This week on Preacher: Oh goddammit, Jesse.
As per usual, full spoiler warnings are in effect for this column. I’m also going to talk about a few comic book spoilers but I’ll note when I talk about spoilers that a re straight up going to spoil the future of the show.
1. He Gone
So last episode’s big twist was that Jesse accidentally sent Arseface to Hell. Like, actual Hell. We were under the impression that this was a secret between us and the viewer until the opening to this week which reveals that Cass was watching from the rafters the whole time. Crap.
After casting a teenager into the bowls of Hell, Jesse really tightens up this episode and doesn’t let go until the end. He can’t even be nice during a rehearsal for the church drama group’s production about the story of Lot’s wife since the actors aren’t being fearful enough. The power’s clearly going to Jesse’s head but he’s not exactly thrilled about it. And over the course of this episode we get a lot that explains why he’s been acting the way he has the whole show.
The biggest takeaways, for me at least, from the Arseface section of the plot were two things. First of all, Sheriff Root is the unsung heart and soul of this show when he stops by Jesse’s to look for his son. Second, I don’t think we’re getting Arseface back. Arseface has a huge part in the comics where he becomes a globally beloved rock star but I don’t think it’s happening now since he got a whole lot less lovable. Jesse tells Cass that Arseface deserved to be cast in hell, that it was part of God’s plan, because the girl in a coma was actually shot in the back of the head by Eugene after she rejected him. Then he tried and failed to kill himself too, and that’s how we got the meat smoothie slurping boy we used to love. It’s a gut punch to anyone who might’ve fallen in love with Ian Colletti’s puppy eye character, and a kick in the teeth for everyone who knew Arseface from the comic as a gentle soul. If Arseface does come back, he’s going to have so much more weight than the carefree boy from the comic.
2. Odin on the Ash
One of the other big developments from this week is that Odin’s apparently immune to Jesse’s Jesus mind tricks. Jesse got Odin into the church by saying he’d give up the land it’s on if he could make Odin a true Christian. We’d thought it work but it didn’t which we should’ve seen coming since he did shoot all those people in front of the mayor. I thought it was him deciding to serve the Lord by shooting environmentalists but that’s just kind of his Tuesday night.
I have to wonder if this is Preacher establishing the Word of God as something that can only work on Christians. Everyone who’s been under its spell is someone who’s a regular churchgoer to some degree, so it makes since that they’d be subject to the Lord’s will. If you’re someone who refuses to give God power over them by believing in him, then the Word can’t hurt you. That might explain why Jesse couldn’t talk down the Seraphi from last week and keeps future episodes from having a “Why can’t Jesse just talk his way out of this?” problem. Anyway, I’m excited to see what kind of small-town war this might bring now that all of Quincannon’s men are marching on Jesse’s church to take his dad’s land.
3. Until The End of the World
Speaking of Jesse’s dad, “He Gone” does a lot to establish more of Jesse and Tulip’s background with Custer Sr. John Custer took Tulip in after it was apparent her family couldn’t look after her properly. Jesse and Tulip were friends before, but this time together in the Cuter Church shows how deep their relationship is. They even get to establish “until the end of the world” which is the promise Jesse and Tulip have for each other in the comic. Honestly, I kind of like it way more as a childhood promise than something two people who randomly met developed after a few years together.Continued below
Unfortunately, we still have a while until the end of the world. Jesse’s dad calls social services on Tulip and they take her away, with Daddy Custer explaining that an O’Hare always brings trouble. Jesse prays for Tulip to be safe and for his dad to die and uh whoops.
Before Jesse’s dad dies though, we have the dinner that Tulip cooks for Jesse, Cass, and that woman who I will finally accept is named Emily. It goes to shit in the typical Preacher way (Sheriffs showing up looking for their hellbound sons, ovens blowing up in flames, etc.) but it takes a turn for the worst when Cass confronts Jesse outside. After arguing over whether or not Eugene deserves to burn in hell, Cass wonders if Jesse thinks he should burn too. Following on Tulip calling out Cass earlier for not showing Jesse what he is, Cass walks into the sun, hands Jesse a fire extinguisher and burns alive. Commercial break.
When we come back from commercial, Jesse goes back to the dinner table and just does not bring up what he did to anyone. He asks Tulip if he knew what Cass was and she eventually leaves, but not out the door Cass burned outside of. Emily leaves too, after telling Jesse she believed in him, going after Tulip. That night, Jesse breaks down the floorboards of the church and unsuccessfully tries to call Eugene back.
So uh did Cass burn to death? I know he can survive a lot of stuff but it’s been made super clear that sunlight is for real the thing that’s going to mess him up. And he didn’t just start to sizzle. He actually burst into flames. Crap. The absence of any indication about what happened between Jesse and Cass is way more compelling than showing what actually happened, even if that only lasts into the next episode when we get an answer.
Okay so from now on I’m going to discuss comic stuff that probably spoils season two. I mean, this is Multiversity Comics, not The AV Club, so I imagine our readershipp is more likely to have read the books anyway.
5. REACH FOR THE SKY, BOY
It was only a matter of time until I brought professional wrestling into this, but I can’t believe it took me this long to realize that Jody and TC are Jay and Mark Briscoe from Ring of Honor. They even have the same dynamic where Jay and Jody are the legit badasses who will fuck your entire life up while TC and Mark look like they’ve both made love to a chicken.
If you don’t know who Jody and TC are, they made their unofficial debut this episode as the two guys who granted Jesse’s wish by showing up and killing his dad. Considering Jody had the tattoo on his arm that Jesse has on his back, the same one he mentioned a “mean old bitch” giving to him, I have to imagine that the L’Angelle farm is on the show’s horizon. The L’Angelle’s are the family Jesse’s mother comes from and they are pretty much pure evil. They’re also mostly Marie L’Angelle, an evil old woman in a wheelchair who should be played by Mac’s Mom from It’s Always Sunny. We don’t do the Casting Couch column on this site ever since we found out it’s a porn thing, but The Briscoes as Jody and TC and Mac’s Mom as Marie L’Angelle are my honest to god dreamcasting.
So with all of these dangers from Jesse’s past, present, and future coming to kick him in the ass, Preacher‘s remaining episodes seem like they’re going to be a doozy, to say the least. We’ll check back in with you next week when the newest episode hits.