Supernatural: Death Takes a Holiday
|Written by April Yorke|
|Sunday, 12 December 2010 21:38|
Hey, look at that! Another perfectly decent episode of Supernatural! Sure, “Appointment in Samarra” isn’t all that exciting, but it moved things along, didn’t make me angry, and reminded me of a few good things about this show. Given my lowered expectations for this season, that ain’t half bad.
The Doctor is in
Dean visits a disreputable, no-longer licensed doctor in (a) Chinatown. I’ve long thought that the Supernatural universe must have a line on backroom deals like this, so it’s nice to see that confirmed. Dean hands the doctor an envelope of cash and a letter for Ben and gets killed for compensation. Tessa comes to reap Dean. TESSA! A recurring female character who isn’t evil or a damsel in distress! I didn’t know I had been missing you, lady, but, boy, have I. Welcome back, dear girl. So Dean’s like, “Get me an audience with Death,” and Tessa’s like, “It don’t work that way,” but they don’t get too far into the line of thought before Death himself shows up. Of course he does. He’s ballin’. Dean wants Adam (aw, nice to think of little Adam!) and Sam’s souls lifted from the cage, settles for Sam’s when Death offers only one, and wants it fixed. Just when I start to wonder what Dean is offering in exchange, Death realizes it’s his ring but already knows where it is. Death makes Dean a deal: Dean wears the ring for 24 hours. If he can manage it, Death will retrieve Sam’s soul. Death will build a dam in Sam’s mind to make him forget whatever he’s experienced in Hell, but it may not be able to hold back the tide. If Dean takes off the ring or fails to discharge his duties, all deals are off. Despite what Soulless Sammy quite reasonably pointed out a few weeks back, Dean accepts this deal. Dean asks why this deal is on offer but gets sucked back into his body before he can learn the answer. He bitches about missing that last remark, and the doctor points out that Dean was down for seven minutes instead of the promised three. Great, now we’re supposed to put our trust in Brain Damaged Dean.
Souls are for everybody, souls are for everyone
Bobby’s, ‘cause I guess that’s where Sam went when he walked away from Dean last week. Dean’s obviously just finished telling Soulless Sammy about his genius plan because Sam’s yelling no. The previouslies, which were legion, wanted us to forget about Sam choosing himself, so I guess Dean did, too. Sam quite reasonably points out that his soul is, pardon my French, completely fucked, so Dean trots out the ol’ Death builds a wall. Sam asks how long it will last, and Dean hedges that it could last a lifetime. Sam’s obviously pissed but calms down some to claim that he needs a walk. Bobby and Dean find him outside where Dean apparently hid the rings last year. Dean’s already got the ring, and he’s going through with it. Sam accepts, but Dean still puts Bobby in charge of watching him.
Reap the whirlwind
Dean puts on the ring and immediately finds himself in some never-named town with Tessa. She’s not pleased with the situation, but it is what it is, so they best get to reaping. I love Tessa. She’s so professional. First stop is a convenience store: armed robbery time! Dean gets to yelling because, I don’t know, he imagines himself bulletproof, and Tessa had to remind him that no one on the other side can hear him. Dean wonders if the robber, the owner, or the owner’s son is going to get it and revels in the suffering of the robber when the owner pulls out a gun and plugs him. While I am yelling, “Ugh, Dean,” I wonder sometimes if I don’t prefer it when Dean at least owns what an asshole he can be instead of pretending all the time. Shades of Soulless Sammy! If that was intentional, well played, show. Anyway, Dean acts like a dick to the guy’s soul, too, then Tessa takes him away. Next up, a mildly overweight man dies of a heart attack, Dean chides him for having poor eating habits, quotes Kansas, and sends him on his way, too.
