After a few weeks without Supernatural, I’ve been looking forward for the show to come back. There are a lot of dangling cliffhangers this season and I’m looking forward to seeing how they come together.
This episode contains a riff on the Final Destination theme, where events are conspiring to create elaborate death scenarios. The first death involves a man triggering a Rube Goldberg-like series of events that end in being decapitated by his garage door.
It turns out that there have been a string of bizarre deaths, several of them within the same families. This draws the attention of Sam and Dean, but it’s bigger than what they find. They find a piece of gold thread at each of the death scenes, but not really any other clues. Billy’s wife, Ellen, discovers that …
Yes, that’s right, Billy’s wife, Ellen. Her daughter, Jo, is out investigating a connected series of deaths in California. Now, for the reader and viewer who’s been following the show, this may seem startling for a number of reasons. Billy’s not married, for one, and Ellen and Jo are hunters who died last season.
Anyway, Billy’s wife, Ellen, discovers that the families of all of the victims came over to the U.S. at about the same time in 1912. In fact, they came over on the same ship … called the Titanic.
See where this is going?
Since neither Sam nor Dean had heard anything about the Titanic, which had a relatively uneventful trip across the Atlantic in 1912, they do some research. It turns out the Titanic had a close collision with an iceberg, narrowly averted because the first mate noticed the iceberg at the last moment. Their suspicion is aroused by the first mate’s name: I. P. Freely.
Looking up a picture of the crew, they realize that the Titanic was saved by the Archangel Balthazar. They summon him and he immediately fesses up to saving the Titanic.
Dean: Why did you unsink the ship?
Balthazar: Oh, because I hated the movie.
Dean: What movie?
Sam: Wait, so you saved a cruiseliner because …?
Balthazar: Because that God-awful Celine Dion song made me want to smelt myself.
Sam: Who’s Celine Dion?
Balthazar: Oh, she’s a destitute lounge singer somewhere in Quebec, and let’s keep it that way, please!
Balthazar explains that only small details are different. The Winchesters drive a Mustang instead of an Impala. Ellen and Jo would be dead in the other reality. He saved people, so what’s the big deal?
Sam explains that because of Balthazar’s intervention, there are now around 50,000 descendants who weren’t alive before Balthazar’s tampering … but Balthazar really doesn’t care.
This information helps Billy figure out what’s up. The Fates of mythology are behind this, as evidenced by the gold thread that they have been leaving behind. They’re trying to clean up the mess that Balthazar has left behind. Billy explains that the simplest fix would be to sink the ship again, but when Sam and Dean explain that Ellen is one of the people who would be dead, he makes them promise they won’t sink the ship.
Sam and Dean decide to follow one of the descendants they’ve tracked down. They’re able to save him from being run over by a van, only to have him be run over by a commuter bus. Sam sees a woman in a nearby building.
Dean: What did she look like?
Sam: Kind of like a librarian.
Dean: Your kind of librarian or my kind of librarian?
Sam: Well, she was wearing clothes, if that’s what you mean.
Dean thinks they’re safe, since they have nothing to do with the boat. Instead, they almost blow themselves up by accidentally igniting a building full of natural gas, but are rescued at the last minute by Castiel, who teleports them away. He explains that Fate’s a bit pissed at them, since they averted the Apocalypse and made her obsolete. Because of them there is no longer any fate (which is, incidentally, why Balthazar was able to change history in the first place.)
Castiel convinces them to “tempt fate,” resulting in one of the funniest sequences I’ve seen in the show. It’s a montage of them encountering potential death-traps to the tune of Blondie’s “One Way or Another.” The events escalate as they walk down the street, encountering teenagers on bikes, large dogs, jugglers wielding knives, hatchets, and flaming batons, and a construction worker with a malfunctioning nail gun … all with no near fatalities. “Who do you gotta kill to get killed around here?” Dean mumbles.
Then something falls from the sky (I think it’s an air conditioning unit, but can’t tell for sure) … and time freezes. Castiel approaches the Fate (Atropos, the maiden incarnation of Fate) and tries to tell her that her services are no longer needed, because people are now free.
But Atropos accuses Castiel of ordering Balthazar to save the Titanic. “You’re in the middle of a war and you’re desperate. Come on, this is about the souls.” (This mirrors the language that Death used when he rescued Sam’s soul.) Castiel originally denies it, but she continues. “That angel went and created 50,000 new souls for your war machine. No, you can’t just mint money, Castiel. It’s wrong. It’s dangerous. And I won’t let you.”
“You don’t have a choice,” Castiel replies, essentially confessing that this was his plan all along. Except the problem is that if Castiel doesn’t fix the Titanic situation, the Fates will target Sam and Dean for vengeance and “Fate strikes when you least expect it.” Castiel grudgingly agrees …
The final segments starts with Sam and Dean waking up in their Impala with Celine Dion’s “My Heart Will Go On” playing on the radio. Turns out they both had the same dream. Castiel shows up, explaining that it wasn’t a dream. He explains that everything has been fixed, including Ellen and Jo now being dead. They remember the alternate reality because Castiel wanted them to. He wanted them to understand that Fate was cruel and capricious, because they were the ones who made him realize that freedom was something worth fighting for.
However, Castiel does lie to the boys, by allowing them to think that Balthazar really did destroy the Titanic because he hated the film, rather than revealing that he was behind the whole thing.
We’ll no doubt find out more, because the promo for next week’s episode shows Castiel sending the boys back in time to the old west. Judging from the pictures on the website, it looks like they’re going to meet Samuel Colt, so I look forward to seeing where this leads.
- Episode 6.16 – “And Then There Were None”
- Episode 6.15 – “The French Mistake”
- Episode 6.14 – “Mannequin 3: The Reckoning”
- Episode 6.13 – “Unforgiven”
- Episode 6.12 – “Like a Virgin”
- Episode 6.11 – “Appointment in Samarra”
- Episode 6.10 – “Caged Heat”
- Episode 6.9 – “Clap Your Hands If You Believe”
- Episode 6.8 – “All Dogs Go to Heaven”
- Episode 6.7 – “Family Matters”
- Episode 6.6 – “You Can’t Handle the Truth”
- Episode 6.5 – “Live Free or Twi-hard”
- Episode 6.4 – “Weekend at Bobby’s”
- Episode 6.3 – “The Third Man”
- Episode 6.2 – “Two and a Half Men”
- Episode 6.1 – “Exile on Main Street”
- Supernatural Seasons 4 & 5
- Supernatural Seasons 2 & 3
- Supernatural Season 1
- Smart Pop Books – Supernatural: Reload