Supernatural: Do You Believe in Miracles?
May 22, 2014 11:10 AM - Season 9, Episode 23 - Subscribe

The epic conclusion to the battle for heaven! Lots of witty lines, some heartfelt moments, and a few end of season cliffhangers.
posted by Arbac (22 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Dean is a demon. Not possessed by a demon but like fully fledged evolved into one.


1. Can he leave his body and possess someone else?
2. Is this change something that be can reverted/healed?
3. Is this going to get resolved in the first couple of episodes in the season or will the writers run with it for the full season?

and yes, Castiel is the best. although I'm still grumpy he gets references now.
posted by royalsong at 12:07 PM on May 22, 2014 [3 favorites]

This episode was so much better than it had any right to be.
posted by fshgrl at 1:44 PM on May 22, 2014 [2 favorites]

Is it just me, or do they keep waiting until either the last couple of episodes, or the last episode itself, to use their really good writing skills? It seems like the last couple of seasons have been rather bland, and then really good at the end.
posted by Meep! Eek! at 2:51 PM on May 22, 2014 [2 favorites]

And I see that someone addressed this very thing in the last episode thread.
posted by Meep! Eek! at 2:56 PM on May 22, 2014 [1 favorite]

Dean as a demon; this will be fun. He's dead, so I'm assuming he's just like Cain or Meg or any other black-eye. He could ditch his corpse to grab another vessel, but why abandon such a useful vehicle/camouflage?

Nice to see Metatron's love of the sound of his own voice bite him in the ass; I sort of figured that was coming after the obnoxious high school PA announcements. Also enjoyed Gadreel and Cas's "what have we learned?" moments.
posted by FelliniBlank at 3:36 PM on May 22, 2014

I really like the idea of Dean being the (or a) big bad next season. I hope they don't resolve it too early. Also, I'm looking forward to Dean and Crowley's death and destruction version of a pub crawl.
posted by brundlefly at 4:16 PM on May 22, 2014

I was so BORED I did other things while the episode played in the background. Just bored. When Dean hit Sam cold, I sighed. How dumb dumb dull.

We had Sam-without-a-soul, we had the Righteous Man who picked up a blade. They've done this. They've done it all better.

Mind you, with Psych finished, Timothy Omundson is available so we can get lots of Cain onscreen, and that's not a bad thing.

I will take this all back if they actually go there and have Castiel's Angelic Love be what saves Dean. The actors and the show is pretty much guaranteed, no matter what tripe they write, and they can't kill the two main characters for a twist so why not do something else?

Or bring back an actual God who hits reset for the whole damn thing.

This season made me miss the Leviathans. Why are angels so boring on TV when they are terrifying and crazycool in theology and literature?
posted by viggorlijah at 7:23 PM on May 22, 2014 [1 favorite]

AV Club gave it a B. THIS IS WHAT YOU'RE GOING TO BECOME! (Remember that from way back in S3?)

I'm guessing that Dean's going to try to keep his demonhood a secret from Sam for an excruciating number of episodes next season.
posted by obloquy at 10:27 PM on May 22, 2014 [2 favorites]

I saw the angel radio thing coming, but I expected Dean's condition to be resolved with him killing someone and suddenly feeling much better.
posted by Pronoiac at 11:17 PM on May 22, 2014

Dean is the son that Crawley never had? That's actually really sweet. And discomfiting.
posted by rue72 at 2:22 AM on May 23, 2014 [1 favorite]

I don't know how available Omundson will be - I'm hoping Galavant stays on ABC long enough to keep him busy as the evil king. I mean, he was smoking hot as Cain, but, he'll be singing and dancing in Galavant.
posted by oh yeah! at 5:44 AM on May 23, 2014 [1 favorite]

I don't know how available Omundson will be - I'm hoping Galavant stays on ABC long enough to keep him busy as the evil king. I mean, he was smoking hot as Cain, but, he'll be singing and dancing in Galavant.

