I'm sorry to anyone who saw my unfinished, uncut post on their feed. I was completely helpless for 30 minutes. Did everyone else have an "outage" while I did? What exactly happened??! I think it's ok now...?
I'll have to say that the title of this episode is pretty easy to remember - at least if I hear it, I remember exactly what the episode is about because of the movie it is named after. I rated this one a bit lower at "Good" because I don't like the Campbell/alpha monster hunt bit as much as other monster eps. I'll have to say also that there are a few scenes that are tough to watch - basically Dean's struggle as he tries to protect the people he has put in danger, and also Dean's show of distrust in the Campbells and in (Soulless) Sam. Maybe on later rewatches or even just after talking about it with you these scenes will make this episode "great" or even "awesome" to me. Let's wait and see :D Most importantly, there are quite a few scenes I really enjoy and look forward to watching so the episode will never go below a "good" for me.
"Shop Til You Drop" by Daniel May (plays while Dean and Sam are shopping for baby supplies)
"Dirty Weekend" by Jim Blake (Extreme Music) (plays while Dean and Sam realize a shapeshifter is holding the baby)
"Smoke on the Water" by Deep Purple (the song Dean hums to Bobby John; it also plays when Dean puts the Impala back into play at the end of the episode)
The episode starts with the MoTW attack on a mom hiding under the bed with her little 6 month old baby. Monster kills the mom and the baby is watching it all innocently.
Next, Dean and family are moving into a new house. Dean is in the garage filled with boxes and a tarped Impala. He peels up the tarp to open the trunk and check out his weapons before putting them back in, closing the trunk and smoothing the tarp over the Impala again. The way he smooths it, makes us think that he misses using the Impala, and he misses being a hunter.
When Dean enters the kitchen with some boxes, Ben is pouting because he is not happy they had to move, while Lisa is telling him to keep an open mind. When Ben decides to go for a ride on his bike, Dean stops him and suggests he help unpack. When Ben doesn't look happy, Lisa suggests they will go out for lunch later and scope out the neighborhood. Dean agrees but doesn't look very happy about it. As you can tell, there's a bit of unhappiness in this family as to how things are. Dean is really worried that some monster or other is going to come and hurt Ben and/or Lisa and the only way he can think of to protect them is to keep them under his watchful eye, inside the house - "on lock down." Ben, of course, is having a hard time letting go of that normal life he is used to. And Lisa is on her toes here between the two. If Dean is John then Lisa is Dean and Ben is Sam :P Wow... that is such a perfect analogy it gives me the shivers.
Dean goes behind Lisa and Ben's back and orders pizza so they can eat lunch in - which naturally disappoints both Lisa and Ben, but we again can tell how worried Dean is for his family. And we can't really say he's being too cautious either. Who knows what monster is going to come after them next? And we(I) begin to understand why John did what he did. But we will go into that a bit more later.
Sam's checking out the MotW crime scene and can't find any EMF or sulfur so he calls Samuel and suggests that maybe it's not their kind of thing. They have an interesting conversation here -
SAMUEL:Four couples slaughtered in one part of the state within days of each other. That's four babies taken from locked houses. Damn it! Explain to me how any version of that is natural.
SAM:No, no, I agree. It's awful. I'm just saying this one might be on the police.
SAMUEL:Okay, so either we've got monsters grabbing babies to make baby stew, or we've got a bunch of psychotic yokels grabbing babies to make baby stew. Either way, it's baby stew, which is bad.
SAMUEL:Am I boring you? You got someplace you need to be?
SAM:No, no, no, I get it.
SAMUEL:Good. You know, sometimes I wonder about you, Sam.
SAM:Sometimes I wonder about me, too.
So Samuel is like, who cares if it is not a monster thing. Babies are dying here. We have to do something about it. Samuel reacts strongly to the fact that these are innocent babies and thinks Sam is being abnormally unfeeling/uncaring by saying that maybe it's not "their thing" and being reluctant to look into it. He tells Sam that he "wonders" about Sam sometimes. Knowing future eps, we know that Sam has been pretty brutal in other hunts he and Samuel have been on together and these may have made Samuel "wonder" as well. But it's just as important to note that Sam says he wonders about himself too. Sam doesn't know he is soulless. But he knows there is something different about him from everyone else, and possibly he also remembers how feeling and caring and instinctive he was before and wonders about it too. Why is he different? This could be another one of the reasons he wants Dean at this point - to help him figure out what is wrong.
