I’m not going to lie guys, I had a bit of a rough time with this one this week. I wasn’t really sure what to say about the episode. I was excited to see the return of the “wayward sisters” and Jody will always get love from me but I was really disappointed in the fact that Dean seems to be back to normal. The only thing that’s giving me hope right now is the possibility that Dean is not as back to normal as it seems. So with that, let’s move into the review.
The Road So Far:
Other than what has been happening the past couple of episodes, you may want to refresh your memory of episodes 9 and 10 from season 13, “The Bad Place” and “Wayward Sisters”. You can also look back at my reviews of those episodes to see that I was first on the bandwagon for making Dean pay for kidnapping Kaia AT GUNPOINT!
“It’s just, every time I think about it, you know, it’s like a nightmare. I can’t eat, I can’t sleep, it’s always just there, watching me.”
“Dean, it’s just a beard.”
LOL! Don’t ever change, Dean!
Dean says he’s good, he doesn’t remember any of his time with Michael and he’s just glad to be home. Who’s buying that? No one! Dean never tells it like it is when it comes to bad experiences and his feelings! And just as he thinks he’s back to a safe and familiar place, BAM! Beard! And a full
house bunker of apocalypse world refugees. And they’re operating like a well-oiled machine and calling Sam “Chief”! That’s going to be an adjustment. Dean doesn’t strike me as a real people person. (Introverts unite! Separately!) But we do get a nice reunion between Dean, Jack and Cas. Jack and Cas seemed really happy to see Dean. Dean seems happy to see them as well, but only briefly. Then he runs off to his room at the first opportunity. Still dealing with Michael after-effects or hiding something? It can be two things? While Cas fills Sam in on Nick’s disappearance and Sam fills Cas in on all he doesn’t know about Dean and Michael, Dean is back in his room, looking in his mirror (see!) and seeing a strange scar he didn’t have before.
Dean wants to know what happened, because whatever it was could hurt Michael and that kind of power is rare. (Umm, archangel blade?) So, he asks Cas to Vulcan mind-meld him so they can find out what happened. Since Cas was rummaging in Dean’s head and didn’t raise any alarms, I assume that means Michael’s truly gone. Though, this leaves more questions. Mainly, what on Earth would make Michael give up his “sword”, his perfect vessel, for something inferior? Won’t he be “burning” through it like Lucifer did with all of his inferior vessels? It doesn’t make a lot of sense to me.
Cas does the mind-meld and gets an overview of what we’ve already seen, then he touches the scar and we see Other!Kaia! Wow, kind of cool that they’re going to use this plot thread that was left hanging for Wayward Sisters, then never used when the show wasn’t picked up. Well, part of me is glad, anyway. Part is just sad that Wayward Sisters isn’t on the air and using this plot themselves.(Booooo, CW, Booooo!)
Time to call Jody! Who is also glad to hear Dean’s okay. She’s not so glad to hear that the thing that killed Kaia in the Bad Place is now here in our world. And it didn’t just stab Dean, Jody’s got a few headless bodies with the same scars in her morgue. Time for the boys to head her way. Jack wants to come with, but neither Sam, Cas nor Dean seem eager to take him into danger without his powers. It’s Dean though, who says something…kind of harsh.
“I didn’t mean to be a dick.”
Oh, you never do, Dean.
Just as the boys are ready to leave, one of the new apocalypse world hunters brings in a victim who was hexed by a witch. So now Cas is staying behind too, to help try to cure her. Sam and Dean head to Sioux Falls themselves. At least they’ve given good reasons for Mary and Bobby to be absent and for Cas and Jack to stay behind so it makes sense that Sam and Dean are heading out, just the two of them, on this major case. I appreciate that, show!
Dean seems pretty eager to get to Sioux Falls and the bottom of this Bad Place killer with the oversized meat fork. Sam, as always, wants Dean to slow down for a minute and talk about what happened. Nice try Sam, but this is Dean we’re talking about. For real though, if I were headed towards Jody hugs, I wouldn’t slow down either! Seriously, can she adopt me too, please?
