Supernatural 4.14 – “Sex and Violence” Recap

Supernatural 4.14 – “Sex and Violence” Recap

SUPERNATURALGreetings and Salutations, SPN fangirls and -boys! My name’s Whiteotter and I’ll be recapping this magnificent treat of angst, sex and violence for Kripke Owns Me. Only on Supernatural would a fistfight be considered romantic and/or foreplay, but that’s why we love it. Onward!

Bloody bloody THEN: Castiel (ooooo, Castiel) VOs that Sam’s heading down a dangerous road as Sam gets into Ruby 2.0’s car, telling her that “he’s in.” Ruby and Sam have a VO conversation in which she asks whether he’s told Dean about “what they’re doing” – and Sam responds that he has to find the right way to say it – as we see Sam using his Super-magic and Morally Ambiguous Powers to draw a demon out of its human host, leaving the human alive and in need of serious therapy. Seriously, can you imagine that session? (“Look, there was this giant guy. GIANT. Like, the most ginormous…” Therapist: “Tell me about your father.”) Ruby VOs that Dean’s going to find out – as we see him observing the same scene on-screen – and rightly says that if he doesn’t hear about it from Sam first, Dean’s gonna be pissed. Sam VOs that Dean’s gonna be pissed anyway. Heh. You can’t say they don’t know each other. Cut to Dean brutally punching Sam in the face; Sam takes the hit calmly and asks if Dean’s satisfied, but apparently not, because in response Dean punches him a second time even harder. I am not a little disturbed by how unbelievably hot that is. In the Impala, Dean asks why Sam trusts Ruby 2.0 so much, and Sam says that Ruby’s helping him to go after Lilith. Remember when Sam didn’t want to be anything like John Winchester? I can’t imagine what made me think about that. Dean says that that’s not near enough information, adding that “something major must’ve happened” – here we cut, all too briefly, to Sam and Ruby doing the nasty – “for Sam to be BFF with a demon.” Sam parries by asking Dean if he’d like to share more about his four months in hell, and snarks that Dean shouldn’t spare the details. Yowch!

Bloody bloody NOW. In her kitchen, a blonde uses a massive metal meat tenderizer on two juicy steaks. Her husband comes home and we see by the wall clock that it’s 8:30PM. She makes a joke about his boss “cracking the whip”, and the tired hubby totally overreacts, telling her that he’s working his ass off. She apologizes and then he does, twice, kissing her on the cheek. I’m sure everything’s all better, then! Ahaha. This is SPN, after all. She walks into the living room and says that she ran into some friends who invited them over for a birthday party, and she accepted; hubby opens the fridge, takes out a beer, and slams the refrigerator door so hard everything in it rattles. He can’t believe she did that without checking with him first. Wifey says that she thought he’d want to go, and we get a close-up of hubby’s face as he turns around in the kitchen. Wifey, do you have any mad ninja skillz? Maybe some running shoes? I’m betting no. He says he “can’t believe (her),” like she’s taken out a second mortgage or something, rather than make plans for Saturday on his behalf. She says she’ll cancel, and goes to turn on a nearby lamp. “What’s the matter with you tonight?” she asks. “It’s like you want to have a fight.” She turns around and hubby clocks her with the meat cleaver. The lamp falls as she stumbles, and we see their shadows as he hits her over and over. Blood spatters their wedding picture, but Hubby’s eyes are dead calm as we go into the flappy zappy credits!

A slow pan up Dean Winchester’s body as he lies asleep in his hotel room has me yearning for season one, when Dean was not such a fan of blankets. Even when they’re sleeping they have multiple layers! Ahem. Dean’s startled awake by a passing vehicle, and he immediately turns over to look over at Sam’s bed, which is empty. He sits up, concerned, and then sees Sam talking in a low voice on his cell phone as he paces back and forth in the bathroom. He overhears Sam: “…that’s what I’m telling you, no storms, bad crops, nothing,” and I’m reminded of how John Winchester tracked ol’ YED back in the day. I don’t know if Dean processes this too or if he’s just caught Sam Being Sneaky (again, some more). Either way his eyes go cold, and when Sam hangs up, Dean turns over and plays possum. Sam walks into the room quietly, eyeballing Dean, but eventually sits down and shoves Dean with an “Up & at ’em, kiddo.” Kiddo? What the… Sam, I know you’re changing in lots of morally ambiguous ways, but you’re the younger brother. Dean fakes his way awake, rubbing his eyes and asking what Sam’s doing up so early. Sam admits he was in the bathroom, but leaves out the “…plotting with my also morally ambiguous and most definitely demonic romantic interest” part. Dean: “Yeah?” Sam: “Want me to draw you a picture?” I don’t, Sam! I’ve seen your artwork. Dean says no and wipes his eyes, truly tired this time. Sam hands him a newspaper with an article about the Meat-Tenderizer Hubby, whom I shall dub MTH for the rest of this recap, and adds that it’s the third such murder in two months, no priors, all happily married. What? You mean on the outside everything looked fine, but underneath there were all sorts of unresolved secrets and tensions? I can’t imagine how that might be relevant, Sam. “Sounds like Ozzie and Harriet,” Dean says. Sam: “More like The Shining.” Dean says they better have a look and tosses the paper to the foot of his bed. We see a picture of MTH in the newspaper, and then we cut to –