Well, that looks splendid, which means it will probably last 2 weeks.
posted by FelliniBlank at 7:48 AM on May 23, 2014

I hope they don't resolve it too early

Me too. His friends and family have been happy to weaponize Dean when it suits them so he better go full Abbadon on them now. I want to see him running around lopping off heads and laughing maniacally for most of the next season.

I did like that his death was totally pointless. Megatron kicked his ass handily and ultimately the angels didn't need help to defeat him. That was a nice touch after all the "Dean turning evil is our only hope!" talk.
posted by fshgrl at 10:55 AM on May 23, 2014 [2 favorites]

Or is there a chance that Sam saving Dean completes the trials that he so long ago abandoned?
posted by Feantari at 11:29 AM on May 23, 2014 [5 favorites]

Is it wrong that I half cheered at "Carry on my wayward son" even though I knew it would be there?

Dollars to donuts this isn't carried out through the whole next season. I want to to be, but they have followed a predictable trend of bad thing at season end, fixed by episode 3 of the next season, then angst angst angst, some vague mission, angst angst angst, now well finally address the mission for 2-3 episodes before the finale and start over again.

This episode was really good. Other than Dean dying, because we all knew that wouldn't be permanent. Which I suppose Sam did too by plopping him into bed and not giving him a hunters funeral.

But I digress. The episode was really good, but it crammed so much in it that could have and should have had time to breathe. We really should have seen the build up of "Marv" over the course of a few episodes. Same with the Gadreel story, both possessing Sam and his turn back to flipping sides. Abaddon was a was of a neat concept. The whole story should have been an arch, without the single episode detours.

On a practical note, I sort of wonder if it's not a budget issue. The show is old and wasn't supposed to last this long. I have been wondering if it's suffering from a declining budget, so they throw money at the beginning and the end, knowing that's what will keep the fans hooked.

Then again, maybe if the cast didn't waste so much time goofing off. . . (actually no, I really love the tales of their shenanigans.)
posted by [insert clever name here] at 11:39 AM on May 24, 2014 [2 favorites]

Why are angels so boring on TV when they are terrifying and crazycool in theology and literature?

They were all terrifying on the show until we met them. Remember Cas when we first saw him? And the build-up to that? Now he's the lovable, but flakey angel pal. And that's how all their bad guys end up. Demons were super terrifying at first too, until we had a lot of them. Leviathans too, since you mention it. You could argue that they just seem that way as Sam and Dean grew in their ability to defeat them. But it's just poor writing, being unable to write the characters up to the challenge they created, so they dumb down the bads.

The thing the show repeatedly does poorly is sticking to its own mythology. Remember when they tried to save people demons possessed? Now they opt for killing them. The sheer number of people they have slaughtered that could have been saved is astounding. I wish that would play into the angst, even into Dean becoming who he is.

I still find the show immensely enjoyable, so will still watch it. But it does have flaws. The angels just being one small part.
posted by [insert clever name here] at 11:54 AM on May 24, 2014 [3 favorites]

The sheer number of people they have slaughtered that could have been saved is astounding. I wish that would play into the angst, even into Dean becoming who he is.

Oh I think it definitely has. His slide into isolation, depression, alcoholism and general tetchiness has explicitly been tied to his feeling corrupted because he's a "killer" many, many times over the years. Dean losing his humanity makes sense but it's kinda boring to watch someone who is merely a shell of their former selves. Evil Dean at least might be fun again.

Sam doesn't appear to be affected by it because Sam has a superhuman ability to simply shrug off the slings and arrows of life. That or the writers stopped caring about his character years ago.

The angels are boring because they have no motivation anymore. What do they want? Will they get it? Who knows. Who the fuck cares.
posted by fshgrl at 4:29 PM on May 24, 2014 [2 favorites]

I don't know. I kind of think it weighs on Dean only when it's convenient to the plot. Even then, he doesn't really seem particularly put out that he is killing people, just that the life is a grind and there isn't any traditional normalcy. Even Sam, the supposed bleeding heart of the two is now pretty nonplussed about murdering everything and everyone. Once in a while they stop to think about it, the rest of the time it's murder time.

