The painful hellatus comes to an end with a tale about dead loved ones coming back to life in Sioux Falls, S.D., the hometown for the town drunk, Bobby Singer. Sam and Dean go head to head with these "zombies" and, more importantly, with Bobby.
Welcome back to the Supernatural blog. It has been a long (long) break, but it's finally time to get back to the business of Sam and Dean Winchester. Bobby Singer plays a big part in "Dead Men Don't Wear Plaid" and we're all the better for it. It's an episode I really enjoyed even though it was beyond depressing at the same time.
After the first victim is offed, Sam and Dean don their spiffy suits to interrogate a witness named Digger. He tells them how Clay came back to life and killed Benny in a bout of revenge. After all, five years ago, Benny killed Clay. In comes Sheriff Jody Mills who decides to check to see if Sam and Dean (aka Agents Dorfman and Neidermeyer) are for real. Turns out Sheriff Jody recognizes Bobby's voice. The gruff hunter tries to play it off but he doesn't do a very good job because he lives in Sioux Falls and he's got a reputation around town as a menace.
Sam and Dean arrive at Bobby's house and everything's all tidy and clean, even Bobby. He doesn't have a hat on and he smells good. Plus his hair is all combed with not one out of place which means one thing: something's definitely up in Sioux Falls. Bobby lies to the boys telling them their lead (meaning Digger) is a dead end. Just as Sam and Dean are heading out of town, Dean decides to make one last stop and check out Clay's grave. Sam does the digging and finds an empty casket. The brothers head to Clay's and end up confronting the undead killer who pretty much looks and sounds normal. The sheriff arrests the boys for attempting to shoot the good citizen even though said citizen is not alive.
At Bobby's place, he fills the hunters in on what he knows so far. Five days ago the dead started rising all over town. Bobby doesn't think Sam and Dean should have anything to do with this. Bobby has some seriously warped show-and-tell for the boys and it comes in the form of his wife, Karen Singer. There are a few issues, however. For one, she's dead. Bobby was forced to kill her after she became possessed a long time ago. He cremated her back in the day so she should not be standing in front of him right now passing every supernatural test he can think of. Her ashes were buried in the cemetery. All the so-called zombies came from the cemetery, so that's a common thread right there.
Bobby comes clean about the lightning storms that signaled something was going on and it turns out the culprit is Death, the Horseman Lucifer called up in "Abandon all Hope." And everything starts to get sadder and sadder from here. The sheriff's kid is back from the dead. Bobby lets Sam and Dean know his wife doesn't remember ever being possessed or Bobby killing her. Dean warns his friend they have to do their job. Normally Bobby would reluctantly agree but not this time. He actually begs Sam and Dean to leave things the way they are. Bobby's lost a lot in his life. And he's lost even more recently (the use of his legs). It's difficult not to want Sam and Dean to go along with their father figure. It turns out Bobby's wife is well aware she's dead and that she's a thing Bobby, Sam and Dean usually hunt. She remembers everything and she understands why Bobby had to do what he did.
In another part of town, the sheriff has a potentially scary kid on her hands. Her son comes back from the dead, but he's not looking too good. In fact he's looking like he's going to go medieval on his mom at any given second. Supernatural loves scary kids, right? Sam heads to the sheriff's to try and talk her into joining his anti-zombie campaign. I feel so bad for Sheriff Jody. She not only loses her son again she also loses her husband. Sam goes back in and kills her son. I swear everything that happens gives me a flashback to another Supernatural moment. I think this is very appropriate considering we're nearing the show's 100th episode. When Sam goes back in to kill Jody's son, I'm reminded of a couple of classic moments: 1) When Sam had to go back in and kill his werewolf girlfriend in Season 2's "Heart;" and 2) When Dean killed the wife who was all virused up in "Croatoan." Sam and Dean have to make these judgment calls all the time. I remember in "Croatoan" Sam hesitated in doing away with the things. I'm constantly reminded of just how much the youngest Winchester has changed over the years.
Please say it isn't so. Bobby is forced to kill his wife once again! This Supernatural world just isn't fair, is it? After this episode aired, my sister called me and she had one thing to say: "The misery on this show astounds me." It's true. For Bobby to go through that again, it just isn't fair. Bobby, Sam and Dean have had these tragedy-filled lives and it just keeps getting worse. But that's what good TV drama is all about, I guess.
The action sequence near the end is one of my favorite parts of the episode. It starts out with a classic shoot out in the junkyard. A wheelchair-bound Bobby kills his fair share of the undead. Then things head inside where Bobby and Dean get trapped in a closet. Sam and the sheriff arrive to save the day and more gunfire and killing of the dead ensues. It's very satisfying. I'm someone who likes the action portions of the show drawn out so I was not disappointed.
