‘Evil’ Creators Introduce Us to the CBS Thriller’s Own Mulder & Scully

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Elizabeth Fisher/CBS

A disagreement between The Good Fight creators Robert and Michelle King about why people do wicked things — she points to psychology, he suspects a supernatural element — birthed their latest CBS drama, the dark thriller Evil.

“The show is very much about the tension between trying to explain evil religiously versus scientifically,” she says.

Evil’s leading characters exemplify the profound split. According to Robert, psychologist Kristen Bouchard (Katja Herbers, Westworld) “believes there is a [diagnosable] reason for any murderous intent,” while David Acosta (Luke Cage‘s Mike Colter), an adventurer training to become a priest, argues for “something beyond that.”

In a nutshell, he’s Mulder, she’s Scully. A cash-strapped Kristen agrees to work with him and eager debunker Ben Shakir (Blue Bloods‘ Aasif Mandvi) to assess the Catholic Church’s backlog of unexplained mysteries, which range from seeming miracles to hauntings.

First up: Kristen visits with a serial killer who exhibits signs of demonic possession — an encounter that generates some terrifyingly vivid nightmares for her. The case also introduces Lost‘s Michael Emerson as übercreepy Leland Townsend, “who encourages people through social media to do great wrong and great evil,” says Robert.

The why of that is, of course, up for debate.

Evil, Series Premiere, Thursday, September 26, 10/9c, CBS