Going on, Sam remembers that the house's alarm system didn't go off and asks Samuel to check up on the other houses. We have a little sarcastic line here by Samuel about checking stuff on the internet. Obviously he is having a hard time getting used to the modern hunting methods. We had a similar line in the scene with Dean last episode where we were reminded that Samuel is not of this time. It's interesting to consider how both Samuel and Sam are missing something - Samuel, his ability to use modern technology, and Sam, his instinct and feelings for others. They aren't particularly the best choices for this job and I wonder why Crowley would have chosen to bring Samuel back for it.
Meanwhile Dean goes into the garage again to find Ben picking up the gun from inside the open trunk of the impala. I don't know how Ben knew where the key to the Impala was kept - maybe he's watched Dean at the Impala before, but he's basically doing exactly what Dean had done in a previous scene. It's like he's trying to be like Dean and reminds me of Lisa last episode, saying how Dean was someone Ben looked up to. Dean is not happy to find Ben there. He tells Ben never to touch the Impala again. Ben apologizes. But then Ben suggests that Dean made his own shot gun at Ben's age. If Dean could teach him, Ben could help with protecting the family... Dean cannot stand this idea and tells Ben that he will never use a gun.
BEN:I know what's going on. You think something might be coming for us.
DEAN:There's nothing coming for us.
BEN:I could do what you do. You could teach me how to shoot--
DEAN:Shut up about the freaking gun, okay!
BEN:Okay. Sorry. I'm sorry.
Ben leaves and pouts in his room. We can see that Dean feels bad for shouting. He looks like he wants to stop Ben and explain, but he doesn't. We know what Dean thinks about anyone other than himself being dragged into the life of a hunter. He loves hunting. It's his calling. But he also knows that it is a hard and often short life and doesn't want to drag anyone into it. He thinks he is doing Ben a favor by not teaching him how to shoot or even letting him touch the impala or the equipment. It actually all of a sudden reminds me of Adam. And I wonder if Adam could have been saved if John had taught him like he had taught Sam and Dean.
Sam's checking files at a park bench when Samuel calls him back and tells him that Sam's right. All the other houses used the same security system too. Samuel has also found out that there is another family with a 6 month old baby who also live in a house by the same security company. Is anyone bothered by the fact that these are all 6 month old babies and Sam also lost his mom and was fed blood by a demon when he was 6 months old?
Dean is in the garage still when Lisa comes in and asks what happened, since Ben has been hiding in his room for hours. Dean just tells her Ben was touching his "tools" and he shouldn't have yelled at Ben. But here Lisa has to talk a bit with Dean about his excessive protectiveness and remind him that Lisa does have to go back to work, and Ben has to go to school, and they are going to have to face the world sometime. And here Dean says something important.
LISA: Well, I'm going to need some parameters. We have to live our lives here. I mean, at some point I have to work. Ben has school!
DEAN:But if something happens on my watch...
O.M.G. THAT totally makes my heart squeeze up and takes me back to Dark Side of the Moon, and that time long ago when Sam left home "on my watch" and then Something Wicked when Sam is attacked "on my watch" All Hell Breaks Loose when Dean tells the dead Sam how he couldn't even do his job and keep him safe. Then Jo and Ellen, and how Dean blames himself for their deaths. I've been rewatching Season 7 recently as well, and combined with Season 10, we can really see how deeply he is ingrained with this "my watch" idea.
Sam is checking out the said house at night and finding that the door is already open and the father and mother dead. The monster is in the room and Sam gets flung and his gun also goes flying but when Sam takes out his silver knife and slashes the monster in the arm, the monster freaks and runs away.
Sam finds the baby under a load of washing and we have two adorable faces looking at eachother. I love Sam's face as his eyebrows go up to his hairline, as they say LOL. I'll add here that Sam, and particularly his hair, looks very nice this episode <3
Dean gets a phone call from desparate Sam in the middle of the night. Sam is threatening to come by the house if Dean doesn't come and help him. When Dean hears what Sam needs help with...
That's his reaction LOL.
Dean goes to meet Sam somewhere, and checks out the baby in the car.
SAM:Welcome to the party, Guttenberg.
Now, I'm not sure what they do after this because the next scene is morning and Dean is at home getting Lisa to show him how to load and repair her gun.
Lisa's telling him they've been over this before, but Dean has to see it again. Then he reminds her (again) to salt the windows and doors. This totally makes me imagine how John would have done the exact same thing with Dean.
DEAN:You know what, Sam can handle this.
LISA:Dean, no offense, but if you don't walk out that door, I'm going to shoot you.
DEAN:I bet you're missing your ex right about now. The uh, the boring one?
LISA:God, shut up. Just be careful, okay?
He then has second thoughts about leaving, but Lisa has had enough. He obviously wants to, and she'd rather have him go than be pining at home.
