Supernatural season 6 episode 15 review: The French Mistake

The French Mistake proves to be one of the very best Supernatural episodes. Matthew explains why...

This review contains spoilers.

6.15 The French Mistake

Most reviews these days have that disclaimer and, to a certain extent, if you are reading a review before seeing the episode in question, you do run the risk of having that episode spoiled and it’s nobody’s fault other than your own.

This episode is a great episode. It is easily one of the best episodes of the whole six seasons of Supernatural and is comparable to some of the best episodes from the likes of Buffy, Angel and any Star Trek series you care to pick.

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The point I am trying to make here is this review will contain spoilers and if you haven’t seen the episode, you really should stop reading now and come back after you’ve watched it and thank me for the extra warning. Of course, if you did stop reading when I said ‘now’, then you wouldn’t know to come back and I wouldn’t get any thanks. I should have thought that through.

The episode begins with Balthazar interrupting Sam and Dean. He explains to them that Raphael is after him and the weapons he stole from Heaven. He gives the brothers a vital key and urges them to flee as Raphael’s agent, Virgil, tracks him down.

Balthazar uses his power to aid the brother’s escape, hiding them and the key somewhere very strange, indeed.

A film set in the middle of shooting a show. A show called Supernatural.

Genius. Pure writing genius.

From the moment that J Squared landed on the crash mat, it was plain to see that everybody in the episode was having a great time. Humour has always been a big part of Supernatural and this episode really shows it off, from Misha Collins’ tweets to Dean’s acting ability, from the decor in the Padaleski residence to Sera Gamble’s non-appearance, but, it never simply breaks down into farce.

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I have also commented previously on Jensen Ackles’ and Jared Padalecki’s acting capability and once again this episode shows just how good they are. However, I do feel that Misha Collins almost steals the show from under them with his portrayal of himself. Ola, mis amigos, indeed!

The humour alone would have been enough for this episode to make it good, but this episode actually does something even more clever. It makes sense. It makes sense in the world of Supernatural and partially deals with the conflict in Heaven.

The war in Heaven is a very interesting plot in the respect that there seems to be very little Sam and Dean can actually do to help and, as if to prove that, in this episode they are little more than a distraction, as Balthazar so readily admits. But it’s to Supernatural‘s strength that the show has kept Castiel and the Angels present.

It would have been easy to quietly lose them at the end of season five, but not only have they remained, but they have remained integral to the ongoing story and I’m sure that, as the end of the season approaches, the war in Heaven will become even more significant.

If you consider this as a gimmick episode, I feel you are missing some of the point. Yes, I freely admit that this is not the most serious of episodes, with the cast and crew of Supernatural openly mocking themselves and, perhaps, thumbing their noses at some of the criticisms that have been voiced by fans, but to find a way to do that and still make the episode vital to the season is very impressive.

The only downside is, since viewing the episode and finding out where the title comes from, I have had a song bouncing around inside my head.

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“Throw out your hands, stick out your tush…”

Read our review of episode 14, Mannequin 3: The Reckoning, here.

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