The CW, 4 November 2011-18 May 2012
The Leviathan plan is revealed: to fatten up humanity for their dinner. However, head monster Dick Roman fails to reckon with the Winchester boys and the treachery of demon king Crowley.
This has been a very mixed season for Supernatural. After wandering all over the map and seeming rather unfocused, things did come together nicely in the final few episodes. Getting there, though, has been something of a slog this year with many more misses than hits in the meandering episodes the show has presented.
What didn’t work? The whole Lucifer-haunting-Sam sub-plot really went nowhere and took up a lot of time, while the killing of Bobby took a while to resolve and become integral to the overall story again. The humour episodes (primarilly those featuring would-be hunter Garth, especially the misfiring ‘Season 7, Time For A Wedding’) were not as sharp as in previous years. It took far too long for the Leviathan plot to unfold and become a genuine threat worthy of the Winchesters’ attention (over and above just cleaning up the mess created by Cass). The sidelining of Cass didn’t really prove to be worthwhile, either.
What did work? The Leviathan’s ultimate plan revealed a nice line in contemporary social satire that the show has not really delved into before, and James Patrick Stewart really came into his own in the final few episodes as Dick Roman, the king of the Leviathans with a nice line in evil, sarcastic grins.
The one-off time slip adventure of ‘Time After Time’ was a breath of fresh air in the middle of a season that was rapidly becoming less-than-essential viewing, while the appearance of geek girl Felicia Day in ‘The Girl With the Dungeons and Dragons Tattoo’ also helped liven things up (what’s the betting she’ll be a semi-regular next season, having merited a name-check in the finale?). ‘Pluck Pennywhistle’s Magical Menagerie’ was a rare example of a stand-alone humorous episode that actually worked, even if it dealt with the cliched fear of clowns…
The final run of episodes drew the story threads together in a satisfying way, providing a downbeat pay off in which Crowley (the always watchable Mark A. Sheppard) won, the Leviathans were defeated, and Cass and Dean were sent to purgatory leaving Sam alone. This clears the slate for the next season to take a fresh approach (although there are some unresolved plotlines, such as Crowley’s plans for the ‘prophet’ he’s captured). Let’s hope the change in showrunner brings a fresh eye to a series that needs an injection of new blood.
Verdict: A late recovery wrapped up in style an otherwise mediocre, wandering season…
Episode 7 ‘The Mentalists’: 7/10
Episode 8 ‘Season 7, Time For A Wedding’: 5/10
Episode 9 ‘How to Win Friends and Influence Monsters’: 6/10
Episode 10 ‘Death’s Door’: 6/10
Episode 11 ‘Adventures in Babysitting’: 4/10
Episode 12 ‘Time After Time’: 8/10
Episode 13 ‘The Slice Girls’: 5/10
Episode 14 ‘Pluck Pennywhistle’s Magical Menagerie’: 8/10
Episode 15 ‘Repo Man’: 6/10
Episode 16 ‘Out With The Old’: 6/10
Episode 17 ‘The Born-Again Identity’: 6/10
Episode 18 ‘Party On, Garth’: 6/10
Episode 19 ‘Of Grave Importance’: 6/10
Episode 20 ‘The Girl With The Dungeons and Dragons Tattoo’: 8/10
Episode 21 ‘Reading is Fundamental’: 7/10
Episode 22 ‘There Will Be Blood’: 8/10
Episode 23 ‘Survival of the Fittest’: 8/10
Brian J. Robb