YMMV / The Exorcist

The Exorcist (2016 series)
  • Alas, Poor Scrappy: Jessica does get a sad goodbye when she finally gets the hint that her relationship with Tomas would never work and thus, the two depart.
  • Complete Monster:
    • Season 1: The demon known as the Salesman—later revealed to be Pazuzupossesses Casey Rance, the daughter of his former host Regan Macneil, and decides to manipulate her by playing with her insecurities and torment her by inflicting her horrific nightmares. He’s soon revealed to have caused the car accident that killed Katherine’s girlfriend Julia. The Salesman destabilizes Father Thomas Ortega and Father Marcus Kane, the priests tasked for the exorcism, and successfully frames Marcus for the abduction Casey before killing two paramedics. He forces Angela to give up herself to him by threatening the life of her daughter. On top of this, it is revealed that he raped Regan when she was twelve. After repossessing Regan, he kills her mother Chris by snapping the latter's neck; encourages the Friars of Ascensions to pursue their plan of murdering the Pope; slaughters the convent of Mother Bernadette and her sisters, then takes great pleasure in torturing Angela’s husband and daughters and inflicting Father Tomas with an illusion designed to goad him into suicide. Realizing that Angela survived the supposed "integration", he attempts to breaks her down by letting her hear the screams of her loved ones. In his last moments, he tries to kill Angela by snapping her spine. Believing God favored humans more that he and fellow fallen angels, his plan in the long run is to take the world back.
    • Season 2: The Big Bad is a particularly vicious demon haunting Nachburn Island who targets families and coerces parents into murdering their own children over the centuries. After approaching his latest victim, foster guardian Andrew Kim, as a little girl named Grace then under the appearance of his deceased wife, the demon attempts to drop a blind boy into a well and compel a teenager to strangle his foster sister. Taking possession of Andy, he forces his host to relive the suicide of his wife and mind rapes him with horrific visions. He then stabs a woman to death, put exorcist Thomas in a trance and slaughters a couple of farmers. After abducting the four teenagers and social services representative Rose Cooper, the demon plots to execute them all one by one, starting by drowning Rose in the well.
  • Fan Nickname: "Regangela" has been thrown around for Angela Rance.
  • Fridge Brilliance: Angela appears kind of unstable and paranoid when she first jumps to the conclusion that Kat is possessed when Kat only seemed depressed and withdrawn (understandably) after the death of her close friend. But after Angela reveals that she is in fact Regan MacNeil (the possessed girl from the film) her paranoia and prescience make complete sense, even though she was wrong about which daughter was compromised.
  • Hollywood Homely: Incredibly, Casey is supposed to be the less attractive sister. Both young women are gorgeous.
  • Ho Yay: The relationship between Father Marcus and Father Tomas could be read this way. They immediately fall into a kind of domesticity ("we're out of eggs") and invade each other's personal space, metaphorically and literally. Also, Marcus's demeanor can seem downright flirtatious at times.
  • HSQ: The series went into this when Episode 5 revealed Angela Rance is Regan MacNeil and Chris MacNeil has come back to find her, and it goes on from there from Bennett and Chris being killed in Episode 8, Episode Nine leading to the deaths of most allies (Mother Bernadette and her covenant, Cherry and Lester Rego), Pazuzu revealing he's merged with Angela/Regan, the Friars are close to executing their plan, and it's implied Father Simon will try to have Marcus become possessed with them as well!. And this is just one half of the finale.
    • Season 2 as well with stuff like Grace being an hallucination, the Introduction to Mouse, and the ending with Bennett becoming integrated with a demon.
  • Iron Woobie: Father Marcus. While he's a prime example of Good Is Not Nice, the fact he lived a very horrible childhood, abandoned Mouse due to feeling he wasn't a good enough exorcist to save her, lost a child in Mexico City he tried to exorcise, and then struggles with his own faith and fears of losing Tomas can do a lot on a guy.
  • Nausea Fuel: The things that happen to a body that's possessed all qualify.
    • Honorable mention goes to the impossibly long, live centipede Casey pulls out of her throat in Chapter 2.
