a lot of people coming at us about it, this canon shit, this is to be reinterpreted and reimagined,” he said.
“How stale would it be if we were just telling, you know, The Dark Knight Rises in another two years, every five years?”
In that vein, he saw nothing wrong with changing characters’ histories, considering that writers have been doing it for a long time.
Gotham also introduced Latina lesbian detective Renee Montoya back in season one.