The boys arrive and get their hugs and then Jody turns Dean traitor and tells Sam she likes the beard. Betrayal! (I really hate to admit it, but I like it too. Sorry, Dean!) The girls are all good, but Jody’s been avoiding Claire since she talked to the boys, so she doesn’t have to tell Claire what’s going on before she herself knows what’s going on. The three bodies she found seem to be human and Jody had thought the killer was human as well before the boys called. And Sam (of course) knows exactly who the last serial killer in Sioux Falls was. You’ve got a strange obsession, Sam! Jody has charted out the best place to look for the Bad Place killer, based on the locations of the bodies and Sam thinks they should rest for the night and head out at first light. Dean has other ideas and is on his way right the f*** now! He really is in a hurry to deal with this, huh?
Back at the bunker, Jack is getting ready to run away, (feeling unappreciated or in the way?) but he overhears Cas trying to heal the poor girl with the witch hex and he gets pulled into the investigation instead. Cas says they contacted Rowena, who suggested a reversal spell. Yay! I’m so glad Rowena is still Team Free Will and is helping out. Are she and Charlie still traveling together? I’d watch that show! I’m going to need at least one episode of this sometime this season.
Dean is still pushing hard, suggesting they split up to cover more ground more quickly. But Sam and Jody are more about safety in numbers. It doesn’t matter, because they soon come across three heads staked out in the forest. Seems they probably match Jody’s three bodies. Only problem is the bodies tested negative to silver and dead man’s blood, but the heads say vampires. Seems Michael has made more new monsters than just what he sent against Sam, Mary and Bobby. Just how many has he made and can they create new ones themselves? (Like a vampire can turn a new vampire?)
Jody and the boys explore the camp and while checking it out, Dean narrowly avoids getting another scar from the meat fork. While the three fight off the Bad Place killer, her hood comes off and they find out what we’ve known for a while, Bad Place killer is Other!Kaia. Shocker!
Back at the
BatCave bunker, Cas is preparing the reversal spell. (I love that their “sheep’s eyes” are stored under “gross stuff”…and that Cas knows where everything is!) Jack is getting to know the girl who was attacked by the witch. He gets to hear her story which a) gives him the information he needs to eventually save her and prove himself and b) convinces him that running away isn’t the answer. Convenient!
Jody and the boys are still hard on Other!Kaia’s trail and Sam tells Dean he thinks she killed the vamps because Michael has been sending them after her ever since he fought her. So, if Michael tangled with Other!Kaia and got hurt so badly by the meat fork that it hurt Michael himself and left Dean with a scar, why on Earth would he pick right then as a good time to leave the body he is strongest in and inhabit a weaker vessel? More on that later.
Cas finishes the reversal spell, but that just accelerates the aging hex and the girl dies. At least for now.
Jody is dodging phone calls from the girls. She feels bad, but she promised Claire that, although she would keep human cases to herself, she would pass on any monster cases to Claire. But given how hard Claire took Kaia’s death, Jody wants to keep her away from this monster case.
“First love strikes quick.”
Wait, what? There wasn’t anything in season 13 episode 10, “Wayward Sisters” to support this. If you wanted to make this the case, show, you really need to show and not tell! Maybe this is what would have happened if Wayward Sisters had gone to air, so I’ll cut them some slack for now, but if we see more of Claire and/or Kaia, I’m going to need them to show us more than the friendly relationship we saw last year. It isn’t enough to just say a character has come out or a friendly relationship is more than that. People need to see that represented on screen. (And if those feelings were reciprocated by Original!Kaia, was that why Other!Kaia was trying to kill Claire? Was she jealous of their relationship and worried it would affect the relationship between her and her double? I need to know more, show!)
