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The Righteous Gemstones Season 3 finale: An Explosive Redemption

What a finale that was for the third season of The Righteous Gemstones! We can't wait to see if Danny McBride can replicate the same magic in Season 4.

As I sit here, contemplating how I'll spend my Sunday evenings in the coming months, I find myself engrossed in thoughts about Season 3 of The Righteous Gemstones. Watching this show is akin to an addiction, and now that the season has come to a close, I can't shake this sense of emptiness.

Thankfully, for me and all the fans of this dark comedy series, the double feature finale did not disappoint. So join me as I delve into the final review of Season 3, where I'll try to unravel the events of Episode 8: "I Will Take You by the Hand and Keep You" and Episode 9: "Wonders That Cannot Be Fathomed, Miracles That Cannot Be Counted."

Jesse, Judy, and Kelvin Gemstone are safe thanks to Karl and May-May's heroic efforts, with a great deal of help from Gideon. However, Eli Gemstone is facing the consequences of refusing to pay the ransom and endangering his kids' lives. The incident has created a rift, but on the bright side, it has brought Eli and May-May closer together than ever before.

In the midst of mounting pressure and dwindling morale, Peter and his militia are compelled to abandon their outpost to evade apprehension by the authorities. Doubts about Peter's leadership start to emerge, fueled by Marshall's constant questioning. Struggling to find a safe haven and lacking a clear strategy, they seek shelter under an overpass, where they regroup to devise a new plan of action.

Surviving an abduction truly puts things into perspective for the Gemstone siblings. Jesse reconciles with Amber and ditches the sideburns, which becomes a running joke. BJ and Judy seemingly mend their relationship, which was in jeopardy after Judy's affair, and Kelvin and Keefe find their own strange way to forgive each other - but that's not all.

The siblings decide to return to the church and work together, motivated by their collective animosity towards their father, which he accepts as the only way to bring an end to their bickering and find peace.

Who knew that all the Gemstone siblings needed was a common enemy to work together?

Meanwhile, the militia decides enough is enough with Peter's indecisive leadership style and exiles him and his son. The ragged outfit leaves with everything except the U-Haul containing stolen ammonium nitrate and a bomb Peter is crafting. Fueled by anger, Peter retaliates by alerting the police about the militia's location, leading to their arrest.

Then enters Uncle Baby Billy, the charismatic Gemstone that could probably sell you sand on a beach, and doesn't know the meaning of the word quit. Since the season began, Uncle Baby Billy has been trying to get approval for his show, Baby Billy's Bible Bonkers, from the Gemstones - without success.

However, now he found some leverage they can't ignore. It turns out he and Dusty Daniels share a close relationship due to their shenanigans during the Y2K scare (which is hilariously depicted through a series of explicit montages).

While Dusty was initially won over by the Simkins, he's now grown tired of their ministry, and Uncle Baby Billy sees this as the perfect chance for the Gemstone siblings to win him back. But there's a twist: the Gemstones and Simkins must compete in Baby Billy's Bible Bonkers trivia to determine the winner, with the grand prize being Dusty and his vast estate.

Finally! The Baby Billy's Bible Bonkers show is now live and what a blast it was!

Chuck, upon discovering his father's plan to destroy the Gemstone Church with the improvised explosives, takes action. He decides to detonate the explosives after Peter enters a mini-mart, leaving him and the van outside the parking lot. The news of Chuck's apparent demise leaves May-May and Karl devastated.

However, to everyone's surprise, Chuck reappears unharmed, explaining that he made sure no one was near the explosion before triggering it. His heroic act to save the Gemstones from Peter earns their forgiveness, though it takes a little more convincing for Jesse, who feels more betrayed than most.

As Eli, May-May, and Gideon make their way to the Bible Bonkers trivia event, they spot Peter driving a stolen church van belonging to the Smut Busters. Following him, they quickly deduce that he's headed to the church where the trivia is happening.