    • Casey's "favorite omelette" from her dream in Chapter 4.
    • "Just as I was getting ahead."
    • What was left of all the various murder victims.
    • Casey's 'relationship with "The Salesman/ Captain Howdy/Pazzuzu". Eugh..
      • Especially after he integrates with her mother. Shudder.
  • The Scrappy: Jessica isn't very liked by fans due to the fact she's considered a derailment of the plot with Tomas, along with the fact she accidentally causes her (now ex) husband to figure out she has been having sex with a priest, resulting with him reporting Tomas for adultery. Which makes it hypocritical considering he was committing adultery The annoying aspect of Jessica is that she seems okay with the fact Tomas broke his celibate rule and doesn't even show regret for it, seemingly only caring about how she should be happy.
  • The Woobie: Season 1 wise, Dear god almost everyone but that goes to Casey. Being the youngest of the Rance family and being overshadowed by her dancer sister, it seems to be the case why she made her first deal with The Salesman/Pazuzu, but upon realizing what he's doing to her and her loved ones, she can't stop him and he forces her to watch as he murders three people in an ambulance after the first failed exorcism. Considering what Angela/Regan had to endure after what she endured 40 years ago, it seems Casey will go down that path as well, especially with those who flat out accuse her of murdering those people when she wasn't in control.
    • Henry as well, considering he suffered an accident that left him with a brain injury that knocks him out sporadically, endures Casey's possession and learns Angela's secret, it's no surprise he's this with his daughter.
    • Season 2 has Andrew "Andy" Kim, a young man trying to raise five foster kids but struggling with the death of his wife via suicide, an event that destroyed so badly that the demon of the island manipulated him into thinking he had another daughter.
    • Special mention goes to Harper: A young girl who's mother gaslight her into thinking she was possessed, and even when she was out of danger, she witnessed Andy not only kill her mother who wanted her back, but see him descent into possession.

The Exorcist (Film/Book)
  • Adaptation Displacement: Not many people are aware that there was a novel first.
  • Awesome Music: The perennially-creepy Tubular Bells, courtesy of Mike Oldfield.
  • Complete Monster: Pazuzu, the ultimate source of everything wrong within the series, was an ancient demon who possessed the young girl Regan MacNeil in the original film, in the hopes of getting revenge on Father Lankester Merrin for exorcising him from a boy in Africa. Causing Regan to go into violent body spasms, as well as sexually and violently lashing out at others, and intending to stay in her "until she rots and lies stinking in the Earth," it is implied that Pazuzu causes Merrin to suffer a fatal heart attack, before it takes control of Father Karras in an attempt to kill Regan, as she was of no longer any use to it. In the second film, Pazuzu, among other actions, attacked an African town with locusts. Seeking to hurt Karras after the events of the first film, Pazuzu took the soul of the executed Gemini Killer and transferred it into Karras's body, thus setting off the Gemini Killer's further spree. In the prequel, Exorcist: The Beginning, Pazuzu systematically corrupted and killed anyone who arrived at the pagan temple, only leaving a sole priest in the process. Towards the end of The Beginning, all of the soldiers and the local tribes had killed each other due to Pazuzu's influence, leaving Merrin and a young boy as the only survivors. An obscene, destructive abomination, Pazuzu gleefully ruins the lives of everyone around it and has well-earned its status as an icon of horror.
  • Contractual Purity: The inverse happened to Linda Blair when she tried to break into romantic comedies.
  • First Installment Wins: Only one in the series whose quality is undisputed.
  • Fountain of Memes: Thanks to its Cluster F-Bomb tendencies, Pazuzu has been quoted endlessly through the decades.
  • Fridge Brilliance: In the book, Pazuzu's rage when Father Merrin dies. Father Merrin was, presumably, a good, faithful priest. His death means he is likely in Heaven (or will be relatively soon if you believe in Purgatory,) the one place Pazuzu will never be able to reach him.
    • The film lost something by having Pazuzu giggle when Merrin died rather than yelling at him to come back. On the other hand, it could be interpreted as excitement that the much more vulnerable Father Karras is now on his own against it, since Pazuzu's revenge angle against Merrin is downplayed in the film in favor of Karras's internal conflict.
