Supernatural: Moriah
April 26, 2019 12:48 PM - Season 14, Episode 20 - Subscribe

Because of Sam, Dean, and Castiel, Jack becomes disenchanted with all the lies. An old friend shows up.


- Moriah is the mountainous region in the Book of Genesis where Abraham was to sacrifice his son Isaac to God
- Chilton Crane, who played Mrs. Kline, previously played Mrs. Tanner in 2.09 Croatoan and Mary Lew in 8.06 Southern Comfort.
- Brandyn Eddy, who played Break Room Man, previously played an uncredited Pitching Demon in 10.14 The Executioner's Song.
- Travis Turner, who played Short Guy, previously played Joe Silver in 6.19 Mommy Dearest.
- During the closing scene, several ghosts previously defeated by the Winchesters appear including Constance Welch, Mary Worthington, and John Wayne Gacy.
- The song "God Was Never On Your Side" by Motörhead, played over the ending scenes leading up to the credits, was used at Comic-Con 2018 over the teaser trailer for Season 14
posted by numaner (19 comments total)
Wow, that's a lot of crazy stuff!

I was a little surprised that God/Chuck was so.. mean... and cruel. That was not the perception I had when we last saw him and Amara. I guess he's always been nice to the boys as long as they were going along with his script.

But Sam's right. It's pretty fucked up that all this stuff has been happening to them just because God thinks it's entertaining to watch.

I enjoyed everyone tell the truth, that was fun! Too bad the boys knew quickly to stop talking and we didn't get more truth bombs about each of them.

So the world is ending somehow. And I guess in the series finale they're going to fix things by... killing God? Also did anyone else notice that before the commercial break, when Sam shoots Chuck with the Equalizer/Hammurabi, the screen fades to a blinding white, but after the commercial break when the scene repeats, it's just a regular bullet that didn't do anything to God but hurt Sam? Did Chuck momentarily died and made the moment repeat and not die? That's some power!
posted by numaner at 12:57 PM on April 26, 2019 [1 favorite]

posted by numaner at 1:01 PM on April 26, 2019 [2 favorites]

Mostly, Supernatural is just okay, even frustrating. Every now and then, Supernatural is mad genius: their Scooby Doo crossover, Gabriel making Dean die over and over again, their trip to the real world, Sam and Dean visiting a Supernatural convention because Chuck wrote the 'Winchester Gospels'... when they're really on, this show is something special.

This is my new favorite. It's the most meta the show has ever been, and it blows up everything. I was genuinely impressed they were willing to go there. For most of the episode, I assumed Chuck wouldn't confront Jack head-on because Jack might have a shot at really hurting him (like with Amara). This was better.

Anyway, all I really had: this was the biggest reaction the show's ever gotten out of me.
posted by mordax at 2:42 PM on April 26, 2019 [8 favorites]

Nope, wait, one more thing:

I think this also gives away the real reason Chuck doesn't intervene much. I think he's usually disappointed when he does. See also the abandoned room he used to use to answer prayers. I think when he does step into his creation and try to play directly, things tend to turn out like this, and he gets petulant.

God isn't just a writer, he's not a very good writer. It's easier to watch.

I can't help but draw a lot of parallels with Preacher in my head, after this. (In a good way, because of the similar takes on the problem of evil.)
posted by mordax at 2:50 PM on April 26, 2019 [3 favorites]

Yeah, this is peak Supernatural: doing something that is simultaneously flabbergasting, totally meta, and that in hindisght also feels completely inevitable. Of course Chuck is going to be the big bad of their final season; really, how else could this show end but with a showdown between the characters and the 'writer'? Especially after this sort of meandering season where it frequently seemed the writers had no idea where they were going, why wouldn't things end up going that way?

