By Barbara Sirois Doyle
True confession number one: I know little to nothing about professional wresting. In my world, the WWE stands for “Winchesters Wanted Enthusiastically.” True confession number two: the murder wrangling demon that was the Monster of the Week did little for me, but in the end? It didn’t really matter. The broments were adorable and closed on a unified note of resolve, and that’s episode-worthy enough.
- Personal Day
Man cannot live on beer and ibuprofen alone, so I appreciated Dean’s need to take a day off and relax. I mean, the HuntCave is cozy, but that doesn’t mean our boys don’t occasionally get cabin fever. It’s kind of sweet that Sam and Dean have a good(ish) memory of John that they can call upon and a brotherly pastime that they can indulge in together. I love the tiny moments we learn a little bit more about their childhood and the few good things that happened during it—provided what we learn isn’t about a non-canonical trip to the Grand Canyon.
- Lap Dog
Does it pain anyone else, seeing Lucifer treat Crowley as his own personal hellhound? Lucifer has his own SPCA (Satan Providing Cruelty to Animals) making a collared Crowley clean the floors of hell with his tongue. We have seen Crowley so powerful in the past—so ready with his upper hand. To see him shackled? Beaten? Cowering? One wants to pay a King’s ransom and set him free.
- Potent Quotables
Misha Collins’ portrayal of Lucifer just gets better week to week. He has found his stride in channeling Mark Pellegrino’s most excellent mannerisms and when he delivers signature lines from classic films and television? It’s even better. Here are a few that I caught.
“Remember ABC. Always. Be. Closing.” – from Glengarry Glen Ross
“Search every warehouse, every farmhouse, every henhouse, outhouse and doghouse.” – from The Fugitive
“You made me bleed my own blood.” – from The Simpsons
Did I miss any? Tell me in the comments.
So, okay, maybe a wake isn’t the best place to go gaga for your entertainment idols but can you blame Dean for waxing nostalgic for the heroes of his youth? When Dean spies Gunnar Lawless, the crème de la crème of his wrestling memories, he fawns over him, letting him know of his importance with a dubious honor.
Dean: “You know when I was ten? I got my first B&E borrowing some family’s pay-per-view so that I could watch the cage match between you and the Tower of Power.”
Lawless: “I’m not sure how I feel about contributing to your juvenile delinquency but I appreciate it all the same.”
And Sam can make fun but when he meets Rio, the older but still beautiful wrestling manager and caller who was his very first crush, he’s no better. He lies about having her poster over his bed the same way I lie about my Winchestery daydreams. Seeing the guys get so excited for something genuinely silly and fun and—dare we say it?—normal was a treat for our sore hearts, and that’s what made this episode worthwhile.
- Get Ready to Rumble
Sure, it opened with a sad bastard comparison:
Dean: “Think about that. Town after town, putting your ass on the line for next to nothin’? No money, no glory? Wow.”
Sam: “You realize you just literally described our jobs?”
But after that, let’s face it: we haven’t seen this much interest in a ring since Gollum. The boys were an utter delight as they watched the match, Dean leaping out of his seat in excitement, Sam coaching from the sidelines with vigor, both of them wearing mega-watt grins. Dean may not have been young enough to get Lawless’ glove, but he was certainly a child at heart. And it was a joy to behold.
- Rock and Roll
Dean. Rolling into the ring over and over, showing off his finest imaginary holds and struts. That was thirty seconds of good times. Jensen Ackles is an all-in actor, and he proves that again here, completely going for it in the best of ways. I mean, his stomp walk alone! And yeah, he may not have exited the ring with the same panache, but still. I’d take him over any pro any day. Especially if I could get him into some of those form fitting shorts.
- Make it Reign
It was kind of obvious that Simmons was duping our King on behalf of her Satanic master. Still, seeing him regain some of his dignity? Donning the black suit and reminding people of his importance and sharp wit by simply saying “I’m Crowley”? That was delicious, even if, by placing his bets on a one-shot-wonder, his commanding lead couldn’t last. I’m glad Crowley escaped, and I am looking forward to seeing how he overthrows Lucifer. That’s going to be the prize fight that will find me ringside. (Recapper’s note: how cute was it that Crowley has a stash of the Carver Edlund Supernatural books in his lockup? So, okay, he used them to find and torture people once. I still think they’re his beach reads.)
- Say My Name
Small details, but I loved the way that the boys weren’t at all impressed with the demon determined to take them down. He tries to tell them his name and Sam responds with an annoyed “We don’t care.” And why should they? They are facing off with the sister of God himself, witnesses and instigators to the worst case of sibling rivalry in the history of ever. What little red-eyes could possible scare them at this point? Certainly not this low-rent Ryan Gosling who merely steals souls and contracts kills. They’re about to witness the end of the world. Again. As Firefly’s River Tam said about Badger (coincidentally played by one Mark Sheppard) “Call me if anyone interesting shows up.”
- Do the Right Thing
In the end, Dean knows people and what they are capable of, both good and bad. When it comes down to it he knows Lawless is a good man making terrible choice after terrible choice (and he should recognize that kind of person well, considering that Cas is his best friend.) He knows Lawless is capable of being better, and tells him so.
Dean: “Look, you screwed up, all right? Trust me, I’ve been there. But it’s never too late to do the right thing.”
Lawless: “You really believe that?”
Dean: “I have to.”
And Dean is right. In the end, Lawless stops working for the demon that holds his contract and kills him instead, taking his hellhounds like a man in perhaps the tiniest effort to ultimately right a wrong or two. The lesson is that good person can always be redeemed. We’ve seen eleven seasons of it enough to know.
- In Sync
There were little moments scattered throughout the episode where we could see that our boys were, just as we love them and as we get them so sporadically, on the exact same wavelength. From the toss and catch of the pill bottle to the shared reminiscences and the unfinished sentences that let us know they are thinking the same thought, right up to the episode’s close, when they reiterate their solemn vows.
Dean: “And we’re gonna win. We’re gonna save Cas, we’re gonna ice the devil and we’re gonna shank The Darkness. And anyone that gets in our way? Well, God help ‘em.
Sam: “Damn right.”
Dean: “Damn right.”
Sadly, we are back to another mini-hiatus! A month off until the season’s end episodes begin, and the search for more Hands of God continues (here’s hoping he doesn’t just have two.) See you next time for episode sixteen, “Safe House.”