Although the biggest news came in the form of the Season 2 trailer, there were plenty of great takeaways from the Preacher Comic-Con panel where cast members Dominic Cooper (Jesse), Ruth Negga (Tulip), Joseph Gilgun (Cassidy), Graham McTavish (Saint of Killers), Ian Colleti (Eugene) and producer Seth Rogen took questions from the media.
Take a look at the six awesome things we learned from the Preacher Comic-Con panel.
Spoiler Alert: This contains spoilers from Preacher Season 2 if you’re not up to date with the episodes
Hell is the softer side of Hitler
In the latest episodes of Preacher Season 2, you see Eugene Root aka Arseface trying to exist in hell and he’s found a new friend. A new, rather unexpected friend, in Adolf Hitler. Both characters are locked away in cells, experiencing the worst moments in their lives on repeat, ad nauseam. But for Hitler, his personal hell isn’t anything like you’d expect it to be, instead showing off his sensitive side – which is a sentence you never think you’d have to write.
“We’re definitely trying to play with the ideas of redemption and rehabilitation I guess,” explained Rogen. “If there is a hell, what’s the point in it? We’ve talk a lot about whether you could change in hell. Is there a point in changing in hell? Is it bad to change in hell, because if you act good it goes against the nature of hell? I don’t want to ruin where it all goes, but those are the kinds of conversations that we’ve had.”
“It would be very expected just to show the pure evil version of Hitler, basically. It’s much more interesting to explore the versus side. They’re all people. Hitler was a person… like the worst one. But if you’re embracing the kind of idea that we are of having him be a character on our TV show, then we thought we should treat him like any other character as far as the thought we put into him goes.”
“For Eugene, he’s nice to him and he inherently believes in the Christian philosophy of forgiveness and things like that. But he’s also in hell, which he also believes in. And he’s still Hitler.”
“It all adds up, but it’s weird though.”
Some Preacher moments required a few pre-approval chats with AMC
Preacher is know for having some rather disturbing, twisted and downright weird content – but of course, that’s why fans love it. According to Rogen, there’s been a few moments where chats with AMC have been required just to double check the appropriateness of the content.
“Hitler required a few conversations, but [AMC] almost just want to kick the tires, I guess you’d say and make sure that there’s thought behind it, or overall kind of plan behind it. And it’s not just us doing it because it’s funny or incendiary or things like that.”
You might remember a random moment in Preacher Season One where the show casually blew up Tom Cruise in the pilot and then had a little funeral for him in Episode 3.
“Blowing up Tom Cruise took maybe two conversations,” admitted Rogen.
And it seems that there are plenty more of these WTF moments coming in Preacher too, which we’re plenty intrigued about.
“There’s definitely a few things, including some that haven’t happened yet, that do require a conversation. But [AMC] are generally really cool about it. If anything, when I watch the show – like most things I’ve done throughout my life – I’m shocked with what we’re able to get away with. The things that we’ve been stopped from doing pale in comparison to the things we’ve actually done and that’s something that I’m constantly surprised by. It’s crazy, Hitler’s a character on our show.”
It takes 2 hours to make Arseface
Ian Colletti’s baby face is mostly hidden when he plays Eugene, aka Arseface, the chap who tried to kill himself with a shotgun to the face and failed. Oh and the guy that Jesse Custer accidentally sent to hell using the power of Genesis.
Speaking at the Preacher Comic-Con panel, Colletti admitted that the process of becoming Eugene is long and a tad gross.
“It’s a pretty crazy process. It takes about two hours to get into everything in the morning and it’s a one-time use thing,” explained Colletti. “We use it one day, it’s glued to my face and we take it off. It’s a snotty disgusting mess by the end of it. Then we start again the next day.”
And it seems the prosthetic –which was made by none-other than Greg Nicotero (the genius behind The Walking Dead‘s zombies) — is almost a bit too real, especially for those not familiar with the TV show.
“I remember on set, last season, someone came up to me — he wasn’t part of the show or anything — and said, ‘Thank you for your service.’ And I was like, ‘Oh no, it’s totally fake, it’s make-up and I’m just an actor.'”
“It’s nice that he assumed you were in the military, because I’d be like, ‘Did you fall on a toaster or something?'” quipped Rogen.
