Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Preacher, Season 2, Episode 6: Sokosha

Opening odd foreshadowing weirdness to remind us of the weirdness that is just Preacher: a man ominously buying some white powder extracted from poor, desperate people for a moderate sum of money - and then sold to very rich, desperate people who pay much larger sums of money to use it to cure alzheimers.

Ominous -and yes there are comments to make about class and exploitation - but, c’mon, it’s not exactly subtle or require a nuanced examination.

Cassidy, Tulip and Jessie are still squatting with Dennis the odd French man (Cassidy continues to have a conflicted relationship with Dennis) and things are… happy but tense. Everyone is playing nice but there’s a lot of tension and unresolved ish under every word. But they make nice while they do that odd American thing of having dessert for breakfast

While Viktor’s daughter leads the Saint of Killers to their door

Well, their neighbour’s door anyway. The Saint of Killers works his way through them one at a time with gun and knife - one of his bullets making it’s way to Dennis’s fridge and alerting Jessie that there’s something going on - they run.

And brainstorm how to stop the Saint. Of course, Tulip’s very sensible suggestion that they just run and stop using the Word doesn’t work for Jessie who is still hunting god. So they need a plan B:

Lots of research - it turns out that there are a lot of very very very accurate stories, comics, romances and books on tape about the Saint fully filling in his past. But before they can decide how to use that against him Cassidy remembers Dennis is coming home and going to run into the Saint

They call him and hear the Saint attacking - to save his life Jessie uses the Word and says he’s on his way

It’s a huge gamble - but when he arrives he manages to convince the Saint not to kill him. He guesses that Fiore made a deal with the Saint - kill Jessie and god will reward him by sending him to Heaven to be with his dead wife and child rather than in hell reliving his worst day forever more. A nice offer - except, as Jessie proves (for a given definition of prove... ) with the audition tape that god isn’t around so he isn’t getting to heaven

Not by god anyway. But Jessie has sent someone to hell with the word, Heaven can’t be that much different. But there’s one missing piece - he needs a soul. The Saint of Killers, his mythology says, is the one man in Earth without a soul.

The Saint agrees to give Jessie a chance - and one hour to get him a soul. And he’s holding Jessie, Tulip and Dennis captive until Jessie gets back.

The time is especially tense because Dennis is ill and needs a hospital - which plucks at Cassidy’s heart because Dennis is his son… yes son and yes Dennis speaks no English and Cassidy no French: Cassidy admits to not being the best father but still he cares. Tulip tries to appeal to the Saint to let Dennis go but he just lifts her to the ceiling by the throat

Tulip is disturbed - not by the violence or his strength - but by him touching her. I guess the touch of a soulless man is pretty creepy. Also creepy to Tulip is how very much Jessie knows about soul stealing

Which is the expertise he puts to work checking on New Orleans soul sellers - of which there are a few. Or were a few - it seems they’ve all been put out of business by the Japanese new business who have modern technology and are using portions of souls. And yes this comes with a whole lot of pretty gross stereotypes.

Jessie tries to break into the armoured van they use to store their souls but even Tulip’s home made bomb doesn’t make it work. Instead he has to resort to the police and the Word.

Then there’s the tricky issue of finding a compatible soul. Unsurprisingly the Saint of all Killers has a pretty unique soul and the only compatible one they can find is Jessie’s own…

Clearly torn as a religious man, Jessie asks what the smallest amount of soul they can extract - 1%.

This seems to be enough because he manages to get to the Saint just before he kills Tulip (Cassidy losing all the fingers on his hand trying to hold back his sword) and give the Saint his soul.

Twist - the Saint is immune to the Word. Because he is a man with no soul. Give him a soul and suddenly he’s vulnerable and completely helpless before Jessie. And there’s no way that Jessie, a deeply religious man, is going to let a murderer like the Saint into Heaven…

But the plan to send him to hell like he did Eugene? Well… the Saint technically has a slither of Jessie’s soul now. Ooops, didn’t think that through..

Plan B is to dump the Saint in an armour car and the bottom of a pond (or bayou or swamp or whatever they have near New Orleans). I wonder how permanent that will be. Methinks the Saint of Killers is not so easily restrained or having a piece of his soul missing will really be so harmless.

Everyone is reunited, healed and ok again - including Dennis and Cassidy. Everything seems happy - but Tulip is still visibly shaken. And Jessie hides something under Dennis’s bathroom floor.

It seems a facade over deep tensions is the new normal for Preacher