The world thinks I am dead, the richest spoils in Gotham await me, and you want to cut yourself a slice of the action? -- You must learn, my ghoulish friend, the Penguin flies ever alone!!
~ The Penguin.
I have never received the recognition my criminal genius deserves. The Joker and the others-- they're all second rate charlatans compared to me... and yet, because my appearance strikes some as comical-- I have always been portrayed in the media as an insignificant bumbler constantly thwarted by the Batman. But I ask you-- Have any of the others ever fared any better against the Batman? And consider this-- In virtually every confrontation, I have successfully completed at least two or three brilliant crimes before Batman's single victory.
~ The Penguin.
The Penguin is one of the major villains from DC Comics, most notably appearing as one of Batman's oldest and most infamous foes.
The Penguin, like most of Batman's foes, relies heavily on gadgets, since he does not have any superpowers. His real name is Oswald Chesterfield Cobblepot. He feels the need to prove himself, because of his somewhat eccentric appearance. Although the Penguin doesn't seem to have any real powers, he appears to be somewhat of a knowledgeable scientist, as his umbrella doubles as a small helicopter device that he uses to fly the skies of Gotham and a pistol concealed in his umbrella. He also uses his umbrella to take down Batman. He owns a nightclub called the Iceberg Lounge which often provides cover for criminals, which Batman can actually tolerate provided he gets information on the criminal underworld. Unlike most of Batman's foes, he is not insane and is in complete control of his actions, giving him a unique relationship with the caped crusader due to how he sometimes works against his fellow Rouges as long as Batman allows him to run his Club.
Oswald Chesterfield Cobblepot was a target of bullying in his youth, due to his short stature, weight, way of walking, and beak-like nose. According to several sources, his father died of bronchial pneumonia he contracted by walking in the rain without an umbrella, leading to his overprotective mother insisting he carry one on his person at all times. Cobbelpot's parents owned a bird shop, where he would spend his free time interacting with the birds, considering them his only friends and lavishing them with attention. His relationship with birds lead him to studying ornithology during his college years, only to discover he was more knowledgable on birds than his professors.
There are differing accounts on what led to Cobblepot's turn to a life of crime. One source claims that he became a criminal after the bird shop and all of it's birds were repossesed after the death of his mother to pay off her debts. Another source claims he was driven to crime after being rejected by his high-society family. In keeping with his aristocratic origins, Cobbelpot pursued his criminal career wearing a monacle, top hat, and tuxedo (especially those of the white tie-and-tails design). He took on the mantle of "The Penguin" and would eventually become one of Gotham City's most powerful crime lords, as well as one of the most enduring members of Batman's Rogues Gallery.
The Penguin doesn't appear in the video game Batman: Arkham Asylum, but two of the Riddler's riddles revolves around him. He does have an entry in the character bios. His profile states:
The Penguin, one of Batman's oldest foes, is an eccentric criminal mastermind, known as much for his love of ornithology and trick umbrellas as for his shady business dealings. Gotham's popular Iceberg Lounge serves as Cobblepot's front for a number of illegal financial activities that fund much of the city's underworld. Despite his short stature, the Penguin is a wily foe whose umbrellas conceal a variety of deadly weapons and gadgets.
Batman: Arkham City
The Penguin is a major antagonist in Batman: Arkham City. At the beginning of the game, The Penguin was waiting for Bruce Wayne, to teach him a lesson for ruining his career. After Wayne managed to escape from Penguin after beating his men and breaking his arm, Penguin did quite a handful of activities.
He managed to capture Mr. Freeze, kidnap Comissioner Gordon's special force, managed to find Solomon Grundy, and somehow aquire TITAN. In the middle of the game, Batman had to find Mr. Freeze, because the Joker poisoned Batman with his own blood.
But the Penguin captured Freeze and held him in the museum, so Batman had to rescue Freeze. Penguin also was using Freeze's freeze gun. After Freeze was rescued, Batman created a device that could jam Freeze's weapons. He uses on the freeze gun which left Penguin vunerable. To prevent himself from being defeated by Batman, Penguin tossed Batman into the hands of Solomon Grundy. After Grundy was defeated, Penguin tried to defeat Batman with a Rocket Launcher, but ended up being defeated by Batman. In the video game, Penguin's personality is different. He's less sophisticated and more bloodthirsty.
Injustice Gods Among Us
Penguin makes a cameo in a Star Labs Mission where he shoot the fighter closest to him.
Oswald Cobblepot appears in the Telltale video game series for Batman. This version is tall, thin and handsome (unlike his comic book counterpart) and is the same age as Bruce Wayne, with the pair of them being childhood friends.
Penguin appears in Batman: Assault on Arkham, voiced again by Nolan North. He is hired by Amanda Waller to give the Suicide Squad arms, equipment, and shelter in his Iceberg Lounge for the night prior to their mission to infiltrate Arkham Asylum and take out the Riddler. He appears to have worked with Deadshot before and respects him as the city's best assassin, as he chooses to only work with the best, and he holds a grudge against the Joker and Harley Quinn for their having sunk a truck of his cigarettes "just for a laugh."
Batman: Bad Blood
The Penguin briefly appears at the end of the film Batman: Bad Blood in a non-speaking role. Penguin is seen in a car escaping from the cops in a high-speed chase. The Bat Family flies down to pursue him.
DC Extended Universe
The Penguin is somewhat mentioned in the DC Extended Universe as he is one of Batman's most formidable foes whose exploding gadgets would once become Batman's biggest concern. Penguin also owns a trendy, stylish club called the Iceberg Lounge.
The Penguin was one of the rogues who worked with Sweet Tooth to destroy Batman and put nuclear Warheads into the city's water supply. At first, he didn't like the homicidal candy-themed criminal when he interrupted the Rogues Councils' meeting in destroying the Bat, but after Sweet Tooth killed Chilly Willy with his lollipop to express his villainy, he said, "Ladies and gentlemen, put your flippers together for the NEW king of crime in Gotham." Which resulted in him having some humility.
Powers and Abilities
Penguin is a brilliant planner and can make almost every situation fall in his favor, to the point of even his archenemy admitting the clever bird’s intelligence. Cobblepot is a great organizational leader and has many underworld connections making him a force to be reckoned with.
Like Catwoman with cats, Penguin has been known to have an almost psychic connection with birds, and yet again, very much like Catwoman, they both use their favored animals in assisting their various burglaries and robberies. Despite not being the most intimidating fighter appearance-wise, Oswald is actually an expert in Judo and has been trained in bare-knuckle boxing. While he has been depicted as being able to go toe-to-toe with Batman, like the Joker, some have depicted him as being able to be taken down with a good solid punch, but it’s all up to the writer.
Being one of Batman’s most dangerous foes and one of his most persistent ones, Penguin has been known to be able to make all sides go against each other, and the only winner in the end is Cobblepot. The foul-feathered fowl is a great manipulator in that regard, and has come out the winner in many situations. In his early years, he was known to be able to escape Batman multiple times. This, along with his connections, make him one of Batman's deadliest foes.
He was ranked 51st on IGN's "Top 100 Comic Book Villains of All Time".