THEN: There are other hunters in the world. Okay, the ones they show us are all dead, but still. And there are a variety of monsters in the world. And Amara and Casifer are still out in the world. Caught up? Good.
NOW: Now actually takes place 27 years ago, when a young gay tween named Jess (which is surely not a coincidence) plots an escape from his horrible life along with his big brother Mattie, involving a $900 nickel, but the plot is foiled when Mattie is attacked and dragged off by... something.
Swirly title card of darkness!
It's a week after the boys watched Amara yoink Casifer away, and Dean is worried. Sam's concerned, but optimistic. And he found a case about a girl who turned into a green-eyed zombie. And he's eating a bowl of (presumably) cereal, which I find precious for some reason. (WE ALL KNOW WHAT YOUR REASON IS. IT'S BECAUSE HE'S SAM WINCHESTER AND EVERYTHING HE DOES IS PRECIOUS AND BEAUTIFUL.)
The only thing that would make this better would be Sam's little bare toes sticking out from his jeans. And one or two fewer shirts.
They end up in Colorado, where an awfully pretty and awfully young sheriff explains that the victim was on a "marijuana tasting tour" and her friend wasn't exactly a reliable witness. And that a handful of people disappear every 27 years but she doesn't think there's anything weird about that all, so I guess she got this job on her looks.
But she's still not the prettiest person in the room.
The victim's friend, Ganja Girl, describes the creature as pale, naked, and junkless, with glowing green eyes, and says that when she found her friend after the attack, she was buzzing. I love this scene. I love this shot. I love that Dean teases Sam about his past marijuana use. I love that Sam has past marijuana use. I love that Sam says naming the monster "Junkless" is low, even for them. I just love.
What's not to love?
There is actually one witness from the last group of disappearances; a woman named Etta, whose second husband disappeared 27 years ago after he was seen publicly "diddling" a couple of women who also, coincidentally, disappeared. So we're supposed to think this woman - this blonde woman right here - was old enough to be on her second marriage 27 years ago? Chick looks like she's in her 30s now. Was she a child bride?
She, also, is not the prettiest person in the room.
Carrying on. There's some weird awkward discussion about orgies and it turns out she's burning sage and skipping town because once a generation, around the spring equinox, people get "the chitters" and go crazy, copulating and disappearing. And there's some even more awkward discussion about green eyes and being horny and Significant Looks and Sam is adorably embarrassed and Dean doesn't know what to think and HEY, ARE WE GOING TO SEE GREEN-EYED DEAN WINCHESTER GET HIS CHITTER ON. BECAUSE I'M DOWN FOR THAT.
Is anything cuter than embarrassed Sam? NO.
Then we see a couple of young people taking a shortcut under a bridge and interrupting some hot chitter action and you know, there's no way anyone would misconstrue this as an orgy. It's quite obviously monsters mating. Etta's husband must have been rather ugly if someone saw him in this state and thought he was simply indulging in some public extramarital diddling.The girl escapes to tell the tale - the people she saw chittering were two of the reported missing.
Just as they're about to investigate the bridge, Dean gets a call from Ganja Girl, saying she saw Libby again. Because of course she went back to the woods. Wouldn't you? Sam and Dean decide to split up, because it would be really stupid not to, and Dean goes to the woods alone, finds Libby, and gets attacked by something with really big pointy teeth and glowing green eyes. And just when I think the show is taking a really unexpected turn, someone comes up and chops the monster's head off.
Oh, hey! It's another hunter! Two of them! Thanks for reminding us they exist, Show! It's actually two other hunters, and when Dean asks what they're doing there, they say "you wouldn't believe us" and ha! It's actually quite funny.
They retire to a bar, where we learn one of the hunters is Jesse, aka Jess (YES THAT JESS WHOSE NAME CANNOT BE A COINCIDENCE). I cannot understand the other hunter's name, but he has a charming Mexican accent and reminds me a bit of Antonio Banderas, so I'm going to call him Antonio. (Okay, on rewatch, it's Cesar. But I'm still calling him Antonio. I'm stubborn that way.) They've heard of the Winchesters but thought Dean was dead. The creature they're hunting is some kind of cicada spirit, whose real name I've forgotten. And yeah, I could rewind, but I was busy getting this cap of Sam hearing that Jesse's brother was killed by one of them 27 years ago.
Isn't this more important? Thought so.
