Alright, so according to the interwebs, I know a lot of people are upset about the recent events on Supernatural, but I gotta say: I am not one of them.
If the show is going to end, I really want to see it end on a high note. And if the powers that be keep Jack alive through the finale, I think we could get it.
Last week, in Jack in the Box, poor-but-also-scary-powerful Jack is being manipulated left and right, and if there’s anything worse than a naive child with literal God-like powers, I haven’t seen it.
Jack in the Box starts with Mary’s funeral (complete with a monster killing) and ends with, not a death in the family, but a death of a family, as Dean and Sam’s betrayal comes to bite them in the ass. It’s the kind of episode that has been a long time coming, and if I’m being honest, I can’t believe it was written by Buckleming.
After Mary’s funeral, the boys seem to go about business as usual: Sam wanting to talk, Bobby off to kill shit, and Dean crying by himself in the woods (Ah Jensen, every time I want to slap Dean, you pull me back in!). Cas heads to Heaven to see if they can be of any help, cause desperate times and whatnot. He talks to Duma, who is now in charge, and fills her in on the whole “Jack” sitch. She says she can help, and then as soon as Cas leaves, the angel pops in on a scared, grieving Jack. She tells him that killing Mary wasn’t his fault, and that smiting like Old Testament Grandaddy is the best way to make the Winchesters happy! Jack, being two years old, believes her and the two go on a smiting spree.
Cas goes to the bunker, full of faith in the Host (which, come on, I can’t even blame Dean for his eye-roll there). The angel doesn’t even finish his sentence before Sam reads about the Biblical deaths happening all around the country. I wonder who it could be? Meanwhile Jack is in Heaven, basically the new God (as if Heaven giving randos a seat at the throne has worked out so well in the past), listening to prayers. He hears a church group praying and pops in. He asks them if they really want to go to Heaven and become angels, and being the rational yet religious group of people they may be, they say yes, not for a second thinking this meant right now. Their pastor tries to literally save their souls and, for his troubles, gets eaten by worms. Jack must have missed that class on free-will and whatnot.
After some sleuthing, Dean tells Sam that they have no choice but to put Jack in the Ma’lak box. Handy that he built that back in season five — JK it’s just been a long ass shortened season. Sam brings up the obvious point of “well he can kill everyone with a thought so…how is this gonna work?” Dean’s solution is to have Sam pray to Jack that they forgive him, and trick him into thinking they’re near a cure for his soul probs. When Sam asks why him, Dean tells him it’s just “too hard” for him after Mary died which, fair… it’s not like Sam has thoughts or feelings or a lot a conflicting emotions after his “son” killed his mom. It’s cool to place all this shit on him…
Cas, on the other hand, heads straight to the gates of Heaven when he finds out what Duma is doing to Jack. He’s told Heaven is closed to him, but since when has that stopped the Seraph? Cas goes to Heaven where he sees Jack, who proudly proclaims, “I’m making angels!!”, with such childlike innocence it makes me sad to guess his fate. Cas confronts Duma, eventually killing her. While all this is going down, Jack hear’s Sam’s prayer and heads to the bunker. Oh baby.
Once he’s in the bunker, Jack apologizes to Sam and Dean in the worst way possible: seemingly without feeling. He calls Mary’s death an unfortunate accident and doesn’t seem to grasp the depth of their pain which is surprising since so much of his time alone is in anguish. Dean and Sam convince Jack to get in the box, telling him it won’t be for long. While the brothers are having whiskey and ignoring Jack’s panicked cries, Cas returns and tells them of Duma’s manipulation, which means nothing since the Winchesters know best. Cas is outraged when they tell him about the Ma’lak box, but before they can get into it deeper, a furious and terrified Jack causes the box to explode, along with any trust he once had. OOOOooooo it’s gonna be a good fight!
Now, I can understand the attachment and upset with what is happening to Jack right now, but hear me out: it is better that he is so close to and loves the brothers and Cas so much. Is it sad to see his disillusionment and heartbreak? Of course. Is it tough to watch this found family splinter? It really is. But is this a fantastic turn of events, story-wise? Yes yes yes. Supernatural in the past has dabbled in moral ambiguity and personal loss versus the Greater Good™ but never quite this deeply. Jack is a son to TFW, and that relationship adds so many more rich layers to the conflict within the group, as well as turmoil within the individual characters. Jack loves these men, dearly. His rage will be a justified one, not to mention the fact that he truly believes what he’s doing is right, based on his interpretation of what the Winchesters and Cas taught him. It’s setting up for a hopefully climactic and intense final season and I, for one, am here for it.