blogging by Andrew Wickliffe

Evil (2019) s03e08 – The Demon of Parenthood

As the end of season three approaches, “Evil” seemingly does a soft reset and closes off two big outstanding story arcs. The mysterious, demonic fertility clinic–which the gang discovered, I think, in the first season and have been waiting seasons to resolve–might finally be done. And then Li Jun Li’s maybe reincarnated Jesus, a Chinese woman imprisoned in a labor camp. What’s strange about the closures is the show not really getting anything else going in their place, especially since they just wound down the Andrea Martin arc without any fanfare.

I mean, Kurt Fuller’s continued dalliances with Michael Emerson in pursuit of literary success at demonic cost. And then Katja Herbers and Mike Colter are in a fight after she realizes he’s been keeping important things from her (and Aasif Mandvi, who doesn’t seem to care). But they’re not on the outs; they’re just trying radical honesty, including about Colter hanging out with Vatican secret agent Brian d’Arcy James.

Colter’s mission this episode involves giving James a code word, only Colter mistakenly gives him the wrong code word by accident. Although Colter’s good and Aisha Tyler’s direction is solid, it’s a somewhat sophomoric arc.

Meanwhile, Herbers finds out her missing egg has been implanted into a woman, Lauren Norvelle, who is rapidly approaching her due date. Norvelle’s husband, Charlie Semine, is pretty sure the baby’s demonic. And Herbers is having night terrors involving daughter Maddy Crocco (who everyone just assumes is demonic) and demon Marti Matulis.

Crocco’s got her own subplot with Christine Lahti, who takes Crocco to work to show her the demonic boss (also Matulis, unfortunately, they missed a great chance at a Ted Danson cameo). The fallout from that meeting could change the entire trajectory of the main plot.

The series’ main plot, not the episode main plot, which is ostensibly about demonic toys from a toy shop. People are buying toys, taking them home, then discovering they’ve changed to be in some way frightening. They don’t spend much time on the investigation besides Mandvi’s forensic stuff because it’s all a red herring to set up Colter’s secret agent arc.

Herbers’s nightmarish arc with the expecting couple offsets Colter’s antics pretty well, but if “Evil” keeps going in this new direction… it’s hard to say what next season may hold. It’ll depend on what arcs make it. About the only one they have left is Herbers’s husband, Patrick Bramell, who Emerson and Lahti are torturing for eternity.

Get that one wrapped up, and it’s back to square one.

Oh, the script—credit to Sarah Acosta—is sometimes silly and usually too perfunctory, but it’s got the best cursing in the show since its move to streaming.

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