Monday, October 31, 2011

Supernatural - 7.06 - Slash Fiction - Recap

Previously - Sheriff Jodie saw a monster, Leviathans suck, Witch Don took LeviaHunter temporarily down, Sam tried to get Dean to share, Dean killed Amy, the brothers were good….this doesn't bode well for the episode

Note - I love this episode. Even the ending doesn't bother me. The writing is exceptional after a string of hits and megamisses. Therefore look for large chunks of dialogue in this recap. Some scenes are just too funny not to. On with the show. At First Bank of Jericho, Dean flatters a teller into making change and no that's not innuendo. He signals Sam to lock the doors and they rob the bank. For anyone not spoilered yet, welcome LeviaBrothers. They're like shape shifters but with a nastier appetite. LeviaSam: "Your money's insured so no heroes, okay?" Yep, no heroes here - just a whole lot of fun for Jensen and Jared. They put everyone in with the safety deposit boxes, wink at the cameras, hold their guns awkwardly, and fire. Highest number of deaths before the title card ever.

In the basement of Rufus' Montana cabin, LeviaHunter is awake but chained. Apparently Don's spell worked well as he still isn't up to breaking out, eating Bobby, and disclosing to his fellow Leviathans the location of the only thing close to home now that Bobby's house blew up. Bobby attempts to kill LeviaHunter in sundry ways; LeviaHunter attempts to make me spit out my water with his snarkitude. He succeeds. Right until he calls Dean and Sam, "My two favorite meatsicles." That's worse than meat suit and I cringe every time it's said. Bobby is frustrated. "Greatest hits didn't do the trick. I'm down to B sides and deep cuts." Dean reminds us that the spell is temporary, which we know from in the previouslies. Dean: "He gets his spinach back we're going to end up having to drop a car on him just to stop him." LeviaHunter reminds us LeviaDad walked away from that. Thanks - I can be ticked all over again. The Winchester clan isn't happy with the news either. Dean takes over the interrogation with the chatty captive. LeviaHunter tracked them through alias-tracking software. Bobby: "Great. Just what we need, a Mensa Monster." BWAH!!! And he has a new name, MM for short. "When we were all nestled in at Camp Cas, we kind of got the full download. That's just how we do." I like MM. Bobby asks why he's answering questions. "Because 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." (Huge sigh) You're too cocky. You aren't going to make it. Glad to have had you for a little while MM. MM must be pretty big in the LeviaLeader list because he knows all about the LeviaBros.

On an ancient TV, local breaking news catches the Winchester clan up. I puzzle why local news in Montana picks up a California bank robbery. If it was the 6:00 news sure, but breaking news? I doubt it. Dean and Sam were presumed dead (Jus in Bello) and now the focus of a manhunt. Bobby: "Busy morning you two?" Dean: "The SOB's Xeroxed us." Ha! Sam asks how and MM yells about hair. "Not too hard to lift some DNA out of a motel shower drain guys." I love his "duh" voice while the brothers exchange "we're screwed" looks. Dean: "You can copy people like that? Awesome." The Leviathans want the Winchesters on the FBI's most wanted list so Dean's all for killing them first. Bobby has very valid reasons against that. Dean: "They're wearing our faces Bobby. This is personal." Sam and I agree. Bobby: "Well if you're going to be stupid, you might as well be smart about it." BWAH! He tells them to see Frank Deveraux. "In the meantime, I'll keep working on Chatty Cathy here. See if I can figure out what makes him die." Ha! I love these small gems. The dialogue is snappy tonight. The brothers stop to fuel Baby and Sam heads inside for protein bars and Bing Bongs. What? Hostess won't pay for product placement. I'm very disappointed. Unfortunately the clerk recognizes Sam and calls the police. Sam sees an ATM robbery by their doppelgangers and hightails it outside. Baby roars into the night with nary a Bing Bong in sight. Meanwhile the Feds head to the Manitoc Savings & Loan. By this time I should have caught on, but nope, oblivious. Cop: "These Winchester boys are keeping busy I hear. What is this? Some type of psycho road trip?" Feds remind us the Winchesters were dead a couple days ago and the lead Fed doesn't like serial killer paperwork. They get a tip about the Gas n Sip and young Fed puzzles, "It's about a thousand miles from here. That's fast. Must have flown." "That or Batmobile." Actually it's Supernatural geography - nothing is more than 8 hours away no matter how many states you cross.

In a mansion in the middle of nowhere the Winchesters pop in on Frank, who greets them with a gun. He thinks he's funny. I find him amusingly annoying. "Well I'll be darned. Psycho Butch and Sundance. You're on CNN right now." That's a keeper! He agrees it's not them - no teleporter. "Now who sent you? NSA, the Feeb, March of Dimes?" (snickers) Dean says Bobby, which earns a gun waved in his face. Sam clarifies about owing Bobby for Port Huron. "Guy saves your life one time, and what? You owe him the rest of yours?" Dean and I say, "That's usually how it works, yeah." Frank puts down the gun and shreds all the brothers' ids. He thinks the government is cloning people. Frank reminds me of a much less sweet, not naïve Ronald Reznik. I miss Ron. "You're number two on the Most Wanted list. Quickest climb up the charts since Donna Summer." Frank suggests Cuba. Dean: "Look, we gotta stick around and kick a couple of a**. So, uh, we just need you to get us further off the grid but keep us on the board." Frank says, "No more rock shout-outs." Aw man, I love the rock shout outs. Tom and John Smith are so boring. He demands they change phones frequently, use only cash, and avoid 100 million government-accessed cameras. What is this? London. "You see a place that even looks like it can afford security, you just ease on down the road." Frank's stuck in the 70's. Donna Summer, the Wiz? He smashes Sam's laptop, gives him another, and claims they owe him $5,000 cash. Bwah! The Winchesters get their pictures taken and a few ids (much less than they started) and one map later, they leave Frank's. I'm surprised they had $5,000 cash on hand to pay him. Not sure why. Frank marked where the LeviaBrothers hit and tells them there's "no such thing as a random series of robbery-murders by your evil twins." He questions their plan to chase down their LeviaDoubles instead of hiding. "…I'd lay low cause I love life and its intricate mysteries, but you two want to be dumb, that's fine. At least have the common sense to ditch your car." The brothers and I cringe. What? Not Baby. "Your DoubleMints? They're using a car just like the one outside." Dean looks freaked while Sam hesitantly waits for Dean's reaction.

Quick cut and Bobby shoots MM, which only hypes him up. Bobby: "You bleed black snot, sure, but you bleed, you can die." MM taunts Bobby to provoke an emotional gaffe, but Bobby takes his frustrations out by beheading MM. "Hot damn. Well, that's something." Ha! Too bad it won't work. Cool effect though. Later, Bobby hears a knock on the cabin door. Who should be there but Sheriff Jodie? Woo hoo! Of course, I immediately suspect she's possessed. Anyone else? Bobby is rude in his shock but she persists via food and beer, while Bobby explains his other guest. Sheriff Jodie thanks Bobby for his help with LeviaDoc. "They were fresh out of thanks for saving me from liver-eating surgeon cards at the store." Hallmark needs a freaky events division. Bobby passes it off as his unpaid job. Jodie wants real conversation; Bobby not so much. Sheriff: "Bobby, let someone be nice to you for 5 minutes." He agrees, "But not too nice. Can't be going soft." Ha! It's the Winchester way. Jodie: "I can cook - ish. You know. Why don't you let me make you something? Maybe put this new place of yours in some kind of order. I owe you that much." Bobby calls her Sheriff but she corrects, "Jodie." I grin broadly while Bobby looks puzzled. Have you never gotten signals from a woman before? He's as hopeless as he was with Marcy. Back downstairs, MM reassembled himself. MM taunts, "Did you think it would be that easy?" Bobby: "No but it's a start." He swings the machete again.

In a Gremlinish car decorated by toddlers, I share Dean's pain. No grown man should ever drive this. Bunny stickers on the dash, a squeaky pegasus hanging from the mirror. No one older than 12 should like this. Dean slices the toy off and grouses, "You know it's bad enough that they are ganking people wearing our mugs. But now this? Have us driving around in this…kaboodle while Baby's on lockdown." Yep, definitely feel your pain. Sam says its temporary; I say it doesn't matter. This is a crime too. Dean: "Nobody puts Baby in a corner." BWAH! Sam calls him on the Dirty Dancing allusion, but Dean counters, "Swayze movie. Swayze always gets a pass." I shelled out money for Wong Foo so I don't agree, but I do love the line. Sam tries to placate Dean with music but Air Supply's "All out of Love" comes on. Just like Sam I figure Dean would rather be monster-throttled than listen to this. We're both wrong. Sam wants to turn it off but Dean says nothing else is on and quietly proceeds to lip sync the words. He does it with such passion I spit out my gum. I won't bore you with middle school Air Supply tales, but I know exactly why Dean knows this one. The scene is as classic as the Eye of the Tiger outtake, especially since it freaks Sam out so much he turns it off. I gasp for breath so hard I almost miss the key clue. The LeviaBrothers are strolling down season 1 memory lane. They hit Jericho, Black Water Ridge, Lake Manitoc, etc. As we flash to the brothers' first cases together, I wonder why Cas knew this info to pass to the Leviathans. I didn't get the impression he was on Winchester patrol before being one of several angels pulled up to the Majors to get Dean out of hell. Sam says it's St. Louis next and I'm all excited they are returning to my city and on World Series game 7 too. Dean's also excited, "Perfect. Connor's Diner. Best burgers in St. Louis. Oh, I deserve something good in my life right now."

