Okay, standard rules - watched the episode once, had a lot of wine, don't have spell check on this motherf****, all quotes paraphrased, etc etc...
I don't know about you but I'm here for the MURDER PORN!
Should I be disturbed that I find coldblooded killers so sexy? Maybe, perhaps. Do I care? Not a lick. All my licks are saved for... uh... moving on....
Okay, so, if we actually start the episode at the beginning, then it is sad times forever.
I'm still kind of torn up about the Charlie thing - I mean, I can see why they did it, but I still feel it was the lazy-writing way out and that there were options to doing the same thing without killing Charlie. But, whatever...
I will say that it was pretty neat to actually SEE the building of the funeral pier. Piar? Piere? PYRE! Funeral pyre. We always see the burning body, but we don't see the hour it takes to chop down trees, to build the thing, the labour intensive process that is giving a hunter a proper burial. Personally, I think that the building of the pyre is as important a part of the ceremony as the burning - or, an important part of the grief. I mean, on the one hand, I don't like dead bodies and I don't want to be near them, even if they were once my loved ones, on the other hand, I think that as a culture (Europe+America) we've kinda lost something by divorcing ourselves from the burial/funeral process and paying other people to do it. ANYWAY, that's off topic...
Dean is all like "THIS IS YOUR FAULT SAM! I WISH YOU WERE DEAD AND NOT CHARLIE!"
And Sam is all like "Ouch...." but inside he's all like "THIS DOESN'T JIVE WITH YOUR PREVIOUS ATTITUDE MAN. REMEMBER WHEN KEVIN ENDED UP DYING BECAUSE YOU WANTED ME ALIVE! HUH! WAS THAT ALL FUN AND GAMES FOR YOU!?" Okay, maybe Sam doesn't have these thoughts, but *I* do.
Maybe this is a way for them to get Sam to forgive Dean for Gadreel, since Sam is proving that he too can get their friends killed in the name of saving his brother. (to be a bitter Sam!girl for a moment here, I'm sure a huge swatch (swathe? Uh... chunk) of fandom will be like, "Dean was totally Justified, where as Sam is guilty 5eva and horrible!" Oh fandom. It has been 10 years.
What was I talking about? Oh yeah, so... Kevin and Charlie both die because the brothers prioritize each other above all else. This is the theme that Carver has really been exploring since he started - what's the price of their codependency? In what ways are the Winchesters dangerously selfish to a degree that makes them the bad guys in terms of humanity?
I also think this is why both Kevin and Charlie's deaths annoy me the most out of everyone's. They aren't deaths caused by forces beyond the Winchesters' control. They are deaths caused as a direct result of the Winchesters' actions, and so therefore both of them are really done to contribute to the character plots of Sam and Dean, rather than contribute to their own story (like Ellen, Jo, and Gabriel's deaths... or Castiel's multiple deaths.)
Okay, sorry, I will take off my critical hat and put back on my drunk hat.... (PSYCH! DRUNK HAT WAS UNDER CRITICAL HAT THE WHOLE TIME!)
When do we get to the murder porn? Now?
Dean walks off to become an AVENGER.
Sam is all like "I guess I should do what Dean says and go put a stop to my sketchy plans..."
And then when he gets there, Cas is like "Where's Charlie?" and Sam is like SADFACE and Cas is like "WHY DIDN'T YOU ASK ME TO RESURRECT HER BEFORE YOU BURIED HER?!" and Sam is like "BECAUSE HER DEATH IS FUELING DEAN'S DECENT INTO MADNESS!"
Uh, okay, so I made that last part up. I don't know why Sam and Dean didn't seek Angel help for Charlie, especially since Sam knew exactly where Cas was. It makes no sense whatsover. And before you say that it's probably because Cas is fallen and his wings a broken, may I remind you that Gadreel was in the same boat when he resurrected both Cas AND Charlie in two back to back episodes. I mean, is there a rule about how fresh the corpse has to be?! We're never told! It's not like Charlie was killed with the colt. I mean, COME ON.
Okay, uh... I'm supposed to have my drunk hat on, not my critical hat.
Anyway, Sam is all like "we're going to shut this motherf***er down! but then his phone makes a very convincing BOOPBOOP noise and he discovers that Charlie cracked the code before she died...and well...it's hard to turn away from a project when it looks like it might actually be possible to achieve something with it.
