Temptation and Revelation on Preacher

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So you saw the premiere of Preacher a couple weeks ago. Or you missed it and caught it on the rebound or finally got to it when recorded. Or you stumbled on it, completely forgetting it was even on (and how you did that when promotions for it have been running rampant all over television is beyond my comprehension) and you spied it with a buddy at his or her house while visiting recently.

Notice anything about it? How simply you ease into it, whether or not you’ve taken in the comic series on which it was based?

There’s a reason …

Preacher is one of those shows – at least thus far – you don’t need any prior knowledge of going in. And it’s a piece of cake to work your mind around it without much thought. (That’s not to say there aren’t plot points which need pondering. There are.) The show is difficult to explain to anyone who hasn’t seen it, yet it’s watchable and comfortable as it goes through the motions. You don’t have to suspend belief viewing it; its world is easily taken for granted. It is what it is. As are the characters and who they are. Twisted. Flawed. Methodical. Obsessive. Bonkers.

It’s all part of the fun of the show.

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That being said, there were two overriding themes in this week’s episode, “See.” The first was temptation, the second revelation. In between the two was the attraction working its way to joining them, inviting both to merge and, finally, coupling them together.

And, therein? All the conflict of the episode.

The baptisms and the falls from grace. Or the effort of going through the motions while knowing full well (as in Tulip’s case) said baptism was nothing more than a vehicle to work her will toward that ulterior motive. (Or plant the seed deeper down, at least.) And Linus’ baptismal facade was nothing more than a joke; he knew full well what he was (or wasn’t) doing. He was simply putting on airs just to put appearances out there and delude himself.

But the really fun part of the show for me, the most revealing, was the conversation between Jesse and Eugene (Arseface):

“In the end the change always comes from God …” – Jesse
“But, Preacher … what if this is the me that God wants? No matter how hard I try it’s just … I stay the same. I’m always the same. You know what I mean Preacher?” – Eugene
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Did you see the light bulb above Jesse’s head when Eugene asked that of him? That was part of the “attraction” I spoke of above, the merge between temptation and revelation. And a moment eventually culminating in the preacher’s nascent understanding of the Power he’s acquired. It was that discussion with Eugene that was the trigger to working his will on Linus and getting him to submit. (Though, I didn’t understand the afterward with Linus questioning Jesse what had been done to him. That was a bit confusing. The Power should have spoken and manifested. And that’s it. The command is fulfilled in the person being told. The person doesn’t question it … right? Guess that needs some further explanation.)

And, again, to recap what I’ve said before: Do you see how effortlessly that came and you accepted it as you watched the scene? No thought involved, no consternation or question as it unfolded, you didn’t need to wrap your brain around what was happening. It just “came” naturally. You took it for what it was and it flowed on by, simply, as if it has always been a part of your understanding of the show, regardless of the fact we’re only a mere two episodes in.

The fun continues next Sunday evening …

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Quibbles and Bits

  • What was the deal with the opening sequence and its conclusion? Where did it correlate within the episode? Did I miss the connection completely? About the only thing I got out of it was the irony of what was said to the stranger in relation to Jesse’s Power: “You don’t say much now, do you mister? No harm in that. Silence is as deep as eternity and speech is as shallow as time.”
  • We got some nice history out of Cassidy: He’s a 119 year old vampire on the run from a group of religious vigilantes who annoyingly and relentlessly track him. He’s right-handed, a Sagittarius, loves Chinese food and thinks The Big Lebowski is overrated. (I’m in agreement with him on that one.) What’s not to love?
  • Though … see that scene of him looking into the sunrise? That perplexes me. How is that possible? He should be “flaming on” … should he be?
  • Additionally perplexing is Odin Quincannon. (But we’ll learn much more about him as the show moves forward.) Rather, his cock-eyed left eyebrow is perplexing. Is that thing permanently static? Because I haven’t seen it move yet.
  • Irony: Cassidy’s pummeling of one of his foes with a bible. That was not lost on me. (His Scarface shout out was cheesy, though.)
  • Speaking of his foes … the vigilantes are still alive. They’re definitely not vampires – they’ve been seen in full daylight (we’ve witnessed them out in the elements during daytime) and their Cassidy-inflicted wounds appear completely healed.
  • What’s really in that potion Jesse nabbed from Cassidy and swigged, causing him to conk out? (It reminded me of Elwood’s statement to Jake at the Paris Hotel Ballroom in The Blues Brothers: “This is glue … strong stuff.”)

What did you think of this episode? Start a conversation in the comments section below!

 

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