AMC’s Preacher
Season 2, Episode 12: “On Your Knees”
Directed by Michael Slovis
Written by Sam Catlin & Rachel Wagner

* For a recap & review of the previous episode, “Backdoors” – click here
* For a recap & review of the Season 2 finale, “The End of the Road” – click here
Pic 1Eugene (Ian Colletti) and Hitler (Noah Taylor) are making their escape. The alarms come alive. Personal Hell comes back to the young man. He tries to resist the temptation to kiss Traci, to change the outcome. Finally, he gets it right and things are okay. For a moment. And then, they’re not anymore. We also discover there’s some hidden abuse in Eugene’s past. All before Hugo Root (W. Earl Brown) shows up, his face puckered into the butthole wound like his son’s has been since the accident. Instead of things getting worse, the father and son finally come together in this vision.
Once and for all Hitler and Eugene make it out the window of that little Hell. But what’s next?
Pic 1APic 2We go back to the Saint of Killers (Graham McTavish), dropped in that armoured truck to the bottom of a swamp. After a week of beating at the doors, he thinks about souls, like the ones in the vials in there with him. He flashes back to an old memory of him, his pregnant wife, being baptised in a lake by a preacher.
Suddenly, he sees lights coming for him. The flippers of divers nearby. The truck is being pulled from the swamp. Yes, Hoover (Malcolm Barrett) is retrieving him, he put another truck in place just to throw Jesse (Dominic Cooper) off. Now he’s offering the Saint a deal, one that ought to benefit both him and the Grail.
Will he take it? Oh, yes. Hoover lets him free, then the hellish cowboy goes straight for a drink at the bar to get his murderous engine oiled.
Do not be deceived, God is not mocked. But whatever one sows, that will he also reap.”
And what of Jesse? He’s lost in the underground of New Orleans, trying to find God. Unaware that his biggest, baddest enemy has been let loose on the streets once more. At the apartment, Denis (Ronald Guttman) is still trying to kill and suck the blood of anything he can, including the dog, which papa Cass (Joseph Gilgun) keeps hiding. Ah, the vampire with a heart. Meanwhile, Tulip (Ruth Negga) is still adrift, driven mad by her man’s search for God, and she’s also completely unaware that Lara (Julie Ann Emery) is playing her like a fiddle. Neither of them realising that the Saint might be back fro them any second.
Pic 2Sure enough when Tulip goes to drop the garbage out, the cowboy returns. What’s scary about him is that Tulip doesn’t get scared by anything, and this dude scares her. Not to mention he wallops her into the wall when she tries stopping him, knocking her out cold. Into the apartment the cowboy goes, Cass and Jesse not expecting a thing, having a casual drink and a laugh.
Then comes the showdown, as the Saint comes face-to-face with the preacher. Worst part? Genesis won’t work on the cowboy, not after the Grail kitted him out to take it on. So it’s a fair fight. Or, well, as fair as it’s gonna get at this point. Jesse and Cassidy both give it their all. Except that damn cowboy, he’s like a Western Undertaker. Tulip gets back in on the fun, too. However, neither of them can take him on properly, and he’s running the show.
The Saint ties Jesse, sits him down for a talk about “scalpinheads” from Comanche warriors, so on. A brutal, nasty conversation. Starting to look like the next scalp could be the preacher’s if Jesse ain’t careful. Just as the skin’s about to rip, the management from Hell arrive to take him back. If he doesn’t go back to his cell, his wife or daughter takes his place. And “Gods gone” so there really aren’t so many rules these days. Lucky fucker, that Custer, seeing as how he’s got Herr Starr (Pip Torrens) sort of on his side.
Pic 4Soon, in a Grail ambulance, Tulip and Cassidy are whisked away to Starr’s office. He’s planting the seeds of distrust, trying to break the loyalty between the trio. Of course under the guise that he’s doing it for the better of Jesse, his supposed destiny.
Cut to the Pope on TV speaking of God, his absence around the world as of late. He’s also planting seeds, about the Second Coming of Christ. Certainly we know the difference, having met the drooling, defecating, pissing Humperdoo. But we also know the other plan Starr has in mind.
Jesse finds Cassidy and Tulip back at the apartment, wondering what’s been going on with him. They go out to eat and chat like friends, something they’ve not done in TOO long. Things feel normal after their meeting with Starr comes up, until Jesse confirms the Grail, him as the new Messiah in place of Humperdoo, God’s a bit of a pervert: it’s all scary real. The other two wonder if Jesse will leave them behind because of all this nonsense, or that they’ll have to worship him.
Jesse: “Is it really worth findin a God like this?”
In Hell, the Saint says he needs a word with the big bossman, Mr. Satan himself. All as he deals with his own Personal Hell. Up in the vents, Hitler and Eugene are still sneaking away, getting glimpses of all the other Hells those around them must experience. Horrible shit.
Later, Jesse goes to see Starr. They’re going to go ahead with the plan. Starting by the first worship of the new Messiah, Starr bowing to him. Uh oh.
Screen Shot 2017-09-05 at 1.20.08 AMFantastic episode leading into the finale next week. “The End of the Road” should offer us a big fucking bang at the end of an interesting, fun, weird season. Expect wild things! Because I certainly do.

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Father Gore is first and foremost a passionate lover of film— especially horror. He's also a Master's student at Memorial University of Newfoundland with a concentration in postmodern critical theory, currently writing a thesis which will be his debut novel of literary fiction, titled Silence. He also used to write for Film Inquiry frequently during 2016-17 and is currently contributing to Scriptophobic in a column called Serial Killer Celluloid focusing on film adaptations about real life murderers. As of September 2018, Father Gore is an official member of the Online Film Critics Society. Get in contact (u39cjhn@mun.ca) if you want to chat movies or collaborate!

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