In “We Happy Few”, the Winchesters come home after running errands to find Lucifer and God still in the middle of a cold war. In order to get them talking, the brothers decide to play Dr. Phil times 2. Also? God makes pancakes! And he has a plan, to take down Amara. Yeah, I know. It’s not the finale so what are the chances it’s gonna work. Let’s just recap, shall we?
Sam and Dean’s full house : “You’re gonna have to come out, and talk to God.”
A freshly healed and defiant Lucifer is giving his father the cold shoulder and Sam and Dean decide to get involved. When Lucifer accuses his father of only deigning to show up because his “apes” called out to him, Dean reminds him that the “apes” are also the ones who saved his life. Lucky for Dean, Chuck’s put a “safeguard” on Lucifer’s powers, protecting him, and Sam, from the angry finger snap Lucifer directs at them. Lucifer isn’t hearing the words he wants to hear. He storms out, locks himself in Sam’s room, turns on the music loud, and tells the brothers that the ball is in Daddy’s court.
Crowley and his ex-minions : “We can make Hell, great again.”
Crowley gathers a group of demons in the Throne Room and asks them to fight The Darkness alongside him. His two former minions from “Dark Dynasty”, one he told not to come back without news of his mother and the other he was throwing darts at are the ones laughing the hardest. They’re not following Rowena’s, Dean’s and Amara’s bitch or Lucifer’s doggie either for that matter.
Chuck and Lucifer’s bunker therapy : “You were my father and you forsook me.”
God is making pancakes for Sam and Dean and he explains why he won’t talk to Lucifer. He can’t give him the apology he’s looking for because he’s not sorry that he made the only choice he could to protect humanity. He thinks Lucifer just needs time, something the Winchesters remind him they don’t have. The brothers get both parties to sit down and Dean gets the ball rolling by encouraging them to try “I feel statements” (he learned that on Dr. Phil). Chuck starts with a non apology, Lucifer responds that Chuck threw him away when the Mark “inevitably” changed him. For Chuck, the Mark didn’t change Lucifer. It just magnified his negative traits and the hatred he already had for humans. Locking him up was the only way to protect the world. For Lucifer, God is missing the point and Sam agrees. Chuck just needs to apologize. To make it easier, Dean helpfully adds that he doesn’t even have to mean it, just pretend, like Dean does, “all the time”. Chuck finally admits that he did punish Lucifer because he couldn’t face the fact that his decision to give his “most cherished son” the Mark ended up destroying him.
Sam, Dean and Lucifer rally the troops : “We trap Amara, put her back in the box.”
Now back on the same wavelength, Chuck and Lucifer are ready to work together to trap Amara, for the second time. Dean asks Chuck to kill her and he seems a bit agitated when Chuck explains that she is necessary to the balance of the universe, the Yin to his Yang. They’re also going to need help as they are three archangels short, Michael being in no condition to fight, and Chuck not having enough time to harness the primordial force needed to rebuild Raphael and Gabriel.
In order to compensate the loss of power from three archangels, God’s players go out and recruit powerful allies. Dean enlists Crowley, reminding the fallen king that it is his chance to be a “soldier” again and the best way to earn back the respect of his demons. With the help of Clea, a witch Rowena is planning to escape with, Sam convinces Rowena to enlist her sister witches to fight on God’s side. Lucifer who is persona non grata in Heaven, lets Castiel do the talking to round up support for their cause. When Castiel explains that he stands by his choice to house Lucifer even if it’s brought him nothing but torment and suffering, for the simple reason that it will help the world defeat The Darkness, the angels agree to follow him.
The Amara-sized chink in Dean’s armor : “Why trap her when you can kill her?”
The plan is to hit Amara with the collective power of angels, demons and witches to weaken her before God can swoop in and imprison her. Dean insists she must be killed to ensure she can never be unleashed on the world again but Sam can tell there’s more. Lucifer tells Sam Dean wants God to do what he couldn’t: kill “his girlfriend”. When Dean mentions that he tried, Chuck interjects that he probably failed because he never really wanted to succeed. Sam understands that Amara winding up dead frees Dean from the disturbing urge he has to keep her from harm and Dean admits that, it is the truth.
Team God versus Amara : “Welcome to the end.”