Jesse tells the Winchesters they need to back off and let him and Antonio handle this hunt because he wants revenge, and he and Antonio argue a little bit, and it turns out they're more like a old married couple than brothers because in case you've forgotten, Jesse was gay 27 years ago and still is. And wait. Jesse was 12 when his brother died? Making him 39 here? You know, maybe cicada spirits aren't the big problem here. Maybe they need to investigate the Dorian Gray situation going on, because everyone looks kinda young. Jesse has a little gray in his beard but he still looks pretty good for 39. Maybe the sheriff isn't as young as I thought she was - she could be in her 50s.
I just use a really good moisturizing night cream, okay?
Jess knows where the previous sheriff is holed up, so he and Sam go to question him while Dean and Antonio go to the woods and look for the burrow. On the way they discuss hunting and revenge, and Jess's need to avenge his brother's death, and losing someone when you're young, and there are lots of Significant Looks. Antonio skeptically asks if Dean's ever known a hunter to get his revenge, and Dean does not say "Yeah, just ask that yellow-eyed demon," but he does say that it happens sometimes. But not often, and it never makes anything okay. And this is a very sweet conversation and I'm sure it's also a massive clue about something.
Dean's awfully pretty in the car and I love Antonio's accent and I could use several more minutes of this scene.
Once they get to the woods, Antonio gets attacked by a cicada spirit and I'm pretty sure he's a goner, but I guess it takes more than a bite or whatever to get turned. Dean follows it to the burrow and comes back to collect Antonio and some gasoline.
Meanwhile, Jesse tells Sam about the attack on his brother, and how everyone thought he was lying. Poor Jesse's been mourning his awesome brother for 27 years, and Sam gives him a Significant Look, because hey, he has an awesome brother too, and it would sure suck if something happened to him. Again. The old sheriff pretends not to know anything, but Jesse points out that the one person in the world he loved the most was taken from him that day (and yes, the camera DOES go to Sam as he says this) and when the sheriff learns the creatures are back, he finally admits that his own daughter was one of the killers, having been turned by the cicadas, and he just wanted to make it all go away. He tells them that he found her and the other creatures at the old mine, which is coincidentally where Dean and Antonio have discovered the burrow.
The burrow contains some dead women with glowing larvae in the bellies. Ew. Dean and Antonio kill the live cicadas and are ready to burn the place down as Sam and Jesse show up. Dean offers Jesse the gas can, but first he wants to see if he can find his brother, and he does. So Jesse gets the $900 nickel back (Nickelback. Ew.), Mattie gets a hunter's funeral, and the rest of the burrow gets a pauper's pyre.
Sure glad my brother hasn't died recently, and isn't gonna die any time soon. Yep.
Sam and Dean discuss that Antonio and Jesse are useful allies and maybe they should ask them to help with the Amara situation. But when it gets to that point, and the happy couple announces they're retiring from hunting, he keeps quiet, and everyone goes their separate ways. And the music as Sam and Dean drive off is a bit on the ominous side.
Don't worry, boys. I'm sure it doesn't mean anything.
I quite liked this episode - once again the MotW episodes are giving us interesting monsters, fun action, and lovely brotherly moments. I like it enough that I'm going to ignore that Dean claims they hunted vampires when they were younger because no, they didn't.
(I do have to say Sam's hair left a lot to be desired. I did happen to pause at one point where it looked nice, so this is my gift to you.)
I could pretend I capped this to talk about the TFW colors symbolizing how the boys are working together again, but y'all know me too well for that kind of nonsense.
So, what else are we supposed to get out of it?
Dean flirts with the idea of asking Jess and Antonio to join them, but decides he can't. Because if someone gets out of the hunting life, you leave that alone. Hmmm. Once again we're being asked to consider the idea of getting out of the hunting life and settling down. Hey, Dean, I know of a nice retirement village. Sam has the brochure.
Up to this point, all signs were pointing to something awful happening to Sam. But now I feel like they're paving the way for something awful to happen to Dean. Or for Dean to retire.
Jess (!) lost his protective, 4-years-older brother. And then he ended up in a long-term relationship with another hunter, and eventually got his revenge. So if they've suddenly turned the tables on us, and now it's Dean who is going to
die "die," is the silver lining Sam's eventual reunion with my beloved adorable badass Eileen? Please?
(And now I have a scene in my mind where we see Sam in the library, Skyping with someone, and the laptop screen is blocking him so all we see is his face but he's talking and laughing and we can tell he's moving his hands a lot, and then the camera swings around and we see he's Skyping with Eileen and signing as he speaks and I WANT IT. PLEASE.)
Tell me what you think! No spoilers in the comments, please!