  • Fridge Horror: The spider-walk scene in the book is less terrifying at first than completely, inhumanly alien. Blatty's description doesn't sink in for a minute. Then it hits you.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: All the loving moments with Chris and Regan become depressing when the 2016 series reveals Chris exploited Regan's pain after being blacklisted, resulting with Regan running away, changing her name and cutting ties with Chris. Worse too when Chris reunites with Angela/Regan only by the eight episode to die by Pazuzu's hands.
    • The efforts of Karras and Merrin to save Regan becomes for naught too when you learn Pazuzu's held a 40 year old grudge and took possession of Regan's daughter and then her again. Worse when you take into account Pazuzu finally upper handed Merrin after so long.
      • Thankfully, Pazuzu was subdued once again (partly by Regan herself wrecking his ass), though not without Regan receiving permanent injuries.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: The Zodiac Killer — in a letter to the San Francisco Chronicle — referred to the movie the "best satirical comedy I have ever seen". Guess who the Gemini Killer in The Exorcist III is based on?
  • Hype Aversion: The cover art declares it to be "The Scariest Movie Ever Made." That can definitely turn people away or lead to disappointed viewers.
  • Moral Event Horizon: If Pazuzu's possesion of Regan wasn't bad enough, when he posseses Karras at the end, he immediately moves forward to KILL Regan since he doesn't need her anymore. Bastard!
  • Memetic Mutation: Ever saw a screamer? If yes, there's a 99% chance demon-possessed Regan jumped in your face at least once.
    • Or an image of Captain Howdy.
    • "The power of Christ compels you." Every movie with an exorcism scene will always tend to repeat this line.
  • Narm: Most people find it scary, but quite a few find it downright hilarious mostly due to just how over the top it gets: a good example would be the restored spider-walk scene.
    • The silver medal in that department has to be the "The power of Christ compels you!!" scene.
      • It's Truth in Television for exorcisms though. That line is in the ritual, and priests are told to repeat any words that seem to make the demon uncomfortable.
    • Some feel that the possessed Regan's voice has aged badly, since nowadays the voice of a Creepy Child often seems creepier than something inhuman. A good number of the comments to this video are saying that they find Linda Blair's real voice creepier than the dub.
    • The pea soup vomit.
    • Burstyn's overwrought screaming and general overacting whenever she's confronting the demon.
    • "YOUR MOTHER SUCKS COCKS IN HELL!". Seriously Pazuzu, if you wanted to actually look genuinely threatening, maybe you'd want to use a phrase that doesn't sound like a childish joke, and/or use a threatening voice, not a scrawny one that could come out from the mouth of a goblin.
  • Nausea Fuel: Most people were physically ill and fled theaters during the medical scenes, especially the spinal tap. Then there is all the vomiting by the possessed Regan.
  • Nightmare Retardant: The Exorcist in 5 Seconds
    • Some find the effects work a bit outdated.
  • "Seinfeld" Is Unfunny: Considering how much further effects have come, and how more subtle and subdued later films would take the premise, the film has this effect to some modern-day viewers.
  • Signature Line: "YOUR MOTHER SUCKS COCKS IN HELL!!!"
  • Signature Scene: The part when Regan's head spins a 360 as the rest of her body sits still is probably the most memorial part of the film and is often mimicked in other horror movies/shows/video games.
  • Squick: "LICK ME! LICK ME!"

Exorcist: The Beginning
  • Foe Yay: The demon making Sarah strip in front of Merrin comes across as this. The line doesn't help either.
    Pazuzu: What's the matter, don't you wanna fuck me anymore?
  • Nausea Fuel: The decaying stillborn baby.
  • Sequelitis: It received negative reviews on the box office and that the movie feels more like a splatter horror than a psychological horror.

Dominion: The Prequel to The Exorcist
  • Contested Sequel: The film continues to divide fans, with some considering it a major improvement over The Beginning, but others deeming it to be even worse, for not only having most of the flaws of its remake, but being boring as well.
  • Surprisingly Improved Sequel: Some people say that it's this when compared with Exorcist 2 and The Beginning.