After chasing a wounded witch for killing a local accountant, Dean inexplicably becomes the victim of a spell that causes him to forget most aspects of his life including basic and long-term memories. Sam calls on Rowena for help and arrives after she recognizes the wounded witch who later had been found dead. His two siblings also find and take the body to prepare it for a spell of resurrection as Sam tracks them to their house alone. After being captured, Rowena brings a forgetful Dean to the house and attacks the sister as Dean unwittingly helps kill the remaining witches with Rowena’s help. Rowena then restores Dean to normal and leaves the brothers who admit to owing her a small favor in the future.
It was an obtuse look into Dean’s more innocent outlook on life as we followed his rather frustrating journey into the mystery of his ailment. Rowena’s background was further explored giving her a few more sympathy credits and Sam maintained his Sam-like behavior all-throughout. A few chuckles came and went along with some interest on a book that may or may not come into play later. The examples of both long and short-term memory loss were in abundance paired with a few recognizable references to likened plots of the other media, but as a whole, “Regarding Dean” won’t be the most remembered episode of the season.
Rowena’s presence may be fractal, but she’s been an established alignment-neutral witch for long enough that this season she’s finally assisting in ways that make sense. It’s fun watching her develop and reveal layers of humanity that over time had caused her to be callous and cynical well beyond the mere definition of it. She may not be a witch with a heart of gold quite yet, but given time, she may actually prove her worth enough to impress even her little king of hell.
There may have been a deeper meaning behind Dean’s comedic reversion into a simple-minded amnesiac, but the tone and behavior was routinely inconsistent. His memory loss came and went, probably as intended, but the true horror of Sam’s realization about losing him to something akin to Alzheimer’s was the only raw moment that should have been exemplified but wasn’t. It was more about making Dean’s reactions humorous and somewhat trivial as he stumbled around trying to remember things. The balance seemed incredibly off between the funny and serious aspects of the episode, brought together by one basic comment that Dean preferred to carry the weight of his guilt rather than be purged of it. We’ve known that for many seasons.
Hands down, when Dean showed the post-it right before he shot Catriona. A very worthy and laugh-out-loud moment that was the perfect payoff for the entire episode’s set up. It was almost cartoony in its delivery and Dean’s dead-pan look sealed it.
I’d like to give Rowena the stage for opening up to Dean in a way that seemed more therapeutic to her than anything else. Some walls are beginning to break down as we found out a bit more with her past and reasons why she had became so bitter and alone over the years. I’d like to think there’s more to discover and even worth going into some flashbacks for in future episodes. We’ll see.
Shout out to the grenade launcher in the trunk. The writers haven’t forgotten about it and neither have we. Its time is coming, and something is going to get blown up this season. The question is who is going to do the launching?
It would have been appropriately humorous if we got to see who was being affected by the voodoo doll that Dean was playing around with. At least he remembered how the needle-thing worked.
I have to say, the end sequence had me confused for a moment considering the atmosphere and overall review of Dean’s experience before and after being hexed. His cheery demeanor and carefree lifestyle wasn’t a unique experience even through he harbors some dark issues with guilt. He always finds the time to live in the moment and find that sugar rush in almost anything he does. It was odd how they decided to reflect on that subject given we’re so used to seeing him be that way regardless of being hexed or not.
One would think the spell would have a more consistent affect on Dean. He forgets a lot of basic things like firearms and then proceeds to use one at the end rather convincingly having lost his speech and memories of his own brother. Rowena explained the effects of the spell rather well, but Dean’s reactions either meant he was fighting in ways we couldn’t perceive, or he just had some odd luck knowing what to do with the weapons at his disposal.
7 out of 10. It feels rather generous a score, but given a different approach, this could have been a much more dramatic and fitting episode about Dean’s aspect with losing his sense of self along with Sam’s fears about losing his brother in a very relatable way many people in the world have to deal with. It’s funny because Dean’s reactions make it so, but realistically, this should have taken a darker turn. There was a moment when Dean was in the bathroom staring at himself in the mirror that locked in exactly how damaging and confusing losing one’s memories must feel like. He really nailed that scene, but it was surrounded by so many whimsical segments, it just got lost in the mix of things. In any case, this will stand as a filler episode that gave us more backstory into Rowena’s past. That alone was fulfilling if not shortened to a single scene. Back to the road. Thanks for reading.
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