Thursday, September 7, 2017

Preacher, Season 2, Episode 12: On Your Knees

In the real world, we see the Saint again, even on Earth he’s still fighting in his memories, remembering his wife and child and how his wife definitely wanted to make him a good man and join her in heaven. All angsty and bleak and in almost stark contrast to the rest of this show

He was pulled out of the swamp by Hoover who then has to convince the Saint to stay on side. This involves lots of patience while the Saint tries to beat his way out of a metal van with his bare fists. It doesn’t go well and he eventually capitulates.

Cass (wow… he looks… different somehow) and Tulip are both all torn and (we also have dennis trying to eat his dog and Cass clearly having issues) upset over Jesse in between their banter. This season has lacked banter. Everyone has been so grumpy and mopey there hasn’t been enough banter. Featherstone does not appreciate good banter, still watching on the spycam.

Jesse joins them and it’s still kind of tense and awkward.

Which is when the Saint returns - without weapons. He fights Tulip, Cass and Jesse - whose voice is on the fritz again. Without supernatural powers, the Saint being super strong and pretty much invulnerable guarantees he knocks Tulip and Cass out out of action - and then captures and ties up Jesse. There follows more bleak and ominous speeches from the Saint which, again, feels far too serious for this very very silly show.

He and Jesse have a brief conversation about redemption - Jesse holding it’s possible while Saint convinced he tried it once. And failed. He also pokes at Jesse’s petty attempts to claim he was merciful - Jesse was scared of his own shard of soul being lost to hell.

Jesse is saved… but the Hell lady. No, really, the woman who rules hell. She arrives to demand the Saint return on pain of having his place taken by his wife. Against the rules, maybe, but with god gone, who cares?

And why would she save Jesse? The Grail. Yes Herr Starr seems to be every bit as powerful as thinks he is.

The Grail also provides medical attention for Cass and Tulip and gets them an audience with Herr Starr who, between all of Cass’s snark, makes it clear that Jesse is super awesome and they’re holding him back

When they’re reunited, Jesse sees the Pope on television telling crowds that god is gone - and that’s pretty bad but hey Jesus is coming back. Um. Sort of.

Which leads to Tulip and Cass having an amazing conversation about unicorns and ice cream (more of this!) before asking Jesse if he really really intends to be the messiah. He’s just a person! A man who likes to break bones to hear the sound…

Except Jesse still thinks he is chosen by god for his powers… and he thinks he’s a better choice than the disabled Jesus heir. (I hope that there’s also some consideration that the agents of hell are apparently able to work unhindered).

He insists that he is the best choice… and in doing so he pretty much alienates them. Neither Cass nor Tulip, despite their friendship and despite Tulips professed love, want to under Lord Jesse. Especially since Jesse clearly can’t tell them what a world under Messiah Jesse would look like

Jesse returns to Herr Starr… who kneels before him.

While in Hell, the Saint demands that he get to see Satan which is apparently in the to do list. But the Warden is more concerned with Eugene and Hitler

Who have finally escaped, Eugene entering his relived memories to deal with his demons:
  1. Declaring Tracey his friend and that enough
  2. Declaring that Tracey committing suicide for attention is on her not on him (this is good though still reduces her to a plot device for him)
  3. Shooting a child molesting sports mascot. Because… Preacher. Of course.
  4. A final moving scene in confronting his father and his own guilt, refusing to kill himself and accepting that his own attempted suicide was a mistake by a scared kid - and how he’s not going to apologise for that and what it did to his dad any more. It’s a really powerful scene (and, again, feels out of place in something as silly as Preacher)

Defeating his own hell is enough to allow them to finally escape hell...

I’m kind of flat on Preacher this season. It’s… dull. It’s ridiculous enough not to be dark, serious or poignant despite trying to hit those scenes. But it’s not consistently funny or amusing enough either. It’s not silly or zany enough, not enough banter, not enough fun, not enough hotel rooms full of dead angels or other hilarious nonsense