Preacher Review by John Keegan

Preacher 1.02: See

Preacher 1.02: See

Written By:
Sam Catlin
Directed By:
Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg

In many respects, the second episode of Preacher is much like the first: confusing, inexplicable, and just plain bizarre.  I still feel as though this series is being made for the already-initiated, and those unfamiliar with the source material (like myself) are going to feel disengaged.  Time will tell, I suppose, but it feels like this property, under the purview of Seth Rogen and friends, might have benefitted from someone who is actually sober long enough to string together a narrative.   

 


 

I’m perfectly at home with the surreal and unconventional; after all, I can’t wait to see what the Twin Peaks revival brings our way in 2017, and as an anime fan, navigating the bizarre and (oft-times unintentionally) symbolic is par for the course.  This feels less surreal and more scattershot.  Jesse can control people with his voice, but that doesn’t always work.  So how does that help or advance Jesse’s character, exactly?  If it’s unreliable, where is the motivation for him to explore its use?

 

I understand that Jesse is now trying to turn his philosophy around and be an actual figure of inspiration for the residents of Annville, and this episode has him staying the course despite a number of initial difficulties and Tulip’s bad influence.  So what, exactly, did that opening sequence have to do with that core character conflict?  What does it have to do with anything?  Well, apparently the readers of the source material might know, but that only reinforces my assertion that this adaptation could care less about those who don’t already have investment in the property.



 

So far, the series is trying to make a virtue out of intentionally not answering basic questions, like why the two men attack Jesse and Cassidy in the church.  Why are they hunting down whatever it is that is inside of Jesse?  Why does Jesse just gloss over the fact that Cassidy is a vampire?  The ensuring fight sequence has its moments, particularly anything related to the use or mere presence of a chainsaw, but the fight itself was barely in context.  Maybe the pieces are meant to fit together later, but give me a reason to care enough about the mystery now to keep paying attention.

 

Granted, it’s a very different animal from the kind of maddening scenes we’re used to with shows that savor mysterious plot points.  We don’t have vague answers to questions being tossed around.  Of course, the problem is often that the characters don’t ask logical questions, either, and Preacher isn’t resolving that issue at all.  The reason we don’t get dissatisfying answers is because there aren’t any questions being asked!



 

Despite the fact that we are in the midst of a hiatus for Walking Dead material and the summer season is notoriously less populated compared to the rest of the annual cycle, there is still a need to hook the audience with something other than weirdness.  Preacher hasn’t turned that corner, and it desperately needs to if it wants to survive.





Our Grade:
C+
The Good:
  • The fight sequence with the chainsaw was memorable
The Bad:
  • The series seems too focused on satisfying those who already know the source material
  • The emphasis is on being bizarre vs. introducing an audience to a storytelling world

John Keegan aka "criticalmyth", is one of the hosts of the "Critical Myth" podcast heard here on VOG Network's radio feed Monday, Wednesday & Friday. You can follow him on twitter at @criticalmyth

Preacher by - 6/7/2016 9:32 AM139 views

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