What do you get when you mix a banshee, Viagra, a Golden Girls reference, and a dangerous, unstoppable attraction? Other than the beginnings of a bawdy joke, “Into the Mystic”, the latest episode of Supernatural pitting Sam and Dean against the Ireland beastie.
The story begins 30 years prior when, in County Cork, Ireland, a husband and wife fall victim to the aforementioned banshee, with their little girl orphaned before she’s learned to walk. Fast forward to the present: Sam’s still feeling guilty and burdened by Lucifer’s words of his failure but Dean has the best distraction for Sam: a case in an Oak Park retirement community where a man was found in a locked room with his head bashed in. While Sam looks through the victim’s room, Dean gets the 411 from Arthur, the community’s manager and discovers that Harold wasn’t the greatest guy. Not only was he stealing other patients’ Viagra supplies but was accused of stealing the pension checks of Jake Townsend, a former member of the community. Based on their findings, ‘ghost of Jake’ is their first supposition but, while they are burning Mr. Townsend’s bones, Arthur becomes the next victim but this time, there’s a witness.
Mildred, one of the community residents and harboring a serious crush on Dean, gives them the play-by-play of Arthur’s death. During the convo, Sam catches sight of Marlene, part of the housekeeping staff, listening in. He questions her and finds out Marlene’s deaf but, as Sam walks away, ‘Marlene’ keeps her eyes open, a definitive hint that she’s somehow involved.
With Mildred’s account firmly in their minds, the Winchesters gather facts from Harold’s autopsy. Part of his frontal lobe is missing. That, coupled with Mildred’s description, points to the banshee: a spirit that travels through mist using its scream to drive its victims crazy and feeding on their cracked open skulls. Oh, and they prey on those that are vulnerable. The two hunters believe Mildred may be next and Dean heads back to the Bunker to retrieve gold blades, the only thing that can kill a banshee.
While Dean’s at the Bunker, he runs into ‘Cas’. The two talk about the need to find something—anything—that will turn the fight against the Darkness in their favor when Dean admits to his attraction/connection to Amara. “I don’t know if I can stop it,” he tells ‘Cas’, “I don’t know if I can resist it.” Sam’s call interrupts Dean’s admission. Turns out ‘Marlene’ isn’t a housekeeper but, Eileen, an orphan raised by a hunter when her parents were killed by the banshee. Yep, she’s the kid from the cradle in Ireland. Not only that but her grandfather was a Man of Letters. Knowing Eileen’s heritage as a legacy, Sam and Dean bring her as well as Mildred in on the plan: use Eileen’s wards to trap the banshee and the gold blades to turn it into a kebob.
The banshee only attacks after sundown, giving the quartet downtime to prep for the coming battle. Sam gets ready with Eileen, asking her what she’ll do once the banshee’s dead. He relates his intimate familiarity with the situation (the yellow-eyed demon that killed his mother) and how revenge doesn’t magically make the pain go away. She admits to not knowing what she’ll do, just that she has to finish this job and go from there.
For Dean, he gets a pep talk on the secrets to living a long, happy life from Mildred. “Follow your heart,” she tells him and, even as her flirtations get a bit hands-on, the banshee attacks. But it’s not Mildred that’s the target, but Dean. The battle is fierce and it takes all four to take the banshee down but, in the end, Eileen plants her gold blade right through its heart.
In the aftermath, Eileen realizes the hunting and saving people is her life while Mildred spies Dean’s unmistakable “pining for someone else”. Though he denies it, later that night, sleep eludes him because, in his heart, Dean fully understands that what he feels for Amara isn’t going away anytime soon.
- Fresh off of Castiel giving Lucifer the go-ahead to take a spin in his body, we see the new ‘Cas’ in action. When an angel tries to take him out in a nature park, it lets us know that the word is out on angel radio; Cas ain’t driving the host anymore. One has to wonder if any other angel will clue the Winchesters in on what’s going down. Yeah, probably not.
- Welcome to Supernatural, Dee Wallace! Playing the part of Mildred, she’s all about getting a bit of action in with Dean. Her conversation with Eileen about taking the brothers for a little bit of rough ‘n tumble added some pizzazz to an otherwise ho-hum episode.
- We all knew it but Dean finally spills the beans on his attraction to Amara. It’s not a surprise considering their first meeting way back in the season premiere but Dean’s admission, coupled with Mildred reading Dean’s emotion that someone is in his heart makes for a very interesting second half of the season. If Dean’s heart is more towards being with Amara and not fighting her, what chance do the Winchesters really have of getting the job done?
- Sam, with the highlights of his greatest failures as shown to him by Lucifer, apologizes to Dean. “I should’ve looked for you,” he says, “when you were in Purgatory.” And while he’s yet to forgive himself for the failure, Dean has. Yet as many of us know, gaining someone else’s forgiveness for your transgression may be hard, but it’s easy compared to forgiving yourself.
- Welcome to the Supernatural world, Eileen! Here’s hoping we’ll see more of her down the road.
- True, there were a few points of the larger story that move forward during “Into the Mystic”, the overall banshee angle, though a new beastie, wasn’t the most engaging monster-of-the-week episodes.
- Adding to the banshee story, isn’t it a bit of a long shot that this particular banshee is the same one that killed Eileen’s folks? Personally, I’d think the odds would be greater against that than successfully navigating an asteroid field. But to tell a story, sometimes we have to work in the concepts of coincidence and/or kismet.
- Dee Wallace as a guest star was a completely Supernatural thing to do. Add to that Dean’s “I always had a thing from Blanche on the Golden Girls” is one of the few pop culture references sprinkled through the hour.
- The usual fine tunes bookend the episode with The Shirelles’ “Will You Love Me Tomorrow?” and “Prison Grove” by Warren Zevon. There’s even a Jonny Mathis tune (“Wonderful! Wonderful!”) tossed into the background as well.
- And how about Dean pocketing a bottle of Viagra?! Such a slick move, Mr. Winchester.