Following a couple of weeks that put a quieter spin on things, “Sokosha” is here to get Preacher back on track. Make no mistake, I enjoyed the character focus (and moments of visual creativity) featuring in the past couple of weeks, but while “Dallas,” in particular, was a real downer, this week’s episode was a lot of fun. Jesse and The Saint of Killers had a major showdown that was unexpected if only because this is merely the midway point in the season, but the results were truly exciting to watch. Add to that some additional information about Cassidy and the pure strength of the episode as a whole, including the weird cold open, and Preacher continues to find itself in a very good place this season.
About that cold open; while it was purposefully vague from the start, there was a lot to enjoy about the oddness of it all. Watching a businessman dealing with a couple in familiar terms, resulting in some wild procedure certainly seemed offbeat, but never out of place. Preacher has been a show that’s played well when it comes to throwing everything at the wall, and it once again succeeds here. The effort being put in by the filmmaking team to make these sequences work is impressive and shows why Preacher succeeds as often as it does. A lesser show wouldn’t be able to handle this seemingly random event, but Preacher is good enough to have the audience know a payoff is on the way.
Elsewhere we have Jesse exiting a shower and feeling pretty good about himself, before coming down to eat the very sugary pancake breakfast Tulip has prepared for the trio. That first close-up is an image that bookends the episode this week and is a nice way of placing us in the mind of Jesse. As noted in these reviews, I find Jesse to be the character that has benefited the most from the first season’s laid back approach. Giving us a proper amount of time to see the man slowly break out of his funk may have initially had things feeling shaky, but it benefited overall in giving us a man who has found purpose.
Given how the show is built around the idea of Jesse having the voice of God as a superpower, it is surprising how little it has become the center of the conversation. That said, that ability has made Jesse into an even more confident version of who he already was as far as being able to handle himself in a fight and come to the aid of others. That level of confidence is put to the test in “Sokosha,” as Jesse finds himself negotiating a deal with The Saint and doing all he can to find what he needs to get this unstoppable hitman off his back.
Beyond being on a mission to kill, The Saint hasn’t gotten much of a chance to be more than a violent menace, so it was great to see more dimension given to the character this week, let alone a display of his power once again. The whole cutting back and forth between The Saint moving room to room to find Jesse, while the gang has their pancakes and Jesse investigates the fridge, was a fantastic bit of tension. Finding a way to have these two come face to face also provided a level of shock, as even as a comic fan, I realized we were in uncharted territory to a degree.
Through all of this, The Saint glowers and continually works as a sinister force that reminds Jesse that a revolver is the main way he has of answering a question. It is only until he is unexpectedly bested that a new type of frustration emerges in this character. But before that, it’s a joy to see Jesse and The Saint watch the God audition video and consider how to handle things.
Also enjoyable was seeing the gang take a trip to the library. The humor has not subsided, as Jesse realizes research is to find a weakness for The Saint. As a result, we get the wackiest forms of research that completely fit the tone of the show. Having a mix of a book on tape and images from the comic spin-off from the actual Preacher comics that served as a story for The Saint made for a fun sequence that steered away from tedious exposition. It’s info that was needed, and it was brought out effectively.
Just as effective was the stretch of this episode devoted to Jesse looking for a soul. It is here that the episode paid off the cold open, as the initial attempts to retrieve a soul turn into an understanding that the Japanese have cornered the market on soul extraction. That means getting to watch Jesse go through a couple of attempts at breaking into an armored car and getting his hands on a soul for The Saint. It only fits that Jesse would be the one who had a compatible soul to get back to The Saint just in time.
Given that I wasn’t sure where this all was heading, it was neat to see the soul work as a way for Jesse to get the better of The Saint, by having the sudden inheritance of a soul mean Genesis would now work on the killer cowboy. While we surely haven’t seen the end of The Saint, having Jesse use the word of God to get him into the armored truck and driven into a lake put a stop to a good amount of tension hovering around our heroes. And now that also means getting back to finding God.
While these characters don’t seem like they’ll be leaving New Orleans anytime soon, Preacher is now halfway through its season and likely heading to some more important story points. There may still be some personal drama affecting the three of them, but they at least seem back on track in locating God. Let’s just hope they can figure things out before Jesse’s arrogance finds a way to bite them all in the ass.
Preachin’ To The Choir:
- Cassidy has a good amount going on this week. In addition to continuing to undermine Jesse by mentioning Lara to Tulip, he manages to save Tulip. It means sacrificing his fingers (they’ll grow back) in the process, but it was a nice hero moment.
- Also of note, when it comes to Cassidy, we now know that Dennis is his son. It’s a great reveal, as it is surprisingly touching and brings new meaning to many scenes that have come before.
- The whole bit of Jesse finding the bullet in the fridge was a very impressively done sequence.
- “Oh, while I have you; Any idea how to break into an armored truck?” – Based on Tulip’s advice – lawn fertilizer, a D battery and a cell phone.
- Talking with The Saint went okay for Jesse. It went horribly with Tulip.
- Cassidy buys Dennis a new entertainment system because dads can be great.
- Jesse hides The Saint’s revolvers, which will likely be a bad move for somebody.