Switch to LeviaDean (LD) scarfing a burger at the diner where Eve died, complete with the uniforms. (There is no Connor's Diner in St. Louis and the whole scene is an homage to Pulp Fiction, which I have no interest in seeing. Things you learn on Google.) This scene is too awesome to recap so here's the whole thing. LD: "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." LeviaSam: "Dead plants with creamy goo. It's like eating self-righteousness. I mean you tell me which is worse." LD: "I mean honestly, I just I…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. Thinks he's a damn comedian." LS: "Who has 2 thumbs and a 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 detachable arms is beyond me. You know I had a brother with this many issues once." LD: "Yeah." LS: "You know what I did? I ate him." LD: "Of course you did." BWAH!!!!! LS: "How are these guys even a threat?" LD: "Boss says they gotta go, they gotta go." LS: "Right. Idea. You want to trade? I mean I'll take Chuckles over Schizo." LD: "No, I like this one's hair better. You can stay in the big one." LS: "Alright. In that case let's turn up the heat. The sooner I get out of this and into something more stable the better." LD has a kid videotape the whole thing and they proceed to blow it all to pieces (off screen). Budget cuts! Everything about this scene is golden. I love how the LeviaWinchesters trash talk Dean and Sam and point out how screwed they are. I love how LS proves Sam is not alright despite his claims. All in all, one of my favorite scenes this season.

The real Winchesters talk to Bobby about beheading, but no one's keen on getting that close. Bobby discusses a shootable weapon when Jodie asks if he wants mayo. Dean: "You got a chick over there?" Ha! Bobby's caught. He denies it but no way. "Are you even working Richard Gere?" Bobby calls them idjits; the brothers and I grin. Bobby deserves some love. Sadly Bobby tells them LeviaBros "Pumpkin and Honey Bunny-ed a diner" in St. Louis. Dean's distraught because no more Connor's burgers for him. I'm distraught because instead of St. Louis they head to Iowa. Skin was far better than Hook Man anyway. The Feds still hit St. Louis though, where a cop shows them the video and we see LS yelling, "I want the whole world to see what Sam and Dean Winchester are capable of." They kill the camera kid last and move in for a close up. LD: "Well, good night St. Louis. You've been a wonderful crowd. Grab your socks and hose Iowa because we're headed to you next." He winks. The Feds head to Iowa. We head to Rufus' basement . Bobby tries electrocuting MM and makes the mistake of touching him. It's LeviaBobby. I'm thrilled; Bobby's not. LeviaBobby: "It's pretty dark in here. High school dropout. A drunk like your Daddy before you. Oh, you and Dad. Now that's a can of scorpions. Your favorite singer is Joni frickin' Mitchell. Oh Bobby, you are ten pounds of sad in a five pound bag." Aww! I love this scene too. Mostly because we get more Bobby background and there's never enough of that. Too bad he didn't tell us what happened in Omaha.

In Akeny, which looks more like Manitoc than Manitoc did, Dean and Sam walk down the street as the LeviaBrothers arrive in Impala 2.0. She may be an imposter but she's still a welcome sight. Dean agrees. "Those are nice wheels. I tell you what. When this is over, I'm stealing those rims." Sam is less pleased. "This is all sorts of wrong." Dean calls Bobby. "We've got eyes on him. It's like looking in a fun house mirror." Bobby: "Yeah, I know the feeling." Well at least I'm excited. Bobby suggests they lie low until he gets something but that is not an option. The Leviathans will keep killing until they flush out the brothers. If they lie low, more people die and we all know Winchester guilt. Sadly, all options disappear as the police bust the real Dean and Sam. Behind the cops, the doppelgangers re-enter the Impala and LeviaDean winks. It's cold and totally awesome. The Winchesters are screwed and need Bobby for answers, but LeviaBobby is still messing with him. Bobby: "Save it. I already know me, handsome." Ha! LB: "You've got the gruff thing down. 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've even got a thing for that lady upstairs." Aww Bobby. I hope with you. At least one of them ought to get a happy ending. Bobby counters with a Browning quote - "A man's reach should exceed his grasp." LB likes the quote too. "After I eat you, I'm definitely going to hit the library." BWAH!!! Bobby goes to machete LB but something drips down and burns him. The almighty goo freaks him completely out as chunks of skin melt. Upstairs Jodie had a mop accident. Bobby's so happy he kisses her. YES! Jodie and I are surprised but inwardly ecstatic. Well at least until I realize the big bad Leviathans are taken out by mop water. How disappointing!

At the police station, Akeny's new sheriff puts Dean in a cell and Sam in interrogation. Then he tells his officers to go home. What? First off, the place will be a media mad house once people realize the killers are caught and Akeny seems short on cops. Secondly, shouldn't they want to interrogate the serial killers first. This is a huge deal. They should all be celebrating together, not heading for a nap. Ah, Annie enters the episode. The two cops are needed for Leviafood so common sense flies away. I sigh. LeviaCops return to eat the night crew, while the sheriff talks with Dean. Dean starts to go the innocent route but then just asks for his phone call. Dean can use puppy dog voice too. Bobby picks up over a decapitated and fully burned MM. Bobby wants to get them but Dean explains, "There's no time. We saw them. They saw us. So we are coming to get us. You read me." Bobby exposits about sodium borate. "OK, let me get Mr. Wizard on speed dial." No need, it's in common cleaners that says Borax. Dean: "You want me to Desperate Housewives these mothers." Ha! Bobby suggests Borax dousing and decapitation. Then keep the head separate. Dean says thanks but the sheriff is freaked out. "Borax. Decapitation. What kind of sickos are you and your friends?" Dean: "Hey, you listen to me. If you don't go get every ounce, every drop of whatever that stuff is in this place right now, we're all going to die." The sheriff calls him crazy and for a moment I wonder if he's a low-level Leviathan waiting for the boss. That's the genius of the Leviathan plot; anyone could be one. However, the sheriff rethinks it when he sees one of his deputies eating another. Watching your deputies turn into serial killers in front of your eyes will make anyone a believer. The actor playing the sheriff does a great job here. He lets Dean out. "OK, you listen to me and we'll live. Keep your head down. Get to the supply closet. Get anything that says Borax on it." Dean goes for a gun and runs into LeviaSam. Unfortunately, guns don't work and Dean goes flying. He breaks the fire axe box but LS mocks him. "Cute. You really think you can get close enough to use it." Dean: "Not until you're burning." Cue the sheriff with the cleaner. One clean swipe later and LeviaSam is down for the count.

Flipping to Sam, LeviaDean enters his room. "I'm not your brother but I am Dean adjacent." Bwah! Who wouldn't want to be Dean adjacent? LD: "I just want to let you know how much I have 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." It really ticks him off. "You're wasting a perfectly good opportunity to subjugate the weak." Yikes, Leviathans are so power-hungry. That makes them more like the evils the Winchesters have already faced than monsters who really want to feed. Disappointing. LD hits psychiatrist mode and I have a terrible feeling. Please don't spill the Amy beans LD. Let Dean do it. "Here's the deal. Dean thinks you're nutballs. He thinks you're off your game." Sam: "You going to kill me or is this some sort of play with your food bull?" LD: "Alright, alright, I guess that's why Dean never told you that he killed Amy." NOOO!!! There goes the brother relationship again. This sucks out loud! LD: "There it is. The look on your face. That is priceless. That's what I've been waiting for. Now I can eat you. Cuz you see, I like my meat a little bitter." LeviaDean completely creeps me out. Kudos to Jensen Ackles here. Of course this is where Dean kicks in the door, douses LD with cleaner and chops his head off. Dean beheaded Dean. So cool!!! Dean: "Wow, that felt good." Special effects are awesome too. Sheriff uncuffs Sam and agrees he'll lie to the FBI. Dean asks to be dead again. He gets a mop but Sam's still stunned. Sam says he's okay, but I foresee a nasty NotImpala chat coming.

Next day the sheriff says he shot the brothers and killed them. The coroner confirms it, complete with fingerprints. They claim the bodies were cremated since the sheriff obviously had time to see their living will and talk religion before they croaked. They have the fastest coroner's office on the planet. Fed: "Wow! That must be some kind of record. They died last night." One Fed is believably upset. The other says it avoids paperwork. Yep, don't trust him. Let's contemplate how many conspiracy theories will surface about these serial killers. They were dead, then started a wild crime spree years after their deaths. Then they are killed by a small town sheriff and the only proof of that death is his and the coroner's word and some fingerprints. This screams suspicious! I know Supernatural is going to brush this under the rug, but in "reality" people know the Winchesters' faces now. They won't forget about them overnight and they can check the internet to compare pictures. It should be a big deal for hunters even if it won't be in the SPN-universe. Back to the story, Bobby's TV plays the sole reporter at the scene of 2 serial killers' deaths. (Did all the others get lost?) Jodie says her work is done and Bobby thanks her. "Anytime you need me to spill something else, you give me a call." Man I like her! Bobby leans in and Jodie and I think he's going to kiss her again. Instead he gives her the severed head of MM and tells her to drop it over a bridge. Way to kill the mood! He kisses her cheek and she stares at him then grins. I throw a pillow. Man up Bobby! She knows what you do and is still interested. Not many women like her. Instead of Bobby going after her, it's back to the coroner's. Not good. YoungFed returns and Leviathans out. Bye Sheriff and Coroner daughter. Their deaths, as the only witnesses to dead Winchesters, won't seem suspicious at all.

LeviaFed calls his boss with bad news. The bodies have no heads and the Winchesters live. LeviaBoss: "So all that brain power, all those resources, and those 2 field mice are still on my to-do list?" LeviaFed wants to make new LeviaBrothers but LeviaBoss realizes it will really bring them undo attention. Apparently people get suspicious with resurrections. They must not be Supernatural fans because it's a yearly occurrence here. LeviaBoss prefers subtle. They could hardly go bigger. After threatening to "bib" his underling, he enters an obnoxious limo. Hello Crowley! It's always better when you're here. He introduces himself to Mr. Roman, aka LeviaBoss, and brings "muffins" as a welcome gift. LeviaBoss knows who he is and says to call him Dick. Well, that's appropriate. Crowley schmoozes about a deal between the Leviathans and hell, but LeviaBoss won't bite. Crowley claims he released them into the world but really it was MegaloCas and quite frankly LeviaBoss already knows about soul power. "Don't roofie me and call it romance." Yikes! Crowley: "I think you got me wrong." He pegged you right but dangerously underestimates you. A ticked-off Crowley is a clever Crowley. LeviaBoss proceeds to insult Crowley and threaten demons. "You're less than humans and they're not good for much until you dip them in garlic sauce." Tell us how you really feel. I foresee the Winchesters and Crowley on the same side but not truly working together again. Too much bad blood. Crowley: "Keep the muffins." He disappears.

