USA’s The Purge
Season 2, Episode 9: “Hail Mary”
Directed by Gigi Saul Guerrero
Written by Nina Fiore & John Herrera
* For a recap & review of the previous episode, “Before the Sirens” – click here
* For a recap & review of the Season 2 finale, “7:01am” – click here
Ms. Lorelei’s Corner is a children’s program in Purge America. She talks to the children about her worries, and about how the Purge is part of their country to help grownups “deal with their bad feelings.” It’s a very simplistic breakdown for young minds. Early indoctrination for young citizens who’ll someday grow into big boys and big girls hoping to release the beast. We see a little boy at home watching the show, taking out aggression on his toys. It’s young Ben— the animal was always inside, waiting to come out. He’s at the age where he’s never known another American than the one living under the Purge.
Cut to current day. Ben has his frat house held hostage, at least those who are still alive. He’s intent on having sick fun with them. Turner attempts to talk him out of it. Yet Ben thinks he’s giving him “a gift” by introducing him to the supposed positive benefits of the Purge. He’s giving Turner an ultimatum: kill one of their frat boy buddies, or die. Poor Turner’s forced to stab their frat pal in the stomach, killing the guy. Ben’s thrilled to have his friend by a part of his one-man murder club. Not quite as thrilling for Turner, totally unprepared for the horror of taking another person’s life. He makes a run for it from the house, followed not far behind by Ben.
The streets are alive with the sounds of murder and violence.
Esme makes it a building where she meets with the underground foundation working to defeat the NFFA and the Purge. She’s there to be turned into “a ghost,” so she can execute this big plan of hers. She has her friend Skye working to help, planting a “deepfake” to put Esme in a totally different part of the city and drawing the NFFA there.
At home, Marcus, Michelle, Tonya, and Andre are awaiting the assault on the house. The neighbourhood are outside prepping to pull the security door off its hinges. Once the outer door’s off, Clint orders the group forward. He has Molotov cocktails to toss inside. They might not burn the place down, but they could smoke the place out.
Tommy and other prisoners are brought to the woods. Some “rich assholes” have paid for the privilege of Purging without any danger of getting killed themselves. It’s basically The Most Dangerous Game in Purge-era America. While they’re about to start running for their lives, Ryan and the crew are paying their way into an event. The Daughters of the NFFA are putting off a tribute to “heritage” and “traditions“— the hunt for prisoners, using only weapons their ancestors would’ve used hundreds of years ago. A sick display of nationalism. Ryan, Doug, and Sara could have their work cut out for them. They didn’t anticipate the rich guy whose house they broke into a while back being in the crowd. An uh oh once they’re all out hunting and this guy Silas starts hunting them. Ryan catches up with Tommy, however, he gets a tranquilliser dart in the shoulder that puts him down and out.
At the house, Clint gets aggressive with his fellow neighbours, forcing Sam to be the one to try talking the others out in exchange for Marcus. He’s getting scarier than he was already, and unpredictable. They approach the door together, as Sam opens it slowly. He calls out but nobody answers. He gets slammed tight under a security door and then pulled inside. Marcus gets the neighbours turning on Clint for Sam and a trade is completed. He wants to hash things out “man to man” with Clint. He tries talking sense to the man. They come to an understanding, until Clint puts a knife in Michelle. Still, Marcus refuses to kill. He rushes to try saving his wife.
And there’s only 7 hours left before the end of the Purge.
Esme and Skye get on the road, only to have their van flip in the road after a masked man pops out of a vehicle to shoot at them. GodDAMN! Esme comes to after a bit and gets the back door open, though Skye remains out cold. The masked men who took them down is close, too. He’s looking for that reward money, recognising Esme, and it’s a nasty cat-and-mouse hunt now. She uses a jammer to shut the NFFA Surveillance Centre down briefly, giving her the ability to slip inside. She holds on for dear until the system reboots, barely managing to keep the maniac hunting her on the other side.
In the street, Turner comes across girls celebrating on a Purge Night tour bus. He’s continually stalked by Ben. Curious to see another person with a God mask out there killing, taking notice of Ben in his own. Hmm. Turner slips into a graveyard, trying to find anywhere possible he can hide. He and Ben run into each other, though. Then Ben runs into the other God-masked killer. In fact, there are several. “Welcome to the party,” Ben says. These guys aren’t looking to fuck around. He stabs one of them and runs.
Marcus is able to get out of the house safely so they can take Michelle to a triage centre. None of the neighbours try to hurt him, particularly after hearing what Clint did, and they’re left with him at the end of their guns. Will they Purge?
More important, can Marcus and the others get Michelle help in time? Doesn’t make things easier once they run somebody down on their way. That somebody is Ben.
Ryan comes to in a hole, being buried by Silas. Only his head’s left above ground. The rich dude wants answers and the thief says it was all “just bad luck” they came together again on Purge Night. It ended up with Silas’s brother being killed, which dampens his spirits about coincidence. And now Ryan’s being buried alive completely. Sara, Doug, and Tommy show up moments later. They dig him out, trying to resuscitate him, and thankfully he hangs onto life.
Only four hours left to Purge Night.
Anything could happen.
Another truly wild episode. Lots of interesting things happening at once, setting up what’ll definitely be a crazy finale. There’s also an appearance from Ethan Hawke(!!!), which should provide another cold open to sink our teeth into and offer up juicy bits of the Purge’s past.
“7:01am” is next time.