It's already 11:30pm, so I'm going to get right to it...
We begin with a cheap motel and a man SPECIFICALLY asking for room 214 on "Doctor's orders"... and I'm immediately thinking that he was ordered there to face some sort of trauma, but what was he afraid of, dated decorating? Nope! A ghost! (Or so I thought) - this is what happens when people don't know that ghost are real. The guy dies.
Sam and Dean are on the road, and are still 7 hours from their destination... it turns out that Travis, the guy in the beginning was a friend of there's. And for a moment, I am confused, because surely a fellow hunter would know that ghosts were real... and then Dean mentions that they haven't seen him for 25 years and he's not even a hunter. So, mystery solved. Childhood friend.
It also soon becomes apparent that while Cas told Dean about how Jack is going to murder-suicide Chuck, Dean did not pass that message on to Sam. Sam is wondering why the heck Cas suddenly bailed - did he have a fight with Dean? Nope. Meanwhile, Cas is texting Dean asking if he's told Sam, and Dean is ignoring those texts... and geez Dean....
Sam and Dean pull up to the motel, and we get a FLASHBACK.
Listen, I love wee-chester flashbacks, I always have. These child actors are a little stiff, but that's okay. It's hard shoes to fill.
Back when Sam and Dean stayed here the first time, it was January 1993, and Sam had swiped a book of college entrance exams from 1991 from the previous motel. Dean quickly puts a downer on those plans - with Sam's sporadic and unstable school attendance, Dean doubts any college would accept him, even if a 'normal' life was possible for him.
Once inside the motel, Sam and Dean meet Caitlyn and her younger brother Travis, who incidentally, looks exactly like the ghost that killed grown-Travis in the beginning. So... my brain starts wondering about splitting souls or something? I don't know. I am confused. It obviously wasn't a ghost.
Caitlyn tells Sam and Dean about how Travis had started going to therapy and the doctor had pried about what had happened "that winter" and wanted Travis to face his fears by staying at the motel again. The funeral that Sam and Dean came for was actually last week - because Caitlyn only invited them because she doesn't think Travis killed himself, she thinks he was murdered by the same monster that they encountered 25 years ago.
We get a flashback to the monster first attacking Travis 25 years ago - by being in the vending machine... I have the words "vending machine ghosts?" written in my notes, so clearly, I would make a great hunter.
In the flashback, Dean and Sam believe Travis when he says he saw a monster, and Dean tries to call John via Bobby, but Bobby says that John is two days out of reach. Ah, the past, when it was hard to get in touch with people who didn't have landlines... I remember it vaguely.
After a nod from Sam, which I found adorable, Dean gives Caitlyn the "monsters are real" talk. They then ask if there's anything suspicious going on in town. Apparently, there are a bunch of missing kiddos. Note to John, who needs a hellofalotta notes on parenting - maybe research a town to see if there's a string of missing children cases in it, before you drop your kids off and leave? Just a note... no biggie.
Young Dean and Sam do some investigating and figure out that the monster is probably staying in the abandoned cannery. So Dean goes to check it out, while Sam stays behind and plays Boggle with Travis. Caitlyn tags along with Dean, much against his wishes. While at the cannery, Dean does find SOMETHING, but quickly blocks Caitlyn's view of it and ushers her out.
Meanwhile, back at the hotel, the monster attacks! Thankfully, Dean rushes in before it can kill either Travis of Sam, and cuts off it's fingers, and then stabs it, and it appears to die. When it dies, it leaves behind a ring on the floor - which I immediately recognize as the ring that adult Travis had around his neck when he died, and I'm like "DON'T KEEP SOUVENIRS!" (seriously, that's what I wrote in my notes to represent this entire scene)
Back to the present! Dean is walking down the hallway of the motel after telling Caitlyn that her brother just offed himself and there's no monster - when he sees his younger self - only the grunge band version - and he's compelled to kneel and stab himself with an imaginary knife. Sam and Caitlyn stumble across him and break the spell, and Dean tells them that Caitlyn was right and there's still the monster.