A far less coiffed and glowing MTH, bedecked in prison orange. Remember when the boys went undercover as prisoners in Folsom Prison Blues? It’s like that, but with less shoulders and guns. MTH tells a besuited Sam and Dean that he keeps saying that he doesn’t want a lawyer. Dean tells him that they’re lining up the firing squad, and MTH looks up and quietly says that he’s pleading guilty. Dean says it’s no skin off his nose if MTH doesn’t want them to represent him – “in fact, it’s probably not a bad idea, between you and me”, he adds, which gets a small but hilarious wtf? face from Sammy – but that they want to know what happened. Sam asks MTH nicely, and MTH brokenly stumbles through the words: “What happened was… I killed my wife. And you want to know why? Because she made plans without asking me.” Even Dean is kind of gobsmacked by this. Sam asked if he felt disoriented or out of control, and Dean anviliciously asks if something “possessed” MTH, but MTH isn’t having any coddling; he says he knew what he was doing, and everything was crystal clear. Why’d he do it then? MTH starts to lose it because he doesn’t know. He says he loved his wife, and they were happy. Dean glances at Sam before opening up his briefcase – and hee! Where’s that been in the Impala all this time, under the spare? – and pulling out a bank statement. He slides it toward MTH and points out a $9,000 withdrawal. MTH asks where they got that, and Dean says that doesn’t matter. Dean presses that perhaps there was a reason that he didn’t want his wife to know about the payment to “Embassy Entertainment”. It would be Dean, of course, who would pick up on that. Dean suggests that MTH was dropping money at a nudie bar; Sam, the good cop, says they just want the truth. MTH closes his eyes and admits that “her name was Jasmine.” Sam asks whether she was a stripper, and I have to pause here and say that while I do love our Sammy and his expressive eyebrows, I want to reach right through the screen and exfoliate the poor boy’s forehead, stat. Dean, in response to Sam’s question: “Dude. Her name was Jasmine.” Heh. MTH stumbles all over himself that he didn’t mean to, that he doesn’t even like those places, that he went because a friend was having a bachelor party, but when he saw her – “she was just… perfect,” he says, as the camera closes in on his face and his eyes. Dean points out that for enough cashola, anyone will be anything you want (O RLY, Winchester?), but MTH quickly says that it wasn’t about the money, or even the sex… he doesn’t have the words for it. Sam asks if his wife found out, but MTH said she had no idea. Sam asks what the motivation was for killing his wife, then, and MTH finally confesses: Jasmine told him that if his wife were dead, the two of them could be together forever. MTH went to meet Jasmine after murdering his wife, but she never showed. We get several quick cuts of MTH’s mouth and eyes as he babbles, near panic, that he doesn’t know where she is or even her real name. It’s pathetic, and Sam looks at the guy in pity. He asks why MTH didn’t tell the cops, and MTH asks why he would: “The stripper didn’t do it. I did it. And I know what I deserve,” he says flatly. The camera cuts to Dean, who looks sympathetic and nods slightly, which is a nice touch from the Ackles. “Judge doesn’t give me the death sentence, I’ll just do it myself,” he finishes. It’s a demonic two-for-one special! The boys exchange A Look, and we cut to –

A pretty doctor who looks astonishingly like the delightful Sarah, Sam’s love interest from S1’s clever and scary Provenance. She’s dishing out pills and throwing them back in her office, which has the name “Dr. Cara Roberts” stenciled on it. Wait, “Cara”? Who looks just like Sarah? Oh, show: subtle as a heart attack, you are. Sam walks in and is bug-eyed to find a doctor self-medicating. Sam asks if she had a rough night. Cara corrects him: “Fun night,” she says, rubbing her temples. “Rough morning.” Heh, I like her already. Sam huffs at this. She asks if she can help Sam, and he introduces himself as Special Agent Stiles – that would make Dean Murdock – and flashes his FBI badge. He confirms that she works with the sheriff’s department; she adds that she does when she’s not “slogging it through the ER.” Cue another head-quirk, wtf? moment from Sam; she picks up on it and says it’s a small town, so they multi-task. He confirms that she worked on the three murders, and she tells him she did autopsies on the wives and tox screens on the husbands. She says there was nothing unusual in the wives, but when Sammy asks about the husbands, she asks to see his badge again. Ruh-roh. Sammy whips it out (dirty!) and Cara hesitates before dropping the hammer: the husbands’ blood all contained oxytocin, and follow that link at your own visual risk. She tells Sam that it’s called the Love Hormone because it’s produced during childbirth, lactation and sex, and that all three men had ridiculously high levels of it.”You know how it feels when you first fall in love, the whole weak-in-the-knees, tattoo-on-the-chest thing? That’s oxytocin.” Sam blinks and smiles. “Of course, eventually it fades and then you’re left with every relationship ever,” she deadpans. “That, and the painful regimen of tattoo removal.” She bites her lip at the corner and Sam grins at her. Awww! Also, I foresee doom. Dean walks in and asked what he missed; Cara doesn’t look away from Sam for a few seconds. Sam introduces “Agent Murdoch”; Dean says agent “sounds so formal”, and invites her to call him Dean. “I’m Dr. Roberts,” she says flatly, shaking his hand and immediately turning back to Sam. HEE! I love Dean, but it’s nice to see his game fail utterly once in a while. Dean sits down as Sam asks what would cause such high levels of oxytocin; Dean watches Cara set the file back on her filing cabinet, upon which is a vase of flowers. Cara tells them nothing that she’s ever seen could do it. After a second, Sam gets up to leave, smiling at Cara as he goes; Dean tries to cover his disappointment and ambles after his brother. Sam pauses at the door and then turns to tell Cara that a “greasy breakfast” is the best thing for a hangover. Am I the only one who flashed back to Hell House, in which Dean tortured a hung-over Sam with talk of greasy eggs? Just me, then. Cara grins and responds with a smile and light banter: “Watch it, buddy! I’m the only M.D. here.” Sam’s a little smitten, and I don’t blame him. Outside, Dean grumps that Sammy just “totally c-blocked me”, and for the love of God, show and its hosting network! If you can say “dick” on this show, surely you can say “cock”. It makes Dean look like a doofus. Also, Dean: Shut up. I say it with love!

