I guess I wasn’t looking forward to this episode quite as much as some people. I’m impatient (in a good way) for what’s going on between Sam and Dean and the nasty road that’s taking us down and though I’m interested to see how Castiel is doing out in the big, bad, human world, not at the expense of the arc that I’m feeling the feels for this season. I'm just loving (terrified of) that story.
Sometimes when the Show has Sam and Dean having their own adventures or it concentrates more on other characters, I find it can be jarring, but not this time. New writer on the block, Berens, managed to walk that line many writers can’t, a standalone style episode deeply rooted in the mythology of the season, one that is driven by the all characters as opposed to the case. Let’s face it the case, in this..er…case, was really just window dressing. Pink window dressing.
Misha Collins does little lost lamb so well. Those expressive big blues of his sure don’t hurt none! I enjoyed seeing Castiel’s struggle to integrate into our world. The simple joy he took in doing a good job, mundane or otherwise. The studying and copying of small, everyday habits, like stirring a coffee. The awkward high-five and over zealous good luck wishes to the lottery ticket woman…making him look a bit creepy! It was all very heart warming.
Of course the real story is told by his toothbrush and sleeping bag at the Gas-n-Sip. He has no home. The words he spoke to the baby about being shoved out into this human life with no explanation for all the feelings, a hairs breath from terror or pain. He feels like he doesn’t understand anything at all, the minute he thinks he does, he's proved wrong. He’s confused. He’s lost. He misses his powers, his ability to help. This is how he’s really feeling. He’s trying to fit whilst juggling a whole lot of new emotions along with his old emotions of failure and guilt over his time as an angel. All this is what brought Ephraim to Cass…because he sensed Cass’ sadness and assumed that meant he didn’t want to live. Not being used to emotion, Ephraim doesn’t understand that, as Cass put it, humanity’s emotions ebb and flow. The baby helped Castiel recognise that both in himself and also in the fallen angels…how they must all be confused and struggling, even more so than Cass who a least has some experience with the human race.
With Misha’s sensitive touch, all this was communicated with a great deal of pathos and charm. Uncertainty is etched in his face at every turn, alongside occasional hope and desolation. Cass is trying so damn hard to fit. He may have experienced this world first hand for several years, but not the torrent of feelings that humans have whilst navigating it.
I literally moaned out loud when I realised that Cass’ date was actually with that baby! Oh my goodness. I was just hoping his boss wouldn’t see the rose! Aww. Poor Cass. Dating’s tough enough without having to deal with something like that! Heartbreaking.
The whole thing was so sad and ended even sadder. With that small flicker of hope for a little happiness or satisfaction in the new life he has chosen, disappearing before his very eyes. He started with nothing and ended with even less… A-Wahhhhhh!
Dean’s interactions with Cass came across to me as overcompensating a little on the brightness factor! He feels crappy that he kicked Cass out, even though we get why and his reason, in his eyes, is sound, he’d obviously feel crappy about it, so he seemed to be being a bit perky to try and cover all that up. Desperately ignoring the issue as only Dean can do.
Seeing how his friend is struggling and how he admits to being scared is why I think Dean didn’t tell Cass about the angels. Here’s his friend, who told him “Here, at least I have a shot at getting things right.” His friend, who is weighed down with new experience and new emotions. His friend, who’s not doing so great and just had a seriously bad night but is trying so hard. I saw Dean’s not telling Cass, as simply him reading the situation and deciding, now was not the time. There are good times and bad times to break bad news. That looked like a really bad time to me too. I don’t believe Dean had an agenda on this one, except being conscious of his friend’s fragile state.
I’d also imagine that he’d want to have a proper conversation with his brother about the whole thing rather than a few minutes on the phone, before he dashes his friend’s dreams completely. I couldn’t be mad at Dean for this one and believe me there are plenty of times I am furious at his behaviour, the more you love the madder you get! But I couldn’t put this into the, another lie basket. I think he just didn’t want to shatter his buddy…again...just yet.
I’m also not in the slightest surprised that in the end, Dean told Cass to go live his life and don’t worry about the angels, that’s not his job anymore. Dean has seen what hunting has done to him and his brother, his whole family, the bulk of his friends. If there’s a chance for Castiel to not get involved in the life and to try and find a place in the world without hunting, why would Dean not encourage that? Cass said that’s what he was trying to do; live normal. Dean wants that life for his brother, eventually, maybe even for himself, in places he doesn’t like to talk about, so yeah…why not Cass.
Dean was almost uncharacteristically gentle with Castiel - with a side helping of overcompensating because of guilt. Not that Dean can’t be gentle, he certainly can, but Dean doesn’t say I love you, he doesn’t do love and you know, love. He shows it in other ways, like making sure his friend was dressed properly for a date or making sure he gave him tips on what Dean thinks chicks like (I’m quite sure Dean knowsexactly what chick like)…all that stuff was super sweet. It really warmed my heart. Cass was sad, Dean didn’t want to make him sadder.
