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2006, TV Show

Supernatural Episode: "Appointment in Samarra"

Season 6, Episode 11
Episode Synopsis: Dean seeks out Death to get Sam's soul back, but Sam decides he doesn't want it returned and tries a protective spell to keep his soul out of his body.
Original Air Date: Dec 10, 2010
Guest Cast Julian Richings: Death Jim Beaver: Bobby Sebastian Roché: Balthazar
Full Episode
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Season 6, Episode 11
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Length: 41:45
Aired: 12/10/2010
Also available on Amazon Instant Video and VUDU
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Supernatural Episode Recap: "Appointment in Samarra" Season 6, Episode 11

Dean's quest to save his brother's soul is in direct opposition to what Sam's up to in "Appointment in Samarra." The action involves Dean becoming Death for 24 hours, while Sam tries to kill his father figure (Bobby) to prevent from getting re-souled.


Let's start at the very end and work our way back. I wondered how long we were going to have to wait before Sam and his soul met up again. So happy it's halfway through Season 6 and we didn't have to wait until the finale.


Now we're left with tons of questions. What's Sam going to be like when the hellatus is over? Death placed all of Sam's memories behind some sort of wall since his soul is "flayed to the point of raw nerves." Does that mean he'll be OK when he wakes up? Are we going to be on pins and needles waiting for that wall to come tumbling, crumbling down, resulting in Sam feeling the full effect of being in hell for a year? Is this re-souling business just putting off the inevitable, meaning a transition to Coma-Sam or Insane-Sam? This definitely gives the Sam-in-hell story more legs.


Another question is how will Sam treat Dean once he realizes what happened? Just because he gets his soul back doesn't mean we'll get the Sam we know and love. He may be super-resentful Dean didn't give him the option of reconnecting him with his soul or he may be super-grateful. I'm waiting anxiously to see how this plays out. I don't think we can expect the brothers to be the Winchesters of (way) old just yet. They still have a lot to work through. I'm cautiously optimistic Sam and Dean are on their way to a better sibling relationship.


Dean, once again, shows how far he's willing to go for his brother. He never questions the fact Sam needs his soul back. He goes to extreme lengths to get this done. Psychic Pamela's not around so he goes to see Robert Englund's Dr. Robert, who treats injured hunters for a living. He and his "cheerful" assistant Eva help him die so he can have a conversation with Death. Death basically tells him he'll get his brother's soul back, but Dean needs to put on Death's ring and be him/it for a day. Tessa's also back and she reluctantly acts as Dean's guide.


Naturally, Dean doesn't want to take the life of a 12-year-old girl who's suffering from a serious heart condition. He learns an awful lesson when a hospital nurse dies in her place. The line of dialogue that strikes me the most during the Dean-as-Death portion of the episode is: "Everything you do has consequences." I think this is going to be a continuing theme. The boys have played around with the natural order for so long, things might come back to (again) bite them in the-you-know-what.


Meanwhile, Sam's definitely a wild card. He's come to the conclusion he doesn't want his soul back, so he goes to his own extreme lengths to prevent that from happening. He turns to Balthazar, Cas' heavenly friend we met earlier this season in "The Third Man." The rogue angel tells him about a spell. Only problem is Sam will need to resort to patricide; and while John Winchester isn't around, Bobby Singer sure is. I really loved the scenes where Sam's chasing Bobby, trying to hunt him down. They each get some licks in, but by the end, Bobby's tied to a chair. Dean conveniently shows up at the perfect time to knock Sam out and imprison him like he did when Sam was addicted to the demon blood. It's getting to be we can't go a season without one of the brothers being locked up at Bobby's house "for their own good." I hope this is the last time we see this happen.


Death shows up and reconnects an unwilling Sam with his soul. The episode ends with the youngest Winchester screaming his brains out. So much happened in "Appointment in Samarra," I'm still trying to process it all. I think this is a very good end to the first half of the season. It's not one of those cliffhangers where it completely made my jaw drop, but it's a good one. I can't believe the next new Supernatural won't be until January 28, 2011.


