Before anyone asks - yes, I know I haven't started S14 rewatches yet, even though I promised that I'd start them in November (after saying I'd start them in October.) I had a project due on November 30th that I ended up pulling a few all-nighters for, and then I wanted some time off. So, my aim is this weekend - let's all cross our fingers.
NOW, on to tonight's episode....
We begin in Texhoma Texas at B’s sugar bar. Where there are two girls leaving as seemingly the very last customers at the end of the night because the parking lot is deserted - and then in a twist, it’s the sober friend who disappears along with her car while the drunk girl vomits. Always make sure your DD isn’t kidnapped by monsters while you’re puking.
Our DD wakes up tied to a chair while her blood travels into a cage where a monster prowls.
Dean, meanwhile, is trying desperately to find a case. And finally finds the report from Texhoma about a drunk girl’s friend being “raptured”.
He goes to the kitchen to discover that Sam and Eileen have made a huge breakfast… with actual real bacon - because they are both very hungover from drinking too many margaritas the night before. Um, adorable? Yes, adorable… and also might explain why Dean is wanting to take off on a case along, because it’s never fun to be the third wheel. (unless the vehicle is designed to have three wheels, then you can have a LOT of fun… but when part of that vehicle is your brother, that gets into incest territory, which is only fun in fanfiction and not in reality.)
So, Dean takes off alone, claiming that he’s going for a drive - not admitting it’s a case - which is suspicious. He then makes a bunch of insinuations about what Sam and Eileen might get up to - and yes please!
Sam is being optimistic though, and thinks that Dean must be less depressed, given that he’s going out and driving around again.
When Dean gets to Texas, he finds a Sheriff who is obsessed with Hollywood, is very strange, and thinks that the missing girl just left for LA. He advises Dean to do the same. But he also tells Dean the name of the missing girl’s friend and what bar to find her at - Swayze’s.
As Dean pulls up, they’re playing a Christian Kane song - and I remember this is the episode that Christian Kane is going to be in! And sure enough, he’s the one that’s singing on stage in the bar.
When Dean walked in, he had to leave his phone in a basket as a rule of the bar. Um… that is not secure storage. If I have to check my phone at the door, I expect it to go into a locker to which only I have the key, or at least behind a counter where there is someone standing at all times, and it’s clearly marked which phone is mine.
Dean finally spots Kane. And then we get some confusion, because Jensen as a very gravely voice which is hard for me to hear sometimes, and I didn’t have close-captioning on… so I thought Dean said “Dean Webb” when he saw him. And I was like “They’re really going to have two Deans in the same scenes for this episode?!” And then my notes were super confusing until nearly the end of the episode when I realized they were saying Lee, not Dean. So… for YOUR sake, I’m now going to go ahead and correct myself to Lee far before I actually realized.
Lee and Dean quickly catch up - Lee now owns the bar, and Dean is still hunting. It makes for an interesting run-in, given that we learned last year that one of Dean’s dreams is to open a “Roadhouse” type bar.
Meanwhile, back at the Bunker, Eileen finally realizes that she’s got to amp up how obvious she’s being if she wants Sam to stop researching and understand that she’s into him. And just as he catches a clue and tentatively makes a move, Cas walks into the Bunker! Oh, Cas, you eternal cock-block.
Not only is he a cock-block, he’s got dangerous-to-Sam-health ideas about what they can do. He’s also made the connection that a piece of Sam has ended up in Chuck, and that maybe they can use that to spy.
Back with Dean, we find out that it’s been a REALLY long time since Dean has seen Lee, because Lee asks how John is. Dean tells him that he’s been dead for 13 years (It’s actually been at least 15, but you know, whatever show, count your years wrong like you always do).
We find out that John always thought that Lee was a good fighter - and that Dean hasn’t seen him since Sam was in college. Dean had thought he was dead… and yeah, this is where Lee starts being very suspicious.
Lee tells him that after the “cult thing” they worked in Arizona, which was the last time Dean saw him - Lee worked one more case “around here” and then decided that hunting wasn’t for him anymore.
So, yeah, this is where I figure that Lee is DEFINITELY the bad-guy of the piece.
Cas wants to probe Sam’s wound to see if they can find Chuck. Eileen is worried about it being too dangerous, but Sam is like “nah, it’s okay, I am naught but a martyr for my family.”