Despite Uncle Baby Billy providing the Gemstone team with the trivia answers, Jesse decides to play fair and square, a choice that proves to be disastrous as they suffer a major loss in the first round of the contest.

Meanwhile, May-May and Eli confront Peter, who discloses that he has an improvised explosive device in the back of the van, connected to a dead man's switch linked to his Fitbit (not exactly the best advertisement for Fitbit).

Jury-rigging a Fitbit as a dead man's switch? Now that's both idiotic and genius!

In the midst of dire circumstances for the Gemstones, a much-needed miracle arrives in the form of a locust swarm unexpectedly descending upon the church, setting off a chain of chaotic events. Strangely enough, this commotion leads to positive outcomes for both the Gemstones and the Montgomerys, with Jesse bravely rescuing Dusty and Eli heroically protecting Jesse by tackling him.

Unfortunately, one of the locusts accidentally damages Peter's Fitbit, inadvertently triggering a countdown of the explosive device hidden in his van. With no other option left, Peter makes a selfless decision to protect everyone by driving the van as far away from the church as possible, seemingly sacrificing himself in the ensuing explosion.

In the final moments of the finale, Dusty is laid to rest in a NASCAR car after he passes away off-screen, leaving his estate to the Gemstones. Jesse sends his second son, Pontius, to military school, while Gideon chooses to become a preacher and seeks guidance from his grandfather, Eli. Surprisingly, Peter survived the explosion, albeit at the cost of one of his lower limbs.

Despite past conflicts, forgiveness prevails, and both the Gemstones and Montgomerys unite as one family (seeing everyone wreck stuff with the Redeemer was such an awesome way to sign off the season).

Two fake out deaths in two episodes... That's Danny McBride for you.

As far as season finales go, Episode 9 is arguably the best end to what was a thrilling ride that had me thinking one of the Gemstones would bite the dust. When the Montgomery sons were introduced, I had a feeling that they would play a big role in the final showdown.

I was definitely pleased to see Danny McBride follow up on this promise with Karl and Chuck playing pivotal roles in the survival of the Gemstones. Peter was a ticking time bomb throughout the season (sometimes literally), but just like the Biblical plague of Egypt, a swarm of locusts can easily change even the most resolute minds.

Judy's redemption arc leaves something to be desired, considering the humiliation she put BJ through this season. Perhaps McBride will address this in the upcoming season, but as of now, Judy still has a lot to do to get off the naughty list.

On the other hand, Jesse and Gideon's character development this season was remarkable. That doesn't necessarily mean Jesse will cease his hijinks in the future, but he seems to have a better grasp of the bigger picture now. The church requires true leadership to thrive, and likewise, his family needs him to step up as a leader to confront any future threats.

Gideon's unexpected choice to walk in his grandfather's footsteps caught me off guard, but it's a decision that has piqued my curiosity about how it will unfold in the upcoming season. Being the most rational and grounded member of the Gemstone family, Gideon possesses the potential to ignite a fresh start for the church, and Eli surely understands the implications this holds for his own legacy.

Dr. Eli Gemstone can now fully retire as a happy man.

HBO wasted no time in confirming the show's renewal for a fourth season, and it's no wonder, given its impressive viewership and high approval rating from critics. How do you feel about this season's finale, and what are your predictions for Season 4 of the Righteous Gemstones? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section below.

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  1. The way Aimee Leigh was standing there in the distance watching the fam. Her hair was diff from when the kids remembered her and every flashback I’ve seen(I’m pretty sure of) Could she be alive? And is this the cliffhanger McBride has left us with? Or was it just an angelic moment? Plot twist.

Caleb Sama

Caleb Sama // Articles: 491

Caleb is just your average Joe Schmo with a love for games and films and a knack for writing. He can tell you all about the latest blockbusters and indie flicks, but he'll also sneak in some obscure references and dad jokes that will make you groan and roll your eyes. His reviews are like a box of chocolates - you never know what you're gonna get, but you'll probably want more.
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