The Penguin seems like a brilliant new dimension for the ailing superhero genre. After Matt Reeves' excellent The Batman, the streaming spinoff will depict breakout character Oz Cobblepot's new rise to power in Gotham's underworld. It's a sequel that can explore new dimensions before the sequel drops in 2025. One of its most fascinating character decisions will see Alberto Falcone join the cast, implying a classic comic book narrative as a potential future subject.

The Batman spawned a side-universe unrelated to the larger DCU. As James Gunn shakes up the previous DCEU and casts new versions of DC's beloved heroes, Matt Reeves' alternate dimension stands firm. The grim and gritty Gotham City he imagined could house wildly varied narratives. While it can get a bit confusing with two or three versions of every hero and villain running around, this variety can keep the franchises fresh.

Who is Alberto Falcone?



Alberto Falcone



Created By

Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale

First Appearance Date

October 1996

Alberto Falcone is the youngest son of Gotham City crime boss Carmine Falcone. Don Carmine "The Roman" Falcone became one of the most threatening underworld figures in Gotham. Introduced in Batman: Year One, Carmine is a naked expy of The Godfather's Don Vito Corleone. Like Marlon Brando's character, Carmine has three children patterned after the Corleone kids. His eldest son, Mario, works tirelessly to legitimize the family, like Michael Corleone. His daughter, Sofia, boasts a short fuse like Sonny Corleone. Finally, Alberto occupies Fredo's tragic position in the family. Alberto carries Fredo's inadequacy and rough relationship with his father. Unlike Vito, Carmine Falcone loved Alberto deeply. His actions, motivated partially by his inability to communicate, led Alberto down the wrong path.

Alberto was an intelligent young man who attended Harvard and Oxford on full-ride scholarships. Though Alberto had an excellent path toward a decent life, he wanted nothing more than to follow in Carmine's footsteps. Carmine favored his elder children, providing them with the means to continue his criminal empire. Alberto felt cheated out of his birthright, even as his father did everything he could to give Alberto better options. Carmine couldn't express his genuine desire for his son, leading to an inferiority complex and several unhinged responses. Alberto internalized his perceived inadequacy and weaponized it. He became a serial killer, targeting mob members on special occasions. He became the Holiday Killer.

In Batman: The Long Halloween, Alberto guns down several Falcone family members, including his cousin. He turns his attention to Salvatore Maroni's men, igniting a gang war between the two. Falcone hires costumed supervillains to secure his grip on power, shifting the balance in Gotham and granting "freaks" a chance at taking control. Alberto fakes his death before launching his final assault, assassinating Sal Maroni in court. Batman beats him savagely as Jim Gordon arrests him. Alberto confesses to the Holiday murders, claiming his successes should make him a more prominent underworld figure than his dad. He pleads insanity, dodging the death penalty and landing in Arkham Asylum. In Batman: Dark Victory, The Scarecrow and Calendar Man try to manipulate Alfredo into killing his sister. He saves Sofia from the Joker and overcomes their brainwashing. Sofia saves Alberto from Calendar Man, breaking the villain's jaw and leaving him for Batman. When Alberto expresses pain, he disgusts Sofia, who holds him to Carmine's unfair standards. Sofia smothers him to death, ending his story by misunderstanding her father's lesson as he did.

Where else does Alberto Falcone appear?

Alberto is most famous in the comics, but he also appears in some other notable media. Here's a short list of his other appearances:

  • Batman: The Long Halloween: The animated adaptation of the comic that introduced Holiday changes Alberto's character considerably. Though he's very different, this is his biggest on-screen spotlight.
  • Batman: Arkham Origins: The Penguin captures and tortures Alberto to force his father out of the weapons business. Batman saves the young man, learning of his psychiatric difficulties. Alberto is unrelated to the holiday-themed murders throughout the game, which are attributed to Calendar Man.
  • The Flash: The DCEU Flash movie bizarrely dubs a random terrorist, Al Falcone. The leader of the gang that robs the hospital in the film's opening is Al Falcone. The character bears no significant similarities to his comic counterpart, but it's his live-action debut.

Who plays Alberto Falcone in The Penguin?


Michael Zegen will play Alberto Falcone in The Penguin. Zegen previously portrayed a notorious mobster in Boardwalk Empire, where he took on the role of historical celebrity gangster Ben Siegel. He's also known for roles in Rescue Me, The Walking Dead, and movies like The Stand In. Zegen won two SAG Awards for his performance as Joel Maisel in The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. His appearance as Alberto Falcone could extend into future Batman outings.

The Penguin could adapt countless grim Batman comics. As the series delves deeper into Gotham's criminal underworld, the franchise could explore the classic stories fans love. The Long Halloween seems like an obvious candidate for a future sequel. Introducing Alberto Falcone could lead to an adaptation, but it could just as easily suggest a serial killer plotline throughout the miniseries. Al Falcone is a fascinating figure who will add a lot to the upcoming series.