Of course, Cas is all like "BUT DEAN SAID!" and Sam is like "DEAN IS GOING CRAZY! GO LOOK AFTER HIM!" And Cas is like "ugh, FINE!"
Then Rowena is like, "GO KILL CROWLEY LIKE YOU SAID!" and Sam is like "UGH, FINE!"
MEANWHILE IN MURDER TOWN!
Dean is going a murdering - first stop, the police station, because of COURSE the Stynes have the town in their pocket.
Oh, hey, I didn't talk at all about Baby!Styne and his plot...uh, it was a sad one... he is like a little Sam, who doesn't want to be part of a murder family and wants to run away to the west coast - but unlike Sam, his family will actually kill him if they find out his plans, instead of just disowning him and then checking up on him like sad puppies that didn't mean to bite you and really regret it, but also don't know how to apologize. And his family thinks they are being all family-ish by capturing his bully and then making Baby!Styne murder him to both prove that they love him and that he loves them....only instead it makes Baby!Styne super sad, because he knows that the bully was just trying to fit in and made bad choices and didn't deserve to die. And everything is heartbreaking forever.
Also, the whatshisface Styne was like "They had me in this bunker that was full of magic! Let's go raid it! WOOT! And oh man... so much for the wards on the bunker, I guess. They must only apply for people that the Winchesters haven't brought there - which means that Crowley can probably come and go as he pleases too right now. Not smart, boys.
BACK TO MURDER!
Dean starts off small, somewhat merciful, and still damn hot, when he tells the police officer that he'll be free in thirty seconds and then gets the keys to the cuffs in thirty seconds by taking down the cop while he's still handcuffed to the chair. Then he goes after the Sheriff and it's still awesome town - but non-stynes get to live.
I also love love love these lines:
Sheriff: "[the Stynes] are like gods around here"
Dean: "Yeah, well, I kill gods."
- SO AWESOME.
Dean gets the name and address of the Stynes and then goes to TOWN. AND IT IS AWESOME.
The way he takes out the first few guys is just awesome. Stab, drop corpse without looking at it, continue walking. So hot.
(Side story: Back at the tender age of 21, my BFF introduced me to anime by showing me Record of Lodoss War. There's a berserker character in it that I absolutely fell in love with - and he had this great scene/line in one episode when the crew have to get into some place but there are two guards at the door, so the Berserker just walks up to them and slaughters them both with two slices of his great sword, and then he walks past the corpses as they fall, and when the rest of the crew is like "OMG", he says, "They were in our way." And man, this is what that was like, and it was awesome.)
Dean gets the old plastic-bag over the head once he gets in the door though. And that slows him down temporarily.
Back to Sam! Sam is killing Crowleykins. Or, tryig to. Rowena wants him to do it "her way" which is apparently a devil's trap bullet and a hex bag.
Speaking of Murder!Porn. I LOVE the fact that Sam isn't apologetic about what he's doing. Crowley tries to get sympathy, telling Sam how he reordered hell after Sam gave him a taste of humanity, how Crowley has been trying to be the good guy... and I LIKE the fact that Sam is like "YOU HAVE KILLED PEOPLE I LOVE AND DONE VERY VERY EVIL THINGS!" A
And, you might make a case for whether everyone deserves a change at redemption or not - but I love the fact that Sam hasn't forgiven Crowley. I love the fact that even when Sam was "curing" Crowley back in S8, the plan was always to kill him afterward. I love the fact that Sam is merciless, I guess... which is odd, because I know that I also love Sam for the times that he DOES show mercy. So, maybe I'm a hypocrite - or maybe I just think some people are irredemable. I don't know. The point is that as much as I know a large part of fandom loves Crowley, and as much as I like Mark Sheppard, I have personally gotten a bit frustrated with understanding why the Winchesters haven't managed to kill him yet.
What I really love about this episode is that it DOES tell us a little bit of WHY they haven't managed it yet - Crowley is powerful. He coughs a bit, makes his case to Sam, but when that doesn't fly, Crowley decides that enough is enough. If Sam won't grant him a chance at redemption (whether he honestly wants it or not), then Crowley will embrace the evil.
We finally see Crowley's eyes change while he's in his regular meatsuit. And then he gets up and escapes - letting Sam live, under the condition that Sam knows that he's alive purely on Crowley's mercy... which is a nice "fuck you" from Crowley, I must admit.
Also, just an FYI: I don't think that the knife would have worked even if Sam had gotten his hands on it. We've seen in the past that the knife doesn't work on powerful demons (alistair, lilith)... I've doubted for YEARS that it would work on Crowley, and I still doubt it. I'd like the show to prove it, but they'll probably save that for a later date.
