Supernatural Think Tank - Anna's Thoughts on 12x16 Ladies Drink Free
I really enjoy watching the evolution of relationships on this show. I'm not only talking about Sam and Dean's relationship with each other, but the relationship that they form with others. I also enjoy witnessing the way the Winchesters influence other people's behaviour and mindset. This aspect that I love so much was prevalent in this episode.
Mick-Introduction to the human aspect.
I've said it before and I still believe this to be so, I find Mick's character to be very similar to S4 Cas. He is also quite similar to early Dean. Mick, like Cas and Dean, holds onto a very black and white outlook that had been conditioned into them. They also blindly followed the orders given to them by their superiors/fathers. Mick's job is to kill monsters. When the orders come from above to kill something, he does the job. Mick is part of an elite secret society charged with the task of saving lives against the supernatural. He is part of the group that holds the largest collection of occult lore in the world. This group also has developed modern technological advances to destroy these monsters. Mick is part of a group of individuals whose job it is to protect human lives, so for Mick there really is no questioning what needs to be done or how. Mick isn't accustomed to murky waters, for him it's always been the clear deep blue sea.
Devils Advocate: I am not condoning Mick's behavior, but I do understand it. Mick is not a hunter, he's an academic or for lack of a better term at the moment...a paper pusher. He is a BMOL who has spent years acquiring knowledge and weaponry in their quest to rid the world of monsters. He takes orders from those above him, which he follows without question. The orders he receives he passes on to the hunters who work for him, hunters like Ketch. Ketch is the one who experiences the kill. He's the one who has contact with the monsters. If the BMOL were looked upon as a company, Mick would be considered a General Manager at most. Mick clearly has no experience or understanding of the human aspect of what they do. He seemed to have gotten his first introductory lesson to that during this episode.
I really got a kick out the way Mick invited himself on this hunt. I kind of wonder if he was ordered to go on this hunt to keep an eye on the Winchesters or whether he decided after the debacle in the Raid, that it was in his best interest to get some hands on experience hunting. He did admit that if Sam hadn't been in the bunker, he'd be dead. So Mick may very well be taking his first baby steps to start thinking for himself. I'm not saying it's right, but I do understand Mick's position on killing the girl once he discovered she'd been bitten. I found it quite telling that he was sad when he found the bite mark. We can see the human side of Mick not only when he found the bite, but in his apology in having to kill her. Mick didn't tell the boys about the bite. He most likely didn't trust that they'd do the job, given they had let Magda go. If the BMOL have been studying the Winchesters as they have noted, then they should be well aware by now that the Winchesters don't kill children. Dean of course saw what Mick did as a betrayal. He didn't trust him from the start and immediately accused him of killing the girl. Dean was right of course. Playing devil's advocate here, I can see why Mick didn't see reason for telling the boys. Mick's job is to ensure the monster dies. He's only answerable to the BMOL, so for Mick, Sam and Dean are there to do a job and are doing a job for him. He doesn't have to answer to them. Mick is also used to following orders given to him, so if he's ordered to ensure that the werewolf who's killing people be killed, then he'll do the job. If Mick encounters other werewolves, he'll make sure they are killed as well. Mick stated his job, ridding the world of monsters. It's that easy. He is yet to experience the gray of it all. Now was Mick right to kill the girl? That's hard to know for certain. When the girl changed, the first thing she did was attack Mick. What if her mother had been in the room? What if it was a doctor or a nurse? Would she have attacked and killed them? If Mick hadn't been in the room with the injection to kill her, one, she might have killed innocents in her attempt at escape and two, he never would've experienced first hand what it's like to personally kill a monster. A monster who in this case had not a few hours earlier been simply an innocent girl. As sad as the entire situation was, this was an important lesson for Mick. Now he's that much closer to understanding that hunting monsters isn't all black and white like he previously believed. Welcome to the "gray" Mick. Hope you like the way it looks on you.
