Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Supernatural - Favorite 3rd Episode - Poll

I'm calling yesterday's poll a bit early tonight, but the polls are still open until midnight, Midwest US time. Our standings right now for Favorite Second Episode are:

Are You There God? It's Me, Dean Winchester with 30% of the vote
Good God Y'All is in second with 18.7%

Things were definitely closer than the blow out of the season premiere contest. Today and tomorrow we vote on our favorite third episode. This is one of the toughest for me because 4 of the 6 are in my top 30 episodes, including Dead in the Water which made Supernatural appointment TV for me. What's your favorite? Will it be a threepeat for season 4 this time? I'd say season 4 has a better chance of winning here again than in the fourth episode contest, but I've been wrong with these polls before.

Dead in the Water
Bad Day at Black Rock
In the Beginning
Free to be You and Me
The Third Man

Don't forget to leave your comments about your choice and why or rank them all. Comments make for great discussion and helps speed hellatus along. Thanks for playing with us and Happy Voting!

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White Collar - 1.10 - Vital Signs - Recap

On a beautiful day, Neal and June sit at the park watching her granddaughter Samantha play soccer. "Scenery, fresh air, just about everything I couldn't get at my last address." June says Byron loved it too for the same reasons. Neal: "You do like bad boys." She nods and laughs. Samantha scores a goal and comes over to celebrate. Too bad she's suffering from kidney failure. June sadly admits she was bumped from the donor list and Neal asks what he can do. I know, walk into Peter's house unannounced. I'm sure he'd love that. Neal: "I hope you don't mind. I let myself in." Peter: "I mind." Neal states the obvious and helps himself to Peter's Super Sugar O's. Hmm, I took Peter for an All-Bran kind of guy. Peter's miffed because he enjoys breakfast Neal-free. I'm stunned an FBI agent doesn't lock his front door. Neal goes for the sheriff badge toy in the cereal. Peter: "El, do something." El: "You want a bowl with that cereal." Neal: "Thank you. Manners." Not sure entering someone's house without knocking qualifies as good manners either Neal. Peter asks why he's there and he exposits that June was asked for $100,000 to find Samantha a new kidney. It's suspicious and Peter jumps on board. "Look at you bringing me a case." Neal attaches the sheriff badge to his coat pocket. "Well that's what us lawmen do." Peter wants more details and Neal says, "So I can run with it?" Peter: "Run with it? No Barney Fife. No, you can walk very slowly as long as you don't interrupt my breakfast again." Neal agrees and Peter reminds him that cereal toys are not real badges. Kudos to Tiffani Thiessen who doesn't have a lot to say in this scene but does a tremendous job.

Neal gets dressed as Mozzie questions if Peter told Neal to "run with it." Neal: "More or less." Moz: "I'm assuming less." Ah Moz, you know him so well. Neal justifies pretending to be June's financial advisor as a fact finding mission. He's meeting Melissa Calloway, representative of Hearts Wide Open. Moz and I agree the name "is truly menacing. If I made a horror movie, I would definitely call it Hearts Wide Open." They use Neal's new surveillance equipment to watch the street and Moz says they can't trust Melissa. "A New Yorker who does not take the subway is not a New Yorker you can trust." Neal: "I don't take the subway." Moz: "Precisely." Bwah! I wouldn't trust Neal either. He asks Moz to break into Melissa's car to examine her briefcase. "That's not so much a favor as a truly horrible idea." No kidding. It's daytime on a crowded street. Moz: "There's a reason most crimes happen at night. People can't see you." Neal changes the plan. He'll break into the car and Moz will take the meeting. Moz reluctantly agrees only because it's for June. Neal gets Moz a tie and tells him what info to fish for. "Since when am I a people person?" Neal: "Just do what I do." There are so many ways this could go horribly wrong.

While Melissa enters June's, Neal begins to pick the car lock. Alas, a cop walks by so Neal pretends he locked his briefcase in the car and blames his "wife" for taking the spare. The officer asks for ID to prove it's his car and Neal says it's in the glove box. He spins a tale of a prosecutor who needs to be at the courthouse in 20 minutes to arraign an abuser who punched a cop. It works. The cop calls for a patrol car. At Neal's, Melissa shoots for compassionate but takes a wrong turn at creepy. Mozzie talks too loud and surreptitiously turns on the surveillance so he can see Neal's situation. June asks about the donation and Melissa non-answers, "We would never discourage anyone from helping us continue our work." Moz however is distracted by a police car showing up on the screen. He thinks Neal's busted and tries to multitask the interview. Melissa says donations run between $100,000 to 500,000 but they're running out of time. Neal is also out of time, but luckily the new officer arrives with a Slim Jim. Original Officer asks who arrested the scumbag and Neal says Jones from the sixth precinct. Second Officer knows Jones and my guess is given the common last name, they all know a Jones. Neal calls him a tough guy and they agree, opening the door. He goes to grab his ID but the cops say no need and he is visibly grateful. He takes pictures of her briefcase contents as the police drive away. Melissa stands to leave and Moz in a bid to buy Neal more time, asks her to dinner. She flat out refuses and I would too. Thankfully June takes over before Mozzie embarrasses himself further. Moz calls Neal. "You told me to do what you do so I asked her to dinner….She left. Running." BWAH! Neal books it just in the nick of time after finding an invitation to a tennis tournament.

At the FBI, Peter tells us respected Dr. Wayne Powell created the charity. Neal admits he talked to Melissa, which causes Peter to get into storyteller mode. He regales us with a cautionary tale of a restaurateur who informed on the mob to the FBI. Sadly, Jimmy got in over his head and as Neal says, "It didn't end happily ever after." Peter sticks his finger between Neal's eyes and says, "He took one. Right there." He cautions Neal against "trying to run the show on your own." With terrible timing, Jones gives Neal info he requested. Peter: "Unbelievable. It's like talking to a wall." Neal protests, " I hadn't heard your story yet." (snickers) Good point. From the info, they surmise Dr. Powell uses a third world charity called Doctoral Global Initiative to find organ donors. Neal suggests they talk to Powell at the tennis match.

Sadly, they are turned away at the door and Peter's surprised Neal didn't forge an invite. Neal: "I was allowed to?" Nope, plan B. He tries to charm Melissa but she's not interested until Peter joins them. Suddenly no invite isn't a big deal. Neal looks dubious and smirks when Peter says he's a chiropractor. "Poor posture doesn't discriminate." HA! They follow Melissa as Peter shrugs, "You underestimate me." Neal reminds Peter he'll have to flirt all day. "Should be a fun story to tell Elizabeth over breakfast tomorrow." Dr. Powell talks with Melissa while Neal snarks. Peter: "You know, any shlub can pick up a girl at a bar. You want a challenge. Try keeping a beautiful woman happy for 10 years running." Agreed. You're awesome Peter. It's been 12 years since Peter flirted. Neal: "Whoa, you haven't flirted in the 21st century?" They split up - Peter to distract Melissa and Neal to grill Powell. Neal complains about a 30 hour flight and Powell suggests taking sleeping pills on the way to the airport. They introduce themselves and join a mutual admiration society. Dr. Powell asks Neal to look for a perfect donor match for a "friend's" kidney in India. Neal says it's illegal to sell organs but Powell asks him to call. "We make exceptionally charitable donations."

Meanwhile, Melissa flirts with Peter saying, "I prefer someone with more experience." Apparently she doesn't mind if said someone has been married for 10 years either. "Commitment. Another quality I admire." So she likes the challenge. In a medical tent , she asks Peter to be the back-up physician and becomes his first patient. She takes off her jacket and asks him to massage the knot out of her back. Peter: "I can feel the tension, yep. Maybe this is stress. From work maybe." She tells him to go lower and Peter quietly wigs out. Turning around she says they are working the wrong side but Peter doen't going there and asks about work again. Melissa mentions the Howser clinic and he says he'd love to see it. She extends an invite, reaching into his jacket pocket for a pen to write her phone number. "Feel free to give me a call. Whenever you're ready." It's a good thing Peter's faithful. Neal joins him as Melissa puts her jacket back on. The look on Neal's face is priceless, but Peter just shakes his head and rushes off.

That night Neal makes a truly terrible joke about FBI standing for Female Body Inspector. Peter tells him to shut up and exposits Dr. Powell's travel records to India. They can't get him through charitable donations either. However, Powell has nephrosis and suddenly all his cranberry juice makes sense. He born with only one kidney and needs a perfect match to keep kicking. So much for that "friend." Neal: "Peter, he's got the perfect cover here. If he wasn't so dirty, I'd almost respect him." Peter thinks he can find proof at the Howser Clinic. However, he has doctor-patient privileges. They need another way in and Neal's on it. He finds Moz glumly playing chess by himself and asks if he's okay. In short, no. The charity won't help June anymore because they found a more urgent need. Still, Peter was right about the clinic because they are dumping files.

