"My sister's virus is a beautiful thing. It makes the darkest parts of a person sing. What darkness in you... has Alice brought to life?"
Jervis Tetch to Nathaniel Barnes[src]

The Alice Tetch virus, simply known as the Tetch virus, is the name given to tainted poisoned blood originating from Alice Tetch, which if infecting anyone can bring out their deepest, darkest desires. The blood would later be turned into a biological weapon by the Court of Owls in order to unleash it upon Gotham City.


The blood comes from Alice Tetch, who was a patient at the Indian Hill facility underneath Arkham Asylum, in which she was experimented on by Hugo Strange. She managed to escape with other prisoners with the help of Fish Mooney, and went into hiding. However when some of her blood spilled in a bar that she worked at, she burned the place to the ground in order to not risk it infecting anyone, as she knew of its effects.

After Alice was kidnapped by her mentally unstable brother Jervis Tetch (who had a sick obsession with her), he drained some blood from her body and threatened to unleash it on the city if she tries to escape him. When Jim Gordon and Harvey Bullock attempt to rescue Alice, she ends up falling from a ledge in an attempt to escape Jervis and is impaled.

Jervis managed to obtain Alice's body and drained her blood, which he planned to use in his attempt to drive the city into madness, as he blamed everyone else for his sister's death. He attempted to poison Gotham's high society with the blood, but was stopped by the police. Although taken into custody, he was delighted that police captain Nathaniel Barnes was showing symptoms of being infected by the blood, which occurred when the captain investigated the crime scene of Alice's death.

Before his arrest, Jervis managed to infect Mario Calvi, the fiance of Leslie Thompkins (who was previously in a relationship with Jim Gordon).

The group known as the Court of Owls obtained the blood, and with the help of Professor Hugo Strange had it turned into a biological weapon. This was part of a plot to unleash it upon Gotham City in order to destroy it and start over, as they felt the crime, corruption and madness was getting out of control.

Sensei (leader of the Court of Owls) managed to successfully unleash the virus, which infected thousands of people and began tearing the city apart.[1] A cure was eventually made with the use of Jervis' blood and people began to be treated, however the attack left many people dead and destruction which would take years to rebuild from.[2]


Once infected, the victim begins to hear voices and hallucinate, which is related to their deepest, darkest secrets that they are attempting to keep hidden. For example, Nathaniel Barnes constantly hears himself say "guilty" over and over again, and hallucinates the "guilty" ones as zombie like figures.

The victims eyes redden, with their veins clearly visible. The victim's muscle and bone power increases dramatically as well as heals itself to a limited level. Prior to being infected Barnes had to rely on using a stick to get around, but following the infection he was able to walk around again.

It usually takes weeks for the victims to be driven into madness by the virus, before they completely snap and let their darker side takeover. However, following Hugo Strange weaponizing the virus, he made the effects advance more quickly, so once infected the victims quickly turned violent.


Known infected


Season 3

Season 4

Season 5


  • Alice Tetch's blood and Viper each share a strength-enhancing side effect, albeit with opposite effects on the individual's skeletal structure. It is unknown if there is any connection between the two substances.
  • This chemical substance shares some similarities between the neurological agent in "Batman: The Telltale Series"


  1. Lilien, Steven & Wynbrandt, Bryan (writer) & Cannon, Danny (director) (May 29, 2017) "Heroes Rise: Pretty Hate Machine" Gotham. Season 3. Episode 20. FOX.
  2. Hull, Robert (writer) & Bailey, Rob (director) (June 5, 2017) "Heroes Rise: Heavydirtysoul" Gotham. Season 3. Episode 22. FOX.
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