Meanwhile, Dean and Sam go to a pier to toss off Leviathan heads. Dean debates keeping them. I wonder why they are tossing them in the same place. Wouldn't it be a bit more secure to dump them a state apart. None of it matters because Sam isn't paying attention. Here we go. Dean thinks their doubles creeped Sam out, but Sam asks if he wants to know what's wrong. I hesitate. On one hand, we need the whole Amy thing in the rearview mirror. On the other, I dread another brother rift. Dean has no qualms. "You know my motto. Here to help." So not the right words. Sam: "Here to help. Kind of like you helped Amy." Ouch! Dean realizes the jig is up; he starts to explain but Sam is rightly ticked off. Dean lied and he calls him on it. "Don't lie to me again. You know, don't even talk to me." They stare briefly at each other and Sam get his duffel from Notpala. He says he can't and walks off. Dean: "You can't what?" Sam: "I can't talk to you right now. Dean, I can't even be around you right now." He tells Dean to leave without him. Dean slightly bobs his head and Sam yells, "Go!" Dean: "Alright. Sorry Sam." The brothers head in opposite directions but this scene hits me more the second time than the first. I guess I expected Sam to punch Dean out. He deserves it. When Sam walked off and the screen went black, it felt off. I had psyched myself up to endure this big emoangst drama fest, but then nothing. On second viewing it made more sense. Sam was way too upset to talk so some space is probably healthy. However, this means the fallout will occur in future episodes and you know me with long, drawn out emo. I won't be able to psych myself up forever. I guess future episodes will determine how I feel about this scene in the long run but for now, I'm good. Especially since I know they work together again in the next episode. It would be far different if I didn't have that assurance.

Review - Without rewatching the first 2 episodes, I think this one is on par with the premiere and possibly better. It hit for me in writing, acting, but mostly in fun. LeviaWinchesters have a levity that was freeing. They killed people and didn't brood about it. That's by no means where I want the "real" Winchesters to head, but the lack of guilt, burden, and secrets was refreshing. The scene in Connor's diner is a classic. I will never look at salad the same way . I had as much fun watching the LeviaBrothers as I bet Jensen and Jared had playing them. I also loved the asides, one-liners, and the overabundance of snark. Not only did we flash back to season 1, but in some ways it reminded me of the best of season 1. Dean didn't even drink in this episode. Sheriff Mills and Crowley were the icing on the cake…um after last week…make that brownie. Still swearing off cake. SPOILER - I am excited Kim Rhodes will reprise her role in a future episode and hope beyond hope she makes it through. I love the idea of a Bobby romance if only briefly. Let it not end in heart ache though. In the end, the only thing I disliked about the episode is that the mighty Leviathans are taken down by common laundry soap. Other than that, it's just me nitpicking. This one was plain fun and I think the fans deserved that. Kudos all around!

Grade: A-

Next week - Psychics galore. Dean and Sam reunite. I only care about the latter.

Best scene- LeviaWinchesters in Connor's Diner. BY FAR!
Best shock - Amy thing is out in the open
Worst Shock - Laundry soap can take out the big bad. Get the squirt guns folks.
Best line - "Well if you're going to be stupid, you might as well be smart about it."

Other great lines (Because there were so many of them):
"It's like eating self-righteousness."
"It's kind of hard to sift through all the drunken blackouts."
"After I eat you, I'm definitely going to hit the library."
"We saw them. They saw us. So we are coming to get us."
"You want me to Desperate Housewives these mothers."
"Don't roofie me and call it romance."

Screen caps by Home of the Nutty

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Saturday, October 29, 2011

Supernatural's Ratings Suck But What Can I Do? 5 Suggestions to Feel Better Other Than Hacking Nielsen

Many things plague a Supernatural fan's world. Anxiety over future deaths (keep breathing Bobby), fandom wars, the CW, and of course hellatus are just a few. Still no foe ever pursued by a Winchester comes close to our greatest adversary. Larger than a Leviathan's shadow, more constant than a Lucifer hellucination, more hysteria-producing than a 2 line plot synopsis, Nielsen is our enemy and he's got a cancellation bear that makes hellhounds look like Lucky. A cunning adversary, he controls the Winchesters' fate far more than angels and demons ever could.

Nielsen's torture of choice - ratings! Part of what makes Nielsen so deadly is no one understands him. He uses ratings and shares and live viewing vs DVR. He's equipped with a weapon so dull it lulls you to sleep before stabbing you in the heart. Complicated charts and endless numbers are his "salt and holy water" 2-punch assault on the passionate. While you have to be a statistician to fully understand the beast, it's implications are clear. Fall under the "desired" number and your show is history no matter how much you love it. Problem: the desired number changes more than Big Bads in season 6. In order to effectively control the monster, you have to be a part of the monster. And the monster is not accepting applications. Sorry to those clamoring to be a Nielsen family.

In layman's terms, Nielsen operates under the statistically significant principle, which means the sample size of a survey can be small but still accurate. Increasing the number of participants does not change the percentages. Basically, even though most people don't know anyone who has ever been part of the Nielsen system, it's still mathematically correct....maybe, depending on who you talk to. You should be able in theory to survey 100 varied people you don't know and don't get online (because that's majorly skewed), and find that yes, an absurd number of Americans actually watch Jersey Shore to the detriment of society. Unfortunately, in that same sample, you would find a low number who watch Supernatural or have even heard of it.

So what's a fan to do? Only a few thousand American households are Nielsen families. (Sorry international fans.) This group is picked randomly so the more you really want to be a Nielsen family, the less likely you are to become one. Remember Murphy's law. Since thus far no one has successfully hacked the Nielsen system to get on the list and finding a Nielsen family to force into watching Supernatural is both illegal and harder than finding someone in Witness Protection, Supernatural fans need to be creative. Telling people who already watch Supernatural won't do it folks. In fact, unless those people have a Nielsen box, it doesn't matter if they watch it live, on DVR, live streamed, or downloaded legally or illegally. The only people who count in the ratings are those with the elusive Nielsen boxes. Time for a new plan.

1. Show advertisers the money - Sending random things to the network to save a show does not work. Getting a company to sponsor a show might. For example, Chuck got sponsored by Subway and it was renewed despite bad ratings. If we show advertisers we will buy their products because they run ads during Supernatural, we deliver a nice add-on value. Of course, they need to know you bought their product because of Supernatural. To best understand this campaign, head over to the Supernatural National Guard run by St. Jon. In fact, go now! They are doing great stuff for Supernatural.

2. Show Warner Brothers the money - Warner Brothers sells Supernatural episodes to the CW. Therefore, the more Warner Brothers makes from the show, the cheaper they can sell it to the CW and the fewer ratings Supernatural has to get to cover the CW's cost. It's all business, so put your money where your heart is. Buy the DVD's. International fans, if Supernatural is shown in your country, watch it. Let that station know how much you love it so they repurchase it. Show TNT the love and encourage them to continue syndicating Supernatural. These three are huge money makers for Warner Brothers. Christmas is coming so put official Supernatural merchandise on your list. Buy the novels and magazines. Purchase a ticket to a con. All of which benefits Warner Brothers.

3. Watch Nikita (or Vampire Diaries...) - Yep, you heard right. But do it with a purpose. This is where the online community can help. The Supernatural fandom can be their own worst enemy and we've made foes of people who should be our allies. (I can hear it now - but then those shows' ratings will rise and Supernatural will falter in comparison. Nope, not unless you are a Nielsen family because otherwise your viewing doesn't count.) I'm guilty myself of mostly watching and talking about Supernatural. However, if every SPN fan watched one other show and went on its fanboards and websites to say what they liked and mention why their fans might like Supernatural, we come out with a lot more allies and possibly a Nielsen viewer. Granted it's a long shot but I'm willing to try Nikita. After all, Nikita is known for action and SPN has that in spades. Already we have something in common. Best news - CW and Netflix now have a contract to allow past seasons to live stream. Anyone with a Netflix account should take advantage of that.

4. Talk it person, not online - It's highly likely those mythical Nielsen families are not passionate fans who spend every waking hour chatting online about SPN. They probably don't have a favorite website to dissect every detail of the previous week's episode. It's unlikely they have a hellatus countdown dominating their desktop. Warning - you may need to sit down for this - In fact, there are millions of people who watch Supernatural regularly who are not part of the online fandom. I know, it's a shocker. We have to reach out in person, but admittedly even then our chances of talking to an actual Nielsen viewer is slim. So....

5. Talk it up in entertainment magazines - Again online excitement is great but what really works is the TV Guide cover. Notice how TV Guide gives Supernatural more coverage now than it did previously? How there's a whole lot more press from them than Entertainment Weekly (EW)? That's because TV Guide sells a lot of issues when it features Supernatural. And yes, I know people who actually started watching SPN just because it was on the cover and they wanted to see what the big deal was. While we cannot grab every magazine cover, we can write in the comments mentioning SPN. If EW hasn't profiled Supernatural for 5 weeks in their What to Watch section, write to them about it. Be positive about what you like in the show though instead of attacking the magazine. If it has a Comic-Con issue and fails to mention Supernatural got into Hall H, remind them. And by all means, if a magazine does prominently feature Supernatural, buy it. After all, every magazine will highlight what sells and if we keep SPN in the forefront of their mind, nothing but good can happen.

In the end, none of these things will raise ratings but it does make Supernatural worth more to Warner Brothers and keeps it in the forefront of conversation. Besides, it makes a non-Nielsen family fan feel like they are doing something for the show, which makes me feel better. Right now, Supernatural is still looking safe in the ratings. We aren't in the bottom three on the CW and SPN still makes tons of money for Warner Brothers. The ratings while not good are not dire either. However, ratings tend to slip as the season progresses, especially in spring, and that's when decisions are made. I expect a season 8 but I'm campaigning for a season 9. After all, a year without new Supernatural will be more depressing than a season four brother split.