Merry Go Round
We can't seem to get away from the deception aspect of our little show. Claire is lying to Jody. Mick is lying to the boys. The victim was lying to her Mom and brother. Of course the killer was lying to the boys, but that is as it should be. The lying from all stems from the same thing, fear of the reaction from others. Lying seems to be a prevalent theme this season. What I questioned the most here is Dean though. We just had Sam come clean with Dean because he realised that lying wasn't the right path just because you feared someone's reaction. Lesson learnt, at least for the moment. What surprised me here though was Dean. Dean asked Claire if she was going to talk to Jody. When Claire said she didn't know, Dean told her that whatever her decision, he would back her play. So if Claire hadn't listened to Sam and continued to lie to Jody, Dean was going to go with it and lie to Jody as well. WTF? Does he not remember what happened when he lied to Ellen? Didn't we just go through this? Wasn't part of the reason Dean was so pissed at Mary because she lied? Here we are again. I kind of have to ask myself why that is. Is it just pure habit? Is something more going on that makes Dean more understanding of why people are not so quick to reveal the truth?
I'm trying to figure out what the point of her was supposed to be here, in this particular scenario. Was she simply to have an effect on Mick, to sway his black and white way of thinking? Does she represent where Supernatural might lead to? Is her relationship with Jody supposed to remind us of Mary?
Claire is a conflicting character in the way that the fandom seems divided on the way they feel about her. Some consider her a fan favourite, while others count the days to her demise. I don't really think much about Claire, like at all. Her appearance doesn't really stir up any feelings of anything. I don't care if the kill or her keep her. I guess I will say that I appreciate it more when her appearances are farther and few between, just because I don't find her character all that compelling. Why was Claire the character of the week? Well, she was sneaking out and hunting on her own, which ironically bothered Sam the most. Sam had been the one to talk to Claire, call her out on acting like a stupid kid (which is totally true) and insist she call Jody and tell her the truth. Sam had just been in a similar type scenario, so this is all very true to his character. He doesn't want her to make the same mistake he did. He doesn't want either one of them to get hurt. Was Claire in this instance supposed to represent Mary? Claire is also somewhat responsible for Mick seeing the grayer side of hunting. Killing Hayden was hard for him. He felt guilty. He was even remembering having Magda killed and he didn't seem all that happy about that either. I don't think Mick wanting to help save Claire was just about his fear of the Winchesters killing him. I think it's very possible, becoming hands on in a situation where an innocent was trying to be saved instead of killed was a real eye opener for him. I think Claire and the boys wanting to save her influenced Mick to understand that hunting isn't has black and white as he was conditioned to believe. Claire might also be a character who's being set up to be a future hunter for a spin off. The Wayward Daughter idea seems to be a popular one among some of the fandom. What I really found fascinating, much the way Sam did, is the existence of the Kendrix School. A place where BMOL and hunters are trained. If they did go the way of spinning off Supernatural with a new generation of hunters, I think it would be cool to take place in England. The spin off could revolve around the school.
Another nice idea is the notion, that Sam become a teacher in AMOL. Maybe set up a school in the bunker, while Dean trains future hunters. A nice idea for the boys, as they get older to still remain in the game, and survive.
I'm going to do it now. I'm going to sing the praises of Sam Winchester in this episode. Sam covered all the emotions with this one. He went from being totally and adorkably geeky every time anything that had to do with lore and research was mentioned. He was excited at the idea of a Hogwarts type school that taught and trained young BMOL and hunters alike. He was downright blissful at the idea that Kendrix held the largest amount of occult lore in the world. He was totally into the podcast regarding Martin Luther who turned out to be a hunter in the early 16th century. You know when you were a kid, there was always that one kid on the block who always had really cool toys, or lived in a really big house and you hung out with that kid, not so much because you liked him/her on a personal level, but because you wanted to play with their toys. That's exactly what Sam reminds me of right now in regards to Mick/BMOL. Yes, Sam acknowledged the wins and saving lives of course working with Mick and the BMOL, but his sheer joy came from the expansive amount of books/lore/ knowledge the BMOL have acquired. Let's face it...Sam is a geek. He's a research enthusiast. Sam never balks at the notion of having to do research the way Dean does. Dean rather do anything else. How many times have we seen Dean go off to a bar to have a good time, and Sam choose to go back to the hotel and look up the lore. He's an academic who craves knowledge the way Dean craves action. In that way, they complement each other. Most of the time Sam spent in defense of Mick and the BMOL was regarding not them on a personal level, but the fact that they had information that they could use, that would help. It was by researching BMOL books that Sam discovered that there might actually be a cure for Lycanthropy.