Opens up a ton of interesting possibilities for next season. Will Amara be involved? (She's in Reno apparently.) If God's the bad guy, is Lucifer now a "good guy" to be recruited to Team Winchester? Will they attempt to supplant Chuck with Jack? How many of those previously-vanquished Season 1 monsters that they showed getting loose again at the end will they actually spend the time to re-vanquish? I dunno, but man, if you had told me even last week that this season finale would get me this excited about next season I probably wouldn't have believed you. Impressive work.
posted by mstokes650 at 8:08 PM on April 26, 2019 [5 favorites]

The whole time Chuck was ranting in the graveyard I was absolutely waiting to see who would snap and take a shot at him first. (I actually had it on Jack and would have believed it from Castiel, though Castiel's maybe got too much angel still in him.) But no, Sam has a soft spot for soulless knuckleheads, and if you piss the him off enough my dude's just gonna haul off and SHOOT GOD. And I also got the weird white fadeout/repeat on Sam shooting Chuck. I guessed it was just a commercial break thing, but I'd also think Sam could hit center-mass from like ten feet away if he wanted to (though also it seems like Sam needs to suck at many things for the plot to move along these days. Which is mostly eyerolly and sometimes hilarious, like when you get to watch Jared Padalecki trying his hardest to act like he'd get his ass kicked by Mark Pellegrino.) But it's a sad road from Sam as a kid secretly praying to escape the hunting life, to him now, in sight of middle age, freshly re-orphaned, asking God if this was it and were they being abandoned for somewhere more entertaining; all that, and there was never anywhere for him to escape to.

"You're my favorite show, you suffer for my entertainment" was the kind of meta I was hoping for back when Chuck first got introduced (Preacher is the vibe I was thinking about for next season's setup too, but this bit is straight Animal Man.) I'm not sure if I still feel that way, but I was surprised for Chuck to turn that openly sadistic. Speaking of which, they may even had said this outright, but I'm completely sure the gun rebounding on whoever shoots it was 100% Chuck being a drama llama and jerking them around. Joshua probably made that God-detector necklace so he wouldn't get stuck having to talk to the guy.

I'm not clear on the current verdict on whether Chuck Shurley was ever a real person, if he was a vacation for God where he kind of let go of the God parts to be mostly human, or if he was this version of God the whole time and Chuck was always an elaborate act. I'm fond of Chuck the drunk novelist and all the meta weirdness that came with him, so I prefer a read where he was once at least sort of a real person, but it's clearly changed over time. Then again, if Chuck was always God, that means that God spent the early oughts writing Supernatural fanfic in his bathrobe, #relatable. (No, but it means he enjoys Sam and Dean's suffering so thoroughly he felt compelled to share it with the world, which is somehow even worse.)

But depending how far they plan to take this next season, and how much of a plan they have to get there, this could be pretty fun.
posted by jameaterblues at 11:46 PM on April 26, 2019 [3 favorites]

I'm completely sure the gun rebounding on whoever shoots it was 100% Chuck being a drama llama and jerking them around.

I agree. Him talking about Abraham and Isaac is a dead giveaway: he clearly just wanted Dean to prove his commitment by pulling the trigger, but Dean permadying was right out. (At the very least, Chuck never would've let it stick.)

I'm not clear on the current verdict on whether Chuck Shurley was ever a real person, if he was a vacation for God where he kind of let go of the God parts to be mostly human, or if he was this version of God the whole time and Chuck was always an elaborate act.

My personal take is that Chuck was never anything but God slumming. To step away from Preacher a moment: this is God as Alanis Morissette playing ski-ball in Dogma. Chuck knows running the whole shebang like a king is a drag. He doesn't want to step away from this world. Playing human is the best way to get to engage with his creation without tipping stuff too much one way or another... but Jack definitely threw that out of balance.

(Aside: we also know God comes with an expiration date - original Death claimed that he'd be the one to reap God, one day.)
posted by mordax at 12:27 AM on April 27, 2019 [4 favorites]

(Aside: we also know God comes with an expiration date - original Death claimed that he'd be the one to reap God, one day.)

Yep, I've been thinking about that too! Clearly Billie should end up being significant next season, along with that cosmic entity from the void. Perhaps original Death will even return?
posted by Pryde at 7:47 AM on April 27, 2019 [1 favorite]

I liked the episode until Chuck snapped his fingers and just turned it into "more escaping souls from hell." I did not like the ending, which felt like same ol' shit there. Until then, however, it was interesting. Chuck as villain is appropriate. Chuck as bad writer is appropriate. It's a good move and I liked where it was going until the end, sigh. I don't care about "let's chase down all the bad souls of hell" stuff again.