But that's always been my complaint, that the writers take shortcuts and characters suffer from plot-based motivations (and powers!). I'll still forgive it. But if they'd follow threw on a few things, it would make for a better story overall. They've introduced some really neat ideas, only to throw them out when convenient.
posted by [insert clever name here] at 11:04 AM on May 25, 2014 [1 favorite]

Is it wrong that I half cheered at "Carry on my wayward son" even though I knew it would be there?

I do it every year, even in the bad seasons, so I understand. Though this year, I had to shake my head a little bit--does ANYONE believe there will be peace when the Winchesters are done?
posted by terilou at 8:04 AM on May 26, 2014 [2 favorites]

Finally caught up with the season and the finale the other day.

I had the sense that this season was a step up from the last, but still not quite the awesomesauce the seasons of the original Yellow Eyed Demon series arc brought us.

I'm not convinced Dean will remain a demon very long, since we've already been introduced to a rather convenient method to "cure" a demonic soul. It doesn't have to be part of a trial, hence no one should suffer or be grievously injured in the process of bringing Dean back from the demonic pale.

What question, at the end we're presented with the growing danger that Castiel will die once his borrowed grace runs out. Why did the lack of grace before not result in his death? Sure, it was part of a spell to kick the angels out of Heaven, but surely it was still the same as removing grace from an angel.

Crawley totally jacked up the timeline by not sending his son, PRINCE OF HELL, back to the past. I thinks that will play a role in next season's stories. Is Crawley stuck with a degree of humanity he can't get rid of? Will this give him any future probs as CEO of Hell Inc?

Honesty or the lack thereof has been a continual driving force in the show, be it a means to create tension between the brothers (RETIRE IT ALREADY), but also in how other characters have acted. I would absolutely love to have a season where the Winchesters are right with each other.
posted by Atreides at 7:31 AM on May 30, 2014 [1 favorite]


Dean: [dying] What happened with you being okay with this?
Sam: I lied.
Dean: Ain't that a bitch.

Metatron: You know, while you could never pull it together, Castiel, why you're sitting here while your grace slowly burning away and your reputation long extinguished? No curiosity. You didn't read enough. You never learned how to tell a good story.
Castiel: But you did. [reveals the whole conversation was being broadcast to all the angels]

Crowley: So this is what you and Moose do, eh? Crisscross the country searching for evil, order your nitrates, partake of the local attraction?
Dean: Yup.
Crowley: And you never get tired of the rat race? Never get the urge to just bugger off and howl at the moon? Never ask yourself, is this it? Is this all there is?

Dean: How's Hell, Crowley?
Crowley: Hell's fine! Hell's like a Swiss watch. Don't worry about Hell. Hell's complicated.
Dean: Game of Thrones is complicated. Shower sex, that's complicated. Hell ain't complicated. You're problem ain't Hell. It's *you*.

Metatron: This is a story, Neil, a marvelous story, full of love and heartbreak and... love.
Neil: Sort of like The Notebook? I love The Notebook.
Metatron: Uh... No.

Metatron: Do you have any idea how much pancake makeup and soft lighting it took to get God to work a rope line? He hated it. And, you know, humans sense that. So they prayed harder and longer and fought more wars in his name. And for what? So they could die of malaria? Leukemia? And all the while, blaming themselves! Oh, if only I'd been more prayerful, God would have loved me! God would have saved me! You know what? God didn't even know their name! But I do. Because I've walked among them. And I can save them.
Dean: Sure, you can. So long as your mug is in every Bible and "What Would Metatron Do?" is on every bumper.