As they leave the hospital, the boys exposit some info – the other two perps paid out big bucks as well (one his IRA, the other his kid’s college fund. Looks like state school for little Ricky!). Dean explains, however, that while the other husbands also found their love at the – and I can’t believe I’m going to type this out – “Honey Wagon“, they fell for strippers other than Jasmine. Yet they all describe the object of their affection in the exact same way: “perfect and everything they wanted.” Sam snarks that was the case until Dream Barbie convinced them to murder their wives. “There is that,” Dean agrees. Sam notices that it sounds like a love spell, and Dean again agrees with Sam. “Which caused them to become psychotic,” Sam finishes. Dean: “Absolutely.” Sam does a double-take at his brother and asks him why he’s so damn cheery. “Strippers, Sammy,” Dean beams. “Strippers. We are on an actual case involving strippers. FINALLY.” Hee! Oh, I forgive you the stupid c-block comment, Dean. C’mere and let me muss your hair up.

Rock music plays. Dean practically sprints past the line outside the strip bar, flashing his badge as he goes. Incidentally, some couples are standing in line, and I have to ask, is that where one takes one’s date these days? Huh. Inside the bar, we are treated to fast cuts of pole-dancing, bosom-baring, lapdance-performing, lip-biting size twos. What? I’m not bitter! Dean tells the manager that he’s looking for three girls: “Jasmine, Aurora and Ariel.” BWA! Oh, nice, Kripke. Little did I know that Disney prepared young girls so well for careers as exotic dancers. Dean’s only slightly distracted by a wriggling stripper next to him, for the record, and he focuses on the manager, who is… absolutely no help. He doesn’t know the strippers’ real names, and the physical descriptions Dean tries to supply could account for half the girls in the joint. Dean argues that there must be check stubs or time sheets, but the manager explains that he hires “independent contractors working for cash.” Man, this guy’s overhead must be near zero. Dean asks if it doesn’t seem weird to the guy that three of his customers murdered their wives, and while the manager agrees that’s “super-friggin’-weird”, what it isn’t is his problem. He walks away; Dean tongues the inside of his cheek in frustration and rolls his eyes. He sees Sammy on the other side of the club and walks over, barely looking at the dancers as he goes. Things have changed a lot since Heart in S2.

The boys catch up. Dean’s had no luck, as we know, but Sammy called Bobby, their always-reliable source of knowledge and badassery, so they have a theory: sirens. “Greek-myth sirens? Like, ‘The Odyssey’?” Dean asks, and Sam nearly gets whiplash staring at his brother in disbelief. “Hey, I read!” Dean snarks. Well, he was in hell. Maybe that was part of the torture? (Dear Greek mythology fans: I kid! I heart Edith Hamilton, too. Plus if it was hell, it would be Joyce’s Ulysses, and I’m not apologizing for that one.) Sam clarifies that sirens are just beautiful creatures who entice humanity with their siren song. By which he means that they read minds and take the form, aspect and characteristic of what you most desire, almost like a cloak. “If you’re a siren in ’09 trying to take out a bunch of morons, where would you set up shop?” Sam asks. Dean glances around at the throng of drooling, dollar-bill-waving scalawags and asks if Sam’s saying it could all be the same chick morphing into different characters. Indeed, Dean. Sam says Bobby’s working on a plan to kill it, but in the meantime, they’re kind of screwed, as the creature could be any woman in the place. Well, if you’d had a remotely normal childhood, Dean, you could narrow it down by the DISNEY PRINCESS ANGLE, and you cannot imagine how much joy I get from writing those words in an SPN recap. Alas, John Winchester’s legacy of poor parenting lives on, because Dean rolls his eyes in frustration and the camera angle goes wide, panning over to a booth in the far end of the club, where a young guy welcomes a scantily-clad brunette. Who goes by the name of Belle. See, Dean? Also, nice twist on “Beauty and the Beast”, Kripke et al – this girl is both. The buxom lass leads the poor sap out of the club.

He opens a door quietly in the door and peers into the room. He closes the door and goes into the living room, where the Deadly Disney Princess du Jour is waiting. Hee! It just doesn’t get old. Belle tells “Lenny” that he’s amazing to be taking care of his sick old mother like this, and that so many others would turned her care over to someone else long ago. It was only on second watch that I realized the siren chooses her victims in part upon their devotion to the person they love – in other words, she doesn’t pick people who are fickle or love easily. Anyway: Lenny says that she’s his mom, so it’s no big deal; Belle thinks it is. She strips down to her skivvies and Lenny swallows hard.

Cut to Lenny and Belle doing the nasty on the living room couch. Belle’s on top, of course, and the camera pans away from their bodies to a picture of Dear Old Mom watching mournfully on her mantlepiece. Maybe she’s thinking she just had that couch steam-cleaned. The camera swings to the left and we catch a glimpse of the action from the giant mirror atop the mantlepiece – except Belle is now revealed as a cross between Mystique from the X-Men film series and The Joker. Eeeagh! We cut to Lenny on the couch; when Belle leans down to kiss him, she’s in human form and her hair falls against his cheek. Dear show: We get it! Like vampires, but different! Please make it stop! It does, thankfully, as we cut to post-coitus, human-and-humanoid couch cuddling. Belle pronounces Lenny sweet and strong and thoughtful, and oh btw, would you mind killing your mom so it can be just the two of us? Lenny’s face goes a little slack-jawed as she asks if he doesn’t want to be with her forever; he says she knows that he does. “Then bash your mother’s brains in,” she says. “Yeah, okay,” the poor guy says. You never had a chance, dude. He sits up, hesitates, and Belle drives the knife home by telling him that she loves him. He hops off the couch and goes into his mother’s bedroom, picking up the fireplace poker as he goes. The camera cuts to Belle as we hear him hit his mother over and over, along with her muffled screams; Belle slips back into her skank-dress and sashays out the door.

