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.
Okay, you're wanted criminals, your brutality is all over CNN and cable news, and you think that pulling into a gas station isn't going to get you recognized? Do you know how bored clerks get? They like watching sensationalized stories about brutal killers on CNN. Sam and Dean do it anyway because they're still not getting the full grasp of this situation. Haven't you guys been on the run from the law before? Anyway, Dean fills up while Sam goes inside to get Dean's favorite junk food. It rhymes with "sing songs." What, no pie? No, these are bing bongs, which are cupcakes. Oh Dean, you child.
Sam asks if they have protein bars, and the wide open look of his face on that tall frame is more than enough for the clerk to realize who he is. The clerk cleverly tells him it's in the back and to give him a second. Sam looks behind the counter while the guy is gone and sees the news report of them killing innocents. Then he sees the clerk on the cell phone. Time to leave! What, you don't even grab the food? If it was Dean, he would have grabbed the food. Sam calmly walks outside and tells Dean he's been made. Time to leave. At least they didn't pay for the gas. Their fugitive reputation is cemented. I could see the terrified clerk's testimonial on CNN right now. "They, they came into the store, and they, they...DIDN'T PAY FOR THE GAS!" He busts into tears, the hosts behind the desk feign shock over this unspeakable horror. Cable news is so f-ed up these days.
In the meantime, we meet the new FBI tools handling the case. Morris and Valente. They are at the Manitoc Savings and Loan. They have to leave though because Sam and Dean were spotted at a gas station a thousand miles from there. The two theories are they flew or took a batmobile. Both good, but I guess evil clones just isn't on the board right now. Man this episode is moving along quickly. It's hard to keep track!
The Impala pulls up to a dark property at night. This must be Frank's house. Lovely fellow. Wouldn't it be nice if for once they got to pull up to a luxury beach house? Nah, that would be too freaky. They enter the dark property without guns drawn? Uh, you're entering someone's remote house at night that didn't answer your knock and you're not expecting trouble? Yeah, they enter the living room, a guy turns on the light and there a older dude in glasses pointing a semi-automatic at them. He smiles. "Well, well, spider caught some flies." Oh wow, another nut job. Go figure!
Sam and Dean aren't exactly sure why this guy has a gun on them. Uh, you enter someone's remote house at night and...never mind. Frank suddenly recognizes them. "Well I'll be darned, psycho Butch and Sundance." See, Frank saw the parallel too! He tells them they're on CNN right now. Sam tells him it's not them, but Frank knows that. "Not unless you have a teleporter." Then Frank gets a bit paranoid and serious, waving the gun at them more. "Do you have a teleporter?" Oh, I love this guy. The hubby has a cousin who's a government conspiracist like this. He's a barrel full of laughs at a party without realizing it.
Sam and Dean confirm with hands still raised, no teleporter. Too bad, I know there isn't much time in these eps, but it would have been great if they played along and offered to show him it? Frank wants to know who sent them, "NSA, the Feeb (FBI perhaps?), March of Dimes?" He's really bitter about the March of Dimes thing. Okay, not playing with a full deck. Dean answers "Bobby Singer" and that really makes Frank mad. Oh, they're dying. Sam stammers about owing Bobby from Port Huron, and Frank is now all whiny. He doesn't get to kill anyone. "Guy saves you live one time, what, and you owe him the rest of yours." "That's usually how it works, yeah," Dean answers. Frank puts the gun down in disgust.
Frank gets to work on shredding their fake credit cards and IDs while dismissing the idea of "magic hooey." "The truth is the government has been cloning people for years. I guess it was your turn in the barrel." Bwah! I do love it when clever writers run with colorful characters. Sam tries to explain what happened but Dean stops him. "Forget it, he's rolling." Frank watches the footage of the Leviathan!Sam and Dean's killing spree. "Yours have been Busy Beavers. #2 on the FBI Most Wanted List. Quickest climb up the chart since Donna Summer." Number 2? How many innocents to you have to butcher to become #1? Even Donna Summer hit number 1 and only a few people died from it. (I kid, I kid).
Sam asks for suggestions. "Cuba's nice this time of year." I would have said Bolivia! That would have been the perfect Butch and Sundance parallel. Dean makes it clear they aren't hiding. "Is he always this stupid?" Frank asks Sam. "We've got to stick around and kick a couple asses," Dean explains, "so we need you to get us further off the grid, but keep us on the board." Frank turns on classical music while he's saying all this. At least he's a cultured lunatic. You picture old Sam and Dean like this someday? Oh, I often do wonder what would happen if they grew old ungracefully.
Frank has some suggestions, but they aren't gonna like it! He has to wipe all their old aliases. No more rock "shoutouts" for them. It's Tom and John Smith. I've always thought that was the smarter policy! Do you think the rock aliases are gone for good? No more fake credit cards either, only cash. He throws a couple of new cellphones at them. "Change your phones on a very frequent non-schedule schedule." They also need to stay clear of the 200 million cameras the government has everywhere. "200 million?" Dean asks actually buying that line. "Big brother, he has many eyeballs my friend. You see a place that looks like it can afford security you just ease on down the road."
