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I'm mixing it up this week.  After going through all the goodness of "Slash Fiction," I realized that a mere review could not do it justice.  Not by a long shot.  So I've decided to dust off my mad recapping skills and pour through this one bit by bit.  There's so much to comment on!
 
For those that aren't familiar with my recaps of the past, they're long.  Freaking long.  They're worth the read though for they find things in scenes you never noticed before.  Heck, going through stuff for this recap brought on whole new discoveries.  So, I suggest you settle into someplace comfy, grab a cup of coffee or hot cocoa, and enjoy.  If you really don't want a detailed commentary, I at least throw in my two cents at the end about what I think of the entire Sam and Dean drama.  So feel free to skip to that part if interested.  But then you'll miss out on the big continuity error and the discovery of bunk beds!  Among other things.  
 
Before I start with a single frame, some technical notes.  The director is the always entertaining John Showalter.  I love doing screencaps for John's episodes because he gives me so much goodness to capture.  You'll see plenty of what I mean in the recap.  On the writing side is Robbie Thompson, who submits an incredible first time script for this show at a time when a strong script was needed.  Robbie Thompson has been listed in the credits through the entire season as the new Executive Story Editor, which is a title often given to new writers on the team.  This makes me assume he's part of the Supernatural writing team this year and will be giving us more.  After this amazing episode, I hope so.  

Okay, with the formalities out of the way, let the recap begin!  THEN, Leviathan and the Amy drama.  Anyone who reads my reviews knows how outraged I am about the whole Amy thing.  The Leviathan though, I'm ready.  They're freaking cool.  Oh, and there's Sheriff Jody Mills.  This is gonna be sweet.  
 
Now.  This scene is perfect for anyone who hasn't read any episode summaries or hasn't seen a single promo.  I was not one of those people, but hey, I can always pretend.  Sam and Dean walk into the First Bank of Jericho.  Judging by their serious nature, they're up to something.  I think Sam asking if he's sure about this and Dean saying "trust me" gives me that impression.  


 
Jericho is fitting for two reasons.  First, its the city where Sam and Dean's first case was.  Also, the writer of this episode, Robbie Thompson, wrote for Jericho.  See, it all comes full circle.  Okay, maybe not.  
 
Dean goes up to the cashier while Sam hangs by the door.  Dean naturally charms the pants off the gal with a smile and a pretty dress compliment, hoping to get change for a $100 bill.  You know how impossible that is these days?  I'm buying it.  While he's doing all that he signals Sam, who slyly locks the door.  That's Dean's cue to pull a gun on the unknowing teller, and what do you know, Sam and Dean have automatic weapons.  Since when have they ever used automatic weapons?  There's your first clue right there you lucky unspoiled fans.  


 
Dean fires in the air, Sam fires in the air, and its a robbery.  Hey, there's the Butch and Sundance comparison I've been looking for!  The good old fashioned bank robbery.  "Your money's insured, so no heroes okay?"  Yeah, Butch and Sundance couldn't make that assurance in the old west.  Suddenly Sam and Dean are rounding everyone up in the vault.  Um, why would they doing that?  These people are sitting ducks as Sam and Dean stand in the doorway.  This doesn't look like Butch and Sundance.  The people are terrified, Sam asks if Dean's ready and he is.  They look in the security camera and...OPEN FIRE???  This isn't Sam and Dean!  They massacre everyone and look like they're enjoying it.  That's not Butch and Sundance either.  We're onto Bonnie and Clyde now.  They finish, do their customary shrugs, and move on.  Um, yeah, something isn't right here.  


 
I very quickly realize I have to pretend I'm watching Pulp Fiction or Kill Bill, where I overlook the horrific violence and tragic loss of life.  If I think about it, it'll ruin my enjoyment of the story.  Heck, I'll curl into a hysterical ball and start asking "why?"  So yeah, it's better this way.  "It's only a TV show, it's only a TV show..."
 
Splat.  This is my first recap of the season, so I haven't commented on the black splat credits.  A little too monochrome for my tastes, but hey, it works.  
 
It's Rufus' cabin!  This time, it's a side view.  I notice the really nice tranquil screen porch.  I hope that when Sam and Dean were recovering during that 3 weeks after the Leviathan attack that they had plenty of beers on the screen porch.  That's my idea of an idyllic afternoon.  