Dean goes in his truck and leaves the truck at the meeting place to get into Sam's little car.
DEAN:Well feel free to speak up if you know anything.
I just love the way the baby smiles at Sam and Dean everytime they look back at it <3<3 First things first, they decide to get some supplies.
I also love these scenes where Dean shows off his knowledge of fatherhood! What a long way he's come since Dead in the Water aye?! And I also love Soulless Sam's reactions to everything as well. He is soooo clueless!
DEAN: I don't know. You think I speak baby? Maybe he needs a diaper change.
SAM:Oh God, I hope not.
Hilarious also is Sam begging Dean to stop the baby's crying, and Dean being unable to handle it. Copying the baby's crying, holding the baby up far away from him to avoid the smell of the diaper... :D Then when the shapeshifter lady comes up and takes the baby, the whole Bobby John naming (Which you will notice are their two fathers :DDD And what is the significance behind Dean calling him Bobby and Sam calling him John do you think, at this point?) and how they stick to the name all through the episode! Dean just happens to see the shapeshifter's eyes in the camera monitor screen and Dean and Sam chase her around and finally get the baby back - it's sort of like watching a football game! Dean jumps with Bobby John into the car that Sam had brought over and they are off, but we can see that the shapeshifter has seen their license plates and soon afterwards has taken over a police officer's body in order to find them.
(Sam's blue steel face :DD)
We don't really know what the boys' plan was before but now that they know the shapeshifter is after the baby, they decide to get the baby somewhere safe and try to figure things out. Let me just mention also how I love Dean killing himself over the baby seat. Those things are crazy complicated!!
They get a motel room to do some research and take care of Bobby John's diaper. It's of course Dean's job to change the diaper and after he does, he puts Bobby John on his shoulder and pats him a bit to the tune of Smoke on the Water. Sam's like, that's just going to make him cry again dude, but nope, Bobby John quiets down and Dean puts him down in the bed<3<3 This whole scene is just adorable and of course you cannot miss the bit of skin peeking out as Dean leans over the bed...
Then we have a talk between Sam and Dean that is quite meaningful to Dean -
SAM:You're just, uh, actually, not awful at that.
DEAN:Dude, I'm barely keeping that thing alive.
SAM:No, no, no, seriously. You've got a whole Dr. Huxtable vibe coming off of you. You're like... father material.
DEAN:Yeah, well I kind of had to be lately, you know. Sink or swim, right?
SAM:You mean Ben.
DEAN:Yeah, I mean Ben. I mean, I know he's not my kid, but I don't know, I'm starting to feel like yeah, he is. Then I think about the way we grew up, I don't know, I kind of feel like I have a chance to do something different with Ben, you know?
SAM:You sure about that?
DEAN:What do you mean?
SAM:Look, you clearly care about the kid.
SAM:But moving them around? Keeping them on lockdown? I mean, you do have them on lockdown, right? How is any of that different from how we were raised?
DEAN:So you're saying... I'm not shoving anybody into this life, okay? This is temporary.
SAM:Dad always said it was temporary, Dean. He said it for 22 years. Look, I get it. You want to watch out for them. That's great. I'm just asking, how do you do that and not turn into Dad?
The thing is, up until now, Dean had been raising Ben differently. Normally. That is what Dean is talking about when he says he had a chance to do something different with Ben. But, as soon as there was a risk to their lives he felt forced to go into defensive mode and basically do what his father did to him and Sam. Dean feels defensive when Sam seems to imply that his actions now mean that he is "shoving" Ben into "this life." But then Sam's words hit home - that John had always said, and of course believed, that what he was doing was temporary. This whole situation not only shows that Dean is going down the same path as his dad, but kind of explains how dad came to act like he did in the first place. The threat to his family - the death of his wife on his watch when he should have been taking care of her and the constant fear after he finds out about monsters, that something might come after his family again. He also wanted to think that it was temporary - that it would all be over once he was able to kill the demon that killed his wife and somehow removed the threat.
After this chat, Sam finds that the dad of one of the families was actually alive because he was not in the house at the time of the attack, so Sam goes to have a chat with him, leaving Dean to take care of the baby. Another cute scene between Dean and baby here.
DEAN:It's good, isn't it?
Sam finds out indirectly from the husband that something similar to the situation in Skin had been going on. The shapeshifter had been pretending to be the dad coming home early and would have sex with the mom to impregnate her and then come back later to collect the baby.
Dean's taking advantage of the magic fingers while the baby lies quietly in the baby bed looking at the diaper box with the little baby with brown skin. All of a sudden the baby starts crying and splat! yucky gooey stuff all over the wall over the bed and the baby has changed color. Deans standing their staring at the little baby shapeshifter when Sam calls with his findings and they compare notes.