This next part kills me! Hey, I'm a computer professional, damaging perfectly good equipments hurts. Frank pulls out Sam's laptop, confirming it's his. Frank smashes it to bits, shocking the crap out of both Sam and Dean. Frank then hands Sam a perfectly good one with a cheesy smile. Sam gives him an uncertain, "Thank you, I guess." Oh, it's not free. Frank wants $5,000 cash for it. "Unless you want to go comparison shop at the mall sweet cheeks. Say "Hi" to the cops for me." I'm rolling here! Sweet cheeks? What cheeks was he actually referring to?
Oh, but this is the best part of all! Frank is on a roll. He grabs his camera and then Dean, pushing Dean up against a backdrop on the wall. "Let's Blue Steel you up some new ids." Bwah! That's a shoutout to "Folsom Prison Blues" BTW. I'll try to point out some of the shoutouts, but I'm bound to miss several. He takes a stunned Dean's picture, and then Sam's. Their expressions are priceless! "Mr. and Mr. Smith." Oh, oh, where's my remote? Gotta pause, I'm laughing too hard.
Okay, I gotta stay focused, for this wild roller coaster ride is going back to Bobby and Chet. Bobby blows Chet away with the shotgun, Chet starts hollering like he's at a theme park. "Whew! Do it again! Come on, do it again!" An agitated Bobby just puts the gun down. Nothing is working. "Are you going to just touch me in the morning, and then walk away?" That's a shoutout to "Touch Me in The Morning," a hit for Diana Ross in 1973. So, we are to assume then that Robbie Thompson loves 1970's female R&B recording artists? That's the second shoutout in two scenes. I would have picked 80's hair bands myself.
Bobby is at wits end. He still maintains that if they can bleed black snot, they can die. Chet taunts him, making it clear he's going to really enjoy eating Bobby when the spell wears off. You know what I'd be doing? Going back to Don Stark and finding out how to cast that spell. That buys more time. When Chet promises to eat everyone Bobby ever said "Hello" to, Bobby loses it and picks up his sword. Off goes Chet's head in one awesome swipe. The head is shown on the floor oozing black. "Hot damn. Well that's something," Bobby says. Yeah, small breakthroughs are always rewarding.
Back to Sam and Dean, who's fresh ids are getting thrown in a cigar box. Dean is now Thomas Smith, Sam is John Smith. Hey, we've always said Sam is more like John. Frank hands Sam a map, marking all the towns their "stunt doubles" hit so they could see the pattern. Sam asks what that is. Frank has no idea. "Little tip from a pro. There is no such thing as a random series of robberies/murders by your evil twins. Have yourself some uppers and look at that some more." I love this guy! He gives Sam a sardonic "good luck" pat on the shoulder. Sam thanks him. "For what, sending you to your death? Your doubles want to be on candid camera, put you in the line of fire. I'd lay low cause I love life and it's infinite mysteries but you two want to be dumb, that's fine." I'm so using that line from now on in daily conversation. "I love life and it's infinite mysteries." Perfect sarcastic line to throw at someone at the coffee station when they ask through small talk, "How are you this morning?" "Living the dream" is getting to be so droll.
Oh no, Frank's about to hit a sore spot. "At least have the common sense to ditch your car." Dean does a double take, shocked over what he's just heard. "Your doublemints, they're using a car just like the one outside." Dean is devastated. Sam can only look at Dean through the corner of his eye, making sure that his brother isn't losing it. Oh, he's close.
Okay, here's a nitpick. The "USA Times Weekly" has the story of "Killer duo still at large." It shows all of Sam and Dean's targets. 1) Jericho, California. 2) Black Water Ridge, Colorado. 3) Lake Manitoc, Wisconsin, 4) Denver, Colorado. 5) Toledo, Ohio. We know they're hitting all of the locations from the beginning of season one in order, right? "Phantom Traveler" took place in Pennsylvania and Indianapolis, didn't it? Yes, I ended up pulling up "Phantom Traveler" (one of my personal favorite episodes) and watching it again. Oh, yeah, it was really rough. The only mention of Denver was that the guy who was possessed and crashed the first plane was on his way there. The flight that Sam and Dean were on, it left Indianapolis, and judging by the fact that everyone was coming from the same gate as takeoff at the end, it went back to Indianapolis. It was never disclosed where that plane was headed, so let's assume Denver. Bottom line though, they were never in Denver. Continuity Error!!!! Thank you, this kind of research is always so painful. :) BTW, here's a small blurb I put out about meeting the writer of "Phantom Traveler," Richard Hatem, at Comic Con and he telling me a little something about writing that episode. Just in case anyone is interested.