Turns out, Eileen was right! It was a very bad idea, as Sam gets knocked backwards, hits the wall, and falls unconscious nearly immediately.
Cas tries to call Dean, but he’s still at the bar without his phone. Dean is drinking up a storm with Lee.
Castiel calls Sergei, who I totally remember as a character, but also completely forget the context of his initial appearance. Something to do with healing Jack, based on what Cas says to him. So, I’m thinking it happened in S14, which I still haven’t rewatched yet, so isn’t that firm in my memory.
Then Cas hangs up and calls someone else, but who?! (We find out later.)
Dean is at the bar telling stories to Lee - he tells him about the ghost sickness (Yellow Fever). Then when Lee asks him about the current case, Dean shows him a picture of the missing girl, and Lee totally lies about not recognizing her, only to be called out by the waitress, so he quickly covers his earlier lie. TOTALLY THE BAD GUY.
But, at least Lee is trying to get Dean to drop the case in a way that will improve Dean’s life - encouraging Dean to retire like he did, or trying to convince him that there isn’t a case.
Lee calls Dean up on stage to sing a song… and oh look, Dean can suddenly sing on tune! I mean, CONVENIENT and non-canonical, but I’ll forgive the show at this point. Also, it’s been a few years since the last time we heard Dean sing, and you CAN actually learn to sing if you practice enough, even if you start off without much skill, so maybe it’s a combo of the song being familiar and Dean having practiced over the years.
Then a fight breaks out when some dudes are harassing a girl, and Lee and Dean go to intervene - and we are cheated out of seeing them fight on the same side, which would have been SO COOL. Like... I know fight scenes take a long time to film... but, COME ON, we could have gotten not one, but TWO Christian Kane fights, and that would have been awesome. But, whatever... FINE.
My notes here say "Aw, I'm going to be sad when Dean has to kill his friend." So, they must have done something sweet together.
Sergei arrives at the bunker - and I'm calling it a breach of security. Seriously Cas? Put Sam in a car and drive him to the nearest motel. Have a little precaution!
Sergei announces that Sam is dying. Here my notes say "Well, that's great news - way to go, Cas." But seriously, I kind of understand the breach of security now and the calling Sergei right away, because if Cas also accidentally gets Dean's brother killed along with his mother... yeah... if you thought things were bad before...
Turns out the girl at the bar who was being harassed was DD's drunk friend, so Dean gets to question her. We're told that the DD was a good girl - who loved Jesus. And Lee pipes up with "And America too?" just to reference the great Tom Petty and endear himself to me even though he's obviously the bad guy.
Dean asks where the car went, and she's like "it was raptured too... it was a good car." And I love her as well.
After, Lee argues that the girl just left. But Dean is like "Best friends don't just leave without saying goodbye!" And it makes me wonder how Dean and Lee parted ways.. I mean, they obviously said goodbye, but yeah...this is probably just a line. Lee offers to work the case with him, and Dean asks him where someone might dump a car. Lee immediately suggests the lake, but the waitress spoils his plans again by suggesting the scrapyard - which he immediately tries to dissuade Dean from. Oh Lee, is this the first time you've ever had to do this? The smart thing would have been to admit that the scrap yard was a good idea, take control of the situation before Dean does, and assign Dean to the lake and YOURSELF to the scrapyard. But no, Dean is too long out of the game that he is now a horrible liar.
At this point, I actually start swinging the other direction, wondering if it's perhaps TOO obvious and maybe I'm wrong...
Back at the Bunker, Sergei explains that the wound is connected to Sam's soul, which is connected to something "out in the world" which means that his soul isn't broken into pieces.... which I was actually going to complain about earlier, but forgot to (but we know canonically that the soul can't be broken apart, so I was like "how can there be a PIECE of Sam's soul anywhere but inside of him?")... what Sam's soul is ACTUALLY doing is stretching across the distance. If too much of it is stretched too far for too long, Sam will die.
The next day, Dean goes to the scrapyard. Also, did Dean not take his phone from the bar? Has he not checked his messages? What decade is he living in?! Where are his dopamine receptors?
Sure enough, Dean finds the car - and the body is in the trunk... and I was right the whole time, because Lee comes up behind Dean with a gun and knocks him out.