Dominic Cooper is a bit scared of Jesse Custer
In Episode 5 of Season 2, Jesse definitely is at his darkest. He’s just found out that his beloved Tulip has a husband he didn’t know about and he’s prepared to kill him, after a bit of torture of course. Cue a flashback to how Tulip and Jesse broke up the first time around, with a heartbreaking episode about loss and how you can so easy push your soulmate far away.
Speaking at the Preacher Comic-Con panel, Dominic Cooper explained that this new level of darkness for Jesse isn’t totally unexpected.
“I’ve always been aware that he possesses that darkness and I think it comes from an incredible amount of guilt that he harbours about the death of his father and the responsibility of the death of his father,” Cooper said of his character.”And also a life of living with the most crazy people that have ever been portrayed in anything that I’ve ever seen.
“The darkness is constantly bubbling under the surface and there are certain things [that trigger it]. One of the things that really infuriates him and reveals that darkness is any danger towards the person he loves more than anything in the world – Tulip. That’s the only family he’s ever had and the only family he’s ever known. I think when he finds out about the marriage and the disloyalty around not knowing about it, along with the other things that have happened in his past, he sees red and really goes blank. He can become extremely volatile and dangerous, and quite nasty.”
But despite the fact Cooper isn’t totally surprised by Jesse’s action – and let’s face it nor are we – there’s quite a bit that Cooper finds unnerving about his character especially as we move into the yet-to-be-seen episodes of Season 2.
“The more that the writers write about him and the more that is revealed about him, the more he terrifies me. It’s in his inability to see compassion and his use of Genesis often astounds me because he doesn’t do it to help his best mate in his time of need, he’ll use it sporadically without warning and sometimes just for fun. There’s a kind of schizophrenic nature to him and that I think will go much further, and become more and more unsettling as the season goes on.”
Saint of Killers isn’t going to stop walking any time soon
Although we’ve got a hint of the other big antagonist coming in Preacher Season Two, Herr Starr, there’s definitely been a lot of screen time for the ever chasing Saint of Killers. Played by Graham McTavish, the Saint of Killers is on the hunt for Genesis after being hired by the angel, Fiore.
But what you might have forgotten is the Saint of Killers’ backstory, explored in graphic detail in Preacher Season One.
“He goes through such an extraordinary trauma with his family,” explained McTavish at the Preacher Comic-Con panel. “He’s made this deal with Fiore to get back Genesis and in doing so – indirectly – would kill Jesse Custer. There’s no personal animosity at all, he’s just a means to an end.”
“So I had to try and find a human reason for all of it really, and for me, although it possibly sounds a little eccentric to say this, it became a journey motivated by love as much as anything else because he wanted to be reunited with his family and this is the only was he could do it. Now he does take rather a heavy handed approach to it and a lot of people get in his way – they all die.”
As expected, it sounds like the Saint of Killers is going to continue on his journey to kill Jesse and free Genesis for the rest of this season (and maybe more), especially as Jesse can’t help but use the power of Genesis to sort out his personal problems – particularly when it revolves around Tulip and her secret husband.
“It’s great fun to play that character and it’s like that nightmare that we’ve all had where you’re being pursued by something that you can’t get away from. And that nightmare is me, I guess. I am that person that pursues you down the road. And the fact that he walks everywhere, and he doesn’t even walk quickly, that’s just so much more intimidating. If he was going at a brisk pace going down the road, that wouldn’t be nearly as horrible. It doesn’t help having the sword, of course, because it’s quite an encumbrance.”
“It’s a wonderful character to portray and he’s got some interesting stuff coming up for the rest of the season in terms of his own pain, the heaven and hell that he carries around with him.”
Cassidy had a forced accident in Season 1
Although most of the Preacher Comic-Con panel was focused on the events happening in Season 2, the cast did take a moment to reflect on some of the stuff that’s happened on set over the course of filming. And of all the tidbits they shared, there was definitely one anecdote that made the entire audience burst out laughing. And it involved Joseph Gilgun who plays Cassidy.
“I think we have a good demeanor on set, although we did make Joe piss himself one time because in the pilot there’s a scene where he’s landed after jumping out of an airplane and he’s like splattered in a field in the bottom of a crater with his guts out,” said Rogen. “To shoot it, we buried him in a hole basically with a big prosthetic thing that took him like 45 minutes to get in and out of the hole. We were strapped for time, the sun was going down and he said ‘I have to get out of the hole and piss’ and I was like ‘You’re not getting out of that hole, I can’t let you’. So I made him piss himself while he was in that hole.”
“We made a grown man piss his pants in the desert.”