Father Tomas Ortega (Alfonso Herrera) and Father Marcus Keane (Ben Daniels) move closer to uniting to fight evil in Fox’s riveting new horror series The Exorcist season one episode two. Titled ‘Chapter Two: Lupus in Fabula,’ the episode opened in a dark room with boys gathered in front of a priest. He tells them they don’t have a future and are basically nameless, and warns them he’ll be testing them. Each boy will be sent one at a time into a pitch black room with a possessed man. Armed only with a Bible and cross, one boy doesn’t retreat and remains in the room reading passages.
Fast forward to Father Marcus on a bus making notes in a well-worn Bible.
Using only the light of her iPad, Angela Rance (Geena Davis) goes to her kitchen for a midnight snack. The house is quiet around her when she suddenly hears a man’s voice. She’s shocked, finding only her daughter Casey (Hannah Kasulka) seated in a chair, facing away from her in the room. She begins recording on her iPad, watching as her daughter feels up her own body. (The voice had said she was fresh and supple.) Angela speaks to her daughter and the male voice tells Casey her mother is snooping beside her and to wake up. She jerks awake and comes to her feet, all while Angela still records. When Casey sees her mom, she looks confused and frightened.
Father Tomas speaks to Bishop Egan (Brad Armacost) about Casey, saying he sat down with her after their run-in in the attic. Casey didn’t remember, her mom is concerned and Casey’s sister, Kat, and father, Henry, are unaware of what’s happening. Father Tomas received Angela’s video of Casey and now he wants to know if he can get approval for an exorcism. Bishop Egan tells him he’s done an incredible job in the parish and it hasn’t gone unnoticed. Plus, His Holiness is visiting in a month and Tomas is on the welcoming committee so it’s a big month. The Bishop says this isn’t his job and that the child just needs a psychiatrist. Bishop Egan also brings up the fact Father Marcus has gone missing.
Angela meets with her friend, Maria Walters (Kristen Fitzgerald), who was part of the group responsible for bringing the Pope to Chicago. Pope Sebastian will be sleeping in a bedroll on the floor elsewhere, but Maria wants Angela’s hotel to host his entourage. Security is critical, says Maria. The meeting ends when Angela receives a message from Casey. She calls her cell phone and only hears heavy breathing.
Rushing home, Angela yells for her daughter but there’s no answer. She calls her cell again and hears it ringing in Casey’s room. It’s there on her pillow but Casey’s not in the room. Just then Casey, Kat (Brianne Howey), and their dad (Alan Ruck) come up the stairs. They went for ice cream…so who was on the phone heavy breathing with Angela? Creepy! Angela picks up Casey’s phone and there’s a huge bug under it. Kat is apparently the brave one of the group and snatches the pillow to find the bug. Under the pillow is a mass of centipedes all swirling around in a circular group. Not even Kat’s brave enough to deal with this insect invasion.
Father Tomas returns home from a jog and his apartment door’s unlocked. Father Marcus is in the kitchen after having picked the lock, and Father Tomas doesn’t know why he’s there. Marcus wants to know if Tomas has told anyone else about the possessed girl, and Tomas admits he told the Bishop. Marcus guesses the Bishop told him to bugger off, and he wants to know if Tomas always does what he’s told. Tomas is weirded out by the visit, especially as Marcus keeps inspecting all of his possessions. Marcus believes the demon has “gone possum” and will gather strength before showing itself. He says he’ll kill it when it does and Tomas will either watch or pass out. Marcus also asks about Jessica after seeing all the letters from her that Tomas keeps on his kitchen table.
Casey’s playing lacrosse with Kat looking on from the stands. She gets tripped and goes down hard, right before they take a water break. She glances up at the stands and sees a man (Robert Emmy Lunney) waving to her while seated next to her sister. The game starts up again and the man is staring at her intently. The same girl knocks her down again as the man stands up. Casey stares at her opponent and with no one around her, the girl breaks her leg. She falls to the ground, leg contorted in a direction it wasn’t intended to go. Casey just smiles.
Marcus and Tomas are discussing what the demon will do and Jessica’s name comes up once again as someone the demon can use to shame Tomas. Marcus read the letters and Tomas says he and Jessica helped each other with English and Spanish. She was married, he took his vows, and that’s it. Marcus wants to know what else Tomas is hiding because the demon will use everything against them. He tells Tomas to break it off with Jessica, for the sake of the Rance family.
Henry, Kat, and Casey are playing Jenga and discussing toilets and pipes when Angela finally gets home from work. She joins Henry’s team and Casey tells her about the lacrosse game and the girl whose leg snapped. Kat warns Casey that mom will sic Father Tomas on her. Henry doesn’t understand and Kat says her mom told Father Tomas she was possessed by the Devil. Angela tells Henry Kat hasn’t seen the sun in months and Casey isn’t herself. Casey pulls out a piece from the Jenga tower, a piece from the bottom that should have instantly made the tower fall. Henry and Kat don’t understand how it’s possible the tower is still standing, all while Angela and Casey are locked in a staring contest. Casey has a small smile on her face as the game ends.
