Witch Esther Finch In ‘Dead Boys Detectives’ Explained: Did Lillith Kill Esther?


Esther Finch, played excellently by Jenn Lyon, was introduced to us as the primary antagonist of Dead Boy Detectives. Due to Crystal Palace’s psychic powers, she was able to figure out that Finch had kidnapped a little girl and was keeping her in her house. Charles and Edwin snuck into that wretched place and found the captured child lying in a void (that was home to a giant snake) in Finch’s kitchen cabinet. Before Crystal, Charles, and Edwin could rescue the girl, Finch returned home and nearly killed the protagonists. However, the one-two punch of Crystal peering into Finch’s mind and Edwin possessing Finch allowed the heroes to get away. And although it seemed that that was the last we’d see of Esther, she hatched quite an elaborate plan to get her revenge on the Dead Boy Detectives and become one of the most powerful witches in the world.

Spoiler Alert

Esther Finch’s backstory is quite sad and tragic, to be honest. As explained by the Cat King, when Port Townsend wasn’t Port Townsend, it was visited by pioneers from all over the world. They cut down the forests around the place and turned it into a town. Esther Finch was apparently one of those pioneers. The Cat King described her as “tough and beautiful.” But she was betrayed by her adulterous husband. That was when Esther picked up her mother’s occult books and turned to various forms of black magic, and she killed her husband and his mistress. However, that wasn’t where Esther stopped. She summoned the goddess Lilith, someone who granted boons to scorned women, and obtained the power of immortality. Unfortunately, immortality didn’t come with eternal youth. That was why she started kidnapping little girls and fed them to a giant snake to stay young forever. When people realized how dangerous Esther was, they isolated her. So, she learned how to blend in so that she could continue her devilry without setting off any alarm bells.

Esther was probably under the impression that she could continue this as long as there were babies in Port Townsend. But the arrival of Charles, Edwin, and Crystal distracted her from her mission as she started to devise a way to get back at them. She transformed her crow, Monty, into a human being and used him to lure the Dead Boy Detectives into the forest and feed them to Teeth Face, a sentient, giant mushroom from another realm. That didn’t work out, thanks to Crystal. So, she came up with the plan of torturing Edwin to extract “power” from him, thereby making her the ruler of Port Townsend. Apparently, she had figured out that torturing normal ghosts caused them to disintegrate and vanish. However, since Edwin had escaped from Hell (the literal one), his soul was “tempered,” and he could tolerate all kinds of torture. That would cause Edwin’s soul to secrete the energy that Esther needed to become powerful.

Esther bombed Jenny’s Tongue & Tail butcher shop, thereby distracting the landlady, Niko, and Crystal. She captured Edwin and Charles, and while she chained the latter, she put the former in a contraption that inflicted unholy amounts of pain. According to Esther, she wanted to torture Edwin for years, or as long as Edwin didn’t succumb, and keep filling her glass of power. Of course, Crystal and Niko intervened. Esther killed Niko, but Crystal jumped into Esther’s mind and summoned Lilith. Crystal told Lilith that she was misusing the power that was granted to her by the goddess to kill little girls and torment innocent souls. So, Lilith took away her power to look young and turned her into a crone. Then the goddess showed up at Esther’s house and probably dragged her away to Hell (or some version of it). Is that the last that we’ll see of Esther Finch? I don’t think so.

Esther moved heaven and earth to get back at Charles and Edwin for rescuing one girl from her basement, which was a void with a giant snake in it. At the end of Dead Boy Detectives Season 1, her beautiful looks were robbed, and she was dragged away by Lilith. So, there’s a decent possibility that she’ll find a way to thwart Lilith, or crack some kind of deal with her, to get back to Port Townsend in the yet-to-be-announced second season of the Netflix series. I don’t think she’ll get to prey on children again. But if she wants to teach the boys and Crystal a lesson, she’ll need to find a way to go to London and learn how to “blend in.” London is Charles and Edwin’s domain. They probably won’t be handicapped by a magic bracelet from the Cat King. Therefore, Esther would’ve had to be extra observant and crafty to get the better of the ghostly boys. I don’t expect her to win. I hope that she becomes a recurring problem for Edwin and Charles and that she keeps appearing in every season to one-up the heroes, only to be defeated in the most hilarious fashion possible.

The parallels between the Evil Queen from Snow White, the witch from Hansel and Gretel, and Esther Finch aren’t lost on me. In addition to that, I think that Finch’s lust for youth and power is an obvious commentary on how the old aren’t ready to let the young progress. Think about the generations of children that Esther had destroyed before the Dead Boy Detectives intervened. And all for what? To stay young and powerful? Isn’t that the same thing that we’re seeing in real life? Old people, all around the globe, are endlessly consuming everything that they can get their hands on while leaving nothing for the upcoming generations of people. Well, thankfully, there are people like Edwin, Charles, Niko, and Crystal out there who are ready to put their lives on the line so that the world can be freed from the clutches of blood-sucking oldies like Esther Finch.

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Pramit Chatterjee
Pramit Chatterjee
Pramit loves to write about movies, television shows, short films, and basically anything that emerges from the world of entertainment. He occasionally talks to people, and judges them on the basis of their love for Edgar Wright, Ryan Gosling, Keanu Reeves, and the best television series ever made, Dark.

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