Preacher: 2.01, 2.02
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This review contains spoilers for the latest episodes of Preacher.
Plenty of shows out there want you to believe that they are unafraid to wipe out its characters. Those same shows (I'm looking at you, Game of Thrones) like to fake out the viewers or simply resurrect the more beloved ones. But Preacher has the biggest cojones of the bunch: last season ended with the destruction of literally the entire town of Annville, Texas. Most of the side characters we'd come to love/hate/feel completely indifferent towards were removed from the equation, whether they committed suicide after the revelation that God abandoned heaven or were obliterated by a massive explosion.
After a first season that took itself a little to seriously in the latter episodes, that finale was the perfect way to free up the main trio of protagonists and set up an absurd and very exciting premise: Jesse, Tulip, and Cassidy embark on a fun little road trip to find God, while the unstoppable Saint of Killers tries to destroy Preacher and Genesis.
Viewers rejoice: On the Road and Mumbai Sky Tower are super fun hours of television, with plenty of blood and guts, healthy doses of dark humor, and some more blood and guts for good measure. Preacher is blessed with some of the most interesting and unforgettable characters on TV right now, and they all get ample time to shine here. And with Jesse and Tulip's relationship and Fiore's heartbreak, there's some emotional resonance to give the series a little bit of depth.
The Saint of Killers, with his immunity to Genesis and ability to track the power, is certainly a formidable opponent. He already has a lot of deaths under his belt, mowing down cops and gun fanatics with wild abandon. Hopefully, his scenes will be more well-paced and spread out as the season goes on, because otherwise it could become a little repetitive. The more Preacher & Co. manage to evade him, the less menacing he will become. And now that Fiore is out of the mix, there seems to be no way to get rid of him.
Speaking of Fiore, Mumbai Sky Tower is a fitting final arc for that peculiar angel. As fantastical as his origin is, there's some deep human insight in the fact that he becomes famous thanks to his suicidal tendencies and self-destructive stage presence. And his final order to the Saint of Killers is the perfect reminder that even though Jesse is having a lot of fun using Genesis, it's an incredibly dangerous power that probably shouldn't be used at all. For Fiore, whose lost his eternal friend, finding peace means ending it once and for all.
Perhaps most exciting about this season's introduction is lunacy that it promises in the future. Did I think that I would see Arseface hanging out in Hell with what appears to be Hitler? No. Am I happy that it's happening? Absolutely. And even though I've never read the comics that inspired the series, the excitement that its longtime fans are exhibiting online has me equally pumped.
In a world where American Gods is giving us heavy commentary on faith and religion and the aforementioned Game of Thrones treats its gruesome violence as highbrow commentary, we need something like Preacher: a show that isn't afraid to satirize mankind, but also doesn't pretend to be more highfalutin than it is. Sometimes, it's good to watch a murderous preacher, a druggie vampire, and a kick-ass lady chase down a deity that loves, out of all His creation, some smooth jazz. God bless Preacher.