Anyhoo, Bobby is at the cabin and there's a knock on the door. He's surprised to see who's there through the peephole, and even runs his hand through his beard. Aww, he cares about his scruffy appearance in front of someone special. He opens the door and it's Sheriff Jody! He's stunned that she found him, but she is a cop after all. If she can find him though, why can't the Leviathan? Food for thought. She has drinks and food, and isn't too put off by one of the "bigmouths" being downstairs. I honestly thought she was a bigmouth herself. I was at first yelling at Bobby, "See if she bleeds red!" Lucky for him, she turned out to be legit.
Now, before we get to the cuteness that is Sheriff Jody and Bobby, a BIG reveal comes from this scene. Okay, maybe not that big, but as a fan I'm still tickled to see it. Look in the background when Sheriff Jody takes off her coat. BUNK BEDS!!! They've been slept in too. I raised this issue on Twitter and judging by the messy top bed and the neater bottom, we've presumed Dean got top bunk. TPTB, I will forgive anything in season seven that pisses me off if you show Sam and Dean sleeping in those bunk beds. Please???
Okay, back to Bobby and Jody. She's basically there to thank him for saving her. In her words, "Since they were out of "Thanks for saving me from liver eating surgeons' cards at the store." I like her Bobby. She tries to get Bobby to talk, maybe share what it's like losing his house, but Bobby isn't worried. "Everyday's a gift." He has a roof over his head. Sheriff Jody demands he let someone be nice to him for five minutes and offers to cook and clean. Then she tells him to call her Jody. Oh Bobby, you sap. A pretty lady is throwing herself all over you and you don't know what to do. Ask Chet for some pointers!
I do wonder if that's what he was doing when Bobby next goes downstairs. Chet's head has dragged itself back to his body. He asks Bobby did he think it would be that easy? "No, but it's a start." Off goes the head again. Hee, great to see Bobby has a way to vent frustrations.
Oh no, a Chevette? Actually, the ending scene we could see the logo of the car, and it's really a Pontiac Acadian, which was the Canadian version of the Chevette. It's still the same car though, and almost always makes lists of the worst car ever made. It's up there with the Pinto from season four. Poor Sam and Dean, crammed in a tin can like that. I laugh!
Actually, I'm about to laugh way harder. It's time for the awkward family road trip moment. We haven't had one of these in so long. Another shoutout to continuity! Dean is scowling, Sam is calming reading the map. To add insult to injury, the car they snagged has a cutesy "My Little Pony" hanging from the rear view mirror on a pink ribbon. Dean can't take it anymore, whips out his knife, frees the little pony from its tether and tosses it in the back. Oh yeah, Sam can tell big bro is tense.
"You okay?" Sam asks Dean. Ask a stupid question Sam... Dean is definitely not okay. "You know, it's bad enough they're ganking people wearing our mugs, but now this? Us driving around in this caboodle while baby is on lockdown." You're lucky that caboodle is running Dean. It must be the best Acadian/Chevette ever made. I'm stunned they're going faster than 25 mph (no, I don't know what that is in km). Sam mentions it's temporary. "No body puts baby in a corner," Dean gripes. Sam's freaked because that's a line from- "Swayze movie," Dean answers. "Swayze always gets a pass."
Sam, already bothered by the Swayze reference, backs himself into a worse corner by suggesting tunes. It's not like they have their "greatest hits of mullet rock" handy. So he turns on the radio. Suddenly, Air Supply's "All Out of Love" comes on. Sam realizes that's not such a great choice, but Dean says to leave it. "It's probably going to be the only thing on." It was at this point I was expecting a shoutout to Tommy Boy, where a few seconds later we would cut to them both wailing the lyrics at the top of their lungs. Luckily though, Robbie Thompson figured out that would be so out of character and did something better.
Sure enough, we quickly see how Dean is feeling the Air Supply love. Sam goes back to looking at the map, but it doesn't take him long to realize Dean is lip synching the words. Sam's expression of sheer horror matches what he might do when spotting a monster. It's hilarious!
Dean realizes he's been caught, seeing one very disturbed Sam eyebrow raise. He stops, but can't help but turn his head away and smile. Sam goes back to the map, but his eyes drift left again. Dean's back to signing and when he head bobs to the big beats of the dramatic climax of the song, Sam's had enough. He bitchfaces and turns it off! Gee, who's the one freaking out here Sammy? And another classic scene for the ages is born! Thank you so much show. This will last me for a while.
Suddenly, Sam gets the pattern. Jericho, he remembers the woman in white. Black Water Ridge, wendigo. Lake Manitoc, ghost kid in the lake. They're hitting the cities they've worked jobs in order, since he left Stanford. Awesome, MAJOR shoutout to season one. Except Denver, but that didn't make Sam's list of cities. Probably because THEY NEVER HAD A CASE THERE. Toledo wasn't mentioned either, but we know it's been hit. So that means St. Louis is next. Dean actually wants to go there? The place where he first officially became a dead man? He's all excited about Conner's diner, where they have the best burgers. "Oh, I deserve something good in my life right now." Oh Dean, you're so adorable with your simple needs.
