Preacher – Season III- Ep 6 “Les Enfants Du Sang”: A Review

Posted: 08/02/2018 in Uncategorized

Combining comedy and the grotesque is nothing  new for “Preacher” but this ep skated toward nihilism and this is something I am not fond of. This is the first episode I did not love. It was okay. It certainly wasn’t a show killer but it was astoundingly bleak. We got to learn a lot more about the Allfather (John Coyne) and this was terribly disturbing and again pushes the show more toward a horror milieu than it has ever been. My review follows below.

Jesse (Dominic Cooper) and Tulip (Ruth Negga) again find themselves at the short end of the stick in their fight with Jody (Jeremy Childs) and T.C. (Colin Cunningham). We spin back to Cassidy (Joe Gilgun) whose arc seemed poised to play strictly for laughs but instead became the more profound of this episodes multiple plot lines. The prologue featuring Eugene (Ian Colletti) returning to Annville, cooly presented in its stark decimation, opened the ep to harsh times ahead but organically allowed for the return of The Saint of All Killers (Graham MacTavish) as he endeavours to fulfil Satan’s (Jason Douglas) task of returning any escapees back to hell. Colletti who almost literally has to act his ass off with the heavy prosthetics informing his condition manages to remain bafflingly positive despite the horrors he has escaped and now faces. A moment between the Saint and “Arseface” allows for the notion that while TSOAK is a grim enforcer and death incarnate, he takes no pleasure in taking in Eugene.  MacTavish continues to nail the performance, playing someone deeply haunted but purposeful.

There were many arcs in this point, including the main story line in which Jesse and Tulip try to find a way to escape Granma (Betty Buckley), a task made all the more difficult by the woman’s ingeniously vile tactic of linking her life to Tulip’s. The soul bank heist was standard Preacher fare and brought a bit of fun to an otherwise heavy toned episode. Seeing the duo at work reminded us of two facts, both Custer and O’Hare are genuinely flawed people whose penchant for criminality is undeniable. Their “until the end of the world” mantra stands both sublimely and overtly. Jody and TC agreeing to be back up allowed for a twisted…and mildly hilarious scene featuring T.C. and a petting zoo. “We can buy you some time” is uttered quietly by T.C. but delivered outrageously. This is one twisted show. It again challenges the viewer to tag along, remaining pure to its subversive nature.

Cassidy’a arc with “les enfants” could have been a mockery of poseurs who emulate creatures such as he. Instead with “Eccarius”(Adam Coadsell) we get a visit to the other side of the spectrum regarding vampirsm. Cassidy takes a path of self destruction, proclaiming that being what he is ‘sucks’ and is terribly boring. Eccarius offers an alternative. His revealing to Cassidy what he could be capable of played exceedingly well including the physical demonstration of what he could do if he allowed himself to embrace his potential. For every point Eccarius makes, Cassidy pushes back with a challenge but two scenes strengthen both the plot arc and the notion that the two men aren’t that dissimilar. The first is the admission by Eccarius as to why he wants to reach out to Cassidy. The second is Cassidy’s need to be reached out to…along with the necessity for company. The matter of fact declaration by Eccarius has due emotional oomph. No less so is the phone conversation between Cassidy and Tulip which is genuinely heartbreaking.

Where matters go awry is the greater reveal of the Allfather, an aberrant character meant to be a nasty indictment of religion and avarice overall in one Monty Pythonesque “Mr Creosote”-esque form…including a later unsettling moment after the leader of the grail has his after dinner ritual. The one aspect of the AllFather/Starr (Pip Torrens) dynamic is that while Starr is an evil, twisted, disenchanted control freak, he has limits and his dry wit and world weary mannerisms make him bizarrely charming. Allfather is well….insane…psychotically so….while an excellent amount of effort is spent on visuals to make him appear garishly imposing, as a character he does not resonate. His apocalyptic views are nothing new and make him seem all the more unappealing. His dinner with Starr does allow for some hilarious  facial performances by Pip Torrens whose frozen ‘smiling’ countenance as he ‘debates’ with someone far worse than he make for pretty watchable tv. Starr’s earlier pronouncement to his underling Hoover (Malcolm Barrett),who questions if Allfather is really that bad, allows for a vintage Starr response…”compared to him I might be perceived as a conscientious objector”….

While the ep was certainly not filler, and had a goodly amount of emotional beats and character development, it seemed a little lower quality from the balanced form offered thus far this season. The denouement in which Jesse exacts a merciful yet vicious action prefaces epic events to come as his current ‘family’ hurtles toward his potential ascension. Preacher remains assuredly outstanding and well worth your time.

 

 

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