Chuck's "oh, I can't fix the soul thing, all I can do as God is come up with a mutual suicide Colt" was fishy from the getgo. HMMM. So yeah, he's amiable as long as the Winchesters follow the script? (Also, Jack is not Dean's kid. Honorary little bro if anything.) God is indeed slumming playing skee-ball (or possibly keno).

I want to see the world that's all squirrels!
posted by jenfullmoon at 9:30 AM on April 27, 2019 [1 favorite]

Also, been mulling this overnight:

Will they attempt to supplant Chuck with Jack?

My shiny nickel is on 'yes.' When Amara gave Chuck a fatal wound, the world did start to end. They probably need someone supplying the universe with 'god energy.' Amara's plainly not interested in that kind of project, and might not be capable - it's unclear whether her yin/yang relationship to Chuck is cosmically required, or if she just doesn't like making stuff the way he does.

They deliberately showed Jack pulling off God-level stunts, starting with Duma egging him into doing Old Testament curses and making angels, then ending with the truth field here.

I want to see the world that's all squirrels!

I felt like that was an oblique nod to Buffy, where several immortal characters claimed there was a world that was just shrimp. (I remember Illyria talking about that, and I could swear Anya did?)
posted by mordax at 9:32 AM on April 27, 2019 [1 favorite]

Eleanor Shellstrop would love to see ShrimpWorld.
posted by jenfullmoon at 9:48 AM on April 27, 2019 [2 favorites]

I totally didn't think of this till after, but the Shrimp World stuff has got to be a Buffyverse reference, right?
posted by jameaterblues at 10:54 AM on April 27, 2019

I really liked this one. My own idea for what they should do with Jack was to have him become the new God and it seems like that's where this could be heading. I think it would be a great ending for the show. Sam and Dean replace God with a better one! Now there's an accomplishment to be proud of! But Jack is only two and still has a lot to learn so it's not like he's going to turn Earth into a paradise right away. I feel like they need an ending that shows that the Winchesters actually made a difference to the world but they probably feel like they also need one that lets us imagine the continuing adventures of Sam and Dean in a world that isn't drastically different from their current world. So Jack becomes God with the intention of eventually making things better. Perfect.

It seems like something interesting will happen with Jack and Billie and the thing from the Empty. There are some loose ends and unexplained things related to death and the afterlife that hopefully will be addressed along the way. It looks like the last season may feature a zombie apocalypse, too. Though generally whatever terrible thing happens in the last episode of one season gets fixed within the first couple of episodes of the next season, so maybe that won't amount to much.
posted by Redstart at 12:35 PM on April 27, 2019 [1 favorite]

This was thrilling stuff. Chuck's always been such a lovable schnook, but that lovability hinged on nobody asking a few awkward questions. In this episode the questions get asked and Chuck gets scary fast. I'd be surprised if God is the true Big Bad for the final season, it just seems a bit too edgy for this show to portray Jehovah as a villain worse than Lucifer. They'd have Christian fundies camped out on the CW's lawn! But then again Sam already shot God(!), so who knows how far they'll take this.

I suspect the final Big Bad will be Billie, Death herself. Well, her and the Shadow. (I guess that's what we're supposed to call Mr. Inky now, but it always makes me think of, you know, the Shadow.) I think her thing about how Dean had to go in the box under the sea was just a sneaky lie to try and get rid of Dean, she's up to no good. I think the mention of the original Death is laying the groundwork that he'll come back, and in the end he'll probably claim Billie. It always seemed weird to me that Death could be killed and all, and maybe he wasn't and this has all been a scheme or a vacation for him. I'd assumed that the series ended with Castiel going to the Empty, he'd finally be happy and then he'd vanish in fulfillment of the Shadow's curse, but now it seems like all bets are off.

I'm really not sure what Sam's plan was, taking a shot at God with a gun that was supposed to kill them both... especially when Sam had reason to think that God dying would take out the universe! It was a shoulder shot, so maybe he thought he'd just wound God a little? It was an awesome moment, but it just seems like very poor thinking on Sam's part.