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SPN Asylum

Supernatural - 7.05 - Shut Up, Dr. Phil - Recap

Previously - Witches were skeevy, Cas vomited Leviathans, Leviathans had bad taste in food, Amy killed her mom to save Sam as kids, Amy convinced Sam, Dean disagreed, Dean killed Amy (we're still dealing with this irksome plot)

At a hair salon, the pink robed victim of the week convinces a divorcing woman to sell her house. She's obnoxious, self-congratulating, and since she's getting her roots done, sitting under a big hair dryer. A blonde metrosexual stylist says to yell if she needs anything. I doubt he'll save her; she's before the title card, a guaranteed goner. For some reason, the hair dryers are separated by a glass door so yelling won't help anyway. HairVic overheats and tries to lift off the dryer. I wonder why she doesn't slide out of the seat. Question answered - something won't let her. The blow dryer sparks and shorts out. No need to worry about roots anymore. Metro enters and sees his dead client and blow dryer decorated with brains. Where's a Leviathan when you need one? The title card splats.

In a hotel room, Dean's nightmares include LeviaCas, psycho Sam, and dead Amy. He wakes sweaty, sees Sam's gone, and finds an empty beer bottle. Time for research and whiskey, not in that order. Intervention time before his liver makes a demon deal. Outside, Sam runs - the first time a Winchester has run except in a hunt. Dean: "Somebody better be chasing you." Ha! This scene is funny; the gag outtake Jared sent is far funnier! Sam wants to get healthy; Dean wants to drown his sorrows. I want this subplot to end. In a running gag, Dean calls Sam "Lance Armstrong" and Sam reminds him Lance Armstrong is a bicyclist not a runner. Dean mentions 2 deaths in Prosperity, Indiana - one HairVic, the dryer casualty, and another "boiled in a hot tub." Thanks SPN for not showing it. Sam: "You don't see a lot of that." Ha! I like deadpan Sam. In another blatant contrast, Sam drinks knock-off Gatorade while Dean swills whiskey. Sam: "What's going on with you?" Dean says they already talked about it. Sam: "No we haven't. See to do that, you'd have to sort of speak." Good point. Dean: "Okay, see if you can get this straight. You're New Sam, right? Lance Armstrong (biking) and I'm still me, okay. Alright so you might see things different now, call it a runner's high or some c**. But that doesn't mean something's going on with me. " Sam agrees abruptly and Dean calls him on it, but he's off to shower. Dean lifts the whiskey but after contemplating puts it down. Sam needs to push harder on this to really get to Dean. Meanwhile at Jack's Eat & Run Grocery, LeviaHunter (he needs a good name) has finished his gourmet people mac & cheese and needs another meal. He swings groceries in the trunk complete with dead body.

In Prosperity, Indiana, HairVic's picture is plastered on bus benches. Sam questions her sister who calls her a pillar of the community. "I was the big sister and I looked up to her." I swallow the huge freaking anvil they just tossed down my gullet. BigSis can't find a connection to HotTubVic, but of course there is. "Agent Sambora, if someone did this to my sister, find out who." Wait a minute. Did she just say? BWAH!!! Bon Jovi's alive and well on SPN. Meanwhile at the salon, Metro explains the accident that couldn't happened. Dean finds a weird coin and phones Sam. "Someone could have dropped it. Of course they don't have pockets in those robe things they make you wear." Sam teases him about his salon knowledge and wants a ride. Dean teases he should run home, but hits a liquor store before picking Sam up. Later, Victim 3 says goodbye to construction workers at his site and heads to a PortaPotty. I feel for him; no one wants to die while going to the bathroom. Of course if it were me, I would wait until I got home. PortaPottys are nasty. He enters as a nail gun turns itself on and snakes over to him. He opens the door only to get nailed over and over again. As he gasps his last breath, he gets it in the eyes. I close mine until the machine noise stops. Gruesome!

Dean checks the PortaPotty crime scene complete with nail-protruding eyes. Yuck! A local cop knows way too much about Nailed's life including his blue ribbon for pecan pie. Is there nothing to do in this clearly prosperous town? Cop puzzles over how the nail gun got power without a genreator. Dean finds another coin and confers with Sam who found a connection to all three vics. "Hair dryer/brain roast" Ha! They were part of a shopping center project that went south. Everyone but the developer, Don Stark, died. Dean: "Don Stark. Why do I know that name?" (Don Stark had a minor role in Hollywood Babylon , but it may be a coincidence.) This small town where people know the minutia of everyone's life is big enough to have a community center complete with bust of Donald Stark, founder of Prosperity Charity Foundation. His wife is hosting an art auction for the Margaret Stark Charity Foundation. These two have supersized egos. Dean and Sam discuss the case as Dean brings out his flask. Sam and I both eye roll and say, "Really?" He reminds Dean they are on a job. I remind the writers I said that last episode. Neither care. Bobby's text interrupts a much needed smackdown to say the coins are old Romanian. I think gypsy and hope Jenny Calendar makes a surprise appearance. Sam notices dead flowers around the bust and Dean mentions dead flowers around HairVic's bus ad. Dean: "Hmm, I've seen this once before. The plants are all dead in one spot." Yeah, in the terrible Children Shouldn't Play with Dead Things. Here's hoping we avoid zombies. In a random cut, LeviaHunter drives to Bobby Goldsboro's "See the Funny Little Clown." Congrats SPN team for making this 5 out 5 episodes with pointless cuts in them. No idea what it was for. However, next episode better explain the odd music choice.

Thankfully we switch to Don Stark's house. Welcome James Marsters! Good to see you! The brothers interview while he exposits and his assistant Jenny Kline pops in. She makes cupcakes; it's important. Sam excuses himself to poke around the bedroom and finds Mrs. Stark has moved out. She conveniently left behind some witchcraft with a pair of broken heels. A half-trained monkey could follow the glaring neon yellow signs that say "Clues here." Good thing this episode is not about the mystery and all about the guest stars. Speaking of, Don points out the kudos in his office, including a signed photo from Donald Trump. Sam returns to talk about Maggie and Dean mentions adultery, suspecting Don and Cupcake Jenny of a fling. Right cause, wrong woman. Don describes it as a thing. Sam: "Like a shoe." Dean: "Yeah, or a waffle iron." I like the asides today. Dean: "You see Don, wives generally think of an affair as something more than a thing." Ha! Glad living with Lisa taught you something. Don admits sleeping with HairVic, but denies Maggie killed her. Sam: "We're not implying anything. We're just saying you should be careful. And take her to dinner. And apologize." Dean: "And, uh, grovel. Wouldn't hurt." Dead plants on the porch point towards a highly ticked off witch. Dean: "It's kind of like Bewitched. Don's Darren. Doesn't even know it. Lot of laughs until you cheat on your wife." Or it's kind of like Cordelia summoning a vengeance demon after Xander cheated on her. Just saying if you have the alum, take advantage of it. Sam claims the plants die from bad vibes. Dean: "Literally kill off everything around her by PMS-ing at it. Yesh, that's not creepy at all." Dean calls Bobby. "Bobby, hey it's Dean. (pause) Winchester." Bwah! Either Bobby's possessed, suffering from head trauma, or has a weird sense of humor. Dean wants witch Terminex (ha!) but Bobby keeps cutting him off, even as he says thanks. Hmmmmm?

In the rain, Sam pops the poor Impala's hood as a distraction to watch for Maggie while Dean breaks into her newly leased place. He examines the house finding a witch bulletin board. Like a classroom one but with victims' pictures defaced by blood and animal bones at the bottom. Jennifer "Cupcake" Klein is next. Why doesn't Maggie just off her husband? Dean: "Don, keep it in your pants man." Agreed! Maggie returns in a silver sports coupe but Sam can't warn Dean since "all circuits are busy." He tries to FBI stall her but Maggie claims an emergency and walks off. Sam sets the car alarm off; I giggle. Sam: "Sorry. Restless leg syndrome." BWAH! Love his side kick. In the house, Dean gets the message and plays ring around the witch, one step ahead of Maggie until he slips out. Good thing Maggie's focused. Dean: "Spoiler alert! Jenny Klein's next. Swiped her photo off a hex deck but Maggie's going to notice it's gone eventually." Thanks for the warning. They book over to Jenny's as Maggie finds the photo's missing. Compare her witch face to Jenny's I Love Chocolate apron and sunny smile. Jenny's going down. One new bloody Jenny photo and Romanian spell later, Jenny's beautiful cupcake oozes blood filling. Ew! My aunt just brought over cupcakes too. The cupcakes start beating and pumping like mini hearts. The special effect is really cool and well, gross. No time for lingering though because she vomits blood and that's strictly Ew! Luckily Dean breaks open the door, Sam shoots the coin with his gun and all vomiting stops. "There were tiny beating hearts in my cupcakes. There were hearts in my cupcakes. Hearts in my cupcakes! That's never happened before!" Bwah! Hysterical in all its definitions. Dean: "Should I slug her?" Sam: "Give it a second." HA! Sam says she's hexed; Dean says to leave Dodge; I laugh through the whole scene. Sam brings up Don Stark and she's more grossed out by the idea of sleeping with him than by the cupcakes. Dean: "You and know." Cupcake: "You know? There is no you know." Sam: "No?" Who's on first? No cheating here!

