The Official Supernatural: “Good Intentions” (13.14) Live Recap Thread

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My collected recaps and reviews of season one, which first appeared on Innsmouth Free Press, are now up (with a few extras) on Kindle. The Kindle version is available through  Amazon. The print version is also up. If you buy the print version, you get a Kindle copy thrown in for free. I also get paid if you get it on Kindle Unlimited (for free), read the Kindle version, or lend it to a friend via the Kindle Owners Lending Library. Just FYI.

Whoo, the title to this one was so boring, I kept having to look it up to remember it. Let’s get cracking.

Recap of the Donatello storyline, which does not bode too well for Donatello. Sorry, Mr. Redshirt Prophet. I’m gonna miss you, Keith.

Cut to Jack, who wakes up in the Bunker to hear the Brothers talking about how glad they are to have him back. Then the alarm goes off and smoke comes through the grate in the bottom of the door. He rushes out into the corridor to find that Sam and Dean are trapped inside a room and calling for help. He tries to use his power to break through the door, but he can’t get it open as they plead for their lives.

I’m sure it’s a surprise to no one watching this that it’s a mind game (am getting tired of the whole “Let’s make the protagonists look like fools” trope. It’s greatly overused of late). The only twist is that it’s alt-Zachariah doing some kind of mind control thing on Jack to get him to use his powers to make an interdimensional rift at alt-Michael’s behest. Alt-Michael tells Zachariah to hurry up and get it done, and Zachariah thinks he knows a way to do it. No, sadly, we do not get Kurt Fuller back.

Cue title cards.

Donatello is working on the Demon Tablet, writing down words and phrases: “blood,” “symbols,” “danger,” “open the tear into worlds,” “all will burn,” “the born one.” Comforting messages like that, while distorted voices that kind of sound like Sam and Dean harangue him.

Castiel knocks on the door and asks to come in. He brings breakfast and asks if Donatello is all right. Donatello says sure (as he hides something under a paper), but does comment that the tablet has a lot of power. He also says he’s “making progress.” As soon as Castiel leaves, Donatello uncovers the paper and keeps working on it.

In the kitchen, Dean is eating a plate-ful of bacon, while Sam kvetches. Business as usual on that end.

Dean: Dude, if bacon’s what kills me, I win.

He’s got a point.

So, Castiel comes in and we finally get what the plan was last week – they were going to tap some of Lucifer’s archangel grace for their spell. Okay, whatev.

Meanwhile, Jack finds himself on a misty beach near Vancouver. “Castiel” shows up and says he wanted to show Jack the world before it was ruined by humans. Except, like Apocalypse World has been “saved” by angels and look how that turned out. Hmm. “Castiel” claims that Jack has to use his powers to “save us all,” that Sam and Dean taught Jack to “fear” his powers.

Jack finally buys a clue from Vanna and realized this isn’t Castiel. He wakes up in the grody old church that is alt-Michael’s hideout. Losing patience, alt-Michael tosses Jack and alt-Zachariah into respective corners and then grabs Jack for “my way.” Because that’s been working so well so far.

Back to Donatello, who is writing down “between our world” and “mix thoroughly.” He looks squirrely and then we see him running through the halls into the kitchen with a piece of paper, yelling “Eureka!”

Sam looks at the paper. One surprise is that they have most of the ingredients. Another is that they don’t need archangel grace for this particular spell (Donatello looks shifty at this – hmm). A third is what they do need – “the hearts of Gog and Magog.”

Castiel says he’s “heard rumors,” but didn’t realize Gog and Magog were actual people. Donatello says they were warriors who had “enslaved half the Fertile Crescent” before being locked away beyond space and time. Castiel offers to go fight them and Dean says he’ll come with. As Castiel looks suspicious, Donatello too-cheerfully says he and Sam can stay behind to find the ingredients. I’m sure this will end well.

Cut to Jack getting dragged through a hallway. Remember Dean getting dragged through the angels in season nine premiere, “I Think I’m Gonna Like It Here”? They rip that off. Poorly. Alt-Michael apparently needs a lantern to light his way as he drags Jack to a cell where he tosses him in. There, Jack finds Mary.

To her credit, Mary quickly figures out who Jack is when she hears his name. She tells him she was present at his birth. She’s also relieved to hear her sons aren’t in Apocalypse World.

Jack admits that Michael got inside his head and made him do things. Mary tells him she saw Michael’s grand plan when he got inside her head – he’s going to bring an army to the SPNverse (in other words, alt-Michael is a Bond Villain: Evil Overlord Variant). She explains to Jack that alt-Michael will hurt her to make Jack do what he wants. We also find out from the dialogue that it’s currently six months after Jack’s birth at the end of last season.

As they gear up to go, Dean asks Castiel how he’s doing. Castiel frets that he was brought back for a reason (Dean tells him Jack brought him back and Castiel looks a bit shifty, but doesn’t mention the Empty Entity), but so far, he’s failing Jack, that Michael (he doesn’t specify which one) is all about making war. Dean gives him a pep talk about how they will power through and off they go.

Meanwhile, Sam and Donatello are gathering ingredients, while Donatello runs through a series of Untrustworthy Expressions behind Sam’s back.

In a clearing in a forest in Vancouver, probably somewhere in Stanley Park, Dean and Castiel talk strategy. Castiel says that Donatello said Gog and Magog could only be killed “by a weapon touched by God” and promptly hands Dean an angel blade. Dean casually takes it (remember when angel blades were rare and awe-inspiring? Kinda miss those days) and Castiel does a summoning in Enochian, no spellwork.

At first, nothing happens and Dean gets sassy about Castiel’s Enochian pronunciation. Castiel is snippy in response, which causes Dean to roll his eyes.

Gog and Magog show up (behind Dean and Castiel, of course), making the earth shake with each step. They look more like Vikings than guys from Ancient Mesopotamia and they’re wearing leather diapers. Dean snickers to Castiel that they’re wearing loinclothes. No, man, those are diapers (which Dean finally acknowledges).

Meanwhile, Gog and Magog are commenting in Ancient Canaanite (more or less) on how “pretty” their latest adversaries are. They finally decide which one to attack. One goes after Castiel and the other after Dean.