Sergei makes Sam worse - on purpose! Because he is trying to blackmail Cas into giving him something - the key of death, which is supposedly a black key with a skull on it that the Men of Letters have. The key will open the door to death's library. INTERESTING... have we seen that before? I don't think we have, but it's pretty interesting information! Definitely something that should come into play later - especially considering that the last time we saw Death, she was with Jack. I really want Jack to come back.
The good news is that Eileen doesn't have to avenge Sam, because Cas is also capable of blackmailing people - so we get a brief standoff with blackmailing, as Cas threatens a loved one of Sergei's who he apparently has Au!Bobby surveiling. Sergei relents and cues Sam, and then leaves - telling Castiel that he likes "this you" because he's "very Russian" - which is I'm sure an inside joke on Misha's heritage.
Dean is now tied up in a basement. Lee isn't the monster, of course, he's just FEEDING the monster.
We get the backstory - Lee wasn't lying about quitting shortly after the case that he and Dean worked in Arizona. Apparently, whatever they saw there - what it did to those families and kids - was very disturbing to Lee. He realized that they'd never win with evil like that in the world. So, when he discovered this particular monster on the next hunt, he decided he should have a fun life instead of a futile one... as long as you keep feeding the monster, it keeps giving you money, health, and everything you've dreamed of. And my goodness, that's one hell of an allegory for what our society deems "success" - in order to feed the monster of success, you have to compromise your morals.
But, Lee argues, isn't he OWED happiness. Isn't he just getting what he DESERVES. And my goodness, that's another great allegory for white-male entitlement right there.
Dean rightfully calls him out on it - OWED?! DESERVE?! - "You're not God. God isn't even God!" (And you can pry Atheist-Jewish Dean Winchester out of my cold dead hands, btw.)
Lee argues back - "Good or bad - the world doesn't care"
"I do" Dean says. Lee agrees that Dean does - that that's why he's now tied up in a basement about to have his blood drained. Because if it comes down to a choice between Dean and Lee, Lee is going to choose himself. (Interesting, when just the other week we had a teenage quarterback with his whole life ahead of him choose saving other people rather than himself...)
Of course, you don't just leave Dean Winchester conscious and expect him to stay-put. Dean quickly tips over the chair and gets his hands fairly free, once Lee leaves. When the blood flow to the cage stops, however, the monster gets mad - and it breaks out of the cage. (Dude, it's been at least 13-14 years - did you really not have a more secure cage?)
We find out that the basement is the basement of the bar... Lee hears the ruckus and the fact that SOMETHING is coming up the stairs. The basement door opens and the monster's head is tossed out.
Lee and Dean have a gun fight - which sort of throws me off for a moment, because I'm SO USED to Christian Kane playing Elliot Spencer that I was like "why is he using guns?!" Hahaha
Dean runs out of bullets first (having procured the bar shotgun) - he claims that Lee has also run out of bullets. Lee actually wasn't, but empties the gun so that they're even.
He tries to get Dean to walk away instead of fighting - but Dean says that they can't be friends any more. That if the world is broken, it's your responsibility to fix it. You don't get to walk away - you have to fight for it. Lee keeps trying to get Dean to leave, but Dean holds his ground - "I kill monsters"
We finally get our Christian Kane stunt-fight! Yay! And it ends with Dean stabbing Lee in the stomach with a broken pool cue. As he's dying, Lee asks Dean why he cares so much - "Someone has to" - and Lee says that he's glad it was Dean who killed him, and then he asks Dean to do it quickly, and Dean pulls the pool cue out, which finishes the job nicely.
And really, even though it was super predictable, this episode is actually really well written in terms of setting up this foil for Dean's character and giving him a chance to get his motivations clear in his own head again.
Dean FINALLY must check his phone, because he runs back to the bunker frantically asking after Sam. Cas says that Sam is fine, and they fill him in on what happened (mostly off screen.) Sam was in Chuck's head, and saw his memories - he knows that Chuck is weak. He think that they might actually have a chance because of it. "I think we can beat God."
YES!!!! BEAT HIM!!! IT IS ALL I HAVE EVER WANTED!
(Also, Saileen 4eva - please both live and have adorable babies.)
Let me know in comments what you thought of the episode! This entry was originally posted at https://hells-half-acre.dreamwidth.org/583295.html.