Evil: “Vatican III” Review

Another week, another demonic case.  This week’s episode of Evil wastes no time following up the frustrating ending of last week, while introducing new challenges and demonic forces to face.  But does it hold up compared the mysteries we’ve seen already, or is the whole demonic police procedural starting to feel weary?  Let’s take a closer look at “Vatican III”!

Minor Spoilers: You’ve Been Warned!!!

Conflict of Interest
Following the immigration debacle that ended last week’s episode, this one wastes no time in dealing with the aftermath.  Three representatives arrive from the Vatican itself to interview (perhaps “interrogate” would be a better word) Kristen, David, and Ben regarding their last case.

While the team’s morale is at an all time low, they’re sent to investigate a possible possession, which has already allegedly resulted in three murders.  This however, puts Kristen at odds with an NYPD detective friend of hers, who wants Kristen to come clean and divulge everything she knows about the case.

Given all the craziness Kristen has dealt with recently, why are we just meeting this detective now?!

Their whole dynamic, starting as friends, and ending as philosophical adversaries makes for an interesting character arc for both, however it would have been all the more effective had we met this detective character and gotten to know her several episodes ago.  Because their entire friendship had to be built up, and torn apart just in this episode.

Real Life Threat
Meanwhile, a young, frustrated man named Sebastian, with absolutely no game asks out a girl at a coffee shop, but is immediately shot down.

Leland overhears this rejection, and takes Sebastian under his wing, filling his head with ideas that he needs to take what’s his in order to gain respect for himself.  This leads to him connecting with other “incels” online, as they plot something nasty to do to the women who have repeatedly rejected them.

Since this issues exists in real life, and has even been at the core of some violent incidents, this part of the episode is incredibly compelling.  However, there’s no real guarantee that we’ll get any payoff for it.

What’s even more unsettling than Michael Emerson’s performance (which is already very creepy) is that this is very much how someone like Sebastian could easily be radicalized. Too many lost souls end up being fed toxic information on the internet, and later doing things they shouldn’t.

Thus far, it seems that rather than follow through with all the carnage and chaos that Leland spreads, the series is more interesting with merely showing that he in fact does this.  And there’s nothing inherently wrong with that, but in a serialized series, many come to expect this continuity from one episode to another.

Hitting On All (66)6’s
The true star of this episode however is Annaleigh Ashford, as the possessed Bridget and the demon simply known as “Howard” (because some demons names are just normal-sounding).  She seamlessly switches from normal human to fully demonic with ease, and she provides one of our best closeup looks at a possessed character so far this season.

While her subplot was the main storline, it feels like it deserved more time devoted to it, (perhaps another entire episode).  Hopefully we see more of her in later shows, but given the way the series has operated thus far, that’s probably not likely.

For a series that branded itself a cop drama set around possession, we get surprisingly little possession…

But based on the previews for next week, we do know that Kristen’s  husband was returning, which already puts to bed many rumors that he was actually dead this whole time.  Hopefully it shakes up the narrative a bit, which is starting to get formulaic.

Thus far, Evil seems to exist on the fringes of whether the supernatural is real or not, and each episode seems to relish in demonstrating how science and technology were secretly behind everything.  In a strange way, Evil is the closest we have to an adult version of Scooby Doo!

What did you think of this week’s episodes, and what are your predictions for what is to come?!  Let us know in the comments below!  And for more reviews, rankings, and other fun horror content, follow Halloween Year-Round on Facebook and Twitter!

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