Damnation Season 1 Episode 5 Review: Den of Lost Souls

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When Creeley tells Bessie his desires regarding his brother are complicated, I get the feeling even he doesn't know how complicated things will become at the end of this tale.

Virtually everything regarding the strike is on the back burner during Damnation Season 1 Episode 5 while personal relationships and motives are highlighted.

There were a couple of times when the action tried to throw us off the path, but the most shocking events came by was of personal reveals.

The Carnival - Damnation

Right up front, we discovered Hyde, PhD hasn't been pleased with the work Creeley has been doing on his behalf. 

For proof the strike wasn't of importance, Hyde didn't even bother firing Creeley, but instead hired a second contractor to outright kill the preacher and his wife. 

That was more than a little confusing to me. Hyde pulled Creeley out of a Wyoming jail to do a job, a job he's not doing satisfactorily. But as far as we know, it's never been Creeley's job to kill the preacher and his wife, only to stop their damn agitating.

To that end, it's only been two and a half weeks (my, how time flies). We can surmise Connie's methods of killing as many as possible before disappearing into the night probably shuts things down a little faster. 

Creeley: The man I work for just sent someone to kill my brother and his wife, and I can't let it happen.
Bessie: I thought you were sent here to stop him.
Creeley: Yeah, I was, but it's more complicated than that. I need my brother alive.

Everything is always more complicated than we know until we know it, and we're just beginning to discover the depths of how complicated the relationship is between Creeley and Seth.

Creeley didn't want his brother killed, that was obvious. Visiting the carnival was a reminder of the past everywhere he turned. First, he was accosted by the fortune teller who knew more than Creeley felt comfortable.

Carny: It doesn't feel the way you wish it would, does it?
Creeley: What doesn't?
Carny: Freedom, revenge, the world of men.

And then that thought was wiped away when he recalled the thrill of visiting the carnival with his daddy, seeing the very same wrestler who was in Iowa. You could see the joy on his face as the memories dances across it, the excitement he must have felt as a little boy, sharing time with his father.

But his memories didn't include Seth, who was also walking down that lane with a boy who was once like a brother to he and Creeley. By introducing Lou to town at the same time a killer was hunting Seth and Amelia, it looked like he might be the guy.

Two Preachers - Damnation Season 1 Episode 5

Instead, Lou brought some more insight into the brothers' relationship as well as a bit of Seth's more mischievous side, which was needed to keep Seth alive.

Seth was being stupid after reuniting with his friend, but in doing so had a little time to blow off steam. He was drinking, carousing, and even almost ran the banker out of town after using him as a hood ornament.

Through Lou, we learned Seth's shooting skills get better after a few drinks, and there was a time when he and Creeley were inseparable. 

Lou: Still pretty good.
Seth: The way Creeley is these days still pretty good will get me killed.
Lou: Can't get used to hearin' that.
Seth: Why? Because he used to be so yellow?
Lou: No because you used to be so close.

Amelia's continued encouragement of DL inspired him to write something quite good, and they're in the midst of publishing their first underground newspaper.

What Amelia doesn't know is DL getting a bit of a crush on her. When she thinks it's sexy that her bad-boy preacher husband leans into the weapons of war to win her a tiny stuffed animal at the shooting range, DL puts down his newspaper sack and handily destroys every target.

DL is the town sharpshooter.

Wedded Bliss - Damnation Season 1 Episode 5

Amelia isn't listening to Creeley to save herself and run out of town, so will we soon discover DL carries more than the wares of the reporting trade in his rucksack when he's called to protect the woman he's growing to love?

Think of him in the streets during those shootouts. He looked so powerless. He could have quite handily taken out a number of the men himself. That's an interesting takeaway, isn't it?

And Bessie's daddy held up his end of the bargain made on Damnation Season 1 Episode 4 when he promised he'd give her something in the return for information on Creeley and Seth. He found her a little house and offered the rest of the down payment for information.

Not Daddy's Girl - Damnation Season 1 Episode 5

But Bessie still thinks there is something very right with her cowboy, even if there is something very wrong with what's happening in the town.

By poking around Creeley's things, she saw how connected he still is to his brother and found a phone number. How she knew what to say once she got Hyde on the phone flew right over my head, but it was good enough for Sheriff Don.

Who is Duval? What did I miss? He's pulling the strings of everyone from Hyde down, but I have no idea who that is. Whoops.

Bessie is going to get her house, but will Creeley move with her? He has a think for whore houses and probably for being close to the action. Following her to a little house in the middle of nowhere isn't going to give him the same sense of security.

And until Creeley has Seth back in Wyoming, he's going to want to be as close to his brother as possible. Now we know why Creeley chose this gig specifically, and why he was in jail.

According to Creeley, Seth murdered a few people and set his brother up for it. If we're to believe him, and Connie, too, Seth is a murderer. He's always talking about the things he doesn't want Amelia to know about his past; is his biggest secret the ease with which he used to kill people? 

Or was it setting up the brother he once loved for murders he committed?

I can't have either character be a really rotten guy. I like them too much. This story has to be a lot more complicated, right? RIGHT?? I guess we'll learn more very soon.

If you've missed the progression, watch Damnation online to see the story unfold.

Den of Lost Souls Review

Editor Rating: 4.35 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.5 / 5.0 (4 Votes)

Carissa Pavlica is the managing editor and a staff writer and critic for TV Fanatic. She's a member of the Critic's Choice Association, enjoys mentoring writers, cats, and passionately discussing the nuances of television and film. Follow her on Twitter and email her here at TV Fanatic.

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Damnation Season 1 Episode 5 Quotes

DL: I'm not sure that we thought this through.
Amelia: Oh, come on, DL. Did Thomas Paine get cold feed when he wrote the Rights of Men?
DL: Thomas Paine was arrested for treason.

Carny: It doesn't feel the way you wish it would, does it?
Creeley: What doesn't?
Carny: Freedom, revenge, the world of men.