Supernatural: The Hunter Games review

In last night's Supernatural, the tone for the rest of the season is set when our boys fight to save Dean from the Mark of Cain.

Supernatural returned with a blend of heart and foreboding. The episode followed three different story arcs: The boys and their quest to rid Dean of the Mark, Cas’ troubled relationship with his almost-daughter, and Crowley’s problem with his mother trying to usurp his throne. Just your average Tuesday in the Supernatural world.

First, our main storyline with the Winchesters. After the repercussions of our mid-season cliffhanger, Dean and everyone else at Winchester Inc. are anxious to save Dean from the Mark of Cain.  They turn to an unlikely source: Metatron. Metatron gives the first step of the process for “free,” but soon demands compensation from Dean for more information. There is a noticeable shift in Dean’s behavior. He calmly shuts the door, then confronts Metatron with an angel blade. Dean looks so menacing, his eyes glittering with malice (neat lighting trick or accident?) that at any moment, I personally expected his eyes to go black. Such was the tone of much of the episode—a sense of dread that something horrible would happen at any second, effectively setting us up for the rest of the season and the various troubles our boys will face. It was a slow boil, indicating that this wasn’t the end of their troubles, but foreshadowing the inevitable climax of the season.

We also spent a sizeable chunk of time with Crowley in his lair…with his mother the witch skulking around every corner, pulling the various strings that hold his evil organization together. Rowena’s a schemer, and no doubt there isn’t a single character who trusts this woman to be the doting mother she pretends to be. Even still, she is shown to be a master manipulator, and relishes the feel of the throne when Crowley is away. Three guesses as to what she’s after.

Castiel’s storyline was where we got the heart. We continue on the coattails of his reuniting with his vessel’s daughter, Claire. She doesn’t want anything to do with him and continues putting herself in dangerous situations. This is the classic rebel teenager saga with a twist. Most rebellious teenagers don’t have to share stories as complicated as hers. I like the addition of the Claire storyline and I’m eager to see Cas and Claire build a sort of familial relationship, even given how weird it is that he looks like her real father.

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Castiel did not act like his normal self. Perhaps this was a subtle change from when Metatron downloaded his brain full of modern knowledge, but Cas’s word-choice and body language was not at all like him this episode. When he says to Dean that “one extremely messed up human to another” could relate, I couldn’t help but wonder when Cas started using such casual language as “messed up.” His wording sounds more human, and he expresses more emotion than his usual near-monotone angelic self. They even threw in a classic funny Cas line of: “I like texting. Emoticons,” but it was goofier than usual. In that moment, however, it was probably just the socially awkward Cas trying to defuse some tension on the subject of his daughter. It’s interesting—he seems more able to relate to humanity than he has before, and I’m thinking a combination of Metatron, Claire, and his time as a de-powered angel brought about this change.

Until next week, we have one thing to puzzle over; “The river ends at the source.” I have my theories. Also, a Felicia Day encore!



5 out of 5