Dean gets his angel blade shattered by a sword early on. When he yells to Castiel (who is getting tossed to the ground) about what to do next, Castiel shouts back that they can only be killed by weapons “forged by God,” which is different from what he said before.

Dean gets his guy into a headlock, but then gets flipped over. He avoids a sword cut, manages to get hold of Gog (think it’s Gog)’s sword and beheads him with it. Magog is about to make short work of Castiel when Dean stabs him from behind.

Dean [grumpily]: Forged by God; touched by God” – same thing.

But they run into a snag when Castiel goes to retrieve Magog’s heart and finds only sand. It turns out Gog and Magog are not human at all but magical constructs from before the Flood. They have no hearts. The thlot pickens.

Meanwhile, Mary is trying to get Jack to let alt-Michael kill her rather than open the door to the SPNverse. Jack insists he can save them both, but his powers keep going wonky and his head hurts. Mary admits her head hurts, too. She thought it was the torture, but now she wonders if it’s because the angel warding is so strong that even humans can feel it. She finds a place in the cell (conveniently near the only window) where she doesn’t have so much of headache and guesses that’s where the warding is weakest. Jack starts working on breaking through the window.

Back at the Bunker, Donatello is stalking an apparently oblivious Sam, who doesn’t hear a warning call on his cell from Dean. Donatello then smacks Sam in the head with a bottle and keeps on smacking.

So, alt-Michael is, to put it mildly, unhappy about Jack and Mary’s jailbreak. He orders Zachariah to go get Jack back, kill Mary in front of Jack (slowly), and not fail him again.

Meanwhile, Jack and Mary are running around the Apocalypse World set at night, trying to avoid anything on two legs. They quickly get rousted by alt-Bobby. He recognizes her as Mary Campbell and thinks she’s a ghost at first. She mentions Dean and Sam (in that order) and alt-Bobby remembers them. Jack is introduced as “a friend of the family.”

Back at the Bunker, Dean and Castiel arrive to find the place a bit trashed and Sam nursing a large welt on his head. He has a raving Donatello on lockdown in their dungeon. Castiel explains about how Gog and Magog didn’t have hearts, which means the spell was fake – Donatello was trying to send them to their deaths.

Alt-Bobby takes Mary and Jack to his camp and explains that the angels are systematically exterminating humans. As they bond over coffee spiked with whiskey (and Jack does puppet theater for a bunch of kids), alt-Bobby spells out that Mary of his world never made her demon deal, so John didn’t come back from the dead and she never had Dean and Sam (that order again). She says they saved her world. Alt-Bobby says he didn’t go back with them because he’s about the only thing his world has to save it.

He is rather less thrilled, however, when Mary admits that Jack is a Naphil, and insists Jack be out of the camp by dawn. Even when Mary says she’d leave, too, alt-Bobby insists that the angels turned on humans, despite initially seeming to be their allies, and Jack will, too.

Fortunately for Jack, the angels attack in the morning, apparently attracted by Jack using magic in his shadow puppets the night before. Mary tells Jack to run and gets a mission from a grumpy alt-Bobby to rescue as many kids as she can. Jack is running when he hears children screaming and goes back to help.

Meanwhile, Mary has been caught out by Zachariah, who is about to kill her when Jack shows up. Jack kills him, instead, then foils another attack by angels (not impressed by the whole fireball thing instead of wings) by blasting them out of the sky, saving the whole camp. Alt-Bobby is properly impressed.

Yeah, I kinda figured early on that Mary would end up a Mother figure to Jack.

Back at the Bunker, the Brothers try to interrogate Donatello, who cackles that he’s translated the entire Demon Tablet (didn’t Kevin already do that years ago? Why does it need to be translated again?), then does a suffocation spell on Dean. Dean’s okay once Sam gets him out into the corridor (just as a worried Castiel, who was watching on a monitor, shows up), but Donatello is clearly cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs.

TFW tries to figure out what went wrong with Donatello. Castiel insists that Prophets can’t be corrupted by the Tablets. They’re only “conduits” of God’s power. Sam then points out that Donatello no longer has his soul (this didn’t come up before?) and Castiel speculates that without the “filter” of the soul, Donatello was corrupted.

There’s then a flurry of discussion. Sam gets mopey and says they can never get Donatello’s soul back because Amara “ate” it. Dean doesn’t exactly contradict him, even though Amara told him once that all of the souls she ate still existed inside her, apparently as intact souls. So, theoretically, it’s just a case of ringing her up and persuading her to give it back, which, theoretically, Dean could do.

But this doesn’t happen. Instead, Castiel suggests putting Donatello down. That way, another Prophet will come into existence and they can use him/her to finish reading the Tablet. The Brothers aren’t thrilled by this idea, but they aren’t quite fast enough (okay, they don’t exactly rush) to stop him from going into the dungeon and forcibly stripping the spell from Donatello’s mind. It’s pretty clear he does this in large part because Donatello hurt Dean. Afterward, he seems odd and one wonders if he absorbed some of Donatello’s “corruption.”

Donatello isn’t dead, per se, but his mind is wiped and the Brothers are forced to leave him at a nearby hospital in a coma. Castiel tells them that Donatello was working for Asmodeus and that “some people can’t be saved.” Dean still calls him out on it, though Castiel justifies it as necessary because they are at war.

Castiel then gives them the ingredients for the spell: “the blood of an archangel, a fruit from the Tree of Life, the Seal of Solomon, and the blood of ‘a most holy man.'”

The episode closes on Dean’s thoughtful face as Castiel says, “It’s like you said, Dean, ‘Whatever it takes.'”


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95 thoughts on “The Official Supernatural: “Good Intentions” (13.14) Live Recap Thread”

  1. Sadly I always thought of myself as the Carver whispered but it turns out that I am the Dabb whispered and now I am very sad.

  2. Weren’t they hinting that the character Jensen would play is someone from long ago in the series. Someone very important and unexpected? If I remember the wording correctly. Michael would be expected. If we are thinking outside the box then who else could they mean? Isn’t this character supposed to show up for the cliffhanger? To carry into next season? So they would carry Dean/Michael into next year? I dunno. We already have Michael redux from AU land trying to crossover – seems like a lot of Michaels to me? They shit all over the whole Michael/Dean – Sam/Lucifer the first time around. I’m not so sure I’m eager to see Dabb screw it up further. What if DabbsDabbs lying and the returning character Jensen will play is not from years past? Then who would it be? Curious as to what everyone thinks…

    I wonder if we will ever hear or see Jesse return. A Nephilim and an Anti Christ could be interesting.