After commercial, the camera zooms in on a blackberry, sitting atop an open book. Dean’s reading something (Hey! He reads!), but he can’t stop looking at the phone. He glances across the room and then picks it up, zipping through the call log. For the record, the call history is Dean, Bobby, a phone number, Dean, Bobby again. He calls the number, and Ruby picks up. Dean hangs up immediately, clenches his jaw, and tosses the cell phone aside. That’s gotta hurt. Sam comes in, wearing his FBI suit, and says that Lenny was definitely a siren victim: he killed his mother for Belle. Dean asks if Sam just said that Lenny killed his mom, and Sam shrugs that it’s the woman to whom Lenny was the closest. Dean notes, in that overly-bright way he has when he’s pissed, that Sam left his cell phone, and tosses it to him when it starts ringing. Who could that be? Sam catches it warily, but it’s Bobby, who’s checking in.

Bobby’s found some lore from a “dusty Greek poem. Surprisingly, it’s a little vague.” Heh. He tells them that the poem says they can only kill the siren with a brass dagger, covered in the blood of a sailor who’s in the clutches of the siren song. “What the hell does that mean?” Bznuh the boys. Um… that actually seemed pretty clear to me, guys, but Bobby concurs that it is a mystery since they’re “dealing with 300 years of the telephone game.” Hee again! Bobby’s got a million of ’em today, it seems, and I can practically hear Kripke Owns Me shouting “YES HE DOES” from the ‘Here be Dragons’ part of the map. Bobby hypothesizes that the ‘song’ is actually a toxin slipped to the victim… “which makes them go all ‘Manchurian Candidate’,” Sam finishes. Wait, Dean’s reading “The Odyssey” and Sammy’s brought two film references now? Things have changed. Dean jumps in, saying that the spell’s essentially a Supernatural STD, and Bobby extrapolates the good news: the siren’s vulnerable to its own venom. Dean asks if they just need some blood from “the O.J.’s in jail,” but Bobby doesn’t think they’re under the spell anymore, and their interview with MTH bears that out, I think. Sam has a handy little idea about blood, and Bobby warns them to be careful. Cut to…

Hospital. Dean & Sam run into Cara in the lobby. “Can’t stay away, huh?” Cara grins at Sam, and Sam smiles while Dean totally ROLLS HIS EYES. Hee! Okay, hang with me for a minute: Cara’s snarky, a partier, drinks on the job, makes Sam crack up in spite of himself and only has eyes for Sam. Who does that remind you of? It’s like Dean’s rolling his eyes at himself. ANYway. Sam starts to smile until he sees Dean’s Great Eyeroll at This Chick Who Doesn’t Dig Me but Really Is Me, Metaphorically, And What? I Read, and then Sam immediately goes into FBI-Agent mode. He babbles a bit, adorably, finally finishing with “you know… oxycotin?” Snerk. Dean is appalled at this lack of smoothness, and asks she still has the vials; when she says she does, he says they need to have them. Cara asks what they need them for, and before Dean can answer, they’re interrupted by a guy in a suit, trying to talk to Cara. Dean tries to brush him off with a “we’re a little busy, buddy“, but the suit pulls out his OWN FBI badge: “Me too, pal.” RUH ROH! You can practically see Dean’s blood go cold when he sees that badge.

Sam asks if Cara could excuse the three of them, and the boys whip out their badges rulers. Agent Nick Monroe, who’s from the Omaha office, is incidentally very well performed by Jim Parrack, who also plays Hoyt Fortenberry on True Blood. He’s with the Violent Crimes Unit and was sent down to investigate the murders. Monroe asks for their intel, and the boys claim to be from D.C., sent by Assistant Director Mike Kaiser. Monroe looks at Dean and asks them to recite their badge numbers, and I squeal in fear a little bit, because how could the memorize the badge numbers of all their different IDs? Dean, however, doesn’t bat a gorgeous eyelash: he simply asks if Monroe’s serious. Monroe says he’s just following protocol, and Sam hands him a business card, suggesting that he just call the AD and ask. Mayday! Mayday! This is not a… wait, what? Monroe takes the card and moves a few feet away, dialing his cell. Someone answers, and Monroe says he’s calling about two men who were assigned to “his case” – and we cut to Bobby, in a Kiss the Cook apron, frying up some lunch on the stove. BWA! Oh, well played, show. Bobby awesomely asks if Monroe’s questioning his authority, smacks him with a “D.C. has authority”, and finally hangs up on him. When he moves away from the phone (muttering something about “those idjits”), we see a series of phones on the wall, all marked with masking tape and big block letters: FBI, CIA, Federal Marshal, etc. Whoever thought that up in the Writer’s Room deserves to wear a big “AWESOME” button for the day.

A cowed Monroe turns to the boys and apologizes; Dean snarks just not to let it happen again. Monroe asks where they’re at with the case, and Dean lobs the question right back. Monroe was going to check the blood work, but Sam LIES that they already have, and that it’s a dead end. Monroe takes a breath and tells the boys what they already know: the husbands were all banging strippers from the same club. “You don’t say,” Dean says. Monroe suggests they go check it out, and Dean hilariously starts to explain how he and Sam are “like lone wolves”, and HEE! Please tell me that’s an ad-lib, and that Ackles did multiple takes. “Well, y’see, Nick, we’re like blow-up dolls.” “…we’re like ninjas.” “…we’re like komodo dragons.” Oh, in a perfect world! Sam, however, cuts Dean off and pulls him to the side; he tells Dean that they have to keep an eye on this guy and keep him out of the way. Dean is, as you can imagine, Not Happy About this Development, and asks why Sam can’t do it. Sam says he has to get the blood samples. Dean huffs and rolls his eyes and generally acts like a little woobie baby whose Sammy is being taken away. Sam tells him just to focus on the naked girls! He won’t even notice Monroe’s there! Dean glares up at his little brother: “I’m not doin’ this for you. I’m doin’ it for the girls.” Hee. We know, Dean. We know.

