Recap: Supernatural, Episode 6.20 – The Man Who Would Be King

Castiel tells Sam, Dean and Bobby about the war in Heaven and how he and Raphael became enemies. Bobby believes Castiel is hiding something, but Dean refuses to believe it.  Ben Edlund wrote and directed the episode.

The Ramble

As Dr. Sam Becket might say, “Ohhhh, boy.”

I apologize for the lateness of this ramble. Sometimes Real Life makes demands that are unavoidable. The drawback of posting nearly a day after the episode has aired is that everyone but me has had time to process and opine. I don’t usually read any other reviews/reactions before writing this ramble (as it’s normally done directly after viewing) and I considered taking advantage of the Internet this morning to see reactions, but I thought it best to just ramble as per usual and get this out to you.

If I cover old territory for you, or repeat anything you might have already said and/or thought, I apologize up front. That said, I am really looking forward to your thoughts on this one.

This has been quite a journey, folks. Unlike previous seasons, I don’t feel as if it’s so much a ride as a trip. We’ve traveled some long and winding roads together and I believe that we’re glimpsing an end to some of the mystery (I dare not say all because, well, it’s our Show…lives to keep us guessing), but the resulting truth is hurting a bit.

Not having a really true picture of what ‘noir’ might mean to all parties, I decline to have an opinion on if this season has been true to the ‘noir’ style. I think that there have been a lot of clues, many of which were false, and I feel like when I look at the big picture, a lot of relevant facts are rushing to the reveal here at the end of the run.

True to the styling of John Winchester himself, this has been a season of “need to know,” and the powers that be elected early on that we didn’t. For a bit in these last few episodes, that frustrated me. My mind and heart were ranting you’re telling us this now?! But the advantage of watching the morning after (and having to be Mama for a bit before sitting down to ramble) is that I gained a bit of perspective that I don’t normally allow myself.

The season began from Dean’s point of view, for the most part. With some various, necessary exceptions, when we watched what was happening, we were as clueless about all the underlying meaning and back-story as Dean was. We saw what he saw, learned it as he learned it. And it’s been a painful journey, I have to admit. Especially after The Man Who Would Be King.

Watching this journey—from Swan Song until now—through Castiel’s eyes, with Castiel’s voice explaining why he did what he did, was heartbreaking and frustrating and enlightening. I found myself struggling a tad with the manner of storytelling—the Voice Over guiding us through so many things that I’d hungered to know for months. But then I realized…this was the only way they could do it.

However the choices were made in the writer’s room—whether this was planned from the very start, or if plans were shifted (as I’ve heard and suspected) when they realized that Sam’s soul needed to be returned pronto to appease the unrest of fans (myself included)—when they decided to make it about the souls, it would have been extremely difficult to have known everything we found out in this episode all along the way and still kept our faith in the journey of our heroes.

So, while I wouldn’t have told it this way, and while I spent the majority of this episode rubbing my heart, and while the SPN-soul inside of me is coiled up tense with the questions they still haven’t answered the possibilities for where this season will end, I can appreciate this choice, this style of storytelling.

I found it interesting that they transitioned from Smallville to Supernatural by showing us the same previews they’d tagged to last week’s episode. I don’t think they’ve done that before (this Season). It was a good ploy for this story, though – getting us revved up. I’ll skip the THEN and go right to the start—an episode told through a series of memories and flashbacks, working to give meaning to the stuff we didn’t see.

Gaelicspirit

Gaelicspirit is a storyteller. She is a recent addition to Whedonverse Network, but has been writing and posting recap/reviews of Supernatural on LiveJournal since 2007. She works as a freelance writer and consultant in the real world, and is ever-connected to the six-degrees of Joss Whedon.

Gaelicspirit

Gaelicspirit is a storyteller. She is a recent addition to Whedonverse Network, but has been writing and posting recap/reviews of Supernatural on LiveJournal since 2007. She works as a freelance writer and consultant in the real world, and is ever-connected to the six-degrees of Joss Whedon.

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