“Make Gotham great again.”
An approving crowd cheered for Gotham star Robin Lord Taylor as he remixed The Donald’s campaign slogan at the show’s New York Comic Con panel. Taylor’s Penguin is running for mayor, and his candidacy, entailing a villain running for office, feels like a reflection of the real world.
“At this rate, Penguin looks pretty freaking good,” Taylor joked. “Wouldn’t you say?
“I think the Gotham writers are writing our actual reality right now, and that’s probably the scariest thing you could possibly imagine.”
Penguin’s mayoral run is shaping up to be a major plotline in the show’s third season. From the little we’ve seen so far, Penguin is capitalizing on the public’s emotional distress to turn it against his more experienced opponent.
“He tries to present himself as he thinks a candidate should look,” Taylor said. “There is a certain homage to a certain candidate who is out there which is entirely intentional.”
Taylor then pointed out that the show’s flirtation with commentary is nothing new for comics. From the early days of Batman and Superman pushing back against fears over the rise of organized crime to Marvel’s more recent metaphoric forays into intolerance and social justice, Gotham is just a new voice in the mix.
“Our show is like any comic book in that the stories are written to reflect the times in which we live,” Taylor said. “Comic books are written with that idea in mind, the social climate. So our show is reflecting that.”
The panel moved on to other topics at that point, but Trump came up again after actress Erin Richards, who arrived late and missed Taylor’s earlier Trump talk, laid into the GOP candidate on her own.
“Did everybody hear what he said on Friday about women?” she asked. “It’s embarrassing.”
Taylor then mulled over what would happen if Penguin found himself speaking privately while a hot mic a la Trump.
Taylor laughed. “If Penguin was caught on a hot mic, he wouldn’t say anything nearly as vulgar or disgusting.”
Richards nodded her head in agreement, adding, “Nothing could be as bad as what that man has said.”
She then launched into a full-on anti-Trump stump speech for Hillary.
“Please, please, please vote Hillary. Please. Please vote Hillary. For the world. Please. For me. I can’t vote. I wish I could vote. I can’t vote. Britain is behind you if you vote Hillary. Though I don’t know what we’re doing at the moment, I apologize for Brexit.”
Trump came up one final time, late in the panel, when a fan asked the Gotham stars what they would write if they had control of the GOP candidate’s Twitter feed.
For Taylor, it was: “I’m sorry for making a mockery of the United States. I’m sorry for being embarrassing. I’m sorry. I’m ashamed. That’s what I would say.”
And for Richards: “I am removing myself from the presidential race. And from all races. I’m removing myself from the Earth.”