Though…he could give him a leg up! Bit of cash, fake credit card, set him up somewhere. Geesh. I’m sure Cass would accept a little help from Dean. I think it’s a bit odd that we haven’t seen that happen quite frankly, or at least mentioned that Dean has done that, because I think he would.
I also wished Dean had talked to Cass about the Ezekiel thing. Cass would be an excellent sounding board. He’d have a different view. He might be able to tell Dean something about Zeke. But he’d for sure tell Dean to tell Sam and Dean’s not ready to do that and obviously the Show’s not ready for us to hear any of that! So we wait…gnashing...as Dean stews and everything get's worse. Ack!
Meanwhile back at the Bunker.
Dean managed to get out of research! He was tap dancing like Fred Astaire again, as he tried to convince Sam that he was just going on a reccy to check out a possible job not a real job and that he’s not going to see Cass, honest. I keep wondering how much of what Dean’s not saying he’s not saying for Sam and how much is to hide stuff from Zeke…who even though wasn’t in this episode, still seemed like a lurking presence!
The Crowley Sam dance was so fun to watch. I love how Sam just knew which buttons to press to get the King of Hell’s knickers in twist. He’s pretty easy is Crowley! Sam played him like Kevin Tran would play video games! Sam was awesome…especially that look he gave when Crowley tossed the paper in his face. That was gold. I also love how he always stares Crowley down as he closes the doors. It’s quite imposing (and hot).
The interaction between Crowley and Abaddon was fabulous. Gosh those two can chew up some scenery! I’m looking forward to their inevitable show down. Crowley is right, Abaddon’s methods can’t be maintained. Even in Hell, you’d have to have order. In fact, you’d think Hell would need even more order considering the inhabitants! It was interesting that their conversation ended with Crowley deciding to help translate the doodles. Was he just keeping to his agreement as he said, or is he starting to see that he’ll have to work with the Winchesters as opposed to against them if he has any hope of getting rid of Abaddon and getting back his Empire. By the way, “Ganky putrescent skanger” may well be the best insult ever!
And guys! Did you notice Abaddon was standing in front of Castle Storage? Recycled prop signage coincidence or is John’s storage unit still there and there’s something in it Abaddon wants?
I’m not so sure Crowley is telling the truth about the angel spell. Why did Sam seem so adamant that this time Crowley was telling the truth? I’m not so sure that’s all the God rock doodles said and I think the guys need to do more research on that…somehow. Hey, if Crowley can read that ancient, long dead doodle language…what about Zeke?
And what about Crowley and the blood? I have a few half-baked theories.
- Crowley has been affected by the trials more than he cares to mention and he likes sensing his own humanity – so essentially, he was jonesing for a hit of feels. He’s turned blood junky.
- He needs Kevin’s blood to flush out Sam’s trial’s tainted blood. Sam’s blood was being affected by the trials; he was undergoing some form of transformation, as was his blood, so maybe if Crowley injected some plain old human blood, it might counteract Sam’s blood and return Crowley to his feelingless, narky self.
- He’s trying to continue the cure, because if he can get the demoness out, the Devil’s traps will no longer work – though the neck lock and handcuffs still will! So there’s that.
- There’s something in the Prophet’s blood that will give Crowley power. I don’t know what that would be.
- Crowley was being a dick and continuing to toy with Kevin.
Crowley was so great in this episode. The subtle changes in him. The cracks that are starting to show. I think the Winchester’s plan to keep him in solitary, along with the world he built crashing around him, is starting to chip away at our frenemy, Crowley. I like it!
There were a few other things that I liked or had thinky thoughts about…
I loved Cass singing the theme from The Greatest American Hero! That was my ringtone for the longest time! Plus, my goodness that was a cute baby!
What did the cops make of an FBI agent bringing Steve the Sales Associate to a crime scene? That made me giggle.
To that matter, what would the cops make of a crime scene that is covered in hot pink granulated human! Yuck. And Awesome.
Did you all notice that the sheriff was Mr Berrisford from the Dark Angel episode, “The Berrisford Agenda”? The one where Alec fell in love. So Jensen had worked with that actor, Michael Kopsa before.
I loved the teenager who had to explain “kinda” to Dean. My gosh, she was sassy.
I thought the new angel lore was cool and I thought it was really neat that the Kevorkian angel assumed that because Cass chose to be human, he was choosing death. It’s kind of true in a black and white way. Though did Cass have an alternative?
Cass’ quick thinking with the rose and the banishing sigal.
I always dig seeing the blood phone.
I loved Dean’s line “We’re not keeping him chained up for the one-liners.” I GUFAWED…at the hairdressers.
Kevin. I liked him and I liked him giving Dean lip.
Everyone looked really pretty! It was another episode where it was impossible not to pause and have love hearts fill your eyes!
By the way...I can't wait for next week's episode! I'm predicting bro feels! Weeee! They've been making me squee like a fangirl this season. I'm loving that it feels like them against the world again...even though three's company and I know it's going to go pearshapped at any moment and all that (hopefully not for long). I'm just living in denial that it's all sunshine and lollipops in my Winchester World!
Thanks for reading.