 
Chet the Leviathan is chained up in the basement.  Bobby has his arsenal of potions and other things there and has a needle of something new to try.  "Fruit of the Poison Tree."  "Isn't that just a legal expression?"  "You're gonna wish it was."  Sorry, but that reference flew right by me like a streaking bird.  Nope, doesn't bother Chet one bit.  "Oakey, similar finish to holy water, not at bitter as rock salt."  Well at least Chet has a keen palate.  He's not a total savage.  


 
Sam and Dean casually come down the stairs.  "Why if it isn't my two favorite meatsicles," Chet says.  He has a sense of humor too!  He's not all bad, except for the eating people thing.  I guess nothing is working.  "Greatest hits didn't do the trick," Bobby says, "I'm down to B-sides and deep cuts."  Hee, a DJ metaphor.  There's a couple of music references in this ep.  Dean reminds us that the spell that Don the Witch put on Chet last week only lasts a few days.  They don't have much time.  Really?  I'd use a clever Captain Obvious quip here, but that's so overdone anymore.  
 
"We're going to have to drop a car on him to stop him."  Chet with delight tells them that Edgar walked away from that.  So like everything else, a car just slows them down.  Chet also mentions Edgar's a little pissed, but anyone watching the last few eps already knows that.  In fairness though, Sam and Dean did have a few distracting issues after that encounter.  


 
Dean decides to give his way a try and takes a seat next to Chet.  "Huddle over coach?"   You know Chet, that cocky attitude one day is going to get you a mess of trouble.  Actually, tomorrow I believe.  Dean wants to know how he found them.  Chet can't wait to share that answer.  "It was easy.  I used pattern recognition software and basic heuristic algorithm to track your known aliases."  As a technical person, that's what I would have done.  Dean doesn't know what to say, but Bobby does.  "Great, just what we need, a MENSA monster."  They are pretty smart, aren't they?  In fairness though, rock star aliases aren't hard to track.  


 
Sam asks the question that I already believed, but the fandom needed to hear it.  How does he know their aliases?  The dude in the trenchcoat of course.  "When we were nestled in at camp Cass and got the full download."  See everyone, there!  No more debate.  The most obvious answer was the right one.  Bobby wants to know why he's spilling state secrets.  Haven't you figure out these are really arrogant sons of bitches by now?  Chet's answer is better.  "Cause I'm not scared of you.  You can't stop me.  You can't stop any of us.  We can't be killed you stupid little chew toys."  Well geez, don't sugarcoat it.  Chet's not done though, for he can't wait to rub in that he's the least of their worries.  Guess who hasn't watched the news yet today?


 
The news tells about two men that until today were presumed dead massacred a bunch of people in California.  This I don't get.  How in the world are they watching this on a TV with rabbit ears?  I assume the rabbit ears are for decoration, because there's no such thing as analog signals anymore.  It's all digital, even in Montana.  The signal has to be coming from some sort of convertor box in the back.  Either that or angels are still time warping TV signals.  


 
Anyway, Sam, Dean, and Bobby watch the footage of them coldly killing innocents, and they're a bit pissed.  Sam doesn't understand how, but Chet is still with the easy answers and awesome eavesdropping skills I might add.  "It was the hair!  Not too hard to lift some hair out of a motel shower drain guys!"  Dean's surprised you can do that.  Hmm, you don't know your basic cloning research, do you Dean?  He wonders what the plan is, but Sam can see it.  To squeeze them, to make them the most wanted men in America.  Very good Sammy.  I should note how much I love the angles used here to show Sam and Dean listening to Chet shouting from downstairs.  Very cool.  



 
Dean is ready to go after these creatures himself, taking this a bit personally.  Bobby tries to talk common sense since they really don't know how to fight back, but both Sam and Dean are thinking with their hearts instead of their heads.  Young kids just won't listen these days.  Chet is just sitting in the basement laughing.  Bobby gives them the address for Frank Deveraux, a guy who he saved in Port Huron.  He's also a jackass and a lunatic.  In the meantime, Bobby will keep working on Chet.  This plan has failure written all over it, but then again they all do.

Comments  

chris
# chris 2011-11-03 00:21
Thanks!
trackerem
# trackerem 2011-11-03 00:26
enjoyed it alice! it was like i relived the ep which i adored!! agree especially with the ending, it was mature of them, sam to walk away & dean to let him. i also think that dean will be hiding behind trees!
Melanie
# Melanie 2011-11-03 01:09
Nice recap, Alice.

