Tuesday, 29 November 2016

Review - Supernatural 12x06 Celebrating the Life of Asa Fox

Hello…. is anyone still with me?

Sorry about how late I am with this review. Some of you know that my day job is a creative one, I’m a promo producer/creative manager in network TV, and sometimes (a lot of the time), that role is very full on and exhausting, and sometimes (rarely thankfully), it burns me out to the point that I can’t gather the brain matter to do anything outside of work. That’s basically where I’ve been lately, ridiculously tired - but with a new episode this week, I’m putting on my big girl pants and remembering that I love writing these reviews, and I shouldn’t let other stuffs stop me, so here I am!

Celebrating The Life of Asa Fox was another fab episode by another new writer, with spot on boys, a dollop of history, characters we love, new characters we’d love to see again and lots of lovely feels! Good work Steve Yockey!

We discovered, through the introduction of the Asa character, that Mary Winchester never really gave up hunting. The beginning of this episode was set in 1980, a year after Dean was born, and Mary was out on a hunt…. in Canada! She said she was tying up loose ends, but I got the distinct feeling - as Sam says later - hunting is in her blood and giving up the job, is not an easy thing - it looks like she never really did.

She rescued Asa from a werewolf, which drew back the curtain for him, leading him to a life of hunting things that go bump in the night (and Mary adulation), which eventually led to his death - but on the plus side, allowed us to attend his wake and to visit the hunter community, which we’ve not done very often, and which I always love! I love it when we meet new hunters and see how they manage their lives.

I could have watched an entire episode of the boys hanging out with Jody. For a start, I just love that after a hunt, all stinky, they decided to swing by Jody’s to check in and say hi. I love that Jody, in her pjs, day drinking, about to plonk down to watch Netflix, welcomed them in (told them they were stinky), and straight away offered to feed them. I love that Jody is comfortable enough with the boys and herself, that she stays in her pjs, and stays with her chick flick! I love that the boys are so comfortable with Jody, that Sam is practically horizontal on the couch - seriously, I’ve never seen Sam so relaxed, pizza plate on his tummy, teasing his big brother with a huge amount of little brother glee, about Dean’s animated Japanese erotica hobby “be proud of your hobbies, it’s what makes you you” (fandom anyone?)! Sam is snickering into his pizza the whole time and I love it. I LOVE IT!

The fact that the boys have a place like this that they can go to and completely shake off the hunt, with someone who cares about them, understands them, knows their history and doesn’t judge them, is just amazing. I adore it, and I adore they have this relationship with Jody.

And it plays both ways, because they know Jody and they know Jody’s history, and when Jody finds out about Asa dying, the boys make it seem like she’d be doing them a favour if she let them tag along with her, when all of them really know, that they are going with Jody to support her and so she doesn’t have to drive herself TO CANADA when upset. All three of them read the situation perfectly, and even though you know Jody knows exactly what they’re doing, she’s thankful for their support.

I love Jody, Sam and Dean’s friendship. The boys don’t have a lot of friends, and Jody is one hell of a good one, and it warms my heart that they all have each other.

Getting to see the hunter community gathering to remember one of their own was such a treat. We know other hunters are out there, we know they sometimes team up and work together, Sam and Dean sometimes meet them along the way, but we also know it’s a pretty solitary existence - so to see them all together with their Wendigo drinking game was a blast. The idea that there are all these hunters out there doing the work, busily saving humanity is such an awesome concept. And I sooooo dug that Sam and Dean are hunter famous! You could tell Dean took a little bit of pleasure in the Winchesters being legendary! I mean, oh course they would be - at least now it’s not for starting the apocalypse or anything like that though! Dean’s famous for being dead over and over - it didn’t take - and Sam, for being possessed by Lucifer! Sam’s fanboy needs to learn some boundaries….not that it mattered, because later he was a goner.

