As the second season of Preacher ends, we look at the relationship so far between Jesse, Tulip, and Cassidy. The threesome has experienced a whirlwind of events this season in New Orleans. We’ve delved deeper into the mystery of God and Genesis, explored Jesse and Tulip’s tragic past, found out about Tulip’s secret marriage, and met Cassidy’s dying-to-undead son. However, through all of that, along with dealing with forces like the Grail and the Saint of All Killers, we’ve seen these three characters dynamics slowly deteriorate.
After their first illicit encounter in which Cassidy and Tulip have sex, Cassidy has been smitten with Tulip. Joe Gilgun caught up with us at San Diego Comic-Con this year to talk about it. “He loves her. It’s unrequited love it’s the worst thing,” he muses. “I mean, I know that feeling, I think everyone’s had that at some stage. It’s really long and drawn out for him, it’s a bloody shame. And he wants to be honest, he wants to be honest with his friend as well, with what he’s done. I don’t think Cassidy understands Jesse like Tulip does. Tulip’s seen that side of him.”
For Ruth Negga, in regards to Cassidy and Tulip’s unspoken connection, she says, “Tulip’s very much like, if it’s not broke, don’t fix it. We don’t need to tell him. And I like that dynamic. That tension’s very constant.” That tension permeates itself the most when the three characters are traveling together, and especially so in a close confined space like in Tulip’s car or Denis’ apartment.
Although it seems like Cassidy is ready to step aside, or at least take a back seat with his unrequited affections, it hasn’t stopped him from interfering when he feels like Jesse isn’t paying enough attention to Tulip. “He loves her, he absolutely adores Tulip. And I think he just wishes Jesse maybe appreciated her a little bit more as well,” Gilgun added. The most notable situation in which Cassidy intervened was in the episode “Viktor” when he revealed where Tulip has gone after not getting any replies back from texting her.
“I think the dynamic is interesting, isn’t it?” Negga comments, regarding her character’s dynamic with Cassidy. “It feels like the male and female roles are reversed. He wants to be honest, and have a conversation, and pour his heart out, and have like a night in and talk about his feelings, and Tulip’s like, ‘No. I don’t want to do that actually. I’d like to keep that compartmentalized somewhere else.’ Which usually, you don’t see that.”
Indeed, Tulip has become the queen of compartmentalization this season. From her frequent trips to the Hurt Locker to her solo venture into the lion’s den at Viktor’s home, she’s far from the damsel in distress. “What I love about her is she doesn’t think it’s necessary to reveal everything because she’s had a life outside of [Jesse]. And, that’s not healthy, but it’s part of her. We see all these unhealthy bits of her laid bare this season, especially in terms of what she’s been doing when she hasn’t been with Jesse,” Negga said.
Not only did we find out what exactly happened to Tulip during that time without Jesse after their break up, but we also discovered the cause of said breakup. In “Dallas” we learn about the two losing their baby and then their attempts to conceive and live a life outside of crime. Negga comments on filming the scenes and the eventual collapse of their relationship, “It was a really interesting dissection of a relationship that’s in free fall, when two people can’t communicate and what that does, and how that changes you, and how something so big and intimate can be so explosively divisive. It can shift people so far away from one another. I really did love that storyline, because I thought this is real life. This is what happens. Sometimes these things can do that, and they can shift soul mates so far away that there is no communication.”
As for Jesse, who has spent the better part of the season on his own in a seemingly fruitless search for God, the more time he spends using Genesis and separated from Tulip, the more he seems to spiral into his own darkness. “The more writers write about him and the more is reveal about him, the more he terrifies me and his inability to see compassion and his use of Genesis often astounds me,” Dominic Cooper reveals. “He doesn’t do it to help his best mates in a time of need, he’ll use it sporadically without warning, and sometimes for fun. There’s a kind of schizophrenic nature to him, he’s all over the place.” Not only has Genesis affected his own life, but it has been the weapon to kill many people in the series and seems to have corrupted Jesse to the point of no return.