You know what’s fun about my reviews? You really don’t know what my reaction will be to an episode. Imagine how I feel watching it!
Well, after a few weeks of frustrated despair, I must say, I’m pleasantly surprised. I really liked “Destiny’s Child.” Sure, I have some big quibbles with the loose rules on continuity, but I enjoyed watching it. I can’t say that has happened in a long time, and considering this will be the last episode for a long while, I’ll take those gifts where I can.
I’m surprised, but the dialogue was a lot snappier this time, one of the best efforts I’ve seen for a Brad and Eugenie script. Heck, it might be the best. Dean had some real dingers. My favorite, “Sam witch.” Ha! The pacing was pretty brisk too, which I adore since slow pacing has been my number one complaint for a while. Yeah, everything got a bit choppy about 15 minutes in, starting with the time wasting trip to Hell, but it at least didn’t slow down.
There’s a lot to like about this episode. I really loved Castiel in this one. He was useful. He’s been offering Jack support that Dean still can’t provide and Sam has been struggling with. He caught on fast that what Sister Jo told Sam and Dean was a load of bunk. He pulled a Winchester and did a bold, crazy move on his own that was literally suicidal! But it worked. Castiel also looked so glad to see Meg for that brief second until he figured out who it was. I was happy to see her too, even if it wasn’t her. Rachel Miner was the best incarnation of the Empty Entity yet! It was just so much fun to see her and Misha together again. They have a lot of on screen chemistry. Plus I loved the return of the nicknames, like Clarence and Feathers. Good times.
I’m with everyone else that loved the AU Sam and Dean. It’s about the freaking time another Sam and Dean came from another universe. But in a Fiat? Hilarious! Our Sam and Dean can’t be the only ones to breach other worlds. But these ones are the rich, snobbish versions? Love it! Something tells me they’re going to be rather put off by Brazil and find adventures elsewhere. I could go on about their scenes, but that has been well covered by other reviews, so I won’t repeat. I’ll just say, I approve. I really approve. Especially the Sam man bun.
Okay, yeah, there is a glaring elephant in the room, the blatant disregard for continuity. I suppose, there could be an off sideways chance that Sister Jo came to earth the same time Ruby was around. She probably wasn’t staying, but could be going back and forth. She talked about visiting earth in season 14’s “Game Night.” That was probably enough to open a door here, although the partnership with Ruby really seemed off. It felt like a blatant attempt to shoehorn the lead actors’ wives into the same story rather than telling an organic and fluid plot. But, it didn’t last long, so I guess I’ll let it go for now. Again, there’s been enough said about the topic in the other reviews, so I’ll stop there.
I didn’t mind seeing Ruby this time. I always liked her as a character and believed in the Kripke years her presence would end with a big payoff. Boy did it! I also liked that she could still smile when talking about Sam, despite the fact he helped kill her. A nice nod I guess to the now husband and wife, who weren’t when they had their, um, physical relationship on screen. The truth is stranger than fiction I’ll tell ya. Personally, I wouldn’t mind if she broke free from the empty, but with 7 episodes left, it’ll be hard to tell that story.
If there was one thing that bothered me, it was Ruby’s statement that the Empty was where angels and demons relive their past failures. That doesn’t really add up. Sure, it does for demons, but what about angels? A lot of them that died were faithful servants. Some probably had no failures, they were innocent victims. Since the empty is the only place they go to die, why are they given that fate? Humans that go to Heaven do better than that. I just don’t understand how the punishment can be so cruel and one sided. It’s kind like the question in Purgatory, if a monster dies in Purgatory, where do they go? They’re already in the after life. Do they just cease to exist? I do tire of these final resting places with sketchy rules.
Even the rules to traveling to these places has gotten sketchy. Now Sam just needs to do his spell and he and Dean can walk into Hell without consequence? I know, that was established prior, but it still bothers me. While I liked Castiel visiting the empty to talk to Ruby (and his faux unicorn), that also seemed a little bit easy. I thought the only ones that could travel so easily between realms was the reapers and Death. Surely they have to know what's been happening. Which brings me now to Billie.
I’m glad that Sam and Dean were trying to ask questions about this whole plan of killing Chuck. They’re like us, a lot of this doesn’t add up. They aren’t getting details, just sketchy instructions. Dean raised a question we all have, what happens to the balance if Chuck dies and Amara lives? Jack knows he has a mission, but exactly what is he supposed to do? Why isn’t Death revealing the punchline? I do think though that they are setting up Jack to be the next savior. Sam asked that question, will Jack take Chuck’s place? Dean doubted it, but then Castiel delivered the line that no one had been in the Garden until now. “Til Jack,” were his exact words. That sounds like Messiah stuff to me.
Death has been around a long time, longer than God, right? So has The Empty. I’m still curious why she is so eager to defeat Chuck. What did he do to upset her? What has he done specifically that upset the balance of the natural order? I sometimes wonder if it has to do with him creating humans. From what I can tell, Billie doesn’t care for humans all that much. The original Death didn’t either. Angels for the most part don’t like humans. Billie seemed very concerned about Jack in the beginning, checking for absolutely sure that he was ready to find the Occultum. It was more than her protecting her prize fighter. She had genuine concern. Yet she shows a lot of disdain for The Winchesters, but I always figured it was because they are rule breakers. Maybe that’s it? Humanity and their freewill is mucking up the works? Does that makes Chuck a rule breaker too? A petulant child doing awful things for the sake of entertainment? Perhaps Jack will become everything she hoped Chuck should have been. But wouldn’t he have to forsake his humanity in order to be that? Kelly Kline would not approve!
