The Exorcist: (S01E01) "Chapter One: And Let My Cry Come Unto Thee"

The episode begins with a man walking through a neighborhood carrying a bag. A pack of dogs emerges and barks but does not hurt him. You can see by the way he is dressed that he is a priest. He looks up at a house where there is a bright light and a lot of commotion. The logo for The Exorcist TV show is the same as the original 1973 movie. I know this because I just watched the movie to prepare for the show.
The next scene is a young priest conducting mass. The priest is Father Tomas Ortega played by Alfonso Herrera. Geena Davis and Alan Ruck are in attendance. They play Angela and Henry Rance. Alan Ruck looks so old. Angela tells the priest it was a lovely service and gives him a check. The priest asks how her husband is doing and she says good days and bad. The priest sees what appears to be a homeless man but he disappears. Next we see Henry and the family enter their home. Angela knocks on her daughter Kat’s door and says they have donuts. The girl says through the door that she is not hungry.
Tomas is receiving letters from some female and his sister Olivia does not approve. Tomas says she is married and asks whether married people can’t have friends. His sister still disapproves.
Father Bennet approaches Father Marcus Keane about something he is supposed to be doing. Father Marcus has a boy who is possessed and he is trying to help him. Father Bennet disapproves but Father Marcus pulls a gun on him and Father Bennet leaves. The boy looks terrible. The boy asks for his mom and Father Marcus lies and says she is in the next room. Father Marcus tells the boy to fight. It becomes clear the boy is possessed. Father Marcus tries to perform an exorcism. Father Tomas sees this or something similar in his dreams, or should I say nightmares. Was Father Tomas that young boy?
Angela is on the phone with someone who tells her to go be with her family. Angela hears a noise and looks around her home trying to figure out where it came from. It came from her daughter Kat’s room. Her other daughter comes by and asks if everything is all right. The other daughter is Casey. Casey goes into Kat’s room and asks her if she wants to join them for dinner. Apparently Kat hasn’t been out of her room in a long time. I have no idea what is wrong with Kat. I know Angela lied and told the priest her daughter had a broken arm.
Back at the church an old lady is practicing the organ. Her name is Mrs. Finley. The power goes out and Father Tomas goes to see if he can figure out how to get the power back on. There appears to be some construction going on in the church. Angela sneaks up on Father Tomas and asks to speak with him. They sit down to talk and she says her daughter Kat is back from college and took a leave after a car accident. Kat’s friend died in the accident. Angela says Kat is completely different since she came home from the hospital. Angela says it isn’t depression. Angela says there are things going on in her house like the chairs being out of place or books off the shelves. She hears voices inside the walls. Angela says there is something inside her house. Angela says she knows it sounds crazy but she is not. Angela says a demon is trying to take her daughter. Father Tomas tells Angela demons are not real. They are something the church made up to account for mental illness and other things. Angela says, no, something is going on. There is a presence and I feel it. How do I convince you to believe me? She invites him to come to the house. Meanwhile, a big black gird crashes into the father’s office while they are talking.
Father Tomas is on the train and he is remembering the exorcism of that little boy. He gets off the train. He arrives at the Rance household and talks to Kat. Kat says she is doing fine. Father Tomas shares that her mother believes there is a presence in their house. Kat starts laughing. Kat says her mom is losing her mind and says you have seen what my dad is like. Yes, her dad does seem to be out of it. I hope we find out what happened to Henry. Kat says her mom blames God for things but she blames herself because she is an adult.
Father Tomas stays for dinner. He asks Henry about his boat but Henry doesn’t answer. The girls fight about Henry and how he is. Father Tomas tells a story about a girl who was in a coma and braindead but she woke up and when she did, she heard the conversations around her so Father Tomas tells her to treat her dad better.
Henry is watching old home videos. Father Tomas comes to say goodbye. Henry thanks him for coming to see Kat. Henry says Kat has had a rough couple of months. Henry says “It’s just off 41” Tomas says, “What’s off 41.” Henry says Father Marcus. Tomas asks Henry who is Father Marcus. Henry zones out and repeats his thank yous for coming and for talking to Kat.
Father Tomas goes home and does some internet searching for Father Marcus and exorcisms. The results are not pretty. As Father Tomas lies in bed that night, he is remembering that scene with the little boy in the bed and Father Marcus performing the exorcism. It is not going well. The boy gets off the bed and beats up Father Marcus. The boy dies. Father Marcus cries.
Father Tomas is now in a car driving. He goes to the St. Thomas Aquinas retreat center. I am not sure what this place is. He meets a guy who greets him by name and tells him which church he serves. This man says the bishop thinks highly of Tomas. The guy asks Tomas what brings him there. Tomas says he is looking for some answers. The man asks if he is asking the right question. The guy tells him to ask God to use him as his divine instrument. Tomas walks off and enters the building. He finds Father Marcus who asks him what he wants. Tomas names a priest in Chicago who sends his greetings.
Tomas asks Marcus about demonic possession. Marcus says it doesn’t exist. Tomas asks if exorcism works. Marcus asks who it is. Tomas says a girl in his parish. Tomas explains about his dream where the young boy is being exorcised and Marcus is in it. The child’s name is Gabriel. Father Tomas repeats things he heard in the dream that no one else can know. Marcus says it was in Mexico City 18 months ago. Marcus says let me guess, now you think you were sent here by God. Marcus says Tomas is being manipulated by forces he can’t imagine. He tells Tomas to go home. Tomas tells Marcus he is afraid. Marcus says yes, and you should be too. Tomas quotes the verse that says come to me all you who are carrying heavy burdens and I will give you rest. Marcus cries when Tomas leaves. Then Marcus yells and says this is the sign you send me after all this time?
Father Tomas knocks at the Rance’s door. He and Angela have a drink. Tomas asks if she believes in God. She says she wants to. He tells Angela he heard God say he wants Tomas to help this family. This is his purpose. They hear something coming from upstairs. The attic ladder drops. Father Tomas asks if anyone is up there. Father Tomas goes into the attic with a flashlight and asks Kat what she is doing up there. He hits his head on something and falls. I don’t see Kat. Father Tomas is OK. He gets up and sees a mouse or a rat and then a human hand reaches out for it. It is Casey up in the attic, not Cat, and she does not look well. She looks possessed. Angela comes up there and turns on the light. Casey looks normal. She says Father Tomas killed a rat. Father Tomas leaves. Father Marcus dresses in his priest clothes and goes somewhere. That is the end.
Did any of you watch The Exorcist? What did you think of it? I didn’t like that the priests were saying demons don’t exist and yet they run around doing exorcisms. What did you think of the twist at the end about which sister is possessed? Any theories on what happened to Henry, the dad? The show airs on Fridays on Fox at 9pm EST.