|“||Now please welcome, Austin and Ally!||”|
— Penny, in Chapters & Choices
|Date of Birth||
1970 (most likely)
Penny Dawson is the mother of Ally Dawson. She first appeared in Backups & Breakups. It is revealed that Penny and Lester are separated. She was on a research trip in Africa, but returns in Chapters & Choices. She has a couple of attributes that she passes down to her daughter, like no touching her book, the song Ally sung earlier in the episode about Trish and Trent, and loving love. Penny also has a pet monkey named Ricky and a gorilla named Lula which gave birth and named her twins after Trish and Ally. She wrote about a fictional gorilla named Chester. She was also mentioned in the Season 3 episode, Records & Wrecking Balls as well as Comebacks & Crystal Balls.
Penny is portrayed by Julia Campbell.
- Comebacks & Crystal Balls (Mentioned only)
In this episode, we see Penny for the first time. Ally is video chatting with her mother, and it is revealed that Penny is in Africa on a research trip. She and Ally are shown to have many similar characteristics. Ally asks Penny for advice on how to tell Trish that Trent is cheating on her, and Penny urges Ally to let Trish know. She also lets Ally know that she named two baby gorillas after her and Trish.
In this episode, Penny finally comes home from Africa. She reveals that she and Lester are separated. Even though they are separated she still wants Lester to be happy. It's because of her book release party that Ally performs with Austin. When Ally doesnt show for the concert at the book release she tries her best to make Ally comfortable and perform with Austin.
In this episode, she and Lester Dawson are proud of Ally for conquering her stage fright and throw a party for her. She and Trish talk to Ally about the kiss and Ally starting her own career, now that she no longer has stage fright.
Penny has written a book named "The Wild Things: What We Can Learn From Animals". She had gone to Africa on research about Animals behaviour, suspecting animals like Gorilla's have qualities similar to humans like us. She first released the book at the Jungle Cafe, where Austin and Ally also performed, and shared their first kiss. Penny and Lester also (after the perfomances) had signed the books. Penny did since it is her book, and Lester because everyone thinks the fictional Gorilla, "Chester", who is known as lazy, and cheap, is similar and inspired by Lester. Lester was mad at this at first, but as soon as he found out he could sign the book too, he took the opportunity.
Ally is Penny's only daughter. They didn't really interact much up to the airing of Chapters & Choices- although they did video-chat in Backups & Breakups. They have a lot in common (for example they both don't like it when someone touches their book), and Ally asked for her mother's advice in both episodes that Penny has been in. Penny named a gorilla baby after her. Penny was excited when she heard that Ally had her first kiss with Austin
Lester was the husband to Penny, but they divorced prior to the show. Penny seems to not harbor any grudges against Lester by the events of Chapters & Choices, but it's made somewhat clear that, when writing her book, she held grudges against Lester- she made a chapter about him. He was described in the book under the alias of 'Chester the Gorilla' as cheap and stingy.
Penny has heard a lot about Austin from Ally, but not much else is known about these two's relationship but she did eventually find out they like each other. Penny probably found out they like each other when she said the way Austin looks and smiles at Ally is "classic love behaviour". Austin is Penny's son-in-law due to him being Ally's husband.
Daughter's Best Friend
Penny has known Trish for a long time- this is first made clear when she names one of the gorilla babies after her. She knows that Trish is tough and sleeps a lot. Trish was inspired by Penny's book to quit her job earlier than intended.
Daughter's Best Friend
The two haven't really interacted much, but Dez did get inspired by her book to run a marathon- he later got inspired to not do the marathon and got some food. Penny only knows his name- Ally didn't tell her much about him.
- She was in a band called "Funky Bubble" with her ex-husband Lester Dawson.