Recap and Review: Supernatural 7.20: The Girl with the Dungeons and Dragons Tattoo

This entry is part 20 of 23 in the series Supernatural Season 7

By Paula R. Stiles

[spoilers ahoy for several seasons]

Tagline: Dick acquires Frank’s hard drive and orders a geeky hacker to crack the code. Enter Dean and Sam, who are determined to keep it out of Dick’s hands.

Recap: Recap of the short, unhappy career of Frank Devereux and Ghost!Bobby’s reappearance (with a strong emphasis on Dean’s unhappiness about Bobby’s ducking his Reaper). Cut to Now and a crappy shack (Inside, it looks like Rufus’ hidey-hole). Sam is talking on his cell phone to someone about Dick Roman’s public appearances, while Dean has been trying to figure out what the archaeological digs were looking for. They’ve got nothing, no patterns or anything. Sitting down on the edge of the couch, Dean pulls out Bobby’s old flask and drinks from it. Soon after, the lights fritz and the brothers come alert, pulling out their pistols (What the hell happened to salting the doors and windows, show?). The ghost that appears is Bobby, calling them “idjits” (That word needs to be salted and burned out of the writers’ vocabulary, along with “balls”). He fritzes out soon after, coming back to say that he’s exhausting himself. Dean commiserates in a neutral tone.

Bobby proceeds to unload the biggest infodump outside of a horse farm. First, he recaps the numbers that he saw in Dick’s office before he died (which he wrote out wrong on Sam’s hand, but apparently, we’re suppose to not notice). Then he talks about how he saw that Dick’s big plan is to build a slaughterhouse on the plot at the coordinates Dean and Frank staked out. The Leviathans have now started building, since it’s April. The plan (such as it is), is to go all “Soylent Green” on humans, make humans into dumb cattle with stuff like the Biggerson’s Turducken, cure them of all diseases, and then send them off down to slaughterhouses in complacent herds to be eaten. That’s actually not what happened in Soylent Green, but whatever. So, then…well, that’s all there is to it. It’s not a terribly complex, intelligent, or even scary plan. The writers unsubtly having Bobby compare it to the “one percenters” doesn’t make it any scarier.

I sure hope that when Carver comes on board, we’ll get back to horror. This is not horror. It’s not even intelligent social or political commentary.

At that moment, Sam gets an email on his laptop from Frank, while we get cuts to a young woman tapping on a keyboard. The email tells the rest of Team Free Will that Frank had a hard drive that has been captured and compromised. Someone is trying to hack into it. Fortunately, there’s a tracking device on said hard drive and it leads the brothers right to Dick Roman’s own office building in Chicago.

Cue title cards.

Cut to Five Hours Earlier (The show really needs to stop relying on random time-jumps to shore up weak logic in its plots). A young woman with red hair arrives at her office building at Rick Roman Enterprises on a cute little yellow scooter. Putting on headphones and playing “Walking on Sunshine” (I like that song, but playing music and walking past people at work without acknowledging them is hellaciously rude), she heads through the foyer, where she’s identified by security as “Charlene Bradbury” then keycards herself into a glass elevator. Once the doors are closed, she looks around to make sure no one is looking and starts dancing around as if she’s having a seizure. As soon as the doors open, she stops and walks out onto her floor, all smug at not being caught dorking out.

My God, I hate her, already.

At her desk, which has a large collection of PEZ dispensers, dolls (like the Hermione bubblehead on her desktop), one of those old official Lord of the Rings desktop wallpapers (I still have that free CD somewhere), and – Good God, did that woman actually rip covers off her comic books and stick them on her office wall? What comic book fan desecrates her collection like that? What else does she do for fun? Shoot horses? Kick dogs? Drown kittens? For shame, woman!

Then she immediately starts hacking into the website of the Republican presidential candidate and has the campaign make a large donation ($10,000) to an animal rights group. And when her obligatory “Too fat and ugly to get a date” geek buddy comes over from his station to ask her what she’s doing, she brags about her exploits to him, which include attending a “reproductive rights function” (Oh, is that what we’re calling pro-Planned Parenthood rallies these days? We used to just call it “pro-choice”) the night before to hook up with another lesbian (You’ll find out in a bit that Charlie is gay). ‘Cause, golly, no business these days has software that tags your every move. And your workplace friends would never, ever rat on you, right?

And no, show, quoting the geek classic, Real Genius, does not make you cool by proxy.

After referring to her boss as a “teddy bear” and an easy mark, Charlie is not dismayed when he calls her into his office. Smugly, she walks right into a meeting with Rick Roman. Now that wipes the smile right off her face. As soon as Dick starts talking about being around “since before the dawn of Man” and how “the world is my dinner plate” and other such loaded phrases that the audience knows and Charlie has no clue about, Charlie cracks like an egg and admits to her hacking skills. Dick already knows about them and thinks they’re cute. He says Charlie has a unique “spark” that some humans have (She really doesn’t, but let’s roll with that for now) and that can’t be “copied”. How has she managed that, being a high-school dropout and all? Charlie admits that she has a tendency to flout authority, so she’s always tried to circumvent this character fault by making herself “indispensable”. Dick responds by giving her a job – to crack the encrypted hard drive of “one Frank Devereaux”, who tried to take down the company. Charlie eagerly agrees to do so and doesn’t even look shocked when Dick tells her that if she doesn’t do it in three days, she’s fired. Why? Because she’s not really a rebel, just a poseur. Otherwise, she might wonder what happened to Frank Devereaux and why the company now has his hard drive. I sure would.

I suppose one could complain that the show takes loads of potshots at Conservatives in this episode, but considering the nitwit they have as the stereotypical Liberal, I’d say it’s equal opportunity.

Back Charlie goes to her desk, whining about her new assignment and having the “Eye of Sauron” on her to her work colleague (Yeah, why not blab all about that confidential meeting to her workmates?). She starts typing in code to her DOS program computer and promptly gets mocked by Frank’s program. She stays there all night, wrestling with the thing, until one of her programs gets through, cracking the password and ending up with an ordinary desktop and easily named files. This puzzles me. Why wouldn’t Frank password-scramble his folders and files on top of the whole system, and name them weird things instead of straightforward stuff like “Dick Roman Enterprises”? For example, back when we had an IT guy who liked to snoop through our files while “upgrading” computers in our office in grad school, I used to encrypt my files and name the folders things like “Sheep Follies” and “Princess Leia’s Pleasure Palace” (I still have those old folders, about five computers later). That way, he’d know he’d been made without being ever able to accuse me of insulting him – or being able to snoop through my files.

