TV Review: The Exorcist 1×02 “Chapter Two: Lupus in Fabula”

Episode two of The Exorcist doesn’t waste any time getting to the creepy possessions. In the first scene there is a kid who’s apparently attempting an exorcism on a possessed ghoul-looking individual. Well, this can’t go right, can it? The action moves to the Rance household where Angela (Geena Davis) is walking around the house at night in the dark, only to witness her daughter Casey (Hannah Kasula) uttering the words “so fresh.” What’s so fresh, Casey? The air in the house? The nightgown you’re wearing? Your hair smelling fresh? Wait, it’s just a demonic possession doing the talking. Got it.

The the opening intro for the show doesn’t have The Exorcist theme music anymore, now replaced by some goofy intro music that made me think it was stolen from the Fox Kids show Eerie Indiana that I used to watch after school. This is not a compliment by any means. Meanwhile, Father Tomas (Alfonso Herrera) attempts to convince the archdiocese to take a look into the Rance family’s situation. He gets a swift refusal. Just when Casey is back to normal, Momma Rance discovers a snake in the bedroom. Hope just went out the window.

Apparently Father Keane (Ben Daniels) is not only an exorcism expert, but he’s quite the intruder, as Father Keane randomly finds himself inside Father Tomas’ apartment. Keane offers to help Tomas with any necessary exorcism; who knew it was that easy to find a demon hunter? An innocent game of Jenga at the Rance household turns testy when Kat confronts the parents about going to Father Tomas in regards to Casey’s strange behavior. Yup, now we know who the family’s loudmouth snitch is.

The church soup kitchen isn’t a safe place for Casey either. She’s confronted by a disheveled man who claims to “know” her, tells her that “he chose you,” not to mention that she’s “so special,” so of course he proceeds to want to touch her. Definitely creepy. The man resembles a dirty looking Paul Giamatti. Thankfully, Father Keane was around to get the intruder out of the church.

The relationship between Tomas and Jessica is further explored. She’s clearly coming onto him and offering to take him shopping (in hopes he dons the priest clothing) and she even calls him handsome in Spanish (guapo). All the attempts are to no avail. He’s not leaving his calling for heryet. Father Keane decides to look for trouble by heading to some rough neighborhood of Chicago. He unceremoniously uncovers (literally) a possessed woman. Keane attempts to perform a mini exorcism right on these mean streets of Chicago, but does not succeed.

FOX

FOX

Yet another awkward family dinner at the Rance household. Are the only scenes we will be seeing of this family are when they are eating? Kudos to sticking to their family values. Leave it to sneaky Angela to prepare dinner and purposely only fill Casey’s glass with Holy Water, which she does end up sipping on. Casey isn’t much for holding that Holy Water down, as she runs to the bathroom to puke it out. Oh, she also ends up pulling out a 12-foot-long centipede-like insect out of her mouth, so there’s that.

What’s the seldom-seen Tomas doing in this episode? He’s having another confrontation with Keane, but this time Keane reveals a bit about his past. It is explained that Keane’s father killed his mother and he was raised in the church, which is where he witnessed his first demon at age twelve. The result of this encounter is that the two seem to agree to finally work together. Well it’s about time, fellas.

So the kid who’s riding his bike in bits and parts of the episode is finally seen getting back home. He walks in and his family members are getting their throats slashed, and soon after he becomes a victim. The body parts are shown being cut-up and thrown into containers, and a few men walk out of the house with them. Whoa, this show just got really dark and gory. We’ve been officially put on notice as to the lengths Fox is willing to go. In the final scene, Keane is watching the news and hearing about the Inglewood murders, then proceeds to look out the window and stare at a sign that shows a man (looks like a Pope) turned with his back and reads “He Is Coming.”

Episode two was a lot different than the first one. Much less focus on Father Tomas, more plotlines spread apart, which is a good thing. We find out more about Father Keane’s background. The continuation of the Rance family’s demonic saga. However, the biggest takeaway was how dark this show is becoming. A lot more demons make appearances throughout, and that last scene was pretty disturbing. Definitely pushing television boundaries. I’m intrigued of what’s to come of this show and looking forward to the next episode.

Rating: 8/10

Jim Alexander is one of the co-founders of the Chicago Independent Film Critics Circle (CIFCC). He has been a staff writer at TheMovieBlog.com since 2014. He helped develop and host the “Correct Opinion Podcast.” Jim has written for Screenrant.com and contributed to the Australian movie site Cinemazzi.com. He is the United States Film and Entertainment Reporter for BBC’s 5 Live radio show. In addition to his interest in film, he also hosts the “Bachelor Universe” blog and podcast, centered on the ABC show The Bachelor. Jim graduated with a MA in Journalism from DePaul University. He is a die-hard Chicago Bulls and Bears fan. Born in Chicago, but raised in Poland, he grew up playing soccer and remains an avid fan of the sport. He is passionate about film and strives to incorporate new and innovative ways to present film criticism. He currently resides in a suburb outside of Chicago, IL.
  • Li Tempo

    I found the first one quite atmospheric with some good acting. The script may not be Blatty, but it held my interest.