“I know you, Jesse Custer. I know that deep down; you’re a bad, bad man.”
Preacher is an American television series developed by Evan Goldberg, Seth Rogen and Sam Catlin for AMC starring Dominic Cooper. It is an adaptation of the comic book series created by Garth Ennis and Steve Dillon, and published by DC Comics’ Vertigo. It premiered on May 22nd 2016 and has been renewed for another season in 2017.
Fulfilling a promise to his deceased father, one-time outlaw Jesse Custer (Dominic Cooper) returns home to West Texas to take over his dad’s church. Jesse’s mission, however, becomes twisted when his body is overcome by a cryptic force that unleashes within him a highly unconventional power. Together with hell-raising ex-girlfriend Tulip (Ruth Negga) and Irish vagabond Cassidy (Joseph Gilgun), the preacher-in-training embarks on a journey to find God in a world inhabited by holy, hellish, and everything-in-between characters.
After hearing this series had been officially announced honestly I had very little confidence they could translate the comic into television. I was doubtful it would be able to retain its dark humour and storylines. But, I was wrong. Of course it’s not an exact copy, the story has been altered and changed to suit its medium but damn it’s still good. I take back all my concerns and casting worries and urge you to watch this, comic fan or not.
The TV show and the comic are most certainly different animals and I’d encourage anyone who loves the original source material like me to try to let it go while watching this. I found after I tried to not think about what was supposed to be coming next or what each character was supposed to be like, it was much more enjoyable. Similar to any book being made into a film, one cannot be compared to the other because they’re very different.
(Jesse and Tulip knew each other as children and lived with his father, but wait…what? Oh never mind…)
Preacher’s pilot series is equal parts dark and funny, it doesn’t waste any time and the first episode introduces our main trio with a bang. I have to say those three (Jesse, Cassidy and Tulip) are the best parts of the show as were their comic counterparts.
The casting of Ruth Negga for the role of Tulip O’Hare was widely criticized online due to her ethnicity and I can’t lie, from my first look I was disappointed she didn’t look like her drawn version. But after seeing her in action all I have to say is, fuck that, she’s badass and I’m very happy she was chosen instead of someone boring just over a look. Her relationship with Jesse did initially confuse me but after their entire “Carlos” backstory was revealed it makes more sense and I can see why they wanted to keep them apart at first. Additionally, I disliked Cassidy and Tulip being “intimate” and thought it was curious to get that important betrayal subplot beginning so soon already but I presume they wanted to sow the seeds early so they can bring it back around later on.
Another widely criticized part of season one was the case of Cassidy’s missing sunglasses! Towards the end of the entire Preacher comic book series a dark secret is revealed about Cassidy’s past that paints him in a completely different light and it reveals the mystery behind his permanent accessory. But, it seems in the TV series that’s non-existent although he does have a series of hilarious outdoor disguises to venture into the sunlight. So, I guess I can forgive them if they keep more of those coming.
Lastly, Dominic Cooper’s casting as Jesse Custer. I actually highly approve of this and have done ever since it was revealed. Dominic Cooper is an actor crush of mine so getting him to play the handsomely drawn Jesse is like a dream and I’m really happy to see him in a decent role again. Jesse is great to follow, with his conflicting interests and the power of Genesis inside him. He also gets to have one of the funniest moments in the series, with the Fiore and DeBlanc (angels) and Cassidy.
Overall, the pilot series of Preacher impressed me very much. It debuts some very well-known characters in ways I didn’t expect and I’m intrigued to see what comes next now that we’re leaving Annville. My favourite part is that every episode manages to get a laugh out of me and the gorey scenes are never unnecessary; everything feels very plot relevant.
Preacher - Season 1
The Final Score - 9/10
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