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Recap / Gotham S1 E2 "Selina Kyle"

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Directed by Danny Cannon

Written by Bruno Heller

Someone has been snatching homeless children off the streets, and Gordon and Bullock have the case. While the Gotham City PD want to hush it up, Barbara Keane takes it out of their hands. Selina Kyle, meanwhile, gets caught up in the case as she finds herself amongst the street kids targeted. While Gordon and company might be able to stop the kidnappers, they might run into an even worse situation.



  • Anger Born of Worry: When Alfred discovers Bruce intentionally hurting himself, as Bruce is trying to make himself pain-tolerant, he angrily calls him a "stupid, little boy," but then brings him in for a Healing Hug.
  • Asshole Victim: The Dollmaker's goons and the men who held the children for him are this so very much. Even Jim Gordon thinks so.
  • The Baroness: The Dollmaker's female henchwoman evokes the Rosa Klebb version, being very very unusual looking in the 21st century.
  • Cassandra Truth: Penguin tells a woman that he has her son and wants $10,000. She thinks it's just another of her son's pranks and refuses. So Penguin kills the kid.
  • Berserk Button: The Penguin seems to have developed one in being called Penguin.
  • Black-and-Gray Morality: Jim Gordon wants to help the kids and does so. However, the situation with the state means the street kids are going to all be sent to juvenile detention for no crime worse than being runaways.
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  • Corrupt Politician: We meet the mayor in this episode, and he's not actually a shining beacon.
  • Eye Scream: Cat advises a kid to go for the eyes if someone comes after him. She does so later. It's not pretty. She actually ripped his eyes right out.
  • Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique: With a phone book.
  • No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: Even if they laughed at him and mocked his appearance, the two preppies did give Penguin a ride and even a drink when they could have just drove off without him. This backfires when Penguin takes offense to being called "Penguin", kills one of them with the bottle and presumably kills the other.
  • Not Quite the Right Thing: Barbara leaking the story results in the criminals believing they should liquidate the merchandise. I.e. kill the children. Thankfully, Jim stops it.
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  • Not-So-Harmless Villain: The Penguin continues to display ruthless, animal-like characteristics at odds with his earlier harmlessness.
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business: Given the victims are children the suspect was going to have sold into slavery or executed, Jim flat-out drops his usual prohibitions against the Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique of Bullock.
    Bullock: You see that man there? He doesn't like it when I beat people but for you, he's got no objection, now why is that?
    Jim: Math. The lives of 30 children versus one scumbag.
    Bullock: Which means I can beat you like a bongo drum and St. Jim here won't intervene!
  • Oh, Crap!: When the Dollmaker's henchmen step onto the bus. Selina bolts for the back. Unfortunately, it's a prison transport.
  • Pay Evil unto Evil: Despite his vocal protestations against the abuse of criminals and police brutality, Gordon doesn't have a problem when Bullock beats the crap out of a prisoner if that prisoner is a member of a group that kidnaps and sells children.
  • Room Full of Crazy: We have our first clue as to who killed the Waynes, and the ceiling of his mobile home is a kind of Stalker Shrine, as befitting the character's history.
  • Stealth Hi/Bye: Bruce has already started practicing this, sneaking upon Gordon and Alfred.
  • Would Hurt a Child: The citizens of Gotham are outraged at people targeting street children but it's very clear few of the people who deal with them every day care. The Dollmaker's goons are merely the worst.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: One of the Dollmaker's goons when she comes across a henchmen Selina removed the eyes of.