Evil‘s David Acosta has been a priest for all of, what, five minutes? And he’s already bored of the monotony of parish life: the ho-hum confessions, the poorly attended 6 am Masses, the other priests slurping soup at dinner. How lucky for him, then, when The Entity — the super-secret Vatican group that offers “information and assistance” when needed — approaches him to join their covert ranks.
But does he sign up? And what’s this about someone named Visiting Jack? Read on for the highlights of “The Demon of Memes.”
THE ENTITY ARRIVES | “God wants you to be a friend of the Vatican,” Victor LeConte (Brian d’Arcy James, Smash) informs David when he mysteriously shows up in his room one night. “There’s something happening in New York that is evil… but it is not just supernatural. It is also corporeal,” LeConte says. He informs David that he will get a mission from the Vatican in the coming days, and it’s all very cloak-and-dagger — especially the part where David isn’t allowed to say anything to anyone about what he’s doing. Still, David signs up.
HOME IMPROVEMENT PLAN | Kristen and Andy need $90,000 to add another bathroom and bedroom to their house, but they’re only poised to sell the trekking business for $85,000 and they owe almost that much on their mortgage. Andy suggests that he try to get a higher price for the business. And when he meets with an associate, he learns of a potential buyer who wants to pay $800,000 (!) for the business and scale it up. And when Andy has a videoconference to meet that potential buyer… it’s Sheryl’s infusion pal Eddie, with Leland and Sheryl in the background.
Eddie asks Andy to accompany him to Nepal as part of the deal, and when Andy balks, Edward tosses in $150k more to sweeten the deal. “I don’t really see how we can say no,” Kristen notes later, grimacing as they talk about how he’ll have to be away for three months. “Just don’t die.” A moment later, though, she’s in tears. “Being a single mom really sucks,” she laments. He kisses her and promises that it’s almost over.
Elsewhere, after a few punk kids prank David in the confession box by screaming, “Captain Kirk is Christ!” and then running out of the church, the monsignor investigates and realizes that it’s probably part of a “blasphememe” that also includes the phrase “Praise Wandering Jack.” It’s probably harmless online ridiculousness, but the monsignor soberly notes that a teen killed himself the week before and his parents think he got caught up in the Slenderman-like hysteria. David agrees to check it out.
THE TWILIGHT THRONE | Meanwhile, upstairs, Laura is in the bathroom when the toilet starts acting funny. And then it starts overflowing with blood. By the time her folks hear her cries and come running, the blood is gone but the commode is still not working well. Ben comes over to see what’s up; he can’t find anything. And when David calls Kristen to tell her about their next job, the daughters Bouchard correct their mom: It’s Visiting Jack, an urban horror legend, and a boy that Lynn may or may not be dating is wrapped up in the whole thing.
The boy, Ren, has holed himself up in his room, watching videos about the inevitability of death and muttering, “He’s coming for me.” He says he’s not done with “the licks,” which are apparently tasks that Visiting Jack requires be completed within seven days of first seeing a specific photo. In Ren’s browser history, Ben finds an address for an abandoned house in Queens; a street view of the location reveals that someone has asked for the photo to be obscured. Ben’s sister, Karima, helps him find an older iteration of the photo, which makes it look like one of The Gentlemen from Buffy the Vampire Slayer is standing in one of the home’s upstairs windows.
David, Ben and Kristen visit the house that evening, but David gets diverted by an ill-timed call from The Entity. So he takes off, and we’ll get to him in a moment. Meanwhile, Kristen and Ben break into the house after noticing some movement on the upper level, and they find a college student squatting there. He says Visiting Jack “lets me stay here as long as I feed him” and angrily insists that he didn’t make the whole thing up.
Ren later tells Linda that Visiting Jack is in photos for six other homes where he allegedly killed the families who lived there; he gives Kristen and Ben the locations, and the street views reveal a ghoulish face in each — with ol’ VJ getting closer to the camera each time. Ben and Kristen discern that the homes in the photographs were the sites of violent deaths, and they theorize that whoever is behind the hoax cherrypicked them to make it seem like Visiting Jack was culpable. In the last picture, though, there’s a woman in the driveway; Kristen recognizes the woman as Orson LeRoux’s widow, and the house as the LeRouxs’ home.
THE FIRST MISSION | The Entity sends David running to a church in Manhattan, where Victor gives him a Bible and instructs him to await a call that will tell him where to deliver it. That follow-up call comes just as Kristen, Ben and David are about to talk with Emily LeRoux. LeConte directs David to a hotel where a man is dying. He’s to administer last rites, then find a postcard, take it and leave — “but make sure you leave the door open.” So David skips out on his partners again, leaving them to talk to the woman who was married to the man Kristen killed. Kristen gives AMAZING compassion face when Emily talks about how the police still don’t know who murdered Orson. She recalls that the driver who was capturing the street0view photos passed by the house several times; Ben is able to get a good look at the driver via one of the shots taken as he passed a reflective window.
David arrives at the hotel, administers last rites to a not-terribly-old Chinese man whose family is weeping nearby while various other people mill about. After a doctor determines that the man has died, David grabs a Statue of Liberty postcard that’s on the table and goes to leave. On his way out the door, one of the men bustling about the room tips him. (Ha!)
THE GRACE OF GOD | When David returns to the rectory, Kristen is waiting for him: They tracked down the street-view driver and he goes to school with the guy they found living in the abandoned house: They must have worked together to create the scam. She wonders what called David away and he lies unconvincingly about how the Mass schedule had to be solved right then. “I miss us,” she says quietly, and he assures her his weirdness “had nothing to do with us.” Still, “We’re not what we were,” she says, and she worries that it’s her fault because what she confessed to him and what happened after that. David says all of that is done, and that what is going on with him has nothing to do with how they feel about each other. She cries, he promises her that he will be himself again, and they shake hands.
Victor LeConte is waiting for him in his bedroom, asking for the postcard. David demands to know why the man in the hotel room was dying. LeConte says he was poisoned to stop him from delivering a message — “that message,” he says, indicating the postcard. He says he needs it to save someone: Grace Ling from Season 1, whom the Vatican believes is a prophet but whom was deported to China and has been lost in a work camp. LeConte seems bothered by the fact that there’s nothing written on the postcard, but when he asks if David was given anything else, the priest turns over the tip that the man insisted he take. LeConte sees something he likes on the bill, praises David’s good work, and takes off just as mysteriously as he appeared.
SHERYL’S NEW SCAM | If you’re wondering what Sheryl is up to during all of this, she’s started a job as an online troll. Or rather, someone who oversees a group of online trolls. “You’re to keep the people doomscrolling,” Leland says, pointing out that keeping people nervous makes them focus on the evil in the world, and not the good, and therefore is under the purview of “the father below.”
Now it’s your turn. What did you think of the episode? Sound off in the comments!