'Honeybunny' is from Pulp Fiction in the diner scene - I seriously LOL'd
rmoats8621
# rmoats8621 2011-11-03 05:07
Nice job, Alice. I loved this episode and I have to admit that I used to love Air Supply when I was a teenager in the late 70's, early 80's. They had great slow dancing songs! So, I found myself lipsyching right along with Dean.

BTW - I liked how Dean and Sam have handled this new rip in their relationship. This is a more mature response than has been present in the past. This time, Sam left to cool off and Dean let him go. No fuss and no fists thrown. And I agree, Dean is probably watching him from the trees and bushes. I, too, saw the clips from this weeks coming episode and all I can say is about time! I hope they don't leave it so limited. This has been a long time coming and it is something that needs to be addressed finally once and for all. Then, the show needs to move on and drop this issue and not drag it through the mud. :D
Geordiegirl1967
# Geordiegirl1967 2011-11-03 06:56
Alice - Re whether Robbie Thompson is part of the writing team, Jim Michaels tweeted the other day "Robbie Thompson has written episode #712 being directed by Phil Sgriccia! We are currently prepping this script!"

So looks like the answer is that he is part of the team. I am pleased about that as I thought the writing on this ep was great (last scene excepted).
Sylvie
# Sylvie 2011-11-03 09:18
Thanks so much for the recap, I miss them, though I know how much work you put into them. Great episode, great writer, great director, great actors. Most definitely an A.
trinaaron
# trinaaron 2011-11-03 10:13
I loved this episode. I was on such a Supernatural high after the first two episodes of the season...and then 3-6 happened. I have since come to appreciate The Girl Next Door a liitle bit more, but do not like eps 4 and 5 at all. So I was jumping for joy after the end of this one that I flat out loved it. Can we keep Sheriff Mills as a regular? She would make a great addition to the team, and Bobby, Sam, and Dean could really benefit from her presence.
Gerry
# Gerry 2011-11-03 10:27
Lovely recap, Alice! The only place I have a different feel for is the end reveal. I think your take on the scene shows that the lie had a big pay off and that the three episode build up was worth it.

I think Dean not trusting Sam to be able to handle a difficult kill fits with what was happening at the time. He had just finished grounding Sam from SatanVision an ep earlier. I understood the lie, even though it was going to be hurtful for Sam in the long run.

I think the time we spent with Dean obviously suffering from lying to Sam and Sam trying to dig the secret out made Sam's hurt really believable when he finally did get the truth. And I knew why Dean looked actually relieved it had finally come out. It wouldn't have had near the impact if everything had come out immediately.

I'm really enjoying Sam and Dean renegotiating their relationship and I think they are showing growth. Dean will have to let go a bit with the "big brother saving Sam" and Sam will have to learn not to walk away when he's upset. I'm loving this plot line.
Bevie
# Bevie 2011-11-03 11:25
No Alice. I had the best Pontiac Acadian hatchback (silver too). Lasted me for over 20 years and cost me hardly anything to run except for gas. Was still going strong when I traded it in 2 years ago for a new car. In fact, I bought it in 1988 second hand and it took me 5 years to pay it off.

Best car I ever had so far. (My third car)

Must have been my lucky day on the used car lot. :P
trinaaron
# trinaaron 2011-11-03 12:59
My first car was a chevette (baby blue). I was the car's third driver (it went through the family as a handed down car). That was twenty years ago and the car only recently had to be finally retired after a crash. My guess is that the cars were just so simple without any bells and whistles that there just wasn't a whole lot to break.
maggie
# maggie 2011-11-03 15:44
Hi Alice thanks for your recap, I love them!!

The scariest scene I've seen in Supernatural is the leviathans killing the people like that.

I can't believe that Sam and Dean were walking around in the city seeing the brutality the leviathans used to kill the civilians, and Sam and Dean didn't even change their clothes or used mustache or something!! :)

Oh! and I loved the my little pony in the car, I was: hey is Cass !! (even it had the wings and all) :lol:

I don't know how the police didn't know Sam and Dean were still alive cause they supposedly died in season 3, but they have been arrested again in season 4,5 and 6 and as far as I know when the police take you to jail one of the 1st things the police do is take your fingerprints.....

And about the episode ending,
I honestly don't know if I'm on Dean's side or Sam's side. Sam is angry because Dean lied to him and because Dean killed his friend, Do you imagine if your brother kill your friend after you told him not to???. And on the other part Amy killed people because his son was sick what if later her son would get sick again?? she would kill again?, she said no but what if she would do it again??

