The Exorcist: By the Grace of Geena Davis Go I

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The Exorcist, “Chapter 7:  Father of Lies”

It occurred to me during the week that apart from The Evil One Percenters and Chris’s return, last week was a whole bunch of nothing, once again. There was no real progression of any plot point at all and we don’t see any consequences of the Possession Party this week. They really are reaching to fill every episode.

In the Now, the church is filled while a grim faced Tomas holds a prayer service for Casey, and looks sad and pensive.

Nine Days Ago; Tomas has picked up Keane and the still somewhat possessed Casuzu and they’re speeding to find a place to hold her.

During the mass, Tomas is asking forgiveness for sins while he thinks about the super, duper hot sex he keeps having with Jessica. Um, dude, clean up your thoughts while you’re saying actual mass inside a church.

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Nine Days Ago, Keane and Tomas took Casuzu to Mother B, and after Tomas managed to yield a little priestly power  to subdue her, the Ninja Nuns dragged the struggling girl into the back of the building, and presumably to their enchanted garden.

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Keane, and his nipples which are impossible to ignore, invite Tomas back into the exorcism, but he won’t let Tomas tell the Raances they’ve found the girl, figuring this isn’t possession; it’s revenge on Regan. He points out how twice he’s come close to beating the thing, and he needs more time, so Tomas is to lie to the family.

Um…how illegal is that? I’m thinking super?

Modern day Tomas, full of guilt, can barely look at Regan as he asks the Lord to hear their prayers.

The credits on this show are a very weird fit. The credits don’t take the show nearly as seriously as the show takes itself.

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Back home, the press is mobbing the family as they return from mass.

Reporters have figured out the Chris MacNeil/Regan and ‘Casey’s Condition’ connection but Chris insists Casey is fine, just missing.

I mean, it may be pertinent to say, yes, Casey was very unwell when she went missing ,which makes her incredibly vulnerable and therefore her being found is all the more vital. But nah, keep up the nonsensical kidnapping story.

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Mother B. is showing Keane a tabloid paper which has found out about the El Train incident. This still bugs me. That incident would have been in the news way before this.
Hell, that shit would have been on Reddit the same day and if anyone caught any video, even Casey tossing the guy across the train before the phones all died, that shit would be viral before she was released from her 5150.

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Keane tries to act like he’s not worried about the press but Mother B. very much is, and is worried they’re making no progress with Casuzu, that in fact, the demon is getting more powerful.

Mother B. is very afraid of what they’ll release if they fail but Keane doesn’t think giving up or failing is even an option, and doesn’t want to stop.

I can’t help but notice Mother B. has her typical exorcism bruising, while Keane’s skin is as clear as a spring day. I think, Keane, if you really don’t want to stop, maybe take the place of the 80 year old woman who gets punched in the face by an athletic and, you know, demonically possessed college kid every night? Just a thought, bro.

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At the Rance Manse, the family is doing news interviews to spread the word about Casey.

Chris is coolly deflecting questions about the past and Regan, but the journalist goes right for the jugular, and asks if Casey is dangerous, and about the El Train incident, the 5150. Regan wigs and walks out and Chris looks ready to kill and ends the whole interview.

Continuing to push the kidnapping story this hard is so silly. And honestly if they can find Casey, and get even ten seconds of her demonic behaviour on camera they’re going to have a solid insanity plea to get Casey out of any legal trouble. This is all just silly. Would a reporter who had apparently agreed to questions and the content of the interview go that hard off script, that soon? It would make more sense to warm up the family, and get them to trust you before chancing that whole area. This is just a silly, pointless scene in a show full of them.

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The boys are trying to exorcise Casuzu and failing. Tomas gets bitten on the hand, nuns are thrown around like rag dolls. The nuns are bearing the weight of this one heavily. Keane, though, is fine.

Tomas is using cactus oils to treat the bite on his hand and Keane tells him he’ll need much more than that to clean the wound. He does not say ‘because I found her eating a seagull and she hasn’t brushed her teeth in weeks’ and instead, he talks about how hard the exorcisms have been.

Tomas asks what happened on the lake and says Keane is different; we haven’t seen enough of him this week to actually verify, so I’ll take Tomas’ at his word. But he’s not, so stop cheating, writers.