But anyhoo, since Frank has helpfully provided only one way to confuse anyone who is after his files, we instead get a Frank voiceover babbling about Leviathans and predicting doom and gloom for the world. Charlie’s reaction is to go for coffee and whine to her work buddy some more that she’s hacked into the hard drive of a “lunatic”. She asks said buddy where her boss has gone and he says the guy disappeared down to the garage for a cigarette break. Down there, the boss is being accosted by Dick and a flunky. Dick tells the boss that he, unlike Charlie or Bruce Springsteen, has no spark (He’s more of a Joe Biden or Tim Tebow) and can be easily copied. Dick then orders his flunky to chow down on the boss right there in the parking garage and copy him (So much for keeping things under the radar). Charlie happens to see this. Of course she does.

She immediately heads back to her apartment and starts packing. Yeah, this kid is a real smooth operator, even answering her boss’ call and claiming to have “lady problems” as her reason for going home early. I do not know what this show’s obsession is with menstruation, but it needs to let that one go.

Getting off the phone, she is ambushed by Sam and Dean (The latter slams the door before she can get through it). When she tries to fight back with a sword, she whacks Sam with it and accidentally breaks it on his arm. It’s a plastic Lord of the Rings prop. Oy. Dean, looking like a total MOTW (and, thankfully, giving me a moment of sheer hotness in the middle of this episodic desert), informs her that they are not Leviathans. To prove it, he and Sam pour Borax on their hands, then have Charlie do it.

Cue a rather clever ad for “Sucrocorp” that’s a really obvious slap at Monsanto. Its effectiveness stems from the way it uses sappy, patriotic music and symbols (The American flag is everywhere), and the recurring motif of corn, to look like a real TV ad for some kind of soulless multinational, while cueing us in that the Leviathans are targeting America’s food supply. This show is unsubtle enough to make the actual food be the corn shown in the ad. Maybe it’s a reference to the fact that America uses high-fructose corn syrup in sodas as a way of subsidising the corn farmers. In Europe, they use cane sugar for similar uses and reasons.

Cut to Charlie being brought up to speed by the brothers. She rather stupidly asks them how they found her and Sam shows her that Frank’s program had hacked into her webcam. When Sam asks her how long it took her to hack Frank’s hard drive, she says, “A day or so,” in a dismissive tone, then acts all smug when Sam asks if there’s anything she can’t crack. I guess I’m supposed to be impressed by her mad hacking skillz instead of snorting derisively at how neatly Frank set her up. Somebody tries to hack his hard drive; he has a program on it (probably a Trojan Horse) that sends a warning to the brothers, including all the info they need to track the hacker and eliminate her/him. In fact, I’m kind of surprised Frank didn’t take the opportunity to put in a deadman’s switch kind of virus or even worm aimed specifically at Rick Roman Enterprises, in the event of this possibility.

Charlie then has to be informed that Dick is the head of the Leviathans, even though Frank’s hard drive files already told her that. ‘Cause she’s a little slow. She looks incredulous when Dean tells her the “endgame” is that humans are food. Dean just gives her his usual “Welcome to my crazy world” look. She quickly realises that she was doomed the moment Dick decided to give her the assignment.

She agrees to hack into her company server, but discovers that Dick’s office email is on its own server and can only be hacked from inside his office. She volunteers to go back into his office, grab and erase Frank’s hard drive (which she apparently did not do before), and leave with none the wiser. I wonder why the brothers can’t engineer a power surge for the office building and knock out the generator, and/or just plunk a big old magnet down right next to Frank’s hard drive and Dick’s computer. And Charlie should volunteer, seeing as how her cockiness nearly put that info in Dick’s hands in the first place.

While the three of them plan, Ghost!Bobby watches from invisibility with a pissy look on his face (I’ll try not to get started on my unhappiness about the show turning him into a perpetually angry toddler by way of Old Yeller). Later, while the brothers hang out in a van outside the office, and Charlie psychs herself up on the sidewalk to go inside, Dean spots Bobby’s flask in Charlie’s satchel, which Bobby snuck in there. Dean calls Charlie over her Bluetooth to warn her about the flask, but she assumes the brothers put it there and drinks from it (Lawd, she is dumb). Incidentally, only in America could you park a van outside a big office building in a major city like that and go unremarked. The IRA used many car and truck bombs in London, two of them in 2001, alone, so that scenario wouldn’t work so well there.

Even after a few swallows of Dean’s liquid courage, Charlie freezes, so Sam talks her in through the door, using the example of Harry Potter’s Hermione (She actually uses Kim Manners’/Ellen Harvelle’s “Kick it in the ass” line). I’m not entirely sure why a woman who just hooked up at a reproductive rights function a few days before is having so much trouble going into her own office building, but moving on. Inside, she nervously walks past the desk guard, briefly pinging his radar, and enters the elevator, where invisible Bobby rides up with her. Black Widow she ain’t. At least, this time, she doesn’t seizure-dance. Up at Dick’s office, she finds a night guard on that floor. Dean tells her to wait him out and she impatiently says it’s not working. So, he advises her to flirt her way in. She complains that she’s a lesbian and doesn’t know how. Since when does being a lesbian mean you have no social skills?

So, Dean talks her through the flirtation, having her mention that the guard works out and simper (Yikes) before excusing herself off to Dick’s executive washroom. But not before completely embarrassing herself by repeating everything Dean says, including telling Sam to shut up when Sam laughs. Which makes everybody look like a moron.

In Dick’s office, Charlie sits down and starts downloading all of his emails, which include references to the archaeological digs. One in Iran apparently hit paydirt several days ago, so all digs have been halted and the workers “terminated”. The object is now on its way back to Chicago that night (11:15pm), via Saudi Arabia, Paris, and a private jet borrowed from Donald Trump. Charlie is nearly discovered when the security guard gets suspicious and goes to the main executive washroom (where she said she would be). Bobby closes and bolts the door (Charlie had forgotten to do this). This alerts the guard, who opens the door to see Charlie’s forgotten pack on the desk. Charlie then comes out of the washroom. The guard is angry with her, but she flirts her way past him long enough to download the rest of the emails onto a thumb drive (Really, how long does it take to download email?) and head out the door.

Unfortunately for her, Dick has just got the call from his airport contact, Victor (Darcy Laurie, who played Bob Tremblay in Intelligence), about the stone and then comes to check on her, where she is busy at her desk, scrubbing Frank’s drive of any info on Dick or the brothers, and sending them Dick’s emails.

Then we see Victor pick up a suitcase at the airport that he brings back to Dick. It turns out to be a bomb. Could that have anything to do with why the brothers are at the airport with their car trunk open, while Sam says, “So, now what?”

Cut to two hours before, where we see Victor at the airport and then we see two baggage guys that keep nearly running into him. They turn out to be Sam and Dean, pulling a switch with the briefcase and walking off with the real one, helped by a forged email from Charlie faking a delay in the flight. Back at their vehicle de la semaine, they open up the briefcase to find a large chunk of red clay. When Sam wonders what it could be, Dean says they can always find out after they’ve put a few thousand miles behind them (Gas prices? What gas prices?). Dean wonders what is going on with Charlie.

