Thank the lord, at long last we have signs of life from The Righteous Gemstones, the HBO comedy that ended its first season all the way back in October of 2019. Today HBO released a bunch of first-look images from season 2, which not only catches up with the entire Gemstone family, but also new additions to the series Eric André and Jason Schwartzman.
Created by and starring Danny McBride, the pitch-black comedy follows a deeply hypocritical family of mega-church pastors—Jesse (McBride), Eli (John Goodman), Kelvin (Adam Devine), and Judy (Edi Patterson)—in their descent into outright criminal activity. The COVID-19 pandemic kicked off right as season 2 was set to begin production, causing the substantial hold up between seasons. But in a new EW interview, McBride noted that the delay gave him time to rewrite season 2 and work real-life events into the plot. Obviously, the ongoing health crisis has been the best thing to ever happen to the Gemstones.
“Things pick up an unspecified amount of time later, and we find the Gemstones in a pretty awesome place. I feel like the Gemstones have more to do with a massive corporation than they actually have to do with most Christians, and so like many corporations, COVID was very kind to the Gemstones. They were able to deliver to the world a streaming service that allowed people to stay at home and watch Gemstone broadcasts. So while everyone around them suffered, they’re in a better position than they’ve ever been in before.”
André joins the series as a Texan mega-church pastor who McBride says becomes “a fast friend” of Jesse Gemstone, while Schwartzman will be playing a journalist with “a vendetta against hypocritical evangelical preachers.” Walton Goggins will return as Gemstone uncle Baby Billy, which is good news because another year without Baby Billy on television would’ve absolutely led to rioting in the streets.