hells_half_acre: (Sam strung-out)
[personal profile] hells_half_acre
 Well... that was an objectively terrible episode, I'm not going to lie. 

BUT, there are rules around here - and so now is a good time to remind you... and myself... about them: I like to keep things positive - so for every negative thing you say, you've got to say one positive thing too.

Mainly though, I'm probably going to just be recapping this episode without much commentary if I can help it, because... yikes. BUT I WILL DO MY BEST TO BE FUN! I mean, in good news, this episode drove me to drink a lot... so I'm intoxicated enough for this to be a good time for everyone (title of my sex tape.)

I mean, the first positive thing is that The Glamor Boys by Living Color came on my iPod on the way home - I didn't even know I owned that song! I was flooded with vague childhood memories and filled with nostalgia for a time in which my life still had limitless potential and we were not yet doomed.

But let's talk about the actual episode...

We begin with some dude tied up, being drained of blood into a goblet - at first I was like "super slow demon call?" but nope, it's Michael doing experiments - mixing vamp blood with angel grace and then feeding it back to the vampire to see if it'll make him do something besides explode. Spoiler alert: He explodes. Eyes burnt out - so, too much angel grace, obvs.

Back in the Bunker, Bobby has noticed strange happenings in Duluth. Who wants to hang out in Duluth in October? He asks. To which the answer is Micheal, but meanwhile, I'm like "You do realize that last episode happened in June, right? Did 3 months just pass?" And then I sigh, because either 3 months did pass, or this throws out my timing for the season finale of last year.

Bobby then says something insulting about angels, which I miss, because I'm making timeline notes, and Castiel walks into the room and Bobby says "no offense" and Castiel says "None taken, I tend to agree with you." Which is a nice Castiel line. There's a few of those in here, spattered around the general carnage.

We then get a ton of needless exposition - Castiel tells Sam, when prompted, what they all, obviously, already know - that Castiel has to stay behind and can't go after Michael, because Michael would detect his "angelic presence" and also he has to babysit Nick and Jack. 

"Is this episode going to be all exposition?" my friend asks. "Is it written by BuckLeming?" I counter - because I don't read credits, and they just finished. My friend looks it up. "Yes." "Then yes. That's how they write, they are the worst writers on staff."  "Ugh." 
- The positive here, is that I have time to have a cookie while we talk.

They talk about how hard it is to have Nick around - Castiel reiterates that he's associated with "the Supreme agent of evil" at which point Jack enters to remind them all that there talking about his father. Also, that it's hard for him to be around Nick too. And also that he understands he needs to improve before he can go on hunts.

My friend points out that Richard Speight Jr. directed this episode. We agree that we love that guy, and we're sure he did the very best he could given the material, and we're both appreciative of his efforts.

Sam, Bobby, and Mary leave.

We then see that Nick is having nightmares/visions where he remembers being inside Lucifer (we assume - this better not the fuck be Lucifer - pardon the swearing.) Castiel brings him food. Castiel then reiterates to Nick that it's hard to be around him because of what he did when he was in Lucifer's "thrall" - at which point I need to have another cookie, because being in THRALL and being possessed are two ENTIRELY DIFFERENT SUPERNATURAL THINGS. And Castiel wouldn't use one word when he meant the other. UGH. AT LEAST GET YOUR WORDS RIGHT.  BUT, in positive, they talk about how Lucifer took advantage of Nick's pain, and Nick is all like "what do you know about it" only he doesn't ACTUALLY say that, and then we all (hopefully) remember that Castiel also said yes to Lucifer once. And it's a good moment, because it's not actually explicitly said in exposition-y dialogue.

We are then reminded that Nick's wife and kid died in a home invasion. FUN FACT: Back in S5, when Kripke wrote that episode, it never had to be explicitly stated how they died, there were actually NO WORDS USED AT ALL, and yet we all understood, because we are not idiots.

I'm doing a bad job of this write-up. 

Back with Sam, Bobby, and Mary - who are at the Morgue in Duluth, there's some charming dialogue here between them and the mortician, before she's conveniently called away on a phone call. They discover that the bodies are vampires. They wonder what the heck is going on. They question the mortician again and she tells them that there was a lady who came to see the bodies, but she didn't claim them. They ask for security footage.

