I really appreciated the fact that Supernatural delivered a solid, classic episode straight from the season one playbook of tricks last night. There were fantastic one-liners, a little drama, a little sadness, a deceivingly simple case that took a turn for the twisted, a brotherly heart-to-heart (two, actually!), and Dean called the Impala his “baby.” If I had to guess (and I do because I have yet to succeed in my quest to locate and bug the Supernatural writers’ lair) I would say that we were served up this classic formula as preparation for next week’s highly meta episode. And I appreciate their consideration. This was just the episode we needed right now, a taste of something familiar and comforting. Let’s take a closer look:
We picked up where I had shat myself last week, er, I mean, where we left off last week with Sam seizing on the floor after scratching his mental wall a little too intensely. LEAVE THE WALL ALONE, SAM! But chicken pox this wall is not. Dean can’t just stick kitchen mittens on Sam to prevent him from scratching away. (Although, that would be pretty hilarious to see.) Sam has to put the past behind him or possibly suffer what will most certainly be the end of his life — literally or figuratively. And, of course, the brothers fall on opposite sides of this argument — but we could have expected this struggle. It’s in the brothers’ DNA to love the other more than he loves himself. It will (and has been) their downfall. I’m just not looking forward to seeing it. (LIES. I AM! That’s the whole point, no?)
Anyway, Sam woke up feeling like he’d been knocked out for a week and “hit by a planet,” which is oddly one of the only outlandish statements one of them could make that has not actually happened to them. Dr. Dean (yum…) arrived with a cure: a cup of joe, some grub, some mysterious pills, and a case/distraction. Sam took three of the four, rejecting Dr. Dean’s mystery meds, but I predict this isn’t the last we’ve seen of them. I’m really curious what the heck they were.
One thing’s clear though, Dr. Dean is definitely not a psychologist. When talking with Sam about the “big, fat face-full of hell” he’d just gotten, he suggested to Sam that he ignore the wrongdoings of his soul-less year and never scratch that wall again. Instead, he said, Sam should “shove [the guilt] down and let it come out in spurts of violence and alcoholism.” (As Sam said, yeah, that sounds really healthy.) Sam wasn’t happy with Dean’s insistence that they do things his way but said the matter was closed…for now.
Over in Jersey, the boys jumped on the case of a murdered janitor who had been found in a locked room but found themselves stumped. And when a very similar murder occurred two towns over later on, they were at a total loss about the apparently traveling ghost they had on their hands.
Just as they were about to delve into the case, Sam finally insisted that Dean answer his incessantly ringing phone, which Dean had been ignoring because he didn’t want to talk to Lisa. But once he answered, he found out that it was actually pre-teen Ben on the other side, who had called because Lisa was afflicted with a mysterious ailment that prevented her from coming to the phone. Dean almost didn’t go, but Sam insisted he go check it out and practically shoved him into the car.
Admittedly, part of me thought Sam was just trying to get rid of Dean so he could do some wall scratchin’. False. Shame on me; that’s something soul-less Sam would have done. Not sweet, souled Sam. The Sam who furrows his brow in confusion and talks in his throaty, soft voice when he wants to tug at our heartstrings. No, that Sam stayed behind to worked the case. I’m sorry I doubted you, Sammy.
NEXT: Dr. Dean learns about Dr. Matt