Throughout all my reviews of the first season of Damien, I have maintained that it is a very smart horror show. It wasn’t about the blood and guts that is so popular in today’s horror and it wasn’t about the jump scares and screaming attractive teenagers of yesteryear either. Damien has been able to not only bring in the best of those elements, but also make something entirely its own. It was hard for many to wrap their heads around it at first. They wanted it spoon fed to them. Why think about an antichrist that has a conscience and may not want to do this or even believe it, when he could be out taking over the world already? Now, now, now. I like that showrunner Glen Mazzara and his writers rejected this and instead brought us the thinker that is Damien.
The writers allowed these characters to organically come to their own conclusions while otherworldly forces seemingly led them down a dark path. Did they bring about these circumstances on their own, or was something else at play? I really enjoyed the slow burn of the show and the explosive finale brought everything together in so many shocking moments. After watching a few disappointing finales to other shows this year, I was amazed and delighted to watch, ‘Ave Satani.’
The show started off right where we left off last week. Damien and Simone escaping through the woods while Ann and Amani deal with the fact that Veronica is dead. Also Shay is being driven crazy by this dark force. Damien leads Simone through the night and in the morning they hijack a car. The girl immediately tries to off herself giving the usual spiel about ‘loving Damien.’ This time though Simone is able to stop her. They still leave her stranded on a bridge and Damien doesn’t seem to care what happens to her. I really don’t think he did care. Simone seems to notice this as well and tries to talk to Damien as they reach the trailer we had seen Powell hole up in. Eventually Damien tells her to stop telling him what to do (which he should have been telling everyone since episode one, but I digress). He also explains that it is his fault that everyone has died. That he brings death with him like others would a jacket. He tries to get Simone to leave, by hurting her and reminding her of Kelly’s death, by being super creepy and making flies come out of her mouth and worst of all, putting on a shirt.
What? Just me?
It seems as if Damien not only believes what he is now, but is also starting to accept it or at least stretching his devil wings out to see how far they go. Simone thwarts him by refusing to leave and even helping to clean his wounds. One of the images that struck out was the parallel of her washing Damien’s feet. That is the same as Jesus washing his disciples feet before the last supper. It was an act of humility and cleansing. It wasn’t the last Jesus-esque thing Simone would do in this episode.
This feet washing act seemed to change Damien’s mind about sending Simone away and he woke her up creeper style so they could run off as he confided he wanted to go to Maggido. His father had went there, the daggers were from there and so he needed to go there too. I like proactive, curious Damien.
Meanwhile Amani and Ann have taken Veronica back and are grieving for her. Amani is taken away and tied up and interrogated by John. He seems to think that Amani will know how to find Damien even if he has been with Ann the entire night before. He threatens Amani’s family and rightfully receives a headbutt from Amani and his refusal to ever help him. Always loyal Amani.
Ann tells Greta that she is going to make her pay dearly for her daughters death. I’m still impressed Greta was moving around at all with that stab wound. Greta is taken away as well and Ann is left for a few moments on her own. We get to see, for a moment, the soft more human side of Ann. She cries over her daughter and I almost felt badly for her. John comes by and Ann seems to shove those real feelings down deep and is ready to get back to work.
Later both Amani and Greta are taken back to the grave she had dug for Damien. Greta is forced to look at her murdered sisters thrown carelessly in and cries for them. It was very intense and sad even though we never knew the others and only very little of Greta. Robin Weigert did an amazing job.
The situations worsens when John tells Amani he has to put Greta in the grave or he’ll murder his entire family. I wanted to cry as Amani sees no other choice and looks to Greta who accepts her fate with a simple nod to him. They hug and my heart broke with theirs. Greta was at least guilty of crossing them and trying to take away the antichrist, but Amani’s only sin was being loyal to Damien.
Greta helps situate herself so she can easily fall into the grave. Amani turns around and John shoots him point blank in the abdomen. He falls into the grave as Ann yells, “No!” and then walks away upset. I’m sure worrying that Damien was going to go all sorts of crazy when he hears what happened.
The two are then left in the grave as some of John’s henchmen bury them alive. Heart wrenching is the only way I can describe the two holding on to each other as dirt is thrown on them and Greta pleads with God to save her and receives no answer.
I really want John to die horrifically now. How can anyone kill puppy Amani? It’s not even right. Ann figures out afterwards where Damien has went and the whole group goes off to the trailer before Damien can bolt on them.
We also have detective Shay whose life is in shambles now. He is out of a job and he ran off from his family to try and take out Damien who he has no proof did anything wrong other than strange occurrences and a gut feeling. Oh and the whole being haunted thing, but I don’t think that stands up in court.
I have been trying to figure out for the past several episodes what is the bigger picture when it comes to Shay? Damien hasn’t had much to do with him other than to run the other way. Ann only spoke to him once. Why is Shay still in the series? That was finally answered as the finale came to a head.