At the art exhibit, I finally get to say, "Hello Charisma! Looking great!" She arranges things while her best friend Sue stalks, er, helps her. Sue is completely into Maggie, who is stressed over Don cheating. Sue exposits she spilled the beans about HairVic. Yikes! I'm all for telling your best friend her husband is a cheating scumbag but I smell ulterior motive and it stinks. Maggie loves Sue for keeping her from looking like a fool. Alas, before Sue finishes her "I love you" Maggie's off reorganizing. Don runs into Sue and I thought she was a witch too. She's snarky and direct when Don counters he made one mistake. I don't buy it but Maggie interrupts before a hissy fit starts. Don: "You know Maggie, I think I've been patient." Excuse me! This is neither apologizing nor groveling. I don't like Don. Of course when he calls HairVic's death "creative" I realize he's a psychopath too. Don blames Maggie for his affair because she chaired too many charity events. Maggie and I both say, "Oh boo hoo!" She calls him an egomaniac (if the shoe fits honey). "There was three of us in this marriage - you, me, and your ego." Don mentions FBI Winchesters; Maggie knows they're hunters. He says it stops; she doesn't comply. "You're so cute when you try to tell me what to do." This whole scene is gold in an un-SPN way. As Don leaves, his bust shakes and its face falls off. It is so on! Dean and Sam arrive just in time to see the implosion. "OK, now she's just getting nasty. I mean killing the girlfriend is one thing but his commemorative bust? That's gotta hurt." BWAH!!! Sam: "She'll take the whole town out Dean. She doesn't care who gets in the way." It's out of character yet hilarious that the bust affects the Winchesters more than the "creative" deaths do. But time for a Bobby rescue in the form of an anti-witch spell. Dean says he'll remember but partway through realizes he needs a pen. This isn't a good sign. And also out of character.

That night Maggie practices her speech proving there's another megalomaniac in the family. She stops to boss the staff; Sue interrupts to kiss up. She wants to get close but Maggie wants to check the menu. Quick cut to the motel - Dean's pie looks better than Maggie's fare. Right until Sam dumps rotting chicken's feet next to it. Way to kill my appetite Sam. First cupcakes, now pie. Is any dessert safe? Sam exposits that every place with chicken's feet has encountered refrigerating and plumbing issues. Not a coincidence. While the brothers avoid the nasty smelling feet, Don pulls up outside the charity event. Cocktails get Supernaturaled next - the martinis come with eyeballs. Don smiles as Maggie watches the paintings run. She blames Don and Sue tries to comfort her. "I told you. He's a d**. We'll get through this because you have people who love you and he can't take that away from you." Wanna bet? One silver serving tray later and Sue's head and neck separate. Yuck! But hello Supernatural surprise! I totally didn't know Don was a witch. I love when this show shocks me in such a good way. Have to love Maggie's non-reaction to seeing her friend beheaded too while Don smiles and drives away. Maggie: "Fine Donald. It's war!" Enter Dean and Sam who are equally surprised at Don's witchy side. "So the mister's a witch himself. That means we've got not just 1 p** off witch. We've got 2. It's full-on War of the Roses." Yep, but funnier thank goodness. Sam doesn't agree. "Yeah, Bewitched just got a lot less funny." Dean: "Just like when they switched Darrens." Bwah!!! So true! They drive away but guess who's in Prosperity. It's LeviaHunter. Uh oh!

On stakeout, the Winchesters wait outside the Stark home. Dean: "She'll be here. They've been throwing lightning bolts at each other's favorite toys. There's nothing left to destroy but each other." Plan A: get them together and take them down. Plan B: why would they start having one now, no matter how smart that would be. Maggie storms in, Winchesters follow, and Plan A is shot to hell. Apparently the spell only works when the chicken feet are chilled. How persnickety! It only creates smoke and identical "What morons!" looks from the Starks. Don: "For obvious reasons you won't be leaving this room. Well you will be leaving. Just not alive." Traces of Spike leak out. Don and Maggie join forces chanting Romanian; Dean and Sam panic. Sam suggests talking. "This is obviously a domestic dispute so if we can't kill them, counsel them." (snickers) Dean says not his area and I agree, so why did Sam make Dean do the talking? Dean says the fact they haven't killed each other proves they enjoy each other in a sick twisted way. Sam steps in thankfully. Maggie plays the adultery card but Sam says relationships are a two-way street. Not what you say to a witch scorned. Down goes Sam for defending Don. Dean tries to walk the line and fails too. "No one can defend Don, not totally. We get that you feel betrayed because you were." Don calls kissing up and Dean flies through a glass door. Next Sam claims Don "regrets the whole Wendy thing" and Maggie balks at "thing". (Remember the conversation in Don's study.) Down Sam drops.

What? Maggie and Don have been together for 800 years? Frankly they have centuries of baggage since cheating isn't new to either of them. Maggie did Columbus. "The man was about to set sail. He could possibly fall off of the edge of the earth. I took pity!" Bwah!!! They look really good for 800+. Dean confirms Don did not sleep with Jenny but gets flung anyway. I think the Winchesters should cut their losses and run while they are distracted. Don apologizes and Sam encourages them. " All these years you buried your anger and your disappointment until it tore you apart. All you needed to do was talk." A theme anvil drops and narrowly misses Dean's head, who chooses this moment to snark. Dean, you were almost out! He's pinned to the wall with bees for flair. Maggie compliments Don's creativity and they make up. Don: "I couldn't kill you. All I ever wanted is you Mags. I've been crushing on you since forever. You're the woman I want to never grow old with." Maggie: "I could never murder you either, Don." They kiss. Awwww, if you weren't psychotic I'd root for you two. Dean however is stuck with bees.

Back at the motel, the brothers know they're beaten so Dean goes for the flask. Sam glances over but Dean says, "It's been a long day." LeviaHunter pops in to make it longer, although they don't know he's a Leviathan until Dean shoots him and out comes goo. LeviaHunter throws Dean into a corner; Sam is choked; I flash back to season 1 goodness. Until lightning fries LeviaHunter. Huh? What just happened? Apparently, Don's witch powers can take out big guns. Don: "You find a bottomless pit and drop it in. Spell only lasts for a few days." Hey, it's better than nothing. They should ask about this spell to use next time. Don pulls out Maggie's hex coins and they protest the attempted assassination on grounds they saved their marriage. Don: "Well to be fair, you also tried to kill her." He thinks it's cute; the brothers not so much. Don leaves and the brothers drop a chained up LeviaHunter into the back seat of the Impala. Wonder how they will explain that at the local gas station. Dean wants to leave but it wouldn't be Supernatural without a patented Impala chat. Sam asks if he listened to the Starks. Dean: "When I wasn't getting slammed into a wall or stung by bees." Sam: "Did you notice how they opened up, got everything off their chest. " Dean says kudos for selling that junk, but Sam reminds him it worked. I remind the writers that 95% of this fandom wants the Amy story line dealt with. This is a perfect time. No dice. (Huge sigh) Dean: "Sam, I am so very, very, very, very, very, VERY tired." Sam: "Dean, like it or not the stuff you don't talk about doesn't just go away. It builds up. Like whatever's eating at you right now." Dean says things always eat at him. "Something happens; I feel responsible. Alright, uh, the Lindbergh baby. That's on me. Unemployment? My bad." Sam: "I'm talking about whatever you're not telling me about. Look Dean, it's fine. You can unload. That's kind of what I'm here for. I mean, we're good, right?" Dean: "We're good." He gets in the car while Sam looks on in frustration. I feel for him. He gave it a great try and I wish it had worked. The brothers drive off but nothing is resolved. (Sigh) Well, there's always next week. Could we please deal with Amy by then? Please writers!

Review - This episode was a vast improvement in writing and pacing from the last two. There was ample humor, great acting as always, and the return of the Leviathans. As a one-off, it was exactly what the season needed - a break from drama and room for this fan at least to breathe. Even the gore was an addition instead of a detractor for me. I've heard brief unrest about the brothers letting the Starks go on Twitter but this doesn't bother me at all. In all honesty, they didn't have a choice. Don taking out LeviaHunter with nary a snap of his fingers proved it. (That I do take issue with because it has the same effect as the blasted angels always did. Dean and Sam stand around while someone more powerful takes out the bad guy.) The Winchesters didn't have any choice but to let the Starks go. They may search for ways to take them out, it just won't happen right now. In fact, I want another Winchester vs. Stark showdown because Charisma Carpenter and James Marsters would return. I don't know what it was like for non-Buffy/Angel fans but for me it was sheer delight to see them on screen together again. I love their chemistry and their little expressions that convey big feelings. They're a bit like Jensen and Jared in this and that's always good. I'd love to have them back. My biggest complaint of course is dragging the Amy issue out. For me it is the deadest horse in a dead horse lot. Get it out in the open, deal with it, and move on. I hold out hope that Dean tells Sam (not LeviaDean) next episode, but it sounds too packed for the extra emoangsting that will accompany such a confession. In the end, for bringing back the writing and humor alone, this episode gets a much better rating than the previous two. Here's hoping this writing trend continues to midseason hiatus.

Grade - B+

Favorite scene - That's tough, so tie between the cupcake aftermath and witch counseling.
Best shock - Don Stark was a witch too
Worst shock - Amy is still an issue

Screencaps by Home of the Nutty

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SPN Asylum

Supernatural - 7.03 - The Girl Next Door - Recap

Warning - When I recap I try not to be swayed by others' opinions. I never read other recaps before I publish mine and I typically avoid Supernatural-specific websites (except SPN Asylum) and reading SpoilerTV comments . However since I don't avoid all social media, some impressions get through and I know the fandom is divided here. This recap won't help because although I have several issues with this episode, Dean's reaction to Amy is not one of them. And no, I do not think the situation is at all like Lenore's. Sam was right with Lenore; Dean was right with Amy. Amy may be sympathetic, but she's a killer and in the hunting world that means she must die. Also fair warning, this will be a mostly negative recap especially in regards to the writing. In a word, it sucked!

Previously - season 7 rocked! Sam hellucinated Lucifer, Dean proved reality, Death exposited, Cas vomited his inner Leviathan, Leviathans possessed hospital people, Bobby's house blew up, LeviaDad didn't die when crushed (Darn!), Sam seized, Lucifer wouldn't leave, and Dean broke his leg and worried. And so starts episode 3 - The Girl Next Door: The One Where the Brothers Didn't Learn Anything in 6 Years! What? You didn't know this episode was subtitled? It has its own slew of nicknames and introduces a new fairy into the Supernatural world. Stu joins Annie, the fairy of contrivance, and Flo, the continuity fairy. Watch for him because he makes his entrance earlier and doesn't leave until the end. I dislike this episode, but on with the show.

