'Supernatural' S10E17: Inside Man

★ ★ ★ ★

The pace has picked up significantly. For the first time in a long while, an episode centered around the Mark of Cain wasn’t just about Sam consoling Dean. In fact! Sam was actually given something to do! But more on that in a bit.

That scene with Dean yelling in his sleep was gripping and extremely well done. I’ve been wanting a more serious look at the consequences of the Mark and this raised the stakes. This scene alone made it interesting again. The Mark’s been an odd "villain" and, like the First Evil in Buffy the Vampire Slayer, just because it’s a powerful baddie doesn’t mean it’s a compelling one. The problem with this villain is that it’s non-corporeal and that it hasn’t had its effects being demonstrated in a more effective manner. That is, until that scene.

Supernatural S10E17

It was also awesome to see Crowley take charge once again. Kicking out his mother Rowena is a big deal, but will he actually take notice of how soft he’s gotten? Sure enough, his first big move in a long time was to make sure his mother no longer influenced him. I’m glad she’s gone… for now. Rowena’s a more slow burning villain. There doesn’t seem to be any major plans with her, although getting rejected by her son may just be the motivation she needs to take on the Winchesters or even Crowley.

Now for the big game changer, Sam actually did something in this episode! For weeks, he’s been glued to Dean’s side as both a babysitter and a brother, but that role left him with very little material to work with. Sam’s partnership with Castiel is a dynamic to look forward to. Castiel/Sam may not have the same chemistry as Dean/Castiel, but it’s something far more volatile and dark. It’s a motif that’s been around for a while, but whenever Sam does something without Dean he usually takes drastic measures, what Sam and Castiel did in "Inside Man" is no exception.

Having a psychic on the show was fun to watch, especially since it reminded me so much of Supernatural’s beginnings. Before Castiel was even introduced. It’s just that type of magic that connected the supernatural with humanity in a very intimate and more ominous way.

This episode really helped bring the show back to the pace it needed to be. After a couple of weeks of good and bad monster-of-the-week episodes and Mark counseling, "Inside Man" created the sense of seriousness needed to push the show forward. PS: Sorry for the delay everybody! I was on a much needed vacation.


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