    1. These are not writers who think outside the box. I mean, since when has anything big that they’ve done not been predicted by multiple fans months ahead of time? When someone asked Bob Singer point-blank if they were bringing back the SPNverse’s version of Michael, he said, “No comment.” That speaks volumes.

    2. Jesse is nobody. He is a one episode character introduced to fix the mistake they made by making their hero the antichrist. As if calling another character the antichrist fixes anything.

    3. Alycat dearest, we have our shared cat, Italian, witch heritage… It’s my kitty Italian witch blood speaking to me in the lady two years saying since 12:1, Patty Sue… we are heading to another Apocalypse and this time we are getting Dean!Michael.
      I know you believe in that sort of thing. For me it was a feeling as string as when you woyldcwalj into a murder house and feel chills.

    4. Jensen said he is d oing his homework. Didn’t he say that the lady time he was preparing to play Michael because he closely studied Matt Cohen’s performance. Now this time he has to adjust for some justified crazy. Perhaps a rewatch of Devour and My Bloody Valentine 3D.

    5. Dean’s razor. The simplest answer is the correct one. Look at all of the evidence and look at the episodes that have aired in terms of them as for hints . All roads lead to Dean!Michael.
      They have done an exceptional job of seeding seasons 12-13 with foreshadowing, anvils, hints, tropes, mirtors, arcs, etc.
      The biggest off the top of my head…
      Reboot to the beginning signaled by Dean and Mary looking for Sam. Later Sam and Dean look for lost parent. BMOL substituted for Demons = 1st hint new Apocalypse will be different. Mary substituted for Sam in reboot of many Sam storylines including, disappointing Dean, running away, working with the enemy, pushing Lucifer through interdimensional rift, trapped with Lucifer in hellish world needing rescue.
      This signifies two things… first, Dean will make uber sacrifice to save her per past actions for Sam. Second, Sam is out of mytharc action; this is,also reinforced by him staying at home during cases to care for Jack and his caretaking of Dean.
      As for Dean, tbis seadon alone has focused on establishing he is in Gonzo desperate depression mode. He has already killed himself once to save Sam, a direct callback to his desperate season 6 maneuver to get Death to save Sam’s soul from the Cage which is a mirror to saving Mary now.
      There was an episode that focused on Dean’s blood being special because he is the Righteous Man and was the only one that could do it.
      He killed Gog and Magog which is a precursor to the Apocalypse in some lore, an act often ascribed to the messiah, the killer of Lucifer, sometimes conflated with Michael. This is from the first paragraph of wiki by the way, the same first paragraoh of wiji quoted by Donatello. So not an accident. So not random weirdness.
      Then there is that spell to open the rift which requires archangel blood. Lucifer is already too powerful. We saw that. Gabriel is pretty d’s up and is probably around for fan service only to die quickly.
      That leaves Dean in desperation and depression to recklessly make a,deal with Michael that he will see as a big win. He saves mom. He take a out AU Michael and Lucifer and Asmodeus …. and Michael gets his OTV and heaven. What can go wrong

      It is no accident that Amael wastes dia Lorie describing her quid pro quo deal with her vessel.
      It is no accident that Dean kills himself recklessly in that haunted house. Both are huge red flags. Tbis is how Dean works y’all. He is all high strategy and low self esteem, recklessness and depression,. He will accept a win at the cost of his life when famiky are at stake or when ge has been beaten to the ground by their loss.
      He is primed.

  3. It’s just this different music is freaking me out. During the Dean/Cassie love scene they are playing Take Me Away to Paradise by somebody called Sharif whom I have never heard before (either the song or the singer). I mostly ‘do’ recognize REO Speedwagon or Styx or Social Distortion (looked them up) but I don’t know who scored these episodes.

  4. I am even watching Route 666 and it has just some little ‘add-ons’ and it is wacky. Does Netflix have the Director’s Cut of all these episodes?

  5. io9 had a somewhat fuller version of Jensen’s quote with the header: Jensen Ackles will play a second character later this season and he is excited.

    “I” am excited. My prayers and voodoo offerings have ‘worked’ and yippee for THAT!

      1. Well… pretty big spoiler. To me the obvious answer is Dean!Michael… duh. So for them to spoil this gives me huge pause… Makes a me wonder if it will not be the obvious suspect.

        Of course 99.9% of fans have not been chanting Dean!Michael forever and anday.

        Still a mighty big spoiler.

        I did try to infect Previously TV with my Dean!Michael disease. No one bought it. Mwahaha. I shall have the last laugh.

        1. Well, the person who dropped the spoiler was Jensen Ackles and as we all know from 13 years of experience, he likes to nuke from orbit when it comes to that sort of thing. So, yeah, it’s probably Michael and it’s very likely Cray-Cray Michael from way down under. One hopes, anyway.

          Several fans on the EW article were talking about Dean!Michael and what flavor we might get. At least one was also excitedly talking about how Michael is a pre-human version of Jesus and we might get Dean as Jesus. I’m sure we all know who put that theory out there in the fandom. Pretty sure there are Sam fans who never forgive me for it.

          1. Yeah, I saw you on the EW comment thread and read the rest of them. You were very measured, lady.

            NOW THIS IS IMPORTANT: we are visiting my son and he does not have regular television so MY HUSBAND put Supernatural Season 1 on Netflix. I have only ever watched the episodes LIVE on VW, in strips on TNT, AND on dvd. THESE ARE DIFFERENT.

            We are watching Faith this very moment, and they came to the scene in which EVERY type of episode I have ever seen plays Don’t Fear the Reaper by Blue Oyster ; they are playing some other song! What is going on? My son has a huge screen with sensurround and my husband is mentioning how good the show is under these updated techs.

            1. I put the alternate song choices (due to copyright issues involving syndication) in the music section in the back of the Codex.