Yeah, except guess who's already at Conner's Diner in St. Louis? This scene, I can only image how much fun Jared and Jensen had doing this. Best...meta...ever! Okay, "The French Mistake" is better, but this is still awesome and hysterical. You know what I think would do this scene justice? A full blown transcription:
Leviathan!Dean: (eating a cheeseburger) You know he has one of these every day, and in his heart, he thinks they're almost as good as sex. This is disgusting.
Leviathan!Sam: (pushing away his salad). Dead plants with creamy goo. It's like eating self righteousness. I mean you tell me which is worse.
Leviathan!Dean: I mean honestly, you know what, I can't stand the guy. Talk about a hero complex. And he doesn't have relationships, no he has applications for sainthood. Oh, and he thinks he's funny. He thinks he's a damned comedian.
Leviathan!Sam: Who has two thumbs and full blown bats in the belfry? I'm serious, it's nothing but Satan vision on the inside. I mean, how he's walking around in a jacket with attachable arms is beyond me. You know, I had a brother with this many issues once.
Leviathan!Sam: You know what I did? I ate him.
Leviathan!Dean: Of course you did.
Leviathan!Sam: How are these guys even a threat?
Leviathan!Dean: Boss says they gotta go, they gotta go.
Leviathan!Sam: Right. Idea. Wanna trade? I mean, I'll take Chuckles over Schizo.
Leviathan!Dean: Nah, I like this one's hair better. You can stay in the big one.
Leviathan!Sam: Alright, in that case let's turn up the heat. The sooner I get out of this and into something more stable the better.
Bwah! LOL! LOL!
Once I've calmed down from my laughing fit, I take some time to realize what that conversation really revealed, other than Jared and Jensen must have had a blast talking about their characters like that. This very clever writer took the perfect opportunity to show that Sam is not okay. I really hope the future scripts capitalize on this revelation. Perhaps the comment is some foreshadowing? I really hope so, because he's been a little too well adjusted for my tastes.
The next part gets really brutal again, and I break into my "puppies and kittens" chant. Leviathan!Dean tells a kid to fire up his cell phone camera and points his gun at the kid. They fire in the air and announce it's a robbery. Yeah, everyone in there is toast. Puppies and kittens, puppies and kittens... BTW, we were told author SE Hinton ("The Outsiders," my favorite book as a teen and now required school reading for my own teenage daughter) was in extra the diner scene. Judging from the people in that room, I think she's the lady in blue at the two-seater booth in the back.
The Acadian motors on (how???) and Sam is manning speakerphone. Chopping off the head is a development. It won't kill them, but it'll slow them down. BTW, in the first shot of this scene, there's a profile of Sam's face and man, the sideburns are very noticeable here. He's close to full blown mutton chops! They have a perfect point too. That's some careful sculpting. I'm surprised that Dean hasn't made a cruel joke about them right now.
Bobby is talking in the cabin while Jody is making a sandwich. Dean thanks Bobby just in time to hear Sheriff Jody ask if he takes mayo. Oh, Dean is running with this. "Are you even working Richard Gere?" Ah, now we're up to 80"˜s male sex symbols. Look, smiles on Sam and Dean's faces. They can do that! Bobby changes the subject by asking where are they off to next. St. Louis. Nope, they've already hit that. "Pumpkin and Hunny Bunny hit a diner there." Ooh, I LOVE cutesy nicknames. I'm still waiting for someone to call Dean "Pookie." Speaking of Dean, he's upset they hit Conner's diner. No awesome burger for him. Time to go to lame Ankeny, Iowa instead. Home of "Hookman"? Ugh, I hope Sam doesn't run into Lori again. She had the personality of wood.
I'm going to gloss over this next scene, because it's the FBI tools investigating the bloody diner in St. Louis and watching the gut-wrenching video of Sam and Dean slaughtering everyone, and then announcing with evil smirks they're going to Iowa next.
It's definitely got a Natural Born Killers vibe. I hate that movie.
Bobby is gonna try the car battery on Chet next. Oh Bobby, that's just desperate. Stupid too, for his arm touches Chet. Way to go, now Chet gets to be evil Bobby. "Balls" is right! However, this is a great opportunity to learn a bit more about Bobby's backstory. Chet is fascinated how dark Bobby's life is. "High school dropout, a drunk like your daddy before ya, oh, you and Dad, that's a can of scorpions, your favorite singer is Joni friggin Mitchell, oh Bobby, you're ten pounds of sad in a five pound bag." So we've moved onto 70's female folk singers. As long as it wasn't Helen Reddy. Carole King would have been cooler though.