Outside, the Impala waits patiently in all her glory. The camera’s got her in a close-up, and we hear Monroe and Dean talking as they walk over to her. Dean announces that they’re taking his ride, and no complaining about the music, which I guess is the formal way of saying “shotgun shuts his cakehole”. Monroe fangirls, not effeminately, over the car, knowing her make, model and year. Dean doesn’t break stride until Monroe says it’s a 327 four-barrel. “Yeah, it is, actually,” Dean says, impressed, getting the personal pronoun wrong. She, Dean! You and Impala are OTP! Work with me here! Monroe correctly pronounces her a thing of beauty as he gets into the car, asking how Dean got the bureau to let him drive his own wheels…

Cara’s Office. Sam tells Cara that the bureau wants to run some tests, and Cara tells Sam that she’s run every test there is: “Note the lab coat.” Sam says they have a specialist, and Cara’s game. She goes to get the vials, but DUN! The vials are missing. Cut to…

The packed Strip Club, where Dean and Monroe do shots. Hee! Now that Dean’s off the clock, he’s loosened his tie and is indeed eyeballing the strippers. They’re taking turns naming Zeppelin tunes and challenging the other guy to identify the album and songwriter. Dean starts with “Nobody’s Fault But Mine”, which Monroe identifies as a cover of a Blind Willie Johnson tune that Zeppelin recorded in ’75. Whoa, says I, and not because Monroe’s bringing the classic-rock prowess; in addition to loosening his tie, Dean’s hair is positively mussed. It’s just shy of sex-hair, y’all. Hoo! Monroe throws out “You Shook Me”, and Dean scoffs: ’69, debut album, written by Willie Nixon. “And?” Monroe prompts. Dean’s all, “wtf, ‘and’?” Monroe schools Dean on Zeppelin, telling him that JB Lenoir shares writing credit. This is a little mindbendy. Dean is super-impressed, telling Monroe that for a Fed, he’s not a total dick. Monroe asks if they’re not both Feds, and Dean says of course! But, um, most Feds aren’t as cool as they are, and hey, look at the naked chicks! Monroe turns back to the case, asking how one stripper convinces four different men to commit murder. Dean catches the eye of a stripper working the aisles on the far side of the club, who gives him the stink-eye. I don’t know if they deliberately cast someone who was a young African-American like Cassie from Route 666, and I’ve blocked most of that atrocity out, so moving on. Dean says it’s a crazy world as Stripper!Cassie moves away, and Monroe asks if he can be honest with Dean. He pulls out an evidence bag containing a small purple flower, and says one’s been left at every crime scene. Dean asks if Monroe’s saying it’s been left on purpose, and Monroe says that serial killers often leave a “calling card” with their victims, but admits he has no idea what’s going on. Dean looks up from the evidence bag and says he thinks he might, because he’s seen these kinds of flowers before. Where, you ask? Why…

Cara’s office. The camera pans across the long stems of small purple flowers on Cara’s filing cabinet. She and Sam are watching video footage of the office to see if it records the theft of the blood vials. Sam has his jacket off (SHOULDERS!) and his arms folded (FOREARMS!). One of Cara’s co-workers walks past her office, shrugging on her coat because she’s leaving for the night. That may be relevant in a little bit. Cara begins that they’ve watched the tape twice, and Sammy finishes that whoever took the blood has also messed with the tapes. Yep, finishing each other’s sentences: another SamNDean similarity. He asks who has access to the office, and Cara shrugs that everyone does, because they don’t lock the door. Sammy is frustrated by the old-school, open-door policy, and Cara asks what’s so crucial about the blood anyway. Sam says that he thinks the men were drugged to promote their homicidal hobbies, and Cara responds with the most genuine “wtf?” I’ve seen on TV in a while. Heh. The actress (Maite Schwartz, also from Dallas, TX) is doing a great job with this part, IMO. She asks what kind of drug Sammy’s talking about, and Sam’s response falls into the “Ri Ron’t Ruh, Shaggy!” category of Winchester comebacks. Cara says she’s not convinced, because she interviewed all the murderous husbands and “they had their reasons.” What, like agreeing to go to a birthday party without asking their husbands first? Cara, I was digging you, but you just lost me. Sam points out that the men all loved their wives, and Cara counters that she’s sure they did. Ah, so “they had their reasons” is a shoehorn for “Love can be destructive”. Don’t slack, writers! You can do better. Cara climbs up on her chair so she can see eye-to-eye with Sam – well, as much as a petite doctor can – and asks if he’s never loved someone and yet also really wanted to bash their head in. Golly, doc, when you put it like that!… and yet I flash back to Asylum and Born Under a Bad Sign when Sam, for whatever reason, actually was quite motivated to beat the hell out of Dean, so well done. Sam huffs at her bravado, shocked and a little busted, and says it sounds like Cara’s speaking from experience. Cara says distantly that she is, and her eyes trail down to Sammy’s massive chest. In all fairness, it is a fine chest. She hops off her chair and crosses to her filing cabinet, getting out a bottle of liquor and two glass tumblers. She really is a multi-tasker. I must note here that Cara’s wearing a very pretty but very tight, body-hugging blouse, and the top button has sprung loose under her buxomy-ness, so you can literally see the top of her lacy bra. I don’t know if that was a method decision or an accident, but it gives her just a little bit more of a slutty edge. She pours two drinks and Sam tilts his head: “Really.” She holds a glass out for him, nodding: “It’s medicine!” (pause) “I’m a doctor.” HEH. Well, she’s trouble, but she’s the fun kind of trouble. Sammy stares at her for a second, his mouth twitching into a smile, and then he takes the glass from her, his fingers brushing hers as he takes it. Hook, line and sinker, ladies and gentlemen! Sam walks around the desk to clink glasses with Cara as she volunteers that her ex’s name was Carl, and that they were married. Sam asks what happened. “Life happened,” she shrugs. “I don’t know, I mean I loved him, but one day I looked up and I was staring at a stranger.” Oh, show. Wonderful, anvilicious SHOW. “You know what I mean, right?” she asks, looking up at Sammy. He knows, Cara, although he doesn’t say it: he knows. “People change,” Cara says, sing-songing it a little when you say something that’s true but still frustrating: “But it’s nothing to feel guilty about.” Sam, who knows a little something about guilt, asks if the two of them split up. Cara shrugs that’s as good a term as any, and Sam’s phone rings. He looks at the caller ID and Cara asks if he has to get that; Sam stares at her, says that he doesn’t, and shuts it off. Cara starts reeling him in, talking about how everyone’s got a sad story, so you might as well have a good time and make hay while the sun shines. And by “hay” I mean “have hot sex in my office with Sam.” See, when I multi-task, it means more paperwork. Cara’s version is better. Cara leans in and tells Sam that she’s been thinking about him all night: “Well. Parts of you.” Sam’s intrigued as she starts talking about his lips, and that is NOT where I thought she was going with that. She bumps noses with him, cutely, as she tells him that they’re a distraction; she pulls his tie apart. The music gets scary and foreboding as she kisses him, and then they’re both pulling their own clothes off and making out. He pushes her back toward the window, smushing the blinds against the window, which is a nice cinematic touch. Way to break the fourth wall, cinematic crew! She pulls his T-shirt off, and I know I’m a Deangirl, but sweet mother of God, Sam has a well-sculpted back. She grins this brilliant, infectious, dare I say Dean-like grin as she pulls him closer; the camera focuses on the blue-purple flowers that brought us into this scene, and we cut to black.