Back at the office, Charlie nervously takes Dick through the scrubbed hard drive, while a ghostly Bobby stands behind them and drives down the temperature in the room, trying to control his rage at Dick. Dick asks her loaded questions about whether the files could have been deleted (and then retrieved) and hints that he knows she did it. A very nervous Charlie stumbles through her answers. Dick then gets the call that the suitcase has arrived and tells Charlie to wait at her desk. Unsurprisingly, she flees downstairs as soon as he leaves. We get a reprise of the bomb scene, this time with the BOOM. While Victor lies unconscious on the floor, a somewhat-eroded Dick steps over him and calls security to lock down the building.

Charlie hits the outside doors but not before the lockdown. Trapped, she turns as Dick and her Levboss come down the elevator and the front desk security guard comes from somewhere that’s not his desk. Ghost!Bobby cracks the glass of the doors. When the Levboss comes after Charlie, Bobby sends him on his way with an extra push. The Levboss collides with Charlie, knocking her down and breaking her arm. You’d think Bobby would throw him in the opposite direction if he were trying to protect Charlie, but that’s not really his objective. He then tosses Dick across the foyer. That’s his objective.

Sam and Dean dive through the weakened glass into the foyer and splash Charlie’s Levboss with Borax (which we had previously seen them loading up in the van). Bobby briefly appears to them while Dick is down. Not having seen Bobby, Dick taunts Bobby to appear, but instead, Bobby knocks him backward again. Dean, shocked by Bobby’s actions and Dick’s proximity, hesitates while Sam picks up Charlie and urges Dean to flee. Dick isn’t hugely impressed, but the brothers are able to rescue Charlie and flee, though not before Dick recognises them.

Afterward, the brothers take off with Charlie, while an uncharacteristically angry Dick finds out that they have the suitcase. Then he eats Victor. Bye-bye, Darcie Laurie [is a little bummed]. This is pretty much the only time in the show Dick actually seems like a monster to me.

At the bus depot, the brothers see Charlie off. She is bitchy about it (even though Dean carries her bag for her) and tells them not to contact her ever again. I’m pretty sure they had no intention of doing so, anyway. Goodbye, Charlie! Don’t let the bus door hit you in the ass on your way out of this episode!

As she leaves, Dean tells Sam she is like “the little sister I never wanted.” Hear, hear, Dean. How I wish this had actually been one of those terrible “little sister” fics you see all the time on Fanfiction.Net and not an actual episode.

Sam briefly smiles at Dean’s humour and then says, “We need to talk.” Dean immediately twigs to Sam’s intentions, asking if he means before they “get back to the car and the flask [Ghost!Bobby]?” Sam says yes. He tells Dean that he’s worried that Bobby is losing it. He broke Charlie’s arm and flipped out on Dick. He’s turning into a vengeful spirit. Far from arguing with Sam, Dean agrees with his brother, but says that their options are limited. First, they need to figure out what they just stole from Dick. Then they can “figure out what the hell to do with Bobby.”

Review: Holy Irritating Mary Sue, Batman!

The episode itself is not that bad in spots. In spite of myself (because the reveals for the mysteries this season have been underwhelming), I’m curious about what’s going on with the big rock the brothers stole and it was clever of the brothers to steal it like that. Frankly, the way they did that was far more clever than anything Charlie did in the episode, so why was it so glossed over?

I also liked that the brothers didn’t just accept Ghost!Bobby back with open arms, but what’s with switch-hitting which brother is unhappier with him each episode? Last week, Sam was all for having a Ghost!Bobby as their ace in the hole, over Dean’s objections that Bobby would eventually go rabid. This week, he’s all shocked that Ghost!Bobby is turning rabid (as Dean predicted), while Dean just wearily admits that, yeah, the situation is, as usual, SOL. It seems as though Dean can’t catch a break. Whatever position he takes is wrong, especially when he’s right.

Regarding Charlie, a great deal of your enjoyment of this episode depends on whether or not you love Felicia Day’s geek shtick. If you do, this is the episode for you. If you don’t (or don’t even know who she is, like most of the planet), the current tone of online fan discussion indicates that you will find Charlie annoying, abrasive, a raving stereotype, and a total legend in her own mind. As far as tolerating her, it helps later on when they tone down the “quirkiness” and overreliance on the stuntcasting of someone who is mainly known for playing a cute, inoffensive nerd. When she’s not supercocky, she’s sort of okay.

Less charming are yet more denigration of education (How many high school dropouts do you know who work in computer tech?), Charlie’s thinking she’s da bomb when the only thing she can do right is hack a computer (They have programs for that, y’know), the writer’s shoving of the brothers to the sidelines of the story, and Charlie’s utter lack of gratitude at the end (She didn’t really think Dick wouldn’t have killed her, regardless, did she?). Plus, Dick is as lacking in charisma and scare as ever (Variations of “Good talk!” do not make the message any more exciting) and the show continues to do the Watusi on its own canon to service a guest star that much of the audience has probably never even heard of.

Case in point: Leveeta from the early part of the season discovered the brothers with relative ease. Yet, we’re supposed to believe that a Leviathan couldn’t eat Charlie and absorb her superspecial (only, not so much, when all it takes is a few good password programs) abilities the way Leveeta did with the human he ate? Do the writers really, honest-to-God think that a cocky young hacker has anything more special in her skill set than an experienced, middle-aged surgeon like Dr. Sexy?

I am guessing that this U-turn on their own canon is some kind of set-up for one of the brothers to surprise the Leviathans with his own superspecialness. Since Robbie Thompson (who wrote this episode) wrote the superior “Slash Fiction”, I’d normally guess that brother is Dean. That episode involved two Leviathans who copied the brothers, thought they were both stupid, and still got outsmarted by Dean. However, this is Thompson’s last episode of the season. That’s a problem for guessing because the discontinuities in this and the last couple of episodes make clear there’s no one currently at the helm in terms of making sure everything hangs together over multiple episodes. Maybe this subtle change/regression to Thompson’s previous hints is one of the laundry list of things being covered in the last four episodes and maybe it will be forgotten as of next week. With the lack of continuity from week to week, it’s really hard to tell.

Charlie herself was…yeah. Not so great unless you’re a huge Felicia Day fan. Which was a problem because there was a lot of her in this episode and it was hard to get at all invested in her dominating the story when we knew we’d probably never see her again. In addition to her lack of gratitude and general stupidity/naivete, her cockiness was seriously annoying. Okay, so she knows a program or two that she can use to crack a hard drive password. Yippee. On the other hand, she’s such a moronic dork that she uses company equipment for her hacking and thinks she won’t be monitored or get caught, never stops to think that the hard drive she’s hacking may have been booby-trapped such that two guys will come after her to kill/blackmail her, can’t even figure out how to get into a building where she has a legitimate reason to be, parrots every single thing she hears over a Bluetooth when she has to be coached through a flirtation, and can’t get up and walk after she’s broken an arm. No, she has to be carried out by Sam “The Redwood” Winchester. Plus, she dances as if she’s having a seizure and brags about her hacker exploits to a stereotypically socially awkward geek colleague (who is never seen again after a few scenes of being her shoulder to brag on).

