Jeremiah is an American television series starring Luke Perry and Malcolm-Jamal Warner that ran on the Showtime network from 2002 to 2004. The series takes place in a post-apocalyptic future where most of the adult population has been wiped out by a deadly virus.
Developed by Babylon 5 creator J. Michael Straczynski and executive produced by Straczynski and Sam Egan, the series is loosely based on Belgian writer Hermann Huppen’s comic book series, Jeremiah. Aside from the names of the two main characters, the general personality of the protagonist, and the post-apocalyptic setting, there are no other similarities between the comics and the series.
The series ended production in 2003 after creative differences emerged between MGM and Straczynski. Episodes for the final half of the second season did not begin airing in the United States until September 3, 2004.
The series was filmed in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.
The year is 2021, 15 years after a plague has killed nearly everyone over the age of puberty (both the event and the virus itself are referred to as “The Big Death” and “The Big D”). The children who survived are now grown, and find themselves faced with two choices: either continue to scavenge off the diminishing remains of the old world, or begin trying to rebuild.
The eponymous Jeremiah is a semi-loner who has spent the last 15 years travelling back and forth across the United States, seeking out a living and looking for a place called “Valhalla Sector,” (the remains of Raven Rock) which his father—a viral researcher—had mentioned to Jeremiah as a possible refuge shortly before disappearing into the chaos of “the Big Death.” A stop in the trading town of Clarefield, Colorado results in Jeremiah teaming up with another lone traveller named Kurdy, before being imprisoned by the town’s warlord in a cell with a man named Simon, who wants to recruit Jeremiah for a vague and mysterious organization. With Kurdy’s help, Jeremiah and Simon escape, but Simon is fatally wounded in the process.
Following the instructions given to them by the dying Simon, Jeremiah and Kurdy take Simon’s truck back to “Thunder Mountain,” the remains of the NORAD complex, where they discover a well organized and equipped group operating out of the base, led by the former child prodigy Markus Alexander. Markus chooses to employ Jeremiah and Kurdy as a recon team to replace the now dead Simon and his partner, sending the two men back outside to gather information in preparation for the time when the mountain will need to start rebuilding the world.
Over the course of the first season, the group increasingly encounters threats originating from Valhalla Sector, which they discover to be a sealed and heavily armed bunker complex in West Virginia, used to house the remains of the US government and military leadership during the Big Death. The survivors there plan to rebuild the world in an authoritarian mold, combining their military power with attempts to control the “Big Death” virus itself in order to wipe out resistance by slaughtering non-compliant populations. The second half of Season 1 primarily deals with the efforts of Jeremiah and Thunder Mountain to stop Valhalla Sector.
After the final defeat of Valhalla Sector in the opening episodes of Season 2, a new threat emerges in the form of a crusading army from the East, led by a mysterious prophetic figure known as Daniel. Season 2 deals with the impending conflict between the unifying survivor communities under Thunder Mountain, and the advancing Army of Daniel.
Although a third season was considered, series creator J. Michael Straczynski made it clear that if the show ran a further season he would have nothing to do with it. The show concluded with the end of the second season resolving most plot threads.
Learn more about the concepts, principles and symbolism behind the subliminals found in this television series: