We all had to expect a bit of a breather after the nostalgic grand opus that was the 200th episode of Supernatural. Tonight’s episode “Ask Jeeves” brings back an old monster mainstay, the elusive shapeshifter entity. Through a minor twist on creature-types, the brothers find a shifter is responsible for murders taken place within a mansion with Clue-like easter eggs drawn throughout. With a simple location, and a familiar kind of plot, Sam and Dean uncover their own mystery with the late Bobby’s signature embedded in the shifter’s backstory.
A few parts were chuckle-worthy, namely Sam’s interaction with the cougars of the night. Dean practically earned a new theme for this episode alone, just to solidify that this was a very tongue-in-cheek episode. Without a whiff of Demon or Angel presence, the main element here was introducing a group of “wasps” as Dean refers to, and see if their high opinion and snooty personas would mesh well with the flannel wearing Winchesters.
It began and played rather well into the style that comes with rich murder mysteries, but it fell a bit short once we understood the kind of creature they were dealing with. Some things about a mystery should last until the climax, or at least near it. I wouldn’t have rolled my eyes if this was a duel vengeance ghost story, in fact I thought it was less interesting once we knew a shifter was involved. Ghost stories can be creative given the world they inhabit, but creatures are a different albeit mixed bag. Creatures are almost always faced with societal acceptance and/or a longing of family. Some try to blend in and perform dark acts when necessary. Others lash out over the mistreatment of their youth and upbringing. This evil character was very much dropped in the latter.
The remaining human characters were very much carbon copies of older stylistic models portrayed in the finer days of murder mysteries. A family that hates one another and wants more money is the defined serial of this kind of genre franchise. There could have been several creative tangents to be made, but they played it safe and gave us cheating, and older women pining after the younger men. Jealousy and lies, and of course, the maids and butler who were at the center of it all.
What I do appreciate from it is the experience that Sam and Dean go through when they encounter older pop culture threads and overtly familiar environments. Sometimes when the arcs have to take a break, one has to ask “How would Sam and Dean handle this kind of situation?” It’s alright to ask those questions, because many funny episodes have come from it, like Sam reliving a Groundhog Day scenario and of course when they both crashed into our reality of meta. A Clue-centric episode was casually satisfying at best, only because they didn’t surf outside the norm and played an all too easy creature to defeat.
The episode does conclude with Sam confronting Dean about the sheer amount of bullets he shot into the shifter to kill her and Dean gives a passive “I’m fine” answer before turning up the music and ignoring Sam for the remainder of the trip. That’s a bad sign as Dean not only denies a problem, but probably doesn’t fully know what’s going on. There’s every reason to believe it’s either demon residue or the mark. Dean admitted he was a Knight of Hell, you can’t just erase that without some kind of consequence. In any case, Sam already knows something is up and Dean isn’t committing to an explanation. The season 10 schism has already begun and he haven’t even hit double-digits yet in this arc.
Not much to choose from, but I think Sam dealing with two older ladies seemed a genuinely awkward scene to pick. Dean had a grip of humorous one liners, with the “Clown college Collette” joke running the longest and practically with every character. Sam is still very much a passively sexualized character who doesn’t jump at every opportunity as Dean mostly does. Every now and then it’s funny to see Sam deal with those who desire him but are clearly not viable options.
No Cas or Crowley and though Sam went through a few notable moments, Dean fit more with the humorous plot and deserves tonight’s MVP award.
Dean = 4
Sam = 1
Castiel = 0
Crowley = 0
Marie = 1 (Special circumstance)
LONG TERM THOUGHTS
One cop/detective at the mansion doing all the interrogations? Really? If that was the case, one of the brothers could have easily escaped to get to the Impala for weapons duty.
I highly doubt there would have been a clean up crew come and gone like that for the beheaded victim. Aside from the caution tape there was no sign that place had anything more than the detective the entire time.
Are Sam and Dean ever going to another country to investigate a supernatural murder?
I half expected there to be more murders. 4 family members survived, which seems 2-3 too many.
Are Sam and Dean going to return to Chicago to wrap up that cheesy “Bloodlines” plot? In a way I kind of hope not.
It was an okay episode. 6 out of 10. Nothing much new is learned, if anything. The brothers took a detour from any existing plot thread and handled a rather recognizable and bland attempt at what Clue solidified itself as. Sam and Dean can work out of their element, but this time around, it didn’t have as many super fun moments that some one-offs have provided in the past. Dean running into most of the Clue weapons was a nice homage, but that was about it. Until next week!
No more words