Episode 11.14

“The Vessel” Review

By Annie Kenney

The title of this episode had a dual meaning – the Vessel may have meant the submarine that Dean was transported back to or it might have meant Lucifer using Castiel – unfortunately I was so bored by most of the episode that I actually didn’t care what it meant in the end and I am going to have to be very careful when I write this review so as not to upset anyone!

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There was a lot I didn’t like about The Vessel. Firstly I hate the fact that Dean always gets to go back in time and Sam very rarely does…how nice it would be to see Sam in the thick of the action while Dean sits in the bunker and waits for him. Mind you Dean didn’t actually do much when he went back in time so that may well be a moot point. In fact I spent a lot of time wondering why the heck Dean did go back and, it might just be me, I was a tad confused for most of the episode!

Secondly I really, really didn’t like the scenes in Hell where Luciel/Casifer was taunting Crowley and calling him ‘doggie.’ These scenes made me feel very uneasy and I found them unsettling. They didn’t strike me as necessary and, despite myself, I felt really sorry for Crowley. Having him chained and treated like a pet seemed a bit nasty (and I know Lucifer is meant to be nasty but…) the whole thing wasn’t pleasant and it wasn’t like the program I have grown to know and love.

Thirdly – and this is going to make me very unpopular and I beg forgiveness before I even put the words down – I don’t really enjoy Misha’s performance as Lucifer all that much. At the beginning I was unsure, then I sort of got used to it but now I’m not sure again. It is none too subtle and very over the top. There is a lot of face pulling and grimacing and, although I realise that Misha is trying to channel Mark I’m not sure that it’s working. On one hand it’s good that Castiel finally has something to get his teeth into, on the other hand I’m not sure that this is the best thing for the character. Of course this is only my opinion. Four nights playing the Charwomen in A Christmas Carol does not make me an expert on acting nor does it make me a critic. What one person hates another person loves so please take this on board when you read this review!

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Anyway back to the story; I’m uncertain as to what this episode was meant to do or how it moved the story on. We met Delphine who was a woman of letters (how Charlie would have loved her) and she was a very good character. We know that she had ‘The Hand of God’ and that this weapon might help the fight against Amara (the Darkness). We know Dean went back to get said weapon and we know that Sam was made to stay at home because he was stronger and might actually be able to kill Amara whereas Dean could not.

And that – in a nutshell – was that.

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This episode was amazingly talky; there was a bit of action at the end, a few good scenes where the sub caught on fire. There was the realisation from Sam that Cas was actually Lucifer and there was a brief appearance of the real Castiel which made you realise how much you had actually missed him! The two brothers were apart (which I personally don’t like) and there were a few anonymous crewmen who didn’t really register. We knew the Sub would go down and the sub went down. The only surprise is that Delphine’s lover was actually a member of the Thule and was still alive (although not for long).

So what did I like? Sam and Dean’s exchanges at the beginning and at the end of the episode. It’s nice to see them close and honest with each other. Sam’s bad ass move to get rid of Lucifer by using the blood sigil, Delphine who was pretty kick ass for a woman of her time and Castiel’s brief appearance after he touched Sam’s soul.

What didn’t I like? The rest of it to be honest. I was bored and when I wasn’t bored I was perplexed. I found the Hell scenes disagreeable and some of the acting questionable.

So what now? Lucifer has gone – but not for long. Is Castiel going to make another appearance? Is Lucifer going to help kill the darkness or does he have another agenda? How are Sam and Dean going to save Cas? Can they save him? There are a lot of questions and I don’t have any answers and – to be honest – I’m not sure where all this is going (not that that is a bad thing).

For this episode 4/10 with extra marks for Dean’s witty coffee remarks and Sam’s sigil action.

And remember – this is just an opinion and you are certainly welcome to disagree as much as you like!