Keane decides to look all guilt ridden because the script said he’s meant to be, and says he nearly killed Casey in the lake, that a madness had him but then God acted and brought her back, so now she’s Keane’s ward. It’s why he has to save her, he insists, tears in his eyes.

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This would be a moving moment if it had come from…like, anywhere. So far we’ve seen Keane bitch at Mother B, having a pretty easy time of it during an exorcism, and then this scene right now, and he’s been typical Keane. This is not earned. And nothing of last week played like Keane felt God work through him. He was shaking Casey to wake her up and she did.

Tomas wonders why God would save Casey and the demon; Keane says it’s not their job to understand why.

… you know for a fact there’s a larger demonic conspiracy at hand, and you don’t think it’s pertinent to know why God brought back this girl and by proxy, the demon inside her? Defensively or offensively, that’s important information to the larger cause. Stupid ass.

 

All you people need a hobby

All you people need a hobby

At the Rance house there’s a mob of Casey supporters and WBC style protestors ( … why? Why? This is why they should just say she’s had some kind of psychotic break.) One of the medic’s now widowed wife is there with her child, and tells Regan ‘Your little demon girl killed him’!

Regan nearly collapses as Henry rushes her back indoors. Geena Davis is amazing, the last few seconds of that scene was brutal.

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At a planning meeting for the Pope, Bennett has pointed out a gigantic security flaw with the Pope’s visits, specifically, that he can really, really easily be shot in the fucking head by a sniper, for whole stretches of the drive.

All the other planners are The Evil One Percenters, including Brother Simon aka Father Satan. Bennett point blank asks Simon what in the fuck he is even doing at a fairly high security meeting, and Maria hand waves it off that his fundraising made the visit possible and he’s something to do with financing the whole trip. Ooooof course he is.

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Bennett drops the Tatersall information, and I thought that was dumb until the final scenes of the night revealed why Bennett is so fearless. Bennett asks how a defunct company is funneling money in the millions into their organisations, and asks Simon just what in the fuck is going on. They square off a little and ooooh if Bennett dies, I am going to set something on fire.

Also, how have they let him live this long? Why would they let him make this progress? This makes no sense. Keane is alive because they can’t find him, Bennett works alongside the fuckers, why are they letting him get this far? This isn’t arrogance, it’s stupidity.

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You take Karras’ name out of your mouth for the rest of your life. Tomas isn’t even Karras-lite

Tomas and Chris are having coffee, and he asks what Georgetown was like. She compares it to that feeling when you walk downstairs in the dark and miscount a step, and you’re in freefall. But, months of that. That’s a really good analogy.

Chris talks about Merrin and Karras, calls them good men who gave their lives to save Regan. She says he reminds her very much of one of them and … okay. No, he doesn’t.

I’ve been waiting for, and talking about references to Merrin and Karras since the pilot, but I don’t want them like this. Tomas doesn’t remind Chris of anyone. Tomas is a beautiful moron  plagued by an irrelevant guilt. And I mean irrelevant; after sleeping with Jessica, he seemed to exert enough power over Casuzu for Keane to let him back in on the exorcism, and Keane, himself is excommunicated but still has the same powers as before, so their guilt and sins don’t appear to matter unless the Fathers allow them to.

Karras was a man who suffered a profound crisis of faith because his emotionally manipulative mother had a prolonged, undignified death, in part because he didn’t get out to visit with her enough.

Do you see how those things may not be on quite the same level?

Tomas goes out to see Regan who throws Keane’s words — about how long Casey is possessed, making it worse — back at him. She’s drinking and angry, and asks if Tomas thinks Casey is alive. He says he has faith and Regan demands he ask God for some answers, and suggests Tomas try harder to actually help.

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Tomas goes over to see Casuzu, who is in terrible shape, looks like she’s dying. Her body is failing, and the demon has withdrawn inside her and won’t come out to fight so they can’t exorcise it. Casey will die.

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Keane  rushes off and asks Mother B. why Casuzu is sedated, and forces her to take her hour of rest early. Mother B. is preparing a poison tea to give Casey a quick death, which HOLY SHIT, LADY!