Back with Jack and Castiel, Jack is looking into biblical lore to see when he might grow his grace back. There isn't much information on it, and it's going to be either a month or a century, but since Jack is a nephilim, whatever the process is, it'll be slowed. Jack's not impressed. Castiel tries to tell him not to dwell on mourning what he lost, and Jack is all like "WHAT DO YOU KNOW?" and Castiel is all like "Let me explain S9 to you." BUT, the positive thing here is that when Castiel tells Jack what he HAD even when he didn't have his grace, he lists Sam and Dean first, and then more importantly, himself - so, that's a nice bit of positive message, and also reiterating of the importance of Castiel's bond with Sam and Dean.

He then goes on to use Sam and Dean as a parable of sorts, explaining how they weren't born with their expertise, they had to grow and learn and have patience. That the past is important but not as important as the possibilities of the future. 

In a NON exposition scene, we actually get to see Dean fighting Michael very briefly. YAY! Go Dean! He's not successful, but it's nice to see him try... I kind of wish that was the whole episode.

Back at the bunker, Castiel fields a call from Sam, and repeats everything we've learned so far in the episode.

Nick then comes into the room obviously distraught. Once again, repeating everything we could have already guessed about his family - that the case isn't solved and their killer unpunished. When Castiel goes to comfort him, he suddenly straightens and snaps (literally) at Castiel as though he were Lucifer - this, obviously, is worrying, and Castiel concentrates really hard, and realizes that Lucifer may have damaged Nick's psyche a great deal (... I'm shocked.). Anyway, Nick storms off to go find their killers or something.

Meanwhile, Sam, Bobby, and Mary, interview a vampire girl, who tells us everything we have already seen in the episode, just in case we needed it in words, not images. "Please tell, don't show" my friend quips, as she takes the opportunity to check her email. I have another cookie and some more wine (I was the only one drinking tonight, because my friend's allergies were acting up...you'd think that would cause me to drink less, but somehow I ended up drinking more.)

Back with Michael, he is seducing werewolves now, while wearing a tux and a bowtie... in Duluth? Anyway, I guess vampires weren't good enough?

Nick is talking to police detectives from Pine Creek Delaware (I wrote "Pipe Creek" in my notes... recreational cannabis is now legal in Canada, perhaps my subconscious wanted some) on the phone... "that's not how the police work" my friend mutters, reaching for a cookie. It occurs to me that Nick is probably a missing person by now. He was dead for 7.5 years and possessed for 1 year before that... you'd think he'd show up on some radar somewhere as, you know, having abandoned a 3 storey house, his job, all his furniture, etc, shortly after his wife and kid were murdered. You'd think maybe him calling the police 10 years later would cause some ruckus... apparently not? 

The cool thing here though, and I do think it's cool, is that we get to explore Castiel's relationship to Jimmy a little bit more - as Castiel tries to tell Nick that he understands by relating Jimmy's experience to his - only to have this bring the fact that Castiel is also a "body-snatcher" to Nick's attention. Castiel has to explain that Jimmy is dead, and then says that what happened to Jimmy and his family is Castiel's biggest regret.... and although we already knew all that too, Misha does an excellent job with the dialogue and it's a heart-wrenching grey area, given our love for Castiel, but also the reality of what Castiel's presence meant for the Novaks.

Michael negotiates with the werewolves, telling them that God's on permanent vacation and he likes their purity of living, and that he can "enhance" their "talents" and that keeping humans for slave labour and food supply IS possible. My friend wonders "I didn't think werewolves works that way...?" and at this point I'm a little too defeated to explain that they completely ruined the werewolf mythology somewhere between S8 and S12... instead I have more wine and another cookie.

How hard is it for Castiel to keep track of only two people in the bunker? Apparently VERY hard. Also, where did everyone else in the bunker go? No one knows.

