Praise be, The Righteous Gemstones is back for Season 3 to bless our Sunday nights. Season 3 Episode 2, “But Esau Ran to Meet Him,” introduces us to Peter, his sons and his doomsday prepper compound. Steve Zahn and Lukas Haas join the darkly comedic fun. This outing is chock full of action, high-octane thrills and big belly laughs. The scene where Jesse, Judy and Kelvin get into a shoe-throwing war with the leaders of various churches? Hysterical.

It perfectly fits the show’s tone, as does the tense car chase with Gideon (Skyler Gisondo) at the wheel. This series contains multitudes; the writers deftly balance those nuances and colors. “But Esau Ran to Meet Him” scatters the puzzle pieces across the floor, planting narrative clues about where our characters will go. 

In honor of our favorite obscenely wealthy family returning (with no ludicrously capacious bags in sight), here are just a few of the best quotes from “But Esau Ran to Meet Him.” 

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JUDY: “I have long known that I can drive men wild with the power of this pussy or even just the promise of this pussy. But, like, marriage-ruining sh*t, homewrecker sh*t? That’s a ‘hell no’ from me, dog.”

It’s hard not to cackle when you hear Judy (Edi Patterson) tack on a “dog” at the end of a sentence, especially since she utters it unironically. On another note, who has the full-on, wholehearted confidence of our girl? Not a soul. She drives all the menfolk wild with her powerful private part. Her milkshake brings all the boys to the yard. However, she draws the line at homewrecking, so she harbors a functional, if not bare bones, moral compass. Sorry, Stephen (Stephen Schneider). 

Steven reaches for Judy's hand across a booth in a restaurant in The Righteous Gemstones Season 3 Episode 2, "But Esau Ran to Meet Him."

THE RIGHTEOUS GEMSTONES Season 3 Episode 2, “But Esau Ran to Meet Him.” Photo credit: Jake Giles Netter/HBO.

JESSE: “Percy, can you make our chairs taller than the rest? What we’re going for here is that when people come in to meet, that they feel less.”

If one thing in Jesse Gemstone (Danny McBride) is in working order, it’s his massive ego. He and Kelvin (Adam DeVine) hope to raise their status among the peons and those with less than $1 million to their names. And, as usual, Judy is left out of the equation. McBride’s delivery of that last sentence killed me. He’s pretty adept at making the most ludicrous line sound natural. It’s all about making them feel less. 

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ELI: “World’s a more cynical place than when we were coming up. People are ready to hate. Excited to, even.” 

Eli (John Goodman), aka America’s Jesus Daddy, simply wants his children to let him fish in peace. But in true Gemstones fashion, the former head of the church can’t even enjoy semi-retirement without our new leading trio inserting themselves into his business. They want deddy to fix everything. Pwetty pwease? The Gemstones might not have the strongest moral center, but Eli’s line here resonates.

While some folks are unhappy with the status quo and willing to upend discriminatory systems in favor of something much better, others would rather watch it all burn. Cynics excited to spew vitriol lurk around every corner. 

Peter wears camo gear while standing in his doomsday prepper compound in The Righteous Gemstones Season 3 Episode 2, "But Esau Ran To Meet Him."

THE RIGHTEOUS GEMSTONES Season 3 Episode 2, “But Esau Ran To Meet Him.” Photo credit: Jake Giles Netter/HBO.

BJ: “Don’t gaslight me, Judy.”

JUDY: “You gaslight yourself by being crazy.” 

Nobody gaslights or puts my baby BJ (Tim Baltz) in a corner. Of course, we know Judy is legitimately gaslighting BJ into thinking something isn’t amiss, but Judy’s response made me laugh. Well, laugh and simultaneously sigh because this is how those who are gaslit are portrayed — as “crazy.” It’s a vicious cycle of abuse. Even though Judy claims her reply is a joke, I don’t think BJ buys it. 

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What are your favorite quotes from “But Esau Ran to Meet Him”? Sound off in the comments below!

The Righteous Gemstones airs new episodes every Sunday at 10 pm on HBO and Max

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Melody McCune
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