          2. I am pretty much 100% Cray Cray Michael.
            I wobbled a bit a,fee werks,ago but once I reasoned everything out it cane to Dean Making. Quid pro quo deal with Michael to save Mary + taking out the,trash. This is Dean’s go to desperate move/fatal flaw x 2.
            Then the close-uo on Dean ,face when Cas,recites the spell, Amael’s recitation of quid pro quo agreement of getting her vessel by saving the vessel’s loved one, Dean’s uber angst over saving Mary, Dean’s suicidal desperation at losing her (Thanatos), Rowena is alive, Rowena can open the cage and put Michael in holding cell for chat, Rowena wants Lucifer dead, Dean wants,Lucifer dead, Michael wants Lucifer dead…

            Michael has been mentioned more times since Dabb took over than season 5.
            Do we really need a front page headline.
            AU Michael is the great Macguffin. He is motivating everyone.

  6. Well big news for ME: Jeffrey Dean Morgan says John Winchester ‘will’ return to Supernatural. He said John ‘will come back.’

    No date given or specs (like ‘before the end).

      1. It sounded a lot more like a promise.

        I thought he usually says he would like to come back or is open to coming back (maybe have John and Mary in heaven with their sons coming over for dinner? I’d like that) but this seems like there is something more behind it.

        Anyway, he was at a Walking Dead convention in England (I think) and he could have gotten away without saying much of anything.

    1. Ugh. I did silly spec that AU Michael would resurrect John and use Mary to breed his OTV…. still farfetched.

      This is fan servuce unless it is in Macy’s heaven.

      1. CC, I was just on Spoiler Speculation at supernatural thread: Jensen is saying that something ‘big’ is coming up and mentioned that Jared has gotten a lot more ‘other’ characters to play (Lucifer, Gadreel, MEG) and now something is coming up for him.

        OHOHOH if he is going to be ‘our’ Michael and fight AU!Michael I really ‘will’ have a minor stroke or something.

        So I ‘think’ you are RIGHT, lady kitty.

        1. I have known I was right about this for well over a year… lol. Call it my Italian witch blood. Call it my ability to see patterns. Call it my uber logic. Call it my academic background. Call it the Patty Sue phenomena.
          Thank you for the acknowledgement. Because I am not Lucifer I do not require bowing.

  7. CC (I don’t know why ‘some’ comments have reply buttons and some don’t): I agree . There were two twilight zones and two outer limits I think and both reboots sucked.

    1. If you guys mean replying to the Shroud article, I checked it and the comments section appears to be active, with a reply box at the bottom. Maybe try refreshing or deleting your cache history if it’s not working.

      1. No I meant that some comments here have a reply button and some don’t. It does not matter really, but I like to reply right under a comment.

        Is it just me finding that?

  8. This is a wacky little thing to notice: Rufus was a favorite character to me; I was watching Timeless tonight (the new Kripke show) and for the first time it hit me that the driver of the time machine is ALSO a black man named Rufus. And both are wonderful characters. (I think Kripke just likes using that name.)

    In Dead Men Don’t Wear Plaid there was a zombie lady named Ezra. And then in Time after Time after Time there was a lady “Bobby” named Ezra. I should check to see if it was the same writers who wrote about Ezra in Seasons 5 and 7.

    It’s curious, writers have little ‘special’ things too.

    1. Heh, as a writer myself, I think it’s far more mundane–we writers are lazy and whenever we’re trying to think of a name for a new character, we tend to fall back on the same ones, over and over again.

  9. Paula no place to reply to your link back to the 2016 article.

    Let me see if I got it right: There is a Shroud (kept in Turin); there is a Veil of Veronica (can’t remember whose got ‘that’) and the Sudarium of Oviedo. The last scholarship “I” saw on this was that the Sudarium fits over the Shroud (there is mention of a ‘burial cloth’ AND a ‘facial cloth’ in the Gospel of John). The Sudarium yes goes back to the 6th Century CE but ‘if’ it fits that does show that the SHROUD can be dated to the 6th CE.

    Or is ‘that’ finding suspect as well? With Good Friday, Easter, coming up I like to look into these things and would appreciate somewhere to being.

    So your opinion at this time is that the Mandylion could have been the folded up Shroud, with just the head visible? I mean the Mandylion ‘was’ a noted relic in the Byzantine collection, right? And nobody knows where it is now?

    I admit to confusion between the Veil, the Sudarium, and the Mandylion (which are all basic head-shots).

    1. You cannot definitively date a piece based on the presence of a similar pattern. Sure art historians use connoisseurship to date objects all of the time however this is considered to be subjective.
      Scientific dating has indicated that the image on the shroud is medieval. I forget what carbon daring of the cloth showed. Look for article by McCrone on microscopic examination of the shroud of Turin.

      1. Only the carbon dating (from 1988) indicates the Shroud might be medieval. The other tests were inconclusive. Unfortunately for the carbon dating, we know for a fact the Shroud was contaminated with extra carbon by a fire in 1532. Further, the outlying date of 1390 ever-so-conveniently coincides with the exact year that we have a first record claiming the Shroud is a fake, when really, said date ought to be closer to the middle of the range. I put that in the category of “Things that make you go, ‘Hmm.'”

        Carbon dating can’t solve everything, especially when this one was as early, perfunctory and biased as it was.

        As I said in the article, I don’t object to the idea that the Shroud is medieval in origin. I object to dismissing it as important due to the possibility it might be medieval in origin. That is unconscionable bias. It doesn’t have to have been Jesus’ shroud to be historically important. In fact, we know it is historically important. At the very, very least, this is a unique religious artifact of Black Death origins, that we know was on display and used to inspire people during the ravages of the plague. Think about that.