Sam and Dean, because they are the stupidest fugitives in America, decide to walk down the main street of Ankeny, Iowa in broad daylight. Oh yeah, especially when every cop in Iowa was looking for them. I'm shocked they didn't run into the entire Hawkeye militia waiting to gun them down in an ambush (Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid reference there). They see Leviathan!Sam and Dean pull in an Impala that's looking sharper than theirs. I noticed the cool rims right away. "Oh no, this is all sorts of wrong," Sam says. Dean has a better perspective. "Oh, those are nice wheels. I'll tell you what when this is over, I'm stealing those rims." Take the car too! It never hurts to have a spare.
Since Leviathan!Sam and Dean aren't stupid enough to be standing in open view on the main street sidewalk in a state where cops are waiting for them, guess who gets popped first? They get off a call to Bobby first. "It's like looking at a funhouse mirror." Bobby says he knows the feeling, and I love the shot of Chet!Bobby behind him. Everyone is getting squeezed. Then, as we all suspected, the sheriff and his team pull up, all guns pointed on Sam and Dean. They try to get the sheriff to look at their evil twins behind him, but this guy ain't stupid. He's not falling for that. So as Sam and Dean get cuffed and frisked, their evil twins smirk. Leviathan!Dean even winks at them. Yes, I'm sure that thud you heard was every single Dean girl falling to the floor. Dean is so ready to kill some doppleganger scum.
Back to Chet!Bobby taunting Bobby as he's pouring through the books for another solution. It's fun hearing Chet's smart mouth coming from Bobby. "Seen more death than an electric chair, ready to die with your boots on, but you know deep down inside you're no cynic. You still hope. You even got a thing for that lady upstairs. Tiny part of you thinks maybe when after this is done you and the sheriff can make your own little cabin in the woods."
Chet!Bobby gives his diabolical evil laugh and wonders why Bobby bothers. Bobby grabs the sword and asks his evil twin if he's a Browning fan. Robert Browning, the poet. Chet!Bobby can't recall that. Bobby reminds him. "A man's reach should exceed his grasp." Chet!Bobby likes that. "After I eat you I'm definitely going to hit the library." Bobby is about to chop the head off, when a drip comes from the ceiling. It hits Chet!Bobby and his skin begins to burn away. He starts screaming like a fool, "Get it off!" over and over again. A breakthrough!!
Bobby races upstairs to find Sheriff Jody washing the floor with a soapy bucket. She apparently had a mishap and was cleaning it up. Bobby races over to her and plants her a big wet one on the lips! Oh yeah, he's happy about this. Hell, I'm happy about this too! Jody's a bit stunned. "Okay, I wasn't expecting that reaction." Bobby asks what was in the bucket. Now Jody is really confused.
Might I interject also, yay, a win! It's about friggin time. A fun win too. Ooh, I can't wait to see how this plays out.
Meanwhile, back in Iowa, Sam is trying to tell the sheriff that he's making a mistake. The real killers are back at the diner. Dean just wants his phone call. Oh, there will be a call, to the FBI. Dean is going to cell #1, Sam the interview room. Here's another shoutout of sorts. Remember "Hookman?" Sam was arrested in that episode too. So this is his second visit to the Ankeny jail. I guess he's not fondly reminiscing.
The two cops that helped are told they can go home, so they leave. Uh oh, who's waiting outside but Leviathan!Dean and Sam. These cops aren't going home for dinner, they are dinner. They come back into the squad room, and it's pretty easy to say they aren't them. The wide mouth, many teeth, and two squiggly tongues tip us off to that!
The sheriff visits Dean in the cell. Dean is demanding his right to his phone call. The sheriff isn't concerned about his rights given how many people he's killed in the last few days, so Dean turns on his own version of the puppy dog and pleads. It works! Dean calls Bobby, who is looking over the carnage of a burnt and headless Chet!Bobby. Dean tells him they've been popped, and there's no time for Bobby to get there. "We saw them, they saw us, so we are coming to get us." Brain teasers are always interesting on this show, aren't they? He asks if Bobby has anything. Yep, sodium borate. "Okay, let me get Mr. Wizard on speed dial," Dean jokes. He's always got one no matter how desperate the situation! God love him.
Bobby explains its found industrial cleaners, soaps, and laundry powder. Anything with borax. "You want me to Desperate Housewife these mothers?" Stop! This scene is moving too fast for me to laugh. Bobby tells him to trust him, it burns them bad enough to slow them down. It's the new holy water! Once they douse them in borax, chop the heads off and keep them separate. The sheriff hangs up the phone before Dean can rave on how much of a genius Bobby is. He's a bit disgusted by all this talk. "What kind of sickos are you and your friends?" Dean tells him if he doesn't round up what they need they're all gonna die. Nope, doesn't believe him. Until...