And she’s a lesbian, which is something put in literally for a throwaway joke because it’s not as though there are any other women in this Faux Girl Power story (Also, the blatant political jokes weren’t funny, though the commercial, which didn’t bang you over the head with any particular affiliation, was). Apparently, we are supposed to be so impressed that the show finally had a sympathetic lesbian character that we’re supposed to forget all about the bitchy poison friend who kept coming on to Maggie in “Shut Up, Dr. Phil” or the Evil Butch Amazons in “The Slice Girls”. And that Charlie’s the only freakin’ woman in the entire episode. At least, last week, we had Annie, the Fancy Girl and the Teen Girl as speaking parts, with assorted other non-speaking female roles to remind us that 51% of the world’s population just happens not to be male. But Dick? Seems to have only men working for him in his enormous glass-and-steel office building. ‘Cause tokenism is the watchword for the cool TV genre writers these days.

In short, aside from the very specific skill that she brings to the story, one that isn’t unique even within the context of this season, and the fact that she’s played by a cute actress (God forbid she be homely. Or overweight), Charlie’s a complete loser. Even Becky was more effective and proactive on a hunt.

And does she really think two guys who got framed for a mass-murder spree and ended up on America’s Most Wanted list before faking their own deaths (not for the first time) are going to be impressed that she once changed her identity? Really? Or that the Leviathans won’t be able to find her when Dick knew all her tricks? Her only real hope is that Dick will be too distracted trying to kill the brothers to come after her.

Also, since when is being a fan of the Lord of the Rings movies or Harry Potter an indication that you are a hopeless geek? I get that the Comic-Con bit was an injoke (and yes, that was amusing, including Dean’s response), but tens, even hundreds, of millions of people have enjoyed those stories, and recently. They aren’t all socially inept. They’re just ordinary people. That’s Charlie’s biggest problem as a character – she’s ordinary and thinks she’s extraordinary, which has promise, but not when the show tries to back her up by having the Big Bad declare her “special” and “unique” when she really isn’t. If she goes off to hang out with Jessie on the Beach of Characters That Didn’t Work on Bora Bora for the rest of the show, I’m okay with that.

Also, show? If you’re going to make your title “The Girl with the Dungeons and Dragons Tattoo”, don’t have her tat be a Star Wars one, instead. Yes, Princess Leia was straddling a die on Charlie’s tat (And yes, I know it’s a snark on the much-harsher The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo), but many RPGs that aren’t D&D use multi-sided dice. Just sayin’. The nerds you’re aiming this one at are gonna nitpick that one to shreds.

The problem with Charlie, for me, is that she represents the cud-chewing mass of humanity the brothers are trying to save and she’s such an idiot that I find myself right there with Dean about not saving the world yet another time in exchange for zero gratitude. She’s upset at the end that they put her in danger? How does that work when she volunteered to fix a mess she helped create? At the beginning, she is so oblivious and smug in her position that she lets herself be used to do something that could destroy all of humanity and take out the only two characters in the story who could prevent this new apocalypse. Keep in mind that if the brothers had not intercepted her at her apartment, she would undoubtedly have been killed. And since she had already cracked the hard drive’s password, her necessity in the story would have already been accomplished. In short, she’s a collaborator who thinks she’s a freedom fighter, a pawn who think she’s a player, a Trojan Horse who thinks she’s God’s gift. Those are the worst kind because they’re both self-righteous and utterly destructive. Yeah, Charlie, she’s not so bright. But what can you expect from a character who doesn’t notice anything the least bit strange about the flask that magically appears all over the place, or the invisible being that saves her life while breaking her arm? Mouthbreather, much?

So, back to Team Free Will, such as it is these days. The brothers are worried about Ghost!Bobby because he snuck off his flask to Charlie’s pack/whatever (What was up with her just drinking out of it as if she knew where it came from or what was in it?). What I don’t get is why they’re acting so helpless about it. They know how to contain ghosts. Just stick that flask inside a ring of salt, inside a cast-iron safe, inside a ring of salt and he’ll be exactly where they want him to be. If they have to take it on the road, put it inside a container inside another container that they could fill with salt. There are ways.

As far as Ghost!Bobby is concerned, this is not Bobby, anymore. This is a literal shadow of Bobby. I did like that they showed he is going down the inevitable road to going nuts. I didn’t like that he’s here at all. It’s just not a well-done storyline. Either they ignore their own canon and have Ghost!Bobby defy the laws of all other ghosts (when the whole original point of his character was that he was an ordinary human with no superpowers but lots of human knowledge) or they ruin a once-beloved character, even more than they already have, by turning him evil. You’d think they’d have learned their lesson from what they did to Castiel last season, but I guess not. If I could think of just one reason why I won’t be missing Sera Gamble, and would even prefer she write no more episodes, it’s that she’s turned Bobby into Ruby 3.0.

Speaking of dei ex machina, is this really the last of Frank or are we to believe he’s hiding someplace and may pop up at an opportune moment for yet more infodump duties?

Sam and Dean were not in a whole lot of the episode. I get why Padalecki wasn’t in much of this (Expect him to be in even less of it next week, since that was the week he basically took off for his son’s birth). I don’t get why Ackles is in so little (unless, perhaps, he’s in so much of the last three episodes that he needed this kind of break). I do know I’m not invested in Charlie as a character. How can I be when I never met her before and don’t expect to see her again?

Dean does seem to be running the operation, which may explain his hesitation over holding Bobby back. Bobby may or may not end up being the Big Damn Hero of the season finale, but it won’t be because he’s the one in charge. In fact, his mental faculties seem to be deteriorating, even as his ego inflates to cosmic levels. His role this week consisted of a belated infodump from the writers to spackle all those mytharc holes they let open up while engaged in loads of boring filler, stalking/guarding Charlie, and going ape on Dick. In the latter role, curiously enough, he played more of a deus ex machina than an Exposition Fairy, especially since the show could easily have had Frank’s hard drive contain all that info. In fact, the whole bit with the hard drive was passed over largely as a case of having more info about the brothers than about Dick or the Leviathans, and being more of a justification for Charlie’s finding out about the shipment of the big, red brick. It seemed oddly careless of Frank to have all his computer eggs in one basket, anyway. Surely, he’d have extra passwords on each folder (Yes, you can do that) in addition to a system-wide password, and even passwords on each file. Separate ones. That would take a while to crack. As well as misleading file names and putting them inside folders inside folders, like nesting dolls. Some missed opportunities, there, in favour of overly linear storytelling.