        1. There have been advances in carbon dating such as accelerated carbon dating; the much smaller sample size would allow them to pick and choose their sample. We use to send samples out for accelerated C-14 analysis to Cambridge however my understanding was they were cleaned to remove contamination. It is typical to not know an artifacts history and most artifacts have been handled or contaminated. Soot can be completely removed from fabric using oxygen plasma. There are also abrasive means to remove a potentially contaminated surface.
          One does remain aware that contamination remains a potential issue in interpretation of results.
          When authenticating an artifact one generally uses as many layers of information as one can including connoisseurship and provenance.
          It would be best if no one has any skin in the game.
          I performed the technical study and authentication of antiquities as part of my job for many years. Walter McCrone taught the microscopy course in my graduate program. We had to send him a packet of our own samoles,and identifications,after the fact along with our reasoning. I received an A.
          I performed numerous examination, radiographic and analytical techniques in house, and worked with scientists at NASA and several institutional and university laboratories in the course of my work.
          Only carbon-14 and thermoluminescence testing was sent out of state.
          I dearly miss that work unfortunately not all types of museum have the collections or budgets to support this and my health has prevented me from working gor quite some time.

        2. Sure. All of these relics are important in the historical sense and in the human sense because the faith of the populace at that time was incredible. The church was western culture really.
          What I know about Christianity I know because of art history and if one walks through a major art museum one sees more Christian art than in any church.
          I find it curious thst I was healed by an artifact that i believed to be a fake based on factuaal information.
          I am Christian, wa s baptised but nevercreallywent to church. I have had some profound spiritual experiences in some sublime churches. I tend to think it was a response to the beauty of human creation in the service of God that spoke to me.
          I guess by healing me via a painted image of his son God was speaking to me… as if to say “hey, I see that you ,are suffering and I choose to help”.
          I was in Turin to see the Egyptian collection and the Shroud was on view after a long absence so I braved the crowds and went. I don’t even remember what I felt really upon seeing it. Just my absolute surprise when I realized my very bad very uncomfortable symptoms had disappeared. Whoa.

          1. Well, regardless of when it was made, there’s a reasonably good chance it was made as an act of faith in a very dark time in human history. If it was intentionally created, it’s a truly remarkable work of art. If it was accidentally created, that’s an equally remarkable act of science and worthy of more study. Dating it properly with the updated techniques would help immensely in untangling its story further. Unfortunately, as long as people who want to test it keep throwing loaded words like “fake” and “fraud” around, and declaring all further scientific investigation into it unnecessary once they’ve decided for themselves one way or the other, the Church is going to be (understandably) nervous about letting anyone near it. It’s a fragile old piece of cloth that could easily be tested to destruction. I’m amazed by how much testing they’ve allowed, already.

        3. There is that body farm in Tennessee. It would be interesting to see if forensic anthropologists could reverse engineer burial conditions and bury a body in a shroud for 3 days…
          Just to see what happens.

          McCrone’s report was probably professional I suspect. It sounds like things got ugly after the fact when scientists clashed. It is possible that he had an ego. He was kind to students who knew nothing, not even how to work the microscope.

          As I recall he took numerous samples based on a grid, microscopy samples are microscopic in the right hands, and analyzed them which can involve plane polarized light, ultraviolet light, filters and microchemical tests.. He found paint, perhaps binder… I can’t recall but absolutely nothing to indicate human educate or blood in his samples.

          At the least it was painted to refurbish it like that sad Spanish church painting of Jesus that a parishioner ruined. At the most it was manufactured as a fake. It is actually an astonishingly modern image for the 13th (?) century.

          I agree that debunking a holy relic is not the same as an academic discussion of a work of art. I am surprised the Vatican did not have non-disclosure agreements in place. I would have thought that someone like a Devil’s advocate would have received all reports and made the final conclusions.

          There was a new Outer Limits in which they used the Shroud to clone Jesus and implant it into an unsuspecting mama. I missed the end however the pregnancy was taking an unpleasant turn when I had to go. Baby Jesus seemed violent.

          I find the fetishization of relics fascinating myself. I would love to do a relics tour of Eurooe.

          Have you ever seen Cemetery Man. There is a sex scene in an ossuary.

          On a related note…

          Singer and Dabb rate high in the annals of dumb hacks however i was gobsmacked by the following which is the dumbest dumb dumb dumb dumb thing ever…


          Nuns live in convents. Monks live in monasteries.
          These places are cloistered. A passel of nuns would not be wandering around a monastery at night. Also could there be a more generic order name than holy sisters. Is that a thing. Aren’t order names usually more specific. I mean Google is not that difficult. If you can tweet you can damn well Google.

          This in an episode that was the lamest attempt at film noir and the worst Maltese Falcon rip off I have ever seen. How do these two get paid. Is there not anything they can do to get fired.

          I am totally convinced Jeremy Carver left a road map of major benchmarks to hit for the next 3 years that these dumbasses are using. The stuff thst works is Carver. The stuff that is dumbass is Singer and Dabb.

          Kudos to Paula for getting an honorary mention in Ellen Datlow’s yearly anthology of greatest fantasy and horror, or what ever she calls it. It has been a few years since I bought one.

          1. I saw the Outer Limits: the mother’s name was Maria and I think husband’s name was some variation of Joseph. David Ogden Stiers was the evil guy trying to clone Jesus; he was a religious fanatic who was rich enough to fund the project.

            Baby Jesus knew his intentions and was trying to stop him somehow. Then Maria and Joseph got out during an earthquake or something Baby Jesus and went to live in obscurity.

            The idea was Baby Jesus shut down the religiously intolerant David Ogden Stiers.

          2. Thanks Gracie. Yes. The cult was obviously bad news. I thought perhaps thst the fact that they used the leader’s DNA to fill out missing stuff might have corrupted it or there wasn’t much Jesus juice left and it was too much evil tumult leader DNA, aka antichrist or some such.

            The new Outer Limits are sometimes interesting but rarely good really.

            1. I wasn’t a huge fan of either version of The Outer Limits. It felt as though the writers liked downer endings because that was deeper, or something.

  10. This may be silly but did you guys notice the name of the book the young woman that Dean was hitting on was reading? Guarded By Demons. By an Alexander? Jorgensen. Guarded By Demons. Like a certain ex-Trickster probably was. By KFC wanna-be Colonel Man Spreader. Maybe she was Gabriel spying on the Winchesters for Asmodeus… Maybe Gabriel was using the Jorgensen name to write under… Like I said, I’m just being silly but I did think the title was an interesting coincidence.

    1. I did catch that and I also caught the way they Winchesters are zapped into the tv al a Changing Channels. Yawn.
      I fear it won’t make any sense except in a fan pandering way.

