How Gotham Used Jerome To Set Up The Devastating No Man's Land Story

gotham that old corpse bruce jeremiah

(Image credit: Image courtesy of Fox)

Spoilers ahead for Episode 20 of Gotham Season 4, called "That Old Corpse."

Gotham doesn't hold back when it comes to ending its seasons on totally bonkers notes, and Season 4 is coming to a close. Predicting Gotham storylines is never easy and the recent death of Jerome Valeska proved that Gotham is unafraid to kill off major characters, but the title of the season finale has led fans to believe that Gotham City will be destroyed sooner rather than later. The finale is called "No Man's Land," which indicates that Gotham could adapt the comic story arc of the same name that sees Gotham City leveled by an earthquake. Now, the events of "That Old Corpse" indicate that Jerome, despite his death, set up how Gotham will be destroyed by the end of the season finale, and it has everything to do with his brother's invention.

Here's what happened. Jeremiah seemed relatively sane at the beginning of "That Old Corpse," although understandably rattled by Jerome's actions prior to his death and his exposure to the insanity gas. Nevertheless, he came across as more paranoid and traumatized than villainous at first as he and Bruce worked on creating the self-perpetuating generators that Bruce thought would provide power to the people of Gotham. Meanwhile, Jerome's crazy followers swarmed the GCPD after Jerome's last will (via video) instructed them to do so. By the end of the episode, however, Jeremiah revealed what was really going on.

According to Jeremiah, it's his job to one-up all of what Jerome wanted to do prior to his death. Jeremiah claimed that the crazy gas didn't affect him in any ways beyond the aesthetic, and he wiped his face to reveal that he was wearing makeup to give the impression that nothing had been done to him. The reality is that his face has been bleached white and his eye color has been altered, giving him a distinctly Joker-esque look. He now has Jerome's journal from Arkham Asylum in his possession, and he's determined to do everything that Jerome wanted to do, but better. For example, Jerome wanted to kill Bruce by slathering him with honey and then having him eaten alive. Jeremiah stated that he would choose the much more direct method of shooting Bruce to death... if he wanted Bruce dead. Jeremiah believes that he and Bruce are pals.

Anyway, Jeremiah still has at least some of his sanity intact as well as Jerome's journal of horrors. He's basically what Jerome could have been if he was slightly more in touch with reality, and it's already clear that he's more dangerous than his brother ever was. Jerome's method of causing chaos was limited to the point that he had to rely on other villains like Scarecrow to get his jobs done. Jeremiah created the method for Gotham's destruction all on his own. All he needed was Bruce Wayne's money, and he could create a whole bunch of bombs with the potential to take the city down.

Yes, the self-perpetuating generators that sounded too good to be true are indeed too good to be true. Jeremiah revealed that while, yes, they do generate power as intended, they're also incredibly effective as bombs. With the help of Ecco, Jeremiah managed to trap Jim Gordon down in his bunker and overload one of the generators. The generator caused a massive explosion that could be seen from all over the city and may have even killed Jim Gordon.

Now, the explosion probably didn't kill Jim Gordon. He was seen scrambling for safety before the generator exploded, and we can bet that Gotham wouldn't kill off its protagonist so unceremoniously in an episode that's neither a premiere nor a finale. Nevertheless, the explosion was violent enough that more explosions of the same magnitude could certainly level the city. Jeremiah ended the episode by killing his way into a secure room at Wayne Enterprises and then admiring the many, many generators contained within. He has what he needs to turn Gotham into a no man's land, and it's looking more and more like Gotham will indeed go full "No Man's Land" in the finale.

In case you still have any doubts, check out the trailer for the next episode:

If Jeremiah was able to level a massive clock tower with a quick press of a button, just imagine what he could do with a whole bunch of those generators! Jerome's influence over Jeremiah, even after his death, seems to play a big role in the probable destruction of Gotham City. We'll have to wait and see what happens next. At least we're getting the Bat Signal!

Only two more episodes are left in Gotham Season 4, so be sure to tune in on Thursdays at 8 p.m. ET to see what's in store next. The upcoming episode will be called "One Bad Day," so we may be in for some more Killing Joke nods. For what you can watch once Gotham is finished for the season, swing by our summer TV premiere schedule and our 2018 Netflix premiere guide.

Laura Hurley
Senior Content Producer

Laura turned a lifelong love of television into a valid reason to write and think about TV on a daily basis. She's not a doctor, lawyer, or detective, but watches a lot of them in primetime. Resident of One Chicago, the galaxy far, far away, and Northeast Ohio. Will not time travel, but will sneak references to The X-Files into daily conversation.