Before fighting crowds of Black Friday holiday shoppers, Supernatural viewers sat down after their Thanksgiving feast to watch Sam and Dean fight evil. And they got a few surprises.
This article contains spoilers so if you haven’t seen the episode “War of the Worlds,” please do not continue reading
The first being that an actual new episode was airing on Thanksgiving night instead of the usual holiday fare. Were we in an alternate universe? Nope, still on planet Earth. So it was time to sit back and enjoy the sci-fi horror show we’ve loved for thirteen seasons.
When last we saw Sam and Dean (Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles), they had a lot on their plates (And I don’t mean turkey, stuffing and mashed potatoes). At the end of the last episode, Jack (Alexander Calvert) decided to leave after accidentally killing an innocent while using his powers. And Sam and Dean were desperate to find him. While searching a lead, the Winchesters made a shocking discovery and came across a friend from the past. And by friend I mean the dangerous sociopath who tried to kill them: Arthur Ketch, British Men of Letters. But how could that be? Mary (Samantha Smith) had shot him dead. C’mon guys… when has anything that died stayed dead? You both have died on numerous occasions. But wait, this man may have Ketch’s face but he insisted he was someone else. Not Arthur but Ketch’s twin, Alexander. Dean wasn’t buying it. “Do I look stupid to you?” Dean “Is that a trick question? Ketch. Ketch explained that Arthur was the rock star of the family while he, Alexander couldn’t make it through the training to be a full British Men of Letters operative. Until they could sort it out, Arthur or Alexander or whoever he is was restrained in the bunker. Sam researched and found records for both Arthur and Alexander (Like those can’t be faked sometime phony FBI agent!). Still the younger Winchester seemed to be buying the story. But not Dean because being suspicious is in his nature. There was no way this evil twin yarn could be true. Turns out Dean was right. There was no Alexander only Arthur and the reason why Ketch was still alive was that he had crossed paths with Rowena (Ruth Connell) and obtained powerful magic from her to bring him back from the brink of death. And as the episode ended, it looked like Ketch was forming an alliance with Asmodeus (Jeffrey Parise). But why, what’s Ketch’s end game?
The return of David Haydn-Jones was a huge holiday surprise. For fans who wished he was still on Supernatural, their wish came true. The actor himself made no secret of how much he enjoyed his time on the show in engaging tweets. Even though Ketch had been a villain and an enemy of Sam and Dean, Haydn-Jones was so good being bad that viewers were intrigued by his portrayal. Plus, many (including David Haydn-Jones) felt there was more of Ketch’s story to be told. We never fully understood his motives for being such a loyal British Men of Letters operative and saw traces of emotions in his dealings with Mary. It seemed that Arthur Ketch was capable of love, but throughout Season 12, he remained a man of mystery. And any possible good that was there ended with his death in the Season 12 episode “Who We Are.” In an interview I did with David Haydn-Jones in June in which I asked him the question “If you could have created another ending for your character, how would you have liked to see Arthur Ketch’s story end?” he responded “I would have liked to have seen a redemption arc perhaps. See if Mary could have cracked him open and turned him to the Winchester’s side. Also, there was that mysterious tattoo… Did it have any supernatural powers associated or was it just ink? Would have been fun to see if there was magic there, since we know Arthur is familiar with magic (ie. The extra bunker protection spells).” Well, we don’t know if Mary could have turned him to the Winchesters’ side but a possible redemption arc sounds interesting, if we get to see it done gradually over the Season 13 episodes in which Haydn-Jones appears. As Ketch always appeared to be anti-supernatural, it seems odd that he’d willingly be in cahoots with Asmodeus. Smart bet is Arthur Ketch has a few tricks up his debonair sleeve. But why did the writers decide to bring Ketch back? Was that the plan all along? Surely it couldn’t have been due to a lack of Season 13 foes for Sam and Dean as there was already Lucifer and Asmodeus on the canvas. As we wonder about Ketch’s end game, what is the writers?
And what I’d like to know is will Ketch’s tattoo be making a return appearance? I’m excited to see what the writers have in store for Arthur Ketch and am pleased to see David Haydn-Jones back on Supernatural.
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