That’s another thing I loved about this ep - the demon was an evil son of a bitch. I mean, I think we’ve got quite complacent about demons, what with Crowley and some of the other less than scary ones, but this demon, a crossroads demon called Jael, was a bastard! The neck snap for one was particularly nasty, but who didn’t shit themselves when Mary and Sam were in paying respects to Asa when blood dripped on him from the ceiling! I literally inhaled a huge gasp at the familiar horror of that scene. So perfectly awful. This was good demon - meaning that he was bad - jumping from meatsuit to meatsuit, trying to play the hunters off each other. When it was obvious Jody was possessed, man….I was screaming at my TV not to kill her. I was freaking out. If they ever kill Jody…I’m not sure how I would cope with that!

I felt the same about Billie showing up when we knew Mary was there. I thought - surely not, not yet anyway. There has to be more point to Mary’s inclusion in this season than for her just to die a few eps in, so I was glad to see she told Billie that the reaper would have to wait, regardless of how Mary is feeling, of how she feels like she doesn’t fit in this new world. I think that was a whacking great bit of foreshadowing though…pretty sure at some point later this season, Billie will reap Mary.

The way Billie said “Winchesters.” Haha! The thing is, in some ways she’s ended up having an odd relationship with the boys, just like her boss Death did. She may say there are no second chances - and probably means it - but she’s not adverse to helping them, whether it’s organising the souls for the Amara bomb, or in this episode, helping Dean get back inside the house when he was supernaturally locked out and separated from Sam (yelling for Sam and throwing things at the door like it would help!). She says Dean owes her…it’ll be interesting to see if she collects. Her relationship with Sam and Dean has become quite complicated - maybe she’d like some pickle chips!

Of course Dean was outside because he’d stepped out to think (and drink), after the surprise appearance of Mary. Through these scenes it was lovely to see how well Dean is understood by those who know and love him. Sam stopping Mary from following her elder son, because he knew that Dean just needed a moment to collect himself and be alone. Jody saying exactly the right thing when confronting Dean. She calls him out, but then says how she would feel if in the same situation, knowing that it was exactly what Dean was feeling - what he is afraid of - and saying it in words and in a way which allows Dean to hear it and to tentatively own it, without having to admit to it….“Yeah?” I love how Jody offers an ear and a heart to Dean, she did it when he came back from being a demon, and she does it again here.

Sam when speaking to Mary, also knows exactly what Dean is feeling - that he is scared, scared of being rejected, scared of losing Mary again, scared that maybe he’s not the son she thought he’d be, that she would want, scared that maybe she’s not the mum he thought she’d be, what he wants. I love that Sam knows Dean so well. It’s interesting too, that Sam is almost the peacemaker role between Mary and Dean, where as Dean was the peacemaker between Sam and John.

Sam also reads Mary well enough to know that no matter what, she can’t give up hunting, she couldn’t in 1980 and she can’t now, like her sons, it’s in her blood. I truly love the place Sam has come to with hunting, there’s a peace in Sam this season - I think that’s why he could blob out on the couch so well! He even thinks about a future after hunting - not running away from hunting, but possibly surviving it. Dean being in a bad place emotionally right now, has fallen back on the die bloody feels - even though we know both boys have thought about the possibility of surviving this whole thing….and possibly retiring to a nice retirement home!

And then everyone went for bacon - except Jody, even though Sam and Dean were her ride! I loved to see Mary snuggled into Sam as they walked to the car. His face all lit up when she said she was coming home, then dropped when she said, but not yet. This time it was Dean who offered the olive branch in the shape of “all the bacon”. There was some peace in how they all came together - baby steps in what is a new and weird relationship, no matter how they are related. It felt good, and I think Dean’s going to be cool with eating pie now, next time Sam offers it!

