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Dr. Kristen Bouchard ( Katja Herbers ) is a psychiatrist who specialises in helping the District Attourney to find suspects mentally fit to stand trial. Her latest target is alleged to be a serial killer, and she accuses him of having anti-social personality disorder. This brings her into conflict with a trainee priest, who suspects that the accused man might be victim of demonic possession.
Like the title character in Medium , the female protagonist who works for the District Attourney also has a busy home-life with four daughters. In this case, however, there is no pesky husband in sight. While he has divorced her and become a tour-guide on Mount Everest, the kids are left in the care of their maternal grandmother Sheryl Luria ( Christine Lahti ). This frees up the heroine to have a love life, and potentially pursue her cow-orker as a love interest.
The protagonist starts to have nightmares about a demonic entity. Luckily she has her psychiatrist, Dr. Boggs (Kurt Fuller - Supernatural ), to confide in.
The plot takes a twist with the appearance of Leland Townsend (Michael Emerson - Lost (2005) ) as the kind of creepy sinister manipulative mastermind that Emerson plays so well in everything he has ever done.
The wannabe Exorcists investigate a suspected miracle. A young woman was declared dead in a hospital, but woke up when they were about to start the autopsy. Was this a case of medical incompetence? After all, they do not even take the girl's clothes off before they start the autopsy procedure. And since this is was made in the Trump era, will the show make a woke reference to systemic racism?
Dr. Kristen Bouchard ( Katja Herbers ) is a freelancer, so she craves job security. The District Attorney offers her old job back, so she gets to start a bidding war. Who will offer her a two-year contract first?
Leland Townsend (Michael Emerson - Lost (2005) ) is back, and will probably spend the rest of the Season undoing her work.
George the Dream Demon is back again. This time he has apparently appeared to one of the daughters. Is the image based on a monster in a movie the family watched? And since the monster is based on a dream the SPFX designer had, did the dream actually feature a real demon?
The team investigate a suspected case of Diabolical Obsession, an obscure form of possession that may just be mental illness. The target is Byron Duke (Jon Glover - Smallville ), a Broadway producer who has become volatile after losing a Tony contest. It turns out that he may be the victim of a computer hacker, so the tech support guy takes the lead in this case.
Glover played the devil incarnate in Brimstone (1999) , but in this show the nearest equivalent is Leland Townsend (Michael Emerson - Lost (2005) ). When Townsend tries to overturn his predecessor's decision, with the intent of having a teenage boy tried as an adult, she has to face him at his own game. Strangely the Judge allows Townsend to use stolen files, even though this is fruit of the poisonous tree and should render him and the DA unemployed or worse for the felony of handling stolen goods.
The team investigate a young boy who may be possessed. The technician suspects the problem may be contaminated water from a dodgy pipe in the family's new house. The priest bonds with the boy over a shared love of graphic novels.
Dr. Kristen Bouchard ( Katja Herbers ) has problems with her own children. As in Medium , the four daughters are whiny and annoying. This week they try some Virtual reality goggles, courtesy of their maternal grandmother Sheryl Luria ( Christine Lahti ). The naughty children decide to play a computer game that is above their age range, and end up butting heads with a creepy character named Rose 390. This is the new version of Satanic panic , with a digital version of the ouija board.
It is Halloween, so there is a lot of supernatural activity. Dr. Kristen Bouchard ( Katja Herbers ) and the priest help out on an exorcism. This includes a scene that is the compulsory visual homage to The Exorcist (1973) . Unfortunately the patient is in medical difficulties, with a severe case of dehydration, so the doctor is worried it might end up like The Exorcism of Emily Rose (2006) . Luckily she has her psychiatrist, Dr. Boggs (Kurt Fuller - Supernatural ), as backup.
The tech support guy has a subplot of his own. He is guest-star on a Ghostfacers type Reality TV show. They investigate a haunted strip-club.
As always, Kristen's kids are left in the care of their maternal grandmother Sheryl Luria ( Christine Lahti ). Unfortunately she is being seduced by Leland Townsend (Michael Emerson - Lost (2005) ), which distracts her from her babysitting duties. Meanwhile, the girls have some friends over for a sleep-over. This includes a new girl who never takes her halloween mask off, and urges the others to indulge in ever creepier games.
