Supernatural: Devil's Bargain

Isn't it possible that I'm simply trying to strike a blow for the good of humanity?

A return to the main plot! O plot, how we missed you. When Lucifer's stabbed in the belly by a wised-up Castiel, he has to find a way to return to his state of grace with the grace of others – but will a faith healer named Sister Jo be his path back to the gates of Hell?

I was a little worried about Supernatural. "Wayward Sisters" and "Breakdown" were just okay in my estimation. Then we got "Various & Sundry Villains," showcasing the return of Rowena and her ascent to power – MUCH better, but what happened to the plot for this season? And now we get "Devil's Bargain," which to me is the best of Supernatural: huge overarching world-saving and world-in danger plots, with both sides having to make unlikely allies.

Castiel left Lucifer with his eyes flickering and staggered into the woods; when he comes back, Lucifer's gone. But not dead: no, Lucifer's gone gracehunting, and the first of his victims is a Cupid, who barely has enough to keep Lucifer alive. This was sad for me, since I hoped there was hope for Lucifer, but the ease with which he disemboweled the Cupid showed that there is no hope for Mark Pellegrino (but I love him anyway.)

What Lucifer finds is Sister Jo, who is actually Anael, a disillusioned angel who had no power in Heaven and is running a faith-healing non-scam, saving the bodies of folks for money. Anael and Lucifer actually make an extremely cool couple, because Anael fits so well into the mythology. Lucifer wasn't the only dissatisfied angel in Heaven; the fact that Anael clearly has a ton of ability only made it worse. Underneath, these two are quite alike, and it makes sense for Lucifer to open up to his new ally. And Anael is a truly powerful ally; I guess she's had to work with less for longer. After they work together to repel an attack from the boys, Anael has a clever idea. With Lucifer as a bargaining chip, Anael manages to bargain with angels and negotiate him up into the throne in about ten minutes (and I bet every line Lucifer said was carefully orchestrated by Anael.) The Prince of Lies and the Princess of Business now have the throne of Heaven – and the Angels are looking forward to wings and baby angels.

Wings also play a primary role in our other major storyline. Castiel resisted making a bargain with the devil, but the team is struggling more with resisting Ketch, and they don't even know Ketch is secretly working with Asmodeus and has a devil's bargain of his own going on. Their failed hunt for Lucifer makes Donatello their only hope – and he too is fueling his work on wings. Somehow the conjunction of images makes me think the angels aren't going to get everything they want with the Bad Baby Daddy on the throne. And I wonder what exactly will happen when Asmodeus finds out the angels have united behind the Devil.

We end with the demon tablet slowly being deciphered; Lucifer in power in heaven; Ketch's duplicity not yet revealed; Mary and Jack and Evil Michael still in Mad Max World – and two more reveals.

First, there's an archangel blade, which can be used by archangels to kill archangels.

Second: Gabriel's alive. I thought he was destroyed. After seeing him with his sewn up mouth and wild hair and eyes, I think he might wish he was. (And there better be a good story for how he came back after even God said he couldn't. Maybe the Empty had a role.)

Bits:

Sister Jo/Anael is actually Danneel Ackles,  Jensen Ackles wife.

Tim (Neil Webb) the extremely cute and positive homeless guy just made an appearance as Sir Galahad on Legends of Tomorrow.
I approve of Neil Webb. Please continue to use him in several episodes. But I thought it was a little on the nose giving him the name Tim and crutches (A Christmas Carol anyone?)

Asmodeus seems to have a lot of powers he didn't originally, right? I wonder if the storyline behind that is going to come into play.

Anael and Lucifer shack up at the Diamond Deluxe Motel sharing grace in this episode. And while we're on it, did anyone else think this was kind of like drug fueled motel sex?

I loved the scene with Lucifer reading the Bible and complaining that they gave all his good lines to God.

Did anyone else wonder if we'd see the third Winchester brother, Adam, during the Gabriel reveal?

Prediction: Asmodeus kills Donatello after Donnie eats enough wings to solve the tablet. They pull Rowena in to magic everything away.

