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The Path - Providence - Review

Much of this season’s seventh episode is built around the struggle between tradition and modernity, the version of Meyerism Steve originally envisioned and built and the new form of Meyerism Cal is attempting to forge and maintain.

These two different versions of the movement have this season been symbolised by properties, with the compound representing Steve’s Meyerism and the city centre representing Cal’s. At times this season we’ve seen Cal’s vision for the movement directly contradict or go against that of Steve, as we’ve seen others in the movement begin to doubt Cal’s ability to lead.

But up until now the city centre has been seen not as a replacement for the compound but an extension of it, a symbol of Cal’s dream of rapid expansion, another place where members can learn and continue the good work. But this episode begins with the bank putting up a foreclosure notice on the compound, and as Cal and Sarah must consider selling the city centre, it becomes a question of one or the other. All of a sudden Steve’s Meyerism and Cal’s Meyerism are opposing forces.

But interestingly, while some within the movement have been displeased with Cal’s actions as co-Guardian of the Light, at the end of the episode a compromise is reached, as everyone agrees to do what they can to pay back the bank without resorting to sell the centre. The Meyerist hierarchy are beginning to (tentatively) re-embrace Cal’s leadership, and this is further emphasized by Cal taking his place at the head of the table towards the end of the episode.

Richard and Kodiak have thus far represented the old Meyerism, which has often been portrayed or regarded as pure and good, while Cal’s new Meyerism is something uglier, tainted. And while the episode’s end indicates that perhaps Sarah is going to get the money for the bank by blackmailing members, this episode demonstrated that while Richard and Kodiak claim to be fighting for something pure, they’re willing to get dirty, spending the entire hour plotting to abduct Eddie, thereby further muddying the conflict between the two visions for the movement.

While this episode gives us further hints towards Eddie’s supernatural abilities with his predictive dream sequence at the start of the episode, which also hinted at him slowly being drawn back to the Light, and left us on a tantalising cliffhanger with Eddie kidnapped and Chloe’s son Johnny left stranded, this episode further made clear that the true conflict at this season’s centre is that over the direction and soul of the movement. And given that The Path often uses Meyerism as a prism to view religion and faith as a whole, this brings up interesting questions for the real world and its major religions.

Grade: B+

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