It was fun to see that part of him shine through with such glee.
I loved the look of distress on his face when he realized that he had his own room in the 3 star hotel. His reaction to Dean in the pool sans swimsuit was priceless. Yes, there was plenty of smiles going around for Sam in this one.
Then of course we had the rip out my heart strings moment, or what I refer to as the Madison moment?
I couldn't help but think of Sam thinking of Madison when he was sitting on chair watching Claire go through that agony when she took the antidote. The look on Sam's face when she stopped moving. I was also reminded to be reminded of the scene in AHBL when Dean grabbed onto Sam whispering the words "I got you", much the same way Sam had done with Claire. So the rewatch was even more I also loved that Sam recognized that it was Claire's life and she had every right to decide how she wanted to handle her predicament.
Then of course we got bad ass Sam who is so damn.....mmmmmmm! His "you killed a kid, we're not angry, we're done".....Mick was lucky to be on the other side of the room at that moment.
I knew Sam had told Dean about the events of the Raid. I had said it. I couldn't imagine Sam not telling Dean what happened. I'm not sure how exactly it did go down, but the way I picture it, he likely told Dean about the events of the Raid for the most part, but I think he might have left out the part where he killed the Alpha. I do however believe that when Sam came clean to Dean about working with the BMOL and apologizing for not telling him, I do think that this conversation continued off screen and Sam told him about how he actually killed the Alpha. Now I have to wonder if he mentioned the Colt. I hope we find out soon, as I'm kind of curious.
I totally loved Dean's joy at staying at the shabby 3 star hotel. I love that he finds joy in the little things in life, like big pillows with tiny chocolates on top of them, free mints which of course he had to take a handful of and stick in his pocket and of course little tiny bottles of shampoo. He even takes time out for a morning skinny dip. In typical Dean fashion, he won't give Mick an inch, noting he slept better in his Baby.
Dean's total distrust in Mick played front and centre during this episode. Being leery of him from the start, Dean didn't hesitate in presuming Mick's part in what happened to Hayden. When Dean pays attention, he pays attention and there ain't no way you're going to deceive him when he gets this way. Love this part of Dean.
I really enjoyed his confrontation with Mick and loved that show brought up Dean's past belief regarding the Supernatural vs. the present For example, Dean, by his own admittance believed " if it's supernatural, we kill it, that's our job". It was Sam's response "no Dean that's not our job. Our job is to kill evil, if it's not killing people, it's not evil", that had Dean considering the "gray" aspect of hunting that he's never seen before. Dean said to Sam, " the way we were raised, to hate them, and I do, I hate them." Dean was conditioned by his father to hate monsters. Dean also spent most of his life blindly following his father's orders without question. In these ways, Dean shares similarities with Mick. Of course Dean has changed. Sam's influence, different experiences, and time itself has taught Dean that hunting isn't as black and white as he originally believed it to be. This is the message Dean had tried to convey to Mick.