Continuing where Hello Cruel World left off, Dean wakes as a doctor sets his leg. I wince in sympathy; Dean cries out in pain; she says relax. I glare at her for Dean as he explains that Sam and he have to go. Morphine drip says not happening. She tells him Sam is getting an MRI (after LeviaDad tire ironed his head), while Dean passes out. Next thing, he's in a hospital bed feeling no pain. Well, until he sees it's Sioux Falls General and realizes they have to scoot. It's an IV pullout and Dean back before he's flat on the floor. Trying to escape on morphine isn't the easiest plan. Also, he has a thigh high leg cast. Bobby enters to find Dean floored in more than one way. He's alive! But we already knew that. Dean exposits: "Hey look, a monster broke my leg." I laugh. Bobby helps Dean up but skips the reunion by mentioning their role as Leviafood. He hands Dean crutches and clothes and goes to find Sam. Dean and I are momentarily stunned by how quickly this wrapped up. Hey writers, you get an extra episode this year. No need to rush the action. LeviaDoc and LeviaNurse chat about dessert when a phone call informs them the Winchesters are in the house. It's a full course meal. Luckily Dean gets his pants on over a full leg cast while doped up on morphine all by himself. He's either talented or Annie dropped by. Bobby stops a Sam transfer by claiming his insurance lapsed (HA!) and speeds him away to an ambulance. Bobby: "C'mon sicko, let's get you healed up some place a little safer." Um, is Bobby okay because that's gruffer than usual? Meanwhile Dean hobbles around looking for the ambulance bay but avoiding hospital staff attention. Seeing double makes it harder, especially with LeviaDoc and LeviaNurse on the prowl. Bobby gets Sam in an ambulance as the Leviastaff come out. "Come on, Dean. Come on, Dean." Right when he's going to have to start shooting, Dean pops in the side door sans crutches and off they go. In a stolen ambulance. That should be inconspicuous when the Leviathans report it to the police.

3 weeks and 1 state later, the Winchester clan hides in Rufus' Montana cabin. Sam researches; Dean and Bobby are engrossed in a Spanish telenovela . Carlos dies on the screen, Dean speaks Spanish now, and I gasp from laughing. They must not get Dr. Sexy, MD. Bobby picked up the Impala, brightening Dean's day and mine. Sam asks how the world's doing and Bobby responds, "Weird with a side order of bloody." Apparently hunters find Leviathan sleeper cells all over but info is scarce. They shapeshift, eat people, "bleed black goo," and can't die. Goody! But we already knew that so time for a Sam hellucination. I'd tune out too Sam. The CW can only afford Mark Pellegrino's voice so we cut to Dean and Bobby trying to regain Sam's attention. He presses on his still-not-healed palm and says he's fine. The writers hire Stu, fairy of mental regression, to pop in as I eye roll. Bobby says, "Good." What in Hades in wrong with him? He's flippant and apathetic. I hope it's post-traumatic house demolishing not Bobby possession. Regardless, he's practical. He stashed copies of his books all over the country. I smell musty book road trip! Dean, desperate to talk to Bobby alone, sends Sam to get groceries and pie. Sam and I smirk. As he leaves, Dean worries but Bobby shrugs it off. "Before you bail again, Girl Interrupted over there - any thoughts?" Bobby figures Sam is improving since he only checked out once. "It seems to me that Sam's head ain't no different than your leg. People heal on a curve." Dean and I disagree. Dean's cast is off in five days. Sam's head won't be healed any time soon. Bobby: "It ain't like he's keeping secrets. What you see is what you get." If only that stayed true, Bobby. He calls it an upswing and I agree, but Dean thinks the other shoe will drop. I agree with that too. Still Bobby's right. "Look you sitting there wringing your hands ain't going to do nothing. Maybe he'll surprise you." Bobby leaves to get intel.

Cut to Sam at the Whitefish Mt Gas & Sip. That's one well-stocked gas station. Sam sees a newspaper headline: Ice Pick Killer Strikes Again. Down home country plays in the store but drums of foreboding pound my head. Sam hands over a platinum card for Lenny Kilmister, founder of Motorhead. Ha! Suddenly we switch to the fraud division of a credit card company. Someone visited Mistress Magda - BWAH!! Looks like Flo is visiting today. A red alert pops up for Sam's card and LeviaFraudGuy calls LeviaDad. Sorry you're not squashed like a bug. LeviaDad sends him after the brothers. Leviathans are smart. They tracked every major rock name. About time. Sam returns with groceries and Dean asks how he is. Another "fine" later, Dean presses and HonestySam admits Lucifer's still around. Good! Sam says he's fine although nothing's better because he can tell the difference and manage it. Not so good and likely not accurate. He bought Dean cake instead of pie. "It's close enough, right?" Hmm, definitely questioning Sam's reality now. Night falls. Dean snoozes, Sam surreptitiously reads the paper he bought, and Stu the mental impairment fairy walks in without knocking, takes a drink from the milk carton, and puts his stinky feet on the kitchen table. It's going to be a long unwelcome stay folks, so hold tight as this episode goes rapidly downhill. We sepia to Lincoln, Nebraska 1998. It's TeenSam! Always good to see you. He's talks on a giant cell phone about kitsune, a shapeshifting fox that appears as a female and whose tail creates fire or lightning. Awesome! According to TeenSam, they have claws and stab your brain. Er, maybe not. Dean and John are on a hunt so poor Sam is stuck with research duty. "Yes Dean, I realize killing them's important. Maybe if Uncle Bobby sent a book in ENGLISH." Bwah! I feel for you kid, especially when Dean puts John on the phone. Back at Rufus' cabin, adult Sam proves he's learned absolutely nothing in 6 years. He leaves Dean a note as he sneaks out in the middle of the night. URRRRGGHHH! I'm really sick of this.

I thought this year the brothers were supposed to cement their relationship and work together. Instead it's season 4 Sam acting like an obstinate teenager again. You suck Stu (I blame the writers for this mess!) If he wanted to hunt, why not talk to Dean. Yes, Dean would say no and Sam would threaten to go anyway. Dean would join him and they'd be in a crummy motel figuring it out together. Broken Leg Dean might be a grumpy pain-in-the-butt about staying in the motel, but at least Sam wouldn't act like a secretive bratty brother putting Dean and Bobby through round 976 of hide-and-seek AGAIN! I believe Sam learned it doesn't work from all the other times it failed miserably so why haven't the writers gotten the memo. Sam's almost 30. Let him grow up. (Huge sigh of exasperation.) At least I laugh in my disgust. As Sam sneaks out, a TV ad promotes My Bloodiest Valentine in Hellvision 3-D. Bwah! Thanks, Flo. You're the only fairy I want to stick around. Instead it's a graffiti-riddled park where a disgusting drug dealer wants an addict to trade sex for drugs. He's so sufficiently evil no one cares when the music of impending massacre plays. He should die. A siren scares them both off; Drug Dealer goes down hard. Good riddance.

In the morning the TV drones while Dean wakes stiffly on the couch. Doesn't Rufus have a bed? The fireplace blazes merrily though. He reads Sam's note: "Back in a few days. I'm fine. Sam" My blood pressure escalates again. Dean calls Bobby. "Other shoe!" Yep. Bobby thinks he needed me-time; I think Bobby's cloned. Dean: "Yeah, but his 'me time' ain't just him. I mean for all we know he's road tripping with Lucifer somewhere. Left me here like Jimmy freaking Stewart." Bonus for the Rear Window reference but why's Bobby so blasé? He knows what happened when Sam took off, albeit unintentionally, last time. Even if he wasn't in the warehouse with Dean to see how lost and vulnerable Sam was, he knows this isn't good especially since Sam won't answer Dean's calls and turned off his GPS. Bobby's plan: "Don't panic...Look he says he's okay so give it a couple of days. Just til you get the cast off and then hunt him down. 'Til then we'll both just keep calling." Really Bobby? Really? Dean's plan: Take a saw to the cast. Go Dean! 3 weeks ago Sam had a complete psychological breakdown. He was pressured to kill himself. He was hit in the head with a tire iron. He is still seeing and hearing Lucifer taunt him. He is not alright. He has no business hunting alone and Bobby of all people ought to know that. Urgh! I hate the writing in this episode. It's like the writers have never seen these characters much less written for them before. Meanwhile, Sam is in police mode checking out Drug Dealer's body. His phone rings with 3 missed calls from Lars Ulrich, aka Dean, but he ignores it. I throw a pillow at my TV. Dean proceeds in a station wagon to the Gas & Sip. Limping in he questions the attendant about "a big guy in here yesterday." Ha! He's wearing a Batman Under the Red Hood t-shirt. (Nice catch Sue.) Love the little meta. Dean gets a copy of the newspaper Sam bought. Viola, next move.

Back at Sam Solo, a coroner confirms missing pituitary glands and the screen goes sepia. TeenSam exposits the kitsune's pituitary diet as we flip between past and present a lot, reminding me of episode 2. I take a break to find that some of my least favorite Supernatural episodes were written by Dabb and Loflin. How could they get Weekend at Bobby's so right and create character assassination here? More on these two "writers" when I'm not throwing things at the screen. Both Sams track the victims, noticing a pattern. NowSam resignedly heads to the park where the next attack will occur. TeenSam heads to the coffee vendor outside the Lincoln Public Library to get a triple Red Eye. Sounds lethal. He notices an older blonde enter the library and does the middle school crush thing where he stares at her until she looks at him and then he quickly looks away. It's cute. Less cute is him yelling into the phone "You stab it in the heart" while the librarian shushes him. Shouldn't someone wonder about a kid who spends all his time in the library and yells stuff like that? TeenSam: "Ok, are you guys cool? Can I have a normal life for 5 minutes now?" Sorry - not in the cards, Sammy. "Oh, Dean, question. How do you talk to girls?" Awwww! This episode would be better with 30 minutes of flashback! He straightens his shirt, takes a deep breath, and is summarily shot down by Rude Blonde, who wears a moon and star necklace. She backs off a bit but poor Sammy is devastated. He gets a second chance when Rude Blonde is attacked by two teens. Lucas from Dead in the Water grew up, moved to Nebraska, and became a future rapist. Now I'm devastated. I really liked that kid. Sam takes them down with a few martial arts moves. Rude Blonde aka Amy is impressed.