I'm so glad they didn't waste much time with the sheriff finding out. He walks around the corner and sees his supposed gone for the day deputy snacking on another officer. Not normal. The other deputy comes in berating him for having lunch now. There's no time. They morph back into Sam and Dean and are ready for some eating of their twins. The sheriff is clever to hide while seeing all this. Oh yeah, Dean's making sense now. He goes back to Dean quite stunned. "I uh, it's just, I don't know what I saw." He unlocks the cage and lets Dean out. Dean tells him to find anything that says borax on it. The sheriff does so without argument.
Time to switch to poor sitting duck Sammy, who's handcuffed to the table in the interrogation room. He sees Dean walk in and wonders why Dean isn't helping him out of the cuffs. Because it's Leviathan!Dean. "I'm not your brother, but I am Dean adjacent." Not good.
Back to Dean (yep, a lot of back and forth) in the main room. He grabs a gun and sees Sam. "Sammy." Then it hits him when he gets the evil stink eye. "Not Sammy." Dean shoots him which doesn't do a thing but piss him off. Leviathan!Sam slams him into the trophy case hard, glass shattering all over him. Ouch! That's gotta hurt. What is it with Dean and a glass shower anyway? That's a small shoutout to "Lazarus Rising." Very small. It could also be a small shoutout to "Swan Song" when Lucifer!Sam threw him into the Impala windshield. Again, very small.
Leviathan!Dean is taunting Sam a bit first, you know, because they're all about the giggles. "I just want you to let you know how much I've really grown to hate you and your brother since we've been wearing you. I just don't get it. You could be anything. You're strong, you're uninhibited, you're smart enough believe it or not, but you're so caught up in being good and taking care of each other." "What do you care?" Asks Sam. "Because it pisses me off! You're wasting a perfectly good opportunity to subjugate the weak." You gotta admit, watching evil Dean is pretty fun. Plus, there is some truth there, Sam would be pretty dangerous if he ever went rogue.
Back to Dean and Leviathan!Sam. Dean gets up, smashes a glass case and pulls out an axe. Shoutout to "Sex and Violence." Leviathan!Sam, who sadly has no time for monologuing, isn't bothered. "Cute. Do you really think you can get close enough to use it?" "Not until you're burning," Dean answers. Then the sheriff splashes a bucket of cleaner on him. Leviathan!Sam starts smoking and WHACK! Dean slices off the head in one swoop. You can see the hair flopping as the decapitated head falls. Wicked! Next is the shot of headless Leviathan!Sam on the floor oozing black. Again, this must have been Jared and Jensen's dream scene.
Leviathan!Dean isn't done monologuing. Tool. "Here's the deal. Dean thinks you're nutballs. He thinks you're off your game." Sam isn't gonna take this taunting. "You gonna kill me or if this some kind of "˜play with your food' bull?" Clever line! Leviathan!Dean has more ammunition though, and here's the bombshell. The one that should have dropped about two episodes ago. "You know I guess that's why Dean never told you he killed Amy." Sam can't avoid it, he's shocked. That shock switches to outright heartbreak. He believes every word. It all makes sense, with Dean's strange behavior and all.
Leviathan!Dean gets outright joyful. That's what he was looking for. "There it is. The look on your face. That is priceless! That's what I've been waiting for. Now I can eat you." He moves to the back of Sam, and I LOVE LOVE LOVE this shot in the mirror from John Showalter. A very happy Leviathan!Dean is leaning over the shoulder of one very glum Sam. Just wow. "Cause you see, I like my meat a little bitter."
Suddenly, the real Dean busts in, splashes a bottle of borax on Leviathan!Dean, and he goes sizzling. Sam is ducking down, missing every bit of this awesome showdown. Dean takes off the head with one swipe. Cool, he gets to kill his own doppleganger as well! Sam is shocked, Dean is feeling really good. He's on a head chopping high! The sheriff comes over and unlocks Sam's cuffs.
As Dean and the sheriff discuss the plan about making them dead and covering up the truth Sam keeps looking over at Dean with, hmm how do I but it, stupendous hurt. I love how the sheriff isn't stupid, he's not about to let any of this become public. Dean goes to grab a mop and help cover everything up, but a devastated Sam remains at the table, lost in his own hurt. "Sammy, you okay?" Dean asks. Sam gives him an "I'm fine" and man, he's so not fine. Poor Sammy. Can you imagine the things going through his head right now? Like maybe how his stone number one is crumbling on him, just like everything else?
Next scene is the sheriff and the medical examiner telling the FBI tools that Sam and Dean are conveniently dead, shot by him. The bodies have already been destroyed. One FBI guy is pissed about it, the other sees the case as closed and is pleased to be avoiding all the paperwork. Oh yeah, that guy must be a Leviathan. Too easy.
Bobby and Sheriff Jody watch the news about the crime spree coming to an end in Iowa. Jody is pleased that should take the heat off for now. Bobby tells her seriously and then with a smile, "Thanks Jody. I couldn't have done it without you." Aww, he really does like her. "Anytime you need me to spill something else you give me a call." Bobby tells her there is one more thing and he moves in real close. Jody smiles and we're waiting for it...waiting for it...and Bobby walks over to the other side of the room to get the box with the head in it. That's where she cuffs him up the side of the head for being so clueless.
