Well, there is only one more episode of Supernatural before the winter hiatus, but before we get to that, let’s take a quick look at what happened last week in Last Call.
Before anything else, I gotta say: I love Christian Kane. I have loved him for many moons and was thrilled that he was not only in the episode, but that he was gonna sing. The world needs more Christian Kane. Also, Jeremy Adams is a first-time writer on Supernatural, and that I think he did a pretty damn good job on his first foray. That being said, I couldn’t help but feel like the whole episode was just a little off-balance. While I would love to hear more about Dean and Lee’s hunting stories and see more antics from the two of them, it felt like this episode just focused so much more on the less important storyline. Which brings me to Sam. And Eileen. And their adorableness. And then Cas. And Sergei. Looks like a party in the bunker! Alright, as Shang Li says: let’s get down to business.
The episode opens as all terrible nights end: with the fear that your drunk friend is going to puke all over your car. It’s an understandable and chilling fear, but not quite reason enough to leave said drunk friend on her own to yak in the dark, secluded, woody parking lot. That’s just asking for trouble when, by a quirky twist of fate, the drunk girl lives! While she’s purging herself, we see behind her some cellphone flailing through the windshield and poof! The car, the DD, all vanish without a sound. The DD’s not dead yet, though, as we see her tied to a chair, with an IV in her arm, draining her blood into a super normal looking prison door.
Meanwhile, I feel like I’m watching a fanfic come to life when Dean stumbles in on a very giggly and adorable Sam and Eileen. They decided to make breakfast, including bacon, to combat the margarita hangover they acquired together. I have loved Eileen since day one, and I love the chemistry between the two. My Saileen ship is full sail. Dean, who has been solo-drinking beer in his room and hunting desperately for a hunt (a totally healthy and normal thing to do), finds the news story on the drunk girl and her “Raptured” friend. He tells the pair that he’s going for a drive to clear his head, omitting the whole “going to hunt some rapturers” thing. He tells Sam to go ahead and stay back with Eileen because “wink wink nudge nudge.” Sam shyfully denies anything (liar), and it’s agreed Dean will head out on his own.
Dean heads to Texhoma and after a weirdly flirty interaction with the let’s-talk-mostly-about-Hollywood-life Sheriff, who directs him to a bar named Swayze’s, Dean bumps into his old buddy, Lee (Kane). Lee’s retired from the hunting life and now is living Dean’s dream. He owns the roadside bar and is living his best life, disturbingly able to easily shake the Hunter’s life from his shoulders. They catch up a bit, and we learn it’s been at least 15 years since they’ve seen each other (makes sense). Dean gets his phone confiscated by Lorna, the very attractive and flirty waitress who goes on to mostly be ignored for the rest of the episode, and Dean and Lee eventually start talking about a case in Arizona where some super bad shit went down (we don’t get the details). Lee says he worked one more case after that, but couldn’t do it anymore. He decided to scrounge up some money and go civilian. Dean seems pretty interested in the concept that he could actually retire and not regret it, but let’s be real, that isn’t who Dean Winchester is. If there’s a problem, yo, he’ll solve it, even if it means losing everyone he’s ever loved.
Back at the bunker, Sam and Eileen are researching what they can about Lilith and Chuck. Eileen suggests a break (wink wink) and Sam holds her hand and they start leaning into each other (nudge nudge), when Cas walks in, both cockblocking Sam and saving Eileen’s life at the same time, if Sam’s track record with the ladies can be believed. Sam, thrilled and concerned about seeing the angel asks why he’s been left on “read” for so long, and Cas, rather than explaining, tells Sam he has an idea about how to track down Chuck. He explains that Sam’s wound isn’t from a bullet, but rather when he shot Chuck, a piece of his soul embedded itself into God’s shoulder. They agree that a little celestial probing is in order. While Cas is trying to devine the divine location of the Divine, his mojo gets a bit too powerful and it zaps Sam right into unconsciousness. Oops! Unable to reach Dean and with no Rowena to help, Cas calls on the magical mercenary Sergei to lend a hand. This is smart. Sergei declines, however, saying his niece is graduating this weekend so he can’t make it. It’s nice to know even mercs have a sense of familial duty. Cas makes the argument that it’s better for Sergei’s overall health to come help the younger Winchester and hangs up before Sergei can reply. Cas is not fucking around. Move on he may have, but he clearly still has a soft spot for Baby W. After hanging up, Cas makes one more call. MYSTERY!
Back at the bar, there is more catching up, as Dean tells Lee about his ghost sickness and being scared of a housecat. They talk about sharing triplets and drinking a lethal amount of Jaeger. It’s all good times as Lee talks Dean into hopping up on stage to sing one of John’s favorite songs. Turns out, Dean can sing. Some folks got mad about this, thinking it was just a way to have Jensen sing with his buddy on his TV show, but I say- so what? Even if it is, the man has been working his ass off for 15 years, and has overcome a lot of shyness about his singing. Let him have some fun on his last season. The other thought is that, Demon!Dean can’t sing, or, as a demon, doesn’t want anyone to enjoy things and that explains the tone deaf previous performances. Or, perhaps Dean purposely doesn’t sing out loud anymore either out of misplaced shame, or because spending your life on the road with someone means even good things can get annoying, so rather than bug baby bro (or dad), Dean quietly lip syncs, rather than sing. I don’t really care about the theories, to be honest. I enjoy Jensen Ackles singing and will take it.
