Thursday’s Supernatural is entitled “The Rupture” and it ends the three-part opening storyline of the final season. We lose Rowena, Ketch, and Demon Jack, but at least that town gains some peace.
We start off with the clock running out on Demon Jack’s wall. Rowena’s doing her witchy best but it’s not enough, so DJ proposes a plan. Never trust a demon, you say? Very true, however, any plan is better than no plan, right? Kinda. Over the course of this episode we learn DJ’s motives are shady AF (this doesn’t surprise Dean in hindsight), Rowena had some set intentions she now gets to put in play, and Dean’s still not over his anger towards Cass regarding his mom’s death.
Remember when Ketch showed up saying he’d been hired by a demon to kill Belphegor? That’s Ardat (Sharon Taylor) and she tracks Ketch down at a hospital where we discover he is somehow not dead, but she quickly fixes that error when he refuses to give up his friends to her. It’s a nice noble death for (to me) a largely loathed character and fitting for the show. It also allows Ardat to ascertain Bel’s location. This leads to confrontation between Ardat and Cass and Bel that inevitably turns into a confrontation between Cass and Bel (Bel’s plan is similar to that of Cass’s from Season 6). And ends with Cass rage smiting Bel from Jack’s body to the point of burning his proxy son’s corpse and the horn (Lilith’s “crook” – the episode’s Deus ex machina designed to solve our souls from Hell problem). No worries, Rowena has a better solution.
Our neigh immortal witch has been a little death-happy in the past and she finally gets the ending she’s so desperately sought. See, Rowena put Resurrection Seals in her body to prevent her from ever dying (it’s one of these that explains why Ketch didn’t die the first time when Mary shot him in the face). She’s cool with death now though, and learns from the source it’s gotta be Sam Winchester who takes her out. Hence her pairing up with Sammy in this episode. By the end when DJ’s plan falls apart, Rowena is happy to pick up the load, going through with her always-intended fix: She takes all the souls from Hell into her body, kills herself, then falls into Hell so when her body finally dies the souls are released back into Hell. Another noble sacrifice – and I’ll be honest two in one episode (even if Rowena’s is on a much grander scale) kind of blunts the impact. We’re meant to feel sad that Rowena is dying, but I just can’t. This show has played so fast and loose with the idea of death that major characters’ expirations can’t be taken seriously. I had this same experience when Jack killed Mary. I just didn’t really care. But again, 15 fucking seasons has a tendency to mute a lot of feelings over time (at least for me).
The final storyline in this episode is Dean’s harbored rage at Castiel. Mind you, this seems extremely shoehorned in just for the sake of kicking the boys’ while they are down. Afterall, we just lost Ketch (a foe turned friend), Rowena (the same but I think an overall more beloved character), why not throw Castiel into the mix? Also, if we’re gonna steal storylines from previous seasons the one where Dean banishes Cass from the inner circle does seem to be a popular motif (it’s happened…three times now I think?).
This time around, Dean is mad because Castiel killed Bel before he could finish blowing the horn and absorbing all the souls escaped from Hell thereby negating the need for Rowena’s sacrifice. Cass explains he found out about Bel’s plan to absorb the souls to become all powerful and of course had to stop him, while Dean argues they would have “found a way” to deal with the fallout. I’m not buying it, and neither is Cass – he calls out Dean saying the elder Winchester brother’s anger is really about Mary’s death. Dean blames Cass because the angel wasn’t totally upfront about Jack’s missing soul and that lead to Jack’s impulsive murder of Mary. Which is true, however, Dean’s done the same thing when it comes to Sam. Kevin’s death is the direct result of Dean protecting a truth about Sam he keeps hidden from Cass (going so far as to ban the angel from the bunker at Gadreel’s behest). So should Dean really be SO mad at Cass? Granted, it was his mother that died and not a mutual friend, but still…Anyway, the confrontation ends as it always does with Cass leaving the team.
One of my favorite things about final seasons is that, regardless of how many episodes it takes, their storylines are often streamlined as fuck. Things happen quickly and if you look closely you can see where the long game was neutered. The releasing of all souls from Hell storyline is wrapped up within three episodes as opposed to an entire season or even half a season – which means more storylines are due. The Ketch and Belphegor betrayal angles were also quickly dealt with, while over the course of a normal season they would have been heavily hinted at and nearly discovered several times before being resolved. Even the need to kill long-time characters gets rushed (sorry Rowena, not sorry Ketch). But we’ll see if this season is going to be more in line with the show Agents of Shield where there are sometimes as many as 4 different sub-storylines that converge into an overall storyline. My guess would be yes. It gives you the most bang for your buck.
With the souls back in Hell and the doors closed, what’s in story (on purpose) for the boys’ next?