Nah, she's classier than that. Bobby gives her the box. "Don't open it. Even if it starts talking, especially if it starts talking. When you cross over Underhill Bridge, toss it in the drink." In the meantime, Bobby has to go bury a body in cement. Oh, but not before he kisses her on the cheek! She smiles. Yeah, she likes that. She's getting through to him. He's not totally hopeless.
Oh no, it's back to the sheriff and medical examiner in Iowa. Crap, they're toast. I like them! Turns out the medical examiner is the sheriff's daughter. That makes it worse. The bodies are actually there and she's scooping up the black goo. "What the Hell is it because it sure isn't blood." And there's FBI blond guy, Valente. Yep, called it, evil Leviathan dude. "You're right about that sweetie, it's much more than blood." Suddenly we get the big mouth of sharp teeth and tongues. Sheriff and daughter become blood spatter on a wall. Thanks for at least trying guys! Should have kept some borax around.
It's incredible what they crammed in the last five minutes here. In the whole episode actually, but even the last five minutes is impressive.
Leviathan!FBI dude is examining the blackened bodies of Leviathan!Sam and Dean, and he's obviously had some lunch judging by the blood all over his chin and shirt. Someone really needs to teach these guys some basic table manners. They're pigs when they eat! Anyway, he's not happy about something and makes a call. He tells the guy on the other end their heads are missing. Oh yeah, that's bad news no one wants to deliver to the boss man, especially when punishment involves becoming some sort of entree.
Then we finally get to meet the boss man. It's James Patrick Stuart, whose been in a ton of stuff but I best remember him as Will Cortlandt in "All My Children." You know, in the day when I actually had time and/or poor tastes to actually watch soaps. Interesting choice for the top bigmouth. He at least wants to hear that the Winchesters are dead. Nada, in the wind. "So all that brain power, all those resources, and those two field mice are still on my to do list?" I so love the dialogue in this ep, haven't you noticed?
Valente offers to get more DNA and double them again, but boss man is a broader thinker than that. He's thinking less is more right now, because the public and the media aren't exactly gonna buy Sam and Dean coming back from the dead, again. I do agree, two massive public deaths, no three for Dean, are enough. They're gonna have to try a subtler approach, give the situation a good think. These are some really smart villains, aren't they? They're kind of refreshing after years of stupid demons. Oh, but boss man isn't gonna let Valente off the hook. His next call better be a win, or he's dinner.
After sending a minion to get latte (yes, a more cultured savage), he gets into his sweet limo and checks out the paper. Suddenly, there's an uninvited guest. It's Crowley! Guess who's scheming again? He calls the dude Mr. Roman, so Crowley is in the know somehow. Sam, Dean, and Bobby could really use this information. Crowley introduces his title and thought it was time they met. Mr. Roman definitely agrees. Crowley, because good manners aren't dead between monsters and demons, even has a muffin basket! "100 percent organic baby uvulas, gluten free." Mr. Roman does love a good muffin.
Okay, pleasantries out of the way, it's time to get to nasty business. After finding out Mr. Roman's name is Dick (oh Dean's gonna have a field day with that one), Crowley after some verbiage declares they should be friends. Dick doesn't know why. Crowley tries the good old fashioned political spin on things. "I brought you here Dick. I found a way to open the door to purgatory." Dick, he's way smarter than that. "To steal every last soul you mean. You and that angel friend of yours. Don't roofie me and call it romance." A straight talker. He should never run for public office.
Crowley tries for damage control, but Dick is obviously a busy monster and doesn't have time for this. "Now it's your turn to listen. I'd sooner swim through hot garbage than shake hands with a bottom feeding mutation like you. You demons are ugly, lazy, gold digging whores. You're less than humans, and they're not good for much until you dip them in garlic sauce. I'd never work with you Crowley. In fact, if I wasn't busy with better things, I'd wipe your kind off the face of the universe. And you deserve it. Are we clear?" I guess that's his way of saying, "no."
Crowley clenches his jaw and tells Dick to keep the muffins. Then he disappears. So head Leviathan dude just revealed a lot. These creatures think they're better than everyone else, don't want to work with anyone else, and hate demons and humans. Hmm, sounds a lot like the angels when they arrived, doesn't it? So does this mean that Crowley is going to Sam and Dean for an alliance? Will Sam and Dean be stupid enough to work with him again? I'm sure their paths will cross, but I wonder what events will unfold to get that to happen. Demons are quite old, I'm sure they have some tricks up their sleeves. I'm quite intrigued by the possibilities.
