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“The Devil You Know”
--Robin’s Rambles by Robin Vogel
That first scene was just awful! I hate labs with all the helpless animals being subjected to tests, even though I know it's ultimately for the good of humankind. I guess they gave the one doc a shot of the Croatoan virus, and it's working just FINE, a real killer strain. Blood gushing against another surface to show violence is becoming a recurring (yawn) theme, and for me, not all that gross anymore.
So the brothers need to capture ring #3 in the next ep, then Death's, then Lucifer. This ep seemed to be an almost filler ep, except for Brady's relationship with poor Sam. I thought they were going right for Pestilence, not his valet. I loved the devil we know, Crowley, who was so fantastic in this episode. He is such a dick, a charming, dissolute reprobate who is more snake than demon—a rattler!
Sam and Dean in masks, having to do all their acting with their eyes! I love that, and it worked well here. King of Pop, the day the statues started crying--they really have to watch their voice levels, because they're going to worry folks about their sanity. CRAZY talk, LOL! Crowley seems more concerned about his burnt down house than his gobbled up tailor, but it was a very funny line. Drama queen that he is, he shoots out the light above their heads because he is a wanted man and must be careful to keep in the dark.
Watching Brady run his meeting, then drag poor Mitch into his office for a little talking to, I was reminded of similar chats with my hated manager, who used to challenge me to get him fired because of his evil ways. I promised him that I, a lowly clerk, would do that very thing, and I DID, bwa ha ha!  Anyway, watching what Brady did to poor Mitch, I was reminded of that manager, who, if he could have gotten away with it, would have done the same to several employees, me at the top of the list!  Very scary people in the world, and I bet they DO have demons inside them sometimes! DO THE BEST OF SOMEONE BETTER? How many supervisors order us to do THAT? LMAO!!
We realize pretty quickly why Crowley REALLY doesn't want Sam along, of course, but at this point, Crowley just goes all drama queen on him with a bunch of personal reasons why, including the fact that Sam keeps trying to stab him with the DKK. After they leave, Sam starts drinking right out of the bottle and calls Bobby, who is also boozing it up and urging him not to be too upset. Sam upsets Bobby when he questions him about that incident when Bobby took control of himself while Meg was possessing him, and stabbed himself in the gut. Sam's suggestion that HE could do the same after saying yes to Lucifer gets Bobby VERY upset. Although Sam assures Bobby he wouldn't do it unless they all agreed, do WE believe him? I don't. The younger Winchester has proven himself a rebel before, and his plan makes me VERY uneasy. As Bobby points out, this is the DEVIL, not a low-level demon. Sam CANNOT control him, no matter how much he practices.
Brady sure goes crazy on poor Dean, and it's scary to watch him kicking him like that. I STILL maintain that any other human being would have too many internal injuries to be able to stand up, walk away and function the way Dean does, but perhaps he's been blessed with something similar to Buffy somehow, a protective barrier that keeps his internal organs safe. I don't know, but really, any medical folks out there, what do you think?
CROWLEY, the demon we love to hate! He puts Dean into this terrible situation, knowing Brady has no interest in getting back the other two rings! Brady wants to punish Dean, beat the crap out of him, probably kill him!  Yet demon Crowley allows Dean to walk into this, undoubtedly knowing Dean can get out of it with his wits, cunning and luck! Lucky Dean wasn't kicked to death up there, huh? Oh, Crowley, you'll be the death of the Winchesters yet!
I felt just awful for Sam here. He was in love with Jess, the woman he was essentially set up with by demons! Brady, his best friend at Stanford, not only introduced them, he also killed her! How awful for him to find this out years after the fact! Yet he didn't kill Brady, even though he surely wanted to. He gave him a little cut, then backed off, knowing that they needed Brady in order to find out where Pestilence is. I give Sam a lot of credit for his control over his anger, especially since Brady was really egging him on. I can't help but wonder--if Sam knew what Brady had just done to Dean, would he have spared him then?
Dean didn't trust Sam to leave Brady in one piece, did he? He figured Sam would rip his once best friend to pieces, but he didn't. He left him smiling! However, Brady's day was not going to get better--Crowley had massacred a batch of demons, leaving one alive with a bug in his ear: Brady was a traitor who had aligned himself with Crowley, Lovers in League Against Satan! (LILAS, LOL!) Between this awful news and the sudden appearance of a hell hound, Brady loses it--and isn't it great to see HIM terrified after what he put Sam and Dean through in this episode? Oh, yeah! Once again, though, it appears Crowley double-crossed the brothers as he tosses the coin in his pocket to Dean and disappears, leaving them holding the bag. Sam gives Dean an "I told you so," which Dean does NOT appreciate. Just when it's looking very bleak, Crowley re-appears, insisting he's "invested" now--and besides, he has a BIGGER dog! He sics his on the other, leaving blood and overturned furniture in the wake of the invisible fighting curs. The two men and two demons escape the rundown house as quickly as they can, Crowley betting a thousand that his pup will win, which had me shaking my head and laughing. He never ceases to come up with the wrong thing at the wrong time, does he? You gotta laugh, at least he's fun! Why, I wonder, is Brady so freaked out by a hell hound?
Demons always seem to need to make a long speech before they die, and Brady was no exception. He taunted Sam about the usual stuff--his connection to the demons, how he's got demon blood in him, etc. Sam didn't respond to any of it this time; he just let it go in one ear and out the other. He swiftly dispatched Brady with a knife to the heart and answered, "Interesting theory." Given that after the even worse taunting over what Sam always considered his happy life at Stanford, surrounded by good friends and the woman he loved, Sam was able to stop himself from killing Brady, I suspect he's practicing for an even greater sense of self-control. My fear, after his earlier, drunken talk with Bobby on the phone, is that he is beginning to believe he will have enough self control to say YES to Lucifer and still maintain control enough over his own mind to get him to jump back into his cage without losing himself. THAT is a very scary thought.
OK, much as I adore the smarmy Crowley, I don't trust the bastard as far as I can throw him, and his offer to Bobby--to BORROW his soul?--sounds very suspicious. Demons buy souls in return for something, then give you a number of years--or none, like they did John Winchester--and they come to collect after that specified time period. Bobby was really giving it to Crowley, to my delight, because I was so pissed at him over what happened to Dean! Thing is, I know how much Bobby wants to help, and how helpless he feels in that wheelchair, so my worry is that he's going to say yes to Crowley because he believes it's the only way he can help. Crowley is going to take advantage of him, and when that happens, he'll say, as he did in this ep, "That's what you get for working with a demon." Noooo, Bobby, don't! I want you around for season 6!
  1. What did you think of this episode? On first watching, I wasn’t impressed, but after seeing it a second time, I give it 7 out of 10. I loved watching Sam maintain control over his anger. 
  1. Crowley is such a hoot, but do you trust him? Is his REALLY on the side of humans, or is he planning a double cross? Should Bobby trust him and allow him to “borrow” his soul? 
  1. Brady was a handsome SOB, wasn’t he? I can imagine him introducing Sam to Jess, becoming their friend and confidant, then coldly killing Jess as she begged for her life. He might even have raped her, too, I wouldn’t put it past him!
  1. This episode felt like filler to me, not really necessary. What did you think? Why did there need to be a go-between?
5. Are you scared about what’s going to happen to the Winchester brothers? I am! 


