Robert Falconer/The CW
March 08, 2018 at 10:26 PM EST


TV Show
Sci-fi, Drama
run date
Jensen Ackles, Jared Padalecki, Misha Collins
The CW
We gave it a B

Here’s the thing about this episode: I’m pretty sure it’s one that I’m going to like a lot more the second time I see it. That’s not to say that I didn’t like it. There was a lot I liked about it, including the fact that the show had fun with creating an old-school gangster film. But I think because I wasn’t expecting that, it took me a moment to get into it. And I do think this episode was missing a little Sam and Dean. The other characters were fun and were obviously crucial for the world of the week, if you will, but there were far too many new faces and names for me to attempt to keep track of them all.

With that, let’s get into it: We start in Malta, where someone steals a skull from the Holy Sisters of Malta monastery. That skull will become a big part of the episode when the Winchesters begin their journey to find one of the four ingredients they need to do the spell that will get them to the Apocalypse World. With Castiel off trying to find fruit from the Tree of Life in Syria, Sam and Dean are on the hunt for the blood of a most holy man, which Sam believes translates to “the blood of a saint.” After doing a bit of research — Sam’s favorite hobby — he locates a dealer of ancient religious relics. Her name is Margaret Astor, and she’s straight out of another time (thus kicking off the episode’s old-timey film noir vibes).

The brothers head to San Francisco — I admit it felt weird not to have them in or around Middle America — where they sit down with Margaret. And let’s just say that she likes her some Sam. And for once, Sam flirts back! But only because he’s being strategic. Margaret tells them that she knows someone who might have the blood they need, and she’s willing to make the introduction if it means Sam will be in her bed debt. They agree, and that leads them to Seattle to meet Richard Greenstreet, a British man with a love of donuts.

Greenstreet claims that he has the blood of a saint, but he will only give it to the boys if they track down the skull that was stolen in Malta. (I told you it would tie in.) Greenstreet believes that some mob boss named Scarpati — spelling? — stole the skull, and if the boys get it for him, they can trade it for the blood. Trading a dead guy’s skull for another dead guy’s blood…welcome to Supernatural.

The boys make a quick coffee stop after their meeting for a brief interaction that remains one of my favorite moments of the episode…

Dean: “What you reading?”
Attractive woman: “A book on the supernatural.”
Dean: “So you’re into the supernatural?”
Attractive woman: “I am.”
Dean: “I should sit down.”

But sadly, Dean doesn’t get the chance: Sam has found a lead.

The boys head to a nearby hotel where they believe the skull thief is staying. Only, by the time they arrive, the thief is dead and his room has been ransacked. And while the boys are still standing over the thief’s dead body, a guy who’s clearly only posing as a cop enters to look around. He finds nothing and eventually leaves, leaving Sam and Dean to head back to the car, where a few of Scarpati’s men are waiting to take them to meet their boss. (And they want to drive Baby.)

After Dean reluctantly hands over the keys to the Impala, the boys are taken to Scarpati’s house, where the evil mob boss sits behind a desk listening to opera music and petting his cat. (I do love how the show leans into these stereotypes.) Scarpati wants to make a deal: Considering that it was his thief who was killed, he wants Sam and Dean to find the skull and deliver it to him. In exchange, he will give them enough money to buy the blood of the saint from Greenstreet. Oh, and also he won’t kill Dean for mouthing off. That seems fair, right?

So suddenly, Sam and Dean have gone from working for a scoundrel to working for a mob boss. Either way, they head back to the hotel to to see what they can find at the crime scene. What do they find, you ask? Well, Sam gets his hands on a piece of paper with some numbers on it…and then he gets knocked out from behind. That’s twice in two weeks, dude. Watch your back! (Next: A mobster showdown)

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