Third: they hit the hospital, so Dean can administer the touch of death to a 12 year-old girl. Dean, naturally, refuses. The camera makes a big deal of closing up on the nurse’s nametag to make sure we all know where this is going. I’m kind of confused how they can even move forward now because Dean’s broken the terms of the deal. He didn’t discharge his duties. Whatever. The nurse goes and gets into an accident because she’s not in the heart surgery she should be in due to the 12 year-old’s miraculous recovery, so Dean has to death-touch the nurse. Tessa reaps her and takes Dean back to the 12 year-old’s room, trying to get Dean to understand that death and chaos will be her only constant because her continued existence throws off the natural order of things. Dean, however, is too busy watching Nurse Jolene’s husband stumble out of the conveniently located bar across the street, dead drunk, and get into his car. Dean zaps himself into the car, but, of course, the guy can’t hear Dean’s repeated pleas not to drive drunk. Finally, Dean pulls off the ring and yanks the wheel, crashing into a parked car instead of a bus full of people. The guy lives. Dean steps out of the car and starts yelling for Tessa. When she doesn’t respond, he puts the ring back on just as the widower comes to, and Dean’s transported back to the hospital. He gives the little girl the death-touch and agrees with her that the natural order of things sucks.
Patricide: Scars a Soul for Life
While Dean’s off reaping, Soulless Sammy spelled Balthazar into the hizzeh. Sam wants a favour: a spell or a weapon that can keep a soul out. Balthazar agrees since 1) Dean sucks and 2) Sam’s awesome. Seriously: he wants to piss of Dean, and Sam is surely someone to have in your debt. Sam needs to do something to scar his vessel, so, essentially, his soul won’t fit back in; patricide is the recommended method. Sam quite reasonably points out that Sucky John did everyone the favour of dying years earlier (and right in front of poor Sam!), but Balthazar clarifies that the link need not be biological. Fuck, you had better not kill Bobby, Soulless Sammy, or that will be it.
Bobby’s. Sam and Bobby sit down to some beers and cards, and, if not for all the patricide, I bet that would be fun. Sam waits for Bobby to rummage in the fridge to try to knock him out, but it turns out that Bobby keeps a cudgel in his cheese drawer. He hits Sam first. Bobby grabs his also conveniently located rope, but Sam’s already gone. Bobby locks himself in the front hall closet while Sam busies himself with breaking it down with an axe, but the joke’s on Sam: Bobby’s installed a trap door. Down in the basement, complete with reinforced steel door, Soulless Sammy settles down on the steps to explain to Bobby why this has got to stop: his soul will surely ruin him, and Dean cannot see that. Dean doesn’t care about Soulless Sammy, only Little Sammy down in the box. Aw, that’s true. Sam then escapes out a hatch in Bobby’s panic room. Bobby stalks him through yard only to get knocked out.
When Bobby comes to, he’s lashed to a chair over a sigil. Bobby honestly tells Sam that while he may not be feeling it at this exact moment, “I’ve been like a father to you,” and that’s just poor writing. Are you really picking up that many viewers after the 40 minute mark? ANYway, Dean shows up just in time to grab Sam’s arm before he slams his knife into Bobby. Dean lays Sam out with one punch unlike when he couldn’t accomplish the same with 28 punches of ANGER a few weeks back.
He jests at scars
Sam’s all tied up (but with a pillow!) in the panic room. Dean shoots him a look of absolute loathing through the eye hole while Sam returns the look with one that’s not so much plaintive as “we both know you can’t keep me down here forever.” Dean complains to Bobby that, indeed, he can’t just drag Soulless Sammy down there every time Sam tries to go off book and kill someone. Bobby doesn’t really have an answer for that, but it doesn’t matter. Death’s upstairs with a bacon dog and a beer for Dean. Death has poured his beer into a clear plastic cup, and he’s just the best. Dean’s like, “Stop teasing me: we both know I lost a rigged game.” Death mildly wonders if Dean would just death-touch the girl from the get-go if he had it to do over again, and Dean says that he would. Death is surprised to learn that. He’s annoyed that Dean has upset the natural order of things so many times, doing a jig over the line that separates life from death, but he’s also getting at some bigger, more important truth. He’s not sure what it is, or what the deal is with trading souls, but he wants Dean on the case, so he’s going to give him Sam.
Dean runs downstairs and gets Bobby to open the panic room door. Soulless Sammy’s already screaming at Death to keep away from him, but it’s of no use. Death is sweet when he promises to build the wall in Sam’s mind as best as he can. Sam, for his part, should try not to pick at the scar. Death produces Sam’s glowing light of a soul from his leather case and gets to reinstalling it while Sam’s howls of pain carry us into the mid-season break.
In other news:
Next time year: “Like a Virgin.” On Friday, January 28th, something about virgins. And Castiel since he is one.
|Last Updated on Monday, 13 December 2010 11:53|