Basically Judd, Vicki,and Ryan are waiting for Lionel and Ryan is the only one who justifiably afraid for which the others lambast him. Poor Ryan, forever playing the role of Butt Monkey. He and Hattie Durham really need to start a support group. Call it "Characters against Ellanjay Abuse."
It turns out the apartment complex where Andre lives is on fire so there's an action sequence where Judd and Lionel decide to go in and get Andre out. It actually makes a little sense for this Big Damn Heroes moment to happen because the fire department and every other department would be too busy dealing with the disappearance of every child on earth, but the problem I have with it is that they don't even bother to ask about the other people in the building; they only care about Uncle Andre. Everyone else is untermenschen to borrow Fred's word.
Lionel has a conversation with his dying uncle and it's not actually too bad. It's a little melodramatic but sometimes melodramatic is perfect for the situation at hand.
"No! No!" Lionel screamed. "God, don't let him die! Andre!"
Judd covered with his hand the deep wound in Andre's neck as the man tried to talk. "This is what hell will be like," he rasped. "I deserve it, Lionel."
"No! We all deserve it, Andre! But you don't have to go! Don't go!"
"It's too late."
"It wasn't too late for the thief on the cross! Please, Andre!"
Again, this conversation is dripping with melodrama, but it's not too bad though as always are sympathies are with Andre rather than Lionel.
But when Lionel and Judd get out of the building, Judd's car is gone and with it, Ryan and Vicki.
Ryan and Vicki, it turns out, didn't escape to a better story but high-tailed at as soon as they saw LeRoy, aka the guy Andre was in trouble with, coming.
But Lionel is not in a good mood and who could blame him after what he's witnessed. But Vicki, desperately looking for asshole points, tries to comfort him in the worst possible way.
"Because we love you," she said. "That's why. We need you in this family. I feel awful for you and sorry for your uncle, but from what you tell me, he knew the truth and had every chance to accept Christ."
See this is why you don't convert to RTC religion: because there's nothing at all about the love of Christ in this conversation. In fact, RTC religion as many have said, is akin to spell-casting. Without saying the magic words, God's hands are tied and you're going to hell, but if you do say the magical words, you can run circumvent God.
Judd offers these words of comfort.
"You didn't mess up, Lionel. I hate to say it, but Andre messed up. There was nothing more you could do. You explained. You pleaded with him. Plus, he knew all this from the beginning. He was raised the same way you were."
All the on-screen damned apparently had heard of Christ somewhere along the way, but Ellanjay neglects to deal with the off-screen damned. What about some lost tribe in the South American jungle who have never seen a white man, let alone heard of Christ? What about them, Ellanjay?
But anyway, that's it for this week. Hopefully soon we'll be back to wrong-headed preaching and I'll have more to talk about.