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The Exorcist - One For Sorrow - Review: "Who Is Grace?"

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The Exorcist 2.04 "Safe as Houses"
Directed by So Yong Kim & Written by Rebecca Kirsch

I was really excited to watch this episode when I found out the name of the director attached to One For Sorrow. So Yong Kim is an incredible filmmaker whose 2016 effort Lovesong remains one of my favourite films of last year. So the big question was how she would handle the small screen and it's great to see that she brings her skill to One for Sorrow to deliver another fantastic episode of the season that makes it look as though so far, the series is moving onwards and upwards from its first season, which was good in its own right. I'd even go so far as to say that The Exorcist itself is making a good case right now for being the most underrated show on network TV, and I am really liking the dark and foreboding atmosphere that this episode does a fantastic job at creating.

The camerawork is fantastic and that is no surprise when you consider how great So Young Kim is. Every shot of this episode feels great, and I love how well crafted the setting was over the past four episodes. Its slow burn approach is paying off it seems in developing a great setting that looks like it will be utilised properly in the weeks to come, judging by the fact that One for Sorrow has finally brought Tomas and Marcus to Andy's home, where it looks like they are going to be staying for a while. Because almost immediately, Marcus suspects that something may be amiss when Andy tells him about the dead birds that they just spent ages clearing up. He knows that something may be up, but Andy is a man of science and isn't ready to believe in supernatural superstitions just yet. His belief is about to be tested in the next few weeks.

Father Bennett and Mouse continued their storyline this week as we are introduced to Sister Dolores, or rather the demon inhabiting her. Mouse learns from Father Bennett about the Exorcism that Marcus and Tomas performed last season on a fully converted subject, and as a result, Father Bennett is now convinced that there might be something of Sister Dolores left inside the demon. Mouse is somewhat sceptical and given her past history with Dolores, it seems like she'd be willing to do anything to bring her back. Not being able to de-integrate demons, Mouse still made up for it by being able to get what she knew out of the possessed Dolores. It's bad news. The demons are hunting Exorcists one by one, either killing or converting them, and the war isn't coming, it's already here. They're on the losing side. It's certainly another way to build up an ominous sense of foreboding dread going forward, laying the gauntlet down. It's going to get worse before it gets better and I wonder how much of the action we'll see of the war take place at Andy's home? Hopefully something that doesn't end up affecting any of the kids involved. They've really done a good job with the casting department of this show, and the kids themselves are people who you can't help but feel sorry for especially when you know what's coming.

Rose is able to bring Harper to her new home which given the situation on the island was probably not the safest choice for her but it's a good thing that she's brought Tomas and Marcus in tow with her. The weird things on the island are continuing to happen but it's not just that starting to affect the human children. It's also jealousy with a new kid coming in, the previously isolated Grace is beginning to worry that not only Rose is beginning to distract him, but also Harper. He'll have to divide his attention and Grace isn't too happy about that. But meanwhile, Verity does her best to try and make Harper feel at home. If not for the threat of demons the island home would be an excellent place for Harper to grow up on, isolated and among new friends, but again. Something big is on its way.

It turns out that Andy and Marcus are getting along when Marcus tells Andy that he spent time in a foster home. Marcus had a harsher upbringing, living in a home with over 150 boys for far longer than he should have done, but the dynamic that the show introduces here is great once again and it's helped by the fact that the show has some great actors to play with. John Cho and Ben Daniels are among the better actors of the cast here and they can hold their own together very well indeed. Both Marcus and Tomas don't feel out of place on the island at all, which was something that I initially was worried about given the different tone of the two storylines before this, but it's safe to say that their introduction to Andy's foster home has worked really well. It's helped a lot by the fact that we've had Rose act as a transition in the last episode, especially bringing Harper across with her.

Andy is also doing his best to convince Shelby that it's not superstition but science and he takes him to Peter, who's one of Andy's friends. Peter brings up all the scientific explanations for why they shouldn't be worried, but Tomas is having doubts. He thinks that they may have made a mistake in bringing Harper to the island from the moment he arrives. With all the bad news that's happening here he decides that it can't hurt to at least take a look around. The two also use this time to talk about God, and Marcus has reached a crossroads. He doesn't feel God in his life anymore, but still believes. To make matters worse, he's worried that Tomas may have been sent to replace him. But for now, they believe in each other, and at the end of the day, that's all that matters. But you have to wonder given the demons' habit at finding weaknesses in their enemies, how much potential is there here for them to exploit. We already have Grace's potential issues, and now Marcus as well.

The next day when the kids go off to school, Andy is at home with Grace. Grace is worrying about being Andy's favourite, and asks if she can go outside to spend more time with him. Andy ends up putting Grace to bed eventually, but in an unexpected twist ending it reveals that Andy may well be the only one who can see Grace at all. This was something that although is perfectly explained in hindsight by none of the kids meeting Grace up until this point, the revelation still hit home pretty hard. Grace is a figment of Andy's imagination, and Verity, investigating Grace's room, finds out that not only does the door bear no name but there are no beds, and instead of Grace there are only paintings and food that's well past its expiry date. This fits in all too well with Grace's appearances in the past, and now we have several question marks concerning who, or what she is. And now that Verity knows, Grace may not be too keen on her breaking the news to Andy.

It's certainly a foreboding end to the episode that really ended things on a promising note for what's to come. One For Sorrow did an effective job at establishing the first major twist of the series, in a big, game changing episode. Needless to say this is something that I really enjoyed, and I can't wait to see how the show addresses the consequences of this revelation next week.

What did you think of The Exorcist's latest episode, One for Sorrow? Did you see the Grace twist coming or are you surprised? Let me know in the comments below. Stay tuned for next week's episode this Friday at 9pm on Fox.

About the Author - Milo MJ
Milo is an Arsenal FC supporter and loves TV shows like Battlestar Galactica, Justified, The Wire, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine and Person of Interest. He reviews Preacher, The Exorcist, Star Wars Rebels, Star Trek Discovery, Silicon Valley and Veep for Spoiler TV and will be covering Castle Rock, Counterpart, Krypton, Marvel's New Warriors, Rise, Marvel's Runaways, Succession and Trust. He also contributes to comic reviews on a weekly basis for All-Comic. He also regularly watches and reviews films on Letterboxd, and you can find his ever-changing list of 300 favourite movies here.
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