When it became obvious that Sam would set out on a solo adventure in this week’s Supernatural, I was hoping the time apart from Dean would be for something more than a case of the week. And I was not disappointed.
As Sam set off to look into a case about a mysterious rage hitting the residents of a small town, Dean stayed back to chase down leads on Abaddon’s whereabouts. Or so he said. Much of Dean’s booze-soaked staycation from hunting was spent working through apprehensions about what he’d have to do once Abaddon was found. After his first experience with the First Blade last week, in which we saw Cain-marked Dean approach the borders of Hulk town, Dean was dragging his feet a bit in his quest to find the ginger demon. He never said all of this, of course, because he’s Dean. According to Dean, Dean’s always fine. But as Crowley would say, bollocks.
Speaking of Crowley, he joined Dean at the bar for a little inappropriate banter, some honest talk “just between us girls” and a test. In a quest to find out whether or not Dean was willing to save his life, Crowley planted one of his demons in the bar and made said demon pretend to be a hunter on a quest to kill Crowley. When Dean stepped up to convince the fake hunter to walk away from the battle that he would surely lose — thus, saving Crowley — Crowley knew Dean was “ready” for the challenge before him.
Elsewhere, Sam worked his butt off on the case of the week that actually turned out to be much more than that. While on the trail, Sam ran into a former nun who back in 1958 had an encounter with Henry Winchester and his partner Josie (the woman who provided the meat suit that Abaddon still uses today). Via a series of flashbacks, not only did Sam learn crucial information about the case he was working but we learned that Josie sacrificed herself to save Henry. (Abaddon was going to take Henry’s body as a host to infiltrate the Men of Letters but Josie loved Henry so offered herself up.) I really enjoyed this backstory, and despite the flashbacks taking away from the present-day action, I honestly didn’t notice until I re-watched the episode.
In the end, using the former nun’s story, Sam concluded that the rage-filled residents were simply reacting to being soulless. (Sam’s experience in this area was noted and valuable.) Abaddon, it turned out, had been having her minions steals souls through a local convent and intended to use these souls to make loyal demon followers. Though Sam was able to stop this particular incident and return the souls to their proper owners, he remain concerned about the “factories” that Minion Nun mentioned before he killed her. (P.S – ALWAYS keep a exorcism audio file on your phone.) So upon returning to the bunker, he had a renewed sense of purpose, and admitted to Dean that he was right to keep the blinders on in his search for Abaddon. That’s the No. 1 priority, Sam told Dean.
Dean had seemed to put on a brave face when he was confronted by Crowley earlier — he even claimed he didn’t have time for fear even if that meant grave “consequences” down the line — but it was hard for me to read his reaction to Sam’s information. My take? The news about the souls was just added pressure when that was the last thing he needed. If the weight of the world wasn’t already on Dean’s shoulders, it certainly is now. And that’s tough to deal with. I’m open to counter opinions.
Sam: A handful of people have started to act out, too.
Dean: Act out, how?
Sam: Same as the woman — aggressive, violent, impulsive…
Dean: It sounds like you’re at a Gold’s Gym.
“You’re lying to Sam like he’s your wife which kind of makes me your mistress.” — Crowley
“Unless Abaddon likes 10 cent wings, stale beer and the clap, I doubt she’s here.” — Crowley
“Of course he saved me, we’re besties.” — Crowley
“What you call obsessed, I call doing my job.”
Sam Winchester — using that Stanford education! (By the way, we should all thank first-time director Misha Collins for a visual gem of an episode. And advance thanks to next week’s director for this.)