And well Sam always deal with those situations like he always does, he just walks away, even soulless Sam walked away from Dean at the end of 6x10. I hope we can see how they reunite again next episode.
Pragmatic Dreamer
# Pragmatic Dreamer 2011-11-03 17:15
Hi Alice,

Thanks for the fun recap of this very entertaing episode. (Except for the massacre in the bank vault and the diner. They bother me, because they're so real and plausible. So, yes I was chanting "puppies and rainbows" too. In fact, I think was playing with our new kitten, and saying "It's only TV.. It's only TV)

I loved the witty, sharp writing that propelled the episode forward. And Dean + My Little Pony + Air Supply + Sam Bitchfaces!!! Brilliant!!

I appreciated the way the show actually had a bit of brightness to it, despite the grisly, brutal killings. (Puppies and unicorns.. Puppies and unicorns). Bob still had hope in a future where love and companionship are possible. If Sam & Dean knew that he believed in that possibility, maybe they could have a little faith too.

Also, any time Robert Browning's line "Ah, but that a man's reach should exceed his grasp, or what's a heaven for?" gets mentioned, it's a win for me.

And while we're on the subject of literature, you can find some examples of literary parallels between Supernatural and SE Hinton's work, in my article "The Winchesters: The Outsiders Who Are Just Ordinary People".

I have a slightly different interpretation of Levi!Dean's speech to Sam. I think he was referring to both brothers when he says "you're strong, uninhibited, and smart enough, believe it or not", because he goes on to say they're too busy taking care of each other.

I liked Crazy Government Conspiracist Frank. I think maybe he's Ronald Resnick's uncle? I know Sam & Dean are totally capable of making their own ID's and using disposable cellphones (they did that in Fresh Blood, to evade Gordon), but I think he was introduced as a possible recurring character, and also as a tech genius, something the brothers are not. They're capable, but not computer wizards. I could be wrong but I got the sense he could manipulate current technology, maybe even make certain facts about the Winchesters disappear from the internet. Just a thought.

As well, I was surprised by Dick Roman (I laughed out loud at the name)and his haughty, hateful attitude with Crowley. I'm wondering if Leviathans and demons have some bad history between them. It also makes me think of God!Cas and his comment to Crowley in the delightfully decrepit trailer in MTNB, when he talks about not wanting to let Michael out of the cage. Conspiracy theorist that I am, I got to pondering whether Michael did more than slay demons and help Daddy banish little brother Lucifer to the Pit. Maybe he was the Archangel who exiled the Leviathan to the Purgatory in the first place. Maybe he even created it? That theory provides resolution to many of the still-dangling Dean/Michael threads. (Oh, how they beg to be explained.)

Of course, resolution, leads me to the end scene... I do think the brothers were fighting in a more equal, mature way. Although it might have been a fresh take if Sam had slugged Dean, and really aired the problem, right then and there.

I agree that Sam is upset that Amy is dead, but more wounded by the fact that Dean said he trusted him and then went and killed her anyway, and then lied to him. The lie and the lack of trust are crushing for Sam right now, as he tries to rebuild his sanity. He needs to believe that Dean believes in him. Now, he's going to question that. That can't be good. He needs that Stone #1, so Dean has some work to do in the "foundation repair business."

Although in fairness to Dean, I don't think he was in a completely sane state of mind when he killed Amy. He was grieving Cas, and still dealing with the fact Sam couldn't tell the difference between RealDean and LuciDean and was fired at by his own brother. I'm not sure Dean even totally understands why he killed Amy and that's going to make it harder to explain or rationalize it to Sam. The show is full of minor monsters who get ganked, and bigtime baddies who walk. Amy is yet another shade of grey in this monochrome.

But, I'm sure that part of the reason Dean lied to Sam was because he was worried about what would happen when Sam found out. I agree that it's manufactured drama, but I hope the outcome is that they actually get past it, and realize you can be right and wrong at the same time. And if it turns out that Kitsune can kill Leviathan, that will be really weak storytelling!

Tied to that, I think LeviDean only told part of the truth when he said RealDean thinks Sam is off his game. Dean is concerned about how/if Sam can really cope with his Hellucinations. He's worried about that in terms of how it affects the safety of both brothers. I don't think it's as negative a sentiment as LeviDean painted it. He manipulated the truth, much like a demon. I do think JA did a great job with him. I think we need a few more EvilDean characters. They're spicy and sassy and fun!