Dr. Kristen Bouchard ( Katja Herbers ) dreams about George the Dream Demon again. She tells her psychiatrist, Dr. Boggs (Kurt Fuller - Supernatural ), who gives her a tip on how to control her lucid dreaming. This is just a version of the way she defeated George in the first episode, so she should have been able to come up with it herself instead of needing the shrink to justify his cameo appearance.
Kristen is called in to investigate a suspected miracle. An ethnic Chinese woman named Grace seems to be a Prophet. God speaks to her in Cantonese, she translates it into English, and the Vatican has matched it to English-language translations of a set of prophecies in Italian from the sixteenth century.
It turns out that the Prophet has overstayed her visa. The US Federal government is out to deport her. Vatican City, being a sovereign government, could offer her its protection if it desired. Instead she faces being sent to a re-education camp in Red China.
Leland is dating Kristen's mother ( Christine Lahti ), and gets invited to dinner so he can meet the extended family. Naturally Kristen takes an extreme reaction to his intrusion. But will grandma heed her daughter's warning and skip out on the best sex of her life?
The Vatican has sent a special team of investigators to interrogate our heroes. These investigators have a partial copy of the Italian prophecy, and they want what the Prophet wrote to fill in the gaps. Of special interest is a diagram of sigils, which are basically the heraldic emblems of the demons.
Leland gives himself a new pastime. Although the previous episode emphasised his work for the District Attorney's office, this week he is busy recruiting victims for his private practice. Specifically he recruits young men who are involuntary celibates, then encourages their frustration to manifest itself as anger. Then he nudges them into joining an online forum which amplifies their rage and excludes any other viewpoints. Although both sides have such echo chambers, the incels are portrayed as being ultra-patriotic Americans so we know exactly who this army of straw-men is parodying.
Dr. Kristen Bouchard ( Katja Herbers ) is called in to investigate another demonic possession. The possessee claims that she killed someone while under demonic influence. She tells the priest that since the judicial system does not acknowledge demons, the defence of demonic possession will not be allowed, and thus the possessed woman will be found guilty. Since she is familiar with the court system, she should be familiar with the verdict of Not guilty by means of insanity. After all, the possessee is a mentally ill person and the exorcist is basically a witch-doctor.
Kristen has a friend who is a homicide detective in the NYPD, and happens to be working on the exact case that is referenced by the possessee. This puts Kristen under some pressure, as her cop buddy wants to further her own career and solve the case.
Kristen is sent along with the Priest to interview his estranged father, so they can find the truth about the demonic sigil that appears in his paintings. The father is now hanging out at a hippy commune. His friends invite Kristen and the priest to stay for the night. Unfortunately our heroes get doped with halucinogenic drugs, so what they think they see there might not exactly be accurate.
Bottom line, the sigil is a metaphor for slavery. Not all slavery, just the Dixie-land slavery that was ended with Lincoln's emancipation proclaimation in the 1860s. Yes, once again we are reminded that the USA has structural racism against African Americans.
The tech guy is unable to go on the mission this week. Instead he attends an ADR session for the Ghost-facers show he appeared in. The good news is that he gets to see the actress that he flirted with in that episode. The bad news is that she never returned his calls so she evidently has changed her mind about dating him.
The actress accuses her white male boss of treating People of Colour worse than whites. Then she destroys the production company's expensive property, and tells her boss that the Human Resources Department will prevent her from getting fired. Yes, virtue signalling and a complete lack of consequences.
While Kristen is away, her husband the mountaineer returns home. He gets filled in on a few things by her mother ( Christina Lahti ), and the four daughters try to get him up to date on things like the VR game from a few episodes ago.
The woman who was victim of an exorcism a couple of episodes ago is now suing the Priest and the Church for the torturing her. David has a new Bishop, thanks to the Vatican's interference, and they have appointed a lawyer to defend him. She is the sister of his dead ex-girlfriend, which means there is lots of personal angst. On the other hand, Kirsten's husband is back so it makes sense that David would get a new love interest as well.
The exorcism storyline seems influenced by the movie The Exorcism of Emily Rose , about the criminal trial of an exorcist who killed his patient. Despite the fact that the movie was based on a real-life story about an innocent woman who died an unnecessary death because her mental illness was treated by witch-doctors instead of actual doctors ... this show takes the side of the superstitious.
