This series follows two priests, one younger and the other older, an experienced exorcist. It builds off the original only that it references it in a moment. It’s set in the 2010s. It disregards the movie sequels but uses the original movie as a stepping stone.
The representation of sexuality within the priesthood is also on display. A brief and not-so-subtle scene was in Episode 2 where the older priest flirts with the younger priest, eyeing him after a run, all sweaty, young and handsome. The body posture of the older priest said it all: shirt partially open, half leaning on the doorframe and telling the younger priest that he ran out of eggs all with a half grin. This is what I caught. In Season 2 the older priest shares a kiss with another man priest. This garnered criticism on twitter and the creator shared his thoughts:
Fans watched as Father Marcus Keane (Ben Daniels) kissed another man, confirming his bisexuality after the show spent its first season teasing it through flirting and sideways glances.
However, some were apparently upset at seeing two men kissing, prompting homophobic remarks on Twitter, something The Exorcist ‘s creator, Jeremy Slater, had choice words for in an interview with Sci-Fi Bulletin.
“I saw a couple of homophobes on Twitter and my response is, ‘Good, [explicit] you. I’m glad you didn’t like it, I’m glad it ruined the show for you. You shouldn’t have good things in your life,’” he said.
If a homophobe can’t watch the show any more because one of the characters is gay, then I’m glad something good has come out of it,” he continued. “This is 2017 and we still have people throwing temper tantrums online because they don’t want to see gay characters. I think it’s the last gasp of a certain breed of dinosaur that’s on the way out, and let them kick and scream as they go.”
Slater added that response has been “99% positive” from viewers, and that it “meant a lot to a lot of viewers,” particularly those who “aren’t necessarily used to seeing gay representation on TV with older characters.
We’ve said from the beginning that Marcus is a bisexual character, which is pretty rare on television in general and certainly on network television, where everyone has binary definitions of gay or straight,” Slater said, adding, “We had little moments of flirting, a little flirty glance in a bar, to clue the audience that this thing that you think you’re seeing is actually there but I knew coming back to season 2 that it was very important and we had to work this into the plot in a natural way and do justice to it.