The Guest Stars


Four great guest stars make "Appointment in Samarra" a must-see episode.


Sebastian Roché (Balthazar): I really like his presence. I hope he comes back again. While Balthazar's willing to help Sam, he mentions he really doesn't like Dean. I'd like to see the two go up against each other in the future.


Lindsey McKeon (Tessa): After "In My Time of Dying," I always hoped Tessa would return. And now, along with Season 4's "Death Takes a Holiday," she's proving to be a go-to-girl for this show. I totally dig that.


Robert Englund (Dr. Robert): There are so many guest stars in this one that I fear (had to use that word) we didn't get enough Freddy Krueger. Dr. Robert no longer has a medical license and his treatments are most probably outside-the-box, but I like seeing this aspect of the hunters' life. At least nothing horribly gruesome happened to Doc Robert as so frequently happens when someone comes across a Winchester. Maybe this can become a recurring role for Englund. I think a medical expert's a nice fit for this universe. The way the doctor greeted Dean was just so funny. He practically pinched his cheeks. I wonder if he ever met wee Dean and wee Sam back in the day when he treated Big Daddy Winchester.


Julian Richings (Death): I went back and watched last season's "Two Minutes to Midnight," the first episode to feature Death. And I don't know what you guys think, but the Horseman's introduction scene set to the song "O' Death" is probably one of the coolest Supernatural scenes of all time. I hit rewind a few times because it's just that awesome. In both "Two Minutes" and "Appointment in Samarra," the scenes between Death and Dean are spectacular. They often involve food like deep-dish pizza, or in this case, bacon dogs; Dean's usually scared out of his mind having to face this particular Horseman, although that doesn't ever stop him from being Dean. This means he almost always has some sort of disrespectful comment for Death. But that's OK because Death usually is quick to put Dean in his place. It's a nice give-and-take, isn't it? Julian Richings completely rocks my world in "Appointment in Samarra." He gives the role so much weight.


More Thoughts


- Death tells Dean: "But you have use. Right now you're digging at something, intrepid detective. I want you to keep digging, Dean." "Are you just going to be cryptic? Or..." "It's about the souls. You'll understand when you need to." Any theories? This is an important conversation that might possibly have to do with whatever happens at the end of the season.


-Well, at least the show finally mentioned Adam. Dean asked Death to get both Sam's soul and Adam out of the pit. Death just said to pick one. Poor Adam. I do wonder if we're ever going to see him again.


-Dean died again. How many times is that now? Is anyone keeping count?


-I feel for Robo-Sam. I get why he doesn't want his soul back. But it's interesting how this Sam is treating the old Sam like they're two completely different people. The psychological aspects of this story are pretty fascinating.


-I felt the part with Dean being Death for a day was rushed. I wanted him to be Death for the full day.


-There's no mention of Sam walking away at the end of last episode. I guess I incorrectly thought the two would be going solo but all of a sudden Dean's filling in Sam and Bobby on his soulful plans.


-A break-my-heart moment of "Appointment in Samarra": Dean gives Doc Robert a letter to send to Ben should something happen to him while he's under. It's also sad that he didn't leave anything for Sam. And what about Lisa?


-"Appointment in Samarra" is a short, but powerful story that involves Death and predestination. It's pretty appropriate to what goes on in this episode. Google it.


-I love how the odds in this episode are always 75 percent.


-Congratulations to everyone involved with Supernatural. I was beyond ecstatic to go to the grocery store this week and see Jensen and Jared on the cover of TV Guide Magazine. Love that the fans made this happen. 

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Dean's quest to save his brother's soul is in direct opposition to what Sam's up to in "Appointment in Samarra." The action involves Dean becoming Death for 24 hours, while Sam tries to kill his father figure (Bobby) to prevent from getting re-souled.


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Premiered: September 21, 2006, on CW
Rating: TV-14
User Rating: (10,349 ratings)
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Premise: Two brothers hunt demons, ghosts and other supernatural entities as they investigate crimes caused by paranormal forces.


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