SUPERNATURAL: Appointment in Samara - Give Me My Remote : Give Me My Remote

SUPERNATURAL: Appointment in Samara

December 11, 2010 by  

Hey SUPERNATURAL fans! Please forgive my absence for the last two episodes, which were great incidentally (Cas kissed a girl!). I’ve said it before but I’m constantly amazing myself this season with how fresh the show still feels and how much I’m enjoying the new directions it’s taking. Well, maybe not so much with Crowley’s death – I really liked Crowley. But you never know with this show; he could turn up again. Last night was the last episode leading into the holiday break (if you can attribute a six week break to the holidays) and it certainly ended with a bang. But we’ll get to that.

Dean had a meeting with the always-excellent Robert Englund, or Dr. Robert as he’s known here. He’s an old friend of John’s, someone who used to stitch up Papa Winchester back in the day (*sigh*, am I crazy in my continuing hope that we’ll one day see JDM grace the SPN screen again?). Dean was undergoing a procedure in which he’s injected with something that kills him for three minutes, so he can get a meeting with Death.

I really loved the episode with Dean and Death at the end of last season in the Chicago pizza joint, so it was a welcome return for one of the more enjoyable Horsemen, although for some reason the character had less impact on me this time around – he seemed less threatening and too much like a person. Maybe because he wasn’t wearing his ring? Although, I did enjoy that Death eats like a trucker at all times, which Dean hilariously and hypocritically noted.

Dean wanted Death to jailbreak Sam’s soul, as well as their half-brother Adam, from Lucifer’s cage (I feel like this is the first time they’re bringing Adam up, which in retrospect seems like kind of a dick move. At least Sam’s got no soul – what’s Dean’s excuse?). Death countered with a Sophie’s Choice, telling Dean he had to pick one or the other. Well, Adam’s a sweet kid and all, but we all know that Dean is never going to pick him over Sammy, so sorry Adam; have fun in the worst place in the universe for the rest of eternity.

Dean gets his deal, but in return he has to retrieve Death’s ring and wear it for a day, with all of its life-taking power. Just before we learn why, Dean is brought back to life, and being Dean, he puts attitude before gratitude, berating the doctor and his bored assistant for not letting him stay dead longer. Stay classy, Dean.

Dean is reunited with reaper Tessa for his day in Death’s shoes, and while I enjoy Tessa in general, I can’t help but laugh when she’s on the show because I remember the hilarious season two blooper reel scene where she had some serious difficulty while wearing opaque contact lenses. In fact, in case you’ve forgotten it or just have never seen it, I’ve embedded it at the end of the post, because it’s that funny.

So, shock of shocks, being death is hard. It’s not so bad when you’re offing violent offenders or even people dying as a consequence of their own life choices, but when it comes to little kids, guess who has a weak spot? Of course Dean would be that guy – you know, the guy who decides that he is a position to bargain with Death himself, and he lets the girl live.

This side of the elder Winchester brother can become a little annoying – after everything he’s been through in the past five years and beyond, does he really think these decisions are up to him? But Dean’s nothing if not stubbornly moralistic – I would expect nothing less than his objection to killing the girl, but it still made me roll my eyes a bit. What’s that they say about the meaning of insanity? Doing the same thing over and over yet expecting different results.

Of course, Dean learns that playing by his own rules leads to more tragedy and heartache until he accepts that he can’t cross the natural order of things (except when it comes to himself and his brother of course). While he failed in his mission by briefly removing the ring, Death decides that the young grasshopper has learned the intended lesson and agrees to get the soul back anyway. He’ll even build a little secret compartment to contain all of the horror of whatever’s been going on down in the cage. The walls may hold, or they may not, but Dean doesn’t care. He wants his brother back.

Well, it wasn’t just that Dean mostly passed his big exam that earned Death’s goodwill. He’s of the opinion that Dean and his brother are on the trail of something very important, presumably to do with Project Alpha. It’s about the souls, and Dean will understand when he needs to, but for now they just have to keep digging. I have zero idea what this is pointing to, and I’m not even going to attempt to decipher that riddle until we get a few episodes into the second half of the season.

