You know, every week I watch the recap and wonder how they’re going to tie in the elements they’re showing us. This week I knew there would be a story from Castiel’s past, but I wondered how we were going to get Cass’s past, the nephilim, what happened with Billie, Lucifer…seemed like a lot to cover.
The way writer Steve Yockey tied all these elements together was not only entertaining, it was seamless and fairly brilliant. Just now, while writing this, I looked up his other episode credits. Turns out he also wrote “Celebrating the Life of Asa Fox”. Funny, considering what I said after watching the episode:
I noticed this week they spoke about the lack of angel wings several times. This is the first time they’ve brought it up so often and said so much about it. So, either they heard us whining about Cass not flying, or it’s going to come up again in an important way. They also gave us a visual cue with Benjamin’s wings, so now maybe I won’t forget they can’t fly.
Now, on to Isham. I recognized him, figured it was from another episode. I was correct, he played Chrissy’s father. The merry go round is actually really fun, and it’s kind of a game now to figure out if it’s another episode I know them from or something else entirely. Like the X-Files, iZombie, or another Vancouver show. Timeless (hashtag #RenewTimeless) is in the rotation now, too.
Anyhow, back to the episode. This week was a great reminder that most angels are not Castiel. Most angels are dicks. Isham and his friend being no exception, it pleased me to watch Sam and Dean swoop in and stand up for their friend. The bonding between Cass and the boys was actually my favorite thing about this episode. We know Dean and Cass are close, Dean considers him a brother, but to watch Sam stick up for him as well, to watch Sam pull his Sam face on Castiel, it’s something special to see how far their relationship has come.
As they spoke with Isham, Castiel relating the story of Lily and the nephilim, (sorry I just have to mention that Destiel shippers are sure to have a field day with the fact Cass used to be a woman), who else questioned Isham’s version of events? Why didn’t we follow him into the house? Why didn’t we get to see what happened? Why did he leave the angel squad outside while he went, alone, to take care of this supposed dangerous creature?
Everything we know about this story, we know because Isham told us.
Never forget, angels are dicks.
So here’s dick #1, throwing Lily under the bus. And as she heals herself, we see she is most certainly human (no glowing blue light when the angel blade cut her), but she also has some kind of powers. And they are most certainly NOT demonic.
Come on. A deal with a demon to live for 100 years? Yeah, right. I’m kinda shocked the Winchesters fell for that line of crap.
Their little encounter with Lily in the hotel hallway had to be one of the best parts of the episode. I love Dean’s awkward face. It’s always a treat to see it pop up. And at the same time, I was pissed at this piece of garbage for wasting some of Castiel’s grace.
The rest of the episode went as necessary. Sam and Dean found out the truth about Lily’s daughter, we found out the source of Lily’s power, and she got her revenge. Guest star Alicia Witt was freaking excellent. I’ve been a fan of hers for a couple decades now. It’s lovely to see her popping up on some of my favorite TV shows recently. And I’m glad the character is still around because it would be wonderful to have her show up again at some point.
Let’s talk about Castiel. I’m certain I’m not the only one who’s noticed he’s more human this season. Sassy. Angry. Emotional. One has to look no further than last week, when he defended killing Billie, to see how emotional he can get. But also remember his smart mouth when dealing with Crowley. Exasperation. Frustration. At first, early in the season, I thought it was leftovers from Lucifer. That Luci had influenced him for so long, some of it had rubbed off.
Now, I’m not so sure. I think Castiel has been on earth too long. I think his grace is wearing down. And I think our favorite thing about him, his affinity for our boys, will be his eventual undoing. But until then, watching his bond with the Winchesters deepen is the best thing they’ve done with his character in seasons. I fear where they’re going with him, but I’m enjoying watching him go there.
So far, I feel season 12 has been fun but slightly uneven. It’s had highs and lows. Individually, I’ve enjoyed every episode, but the overall theme seems to lack a bit of cohesion. I’m not saying anything bad about it, exactly, it’s only that season 11 was so cohesive. It’s difficult to step back again to the smaller scale without feeling something missing. But “Lily Sunder Has Some Regrets” and “Celebrating the Life of Asa Fox” have been some real high points this season. I look forward to the next episode brought to us by Steve Yockey, because he seems to have a real grasp of what it takes to be Supernatural.