Dean was also in protective mode during this episode. I liked how he threatened the bartender for getting handsy with Claire. I liked that he wouldn't let her drink a beer, but he totally made sure she had a good meal, complements of the BMOL of course. In typical Dean fashion, when Claire was infected and was willing to try the cure, Dean automatically declared she didn't have a say in the matter...to which Claire responded...it's my life, I have all the say. That was a good moment for Claire and a hard one for Dean. It's not easy for Dean to let go of those protective reins, but with a slight reminder from both Claire and Sam, Dean did the right thing. He followed Claire's wishes. Dean has indeed come a long way. This may be my own head canon, but I liked that Dean was willing to give Mick one more chance. I believe it was because Mick saved Claire and saved Dean by shooting the werewolf. I also think it might have to do with the fact that Dean recognised in Mick his own way of thinking once upon a time. Dean was also consistent in his inability to watch those he cares about physically suffer. He walked out of the room, much the same way he did when Crowley was sticking needles in Sam's head to expel Gadreel and when Sam was detoxing from the demon blood, both times.
It was really nice seeing the actress who played Brenna Dobbs again. She did a great job playing the grieving mother. I also like that they made her smart too, not buying into a school girl playing at being a Wildlife and Fishery agent. Jared and Jensen were absolutely at the top of their game in this episode. They made me laugh, they made me cheer, they tugged at my heart strings...yes totally felt like I did a workout at the gym by the time this ep ended. I love where the boys are right now, it's my favorite part of the this season. I feel like I'm watching Jared and Jensen instead of Sam and Dean. Adam was great as Mick. He is quite humorous in his own right. I enjoyed the conflict introduced for Mick for the first time. I look forward in seeing where this leads. I don't really have a good or bad opinion regarding Kathryn as Claire. I think after so many episodes, it's kind of past due that she lose the attitude about nobody caring about her. That ship has sailed so long ago. I don't think she's a good hunter, like at all. They have yet to really give her any kind of skill set in regards to that. Maybe that's why they mentioned Kendrix. Maybe she'll end up going there because she certainly needs to. I don't see her as sensible either, because hunters don't hunt alone. She's not good enough to take on hunting by herself and to continue to do so doesn't make her brave, it only points out how little she actually knows. Maybe the next time around she'll be more competent...who knows...like I said, I'm not at all really interested in her character. All in all, this was a really good episode.
Sam's enthusiasm over the BMOL vast amount of information/knowledge/training.
Sam getting excited over the notion that there is a BMOL Training School that can be compared to Hogwarts.
Dean getting exasperated over Sam's excitement of there being a BMOL Training School similar to Hogwarts.
Sam totally fan-girling over Kendrix having the largest collection of occult lore in the world.
Sam enjoying the podcast on Martin Luther, telling Dean...it's educational
Sam's face when he found out he was getting his own hotel room.
Mick's apology for the shabby 3 star hotel.
Sam spending the night in a 3 star hotel with a pool, doing research on the lore.
Dean skinny dipping....need I say more.
Sam's reaction to Dean skinny dipping...guess I did need to say more.
Dean grabbing a fistful of free hotel mints.
Dean's excitement at those little tiny shampoo bottles.
"You killed a kid. We’re not angry. We’re done!"
-Sam to Mick
“Wow, that is some world-class repression. You are British."
-Dean to Mick
"He's Sam's best friend. They are like nerd soul mates."
-Dean to Claire
“Killing monsters is what we do. Or maybe palling around with demons and witches, you’ve forgotten."
-Mick to Dean
Mick: The Kendrix School. It’s where the BMoLs train their operatives. It’s like our… Sam: Hogwarts? Mick: Exactly. Kendrix has the largest collection of occult lore in the world.
Sam:Cool! (Turning to Dean to share his glee) Dean: (glares)
"If he's coming, you're babysitting him."
-Dean to Sam
We're working with these people and we're getting wins, we're saving people. -Sam to Dean
Claire: "Stop treating me like a stupid kid!" Sam: " Then stop acting like one!" Dean: "What about you? Sam: "I was researching the lore." Dean: "Those 3 stars were wasted on you." "Those limey bastards ruined me."
-Dean to Sam
"Go nuts. It's on Harry Potter."
-Dean to Claire (offering a menu and putting it on Mick's tab)
Hope you all enjoyed this week's romp. Til next time!