Sunday, June 12, 2022

REVIEW: 'Evil' - David and Kristen Deal With the Fallout of Succumbing to Temptation in 'The Demon of Death'

Paramount+'s Evil - Episode 3.01 "The Demon of Death"

David's relationship with Kristen takes a turn when he gives into his temptation. Meanwhile, the team is tasked with exploring a machine to measure the weight of the human soul as it leaves a dying body.

"The Demon of Death" was written by Robert King & Michelle King and directed by Robert King

Kristen and David kissed. They succumbed to temptation. In that moment of raw vulnerability, they gave in to their feelings for one another. And then, David stopped it before it went any further. Of course, that's not clear right away. It's the story Kristen states later on. That only confuses David. When that realization comes, he already knows he is being haunted by a new demon. The embodiment of evil has taken on Kristen's form in order to tempt him. He thought he and Kristen had sex. She came back into his room after he stopped things. He gave in to these desires. It was the only way to satisfy their needs. They agreed it would only happen once. They would give into temptation assuming it wouldn't change anything. And yes, not a lot has actually changed following David's ordination. He could have been assigned to any work for the Catholic Church. He could become the leader of his own parish. Instead, he continues to assess cases alongside Kristen and Ben. Here, the trio delve into the essential question of the true weight of the soul. Ben warns against anyone using science to confirm their religious beliefs. He doesn't want people to read into the results of this experiment too closely. And yet, things happen in that chamber that defy easy explanation. A priest dies for a minute. He weighs less afterwards. He then comes back to life with a renewed vigor. A burden has been lifted off his shoulders. In facing death, he had regrets. He had his own doubts about his faith. He too was tempted by the fear he wasted life believing in something that wasn't real. David and Sister Andrea are continually propped up as special amongst the faithful because they have the ability to see demons. As such, their lives are always in physical danger. Having that clarity allows them to operate with true conviction. At least that's the case with Sister Andrea. David is still tormented. That continues to be at the core of his character arc. He made this commitment. He was ordained. Even then, plenty of people doubt if he did so for the right reasons. People project importance onto him. He needs to be a warrior for God. He has to be at the forefront of this battle. His certainty is tested while Leland is foiled by a group of girls. That's a nice reversal of events. Leland operates with so much power because of how he slyly manipulates people into embracing their worst, most devious impulses. The temptation is tantalizing. People surrender to it sometimes. Others have to be trusted to keep their loved ones from making devastating mistakes. That's difficult when so many don't operate with much clarity over who they are in this conflict.

Everyone can theorize about what it means when the experiment is repeated and a nun weighs more after death. It simply suggests the study needs to continue with more volunteers. Nothing can be proven from one piece of data. It all needs to be weighed collectively to offer any kind of true authority on the subject. These two cases are linked. They may operate as such because of the importance the church has placed on them. These two have a profound sense of faith. The scientists knew they could go to the church for volunteers who would want to help science explore these grand mysteries. Moving forward, nothing is certain. The results don't promise to behave the same way they already have. Nor is it a given that people will come back to life after being placed in this chamber. Ignatius felt a calling to come back. That's how the dynamic was presented to him. It was a choice. Even then, he felt whatever was waiting out there for him put too much distance to become obtainable. Instead, it was easy to return to Matt and openly act on their feelings. That moment of bliss and happiness was brief. It was followed by the two pushing each other away. They can no longer let their friendship continue. As such, the loss still plays out. Matt loses one of his closest colleagues in the profession. The man is still alive though. They simply remove temptation from their lives. That's the advice they seek out. It's the only solution they can accept. That stands in contrast to what Kurt tells Kristen to do. He wants her to normalize her relationship with David. He needs to become even more of an aspect of her life and her family. She is always worried about her kids. She has relied on her mother for a lot of help. Andy is back permanently now. This is the first time he is physically around for a premiere. That promises to change the dynamic at home. He is already targeted by Sheryl for wanting her to move out. He appreciates what she did. However, he has complete clarity over her being a bad influence for his girls. He doesn't even know the full extent of her corruption. Leland subjected her to a massive transformation. She still surrenders herself to a higher power. That sigil is destroyed by Andy. That may only produce further consequences. He wanted to change the design of the bedroom. He saw the importance of reinvention. This family can start their lives anew. That's difficult to do when so much is the same. Kristen, David and Ben are still working together. Leland continues to be a thorn in their side. The kids are targeted by malicious forces. These patterns can be recognized. The character behavior isn't always the same. That's appreciated. It shows growth. It's also a matter of perception. David's turmoil is more profound than ever. He's not the strong and steadfast warrior Sister Andrea needs. She refuses to let anyone take the easy way out of their conflicts. That remains searingly true no matter where she is and who she engages with.