Back at the state park of future serial murder, Sam follows a blonde and unless you took an unfortunately timed pee break, you know it's Amy. Sam's penchant for attractive monsters guarantees it. Snack, an extremely drunk guy in the middle of the woods reminds us that this script makes absolutely no sense. What is Snack doing in the woods in white khakis and brown dress shoes? Sam turns Blonde around. Aww, she's wearing the same necklace she did as a teen. It's either kismet or really sad. They exchange pleasantries but Sam holding a knife to her heart kills the mood. For reasons unknown, a woman and her dog run by….at night in a heavily wooded area. Amy distracts Sam with her boring picket fence life, but he's put off by the murder aspect of it. With no transition but sepia, we cut to TeenSam getting cleaned up by TeenAmy. She asks about the KungFu and Sam deflects, so she grabs him the last soda from behind the jars of brains. What's with monster girlfriends? At this point I suspect Jessica hid an interesting lineage too. They chat about Goo Goo Dolls vs. classic rock and for once John wins this one. Not that I don't enjoy the Goo Goo Dolls. Sam and Amy share a common past, traveling with a parent who just doesn't understand. Too bad this isn't 10 years earlier. Annie could have walloped us with DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince. Instead Sam says life sucks as the freaky new kid, but Amy counters, "All the coolest people are freaks." No wonder he likes her. They kiss and we flip to current Murderer Amy. She claims she's managing; I heard that before. About 10 minutes ago. My brain hurts as the 10 ton anvil of "Amy and Sam are just alike" drops on me. I don't buy it here either. Neither does Sam. "You spiked 3 guys this week." She claims it was necessity not murder, but won't clarify. Sam has to kill her. Or not since she slams his head into a tree. It seems we all will suffer brain trauma this episode. I wonder if Sam's head is concrete or in tiny floating pieces by now. He was better off choked all the time in season 1. Amy's eyes go a cool red cat slit. Fortunately Sam picked up her litter as he lies back barely conscious.

In a great transition it looks like Dean standing over Sam, but he's really in the morgue with Drug Dealer's body. The missing pituitary gland makes Dean mutter "SOB" before telling Bobby about the '98 case. Kitsunes are rare. Dean: "They didn't make our highlight reel." Bobby's relieved Sam's on a job. I don't see the upswing Bobby. Solo hunting with hellucinations isn't a winning idea. Dean: "But why pull the Houdini act?' Neither Bobby or I have the foggiest. Perhaps the writers have a clue that isn't "We needed them separated to tell our awesome story and couldn't come up with a better reason so we shot character development all to hell." Bobby: "What are you going to do when you catch up?" Dean: "I have a few ideas." I bet you do. Sam has a few ideas too, given he got to Amy's shortly after she did. She's packing as Sam appears in her bedroom. Totally freaked me out. He found her through a receipt for Amy Pond she left behind. (Amy Pond is from Dr. Who.) He notices blood on her hand and Ms. Pond is at 4 kills. Sam: "I think you better tell me exactly what you are doing or I have to kill you whether I want to or not." Amy appeals to their history. You know the ONE day they knew each other. And flashback to kissing. Sam accidentally spills the soda. Amy freaks because her mom is abusive; Sam confirms John is an angry drunk. How that differs from any other day I'm not sure. Amy confesses her mom is evil and she thinks she is too. Sam reassures her. Sweet given he's known her 2 hours tops. "I've been around enough bad to know good when I see it." Aww. They bond further over the pressures of following in a parent's footsteps.

NowSam demands clarification. Amy has a son, Jacob. Sam is conflicted. Amy normally gets pituitary glands through her mortician job. "I know. Not sexy but you know, health benefits." HA! Jacob got sick and needed live glands. And here's the quiet kicker. After the last murder, his fever broke. Either she fed Jacob the new guy she killed that night and his fever instantly vanished or it broke before she killed the last guy. Given the murky time frame, either is plausible but given that she had to find a new victim, kill them, get home, prepare the pituitary gland, feed it to her son and start packing, I'm going with the later. If that's true, she killed victim 4 after her son improved. She promises not to kill anyone again and Sam responds, "You can't guarantee that." And that's the whole point! She wants Sam to walk away since she saved him once too. In sepia, car headlights shine so TeenSam hides in a closet. Is there no back door or window? Amy's mom rushes in talking about pros in a "piece of c** Impala." That's uncalled for lady. Listening in, Sam figures it out. Amy placates her mother by saying she will pack while her mom gets gas. Any parent would be suspicious. Without waiting to hear the car leave or refrigerate the jar of brains on the table, Amy pulls Sam out. He confronts her. Amy: "You're a hunter. So you're supposed to kill me and I'm supposed to kill you." Sam: "I guess." Me: "Sorry Sam, but your lot in life is killing girls you like when they turn out to be monsters." Amy's never killed anyone and Sam admits he doesn't want to kill her. She tells him to run before mom sees him, but no headlights or car noise means mom's still home. Sam puts his knife in the open pocket of his book bag where it can easily be seen or fall out. I suspect Annie at play.

All of a sudden we switch to NowSam at his motel. I'm confused and want to be in the flashback instead. He opens the door and a fist flies out knocking him backwards into bushes. BWAAAHHH!!! Dean: "Howdy Sam." I spit water the first time and it only gets funnier after the third viewing. Funniest thing all night. After an ad break, Dean says, "New rule. You steal my baby; you get punched." Good thing it wasn't a rule when Andy took her. He couldn't take a Dean punch. "What the hell were you thinking Sam running off like that? I mean for all I know, Satan could have been calling your plays." Sam: "Look. How many times do I have to tell you? I'm fine." Dean: "Oh yeah, no, you're a poster boy for mental health. You have any idea the kind of horror shows I had going on in my head?" Sam: "Dean, I left you a note. There was a job in town." (Begin rant) If I haven't already ticked off half the SPN fands, I'm doing it now. ARE YOU FREAKING SERIOUS, SAM? Your note said: "Back in a few days. I'm fine." How in Leviathan-filled Purgatory could that keep people from worrying? Saying "I'm fine" ten thousand times doesn't make it so. Dean can prove you're not fine. The spectacular warehouse meltdown is a shining example that not all is well in SamWorld. 3 weeks ago you were suicidal. You played with guns and listened to Satan say it would all end if you shot yourself. You still see Satan. You think you know what's reality and what's hellcuination and I hope you do, but the simple fact is you have voices whispering in your head, you're distracted, and sometimes you enter mini-comas like a stroke victim. These do not scream "good to hunt", much less solo. If roles reversed, you would tear Dean a new one and wouldn't trust his decisions one jot. Dean came back from hell without a Lucifer playmate and you decided he couldn't handle hunting since he was drinking far too much and having nightmares. Your situation is far graver and you go off on your own? Bah! I hate how these characters are written this episode. (End rant)

Back to the scene, Dean asks why Sam ignored his and Bobby's phone calls. I wait for a good answer but nada. Sam: "Because I wanted to take care of it." Thank you ToddlerSam, now go away and give us back the previously awesome HonestySam. Sam claims he fixed it but when Dean questions him, he admits letting Amy go. Dean's stumped. I'm excited for the flashback because life is much better there. Sam opens the door to a waiting Monster Momma. I'm not sure why he didn't see her through the glass in the door, but he just kissed his first monster and it's ending tragically so he gets a pass. Momma Monster is no dummy and I knew she didn't buy Amy's "I'll pack" plan. She is however a psycho. Barring her teeth, she practically spits that Amy cannot have friends. The song Momma Knows Best from Tangled suddenly pops into my head. She slaps Amy down and tries to make Sam brain food, fingernails turn into Elvira claws. Before she can strike, Amy plunges Sam's knife in her heart. Anyone not see that one coming? Nope? Didn't think so. Momma's shocked speechless as I cheer. Best thing that happened all episode. It's like viscerally getting my own frustration with this episode out.

NowSam never told anyone about Amy, which makes sense. Dean would have told John. John would have killed Amy. Amy hadn't killed anyone. He explains he took the case to clean up his mess and HonestySam is a thousand times more pleasing than the previous flippant remark. This is season 7 Sam and I have no idea why they wrote him out of most of the episode. Dean questions why he let Amy go and Sam says he owes her because she killed her mom to protect him. Dean: "I hear you Sam. I do. But look at her now. She's dropping bodies, man, which means we've got to drop her no matter how many merit badges she racked up when she was a kid. I'm sorry but it's that simple." Sam: "Nothing in our lives is simple." Very, very true! In our final flashback, Sam tells a shocked Amy to take whatever money she has and get out of town that night. He offers to dispose of the body and Amy asks him to go with her so they won't be alone. I'm shocked Sam didn't consider it. This flashback isn't that far removed from when Sam actually did run away according to Dark Side of the Moon. He was already frustrated with a belligerent, demanding John so the idea should have merit to him. Of course, running away with your monster girlfriend is not exactly the normal life he craved. For whatever reason, Amy leaves alone.

Dean's turn to regress. Thanks Stu! "Look man I get it. You meet a girl. You feel that spark. There's nothing better. But this freak.." Way to go Dean. Sam is being honest, something you say you want , and you throw "freak" in his face. At this point, I would understand if Sam threw a punch. Just like "fine", "freak" should be eliminated from the Winchester lexicon because unlike most people, it has charged connotations when Dean says it especially to Sam. Sam: "I see the way you look at me Dean. Like I'm a grenade and you're waiting for me to go off....I'm not going off. Look, I might be a freak but that's not the same as dangerous." Here we disagree Sam. You may not shoot bullets at hellucinations anymore, but you are still a danger in the hunting world mostly to yourself. We've seen over and over and over again that the merest drop in concentration can take a hunter down. Until you stop spacing out, you are a danger to yourself and the others you hunt with. It's not personal; it's practical. Sam: "I've spent a lot of my life trying to be normal. But come on, I'm not normal. Look at all the c** I've done. Look at me now. I'm a grade A freak, but I'm managing it and so is Amy." Aww Sam. You try so hard but the hits keep coming. I can't wait until managing is no longer the goal and thriving is. Sam explains how Amy works in a mortuary and that Jacob was dying. "Look. You don't trust her, fine, but trust me. Dean, please." If only it were that simple Sam, but you yourself said your lives are never simple and this is one of those times.

