CBS’ ‘Evil’ offers spooks for Halloween


In the pilot episode that premiered Sept. 26, actress Katja Herbers plays forensic psychologist Kristen Bouchard (left), who reacts to a homicide suspect (Darren Pettie) during a jail-room meeting to determine whether he is actually possessed by a demon. Image used with permission from CBS Broadcasting ©2019. Photo by Jeff Neumann

Hannah Jeong, Assistant Feature Editor

Evil takes on a new definition as CBS’s latest horror TV show delves to answer unnerving questions about the roots of corruption.

Premiered Sept. 26, “Evil” plays on the thrilling idea of supernatural forces as Kristen Bouchard, (Katja Mira Herbers, “Westworld”) a skeptical psychologist, Daniel Acosta, (Mike Colter, “Luke Cage”) a priest-in-training, and Ben (Aasif Mandvia, “Series of Unfortunate Events), a blue collar contractor, investigate assignments from the Catholic church ranging from “miracles” to “demonic possessions.”

“Evil” is different from other horror shows on the market because they tread on the border of science and religion to investigate the Catholic church’s backlog of cases to assess whether or not something supernatural is at play. At the same time, its cast has a similar concept as Fox’s “The X Files.”

Nevertheless, it’s refreshing to see a show that is not another basic crime series. Rather, it involves paranormal activities to provide new storylines and perspectives.

Within the first 10 minutes of the first episode, the show effectively hooks the audience with the creepy performance of the “possessed” homicide suspect (Darren Pettie, “New Amsterdam”). His unsettling smile and charismatic acting keep viewers on edge.

The show also successfully employs jump-scares, a must have in horrors.

One well-shot scene is when Bouchard interrogates the killer, and he suddenly pounces onto the table toward her when she starts reciting the “Lord’s Prayer.”

As Bouchard works on the cases, she starts having night terrors featuring a demon named George.

Their conversations are extremely disturbing, especially when George interrogates Bouchard with invasive questions and even threatens to kill her children.

The second episode regarding a girl who comes back to life after being pronounced dead in the hospital for two hours is also worth viewing. Once the protagonists get started on the case, we keep following along in their investigation to debunk the possibility of a miracle — whether a resurrection has occurred or not.

The emphasis put on religion, or the lack thereof, keeps the audience curious for the coming cases the trio will investigate in later episodes.

Overall, it’s a good show with an original concept and engaging camerawork. It’s a great thriller that is not too unrealistic and does not heavily rely on paranormal activity.

Airing Thursdays at 10 p.m., “Evil” is a must for horror enthusiasts, especially since this year Oct. 31 falls on a Thursday. It’s perfect for those who want to get into the Halloween spirit.

The past four episodes of “Evil” can be streamed on but with ads.