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News Article

Television Tourniquet: 'Supernatural' Episode 5.16


Supernatural Episode 5.16
Dark Side of the Moon
Written By: Andrew Dabb and Daniel Loflin
Directed By: Jeff Woolnough
Original Airdate: 1 April 2010

In This Episode...
The Winchester boys wake to find masked men holding them at rifle point.  Dean recognizes one of them as Roy, which would make the other one Walt.  They have come to kill Sam for setting off the apocalypse.  And they succeed.

Dean finds himself alone in the car, on a dark highway.  An 8-year-old Sam brings Dean a crate of fireworks, and Dean remembers this memory - Fourth of July, 1996.  After the boys shoot off fireworks, Dean hears Cas over the car radio to explain.  He is dead; this is heaven.  Cas tells Dean to follow the road to find Sam, and whatever you do, don’t go into the light.

Dean meets up with Sam at the house of Sam’s first girlfriend.  An earthquake and a beam of light brings Cas back, this time as a Poltergeist image on the TV, with a better explanation.  The light is the angel Zachariah.  He wants to return the boys to life so they can say yes to the devil.  But Cas wants them to find a different angel, Joshua.  Joshua speaks to God and Cas is desperate to see what God has to say.

The guys visit a couple of different setups: breakfast at home with mommy dearest; Sam’s two weeks on his own when he ran away; the night Sam left for college.  Dean is hurt that all of Sam’s ideas of “heaven” involve not being with his family.  Before they can explore this deep, psychological issue, Zachariah catches up with them.  They can run but they can’t hide, until a Mexican wrestler jumps out of the forest and leads them to a tree, where he draws a door and leads the boys through, Nightmare Before Christmas-style.

Lucha Libre is Ash, who explains a little bit more about heaven.  Everyone gets their own slice of heaven, with “the garden” (of Eden?) at the center.  You cannot move between heavens, but Ash has figured out a way.  He opens up a shortcut to the garden for Sam and Dean, but cannot go with.

Through the door, the guys come face-to-face with Demon Mommy.  Her eyes glow yellow, she bleeds beneath her nightgown, and she tells Dean how much she hates him, and what a burden he was.  Zachariah pops up, insinuates that he is fucking Mrs. Winchester, then snaps his fingers and she zaps away.  In her place comes an old man, who insists Zachariah leave.  The old man takes the boys into a literal garden, and reveals that he is the angel Joshua.  He has a message from God: he’s out.  Leave him alone.  God knows that the apocalypse has begun, and he doesn’t care.  He has intervened enough.

The boys wake up in their blood-splattered motel room.  Cas has been disillusioned - if he weren’t an angel he would become an atheist.  Sam is determined they will find another way to stop the apocalypse.

Dig It or Bury It?
Ugh, bury it.  This episode was just dull, dull, dull.  Like last week, it was wordy, with little humor and less action.  It felt like the writers took a simple concept - the boys going to heaven and looking for God’s mouthpiece - and made it convoluted.   Additionally, there was randomness that seemed like filler.  When Ash brings them to his heaven, he also pulls out Pamela to say hi.  Pamela’s two minutes of screen time serves no purpose other than to gently smack Dean for killing her, telling him heaven is a wonderful place, and kissing him farewell.  The most enjoyable part of the whole episode was Ash. 

I am so, so sick of Sam and Dean’s mommy issues.  We get it - their family situation fucked them up royally.  If I wanted to watch people with mommy issues, I would watch Grey’s Anatomy.  Blow some shit up, please.  This episode was so dull it actually made me angry.

Sibling Rivalry
Dean puts the pieces together and realizes that Sam’s idea of heaven is being away from him: going to college, running away from home, having a real Thanksgiving dinner at a friend’s house.  Being without his brother is Dean’s idea of hell.  He looks torn between punching his brother and crying like a baby when he figures it out.  Luckily for Sam, Zachariah interrupts.

Blood Brothers
Mama Winchester gushes blood from her abdomen, soaking her white nightgown, but otherwise, this is a bloodless, actionless episode.

Spooky Humor
The funniest part of this lackluster episode was Ash running around in his Mexican wrestler costume.  That, and his mullet.

Apparently people are forming a religious army... which side they are fighting for is up in the air.