At the Burke house, El sorts laundry and finds Melissa's card in Peter's jacket. She asks about it and Peter says he was going to tell her about it. Peter: "That is part of an undercover job I was working and part of the cover was that I had to talk to another woman." El flips the card over to Melissa's number. "Must have been quite the conversationalist." Peter explains he had to flirt with Melissa so Neal could talk to Dr. Powell. El's confused because that's usually Neal's job but Peter nonchalants that Melissa chose him. El: "You had to seduce another woman?" On other shows, this would lead to screaming and suspicion or wacky spying hijinks. Peter swears he only had drinks with her and El looks like she's going to cry when….she busts out laughing. Elizabeth is the most awesome TV wife. "You had to flirt? You hate flirting." She rolls at Peter's "You look thirsty" pick-up line. El: "Please tell me there's surveillance video of this. I gotta see this." Peter's saved by the phone and I'm saved from boring TV by the way they write this couple. I hope nothing about Peter and El ever changes.

Neal asks about the clinic and bingo, Peter requested their financial records spawning the file dump Moz saw. He asks why El is laughing but Peter ends the conversation. Neal's frustrated with FBI protocol and concocts a plan to get into the clinic. Surely it's not within his anklet radius so won't he have to get Peter's approval? Enter Neal in doctor coat and glasses pushing a loopy Mozzie. He calls Moz the mayor's nephew, who thinks he's Bruce Willis. Ha! He cons the receptionist into letting him escort Mozzie up. Neal: "Nice work Moz. You can quit shaking now." Moz: "I'm not acting. I hate hospitals." Someone sneezes on him and it's no surprise Moz is a germaphobe. They hurry as Dr. Westlake is paged by the receptionist. Files are being dumped and Moz lifts a janitorial outfit to take the files out himself. At the same time, Neal pokes around Doctor Powell's office. He finds a charity donor list of the city's power players. Unhappily, security sees him and sends guards. Before they get there, he faxes the list to Peter's house. Guess he didn't inform Peter so who the heck monitors his anklet? Security calls Dr. Powell and straps Neal to a table. Powell says to calm him down and they megadose him. Neal: "I hope there's something fun in there, Nurse Ratched." Things get blurry right away.

After getting the fax, Peter calls the anklet monitoring company and asks about Neal (#9305A). I guess an alarm doesn't go off when he's out of range. How pointless but good when they're on a case. Peter flips that Neal's at the clinic and I chalk it up to worry. Typical older brother reaction. He says Neal will go to prison for this and panics about a warrant. El calms him down, reminding him that Melissa already invited him. Brilliant. He calls Melissa and El talks him through flirting. "Tell her you need to see her. Tell her you can't stop thinking about her." Peter: "This is a test isn't it." I couldn't love these two more. All is well until Melissa mentions his magic hands. Peter hurriedly tells El he was a chiropractor but she gives him the high eyebrow. Peter: "That was definitely a test." Ha!

He hurries to the clinic to intercept Melissa. She says it's a bad time but luckily Powell phones to warn her not to talk to anyone until he's there. Peter uses the distraction to slip upstairs. He hears Neal singing, toasted out of his mind. Neal: "Hey buddy!" Peter quiets him and worries about the restraints, but Neal sits up. Even doped up Neal Caffrey can get out of restraints "except my anklet." He tells Peter he's strong. He also says he can walk but falls down, so Peter drags him to a conference room. Peter starts to scold him but this is minor compared to everything else he's done. I wonder if confessing to a crime under heavy drugs is admissible in court. He should probably shut up. Peter is curious though and now knows Neal took the Antioch manuscripts by carrier pigeons. I thought they were extinct. "Who cares though Peter. That's not what's important. It's not about money; it's about people." Peter: "Good 'cause you're going to be spending a lot of quality time with people in orange jumpsuits once I get you out of here." Neal: "Right. I'm going down once they see those security tapes of me breaking in here." Peter: "Those surveillance cameras." Neal: "Before I go back, you should know this. Out of all the people in my life, Mozzie, even Kate, you know, you're the only one." Peter: "I'm the only one what?" Neal: "You're the only person in my life I trust." Yikes! If that doesn't tug your heartstrings, your heart's colder than mine. Peter's a big softie too as he rubs Neal's head like a little kid and sighs. He handcuffs Neal to a chair and demands, "Don't pick this." Awesome! One of the best scenes in the show.

Downstairs, Melissa and Dr. Powell talk about the break-in while Neal debates semantics. "I could slip you off. That wouldn't be picking; that would be slipping." He decides to sing again instead. I like drugged Neal. Peter returns with the surveillance tape. That's theft Peter. Neal looks at him funny. "Peter?" I have the same reaction about Mr. Straight and Narrow. "You stole that for me." Peter: "Yeah, it's a regular Kodak moment." He takes Neal back to his place where Neal's headache is soothed by an ice pack and El's sympathy. Peter: "What about me?" El: "There's some dishes that need to be washed, Mr. Magic Hands." Oops, someone's in trouble. She continues babying Neal, who milks it for all he's worth. I never realized how tall Neal is but his legs are longer than the couch. He uses his normal (not woe is me) voice to tell Peter wealthy clients paid for organs in case they needed them. He mentions a list full of names and blood types. Peter will talk to the four names Neal managed to faxed over.

All four people went to Powell's clinic where he made a master list of their blood types. Whenever a wealthy client needs an organ, he uses the list to find a match. Wealthy clients pay poor clients for their organs, which sounds like an urban legend. Jones asks why Powell travels to India and Peter reminds us he has nephrosis and needs a perfect match. The charity funds his search. Alas, the donors won't testify so Peter asks for divergent thinking. Neal raises his hand and Peter ignores him yet no one else has any ideas. Neal wants to trace the money from the organ sales by offering him a new kidney. He plans to make Powell believe his kidney is failing by giving him 3 symptoms of renal failure. They pick up his suit from dry cleaning and exchange it for a larger size to mimic weight loss. Not sure how it explains his other clothes fitting, but okay. They also put itching spray on his clothes for skin irritation and I worry that the FBI has it in the first place. Neal: "Wow, you're really enjoying this." Peter: "No. Well maybe just a little." Finally, they need to fake blood in his urine. Neal talks compounds, and now I worry about Neal's knowledge too. He says not drugs but food coloring for the body. Phew, that's a relief. I can't handle Killer Caffrey. Moz distracts the food delivery guy and injects dye into his cranberry juice. It obviously works because Powell flips out in a way that makes me laugh. Way over the top. His nephrologist says it doesn't sound good but the tests will be back in a few days. She prescribes rest, which he does in the fetal position on his hardwood floors.

Enter Neal as Dr. Parker, calling with a kidney match. Peter wonders how to knock him out but Neal remembers the sleeping pill bit before. He's nuts to take sleeping pills when he's not sure about his kidneys, but Jones chauffeurs him to the "airport" and knows he took them. They must be really powerful because he awakes in "India." An Indian nurse hits a machine that I guess is for dialysis in order to keep it working. Neal enters in blue scrubs saying, "Please don't touch that. The equipment in here is very temperamental." He tells Powell they removed his kidney because he was in renal failure. His body is rejecting dialysis and his blood pressure is dropping. In essence, he'll die without a new kidney, making it easy to blackmail him for $30 million. Powell protests but Neal isn't negotiating. He tells the nurse the machine will be free soon and Powell admits to a completely secure account used to siphon money from his charity. He gives Neal the bank, account, and password. Neal: "Then I have what I want. Let's see how quickly we can get you healthy again." He turns on the patented Neal Caffrey smile and leaves. Immediately the machine stops. He rips off the bandages to find they are fake and races out. The background city noise is from a boom box. Peter: "Welcome back to New York, Dr. Powell." Busted! Neal shows his cereal sheriff badge too. (snickers)

All is well and they join June at the park where Samantha has another game. Peter says they closed Powell's charity and June thanks them. Neal: "Tell her the best part." Peter: "Samantha's back at her original spot on the list." Aw. Was someone in the registry paid off by Powell? I guess not. Peter exposits about how the registry was re-examined after the scandal and they had Samantha re-instated. Peter leaves to join Elizabeth as June hugs Neal. As El works in the dining room, Peter enters with candles, wine, and his cheesiest pick up lines. "I couldn't help but notice that you are sitting here alone." El: "Well my husband's at work. it happens a lot." Peter closes the laptop saying, "He must be good at his job." El: "Well actually his partner does a lot of the heavy lifting." Ha! Peter: "Oh really. IF that's the case, I bet it's because your husband is distracted by thoughts of you..Bet his favorite part of the day is coming home to that smile. Wherever he is, he's a lucky man." El: "I keep telling him that." Peter: "You look thirsty." BWAH!!! El: "So that line does work." She laughs and Peter introduces himself as Dr. Tennebaum, chiropractor. "I'm told I have magic hands." El: "okay, now you're dead." They laugh and kiss and all is right with the world again. Aww.

