This episode of Gotham answered questions from last week and sets us up for one crazy season finale next week. If you aren’t familiar with the comics, One Bad Day references The Killing Joke. Joker kidnaps and tortures the commissioner, paralyzing Barbara Gordon in the process. His theory is that it only takes one bad day to drive a sane person mad. His chosen subject in this episode is Bruce. If you think you’ll get through this recap without spoilers, then you’ll be having one bad day.
We start this episode right where the last one ended. The GCPD is in shambles after Jerome’s followers trashed it. Gordon is missing and Bullock (Donal Logue) is trying to get the station in order. Jerimiah (Cameron Monaghan) shows up with some of his brother’s followers. He tells Bullock that he is going to blow up the city, they have six hours to evacuate. He blows up a building to prove that he is serious. While Bullock is trying to organize the evacuation, Bruce (David Mazouz) arrives. He explains that the bombs were generators that he and Jerimiah were working on. Bullock sends Lucius (Chris Chalk) to Wayne Enterprises for the plans. Bruce gets a call from Jerimiah from Alfred’s phone. He has kidnaped the butler and wants Bruce to come alone.
Gordon (Ben McKenzie) wakes up at Lee’s (Morena Baccarin). Her plan is to help save Gotham and get the bank robbing charges dropped. She steals the plans that Gordon grabbed from the bunker before it blew. Riddler (Cory Michael Smith) is suspicious of Lee’s intentions when it comes to Gordon but agrees to help.
Penguin (Robin Lord Taylor) and Butch (Drew Powell) show up at the Siren’s Club. He convinces Barbara (Erin Richards) and Tabitha (Jessica Lucas) to help them extort money from Jerimiah, so they can get money to pay Hugo Strange to fix Butch. They show up with one of his followers and the relay for the bombs. Jerimiah pretends to play along but blows up his follower. He says that he is now going to blow up the city as soon as he is safely away. Penguin calls Bullock to warn him.
Bruce and Selina (Camren Bicondova) get to the address that Jerimiah sent him to. Selina goes to the roof and Bruce goes in the front. He sees a video of Alfred being tortured. Jerimiah’s voice comes over a loudspeaker. He tells Bruce that he sees something special in him. He will bring it out, but first Bruce will have one bad day. Bruce runs through the building looking for Alfred. He sees increasingly disturbing videos of the torture, including being exposed to Scarecrow’s fear gas. He finally gets to the room where he finds the butler. Alfred (Sean Pertwee) is laughing hysterically and Bruce watches as Alfred carves a smile in his own face. Then Alfred attacks him. As Bruce is fighting Alfred, Selina makes into the building. She fights two of Jerimiah’s cronies and Scarecrow (David W. Thompson) himself. She realizes that he has been exposing Bruce to the fear gas the whole time. She finds the real Alfred and they get to Bruce and shoot the man that Bruce thought was Alfred.
Riddler figures out the plans that Gordon stole from Jerimiah. He explains to Gordon that it shows where all the bombs are. Riddler warns him off Lee. Gordon is only interested in saving Gotham. He knocks Riddler out and goes to the GCPD. Lucius is looking at the plans for the bomb and realizes that they only have to disarm one and none of them will blow. Gordon arrives with the plans and Bullock heads off to the nearest location. The bomb squad doesn’t make it and Bollock has to disarm it himself. Gordon goes on tv, proving that he’s alive. Jerome’s followers start to turn on Jerimiah. Jerimiah hits the switch to blow up the city. It doesn’t happen. Jerome’s followers start to attack Jerimiah, but he locks them in the room and sets them on fire. Later, as he is trying to figure out what went wrong, Ra’s al Ghul (Alexander Siddig) shows up. He explains that he’s had a vision of the destruction that Jerimiah’s bombs will have and wants to help. Jerimiah refuses but Ra’s insists. He needs it to happen for his plans for Bruce.
Gordon goes back to Lee and tells her to leave town. He cares about her and doesn’t want to arrest her.
Just as everyone tries to abandon Penguin, he admits that he can lead Butch to Hugo Strange.
Bruce, Alfred, and Selina go back to Wayne Manor. Bruce gives Selina a kiss. While they are speculating why Jerimiah is so obsessed with Bruce, he shows up and shoots Selina in the stomach.
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