I have come to the conclusion that I really need to stop playing on twitter when I am watching a television show.  On the one hand, I love the opportunity to converse with other people as crazy about a show as I am!  But on the other hand, there is the problem with--well, missing things...Like incredibly important things such as Crowley finally showing “demon” eyes and smoke.  Albeit red.  But I’ll get more into that later.

 
The other thing I have to watch out for is the actual cringe from finding out things in the credits--like that this episode was written by Andrew Dabb and Daniel Loflin.  I blame them for making John Winchester a child abuser, among other problems that have crept up in their scripts, but this one was actually a very good, strong effort on their part.  Well, ok, they did lean back on an “evil gods” concept, but still, the important thing about this episode wasn’t Plutus.  He and his henchman that bore a striking resemblance to Willy Wonka (Gene Wilder, not Johnny Depp) were just added dressing.  As we have heard on more than one occasion--it’s always about Crowley.
 
If you would like to find out more on Plutus, you can check out a little bit on him here: http://www.theoi.com/Georgikos/Ploutos.html

 
Directing was John Showalter, who we have seen various times in the past, Directing “Out With the Old” and “Slash Fiction” from Season Seven alone.  He also has other SPN credits to his directing portfolio…

 
After seeing Channing’s neck snapped like a twig, Kevin is worried.  He’s afraid that something is going to go after his mom.  Dean tries to convince Kevin that Ms. Tran is better off without him going over there--that most likely she is fine and Crowley has set up a trap for them, but this just convinces Kevin more that mom needs his help.  With this, the Brothers Winchester and the “short stop” prophet head to Neighbor, Michigan to check on mom...And find exactly what Dean feared--demons on patrol.  Everywhere.After busting mom out and inking mom and Kevin up, Sam Dean and the Family Tran go to pick up the tablet in a locker at a terminal...and find only a diaper bag in its place.  With help from surprising places, they are able to locate the tablet, and a very bizarre auction…

 
And on to the analysis…


 
For a very long time now, I have wondered what was up with Crowley.  Now, and by now I mean RIGHT NOW, I am more confused than ever.  With Crowley’s beyond simple demon tactics, I had a very difficult time accepting that “backstory” we were given for him.  I mean Crowley is only a couple hundred years old?  Really?  Je croix que non. His son was going to the new world and the 1700s feel to that?  When we knew Ruby to be older than that?  Please.  Even when he was the King of the Crossroads, he had more power than one would think a demon a mere 250 years old would have acquired.  I always felt he seemed OLD.  Like REALLY OLD.  Maybe that particular life with that ghost son was only one incarnation of him.  The red smoke and red eyes though makes him seem like the other Crossroad demons that we have seen.  And didn’t Bobby roast one of those in “Weekend at Bobby’s”?  Didn’t Sam kill one with Ruby’s knife when he was trying to find a way to get Dean out of Hell?  Clearly there is more to this story than we currently know.

 
Maybe Crowley is just posing as a demon, or maybe he is something else...Demons have souls.  I mean yes, some sold their souls for something, but their souls went down stairs at death, so it was just about them going downstairs. Sam was a special case because of the body being raised but not the soul.  And I’m not sure how Ms. Tran losing her soul would have worked out.  Plutus says Crowley doesn’t have a soul and Crowley doesn’t argue.  So does that mean he is something else--like an angel or some type of demi-god?  Someone commented on twitter that Crowley sold his soul and that’s why he didn’t have one.  But again, I think the act of selling your soul for something is just “damning” your soul...Remember Dean sold his soul, but when Cas raised him, it was the soul he took out of Hell and brought back to his body on Earth.  Dean isn’t walking around soulless…
 

 
But Dean definitely has come back with a few "demons".  If Dean didn’t look so hot in that torture scene, I’d be very upset with the writers for dwelling on this “Dean does torture” thing.  Yeah show, we get it.  We know Dean learned how to torture from the best.  We are aware that the scariest thing in Purgatory for many of those monsters was Dean.  This hurts me a little.  Dean got rid of the emo-angst he has been struggling with for two seasons but what are we replacing it with?  I am just reminding myself of that old Chinese proverb that states that in order to get a bent yew tree to grow straight, you have to bend it in the other direction for a while.  I’m sure Dean will balance out.  Maybe get laid a little...I just want Dean to find some level of piece, oh wait...PEACE.  But a piece might help too...He has yet to have pie since he’s been back… 