If the writers cared one iota about character growth, Dean would say "I'm sorry Sam" and explain why he can't let Amy go. He has valid reasons even if Sam (and many fans) don't see them. However, Dabb and Loflin couldn't write Dean if they were paid too (oh right, they are.) Instead, they throw it all away in one, "Okay." And there goes the brother relationship for another half season. Even Sam knows it's too easy. "Seriously?" Dean: "Gotta start some time, right?" (Begin rant) Now I'm saying, "Seriously?" What's up with that, writers? It sounds like Dean never trusted his brother before and sets up this great lie to be an even bigger fall. What the heck Dean? You preach that Sam needs to be honest with you and then you lie to his face. You say you want your brother back but do the exact thing that will destroy any trust he has in you. It's hard to say, "I'm sorry Sam. I know you believe in Amy but you are too close to the situation and I think your judgment is off." Go round after round if you need to. Take the punch, but for goodness sake, STOP LYING AFTER RANTING ABOUT HONESTY! The rules do not change because it is you. If you want Sam to be honest with you, start by being honest with him. Start by saying that while you trust Sam as a person, you don't trust his decisions while he's seeing Satan. Reasonable people understand that. It isn't personal like not trusting Sam at the beginning of season 5 because he chose a demon over you. This is common sense. You would not let a person with a concussion drive their car home just because they thought they were fine. Their brains are scrambled and they don't make good judgments. It's a health issue. The same thing is happening with Sam. His brains are scrambled and while he thinks he is dealing with it, and in some ways he is, it's only been 3 weeks since he broke down. He proved he wasn't thinking clearly when he ran off. Use your words, have the tough conversation, but don't freaking lie to his face. All that does is add more guilt, more secrets, and more issues to deal with later. Argh!!! Trust your brother enough to tell him the truth. (End rant)

In the parking lot of Biggerson's (hello Flo), Sam's got food while Dean talks new hideouts with Bobby. He tosses the keys to Sam, and frankly I think this is a bad idea too. Since when does Sam peel out? That's usually Dean's thing. At least we get a long overdue car porn shot. She's beautiful! They arrive in Spokane and Dean has Sam check them in while he refills his prescription. On second thought, perhaps Bobby should drive for awhile. He's the only one not broken, unless he's possessed or about to go psycho with PTSD. Forget it all! Protect the Impala; take the bus. We all know Dean is heading to Amy's motel, presumably also in Spokane, so I let out a huge sigh and wonder how long we'll be dealing with the fallout. Amy enters but Dean's already there. "Next time you run, you should change your license plates. Keeping the same tags makes you easy to track." So new plates for the Impala it is. She asks if Sam sent him and Dean tries honesty. Let's make that a trend. He understands she has a son, "But people, they are who they are. No matter how hard you try, you are what you are and you will kill again." Amy swears she won't but in the same situation, she would kill for her son every time. It is every animal's basic instinct to protect their children, including humans, and she's lying to herself if she thinks any different. Dean says it might be a year or ten, but she'll kill again eventually. He stabs her right then, apologizes, and places her on the bed. I'm not surprised he killed her. I'm shocked he does it with the door wide open. Are you trying to be convicted of murder?

Of course, Jacob watches the whole thing. For a kid who just saw his mom die, he's sure not screaming for 911 to come get her killer. I'll file it under shock instead of convenient writing device. Dean: "You got someone you can go to?" Jake nods. "You ever kill anyone?" He shakes his head. "Well if you do, I'll come back for you." It's harsh and designed to put Dean in the worse light possible, but in all fairness he said the same thing to Andy in season 2 and he wasn't wrong to say it then. Jake: "The only person I'm going to kill is you." Absolutely chilling! Kudos to the actor. Dean seems surprised but I have no idea why. If I were the kid, I'd be out for Dean's blood too. In fact if I weren't screaming for help, I might be attacking him. Dean: "Well, look me up in a few years. Assuming I live that long." Dean and the kid trade places and he looks on while Jake goes to his mom. Hunting is tough and days like this are the worst. Unfortunately we get no break to internalize the situation. Back at the Gas and Sip, LeviaFraudGuy guy watches Sam buy groceries a few days ago on the security feed. Unfortunately, the attendant won't make it. "You know what I find. Plain old people taste fine but everything is better with cheese." He picks up the nacho cheese sauce and dumps it over the attendant's head. With the sounds of screaming in the background and Leviaface in the foreground we end this episode. Thankfully!

But not this already too long recap because I need to explain why I agree with Dean killing Amy. I know many people are upset and I'd guess it mainly comes down to 2 reasons. 1. Amy is sympathetic. 2. Sam asked Dean to trust him and he killed Amy anyway. Here's my take. Amy is sympathetic. She had to kill for her son and she killed bad people because she targeted Drug Dealer. Both are assumptions; we don't have enough information. People with pituitary gland problems take hormones to counter the effects. Would that work for a monster? Would it help her son? Did she ever try that? We don't know. Who did she kill when she knew Sam would wake up soon and she had to get out of town fast? Was it a bad guy or the lady out walking her dog? Amy may be sympathetic but she is also practical and she will kill if she feels she needs to. And she will kill to save her son. People keep citing Lenore when saying Dean shouldn't have killed Amy. However, they are not the same. Lenore wasn't killing anyone. She refused to kill Sam even though hunters had killed her nest and Eli begged her. Amy killed 4 people in one week, one of which may have been after her son was recovering. When Lenore did start killing people, she begged Dean and Sam to kill her. Although Cas ended it, I believe Dean would have killed Lenore too. Look at his face in Mommy Dearest right after she says she killed a 16-year-old. Lenore asked to die to keep from murdering. Amy made excuses for why she killed to save her life. Yes, her excuse was excellent, but she was hardly noble. In the end though, Amy didn't become a monster when she killed those 4 people for me. She became a monster when she got pregnant and added to the monster population, increasing the risk to humanity. Think about it. If Lenore never killed but was making monsters, do you think even Sam would let her live? No way. Because she would be responsible for everything they did. Amy might think she could control her adult son by showing him a different way, but she had no idea if it would happen. She definitely skewed her loyalties. She put humans at risk when she created another monster, and while that seems harsh in the hunting world it is us against them. Amy already proved she was be a threat to humans, and she would kill again for her son. In the hunter world, that's about as clear as it gets.

The second reason is far more personal because it concerns the brother relationship and the hope fans have of building it back stronger than ever. Dean should never have lied to Sam. For me, that's a given. However, trusting Sam and not killing Amy is not the same thing. Sam is messed up right now. He is mentally ill. It's not his fault but it does mean his judgment is questionable. Dean was at that warehouse. He saw Sam's confusion and hurt and fear when Lucifer was talking to him. Sam might mentally realize that Lucifer is not real right now but he still has his voice in his head. That's enough to drive anyone over the edge. When you combine this with a case Sam is way too close to, it's easy to see why someone would question Sam's perspective, his judgment. He overidentifies with Amy. It's not that Sam needs to earn Dean's trust again like at the beginning of season 5. It's that Sam is mentally impaired right now and that makes it a whole different story. I wouldn't let someone who was drunk drive my kids home, even if I trusted them in other situations when they were not drunk. It's not personal. It's common sense.

Review - This is the hardest recap I have ever done. It was even harder than The Man Who Would Be King, because in that one I at least understood why I hated it. When I first watched this episode, I had worked back-to-back-to-back 14 hour days. I was tired, frustrated with technology issues, and just wanted Winchesters on my screen. Believe me when I say Bugs would have been good. At the end of the episode I thought it was fine, but not as good as the first two episodes. I had a hard time placing why I felt unsatisfied until I watched it a second time with a clear mind. This is why I should never vote on episodes right after they air. This episode gets exponentially worse after each viewing. At the third viewing, I can say that while there are some real plusses, the minuses are huge. For me, the writing is the worst problem. The characters show absolutely no growth and are in fact regressing at an alarming rate. Sam running away, Dean lying to Sam's face. They both need to end. What possible good did it do to portray adult Sam as less mature than teen Sam or to make Dean look like an evil tyrant? This episode now has the possibility of being long-reaching and go on to screw up the brother relationship again. Fans wanted a strong brother bond most this season and in one scene these writers tossed it out the window. This is one plot line I would love to see dropped. I am sorry that Jensen got stuck with this script because to paraphrase Guy Norman Bee, there's only so much you can do if the writing isn't there. (Just to clarify, he had nothing but positive things to say about Supernatural so he wasn't talking about anything he directed for them.) It has taking me weeks to figure out how the writers of Weekend at Bobby's could so completely train wreck a season in one script. How they could assassinate 3 out of 3 main characters! I think I've finally figured out my issues with Dabb and Loflin but that's an entirely too long other article best saved for later.

I also thought some of the scene jumps were strange. I would have preferred having scenes flow more instead of flashing back and forth from past to present. Speaking of the flash backs, they saved this episode for me. Yes, it is strange Sam had such a strong tie with someone he literally only spent maybe 2 hours with, but it served to show more about Sam's character and gave heart to the story. I firmly believe this story would have been better if they had focused exclusively on the flashback for the middle 3/4 of the episode. Kudos especially to Colin Ford, who did an outstanding job as young Sam. In the end, this episode is not in my top 5 worst episodes (thank you sepia), but I really hope it is my least favorite of season 7. This season started out very strong and I hope next episode gets us back on track.

Grade: D+, but only because of Colin Ford, the flashbacks, and I feel sorry Jensen Ackles had to direct this mess.

Best scene - Young Sam taking out the future rapists / Young Amy stabbing her mother
Best/Only (?) shock - Dean punching Sam when he opens the motel door
Worst shock - That Dabb and Loflin wrote this mess after scoring big with Weekend at Bobby's
Best line - Nothing really stands out. How sad is that?

Screencaps by Home of the Nutty, Screencap Paradise and Supernatural Fans Online.

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