# AndreaW 2010-04-30 16:54
I think Sam has ALL intentions to go on with his plan of helping Lucifer back to his cage, whether all of them agree or not. The fact that is fighting to keep his anger under control has everything to do with this plan, if you ask me. I wonder what Dean would say of such a plan.

It's amazing how Jared manages to swift from puppy dog-eyed to wait-your-turn Sam so convincingly. He'll make a scary Lucifer if it comes to that. On the other hand, it's sad to witness how the innocent Sam from Season 1, who loved Jess and wanted to help his friend Brady to feel better is now this disillusioned and cold man.
# Bevie 2010-05-01 13:35
Robin, regarding number 5. Since there is going to be a sixth season, I am really more scared about what's going to happen to Bobby and Cas. :sad:

Crowley is a hoot, but I think he is more on Crowley's side than anyone elses. Don't know if he will double cross Bobby, but Bobby should tell him to "f*** off!" NO MORE DEVIL DEALS! Please!
# daraobriain 2010-05-02 05:46
Bevie, I agree with you! I'm not at all scared about Sam and Dean, they'll survive no matter what. I'm way more scared for Cas and Bobby!

"OK, much as I adore the smarmy Crowley, I don't trust the bastard as far as I can throw him, and his offer to Bobby--to BORROW his soul?--sounds very suspicious."

I don't trust him either! This was a better episode on second viewing.
# Jasminka 2010-05-04 06:40
Robin, thanks for your rambling… let’s see

1-I love the episode on first watching, but needed some re-watching to grasp all the layers. For me it is an 8.

2-I don’t trust Crowley. He primarily wants to safe his own skin – self preservation, as he himself puts it. After all our experiences with demons, this one is no different, except that he is open with his goals, Or sort of. I wouldn’t mind a ‘good demon’ for once, either

3-I hated Brady’s guts. Excellent baddie. I don’t want to think about him raping Jessica. I can’t.

4-I don’t regard it as a filler. I think it was the kind of set up Sam needed to get ready – to either say yes or to find his powers again. The latter would be fantastic, though.

5-Oh, yes, Robin. This affects me more than I believed possible. It’s afreakin’ tv-show, for heavens sakes!
Knowing that they’ll be back in season six, as Bevie and darao’briain said, I’m also very concerned about Cas and Bobby, Bobby in particular. I can’t conceive of this show without Bobby.
I am afraid, though, in what state of mind the brothers will exit this season. They might be in serious need of therapy. Hey, get them hither… ;-)
Love Jas