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Characters / Carnivale New Canaan Ministry

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The New Canaan Ministry

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The Crowe Family


Brother Justin Crowe a.k.a. Alexei Belyakov

Portrayed By: Clancy Brown



Iris Crowe

Portrayed By: Amy Madigan

  • Axe-Crazy: Though her preferred weapon is a boat oar, and the axe is technically meant for someone else to use.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Sweet on the outside, crazy on the inside.
  • Brother–Sister Incest: Pretty explicit on both sides, though Justin's is sexual in nature and Iris's is emotional.
  • The Dragon: To Justin, at least until Stroud comes along.
  • Heel–Face Revolving Door: Much debate centers around Iris's true nature after the events of Season Two. Is she still loyal to Justin? Was her alliance with Norman just for appearances? Why did she let Ben go? Is she truly sorry for setting the Ministry fire? And just whose side is she on, anyway?
  • Knight Templar Big Brother: Will do anything for Justin.
    "I did it for you".
  • Pet the Dog: Iris may be very dangerous, but she at least has the decency to comfort the traumatised maid after Justin rapes her (the maid).
  • Promotion to Parent: Iris is arguably one of the only competent mother-figures Justin has ever known. Which makes their relationship that much squickier.
  • Secret Keeper: By the series' end, she's the only person who knows about Sofie's parentage.
  • Stronger Sibling: Well, smarter and more ruthless, at any rate.
  • Took a Level in Badass: She takes several over the course of the series, even ones that are levels in retrospect (her "punishment" from Justin and plotting with Norman).
  • Villainous Breakdown: Has one in "The Road to Damascus" when she thinks she's about to go to jail for setting the Ministry fire. She's praying on her knees on shards of a broken mirror. She doesn't anticipate Tommy Dolan taking the fall instead, courtesy of Justin's mind control powers tricking him into writing a false confession.
  • Yandere: Calm and pleasant on the surface, "crazier than a shithouse rat" underneath.



Reverend Norman Balthus

Portrayed By: Ralph Waite

  • Parental Substitute: For Justin and Iris, which makes Justin's sadistic treatment and killing of him very Oedipal in nature.
  • Sacrificial Lion: One of the great shockers of the finale is Justin killing him.


Tommy Dolan

Portrayed By: Robert Knepper

  • Deal with the Devil: Ironically referred to exactly as such by Brother Justin. Since Tommy still thinks Justin is a simple man of god, he jokes "Oh come on, I'm not that bad." Justin replies "No, you're not."
  • Lovable Rogue: Seems to genuinely care about the migrants and the truth, but is not above underhanded methods or receiving financial compensation for his work.
  • Unwitting Pawn: To be fair, no one in-universe sees Iris coming as the arsonist, and no one could predict how far Justin would go to protect her and how manipulative he can be.


Varlyn Stroud

Portrayed By: John Carroll Lynch



Eleanor McGill

Portrayed By: K Callan

  • Cloud Cuckoolander: She certainly chooses to ignore a lot of the strange goings-on around Justin's ministry.

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