Supernatural “The Werther Project” Review (Season 10, Episode 19)

You’d think by now the Winchesters would’ve figured out that making deals never ends well and innocent people always get caught in the crossfire. Always. You’d also think they would’ve figured out that hiding things from each other never ends well for them either. Sadly, it looks like they are doomed to repeat the same cycles. I’m not going to spend a lot of time rehashing the plot of this week’s Supernatural because I’m going to assume you’ve already seen it. So let’s get right down to business.

Dean Winchester has always been a simple, straightforward type of guy. That’s not an indictment or a jab at him, it just is what it is. He’s never done well with the gray areas, which is why he felt like everything about Purgatory was so pure. With the exception of Benny, there wasn’t anything gray about it. There were monsters. They were trying to kill him. He had to kill them to survive. Simple and straightforward. Dealing with the Mark of Cain has been anything but simple and straightforward. Even when the Mark turned Dean into a demon, he wasn’t fully demon, but he wasn’t fully human either. He was evil but not totally, irredeemably evil. Now that he’s been cured of being a demon, he’s still got to walk the tightrope of keeping the Mark sated enough so he can stay in control without giving in to the Mark too much and losing himself again. Like I said, nothing simple and straightforward about the Mark. So it would make sense that when the Werther hit Dean, it would send him back to the place where he felt the most in control and where things made the most sense to him. It also makes sense that it would take Benny’s form.

I always enjoyed the dynamic between Dean and Benny. Other than Cas, Dean never truly trusted any other supernatural creatures, and Benny isn’t someone Dean would have trusted under normal circumstances either. One of the things I’ve always respected about Dean is that he doesn’t trust easy, but once you’ve earned his trust, you’ve got it for life. Despite Benny being a vampire, he earned Dean’s trust and that is a relationship that I’ve always felt saved Dean. Yes, Benny had his own agenda for helping Dean get out of Purgatory, but he also had Dean’s back the whole time. Benny proved himself to be a standup guy who truly cared about Dean. Which is why Dean was able to fight his way out of the Werther’s hold. He knew that the real Benny wouldn’t ask him to give up the way Fake Benny was asking him to do and that’s what allowed him to be able to fight his way back to reality.

One thing Fake Benny did do was give us some insight into Dean’s headspace. Dean admitted that he’s tired of fighting. I can’t say I blame him. It seems like his whole life has been one long warzone since he was four years old, and I can understand wanting to rest. This isn’t the first time Dean has admitted that he’s ready to put the load down for a while. It’s not necessarily that he wants to leave hunting because he’s always said he doesn’t know how to be anything other than a hunter. But for the last several years Dean has been literally carrying the weight of the world on his shoulders. That’s exhausting and he just wants to take a break. It’s especially exhausting when you try to carry all that weight alone which is what Dean has always done. It’s no different with the Mark. He’s been fighting the Mark as best he can, but in true Dean fashion, he’s kept much of his pain/angst to himself. However, the Werther revealed that in addition to being tired, Dean has been considering offing himself before the Mark takes over again. I can’t say that comes as a surprise, but it was still painful to know Dean has considered that as an option. A part of him knows that when push comes to shove, Sam and Cas won’t be able to kill him any more than he would be able to kill either one of them. He asked them to do it because suicide isn’t something he wants to do, but it seems like he’s getting to the point where he’s beginning to think he doesn’t have a choice. If you had asked before Dean became a demon or before he killed Randy and his pals, I would’ve been completely confident Dean wouldn’t even consider suicide as an option. Now, though, I’m not so sure, and that’s disturbing.

Dean isn’t the only one spiraling out of control though. Sam is rapidly going off the deep end. I said in my review of last week’s episode how disappointed I am with the moves Sam is making, but this episode made it even worse. Not only is Sam lying to Dean, his actions directly caused someone’s death, and he didn’t seem to care at all. He said he was sorry for Suzie’s death, and he probably was, but not enough to make him stop and not enough to tell Dean the truth. This is bothersome because Sam acted as if Suzie’s death was just the cost of doing business. You know who else acted like that? Soulless Sam. Part of what made Soulless Sam so scary is how single-minded and clinical he was in his approach to hunting. It wasn’t about saving people and it wasn’t about hunting evil. It was the thrill of the kill and the desire to satisfy his own wants/needs/objectives. That’s where Sam is now. He’s willing to damn the whole world to save Dean, so how does that make him any different than Soulless Sam? I have to wonder whether Sam realizes just how hypocritical he’s being right now. When Dean was faced with the very same choice Sam is facing now, Sam wanted Dean to let him die but Dean couldn’t do it. I don’t know whether Sam actually believed himself last season when he said he wouldn’t have done what Dean did to save him, but I had a feeling then that Sam was going to have to eat those words. Well, eat up Sam. Because he’s doing exactly the same thing Dean did for exactly the same reason. Kevin died as a result of Dean’s actions then, and Suzie died as a result of Sam’s actions this time. The thing is, Suzie was just the first in what is no doubt going to be a long line of casualties. The question, then, goes back to something Demon Dean asked Sam: who’s really the monster? Whether Sam pulled the trigger on Suzie or not, she’s dead because of him. He used her as cannon fodder but it doesn’t seem to have slowed him down in the least. You would think it would at least give him pause, but it seems like he’s barreling straight ahead. Sam is walking an extremely dark path, and the farther down the road he goes, the harder it’s going to be for him to come back.

Sam’s deal with Rowena is really sitting wrong. There’s just no way it ends well, and judging by her reaction when Sam presented her with the codex, I don’t think she actually needed it to read the Book of the Damned. Although, if she does, then my question is why Sam still needs Rowena anyway? If the codex is the key to deciphering the book, why can’t Sam do that on his own? Or get Charlie to help? Even without the codex he and Charlie had worked out the langue the Book was written in and figured out that it was coded. It doesn’t make any sense for Sam to keep Rowena around to do something that he can do for himself. It seems like it’s just a plot contrivance so the writers can set up whatever doublecross Rowena is working out. Maybe that was to demonstrate that even though Sam is desperate he’s not actually gone completely stupid so he’s keeping Rowena locked up until he gets what he wants. The fact remains, nothing good is going to come from Sam’s deal with Rowena. Nor is anything good going to come from the fact that he’s keeping all of this from Dean considering that every time they keep these kinds of secrets from each other, someone pays the ultimate price.

Despite my current frustration with Sam and the stagnation of his and Dean’s growth, I enjoyed this episode. Robert Berens always tends to pack a lot into his scripts and this was no exception. I also liked the pacing of the script and how seamlessly everything flowed together. I still need for Sam to come clean with Dean before it’s too late, but they wouldn’t be Winchesters if they did things the healthy, mature way. It was also nice to see Benny again even if it wasn’t the real Benny. Jensen Ackles and Ty Olsson have really great chemistry and it was nice to see them on screen together again. All in all, solid episode. So what did y’all think of this week’s Supernatural?