Saturday, October 22, 2016

Supernatural, Season 12: Episode 2: Mamma Mia

We continue much the same as the last episode – Antonia continues to try and torture Sam into co-operating this time with sexy magic as well as torture – and it doesn’t work. There’s an impression that lady Antonia thinks that the American Hunters have been compromised somehow

While Dean and Mary do lots of really touching catching up while Castiel looks for Sam

And these aren’t bad scenes – in fact Dean and Mary is touching, sweet and really really really well done. But they’re weird juxtaposed. Because Dean and Mary have no sense of urgency – I mean, Dean has literally shelved looking for his brother and decided Castiel will do it. It feels weird

Especially since one undercurrent we get from Mary speaking to Dean and, later, Sam is the togetherness between them. Mary is continually curious about why her sons are Hunters – after all, this is a life she wanted to leave. As she talks to them we get a really powerful sense of how together they are- Sam talks about hunting as family and Dean says that, other than the Impala, all they have is each other. But this is the essence of bittersweet – because their bond is close (unhealthily so as we’ve said many times before) but they have no life beyond that, few friends, no family, no lives – Hunting has consumed them. In some ways it really explores WHY they are so unhealthily obsessed with each other

When they do finally find Sam, Dean tries to play the protective man bullshit with his mother. She’s unimpressed and insists on going but is willing to stay outside to humour him while Antonia captures Dean (of course). Castiel can’t get in because of mega men-of-letters anti-angel wards

We get some more torturing which doesn’t work on Dean any more than it worked on Sam. Antonia decides to name drop a load of people from past seasons like a really really cheap clips-episode but other than show she has Done The Research it doesn’t really go anywhere; she does point out how educated and intelligent the British men of Letters are, making sure they control uncouth hunters like Same and Dean. Then Mary shows up.

I have a feeling Mary to the rescue is going to be a theme this season.

Everyone free and Antonia unconscious it’s time for Mary to cut out her spleen. This is what I hope was going to happen and you can’t convince me otherwise

But instead we get Mick. Mick is another British Men of Letters and he’s totally sorry for Mary’s barbarism (honestly I thought she was very refined and civilised in her evil sadism which is very British. Well, very American stereotyped idea of British people anyway) and this has all being a terrible misunderstanding. Antonia will be taken back to London and appropriately disciplined while he would totally like to be their bestest friend. As proof of his good faith he points out he did come into the room unarmed when everyone is pissed at him – also he took the wards down unleashing their Nuclear Option Castiel.

Y’know the bad cop, good cop could work but not nearly as much as introducing themselves politely.

I thought it was a ruse, but when they’re alone we see it’s partially true. At least, Antonia’s mission was to earn the American hunters’ trust. My she screwed that one up epicly, didn’t she? They do think that there’s some level of betrayal or taint among American hunters because they’re so bad at their job but she has decided the solution to that is to just kill them and the monsters. Mick is keeping that as a last option – and they’re calling in some ominous guy with a cross tattooed on his hand

Because a notorious hidden killer really needs super identifying marks

Over to Crowley, they worst happens – he finds Rowena (she’s currently looking for a successful, stable and short lived husband).

Now I love Crowley. I also love Rowena. I think they’re excellent, fun, awesome characters who are so much fun and perfectly evil. But I hate them together. Together everything falls apart in both their stories and they become just terrible.

Crowley recruits his mother in his plan to take down Lucifer (now in the body of an aging tragic musician) – namely use her magic to temporarily paralyse him then throw sulfuric acid in his face so he flees his vessel then banish him back to his cage

It’s a decent plan, simple, but decent

But doesn’t account for the sheer power of the archangel, his willingness to stay in a host horrifically injured by acid, heal said host and then prepare to unleash hell. Crowley, who knows when a plan is going south, flees leaving Rowena to be captured by Lucifer. This was not how either of them planned things