Monday, May 23, 2016

Preacher - The Pilot

After a kick ass opening that totally caught me off guard, the real story of the Preacher began. Based on the 90s comic book by Garth Ennis it tells the story of some very bizarre and damaged people who have issues with GOD. However, unlike the rest of us, they have the power and determination to do something about actually making GOD responsible for abandoning heaven. That is if the TV show follows the comic book. 75 issues of gonzo storytelling by Ennis and Dillon. It's a high concept and to make a high concept work, you have to go full retard on the execution. This show looks like it's not going to shy away from the violence and weirdness and blasphemy of the comic book and that is a good thing. I am already looking forward to next week.

Preacher tells the story of Jesse Custer, a preacher in the small Texas town of Annville. Custer is accidentally possessed by the supernatural creature named Genesis, the infant product of the unauthorized, unnatural coupling of an angel and a demon. The incident flattens Custer's church and kills his entire congregation.

Genesis has no sense of individual will, but since it is composed of both pure goodness and pure evil, its power might rival that of God Himself, making Jesse Custer, bonded to Genesis, potentially the most powerful being in the universe.

Driven by a strong sense of right and wrong, Custer journeys across the United States attempting to literally find God, who abandoned Heaven the moment Genesis was born. He also begins to discover the truth about his new powers. They allow him, when he wills it, to command the obedience of those who hear and comprehend his words. He is joined by his old girlfriend Tulip O'Hare, as well as a hard-drinking Irish vampire named Cassidy.

During the course of their journeys, the three encounter enemies and obstacles both sacred and profane, including: The Saint of Killers, an invincible, quick-drawing, perfect-aiming, come-lately Angel of Death answering only to "He who sits on the throne"; a disfigured suicide attempt survivor turned rock-star named Arseface; a serial-killer called the 'Reaver-Cleaver'; The Grail, a secret organization controlling the governments of the world and protecting the bloodline of Jesus; Herr Starr, ostensible Allfather of the Grail, a megalomaniac with a penchant for prostitutes, who wishes to use Custer for his own ends; several fallen angels; and Jesse's own redneck 'family' — particularly his nasty Cajun grandmother, her mighty bodyguard Jody, and the 'animal-loving' T.C.



 Did you watch? What do you think?


jester59388 said...

I did and I saw a number of significant deviations from the original story -- e.g., NO conflagration of the congregation (which is what set Jesse on his path), Tulip is around and armed (vs. chance meeting after being separated and her aversion to guns), Cassidy doesn't have f'd up vampire eyes (something that Garth waited to reveal until the very end of the series - his ever present sunglasses being a big part of his mystique), the Adephi coming looking for Genesis/Jesse rather than the other way around, to name a few -- which makes one wonder how true to the source material they will be, or whether they will pull punches on some of the more "controversial" (sac)religious aspects to avoid censure and cancellation by the repressive conservative Theocracy that runs this country. But that doesn't mean it wasn't a fun ride -- It definitely was! And as with Walking Dead, I'm not adverse to deviations as opposed to slavishness, as long as they stay true to the heart of the highly successful source material. See True Blood and Bitten as prime examples of what happens when you start out faithful and then go waaaaaay afield, and The Dresden Files and Painkiller Jane as examples of what happens when you use the source materials as "suggestions" as to what the show should actually be about. (And if anyone is unfamiliar with the shows I'm talking about, you are making my point -- great potential dead in the water because someone thought it would be a good idea to mess with success).

Cal's Canadian Cave of Coolness said...

It's hard to go past the original vision the further you get away from the beginning. I liked that it has the tone and feeling of the comic book which would be tough to translate literally. I am with it so far. I appreciate your input.

jester59388 said...

Don't get me wrong -- I'm with it until the end! The ONLY way to convince studios to take a chance and make quality programs that aren't the same old dreck is to support them! I have no doubt that Seth and Evan will push the envelope as far as they are permitted -- but the key word is "permitted."

Cal's Canadian Cave of Coolness said...

It's AMC, they are usually pretty liberal with the violence and sex.

DrGoat said...

I don't know how I missed this. Will keep my eye on AMC
for it.

jester59388 said...

DrG, I think they are rebroadcasting the pilot next Sunday, followed by an episode of "Talking Preacher."

Cal, I don't think it's the sex and violence that will cause the controversy. As you say, AMC is pretty liberal with that. But the idea that God has abandoned heaven (and us) and isn't there to listen, Jesse's mission to hunt him down and hold HIM accountable, the portrayal of God as a manipulative, selfish prick who goes from wheedling to threatening depending on whether he is getting what he wants, and finally, what happens at THE END. Any or all of these things could send the religious right into a mouth-foaming, torches and pitchfork grabbing frenzy. Comics are one thing since they are oblivious to them, but this is TV reaching millions. I just hope AMC has the backbone to stand up to them, especially once the advertisers start getting nervous.

Cal's Canadian Cave of Coolness said...

I think those religious nuts are too worried about trans people using the bathroom than to watch a show like this. With the low opinion people have of the religious right these days I don't think they have the power they once did to shut things down. Of course they will use this to raise money for their cause but if they get to involved they will just bring more attention to the series which can only be a good thing. I really like the way they did Arseface which is enough of a reason for people to bitch.

DrGoat said...

Thanks jester. Will check it out.