TV Review: Damien 1.4 “The Number Of A Man”
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Season 1 Episode 4: “The Number Of A Man”
Directed by Bronwen Hughes
Written by Nazrin Choudhury
Created by Glen Mazzara
Starring Bradley James, Barbara Hershey, Megalyn EK, Omid Abtahi, Scott Wilson, David Meunier, Tiffany Hines
Air Date: Monday, March 28th, 2016, 10pm

Last week on Damien, Damien (Bradley James) seemed to accept his fate, or at least part of it. Despite his misgivings about Ann Rutledge (Barbara Hershey), a mysterious one percenter with a shrine to him, he willingly confided in her. Also tugging at Damien’s strings was John Lyon (Scott Wilson). Lyon simultaneously warned him about Rutledge, but was working with her to expedite the process of turning Damien from a war photographer into his rightful role as the Antichrist. Damien can’t seem to grasp the whole evil concept though, as he’s spent his life documenting the worst travesties, and even last week saved a young boy from an oncoming train. The bizarre “accidents” that follow Damien around peaked the interest of Detective James Shay (David Meunier), who in turn has gained certain unwanted canine followers…

Spoilers below.

Simone (Megalyn E.K.) is seeing things and feels Kelly is trying to reach her from beyond the grave. Things don’t get better when her relaxing bath turns into a disgusting scene complete with a dead bird in the drain.

Shay brings Damien downtown to answer a few questions about the train station incident. There are way too many coincidences surrounding Damien, and things begin to get a little tense between the two. When Damien decides to leave, a strange man beckons to him, before very graphically and uncomfortably castrating himself to death… another bizarre death at the feet of Damien Thorn. Damien tries to exonerate himself by passing on the name of Rutledge and describing her Damien shrine.

Meanwhile, Simone goes to a witch doctor for answers. In another squirm inducing scene in a collection of them this episode, Babalawo (Fode Bangoura), the witch doctor, kills a chicken and pours its blood all over some of Kelly’s stuff. After he sets the mess on fire, the blaze turns blue and Babalawo pulls out Kelly’s notebook. There’s familiar pattern 666 on it.

Shay visits Rutledge and of course the basement shrine is now a convenient wine cellar. She tells him that Damien has a troubled past and is known to concoct odd stories. She even gives up the name of a schoolmate who crossed Damien that wrong way. When he returns to the station to free Damien, he feels double crossed by Rutledge and he seems firmly in the camp of wanting nothing to do with her or her services anymore. To make matters worse, as his life is becoming intertwined with hers, her associate Veronica (Melanie Scrofano) starts seducing Damien’s best friend Amani (Omid Abtahi).

It looks like Detective Shay’s police work may turn out to be his downfall as first he had to deal with the rottweiler attack at the station, and now the same evil dogs are following him home. He and his husband are preparing breakfast and the dog hypnotizes their young son Jacob (Brody Bover) to walk outside and onto the pool cover. Shay finds him right in time but not before a demonic force makes itself known in the pool.

It appears that Detective Shay is the Jennings of the TV series. Jennings, for non-followers of the film, was played by David Warner and his photographs provided the titled “omens” of future events. While the only omens so far were in Damien’s photos, Shay appears to be that outsider who gets in too deep with the Thorn clan. Hopefully, he ends up better than Jennings did in the film and gets to keep his head. As for the rest of the show, four episodes in and it continues to be creepy. Bradley James is really good and the whole corporate side of Antichrist worship is intriguing. The Simone/Kelly from the grave angle was slow to start but certainly built nicely this week, and next week it appears we will see part of the cult that follows Damien. Still getting those goosebumps, so that’s a good thing.

Damien returns next Monday night, April 4th at 10:00 on A&E.

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