The Winchester brothers are working together again, but things are still rocky. Their latest investigation takes them undercover at a fancy health spa where clients go to lose weight – with deadly results.
Definition – PURGE: verb \ˈpərj\a : to cause something to leave the body b : to free from moral or ceremonial defilement c : to clear of guilt
Dean is back at the bunker, but things are chilly between the brothers. Sam asks if Dean’s strange mood has to do with his working terms – business partners, not brothers – but Dean has put up his wall and tells him with his usual bravado that it would take more than that to break him. Interesting that Dean looks at it that way. Does he feel that this is his punishment and he must endure? Is that what Sam is doing?
The search for Metatron and Gadreel is slow, but the Winchesters will always have monsters to track and Dean finds them a case of mysterious deaths to investigate. While the guys are in hunt mode, one would never guess there was any tension between them. That is the beauty of the brothers’ relationship (working relationship, at least). This episode is another humorous one – dark humor, but still some pretty funny moments. What really works here is the progress of the investigation and the way the audience gets to follow the trail along with the Winchesters. They discuss the clues along the way and use past encounters with monsters (changeling, succubus, etc.) to help them along. This is something the show has done so well from the beginning. Bravo, writers!
The first death leads to the wife of a “professional” food-eating competitor. The wife happens to be a gypsy and, after Sam finds a “putsi” hex-type bag, a lead suspect. Their interview with her ends up being rather bittersweet (she was in love with the victim and they planned to run off together) and it brings out a bit of the romantic in Dean (his whimsical smile at her “Princess Jasmine” memory is priceless – not to mention his awkward embarrassment afterward). It harkens back to Garth’s comment in “Sharp Teeth” that Dean is a “big ol’ teddy bear” at heart.
Although the gypsy woman ends up being a dead end, the next victim (I felt her pain when she stepped on that scale and had gained weight) leads them to a wellness spa where the real fun begins. Sam and Dean are at their best when in full “character” mode for an investigation — Sam as the slightly clueless fitness trainer (Padalecki legs, yay!) and Dean as the grumpy food server (yes, Jensen even looks good in a hairnet). The brothers’ work together beautifully to catch the culprit – a pishtaco (not a fish taco) – and a new creature to the monster list is added.
Another interesting factor in this story is that, once again, the boys are faced with one monster, Alonso, who gives in to his more vicious instincts and another, Maritza, who has found a way to satisfy her needs (fat) and has even found a way to help the people she is using. It is also a case of siblings who have gone in completely opposite directions in the choices they have made in life. They have tried to work together, but failed.
Dean wants to kill Maritza after the case is solved but Sam argues for saving her, using his possession by Gadreel as a deterrent (“What if a hunter killed me while I was possessed by Gadreel? Would I have deserved to die?”). It’s salt in the wounds of Dean’s guilt, but it works – Maritza lives but with a one-way ticket back to Peru. The last shot of her shows her alone in this beautiful place that she and her husband built. She has lost her husband, her brother, and her way of living — all in one fell swoop. This is not a monster.
Back at the bunker, the brothers are alone again with their tension. Dean is drinking more and is still struggling with Sam’s decision to cut the brotherly ties between them. He makes another effort to break down Sam’s negative logic about their fractured relationship. For Dean, who has spent his whole life protecting and saving Sam, his actions at the hospital with Gadreel/Ezekiel were no different than his actions at the spa when he killed Alonso, as he was attacking Sam; or his talking Sam out of completing the trials and giving up his life at the church. For Dean, these choices are ingrained in every fiber of his being. When Sam suggests that Dean’s actions had more to do with Dean’s inability to be alone – that saving him was for Dean not Sam and he can dish out the pain, but not take it – it is like a slap to the face. Dean is clearly upset by the implication, but is it because it is absurd or too close to the truth? Does Sam really believe this or is the suggestion the best way to distance himself from the negative fallout from Dean saving his life? Maybe it is part of Sam’s feeling that he is not worth saving. In a last ditch effort, Dean tries to turn the tables – wouldn’t Sam do the same thing Dean did if the situation was reversed? Wouldn’t Sam do anything to save Dean? Sam’s reply, “No, I wouldn’t” is stark and cold and a punch to the gut for Dean. It is written all over his face.
