WARNING: The following article contains MAJOR SPOILERS for the Series Finale of Preacher, "End of the World," which aired Sunday on AMC.
After forty-three episodes and four seasons, AMC's Southern-fried, blasphemy-filled road trip adventure, Preacher has come to a bloody end. In its series finale, "End of the World," the live-action adaptation of Garth Ennis and the late, great Steve Dillon's seminal comic book series sprints to the finish line with a hail of gunfire, swordplay, and upsetting scenes of strangulation. While the vast majority of our heroes did walk away from the madness relatively unscathed, not everyone was quite so lucky. Of course, death eventually comes...even for the lucky ones. So who met their demise in in Preacher's final episode?
Note: The following will be a recount of every major character who died in the season finale, in order. Ancillary characters like Chief Whitman and his fellow officer, the nuclear warhead facility guards, a slew of angels, and the creepy "human replacements" God had been cooking up will not be noted below. But make no mistake, they all did in fact meet their ends.
The Archangel and His Beloved
Nothing lasts forever, even the lives of angels and demons. In what might be the most impressive fight scene of the entire series, The Saint of Killers takes on the once-imprisoned Archangel (David Field) and his Beloved Demon Lover (Sue-Ellen Shook), who are protecting their lovechild, Genesis, and Jesse Custer by proxy. Sadly, these two lovers on opposing sides didn't last terribly long. Despite their best efforts, The Saint bested the both of them, cutting them down with divine weaponry.
Julie Ann Emery turned in a wonderful performance as the sycophantic, zealous master of disguise, Featherstone. As an operative of The Grail, Featherstone was cold, calculating and brutal. The only thing to really crack her iron veneer was Klaus Starr, a man she found desirable beyond comprehension. Of course, the closer Featherstone got to Starr, the more she could see the villainous psychopath that he really was bubble to the surface. This all culminated with Featherstone refusing Starr's offer to live "under the sea" as the rest of the world burns, leading her to be shot to death by her would-be deranged lover. It's a sad end to a sad character.
The Saint of Killers
Okay okay. So this one is a bit of a cheat. Yes, The Saint of Killers (Graham McTavish) does technically die in the finale, but the death of a divine figure can get a bit wonky, as Preacher has shown time and time again. While the deaths of the Archangel and his Demon Beloved seemed to be rather final, The Saint exits his mortal coil at the hands of Jesse Custer, who concocted a plan to get The Saint past the gates of Heaven in order to face down the Almighty Himself. The plan worked like gangbusters, much to God's chagrin (more on that later).
One of the biggest character changes from the comics made by the show might also be one of the best. Tyson Ritter as the descendant of Jesus Christ, Humperdoo is wonderful. The balance of kindness, compassion, and very bizarre behavior the character displayed was much more endearing than the non-verbal, feral human we saw in the source material. Which makes it a shame that he had to die in order to stop the apocalypse. The worst part, he was killed by a man who truly loved him: Cassidy. Despite his crass behavior, Hump (as he was affectionately called by his vampire apostle) didn't deserve any of this, which might make him the most tragic character in the show.
What's the opposite of a tragic death? That would be the passing of Hitler. Noah Taylor gave an excellent portrayal of a zany version of one of history's biggest bastards. But the character's life came to an end at the hands of none other than Jesus Christ (also played by Tyson Ritter). So long, Adolf; you won't be missed.
With his plans for the apocalypse thwarted, God (Mark Harelik) heads back to Heaven to lick his wounds. Discovering his throne room stacked high with piles of dead angels, God finds his final challenge waiting for him: The Saint of Killers. Much like how things unfold in the comic, God states his case, but it falls on the deaf ears of a man who is powered by hate. The Saint takes his righteous vengeance against the Almighty. And then takes his throne, weary and withdrawn.
Jesse Custer & Tulip O'Hare
Okay, there is a reason these two are listed under one entry, and it's due to the simple fact that neither Jesse (Dominic Cooper) nor Tulip (Ruth Negga) died on screen. The finale fast-forwards forty years into the future and focuses on the star-crossed lovers' daughter (also portrayed by Ruth Negga) at Jesse's funeral.
In a show filled with carnage, murder, and mayhem, it's something of a miracle these two remained partners in crime (and in life) for so long, and were afforded a quiet, seemingly peaceful death. They were truly loved by those closest to them, and despite their tribulations, they loved one another, each in their own ways. It turns out, there is such a thing as rest for the wicked.
It is of the utmost importance not to forget how amazingly well Joseph Gilgun portrayed the Irish, drug-abusing vampire Cassidy over the last four seasons of Preacher. The character was, and always shall be, the heart of the show. Cassidy's struggles with addiction and the existential nightmare of being an immortal, blood-sucking monster gave the character gravitas and plenty of reason to be so broken. After saying goodbye to his oldest friend, Jesse Custer, he finds solace. The people he loved the deepest are gone, but instead of feeling sorry for himself, Cassidy bids Jesse and Tulip's daughter ado, and walks into the daylight, unafraid of whatever lays beyond the veil.
Preacher was developed by Sam Catlin, Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg. It stars Dominic Cooper, Joseph Gilgun, Ruth Negga, Ian Colletti, Graham McTavish, Pip Torrens, Noah Taylor, Julie Ann Emery, Mark Harelik and Tyson Ritter.