So much to love about this episode it's hard to know where to start. Anytime Neal is out-of-control it's an interesting plot twist. Drugged Neal is hilarious with a good singing voice, if you excuse the slurring. I love how Neal made this case personal and was willing to risk more because of it. As for Peter and El, they remain my favorite on-screen couple. They show marriage is work but that work can be fun. It's inspiring and I wish more TV couples were written this way. I also loved the intricate plot to get Powell to reveal the money. There wasn't enough Mozzie time for my liking but everything else was phenomenal. One of my favorite episodes.

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Monday, May 30, 2011

Supernatural - 1.04 - Phantom Traveler - Retro Recap

Previously - Mary burned, John disappeared, the wicked curved blade made a solitary appearance (sigh), Dean needed Sam, Jessica burned, John left his journal, Sam wanted revenge, and there were more classic lines in 3 episodes than most shows have in 3 years.

We open to a beautiful beach with vacation music playing in the background. Brothers on vacation? Nope, just an airport ad with an incredibly nervous looking guy in front of it. He heads to the bathroom to wash his face and calm down about flying. A helpful guy tells him the odds of dying in a plane crash "are what? 20,000 to 1." Thanks Helpful Guy, I'm sure he feels much better now. Black smoke pours from the vents and that's never good. Since it enters his eyes, we can rule out fire. Welcome black-eyed demons to Supernatural lore. We're all screwed now. On the plane flight attendant Amanda says hello to pilot Chuck as Demon Eyes boards full of confidence. Amanda welcomes him and he looks at her with his black eyes. She freaks but dismisses it as her imagination because that always goes well on Supernatural. 40 minutes into the flight, Black Eyes opens the emergency door. College Boy shouts but it's too late. The plane goes down and the title card flashes.

The cameraman likes Jensen Ackles and pans his sleeping body. Dean wakes as the motel door opens. He reaches under the pillow but is greeted by Sam. "Good morning sunshine." For the record, I'd kill Sam for being unbearably cheerful at 5:45. Happy morning people irk me. Dean agrees, "In the morning. Where does the day go?" Dean asks if Sam slept and Sam lies. Dean calls him on it. "Liar. 'Cuz I was up at 3 and you were watching the George Foreman infomercial." Sam: "Hey, what can I say? It's riveting TV." No Sam it's not, but there's a show called Supernatural… Dean worries that Sam's not sleeping; Sam says he's fine. Ah, the Winchesters' go-to lie comes early this episode. Sam says he appreciates Dean's concern. Dean lies. "Oh I'm not concerned about you. It's your job to keep my a** alive so I need you sharp." He asks about Sam's nightmares of Jess. Sam admits he still has them and I'm pleasantly shocked. Such emotional honesty. "But it's not just her. It's everything. I just forgot, you know. This job man it gets to ya." Dean: "Well you can't let it. You can't bring it home like that." I've seen Dean's coping methods; you keep being you Sammy. He pushes for honesty. "So never. You're never afraid?" Dean lies through his teeth so Sam pulls out a giant knife Dean stashed under his pillow. What the heck? You could slice your hand off Dean? Why not a gun with the safety on? Plus, motel pillows are pretty flat. How do you sleep with a knife under your head? Dean: "That's not fear. That is precaution." Sam: "Whatever. I'm too tired to argue." With a sibling? That's tired!

Dean's cell rings and he acts like he never gets calls. Weird because his dad is missing. I'd think he'd answer quickly. Jerry Panowski, an airline employee and former poltergeist victim John and Dean helped, calls. Dean asks if it's back but he's got a worse problem. Arriving at his work, Jerry thanks them for coming and for removing the poltergeist. Random background guy: "Poltergeist. I love that movie." Ha! That line makes me laugh each time. "I'll tell you something. If it wasn't for you and your dad, I probably wouldn't be alive." Dean smiles; I love Jerry. It's rare that Dean hears thanks. It's always nice to be appreciated. Jerry doubles my joy, telling Sam that John proudly bragged about him. Sam is incredulous and if it's true score one point for John. (He still sucks though.) Jerry asks about him and Dean says he's busy on a job. Jerry: "Well, we're missing the old man but we get Sam. Even trade, huh." Jerry is made of win and I love the looks Dean gives Sam throughout the conversation.

In Jerry's office, they listen to the cockpit voice recorder for United Britannia Flight #2485. There's EVP on it. The NTSB claims mechanical failure and 7 out of over 100 people survived. Pilot Chuck, Jerry's friend, is distraught about the crash. The brothers ask for passenger manifests, a survivor list, and access to the wreckage. The NTSB doesn't let just anyone traipse over evidence so Dean makes fake ID's at Copy Jack's. Sam's irritated by the wait but Dean checks out a passing hot chick and says, "You can't rush perfection." Sam: "Homeland Security? That's pretty illegal even for us." Dean calls it perfect because people haven't seen it before.

Sam's been busy too. The recorder EVP says "No survivors" in the cheesiest voice possible. The brothers exposit haunted flights, phantom travelers, flight 401, and other things it will NOT turn out to be. They head off to interview College Boy at Riverfront Psychiatric Hospital because he's local and "if anyone saw anything weird, he did." They ask is he saw "strange lights, weird noises maybe, voices." He says no but I'd wonder if they were crazy. Dean wonders why College Boy checked himself into the hospital and he cites stress from the crash. Dean pushes but he claims he was delusional. Dean flat voices, "He was seeing things" to Sam who gives Dean the patience glare and takes over. Smart move. Sam: "It's okay. Just tell us what you thought you saw. Please." He recaps Black Eyes opening the plane door. Sam: "This man, did he seem to appear and disappear rapidly? It would look something like a mirage." College Boy: "What are you, nuts? He was a passenger. He was sitting right in front of me."

Dean and Sam head to the house of Black Eyes, formerly known as George Phelps. Dean refutes anyone's ability to open a plane emergency door midflight. Sam: "Not if you're human. But maybe this guy George was something else. Some kind of creature maybe, in human form?" Dean: "Does that look like a creature's lair to you?" BWAH! Not unless he's the suburbia monster. Inside, Sam picks up Black Eyes' picture and softly questions his wife of 13 years. He was headed to a dental convention (insert bad joke about dying being less painful), but was petrified of flying. Sam asks if there was anything strange about him. "Well, he had acid reflux if that's what you mean." Bwah! This episode gets funnier every time. Love the look the brothers exchange. They leave discussing the case. "Yeah, a middle aged dentist with an ulcer is not exactly evil personified." Ha! Depends on the dentist. I've had a few I swear were Alastair's assistants. Dean wants to check out the wreckage and Sam says they need to shop first.

Outside Mort's for Style, Dean complains about his suit. "Man, I look like one of the Blues Brothers." Sam: "No you don't. You look more like a seventh grader at his first dance." HA!!! Sammy snark - love it. Dean: "I hate this thing." I bet you do. They show their brand new ID's and enter the hangar. Dean pulls out an EMF reader he made out of a busted Walkman. Very creative, Dean. Sammy's a hater not an appreciator though and insults it. JERK! Don't make fun of Dean's handiwork. I don't see you making one. Dean's feelings are hurt and he walks off scanning for a signal. The emergency door handle makes it buzz and they discover yellow powder on it. They scrape some off to test and Dean wipes his hands on Sam's suit. Normally, I'd chastise him but Sam deserves it. Sadly, real Homeland Security shows up and the chase is on. However, they run noisily, giving the brothers ample time to skedaddle. They hop the security fence as alarms blare. "Wow, these monkey suits do come in handy." Why doesn't the hangar have security cameras? Shouldn't they see Dean and Sam escape in the Impala and put an APB out on them?

