tek's rating: ½

The Exorcist, on FOX
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Caution: spoilers.

This 2016 series is based on the 1971 novel of the same name, and the film series it spawned. (I watched the first movie for the first time not long before this series premiered, 43 years after the film was released.)

So, there's this priest named Father Tomas Ortega, who has a parish in Chicago, which I guess was in serious decline, before he took over. He's made great strides there, so he's been noticed by the higher-ups. However, he's recently started having some dreams about a priest named Father Marcus Keane, involving an exorcism Marcus had attempted some time ago in Mexico. Meanwhile, one of Tomas's parishioners, Angela Rance (Geena Davis), approaches Tomas with concerns about her daughter, Katherine ("Kat"), who experienced a tragic accident recently in which a friend of hers died. Since then, Kat has hardly left her bedroom, and is very sullen and withdrawn, I guess. Also, Angela says strange things have been happening, such as hearing voices in the walls. So she believes a demon is trying to take Kat, or whatever. Tomas doesn't really believe in literal demons, but he agrees to come and talk to Kat. However, it soon turns out that it's not Kat who's possessed, it's her younger (probably mid to late teens) sister Casey. Also I need to mention that Angela's husband Henry (Alan Ruck) suffered some kind of brain injury, several months ago. So... sometimes he seems pretty lucid, and sometimes not so much. And at one point, he (quite randomly) tells Tomas where to find Father Marcus. It seems Marcus is now living in a sort of retirement home for "broken priests." So Tomas goes there and talks to him, but Marcus cautions him against getting involved in all this demonic stuff. However, Marcus later shows up at Tomas's apartment to offer help with the case. I also need to mention that Tomas has a "friend" named Jessica, an unhappily married woman who may be a romantic interest, as much as Tomas insists otherwise. Meanwhile, there are a lot of demonic possessions in the area, and murders, and... I dunno. The show just gets progressively creepier, as the story progresses.

Um... well, I wrote my initial entry about the show after the first two episodes, I think, and then didn't do anything with the review until some weeks after the show had ended. (It was ten episodes long.) So I'm sure there are lots of details I've forgotten. There's a priest named Brother Bennett, who has a rocky past with Marcus. And now Bennett is in Chicago, investigating some strange stuff, like demonic infiltration of the local church leaders (some of the higher-ups that had taken an interest in Tomas), and various other important local people. And I guess the Pope is supposed to come to town (which happens at the end of the season), so the demons are plotting something drastic, when that happens. Meanwhile, Tomas and Marcus try to exorcise the demon that has possessed Casey. And partway through the season, Angela's mother shows up (played by Sharon Gless), at which point I thought the show became a lot more interesting than it had been, because of a revelation about Angela that I absolutely refuse to spoil.

Beyond that, I don't want to say any more about the plot. The first season was okay, but I'm glad it was fairly short, because I'm not sure it would have held my interest if it had lasted much longer. And when the second season started, I decided not to watch it. (Of course, it's entirely possible if I did watch it, I'd end up liking it more than the first season.)


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