By Dan Compora
The estrangement between Sam and Dean apparently lasted just one episode. While its good to to see the brothers as a team again, a couple more episodes of them going solo would not have been bad.
Sam calls Dean to tell him about the revelation that Sam is to be the vessel for Lucifer. Dean refuses to reunite up with Sam, at least for the time being. Zacharias finds Dean, with the help of a pamphlet-passing street preacher, and promptly transports him to 2014. It is a future in which the Croatoan virus, depicted in the season two episode Croatoan, has nearly destroyed humanity.
The angels have left the planet, apparently tired of the battle, and Dean continues to lead the remnants of hunters and survivors in his quest to destroy Lucifer, who now inhabits Sams body. Of course, it is not exactly clear if this is the real future, or if Zacharias is playing some kind of joke. His real goal is to get Dean to accept his role as a vessel for Michael.
In the end, it doesnt matter much. When the Dean of 2009 confronts the Dean of the future, it becomes apparent that Dean has lost his humanity. It takes Dean only a short amount of time for him to realize that his brother is his link to humanity.
In the second episode of the season, I questioned why the writers would separate these two, when it was inevitable that they would eventually come back together. The third episode followed separate Sam and Dean story lines that, for the most part, worked pretty well. Viewers suspected that the breakup was only temporary, but having it last only one episode makes it seem trite. That is not as much a complaint about this particular episode as it is the decision to split them up in the first place.
Such a complaint is trivial. Sam and Dean are back together and ready to fight. The fifth season has finally hit its stride.
The double dose of Dean had its moments, particularly where he proves who he is by admitting he wore pink girl panties, and liked it. It wasnt played for as many laughs as it could have been, but the ones that were attempted did hit the mark.
Carver Edlund was back, but only for a brief scene or two. Come on writers, bring this character in more often.
What Didnt Work
Although they made jokes about the ghost of Christmas future, this plot was not terribly original. Simply acknowledging that a tired old narrative strategy is being ripped off doesnt excuse those who are employing it. Still, this is just a minor complaint in an otherwise fine episode.
Making Castiel a buffoon every week has already worn thin. Castiel the Angel is far more interesting than Castiel as a hippy or Castiel in a brothel. Its time to employ a new strategy with this character already.
Giving Credit Where Credit Is Due
"Supernatural" stars Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles. It airs on The CW Thursdays at 9 p.m. ET. The End was written by Ben Edlund (yes, like Carver Edlund) and directed by Steve Boyum
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