Me, after the episode:
Yes, I’m a little biased because I watch the show for the car & guns like many of the female fans watch for the boys. And I know, I can be hard on the show sometimes, but that’s only because I know that it can be capable of THIS. Before I said that the only single episode I would really consider being worth included in the original 5 (if all things post Kripke were to be jettisoned) was S6’s “Clap Your Hands if You Believe…” Well, I never thought I’d see the day but this? This episode right here. The 4th episode of season 11, it too deserves to be included.
What isn’t great about it?
First of all, the entire episode is from the car’s perspective. The. CAR’S! It’s not uncommon for shows to occasionally do an episode from a single character’s perspective, (even SPN did it before with Castiel in S6’s “the Man Who Would be King“) but for an object that doesn’t even seem sentient? And yet they did it! From shot 1 the audience’s perspective never “leaves” the car, even the few shots outside the cab are from a “mounted on the hood” or “stuck to door” perspective until the very close where the view pulls back and we get a really good look at her. And during the whole time the direction of the framing keeps things visually interesting without being too “oh-look-how-auteur-I-am!”
Then the writing! We had actual moments with the boys, where they acted like real humans, talked about stuff, and in general behaved far more like themselves than we’ve seen in… years. (seriously, when was the last time we heard “bitch-jerk”?) They had a real discussion with back and forth. The scene with the still living head on the hood being pushed away with windshield wipers – an honest to goodness dark joke! That was funny! And the boys actually saved some people! THE SHOW GOT SOMETHING RIGHT ABOUT THE BIBLE! (sometimes they could be pretty bad in this regard)
Plus we got a new monster! I mean, don’t get me wrong, I like the show taking advantage of established monsters & expanding stories upon them (hippie vampires will always hold a special place in my heart) but they’ve seemed to be in a bit of a rut of demon/demigod/angel/vampire of late.
And of course I love how subtly the story plays out, how we see Baby pick up little odds and ends throughout the course of a week until Dean needed the tools. Like I said before, if Dean was Micheal’s vessel, and Sam was Lucifer’s, then I still say Baby was God’s vessel (especially for the added meaning it adds to the close of Swan Song). Heck, we even see Sam get to talk to God in it (which sounded a bit familiar ;)).
It all made the show feel real again. And that’s all I’ve ever wanted from the show. I know not EVERY episode can be this good, we’re just human, some episodes will be weaker than others etc etc… but every episode should feel like it’s trying to be this good. Because you CAN be this good. You can remind someone of joy, and brighten an otherwise miserable day.
Baby earns a solid:
Out of 5.