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Damien – S1E2 – Second Death

Previously on Damien

We’re straight into the action at the beginning of this second episode. We’re in Chile, where an exorcism is taking place in inclement conditions. The Lord’s work is being done by a lady who’s quite passionate about her faith and choice of career. A little bit of rain won’t stop her from casting out demons, and she’s so good at what she does that Rome wants her back, A.S.A.P. The Church has a problem, and right now that problem is researching his heritage using the Good Book and a yellow highlighter. But before the exorcist can log on to Expedia, a priest back in New York hires someone to assassinate Damien with one of the last remaining daggers of Meggido. He then dies of a heart attack. Let me ask you: who’d be a priest on this show?

Images: A&E

Images: A&E 

Damien’s good friend, Amani Golkar, tells him to cop on and get to Kellie’s funeral – which he does, eventually. He spots his would-be assassin from the corner of his eye, but he’s done a runner before Damien can investigate further. (It was the hoodie that gave him away. Let that be a lesson to all you would-be assassins.) In a scene reminiscent of The Omen, Damien experiences discomfort on hallowed ground. Rather than rant and rave like a little brat, he rushes out and pukes on the steps. He’s followed out by his new admirer, Ann Rutledge, who expresses her own dislike for funerals and anything to do with God’s plan, etc.

I-dont-do-funerals-either

In perhaps the best scene in this episode, Damien rails against a well-meaning priest back at Kellie’s family’s home. When it is suggested to him that he try and find some solace in this faith, Damien gets on a soap-box and to the obvious distress of family and friends, calls God a sadistic prick who’s playing a cruel joke on everybody. Yeah, that goes down well at funerals, right? He then takes time out to have a walkabout in the poorer sections of town, just him and his camera.

DamienS1E2 Bradley James as Damien Thorn

In what I hope will be a regular thing with Damien, there is the obligatory violent death scene. After a disturbing encounter with a disfigured young girl, who makes her mark by writing 666 on a window, Damien is set upon by the aforementioned hooded church assassin, who ends up having an unfortunate encounter with a taxi that has veered off course. Nasty. This brings the cops on the scene, with Detective Shay immediately suspicious of the friendly neighborhood antichrist. Ann appears on the scene and announces herself as Damien’s counsel. Back in the house, Simone is going through her dead sister’s stuff and finds references to her visit with Damien to the professor, as well as video footage of Damien’s encounter with the mysterious old woman. She and Amani look like they’ll be closely investigating Damien himself. Simone especially needs answers.

The episode concludes with Ann taking Damien on a trip down memory lane. In the basement of her own house, Ann has a little museum dedicated to Damien, including all the photographs she bought from his employer, as well as the red tricycle five-year-old Damien was riding on the day his mother died. We all remember that scene from the movie, right?

Damien S1E2
  • 7/10
    Plot: The episode starts and ends well, and is a step up from last week’s premiere. It held my attention and I’m on board for next week’s third. - 7/10
  • 6/10
    Dialogue: Still the series’ weak spot. Having said that, though, Damien’s off the cuff rant at the priest was written and performed well - 6/10
  • 7/10
    Action: Atmospheric and effective, especially the death scene. - 7/10
6.7/10

Summary

Damien is getting to know himself better, aided and abetted by his new defender in chief, Ann Rutledge. But events are making his friends and the authorities take a closer look at him and his actions. I like Damien so far. It has the potential to be innovative and ultra-engaging. I wait for the shackles to come off and for the blood to really start pumping and flowing.

I feel like we’re getting to know each of our characters now. But it goes without saying that the Power Couple of the piece are Damien and Ann. Provided these two get all the best lines, and we have some decent character development in our supporting cast, I’ll be happy to hang around. With improved material comes improved performances.

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About James McShane (97 Articles)
James McShane is Irish, and damn proud of it. A recovering caffeine addict, he lives a full life, devoted to his books, friends, family, and Doctor Who calendar collection. His interests include reading three books at once, stalking his favourite people on Facebook, and going for long walks at four in the morning. Insomnia is a bitch. He hopes to be a published author one day, so he should really get around to finishing that damn novel of his.
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