We open with hipster Jesus having sex. Yes way back in the past Jesus skipped out on praying to have sex - very good sex in many positions apparently.
He then leaves, gets himself dead and leaves his disciples to steal the baby and beat the mother to death. Of course because Preacher
We learn this as Herr Starr describes his institution’s vast power to convince Jesse he needs their help to find god. And he does a pretty impressive job of showing this while dragging Jesse hooded to various secret locations. First showing Jesse the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Pope - and how he can totally summon them both to his side on a whim. Which is pretty impressive, even if they do reveal no-one actually knows a damn thing about god and that you can drag religious leaders together but you can’t make them agree.
Of course on does drop a hint about the messiah. Starr tries to pretend this totally didn’t happen but Jesse uses the voice every time Staff wants to get cagey. So it’s another hooded travel to where the Jesus child exists - the messiah, the 25th great grandchild of Jesus. Jessie falls to his knees in worshipful awe… only to have that shattered
Jesus - or “humperdoo” is the product of 25 generations of inbreeding and is severely developmentally disabled, knows nothing about god or much else.
Can we not use disabled people as props, comic relief or figures of contempt? In fact, given Preacher is Preacher I can’t imagine this show ever being respectful.
And so Jesse realises Herr Starr has been manipulating him the whole time. After all, anyone around Jesse who knows what he can do and would expect the word to be abused a whole lot. Herr Starr is supremely disillusioned by his job which he originally took to be an excellent chance to serve an organisation which would bring order and control - only to realise that there is no leader capable of ruling here. He feels like he’s wasted his life.
Except now he has Jesse. A man with super powers. God is gone, the Pope and Archbishop agrees on that (I also kind of think there should be an Orthodox patriarch there - but it depends on whether it’s to show their power over the church or to impress western-focused Jesse) and the Messiah isn’t stepping up to leave. Let’s not look for god, let’s make Jesse god
Jesse, a devout man, is definitely NOT on board with that kind of blasphemy. He tells Starr where to go and he doesn’t need Starr’s help - he has friends who help him.
Maybe… but Starr is working on this.
Because Tulip continues to have issues and meets up with “Jenny” (Lara from the Grail) who bonds with her in her vulnerability. Comforts her when she finally breaks down into tears. Has awful awful breakfast, plays computer games. And through it all she expertly plays on her fake history of escaping a drunken abusive ex to push Tulip to look a bit more at her relaitonship with Jesse
This is supposed to be manipulative but it may actually be an opportunity for Tulip to actually look at her relationship with Jesse through a clearer lens.
Tulip is very suspicious and almost catches Lara out - but Hoover swoops in to play them abusive ex, hits Lara and gives Tulip chance to bond with her over beating Hoover up, saving Lara and then beating him together, inspiring her to “fight back”.
It certainly distracts Tulip’s suspicions and let’s Lara not-so-subtly push her to check the broken tile in the bathroom: under which is the weapons of the Saint of Killers that Jesse kept. An indication that Tulip’s underlying bad feeling is true - and that Lara is right about partners lying and trusting your instincts
This is why, to Lara’s confusion, Tulip needs to be break up with Jesse not die. If she dies, Jesse isn’t all alone with no help - he’s on a vengeance quest with super powers. But if she leaves? He’s abandoned, self absorbed and pouty.
And his other friends? Well Cassidy (and yes I agree with Lara, he is hot and bony) is treating his newly vampiric son to hot ladies (perhaps sex workers? Since he suggests “splurge”). Either way it’s beyond disturbing and kind of eclipses the fact the vampire son wants to eat blood because… y’know, vampire?
Cassidy tries to get through to Dennis but him being a kind of lazy and lapse because Cassidy is Cassidy. Dennis clearly starts eating people
More Tulip realising Jesse is the worst - and her becoming badass.