This episode of Preacher opens with a flashback to a younger Jesse dealing with his mother’s dysfunctional family. They seem to think lowering a boy in a box into the bayou is a great way to bond. We flash forward to Jesse and Tulip also watching something rising from the swamp — this time the armored truck containing the Saint. I’m sad I missed the initial confrontation over the Saint. Instead, we’re left with another argument about lying. Maybe I’m biased but I don’t think Tulip’s secret marriage is on the same level as the homicidal soulless man from hell that you’ve been hiding in the swamp. They open the truck and guess what, the Saint isn’t there. I’m sure this is going to help a lot with Tulip’s PTSD.

Ruth Negga as Tulip O’Hare, Dominic Cooper as Jesse Custer, Joseph Gilgun as Cassidy – Photo Credit: Michele K. Short/AMC/Sony Pictures Television

Back at the apartment, Jesse suggests they take a vacation and go to the beach. He forgets to mention at first that he means after finding God. Why even bring it up then, Jesse? This leads to another argument. Jesse calls Tulip selfish. After all that’s happened this season, that’s quite the assertion. This group is always on the verge of breaking up so this is nothing new. This argument is a loop and we’re all stuck in it. While Cassidy yells at him, Jesse starts putting together clues and figures out where God is. To his shock, no one wants to come with him.

Jesse thinks God is the weird Dalmatian man they met after arriving in New Orleans. Why? Because Humperdoo was drawing dog pictures. Unfortunately, Dalmatian guy is no longer there. It does make sense for secret basement kink dens to be mobile especially if God is a participant. So he goes back to his main source of information at this point — Herr Starr. This works out perfectly for Starr. He’s just recruited Featherstone and Hoover into his coup to replace the Messiah with Jesse. Now he just has to convince Jesse.

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Starr thinks he knows what Jesse wants — God’s forgiveness — and has recordings of years of Jesse’s prayers to back that up. Included is one particularly damning prayer. Jesse renounces his father’s name and thanks God for killing him to get out of that box in the beginning. It would be helpful to study Jesse more before making these attempts to recruit him, but Starr is ultimately too arrogant for that. His plan falls through and Jesse orders him to shove those tapes up his ass. Starr calls Hoover for their plan B. Hoover makes a deal with the inhabitant of what looks like the correct armored truck in a warehouse. It sounds like the soul machine is being used. The episode ends before we get to see the Saint.

Ian Colletti as Eugene; group – Photo Credit: Michele K. Short/AMC/Sony Pictures Television

In the B plot, we check in with Eugene in hell. The warden is screening inmates to see who doesn’t belong there. When I saw the cavemen still strapped to the tv, I realized how little time has passed in this subplot all season. Eugene and Tyler drag Hitler back to his cell to see his hell. In it, his dream of being an artist is crushed by a gay gallery owner, a group of communists attack the restaurant he’s in (revealing him to be a coward), and the woman he likes rejects him. It ends with him becoming fixated on a Jewish man eating plum cake. Eugene gets called in by the warden and Hitler arranges for the other inmates to sing a spiritual to give him and Eugene a chance to escape. Finally, in the C plot which barely counts, Tulip and Jenny try to destroy the Saint’s weapons. Surprise! They fail.

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Finally, in the C plot which barely counts, Tulip and Jenny try to destroy the Saint’s weapons. Surprise! They fail.

The search for God is still going nowhere. The revelation in this episode led to nothing. Now comes my obligatory comment about the pacing. It’s still too slow. The main takeaways from this episode are 1: Starr is planning a coup, 2: he failed to recruit Jesse and 3: the Saint is coming back. Surrounding that was, as usual, padding. Occasionally interesting padding like the peek into Jesse’s maternal family, but padding nonetheless. Eugene’s subplot is the only one showing progress. The overall plot might be lagging but the show is still a beautifully shot one especially in the opening scenes of this episode. With two more episodes left in this season, let’s hope they pick up the pace.