Supernatural 12.18 “The Memory Remains” Review

This week, I find myself incredibly grateful Supernatural is available to watch in full, including the “Then” segment, on the CW app (or their website) because somehow my broadcast began after the first five minutes.

Though the first five minutes are almost always the same, they’re part of the whole formula that puts my brain in Supernatural mode. Without them, I end up feeling lost for a few minutes, especially when I know they’re missing. What they would have told me this week was that this episode was going to be, for the most part, a Monster of the Week. And the thing about monster of the week is that this show is expert at them. Like a well oiled machine. It makes me quite comfortable, knowing what to expect. Plenty of Sam and Dean, being Sam and Dean.

So, to the case. Sheriff Taxidermy was a great suspect for this case, considering the killer was wearing a stuffed goat head. But I also completely suspected stick-up-his-ass supervisor from the get-go. Especially once the boys interviewed him. He just seemed a little…you know. Off.

Guest star Ryan McDonald, not being suspicious at all.

Side note: in episodes like this, I enjoy the banter between Sam and Dean in places like the diner. Think that’s my favorite part. I mean, do Jared and Jensen even need a script for this anymore?

I love the diner banter more than I can adequately express

Meanwhile, Ketch and some of his boys “broke into” the bunker. I mean, one, I wish the Winchesters would get a run of the mill lock on that place. Something, rather than leave it accessible to the BMoL. And any other Men of Letters in the world. I mean, the Winchesters sleep there. I don’t know if I’d be OK with it once I’d found out there were other Men of Letters, and any of them could get into your home. The Brits have already shown they can’t really be trusted. I mean, the first time one of them came into the bunker, she shot Sam and then had him tortured. Not someone you want with a key to your house. And to top it off, they appear to be thieves as well.

How DOES Sam get his hair so shiny?

Side note 2: weekly shout-out to the set department. I’m pretty sure Bobby was a ghost at least twice on the Addams Family house set, and it’s hard to hide that staircase, but I appreciate the effort. I’m sure it takes a lot of imagination and hard work to make the same sets look different and I like to acknowledge how hard the set department must work. Seems like a huge undertaking. Your excellent work does not go unnoticed.

Backing the sheriff into a corner, Sam and Dean find out the truth about the killings. A pagan god. Yeah, pretty sure Dean was right in that the Colt can take care of this. I mean, we haven’t yet found out the fifth thing the Colt can’t kill (have we? Correct me if I’m wrong), but I doubt it’s some random pagan god. Not considering how many we’ve seen on this show.

As I said before, the formula makes me comfortable, and to my delight they continued to follow it. One of the boys, this time Dean, gets taken by the monster. The explanation of why the monster is getting fed adds up to Will Scarlet, the meat plant supervisor, and we find Dean in the freezer with two dead bodies and a pagan god.

And no Colt.

We know our Dean, though, and we know Sam will kill himself to save him, so the only worry we have is whether or not the good guy of the week will die to solve the case. He lives, Dean gets the crap beat out of him by a pagan god, and every time pagan gods get mentioned I think of the Christmas episode.mr6

All in all, I found the episode itself enjoyable, comfortable, and what makes Supernatural what it is. The backbone of my favorite show. Its meat and potatoes. Our reminder that Jared and Jensen are the heart and soul of this show. They could easily be phoning in episodes like this by now. But never, not once, have I gotten that feeling from them. Not in twelve seasons. Though we know neither Winchester is about to die by the hand of some random pagan god on a Monster of the Week, they still put every bit of effort in helping us believe they are fighting for their lives. And I love them, for that and for so many other reasons.

Notes and theories:

-whoever’s decision it was to not show the god in full form was a brilliant, and I’m sure, money saving one. In horror you do not always need to see the monster. Sometimes, suspense is better.

-poor Dean didn’t get to use the Colt. Again. Well at least he got laid.

-I liked the set-up of the town’s history. You really got the sense of a larger story that will continue once the boys leave.

-The boys carving their initials into the table definitely achieved the desired effect. Got a little misty watching that brother moment.

Seriously haven’t seen a bug this large since those 80’s spy movies about the Cold War I grew up on

-Alright, seriously. Was that a bug Ketch planted? The blond one already planted a bug in the wall speaker. What was up with the one Ketch slapped under the table? AKA the most obvious bug known to man? Even the one in the speaker was unrealistically large. This was is just impossible.

Naturally, I have theories. Was it really a bug? At first I worried maybe it was some sort of explosive device. Or some other sort of BMoL toy that will harm the Winchesters. But. The more I think about it, the more I think it’s some kind of clue for the Winchesters to find. I still think it’s probable that Ketch is going to switch sides. But seeing what he saw along with doing what he did when Mick tried it convinces me he’s going to be a hell of a lot more discreet about it. Some in the fandom have shown surprise Mick was killed so quickly. My answer to that is that he was to be an example. To Ketch, specifically. Don’t be an idiot about it, that’s the example. The old men and their dogs, they don’t care about individuals in the organization. They only, only, only care about their precious Code.

Not to mention Ketch stealing that photograph. What is clearly one of Dean’s favorite possessions. Not only is Dean sure to notice its absence, why does Ketch want it? Because it’s a picture of Mary? Because it stands for childhood innocence or a mother’s love? Maybe something Ketch never had? Or something he misses, perhaps.

Or something else entirely. For a moment, I’ll entertain that I’m giving him too much credit and he’s simply doing these things to follow orders. To find out and understand as much as possible about his adversary. By studying Sam and Dean’s relationships to others, he can understand where their weak points are and leverage them.

Time will tell. See you April 27th.

(All photos property of the CW)

 

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