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TV Series Review

In the great walk-in closet of world religions, the Meyerist movement is a bit of dryer lint. The sect has a few compounds scattered around the world that at first blush seem like quirky, well-meaning clubs. Maybe even neo-hippie communes. Sure, its members may seem a little, well, odd at times. They don't fight or eat meat. They're truthful to a fault, and they talk about "unburdening" themselves while scaling a metaphorical ladder to enlightenment. But they also seem so generous and peaceful and ever so nice. In a hurting world searching for answers, the Meyerists look like they actually have some.

But some, even within the movement, have their doubts.

Eddie used to have his. He left the movement once, actually, leaving his uber-faithful wife, Sarah, and the rest of his family in its fold while he was at it. But faith is a funny thing: He once wanted to expose the movement; now he leads it. The visions he had were just too strong, the pull of the movement was just too insistent.

It wasn't enough to save his marriage, however. Now Sarah's the one with doubts—learning that the movement's founder didn't "climb the ladder" to enlightenment, as they say, without some help and a little hypocrisy. Revelations like those have thrown Sarah for a loop, and she wonders whether the only faith she's ever really known might be a fraud.

And that's not the only pot simmering on the Meyerist stove. Cal, the former leader, still belongs to Meyerism, and he plots and schemes behind the scenes. As the movement grows, there's robust debate whether such growth is a good thing. Eddie's own son—once a devoted Meyerist—is exploring life outside its strict confines and toying with same-sex attraction, too.

Yep, life in a cult ain't all it's cracked up to be. And even though Eddie feels like he's found the one, true way, that way's foundations may even now be crumbling under his feet.

A One-Way Trip

The Path offers us a strange, off-kilter belief system, one that obviously shares a lot of DNA with Scientology, specifically, as well as other modern spiritual movements. And in some ways, the show actually treats adherents' faith with a measure of respect. We see their real spiritual hunger. We watch as the Meyerists, for all their cult's faults, try to help the communities they're a part of. And sometimes the show even hints that there are, perhaps, realities beyond the empirical—what we can see or hear or touch.

But The Path is also an intense and unrelentingly problematic show. While the Meyerists pride themselves on their self-control, this Hulu series itself exercises very little. The Path's inherent spirituality is the first hurdle we run into, a murky stew of mysticism, machines and psychobabble. Obviously, Hulu isn't out to convert anyone to a made-up cult; still, its depictions of Meyerist convictions might be confusing to those who are seeking their own path.

Meyerism also provides cover for a litany of dark, disturbing elements—from predatory sexual behavior to rumors of in-cult abuse to violent put-downs of dissent (one of the darker nods, it would seem, to Scientology). The Path is filled with other serious barriers as well. The sexual content is extreme, flaunting nudity and explicitly rendered couplings. Foul language is replete with uncensored f- and s-words. The violence we see can be indeed troubling.

"Ponder the path of your feet," we read in Proverbs 4. "Then all your ways will be sure. Do not swerve to the right or to the left; turn your foot away from evil." Hulu's Path, in contrast, swerves quite a bit.

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Spiritual Content

Sexual Content

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Plot Summary

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Additional Comments/Notes

Episode Reviews

The Path: Feb. 14, 2018 "The Gardens at Giverny"
The Path: Jan. 25, 2017 "Liminal Twilight/Dead Moon"
The Path: Mar. 30, 2016 "The Era of the Ladder"



Readability Age Range





Aaron Paul as Eddie Lane; Michelle Monaghan as Sarah Lane; Emma Greenwell as Mary Cox; Rockmond Dunbar as Det. Abe Gaines; Kyle Allen as Hawk Lane; Amy Forsyth as Ashley Fields; Sarah Jones as Alison; Hugh Dancy as Cal Roberts






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On Video

Year Published



Paul Asay

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