Well this wasn’t as bad as last year’s finale. Which, since the worst finale led into the worst season, it could be a good sign that S10 has a better finale leading up to it.
To be fair, I’ll start with the negative but wrap up with the positive of this episode. (I know! There were actually positive things in this one!)
- This one does have an * as it could be explained later on in S10. But I’m not thrilled with the “Mark makes you immortal” reveal as it seems really out of character for Lucifer to make a servant that he couldn’t kill and might be able to kill him. However, it could be that archangels are immune to the First Blade. Also the bearer’s life could be so entangled with the Mark that if Lucifer removed it, the bearer would die instantly, essentially giving Satan a kill switch on his knight. Part of what concerns me, however, is that to answer this the show may end up needing to go visit Lucifer again which will start retreading S4 & 5 again as well as lessening his impact.
- Why bother locking Dean up in a room where he has the goodies to perform a demon summoning spell? Why not just send him to his room then?
- Several points in the episode were undercut by a failure of the season’s stories and arcs as a whole to reinforced the themes. For instance, ‘Metatron had to be stopped’. Or wasn’t there something about Metatron rewarding Cas if Cas “played his role” as opponent? Wasn’t Castiel doing that? Why? I mean I have opinions on it based upon my outside religious faith, but nothing within the logic of the story conveyed that, or some other points they were wanting to make. It all has a very “goldfish writing” style that I’ll probably talk about soon.
- I still kind of wonder why Metatron had the tablet on his desk instead of inside him the way Castiel once did. Seems like that would have solved a lot of his problems.
- While S8’s finale was the weakest, it was, objectively speaking, at least generally original. The quality of this finale can be realized because it feels almost like they took segments from every other finale and stitched them together into a new freak.
- I know a lot of fans and twitter exploded at Dean getting stabbed. Meh. With the angels having been established as being able to resurrect people still, it just had no impact before they even revealed that Dean can’t die now.
- The revelation of the tablet powering the typewriter was clever and well done. It occupies that kind of weird, in-between space where it oscillates between making no sense and perfect sense, which is kind of where the best magic and rules should be in my opinion.
- Say what you will, but everyone in this episode acted their hearts out. It’s a testament to how good some of these guys (since no gals have had much of a role lately) are with their ability to elevate a pretty crappy source. It kind of makes me sad because just imagine how great it could be if the writing staff were bringing their full a-game for the actors to chew on (unless they are, in which case we need new writers).
- The camera work in this episode was pretty awesome with their efforts at “impact” shots. Castiel’s revelation about the mic was especially well done. Again, this show cannot fault any of their directors either.
- Speaking of which, kudos also to the set guys. Heaven’s jail, the shanty town and construction site were all some places we hadn’t visited before either literally or in a sense of “something similar”. Again, it gave a great sense to the audience that we were actually in new territories and places.
- I actually like that the “villain broadcasts his master plan/the truth to everyone he’s deceiving” trope may have been employed by Castiel BECAUSE Metatron downloaded all that pop culture into the former’s brain. A seemingly innocuous action later coming back to bite the person who took it is a well used trope for a reason: Because it works in its elegant poetry.
- THEY ACTUALLY TOOK STEPS TO FIX SOME CANON! I counted 2 instances. 1) Actually explaining that, yes, Dean is getting “powered up” by the Mark of Cain to be able to go toe-to-toe with angels. 2) Why Metatron is “near god-like” while previous occupiers of “in charge of heaven” were not. Sure the tablet isn’t a perfect explanation but it is one.
All in all… I’d give this a 3 on the “general SPN scale” with a 5 on the graded curve of S9.
So after last episodes diasasterous shark jumping, did this one manage to go back the other way? Oh hell no, they’d have to try much, MUCH harder to do that.
Let’s see if any effort shows up in S10.