I just saw the pilot a month or two back, for the first time in Chuck knows how long, so it was a trip to see the roadside ghost lady return now. I think the final season will see a return of many of the show's classic monsters, a kind of Greatest Hits, and I'm there for it.

It was also fun to see the show get in a lefty dig at Trump. They used to do that kind of thing a lot more, and it was a hoot to see them bring it back. FFS, Crowley, how could you do this to us??
posted by Ursula Hitler at 1:21 AM on April 28, 2019 [3 favorites]

I think the mention of the original Death is laying the groundwork that he'll come back, and in the end he'll probably claim Billie.

See, I felt like that line was more of a meta throwaway, because so many fans have made comments about preferring the original Death. Although I'd love to see original Death back. Also maybe we can bring Crowley back, since we're bringing back so many old favorites? I really miss Crowley.

I think her thing about how Dean had to go in the box under the sea was just a sneaky lie to try and get rid of Dean, she's up to no good.

See, if anything, I think Billie would be on the Winchester's side here. Billie always seems to be such a fan of order and procedure and balance. I bet she really hates God just snapping his fingers and effing everything up. I wouldn't be surprised if Billie teams up with the Winchesters.

I'm also now wondering if Billie was trying to get Dean into the box to avoid this exact outcome. I know she made it seem like it was so Michael didn't destroy the world, but perhaps the outcome she was actually trying to avoid was Jack loses his soul getting rid of Michael, God comes back, and messes everything up.
posted by litera scripta manet at 5:15 PM on May 3, 2019 [3 favorites]

Well, right now Billie seems to be hanging out with the Shadow, and so far that creep's been nothing but bad news! If she's got some allegiance with, uh, he/she/it, I think it's gotta be bad for the Winchesters and probably bad for humanity in general.
posted by Ursula Hitler at 8:49 PM on May 4, 2019

I mean, Billie doesn't seem like she's above working with the enemy to establish universal balance, and TBH the Shadow isn't exactly "bad", other than an ancient being that just. want. some. sleep. And things belonging to them that are escaping the Empty is noise they don't want, like Cas, Jack, and maybe Lucifer. We only see them as evil because they're threatening people we like. That makes them the enemy, but I don't know if I would categorize them as bad.

Perhaps Billie will show that the Shadow can actually help Team Freewill
posted by numaner at 11:15 AM on May 6, 2019


Dean: Nerds.
Sam: Takes one to know one.
Dean: What?
Sam: You. Come on, man. You're always calling me a geek, but you know every word to every Led Zeppelin song -- backwards and forwards -- you can discuss in detail every major rock drummer between '67 and '84, and... you watch Jeopardy! every night.
Dean: Okay. All right, yeah. But I'm nothing like these, uh, you know, gaggle of Zuckerbergs.

Receptionist: Can I help you?
Dean: Hi. I'm Dean Winchester, and I'm looking for the devil's son.
Receptionist: What?
Dean: What? Uh -- I mean I'm Dean Winchester, and I'm looking for the devil's son. This badge is fake.

Worker #1: Hey. I'm sleeping with your wife.
Worker #2: I know. Kind of into it.
Worker #1: What?

Dean: Hey, let me ask you a question. Tell me who your favourite singer is.
Sam: What?
Dean: You... Look, I know you say it's Elvis, but we both know that's crap, so tell me who your favourite singer is.
Sam: Well, it's like you said.... It's Celine Dion. Uh... I mean Celine Dion. It's Celi-- Dean, every time I try and say "Elvis," it comes out --
Dean: The sad, horrible truth. Yeah. You know why? Because we can't lie.

Newscaster: In what was supposed to be a speech on farming subsidies, the President instead spent more than two hours disclosing his entire tax history, deep ties to Russia and North Korea, and a, quote, "demon deal" he made with someone named Crowley.

Dean: [looking at his phone] When people can't lie, the internet gets real quiet. Hmm. Yeah, guess your life isn't so perfect after all, EightPackMommy.
Sam: What?
Dean: Yeah, she's got this blog. Yeah, you know what? Your kids aren't that cute. And that gluten-free popover looks like crap because there's no gluten in it. [to Sam] You know what I mean?
Sam: ...
Dean: I'll stop talking.
Sam: Probably a good plan.

