And lo, the first season of AMC’s Preacher has come to an end with Sunday’s “Call and Response” finale, moving beyond the small Texas town of Annville to the comics’ road trip to find God. Said exit came with an explosive ending for many of the characters Season 1 had introduced us to, now confirmed by showrunner Sam Catlin, while Season 2's biggest bad may in fact be someone we’ve already glimpsed.

You’re warned of full spoilers through Sunday’s Preacher finale from here on out, but where fans naturally hold out hope for at least some of the characters caught in the methane explosion that claimed Annville, Texas in the finale’s climax, Catlin confirms to Deadline the slate was wiped clean. No more Odin Quincannon (Jackie Earle Haley), no more Sheriff Root (W. Earl Brown), Donnie Schenck (Derek Wilson), nor even Emily (Lucy Griffiths), one of the harsher casualties of such a shocking end:

In the end, we had to clear the deck, there’s so many great characters from the comic to come … In the first season we really wanted to establish Jesse’s relationship to God and lack thereof. He is disillusioned and losing his congregation from the beginning. We needed to put Jesse’s journey into context, and his mission for next season.

That said, Jesse and his group managed not to learn of Annville’s fate before heading out on the road, while Catlin also confirmed that Eugene “Arseface” Root was theoretically spared the town’s destruction from his current position in an unknown hellscape. The mysterious cowboy (known in comics as “The Saint of Killers”) also made known his intent to track Jesse down, while Season 2 will officially introduce us to the mysterious white-suited man glimpsed in the show’s third hour.


That man’s identity? You guessed it, none other than Herr Starr, comic character and key figure in “The Grail,” described as “a secret organization controlling the governments of the world and protecting the bloodline of Jesus.” For the moment at least, the role remains publicly uncast.

We’ll surely hear more of Preacher Season 2 in the coming weeks and months, but was the series right to shuffle off the entirety of its supporting cast? Who will present the bigger Season 2 threat, The Saint of Killers or Herr Starr?