Despite there being a professional lawyer on the case, kristen is the one who works out that the trick is to go on the offensive - and pass the blame onto someone else. Do they point out that the woman's husband was gaslighting her, because he was part of a criminal conspiracy? No, they attack the psychiatric profession instead. Yes, they are one step above the Scientologists now.
Leland Townsend (Michael Emerson - Lost (2005) ) is still up to his old tricks. He is still priming the lonely involuntary celibate towards some act of violence. He even introduces the incel to a firearms expert whom he refers to as one of the fifty nine people in this world that I trust, implying that he and the gunman are members of the fraternity of sixty demons.
To prove the show's political agenda, the villain uses loaded terms like red pill moment. This might actually be a bit more convincing if the show's main agenda was to prove that superstition is real and that science (or at least psychiatry) is hoakum. In other words, it is propaganda of the worst kind.
The Exorcists are called to a school where some teenage schoolgirls have started compulsively humming a tune. Kristen deduces it is just a catchy tune, and traces the cause to an Internet influencer. Despite the Internet being an International Network, as its name would suggest, this influencer lives in the same city as them. Very convenient for the plot!
The previous episode attempted to debunk the science of psychology. This week it is the turn of the Internet, which is shown as a danger to easily influenced children. Maybe the parents should just switch off the kids' electronic devices, and let the youngsters go play in traffic or take candy from strangers in the park.
One of Kristen's many daughters is bullied by another girl. She goes to her grandmother ( Christina Lahti ) for advice, and grandma tells the child to stand up for herself. Unfortunately Grandma's advice comes from her boyfriend Leland Townsend (Michael Emerson - Lost (2005) ).
After the epilogue of the previous episode, David the trainee priest gets hospitalised. A fellow African-American patient warns him that their nurse is a racist and a serial killer. Given that the show already addressed the issue of systemic racism in the medical industry in episode Evil (2019) [Season 1, Episode 2] 177 Minutes , this seems a bit repetitive.
Kristen and the tech support guy investigate David's case themselves. Well, Kristen has a low opinion of the cop officially assigned to the case She has her detective friend from Evil (2019) [Season 1, Episode 7] Vatican III assigned to the case, although David's former shrink Jenny does most of the work. Not only do they track down the stabber, they also link him to the creepy VR game character Rose. Yes, not only only is there a non-demonic explanation but David and his crew knew about the suspect before they even met Kristen.
Strangely, this episode does not feature Leland Townsend (Michael Emerson - Lost (2005) ) or his demonic cabal. In fact, it does not seem to be part of the show's overall story arc.
A mediocre stand-up comedian is invited home by a beautiful woman. We get hints that something is wrong, but this leads into something greater in the main storyline.
David the trainee priest gets left off to do a solo job. Things go very badly for him, as he ends up trapped in a revenge scenario. This involves the genocide in Rwanda, that long-forgotten massacre of Tutsis by their Hutu neighbours. The comedian's crime was to make jokes about the Tutsis, which may have contributed to the genocidal culture. His defence is that he was merely punching up against authority.
What makes this such a great storyline to explore serious issues is that it is removed from the American context - which is what made Star Trek such a great exploration of contemporary issues. The fact the genocide was black-on-black violence means that it is not clouded with the usual American version of racism.
Kristen is busy appearing in court. The serial killer she interviewed in the first episode has put in an appeal, as the killer from a different episode has confessed to the crimes. Of course, Leland Townsend (Michael Emerson - Lost (2005) ) is masterminding the whole thing. He tries his Hannibal Lector mind-games on Kristen, and literally threatens her with the biblical trials of Job.
One of Kristen's daughters suddenly takes ill. The father takes her to hospital, and conducts a Buddhist prayer ritual for her. He is willing to trade his own life for his child's. So if the girl is miraculously cured ... which supernatural entity will get the credit, and what will the cost be?
Kristen's husband is out of town, in Denver for the week. She is visited by George the friendly dream demon. The good news is that she has mastered lucid dreaming. The bad news is that this just invites intervention from Goat-boy, the one who is pulling Leland's strings. It may be that Goat-boy is just a figment of her nightmares, but he pops up in other peoples' dreams too.
