I know that almost any episode following Abandon All Hope was going to be bad but…
I did not get one single great quote this episode, what the hell? (pun intended)
Like I believe the Children… episode, this one suffered from the writers wanting to do too much and not settling on a specific theme and ripping off thing they have done before. They sort of had the Winchesters vs the system, like in the much better Folsom Prison Blues. They sort of had the psychological examination of Dream a little Dream… Even the Wraith took on a lot of the features of the Siren from Sex & Violence.
And don’t get me started on the old hunter, Mr Device, Plot. It becomes even worse when you realize that, at the end, the boys left him to suffer the fate Sam was threatened with.
As always, I hate the episodes that waste the most potential. Why didn’t they make Plot Device full blown crazy and have the brothers in a race to decipher his rambling clues before the wraith struck? Why not take him out all together and let the brothers struggle with figuring out clues without their usual tools? Or how about they gank the evil quickly, then have the rest of the episode an escape flick? Or even have the Winchesters be driven near madness in question of whether anything is real or not (maybe even Castiel shows up as a normal person). I was actually hoping the episode would end a bit like The Real Ghostbusters where Sam & Dean actually got some help while in the nut house, maybe learned to be a bit more balanced.
I’ll actually have to disagree with Seph here, this was not a Dean episode. It wasn’t even a Sam episode. It was a nobody episode, which contributed to its weakness.
It does bring to mind a question: What are the thoughts of all the other monsters about this? We got a brief hint in Fallen Idols but otherwise, season 5 has been having the show neatly segmented between a world of monsters and a world of angels/demons. There was brief talk about maybe the Trickster getting involved but no, turns out he’s not a part of the former world, but of the later. Dammit, I’m starting to get curious here. Ok, we can guess Lucifer would hate shapeshifters because they’re sort of human, but what about the rest? Would he be ok with the wraith? Even encouraging it? What about Ghouls? We sort of got a hint that Reapers are kind of along for the ride in Abandon All Hope but what about every thing else? This is what angered me the most about The Curious Case… I was hoping we’d get to see a reaction from the witch when he realized just who Sam was.
Alas, it seems that with each MOTW episode, the writers are working harder to destroy the atmosphere and tension they have built up through this season. It’s not enough just to have Sam & Dean talk about the stuff guys! We need to have other things reacting too!
I have to give this one an unweighted: