A Sashurai’s Review: Supernatural – Season 11×23 (Sorry Dean, The Flash beat you to it and saved his mother last night)

SN 11x23

 

SUMMARY

Sam and Dean recover from Amara’s attack but find that Chuck (God) is slowly dying. The sun’s light begins to dissolve as the brothers, Rowena, Crowley, Castiel (sans Lucifer) and Chuck return to HQ. Dean accepts their predicament but Sam refuses to give in, leading to a plan to kill Amara by detonating a soul-bomb in her presence. Sam and Dean go to an abandoned asylum and collect the souls there as Billie, the reaper follows them. Amara, meanwhile, ponders what her vengeance is costing her while listening to an elderly woman speak about her family situation. Billie shows up at HQ and offers the souls they need to fill the bomb which Rowena fuses into Dean, who has to confront Amara and sacrifice himself to destroy her. He says his goodbyes and confronts Amara but finds she’s remorseful over her actions. He convinces her to summon God and together they forgive each other. She heals God and the two reconcile making plans to leave Earth for the time being. Amara thanks Dean and offers to give him something he’s wanted. Meanwhile, a woman of letters from England, Lady Antonia Bevell is sent by a regal group of Men of Letters to apprehend the Winchesters. Sam returns home believing Dean is dead and is confronted by Antonia who banishes Castiel with a warding spell. Sam approaches her believing she won’t him, but is wrong as Antonia fires her gun. Elsewhere, Dean attempts to find where he is within a forest clearing and finds his mother, Mary alive.

 

INITIAL THOUGHTS

This is not the reboot I was looking for. In some astute yet cliché manners, Supernatural closes its chapter on the biggest possible story it could have told and leaves us with interesting yet bland cliffhangers that will set the stage for the inevitable 12th season later this fall. The sacred nature of dead characters finds a small loophole here as Sam and Dean’s mother has been brought back as a thank you from the Darkness. It hangs on Dean’s ghastly confusion as he wraps his mind on the prospect of seeing his mother again while we understandably eye roll at Sam’s fate, because clearly, she shot him either in the shoulder or around him to make a point. This finale gave us a bit of the fairytale approach by sticking to their explanation that if God had died, creation would have went with him. While I wanted more risk and sacrifice to own this episode, I understand the need to maintain the balance and allow for everyone to survive because any major deaths would have had a horrific effect in the following season. At least we know Lucifer is somewhere out there, hopefully recreating the horsemen as we speak.

 

THE GOOD

Supernatural knows how to hit homeruns with their themes. Family, obligation, reconciliation, and most of all understanding play their parts here tonight and followed through with a fashionable design that showed human qualities are an extension of all beings light or dark. Dean nailed the truth when he told her that revenge feels good for about 5 minutes. He’s the go to when the truth needs to be rushed and heard in that short amount of time because he’s the master of summing up eternity’s irrational behavior and humanity’s on-going hiccups with its contradictory existence. The message of enduring and forgiving remain the same and no one spells it out better than Dean Winchester.

 

THE BAD

There was something awkward and rushed about this ending, almost as though the writers had built a rock-solid foundation for the season but weren’t sure if ending the existence of the two more powerful beings would sell well enough to be topped by a future season. The answer was no, and thus God and Amara held hands and returned to the stars to work out their wondrous sibling relationship. Chuck’s fallible nature suggests that he never really had to lock Amara away to begin with, he just made a bad call by not explaining creation well enough to his sister so that she wouldn’t flip out and destroy it. What we got was the same exact conversation God had with Lucifer prior to the finale. And the same result was applied making this finale feel like a bit of a rerun.

 

Antonia (Valerie from TVD) also was shoe-horned in to make some semblance of a plot for season 12 giving us some “Watcher’s Council” in England that head up a different chapter of the Men of Letters, who have seen fit to send what I can only guess is their top performer to apprehend the brothers and I assume brought before them. The Men of Letters had an interesting history but most of their storylines have been told now that I don’t need to nor want to see how they’ve been operating in present day conditions. The idea that they’d send one of their own in conceivably the end times is absolutely ridiculous but in the off-chance the world didn’t survive what would it have mattered? They could have presented this episode without her presence and I think it would have been better off.