Leland Townsend (Michael Emerson - Lost (2005) ) is pulling the strings of the serial killer he got released. The killer drops by Kristen's house to say hello. She uses her Missing White Woman superpower by making a hoax call to the cops about him. Things escalate from there, and Kristen does something very bad.
David and the tech guy investigate a pregnant woman who claims that one of her unborn twins is possessed. It turns out that this might be linked to other cases, such as the young boy in Evil (2019) [Season 1, Episode 4] Rose 390.
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Dr. Kristen Bouchard ( Katja Herbers ) is stressed after her off-screen antics in last Season's finale. Luckily she has her psychiatrist, Dr. Boggs (Kurt Fuller - Supernatural ), to confide in. She justifies it by saying she did it to protect her daughters. Ironically, one of the girls has now grown vampiric fangs.
The good news is that the Exorcism team have a new customer. The bad news is that he is Leland Townsend (Michael Emerson - Lost (2005) ). While Kristen was the main target in Season One, Leland now focuses on the tech-support guy.
The team investigate a man who claims to be possessed ... by an archangel. His symptoms include developing an artistic streak, and a judgemental Old Testament outlook. The priest also has visions of the archangel, who makes references to God's next apocalypse.
Leland Townsend (Michael Emerson - Lost (2005) ) decides to call off the wedding to Kristen's mother Sybil ( Christina Lahti ). She does not react in the predicted way. Leland also has time to make confession to Father David.
Dr. Kristen Bouchard ( Katja Herbers ) helps the police with their enquiries. Her struggles to justify what she did to her enemy, just as the priest offers justification for God's next apocalypse.
The team investigate Leland's list of demons. They trace a young girl, apparently a pyromaniac, who is in foster-care of a muslim woman ( Zuleika Robinson ). Rather than a demonic possession, this girl is subject to the attentions of a Djinn. As a result, they must do both Catholic and Islamic exorcisms.
Dr. Kristen Bouchard ( Katja Herbers ) is feeling a burning urge of her own. This is a sexual urge, since her husband has been gone for months. She even dresses up and cruises a singles bar. Is this an overreaction since she became a murderer?
Kristen's mother Sybil ( Christina Lahti ) hires a psychiatrist, Dr. Boggs (Kurt Fuller - Supernatural ), to confide in.
David concentrates on his priestly duties, such as trying to exorcise Leland Townsend (Michael Emerson - Lost (2005) ). Unfortunately Leland knows how to push David's buttons, and makes him think that the Catholic Church is prejudiced against Black people. Nobody points out that most African-Americans are other religions, such as Baptist or Muslim. Also, the vast number of Latino Catholic priests is not mentioned. Instead, David racialises everything ... and when the boss tries to talk sense into him, it comes across as an oppressive racist patriarchy.
Dr. Kristen Bouchard ( Katja Herbers ) and the Arab techie carry on without David, and get a job investigating the case of a missing boy. To fill the team out, she takes her daughters to work. Well, the girls have not been seen in a few episodes - so now the show is like Medium .
The mysterious disappearance involves an online dare game played on an elevator, and the mythical Thirteenth Floor of the apartment building. Apparently the building is haunted.` Will the team discover ghosts instead of demons, or is there a more scientific explanation?
The title storyline concerns a young black girl who likes Asian zombie movies like Train To Busan . She lives next door to Dr. Kristen Bouchard ( Katja Herbers ), and is best friends with one of the blonde daughters. The two girls investigate a local zombie sighting. It turns out that this is a hard-pushed metaphor, with the zombies being an allegory for over-worked manual labourers.
There is a bad case of cultural appropriation. While the zombie myths were part of the ancient West African Houdoun religion, here they are attributed to slave-owners on Haiti. This all comes from a local voodoo priestess, who should know better. Well, this show tends to assume that the Catholic Church is the only true church and all other religions are just satanic conspiracies. She makes a magic concoction to free the allegorical slaves, and a different one to affect the so-called slave-master. There is no red pill, of course, but the children naively follow her advice anyway.