Other!Kaia is on the run, grabbing food and water from a local cabin when she leaves…and runs straight into Dean’s fist. So they’ve got her tied up and held prisoner and they start asking her questions. Basically, we just catch our side up to where we, the audience, are. She’s Kaia’s double and killed her accidentally while trying to kill Claire. (Why kill Claire?) She’s a dreamwalker, that’s how she got here. She dodges the question of why she’s in this world. (To finish off Claire?) She reveals Michael has been sending his monsters after her non-stop since she stabbed him. (While in Dean’s body.) She also reveals that Dean is willing to do anything to get her weapon and Dean confirms. As he threatens Other!Kaia to get what he wants, she points out that Dean is no different than Michael, using threats and violence to get what he wants. When Dean tries to deny it, she reminds him, not only of how he’s acting right now, but also how he acted when he needed Original!Kaia to open a rift to apocalypse world to save Mary. You know, the time he STUCK A GUN IN HER FACE! Ha! So glad he’s seeing some consequences for that! Finally! She also points out what most people don’t see about Dean – that when he’s scared it comes out as all bluff and swagger. In this case specifically, it’s coming out as anger and impatience to “fix” whatever is scaring him. (It seems Other!Kaia speaks truth just like Original!Kaia did. I hope she sticks around.) Like I said at the beginning, Dean is not good at expressing his emotions. (Yup, understatement of the century right here.) So Kaia’s characterization of Dean is more than fair, especially from Other!Kaia’s and Original!Kaia’s point of view. But the audience, I think, can say there is a distinction between Michael and Dean. While they may use the same tools to accomplish their ends, obviously those ends are very different. Michael is trying to wipe out the humans while Dean is trying to save them. I’m not a real “ends justifies the means” kind of person, but when you’re fighting for your life, I think some allowances need to be made. Though, it also won’t hurt Dean to have a look at exactly how far he’s willing to go sometimes. Sometimes it’s this self-reflection (reflection…mirror?!) that makes the difference between the hero and the villain. (God, I’d really love to see Sam and Dean confront different versions of themselves from other worlds where maybe they were a bit better or a bit worse and see how that changed them and what consequences those differences had on the worlds they lived in!)
Just a few questions about the two Kaia’s though. If Other!Kaia saw what Original!Kaia saw, why did she try to kill Claire? Why is she here in this world now? If they were so close, as Other!Kaia says, then why was Original!Kaia so terrified of the Bad Place and why was she always getting hurt there? My “enquiring mind” wants to know!
At the bunker, Jack figures out why the reversal spell didn’t work and just how Laura’s (the girl’s) life force was being stolen, and he’s able to reverse it and save her. Go Jack! See? Here’s your win to show that you are a valuable member of Team Free Will!
Other!Kaia tells the gang about Michael’s visit to her. He apparently “felt” her in the world and could tell she also came from another world. Neat trick! Michael invited her to join his army, for the price of her weapon. (Doesn’t seem like a great deal, given she’s a food source to the army Michael’s leading!) Or, he told her she could fight, “definitely lose, probably die and then I’ll just take it.” Yeah, how did that go, Michael? Other!Kaia gets to keep the spear, but she took a beating from Michael in the meantime. But she was also able to leave a scar on Dichael. So, Michael knows the spear can hurt him. (Is it any thing/weapon from another world that can hurt Michael, or is it this one weapon in particular? That might be a good thing to find out. Maybe just pop into another world and grab a steak knife!) In light of this information, Michael has been sending his monsters after Kaia to get the spear away from her.