Finally, I noticed Dean is still drinking. I find it curious that it’s included here, almost gratuitously. Yes, the flask is now attached to Bobby, but it came across this week as an intentional cross-reference to Dean’s drinking. Not only do we see Dean drink from it (indicating he’s refilled it recently), but Sam gives it a pointed look and later, Charlie drinks from it, too (yuck), commenting on it being filled with booze. As in previous episodes, this seems in there largely to remind us of this storyline such that there is a reference to Dean’s drinking and mental state in every single episode of this season. I sure hope the show intends to give us some appropriate payoff on the only storyline that has had a reference in literally every episode (even more than Bobby, Castiel or Sam’s hellpain).

Fun lines:

Ghost!Bobby: It’s hard to stay focused. I’m still kinda worn out.
Dean: Well, you’ve been pretty busy for a dead guy.

Dean [about the hard drive]: Perfect. It’s in the middle of the Death Star.

Work Buddy: Charlie, it’s a moral imperative that I live vicariously through you.

TV Ad: Sucrocorp: Eat well; live well.

Charlie: So, what’s the end game? Steal our resources? Make us some slaves?
Dean: Planet-wide value meal. We’re the meat.

Dean: Do you have any tattoos? Give him a sneak peek, there. All tattoos are sexy.
Charlie: Mine is of Princess Leia in a slave bikini, straddling a 20-sided die. [off Dean’s flabbergasted silence] I was drunk. It was Comic-Con.
Dean: We’ve all been there.

Charlie [after flirting her way past the security guard]:
I feel dirty.
Dean: You and me, both, sister.

Charlie [to Dick]: Nothing’s safe if you poke at it long enough.

Victor: Please, sir, don’t bib me.
Dick: Bib you?! Why would I waste a perfectly good meal?! [eats Victor]

Dean [about Charlie]: She’s kinda like the little sister I never wanted.

Dean [about Ghost!Bobby]: Man, if I’d’ve had a free shot, I’d’ve bitchslapped the hell outta Dick, too.

Next Week: Reading Is Fundamental: When Kevin, a bookish young man, is struck by lightning, he wakes up as a prophet – and the pawn in a rivalry between two archangels.

You can watch (or download) this episode, in standard or HD definition, on

About Paula R. Stiles

Paula is not at all paranoid about government conspiracies after six years in EMS, two years in Africa for the Peace Corps, a few summers with the Park Service, and ten years studying the Knights Templar. She's seen governments in action. They couldn't cover up a toy picnic table, let alone evidence of alien visitation. Writes about science for fun, history for money, and zombies for the company. You can read her sober-as-a-judge book about Templars in medieval Spain, Templar Convivencia, on Amazon. You can find her homepage at:

Paula R. StilesRecap and Review: Supernatural 7.20: The Girl with the Dungeons and Dragons Tattoo

16 Comments on “Recap and Review: Supernatural 7.20: The Girl with the Dungeons and Dragons Tattoo”

  1. shamangrrl

    Well, I like Felicia Day, and I couldn’t figure out how her schtick was going to work on Supernatural. And apparently, it didn’t. By this point, I’m putting all my hopes on next season.

  2. Lily

    Thank you for a great recap! I thought I was watching an episode of Mission Impossible, the 60’s series rather than Supernatural. While I didn’t hate it, it really didn’t feel like a SPN episode. I was annoyed by Bobby and his whole I’m part of the gang let’s go get Roman shtick. I agree with your point about Bobby. He should have remained dead or survived the shooting. This ghost Bobby is a disservice to the character and they are doing the same thing to him as they did to Bobby.
    As far as the mud brick, I think it will be the Rosetta stone to killing the leviathans. This will most likely bring forth the forces of heaven and hell into play so we might see Dean/Michael at the helm in the battle to kill Dick Roman and his minions.
    As far as Charlie, I was not totally enamored with her, but she did have a few good moments. I think she could have been written better since the actress did seem she could have brought more to the role if the opportunity presented itself. Oh well.

  3. Cassieo

    Thanks for the review Paula. I thought Charlie was okay, but I actually thought with Day playing her she would be better. I don’t know what the turnoff was for me, but if she doesn’t reappear I won’t mind it. Course if she does come back, it will be under Carver, so things might look up some.

    I also didn’t appreciate the ‘lady problems’ line, or indicating her sexual preference. But this show has a propensity to degrade women and it just loves its juvenile humor. Next week is Edlund and he is king of the juvenile humor gags.

    I still see no reason why Frank has info on his drive about the boys. Why would he need any of that? He had their email but I’m sure he had is so routed thought various servers that it would be impossible to trace. And why would Frank know Baby’s location? None of that was worth them trying to get to Franks computer for. BUT they had to create some reason for getting the boys to hack Roman’s computer, so that silliness was it. Also don’t see why they needed a hacker, when all they had to do was eat Frank. I don’t think they ever explained that one either.

    I also loved Dean’s look when he finally talked to Charlie, just curious as to why they would bring borax with them. Why did they think they would need to prove to her they weren’t leviathans? How did they know she already broke the code and that she looked at it? She could just as easily have already given it to Roman.

    Love the worm concept. Yes, Mr Paranoid would certainly have done that! But then how would we get to Dean and Sam meeting Charlie? Need that plot hole to move the episode along, which by the way I didn’t think Thompson did a great job with this time.

    I was SOOOO glad when I saw Bobby snuck his flask into Charlie’s things. Good call on Bobby’s part to ignore Sam. He should not have refused to let Bobby go, and Dean should have spoken up about it…not agreed with Sam. Normally Dean would have, but Sam needed to be something important here. Other than make Dean look bad, I not sure what it was as Bobby turned out to be the best thing they had this week. He made all the difference in this episode and maybe the boys will think better of him now. So what if he goes rabid on Roman. Someone should. Right now, he is the best weapon they have

    As far as the flirting, I didn’t find it all that funny. Don’t know why. It was okay and for me the only person who looked like a moron was Charlie. I also didn’t get why they would have Sam think anything was funny here. It was very serious to me, Dean trying to help Charlie get past the guard to get them info from Roman’s computer. Best chance they have had all season. Why would they have Sam laugh? Was it to make Charlie look stupid? It did…but why do that either. Guess that was for the juvenile minds watching the show.

    “…..but what’s with switch-hitting which brother is unhappier with him each episode? Last week, Sam was all for having a Ghost!Bobby as their ace in the hole, over Dean’s objections that Bobby would eventually go rabid. This week, he’s all shocked that Ghost!Bobby is turning rabid (as Dean predicted), while Dean just wearily admits that, yeah, the situation is, as usual, SOL. It seems as though Dean can’t catch a break. Whatever position he takes is wrong, especially when he’s right.”

    Thank you Paula, for seeing this. I’m not sure what “SOL” means but I don’t think Dean is *supposed* to catch a break. He will always be depicted as being on the wrong side of any issue. I wish the episode last week was in keeping with the boy’s true characters where both boys welcomed Bobby back with open arms. But the show knew everyone wanted that, so they twist the reunion to cause more tension. Also that would have made both boys look good, and that was not the intention.