We watch as Shay has also figured out that Damien will be at the trailer and heads that way. A call from his family is weirdly fizzled out and I never heard those kinds of noises from a phone before. Then Shay hits his kid with his car. He gets out to check and then goes back for his phone to see the boy has disappeared. Shay gets back in his car and continues, but we see the creepy little girl on a swing set watching him. Interesting as we also saw the creepy old lady outside of the trailer too.
Shay arrives moments after Damien and Simone leave. He quietly tails them and then John, Ann and their army arrive. Shay is a ninja and is somehow able to evade all of their notice while Damien and Simone are not so lucky. They are finally cornered in a graveyard, because yes of course they are. What kind of horror story finale would be anywhere else? Also all the symbolism.
Ann reveals that John murdered Amani and Damien’s face is a mix of rage and grief while Simone’s is shocked. Ann sort of tells the truth that she has never lied to Damien when John says it’s not true. Ann has twisted the truth and left certain parts out when convenient, but overall I’ll let this one go. Damien believes her and we hear the hellhounds. There are three of them again, yay! Is that you Amani, since I am always calling you a puppy anyways? They take John down and it was most satisfying.
Attentions are diverted then as Shay makes himself known and shoots at Damien. Simone steps in the way though and is shot through the head. It goes all over Damien who, like a normal person, freaks the hell out. No pun intended. Shay looks devastated that he has murdered an innocent woman and Damien begs anyone to save her.
This is where it gets really interesting. Someone or thing does answer Damien’s cries, he just has to accept being the antichrist. Earlier in the season Damien had spoken to his psychiatrist about doing something bad for good, but not the other way around. It would be good to save Simone, but bad overall because accepting being the beast. Is it still the right thing to do? The question either way is very interesting to ponder and wonder just how far you would personally go.
Damien seems to accept it quickly. Perhaps because he has seen so much and perhaps because he has lost so many people and he can’t stand to lose one more. We see the old woman and the young girl. Then Damien stands up and just like in the original The Omen movie, we see the storm come in and the heavy winds. Damien speaks in Latin and accepts his destiny as the beast.
Simone is then miraculously healed when Damien’s blood drips into her wound. Yes I used that word on purpose. How does it make you feel? Also did anyone else notice that her wound was on the same part of her head as when Damien saw the vision her in the VA hospital?
Does that mean this was the dark forces plan all along? That it already knew her fate and that was why it kept after Shay. It needed to use him to pull the trigger? I feel like it is and that’s why Shay has continued to be in the show and so haunted by visions and hellhounds.
Shay looks astonished and relieved to see Simone alive. When a large crowd comes out of the forest and kneels before Damien, along with everyone from Armitage, Shay does as well. I feel like Shay thinks he has witnessed a miracle, that Damien has performed this amazing thing and taken away his sin of murdering Simone and he kneels to that man now.
Simone for her part after realizing she is alive again and hugging Damien, is the only one to not kneel to Damien. She had already pulled a Christ move washing his feet and now she came back from the dead too. What will it mean for her? Will she be different now? A loyal follower? Some kind of equal? Would Ann be able to handle that? I doubt it.
Oh did I mention the scene where we see a hand come out of the mass grave and you have no idea whose it is? Did God answer Greta’s prayers and bring her back to life? Or is it Amani somehow?
We also had a scene of the church gathering not only their four remaining daggers of Maggido, but also other weapons and putting them in men in black suitcases and taking off for New York City. I also wondered where the seventh dagger is. Ann has two now, they have four. That is six so one more remains, somewhere.
It is still unclear if Damien will be renewed for another season, but I think with this exceptional finale that A&E will give it a chance for a second season. Everything was smartly written, the performances were brilliant and the finale I could watch ten times over and still be thrilled with it. The ratings for Damien have never been the best and they only pulled an average of .478 million viewers or a .18. Those are not good numbers. Bates Motel that is paired with Damien pulls in 1.44 million and a .56 and that’s a drop from their earlier seasons.
But the actors and Glen Mazzara have all been hopeful about another season. Not only is A&E still putting money into the show, as seen with their recent trip to Mexico to promote Damien, but even Mazzara has stated in an interview with Blastr that there is talk for another season and that he is ‘hopeful.’ A&E also listens to social media and if a show has a strong presence, they are more likely to give it another shot. Damien fans have been very vocal these past couple weeks with the #RenewDamien hash being sent to @AETV on twitter daily and by as many of them as possible. Myself included.
Mazzara and his team left us with a wonderful season that if watched altogether will make a great horror film. We had an amazing finale that was not a cliffhanger, yet set up nicely for more should there be a second season.
I encourage all of you to send @AETV tweets about renewing Damien along with the #RenewDamien and liking and RTing others as well. Don’t do it for one day, make sure to RT or make one daily. This show deserves another season and it’s audience has grown over the season and I’m confident will continue to do so.
Make sure to send some love to Mazzara, the other writers and the actors too. They did a stellar job and should definitely hear about it.
What did you think of the finale? Thoughts on a second season? Want to squeal with me on twitter about this show and others? Find me there @quietlikeastorm and make sure to give us a follow @thenerdygirlexp
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