The main story concerns the priest who has been conducting exorcism rituals on Leland Townsend (Michael Emerson - Lost (2005) ). It seems that the priest has relapsed as a gambling addict, probably influenced by online advertising. In a brief nod to a previous episode, Evil (2019) [Season 2, Episode 3] F Is for Fire, we discover that Kristen is still suffering from sexual frustration.
The conclusion is dramatically cynical. Miracles have a scientific explanation, and a black man can be corrupted by power just as much as a white man.
It is a dark and creepy night, and a policeman stops a car in a dodgy neighbourhood. The driver, whose racial and gender identity choices are not apparent, pulls a pistol - so the cop shoots to kill. The twist is, the cop is white and the dead suspect is a black woman. Naturally the do-called good guys assume the cop is a racist idiot instead of just a regular trigger-happy one.
The cop is a practising Catholic, and claims to have been possessed when he shot the suspect. After all, only demonic possession could make him imagine he saw a pistol. It turns out that the cop has a tattoo of a demonic sigil. A lot of cops have them, influenced by a popular police drama. The team then interview the TV showrunner, in a spectacular piece of location shooting. He denies that police brutality is a case of life imitating art, but also claims that his show's POC police hero is responsible for a 30% increase in POC police recruitment.
The b-plot follows a different police investigation. Dr. Kristen Bouchard ( Katja Herbers ) is still a police suspect in the off-screen murder from last Season. Luckily the investigating officer is Kristen's friend. Also, Kristen can always count on one of her duaghters as an alibi witness. However, there is a complication. Kristen's mother Sybil ( Christina Lahti ) may have been dumped by Leland, but she still has her own agenda. She has even begun worshipping at a strange pagan altar, which is portrayed as a lot more satanic than the Voodoo in last episode.
Kristen is okay with being a premeditated murderer. In contrast, we are meant to believe the cop is a bad guy because he shot a suspect and he has a Protector tattoo. Kristen's detective friend relates a similar story, illustrating how easy it is to panic in such circumstances. But will the detectives be willing to cover up for Kirsten's murder? Is it a toxic example of White Privilege to show white cops turning a blind eye to murder - and worse, blaming it on a black male suspect? In a sense, this show is no better than the cop shows it criticises.
The team investigate a suspected sainthood miracle at a monastery. It is a silent order, so the entire episode takes place with almost no spoken dialogue.
Dr. Kristen Bouchard ( Katja Herbers ) befriends a young nun who could almost be her kid sister. This nun has wounds that resemble stigmata, so could be a second miracle.
There is also a mysterious wooden cabinet that is supposed to contain a demon.
Dr. Kristen Bouchard ( Katja Herbers ) gets drunk in the bathtub, so her mother Sybil ( Christina Lahti ) looks after the kids. Mr Bouchard arrives back after his two-month trip, so Kristen finally gets to satisfy her sexual frustration. The husband discovers that his wife has become belligerent and angry. Almost as if she has become empowered by getting away with murder.
The team investigate a scientific device that stimulates patients' brains and giving them religious visions. The Arab volunteers to be a patient, and has a disturbing vision of his mother and the succubus. Then Kristen has her turn.
The team investigate a UFO sighting, in the theory that it might be an Angel. The original spotter is a USAF pilot, but the other pilots claim they did not see anything. The Bishop has a big file with forty years of UFO reportings. Kristen assumes that the UFO reports are all hoaxes. Then she reads the reports, and changes her mind. Her reason to assume a conspiracy theory is that the witnesses were female and were assumed to be hysterical. This episode stretches the conspiracy theory even further - the two witnesses are black women, while the people in the coverup are white and mostly male.
As well as the paranoia about systemic racism or misogyny, there is a more straightforward conspiracy theory too. US Homeland Security secretly claim that the UFO was a Russian Drone. However, the Vatican's Intelligence Service seems to take the opposite view. Yes, Kristen and her buddies are clearly the B-Team while the Vatican has its own A-Team of experts for the important cases. Anyway, the witnesses are subject to external pressure - with bribes that might further their careers. After all, the conspiracy theory is that black women are not allowed to earn stuff by means of a straightforward meritocracy, and rely on participation trophies instead.
Kristen has problems of her own. In the previous episode she beat up a man who was rude to her. Now her husband takes her to her shrink for couples counselling, It turns out that the beating was caught on the cell-phones of many witnesses, and although the police do not seem to have been involved the videos have gone viral. Kristen's mother secretly shows them to the kids, which leads to problems at their nun-run school.