Okay, now for the explosive scene that's been three episodes in the making. If you didn't call this you really don't watch this show. Now, I'm not saying I was eagerly waiting to see this moment, but we all knew it was happening. Too much history. Dean has the two heads of their dopplegangers in a bag in the back of the empty Acadian trunk. Well, mostly empty. The freed My Little Pony toy from earlier is back there now. Sigh, it's not even a cool trunk like the Impala. I hope baby isn't gone long. Dean's feeling pretty jovial, but one look through the rear window of the open hatchback (great shot!) shows Sam is not happy. He's still stewing.
Dean clearly sees something is wrong and tells Sam to talk. Sam says "nothing" but it's obvious it's something. "Well that's convincing," Dean sarcastically answers. So he starts guessing what the problem is, like maybe the fact that they were just cloned by two evil monsters. "Did monster us give you the jeebs, because I gotta be honest, I'm not looking in the mirror for a while myself." Okay, that's enough, Sam will talk. "You really want to know what's wrong?"
Dean, obviously not seeing the intense hurt and suppressed anger in his brother's eyes, gives a light hearted "Yeah, you know my motto, here to help." Oh Dean, you just set it up. "Here to help," a seething Sam says. "Kind of like you helped Amy?" And there it is. Dean looks like he's been busted. "Listen, Sam..." Nope, Sam isn't gonna hear any of it. "Don't...don't lie to me again. You know, don't even talk to me."
Dean gives him an unapologetic look and Sam can't take it anymore. "Yeah, I can't." He grabs his things from the back of the Acadian. "You know what Dean, I can't." He starts walking away. Now this has a tinge of a married couple having a fight. Okay, perhaps more than a tinge. "You can't what?" Dean asks. "I can't talk to you right now," Sam says still walking. Then he turns around and throws out the patented Sam Winchester wide open arms of frustration (I swear I need to gather a montage of those). "Dean, I can't even be around you right now!"
Dean doesn't get where this is going. "I think you should go on without me," Sam says. Dean nods, but does nothing, so Sam gives him a stern "Go." Dean calmly agrees, but not without a gentle, "Sorry Sam." Sam's scowling face isn't exactly accepting the apology. Sam slings his bag over his shoulder and starts walking to the other side of the pier. I'm assuming that's all for drama since he's not going to walk off it. I think. Roll credits.
Now you get my two cents on this whole Sam and Dean rift thing. I've made it pretty clear in my recent reviews (plus in the beginning of this recap), this whole Dean's secret about killing Amy thing has been an utter bunch of crap. I'm not saying killing her was wrong, but lying to Sam about it, especially after he promised Sam he wouldn't, there's where the stinkage lies. It's forced drama. Since we have it though, let's take a closer look.
Sam is obviously not stable, no matter what sort of front he's putting up. Leviathan!Sam confirmed that. So far, we as an audience have been led to believe Sam's inner strength is solely coming from his full faith in his brother. "Believe me, you've got to believe me. You gotta make it stone number one and build on it." (That scene BTW still gives me chills!)
Theoretically, what happens when stone #1 begins to crumble? Does everything come down? In this case, probably not right away. Sam is stronger than that but it doesn't help him much. Little lapses in faith, strength, character, the stress of the Leviathan hunting him, all will probably allow "Satan vision" to seep through in damaging ways. Not only can Sam not trust Dean, but by Dean hiding the truth, Sam knows that Dean doesn't trust him or think he's capable of making sound decisions. He probably already suspected what Leviathan!Dean said, that Dean still thinks he's nuts. This incident only reinforces that belief. What do you do in Sam's case? How can you draw strength when everything is crumbling and the one person that you can rely on doesn't think you can function as a normal human being?
That's why Dean lied. He believed Amy had to die (something I'm not saying is wrong) but if he told Sam what he was doing, it would hurt Sam in more ways than one. Dean had to know he'd find out though, right? Maybe he figured by the time Sam did find out, he'd be stable enough to handle it. I don't know, but I'm sure that's one reason why Dean let Sam walk away. He has to give Sam some time and space, see if he crumbles or deals with it. I wonder how close the Acadian is parked out of view though, watching Sam's every move.
Given the whole mess that was created the last three episodes, I have to say, the way it played out here is pretty good. I liked it because there wasn't a lot of shouting, messy dialogue, punches being thrown, etc. Sam just chose to walk away for a bit, and Dean let him. It's honestly one of the more mature conversations these two have had. Sam is extremely angry and hurt but didn't open up the opportunity to do or say something he'll regret later. Remember "When The Levee Breaks?" Sure, Sam wasn't exactly in his right mind in that one, but how much would you bet he wishes he could take that all back? Here, I think he's handling his outrage properly. He needs time to absorb it all.
I already saw the preview clip for Friday's episode and I won't give away too much except to say, there's a lot these two still need to work out. Hopefully we get more than that sorry little clip.
Overall, I'm giving "Slash Fiction" an A. I think it's up there with the first two episodes of the season. I hope to see more from Robbie Thompson. In the meantime, I can always think of this one with a smile. And I no longer get sick when hearing Air Supply. Major win!