The Leftovers recap: 'B.J. and the A.C.'

Christmas in Mapleton is a battleground as the GRs make their move.
Ep. 04 | Aired Jul 20, 2014

On the road and worried about Wayne's radio silence after six weeks, Tommy and Christine are not having an easy go of it. Tommy isn't as moon-eyed as he was at the ranch, when Christine was sunning near the pool, and she likes to make friends with any guy who smiles at her. At one of their stops, a crazy-eyed bearded guy and his indifferent penis confront Christine, demanding to know why she's in his dreams. He tries to choke her and yells, "You walk over the dead" who are dressed in white and "I know what's inside you!" The A.C? The Anti-Christ? Cue the spooky music, which they did.

Tommy pummels the half-naked man and they make a getaway to the hospital for prenatal treatment on the fetus-Damian. I hope half-naked indifferent penis man becomes a recurring character—though I suspect he was one and done. He'd be the perfect perverse Grim Reaper for this odd show. What else will he dream?

In a previous episode, we saw Tommy kill a man to protect Christine, so there's no doubt his psyche has been overstressed. But this new Tommy—angry, impatient, and a little gangsta—seemed to come a little out of nowhere. At the hospital, the nurse suspects he might be the cause of the black-and-blue bruise on Christine's abdomen, and Tommy doesn't do anything to quell her suspicions. He flees the hospital before security can put their hands on him, and is thisclose to quitting his mission and jumping on the first bus home. While two GRs attempt to recruit him with their empty pamphlet, he pleads with his happy-faced phone to ring, so that Wayne can tell him what to do. And wouldn't you know... it rings. And wouldn't you know... it's only a robo-call asking cryptically, "Have you lost someone?"

That's this show in a nutshell: If you thought things were really bad, just wait another minute—they will get worse. But Tommy doesn't get on the bus, and instead returns to the hospital to retrieve Christine.

The missing-Jesus search in Mapleton is not exactly a CSI-level mystery. A suddenly motivated Chief studied nearby surveillance footage and discovered that his daughter and the Ping-Pong twins are prime suspects. The boys are a little scared, but Jill is taking her crime spree further. At a late-night gathering of teenage troublemakers, Baby Jesus is the dishonored guest, given a token smoke and baptized with some a-hole's junk. Jill has the superb idea to soak the doll in alcohol, send him into the stream, à la Moses, and then launch a flaming Nerf arrow into the float for a blasphemous viking funeral. She loses her nerve, and angrily leaves the red-eyed minions chanting "Go f--- ourselves!" which is about right.

I'm still not quite sure why Jill stole the baby Jesus... She hates God for the rapture? She hates God for what's happened to her mother? She wants attention from her father, who seems only interested in finding her brother? She's just a confused teenager who wants to be cool? Are these all legitimate explanations, or are these too flimsy to justify her rebellion? What am I overlooking?

NEXT: The GRs get Grinch-y

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