‘Evil’ Delivers TV’s Most Disgusting Antichrist Baby in Final Season


Which of these scenarios would be more frightening: walking into a particle accelerator that might or might not open the gates of hell, or becoming the biological mother of the antichrist?

During Evil Season 4, poor Kristen Bouchard (Katja Herbers) gets to decide that first-hand. Each season, she and her fellow assessors—David Acosta (Mike Colter) and Ben Shakir (Aasif Mandvi)—examine paranormal phenomena for the Catholic Church to determine if they’re miracles, demonic activity, or simply strange secular events. But this season, as the series prepares to wrap up, the scares feel closer to home than ever.

Evil has always featured a healthy mixture of peculiarities—from compulsive singers, to a body that refuses to decay, to a creepy VR game. In Season 4 of the Paramount+ drama, creators Michelle and Robert King told The Daily Beast’s Obsessed, they’re particularly focused on the mysteries in science and technology. At the same time, Kristen and her family are staring down a more spiritual threat—albeit one that arrives via surrogacy.

“Science hurts itself when it’s overconfident,” Robert said during a recent interview. “The hubris in science creates fear, because there’s so much science doesn’t know—whether it’s quantum mechanics, or even the particle accelerator, which you saw in the first episode. You can’t control the sinkholes that open up under it.”

A photo still of Andrea Martin and Mike Colter

Andrea Martin and Mike Colter


During Thursday’s premiere episode, “How to Split an Atom,” Kristen, David, and Ben visit an underground particle accelerator where a mysterious video showed what appeared to be employees engaging in a Satanic ritual. Thanks to an employee tip, David finds a deep, dark sinkhole that might or might not have an Upside Down-esque creature inside. Ben, meanwhile, faces a mishap of its own that haunts him throughout the season.

While the episode might’ve been inspired by a real-life humorous video taken in a Swedish particle accelerator that imitated a human sacrifice, the Kings also expressed their sincere misgivings about the technology in question.

“On a personal level, it seems absurd to me to imagine that that technology is going to work,” Michelle said. “It’s as though the scientists don’t live in the world I do. I mean, the elevator in our building has been out for a week and a half because they can’t get the proper part. Why they imagine that something like a particle accelerator is going to work and not create havoc is beyond me.”

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Tech skepticism is par for the course this season, which also includes an episode centered around robo-dogs gone haywire; during some episodes, it can almost feel like a less self-serious Black Mirror. But then, Andrea Martin’s demon-hunting nun, Sister Andrea, shows up on screen to exorcize a demon using only a pair of shears, and we all remember where we are.

Meanwhile, our big bad villain Leland’s (Michael Emerson) plan to usher in hell on earth by delivering the antichrist—a baby he created using one of Kristen’s eggs, stolen from a fertility clinic—seriously backfires. The thing about baby antichrists is, they’re still babies, and babies are gross as hell.

“To us, what was funny about this is we recognize most of the antichrist stories like The Omen really don’t deal with the baby—the fact of the baby,” Robert said. “And the baby spitting up food all the time, having raised a daughter ourselves, is the reality of raising a kid. It’s just like The Exorcist—the spitting up pea soup is part of it.”

This baby’s nursery looks like the apocalypse itself. Brown stains stretch across the floor. Liquids and goops of assorted colors are sloshed all over every surface. The baby’s crib is soaked with its own bodily fluids. Apparently, making the nursery look that grotesque was a team effort from production designers with some experience.

“These are people who have children,” Robert said. Even then, he said, they had to ratchet the “ick” factor up a few times to get it right. “They’re throwing shit at the wall—not real shit, but some of that looked like shit. The scenic artists are amazing on Evil, and they just kept adding layer and layer of guck.”

In other words, Leland has basically created his own hell with this baby. At the same time, Michelle observed, the birth of the antichrist—who is still, at the end of the day, Kristen’s biological child—creates a serious conundrum.

“It’s an interesting problem,” she said. “If you believe that there could be an antichrist, is that taken care of when that baby is baptized? … If you don't believe that there’s an antichrist but you believe that genetics play a role, what does it mean that the father is a sociopath?”

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This season marks a bittersweet occasion for Evil fans. It’s the last full season before the show wraps up this August with a four-episode “mini season.” As previously confirmed, the Kings are not shopping their show around to try and extend its lifespan.

“When we found that there were four more episodes to wrap up the story, our focus was on wrapping it up in a way that felt true to us, and hopefully that the fans will also find satisfying,” Michelle said.

At the same time, Robert couldn’t help but make a quick pitch for anyone who wants to throw some funds at the problem: “Look, if there was somebody out there with a lot of money and wants to spend it…” he said with a grin. “Maybe not even a lot of money—there’s a way to do it [for less]—but you know, those actors are so good. All the production, every element of production was so great. We couldn't have had more fun.”

A photo still of Wallace Shawn

Wallace Shawn


Next season, you can expect the show to begin rounding out each character’s story, and perhaps closing down this triumphant trio’s work together as assessors. David’s work with The Entity continues this season, and his more scientific colleagues might just be getting fed up with all the demonic scares. (If I became the mother of the antichrist, I’d probably be ready to bail!)

The important thing, according to Michelle, is that all of this “will feel seamless” for viewers. “It isn’t as though there’s going to be a bump there,” she said. “It’s one long story.”

According to Robert, the first episode in August’s miniseason will take place just one day after the batch of episodes premiering now will wrap up. “So even though it was written months later, it won’t seem that way.”

On that note, he couldn’t help but crack a joke about Kristen’s brood of four chatty daughters—“we forced them not to grow.”

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