Meanwhile, Dean returns to MURDER TOWN!
I love Dean's argument when they wake him - they can't kill him, because he'll wake up with blackeyes and they'll all be killed. If they leave him human, then some of them might have a chance, given that humans are fallible. I also love the camera shot of Dean upsidedown on the white table. Beautiful.
And sure enough, as soon as they cut into him, it's super-strength murder time! I AM HERE FOR THE MURDER!
Everyone dies, but not before Daddy!Styne gives Dean the hint that there's a faction headed to the Bunker. So, Dean heads to the bunker....
Sam calls Rowena to give her the heads up that Crowley got free, is alive, and is probably going to kill her. She insists that Sam still try to get the job done and hangs up.... but she is clearly not happy about this turn of events.
Meanwhile, the Styne's are pillaging the bunker - not cool, man. Baby!Styne is all like "hey books. Oh hey, these people are people and have family and loved ones... I do not want to damage their lovely home." But his cousins are like "READING AND CARING ABOUT PEOPLE IS FOR PUSSIES AND IF YOU WERE A REAL MAN YOU'D BURN SHIT!" This, my friends, is toxic masculinity... be warned.
I'm super sad that the books and Dean's albums and photos got coated in kerosine. That is going to damage things greatly. Sad times forever. (says the historian with friends in the document/artifact-preservation business).
Before they light the match though, Dean comes in soaked in (hot) blood and looking murderous (hot.)
And then it's killing time again! I love the whole speech the Styne gives about how he's had upgrades and blah blah blah... and then Dean is like "but you still have one brain" and shoots him in it. It's very classic Indian Jones, and I love it.
(Also loved Dean's comment of "seven nipples for the ladies, or the fellas, I don't judge." The only thing I love more than emotionless killing machines is NONJUDGEMENTAL emotionless killing machines.)
Of course, then we see how once the murder train is in motion, it's not so easy to stop... because while Baby!Styne pleads for his life and tells Dean that he hated his family and he's not one of them, and he won't ever be one of them, Dean is all like "you've got evil in your blood and therefore you will eventually be evil, so you die."
And while Dean might be projecting here, I can't help but wince, because there's another character on this show that canonically has evil in their blood... and they have proven time and again that it doesn't make them evil. And if Dean is changing his mind on that, it is bad times ahead.
Dean shoots Baby!Styne in the head too...so, it's a merciful death, at least, because it is quick... also, right before he does it, he gives the kid a slight moment of hope by looking like he might actually be listening. So, you know, of all the ways to kill that kid, Dean was probably chose the most kind way, if there is such a thing.
Cas doesn't agree when he comes in though. He is all like "You shouldn't have killed that kid, this proves that you are on the murder train and it is bad times ahead for everyone!" And Dean is like, "no it doesn't. I kill things for a living. This is normal."
And I really do love Cas's speach about why he has to save Dean... about how Dean might be able to go centuries, like Cain did, without murdering, and maybe Sam will die before Dean started murdering everyone in sight and so Sam will never have to see it - but that Cas will, because Cas is also a (somewhat) immortal being.
I think part of the reason I love the speech is because you see immortality not as a good thing "now Dean and Cas can be immortal together and live happily ever after", but as as horrible thing, where Cas knows that eventually he'll see Dean become the thing that Dean hates the most, that Dean would RATHER DIE than become...and so, even though Cas will live forever (unless murdered), Cas would also prefer that Dean died at the end of his short human life.
So, of course, Dean then proceeds to beat the shit out of Castiel. :(
Still, I mean, Cas beat the shit out of Dean in S8, so fairsies? even steven? yes? no? no.... probably no.
Dean pulling hte angel blade was scary - I knew he hadn't killed Cas when he stabbed it down though, because there was no VHOOOM sound and blue light. Still... it's his BFF... everything is rotten in the state of Dean.
And that's where we are moving into the season finale...with Dean on the murder train to demonville, Crowley pissed off and on the loose, Rowena untrustworthy, Sam desperate, Castiel out of this depth... it should be interesting.
Brief note about the preview for next week: I know it might be foilers, but "DEAN IS BECOME DEATH, DESTROYER OF WORLDS!"
As usual, let me know your thoughts in comments and such... I feel like I missed a lot of things, but I was very distracted by attractive men killing people...