She calls the continuing exorcisms needless torture, but Keane is very much against secretly murdering a young woman with poisonous flowers.

Mother B. and the sisters won’t help with the exorcism anymore (because he won’t let her poison Casey), and she suggests Keane figure out who he’s fighting for, Casey or himself?

Just ponder briefly how often Mother B. has poisoned people to death when she couldn’t exorcise them. Because, it’s enough times for her to be completely okay with it.

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Regan is druuuuuuuuuunk, and she and Chris look at Regan’s photos of ‘fake mom’ and then baby photos of the kids. Kat was two weeks late, 17 hours of induced labour.

That’s the funniest shit in the world. Of course she was.

Regan says seeing Kat for the first time made everything that happened worth it. Casey doesn’t get a cute birth story. Huh.

Chris says Regan is obviously a great mother, better than Chris, but Regan allows that her own childhood wasn’t all bad, she got to sing Christmas carols with Steve McQueen.

Regan tells Chris she finally understands what it must have been like to watch what happened to Regan. Chris says she’d have done anything to protect her, and Regan accepts that her mother did the best she could.

Regan says she can’t remember what happened in the room but she felt so dirty, like she’d never be clean. Chris would look at her like she was broken.

Regan won’t do the same to Casey, she’ll tell her she’s good and clean. As she talks she washes a baby photo of Casey in a glass of water and Chris is moved to tears by her daughters obvious mental unwinding.

Powerful fucking scene.

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Tomas is promising Keane he’ll try and change Mother B.’s mind and suggests they take Casey to the hospital, what with her being starving and rotting from the inside and all that.

Inside the room Keane begins to speak to the demon inside the half dead Casey while Tomas insists they get the family as they have a right to say goodbye.

Casey starts to weep and Tomas actually says out loud ‘do demons cry?’ and oh my god.

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Casey whimpers ‘no more’ and Tomas slumps in defeat.

Bennett has gone, alone for some reason, to the building the Tatersall trucks call home. He breaks in and uses his phone for a light which is the second time this has happened in this show and listen, I know the show wants to be current as all get out but as someone who has my phone nearly surgically attached to my hand I know if I was planning to break in somewhere dark, I’d still take an actual flashlight because phone lights are hot garbage.

See what this is lighting? Whole bunch of nothing.

See, what this is lighting? Whole bunch of nothing.

Bennett is too with it to be so naive, but this fucking show doesn’t know any other way to try and create tension. It still fails, by the way.

He’s clearly not alone and he doesn’t see the crazy homeless guy from episodes back, the one who scared Casey then got in on the Englewood murders, while the guy stalks him through the dark. Bennett finds obvious signs of organ butchery and burning, and doesn’t immediately take photos on the phone he’s carrying but instead lays his bare ungloved fingerprinty hands all over every damn thing and continues to creep around in the dark.

He enters a room and sees dozens of murdered bodies and while he stares at them he’s attacked by the homeless man and another Tatersall demon. Bennett….erm, well, he defends himself. With extreme prejudice. Which is to say, he easily chases off the homeless dude then just casually breaks the demonically possessed mans neck with his bare hands.

I am not remotely joking

I am not remotely joking

A third bad guy built like a rhino joins the fray, and manages to sink a kitchen knife into Bennett’s shoulder and holds him down to try and cut his throat.

But, Bennett isn’t even within shouting distance of being done. He barely even struggles to take the knife out of the mans hands, flips it around and stabs living hell out of the attackers kidneys until the guy collapses to the ground.

He doesnt exactly look torn up about the two murders he just committed, does he?

He doesn’t exactly look torn up about the two murders he just committed, does he?

Bennett, who could not be less concerned he just killed two people,  follows the guy down and anoints his hands with oil and lays them on the possessed man, absolving the human soul of sins and … I think, actually killing the demon inside, not just exorcising it. Bennett appears to be visibly exerting some kind of power, as if this wasn’t just another form of exorcism. What…the fuck? Why is this show about Tomas and Keane and not this beautiful badass motherfucker right here?! Who or what exactly is Bennett?

And … why isn’t he helping out with the exorcism??

