Summary: This episode was written by Robbie Thompson and features the return of fan favorite Charlie Bradbury. The last time we saw Charlie she was off on a quest and adventure to Oz with Dorothy, so let’s see what happens during her return.
The episode begins with “Charlie” attacking a man outside his home. When we find the boys in the bunker they are trying to get Dean into a healthy lifestyle to avoid triggering the Mark of Cain and are still researching the Mark when Sam finds the video that shows Charlie beating up the guy from the cold opening.
The boys go to find out what’s happening, in their own version of a quest, and find that the guy was involved in the hit and run drunk driver case that killed Charlie’s parents. They run into Dark Charlie at another link in the investigation chain and they fight. Charlie escapes and then another Charlie shows up.
We find out that Charlie sold her soul, kind of, in Oz to win the war of Emerald City. Her Dark Half won the war almost singlehandedly but the price is that there is a twofer Charlie – one who is really good and one who is really dark. The episode splits in two, essentially, as Sam and Good Charlie go back to the bunker to find a way to reunite the Charlies and Dean pursues the Dark Charlie. It was a nice structural move on the script’s part.
In the bunker, Charlie and Sam figure out that the Man of Letters who found the key to Oz and went there retired. They speculate he’s still alive and go to find him. Meanwhile Dean is in hot pursuit of a vengeful Charlie who is after the man who killed her parents. One scene focuses on Dean trying to resist women and booze, kind of a nod back to that season 5 episode about purity in my opinion. Charlie escapes Dean’s guardianship and he tracks her down to the place where the murderer works. Dean tries to protect the guy but Charlie shows up and after a rather manipulative turn, convinces Dean that she doesn’t want revenge, just justice. She wants this guy to see her face and the damage he did. She confronts him and he apologizes and it is implied that he inflicted further injuries on Celeste (Charlie’s real name) after the accident. Charlie turns and locks the door on Dean and then kills the man.
Charlie steals the impala because Dean revealed what Sam and Good Charlie were doing. He chases her as we see Sam and Charlie find Clive and they figure out that he is the Wizard of Oz – he too split in two with his Id running wild (by the way there is a basic misunderstanding of the Id here but we’ll go with it for plot). Dark Charlie and Dean collide and she taunts him into losing control. As Dean and Charlie fight outside, Clive mortally injures himself to bring the Wizard into this world. Sam is beaten and tied up while Charlie suffers the blows from Dean outside. Eventually Charlie gets a gun and has to kill Clive in order to kill the Wizard and save the day.
Sam carries her outside and stops Dean from beating Charlie to death. He lays them next to each other and places the key on Good Charlie’s chest. After an emotional exchange, where Dark Charlie tells Charlie she had the magic in her all the time, the two halves are united.
The concluding scenes focus on Charlie forgiving Dean and her possible future involvement with the investigation into the mark. She leaves with her trademark bitches comment. Sam and Dean have a short heart to heart where they commit again to figure out a way to fix Dean’s “demonic tramp stamp.”
Another great outing for Thompson. Kudos to him and Felicia Day on another wonderful Charlie episode.
Where do you think Charlie will fit into the narrative now?
Do you think clean living is the way to go for Dean? Why is that an option do you think?
Do you think the reunification of Charlie was a forecasting of Dean’s cure or a red herring?
So what are your thoughts, reactions, feelings? Leave them here!