Somewhere along the way, the brothers Winchester have lost each other in the fight.
Supernatural airs on The CW on Tuesdays at 9/8c. Full episodes are also available at the http://www.cwtv.com/shows/supernatural/ and On Demand (check your cable listings) as well as on iTunes, Amazon, Hulu and Google Play.
I always like to include some of my favorite quotes and exchanges from the episode. If you have some quotes or moments you liked, please share in the comments section.#1 Contest referee: “No chipmunking allowed!! Swallow – or you’re disqualified!” #2 Sam: “You go to bed last night?” Dean: “What? Uh, no. [clears throat] No, “Rudy” was on, and then, uh… “Unforgiven,” and then I was too jacked to sleep, so… [looks into his glass of whisky, motions toward computer] research. [drinks]” Sam: “Gadreel?” Dean: “Yeah and Metatron and the Mark of Cain and… crickets.” [steals a glance at Sam as he makes coffee.] #3 Sam: “You sure you’re okay, Dean?” Dean: “Why wouldn’t I be?” Sam: “’Cause – I don’t know, you… This isn’t about what I said the other day, is it?” Dean: “Oh, about that we’re not supposed to be brothers? No, don’t flatter yourself. I don’t break that easy.” Sam: “Oh, good, ‘cause I was just being honest.” Dean: “Oh, yeah. No, I got that loud and clear.” #4 Dean, to Slim Jim’s wife, Mala: “I don’t mean to be rude, uh… but how is it that Wayne McNut is your type? I mean, you’re married to a man who’s barely a buck – wet.” Mala: “What can I say? Sometimes it’s nice to feel a little ‘give’.” Dean: “Oh. Yeah, I get that – a little extra cushion for the, uh –” [Dean makes slight hand gesture as Sam gives him a sharp look.] #5 This one is not really a quote, but an exchange nonetheless — the genuine smile that Dean gives Mala when she says, “Wayne used to call me his Princess Jasmine.” And then the embarrassed sidelong glance he gives Sam to try to hide the moment. Priceless. #6 Dean: “Known fact – all women lie about their weight and age.” Sam: “Wait, you told that waitress the other day you were 20.” Dean: “Mmm-hmm.” #7 Dean, to Sam regarding the pretty blonde female trainer at the gym: “Ain’t gonna happen.” Sam: “Why?” Dean: “Because you’re weird around girls.” Sam: “What does that mean, ‘weird’?” Dean: “You’re awkward. You know, weird – Sam weird.” [Sam reacts] “Sorry, man. I’m just being honest.” #8 Alonso (Maritza’s brother), to Dean in dining room talking to Sam: “Hey, new guy. Quit flirtin’ with the trainer and keep scoopin’, huh?” #9 Sam to Dean: “My, uh… Ashtanga yoga class starts in five minutes.” Dean: “How the hell do you know anything about yoga?” Sam: “You’re not the only one who’s ever dated someone bendy.” #10 Dean: “About what you said the other day.” Sam: “I thought it didn’t bother you.” Dean: “You know, Sam, I saved your hide back there. And I saved your hide at that church… and the hospital. I may not think things all the way through. Okay? But what I do, I do because it’s the right thing. I’d do it again.” Sam: “And that… is the problem. Y-you think you’re my savior, m-my brother, the hero. You swoop in, and even when you mess up, you think what you’re doing is worth it because you’ve convinced yourself you’re doing more good than bad… But you’re not. I mean, Kevin’s dead, Crowley’s in the wind, uh… we’re no closer to beating this angel thing. Please tell me, what is the upside of me being alive?” Dean: “You kiddin’ me? You and me – fighting the good fight together.” And the final favorite exchange of the episode is the last punch in the gut at the end of the episode: Sam: “Just once, be honest with me. You didn’t save me for me. You did it for you.” Dean: “What are you talkin’ about?” Sam: “I was ready to die. I was ready. I should have died, but you… you didn’t want to be alone. And that’s what all this boils down to. You can’t stand the thought of being alone. I’ll give you this much. You are certainly willing to do the sacrificing, as long as you’re not the one being hurt.” Dean: “All right, you want to be honest? If the situation were reversed and I was dying, you’d do the same thing.” Sam: “No, Dean. I wouldn’t. Same circumstances… I wouldn’t.”