After a chilly reunion between Lucifer, Crowley and Rowena, Team Defeat Amara gathers around its commander. God doesn’t exactly approve of Crowley, Rowena either, but she’s “one of his guilty pleasures”. Chuck lays out the final plan. A blitz attack on Amara. “Shock and awe!” Witches, angels, demons, then Lucifer, who assures Dean that Castiel is on board. After which, God will take the Mark back from Amara and use it to seal her away. Sam answers that he’s ready, and Dean realizes that Sam volunteered without talking to him. The Mark can’t be transferred to someone who”s already borne it. When Dean demands an explanation, Sam reminds Dean they agreed Sam would be the one to take on Amara since Dean couldn’t do it. Dean reluctantly agrees to follow “God’s plan”.
Meanwhile, Amara finds the bunker’s location by consuming Donatello’s soul. She destroys Chuck’s World Greatest Dad mug and goes directly into Dean’s room where she picks up a portrait of Dean with his mother Mary. Rowena uses a spell to communicate to Amara. Amara knows it’s a trap, but she’s ready to see God. She swats Rowena away, and easily kills the four witches who are attacking her from a distance, but she’s rocked by the angel smiting, disoriented by the demon attack and finally knocked out by Crowley. When she limps inside the building where the rest of Team God is waiting, she’s in bad shape. Sam has to stop Dean from going to her. Lucifer stabs her in the back with the Spear of Destiny (Dean found it in the bunker in “Goodbye Stranger”) but Chuck stops him as he readies to stab her a second time. Chuck apologizes to Amara for “everything”.
Dean looks upset when Amara says she spent millions of years in her cage, alone and afraid, begging for death. What was her crime? Chuck tries to make her see that she left him no choice. The world “needed to be born” and while part of his quest was driven by his desire to be worshiped, the “glory” of creation simply could not be stopped. Looking towards Dean, he adds that he knows Amara has seen and felt the value of creation. “Well. You’ve won again. Finish it.” Amara is ready to die, but she starts fighting when she understands that God’s plan is to transfer her Mark to Sam in order lock her back up. “Goodbye, nephew.” She strikes Lucifer as he approaches her again with the Spear. She swats Dean away as he rushes towards Castiel lifeless form, and she blasts Chuck until he also ends up motionless on the floor. She tells Sam and Dean that God will dim, and fade away to nothing, but not before he sees his beloved creation reduced to ashes. “Welcome to the end.”
Overall grade : 6/10
Last week, I was wondering where Crowley was. Soaked in booze alone in his Throne Room like a fallen king but I’m always happy to see him. “Make Hell great again”. I see who Trump borrowed his catchphrase from. Crowley’s going to have to work to earn back the respect of his minions and I would have rather not been reminded of the tongue thing and the doggie situation but I enjoyed watching Dean give Crowley a no-nonsense pep talk. Of course, Crowley couldn’t help himself from mentioning he and Dean’s so called “summer of love” (Sam came up with this one). Best part of Sheppard’s cameo, the return of Red Smoke Crowley. Smoking!
Rowena was delightful as always, with her fabulous gown, dramatic hair, mischievous demeanor, and the kind strong survival instinct that will send a witch traveling back in time to avoid the apocalypse. “Greek Age” it is. Much better choice than the Middle Age, Rowena. Which brings me to another delightful character. Oh Clea, fun, sharp and charismatic Clea, because you refused to be selfish and you believed, you died in service of the cause. I wish you could have made it to Crete.
Amara. Last week, I was wondering what her true motivation was. Why she was hurt and betrayed because desperate humans were trying to thwart her plans. It all made sense today. With all that power, it is easy to forget that all she’s known in millions of years is betrayal, fear, and a loneliness so deep she was begging for death. From her perspective, it seems like every time she wants something, others make sure she ends up, empty handed, alone and abandoned. Her obsession with Dean makes even more sense when you look at her past. That softness in her eyes when she looks at a picture of him with his mother. She just wants someone, in her corner, and by her side. There’s something tragic to the fact that her sole desire in life goes against everybody else’s welfare and can therefore never be fulfilled.
Still, it is clear that everybody knows and sees what she wants. I’ve been disappointed with the lack of progress on the Dean and Amara front but now Team God is having conferences about Dean and his Amara issues and God himself is looking at Dean when he talks about the beauty of creation that Amara has experienced since she’s been freed. I’ll take it.
