Preacher takes place in the very dysfunctional, very fictional town of Annville, Texas, where nothing is quite what it seems. From the incredibly creepy head of Q. M. & P., Odin Quincannon, to all of his goons, to the ironic innocence of the working girls in the Toadvine Whorehouse — Preacher is filled with uniquely weird and compelling characters.
As the season has progressed, the tone and themes are becoming darker and more ominous, with all signs pointing to some big reveal that’s sure to be a shocker. “Monster Swamp,” the fourth episode, is where things begin to take a turn and the series really dives into the underbelly and inner workings of the town of Annville.
TV Goodness spoke with actress Sarah Minnich, who is introduced as Sindy in the wake of Lacey’s death. “I really liked the way they opened [“Monster Swamp”], with this sort of dark chase scene,” Sarah begins. “You don’t really know when you start watching this episode if these girls are being killed by guns or what’s happening. Then all of a sudden you see, ‘Oh, okay,Â they’re paint balling them.’ Still, there’s sort of this weird, creepy feel to that. The fact that they’re chasing women in their underwear.”
Annville is infused with deep-seated relationships that haven’t been fully explored. Aside from all the history between Jesse and Tulip, one of the biggest mysteries is Odin Quincannon and both his command over the town and his ties to the town’s preachers. “You kind of wonder about the relationship between the preacher and the Head Honcho of the meat plant. In [“Monster Swamp”], they’re sitting down doing little models. And you [wonder] how this kid became so involved with this guy when they had a flashback of his father, I can only guess, was trying to get the demons out of [Quincannon] or something.”
Quincannon’s influence is seen everywhere, especially in the way his Q. M. & P. men behave. We always seem them in a large group where the mob mentality takes over. But just how in-the-loop are these guys about the shadier elements in Annville? “Oh boy! Although I cannot say what goes down, they’re important. I can tell you that. You’re going to want to keep an eye on what’s happening there because the story is starting to develop into this situation with the meat plant.”
They have always given off an aloof vibe, but after Lacey dies, we see how callous they are. “She was a great piece of ass,” is the extent of sympathy we see from the ring leader, Clive (Alex Knight). “But it’s obvious he doesn’t really care,” Sarah says. “And that’s the point, the message they’re trying to get across — where these guys heads are, where this is going with the relationship between the meat plant and the heinousness with the swamp and the town.”
Given Clive’s penchant for being quick to anger, we asked Sarah if she thought her character was nervous be to be taking over as Lacey’s replacement. “Sindy is looking to have the attention on her. She’s looking to be the one Clive goes to. I think she’s excited to be the next thing in Clive’s eye. You never know where Sindy might go, and I can’t necessarily say. But definitely keep an eye on Clive and that entire relationship.”
Based on what little we’ve seen of the Toadvine girls so far, it would be easy to write them off. In all likelihood, none of them are there because they’re just looking for a good time. “I think for women specifically, we have been taught, whether through socialization, social media, or through history and norms…This is what has taught women that their sexuality is one of their best tools. This is one of the reasons women get into a spot where they feel like [selling sex] is their option. I think the same is the case for a lot of current Toadvine girls.” Don’t be lulled into believing that these women are just wallflowers, however. Sarah suggests that fans, “…keep an eye on the Toadvine girls and what goes on in that house of sin.”
After episode four, “You start to see the darkness coming out,” and it feels like Preacher now has passed a point of no return. The slow burn into the meat (pun intended) of the season is over and things from the fourth episode forward are full steam ahead. “I can’t give you too much detail, but think about what’s created by a meat plant in a town like that. What kind of things happen to the people, to the earth, to the animals all around that. I think all of that is going to come together rather creepily throughout the next few episodes and into the season finale.”
Another stand out in Preacher is the setting itself. New Mexico shines as the backdrop for the fictional town of Annville, Texas. Sarah, who calls Albuquerque home, is quite content with her city being put on the map in a big way. “There are a lot of places right now that are moving up and starting to be important in the film industry that aren’t necessarily Los Angeles. We’ve had [about ten] feature length films come out here over the past year and a half. I’m able to feed myself acting, and that’s a dream come true. And I think [New Mexico] is going to continue to be a very lucrative market, and I think it’s going to get even better out here. I’m really thrilled to see this region booming. I love it here! I’m not leaving!”
AMC has renewed Preacher for a second season, and at the very least, we can expect to see more of the Toadvine girls and Sarah Minnich as Sindy for the rest of the first season. Sarah can be found on Twitter and Facebook.
Preacher airs Sundays at 9/8c on AMC.
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