“Repo Man” Review
By Bekah James
Supernatural 7.15: Repo Man
Written by Ben Edlund
Directed by Thomas J. Wright
I was so excited about this week’s episode. The teaser last week promised us some good ol’ Lucifer fun, and this episode did not disappoint. I don’t know about y’all, but I was wondering how Sam was doing with all of that. So I settled in with a bottle of hooch and got ready for the fun.
The opening scene brought us a demon. A DEMON! Can I get a “hell yeah!”? I have missed the black eyed bastards so much. I don’t think I even realized it until I saw this one tethered to the chair. Only a demon can deliver a line like “I’m going to scoop you out like a pumpkin” and be taken as seriously as the swine flu. I loved it. The torture was intense and more than a little gruesome. Now, there’s no way to tell if this was before or after Dean went to Hell, since Lilith was a main player in Seasons 3 and 4 (and four years ago could be the end of 3 or the beginning of 4), but Dean’s an impressive torturer regardless. And let’s not overlook Sam’s involvement in the whole thing. It is moments like this one that remind us all how very dangerous and determined the Winchesters are. Sometimes I forget important details like that. They have suffered so much loss recently and that has made them more human and less, well, scary to me. But this scene, this made me reconsider that notion all together.
Now, Ben Edlund wrote this episode, and as we all know, when Ben is wielding the almighty pen, he scribes something truly grody. I point you to “On The Head Of A Pin” and “My Bloody Valentine” (oh look, two of my favorite episodes!). Not only is Ben the Master of Eew, but he is also The Man when it comes to snappy dialogue. I put him second only to Kripke himself. I knew that Hallucifer would be lobbing some real winners in the one-liner department, and oh how right I was. My favorite might have been this very simple gem: “Avacado grime. Takes years to build up a patina like this.” Patina? Did Hallucifer really just say patina? Ha!
Mark Pellegrino knocked it out of the proverbial park this week. He was a perfect blend of creepy and comforting—kind of like a big brother who’s done hard time or something. I enjoyed the one-sided interaction between him and Jared so very much. I imagine it was a difficult task for Jared to ignore him, and a difficult task for Mark to be talking to himself. They both played it beautifully. When the two of them started working together, I about flipped. THIS is what I’ve been waiting for. It was inevitable that Sam would acknowledge Hallucifer. Now that Hallucifer is helpful—like Jimney Cricket—Sam is going to use the resource. Now, I get where Sam was going this week. He agreed to work with his hallucination (what? How would I ever explain this to a non-SPN fan?) in order to save Dean. Yes, I think we all would have done the same, but did Sam really think there would be no consequences to working with the DEVIL? Hallucination or not, I can’t imagine the Devil having a seven day return policy. No. The Devil was the very first person in recorded history to utter the phrase “No take backs”. True fact.
Let’s talk about the library scenes for a moment. There were parts I loved and parts I hated. First, the part I hated: The fat girl comments/jokes. I get that it’s Hallucifer and all, but it was uncalled for. That never would have been okay if it had been any other group of people. Imagine, if you will, them taking a pot shot at gays, or the disabled, or a minority. I imagine Ben was going for gritty or edgy, but I think he missed the mark on this one. Now, the part I loved: The patrons banging the hell out of their heads on the tables. WHAT? That was insane! The fact that Hallucifer created a bloody and violent scene in order to win Sam’s attention because he was bored struck me as exactly the kind of thing he would do.
There was a new director at the helm this week. Thomas J. Wright, who has worked on series such as “Firefly”, “NCIS”, “Dark Angel”, “Smallville”… the list goes on and is quite impressive. I’m always a little nervous when a new director takes a whack at this show. There are SO.MANY things they need to know/ remember. For example, in the opening scene, not only is the Impala there (woot!), but we also see Dean’s amulet, ring and bracelet. He clearly did his homework. His attention to detail was also apparent with the flies buzzing around the covered—and very bloody—bodies under the sheets in the parking structure. He also brought back the dank, and very green, look to the Winchester World. I do have one question… where in the world did the devil’s trap come from in the warehouse? Jeffrey wouldn’t have done it. He certainly wouldn’t have let Dean do it. Nora and Sam didn’t have time to do it. What… was it Hallucifer? Come on. But really, that was just one fumble in an otherwise triumphant episode.
As for Jeffrey. What a sick bastard. Well, Dean always said that monsters are easy to understand, but people—people are crazy. The casting of Russell Sams was a stroke of genius. He has a wide-eyed innocence that had me completely fooled. He adopted a rescue dog and walked with a limp, for pete’s sake! I loved the guy… right until he wigged out and knocked Dean unconscious. Man, it has been a long time since a character got the jump on me. I am gratified that he also got the jump on Dean. If Dean didn’t figure it out, I haven’t really lost my edge. Shew.
It served Jeffrey right that when the demon came back, he chose to possess Nora’s son. I liked the idea that the demon’s raison d’être was finding the potential evil in human society and guiding those souls into murder and treachery. Yeah… that sounds pretty demonic. Actually, that is what my grandma always said demons DO, so that fit right in with what I’ve always known. I liked it. It was twisted and repulsive. Yep. I liked it.
The special effects this go around were subtle. That is usually what makes them pretty awesome to me. Hallucifer zapping out when Jeffrey and the boys were having their catch-up chat was awesome. The best thing though—hands down—was Hallucifer’s forked tongue. It surprised me, grossed me out, and made me laugh. Oh man, that was epic.
Okay, so it comes down to this. “Repo Man” was a rare treat in a post-Apocalyptic Supernatural world. There was a sadistic demon, a crazy serial killer human, a little torture, Hallucifer and a teaser that showed Misha Freakin’ Collins returning to the show. Yeah. This episode was a Win with a capital W.