At the airport, Pilot Chuck and Buddy wait for Chuck's first time flying a plane since the crash. His buddy says he'll be there to take over if Chuck panics or they can wait until later to go up. Chuck says waiting is worse and Buddy heads for the plane. Alas, black demon smoke enters Chuck's eyes. This flight will not end well. However we rejoin Dean and Sam in Jerry's office where Jerry pronounces the yellow powder sulfur. Really? Sulfur? You couldn't tell that by the smell? It has a distinct odor. (I roll my eyes.) Dean looks in the microscope to the sounds of shouts and banging. Jerry: "If you fellows will excuse me, I've got an idiot to fire." HA! I love his matter-of-fact tone. Dean concurs sulfur and they determine it's demons. The black eye thing didn't give it away? I miss young and somewhat naïve Dean and Sam. Dean's not sure about demons. "This goes way beyond floating over a bed or barfing pea soup. I mean it's one thing to possess a person, but to use them to take down an entire airplane?" Neither brother has experienced this before. Chuck's buddy hasn't experienced death either but it's a-comin'. Chuck is now super confident and I'd worry he took happy pills if I were Buddy. They chat in the plane until it 40 minutes go by. Chuck: "Wow, time really does fly." Apparently demons like to repeat their own bad puns. Chuck knocks Buddy out and heads the plane straight for a farmer's field. Bye Pilot Chuck and Buddy.

At the motel, they've redecorated a la John Winchester. One day a maid's going to enter and freak. Sam exposits demon possession throughout world religions and says Japanese demons can cause natural and man-made disasters. Dean: "So what? We've got a demon who's evolved with the times and found a way to ratchet up the body count." Sam suggests that Flight #2485 wasn't the first. Dean scratches his head and Sam asks what's wrong. "I don't know man. This isn't our normal gig. I mean, demons, they don't want anything, just death and destruction for its own sake. I mean this is big and I wish dad was here." Aw Dean. Wait a couple of years and this will seem like a walk in the park. Sam wants John too and the phone rings. At first viewing I thought it might be John. Of course that was before I knew what a jerk he was. Jerry calls about Chuck's plane crash near Nazareth. Dean: "Well try to ignore the irony in that." They head to Nazareth where smoke still billows.

They must have trespassed that crime scene too because they found more sulfur. Dean suggests the demon was tied to Chuck but Sam thinks it's the 40 minutes thing. Dean explains Biblical numerology to Jerry, stating 40 symbolizes death in the Bible but it really means completeness. Sam's research shows 6 other planes crashed at the 40 minute mark. Only Flight #2485 hadsurvivors, explaining why Chuck was targeted. "It's trying to finish the job." Sam calls survivors in an excellent telemarketer voice. AlternaSam might have a great career here. The only one about to fly is Amanda the flight attendant. It's her first day back and they are 5 hours away. Sam calls 3 times and Dean floors the Impala. They've got a plane to catch. Racing into the airport, they have 30 minutes to go. Dean pages Amanda and says her sister's in an accident. His alias - Dr. James Hetfield. Ha! Alas, she just talked to her sister who was studying for finals. Amanda suggests Dean is Vince's friend and he goes with it. He pleads Vince's case and Amanda agrees to talk with him but not until her flight lands. That's a bust. By the way, Amanda is at gate 13. Number omens appear everywhere this episode. Black smoke rustles inside the ventilation again so demons are present.

One plan busted, Sam suggests they board the plane themselves. Dean says hold on but Sam pleads his case. "Dean, that plane is leaving with over 100 passengers aboard and if we're right, that plane is going to crash." And you want to make it 102? Sam says to get anything that will pass security but Dean doesn't move. "Are you okay?" Dean: "No, not really." After I awake from fainting at season 1 Dean admitting he's not fine, I rewind to join Sam's concern. "What? What's wrong?" Dean: "Well, I kind of have this problem with um.." He makes flapping bird gestures and Sam figures it out. "It's never really been an issue until now." Sam: "You're joking, right?' Dean: "Do I look like I'm joking? Why do you think I drive everywhere, Sam?" Well I thought it was tightened security at airports but this is a great way for the writers to explain the frequent cross-country driving. Sam: "Alright, uh, I'll go...I'll do this one on my own." Dean: "What are you nuts? You said it yourself. The plane's going to crash." Sam: "Look Dean we can do it together; I can do this one by myself. I'm not seeing a third option here." Bomb threat? It buys you a little time. One of my favorite Dean lines ever - "C'mon. Really? Man." BWAH! Rush to YouTube and watch it. It's fabulous. In fact, the whole scene is one of my favorites from season 1.

Sadly for Dean, this flight comes with turbulence. Sam: "Just try to relax." Dean: "Just try to shut up." Ah, brothers. Dean freaks at each sound and hums Metallica's "Some Kind of Monster" to calm down. Sam gently tells him to focus and he agrees. The clock is ticking; they've only got 32 minutes left. Dean says demons more easily possess people "with an addiction or some kind of emotional distress." So they check out Amanda first. Dean, still in need of deep breathing, will "go talk to her and get a read on her mental state." He pulls out holy water to see if she's possessed but Sam tells us and Dean demons flinch at God's name. Sam reminds him to say it in Latin and then calls him back to smugly say, "In Latin, it's Christo." Dean mutters impatiently, "Dude I know. I'm not in idiot." Now I don't know Latin but those who do say Sam got it wrong. God is Deus and Christ is either Christus or Christi so no points for Geek Boy. Dean heads back and starts a conversation with Amanda about aerophobia. She admits to a little fear herself but is stronger than that. "Look everybody's scared of something. I'm not going to let it hold me back." Dean's impressed but says "Christo" just in case. He rejoins Sam. "Alright, well, she's got to be the most well-adjusted person on the planet…There's no demon in her. There's no demon getting in her." Back to square one. Well, after the turbulence passes. Dean: "Oh come on, that can't be normal." Sam quiet voices him. "Sam, this plane is going to crash okay so quit treating me like I'm freaking four." Sam gently says to calm down. "Dude stow the touchy-feely self-help yoga crap. It's not working." BWAH! Love that line. Sam: "Listen Dean, you're panicked. You're wide open to demonic possession so you need to calm yourself down right now." That finally gets through and Dean deep breathes in a hilarious manner.

Sam found an exorcism in John's journal and I'm surprised he never made them memorize it. Odd. In fact, given that a demon killed Mary, they know very little about them this episode. What are you hiding John? The exorcism is 2 part. The first expels the demon from the person, making it stronger. Dean and I ask , "And why's that a good thing?" Sam: "Well, because the second part sends the ba*** back to hell once and for all." Dean uses his handy Walkman EMF to scan passengers. Bet you're glad it looks like a radio now, Sam. I love Dean's expression when he sees Tattooed Girl. He's finishes scanning when Sam comes up from behind startling him. 15 minutes left and so far nothing. Dean suggests, "Maybe the thing's just not on the plane." Sam: "You believe that?" Dean: "Well I will if you will." Ha! EMF doesn't lie though and the co-pilot's the winner. He locks himself in the cockpit. Fasten your seatbelts folks because ability to suspend belief in a post-9/11 world jumps right out of the episode.

Since they obviously cannot open that door, they head to Amanda. Sam: "She's not going to believe this." Dean: "12 minutes dude." Dean starts, "This is going to sound nuts but we just don't have time for the 'Truth is out there' speech right now." Love X-Files references but Sam wisely takes over. They know about Flight #2485 and mechanical failure didn't cause it. Dean: "And we need your help because we need to stop it from happening again here, now." Amanda freaks like a normal person but doesn't yell when Dean stops her from leaving. He says they won't hurt her and tells her Chuck Lambert died in a plane crash. Something's wrong with the flight and she admits she saw Black Eyes. Dean needs to talk to the co-pilot and doesn't have time for explanations. Amanda protests she could lose her job. Dean: "Well you're going to lose a lot more than that if you don't help us out." No way an attendant on a plane lures a co-pilot out post-9/11 but Amanda does by pretending something's broken.

The brothers get ready and Dean punches him and duct tapes his mouth. Amanda: "You said you were just going to talk to him." At this point, she should yell for an air marshal, especially when Dean pours on holy water and his flesh blackens and smokes. She must think it's acid. Instead, she obediently stands guard outside the curtain so no one sees what's going on. Crazy lady! Get help. Dean tells Sam to hurry because it's hard to hold demons down. It fights them off and I'm hard pressed to understand why no passenger can hear the fight or the exorcism. It's just a fabric curtain dividing them. The demon undoes the duct tape to tell Sam, "I know what happened to your girlfriend. She must have died screaming. Even now she's burning." Dean punches it out and refocuses Sam, who finishes the ritual and puts John's journal down to restrain the demon. Sadly, it kicks John's journal, sending it flying down the aisle. The demon is expelled from the co-pilot and escapes into the vent.

