Fresh off the hospital escape, Dean arrives in Cedar Rapids with Jenna and baby Amara in tow. He drops the pair off at Jenna’s grandma’s before heading back to Superior to rendezvous with Sam. He doesn’t get too far into his drive before Jenna’s calling him back. Baby Amara’s showing some serious power—using blocks to communicate her need to feed. A devout Catholic, Jenna’s grandma’s seeing the devil in the little girl and, by the time Dean’s back on the scene, her reinforcements have arrived in the form of Father Crowley.

Father Crowley–there for all your exorcism needs

Yeah, you read that right. It seems that everyone’s favorite (read: ONLY) King of Hell has been quite the industrious fellow by planting moles within the Catholic Church to fill him in on exorcism cases.  Considering this current situation isn’t one of his own, he drops by to investigate. Crowley can feel the child’s power, the darkness within her. While the two pow wow outside, Jenna checks in on baby Amara and the visit doesn’t go too well. By the time Crowley and Dean hear the grandma’s scream, her throat’s been cut but a very different Jenna.  Dean checks in on the child and recognizes the Mark tattoo on her and finally realizes what his gut had been telling him all along; Amara is the Darkness. And what does the baby Darkness eat? Souls.

Speaking of souls, Sam is trying to maintain his in Superior, NE. The infection is getting worse and, when he captures another infected (but not yet turned), he realizes the rate of progression differs for everyone. Still, he doesn’t have much time and…

”O’, Death…”

Though the voice is unfamiliar, ‘Supernatural‘ fans know the song. But Death is gone, right? He very well may be off the table but his reapers are still active, doing their duty. Sam gets this information from the reaper Billie who lets him know, in no uncertain terms, that the jig is up. The Winchester boys have defied death but that was with Death’s help; according to Billie, he thought it was funny. With the head honcho no longer running the show, the next time the Winchesters die, they won’t be going to Heaven or Hell. No, they’ll be tossed out into “the Empty”. And no one comes back from that…

Ephraim does his best to confirm Dean’s opinion that most angels are jerks

Combined everything that’s happened over the past few weeks, Sam feels adrift and out of options. He takes to the chapel in a plea for God to grant Dean something of a life. He asks for a sign and all he receives is a hideous image of his own suffering. Is it a future portent or a reminder of his experience locked up in the Cage? At the moment, it doesn’t matter as the infection is spreading and he’s close to falling into the madness. Not until Sam remembers Billie’s offhand remark of him being “unclean; in the Biblical sense” does he figure out what to do. Using the holy oil he has on hand (doesn’t everyone?) Sam burns it and its smoke purifies him of the sickness. His success leads him to cleansing those still left alive in the town.

Before we head back to Dean’s dilemma, Castiel has his own issues, namely two dick-ish angels in Ephraim and Jonah who want nothing more than to cause our angel of Thursday pain and a bit of suffering—and Metatron’s whereabouts.  Despite swearing he doesn’t know Metatron’s locations, the two angels almost revel in the torture, until Hannah—wearing a new male suit—arrives a puts a stop to Castiel’s suffering. Though he’s grateful for her intervention, he deduces she’s the good cop to the other angels bad cop. When they realize the ruse won’t work, Ephraim brings out the big gun—the halo—to hack Castiel’s brain. Though Hannah doesn’t want to do it, she still goes along with it. To make a short story shorter, her inability to sit and watch Cas suffer causes Hannah to suffer Ephraim’s wrath. The distraction is all the suddenly raged out Cas needs and he breaks from his restraints, kills Jonah and then Ephraim but not before the latter ends Hannah.

Soulless Jenna…we hardly knew ya…

Circling back to Cedar Rapids, Crowley and Dean find the now-soulless Jenna in her grandmother’s room, destroying figurines. Dean tries talking to her but she attacks him, no-holds-barred style, gaining an advantage thanks to Dean’s reticence to hurt her. Crowley doesn’t have any such compunction and ends the fight, killing Jenna. Now, it’s time to decide what to do about the little baby Darkness. Dean admits to his theory on Crowley, who would like nothing more than to act as Amara’s mentor but Dean knows he has to destroy her. The two get into a tussle and Dean somehow gains the upper hand. He has Crowley at his mercy but doesn’t take it, opting to check on Amara. But she’s already gone.

The last few days behind them, the Winchesters return to the Bunker and go over their notes on Amara and the Darkness when they find a beaten and bloodied Castiel waiting for them. Meanwhile, a pre-teen Amara walks the streets only to be stopped by Crowley who offers her a bit of “soul-candy” in the form of a nuclear family…

The Good

  • It’s always a good thing to see Crowley in the fold and his interactions with Dean are the best on the show—a credit to the chemistry between Jensen Ackles and Mark Sheppard. It’s quite interesting that, once again, Dean had the chance to end Crowley (and vice versa) but neither was able to go through with it. While great for the show, one can only wonder how long before one of the two puts their “bromance” out of mind and delivers that killing blow…

The Bad

  • Well, for Sam and Dean, at least. Billie’s proclamation that the Winchesters will no longer be able to count on Death’s whimsy of keeping them alive is like knowing you’re on the most difficult level of a game with no save or chance at a respawn. It sucks. Sure, it may sharpen your focus that much more but knowing that one mistimed jump and that’s all folks? Does that mean this season marks the end of our favorite monster fighting duo or was her warning nothing more than raising of some already lofty stakes?

The Supernatural

  • Crowley to Jenna on how he and Dean know one another: “he was a scrumptious altar boy…” Insanely non-PC but such a classic Crowley line.
  • The episode title “Form and Void” is taken from Genesis 1:2…” “And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.” If that’s not enough to tell just how much caca has hit the fan, well, I don’t know what to tell you.