A new column at The Nerdy Girl Express is The Miller Twins Talk Supernatural Season 12. Here twins and The Nerdy Girl Express writers, Stacy Miller and Tracy Miller, will share their thoughts about the heroic Winchester boys, Sam and Dean (Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles) as well as the many other wonderful characters on The CW’s longest running show. Will these twins agree on the characters and plot themes for each episode? Read below to find out.
After two episodes focused on the mental and physical torture Sam received at the hands of British Men of Letters disciple Lady Toni, the 12×03 episode titled “The Foundry” mirrors the classic horror tone that permeated Supernatural’s early seasons. The episode opens with a young couple, an abandoned house and crying baby. In typical horror fashion, the couple goes to investigate the infant’s wails. And in typical Supernatural fashion, teaser investigation by guest stars means that their imminent death is afoot. Because nothing says cue the main title card more than guest characters’ deaths for the Winchesters to investigate.
Plagued by insomnia, Mary is up reading John’s journal. Enter Castiel. Mary questions the angel about whether he struggled with fitting in when he came to Earth. I enjoy the understated and honest simplicity of these Castiel and Mary moments. Misha Collins and Samantha Smith have a nice, comfortable chemistry that translates quite effectively on screen. Mary goes to her room. Gazing at her reflection, she decides to cut her hair.
Sam and Dean are eating when Castiel tells Dean that he has a lead on Lucifer. So Castiel leaves the Winchesters for his own story line. The brothers briefly discuss the British Men of Letters before the conversation changes to a discussion of Mary. Sam is concerned about how Mary is adjusting while Dean is surprisingly optimism telling Sam that Mary will be fine. Right on cue, Mary joins her sons. Mary found a case where a couple heard a crying baby in a house, went to see what was going on and died of hypothermia even though the temperature in the house was warm. The police found the bodies of the couple but not the baby. Mary feels that focusing on this case will take her mind off of her own adjustment issues. Sam is concerned about Mary hunting, but Dean is surprisingly encouraging about the prospect of a family hunting trip. I especially enjoyed these scenes because we got to see the brothers different reactions to their mother. Sam seems more perceptive towards Mary’s unspoken emotions than Dean. Since food is Dean’s go to solution, bacon and beef jerky, I think, were almost metaphors for exercising control over one’s circumstances. In addition, I also liked how Mary now rides shotgun with Dean and Sam is assigned to the back seat.
Mary takes charge at the investigation introducing herself as Agent Shirley Partridge. I am a kid of the 1970s so I appreciated the reference to the Partridge Family. I’m also a fan of Shirley Jones long before she joined her television family on the psychedelic bus to belt out tunes about “getting happy”. Warm and fuzzy feelings are stirred for me when I think of Shirley Jones from the 1950s musicals Carousel and Oklahoma. But I digress. I thought it was clever of the writers to have Mary use an alias that is relevant for her generation.
Speaking of aliases, Castiel (in investigating Vince Vicente, Lucifer’s new vessel) uses the alias Agent Beyoncé. Castiel is surprised to see Crowley on Lucifer’s trail. The King of Hell suggests that he and his former angelic partner team up. Agent Beyoncé and Agent Jay-Z are born. Only on Supernatural! With the intensity of Season 11’s story line when Castiel became Lucifer’s vessel and enslaved Crowley, I much prefer the levity of these Castiel and Crowley buddy moments. I find Misha Collins’ straight man delivery coupled with Mark Sheppard’s biting wit quite delightful.
Meanwhile, Lucifer (wearing Vince Vincente’s meatsuit) is holding Rowena captive. After inquiring about the Book of the Damned, Lucifer demands that Rowena use a spell to strengthen his vessel so he won’t need to jump from vessel to vessel. Rowena is duplicitous as ever. Instead of strengthening Lucifer’s vessel, the spell weakens it allowing Rowena to gain her freedom. Later when she meets up with Castiel and Crowley, the three form an unholy alliance with the sole purpose of defeating Lucifer.
Back to the Winchester story line, mother and sons learn that they are dealing with a ghost child named Lucas. Sam and Dean opt for the salt and burn routine. But Mary remains unconvinced that Lucas is the killing culprit. Consequently, she elects to investigate on her own. Going back to the house, Mary encounters Lucas and soon discovers that the menacing apparition is a father who lost his daughter. The father coveted other children, lured them to the house and subsequently killed them. This angry spirit attacks Mary and it’s Sam and Dean to the rescue. Unfortunately, Mary is possessed by the man’s ghost. With her eyes bleeding ectoplasm, Mary beats up both Sam and Dean. Sam is able to escape. With Lucas’ assistance, Sam locates the man’s hidden bones in the house, burns them thus freeing Mary from the ghost possession.