Hotel hallway. The camera follows Sam to his hotel room. He’s wearing a black suit and the hallway’s also dark, so we can only really focus on the back of his white collar, some faint light falling on his shoulders, and the curl of his hair. It’s a nice, disturbing effect. He opens the door to his room – which is decorated in blood-red by the set designers this week – and, not seeing Dean, he dials Dean’s cell. Dean, who’s alone in the Impala, asks where the hell Sam’s been. Sam says he was with Cara, and Dean snaps that oh, it’s Cara now, and what’s up with Sam not answering his phone? Dean says that Nick (hee) found hyacinths at the crime scene. Sam’s all “uh, that’s nice” until Dean breaks out his botany badassery, which I love: “Hyacinths? Mediterranean, from the, from the island where the whole siren myth started in the first place?” Sam deadpans an “ohhkay,” and Dean snaps that Cara had hyacinths in her office. Sam huffs because Dean thinks Cara’s their perp, and Dean says that she’s got an ex-husband – “a dead ex-husband” – whose name is Carl Roberts, and who dropped dead of a heart attack out of nowhere. Sam swallows hard at this, but he refuses to buy it. Dean asks why Sam doesn’t believe “cold, hard facts” he’s providing; Sam says he’s got a hunch. The boys both pause, and then we get my favorite exchange of the night:

Dean: Did you sleep with her?

Sam: …no…

Dean: HolycrapyouDID.

HEE. I love that Dean knows right away, and that Sam knows Dean’s gonna know. Oh, boys. Dean blusters that Sam could be under her spell right now, and Sam over-enunciates, eye-rollingly, that he’s not under her spell, but we can see he’s worried about it. Dean mutters something about “unbelievable,” and when Sam presses to know what THAT’S about, Dean lists off Sam’s conquests: Madison, Ruby, Cara – “what is it with you and banging monsters?” Well, I would say that Sam feels like a monster himself, Dean, and so he finds comfort in… oh, that was rhetorical. Sorry! Sam snaps that it’s not Cara and he feels fine, but Dean is adamant: he’s going to finish the hunt on his own, and he doesn’t trust Sam because it “could be the siren talking.” Sam asks if he’s serious, and Dean hangs up. Sam stands up, furious, and throws the phone across the room. Some viewers claim that his eyes flash yellow; I didn’t see it, personally, but I’m open to visual evidence. He catches a glimpse of himself in the mirror and stares at his reflection, angry and hurt. In the Impala, Dean dials Bobby to tell him that Sam may be in trouble, which is always a good idea. Dean then calls Monroe Nick and tells him he wants his help in canvassing, looking for Cara, and we cut to…