As Metatron begins his all-angel broadcast, his voice echoes dramatically. His assistant, Neil, says, "More reverb," to which Metatron replies, "Because I'm Lou Gehrig?" Lou Gehrig, forced to retire in 1939 because of his recent ALS diagnosis, delivered his famous "Luckiest Man on the Face of the Earth!" farewell speech on July 4th in a packed Yankee Stadium, with a lot of reverberation.

This title of this episode is actually a reference to the song "Do You Believe in Miracles" by Slade. The line from Fleetwood Mac's song "You Make Loving Fun" actually says, "I never did believe in miracles".

Muncie, Indiana is a real town and home of Ball State University, alma mater of David Letterman.

The song that plays at the end of this episode is "Can't Find My Way Home" by Blind Faith. Before being replaced with "Line of Love" by The Minors due to licensing issues, "Route 666" (ep. 1.13) also featured "Can't Find My Way Home" by Blind Faith. While songs like these are chosen carefully, Supernatural sometimes unintentionally wraps around to one of the first themes in the series, i.e., the ghost that repeats, "I can never go home" from the Supernatural pilot episode, which mirrors Sam and Dean's struggle to find a true home (beyond the meaning of a building that they live in, but a place with family and safety) throughout the series.

As Dean and Crowley pull up to the trailer park, the name on the mailbox says "Miller's". This could be a reference to the 2013 movie We're the Millers.

At about 29:10 minutes in, Dean says to Metatron "Hell, I'm blaming you for the Cubs not winning the World Series in the last 100 freaking years." In 2016, two years after this episode aired, the Chicago Cubs would go on to win the World Series for the first time in 108 years.

In the original cut of the final scene, the mark of Cain on Dean's arm begins to glow as Crowley puts the First Blade into Dean's hand. It was cut out of the final edit, presumably so as not to give the game away and heighten the shock we feel when Dean opens his eyes to reveal that they are completely black and that he's now a demon.

Dean tells Metatron, "You are nothing but Bernie Madoff with wings." Bernard Madoff committed the largest financial fraud in history in 2008, operating a Ponzi scheme (a shell game using new seed money, not profits, to pay returns to investors) to defraud thousands of investors of billions of dollars.

Gadreel asks Castiel what's the plan for getting past the Metatron loyalist angels guarding the door to heaven. Cass grins and says, "Wookie", and holds up handcuffs. This is a reference to Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope, in which Han and Luke, disguised as storm troopers, escort a handcuffed Chewbacca through the Death Star.

As some homeless people start to kill an angel for Metatron, he smirks and says, "You love me. You really really love me". In 1985 Sally Field won an Oscar and her emotional acceptance speech included the words, "You like me. Right now you like me." That speech has been much parodied and misquoted and, by the release of the movie The Mask, had become an ironic/sarcastic "You love me. You really really love me."

When Crowley is talking to dead Dean, around the time when Crowley says "...he died. Except, as rumour has it..." The footage cuts to an extreme closeup of Dean's dead face. There are many techniques for keeping absolutely still when playing dead, but it is impossible to be totally unmoving. If you look closely at Jensen Ackles' eyes during this closeup you can see his eyelids fluttering ever so slightly.

Sam and Castiel locked Dean in the dungeon where they previously kept Crowley, yet when Dean summons Crowley you can see the door wide open behind him.
posted by orange swan at 4:12 PM on November 21, 2021

Metatron is a good villain -- he's so evil in such a banal, schlubby way that it's actually more chilling than if he were a more elegant, stylized personage.

It's too bad Gadreel didn't give Castiel his grace on his way out. Seems kind of wasteful and heedless of him.

On my first run through the show last fall/winter, I was never too moved by any of the several deaths of either Sam or Dean because there were always so many seasons ahead that I knew both Sam and Dean were in.

Must admit, that shot of Dean opening his black demonic eyes was a good way to end the season.
posted by orange swan at 4:14 PM on November 21, 2021

« Older Survivor: It's Do or Die...   |  Maron: Therapy... Newer »

You are not logged in, either login or create an account to post comments