With the return of Uncle George in Servant Season 2, the mission of the Church of the Lesser Saints becomes clearer.
WARNING: The following contains spoilers for Servant Season 2, Episode 6, “Espresso,” which aired Friday on Apple TV+.
During the strange happenings of Servant’s debut season, it was gradually revealed that young nanny Leanne Grayson was a member of the Church of the Lesser Saints, a cult thought to have been disbanded after a deadly standoff. However, the cult survived their apparent downfall, and by the end of the season, they reclaimed Leanne from the Turner household and welcomed her back into their ranks.
This season, Dorothy Turner’s investigative efforts to find Leanne and Jericho have directly targeted the Church, but despite Dorothy’s success in locating Leanne, the Church has remained bathed in mystery. However, after kidnapping Leanne from her new post at the Marino household, the Turners have put themselves directly in the crosshairs of Leanne’s family, and at the end of the previous episode, her creepy Uncle George eventually caught up with the desperate Turners.
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In this week’s episode, “Espresso,” Uncle George arrives at Sean and Dorothy’s house, desperate to return Leanne to the Marinos. As the family struggles to contain the frantic cultist, he reveals to Sean more details about the Church and their ultimate mission.
Upon forcefully entering the house, Uncle George demands to see Leanne. After noticing the foundational issues of the home, Uncle George becomes more hysterical and prays to God to forgive the Turners. Sean finally decides to talk with him one-on-one, admitting to having kidnapped Leanne. Although Uncle George is upset at the kidnapping, he seems to put more blame on Leanne, calling her decision to bring back Jericho a “mistake.” Uncle George then goes on to explain the aims of the Church while hinting to how widespread their believers actually are.
“We are all amongst you, though we try not to take up space,” Uncle George says. “You might see us on street corners, under overpasses. We are the ones who have been given a second chance at life, and we use it to enact God’s divine plan… to help others.”
Before Sean can clarify who or what the cult members are, George says that they, “only help the people we are told to help,” and that by helping the Turners, Leanne is defying God’s will. Uncle George’s claims about the Church are still somewhat vague, but this revelation is the closest viewers have come to understanding the true purpose of their supernatural and divine dealings.
In previous episodes, the Church had been able to allegedly revive people through their religious ceremonies. Leanne’s actions, including seemingly resurrecting Jericho and cursing Sean, show that she is able to use similar powers. The way George puts it, the Church’s goals are noble in nature. This goes against the menacing portrayal of the cult thus far, especially considering their kidnapping and brainwashing of Julian’s private detective, Roscoe.
George’s claims also raise questions about whether or not members of the Church have all been brought back to life in some way, given what George said about being given “a second chance.” It certainly seems possible the cult member see themselves as angelic, miracle-performing figures, and even Sean seems like he was insinuating this before being cut off.
Whether or not George’s assertions about the goals of the Church are true, what is clear is that Leanne’s initial decision to help the Turners in Servant Season 1 was in defiance of the Church’s directives. Given the extreme lengths George and Leanne’s Aunt May Markham have gone to in order to bring her back, Dorothy’s decision to kidnap Leanne could have grave consequences for all involved.
Starring Lauren Ambrose, Toby Kebbell, Nell Tiger Free and Rupert Grint, the second season of Servant airs every Friday on Apple TV+.
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