Sam hunts for the journal while the plane nosedives. It slides even farther and Dean is thrown against the emergency door. Sam grabs the journal and he finishes the ritual as Dean has a massive panic attack. What looks like lightening hits the plane and everything goes back to normal. Dean and Amanda start breathing again. He shakes his head as Sam looks at him. I don't think this experience changes his views on flying. In a quirk called lack of budget, the plane disembarks at the same airport and the same GATE it left. The NTSB question disheveled people and it's fair to say United Britannia has a publicity nightmare on its hands. The co-pilot remembers nothing and Amanda mouths "thank you" to the brothers. Dean wants to get out, but it's Sam's turn to freak. "Dean, it knew about Jessica." Dean adds mind reading to the demon lore. They also lie but that's par for the course in Supernatural no matter what species. Dean says it was nothing more and Sam agrees verbally, but his heart screams something else.

They head to Jerry's where he finally annoys me. "Nobody knows what you guys did but I do." Then you can't say "nobody" Jerry. It bugs. He thanks them and says John will be proud. They start to enter the Impala when Dean asks how Jerry got his cell number since he got it 6 months ago. Jerry says from John and the brothers are all attention. Apparently his voice message says, "This is John Winchester. I can't be reached. If this is an emergency, call my son Dean. 785-555-0179. He can help." When this episode originally aired, the number was 866-907-3235. It was a toll-free number fans could call to hear "This is Dean Winchester. If this is an emergency, please leave a message. If you are calling about 11-2-83, page me with your coordinates." In the December rerun it changed to "Dad? We really need to hear from you. Leave me a message, text me, check your jwinchester1246 e-mail. Anything. We have new info." I love how they added fan perks here. Sam however is less thrilled. It means John knows they're looking for him but doesn't bother to contact them. Sam is visibly upset as he slams into Metallicar. Dean looks resigned. He's used to John's douchebaggery. He peels out on the road and we're left with a mighty fine 67 Chevy Impala taking her family to their next destination. Just 2 brothers, Metallicar, and the road.

This episode is classic Supernatural to me. The brothers work together to fight evil and save the day. Humor is mixed in well and I consider this episode one of the best for one-liners. Kuddos to the writers for a great, if unbelievable, script. It's also fun to see the brothers get an unquestionable, no strings attached victory against evil, something sadly lacking in recent seasons. All in all, it's a solid, fun monster of the week story I always enjoy rewatching even if it's not in my top 25 episodes.

Screencaps by Screencap Paradise and Supernatural Caps
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Supernatural - Favorite 2nd Episode - Poll

So our premiere poll was a rousing success with over 850 votes. The winner was Lazarus Rising with over 51% of the votes. In My Time of Dying was a distant second. Today we vote for our favorite second episode:

Everybody Loves a Clown
The Kids are Alright
Are You There God? It's Me Dean Winchester
Good God Y'All
Two and a Half Men

Remember comments make hellatus shorter so leave a line about what you chose and why.

You can follow this contest at any of the following:
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Friday, May 27, 2011

Supernatural - Favorite Premiere - Poll

It's here - that dreaded time known as the Supernatural Summer Hellatus. It's a time that challenges the fandom's creativity, spawns a billion theories, and has everyone running for DVD's, fan videos, and pictures to make it through. Some make it through with mini marathons; others by combing through each episode for the smallest detail they missed the first 20 times they watched. For me, the best way to endure hellatus is to participate in great discussions with other superfans. What better way to do that than a poll?

So let's kick it off on Supernatural Friday. The plan is to vote for your favorite episodes. The twist is that we will compare them not by season but by when they appeared in their season. For instance, all 6 season premieres will go up against each other tonight. Next will be all the second episodes. My plan is to run the contest until SpoilerTV starts the Best Show competition, take a hiatus during that and return after the contest is over.

To give people a heads up, the first poll will be up longer, until Sunday at midnight Midwest USA time. Then we will have a new poll every other day. However, the only way this will help the hiatus blues is if people leave comments and we start a great conversation. Please tell us what you voted and why. Or rank all of them. You can find this poll on this blog, at SPN Asylum, or SpoilerTV.

Here are tonight's choices. If I have recapped them, they will include a link to the recap.

In My Time of Dying
The Magnificent Seven
Lazarus Rising
Sympathy for the Devil
Exile on Main St.

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White Collar - 3.01 - On Guard - Preview

Yes, I am one lucky woman. I was privileged to see a screener of the season 3 premiere of White Collar which airs Tuesday, June 7th on USA Network at 9/8C. Let me just say that I am even more excited to see where the season will go than I was during the season 2 finale. This season everything changes. When we last left off, Peter accused Neal of stealing the treasure and these trust issues are not going away anytime soon. My take is that trust will be the hallmark issue this season and there is a lot of area to explore. Not the least of which is can we the audience trust the writers. They are fond of the bait-and-switch. One answer we won't have to wait for: Who took the treasure and why?

Our favorite (and not-so-favorite) sidekicks also get screen time. Mozzie is of course awesome in everything. That is a given. El calls in a favor, Jones finally gets out of the van, and Sarah only has about 1 minute screen time. Oh and June's granddaughter from the pilot returns and is a fantastic asset. As always secondary characters really make this show.

As for the plot, most of the episode is a flashback to 4 days prior to the opening scene. We meet Gary Rydell, a "playboy with an uncanny ability to wreck expensive cars," and Lolana. The case is a parallel to Neal's situation and it all comes down to one question. "If you were 1 step away from pulling off the biggest score in your life, could you let it go?" Other things we learn/see:

Neal complains of "cruel and unusual punishment"
Mozzie looks good in aubergine.
Yes, Neal IS that good.
Umbrellas are good cover in more than one way.
Neal plays Russian roulette with Fate.
Peter finds something priceless in the trash.
Pretty boys play with swords.
The world is a better place when Peter smiles.
Mozzie gets kissed by a pretty woman.
Neal has a fashion faux pas.
I look up osso bucco, Kansas City, and an actress from the 1980's for my recap.
Mozzie makes a Kardashian joke.
Someone thanks Neal for saving their life.
Someone goes topless.

I freely admit most of these make not a jot of difference in the story and many were leaked in the new trailer, but it's always fun to guess. In the end, I thought this episode was fun, fast-paced, and a great game changer for season 3. It's going to be a great ride this year. Don't forget to check out White Collar on USA Network. There's an all-day marathon on Monday, June 6 followed by the premiere of season 3 on Tuesday, June 7 at 9/8C. You can also get a quick White Collar fix at USA Network. There's contests, trivia, videos, and more.

Screencaps by USA Network
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Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Supernatural - 6.22 - The Man Who Knew Too Much - Recap

The Road So Far - Sam jumped into the pit, Dean was bloody, Sam told Dean to go to Lisa, he did, Sam rose soulless, the Winchesters killed lots of things, Lisa told Dean to rejoin Sam on the hunt, Sam worked out and tried to kill Bobby, Death restored Sam's soul and put up a wall, more things died, Crowley wanted Purgatory, Eve rose, souls are powerful, Raphael and Cas both want heaven. Crowley didn't die but Eve did, Cas and Crowley formed a business, Team Free Will is now Team Three Will vs Cas' Falling Angel Brigade (and Carry on Wayward Son still rocks!)

Sam runs as sirens wail. The camera jolts awkwardly and I'm confused and seasick. He breaks a lock as a police car goes by Castle Storage. Hey, Continuity Fairy, you're back! I hope you stay awhile. Sam enters the backdoor of a bar and the bartender says they're closed. Sam asks for time and is clearly running from the police. Bartender doesn't want the hassle and grabs a baseball bat while Stellar Premium Beer gets product placement. The power of Sam's desperate voice works overtime and she puts the bat down. Huh? Why would you do that? She asks Sam's name but he doesn't remember it or anything else. Uh oh. Someone's wall came down. Glass breaks like Sam's memory.

