Reaper Episode 13 "The Devil & Sam Oliver"
Written By: Michael Daley
Directed By: Kevin Dowling
Original Airdate: 26 May 2009
In This Episode…
Steve pops down from heaven for a bit of a visit – he is the guardian angel of the new hippie-dippy greeter at The Work Bench. While there, he takes Sam's scroll to translate it phonetically so that Sam may challenge the Devil. Meanwhile, Sam, Ben, and Sock head out to collect their soul – a simple task, as the soul is stoned out of his gourd. On toads. Which Ben, naturally, takes home to keep his bunny company.
Steve returns the next day with the transliteration, and a suit for Sam. In addition to the incantation to summon the Devil, the scroll indicates that Sam should be a "reflection" of the Devil. The suit is an exact duplicate of the Devil's. Now Sam just has to figure out what his special skill is. It's not sports, clarinet, math, spelling – any sort of book learning. Depressed, the gang starts drinking, and Sam figures it out – his special skill is Quarters, the drinking game where you have to flip quarters into a shot glass. If you miss, you drink. Sam never misses.
So Sam summons the Devil – who is pleasantly surprised by his temerity, and his sharp suit. The challenge is set forth: five quarters, whoever gets the most in wins. The challenge ends in a draw. Perfect scores on either sides. The Devil rejects Sam's plea for a rematch because he doesn't have anything the Devil wants. Andi is desperate to find a loophole, so she has Gladys re-translate. Steve's initial translation was wrong – the Devil can't resist his own reflection. Unbeknownst to Sam, Andi offers up her own soul to the Devil in exchange for a rematch. But this time, they come prepared: the table has a mirrored surface, and the Devil is, indeed, taken with his own reflection. He flips first, and gets only one quarter in. But he is a sore loser, and smashes the shot glass to bits. Sam dashes into the store to grab a replacement shot glass. While there, Steve shows up again. He apologizes to Sam, shakes his hand, and breaks it in six places. Sam returns to the competition with a non-functioning hand. Determined to win, he goes lefty – and misses every shot. Andi's soul belongs to the Devil, but she is strangely at peace with it. Mainly because she can now start dating Sam again. Steve returns a final time, and swears that when he broke Sam's hand, it was a direct message from "up above," and "heaven works in mysterious ways."
Dig It or Bury It?
What a weak season finale. It was slow, not a single second of action (unless you count the priest semi-tackling a very stoned Sock), and scarcely even humorous. Did the creators know the show was getting cancelled, and give up at the end of the season/series? On top of that, the ending – with the mysterious message from "up above" – had a creepy religious zealotry going on. What happened – Hollywood is supposed to be comprised of godless heathens!
Vessel… To Hell!
A machete – badass. Use: to cut Sam from the tongued grip of the toad licker (who apparently is part toad himself). Result: successful. Scene: too short. Graphics: shit.
Hands down the least-funny episode of the season. The only thing that made me crack a smile was Mary Pat, the crazy Work Bench greeter, who believes faeries protect her, practices "magick with a K," and smokes like a burning marshmallow.
The show is cancelled. Sock has a new series on Fox; Sam will probably land another series (it seems he has had dozens of them); I would be happy to see Nina get her own show – she is a delight.