Supernatural Review by John Keegan

Supernatural 10.23: Brother's Keeper

Supernatural 10.23: Brother's Keeper

Written By:
Jeremy Carver
Directed By:
Phil Sgriccia

The first thought to cross my mind after this finale was “this is the ending they were building towards at the end of Season 9”.  In other words, Carver’s admitted “padding” of his story arc, to allow it to stretch beyond its original timeframe, has never been more apparent.  The tenth season has been a long and incredibly uneven holding action.  That said, the end of this episode feels like a story transitioning into a third act.

The complication phase meandering of Winchester brotherly love-hate has reshaped into a common cause.  An apocalyptic evil bigger than anything encountered so far in the history of the series has emerged, one that threatens Heaven and Hell and ties back to the very foundations of the mythos.  It is likely that all the resources of Hunters and Men of Letters will be needed to contain that threat once more and, as long hinted, reshape the spiritual cosmology in a manner befitting “The Winchester Gospels”.

That’s not to say that all the damage from all the stalling has been repaired.  The budget doesn’t allow for an entire season of cosmic-level threat, and thus the prospect of Rowena running about with the Book of the Damned and the Codex is on the table as a recurring antagonist.  Unfortunately, that also means having to anticipate lots more Rowena, which is like anticipating a weekly root canal.  Of course, all of this also points to the prospect of an ongoing uneasy alliance between Castiel and Crowley, which is rarely a bad thing.

The highlight of the episode had to be the knockdown, drag-out fistfight between Sam and Dean.  It’s been a long time coming, and the writers have often walked right up to that line without delivering the payoff.  This felt earned, even if it should have happened a season ago.  And therein lies the biggest concern: is Season 11 going to wrap the series up in a bow, or will Carver be forced to stretch his third act as much as his second?  Trying to soft-sell an apocalypse was the Achilles’ Heel of Eric Kripke’s endgame fifth season, and it would be a shame for similar circumstances to add more challenges to Carver’s less successful era.

Our Grade:
The Good:
  • The conflict came down to the Brother Winchester, as it should be
  • Finally moving beyond the endless middle act of Carver’s story arc
The Bad:
  • Rowena is coming back next season

John Keegan aka "criticalmyth", is one of the hosts of the "Critical Myth" podcast heard here on VOG Network's radio feed Monday, Wednesday & Friday. You can follow him on twitter at @criticalmyth

Supernatural by - 5/22/2015 6:10 AM207 views

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