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Film / The First Power

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Tess: You can't go on killing forever, Patrick.
Patrick: You wanna bet?

The First Power is a 1990 horror film written and directed by Robert Resnikoff, starring Lou Diamond Phillips, Tracy Griffith, Mykelti Williamson, and Jeff Kober.

After Serial Killer Patrick Channing (Kober) is given the gas chamber for committing several demonic murders, his spirit is released and given power by the Devil. Now Detective Russell Logan (Phillips), the cop who caught him before, must find a way to do it again.


  • All Just a Dream:
    • Detective Russ Logan has one where the gas is turned off in Patrick's execution chamber and Patrick jumps through the mirrored wall to stab him, forcing Logan to shoot him in self-defense.
    • At the end, Tess Seaton had one where Logan wakes up and attacks Tess. Or Was It a Dream?
  • Body Snatcher: Channing has the ability to possess people, as well as animals.
  • The Cameo: Bill Moseley as a bartender.
  • Catchphrase: "See you around, buddy-boy."
  • Child by Rape: At Patrick's childhood home, Tess has a psychic vision which reveals that he's the result of his mother being raped by her father.
  • Deal with the Devil: Channing kills in Satan's name, who in turn granted him the power of possessing people upon death.
  • Evil Sounds Deep: Channing's voice is this.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice:
    • One encounter with Patrick ends with him falling on a pipe, which impales his current temporal body.
    • Logan stabs him in the heart at the end, killing him for good.
  • I Warned You:
    • A nun named Sister Marguerite tries to convince her superiors that something must be done about Channing who is killing people with a satanic ritual. Her superiors ignore her.
    • Tess warned Logan not to let Channing get executed. Logan didn't listen, resulting in Channing coming back as a powerful demonic spirit.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Russ Logan breaks his promise to Tess Seaton not to have Channing be given the death penalty believing he deserved it.
  • Psychopathic Manchild: Channing is able to look composed and in control, but he can be extremely childish and psychopathic when he's in a playful mood.
  • Rule of Three: The titular first power (resurrection) is one of the three powers Christ possessed, and which Channing is attempting to gain for himself. Tess has the second power, prophecy. The third power is possession.
  • Super Window Jump
    • Logan encounters Patrick in a church, which he leaves by doing a great physics-defying jump over Logan and through a stained glass window.
    • Patrick, in a body of a derelict woman, enters Logan's apartment by jumping through a window and grabbing him.
  • They Look Just Like Everyone Else!: After he's arrested, people who know Channing say this about him and were oblivious to the monster he truly is.
  • Villain-Beating Artifact: The only thing that can kill Channing is a crucifix with a blade hidden inside it.