 

FAVORITE MOMENT

I really enjoyed Amara’s reactions in this episode as she tried hard to understand the feelings that were plaguing her after the fact. Dean scenes with her really capitalized on that front and I think she sold her feelings rather well given her state of mind. From her perspective, omnipotent as she may be, human-like qualities can effect them just the same. She understands beauty and is able to build on that remorse she felt to allow creation to continue. Maybe it was an easy fix, but I just liked her reactions to Dean summary of what she was doing would cost her. Bravo, Emily.

 

CHARACTER MVP

As per usual, Dean was very much the central figure in staving off the apocalypse, but is willingness to once again put himself on the path of certain death gives him the golden ticket to the MVP slot. It can’t be easy to come up with reasons not to let God die while a soul-bomb is emanating from inside him, something that I wish was more unstable than it turned out to be. But nevertheless, he accomplished the alternate goal that helped save humanity and furthermore, his goodbyes to Sam was every bit as emotional as any other time they’re forced to do a scene like that. “You know the drill” indeed.

 

ENDING THOUGHTS

While the theories will skyrocket over what Amara actually did, we can see that Mary is wearing the same nightgown that she had on in the pilot episode right before old Yellow Eyes killed her, which means it’s entirely plausible she was taken out of time and brought to the present. But since that would really mess the timeline up, I’m guessing she somehow manifested Mary back to life and that included the last thing she was wearing. God-like characters have no respect for the timeline it seems. But in all fairness, the continuity is appreciated if mind-boggling at the moment.

 

This also makes for some seriously awkward and hilarious segments for season 12 because if Mary knew half of the things Dean was into, well let’s hope Dean learns a new shade of red on his face.

 

I was particularly sad that Crowley and Rowena had no resolution, even if it was fake, I would have been fine with it. The two operate on an understanding of hate and loatheness, but while Rowena can be charming when needed, Crowley acts more bored and ego-centric, thus his nature to dispel with any family forgiveness is simply out of the question.

 

Something else which irks me about writers is why wouldn’t Amara sensibly bring back both of Sam and Dean’s parents? I understand JDM has more than moved on from the show and becoming more movie-centric, but ideally, wouldn’t it make more sense if both their mother and father were returned, unharmed? Or is it more psycho-analytical as Amara could have peered deep into Dean’s psyche earlier on and understood that Dean made his peace with his dad dying but never with his mother? Who knows.

 

Will Lucifer return as a villain, or has he moved on from destroying the world? This is a tough question to answer as Lucifer should by all rights become his own man, for lack of a better term. I could see him actually helping Sam and Dean in a pinch, but at the end of the day, he’s still the embodiment of the human need to be sinful and evil. There should be some resolution with his character next season, not immediate, but something. I refuse to believe that Amara simply wiped him from existence.

 

OVERALL SCORE

7 out of 10. I’m not as impressed as I thought I would be as the storyline became less and less personable. Amara too easily gave into the human qualities of remorse, and more than certainly retracted her destructive ways all from understanding what Chuck was trying to do. The soul bomb was a good enough idea but I couldn’t help but remember my escapades in Skyrim, filling soul crystals from monsters I vanquished. Billie is and remains a boring and underdeveloped minor character who apparently is the only reaper left in the world since no one else came to their aid toward the end. The cliffhangers were hit and miss with the English Antonia the latter, making us groan into thinking Sam is in any real danger. Mary’s return may or may not be permanent depending on how they want to formulate season 12, but I do like the idea of her interacting with her sons as they are now. What’s important to take away from this is that the show goes on and it will continue to endure and embrace its multi-faceted stories while keeping its core themes forever intact and alive. Overall, not a bad season. It shined much brighter than season 7 and 9 for certain and without the doubt, there is certainly enough gas to push the Impala into the next state of being, whatever that may be. Just don’t turn their car into a Transformer, that will definitely be jumping the shark. Until then, thanks for reading.

 

 

No more words

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