Episode 8 of 30 Coins season 1 begins with Manuel walking purposefully out the burning church with guns in hand. With Elena and Paco by his side, the trio brandish their holy-water-soaked weapons and call out Father Angel.
In the swirling fog, the ethereal form of Angel shows, laughing and taunting him. And just like that, a giant demon sprouts from the ground and roars at the trio.
Our three protagonist stream a barrage of bullets at the behemoth. Manuel is snatched up and glances at the creature’s body, where numerous souls writhe in pain from within. A few well-aimed shots cause the monster to disappear, as Paco and Elena grab Manuel and race inside one of the buildings, hiding from Angel.
Speaking of hiding, a group of tourists show up at the village. As they walk tentatively into the main square, the fog inexplicably vanishes. Angel controls all the villagers and ambushes the unsuspecting innocents. This sudden change sees Elena and Paco hiding out in the basement, discussing the black ooze and what part that has to play in what’s happening.
With a hidden compartment in the basement, Vergara asks Paco to try and get hold of a cellar map, which should be in the town hall. They’re not leaving just yet though but instead, use the passageway under the town to find a way back out to the open.
With all the villagers under Angel’s control at the church, this vicar greets the villagers, confirming that the Supreme Priest will be arriving in a few days to check up on their progress. With Fabio en-route, Angel brings forth the tourists and forces them to eat black communion wafers (Or so it looks like, we’re not explicitly told to be fair!)
Marcelo spots Elena in one of the rooms and races off to inform Angel. Paco stops him though and holds the man up at gunpoint, eventually knocking him out while Elena finds what she’s looking for.
Snatching up the files, she takes off as Manuel, Paco and Elena begins a ritual to scout the town from above. With Manuel suspended in the air, they release a dove which he seems to be controlling using blood. They use it as a spy, finding numerous dead carcasses strung up with ominous bloodied symbols across the wall. Unfortunately they don’t get to see much else, as the villagers spot them and stop the bird in its tracks.
When Antonio finds Laguna hung in his jail cell, he tricks the two officers from Madrid, distracting them in a storage room while Antonio races back and frees Laguna from his prison. He takes the man straight to the butcher’s and helps heal him back to health again as they sit and eat together.
Elena and Manuel check out the cellar maps and plot their next move. Paco meanwhile, keeps a close eye on Merche and eventually catches up with her. It turns out she’s not actually under Angel’s control. Or so she says anyway! She knows that Paco is heading off with Elena and Manuel, which causes her to snap and reach out to kiss him. It’s a fleeting moment, but one that sees Paco eventually turn and leave.
Merche heads straight over to see our necromancer, with the half-eaten sandwich Paco was consuming earlier. They use this to extract his saliva. Whatever she’s doing it can’t be good, as Merche watches as she brandishes a pin.
Paco catches up with Elena and Manuel in the cellars. Only, the former begins to see Merche’s shadow. In fact, she inexplicably shows up and stabs Elena with a pin. With the girl in a bad way, Elena disappears as both Manuel and Paco find themselves confused. However, they run into even bigger problems when Fabio shows up in town.
Severed carcasses are strung up and lie across the floor, bloodied symbols are strewn across the walls and this sick party sees Merche playing host, ready for the coin ceremony.
Merche greets Cardinal Mateo Lagrange but their exchange turns frosty when he refuses to let go of her hand. Meanwhile, Laguna and Antonio try to get away but unfortunately come up short when they realize the barrier is still in place.
Back inside, the crown brandishing the 29 coins is placed tentatively on the side. The final coin, of course, is in the possession of Angel and this will be showcased ready for the upcoming ritual.
Paco finds Elena lying on a sofa inside and removes the pin from her neck. At the same time, Manuel finds Fabio being washed and prepared by the other villagers. Numerous severed pig heads blanket the walls, as Angel shows up and headbutts Manuel. The pair fight but it’s no good, Angel is just too strong.
As Fabio walks over purposefully, Manuel is stabbed through the stomach and coughs up blood. Fabio dons his new crown, complete with the 30 coins, and steps out to greet the priests, who erupt into rapturous applause.
Back inside, our necromancer suddenly sprouts monstrous bony tendrils from her back, as Paco wrestles with her and manages to kill the creature before it’s too late. However, the more pressing matter here is that of Elena’s wellbeing, which is still unknown.
Paco hurries off with her in his car, managing to leave the innermost reaches of the town after shooting both Madrid police officers. With Manuel in a bad way, Antonio manages to distract Fabio by using the dove from earlier to catch him off-guard.
It’s just the distraction Manuel needs to pull the sword from his belly and charge at Fabio, knocking him off the balcony to the ground below. The crown falls, spewing out the 30 coins as all the priests charge forward and hungrily grab them for themselves.
This single action allows the barrier to break, as Elena and Paco escape the town. Laguna and Antonio look at one another in confusion, as a whole stream of cars follow them. Merche snaps up one of the coins for herself, eventually walking off with Cardinal Lagrange, while Angel sits in front of a mirror, inexplicably changing appearance and heading inside the portal. As he does, he shows up in the middle of New York.
The Episode Review
So there we have it, a weird, wonderful and utterly compelling (and confusing) finale to 30 Coins. There’s a lot still unaccounted for though and with a second season still an unknown at this point, we’re not really any closer to finding out the truth around a lot of what’s happening.
The necromancer finally meets her well-timed demise though while Merche’s flip-flopping motivations seem to be solely based on whether Paco chooses her or not. Of course, he chose Elena in the end and this ultimately causes his downfall.
That’s to say nothing of the various other residents though, who have a mixed bag of conclusions. Antonio and Laguna eventually leave together, with the former showing his true colours and actually helping to put a lot of the plan into motion. Manuel’s story seems like it’s done now too, especially with the big reveal at the end after being stabbed, while the hunt for the 30 coins looks set to ensue.
It’s ironic that greed and gluttony (two of the seven deadly sins) crop up here at the end, consuming the priests as they all hungrily try and snap up the coins for themselves.
The ending seems to hint that Merche could be a big bad next season but right now, with that still an unknown, the ending isn’t really conclusive enough to leave on a satisfying note. Instead, we’re left with even more questions as this first season bows out.
Still, despite that this has been an utterly enthralling watch and with a good balance of suspense, tension and horror, hopefully there’s enough of an audience to warrant 30 coins being renewed for a second season.