Monday, December 10, 2018

Supernatural, Season 14, Episode 8: Byzantium

This episode Jack dies…

That’s pretty much the opening scene - and I give special kudos to Castiel telling Dean to get back to Jack’s bedside because Jack needs support and this really can’t be all about Dean for five seconds.

So we have lots of grieving. And it’s really sad and these actors have spent the best part of a decade perfecting their angsty sad faces. It’s what they do. And of course, especially with us supporting fully the idea that Jack has three dads, they needed to have this dramatic grief. Which is so well done.


But… I’m not feeling it? I mean, do I care about Jack? Does anyone care about Jack? Have we actually built up Jack into someone we all care about? I’m not the only one here right?

So after we lose half of the episode to dramatic, well acted grief, of course we realise death totally doesn’t exist in this world. Sam points out to Dean that they never ever give up on the dead (which is something I think we could explore more) and he’s looked for a solution

Enter Lily Sunder. So back in season 12 Lily was a woman who had a nephilim child who was killed by angels so she went on a rampage using angel magic (powered by her soul) to kill those angels and living for an unnaturally long time to do it. She’s now much older since she’s not using that magic any more. But by using that Jack could be reborn and keep his body going using a shred of his soul

Dean is really against this because he’s super stubborn and doesn’t like her. But Sam points out they actually always do these half-arsed desperate deals. Which is true. Dean points out that they usually bite them in the arse. Which is also true

But can they really not take the chance?

Dean confronts Lily - what’s the catch. Why did she stop using the magic and allow herself age. She points out her dead daughter is in heaven and, with only a shred of her soul left, she could go to heaven to be with her. Which is nice but she did all that angel killing stuff which means she’s probably not that welcome up in heaven. So she wants the Winchesters to guarantee her passage to heaven.

So, apparently they can do this by summoning Anubis. Because this show is always deeply deeply problematic when it comes to non-christian religions. Apparently when god went away, the angels recruit Anubis to be their judge of the dead because of course the ancient Egyptian deity could certainly just step into this role

So they summon him and he does his test and oopsie, Lily’s going to hell, sorry. They decide to lock him up until he agrees to change it to which Anubis calmly informs them that, no, actually, it doesn’t work that way. He reports the news, he doesn’t write it - and they can imprison him forever but he can’t change what Lily’s own choices have decided for her

Which means they let him go and Lily cannot get her guaranteed pass to heaven. She prepares to leave since they have nothing to offer her… but Dean shames her in an awesome confrontation asking why she’d want others to lose a child like she did.

She agrees to help and prepare the spell

Meanwhile heaven is under attack. Castiel goes to find Jack and finds Duma and Naomi - both being overwhelmed by a horrible black slime - it’s his Goopiness. The entity that guards the empty realm where angels go when they die. And he’s attacking Heaven because he thinks Jack doesn’t belong there - as a half angel Jack belongs to the Empty. Naomi thinks to protect Heaven they need to hand Jack over. No Castiel isn’t supporting that. Heaven can’t defend itself because there’s only like 7 angels left. Maybe less now

And he may be right since Jack has left his own personal Heaven to go exploring. Naomi suggests it’s because his angelness knows what Heaven is. He’s gone looking for Kelly his mother so they can have a reunion. Where Castiel joins them and there’s more happy happy reunioness

Thankfully the Empty arrives then to avoid the fluffiness. The Empty wants Jack and won’t take no for an answer - and also cannot be defeated. In desperation Castiel offers himself instead

Which the Empty - possessing Duma and being the creepiest creepiest thing this show has ever managed in fourteen seasons - agrees to. But he wants Castiel to suffer because he’s super bitter about Castiel escaping. So he’s going to wait, dramatically, until Castiel feels happy and secure and peaceful again. Then the Empty will come for him

So presumably if they need a plot hook in season… 17? 17 maybe?

Anyway Jack is resurrected. Naomi is super grateful that heaven isn’t destroyed so tells Castiel where Michael is… which the angels already knew. Which makes sense. What doesn’t make sense is that no-one bothered to ask...

Oh and Lilly dies casting the spell to resurrect Jack… and this selfless sacrifice gets her promoted from good to bad and heading the heaven. Happily ever after all round!

And we're all reminded that Supernatural has a whole lot of spare characters and randomness in its 14 season history to bring up randomly. Keep that wiki link in your favourites, folks