Just as the gang realizes they should move before Michael’s monsters catch up, they are found and have to fight. When all three are pinned down and about to lose, Dean frees Other!Kaia from her bonds and she takes off. (Look, we all knew she just went to retrieve the weapon and was coming back!) Looks like all is lost. Wait….Surprise! Kaia comes back after retrieving the weapon, as that is all that can kill Michael’s new creatures! (So, every time you kill them, Michael finds a way to improve them and plug that defensive hole? Okay, suddenly these critters seem a lot more dangerous! Oh, and Dean’s back now…what are we calling these new “Jefferson Starships”?) Wow, who could see that coming? Though she says she only came back to kill the monsters in order to keep them off her back, not to help our guys. Dean does not get the spear like he wanted and when Sam tells Kaia that she will continue to have a target on her back, for Michael and his creatures, for as long as she keeps the spear, she says she’s used to it. I mean, remember the Bad Place? The place Dean described as “a whole new world of bad”? And how she survived it? And have you seen how she fights? I think she’ll be fine. I’m guessing she will eventually have to come to Team Free Will for help at some point, but until then, that spear will remain out of reach of both sides. I’m curious as to how this war of Michael’s creation will shape up.
In the aftermath, Dean is feeling guilty (of course) for, well…everything…and for getting Jody’s arm broken. Jody says she’s fine with all of that, she’s just worried about what she’s going to tell Claire. Then she talks about how hard it was, losing Kaia, and I’m reminded again of why I want Jody to adopt me. She’s the best.
Speaking of parenting, Cas comes to see Jack and apologizes for not being there more while Jack has been dealing with losing his grace. He says this case with the witch proves that Jack may still have to work at his fighting skills, but he already has the mind and heart of a hunter. Then he tells Jack he’s going to ask Sam and Dean about them going on a hunting trip. D’awwww! Cas is such a good dad to Jack! It’s super cute! …And then Jack is coughing. First human cold, my ass! Nobody’s buying that! And sure enough, there’s a bloody tissue being thrown into the garbage pail full of more bloody tissues. Oh God, please don’t keep this secret for long, Jack. Just tell someone already! Secrets are no good! Do people never learn anything on the show? For Chuck’s sake!
Finally, we are back with the boys, where it seems maybe some lessons are finally seeping in to Dean’s head, because he actually acknowledges and apologizes for the fact that his actions put them all in danger. Then he says he was stupid for letting Michael in which, NO, just no, Dean. You are not a stupid man. Stop that right now! You thought Michael would have to leave when you told him to get out. You did what you had to do to stop Lucifer. It is not your fault. Stop being so damn hard on yourself all the time! But then Dean goes even further in learning to be better, by talking about his feelings! Gasp! And by explaining to Sam that the reason he was so desperate to get his hands on a weapon that can hurt Michael is to try to keep himself from getting possessed again. Apparently, Dean may not remember what Michael was doing when he was in his body, but time also didn’t pass in a blink. The whole time Michael was in charge, Dean felt like he was drowning – clawing and fighting for breath. (Oh my Chuck, my poor baby!) As someone who almost drowned and who, to this day, has a phobia about being in situations where I can’t breathe, wow! This one really hit home for me. Yeah, I might very well torture other people in order to avoid that feeling. I’m getting panicky just thinking about it. Puppies and kittens and babies, oh my! Puppies and kittens and babies!
Okay, so Dean is actually opening up for once, without it being dragged out of him, which is nice. But Jack is now keeping secrets. Cas and Jody are the best parents ever. Sam is having a love affair with his beard. No news on Nick and his quest for vengeance, for now. We saw some of Michael and brought back Other!Kaia, but what we saw of them just left us with more questions. Like what is Michael up to and why did he abandon his ideal vessel? And why is Kaia here in this world? And then we get to what I think is the worst thing in the episode, it seems Dean really is back to normal. And now I’m disappointed…again. The show again sacrifices an interesting story in order to return to the formula that got tired seasons ago. They get me all excited at the start and at the end of each season, get me thinking they will be doing something new and different, and every time, they play it safe by instantly reverting to the same old same old. Now, don’t get me wrong, I do like the same old same old. (For the most part.) It’s what made me fall in love with the show in the first place. But that does not negate the fact that it is also repetitive and predictable and (sometimes) boring. Obviously the writers are still coming up with interesting ideas, they just don’t follow through with them. Instead, they use them to generate interest, only to revert to status quo as soon as humanly possible. Can’t we try, just once, doing something different? Would it really have hurt having Dichael stick around for a while? I love you Supernatural, and I don’t know how to quit you, but seriously! We deserve better. We need a little less of the soap opera about you (where it runs forever, but nothing really happens) and a bit more of the story-telling again. And you have so much material to tell stories with, you could easily have enough material to last until you’re ready to end.