Chuck: [Sam tries to shoot him] Fine! That's the way you want it? Story's over. Welcome to The End.

Dean: The hell, Chuck?
Chuck: This isn't how the story is supposed to end.
Castiel: The story?
Chuck: Look it, the gathering storm, the gun, the father killing his own son. This is Abraham and Isaac. This is epic!
Dean: Wait. What are you saying?
Sam: He's saying he's been playing us. This whole time.
Chuck: Come on.
Sam: Our entire lives. Mom, Dad, everything. This is all you because you wrote it all, right? Because -- what? Because we're your favourite show? Because we're part of your story?
Chuck: Okay, Dean, no offense, but your brother is stupid and crazy. And that kid is still dangerous. So pick up the gun. Pick it up... pull the trigger... and I'll bring her back. Your mom.
Dean: No. No. My mom was my hero. And I miss her, and I will miss her every second of my life, but she would not want this. And it's not like you even really care. 'Cause Sam's right. The Apocalypse, the first go-around, with Lucifer and Michael -- you know everything that was going on, so why the games, Chuck, huh? Why don't You just snap your fingers and end it?
Chuck: Look, I...
Sam: And every bad thing we've been killing, been dying over -- where were you? Just sitting back and watching us suffer so we can do this over and over and over again -- fighting, losing people we love? When does it end? Tell me?
Chuck: Dean, don't do this.
Dean: No, we're done talking. 'Cause this -- this isn't just a story. It's our lives! So God or no God, you go to hell.
Chuck: Have it your way.

Castiel: You should have never tried to lock him away.
Dean: I never wanted to put him in that damn box. I wanted him dead.
Castiel: Dean.
Dean: He's dangerous, Cass, and you knew it! You've known it for a long time! But that's okay. You know why? Because me and Sam, we've killed just about everything there is. And this -- Jack -- oh, we'll find a way. Because he's just another monster.
Castiel: You don't mean that.
Dean: The hell I don't.

Dean: Where the hell have you been ?
Chuck: Well, you know, it's a funny story. It reminds me of a song. [picks up an acoustic guitar and plays notes on it]
Dean: [takes the acoustic guitar away from Chuck and breaks it by smashing it on the floor a couple of times]


Dean's quote about moms blogging gluten-free is a nod to Jared Padalecki's wife Genevieve, who has a mommy blog called "Now & Gen".

Moriah is the name given to a mountainous region by the Book of Genesis, in which context it is the location of the sacrifice of Isaac. The Vulgate renders the location specified by God for the sacrifice as terram visionis, traditionally rendered "land of Vision" in Catholic translations. Through association with the biblical Mount Moriah (the Temple Mount), Mount Moriah has traditionally been interpreted as the name of the specific mountain at which this occurred, although this identification is typically rejected by scholars.

Although it's never been shown on the show, Dean must actually watch Jeopardy! every night, since Sam states that while no one on Earth can lie.

Chuck / God is revealed as the overarching villain of the entire series, the episode title of Chuck's first appearance is "The Monster at the End of This Book" (ep. 4.18).

The weapon Chuck gives to the Winchesters is essentially "The Ultimate Nullifier" from the Marvel Comics, which can destroy any target it is used against, but kills the wielder as well.
posted by orange swan at 1:25 PM on April 7, 2022

The "world where no one can lie" scenario was so much fun I wish it had lasted longer -- for at least a few episodes. Sam's favourite singer being Celine Dion was one of my favourite character reveals of the entire series. It's right up there with Crowley having sold his soul for three more inches of dick. I somehow missed/forgot that Dean is apparently avidly following at least one mommy blog, but that was pretty good too, as was his shit-eating grin when he realizes he's made an ass of himself by blurting out the truth to the receptionist.

Things really took a turn at Chuck's reappearance. They thought they had trouble with Jack, but now they're facing the series' final and ultimate Big Bad: a writer who is pissed off that his plot didn't work out the way he wanted.
posted by orange swan at 1:28 PM on April 7, 2022

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