The point is, Jack has somehow absconded to an unknown city and is meeting Mr. and Mrs. Klein - ie: Kelly's parents. ie: Jack's maternal grandparents. He posses as a former intern/subordinate of Kelly's. They show him pictures and ask after Kelly - explaining that she only said she was traveling and it was confidential. They then tell him that she told them she was pregnant. Jack tells them she had the baby, and that she was a good mother, and repeats some of the things she told him while he was in the womb (though he doesn't say that last part.) He excuses himself when they get emotional, unable to bring himself to tell them that she's dead. 

The actors who play the Kleins did a great job, and this was a really emotional scene and very well done. 

Then we return to the vampire girl, who is packing her things only to have Michael show up - apparently it was all part of the plan to use the dead bodies as bait to attract the hunters, and then he kills her. Thanks for telling us, Michael.

Castiel takes Jack to task for going out. He's afraid that with Jack's diminished powers, he may be captured if demons or angels or whoever caught wind of him. Jack says that the Kleins are the only "real family I have left" which OUCH JACK, your adoptive father is STANDING RIGHT THERE. Jack then is sad about how he couldn't bring himself to tell the Kleins that their daughter was dead. Castiel tells him he withheld the information out of kindness, and there are worse ways to be human than to be kind.... and I DO like that line.

Then Jack and Castiel get in a fight, because Jack thinks that Michael should be killed at the expense of Dean, if they can't rescue Dean on the first try. Castiel disagrees. Jack argues that Dean wouldn't want them to let Michael escape and he'd prefer to die if it meant Michael died too. Personally, I agree with Jack. I mean, I understand Castiel's upset about it, but this isn't at all dissimilar to the choice Sam made to die in order to defeat Lucifer, and I doubt Dean would make a different choice in the same circumstances. But again, I get where Castiel is coming from.

Speaking of Castiel being horrible at keeping track of only two people. Nick is now visiting the only witness to his family's murder. He claims that he didn't really see anything. Nick doesn't believe him. He thinks he saw a man with a hammer, because his family was killed by having their brains smashed in with a hammer. Fun unrelated fact: There's a local stand-up comedian who survived a home-invasion hammer attack. I saw him perform once where he talked about it. He lost an eye, but he's still alive, so that's pretty good. Apparently, it was a case of the home invaders having the wrong address - I bet they were embarrassed. Canada: we don't have as many guns, but we'll still try to kill each other with hammers sometimes.

Sam and Dean and Mary go to the church, only it's a trap! Werewolf attack! Also, attack of NARRATING YOUR ACTIONS AND THE REACTIONS OF OTHERS AS THOUGH WE DON'T HAVE EYES (or descriptive video, in the case of the blind). What is this, a radio program?

Thankfully, although the werewolves are supercharged and don't seem to respond to silver, decapitating them works. Yay. 

Then Michael/Dean suddenly shows up, and seems to be Dean? For no reason? "It's a trap!" my friend and I both say, imitating Admiral Ackbar. "IT'S A TRAP"

But we don't get to see why this weird extremely convenient solution to their Michael-problem is a trap or not, because we then cut to Nick, who has a bloody shirt, because he's obviously killed his neighbour with a hammer... but JUST IN CASE WE DON'T PUT THAT TOGETHER ON OUR OWN, there's a shot of the dead body, and the bloody hammer... and a positive here is that BuckLeming refrained from writing a line where Nick tells his reflection or the dead body "oh no, I seem to have murdered you with a hammer in a fit of rage... could this be a clue as to who really killed my family? Or am I only now insane because of Lucifer's influence... DUN DUN DUN." 

A positive here is that the episode is over.

Here are a list of positives from my friend:
-The boys and Mary looked great
-The grandparents were excellent actors
-lots of exposition for those just tuning in
-Nick exposed as a murderous jerk-?

We watched Baronness von Sketch as a chaser - and it's HILARIOUS. 

The other good news is that next week's episode is going to be written by someone else! Yay! And that's one of 4-6(?) BuckLeming episodes in the can, so we have one less episode from them to dread look forward to.


So, now the challenge falls to you, if you choose to comment. I am sorry if I failed at my own rules, but at least they're my own rules, so if anyone can break them it's me!





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