I did love the mystic quality of the Occultum and Jack’s visit to the Garden of Eden. That was a pretty sweet scene. “Who are you really? Who are you meant to be?” Why don’t we dig into that a bit further?
What Does it Mean?
I do love the Garden of Eden twist, but the question is, will this be a significant turning point and event, or just some folly that Brad and Eugenie were dying to get into the plot and will not be spoken of again? What truly does the Garden of Eden symbolize? Is it paradise as the Bible has us believing? Or is it really a place of birth, since man and woman were created there? Castiel called it the intersection of divinity and humanity. What does that mean?
Who was the little girl? If you look at the bible, it is a Cherubim that was guarding the garden gate. Dusting off my copy of the King James Version of the Bible (you know, the old world stuff), Chapter 3, verse 24 of Genesis says, “So he drove out the man; and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubims.” There was something in there also about a flaming sword, but I guess the show didn’t want to go there. Think about it, if there was a guard, that means the God (aka Chuck) intended for something or someone to return someday rather than destroy Eden. Sure he hid it, but he didn’t destroy it. Why is Eden so special to God?
I wonder what would have happened if Castiel, or Anael, or even Ruby did what Jack did with the Occultum. Would the Cherubim have let them into the garden or skewered them with the flaming sword? Or would nothing have happened? Did Anael know the place was Eden? If she was Joshua’s right hand, I would think she did. I would also think that if such a valuable object delivered someone to the Garden, wouldn’t that also have been protected by something divine? Whoever had it originally was awfully careless for it to change hands like that. Enter the cosmic loophole. As we’ve learned in “Supernatural,” there is always a loophole.
Did Chuck perhaps know that Jack was the one who was meant to find the garden and that’s why he killed him? Or did he kill Jack basically because it was a plot twist for the Sam and Dean story he was watching? You know, another senseless death that litters this plot. Or did he kill him because God historically has killed Nephilim? (At least according to the Book of Enoch he did). Maybe he has done that because he knew Nephilim would have entrance to the Garden, and he has a big distaste for the bastard Nephilim. Yeah, none of that has been revealed.
Personally, I like to think that creations evolve organically and the Garden of Eden story proves that. It is often called the fall of the humanity, but really it’s the birth of free will in humanity. That has not been a bad thing according to the Sam and Dean story. It also means that Chuck has lost control of his creations. So he probably has zero control over Jack’s destiny. He likely has zero control over Sam and Dean’s too. Perhaps that’s why he feels he has to wipe out the worlds he created. It’s all become too messy. You know, that whole Alpha and Omega thing that the Book of Revelation talked about. The beginning and the end. He doesn’t do middle!
But didn’t we establish that Chuck and Amara were the Alpha and Omega in season 11? If Chuck dies, his creation dies. Gee, how well did that go over in season 11? There’s only one way out of this. Amara locks Chuck away like he did her. We found out in 15.02 that there is no love lost between Amara and Chuck. She’ll go with that plan. Is it just me or am I seeing the conclusion a mile away? If it’s that obvious though, what do we need Jack for? Right, the new Messiah thing.
You see what I’m doing here? I’m still wracking my brain trying to figure out Chuck’s motivation. That’s been the missing piece ever since he surfaced in last season’s “Moriah.” What the hell does he want? Why is he doing this? Why oh why has he turned bad other than he’s bored? Is the reason to go with the existing contrasts between the Old Testament in the Bible when he was a vengeful God and the New Testament when he was a merciful God? Or are they spitballing because Dabb wants to embrace his atheist leanings and they are desperate for ideas?
Yep, I got nothing. It doesn’t add up.
So, it looks like this might be the impromptu season finale so to speak. I very likely got my 13 episode season after all. The night this episode aired I suspected they would take the remaining episodes and air them in the fall. There’s no official word on that, but all evidence is pointing to that being the case. Honestly, this was a better episode than a lot of the season finales since season nine. It’s not a bad way to go. I still resent that there are still way too many questions than answers, and the plotting has not been well refined by any stretch of the imagination, but this is where we are.
If this is it for Season 15 or Season 15 part one, all I can say is it’s been very weak. My other reviews elaborate on that more, but it’s very sad to see it all just sit in a holding pattern. This should have been so much more. I will likely spend the next few months postulating where things went wrong, but I do see a definitive lack of imagination and spark with the creative team. I’ll sum it all up with a quote from Crowley from the afore mentioned “Alpha and Omega” episode.
“Well... that was a complete and utter dog's breakfast, wasn't it?”
Overall grade for “Destiny’s Child,” a B. It was an entertaining watch, but at this point in the final season, we need more.
Screencaps are courtesy of the most awesome Raloria. Thanks again for such amazing work!
Read more of Alice's insights on Supernatural! Reviews on every episode of the series are on Alice's Writer's Page and in WFB's Episode Guides!