This Supernatural review contains spoilers.
Supernatural: Season 12 Episode 13
You win some, you lose some. That’s what comes to mind when you have a few stellar episodes in a row and then…this one. Now, it wasn’t terrible, but it was bland. We have a character brought back who is immediately sacrificed for the greater good…with very little buildup. That would be like Adam making his reappearance only to be immediately shunned. Hey remember Adam? We never got any closure on his character either. We haven’t seen him since Season 5.
Gavin MacLeod has appeared twice before in Supernatural. The first time was when his spirit was summoned to enact some revenge on his father Crowley in Season 6. Gavin makes another appearance, in Season 9 when he is ushered into the 21st century due to Abaddon’s meddlesome time traveling. Sam and Dean wanted Gavin sent back (since they are aware how screwing up the timeline works) but Crowley whisks the boy away so he can continue living in modern times.
Now in the filleriest of filler episodes, items from Gavin’s ill fated ship The Star turn up in a museum, and teachers visiting on field trips turn up dead. Gavin is called in to identify what object the spirit is tied to, who the spirit is (his girlfriend Fiona) and make things right by going back to die on the ship as he was always meant to. Snore.
On paper, it looks okay. I mean, self-sacrifice is always gut-wrenching, bringing back old half-forgotten characters is fun and the familial bickering between Rowena and Crowley is usually priceless…but it didn’t add up to much here. At best, we had a rushed story and no emotional arc for the character of Gavin, someone who should have been very sympathetic.
It was sweet that he got to meet his grandmother (who ironically acted more motherly towards him than to her own son), but Gavin didn’t get a chance to form a connection with anyone. We have a bit of disposable character syndrome here, and I think Gavin could have been used much better. There was no build-up to get us invested in his character. He disappeared seasons ago just to reappear and sacrifice himself.
And, if I’m to speak candidly here, the consequences from Gavin being in the 21st century were minor to say the least. What was the body count – three? Anything short of Biblical Apocalypse just seems small potatoes. One-off monsters have higher body counts than that.
Fiona the Ghost’s motivation to kill was weak. Her teacher was on board and didn’t help her so now all teachers must die? What? Vengeful spirits don’t always think rationally but if you’re going to give them a type, it’s got to be better than that.
Also, Mary told the boys she’s working with the British Men of Letters. You could have tacked that scene onto the next episode and fleshed out the A storyline on this episode and solved many of the problems I sketched out here.
We finally got a little update on Kelly – the Devil’s baby mama. I liked Dagon’s character so far, so I’m definitely looking forward to more of her. Her character already intrigues me, and it’s nice to have her show up so soon after being mentioned in the last episode.
You win some, you lose some, and I had been too spoiled by the quality of recent episodes to have this one come out of left field like this.