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Tomas goes to a pharmacy for his, oh fuck, suuuuper infected bite (if you can get possessed from a bite I’m going to be so mad). He’s pale and sweaty and on the verge of collapse, as a fan boy who saw him on TV comes over and rudely starts taking selfies and talking to a visibly sick and pissed off Tomas.

Ooh my god trucker dude, read the room.

Ooh my god trucker dude, read the room.

They get into it and the cops are called. Later Maria Walters turns up and talks the trucker due out of charges. Tomas is in the back of her car like a told off child, and she jokes he must be drunk. He calls himself stupid, and asks her if she was ever in a situation where the only way to do the right thing is to do something wrong?

She says yes without hesitating, while Tomas overthinks his guilt and talks about lying to protect your own lies. He laughs off all the praise he constantly gets for being a ‘rising star’ and repeats the phrase, because MORNING STAR SATAN BLAH BLAH ALLUSIONS, PROBABLY. He laments no one knows the truth, and she asks what that is; he tells her he’s losing himself

My awesome, hilarious friend Rob compared that scene to Palpatine and Anakin, and it’s killing me how accurate that is.

Yessssss...let the hate flow through you

Yessssss … let the hate flow through you

Tomas is at the house, and Kat is terrified because Regan is breaking down.

She’s huddled in the shower with Henry talking to her, Chris looking on devastated. She reminds Tomas about the raven that crashed into her office, then whispers crazily about how she’s been able to feel Casey, how she’s known the girl was alive, she could feel it. But, today that feeling is gone, and she knows Casey is gone too.

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Geena Davis is phenomenal.

Mother B. and Keane are preparing to give Casuzu the poison tea, and with nearly no preamble Keane is about to pour the tea into her mouth and just outright murder a nineteen year old girl, but hesitates and decides it’s not God’s plan for her to die. He does not stop for moral or ethical reasons, guys, but because he’s certain he felt God act through him, and he has to see where it goes.

Not because they were about to poison a nineteen year old girl to death.

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Tomas walks in and Casuzu’s eyes flick open and clear and health visibly returns to the face and body. Behind Tomas, Regan peers around the door and Casuzu sits up and smiles ‘the sow!’

…. I mean, again, a whooooole bunch of nothing. Just nothing, not a damned thing. Filler, basically. The consequences of the possession and exorcism are still far reaching. Tomas is still wracked with guilt over nothing.  No progression, no advancement, nothing learned.

The idea Tomas might turn evil is actually fairly interesting, especially with the mention of Karras. He was briefly possessed and began to attack Regan before he threw himself out of a window. I want to see that gut punch scene for Regan if it happens again, but just because I want to see Geena Davis crush the shit out of that, too. Mother B. turned out to be … erm, maybe a serial killer, if I’m honest. At the very least, she’s pretty cold blooded when she needs to be.

And, apparently Bennett isn’t just on the Papal security team because he’s fucking observant. He killed at least one person and he might have killed two, and he might have exorcised a demon with some oil and about the same effort as he’d exert running a dead sprint around a racetrack. He broke a mans neck easier than Casuzu, the demon broke a jaw, he shrugged off getting stabbed. He stared down a room full of eviscerated bodies with a look on his face like ‘Oh, ew, I didn’t need to see man boobs right now’.

I do now have to wonder why he isn’t taking part in the exorcism at all. He could clearly bring a major power shift into the room, and he doesn’t have a shred of Keane or Tomas’s angst about … like, existence in general.

Why, WHY is this show about anyone other than Bennett?!

Nadine Morgan

Nadine Morgan

Nadine Morgan is really terrible at the ‘About You’ part of life. Nadine developed her reviewer skills writing epic facebook rants about the details script supervisors forget and trying to explain why Carol on The Walking Dead broke Lizzie by accident. Nadine loves TV, film and books but she wishes someone would pay her to be the continuity editor. She can be found on Facebook and in her forest garden and if she’s not yelling at her TV she’s trying to convince a cat to be an Instagram model and refusing to let 90's fashion die.

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  • Fabius_Maximus

    I’m not sure Bennet effortlessly exocised a demon. I think it fled because the body it was in was spent and broken. Bennet could have used it as proof.

    I also don’t think that Bennet saw those two he killed as people. They were shells whose demons had integrated. Their souls already were lost.