What I’m not taking is the lack of regard this episode showed for Sam’s history with Lucifer. I can usually put a little honey on my salt, but sometimes, a girl has to be blunt. Sam, the one Lucifer calls his “bunk buddy”, his “little bitch, in every sense of the term”; the one Lucifer taunts with word play like “the rapier wit, the wittier rape” has been reduced to a shell of a character who now has to coddle his torturer, hold his hand while he bitches about his feelings and play Dr. Phil for the Devil who sliced and diced him every which way for decades, and who was still laughing about it a few episodes ago.
Just last week, I was talking about the plague of the mytharc. This focus on other characters to the point that you dismiss the main players. Who the devil cares about Lucifer’s tears. What about Sam’s? Why isn’t he allowed to react to any of this? Lucifer is in his library, his safe space, stinking up the joint, bitching about his Daddy issues, and Sam has to hold his hand through it all, for the greater good. It’s revolting and I pray that radioactive cockroach is finally dead for good. Speaking of Sam’s safe space. Look at the way Lucifer, who’s been inside Sam and shoved him off the drivers seat, commandeers Sam’s room and locks Sam out of it. Shut Up, Dr. Phil, indeed. “Lucifer is right?” Give me a break.
If it wasn’t infuriating enough, Lucifer was acting like the brattiest teenager in the galaxy. The archangels have truly lost their mystique. Time for my weekly, “But Where Is Mike?” moment, because Mikey, he would never. And the show keeps repeating that the archangel who used to be strong enough to dropkick Lucifer into the Cage and the one God himself was betting on to do it again during the apocalypse is “in no condition to fight”. Yeah, okay.
Not buying the message, but I can never say enough how much I love the messenger. Once again, Chuck is one of the best parts of a cluttered and not very pleasant Lucifer-ridden episode. I love Rob’s delivery. In “All In The Family”, I clapped (mentally) when he said “You think I’m a dick, why do you care?”. I liked his “little redundant” when Sam suggested they find Hands of God and I giggled when he repeated “Shock and awe!” to motivate his troops.
The best moments belonged to Amara. After she swallowed poor Donatello’s soul, the episode was hers. I’m grateful she didn’t kill Rowena (not looking this gift horse in the mouth). The simultaneous attacks on Amara were hard to watch. When Lucifer stabbed her, I couldn’t take it anymore. Apparently, neither could Chuck. I used to wonder if he ever cared about her. Now I know he did, and whatever heart he had left for her was his undoing. Had Lucifer stabbed her again, she might not have found the strength to overpower them like she did. And I was rooting for her so hard. She’s a villain but at this point in the story, I see her point of view and I kinda get her a little bit. I was also rooting for her because I absolutely, categorically, did not, want Sam to bear the Mark of Cain. Ooh, that was close!
I’m going to compare Amara and Lucifer based on the parallel that is the brothers rooms. She and her nephew certainly have things in common. Locked up by God because of their darkness and hell-bent on destroying humanity. Notice the way they entered the boys’ rooms however. That brat Lucifer did exactly what he’s being doing to Sam space all those years. Invade it. Violently. And always throwing in Sam’s face that this is mine. You, your body, your mind, your room!
There was something tentative in the way Amara entered Dean’s room and in the way she touched his picture. She knows he hasn’t accepted her in his space, and she’s not knocking down doors and displacing everything. I absolutely believe she has the power to bend Dean to her will. She hasn’t done it. Sure she’s pushy, but she’s still asking and trying to make him see it her way, with the kind of naiveté that is disturbing in someone so old until you remember how little she understands of the world. A major difference between her and the Devil.
Best Winchester moments
Hey there, Winsync! Always a pleasure to see you.
Protective!Sam is my jam. I’ll save you from God’s sister, bro!
Sam gate crashing the coven, pardon, witches’ den. Clea looked him up and down and immediately knew he was legit (she knows what’s up). Then came the back and forth with Rowena who threatened to turn him into an actual moose, and Sam, Mister I’m Flying First Class On Celestaire With God As My Copilot hit her with “You can’t”, but I’d love to see you try. Okay the last part wasn’t in the script but Sam definitely looked very satisfied with himself. I do love that scene, the way I’ve enjoyed every Sam and Rowena scene since the end of “Book of the Damned”. “Shall we discuss terms?”