Over drinks, they start gathering their intel, so that Sam can find out what they're hunting. Dean confesses to having found the nest in the past but hiding it from Caitlyn and then having nightmares for weeks afterwards before he was able to repress the memories. Sam forgives him for not telling, because they used to keep a lot of secrets from each other (and this is the part of the episode where I pick up on the fact that it's one big long guilt trip for Dean not being honest with Sam. :P)
Dean walks off to do something? I don't know... oh! order food! while Sam and Caitlyn research. While waiting for the food to be made, Billie joins Dean and tells him that Chuck's finished destroying all the other worlds, so now there's just this one left - which means this is our last MotW episode (EVER! Oh god!) and it's all plot from here on out.
Billie straight up admits and confirms the fact that she manipulated Jack into agreeing to the plan by telling him that killing Chuck and dying in the process would be the only way that Dean and Sam would forgive him for killing Mary. She wants to know if Dean has any problem with the plan, because she needs to know that everything is LINED UP AND READY. Then she asks if Sam's on board too, and Dean is shifty, and Billie is all like YOU HAVEN'T TOLD HIM?! And I'm like "You know, Sam ALSO has ears and can talk to you - maybe if all supernatural creatures would stop using DEAN as their messenger service to Sam, there would be better communication in the universe" but Billie doesn't hear me.
Billie wants Dean to tell Sam.
Meanwhile, Sam discovers that they're hunting a Baba Yaga, and my friend and I immediately get derailed into making John Wick jokes.
BUT, I do find out that I should forgive Travis, because he didn't KNOW the ring belonged to the monster - his mother found it when she was cleaning the hotel rooms and gave it to him much later. So, he didn't associate it with the event at all. They figure out that they'd cracked the ring and "dispelled" the Baba Yaga temporarily, but Travis had recently gotten the ring fixed, and thus given the monster back its source of power, unknowningly.
Caitlyn goes out to the car to get the ring from her brother's belongings, but finds it gone - and is attacked by the monster.
Dean gets back to the motel room, only to find Sam panicking about Caitlyn being missing. He quickly fills Dean in on what's up, and they go looking for the nest, figuring that it must be in the motel, since that's where all the attacks were. Sam checks the office behind the front desk, only to find the strange smoke and noises he's hearing from there are just the desk clerk hitting a bong (I saw that gag coming, honestly, but it was still enjoyable)
Dean meanwhile finds room 214 which suspiciously opens for him. When he steps inside, it turns into the cannery. He finds the nest again, but this time sees young Sam dead inside it.
So, I usually don't do this until the rewatches but... REWRITE IDEA: It would be much more character-intriguing for Dean to have seen dead JACK in the nest, because that would give us some incite into how Dean is feeling about Jack dying, and would also tie in the emotional part of the myth-arc to the MotW episode. I understand though, that they might be purposefully leaving how Dean feels about Jack dying very vague, but at this point if Dean DOESN'T have a problem with it, I'd consider it out of character...after all, Dean couldn't kill him himself either when he was soulless and had JUST killed Mary, so I don't know why Dean would be fine with the kid killing himself a year later, especially only two episodes after Dean baked him a birthday cake. Dean worrying about Sam dying is nothing new and has little emotional impact when we know that Sam isn't in any danger - but Dean seeing a dead JACK would make way more sense, if the Baba Yaga was just torturing Dean with things from his psyche. Of course, if the Baba Yaga can only work off of things that IT has seen, then young Sam makes sense.
Dean also sees old Travis, who is the one that attacks him.
Sam rushes into the room and throws the monster off Dean, long enough for Dean to tear off the ring when it comes back at him, and then destroy the ring completely.
We then say goodbye to Caitlyn, whose parting words further accidentally pressure Dean into being honest with Sam.
And we get one more flashback to young Dean and Sam leaving the motel, and Dean telling Sam that he didn't see anything at the cannery - and also, doesn't Sam think that he and Dean make an awesome team and he doesn't ever need to go to college?! Yes or yes?
Back in the car on the drive home, Dean tells Sam the truth about seeing Billie at the diner, and also about what Jack has to do. Sam is MAD. Dean tells him that he has NO CHOICE.... and this makes Sam MADDER. He doesn't let Dean apologize, and just tells him to drive.
So, we're going into the final four episodes, which are all going to be myth-arc, with Sam ticked off at Dean, and a Winchester suicide plan as seemingly their only option.
I'm very interested to see how they're going to save the world with the power of love this time!
Let me know what you thought in comments!
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