    I also see Dean and Sam’s talk a little differently. You left out the part where Dean says it’s Bobby they are talking about. I really don’t think his parting comments to Sam about “figure out what the hell to do with Bobby” should be taken to mean he agreed that Bobby is a problem, but more to placate Sam and drop the conversation for now. Not only is Dean very fond of Bobby, at least this week, but he is the ultimate hunter and saw what Bobby did to Roman. It is a real advantage it is to have a ghost partner who can fight like that…rabid or not.

    And I don’t think Dean was shocked at Bobby for going after Roman, he was shocked that a ghost can be so effective against a levie. Really I wouldn’t have thought a ghost could do much against Roman but he was! Yes, he messed up breaking Charlie’s arm, BUT if he hadn’t been there, Dean and Sam would NOT have been able to get in and Charlie would be dead. I think Bobby’s rational of breaking the window first was great and a ghost totally rabib wouldn’t have done that.

    Roman didn’t know where the force was coming from. I loved it! And Bobby did stop from going all rabid on him… so he has control yet. However, I wouldn’t have minded if Bobby had finished him right there and then. But then we wouldn’t need the remaining 3 episodes, so we had to wait. But I glad Bobby wiped the smile off Roman face at least.

    And I don’t see why Sam felt the need to calling Dean off either. If Dean wants to see what goings on for future battles or even to help Bobby that would be the time to do it. Sam should have taken Charlie and left. Dean and Bobby can make their own decisions. That having been said, again, they have more episodes to go, so yeah, Dean and Bobby had to wait, and both did. Here’s hoping the next time, Dean and Bobby finish what they start. But I don’t want Bobby to possess Dean for any reason. Besides why would he now. He seems to be able to get to Roman just fine as a ghost.

    As for Dean and his drinking, so far they have not shown it to have any involvement in the storyline other than to be a cue for Bobby to appear. That’s also what it was used for this episode again. You seem to feel it is going to go somewhere, so I hope your right. It would be great if it lead to ANY arc for Dean to be the BDH. But past history with Gamble would indicate that’s not the case. So, I won’t be tricked by TPTB into believing that again. If you’re right, I will be the happiest person in the world. If not I won’t be devastated for lack of a Dean story as I was so many times before. I think you are giving to much credit to Gamble.

  4. Ann Emmess

    I just found some interesting behind-the-scenes insight (not for this ep.) This is about the Gamble-Singer-cast relationship.

    Jus In Bello 3 just happened. Last year, a full video of a Jensen/Misha panel at this con is what got me hooked on con vids. They make for outstanding improv. I’m procrastinating today, so I’m all over this year’s panel.

    At his own panel, Misha had said something to the effect that “When Dean gave Cas the trench coat back it was romantic and the gayest moment in the history of the show”. Someone brought this up at the Jensen/Misha panel, and here’s what comes out:

    They start talking about a “certain line” that they “had to edit” — not the one that was cut between promos and show, one that was never filmed because it was so “out of character.”

    Misha: Stuff that was really hard to say.

    Jensen: When you say it out loud, you’re like ‘WOW. I would never say that to another human being. Especially a man.’

    Misha paraphrases the line as “I’ve been cuddling up with this (trench coat) every night.”

    Jensen: “Essentially, the dialogue would have gone along perfectly with me doing this” — mimes cuddle-stroking the coat like a Persian cat.

    Jensen: And BOB SINGER, who was directing the episode…we had him in tears. We simply said, “Bob, allow us to read this scene aloud to you…and you tell us what you think.” And we simply just read the lines and he just…folded. And started laughing hysterically.

    And then they all “spent an hour and a half” trying to make the scene work, which was “tough.” How to change it to make it “more believable between these two characters.”

    The guys don’t remember who wrote the ep, but the woman who’s filming them does and starts to snicker audibly, as do many around her. The audience calls out “Sera”

    Jensen, a bit backpedally now, says that makes sense since “she’s a girl…amazing storyteller, but sometimes the lines for the guys are effeminate.”

    They improv a more “bro-like” version of the scene, and Jensen briefly scoffs at the idea that Dean would have the trench handy. (!)

    I haven’t sought out other vids, but I’ve seen quotes to suggest that there was more-than-usual calling out of plot points the cast found implausible all around.

    The vid is at Question starts at 1:30, guys talk from about 2:00.

  5. Lani

    Interesting review Paula and a completely different take on the episode then what I have seen for the most part.

    Count me in as curious what’s going on with the big rock the brothers stole. Based on the preview it looks like its a tablet revealing something important about defeating the Leviathans and it will somehow tie in to the angels. I so hope it ties back to Dean!! Also hopefully the episode will be more coherent than the last few have been.

    I do wonder if part of the reason Robbie Thompson floundered with this episode was because he had to focus on a one time character like Charlie instead of the brothers because the head honchos had all the writers dial back on a few episodes because Jared and Gen was expecting the baby around the time these were being filmed. Just speculation on my part as I try to makes sense of the horrible turn the episode scripts have taken.

    Its also really disturbing because it really looks like no one is at the helm of the show at this point, what with the coherency and retoconning happening like you said Paula, which worries me about the rest of the season. They’re cramming again and they even had an extra episode! Poor poor story planning.

    Guess I also liked Charlie more than you, though not by much. I wasn’t watching too critically because its seems rather pointless considering messy female characterization the past two years. Just watch, laugh, and not think too hard or the urge to track down the Colt to shoot em could be too strong.

    Much agreement for your thoughts about the switch in the brothers’ positions from last week. Geez! Not that I’m unhappy that Sam showed some sense about the whole thing or that Dean acknowledged once again that Ghost!Bobby is already losing it and turning into a vengeful spirit. Its just…ugh!

    Right, theories about the tablet in the clay. How’d it get there (in Iran) and when? Maybe a mention of the Phoenix in the next episode? Wasn’t it kinda assumed/thought the Phoenix came from Purgatory since it was the only thing that could hurt and kill Eve? Okay, that was one of my assumptions since we were never told for certain.

  6. Caroline C

    Thanks for the review Paula.

    I didn’t post a comment last week because the episode was so blah I really didn’t have anything to say about it one way or the other.

    I have to admit I rather enjoyed this week’s episode despite the many flaws. I was disappointed that Sam and Dean were once again sidelined, particularly as this was the third episode in a row where the focus has been on another character (Garth, Bobby, and now Charlie). Having them bunched up together like this seems a really strange choice to me and I can’t understand why they would do it.

