Episode Title: El Valero
Originally Aired: July 17th 2016
The Highlight of the eighth episode of AMC’s Preacher at least for me was Jackie Earle Haley’s Odin Quincannon. I have always been a fan of Haley ever since I saw him in Breaking Away and The Bad News Bears when I was a kid, and this episode finally answered the question of why he was here other than money. He finally has a scene that allows him to display some emotion and not just pure quirkiness. Finally the secrets of his past and why the voice of Genesis didn’t work on him the way Jesse intended are revealed and the are shocking, relatable and surprising simple.
A man that could be seen as a false idol with the way that the mayor and the workers of his plant treat him reveal himself as the worst motivational speaker you have ever seen. Why anyone would follow his orders into a battle that will see you dodging Molotov cocktails and maybe having your penis shot clean off is a mystery to me. He is the largest employer in the small town and has plans to expand, that is very important, but the best and worst people in history tend to be great speakers, which Odin is not. He does get to show his tactical knowledge he learned from studying famous, mostly Texas based of course, battles with his varying approaches for taking the church from Jesse, while keeping himself safe from harm.
Jesse is still battling with his grief over Eugene and if he wants to keep Genesis. When he thinks sacrificing it will bring back Eugene, he is almost jumping at the chance to get the young man back. There is just a tiny bit of him that wonders if it is God’s plan for him to have the power and if rejecting it is the wrong choice. It is left uncertain in Genesis is displaying a new ability or if Jesse is having a bit of a break down after recent events and it leads to several interesting interactions. As always, Jesse is well acted, as he has to bounce between many different emotions in shot succession. The worst part of his character is the fact that he can drink multiple bottles of whiskey and single handedly take down multiple armed men without a scratch. The way the show treats alcoholics is interesting. One we never see doing more than sleeping in one place or another and then Jesse is capable of almost anything as long as he is not drinking with Cassidy and his secret supply.
On the subject of Cassidy it seems like he survived his exposure to the sun in last week’s episode, we never see him on scree but it is the only conclusion that I can come up with for what we saw at the end of the episode. We did not get too see Cassidy but we did get to see a minute or three of Tulip. Her actions throughout the episode seemed strange at first. I thought maybe it was a ploy to appeal to Jesse or maybe a distraction for Emily and her kids, in the end it was neither of those.
I continue to enjoy the dark green hues of flashbacks or indoor scenes with Odin, and how they are in contrast to the vibrant blue sky when they are outdoors. The costuming is also a bit interesting, most of Odin’s thugs look like they were pulled of the line at the plant but a few look like they were in the middle of a Civil War reenactment when they got the call. That would be fine if they did anything to explain the outfits but they do not, I guess this could be a monthly tradition since we know they were playing war games in the first episode. Another shortcoming is that it has been a few episodes now since we last saw the pre-credits story about the cowboy. With just two episodes left, I hope they are able to tie the two stories together in some manner and that is not something that continues into the second season that has been ordered by AMC. That is a bit of good news, even though the show isn’t getting the ratings that they anticipated AMC is doubling down by ordering a second season before the first has finished airing and not only that it will be an even longer season. I think it is a good choice, as the show really seems to be headed somewhere, but if the extra episodes are just more of the wheel spinning that plagued the first half of this season, I do not see there being a season three.