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‘Preacher’ Recap: Hell or Ratwater

This post contains spoilers for “Preacher” season 1, episode 9, titled “Finish the Song.” To refresh your memory of where we left off, read last week’s “Preacher” recap.

Sheriff Root is done playing games. He’s taking Custer into custody. But after a creepy story about what happens to child killers in prison, hinting at the fact that he thinks Custer killed Eugene, Custer takes an early exit and manages to roll out of the police car unscathed. He makes his escape promising to see Sheriff Root in church on Sunday.

Set on “Plan B,” DeBlanc and Fiore make their way to the Distant Vistas travel agency. After a moment of suspicion from Lucinda the travel agent when the two angels ask her for tickets to Hell, she proceeds to book them tickets. This must be some sort of inter-dimension travel agency. In a (kind of) comedic moment, DeBlanc threatens to report her Lucinda for her advances on Fiore and she in turn threatens to report them for being unregistered travelers, which really makes you question who’s keeping tabs in the “Preacher” universe.

As they get ready to head out, DeBlanc and Fiore have a microscopic cute moment. They’re discussing calling heaven but Fiore reassures him that those in heaven would separate them as punishment and they wouldn’t be able to be together. But the real kicker is the look on their faces — it’s sweet! And innocent! They ultimately decide to scratch the hell plan and call heaven because apparently DeBlanc knows how bad it is in hell and doesn’t want to go there. But when Fiore looks for that make-shift telephone to call heaven… it’s gone. So straight to hell it is!

Cassidy isn’t healing very well. Tulip has pretty much depleted the town’s animal supply in an attempt to help him regenerate. She enlists Emily to help take care of Cassidy so that she can go out and kill Carlos in Albuquerque. Mind you this is the first time Emily finds out Cassidy is a vampire. It’s pretty cruel having to watch sweet Emily carry a little squeaking guinea pig to its death so she can feed Cassidy who, by the way, looks like a feral beast. So Emily calls a not-so-unexpected guest over and feeds him to Cassidy. Oh, you know, just the town Mayor who is hopelessly in love with her. Killing two birds with one stone, huh, Emily? One less person on Quincannon’s side to tear down the church and one less creepy suitor. Score!

Remember The Cowboy? We get another good look at him. In this episode he exacts revenge on the town of Ratwater by expertly executing a full bar. In case you forgot The Cowboy story line, the episode refreshes it for you — from dying young girl, to being attacked at the saloon and not making it back in time to save the young girl. In a fantastic narrative choice, The Cowboy experiences this series of events faster and faster every time, giving us the impression that he’s stuck in a revolving hell, literally (thanks to the much needed title card). DeBlanc and Fiore show up to this hell looking for The Cowboy – they have a job for him, one he’s very fond of; killing a preacher. Fun fact: The Cowboy is based on the Saint of Killers from the Preacher comics.

Before you leave:

Custer comes to see Tulip but instead meets a now healing Cassidy who lets us know that Custer put Cassidy out with the fire extinguisher and didn’t let him burn alive… for long. Custer then helps Cassidy get rid of the Mayor’s body. In their world this must mean they’re best friends for life.

Custer calls Tulip with a surprisingly tender message while she has a Carlos all bloody and tied up. Honestly, it’s a strange phone call given his coldness towards Tulip. It’s a feeble attempt to establish their past, which has been much more successful with the young Custer and Tulip flashbacks than with the adult chemistry.

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