- "What if this is the me that God wants? No matter how hard I try it's just...I stay the same. I'm always the same..."
Eugene Edward Root, also known as Arseface, is a boy with a horribly disfigured face and speech impediment. Due to his disfigurement, his father stopped him from attending church. Eugene also believed God held a grudge against him for what he did.
After returning to Earth and finding out Annville was destroyed, he believed God spared him from death and that he was chosen for a bigger plan. However, he was brought back to Hell by the Angel of Death. There, he learned Jesse Custer is still alive. After the Saint of Killers killed Satan, he followed him to hunt down Jesse.
After seemingly forgiving Jesse, he shot him and gave him up to the Saint of Killers. However, he turned himself in soon after. During his time in prison, he aspired to be a rockstar. Once he was released, he performed on the streets but was quickly run over. While in the hospital, he was given surgery to fix his face, but nothing changed. The doctor offered him to kill himself but Eugene was tired of people feeling sorry for him. He continued his dreams of becoming a rockstar and performed once again on the streets, this time with passion and becoming noticed. He eventually did become a well-known rockstar, with fans sporting t-shirts of him.
Eugene was called by Tracy Loach after the latter discovered her boyfriend cheated. When Tracy told him she was going to commit suicide, Eugene talked her out of it and burnt her suicide note. Eugene comforted Tracy and kissed her. However, Tracy was disgusted at the idea of the two being together and blew her brains out. Eugene panicked but realized she was still breathing. When Tracy's mother began knocking on the door and asking what was going on, Eugene tried to run off. When he knew he had no way out, he shot himself, but a grazing shot left him alive and his face horribly disfigured.
Due to this, Eugene was banned from attending church by his father. Regardless of his father, Eugene believed God didn't want him to attend anyway, believing God held a grudge.
Return to church
Eugene had a visit by Jesse one day, who reassured him that God doesn't hold grudges regardless of what one does. Thankful for Jesse's encouraging words, Eugene embraced Jesse. The following Sunday, Eugene attended Jesse's sermon.
Eugene was baptized by Jesse and Eugene believed his sins were washed away. A few days later however, Eugene told Jesse he still felt guilty and felt he would never change, no matter how hard he tries.
After visiting Tracy, Eugene found his room broken into, with the words "Finish the job" spray painted on his walls. Eugene apologized to his father for ignoring his advice and going to visit Tracy. Later, after cooking his father an omelette, Eugene offered to cut up his father's food. While cutting, Hugo lost his temper and threw the plate against the wall, yelling at Eugene that if he wanted to help, maybe he should finish the job.
Eugene went to Jesse for guidance. Eugene was then driven to the Loach residence. Jesse went inside the house to pray with Tracy, but when Terri Loach saw Eugene sitting in Jesse's truck, she attacked the truck with a baseball bat while calling Eugene a murderer. Jesse commanded her to drop the baseball bat, which she did, but she resumed her attack, so Jesse commands her to step away from the truck. Then, Jesse commanded Terri to forgive Eugene, which she did and Eugene hugged Terri in confusion. While being driven home, Eugene was told by Jesse that his father no longer needed to worry.
During lunch, Eugene was joined by Scott Loach and his friends. Later, he was invited by Scott to a culvert. Though hesitant, Eugene joined them. When they lit fireworks in the culvert, Eugene remarked the beauty of it.
Sent to hell
On Sunday, Eugene asked Jesse to reverse what he made Terri Loach do, commenting on how God wouldn't like it and how it's cheating. Eugene was told it wasn't. When Eugene told Jesse he couldn't force people to see the light and it was a sin, Eugene was told he shouldn't be lecturing on sinning. When Eugene continued to argue, he was told to go to Hell. Suddenly, Eugene vanished from Jesse's sight with a scream.
In Hell, Eugene was forced to relive his final interactions with Tracy over and over. Eventually, he woke up in a prison cell, where he was greeted by a woman who told him to stay put. He later left his cell and wandered about before finding Adolf Hitler. The other inmates from his block soon joined him. When Tyler picked on a gypsy, Eugene stood up for her and Tyler turned his attention to him and his disfigurement. Eugene was then defended by Hitler just as the cells began functioning again. Unfortunately for Eugene, his hell had already been locked shut and took refuge in Hitler's cell. There, he witnessed part of Hitler's hell, before the malfunctions returned. He expressed his shock that Hitler's worst memory merely had to do with his art before returning to his cell.
Eugene was then taken to Mannering's office, who welcomed him to Hell. Eugene was told he seemed like a nice guy, which wouldn't be tolerated in Hell. Eugene was then taken into a holding room with inmates from his cell block where he was greeted by Hitler. Tyler quickly turned his attention and began picking on him again. When Hitler stood up for him once again, Tyler began beating Hitler up, which Eugene joined in on due to Mannering's warning.
Later, Eugene had Tracy's name tattoo'd on his back and began getting in shape while having befriended Tyler. When Mannering explained the malfunctions are due to an inmate not belonging in Hell, Eugene planned to come clean but other inmates began making their claim. Hitler then confronted him, aware he's the one who doesn't belong and was subsequently warned Mannering would only make things worse. Eugene told Hitler he'd still come clean regardless and Hitler then tripped a nun, prompting Eugene to help her up. However, he was caught by a security camera and was instantaneously dragged away and put into "the hole".