 
And what is this return to Season One Sam has going on?  I am practically waiting for the Pada-bangs to be cut back in--now Sam is talking like in “Shadow”, that he doesn’t want it to go back the way it was.  Or in the “Pilot” even, when all he wanted to do was get vengeance for Jess and then get out. I think he’s just talking the talk though.  He may think he’ll leave, and I’m sure he’ll struggle with it a while, but Sam is a warrior, too.  I’d still like to find out what he has been doing for the past year. Dean worked in construction.  I mean SAM EVEN DID THE EXORCISM IN REVERSE TO KEEP THE DEMON FROM LEAVING Eunice!  Life after hunting?  You don’t have to save them?  Really Sam? I don’t believe you!  

 
But staying on Sam a minute, I really did like the Sam version of snark that was going on--the little looks he made of satisfaction that he got his brother--again.  Dean had a couple of “be quiet” moments trying to cut his brother off from the bragging.  It was great that even though they have been apart for a year there are things just about their brotherliness that will just never go away…

 
I also thoroughly enjoyed the Misha appearances. I appreciated the scruff, and I’m loving the backstory.  I love how torn I was about the whole Cas thing.  CAS LEFT DEAN RIGHT THEN WHEN THEY GOT TO PURGATORY!!!  Oh. My. God.  Poor Dean!  He was very truly alone until he struck up a “trenches” friendship with Benny!  I wasn’t expecting that.  And then we get what Cas said about why he left, and what Samandiriel said about Cas.  I was so close to wanting to hate Cas for leaving Dean, but then just knowing that there had to be a good reason.  I can’t wait for our next installment of the Purgatory papers!  I mean WHAT HAPPENED TO CAS???  And why did Dean say he saw enough?  Did he see something horrible happen to Cas?

 
By the way, according to my Google web search (I think I’ll start getting Siri to do this stuff), Samandriel was actually an angel.  The name means “Angel of Imagination." 

 
As far as Cas is concerned, I really liked the beard!  But the Purgatory time showed me something else I thought was interesting.  I liked how protective Benny seemed of Dean.  He wanted an answer as to why Cas just left Dean when they got to Purgatory, and he didn’t seem impressed by the answer.  Is Benny protective of Dean, or is he afraid that Cas will turn Dean against him?  Do Benny and Dean have a real friendship, or is there some duplicity there?  Benny is a monster, so I want to lean toward duplicity and deceit, but what we’ve seen so far he seems genuinely to want to help Dean and the friendship seems genuine…


 
With Kevin Tran’s new hair cut, all he needs is a white and red striped shirt--because it’s time to play “Where’s Kevin?”  Kevin and Ms. Tran took off, my guess in part that Kevin saw Dean considered killing his mom and part because of what Crowley said about the Winchesters...but my guess is that Kevin was also thinking that for about a year he was out on his own hiding from Crowley and since he has met back up with the Winchesters, he saw his girlfriend get her neck snapped and his mother get possessed by the King of Hell...He’s probably thinking that the year without them was a bit less dangerous and traumatic.
 
I also loved the way Ms. Tran was written.  She was tough!  She had the tools to handle the pawn shop clerk, and didn't flinch when getting a tattoo…I especially loved that moment--There she is, not phased at all by her pain, but as soon as she sees how much pain her son is in, she is comforting him.  She truly doesn't care about her own pain, or her own soul, just Kevin's.  I also loved the moment where right before she and Kevin hug, Sam and Dean douse her with holy water!  Excellent music sequence there too!

 
So now we are short one profit and one “word of God” tablet.  The Winchesters are each keeping someone hidden from the other.  Crowley may or may not be a demon. Cas may or may not be dead...
 
Personally, I think Sam should have kept Thor’s Hammer. 
 
The song playing while the Family Tran got inked up was “The Devil’s Chasing Me” by The Reverend Horton Heat.  Since I had the horror convention last weekend and I’ve been working beaucoup overtime in preparation for my week’s vacation to Chicago for ChiCon, this review is a little more brief and much later than I had hoped!  Please let me know what you thought of the episode and what theories you have on Crowley!
 
Thanks for Reading!  Screencaps from scifi.grande-caps tumblr.