Quotables:

Ketch: I know you want to kill me, but if you think about it, I'm the lesser of at least... (counts briefly) three evils.

Anael: After the fall, when we lost our wings, I wasn't devastated. I was liberated.

Lucifer: Dad's always stealing my best lines, man.

Overall

A great episode of Supernatural – five out of five from me.

11 comments:

Billie Doux said...

Thanks so much for subbing for me, Joseph. Sounds like a great episode. (haven't seen it yet!)

An Honest Fangirl said...

WAIT WAIT WAIT, Gabriel is alive?! Okay, I’m going to have to watch this episode now. I missed him.

Anonymous said...

Loved the ep and loved the review. Lots of possibilities! The only thing I feel sorry for is the fact that Sam and Dean are more in the wings now,not in the limelight. Boys, stay visible!
Castiel looks not quite himself which makes me suspicious.

Sue Kelley said...

I was sure when A. Said he had an archangel it was going to turn out to be Michael in Adams meat suit. Instead it was Gabriel! I’m so excited!

And.... the “angels” continue their pattern of being selfish idiots. Their whole existence was based on keeping Lucifer caged and out of Heaven, and ten minutes and a few flirty comments later they’re on their knees offering him the keys. Maybe Chuck and Amara need to cut their family vacation short and get home.

cheryl Maclean said...

In your entire article did you mention the names Sam or Dean? I saw tfw and other characters were mentioned by name but not them. Aren't they the stars of the show?
Now that Sam has a "plan" do you think his depression and crippling fear of Lucifer (we only got a grimace from Sam for the hair remark) is over. The brothers were suitably thrown about, choked and saved by Ketch but otherwise were they necessary to the plot? Speaking of Ketch wouldn't the Demon bomb have also killed Castiel?

Dragonfire said...

Happy happy happy happy happy happy happy! So glad they brought him back! Gabriel is one of my all-time favorite characters, and I really hated the fact that it seemed like he was gone for good. Although I doubt he'll be the same Trickster we all knew and loved.
Did not see Sister Jo being the angel Anael, or her weird semi-sexual relationship with Lucifer. There's been a lot of stuff lately on the internet about Supernatural telegraphing major plot points before the episode airs, but I couldn't find anything about that or about Gabriel. excellent job, Supernatural execs!
The episode felt a little light on Sam and Dean, but there was so much amazing other stuff going on that I'm willing to forgive it, just this once.
On one final note, Anael is used lot in fanon as Anna's actual angel name. Now that that's been ruled out, I wonder what it was?

Chatter said...

i was sure that is was Adam hahaha

Anonymous said...

Had to raise a glass to this show still being able to surprise and be creative this far in to.
There has to be an invasion, right? The list of characters who have been powered up and even promoted/usurped new seats of power can't be a coincidence. Lucifer, Billie , Rowena, Asmodeus....Then you have Jack who may be stronger than them all...Plus the 'Warriors' in Sam and Dean, even Ketch and Cas can be counted as such. Cant wait for these threads to collide.

The Gabriel twist was out of this world..Like everyone i was expecting Michael..

Who knew that all Lucifer had to do to ascend to the throne was spend a day with Rachel Gatina(shout out OTH fans)...Good to see Danneel on screen again, nobody can do devious so well and she somehow managed to create an incredibly intriguing dynamic with Lucifer in the space of three short scenes.

Erica Cerra why...Foolish Angel...
I do hope Amara and Chuck make an appearance at some point. Really miss Amara especially.

TheShadowKnows said...

Didn't Ketch admit he was working for Asmodeus? I thought he told the Winchesters near the end of the episode to show his *snicker* good faith?

Or maybe I dreamed it and need to rewatch. :op

Patryk said...

Gabriel! And they didn't even have to use an alternate version. I wonder how did he survive. I hope they also let him direct some episodes. :)

Anonymous said...

For The Shadow Knows, you're correct; Ketch did say that.

Great review, as always.

I'm excited about the return of Gabriel and am looking forward to the next ep!