blogging by Andrew Wickliffe

Evil (2019) s03e04 – The Demon of the Road

“Evil”’s original conceit was a supernatural procedural. Hot priest-to-be Mike Colter, hot-but-appropriately-aged psychiatrist Katja Herbers, and funny and cute tech guy Aasif Mandvi investigate cases and prove they’re either not supernatural, or their solution gets left up in the air, but the danger abates.

It’s changed over the seasons, though this episode leans in heavy on the religious people—both Churchy and Demonic—are just more susceptible to hallucination, whether through brain chemistry or mental health conditions. Not important. Yet. Maybe next episode.


The show’s always maintained the procedural element—they’re demon-busters on a mission from God (well, the Christian god, well, the Catholic god)–but often mysteries get solved off-screen or not at all or don’t even turn out to be mysteries. Sometimes the approach makes “Evil” better; sometimes, it makes it worse. This episode is straight procedural and for the better. The demon-busters get a case, they investigate, they solve.

It ties into the overarching “cannibal demon cults” plot line, with some biggish reveals; it’s subplots for Herbers’s family, Andrea Martin’s got a big subplot where Michael Emerson’s successfully relying on the Catholic Church’s misogyny to force her to retire. But it’s a mystery episode, first and foremost.

And it’s a good, creepy, fun mystery.

Trucker KeiLyn Durrel Jones has a strange experience driving one night and blacks out. When he gets home, he starts sleepwalking and getting scary to his wife, Jennean Farmer. She goes to Colter, who agrees to investigate the case (it’s unclear why his boss didn’t want to take it).

So Colter, Herbers, and Mandvi road trip to upstate New York and have a creepy experience with a possible drone, possible flying demon. They spend the rest of the episode solving the case while having bizarre experiences related to it. It’s all perfectly straightforward.

The other subplots range in prominence. It seems like Martin’s is important, even bringing in Kurt Fuller for an appearance, but then doing nothing with him after implying they would. Herbers’s worried about not setting a good example for her daughters—as a self-advocating woman—but it ends up just reminding why her husband, Patrick Brammall, is such a dipshit.

The demon cults is just the last scene reveal, though it does figure in—at least somewhat—to Martin’s story.

Good direction from Peter Sollett, decent script (credited to Dewayne Darian Jones). It’s not a big swing “Evil,” but it’s an assured, successful one.

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