    I didn’t mind Charlie although there were things that were annoying about her, like the cockiness, but I have to say I didn’t pick up on that many of the dumb things she did – I’m not saying that she didn’t do some dumb things, just that I didn’t notice them all while I was watching. I felt that some of the stupidity could perhaps be accounted for as nervousness. Perhaps a normal reaction to having just seen your boss be murdered right in front of you, and finding out that the world is full of actual monsters, and the biggest baddest one of the lot has pretty much got his eye on you. I’m pretty sure my brain would stop working properly if it were me. In that context I did think it was quite brave of her to volunteer to go back in and help. Perhaps she should have asked a few more questions when Dick gave her the job of hacking the drive, but since she couldn’t possibly have known what was going on at that point, it’s not unreasonable that she would try to keep her job by ‘being as indispensible as possible’ and going along with it – does that make it her responsibility to then resolve it when she does find out? I’m not sure, but she takes on that responsibility and volunteers without much preamble, and I saw that as a positive thing about the character.

    I didn’t like the cutesy stuff at the beginning and the bizarre dancing and the ‘cramps’ bit, and I was simply downright baffled at why the writers thought a lesbian, who was shown as perfectly capable of hooking up someone, would then be completely incapable of flirting with a guy. If that were true and you could only learn how to flirt with the gender you are attracted to, then wouldn’t that be true of Dean as well, since he also only flirts with girls (I’m talking what we see in the show here, I know there are other theories around in parts of the fandom *winks*).

    I so agree with you Paula about the ‘idjits’ and ‘balls’ it’s becoming caricaturish and they need to just stop it right now. The Levi and Dick are so not scary, and the big plan was so obvious it’s painful. I was really hoping, since the Levi never seemed fussy about what they eat, that the real reason they were going to create a lovely yummy illness free human race was as a food source for some other much nastier big boss beastie(s) that we haven’t seen yet – but I guess that is just wishful thinking. I will admit I didn’t really get the point of the ‘sucrocorp’ thing – we already know what the Levi are up to and that they have a fingers in all the pies. Didn’t like the time jumps, but DID like the boys in the baggage handler costumes, it’s been too long since we’ve seen them kitted out in a decent costume – ok baggage handlers are not the hottest look ever, but it felt kind of nostalgic and made me smile.

    I better sign off now as this comment is getting pretty long!

  7. Ginger

    Nice review, Paula. I hope you didn’t have to watch it more than once to write the review. Well, maybe you didn’t hate it as much as I did. Here’s what I got from it.

    A political drama called “To Serve Man,” starring a 30-something year old actress trying to be twenty who types OS code super fast onto your TV screen. This quirky soon-to-be-middle aged ‘girl’ is into Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings; hope you are too. As the comedy unfolds, against a backdrop of political references, this ‘girl’ gets her sparkle knocked off a little when she discovers the conservative/Republican boss of the evil multinational corporation she works for is…wait for it…an EVIL Republican presidental hopeful in an election year who wants to conquer the world by eating his way through it. He is, however, too dumb to lock her in a room with assigned guards while he forces her to break a hard drive code which may or may not reveal all his evil plans for world domination.

    The episode features a cranky ghost as the special guest star, with brief appearances by Jared Padalecki and Jensn Ackles, who is driving yet another piece of shit old white car.

    Of particular note is that the episode advances the mytharc of the season in two ways: By having the support characters realize that cutting of the forearm with a big knife can be discarded in favor of handwashing with a bottle of soap suds; and telling the viewers that cutesy geek girl sparkles so much that, unlike previous episode leads, she alone cannot be cloned. The episode ends on the very positive note that those characters that manage to survive the season are not Republican and; therefore, their mega big inheritance from their step-father and their membership in Occupy Wall Street remains safe and secure for the time being.

    Screw you, Robbie Thompson. I hope Carver cleans out some of writers in the writers room — you, Adam Glass, and the Singer wife team.

    As far as what the episode gave us, Dick’s plan was what we already knew, the boys will have to take out Sucrocorp (like the Croatoan warehouse) and the tablet will probably give them the clue about the keys needed to put all the Levi back in Purgatory. My speculation is that the cliffhanger will be whether or not Bobby turns vengeful and Cas will not have earned Dean’s full trust back, despite however he helps out this season.

    The next epiosde looks like it could be interesting, and my question is whether it will be another support cast dominated episode with the brothers in the background or does everyone get a part this time. It’s Edlund, so there is hope for something better than we got this time.

  8. castiel'scat

    Thanks for the review. Sorry so many didn’t enjoy the episode. I liked it despite flaws. Not really a day fan. I loved dr horrible but not because of her.
    Maybe for me the less Sam and Bobby the better so a fun guest is OK. I think day and qualls were better than most of the stunt casting this season. It has been such a mess this season with no momentum, few gems, endless wallowing of Dean and mercifully mostly constipation face from Sam (it could have been the woe is Sam show all season). Happy finally it is starting to go somewhere and happy to be excited.

    I didn’t like the time jumps but otherwise the episode moved along. I found dick more threatening this time.

    Yeah. If they needed a hacker fine. I guess baby’s location was the important info on the drive. Everything else was basic information Sam, Dean and Bobby knew (and we had guessed because it was so obvious ) . Killing and copying Frank would have given them access to the drive. Frank definitely should have set things up to destroy his own drive and the offending network if hacked.

    I have seen people complain elsewhere about the suitcase being too weird for the boys to get for the bomb- actually that’s a standard hand carry case for special cargo like art, computer parts etc.

    I agree with paula that All the points about Charlie’s specialness must point to the winchesters in the end, and hopefully Dean. Dick was afraid of Dean.

    I thought Dean was taking note at how effective Bobby was against dick, and that he’s not convinced they should take Bobby out yet because he’s a valuable asset (and dangerous ). At this point the most valuable asset they have against dick. Dean is clearly in charge. If bai was any indication he will be the leader of team get dick.

    The stone’ cuneiform ‘ tablet in the promo… weird artifact. Cuneiform tablets are usually mudbrick although cylinder seals are stone. Maybe its not cuneiform although it looked it rather than demotic or hieratic. Definitely not hieroglyphs.
    Anyhow I assume its ancient info of relevance to the end game.

    I can barely make head or tails of the
    Promo. Cas… tablet … blur…

    So did anyone catch day saying: the really evil ones require a special sword. On other sites a sword is being swung as

    Interesting info Ann Emmess. There was another earlier in the season as well that they talked about rewriting the dialogue. I think it was a Sam and Dean post amy moment. It is bad if your leads refuse to say the lines as written. Maybe that’s why she wrote them out of the show. Ja also said he’d like to go 11 seasons.

    1. castiel'scat

      Sorry I wasn’t focused when I wrote my post. Cuneiform tablets were written on unfired clay, not mudbrick ( building material also unfired). The not being fired creates conservation issues shared by both. Too esoteric?

  9. Cassieo

    Funny! And yes, Robbie Thompson fell short this time, but he had a harder script also. He’s okay for fillers and maybe he’ll be better under Carver.