The outside of a pub. From the car, Nick watches Cara get out of a taxi – yay for not drunk driving, I suppose – and walk into the bar. Dean gets into the passenger side of the car and compliments Nick on finding Cara so fast; he tells Nick they’ll stay put and follow her when she comes out. Nick asks if Dean really thinks she’s drugging the perps to make them kill their wives, and Dean says he knows how it sounds. “You sure about that? Because it sounds like crazy on toast,” Nick responds. Heh. Dean says he knows it sounds crazy, but he “has his reasons” – nice callback to Cara’s description of the murderous husbands – and they’re good ones, so Nick’s just going to have to trust him. Nick stares at Dean and then says okay. Dean regards Nick appreciatively, thanks him, and tells him that’s nice to hear. He takes a swig from his flask and offers it to Nick. Nick stares at the flask and laughs in disbelief; he takes a long drink before handing it back to Dean. “So say she is drugging her vics,” Nick says, watching Dean drink from the flask again. “How’s she doing it?” Dean offers that she could be injecting them, passing the toxin through physical contact, and Nick stares at the flask: “Or maybe it’s her saliva.” Dean nods once to allow that it’s possible, glances down at the flask in his hand, and his face goes slack. Nick smiles: “You really shoulda wiped the lip of that thing before you drank from it, Dean.” Dean’s still staring at the flask as Nick says that he should be Dean’s little brother, not Sam. “You can’t trust him,” Nick says quietly. “Not like you can trust me.” He looks at himself in the car’s rear-view mirror, and for those of us who still don’t GET IT, we see the reflection of the creepy joker/mystique monster from Larry’s house. Nick says that he thinks Dean should get Sam out of the way so that the two of them can be brothers forever, and Dean tells him that he’s right. DUN!

So, join me ’round the SPN campfire to debrief: Sam (a) slept with a real live woman who didn’t die shortly thereafter (woot!) and (b) aside from her not being a hunter, she was pretty much the female equivalent of Dean. Dean, on the other hand, is (a) the Winchester under the Monster du Jour’s spell, and (b) was hoodwinked by the siren posing not as Dean’s perfect woman, but as a more finely-tuned version of Sam. Nicely played, writers. I have to take a minute to brace myself before the next scene, because the realization that what Dean considers “perfect” and “everything he ever wanted” is to have His Little Brother back gets me a little choked up. Okay, a little brother who has an encyclopedic knowledge of classic rock, but you know what I mean. Also, I actually thought that the siren having sex with his/her victim might be crucial to the endgame in addition to simply poisoning the vic with saliva, and so I spent the whole commercial wondering if the siren and Dean were going to have sex. Not like we’d see any of THAT onscreen, but I must say, this is a pretty slashariffic ep.

Hotel Room of Rage and Despair. Sam, now in his hunter civvies, walks into his hotel room and sees Nick sitting on one of the beds. He asks Nick what he’s doing there, and Dean comes out of nowhere, tackling Sam from the side, slamming the hotel room door shut with his body and pulling Sam back to put a giant knife to his neck. AUGH! MAYDAY! Also, how the hell did they block this? Did the Puppy have his legs splayed out giraffe-style so that we could see teh Pretty over his shoulder like that? Moving On. Sam tries to reason with Dean until Nick gets up from the bed and Sam Figures It Out, pronouncing Nick one “butt-ugly stripper.” Nick says that’s as may be, but he got Dean. Sam tries to reason with Dean some more, and I have to hand it to Ackles – his eyes don’t leave Sam, but they are stone cold. Dean’s not there anymore, Sam. Or rather, he is, in all his hunting badassery, but now you’re a threat, not his top priority. Yikes! Nick twirls a small hyacinth blossom around and asks Dean to cut Sam on his neck, just a little; Dean complies immediately, rocking Sam back slightly and leaving a small bloody gash on his neck. DAMN. Sam snaps that Nick poisoned him, but Nick says he just gave Dean what he needed. “It was you,” he says quietly. A little brother that looked up to him, that he could trust. And now he loves me.” To drive the point home, Dean rocks Sam back and cuts him a second time. AUGH! Nick tells Sam that having someone kill because they love you is the best feeling in the world. When Sam asks why he’s “slutting all over town”, then, Nick smiles and admits that he gets bored. “You know, like we all do. And I want to fall in love again… and again… and again.” Man, that’s creepy. And kind of awesome. I have to sidebar here to say that Jim Parrack is doing a phenomenal job in this scene: not overly villainous, just getting a rush from all the potential eternal devotion. He’s giving one of the best performances I’ve seen on this series, IMO, and Cara was also exceptionally good. Way to go, SPN casting! Sam says that he’s fought lots of monsters, but that Nick is… “one needy, pathetic loser.” HA! Oh, Sam, I love your snarky bravado. Nick tells Sam that he won’t feel that way in a minute. He grabs Sam’s jaw, forces his mouth open, and then opens his own mouth. A small part of his tongue raises up and shoots a small amount of liquid onto Sam’s lips. Well, that was… unnecessary, writers. You couldn’t just have Nick smear a dab of his own spit onto Sam’s mouth? Kripke Owns Me was all over this being an ejaculatory thing, and I’ll leave it to her to argue that in the comments. Sam struggles and grabs at his mouth, trying to wipe the spit away, but when he looks at Nick again, it’s already too late. Nick moves Dean’s arm off Sam’s shoulders, setting Sam free, and steps back; an absolutely thunderstruck Sam stares at Nick in astonishment and actually stumbles forward a few steps like, yes, a little puppy. I would pay a good sum of money to know what Sam sees in Nick at this exact moment: the way Sam almost totters forward, I wouldn’t be surprised if he saw Nick as an older brother. Nick says that he knows the two of them have a lot to get off their chests, so why don’t they “discuss it”, and whoever’s left standing can be with him forever. I know of more than a few fangirls who have TOTALLY had this exact dream. Also, he may be a punk, but you have to admire Nick’s style.