I did have some hope through the episode that perhaps Michael was still around somewhere in Dean’s head. I misread Dean’s desire to get the weapon to save himself from possession as Michael’s desire to get a dangerous weapon under his control. Dean’s almost manic desire to get to that weapon helped give that impression that Michael was still in control and there is a part of me that, contrary to all evidence in this episode, still hopes that perhaps that is the case. Yes, I know Cas was in Dean’s head. Yes, I know Kaia could feel the difference between Michael and Dean. And yet…
I think I hope because I want it so badly. The other thing giving me hope is the question of why Michael would leave his ideal vessel right at this moment, when being in his strongest vessel seems like the safest bet. I can only think of two reasons why Michael would do this. The first being perhaps he is trying to hide from Kaia in order to get the spear back and so needed to take on a new face or new faces. That’s the boring answer and I hope it is not the show’s answer. The other reason is that perhaps Michael thinks that Dean, on his own, may be able to resolve the Other!Kaia problem for Michael better than Michael himself could deal with it. Maybe he thinks human Dean can get close to Other!Kaia, can convince her to come to them for help or safety, leaving an opening for Michael to jump back into Dean’s body and take control of the spear. After all, it seems Michael does not need a yes to possess Dean. I’m really hoping it’s the second answer. Like I said, I really want there to be an air of uncertainty around Dean all season as to whether or not he is safe to be around, to talk to. If Michael is jumping in and out, using him when needed and then leaving Dean as himself again for relatively long periods of time, that tension and that suspense can carry the seasonal arc. If Michael remains gone all season until the last few episodes, what was the point? I’m trying not to beat this point into the ground but I am kind of mad about this turn of events. I really wanted the Dichael problem to last for more than two episodes. This is Deanmon all over again. I was so hoping through this whole episode that Michael was still in there, hiding, and trying to find Other!Kaia in order to get the weapon that can hurt him away from her and again, all of my hopes were dashed. You may even say this show has left…a scar. (Couldn’t help myself!)
The Road Ahead:
- Do any of you also wish the show didn’t always shake it up at the end of the season just to get back to status quo as soon as possible when the new season returns?
- What is Michael’s plan in this world?
- Why would Michael give up on his ideal vessel, right when it seems he needs to be at his strongest?
- Why was Other!Kaia trying to kill Claire? Why is she here now? Why was Original!Kaia so terrified of the Bad Place if they were so close? Why was she always getting hurt there?
- Would you watch a Charlie and Rowena “buddy
cophunter” show? I would!
- Do you think this means the “Wayward Sisters” will have a part to play this season? Is this to give them something after not being picked up, or is this to keep interest alive in the show to try getting it picked up again this year?
- How long until Jack’s secret comes out? How much damage will him trying to keep the secret do? To his health or to his relationships?
- Can you please all send me puppies and kittens and babies (pics will do…otherwise I’d be in for a lot of work!) so I have something to take my mind off of Dean drowning for months? Please?
- Oh, Chuck! Is that how Jimmy Novak felt too? Or is this because Dean said no after killing Lucifer, so Michael “put him under”? I’m choosing the latter, because I can’t handle it if Cas did that to Jimmy. Puppies and kittens and babies!
- Remember that time Dean STUCK A GUN IN KAIA’S FACE? (LOL!)
All right, may you all have puppies and kittens and babies in your future! Until next time, be good to each other! XO