Apocalypse On Tap–Preacher Recap: Masada

Season 4 / Episode 1, “Masada” / AMC

 The Return of the #Ungodly

We open on God’s gift to the moving image, Tulip O’Hare, and Cassidy. They share some gallows humor and kiss lovingly.

Cut to: Jesse falling out a plane and hitting the ground like a whole ass cartoon. In Australia!

Then: TIME JUMP to a ‘couple months before’.

Without Crashing It

Tulip is doing her ‘Gone In 60 Seconds’ thing, pushing that ’72 Chevelle to the limit while drifting and swerving! Turns out, Jesse and Tulip are getting it in while driving at breakneck speeds like certified freaks. Satisfied, Jesse says he loves Tulip. She comes back with her signature response, “‘Till the end of the world?”

Grail University

We catch up with Cassidy, who was abducted by The Grail at the end of season three. He’s chained up and chilling in a tiny version of the prison Bane climbed out of. Get this, he’s in there with some mouthy dude cracking jokes while being strung up by his wrists! Oh yeah, the mouthy dude is an angel. Like, with wings and what not.

Enter Agent Featherstone she does her ‘I’m mean’ thing and takes Cassidy on a tour of the Grail’s catacombs. Which leads up a winding staircase, into more catacombs, before letting out into an ancient altar made out in Humperdoo’s image. Featherstone tells Cass they’re in Masada, aka Grail HQ, a fortified mountain in the Judeo-Christian holy land. Which of course has a coffee shop front and center. It’s like walking through parts of Brooklyn that used to be gangster, but now there’s pop up paint and sips and doggie gyms. Very unassuming from the outside.

Alongside the campus Starbucks are classrooms where Grail agents learn how to be as dangerous as Featherstone. Grail University, think of it as a blend of Phoenix University and the school from Deadly Class. In the Advanced Torture class, guest lecturer Frankie Toscani goes to work on an unsuspecting Cassidy.

The Bar & Grail

Cut to: A Grail bar fight interrupted by a rousing hymn, where Jesse makes the Grail members an offer that literally cannot refuse. He uses The Word to force them to take orders from Tulip from here on in. Her first order, break into Masada and get Cass out.

The Saint and Eugene show up just in time to miss Jessie. They know he’s gone because Angelville is burnt to the ground. The Saint knows where to look.

Back at the Masada school of torture, Frankie Toscani is using an Enfield hunting rifle like scalpel to Cassidy’s joints and organs. He shows the class that Cass is a vampire. The gag though, is that he has a rig in place to feed blood to help Cass heal right after torture. (For what it’s worth, this Frankie guy is vintage New York (read ‘New Yawk’) Italian mafioso and it’s fun to watch him work.) It’s classic witty banter; right up until Cassidy lets on about being tortured a million times. Nothing new to be done. Frankie simply puts on a Yarmulke and goes to town by giving Cassidy an unlimited circumcision. Frankie just keeps snipping the tip and waits for it to heal, just to do it all over again!

Step One of The Plan

Outside, our favorite ‘boy from Brazil’ Herr Starr (not the All-Father) waits for Jesse to arrive at Masada. Literally, Starr standing at the gates with a set of binoculars, just waiting for him. Jesse shows up, by himself and just walks right up. Jesse notices one strange detail. Everyone is wearing headphones. In the meeting room, Starr brings out to big guns, an elderly woman who can’t hear. Jesse makes Starr an offer: he’ll use The Word to allow Starr to wear hats again. If The Grail frees Cassidy.

Starr turns the offer down and unveils his plan for luring Jesse to Masada: to carve a giant vagina into his head as repayment. Jesse relies on his ace in the hole to turn the tide and forces a guard to take him to Cass.

Step Two of The Plan

Tulip comes through with her Grail squad from the bar. They’re looking at a Trojan horse manuever. Tammy, the Grail squad commander, has a good feeling about this. (If you’ve seen Star Wars enough times, you already know how this unfolds.)

