[header photo courtesy Diyah Pera/The CW]
One thing Supernatural is great at is tearing your heart out. You wouldn’t believe who Dean kisses in this episode.
The Road so Far points out nothing so much as that the boys have never had much luck with holidays. It shows some scenes from the “My Bloody Valentine” episode, and “A Very Supernatural Christmas” with the little old couple who wanted to torture and sacrifice them for Christmas.
An upscale couple are getting ready to go out for Valentine’s Day. The wife and husband smooch. The doorbell rings and you can tell from the way the woman complains about her ringing the doorbell that she hates the babysitter. The husband answers the door and gets kissed by the babysitter, who demands that he tells the wife about the affair. He says that would be heartless to do on Valentine’s Day.
Someone sneaks up on the babysitter from behind. It’s the husband. He punches her through the chest and pulls out her heart. Cleanly, with no bits of rib or dangling arteries. The nannycam bear watches the whole thing.
Dean has been out carousing. He refers to Valentine’s Day as Christmas for lonely drifters. I have to say, if that’s what he looks (and smells) like the morning after, it’s not very attractive. Sam, on the other hand, has found a case — our dead babysitter. Dean suggests it’s the work of an ironic werewolf. They’re off to Ohio.
They don’t get much from the couple, except that the nannycam is missing and they are both behaving oddly. Sam goes to the morgue: not much there, but I like the coroner. I would like it if we meet her again with a larger role. Dean goes to the husband’s office and tells him he knows he’s been schtupping the babysitter. That’s a word I haven’t heard since I first heard it on Dreamscape. It makes me wonder if it’s a word that Sam and Dean would really use, but Sam says the same thing later.
The husband doesn’t seem so bad for a scumbag. He shows Dean the video, as he is the one that stole the nannycam. There is a telltale glint in the husband’s eyes in the video — that mean shapeshifter; also, there is the fact that he was at dinner with his wife at the same time. After Dean leaves, the dead babysitter shows up and tells Dan, the husband, that she wants his heart. She takes it.
The wife, Melissa, is distraught by her husband’s death and tells the boys that she would never hurt her husband. One of the first things Dean asks is where the baby is — she’s at Grandma’s house. They give Melissa a silver pen to use and it doesn’t hurt her. She’s not the shapeshifter. Having hit a dead end, Dean goes off to get lucky and Sam hits the lore. Sam says “Didn’t you just get lucky?” Dean, “That was Kansas.”
After they are gone, Melissa digs out a box and throws hex bags down the garbage disposal and frantically tries to call someone. Evidently witchcraft is at work here. After it gets dark and she is alone guzzling wine, her dead husband shows up at the door. She manages to run away, grabbing her purse on the way out.
Dean returns to the Too Tired Motel. He’s struck out, it being after Valentine’s Day, and wants to know what a dad bod is. Melissa shows up at their door. She admits to using a spell to get her husband back that she got from someone who billed herself as a white witch. Melissa had to seal the spell with a kiss. She has it on her and Sam says it’s more like an Aramaic curse. They try to figure out how the spell works. This is a little bit like watching someone figure out the Gremlin rules. They conclude that you can pass on the spell (and get passed over) by kissing someone else, but when the curse kills that person, it comes back to you.
Dead Dan shows up at the door and attacks. Dean puts a round of silver bullets in him and nothing happens. He kisses Melissa. “I knew he was going to do that!” Sam yells at him. They all flee.
Melissa has only met the witch, her hairdresser, at her salon, so they go to the Art of Dyeing salon. Sam gives Dean what for about putting the bullseye on himself. Again. And taking all the responsibility, etc. So Dean. They leave Melissa in the car with a knife and a lecture on Sonja being a Wicked Witch who killed her husband and babysitter.
In the salon, they find some information about the monster. I assume Sam is reading the witch’s sticky notes, as am I, but maybe he reads Arabic, who knows? Anyway, it’s a qareen. Sam reads the description, and Dean says it sounds like a djinn, which is correct. According to the internet, a qareen is a subset of djinn. Everyone has one and they inspire you to do bad things, which sounds a lot like a little devil on your shoulder. However, there are many tales of ways to trap and compel them to do your bidding, and all djinns can change form, so it works for the story. According to the show, the qareen comes to you as your deepest darkest desire. It has be killed by slicing it through the heart but it keeps its heart outside its body.