Other than the singing, the other odd thing that happens in the bar is that when Dean shows Lee a picture of the missing girl, asking if he recognizes her, Lee says no. And, just like that, Lorna, the phone-confiscating waitress walks by and says, “Oh yeah, that’s Angela! She’s a regular! Lee you know Angela!”, which, ya know, is not suspect at all. Lee deflects further questions by getting Dean to sing, which, well I went into a little before, but I figured this was an important plot point. Wonder why? Hmmm… After their one song set, they see a disturbance at the bar and, after saying “Roadhouse Rules” to each other (makes sense since it’s Swayze’s, after all), the two get into a good old fashioned bar fight! Gotta protect those damsels from drunken distress, amiright? But hey as luck would have it, this damsel just happens to be Sally, the drunk girl who lost her friend and car to The Rapture! Dean’s excited to hear what she has to say, and Lee is off-handedly trying to negate her points and invalidate what she’s telling Dean. Interestinger and interestinger. After talking, Dean decides to try and find Angela’s car, and Lee suggests that the lake is a good place to dump cars. Dean gets ready to go when Lorna (bless her) pipes in that the scrapyard would also make sense! Lee gets nervous and tells Dean that the LAKE IS THE BEST PLACE TO LOOK, super subtle-like. Dean switches the plan and heads to the scrapyard by himself.
Back in Kansas, Sergei shows up with a Bunker Boner and Cas takes him to see Sam. Sergei waves a crystal over Sam, which glows and apparently tells Sergei something. I love Sergei as a side character. He’s so slimy. He tells Cas what he already knows, that the wound is soul-deep. Sergei offers to help and does some other shit, which in reality only makes Sam worse. SHOCKER! Sergei tries to force Cas’s hand by forcing him to give Sergei the Key to Death so he’ll save Sam. Eileen is not a fan of this plan and gets ready to kill Sergei with her bare hands when Cas stops her. He shows Sergei his phone, which has a photo of a young woman on it. Turns out it’s Sergei’s niece! Cas, who is now planning and counting on being betrayed (poor baby), tells Sergei that his friend Bobby is watching the happy grad and will dot dot dot with one word from Cas, so it would once again behoove the merc to fix Sam. While all this is happening, Sam is having a stroll through Chuck’s mind, seeing some of the shit we’ve been seeing of Chuck this year. The Russian quickly agrees and fixes Sam before skedaddling out of the bunker. Methinks it’s not the last we’ll see of him.
Back in Texas, Dean quickly finds Angela’s car in the scrapyard, and her body in the trunk. In a twist that surprises no one but Dean, Lee comes up behind him, putting a gun to his head. Damn. Lee knocks Dean out, who comes to in the same chair and basement as Angela. This time Lee is there, however, to monologue to Dean about how nothing matters, good and bad, who cares? If you can’t stop the bad, why bother being good? Turns out the monster in his basement is a Marid, an Islamic evil spirit or demon. Lee’s success isn’t so much gumption and bootstraps as it is human sacrifice to a demonic creature that gives wealth and success in return. Dean’s aghast and says so (no literally, but that would be hilarious), and Lee justifies his life by saying “hey no one is innocent! I’m entitled to a little bit of a break and good times, AND SO ARE YOU DEAN!” Like, sure you are, but maybe not by killing your clientele? Lee continues to monologue and say out loud what Dean’s been thinking about nihilism and all that jazz, which puts Dean in the awkward position of defending doing good for goodness sake (Happy Holidays!), regardless of the big picture. He’s forced to confront his own thoughts that what he’s done his own life hasn’t mattered, and is confronted with Lee, who is basically Dean, without that ironclad moral compass. Lee is Dean, without hope.
All this to say that, after opening the magic IV that can flow upwards and after monologuing, Lee falls victim to one of the classic blunders! The most famous is: Never get involved in a land war in Asia,” but only slightly less well known is this: ”Never leave a Winchester alone when death is on the line!” Seriously though, this is supposed to be a man who knows Dean inside and out and he just leaves Dean in a rickety old chair?! Dean, of course, breaks free, but then so does the Marid. I wonder who will win? Lee is getting ready to open the bar upstairs when he hears some footsteps coming from the basement, quickly followed by seeing the Marid’s head roll on the floor. There is gunfighting and when the bullets are gone, Lee asks Dean to forget what happened, and Dean says he’d like to, but he kills monsters, which gets Lee right in the feels.
There is pool stick fighting, and fisticuffs, and while Lee’s not bad in a fight, it’s clear which of these two did not take a decade plus break from hunting. It all ends when Dean stabs Lee with a pool cue. Lee doesn’t die fast, asking Dean to wait. Dean’s clearly crushed to be killing his once-friend, but Lee says “okay” and he ends it.
Dean finally checks his phone, hears Cas’s message, and rushes back to the bunker like a worried dad. Upon learning that Sam is okay, he has a totally natural, not at all awkward four word conversation with Cas, before the two of them go see Sam. Sam tells everyone what he saw, and his theory that it’s Chuck’s memories, and for the first time, TFW+ has some hope that Chuck may be beatable.
When I first saw this episode, I really enjoyed it. Like I said before, I love Christian Kane (You could call me a Kaniac) and I always love seeing Dean let loose a bit. Upon a second viewing, however, I couldn’t help thinking that I’d rather have spent more time with Sam, Cas, and Eileen, and that this should have really been two episodes. It feels like a conundrum, wanting to spend both more and less time with the Dean/Lee storyline. I think we got to see some fun good times between two old buddies, but it didn’t quite feel like the deep bond we were supposed to feel, and there is only so much nostalgia chat you can have before it feels repetitive. I’d rather have had this case and story stretched out over two episodes, allowing for the audience to get more of a connection between the two characters, and also allowing for a bit more time and investment in the more important storyline of Sam and Cas in the bunker. All that being said, however, I thought it was a pretty good debut for a first time writer.
What did you think of Last Call?