After the inexplicable multi-week hiatus following the month long winter break, ‘Supernatural’ is back with a vengeance in “The Slice Girls” where Dean’s penchant for one-night stands leaves him in a precarious predicament.

Spoilers ahead!

The Winchesters suited up for some investigating

Blood flies early on when a man is attacked in his home, sliced and diced before having a mysterious symbol carved in his chest. The brothers get wind of it and investigate as this is the fourth victim in two weeks with the MO the same; each man thrown into a wall with incredible force before having their hands and feet cut off before artistic license is taken to their chest. After examining the body, Dean goes ‘undercover’, i.e., trolling for a better time, when he meets Lydia. The two make conversation and with the help of some very good camera work, the chemistry between the two is on full display. Even better, is when they take things back to her place and “You Shook Me All Night Long” starts banging in the background as the two commence their own—well, you get the picture. Interspersed with their coupling is another unfortunate victim being sliced and diced, far from the happy ending Dean receives.

A long, fun night in the books, Dean accompanies Sam to the latest crime scene, meeting Charlene Penn, the detective on the case who isn’t too keen on the FBI encroaching on her turf. Sam talks with the newest victim’s friend who informs him of said victim’s one night fling that caused his wife to leave. On their way away from the scene, Dean realizes he left Bobby’s flask—the memento he’s keeping of his uncle—at Lydia’s. She’s distracted when he calls and when she hangs up, her very ripe and pregnant belly is a sure sign of a bit of the supernatural going on. In the next scene she’s giving birth, surrounded by several women, with an older one who is no doubt the leader preaching to her “pain is an honor.” She gives birth to a little girl they name Emma.

Dean standing next to Emma. If he only knew then who she was...

In their plight to discover the origins of the symbols being carved into the men’s chest, they go to a Professor Morrison from a local college’s department of anthropology. After a bit of hassle, he agrees to do the research on the symbol’s origins. Dean’s less than impressed with the professor, still longing for Bobby. “I want to call him too,” Sam growls, “but Bobby’s not here, so we’re settling.” Taking his mind off of things, Dean drives to Lydia’s to retrieve the flask. He’s a bit surprised to see her daughter, crib and all where there wasn’t one the night before. When he leaves the room to take a call from Sam, he overhears the toddler asking about him in a manner more befitting an adult than a child.

Sam continues his investigation, talking to Eddie the coroner when he notices a receipt for the Cobalt Room, the same place Dean visited and several of the other victims. After the overheard weirdness, Dean stays at Lydia, following his instincts on the wrongness of it all. When a six year old girl exits, answering to the name of Emma, Dean follows the little girl and women—led by the one who coached Lydia through birth—to an out of the way building.

The building houses several young girls as they go through a ritual offering, one designed to have them become part of a tribe. The tribe, as it stands, based on the professor’s research, is that of the Amazons. Created by the union of Harmonia and Ares, they use men solely for procreation, killing them after successful impregnation. Doing a bit more research on the matter, Sam finds that the Amazons, as they were hunted down and exterminated, made a deal with Harmonia and became more than human, more monstrous. Cycling every two years, they send out women who reach their child bearing years to be fruitful and multiply. Despite the dots being connected and pointing toward the obvious Dean refuses to entertain the possibility of his own little sprog running around sprouting like the virtual weed.

Now teenagers and branded with the mark of Harmonia, the girls tasked for one more trial before becoming fully integrated into the tribe. During the final research, Dean notices a paper move. An inconspicuous notion, his ears are perked for another entry of supernatural involvement. Sam uses the EM detector but the open window and adjoining power lines make any results inconclusive. Dean’s thought of it being Bobby’s spirit is greeted with a hostilely impatient Sam. Still, he takes the new paper—written in Greek—to the professor, ordering Dean to stay put. Not long after Sam leaves, Dean cautiously answers the knock on the door. It’s Emma and she asks for his help.

Emma pleads her case to Dean, on not wanting to become what the tribe wants her to be. Dean is visibly torn, wanting to believe his daughter is good but also naturally cautious. On Sam’s end, the professor translates the document, stating the child must kill her own father. Before he can get to Dean, Sam runs into Detective Penn, who’s a part of the Amazon tribe. She tosses him around but he’s able to shoot her through the chest. Phone broken, he must rush to Dean before Emma gets to him.

Dean can't pull the trigger

For his part, Dean’s never fooled by Emma’s act. He has her at gunpoint but is hesitant to pull the trigger. His mind knows the truth; though his daughter in the physical sense, she’s a monster who won’t hesitate to kill him. Funny how is heart is having trouble rectifying that truth. It’s a poignant bookend from “The Girl Next Door” where the brothers’ roles are reversed and Sam does what Dean can’t, kill Emma.

When the brothers make their way to the Amazon hideout ready to lay waste to the tribe, the Amazons are already gone. Sam’s anger and frustration are evident as they ride away. Sam lays into Dean, bringing up Amy as well as Bobby’s own thoughts that even since Cas’s death Dean’s head hasn’t been right. Bobby’s death has only furthered his disconnect with everything around him. Though Sam’s rebuke sounds harsh, it’s about keeping his brother alive. When asked not to get himself killed, Dean’s only response is “I’ll do what I can.” It doesn’t fill Sam with confidence but he can do nothing but hope and pray Dean does more than go through the motions.

Introducing another part of mythology into the ‘Supernatural’ world, “The Splice Girls” offers an even more important aspect in Sam’s admitting to Dean not being quite right. While it doesn’t move the Leviathan arc forward, it continues the exploration of Dean’s fragile state; the toll of so much loss has thrown an already wobbly Dean so far off balance it’s difficult to surmise just how he’ll be able to get back on track. No matter what Sam does, it will be up to Dean to figure out what he wants; to be a half shell or face the truth in front of him. Bobby’s gone and, if he’s not careful, Dean won’t be long in joining him.

If you missed the previous episode, be sure to read our ‘Supernatural: ‘ recap.

The Good

  • The Amazons, well known in mythology, are brought into the ‘Supernatural’ fold. It’s a welcome addition to the Winchesters’ world and there is definitely a window open for their return.
  • Sam calling Dean out on his hypocrisy. Just as Sam let Amy go, Dean was ready to give Emma a free pass as well. Sam’s been trying his damndest to make excuses for Dean’s behavior but he becomes the older brother in this episode. It’s a testament to his growth and increasing confidence to call Dean out with the truth.
  • It was good seeing Sara Canning of ‘Vampire Diaries’ (Jenna) and Harry Groener (Mayor Wilkins from ‘Buffy’ fame) back in the supernatural genre.

The Bad

  • Though she had to die, it would’ve been nice if Emma, as Dean’s child, bucked the Amazon tribe and made her own way. It would have provided even juicier stories down the road.

The Supernatural

  • The mysterious occurrences are back. This time, providing the brothers with more information on what they are dealing with. Is it Bobby, Cas, or something else entirely?