I really loved this episode. I loved all the characters, from Asa and his backstory, to Asa’s mum, to the massively hot witch twins - please let's see them again because they were awesome - to Bucky, who turned out to be the real murderer - another human monster. It’s always been a theme in Supernatural, the grey lines between the monsters and the human monsters, but this season it’s seriously pronounced! Between the British Men of Letters, the nasty religious zealots family, Mr Ketch and now Bucky, human monsters are definitely the thing du jour of season 12! This was also another mother heavy episode, with Mary, who is not at all happy that her boys were raised hunters, and Mrs Fox, who was also very unhappy about Asa following Mary’s footsteps into the job. Mrs Fox did come to a better place with it all at the end of the episode though, so maybe Mary can too. The other recurring theme of this season which kept coming up, was Lucifer. It was mentioned more than once that Sam was Lucifer’s vessel - another bit of foreshadowing maybe? Human monsters, mothers, Billie, and Lucifer - I feel like all these things need to be written down, because there will be a pop quiz later!

All in all - it was kind of an optimistic episode with kind of an optimistic ending - pretty much a happy ending in Supernatural terms (well, not for Asa or the hunters that copped it!) Happy Winchesters and bacon! The boy’s lives are far less chaotic this season….so far….I’m sure that will change….I mean, there are only 2 eps until the midseason break! I figure chaos is on the way! But it’s nice to see Sam and Dean in a place of peace with each other - that seems to rub off on all aspects of their lives, and everything feels just a little less dark. Gosh I love that they’re getting along and all that. I love it.

Okie dokie…only a couple more days until the new ep - a bit of Lucifer and boys in leather jackets!

See you back here then! I promise!



  1. Your reviews always make me so happy. <3

  2. No worries in how late your review is. It is always a joy to read and always so spot on. I am loving the new writers so far this year and was one that never doubted that TPTB know what they are doing. That scene with the boys and Jodi at her house was my fav. I saw not only Sam and Dean in that scene but also Jensen and Jared. They are one in the same any more and I just love that. I also loved the twins and hope to see more of them in the future as well. Season 12 has not disappointed one bit so far. Every episode gives us more and more of what we wanted. The brothers on the same page and all the bro feels to go with it. The returning to basics is what brought us all together and so glad we are back to that. Great review Amy and only 2 more days till the next awesome ep with yes, the boys in leather jackets and Lucifer.

  3. Another great write up Amy!

    I love that they seem to be mirroring the relationship of Sam and John (and as Henry said, how similar they were) with Dean being so very much like Mary. And also how Sam has taken the peacemaker role between Dean and Mary, just as Dean filled that role between Sam and John.

    Fingers crossed that we see the hot witch twins again.

    Did it bother you that a group of hunters wouldn't have at least had amulets with the anti-possession symbol, if not the tattoo? That was the only thing about the episode that I questioned, otherwise I loved it as well.

  4. So Mary's "unfinished business" kept her hunting even with a toddler at home. So she must've lied to John giving him some bogus story as to why she would take off for a few days given that hunts take more than a couple of hours. This is the same Mary who wanted nothing to do with hunting anymore and wanted her children as far from the life as possible, yet here we are, Dean two years old and Mary is hunting....which leads me to ponder what exactly is her unfinished business?

    Could it be possible that Mary, who made a deal with a demon realized what that could mean for her family, for her now two year old child and possibly went after it? Sam wasn't even a flicker in the brain, so it would seem obvious that if anything would get Mary hunting it would be to protect her child, after all she isn't all too sure what she actually promised all those years ago when she saved John.

    Mary now goes through the journal and might very well see signs that the boys wouldn't have recognized. She claims that she needs more time, but exactly what does she need more time for? Is it really only about her adjusting to being back again, or is it more? I find it interesting that Mary happened upon a hunter with an angel blade. Coincidence? What has Mary really been doing all this time when she claims she's retracing John's journal?

    Mary remembers dying in Sam's room. She remembers how she died, so isn't it safe to assume she remembers coming face to face with the demon who killed her? We know she recognized him before he burned her. She said...."it's you". Could her unfinished business now be the fact that she realizes that it wasn't Dean that was in danger but her baby...Sam. She just found out that Sam had been luci's vessel. Could Mary actually be off on her own looking for Luci? Could he be her unfinished business?

    just saying.....

    1. Exactly!!! There is something super fishy going on I reckon! I think she's on the trail of something...and that's why she grabbed the angel blade for sure!