SAM:I think the shapeshifter is his dad.
Dean is trying to calm the baby down when someone who claims to be the manager demands to be let in due to complaints about the noise. Then when Dean refuses, he starts to unlock the door from the outside. Dean likely figures out that this must be the shapeshifter again and gets ready to attack from the inside. As the Shapeshifter tries to get past Dean, he says something important -
SHAPESHIFTER:That child should be with his father.
DEAN:Wow, I gotta be honest. I'm not really seeing the family resemblance.
SHAPESHIFTER:I'm not just talking about me. I'm talking about our father.
The shapeshifter is quite strong and flings Dean away. He's just turning to go to the baby when Sam comes in from behind and shoots the Shapeshifter in the back with a silver bullet I assume. The Shapeshifter drops dead and there's blood all over the carpet.
DEAN:Well, there goes our deposit.
They are in the car again and trying to decide what to do next when they have this discussion about the baby shifter.
SAM:I didn't even know they had babies. I thought they were just freaks of nature, like X-Men style.
DEAN:You learn something new every day, huh?
SAM:I've never seen a baby monster before.
DEAN:Of course it's not really a monster. I mean, it's still just a baby. It's not its fault its dad's a shifter.
SAM:Right, but it's a shifter, too.
DEAN:Still doesn't change the fact that we've got to look after this thing. I mean, what the hell are we going to do with it? We can't actually drop it off at an orphanage. They might get upset when it turns Asian.
I don't know why Sam says he thought they were "freaks of nature" and didn't have babies. Why would shapeshifters be any different from Rugarus? They knew Rugarus had babies back in Season 3(Metamorphosis). But there is the discussion again of how they have to take care of it because it's not really a monster yet, just a baby. So a question. What do you do with baby shifters if you know the dad is a monster and the baby will grow up to be a monster if it grows up with it's father? The rugaru could be given to normal people to raise, but baby shapeshifters that keep shifting? Then Sam suggests Samuel. Dean doesn't like the idea from the beginning. He doesn't trust the Campbells, especially considering he still doesn't know who brought Samuel back and for what purpose. But he can't think of any alternative. So they are on their way.
If Dean's suspicions later are correct, Sam heard the shapeshifter back there talk about "our father" or the alpha. He realizes that he can use the baby as bait to lure the alpha shapeshifter. But I'm not sure, first because Samuel did seem to hide the capture of the djin from Sam last episode. But it could also be that Samuel was just trying to hide it from Dean and as long as Sam was keeping Dean busy they could take the djin away without attracting notice. I can't remember if this was clarified later or not.
When they get to Samuel's Dean is in protective mode of Bobby John and of course the Campbells are teasing him again. Samuel comes in with Sam and tries to get Dean to give him the baby but Dean will not.
SAMUEL:What do you think I'm going to do?
DEAN:You really don't want me to answer that question.
CHRISTIAN:Well I'm curious. Who exactly do you think we are?
CHRISTIAN:Funny, here I've been thinking we're family.
SAM:Hey, let's not get worked up.
CHRISTIAN:Yeah, yeah, let's not.
Considering past hunters such as Gordon or Travis, we all know that hunters tend to often see things in black and white and Dean is not sure what the Campbells stance is on "baby monsters." He thinks they might kill the baby or do something to it just as awful. Finally Sam convinces him to hand the baby over to him, and Sam in turn, hands him over to Samuel.
DEAN:Alright, so what the hell are we going to do with him?
SAMUEL:What, you've got another suggestion?
SAMUEL:It's dangerous out there for him, Dean.
DEAN:You all are joking, right? I mean, come on! You can't "Angelina Jolie" a shapeshifter. Give me the baby.
Dean is so confused. He doesn't want to kill or hurt the baby because he is a shapeshifter, but he can't conceive of raising him as a hunter either and most of all he doesn't trust these people to do what they said they would. I feel like there is a connection here to his confusion with raising Ben and how to do that. It could be Dean's vehemence against raising Ben or anyone as a hunter, even though he knows that this would be the best protection for them. That is what is making it so hard for him at this point, I think. It is interesting to think of this Campbell family though and how they all seem to be happy in the life and feel that there is nothing wrong in raising a child in the life, while Dean and the real Sam would not want to subject anyone to that kind of life. I think there is a huge difference because the Campbells were a tribe of hunters and they had homes, not like John and his kids, who were always moving around without a proper home. Even then, of course, Mary did not want the life for her children, but just consider how different it would have been if Sam and Dean had grown up in the Tribe instead of wandering the land with only themselves to depend on.
