Episode four? Already? Wow. In which we find out that Dorothy is real, the Wicked Witch is real, the ruby red slippers are real and they’re all in the HuntCave. And none of that really matters, because you know who else is in the bunker? CHARLIE FREAKIN’ BRADBURY, YA’LL! Yes, friends, our favorite nerd girl is back and looking for something a little more fairytale than hunting a ghost and a teenaged vampire has turned out to be. Also? Zeke acts as a defibrillator and Dean lies about it. Again.
Here are ten great moments from “Slumber Party”.
1. Black and White becomes full-on Technicolor
I admit, I had my doubts about this episode, but, as always, I need to shut up, and trust the writers and directors. The story of Dorothy and the Wicked Witch, loose in the bunker, was set up well through the use of black and white flashbacks to 1935. We learn that L. Frank Baum was actually a Man of Letters who wrote the books as tomes of clues for his hunter daughter Dorothy, so that she could stage a rebellion in Oz (which is actually part of the fairy realm.) Dorothy, it needs to be said, is a total badass female Indiana Jones type who sacrificed her own soul to bind the witch in captivity. Of course, our boys knock over the bottle prison where both souls are trapped and all hell breaks loose. The transitions between 1935 and today are done beautifully throughout, really setting the tone for the whole show and making a somewhat preposterous plot work.
2. Hey there, Charlie girl!
All top ten moments could easily belong to our beloved IT girl, Charlie Bradbury. Dean calls her in to inspect the HuntCave computer tracking system, prompting everything from Ada Lovelace and Commodore 64 references to an actual slumber party! Where they eat snacks and watch Game of Thrones and hang out on Sam’s rock hard bed! Charlie admits she’s been hunting. The boys are unamused. Seeing their love and worry for her is heartwarming. This show is all about family, and their “little sister” coming home for the weekend is exactly what the boys need to remind them of what “home” really means. Also? Charlie is acknowledged as a Woman of Letters and “the smartest person in the room.” Well, duh. We knew that!
3. The (kind of) return of Mrs. Becky Rosen-hyphen-Winchester and the prophet Chuck!
Apparently, Chuck’s Supernatural books of seasons past (aka: The Gospel According to Winchester) are now available on Amazon (sigh…if only that were true…anyone have any connections in publishing?) and Charlie has read ’em all. She had even read “Carver Edlund’s” unpublished works, uploaded by Sam’s number one superfan and…um…ex-wife. Awk-ward! Seeing Sam’s reaction to the mere mention of Becky? Hilarious. Watching him connect with Dorothy about being written about? Telling. Sam reminds her that even if they were characters in books, they are the authors now. Their stories are theirs to tell.
4. Crowley and the Purple Crayon
Sam wants information, and he’s not letting Crowley move an inch until he gets some. He gives him a scrap of paper and a crayon, which Crowley laughs at. Of course, those come in handy later when Crowley and the mute Wicked Witch have a little chat and she writes down what she wants. Man, Mark Sheppard does more with a few scenes than Oscar winners have done in whole movies. Favorite line of mine? “What’s the matter, darling? Cowardly lion got your tongue?” When the boys let Crowley out of his shackles to read what the witch wrote all I could think was if Crowley needs a neck massage, I’m your girl. And Mark Sheppard whistling “Somewhere Over the Rainbow”? Lovely. It’s no singing of David Bowie, but I’ll take it.
5. The HuntCave is HUGE!
The Men of Letters bunker has always been the most awesome setting of anything. Ever. In this episode, we see so much more of it! We see the kitchen, where Dean made those awesome cheeseburgers last season. We see Sam’s bedroom, which is sparse and undecorated because he refuses to move in (unlike Dean’s homey set-up) and where I think extremely improper thoughts. We see the computer room, and the lab, and…wait for it…a garage! Baby’s got a new home now, filled with a bunch of other beautiful classic cars to hang with. She deserves it.
6. Charlie dies?!?! WTF!!!!
The Wicked Witch can’t be killed, though Dean’s girl Charlie is clever enough to create poppy bullets to wound her. Sadly, the witch manages to catch Charlie and Dean off-guard and she kills Charlie dead with one touch, breaking Dean’s heart. Dean calls for Zeke, who appears immediately, and tells him to save Charlie. Zeke warns it will weaken him, and he will be no use to them, and that he will have to inhabit Sam all the longer. Dean? Couldn’t care less. He loves Charlie, and he won’t let her go. Of course, this will involve even more lying to Sam, but it is a risk he is willing (and we are thrilled for him) to take. Charlie cannot die. This is non-negotiable.
7. Sam and Dean look good in green
The witch needs the key to Oz, and she steals it from Dean’s bedroom after (literally) breaking Charlie’s heart. She also decides to get Dorothy and Charlie good by possessing the Winchesters and creating yet another version of our boys: witch-infused-neon-green-eyed-Batman-voiced Sam and Dean. (I’m sure you can come up with a better name.) The voice modulation is done well. Sam still sounds Sammish and Dean still has his growl. They just sound as evil and creepy as anything they’ve ever hunted.
8. Charlie and Dorothy = Girl Power
Charlie and Dorothy bond the way badass geek girls do: over books and librarians and being killed by witches. They find Dorothy’s motorcycle, which, sadly/hilariously has the Tin Man’s head in it, presumably serving as a helmet, and has world’s best version of ACTUAL stiletto heels: shoes sharp enough to kill a witch. Unfortunately, WINGEBV Sam and Dean come upon them, causing our ladies to self-defend, and Charlie resorts to a full on kick to Dean’s junk. At least she apologizes. As nard kickings go? Super polite.
9. Charlie and the Witchy Woman
There are, approximately 1,232,674 reasons Charlie Bradbury is my favorite female character on television. Let’s just make how she looked as she saved us all from the Wicked Witch reason 1,232,675. Felicia Day, hair swirling in the wind, looking about as sexy and saucy and dangerous as can be, stabbing a witch in the face with a shoe. YES PLEASE!!!! Swoon. “Ding dong, bitches!” she says, with a gorgeous grin. Indeed.
10. Return to Oz
Charlie is back from the dead, and she wants magic and adventure. Dorothy is revived and she wants help with her rebellion. She asks, “Are you coming or what? You said you were looking for adventure. Well, here it is, Red. Come help me find my damned dog!” Charlie is delighted. This is just what she was looking for. Dean, ever the big brother, is worried that Oz is full of danger. “Promise?” Charlie asks, and, after vows to come if one another calls, she heads off to Oz with Dorothy to the strains of “For Those About to Rock (We Salute You)” by AC/DC. Perfect. Classic. I accept it fully, with the caveat that Charlie has to come back ASAP. And that’s exactly what Dean wants to know. If Sam thinks Charlie will ever return. Sam, who has been struggling throughout the episode with the idea of his place in the world and where it is, and whether he dare again to try to settle down when it has always gone so badly, believes she will. “‘Course,” he says, looking at Dean, who has always been his source of love and a safe haven. “There’s no place like home.”
This was a nice one-off, full of quippy one-liners that I really enjoyed. Charlie is welcome to be in every episode as far as I’m concerned. Next week? We see Dean’s life as a dawg. I mean, a dog. Wait. What? Join me next time for “Dog Dean Afternoon.”