    1. Ginger

      The writers pitch the stories and the writers write the political remarks, the cutesy little spasm dance, add the special little ‘sparkle’ to the character, and can choose to watch the G** D**ned show, or at least a few episodes of the current season to know what the hell the show is about and what is going on (or has gone on one episode prior).

      1. Cassieo

        The writers do pitch the stories and develop the characters for the episode, but this time he wrote a serial episode not a procedural one, so all his dialogue might not have been his own. His episode had to fit in with what was coming in the next few episodes and that could have tied his hands a bit. He did do to great episodes so I’m willing to give him the benefit of the doubt. Charlie’s ‘sparkle’ and the political remarks may not have been his idea.

        But yeah, if all you are interested in the season was the levies, only a few episodes needed to be watch….like maybe 5.

        1. Ginger

          We will agree to disagree, as I do not believe for one minute that Thompson was instructed to insert political commentary or that his script was so heavily edited as to insert the number of political references that it did.

          I am not a long-time sci-fi fan. I turned to sci-fi and foreign films because I was sick to death of Hollywood’s political commentary and social engineering, and that is when I discovered SPN. I haven’t been to a movie in ten years and avoid watching anything connected to the Oscars like the plague. It is rare that politics is a prominent theme in sci-fi. Sometimes it is in foreign films, but you know that going in when you watch it.

          To me, Thompson’s script screamed everything I hate and detest about Hollywood. They can keep their political views to themselves, as I seriously doubt they are as well schooled in politics as I am, most are not as well educated as I am, I sure as hell know they are no smarter than I am, and I resent being visually schooled as if I were a cult member following a yoda master. I don’t care what their politics are, I didn’t ask to know, and I don’t care to share my time listening to their views unless they want to spend their time listening to mine.

          I hope Carver puts a stop to this kind of crap storytelling and gets back to a horror/drama like SPN is supposed to be. I hope he actually uses his two leads as lead characters. I hope he actually tells a coherent story. I hope he actually knows how to run a show so that it is compelling and not a grab bag of…well, everything we’ve gotten in the past two years. SPN can still be a good series with proper planning, writing, and plotting. He’s got the actors that can deliver. That’s all I want; a good story, with good actors, and something that entertains me.

  10. Arafel

    “Holy Irritating Mary Sue, Batman!”

    “Charlie herself was…yeah. Not so great unless you’re a huge Felicia Day fan. Which was a problem because there was a lot of her in this episode”

    “As she leaves, Dean tells Sam she is like “the little sister I never wanted.” Hear, hear, Dean. How I wish this had actually been one of those terrible “little sister” fics you see all the time on Fanfiction.Net and not an actual episode.”

    These quotes pretty much sum up my feelings on this episode, too, Paula. And because of the again feeling of this episode seeming more like a pilot for a spin-off for a guest star than Supernatural, it should have been placed somewhere mid-season, IMO. As one of the last episodes of the current season, it gets a Fail from me. And Dean’s line about them sitting in the van and sending in the 90 lb. girl to do all the work was a good reflection on too many of the episodes this season, if you ask me.

    “I also liked that the brothers didn’t just accept Ghost!Bobby back with open arms, but what’s with switch-hitting which brother is unhappier with him each episode? Last week, Sam was all for having a Ghost!Bobby as their ace in the hole, over Dean’s objections that Bobby would eventually go rabid. This week, he’s all shocked that Ghost!Bobby is turning rabid (as Dean predicted), while Dean just wearily admits that, yeah, the situation is, as usual, SOL. It seems as though Dean can’t catch a break. Whatever position he takes is wrong, especially when he’s right.”

    And then there was this. And GhostBobbySue. Again. And some more. Gun. Mouth. Now.
    I’d just like to add that I think it’s creepy as hell that they can never tell if GhostBobby might be listening in on their conversations w/o them knowing it and that it seems little different to me from Cas “spying” on them last season.

    “Dean, looking like a total MOTW (and, thankfully, giving me a moment of sheer hotness in the middle of this episodic desert)”

    Ah, ever the saving grace of this show. I read that this was a new director. About that, I’ll only say that the main reason I re-watched this one was because of the beautiful way that he shot JA in it. Gorgeous. It was one of those episodes for me. 😉

    I loved Flirting 101 and the way that Dean said, “Baby…”, on finding out that Dick Roman might learn the whereabouts of the Impala.
    If they would tone down the Sue-ing and the arrogance, I think the Charlie character would work better. And I have no doubt that since she lived, we’ll probably see her again.

    On to next week…As always, thanks for the interesting and entertining re-cap, Paula.

  11. Deenort

    I wish Dick would bib himself and save Dean & Sam the hassle of sorting him out, but I suppose then we wouldn’t get to enjoy all the high jinks of Ghost!Bobby and his vengeful quest. Dick is more tiresome then terrifying. He’s a very dull villian and there’s very little menace to him, unlike Edgar earlier in the season. Dick, like Lucifer, is just not that scary.

    I agree with Arafel that it’s creepy that the boys don’t know whether Bobby is listening to their conversations, but there are a lot of options they could use to get him out of their way. It’s a shame that the writers don’t use one of those options. Actually, it’s a shame that they brought in Ghost!Bobby in the first place. His presence is taking screentime away from the boys and their hunts, which isn’t making for very interesting viewing.

    Charlie, I could take her or leave her, mostly leave her. I’m not familiar with Felicia Day, so I had no expectations one way or the other, but if she never shows up again, I’m fine with that. The episode overall was okay and at least it had few “what the hell?” moments than last week. The tablet was interesting, though. I’m interested to see where that leads.

  12. Sunny

    Nice review Paula, I so agree with your points about Charlie. I’m not a Day fan so to me she was basically just like any other guest star except they made her very annoying at times. I think a lot of what happened in this episode with her could have been cut out entirely and all the digs that liking Harry Potter or LOTR makes you a nerd seemed stupid to me. Harry Potter especially is so mainstream that if you tell someone you haven’t read it, they look at you like you’re doing yourself a great disservice lol. I didn’t really enjoy this episode at all; Dean looked good though. Jensen is really the saving grace for me this season. Even when things are boring I can look at him or just focus on Dean.

    I’m beyond sick of ghost!Bobby too. I think we’re supposed to see him as bad ass or whatever but his whining is really getting on my nerves. It’s sort of like when Sam absolved himself of feeling grief and we were supposed to be okay with it because of all his time in hell. Yet also be concerned for Bobby because he’s obviously going vengeful now. I just don’t care though; this season has been filled with stuff I don’t care about. Like the whole slaughter house thing? I don’t see the point because the Levis are powerful enough to just start eating people anytime they want. Even if a few fought back what could they really do about them? Dean and Sam are basically the only ones who know how to stun them but if some poor regular person tried I doubt they’d have a shot in hell of really winning. I have to say nothing about the Leviathans have scared me or shocked me except for the way early episodes with Misha playing them, and Edgar and Dr. Sexy. Since then they have been a total letdown.

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