Angela visits Father Tomas at the church and says the demon can now move things, and it can hurt people. Tomas says Bishop Egan wants Casey to see a therapist before they proceed. Angela doesn’t want Casey to see a therapist, but Tomas says they have to follow the church’s rules. After Tomas walks away, Angela begins to fill her water bottle with holy water. She’s interrupted by Father Marcus who asks her if she knows how to use the water. He tells her to put it in Casey’s drinking water and it will be hard on the demon.
Angela takes her seat in the pew next to Henry while Casey and Kat help Father Tomas serve food to those in need. Casey serves Marcus and they introduce themselves to each other. He takes a seat in a pew and watches Casey. A man who looks homeless approaches her, saying, “Hi. I know you. He chose you.” He wants to touch her and she jerks away. Father Marcus goes to lead him out and he says the same words the possessed man said to the boy at the beginning of the episode. Marcus is stunned.
Father Tomas meets with Jessica (Mouzam Makkar), asking her for advice about Marcus. She took multiple buses to get there and he says she knows him better than anyone. It’s been 13 months and a week since they were together. He asks after her husband and she takes his hand. He pulls away, saying he can’t do this. She feels stupid and leaves, but not before telling him to send her another letter.
Father Marcus has followed the homeless man to the street and watches as he gets into a delivery van. After he leaves, Marcus looks through his tent. An elderly woman tells him everyone knows him, calling him by name and saying they all feared him until he lost that little boy. He orders the unclean spirit out and she stands, asking in a male voice, “On whose authority?” She’s not frightened and the demon’s not leaving her body. It’s not working, even after he places the cross on her forehead. She says, “So, it’s true what they say…” She is not compelled and walks away but not before placing her hand on his face and saying, “The mighty Marcus, vessel of nothing!”
Back at home, the Rance family sits down for dinner. Angela has secretly poured holy water into Casey’s glass, watching every movement Casey makes at the table. She apologizes for being late for game night and being distracted. She also apologizes to Kat for not knowing how to handle her pain and what she’s been going through. Casey sips her water and nothing happens.
The family is acting pretty much normal, clearing plates and talking. Casey heads upstairs saying she has studying to do. She races to the bathroom and throws up her dinner and the holy water (pea soup!). As she’s leaning over the toilet, she reaches into her mouth and pulls out the centipedes in one long, continuous string.
Later, Casey’s sitting outside with a book, by herself. The stranger from the stands at the lacrosse game approaches and she tells him she thinks there’s something really wrong with her. He says it’s just a “glorious seed breaching the soil, a fresh glimpse of the sun.” He sits next to her and asks her to tell him everything. She leans her head against his shoulder and tells him what she thinks is going on.
Father Tomas looks through Father Marcus’ tattered notebook. He’s upset Marcus’ book has the blood of tortured children, and Marcus asks why Tomas thought the man at the church was hearing voices. Marcus explains it’s because he recognized the demon in Casey. Marcus believes Casey isn’t the only one possessed and that there are many demons here. Tomas wants him to leave and instead Marcus describes his horrific childhood. He was seven when his dad killed his mom in front of him. After the murder he was sent to a boys home before being sold to the Church. At 12 he was locked in a room with a demon. He asks if Tomas was scared when he saw the demon in the attic and Tomas admits he was. Marcus said he felt relief because at 12 he finally had a purpose. “I was the gun and the Church was the hand and the words were true.” He saw God’s face once and it was so loud he couldn’t hear it. Now he says he’s not fit and Tomas should know that. He swears on his life he can try to help. Then it’s Tomas’ turn to admit things. He says he saw Jessica today. Marcus suggests they do this together, and they begin praying.
For the third time in the episode a young man is seen on a bicycle. This time he’s returning home while wearing headphones and listening to music. He doesn’t realize his father’s dead and his mother’s being attacked in the other room. She’s killed and then the murderer comes after the young man. He’s also murdered and the killers leave the murder scene with body parts. They join others, including the homeless man from the church, in the street. Each is carrying a small cooler. Half a dozen or so of these men get into the same white delivery van that picked up the homeless man earlier in the evening.
Marcus is still at Tomas’ place when the news comes on reporting the murders of nine people. Few details are given but they were all brutal stabbings. It’s assumed this is gang-related.
A lighted billboard showing the Pope’s back with the words “He Is Coming” is shown on the street.
* * * * * * *
The Exorcist airs on Fox on Fridays at 9pm ET/PT.