Bartender hands Sam a beer since it's a clear remedy for memory loss and possible head trauma. For those keeping track, it's El Sol and I feel the WiaWSNB love. Sam remembers waking on a park bench and instinctively beating up the cops who tried to take him in. Pick up the bat again lady. Sam: "Who even knows how to do something like that?" Winchesters, Sam. I feel for your childhood. Bartender volunteers to take him to the ER but Sam is insistent. He needs to be somewhere quickly. Bartender: "Look the bats have flown the belfry. You need to see a doctor." Sam: "There's something I have to stop….something important. Something like life or death." Bartender says he has to relax to remember so he takes a deep breath and goes to the bar's library? What bar has a library? He picks up H. P. Lovecraft's The Haunter of the Dark which is in no way coincidental. Something funny's going on. I don't trust you Bartender. Sam thinks he's really, really a horror fan, but I'd say it's more a fan of keeping horror at bay. He flashes back to last episode and the Nite Owl Hotel. He almost collapses from the flashes, but when Bartender says hospital, Sam says computer. The hotel is 2 towns over. It may be a dump but it has a web page. Bartender suggests, "Maybe you're a hooker." That's out of left field, but it does have hourly rates. Sam laughs, thanks her, and starts to leave. Bartender says she's driving and Sam and I agree she's nuts. "Look if I let you go off alone, I won't be able to sleep at night and honestly, I'm dying to know how it all turns out." Go off with a stranger who knocks out police on instinct and chances are that is how it turns out. Bartender is hereby renamed Shady.

When hunting, choose the ground floor, corner room nearest the fire escape for "quickest getaway." Good to know. Sam asks for Shady's credit card and she hands it over without hesitation. "Why? Are we checking in?" Nope, but Sam's busting in. You can't be arrested for breaking in your own room, can you? "Dude, who are you?" Sam: "Good question." My question: Where are Dean and Bobby? Sam has his own hunter/serial killer wall mosaic and Shady still walks further inside. "Well, I love what you've done to the place. It's very Beautiful Mind meets Seven." Ha! I'd say "Serial Killer Wall of Death," but wrong show. Shady finds Jimmy Page, Angus Young, and Neil Peart aliases on the counter. Finally she starts freaking. Shouldn't you hide those? Sam freaks too upon seeing an article of the MIA Dr. Visyak. He falls to the ground, remembering that Bobby got a phone call asking to meet her in an alley and the trio headed over. She doesn't show so Bobby calls again and they follow the ringing behind a dumpster. Bobby races to her and she regrets dismissing his help. There's a big gushing wound in her abdomen; she's been tortured. "The demon I could have handled, but when the angel stepped in…I told him Bobby." Confirmation Cas tortured her and knows how to open Purgatory and we're only 9 minutes in. It's going to be fast-paced folks. To get to purgatory, you need virgin blood and the blood of a Purgatory native. Is that why the dragons needed so many virgins? Cas and Crowley already have one item and as long as Cas agrees to bleed a virgin, the second is easy too. The only thing missing is a moon eclipse, which coincidentally occurs tomorrow. Fabulous! Dr. V. tells Bobby she's sorry but she dies before giving up Cas and Crowley's location.

Um, Cas is behind them and since Bobby's torn by Dr. V.'s death, it's terrible timing. "I'm sorry this had to happen." Really Cas? You're sorry you helped torture and kill her? Just give it up. He blames Crowley but we already heard from Dr. V. herself. Bobby: "Yeah, I bet it was all Crowley, you SOB." He goes for Cas but the brothers hold him back. Smart move since who knows what Cas would do to him these days. Dean: "You don't even see it do you? How totally off the rails you are?" Cas: "Enough. I don't care what you think. I've tried to make you understand. You won't listen." Pot meet kettle before pot destroys the world. "So let me make this simple. Please go home and let me stop Raphael. I won't ask again." Cas is deluded, thinking he's the good guy here and maybe some fans agree. But when these are the means, there is no justification in the end. Dean refuses so Cas says, "I wish it hadn't come to this. Well rest assured, when this is all over, I will save Sam but only if you stand down." Busy street noises fill the air but I've got ominous drums in my head. We've come to do as I say or I kill your brother time. Great! Cas touches Sam's head and the wall comes tumbling down. Well, that answers my question last episode. Either Cas is lying now about saving Sam or he purposely allowed him to be RoboSam knowing he could fix him. Oh and this is the death knell on Dean and Cas' friendship. Dean forgives betraying him but put Sam in deliberate harm's way and nothing saves you from his wrath. Not even Cas.

Sam wakes on the floor of the Nite Owl and tells Shady his name. She asks what he remembers but he's reluctant to share. Shady: "It couldn't get any stranger." Wanna bet? Sam: "I just remember I was uh with 2 guys, one was like a male model type and the other was an older guy named um Bobby." Ha! He finds Bobby's address but Shady isn't up for South Dakota. About time you bailed. She asks how Sam will get there and he finds the Impala keys. Why does he have Dean's baby? "I guess I'll take my car. That's mine." At least it's not the plastic one. The two chat by Metallicar about Shady's bad feelings. "Whatever you're looking for, you might not like what you find." Sam: "What other choice do I have?" Shady: "You could stick around here a little longer and get your head straight instead of..." Trying to talk him out of going is so What Is and What Should Never Be. Stake her Sam and move on. A gun clicks and he pushes her down right before Brown Sleeve shoots them. What the heck? It's RoboSam!!!! Did not see that coming! Welcome to Sammy's hell. Sam's stunned too but RoboSam puts the gun down. Huh? Why? Shady shouts "Sammy!" and I'm even more confused. White light flashes and Dean watches a comatose Sammy in the panic room. I get it. Everything is in Sam's head and it was Dean's voice calling him. We pan from sleeping Sam to Dean's anxious face and fade to black. Love, love, love it!

The Rolling Stones' Play with Fire leads us back as Bobby watches a pacing Dean. "I can't just sit here Bobby. I've got to help him. Dreamscape his noggin, something." Bobby: "Dean, you know what Cas did. The dam instead your brother's head is gone and all hell's spilling loose. We don't know what's going on inside him." Dean doesn't care. He wants action. Bobby: "And we will. But right now we got 16 hours until they pop Purgatory. I'm down one man. I can't afford to be down two." Dean: "And how's that going, huh? We've got no line on Crowley. We've got no line on Cas. Balthazar's MIA. I mean all we've got is Sam going through whatever the hell this is." Oh for the love of continuity, does anyone remember the handy pendulum tracker thing from No Rest for the Wicked? Bobby pours hunter's helper. "This is exactly what Cas wants. For you to fall to pieces. So try to think of what Sam would want." It hits Dean right in the stomach and reminds me of Dean with Ben last episode. Hard truths to inspire quick action. Dean takes the whiskey. "Find Cas, Bobby. Find him now." And intense Dean is back! Cas is going down. Bobby head nods and they down whiskey as we pan to Sam's still body.

Back in Sam's head world, he smells whiskey. I laugh. Sam's getting all the good lines tonight. Shady asks who shot at them and he lies. He insists they go to Bobby's but she wants to go the cops. She's right; Sam doesn't know who he'll meet there. The Rolling Stones roar back as Dean shines a light in Sam's eyes. Head Sam is blinded as night turns to day (Maybe that's what happened in Bugs.) He stops the car to freak, but Shady says it was always day. Hmm. Sam: "What the hell is going on here?" Shady: " OK, so I am all filled up on crazy for today. You know what Sam, I'll see ya." Sam demands she get in the car because something's in the woods. He opens the Impala's trunk and his look is priceless. BWAH!!! "Wow!" Yep, that's what I said in the pilot when I first saw her arsenal. He tries different weapons before taking the sawed off.

And we've got RoboSam, who disarms Sam in 2 seconds and puts a gun to his head. When I first saw this, my 5-year-old niece came in at this point. You know how hard it is to explain Good Sam and Bad Sam to a little one? RoboSam: "Am I really that gawky?" Bwah! I miss your snarkiness. He says "Howdy" while Sam is stunned. RoboSam: "Usually you're awake when you're tripping balls." Looked that one up. Ha! "We're inside your grapefruit Sam. Son, you've been juiced." RoboSam, I adore your way with words. He succinctly exposits for me in appreciation. "Well, your BFF Cas brought the hell wall tumbling down and you, pathetic infant that you are, shattered into pieces." He points the gun at himself and Sam. "Piece. Piece." Head Sam is confused; I'm ecstatic for one more go-round with RoboSam before he sadly dies. RoboSam believes he's the superior Sam. "I'm not handicapped. I'm not saddled with a soul. In fact, I used to skipper this meatsuit for awhile. It was smooth sailing. I was sharp, strong. That is until they crammed your soul back in. Now look at you. Same misty-eyed milksop you always were. That's because souls are weak. They're a liability. Now, nothing personal but run the numbers. Someone's got to take charge around here before it's too late." He fires the gun, but he must be rusty. He misses. Sam runs with gigantor strides until he remembers that he too has a gun. ("He's got a sword." "We've all got swords." Sorry random Aladdin reference.) RoboSam plays seek to Sam's hide. He spots Sam's jacket and shoots. Ah, overconfidence is RoboSam's downfall too as Sam shoots him from behind. It's been fun RoboSam. He flips over. "You think I'm bad. Wait til you meet the other one." He collapsesand white light arcs from his body to Sam's. Back in the panic room, Real Sam convulses. Dean freaks but Sam goes still again.

