“Caged Heat” Review
By Bekah James
Raise your hand if “Caged Heat” made your head spin. For those of you counting at home…both of my hands are up. I was firmly and comfortably ensconced in the belief that Crowley was the Big Bad for Season Six. And now? He’s super dead-like, bones burnt to crispy bits dead. With Crowley gone, who is the Big Bad? We’re at mid-Season (woe) and Sera is changing the playbook on us. And, come to think of it, does that mean the hunt for Alphas is now over? Are we finished caring about Purgatory’s apparently excellent location-location-location?
I’m sure Hell has put an ad out on Craigslist for a new king. So let’s consider the applicants. Hm. Who do we know that could rein in the denizens of Hell? Meg?! Not likely. A new character? Nah. How about… Sam? I’m not sure I’m ready to throw all of my chips into the pot on the theory, but isn’t it fun to imagine Soulless Sam as el captain of the S.S. Hellboat?
Enough imagining for now.
Once again we are talking about Sam’s soul. Does he want it back or not? Viewers have known for a handful of episodes now that no, he really doesn’t. Dean is a little late to the realization party, but hey, he doesn’t have the benefit of camera angles or TiVo, so I can forgive him for not picking up on the signs of Sam’s reticence. I am guessing the writer, Brett Matthews, thought we needed a more definitive HEY LOOK OVER HERE foreshadowing moment, so he let Sam overhear Cas’s prediction as to the health of Sam’s soul. Well, considering Sam’s line of incredulous questioning in “Clap Your Hands If You Believe” (“So having a soul means suffering?”), it’s no surprise that his opinion is solidified by hearing he may suffer horrifically if his soul is returned. And really, as Sam says, when angels and demons start agreeing on anything, it’s time to listen.
I’m impressed that Meg has survived six Seasons on this show, where women don’t fair too well. She holds the record for longest lasting female character (change of meatsuit notwithstanding). Her dialogue was jam packed with sexual innuendo-so much that I almost felt dirty the way she said…hell, almost everything! I think it worked well with Cas and his, er, cravings this week. I was perplexed that Dean released Meg from the torture table and then didn’t kill her. Almost as perplexed as when he worked with her-well, ordered her-to continue the torture of Crowley…or when he handed over the knife so she could kill Crowley. It wasn’t just me who saw the pointed exchange of looks between Dean and Meg…was it? Oh, and Crowley didn’t kill Meg before he broke the Devil’s trap… what?? Why not? Oh, right, because the writers intend to bring Meg back at least one more time. Pleasepleasepleaseplease not as a love interest for Cas.
Speaking of which…Castiel, angel of the Lord, discovered porn in this episode. I am at a loss to explain or understand why. It played well with Meg…especially when Cas puts his newfound skills to use by pushing the demon into a wall and having his wicked, uh, angelic way with her. Excuse me but…say what?? I was literally frozen with my wine glass halfway to my mouth. And then I had to rewind (twice, but whatev). After I recovered, I started theorizing again. I’m starting to think he’s going to make the choice to remain on Earth. I haven’t decided if he’s going to do that as a full-on angel or a fallen one. I think that will happen because Cas seems to be waxing poetic about humanity. He admitted to the Winchesters that half the time, he wishes he could be on Earth as opposed to dealing with Heaven. He watched porn and put his lessons to work with Meg. I think Cas misses being amongst humans. As long as he is sheriff of Heaven, his time on Earth is limited. Maybe I’m just wishful thinking for Human!Cas. He’s so sweet and awkward that I just want to eat him with a spoon.
There were a lot of fights in this episode (both with words and with blood), but my favorite of the episode was Sam vs. Castiel in the middle of the street. It was shocking to hear Sam threaten to kill Cas if the angel refused to help him. And in the first of Cas’s BAMF moments this week, he cuts through the BS with a cocky little smile and asks: “Will you…boy?” It gave me buckets of shivers! I was almost sad when Cas relented and went with Sam. I wanted him to stand strong and teach him a lesson in respect! (By the way, the second BAMF moment came when Cas lit Crowley’s bones with nothing but a hand gesture and a slightly interested bored expression. Stoic bad assery FTW!) It made me smile when, at the end of the episode, Dean takes a moment to empathize with Cas’s troubles in Heaven and offer assistance…and the assurance of friendship. It’s about damn time.
On the respect front, the demons suddenly have free rein to back talk the Winchesters. It’s an interesting change from Seasons 4 and 5, when they intimidated demons with their demon-killing knife and Sam’s penchant for drinking them dry. I’m kind of in love with the smart-ass demons who don’t speak “little bitch”. But It is disarming to watch Dean not respond to such obvious insults. I do miss the days of the boys ganking demons. Fingers crossed that we get back there soon.
Oh hey… was anyone surprised that Grandpa Creepypants betrayed his grandsons? Anyone? Anyone? I felt Grandpa Creepypants’ motivation for working with Crowley was weak and trite. Really? His daughter? What hunter would thank their parent for becoming the King of Hell’s cabana boy in order to rip them from Heaven? I didn’t appreciate Mr. Matthews trying to push that thought down my gullet. It was all so… convenient. It’s not going to happen, I assume, now that Crowley is dead. There was no one above Crowley to hold Samuel’s contract so technically he is free to go live out the rest of his creepy life with the remaining Campbells. I’m hoping he disappears, except for one thing: Dean’s promise to kill him. The exact line, delivered by unparalleled intensity by Jensen Ackles: “I’ll tell you who I am. I’m the guy you never want to see again. ‘Cause I’ll make it out of here, trust me. The next time you see me, I’ll be there to kill you.” It seems to be that when Dean makes that particular promise, the character winds up dead-even if not by his own hand. Ruby, Bela, Zachariah, Christian, Crowley… it’s like he is the harbinger of Death!
The effects this week were pretty cool. I enjoyed the blood spurting out of mid-air after Meg pulled the angel knife out of the dead (and invisible) Hellhound. It was grody and awesome. My other favorite was the abrupt disappearance of Cas as he walked down the stairs. It caught me by surprise and it was accomplished with very little fanfare. In Seasons past, even when he was caught unaware, there was a few seconds delay so we could see the lights and such. But this time, it was as fast as a finger snap, which made it way more disturbing for me. My absolute favorite though? Sam’s bloody teeth after he gnaws his arm open to make his prison cell Devil’s trap. I shared an “eeewww, gross!” with my friends over that clever bit of horror.
I watched a few episodes from Seasons 3 and 4 over the weekend and realized something. I miss the beauty of this show. Season 3 had some truly amazing coloring and cinematography. The lush, rolling shots of landscape and the journey on the road in the Impala, and the quirky motel rooms. I miss it almost as much as I miss the classic rock (And really? Another week without some sort of rockin’ soundtrack? This is getting ridiculous!). I understand the point of this Season is darkness like whoa, but even I’m a little over the monotone color palette and shadows. How about tossing us a bone, Sera?
Overall, I liked this episode. It was grim and gritty, offered up more information on the heavenly civil war and gave us a turn about so big that we, as fans, can talk about the ramifications for weeks to come. I think Season 6 is great, but it lacks the heart (soul, ha) of its predecessors.
Before I go…”Caged Heat” was brought to you in part by the word “bitch”.And you know what I learned? That you can say “boner” on network TV. Who knew?
Bekah Forgot to Drink (oopsy)
Oopsy. I was visiting with a dear friend and we were drinking wine, which is way classier than I normally go. It felt wrong to play a drinking game with my Three Buck Chuck. Worry not, friends! Next week it’s back to the hard stuff! Drink with me every time someone drops dead!