Meanwhile, Sam has contacted the always-charming Balthazar because he wanted to put his bod on lockdown so his soul couldn’t get back in. Dean’s single-minded focus on getting it back while ignoring all of the very scary potential side effects has Sam freaked out and I can’t really blame him for that. Balthazar agrees to help, primarily to screw Dean over because he hates him. The catch? Sam needs to commit patricide for the spell to work, which is a problem since John is sadly, still dead. However, he’s informed that while the blood has to be of his father, the father doesn’t have to be his blood. Which means Bobby is in for a hell of a time, and I might have to pull a 180 and hate Soul-Free Sam after I’ve begun to like him so much.

Soon Sam is over at Bobby’s with his creepy dial set to 11, and Bobby can sense that something’s up. Before long they’re battling for control and it’s clear that Sam is really and truly ready to kill the only father that has always been there for him in order to save himself the only way he knows how.

I could completely understand Sam’s motivation (not his method – let me be clear about that); you could even argue that Sam was thinking more clearly than Dean, who basically had tunnel vision regarding the soul at this point. On the other hand, we finally saw, even more than when Sam watched Dean get fanged earlier this year, the horrifying consequences of his current predicament. Soul or no soul – neither of these choices is easy or obvious, and I like that complexity. All that being said, Sam in his current state is now officially a problem. It had its charms for a while, but when Sam is whacking Bobby on the head with a blunt object, I can no longer abide by these shenanigans.

Luckily Bobby’s house has a few trap doors, and he manages to confine him pretty quickly. Sam, locked in the panic room, lays bare what has been going on in Dean’s mind that Dean would never admit out loud: he would rather Sam be dead than be anyone other than the Sam he remembered. The reason he was glossing over the dangers of the war-torn soul (his dismissive “we’ll deal with any problems if they come” reactions to all of the warnings) was because it was more important to him that Sam be “normal” again than healthy. He’d rather try and fail miserably than be stuck with new Sam for the rest of his life. Of course, now that we know what dark things new Sam is capable of, that makes sense, but up until this point it was much more of a grey area.

Sam eventually escaped the panic room and was about to deal a deathblow to Bobby when Dean returned in the nick of time. Death showed up for the party too, and as a present, brought the soul, all fixed up and move-in ready. It did come with a warning – the walls holding back all of the bad bits will start to itch, and whatever Sam does, he has to resist scratching or things could get very ugly very fast. The soul was restored just before credits rolled, and I was really expecting them to end on a close-up of Sam’s face, eyes welling with newly available tears, calling his brother’s name. But instead, we got nothing – no hint of whether he’s going to be okay, or how the soul is affecting him.

Mind you, the cliffhanger is seriously undercut by the promo for the next episode, so definitely stay away from that if you’d like to stay in the dark for the next six weeks. For those who want to see it though, it’s posted below.

Quotes of the night:

• “Well then, go ask your boyfriend.” “Cas can’t help me.”
• “No, you don’t want that. Michael and Lucy are hate-banging it as we speak.”
• “That’s it? A Kansas song?” “He’s new.”
• I may have been born at night boy, but it wasn’t last night.
• Don’t say, ‘Here’s Johnny’.
• It’s heavier than it looks, isn’t it?
• Hi Sam, I’m back. (And thank Baby Cheeses for that)

Any early theories on Death’s cryptic words to Dean about the souls? If you’re starting to give it some thought, feel free to share in the comments. Are you hoping, like me, that we haven’t seen the last of Crowley? Am I delusional to assume that Jeffery Dean Morgan will grace us with his presence again? What are your thoughts on Adam? Don’t care, or would you like to see them get him out at some point too? Most importantly, will you be revisiting A Very Supernatural Christmas in the coming weeks? It’s become an annual tradition for me, right along side Charlie Brown and The Grinch – I love some dark and twisted violence mixed in with my holiday cheer. Talk to me in the comments, and until next time, have an excellent holiday season and we’ll see you back in 2011!

As promised, below is the promo for the January 28th episode, but as mentioned, it’s probably better to avoid it and preserve the suspense:

Also as promised, below is the season 2 blooper reel, and the Tessa scene can be found at the 6:50 mark, but you know you’re going to watch the whole thing anyway, right?

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23 Responses to “SUPERNATURAL: Appointment in Samara”

  1. Emma on December 15th, 2010 10:18 pm


    I was worried about you. I came here to read your fabulous reviews and there wasn’t one. 🙁

    Yes, i feel this season has been really great as well. It didn’t start out that way but it has steadily gotten better and more interesting.

    I still ‘heart’ this show so much.

    I don’t normally comment…I just read your fantastic reviews.


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