HeadSam heads back to the Impala where a completely confident Shady waits. "I remember who I am. Everything I did this past year. And I remember you." Flashback to the bar where a Red-Eyed demon(?) holds Shady captive. RoboSam shoots her. "There goes your leverage." Cold! Blood seeps through HeadShady's t-shirt and she warns him to turn back. Sam apologizes but she says, "Not as sorry as you're gonna be." I expected her to attack but she simply poufs away. Very confusing. I firmly believe the writers never use her name so she can represent Sam's guilt over all the people RoboSam killed. Should have called her Symbol instead. Dean however is not up to debating symbolism, staring glumly into space with a shot of whiskey in hand. Bobby interrupts his musings with Balthazar. "Well at least you mudfish finally got the angel proofing right." Writers, although you have successfully killed "Destiel" it does not mean "Wincest" is fair game. Got it? Dean's his usual uncharming, ungrateful self with angels. "What the hell took you so long?" Balthy: "Honestly, I was having second thoughts…about whether to help you. I was thinking maybe, maybe I should rip out your sticky bits instead." I'm surprised you didn't with so little gratitude. Dean is taken aback. Maybe he'll be civil next time. He hands over Cas' address so I guess he's not immolating today. This is where you say thank you, Dean. For trivia buffs, the showdown takes place at 221 Piermont Ave. in Bootback, Kansas, which exists only on Supernatural. Dean wants Balthy to zap them there but no dice. "I'm betraying a friend here. A very powerful friend. We all are. So I think I've stuck my neck out far enough already. Good luck." He zaps away. Dean and Bobby grimace and look back at Sam.

The address is Crowley's Warehouse of Former Monster Torture. A giddy Crowley enters with a "Purgatory power shake." I'm surprised Crowley hasn't double crossed Cas by now. Once they got the formula, I figured it would be a power struggle. Crowley hands the jar to Cass, who quietly thanks him. Crowley: "You seem even more constipated than usual." Ha! Alas, Cas doesn't appreciate the humor. "I'm renegotiating our terms." Ah, so Cas for the double cross. Crowley is amazingly calm as Cas proposes, "You get nothing. Not one single soul." Crowley: "Kind of noticed, it seems a bit unfairly weighted." He says Cas wouldn't dare betray their contract, but he hasn't paid attention to the decisions Cas has made for the last two years. He dares. Crowley whines about dibs, but Cas retorts, "You think I'm handing all that power to the King of Hell. I'm neither stupid nor wicked." Well, one's debatable and it's not your intelligence. Crowley: "Unbelievable. Have you forgotten that you're the bottom in this relationship?" Cas: "Here are your options. You either flee or you die." Crowley brings up their pact, but since when does that mattered to a Supernatural angel. "Even I don't break contracts like this." Cas: "Flee or die." Crowley: "Boy, you can't trust anyone these days." He zips out but if Cas thinks he's stopped Crowley, his ego is farther gone than I fear.

We flip to Bobby's ala Disney's Haunted Mansion. HellSam sits in the dark in the kitchen, knife near hand. Sam yells at him and he slowly lifts his head to say hi. He's bloody and battered and defeated. "I'm the one who remembers hell." Oh no. Let the emoangst begin. Or not since suddenly Bobby's in the panic room telling Dean it's time. Dean wants a minute alone with Sam. . "Alright, this is where we're gonna be Sam. You get your lazy a** out of bed and come meet us. Sammy, please." He leaves the address and his favorite pistol by Sam's side. Perhaps the desk would be a better place for the gun. Just saying that if Sam convulses again, who knows what could happen?

Back at HeadBobby's, HellSam mutters, "I wish you hadn't come Sam." Sam's figured out his real body is at Bobby's because everything smells like Old Spice and whiskey. Bwah! Glad he kept the humor. He'll need it. Sam wants to find his body and snap out of the coma. Decent plan. HellSam: "But first you have to go through me...Humpty Dumpty has to put himself back together again before you wake up and I'm the last piece." Sam: "Which means I have to know what you know." Hell Sam warns us that hell details are, well, hell and I'm fine with ignorance, because in this case, knowledge means a world of hurt to slog through now and in season 7. Sam: "You're right, but I still have to." Darn. HellSam encourages him to stay at HeadBobby's or find Shady or Jess. "Just don't do this. I know you. You're not strong enough." Yikes, thanks for the pep talk other psyche. It's like black-eyed Dean in Dream a Little Dream. (I hate John.) Sam says he'll risk it. "You know me. You know why. I'm not leaving my brother alone out there." YES!!! Loud clapping and cheers abound. Anyone who doubted that Dean is as important to Sam and Sam is to Dean should rewind this over and over again. They've proved they would die for each other. They will also live for each other even if life is painful and much too hard to bear alone. This cements what we've known for 1/2 a season now. The brothers are back - truly, completely, "I've got you" back. HellSam is sad but won't fight Sam not that he could fight anyone at this point. "Good luck. You're gonna need it." He hands Sam the knife and Sam kills him. The white light bursts into Sam causing his real body to convulse again. I wonder about the writers - Sam has to kill himself to become himself? Hmm.

Meanwhile, Crowley's warehouse is not a warehouse at all. In fact, it looks like a museum with a few dozen angel guards. Cas sits alone until Balthy zaps in. "You rang?" Cas knows Dean's on his way and they have "a Judas in our midst." Balthy guesses it's a cherub mole and Cas invades his space. Cas: "I don't know but I need you to find out." Balthy is too quick to agree and asks what Cas wants done about Dean. "Nothing. I'll handle him myself." Balthy asks if Cas is okay but he really should wing away ASAP. Cas: "First Sam and Dean and now this. I'm doing my best in impossible circumstances. My friends, they abandon me, plot against me. It's difficult to understand." Since Cas has now given his best Stalinesque, benevolent but misunderstood dictator speech, we can confidently say he is Cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs. Drunk on power and pride, this Cas will destroy not save. Balthy tries to charm his way out. "Well, you've always got little old me." Cas' face hardens before he knives Balthy in the back. "Yes, I'll always have you." Balthy whispers, "Cas" before dropping dead in a shower of light. The power shatters the building's windows while Cas looks on self-righteously. Perhaps we should call you Shiva instead.

Dean and Bobby miss the lightshow, but their odds aren't good. Bobby: "I count a dozen mooks, probably more." Somehow Bobby can tell the difference between angels and demons by looking through binoculars. Handy new trick. How does that work? Dean: "Well, how the hell are we going to take out that many angels?" Good question as your one ally was killed by your former ally, who is the newly appointed head case, and I don't see you partnering with Crowley. Bobby suggests ninja stealth. Dean: "Awesome. Yeah. Until they hear your knee squeak." Bobby tells Dean to can it. "Oh what? Now you've got thin skin?" Bobby: "No. Shut up." The ground quivers as drums beat. Dean: "Oh, T-Rex maybe." On this show, it's possible. Except it's worse - demon swarm. They race to the Impala, but the demons flip it onto its hood. NOOO!!! Not the Impala! She can't die. She's Dean's baby. Inside, Cas hears screaming and chaos before smoke covers the windows. "Never underestimate the King of Hell, darling. I know a lot of swell tricks." Yes, Crowley's back! He wants to re-renegotiate the terms. Cas palms his forehead but no dice. Crowley: "Sweaty hands mate." I love his "ew, gross" voice. "You can palm me all you want. Safe and sound under the wing of my new partner." Crowley brought along Raphael and that's…not surprising. Who else would he get? They all stare at each other and Cas looks nervous for once.

