After the massacre at the ranch, Dean, Sam and Castiel double their efforts to find a cure for the Mark of Cain but there is nothing in the lore that can help them. Desperate, Castiel comes up with an idea that Sam deems the ?single worst idea I?ve ever heard.? Meanwhile, Rowena continues to plot against Crowley, and Castiel tries to mend his relationship with Claire who is plotting revenge against Dean for killing her friend.
Jody Mills reluctantly attends a mandatory sheriff’s retreat and is partnered with an overeager sheriff named Donna who wants to bond. Just as Jody thinks things can’t get any worse, a body with just strings of meat and skin hanging off the bones is discovered. While the local sheriffs blame an animal attack, Jody knows better and calls Sam and Dean.
Sam and Dean stumble upon a demon who is running from Crowley. Before they have a chance to shut him down, Rowena steps in and takes things into her own hands. Realizing Rowena is trying to recruit and train followers in the art of witchcraft, Sam and Dean come up with a plan to catch her before she can do much damage. Meanwhile, Hannah runs into a blast from her vessel’s past, which complicates things for her and Castiel.
Dean is surprised when he checks Bobby’s cell phone and hears a message that says Bobby or his next of kin have been named as a beneficiary in an heiress’ will. Hoping that means extra money, Dean talks Sam into hitting the road to claim their fortune. However, what they encounter at the house is far from a treasure chest.
Crowley notices Dean is becoming more and more aggressive. Dean tells him that’s the side effect of being a demon, but Crowley knows it’s something more – the Mark of Cain needs to be fed. Meanwhile, Sam is captured by Cole, an angry man who blames Dean for his father’s death years ago and wants revenge. Cole tortures Sam, hoping he’ll tell him where Dean is hiding. Hannah sees how weak Castiel is becoming as his grace continues to fade, so she makes a bold choice and asks Metatron for help.
If you were disappointed or surprised that Sam and Dean mostly took a backseat to Supernatural Season 9 Episode 20 (especially so close to the finale), that’s because the hour was really focused on setting up the world for its potential spin-off series, Bloodlines.
The episode begins in Chicago where young, handsome cop Ennis Ross is about to propose to his long-time girlfriend, Tamara. But don’t get too attached to her. Elsewhere in a monster night club, shapeshifter Sal Lassiter has a run-in with werewolf Julian Duval, and they do not get along. Like Ennis they are also handsome, because this is a CW show where all guys must be good-looking.
The one drawback to this episode was that Sam and Dean were almost completely irrelevant to the story. They only served to tell Ennis, “Hey man, you DO NOT want to become a hunter.” Then he became a hunter anyway, so mission not accomplished. The episode had to focus on the new players, so it’s understandable that the Winchesters were used sparingly. But every time they’d appear on screen, I’d think, “Oh right, they’re in this, too.”
Even with all those points, Ennis (Lucien Laviscount) and David (Nathaniel Buzolic) have the right chemistry to make it work. Buzolic has a pleasant earnest yet tricksy vibe, and Laviscount showcased more nuance than I expected with his character. The actors could carry a series if their characters get more development and feel less like cardboard. There’s a lot of conflict to explore in their relationship since one is a hunter and the other is a shapeshifter ? assuming they become friends, which seems to be where they’re leading.
One word describes most of tonight’s Supernatural: boring. The story about a bizarre vampire family felt recycled and didn’t have many winning moments. Bitten’s Greyston Holt stopped by for a cameo, and it was a pity he was killed because he was the most engaging of the fanged monsters.
I was really encouraged to see Sheriff Mills manage to last the episode without dying– quite a feat for a female support character in Supernatural. I think the episode did a good job of showing her as a reasonably competent hunter, but also as someone who knows how to live with the grief of losing one’s family– something the Winchesters haven’t necessarily learned how to do so well in their own lives.
Many of the support characters this season have had stories that parallel or highlight lessons the boys would do well to learn, and I think Sheriff Mills’ story also fit this pattern. Hopefully in the future we will get to see more of her relationship with Alex, and what impact it has on her life and her efforts to heal from her past tragic experiences.
But then we cross into more of a gray area when the brothers kill demons or angels, because those are creatures that possess human bodies. When they knife a demon or smite an angel, they’re also killing the poor guy or girl that the supernatural entity was controlling. Then there are the rare cases when the Monster of the Week turns out to be just a regular ol’ human, which raises more ethical questions.