In the hole, Eugene was initially confused as nothing seemed worse. He was then shocked when this time, Tracy expressed her affection for him and they sing to "Closing Time", before being interrupted by "Jesse", who "Tracy" perceived as God and the two make out in front of Eugene. Eugene begs the two to stop but "Jesse" then persuades Eugene to "finish the job" and Eugene turns the shotgun to himself.
Eugene was later taken out of the hole and returned to the holding room. Hitler then told him he needed to show him what's to come if he came clean and invited in on Hitler's plan to escape Hell.
Eugene warned Tyler that no one would be getting out of Hell despite Mannering's promise. Eugene was then taken to Hitler's Hell with Hitler himself. There, Eugene saw the remaining of Hitler's Hell. When they returned to the holding room, Eugene inquired about Hitler's plan to escape Hell but was called to be screened to determine if he doesn't belong.
As he was screened, Hitler distracted Mannering using the Hell inmates and Hitler made his way into Mannering's office. Eugene was then told to go down the hole, where there's a hidden backdoor. Eugene was reluctant but was pushed down into the hole. There, he encountered several different scenarios, with Tracy committing suicide for different reasons. Eventually he confronted his final demon, a manifestation of his father and the backdoor opened. Eugene and Hitler then made their way to an air shaft, which the two crawled through.
The two eventually made it out of the prison and reached the river styx. Eugene was instructed to see Charon, but learned Hitler wasn't leaving with him. Eugene confronted Charon but the two are interrupted by Mannering. However, Hitler knocks out Mannering from behind and reluctantly follows Eugene back to Earth. Back on Earth, Eugene and Hitler are dropped off. Hitler ran off, much to Eugene's dismay.
Back on Earth
Eugene makes his way back to Annville, only to find the town destroyed. He is then taken to an orphanage, where he has a chat with another young man. Eugene is optimistic, and believes everything will work out. He is seemingly proven right when an orphanage worker tells him he's been adopted, much to the other young man's annoyance. However, in a dark twist of faith, his foster father turns out to be the Saint of Killers, who's come to take Eugene back to Hell. Eugene is undeterred in his outlook though, even as the Saint is dragging him away in chains, as he believes God has a plan for him. Their next stop is a sandwich shop, where Eugene is reunited with Hitler. Having heard Hitler's tirade about world domination, he says he never should have let him out.
Both Eugene and Hitler are dragged to a bus stop and are met by Sidney and a captured Featherstone (whom Sidney believes is Tulip O'Hare). When the bus arrives, he and Hitler are put on board, but before they can leave, they are stopped by the real Tulip, who wants the suitcase Featherstone is holding back. Her plan almost works, until Eugene calls out to her and blows her cover. Tulip is then dragged to the bus while Featherstone is released.
Eugene apologizes to Tulip on the ride and helps her with her escape attempts. Though the first one is unsuccessful, the second one results in a cracked window. Before they can coordinate their escape any further, the bus is hit by a tank shell and crashes. Hitler's newly formed SS unit turns out to be the responsible party, having been called by Hitler earlier to rescue him. As Sidney, the Saint and Tulip fight the Nazis off, Eugene brawls with Hitler and is about to kill him, but relents and knocks him out instead. He witnesses the Saint rip Sidney's eyes out for mocking his family's death. Noticing Tulip is missing, he asks the Saint about her, but the latter decides to let her go.
Return to Hell
Eugene, along with Hitler, is taken to Satan's office. He tries to get Satan to turn to the good side, saying it's never too late for redemption. Annoyed, Satan slaps him across his desk. The Devil goes on to congratulate the Saint, and gives him back his guns and saber. Much to everyone's shock, the Saint holds the Devil at gunpoint, demanding to know if the crows that ate his daughters eyes were his idea. Satan reveals it was God's idea, before ordering the Saint to put the gun down. The Saint shoots the Devil in the head instead. He then allows Eugene to leave Hell (and also forbids Hitler from doing the same) as he embarks on his quest to get revenge on Jesse Custer. Eugene chooses to accompany the Saint, wanting revenge on Jesse as well.
Eugene is a friendly individual, never wanting to cause harm to anyone. Despite his father always yelling at him, Eugene always shows he loves and cares for his father. When Jesse made Terri Loach forgive him, Eugene felt guilty and told Jesse he shouldn't be forgiven, demonstrating his honesty. Even after being sent to Hell, Eugene's morals remain unwavering. Eugene is shown to be very naive, being convinced he could actually turn Hitler of all people to the good side, and even attempts to do the same thing with Satan himself. Even when faced with overwhelming tragedy, he continues to have a positive outlook on life, believing God has a plan for him. Despite his positive qualities, there does seem to be a limit to Eugene's good will, as he detests Hitler for falling back into his old ways after Eugene trusted him. Additionally, he holds a grudge against Jesse Custer for sending him to Hell and leaving him to rot, even choosing to accompany the Saint on his quest for revenge against the preacher.
Behind the scenes
- Eugene Root is portrayed by Ian Colletti.