Supernatural returned from its umpteenth hiatus this season with a filler episode clearly meant to make viewers question the intentions of the Leviathans. “Because we’re only here to help” could either be a massive curveball or just another example of the manipulation the Leviathans have used to spread their influence across the globe. I’m leaning toward the latter based on the fact we’ve seen these monsters kill numerous people – remember the nacho cheese assassin? – and because a research lab created to find the cure for cancer seems like a great place to create a chemical weapon of mass destruction. George’s mouth might be saying one thing but the mouths of his fellow Leviathans have been saying something completely different all season: These monsters just want to eat you for lunch.

Who wouldn’t kill to see Dean in ballerina slippers?

This week’s case involved rounding up cursed objects from an antique store called “Out with the Old.” There was a tea kettle that caused a woman to drink scalding water, a gramophone that almost made a kid stab his mom and an old porno magazine that was (thankfully) dealt with off-screen. Each of these items caused horrifying things to happen, the worst of which was watching the old woman drink the scalding water. There was something about seeing the skin on her neck and chin burn away that made my stomach turn. However, I couldn’t help but laugh when the episode started with a pair of cursed ballerina slippers that made a ballerina “dance her feet off.”

The whole thing situation was pretty fun, from the way the ballerina twirled in cheesy fast motion to the patented blood splatter that somehow shot 20 feet across the room and hit the door. I would think this scene was meant for laughs but it didn’t have the same vibe as the encounter later with the little girl in the bathroom. That scene, with the girl kicking Dean in the face multiple times and apologizing, was hilarious in a way that Supernatural has perfected in its seven seasons. But the opening scene didn’t have that same sense of lighthearted goofiness about it despite its inherit silliness, creating a strange tone for the rest of the episode that ultimately made this episode one of the season’s weaker entries.

“Out with the Old?” More like out with the pointless side quest

It wasn’t just the ballerina scene that contributed to the listless feeling of this episode, though. The entire subplot involving the cursed objects was completely unrelated to the final destination – Sam and Dean’s confrontation with the Leviathans – and felt completely forced. The episode boiled down to three important bullet points: the Leviathans might not be as evil as we think, Sam is losing his marbles due to Lucifer’s presence, and Frank has been taken by something, presumably the Leviathans. Normally I’m able to forgive the “case of the week” format this show routinely uses because the case effortlessly weaves into the fabric of a larger story arc or acts as a standalone episode. The hunt for the cursed objects in “Out with the Old” did neither of those things.

Was anyone else expecting some angelic assistance?

Misleading promos are nothing new with the CW but the tease we got after “Repo Man” made it seem like Castiel would be making his return in this episode as opposed to next week’s “The Born-Again Identity.” Granted, the preview did feature one brief shot of Sam lying on a gurney and thus implied that the preview was for the next two episodes, but I was still hoping for everyone’s favorite angel to make his grand return in this hour.

Supernatural has been sparse in the character department this season after killing off Bobby and Castiel so seeing a familiar face next week will be a refreshing change of pace for a show that’s created some wonderful relationships during its run. I’m curious how they plan on bringing Castiel back considering the Leviathans pretty much tore him apart, but then again, this is the same angel who blew up in the fifth season finale only to come back minutes later, so I guess anything goes. “The Born-Again Identity” seems to imply that Castiel has adopted a different role and might not be using his angelic powers to stop the Apocalypse or consume all the souls in purgatory. Whatever the case may be, I can’t wait to see Dean’s reaction to seeing his old friend once again.

Line of the week

Dean: Hey. Got the porn. Just in time, too.
Sam: What was he doing?
Dean: Let’s just say you don’t want to know.

Next week on Supernatural

Lucifer finally causes Sam to crack and Dean is desperate for help. Cue Castiel’s return!

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