Dean says one of the good things about the spell is that he finally will get to meet Daisy Duke — Bach or Simpson, either one.
While they are downstairs, Sam wants to go upstairs and look around for the heart while Dean takes the basement. Dean insists on a game of rock, paper, scissors. They tie for two rounds, and on the last Dean throws paper and Sam throws rock. Dean is so astonished and elated that he won that he doesn’t even notice that Sam goes upstairs and does what he wants anyway.
While upstairs, the witch comes in and gets the drop on Sam, tying him up in a chair just as he finds the heart in a box. I guess he didn’t notice the headlights or shadow. She tells him that she changed the spell to turn back on the wives because she got sick of them asking for spells to get their husbands back and them cheating on them again and then asking for spells to get them back.
Meanwhile, downstairs, the qareen shows up and goes after Dean. It is Amara, of course, who tells him his love is cloaked in shame. He dodges the qareen and puts things between himself and it that it punches through.
Melissa bursts in the door and attacks the witch. Clumsily, of course, but Sam has been getting loose and he takes the opportunity to shoot Sonja. He then stabs the heart in the box and stops the qareen with its arm inches from Dean’s chest. It winks out of existence.
Sam sees the holes punched in everything and asks Dean if he saw Bach or Simpson? Dean admits it was Amara. Sam asks him if he was surprised. He then tells Dean that it’s not his fault, he was never given a choice and Amara picked him. Dean says that when he is not with her he wants her dead but when he is around her he feels that thing like love but it’s not love. Dean admits that he will be useless against Amara and it’s all up to Sam. I don’t know if it occurs to either of them that Sam will have to fight Dean every step of the way.
This is a garden variety monster of the week episode. It’s made more interesting by being a holiday episode. I’ve always enjoyed holiday episodes of shows and the ones on Supernatural are twisted and horrifying. There’s a good victim in this episode, someone who got into trouble but without harmful intent. She’s spunky and has some survival traits. Also, saving her keeps a baby from being orphaned. Sonja the witch is evil enough to warrant killing. All in all, it’s a good save.
It’s getting harder to find a monster that they haven’t encountered or have to do any real investigative work to figure out how to defeat. They put some work into this one.
There are some great funny bits. Sam and Dean playing rock, paper, scissors; Sam and Dean trying to figure out the rules; Dean telling Melissa to drop a house on her (Sonja) if she has to.
Sam confronting Dean was really well done. He has given up bashing his head against the brick wall and is waiting for the right moment, although he did yell at Dean for kissing Melissa and taking a fatal curse on himself. I loved that he told Dean it wasn’t his fault and he shouldn’t beat himself up about Amara. It’s nice to see some of that sensitivity that he directs towards other people directed towards his brother.
I have to give a shout out to whoever designed the set. I’m always interested in seeing what the funky hotel rooms are going to look like when they go on the road. The room at the Too Tired Inn is actually a suite with a little kitchen. It looks like a time capsule. I don’t think it had been remodeled since the fifties, but was still in good shape. Cute little red chrome table, the kind that are in demand today. I think Sam ruined one of the chairs on dead Dan, however. The partition is advertising Hudson tires. The wallpaper and drapes may have ads on them as well, I couldn’t see. But they match.
Questions: Who is going to pay for the damage to the room? The qareen took a window or sliding glass door out, and they probably mangled some furniture. A fake credit card, I suppose. They also left a dead body in the salon.
Does anyone in the Midwest use the word schtupping?
New info: Dean knows he can’t hurt Amara, and told Sam.
Next week Dean travels back in time. It also appears that Sam will have to work with Castifer.
[Author’s note: I live in Kansas. Probably not too far from the secret lair. Valentine’s is coming up..]
Supernatural airs Wednesdays at 9/8c on The CW.