Sam turns and faces Dean; they’re on the opposite sides of the room. Dean says that he doesn’t know when it happened – maybe when he was in hell, “maybe when I was staring straight at you” – but the Sam he knew is gone. He says it’s not the demon blood or the “psychic crap”, it’s Sam’s lies and secrets. Sam asks what Dean means, and when Dean mentions the super seekrit phone call that began this episode, Sam snarks that he doesn’t need Dean’s permission to make a call. “That’s the point,” Dean says. “You’re hiding things from me. What else aren’t you telling me?” Cut to Sam, looking at Dean with a smirk playing on his lips, and I immediately flash back to Born Under a Bad Sign as Sam snarks: “None of your business.” Dean clenches his jaw and grits that they used to be in this together and had each other’s backs, but Sam’s had enough: he tells Dean that the reason he didn’t tell Dean about how he and Ruby are going after Lilith is because Dean is too weak. I have to admit that I actually slapped my hand over my mouth when Sam said that. Sam continues that Dean is, get this, holding him back – that he’s a better hunter than Dean, stronger and smarter, and that he can take out demons Dean’s too scared to go near. Dean pronounces this to be crap, but Sam’s decided to play dirty: “You’re too busy feeling sorry for yourself, whining about all the souls you tortured in hell… boo hoo.” I think it’s worth noting that Dean’s upset about Sam’s actions, while Sam is upset with Dean’s inaction: they have separate goals and priorities now, and they both know it. This last comment from Sam hits Dean’s breaking point, which Sam knew it would: Dean hurls the knife in his hand at Sam’s head, who ducks, and then it is ON. This is not anything close to the slick, choreographed fight from Skin or the fast wrestling match from the Pilot: it’s just deliberate, brute force. The boys lunge at each other, throwing the hardest punches that they can. Sam deftly catches Dean’s arm and pins it against his body, twisting it so we hear a bone-crunching sound; Dean awesomely ignores the pain and punches Sam repeatedly with his other hand. Sam releases Dean and punches him once, twice, three times, and then finally hits him so hard that Dean sails through the air before he goes down, breaking some random furniture as he falls. Sam tells Dean that he’s not getting in Sam’s way any more and pushes him against the wall, hitting him over and over. Dean grabs Sam and spins him, throwing Sam back against the wall and moving to the center of the room; he’s getting his ass kicked and he knows it. Sam steps into the room and Nick, smelling the proverbial blood in the water, gets up from the bed and moves a few feet behind Dean, trapping him – which is when Dean charges right at Sam, slamming him back against the door and breaking it down. Dean scrambles up and stares down at his little brother, who can’t even get up off the floor. Dean sees the handy fire axe encased in glass in the hallway and shatters the glass with his elbow, which I have to admit was the hottest thing for me in this ep. He jerks out the axe and stands over Sam as Nick smarms his way into the scene, telling Dean to kill Sam for Nick. Cut to Sam looking at Dean, scared, and then over at Nick. “Tell me again how weak I am, Sam,” Dean growls. “How I hold you back?” He hefts the axe, lifting it to swing it down at Sam and –

BOBBY, awesomely, catches the axe on the downswing with one hand and stabs Dean with a brass knife with the other. Dean collapses, clutching at the wound, and Nick starts to run. One of my favorite things about this scene is that Sam realizes what’s about to happen and actually shouts “no” at Bobby several times, but Bobby is too awesome: he throws the brass knife, now soaked in the blood of one of the siren’s victims, right at Nick and stabs him in the back. Nick staggers against a window pane, and we see the Joker/Mystique reflection for a moment until he falls to the floor, dead. Bobby walks over to make sure; behind him, we see the siren’s spell over the boys begin to fade. Dean blinks; Sam sits up awkwardly and starts to pull himself up, but then slumps back against the wall, too stunned to move. The boys look at each other, remembering everything they said and can’t take back. Sam can’t bear it, and looks away.

Outside on an overcast Vancouver day. Bobby breaks out the hunter bubbly, handing two bottles to the boys and keeping one for himself. Dean looks down and buhs that Bobby just handed them each a soda. Bobby: “You boys are driving, ain’tcha?” HEE. Nice, Bobby! The boys kind of stare at him for a minute and then take a drink; Dean shifts his weight awkwardly, like a wounded little kid. Sam thanks Bobby for saving their asses, again, but Bobby evenly says that the boys have done the same for him, and more than once. Aw. He saves the day and he’s gracious! He tells the boys that if they’d made a call, they too could have known that “Agent Nick Monroe” wasn’t real. Sam smiles, impressed; Dean purses his lips in self-disgust and drowns his embarrassment in sweet, dark cola. Bobby stares at the boys for a few long seconds, sizing them up, and then asks if they’re going to be okay. Sam: “Yeah, fine!” Dean: “Yeah, good.” Nothing to see here! Move along, please! Bobby tips his worn-out baseball cap to the boys and stops halfway to his car, turning back to the boys. “You know, sirens are nasty things,” he says. “That one got to you… there’s no shame in that.” The boys blink, still unused to encouragement from a father figure and fellow hunter; Sam raises his soda slightly in a goodbye, but Dean doesn’t move.

As Bobby drives off, Dean looks away and asks if Sam’s going to say goodbye to Cara; Sam says no, he’s not interested. Dean, still not looking at Sam, asks why not. “What’s the point?” Sam asks. Dean looks at Sam for the first time since Bobby left: “Well, look at you. Love ’em and leave ’em,” he says, knowing that it’s always been difficult for Sam to do either. It’s just another moment in which Dean’s noticing how much Sam has changed, and how little he knows about him now. Sam glances at Dean and immediately looks away. He starts to say that Dean knows that what he said was just the spell, he didn’t mean any of it… “‘Course, me too,” Dean interrupts, lying through his teeth. “Okay. So… we’re good?” Sammy asks. Oh, SAM! Tell me you don’t remotely believe that. Dean shrugs quickly that of course they are, and I do believe the Dean Winchester walls are back to full capacity, ladies and gentlemen, just as Little Sammy is looking for all the world like he’s ten years old and all he wants is for his older brother to have his back. Twist the knife, writers, why don’t you? They both get into the car, sad and hurt and alone, and close the doors as we cut to black.

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