DEAN:And what about in here? What are we gonna - study him? Poke at him?
CHRISTIAN:Your mind goes straight to torture, Dean. Don't assume that for everyone.
DEAN:What exactly are you trying to say?
CHRISTIAN:Sorry, I heard about what you majored in down in the Pit.
DEAN:The hell is your problem, man?
CHRISTIAN:You're starting to become a pain in my ass.
SAM:Christian, take it easy, man. He's my brother.
I had to add this little dialogue because it's very interesting when we remember that Christian is a demon. We have a bit more where Christian tells Dean to go to Hell and Dean tells him he doesn't deserve to raise a child and it is all quite entertaining on a rewatch.
We know from Sam and Samuel's talk at the beginning of the episode how Samuel feels of babies in general but we also know as rewatchers that he intends to use the baby as bait - at least to lure the alpha in. I think his suggestion of raising the baby as a hunter is not bluff though. He expects to be able to capture the alpha. He gives the baby to Christian, mentioning that Christian and his supposed wife want a child.
But while they are doing that, the dogs start barking outside and Bobby John is quickly passed back to Dean and Dean is told to go downstairs and keep Bobby John safe. I don't know if Dean thought that was odd, since Christian had just been given the baby to raise, but Samuel's reason is to keep Dean (and the baby) out of the fight while they tried to capture the alpha instead of kill it.
They have a terrible time at it though. Nothing works. They shoot the alpha full of tranquilizers but the alpha in Samuel's skin kills Mark (the quiet one) and goes downstairs to find the baby. Sam's peeking through the window of the panic room when suddenly he sees himself staring back at him.
The shapeshifter easily lifts the door out of the way and throws Sam somewhere. He then shifts quickly and effortlessly (without the gunk) into Dean and chokes Dean until Dean goes limp and lets go of the baby. Then he leaves with the baby - Dean!shifter totally looks like the Terminator or something the way he walks down the hall with the baby :P
Cleaning up afterwards, Samuel and Sam are talking about how that must have been the alpha and Dean hears them talking. When they explain the lore to Dean, suddenly he remembers what the shapeshifter had said back at the motel and wonders about Sam.
As they stand by the car, getting ready to leave, Dean asks Sam -
DEAN:You know, just before you ganked that shifter in the motel, he mentioned a father, which makes sense now because he meant the Alpha.
SAM:Huh. Yeah, I guess so.
DEAN:Did you hear him say that?
SAM:Uh, I don't know. Kind of a hot moment, you know? Why?
DEAN:Well, because if you heard him, then you knew the Alpha was out there.
DEAN:And if you knew the Alpha was out there then you knew he might come after the baby. In which case you were using the baby as bait. So was that the plan? To use the baby as bait?
SAM:Of course not. Dean, I just thought that Samuel's was the safest place. That's all.
DEAN:Right, of course.
OK, so what is so bad about luring the alpha, I'm not quite sure. The baby was not going to be hurt by the alpha, obviously, and if they could gank it, then they would be raising the baby just like they had suggested. I can't quite understand except that maybe it was the fact that Sam seemed to be hiding something that bothered Dean.
Sam and Dean are off, and we then see Samuel talking to Crowley on the phone, explaining the events of the day and why they couldn't get the alpha and promising to get one somehow.
The next day, I assume, Dean comes into the kitchen to talk to Lisa about how he feels bad about acting like his dad - like a drill sergeant or prison warden - but he doesn't know the best way to protect them.
LISA:Dean, can I be honest? Maybe we're safer with you here, maybe gone. I don't know. The one thing that I do know is that you're not a construction worker. You're a hunter. And now you know your brother's out there, things are different. You don't want to be here, Dean.
DEAN:Yes, I do.
LISA:Okay. Okay, but you also want to be there. I get it. You're white-knuckling it living like this. Like what you are is some bad, awful thing. But you're not. But I'm not going to have this discussion every time you leave. And this is just going to keep happening, so I need you to go.
DEAN:I can't just lose you and Ben.
LISA:That's not what I'm saying.
DEAN:You're saying hit the road.
LISA:Dean, if there's some rule that says this all has to be either/or, how about we break it? Me and Ben will be here, and you come when you can. Just come in one piece, okay?
DEAN:You really think we can pull something like that off?
LISA:It's worth a shot, right?
This talk totally reminds me of Beautiful Loser from last episode -
He wants his home and security. He wants to live like a sailor at sea.
You can try but you can't have it all, oh no, no. Oh, oh, can't have it all.
And of course the ending, where Dean imagines the fun he's going to have riding around the country in Baby again!
Here are the non-combined versions of this gif banner :P