David the Priest suspects that his laptop is bugged. Well, he did exactly the same thing to Leland. Has the devil-worshipper turned the tables on the priest?
Leland has issues with his secret shrink, the goat-faced demon that apparently only he can see. Which raises a question - what did Kristen's mother see when she visited Leland?
Kristen and the team investigate the pregnancy clinic that treated her. The third one of Kristen's daughters was born as a result of that clinic's work. If the clinic is working with Leland and impregnating women with demonic babies, is Kristen's third daughter one of the demons?
The daughter is having trouble with her body-image, courtesy of an online interviewer. In the days of Buffy the Vampire Slayer , characters like the Influencer would be a metaphor for demons. This show makes it all a bit more rational. However, the daughter appears to have a prehensile tail with a life of its own.
Leland invites Kristen's mother to a party, and lets her meet one of her friends. His plan in the long-run is to lure her into his circle. Strangely, he has a new strategy to corrupt people.
The case this episode is for the benefit of the IRS, the US government's taxation body. The New Church of Satan has applied for tax-free status, and the IRS has asked rival churches to investigate whether these Satanists constitute a proper religion.
Kirsten has been spiralling out of control for a few episodes now. She started the Season as a murderer, then had a series of halucinations, and now her behaviour goes totally overboard. When the medication fails to handle her delusions, she becomes paranoid about her psychiatrist and fires him because she thinks he is sleeping with her mother. Yes, the same mother who is still living in the guest bedroom.
Leland's exorcism enters the climactic phase. He exhibits some incredible symptoms, like those of Regan in the movie The Exorcist . Luckily for him, he has Kristen's mother to help him through the pain.
The nun discovers that Leland wants to take Kristen's job again. The last time he did it, she was working for the DA's office. Now he offers to work for the Catholic Church … for free. After all, who better to help an Exorcist than a former victim of possession?
David begins to have doubts about joining the priesthood. His friend the Protestant minister is busy organising a BLM protest, and has no time for what he calls the hocus-pocus of organised religion. In contrast, the nun insists that the Church's most important role is the magical war against Satan. The Protestant counters that the Catholic Exorcists are all about the theatrics. Cue the introduction of Gregory, a layman Exorcist who seems to be a cosplayer for Jack Crowe in John Carpenter's Vampire$ .
The psychiatrist (Kurt Fuller - Supernatural ) refers one of his patients to Kristen. However, he tags along to take notes on the Exorcism. Soon the man of science begins to see the same so-called halucinations that Kristen was seeing.
The psychiatrist's patient is victim of demonic infestation due to a creepy porcelain doll. By incredible coincidence, Kristen's eldest daughter is babysitter for a young boy who also has a creepy porcelain doll. The doll mysteriously stows away in her bag when she goes home. The younger sisters discover that this doll is a duplicate for the creepy doll on the altar of their grandmother ( Christine Lahti ). Is it wrong to worship dolls? Well, the Catholics in this show are portrayed as surrounding themselves with crucifixes and statues of Mary (formerly the Virgin Mary).
The team has a new case, that of a young man who has urges of cannibalism. It turns out that he has specif urges, to eat the body of one of the satanic cultists. Each demonic sigil is linked in a line of succession that is carried down by means of a passing-on ceremony.
The shrink asks the Nun for advice, and she tells him to stop looking for excuses to not believe in magic. Yes, she is a blatant science denier. Also, it turns out that she is a better demon-fighter than all of the priests and exorcists in the Church.
Leland is still messing with Kristen's head, specifically by letting her work out he befriended her daughter. She has a terrible struggle to work out if she should comit a second murder. After all, she felt more regret over her brief marital infidelity than she did over killing someone. She even expressed somewhat sociopathic feelings (or lack thereof) in a previous episode. Will she walk into Leland's trap?
David is finally about to be made a full priest. But the closer his date comes, the more his sex addiction seems to be coming back. Will he and Kristen, the female lead, ever manage to fulfill their contractually-obligated sexual tension? And if he was a real priest, would he absolve a mortal sin like murder just as easily as the corrupt cops did?