Written by: Mathew ‘JJ’ Simoes
Preacher’s second episode of the new season picks up exactly where the premiere left off, with Jesse confronting the Saint of Killers outside the motel. In true Preacher fashion, Jesse was saved at the very last minute by a truck taking the bullet for him which then rammed the Saint, who shrugged it off like it was nothing. The Saint then proceeded to massacre the gun enthusiasts that Jesse had fire at him, during which he took a large number of bullets and a grenade. One of the best things the show has done so far with the Saint is portray him as a slasher villain, which adds to his already imposing nature. His killing spree in the motel felt like something out of a horror movie, as our heroes tried to desperately escape. The one downside of the episode’s opening is it’s depiction of Jesse. In the comics Jesse starts out with his moral compass figured out, and it seems the show is trying to build to that. It’s great that they’re building this character arc for Jesse, but I’m not a fan of how they’re presenting it. Jesse is way too selfish with how he uses his powers to the point of none likability. I know Jesse is going to learn a better way as time goes on, but his attitude to the rising body count is hard to get behind.
Most of this episode dealt with characters dealing with the loss of a loved one. The episode’s re-introduced Fiore as the the trio track him to a casino to gain information on God and the Saint of Killers. Fiore’s arc is the standout element of this episode, as he deals with the loss of both his friend and his home. Fiore can’t seem to die due to his nature as an angel, so he committed suicide in several different, but equally amusing ways. Fiore has been trying to find some purpose now that he’s lost everything, and he seems to find it in becoming the star of the Casino’s new attraction. Tulip lost the only family she ever had when she learns that Annville was destroyed. Tulip immediately wants to have sex, which is most likely to take her mind off the terrible news. While Jesse doesn’t show any overt signs of feeling loss, his proposal to Tulip is a form of it, making the most of the present in the face of another’s death.
Cassidy’s role in this episode was focused on getting Fiore to call off the Saint of Killers, and it was a great bit of fun in an episode book ended by two very dark scenes. Somehow Cassidy found all the drugs, and proceeded to use them to give Fiore a good time. This provided both levity and some great insight to Fiore and Deblanc’s friendship. The best moment of that sequence was Cassidy accidentally killing Fiore with the first Heroin injection, and I just couldn’t stop laughing.
Tulip is given an interesting sub-plot, as before she can marry Jesse she gets into an altercation with an old acquaintance, named Gary. It seems like Tulip’s boss, most likely after she and Jesse split up, wants to have a chat with her. Things didn’t exactly work out, as Tulip very brutally killed the messenger. She has Cassidy hide the body and not tell Jesse. Tulip and Cassidy are accumulating quite a few secrets, which will payoff down the road with the resulting drama once everything’s out in the open. This sub-plot set up some drama as the series continues, but also displays an important part of Preacher. While the larger narrative is supernatural and about finding Gods, the show also focuses on how it’s main characters grapple with past mistakes.
Jesse is reminded of his biggest mistake when Fiore tells him why the Saint was sent after him. Fiore hired the Saint to keep Jesse from using his powers irresponsibly, which is very evident in this episode. In trying to kill the Saint using his abilities, Jesse gets countless people killed. The Saint is also tracking Jesse when he uses the word, and cuts a path of destruction wherever he goes. Jesse is getting a ridiculous amount of people killed, and the ethics behind his actions seem be a major theme this season, and the series over-all.
The episode’s ending is tragic, as Fiore decides to betray his new friends when Jesse unknowingly re-affirms Fiore’s belief that he can’t be trusted with Genesis. When the Saint arrives after Jesse uses the word, Fiore tells him Jesse is going to New Orleans, cause God really likes jazz. The Saint than killed Fiore upon request, with Fiore not having anything left but the mission given to him by heaven. This ending also reminds the viewers why the Saint is hunting to Jesse, so that he can see his family again. The Saint may be an indestructible ‘terminator’, but there is powerful motivation behind his ruthless actions.
All in all, a very good episode of Preacher, though Jesse’s characterization needs some improvement.
Mathew’s Rating – 8/10
What did you think of Monday’s episode of Preacher and Jesse’s attitude towards his powers?