Episode Review – Shut up, Dr. Phil

Sometimes I almost feel for the SPN writers.

Let’s see here… the “reminder” intro brings up witches.  In the “guest stars” credits we see one James Marsters (Spike from Buffy/Angel) and Charisma Carpenter (Cordelia from same).

Gee, is this episode going to be about those two as witches having a lovers’ quarrel?

[insert sarcasm] What a shock!

.

All in all another fairly standard episode, but one with a bit more fridge logic soaking in it.

  • Ever notice how witches are the one “monster” that continues to pwn the Winchesters?  They’ve never beaten one without help – a record only previously held by the Trickster until they figured out his true identity.
  • Which starts to make one wonder: why don’t the Winchesters go on to make themselves witches?  They already kind of use spells.  And in two episodes now, the most powerful witches did NOT show signs of cavorting with demons.
  • No, really – why aren’t more hunters witches? (or visa versa)  One of the leviathan was just put down temporarily with a “spell” – seems like it’d be a good time for the boys to master that spell at least.
  • One theme I actually like about the show is that age = power.  The older brother Lucifer is more powerful than his younger siblings.  The older witches are far more powerful than the younger ones just starting out.  Death & God – the two oldest beings “alive” are also the most powerful ones.  So how could even a Leviathan be paralyzed for more than a second by a spell?
  • And way to undercut the menace.  (This is what also bugged me a lot about the card playing witch in “Curious Case of Dean Winchester”.)  If these witches are so knowledgeable, can we get a scene of them freaking out just a bit?  Like the card player going, “Your Lucifer’s vessel?  Hell no I’m going playing cards with ya.”  Or Spike telling them, “When did that thing escape?  Get out of here boys!  Run and keep running.”  Remember writers: putting in little touches (that won’t cost anything, just some dialog tweaks and acting skills in the case of tv/movies) can really reinforce atmosphere.
  • Why did the boys try magic?  What if they like… rigged the house to explode?  Would the witches have been able to stop it?  Sniper rifle?  Remember when Dean had one in season 2?  (Just seems unlikely unless they have the cheat codes for god-mode or something.)
  • Sam’s riding a bike?  Where’s the bike?  Have they been carrying it in the trunk?  That’s just… so… (but Dean can’t get a sledgehammer to get a sword out of some stone)
  • This episode really proves how much Bobby’s been “plot hole spackle” of late.  Kind of wish he had died just so we could watch the boys reading again.  I say by this point it’s become worse than John’s Journal.
  • What are the witches planning?  Their activities are really going to tip off actual authorities and it seems like there’s quite a bit of evidence floating around for… well maybe not a guaranteed conviction, but at least a ruination in the public eye.
  • Is it just me, or did those two seem to have an awfully “modern” relationship for how old they were supposed to be?  That would have elevated this episode: some deliberate values dissonance as ‘Spike’ is very old fashioned while his wife has just been fascinated by all this “feminism” stuff going around the last few decades…
  • I’d have been more accepting of the Winchesters’ solution if the MOTW weren’t such cold-blooded killers.  Yet they are let off just to save the boys’ skin?  This is even more jarring considering Dean’s recent actions with Amy.  What we see of her actions could at least be defended in a court of law or on a moral scale.  These two… deserve to serve time at least! (if not be executed)  Just kind of ticks me off that we don’t even see Dean like… making a “to kill” list or something (for the ones that got away).

Still, it had its entertaining moments.

Though I’m getting season 6 vibes again: “Hey, we’ve got lots of new, neat ideas here and there!  Let’s just do more of the same!”

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