My one complaint, and big concern is the description of Sam and Satanvision all the time. My fear is that they're making him so damaged it strains credulity on how he's functioning. And if he is still functioning relatively normally, given that much psychic destruction, he's probably superhuman. And that takes away the need for a brother and friends he can lean on, and get the much-needed support from. It takes away that Ordinary People aspect which I find so appealing.

Thanks Alice,

The very long-winded Pragmatic Dreamer
CitizenKane2
# CitizenKane2 2011-11-03 22:17
I enjoyed this very detailed preview - and Pragmatic Dreamer's (slightly less lengthy :P) post :)
Pragmatic Dreamer
# Pragmatic Dreamer 2011-11-03 22:28
Oops. As Dean would say, "Awkward!". I think I got on a roll, and forgot to stop. Either that, or I just didn't want to make dinner!

Smiling, with some chagrin,

Pragmatic Dreamer
MisterGlass
# MisterGlass 2011-11-03 22:27
Thanks for the write up!

No doubt, this was a good one. So many references to the past - you caught so many more than I did - and genuine comedy. I laughed like crazy at Dean and Sam in that horrid little car, with that terrible song, and the innocent and intimidating my little pony. Poor Baby, she's been mistreated enough already without being replaced by an Acadian.

I loved seeing Sheriff Jodie back, and while her civilian manner was different, much more relaxed and friendly, it rounds out her character, and does not to detract from her ability to kick ass in later episodes. She's the best female character to debut on the show since Ellen. I have liked her interactions with Bobby in the past, and this was no disappointment. They just go well together.

I wonder when Sam and Dean last used a household cleaner? If ever. Go Jodie.

Jim Beaver impressed me this episode. He had a much more layered plot this time, having to deal with a bit of romance and a gruesome science project who literally got in his head. And when that happened, Bobby visibly calmed and locked down, then started talking about Browning. His excited kissing of Jodie was perfect, and the quiet, reserved but still warm parting was too.

This episode had the most Leviathans so far, and it was good to see that each had different characteristics . Leviathan!Sam and Leviathan!Dean' s restaurant conversation was a highlight. The nods to Pulp Fiction's Pumpkin and Honey Bunny were fun and chilling.

Crowley's appearance in the limo was well played. Crowley conducted himself with so much more diffidence than he does with Sam and Dean and Bobby. He dropped the snark, brought a gift, and tried to be serious and cordial. I was reminded that he's "in sales". He's also a shameless opportunist, and he doesn't close doors if he can avoid it. I can easily see another partnership; their last one was only six episodes ago.

I loved that Leviathan!Dean revealed the grand Amy secret, much as I disliked the way the secret has been obsessed over. I expected it, but it sold very well.

I have to admit to an eye roll when Sam walked off at the end. He's been walking off since Scarecrow. No, since Stanford, if I'm thinking about it. But I agree, given his fragile mental state, this could lead to more pronounced recurrence of hallucinations, and I would not turn down the opportunity to see Lucifer again.

At the same time, I don't want him to have to crawl back. Neither brother is 100% in the right on this, and I'd like them to both see that, and on some level they do. I was waiting for Sam to ask if Dean killed her son. Letting the kid go may be a level of mitigation for Sam.

Hoping for more like this!
Birgit Säberg
# Birgit Säberg 2011-11-04 06:33
Thanks Alice!

Love your recaps. :D

And this was a great ep, up along with ep 1 &2. Didn't like tGND and DYL. Liked SUdP a little more.

And I have been re-watching 6.22-7.02 about once a week. Those three ep's are "one" if you know what I mean?

Love this show! :P

Masja,
Sweden
BagginsDVM
# BagginsDVM 2011-11-04 19:06
Thanks, Alice!! Great recap. I could see the Pontiac emblem but couldn't remember the Pontiac equivalent of the chevette.

This episode will definitely go in my favorites list. I loved all that we learned about the guys, including Bobby, through the perceptions of the Leviathans impersonating them. Knowing that Bobby still has hope gave me hope for the guys' future.
Junkerin
# Junkerin 2011-11-08 04:26
I thought that Jody figured out where Bobby was, because she knew about the connections Bobby and Rufus had. Cas never met Rufus so the leviatans don´t know about them.
Great recap. Almost as good as watching.