Jesse “saves” Cass. By saves, I mean he walks into his cell and notes the basket of foreskins (yes, it’s as gross as it sounds) and cracks a joke. Cass doesn’t think it’s funny at all. Frankie and the goon squad show up and Jesse hands them the knives. Jesse proceeds to give everyone the fade. Cassidy starts to see Jesse for who he really is and lets him know it. Jesse is a dick to vampires.

Tulip gets the gate open and gets her cover blown by the really good orders Jesse gave to Tammy. Tammy kills the door Sargeant, who trips the switch that closes the gate. Tulip’s orders were to get the gate open and keep them open. So, Tammy attempts to hold the eight-inch thick iron doors. Uh, Tammy doesn’t make it. Not a spoiler, just the facts. Physics and whatnot.

Jesse and Cass move through the catacombs toward the exit. They dodge some guards until they don’t. Their bickering gets them cornered and they start mowing dudes down. Tulip and the top half of the human being that used to be Tammy have a conversation. Tulip learns that she has to climb the mountain to get to the switch that opens the gate.

Cut To: Starr climbing out from under a pile of bodies. We learn quickly that he used the old lady as human shield. He hears a constant ringing and takes off his headphones to learn that his ear has been shot off.

Jesse and Cass bicker in an elevator about a thank you. Jesse reveals more of who he is, and Cass takes notice. They arrive at the gates, still closed though.

Started From The Bottom

Cut To: Tulip makes the climb to the top of the fortress, where Agent Featherstone is waiting. They really don’t like each other. They both shoot; only to shoot each others bullets on some old John Woo ‘Hard Boiled’ shit.

Back To: Jesse and Cassidy come to an understanding about who Jesse is and how they both feel about Tulip. It comes to blows.

After a hectic fight where Tulip rocks Featherstone with a rock so hard it shifts the angle of her bangs! Featherstone throws a dollar store beach chair at Tulip and misses; Tulip goes for her gun but gets thrown from the mountaintop…Where she catches on to the Deus Ex dollar store beach chair, climbs back up and mollywops Featherstone into next week!

Tulip leans the agent over the cliff and lets her fall. Featherstone channels her inner Swayze and skydives into the fall before spreading her arms to reveal a flight suit?!?!?!?!? Featherstone ‘Point Breaks’ her way out of there. Tulip has to stand and admire her adversary, she also flips the gate switch.

Love In The Modern World

Jesse and Cass beat the snot out of each other. Cassidy admits that he loves Tulip, but he doesn’t want to. The gate opens, Jesse walks out into the sunlight and turns to find Cassidy standing behind the threshold. Cassidy stays behind and tells Jesse he’s got this.

Meanwhile, The Grail guards have Jesse in their sights with a big ass chaingun. They about to chop his body into pieces. Starr keeps the guard from taking the shot.

Tulip & Jesse regroup at the Bar and Grail. Tulip sees through the veil with that O’Hare intuition, asks if they fought. Asks if Cass knew she was there. Jesse crosses the line, and asks Tulip if she slept with Cassidy. Jesse is a dick to Tulip.

What Dreams May Come

Jesse wakes in bed to the sky rumbling and a harsh light. He looks out the window to witness a nuclear blast in the distance, the phone rings: it’s Jesse’s dad, saying it’s time to find God, son. Jesse wakes again to Starr trying to kill him in bed. He wrestles Starr down and starts to choke him out, the camera pans and now he’s choking Tulip in his place – his father’s voice from her mouth saying, “This is your wake up call”. Jesse wakes again, writes Tulip a letter and leaves.

Cass ends up in prison, again.

Tulip wakes to letter from Jesse and looks across the room to the wardrobe with eyes set on the Grail uniform she used to infiltrate the Japanese HQ.

Agent Featherstone is dismissed by Starr after reporting in. A breeze rolls in, and Starr casually makes his way to the mini-fridge and hands God (!) a Dr. Pepper. (First of all, I don’t trust a deity that drinks soda. That’s the tweet.) Starr and God decide to make Jesse suffer. God is now on board to give Jesse all the grief. Episode ends.


See our site’s other reviews of Preacher here.

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  • Poet, MC, Nerd, All-Around Problem. Lover of words, verse, and geek media from The Bronx, NYC.

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