  11. Is it just me, or is the mobster’s reference to a devil’s bargain two episodes after an episode with the same name indicate that all the wheeling and dealing this season is leading to something catastrophic. Sure, nobody’s trading in their soul, but a lot of them seem willing to make some mighty shaky bargains, whether it’s overt, Lucifer /Amiel, Sam/Rowena, or implied Castiel/Primordial Goo – at least I suspect he had a hand in Castiel’s return.

  12. Well they tried. I give S8mger and Dabb that. And they gave balls to steal from the Maltese Falcon.
    It could have been worse. It also coukd gave been so much better. They threw in all of the right tropes but it just all seemed cliche’d in their hands. And do not get me started on the goombas.
    It was obvious,that the Priest was the holy man.
    I hated the Sam pimping. Boy does Singer have a hard on for the character.
    Dean is exhibitig all of the traits I would expect of him at tbis point in the mytharc. He is badass, reckless and ready to get the job done anyway he can. Besides saving family Dean”s reckless sacrifices also can involve taking out the big bad or multiple baddies. Dean!Michael could provide grace and take out a lot of players involved in the usual chicanery.
    I thought J2 was fabulous.

    1. Deans response to if anyone stole Baby. Loved it and how he could not let go of the mental image he had running thru his head. And Sammy’s surprised look over Deans comment that he would murder them all as well as his frustrated look when he couldn’t get Dean to immediately snap out of it.

      Cocky Dean smart talking back to Santino. 😉

      1. +1000
        The fact that Dean actuaslly means it and sounds so MoC-ish sorta is fuel to my theory that he is on the verge of reaching that very dangerous angsty cocktail of depression, recklessness, low self esteem, guilt, suicidal tendencies that lead to him needing to risk himself for a win to save Mary and/or take out a baddie or two.

  13. Get that blood into the fridge, Dean.

    I liked the priest. The guys rarely run into an honestly ‘good’ person who is religious. Pastor Jim and the Lutheran Minister in 99 Problems. And the priest who taught them how to do a ‘demon healing’ in late Season 8. Anybody else got good ‘religious’ AND I was quite angry about the bad dude bashing the nun. You can do lots to lots of people but leave the nuns out of it. (Oh the priest who took Dean’s confession in Season 10 (?) also. He gave good advice.)

    I happen to believe in relics, but I think most of them are fake. Call it my old-timey Catholicism. Like all the splinters of the True Cross could build Notre Dame Cathedral.

    This was like the ‘other’ theft episode, in which S/D lost the spell to find Jack because they facilitated Smash getting free of Bartemus. Here the priest got back his skull and then turned out to be the person who was literally The Most Holy Man. Yippee. I just was glad to meet an actual good person. Glad he survived the episode.

    BTW, I liked Dean mentioning Sam’s incipient CTE.

    1. Most relics *are* fake. Lots of religious people will tell you that. But they may have an interesting history or be tied to an issue of faith in a way that renders that immaterial. Faith is a tricky thing.

      Unfortunately, in large part due to the lack of choice many women had in joining the convent in some cultures, a certain percentage of nuns have been quite horrible people over the years. Same thing with priests and monks. It doesn’t make the office any less holy, but it does mean that someone is not necessarily a true person of faith just because they are in a religious role.

      1. Here in northern New Mexico there is a place of pilgrimage called Sanctuario de Chimayo. Supposedly a place of magical healing. They have a ‘posito’ in the back from which people dig out ‘blessed clay’ and I got me a few little baggies. I made a little pillow for my mom and filled it with the clay and my mom slept with it under her pillow. Well, it could not hurt.

        I also have a bottle of holy water filled from the Sanctuario when we moved into our home (another old Polish Catholic affectation).

        The Church began the relic trade itself because EACH altar was supposed to have a relic in it so ‘everybody’ began trading in stuff.

        Hey, do you have an opinion whether the relics of St Mark in Venice are actually the stolen body of Alexander the Great (the remains were ‘removed’ from Alexandria)? I think it would be cool if it were Alexander and we could figure out what he looked like. BUT since everybody claims it’s St Mark nobody will ever get to date/name the location of birth for the bones. I mean, somebody could get ‘something’ for a Holy Fingernail.

        1. I worked on a fabulous 12th century arm reliquary that actually had a forearm bone it imaged by x-radiography. We were surprised and had been expecting a fragment. It was 12th c. From Hildesheim. I actually couriered it home from a loan there as a hand carry. It was nerve wracking carrying a case containing a fragile composite artifact worth 10 million dollars.

        2. Why would they be Alexander? He would have been really short. I saw his daddy’s armor in Greece.

          I have no idea how tall Mark was.

          1. Alexander’s body was stolen by Ptolemy I (he stole it while it was on the way to Macedonia for burial) and removed to Alexandria. It was supposed to have been mummified in a special way so that the body did not decay. Julius Caesar went to see the body in Alexander’s Tomb in Alexandria when he was there to sex up Cleopatra.

            But it disappeared in the Christian Era; at the same time the body of St Mark (the creator of the first Gospel who was considered the Evangelist of Egypt) appeared. And ‘it’ was cared for in such a way that it did not decay (that is supposed to be one of the marks of Sanctity); eventually ‘that’ corpse ended up in Venice.

            I have read speculation that what people called St Mark’s body was actually Alexander’s. That’s why I asked Paula if she had any opinion in the matter.

            As far as relics are concerned, I am glad that nobody here has taken me to task for my willingness to ‘believe’ in them. I would not PRAY to them (on another website a person became quite irate at the idea that Catholic relics are ‘prayed to’ and I did not want to get into an argument — NOBODY prays to them — but whoever it was who thought that obviously had been taught that was what was going on) but I would ‘consider’ them and the life of ‘heroic virtue’ that a saint should represent. I thought the priest last night really ‘was’ a good man and the first person without ‘grays’ we have seen in quite a while. Just a good good man.

    2. The shroud of Turin which I believed was a medieval fake healed me of raging yeast infection from antibiotics when I viewed it. I was astonished. So maybe there is a ssmidgeon of holy bloods on the thing underneath the paint.