Cas: "Consorting with demons. I thought that was beneath you." Again kettle meet pot. Raphael: "Heard you were doing it. Sounded like fun." Female Raphael is funnier than the male one was. Crowley: "You know Castiel, you've said all kinds of shameful and appalling, scatological things about Raphael. I've found him…her to be really quite reasonable." Cas: "You fool. Raphael will deceive and destroy you at the speed of thought." Hellooo! Anybody in here? Does Cas really think he's better than Raphael? Let's see. Raphael is an ego-driven, proud douche who thinks his way is the only way. Yep, check Cas for that too. He is willing to destroy people to get what he wants. Cas just killed Balthy, so check. Raphael cannot be trusted with what power he already has. Check, check, and triple check Cas. Your intentions might have been good, but both you and Raphael could give Lucifer a run for his money now. Oh how the pure have fallen. Crowley is more succinct. "Right, right, because you're such a straight shooter. She/He has offered me protection against all comers." If he hands over the Purgatory blood. Raphael: "Castiel, you really think I would let you open that door? Take in that much power. If anyone is going to be the new "god," it's me." I suggest they take each other out and spare us. Cas does the Apocalypse song and dance. Crowley: "Hey, this is your doing, mate? I'm merely grabbing the best offer on the table. Now, you have two options. Flee or die." Love how Crowley does the last bit in Cas voice. Cas grabs the blood, tosses it to Crowley, and zaps out. It's highly anticlimactic, so I doubt we've seen the last of Cas either.

Darkness falls across the land. The eclipse hour is close at hand. Symbols in virgin/monster blood. Yep, there goes the neighborhood. Crowley chants as Dean and Bobby lie in the wrecked Impala. Dean wiggles and shouts, "Bobby!" Bobby doesn't move. THIS IS NOT ACCEPTABLE!!! NO BOBBY DEATH! Dean calls out once more. Oh thank all things, he's alive. Kripke, you purposely scheduled my heart attack but you're forgiven. BOBBY'S ALIVE!!! Phew, made it through another season. Well, so far. They make their way out of the car as the ritual progresses. I guess Bobby's knee didn't give away their ninja skills because they creep to the top of the stairs. They give each other a "here goes nothing" shrug and Dean flings the angel knife at Raphael. Who catches it. This is when you're screwed. Crowley hand flicks Bobby down the stairs (no wonder his knee's bad) and Dean off the stairs and onto a table. "We're busy gentlemen. Be with you in a moment." Crowley, you should kill first and open Purgatory next. Just saying this is why all their other adversaries died. Too much chatter, no slaying. Especially since Sam's on the scene. Barely walking and hardly in shape to ninja anywhere, but it's Sam! He flashes to the Unforgiven hell scene and it almost drives him to his knees. Yet no way he's stopping now.

Crowley finishes the ritual but nothing happens. "Maybe I said it wrong." Cas zaps in. "You said it perfectly. What you needed was this?" Cas holds a now empty blood jar. He's squinty and mocking which does not bode well for Raphael, Crowley or possibly the Winchesters. Crowley dips his finger in the blood symbols. "I see. And we've been working with…dog blood, naturally." Raphael demands the real blood because not so quick on the intake. Crowley: "Game's over. His jar's empty. So Castiel, how'd your ritual go? Better than ours I'll bet." Cas breathes in and pure light beams. "You can't imagine what it's like. They're all inside me, millions upon millions of souls." Dean and Bobby exchange worried looks. Crowley: "Sounds sexy. Exit stage Crowley." The only one not panicking, he zaps on out. Bye Crowley, hope to see you next season. Cas: "Now what's the matter Raphael. Somebody clip your wings?" Cas won't let Raphael follow suit so he/she begs. "You let the demon go but not your own brother." "The demon I've got plans for." That does not bode well either. He snaps his fingers and Raphael splatters into blood particles. You know, like how Lucifer splattered Cas. It's like the Apocalypse again but Cas is Lucifer and it's all one-sided.

Cas turns his attention to Dean and Bobby. "So you see, I saved you." Ok, nothing creepy about that smile at all. Dean uses his gentle voice, the kind used to talking people off ledges or to keep your head from getting blown up by a sadistic dictator. "You sure did, Cas. Thank you." (About time even if it's just placating.) Cas: "You doubted me, fought against me, but I was right all along." Dean: "OK Cas. You were. We're sorry. Let's just defuse you, okay." Cas: "What do you mean?" Dean: "You're full of nuke. It's not safe. So before the eclipse ends, let's get them souls back to where they belong." Oh Dean, logic didn't work when Cas was somewhat rational. Do you really think it'll work with all that power exploding in him? Cas: "Oh no. They belong with me." See! Dean claims power has gone to his head but Cas isn't finished. "Raphael had many followers and I must punish them all severely." See that smile when he says it. Yep, power-mad dictator. Dean: "Listen to me. Listen. I know there's a lot of bad water under the bridge, but we were family once. I'd have died for you. I almost did a few times. So if that means anything to you. Please, I've lost Lisa. I've lost Ben and now I've lost Sam. Don't make me lose you too." Dean and Bobby hold their breath; I think fat chance. "You don't need this kind of juice anymore Cas. Get rid of it before it kills us all." Cas: "You're just saying that because I won. Because you're afraid." I am too, buddy. Sam picks up the angel knife behind Cas. "You're not my family Dean. I have no family." Sam shoves the angel blade into Cas' back. BUT NOTHING HAPPENS! The Winchester trio and I are stunned. What? Cas removes the blade. "I'm glad you made it Sam, but the angel blade won't work." You don't say. "Because I'm not an angel anymore. I'm your new god." I know should be terrified right now, but that makes me laugh. "A better one. So you will bow down and profess your love unto me your Lord or I shall destroy you." We get close-ups of everyone's eyes before the screen goes black. And another finale Kripked! Plenty to talk about this hiatus.

The season 6 finale was awesome, one of the best episodes of the season! It had surprises, lots of action, a quick pace , classic rock, a few good one-liners, a huge jump in the mytharc, and an ending that makes me excited for season 7. Even better, no one died who I couldn't live without. (I refuse to believe Metallicar is permanently hurt and Bobby made it through the season. Yeah!) In short, another fabulous finale from Sera, Kripke, and company. I absolutely loved Sam vs. RoboSam. It may be my favorite Sam scene all season. It will be interesting to see if Sam changes subtly now that he has absorbed RoboSam. I hope so. RoboSam was funny. I'm also particularly grateful HellSam didn't describe but moved the plot along too. You know me and the emoangsting. It was fantastic to see Sam stand up to him and emphatically state that he didn't care what he had to go through, he wasn't leaving Dean on his own. I know I wasn't the only one cheering. It's been implied all along, but to hear the words stated so bluntly stirred my heart. The brothers are definitely back and stronger than ever and that's even better than RoboSam. I even enjoyed the mystery at the beginning when I wasn't sure what was going on. It kick started me into the episode and my attention never wavered. I loved the whole Sam situation and I'm tremendously happy the cliffhanger wasn't the wall falling. Sam in a coma would have been depressing.

I also like how it was Cas who destroyed Sam's wall instead of it crumbling on its own. It was the perfect way to show how far he had fallen and since it was pre-opening Purgatory, he can't use soul juice as an excuse. I guess we know what Kripke thinks of "Destiel." No doubt Cas will be redeemed next season, but no way Dean forgets he put Sam at risk. That would be completely out of character for him. I hope Cas does a Darth Vader thing where he dies to save the Winchesters - no army men in this scenario. It would give the character a powerful death and finally get rid of the angel storyline that has dragged on for far too long. That being said, how fantastic is the idea of Cas as the Big Bad. I love it. It gives Cas a real purpose in the story next year. This year it felt like they threw him in to meet a quota. "Hey, where can we stick in Random Cass Scene #3?") I firmly believe plot should drive characters not the other way around. Not to mention, Misha Collins will have a ball with it. For me, there was only 3 ways to go with Cas here - 1. Dead and not in season 7. 2. Fully human with no angel powers. 3. Thoroughly evil. Glad they didn't choose #2 because who needs a third wheel in the Impala. They chose the best option for the series. I look forward to seeing how the Winchester clan gets out of the room much less take down the most powerful angel around. You think Gabriel faked his death and is living in Las Vegas? Maybe he could join the fight.

In the end, this finale left me far more excited about season 7 than Swan Song made me excited about season 6. There are so many angles left to play. So many monsters left to hunt. And finally, it will be Dean and Sam doing it instead of calling up angel express to take care of things for them. It's about time and I for one cannot wait to see it. Thanks again for another fabulous season cast and crew of Supernatural. You constantly amaze me. The acting is superb from the main characters to the guest stars. The writers take huge leaps and we get the payoff. Their twists kept me guessing what would happen next and I'm happy to say most times I was wrong. When a show constantly surprises you and still actually makes sense, it's a keeper. The crew does phenomenal things with a small budget. I love how they played with tones and different shots this year. While I don't know enough about TV production to really appreciate all the hard work put in, I know when I watch Supernatural, everything sucks me into the saga unfolding on my screen. Thank you for sharing your magic with me. I appreciate all your hard work and I'm forever grateful for the last 6 years. Can't wait to see what you cook up for #7. (Just make sure the Impala's fixed please.)

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