Dean telling Crowley to shape up. It reminded me of “Blade Runners” where he chastised the King of Rotten, and also of “The Inside Man”, where he gave Crowley good advice on how to deal with the people around him.
And finally? 11: the grab-your-Winchester season.
Juicy bit : The family photo
I found interesting that Amara picked up this particular photo. Mary Winchester who’s been very present throughout season 10 via pictures makes her reappearance one episode before the finale. Something big is brewing and it involves her, and her son of course, and Amara. Mary is a source of strength for Dean and a way for him to anchor himself to his humanity. I can’t wait to see what role she will play in a finale where the light that is her son is in danger of being snuffed out by “Nothingness”. Juicy!
“We Happy Few” started off in the most irritating manner possible. Lucifer parading in the bunker, snapping his fingers at the owners, mean mugging and whining like a teenage brat. Meanwhile, the only reaction Sam was allowed to have was a convenient focus on the mission that was supposed to make the major arc that is his history and abuse at the hands of Lucifer, an afterthought.
And to make it worse, he was the Jolly Green TV Shrink siding with his own personal Alastair for the greater good. After such an unpleasant start, I found the episode generally uninspiring. It was sprinkled with droplets of goodness of course. Rowena, Crowley, Clea, Chuck, but the general atmosphere was already rotten.
I only came back to life when the team started throwing everything it had at Amara and found myself jumping up and down, in my head, when she took back control, blasted Lucifer and saved Sam from being the latest bearer of the Mark.
In “Don’t Call Me Shurley” I mentioned that I found the Conversations with God format “brilliant” and I also loved the conversation between Amara and Chuck. I’ve always seen him, as a deadbeat. Whether his logic is flawed, or not, I actually understand now where he was coming from when he decided to stop intervening. It also dawned on me that his motivation has always been to allow creation to continue, and ensure the survival of humanity. That’s why he sacrificed his favorite son, even if he hated himself for it, and why he banished his sister because he couldn’t make her see that others had the right to live too.
I certainly appreciate the interesting position I find myself in. Not surprised Chuck is on the floor. We all got the message that Amara is stronger than him, and his weakness for her left her enough strength to rise again and strike him. But I find myself rooting for both. For Chuck, a character I’m falling in love with more and more, and who of course, only wants to protect us (his creations). On the other hands, I also understand Amara, and don’t want to think of her chained up, scared and alone again for another billion years. There’s an easy way out of this. Compromise, but it’s incompatible with an epic finale so this might be my last chance to say this to Lady Darkness, the one who never missed a chance to stomp on the cockroach.
‘Mara, thank you for this. It was beautiful, and so were you, even in your “The Exorcist” make-up.
“Goodbye, nephew.” I bet that felt good. Sure did to me.
Edited on May 25, 2016 to add Jared Padalecki at the Jus In Bello Convention (Rome, Italy, May 20th – 22nd 2016) talking about the scene that addresses Sam’s uncomfortable feelings about Lucifer being in the bunker in “We Happy Few”. No you didn’t miss it. Somebody thought it was a brilliant idea to cut it. Gotta make space for yet another highly ‘relevant’ Lucifer tantrum, I guess.
XI : Winchester Brothers Report
11.01 “We Broke It, We Bought It”
11.02 “That Giant, Crazy Fart”
11.03 “And I have a fake badge”
11.04 “We’re home”
11.05 “That whole sensitive verbal massage”
11.06 “She overpowered me, end of story”
11.07 “What do you mean, killer bunny?”
11.08 “The family that showers together”
11.09 “If Sam’s not safe, it’s not happening”
11A Midseason Report Card “So, lock and key?”
11.10 “Sam can’t talk cause he’s waxing…”
11.11 “All that’s ever mattered is that we’re together”
11.12 “And when you mix it up with the potatoes and the beans”
11.13 “I can’t help it if I’m a hopeless romantic.”
11.14 “Non, je ne regrette rien.”
11.15 “Groupie, much?”
11.16 “I got ya.”
11.17 “You got him, I need him, let’s make a deal.”
11.18 “We geteth it.”
11.19 “Two hunters who make it to the finish line.”
11.20 “I’m not leaving you. Ever.”
11.21 “You’re the firewall between light and darkness.”