      1. Glad you brought that one up: OK Chicago Catholic girl. EVERY Good Friday a priest named Father Filas had a 1/2hr show on The Shroud of Turin and I was raised to believe in it unreservedly. I don’t care if it was not proven to be from 1st century CE. I believe there is enough doubt as to how the Shroud was created and where it was kept AND the fact that nobody has provenance until the mid-Templar times gives me the ‘out’ that it was stolen by the Templars from Constantinople or found somewhere in Jerusalem.

        WEIRD thing: there is a cloth called the Sudarium of Ovieto which is a cloth which matches up with the image of the face on the Shroud. I don’t know if I just see this stuff in ‘only’ Catholic publications but I remember seeing this on some ‘science’ show that the Sudarium cloth fits RIGHT OVER the features of the Shroud’s face and has blood in the same sections. AND this has a provenance that goes back to the late 6th Century CE.

        Paula, you are a secular scholar in this realm. Do you have any opinion in this matter?

        Oh, I know one of the guys who worked on STIRP (shroud investigation) from Los Alamos and HE believed that the error was where they took the fragment of cloth for C14 testing (damaged in a fire, rewoven, in the 13th Century CE).

        I know I sometimes get excited about ‘outre’ theories and am willing to be pulled back.

        1. I believed it to be a medieval fake professionally because conservation scientists had analysed is and found paint but no blood. I forget what the daste of the cloth is. I had factual evidence to believe it was take and had taken a course from r he scientist rhat declared it a fake so I viewed his study as definitive.

          1. It was not ‘one’ scientist, it was a team of scientists on a study called STIRP. I am ‘positive’ that there is no paint on it. Are you sure ‘your’ expert said there was paint? Everything I have ever seen said it was an unknown method to create the image.

          2. Walter McCrone the most respected microscopist in the country for art analysis found no blood only paint. He was not affiliated with the church and would have approached it as pure science
            Yes I am sure. I took a microscopy course from him and heard a lecture. He debunked many fakes.
            Paula my life of the last few years is a blur because of my extended illness and associated brain fog. Totally forgot we discussed this.
            I am familiar with Veronica’s veil through paintings of it. Not at all familiar with the other artifact.
            I saw the shroud I believed to be fake which cured me
            I also was dehydrated hot and exhausted on a deserted road in Greece and stepped inside a church for a saint Nikolas, patron saint of travelers, lit a candle and immediately a car appeared to offer us a ride into town.
            I also lit a candle in. Greek church consecrated to a female patron Saint of eyes, and did not have a migraine for 30 years.

            1. I’d be pretty surprised if any blood survived even 700 years, let alone 2000, in the conditions that thing’s been under. It also doesn’t really tell us anything about how the Shroud was made, not least because the model looks pretty dead. Again, considering the possible medieval dates we’re talking about, think about that.

          3. “I’d be pretty surprised if any blood survived even 700 years, let alone 2000, in the conditions that thing’s been under. It also doesn’t really tell us anything about how the Shroud was made, not least because the model looks pretty dead. Again, considering the possible medieval dates we’re talking about, think about that.”
            Organic materials can survive depending on burial conditions and subsequent conditions.
            Presumably a cave in an arid climate would be a good burial condition for the survival of organic matter. Organic Egyptian artifacts including human remains survive very well under similar circumstances.
            Afterwards presumably a revered artifact
            would have been cared for. So organic material could have been preserved in some identifiable state.
            Again it would take layers of information interpretated by a well trained intellect to provide meaning to the analysis. And as Snow said, in terms of its importance as a medieval relic it’s authentication or not is meaningless.

      2. I wonder about the question of faith in situations like this. Does faith make the relic, or does the relic create the faith. And what about miraculous appearances of Mary, Jesus, or other saints.

        Many years ago, while living in Colorado, I attended an Episcopalian church. It was a newer building with double paned windows. One day, a picture of Jesus appeared etched into the glazing, in the airspace between the window panes. Or I was told it had just appeared. I actually saw it, and the glass was smooth and unetched on the outside, with the picture on the inside. Mind you, this was a modern window, that had been manufactured as a double pane, so it would have been exceedingly difficult to remove it for this purpose. And it was also in a rarely used basement room, rather than appearing in the more public portions of the church. Food for thought.

    3. I liked them showing a good religious person too. I myself tend to be a bit skittish around churches based on my own experiences, but I know that there are some truly good people of faith out there.

      My grandfather was a Methodist minister, and by all reports (and consistent with my memory ) he was a good man. I remember in his final years, he had a 5 acre field behind his house that he kept planted in various things. He would have the youth group come do the harvest, and it all went to the food bank. When he died (I was twenty), the newspaper ran an article on him. I was amazed at all the good he things he had accomplished in his community. To me, he was just Grandpa, a man who had been a logger, and then a minister, and who really loved his family.

  14. Curious from what is going on in AU!Earth: the demons ‘first’ came forth led by Lucifer; AU!Mike killed AU!Lucifer and the demons were scattered. THEN AU!Michael told the angels to take out the rest of humanity. WHY? Did anybody have an idea why? IF the angels are trying to wipe out humanity, that ‘may’ be why Dean and Sam are in AU-land: Chuck has arranged for everything.

    1. Yeah, that and some other little hints have me thinking that something else happened, something catastrophic, in the alt-SPNverse that resulted in it turning out that way and in alt-Michael being so desperate to get to another universe.

      I think it’s pretty clear Chuck intended for the Brothers to go to the alt-verse, especially since Billie was not initially aware they had done so or why (indicating a higher power was involved).

      1. Perhaps That version of Michael is flawed… or the battle was fought yet there was no paradise on Earth. Maybe he did it all ffir Chuck then… nada.

  15. The spell calls for the grace of an archangel not blood… right? I thought it was the same spell repeated on the demon tablet.
    I thought Cas woukd be corrupted too and I think he removed everything from Donatello’s mind from the tablets. It was similar to the season 7 hellpain maneuver. Now Cas corrupted bybt he demon tablet might be interesting.

