In Justice League, when Bruce and Alfred were discussing over finding metahumans, they have the following conversation.

Alfred: Victor Stone. Genius IQ, football scholarship to GCU, and deceased.

Bruce: Figures. Fairy tales and ghost stories.

Alfred: One misses the days when one's biggest concerns were exploding wind-up penguins.

In this last line, which event or thing is Alfred referring to?

  • 6
    i mean.... the "penguin" bit didn't give it away?
    – KutuluMike
    Commented Apr 14, 2018 at 16:14
  • 1
    I didn't read the comics and watch old Batman movies, so I wouldn't have guessed it. I only watched Nolan's TDK trilogy and DCEU movies. I only know villains shown in those movies.
    – A J
    Commented Apr 14, 2018 at 16:25

2 Answers 2


That was a reference to famous Batman villain Penguin. He is prominent character in many Batman related adaptations and most relatable I can think of is Batman Returns where the main villain Penguin used army of penguins to bomb the city.

  • While you're right that it's clearly a reference to the Penguin, the army of penguins from Batman Returns were not wind-up.
    – phantom42
    Commented Apr 14, 2018 at 15:43
  • @phantom42 but they were irritating and were there to explode the city
    – Ankit Sharma
    Commented Apr 14, 2018 at 15:44
  • 7
    I'd agree that it doesn't necessarily have to be a reference to that specific incarnation of the Penguin rather than just a general one about Batman's ealier days. The wind-up penguin thing is a rather classic Penguin theme, I'd say.
    – Napoleon Wilson
    Commented Apr 14, 2018 at 16:12
  • 1
    This answer is disputed (elsewhere). Commented Apr 14, 2018 at 21:28
  • I edited it a bit
    – Ankit Sharma
    Commented Apr 15, 2018 at 12:38

LEGO Batman: The Videogame has Penguin using seemingly mechanical penguin bombs. Demonstrated starting around 5:32 in this video. (This is a player-controlled Penguin deploying the penguins.)

The 1988 Amiga game, Batman: The Caped Crusader had wind-up penguins. I recall them having flip-top heads hiding knee-high guns, but I do not recall them exploding.

  • Oh! LEGO Batman Movie, the best batman movie I've ever watched. Pure awesomeness. Commented Apr 15, 2018 at 19:20
  • @ibrahimmahrir : There may be penguin bombs in the movie -- I haven't checked -- but I am referencing the console video game by Traveller's Tales, published by Warner Bros. Interactive in 2008. Commented Apr 15, 2018 at 20:06
  • Actually, what makes Lego Batman Movie so cool is that it mentions all the villains (penguin and tons of others, including the exploding wind-up penguins) and references all the batman incarnations since the 60s. (It even mentions Iron Man hahaha). That movie is a piece of art. Commented Apr 15, 2018 at 20:13

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