Later back at the Men of Letters bunker, Mary confesses to Sam and Dean how much she misses John and that seeing them as men makes her miss the baby and little boy that she knew them to be, a painful reminder of the years that she lost. Consequently, Mary decides that she needs time alone to herself. Sam seems to understand her turmoil. However, Dean is stoic. I suspect that he is very hurt. Dean, more so than Sam, harbors deep scars from John’s abandonment so I think that he feels as if now he is being abandoned by Mary. Jared Padalecki, Jensen Ackles and Samantha Smith gave marvelous performances in these gut wrenching scenes.
I’ve said many times that my favorite episodes of Supernatural are the ones containing a horror theme. And add Winchester emotion and angst and you have a great episode. So in “The Foundry” we have “a seriously pissed off spirit” as Dean would say (And did in the Season 4 episode “After School Special”) and ghost possession. A simple case of salt and burn right? When have things ever been that easy for The Winchesters. While all this is going on, Mary (Samantha Smith) struggles to adjust to her new world. She starts by cutting her hair, an act she feels will make her more useful and effective as a hunter, reasoning not to give the monsters access to long hair to pull on. What was funny was as I was thinking “Maybe someone should tell Sam this,” Dean responsed “I’ve been telling Sam that for years.” Very funny and helped to lighten the mood as only Dean can do. Like Buffy Summers in Buffy: The Vampire Slayer, Dean’s witty puns add to his skill.
So, it’s off on a family hunting trip which is the Winchester way of spending quality time together. Mary joins Dean riding shotgun in the passenger seat while ‘Little Sammy’ sits in the back. I especially loved how Dean was introducing Mary to the joy of modern day junk food. Mary and Dean seem to share a similar taste in snacks, which was cool.
While Sam, Dean and Mary embarked on their case (Loved the Partridge Family aliases, watching that scene made me ‘get happy’), Castiel (Misha Collins) was off to find Lucifer. Using the alias Agent Beyoncé, he is unexpectedly joined in his investigation by his old demon partner in crime, Crowley (Mark Sheppard). What’s Beyoncé without Jay-Z? Never fear, Agent Jay-Z (Crowley) joins the case. The love/hate partnership of Castiel and Crowley makes this pairing special. Neither trusts the other but for some reason, they always feel they need the other’s help. Their personalities balance out and always make for some funny scenes.
Meanwhile back at the Devil’s Hell on Earth, Lucifer (Rick Springfield) threats Rowena (Ruth Connell) with neck snapping (his favorite) if she doesn’t do his bidding which includes performing a spell to strengthen his vessel. But Lucifer doesn’t know the witch he’s dealing with. Rowena double crosses him, causing his vessel to decay instead and then she sends him off to the bottom of the ocean. Escaping, Rowena runs straight into Castiel and Crowley. They want her to join them. “That whole FBI pantsuit? Not my hex bag” is Rowena’s answer declining their offer. I love the character of Rowena. She knows her witch abilities are strong and will use them for her own gain and no one else’s.
The case of the ghost is not as easy as Sam and Dean’s salting and burning bones. Mary realizes that they have the wrong ghost as it’s not little boy Lucas but Hugo Moriarty, a man who killed many children in the house. Mary goes back to the house to take care of the spirit alone. She’s a hunter who relies on her own instincts. I enjoyed seeing the dangers all three Winchesters faced from Hugo and how Mary tried to fight her possession. Working together, the Winchester family defeated the angry spirit.
Upon returning to the Men of Letters bunker, Mary tells Sam and Dean how much she misses her old life, John, her baby Sammy and little boy Dean. She feels it’s time to step back so she decides to leave. Dean is quiet throughout this scene but the pained look on his face tells all- despite Mary’s “I love you” to Sam and Dean as she leaves, I believe Dean felt as though he was being abandoned by the mother he loves, lost and got back again. Dean is a character who takes this personally, so Mary’s leaving was like she was really saying “I don’t care about you.” How will Dean deal with his feelings on his mother saying goodbye (for now?). I look forward to seeing what will happen.
“The Foundry” was a solid episode containing many aspects fans of Supernatural love about the show. Remember the old tagline “Scary just got sexy” in this episode “Scary just got a win for the Winchesters and the viewers.”
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