Strange tidings are afoot in Grantsburg, Wisconsin when a farmer has to go shotgunnin’ for a trespasser that’s done some unkind things to his cattle. Though the interloper gets away, he ends up getting blindsided by a car and it lands him in the hospital. “He” just so happens to be everyone’s favorite—and gangly—hunter, Garth. Both Sam and Dean pay the unconscious Garth a visit, to both their surprise. Two weeks apart and a less than friendly split fills their reunion with oodles of awkwardness until a slap upside the head wakes up the Sleeping Garth and after questioning Garth on his six months of being AWOL, he spends some time in the bathroom, audibly gagging as the brothers fill one another in all that’s been going on since they last saw each other. When Garth’s silence draws their attention, the find out he’s skipped out on them without a word or answer on what he was up to at the farm.
Splitting up duties, Sam talks to the farmer and Dean checks the hospital security cameras for any leads on Garth. After the farmer tells Sam on his livestock having their organs ripped out, he calls his brother who, despite getting info on Garth’s escape, decides to keep it to himself. But Sam’s already there and the wedge of distrust is in full effect. Though Dean believes they can’t hunt together, they put differences aside in order to find out the deal with Garth. Using the license plate of the car Garth escaped in, they pay a visit to Bess Meyers and find Garth seemingly alone and no worse for wear. That doesn’t last long as blondie girl bounds out of the closet, teeth and fangs at the ready. Sam cuts her with a silver knife and Dean’s about to finish the werewolf when Garth interferes and lets his fellow hunters know that Bess is his betrothed and, just like her, he’s also a werewolf.Dean breaks bread with Garth’s pack
Based on Garth’s recap, he ran into a werewolf on a job six months back and, though he took the beast down, it left him with a lil lycanthropic goodbye. Bess stepped in just before he was able to end his life and things went swimmingly from there. They married a couple months after meeting and her pack has taken him in. And despite most werewolves penchant for human hearts, this pack, led by Bess’s father, Reverend Jim, are vegetarians…or, the equivalent for creatures that eat animal organs instead of humans. Dean is especially suspicious about things so he visits the pack while Sam peppers the town’s sheriff on the good Reverend and his flock. Dean first comes across Joy, Bess’s mother-in-law and the Reverend’s hubby and gives Dean her word he’ll be safe. He finds that, along with laying off the human sauce, this is quite the Christian pack of lycanthropes. After being introduced to some of the pack, Dean joins them for an impressively uncomfortable dinner Dean notices the silver bullets each member wears around their neck. It’s a reminder, Garth says, of their fragility. Reverend Jim shares his story with Dean and also the motivations for how he leads his pack. “The road to revenge is a dark and lonely one, which you never get off. And that hole in the pit of your stomach, you never fill it,” Dean can’t help but to relate to it.
Jobah and Russ’s passive aggressiveness aside, Joy and the Reverend are nothing but kind. Still, Dean’s not buying things are just this kosher. He still holds some anger on Garth disappearing but when the latter hears about Kevin, he’s shaken by the news. That night, Sam chats with Dean about the wolf pack and the latter expresses his feelings on something not being right. Well, they find out just how wrong things are when the sheriff calls them in to a deer mutilation only to try and murder them for the pack. After heaving a knife into the good sheriff’s chest, Dean notices he’s wearing the same silver bullet necklace but this one has ‘Ragnarok’ etched on one side. Splitting up the duties once again, Dean directs Sam to pick up Garth while he checks out the Reverend’s church.Fanatical Joy drops her plans for ‘Ragnarok’ on Sam
Dean finds the book the good Reverend uses to preach and, after doing some digging, discovers information on the Maw of Fenris, a splinter group of werewolves hell bent on eradicating humankind. He relays the info to Sam who comes up snake eyes in the “find Garth” department, though he ends up getting cracked in the melon by Jobah and Russ. While Sam’s getting carried off by the wolf boys, Dean confronts the good Reverend who, since taking over the pastorship, has eliminated such extremist teachings. Dean checks the bullet necklace but finds nothing scrawled across the side. Someone else is leading the cause and, upon joining a chained up Bess and Garth, Sam sees that Joy’s not quite the lycanthropic moderate she made herself out to be. She’s crazier than a bag of cats and wants to frame Sam for Bess’s murder in order to turn the good Rev against humans. Well, she didn’t expect Dean to crash the party. Using some info from Reverend Jim, Dean arrives at the farm and, after stealthily taking out Russ arrives just before a hateful Joy—driven by her little brother’s murder and remembering her father’s teachings—shoots Bess. With Sam’s help, he’s able to take down Jobah before going Doc Holliday on Joy.
The brothers say their goodbyes to Garth and when he talks to Dean, Garth tells his friend he wants to make things right, he wants to hunt along their side. Dean redirects Garth to what he has in Bess. “Don’t let that go,” he tells his werewolf buddy, “you’ll never forgive yourself.”
Now that the case is over, the brothers prepare to send one another off with frosty goodbyes but Dean forces himself to admit it; “I messed up, man,” he confesses. He wants to make things right but knows it won’t be that easy. Same is not about forgiveness either. “Something is broken here, Dean…we don’t see things the same way anymore.” He doesn’t trust Dean anymore and really isn’t too sure how he’ll be able to. He tells Dean they can work together but if he wants to be brothers, well, that road’s a lot bumpier and will take much more than working cases in order for them to smooth things out.
The boys may be back together as partners but they are far from rekindling the brotherly aspects of their relationship.
Chances and Forgiveness
- Forgiveness is not an easy thing. As humans, our natural disposition seems to be directed towards hurting those that hurt us. Taking the proverbial high road can often be a tall order, one that requires us to find the best parts of us to get over it. Reverend Jim’s words to Dean epitomizes that our humanly urges can lead us down a path that can have us forever lost if we let it.
- But that doesn’t mean it’s easy. Like Sam tells his brother, sometimes things are broken and it takes more than wishful thinking or an “I’m sorry” to fix it. Are there things that can’t be fixed, no matter the sacrifices toward making it better? Imagine a vase, dropped onto the floor and shattered into a thousand pieces. It could be glued back together, with meticulous work and dedicated effort. Yes, it may become whole again but there will always be marks in it that can make it more fragile on a second handling or, depending on the glue, even stronger than ever. More often we find the former to be true but there are occasions where the breaks and fractures are forged into an even stronger whole. It remains to be seen where Sam and Dean’s relationship lands.