    As I recall Kevin translated the keviathan tablet easily. He had a harder time with the demon tablet. He translated protection wards and spells when Dean was in Purgatory. And was working on translating the trials to close the gates of hell when Crowley g it him and the tablet. He played at translation for Crowley and when He was back at the bumper after Cas rescued him he only had half a tablet. He didn’t even know Sam would die from the trials until Dean asked him to confirm what Naomi said. I Don’t tbink he translated the whole thing.
    In season 9 he went to Branson and translated the angel tablet because angels were the monster du jour.

    What!!! TFW was planning to use Lucifer’s grace. Does he have enough left. If he is weak enough for them to capture he is likely to weak to provide enough. Likewise to mute hobo Gabriel. Not enough juice.

    Donatello’s writings sure look like prophecy. The born one must be Jack. I guess he is the VIP this season. And here i thought he was a walking plot device who finally developed #goals.

      1. It is okay. Giving up grace is more of a commitment than giving blood. Angels Don’t willing my part with their grace.
        If is important in my opinion because I think Dean will deal with Michael to get it. Take my body and provide grace. Also please can will kill some guys I want off of the board.
        Everyone wants Baby this year.

    1. I got it differently for Kevin-the-translator: Leviathan Tablet was easy, seemed to be done in an afternoon. The Demon Tablet was torn in half and he was working on the spell to close Hell but it seemed ‘that’ was piecemeal. ALSO Kevin was working especially on the spell to banish Hell. We don’t know if he ‘did’ actually finish any other of the Tablet’s translation. When Dean asked Kevin to read the Angel Tablet, I got the impression he was spending most of his time on the Demon Tablet and when Dean began question Kevin, to verify what Naomi said one way or the other, Kevin was unsure of what he was reading. He never gave an answer one way or the other as I remember it.

      I also remember that Kevin had headaches and bloody noses while he was working on the Demon Tablet though (and a small stroke?) but I am sure he focused on the Closing of Hell section.

      So Donatello having a ‘bad reaction’ to the Demon Tablet but because he did not have the filter of his ‘soul’ it corrupted him. No more Mr Rogers Says for Donatello.

      On a side note, we were watching the episode and Donatello clocked Sam, my husband said Sam will be tied to a chair and took a drink. THEN it turned out to be a fake-out and it was DONATELLO tied to a chair. Good twist, show.

      1. Just remembered: Kevin ‘did’ try to read the Angel Tablet and that was when they found that (per Crowley, who seemed to know as many languages as the original Sir Richard Burton) there ‘was’ no cure for the Angels’ Banishment. So Kevin went back to the Demon Tablet to find other weapons to fight the Demons.

        Anybody got a real beef with my memories here?

      2. I agree with your general tablet recollections. Kevin translated enough to learn defence against demons while hiding from C rowkey.
        He worked to translate the trials to close the gates of hell all season. He had the full tablet until Cas rescued him and Crowley vanished with half. It was slow work and Kevin was akways cranky.
        And yes he had to look at the tablet to corroborate Naomi’s intel. Once the angels fell he switched to that because they were the threat. Then he died.

  16. Was so not impressed with Gog and MaGog. That whole scene just felt squeezed in and out of place. And for ancient warriors they weren’t terribly imposing.

    They seriously need to stop adding more storylines to the pile.
    There isn’t a single one that I would like to see carried over into Season Fourteen. Michael and company are a snooze fest. Same with Lucifer and the angels. Tho I am curious as to where they are going to take Danneels character. And don’t get me started on man spreading Asmodeus. At least Crowley knew how to sit on a throne in a manner becoming a king. ;). I know CasCat really wants to see the whole Michael/Dean combo meal but sadly I don’t believe Show will go there. Chuck forbid that they might actually give Dean an important storyline. Or they will and just as it gets interesting, they will cut it short. Looking at you Bob Singer!

    This season started out with such hope. Someone should take the keys to the Lamborghini away from Dabb before it slams thru the impending guard rail and plummets down the cliff. He suuuuuucks. Is it bad that I am mentally picturing Dabb and Singer in said Lamborghini doing their perfect imitation of Thelma and Louise? With the Nep Duo in the back seat, of course.

    1. Oh he of little faith. It is going there. Dean!Michael.

      “the grace of an archangel… a fruit from the Tree of Life… the Seal of Solomon… and the blood of “a most holy man.”

      The grace of an archangel!!!. It is going to be Dean!Michael.

      Anael is angelic Crowley. Currently they are using her to cvomment on Lucifer’s near humanity when his grace is low. They shot their scenes critically to show that he is being affected by emotion.
      I suspect she really isn’t and she is playing him for power.

      1. I have seen Danneel’s angelic name as AMAEL and ANAEL (I tought Anael was Anna Milton’s Angelic name). I think different sites are reporting it differently. Yeah, I want her to stiff Lucifer. The End was on today and Sam!Lucifer in that show was scary (until he started whining about how God never loved me best but I loved HIM best. For sure.) and I though Rick Springfield was able to bring a malevolence to the part that Pellegrino no longer does.

    2. I’m gonna be the contrary one and admit I actually found the Gog and Magog scene amusing. The rest of the episode was kind of a drag.

      1. Well, I did not find the show a ‘drag’ but I ‘di’ find Gog and Magog hilarious. I thought they were going to fight each other for the Pretty One.

        1. The last 20 minutes were riveting I thought
          I like AU Bobby better than Bobby and still I Don’t want to see him again.

      2. Remember the Billy Drago episode of Doc Benton? The episode was really grim and ugly? In the middle of that they had the Dean-eats-a-hamburger scene in which Sam is discussing maggots and offal and Dean keeps saying, Sam I am eating. SAM I am eating. SAM I AM EATING. And then, oh Baby I can’t stay mad at you and he continues to eat his burger. Gog and Magog were just the ‘right’ amount of humor imo. Which one was the pretty one? I always noted that when Castiel is in an actual ‘blade fight’ he puts down every angel he is fighting. So I ‘appreciated’ Dean getting both kills but am confused as to why Castiel was so overmatched by Gog (do we now which was which?); any ideas?

      3. I liked then too. The arguing in ancient Canaanite was hilarious as was Dean and Cas’ bickering, Dean’s zany antics and Dean getting the badass kills.
        And it was very important thematically because killing them can be considered a harbinger of the Apocalypse and their killer was sometimes referred to as the messiah, the guy up against Lucifer during the Apocalypse.

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