The second episode of Gotham: Selina Kyle started with street kids being approached by a kindly couple, played by Lili Taylor and Frank Whaley, who are handing out food and sweets in the name of the major. As each child goes to collect, the woman sticks them in the back of the neck with an oversized hat pin and they collapse immediately except for one boy who runs and Selina Kyle, who does not go near the man and woman. Across town, Bruce Wayne is caught by Alfred burning his hand on a candle. The butler gets angry and then hugs the boy telling him that everything will be alright.
Back in the alley, as the children collapse in the street, a homeless old man gets up to stop the couple and the man shoots him dead. The next day Detective Jim Gordon and his partner Harvey Bullock, investigate the killing and speak to the boy who survived the kidnap attempt. Oswald Cobblepot is killing his way back to Gotham, beginning with the one of the two young men who gave him a lift.
Fish Mooney gets a visit from Falcone, who reminds her that he is in charge. The mobster beats her lover to a pulp and afterward she throughs everyone out of her club. Mooney says that one day she will kill Carmen with her bare “hands and teeth,” she also wishes that Cobblepot was still alive as she did not hurt him enough.
Bullock and Gordon go back to see Mooney and ask if she knows that a man and woman are taking kids on her turf. Mooney says there are rumors of an overseas buyer who wants young and healthy kids regardless of what they look like. Jim Gordon is upset that the woman thinks he killed Cobblepot. His fiance gets the story about the kidnapped children in the paper and in Gotham the whole thing is a mystery since the police have not spoken to the only other witness Selina Kyle.
After the story is printed, not only is the chief of police upset but so is the man who partnered up with the kidnapping couple, Mr. Quillan, who insists he needs more money. During the discussion, it turns out the the client who wants the kids is “The Dollmaker.” Bullock and Gordon appear at the business where the kids are being held. While questioning the shop owner the couple engage the cops in a shootout and escape. Quillan tells his janitor to get rid of the kids and “hose the place down.” Gordon shoots the man before he can kill any of the children.
The Mayor commends the two detectives for saving the youngsters and he promises to look after them. The leader then explains that social services have collected all the street kids and they to be farmed out to foster homes outside of the city. Jim Gordon tells the Mayor what he thinks of the new plan to lock up the children without a trial.
Alfred Pennyworth stops by the police station to see Detective Gordon and invites him around to see Bruce Wayne. Selina and the children
“rescued” by the Mayor are handed over to the couple who were kidnapping them off the street. Mayor James finds out that the kids were taken and he is apoplectic. The two detectives question Quillan who breaks, after being beaten by Bullock with a telephone book.
The children are loaded into a shipping container. “Cat” escapes while the police work out what the symbol on the truck means. The woman hunts down Selina and just as she’s about shoot the girl, Jim Gordon saves her. The detective visits with Bruce Wayne and Alfred and the youngster tells Gordon that his guardian is a worry wart.
Selina Kyle asks to speak to Gordon and Cobblepot kidnapped one of the lads in the SUV and when he asks for a ransom, the young man’s parents refuse to pay up. Kyle offers to give up who killed the Waynes in order to stay in Gotham. The girl tells the detective that she saw who did it, “as plain as day.” The show is, so far, quite good if not overly original. Lili Palmer’s character, best described as an “oh heck” replication of the Mayor in Buffy the Vampire Slayer was mildly annoying as was the decision do a take off of The Wild Bunch scene where Pike shoots the blind man. Still, the show is darkly entertaining and Donal Logue as the surprisingly comic Detective Bullock is a treat. Gotham airs Mondays on FOX.
By Michael Smith