This Supernatural review contains spoilers.
Supernatural Season 12 Episode 16
“Ladies Drink Free” begins in an almost stereotypical horror movie way: a brother and sister walk a lonely path through the woods and the sister comments on a strange noise in the woods. Snore. We know they’re going to get jumped by something, otherwise there wouldn’t be a reason for the Winchesters to investigate. There’s a nice little twist on it, as it turns out the girl was just trying to get rid of her brother to go back to a bar. And then they get jumped. Same end result, but at least it was a different way to get there. Variety is the spice of life.
The B story I’ll talk about first, since we’re introduced to it first. Sam and Dean are working with Mick, showing him how they hunt. It’s all part of a rather shaky partnership with the British Men of Letters, and one can’t help but wonder if Mick is just the guy responsible for setting our hunters up in a trap. If that happens, we can expect that much later.
A conflict occurs that drives a hefty rift between the Winchesters and Mick/The M.o.L. when Mick takes it upon himself to kill the girl from the intro since she had turned. Sam and Dean have many more years of experience than Mick, whose only experience was from fancy book learnin’. He might have the knowledge that’s written down — enough so that he and Sam can be what Dean grudgingly calls “nerd soulmates” — but he’s still lacking in real world experience and judgment calls.
Part of Sam and Dean’s journey over the years has been learning that not all monsters are actually bad, and some can work against killer instinct. You have the werewolf Lenore, Benny the vampire, Garth…. The list goes on. It is in fact the Men of Letters “Shoot first” mentality that paints them as the villains — and looks like it’s going to cause more trouble in the long run. “Things are not just black and white out here,” Dean says to Mick. Angels can be dicks, demons can be helpful and monsters can be nice people. It’s a mad world.
Claire’s return ties into the Mick storyline to give a personal moral dilemma. This is a girl he’s met already, so she’s not some faceless victim. I thought Mick’s story would be resolved by him becoming the werewolf and needing the cure. I’m concerned that Claire decided to go right back to hunting after her werewolf experience, though her story did get a nice little hint of closure by her finally calling Jody and telling the truth.
So many fun light moments broke up the episode, from Dean prank calling Claire and enjoying the 3-star hotel perks to Mick impersonating a doctor to one-up the hunter game. There’s also a more familial feeling for the boys and Claire, especially when Dean gets all protective of her when she mentions the “grabby” guy.
There’s one last thing that I’d like to mention. The Big Bad Wolf said that the only reason he started killing and turning people was because the Men of Letters wiped out his pack. If their elimination technique just creates worse monsters, what crisis might they start that the Winchesters will inevitably have to fix?