WARNING: This review contains HUGE spoilers
Supernatural is back from its hiatus with ‘The Devil in the Details’, an episode that, while it suffered from slow pacing for the most part, it also served to reinforce previous plot points like Sam and Dean’s issues and Castiel’s inevitable downfall.
To me, this episode had two clear protagonists: Rowena and Castiel. Ironically, things didn’t go well for neither. Even though Rowena had had a death flag over her head for a while, this episode almost led me to believe that her fangirling over Lucifer could maybe earn her a place as the Devil’s second. Of course, Lucifer wouldn’t care about her, but I thought that at least he could use her in his strategies some way. That wasn’t the case, as Luifer managed to get out on his own, thanks to Castiel feeling unwanted by pretty much everyone around him, but I’ll get to that later. At least, Rowena got to have her goodbye with her “dear” Fergus when she confessed the reasons why she hates him so much in what was the most emotional scene of the episode. One of those reasons being that, if she didn’t hate him, she would love him, and she can’t have that because “love is weakness”. Rowena is dead, but I’m sure this episode will spark a lot of Rowena/Lucifer fanfiction anyway.
Speaking of Lucifer, I found his trip down memory lane with Sam quite slow and boring. Even Sam said it: it wasn’t new, and it’s something that has become quite redundant at this point (I didn’t enjoy getting my feels destroyed by those Season 5 flashbacks either). However, Lucifer made some good points: Sam used to be bold, decisive and ready to sacrifice himself for the greater good, but he took a step back when he chose Dean and him over closing the gates of Hell.
“Instead of choosing the world, you choose to save each other, no matter how many innocent people die!” – Lucifer
Can I get a hallelujah? Yes, it’s Lucifer and it’s very hypocritical of him to be talking about killing innocent people, but the point still stands. It’s not news that there’s an on-going problem with Sam and Dean’s unhealthy, yet understandable relationship. These men need some serious therapy, and they can’t possibly get it when they’re always in the eye of the storm. At least, this is no longer a debate exclusive to the majority of the fandom, but something that the show has started addressing as well. Still, Lucifer was using a fallacy in his speech. It would have been good to sacrifice themselves to close the gates of Hell, but it’s definitely not good to do so to release Lucifer. As brainy Sam pointed out, even if Lucifer could end the Darkness, what would he do next? Attempt Apocalypse 2.0? “Whoever wins, you or the darkness, everyone else loses”. Preach.
On the other hand, there’s Cas and Dean, who choose to go separate ways: Dean goes to rescue Sam from Hell by helping Crowley trap Rowena, while Castiel goes to meet the other angels supposedly fighting the Darkness. I’m sad that Ambriel‘s scenes were so short-lived. I found her adorable and I wanted her to stick around. And, speaking of people that I want to keep seeing, Billie is back! Her promise that next time that Dean and Sam die, she will make sure it’s for good is, so far, one of the highlights of the season for me. I can definitely see her having a very important role if the story ends with the brothers’ death.
Back to Hell after they complete their tasks, Dean and Castiel join the party in the Cage (literally, Lucifer even played some music!). I had to pause for a moment and think about the fact that I was literally watching Team Free Will beating Lucifer in the Cage. Well, that was something.
Things got serious pretty fast, though. I talked about how Sam and Dean’s codependency keeps being addressed, and I feel like we got to see some more of that in the Cage. Sam is given the choice to either say ‘yes’ to Lucifer or let Dean die, which was basically Lucifer mocking Sam for their issue. However, Cas is the one to save Dean, hence spoiling Lucifer’s little game. To me, this was a metaphor of Cas being able to help the brothers with their problem. If that wasn’t enough, earlier on Sam did mention that he had to save his “friends“, “his family”, not just Dean. And I’m sure he wasn’t only thinking about Cas here, but also about all of those they’ve lost: Charlie, Kevin… basically an endless list.
And now for the “plot twist” (I mean, I’m sure everyone noticed that there was something off not only with Cas, but also with the way the spell worked on Lucifer). Castiel was constantly being told that he was worthless, “expandable”, and even Amara thought that he wasn’t worth consuming. The problem with the angels is that they keep misinterpreting why exactly it is that Castiel is “special” or God’s favorite. I don’t believe that Castiel wants anyone’s attention at this point (even Amara said he was full of self-loathing). More than anything, he seems desperate to help and, for once, do “the right thing”. Unlike Sam and Dean, who put each other’s lives first, Castiel realizes that he’s not really of use to anyone and that he’s not really that important (*grabs tissues*), which is why he didn’t mind sacrificing himself. We have already seen Castiel being the villain with Leviathan/Godstiel in Season 7, but that storyline was poorly done, hence the title of this review. Both Castiel and Lucifer are some of my favorite characters, so I’m trusting the writers to do this right this time. And now for the question on everyone’s mind: how can Jimmy’s body hold both Castiel and Lucifer? Or was Castiel the one who was sent to Hell and he’s no longer in the vessel? Either way, we know from earlier seasons that Lucifer, like Michael, needs a specific vessel to contain his grace, which is why he’s always after Sam. And we know that when Lucifer possessed anyone else (like Nick), his body started deteriorating, so how long will he be able to use this body for?
Last but not least, props to Misha Collins for his impersonation of Mark Pellegrino as Lucifer. He already did an excellent job with Leviathan!Castiel, and in the few scenes we’ve seen from both this episode and next week’s promo, he’s more than capable of portraying Lucifer’s snarky, yet creepy personality.
Even though it had a slow start, ‘The Devil in the Details’ was a decent, natural continuation to the mid-season finale. I was afraid that all those talks about the Cage and saying ‘yes’ to Lucifer would cheapen the events of Seasons 4-5 but, thankfully, they didn’t. Lucifer is still as awesome and scary as he used to be (scarier than Amara, at least) and I’m really looking forward to seeing more of “Casifer”. All that is left to see now is how the brothers will react to this strangely familiar situation.