Supernatural: And THAT'S why we're cat people
You can tear up that page of potential puppy names, Sam -- the answer is no.
Supernatural can expect a call from the SPCA after this week's episode, because we're guessing we're not the only ones who are now a little leery of the idea of adopting a large dog from a shelter. Plus, Sam confirmed that he is, in fact, a total schmuck now, but at least he's just as eager as we are to get our Sammy back.
Last week, we discovered that Crowley has been the demon behind the curtain, the one pulling the strings on Gramps' jobs. This week, we discover that Dean still isn't happy about it. This is hardly a surprise. Sam, on the other hand, doesn't seem too bothered by the idea of taking jobs from a demon. That's partly because Crowley promises to give Sam's soul back if they bag him an Alpha, and partly because Crowley makes it clear he can cause Sam great pain unless they do what he says.
The boys set out looking for a werewolf that seems to be terrorizing the not-so-good citizens of Buffalo. They zero in on a suspect, and Sam is ready to haul him off to Crowley, but Dean counsels patience. It's a good thing, too, because their prime suspect gets eaten by the wolf they're seeking. Except it's not a wolf -- it's the family dog. But that dog isn't a dog -- it's a Skinwalker, a being that can quickly shift from dog to man and back again without waiting for the full moon. Skinwalkers are just as vulnerable to silver, though, so at least the boys know how to kill it.
Sam spies Lucky the pooch becoming an unlucky man, who then goes out to talk to someone. But Man-Lucky catches Sam's scent, so he shifts into dog form and scampers. Dog-Lucky gets hit by a car and taken to the vet, then the pound. That's where the boys find him.
The boys convince Dog-Lucky to come quietly, then get him to shift so they can interrogate him. Sam is basically contemptuous -- "Why shack up with a family? Is it a kinky thing? Do you like to play with your food?" -- but Dean gets it: Lucky genuinely cares about, and wants to protect, his family. That's why he was eating the hearts of anyone who threatened Mandy and her son, Aidan.
Man-Lucky was a down-and-out homeless guy when he was recruited to become a Skinwalker. He's part of a pack or at least 30, all of whom are posing as friendly pooches, infiltrating homes, and waiting for the signal to turn on their masters. Suddenly, we have another reason to prefer cats.
Bite the hand that turns you
Dean convinces Man-Lucky to lure the leader of the pack out into the open so they can take him out with a sniper rifle (despite Sam's objections that they should just snag the Alpha and turn it over to Crowley, even if that means 150 people get attacked by their family not-really dogs.) But things go wrong -- the pack leader knew something was up, so he grabbed Mandy and Aidan. He wants Man-Lucky to prove his loyalty by turning them right now.
Man-Lucky refuses, but that's when the boys come in shooting. Sam does the close-in shooting, while Dean is perched up high with the sniper rifle. Man-Lucky gets Mandy and Aidan to safety, then protects them from his pack leader. The leader manages to shoot him, but Dean takes him out before he can complete the kill. Sam is all set to execute Man-Lucky, but he gets away.
Not that it does him any good… Man-Lucky shows up at Mandy's house, and she's not happy to see him. Man-Lucky explains that his time with them -- as a dog -- was the only time anyone has ever been kind to him, treated him like family. Mandy is unmoved and sends him away. Man-Lucky changes to dog form and takes to the road. Poor puppy!
Confessions are good for the soul(less)
After all that drama, Sam and Dean have a heart-to-heart, and it's worth writing in full:
Sam>: I'm not your brother. I'm not Sam. All that blah blah blah about being the old me? Crap. Like, Lisa and Ben, right? I've been acting like I care about them. But I don't. I couldn't care less.
Dean: Is this supposed to make me feel better?
Sam>: You wanted the real me -- this is it. I don't care about them, I don't even really care about you. Except that I need your help, and you're clearly not going to stick around for much longer unless I give it to you straight. So…I've done a lot worse than you know. I've killed innocent people in the line of duty. But I'm pretty sure it's not something the old me could have done. And maybe I should feel guilty, but I don't.
Dean: Sam, get to the punchline.
Sam>: Look, I don't know if how I am is better or worse. It's different. You get the job done and nothing really hurts -- it's not the worst thing. But, I've been thinking, I was that other Sam for a long time, and it was…it was kind of harder. But there are also things about it I remember that…let's just say I should probably go back to being him. Dean: That's very interesting. It's a step.
Dean: We do what we gotta do. And we get my brother back.
So now we have our quest. Will the boys be able to pull it off?
Highlights, thoughts and odds and ends
It's kind of heartbreaking that Dog-Lucky had such a better life than Man-Lucky. We suppose he was, well, lucky -- he could have gotten a horrible family to live with. Or do Skinwalkers have better adoption interviews than many pet stores?
That said, Dog-Lucky watching Mandy showering? Seriously creepy. And yes, like Sam, our first thought was that dog obviously hadn't been fixed.
Crowley interrupts Dean while he's on the phone: "Is that Bobby Singer? Give him a kiss from me." At least this time, he didn't whip out the cell phone pic of them locking lips.
Sam, describing what kind of Feds they are to a local cop: "We're specialists, they call us in to answer the questions of mouth-breathing dick monkeys." He's really working that win-friends-and-influence-people vibe, isn't he?
Dean apparently agrees with us on the Sam-as-psychopath tip. When Sam tells him that, if he were in Man-Lucky's situation, he'd totally double-cross them, Dean replies "Thanks Dexter, that's reassuring."
Are you glad that Sam stopped pretending that he was his old self, or do you find him infinitely creepier now? This may be a hangover to the Truth episode -- Dean asked for it, and now he's getting it, whether he likes it or not. Ouch.
What do you think? Is Sam redeemable? Will Crowley really turn over Sam's soul? Are you planning on replacing your toothy pets with harmless goldfish? Talk about it in the comments!