Apparently Death is in Sioux Falls for Bobby. The skeletal Horseman sent Karen back to get to him because he's been helping Sam and Dean. He's one of the reasons why Sam's still saying no to Lucifer. "I don't know if they wanted to take my life or my spirit. Either way they wanted me out of the way." I'm not sure I totally buy this reason why Death created a whole mess of destruction for an entire town. But I do get that the Dark Side doesn't care about collateral damage. The entire town suffered. After Sam asks him if he's going to be all right, Supernatural ends things the way they like to end things occasionally with the question going unanswered.
The funeral pyre burning up all the bodies is just beyond sad. The sheriff looks appropriately exhausted and devastated from losing both her husband her son once more. Bobby has his own private pyre for his wife, however, and Sam and Dean show up to support him. Bobby apologizes and feels the five days he got to spend with his wife "made things a thousand times worse."
I always expect Bobby to dig deep and fight. This season, he's been dealt some serious blows. He just seems to be absorbing them; he doesn't seem like he's bouncing back at all. But can you blame him? This time around, it's so personal. To have him kill his wife for a second time to practically the same kind of thing, it's just so very heartbreaking.
What an excellent episode. The game ball (in honor of March Madness) goes to Jim Beaver. He had me near tears several times during the hour. The case was compelling; Beaver's acting was stellar. I loved the woman who played his wife. Her scenes with Jim were just so good and I particularly enjoyed Karen's conversations with Dean. I thought "Dead Men Don't Wear Plaid" was going to be a standalone-type episode. And though it has elements of that, it ties to the mythology as well. It's scary what these different factions will do in order to either get Sam to say yes to Lucifer or to get Dean to say yes to Michael. Things are going to get worse and worse until the finale and that's OK in my book. We're in the home stretch. There are seven episodes to go and it's going to be a wonderfully bumpy (probably severely turbulent) ride. I'm excited by what's going to come next. The "Dark Side of the Moon" preview looks awesome.
That last shot of the beginning recap was Dean looking up and asking for help from "My Bloody Valentine." My heart broke again into tiny little pieces.
Sam and Dean's FBI aliases du jour were Agents Dorfman and Neidermeyer, the last names of two characters from the classic frat boy flick Animal House.
I love when Bobby gets to act like Sam and Dean's FBI boss. Seeing those telephones labeled with every possible scenario is just an awesome thing. When did we first get introduced to that? That was "Sex & Violence" right?
Bobby's FBI alias was Agent Tom Willis. Tom Willis was one of the neighbors on the classic hitcom The Jeffersons. Oh, that's a good alias.
Kim Rhodes guest starred as the sheriff. Most recently she was the mother on Disney Channel's The Suite Life of Zack & Cody which is funny since Dean joked about "the suite life of Zach & Cas" in last season's "Lucifer Rising." But I'm going to go way back and cite another one of Kim's credits: the daytime soap opera Another World. She played "Cindy" and she played such a great bad girl. She's a really talented actress. Hope to see her pop up on more shows in the future.
I love how Bobby takes off his hat in his dead wife's presence. So classy and traditional Mr. Singer is.
I love when Sam and Dean get to sit down at a real table for dinner. Or in this case, pie.
When Dean makes the connection the big bad behind this is a horseman, he gets that exhausted 'I'm done with this' look on his face.
Jim Beaver breaks my heart a few times in this episode with his wonderful performance but when Bobby talks about how his wife hums when she cooks I just about lost it.
Dean's eating again. He must have his appetite back.
When Bobby's wife makes the observation Dean's never been in love that was also sad.
I was wondering when things were going to get gross. Sam battling the spewing, drooling zombie was just gross. She went bad and ate her husband's stomach.
Sam and Dean tell Bobby how these things are starting to turn and what does he do? He gets his gun out and lays it on his lap. And I'm instantly reminded of "Devil's Trap" and Bobby and Dean's conversation of how Bobby pulled a gun on Big Daddy Winchester. He kicks the brothers out of his house saying he'll handle it his way. A wheelchair-bound Bobby is very threatening when it comes to protecting what's his.
Wow. Bobby's the town drunk?
I love Sam in take charge mode.
The show seems to keep reminding us of how Dean has never really been in love (as much as I like Cassie, her relationship with Dean was very short-lived).
The title of the episode reminds me of the 1982 film of the same name. Steve Martin starred in Dead Men Don't Wear Plaid.
"You gave yourself your own nickname? You can't do that." "Who died and made you queen?"
"How far can he get in that chair?"
"Heads up, Fargo."
"I can't believe you were going to kill me." "You're a zombie!" "I'm a taxpayer."
"This is incredible, Mrs. Singer." "Thank you, Dean."
"Awesome, another horseman. Must be Thursday."
"I'm begging you please...please...leave her be."
"OK, I'll head to town and rescue everyone. Should be easy."
"Why didn't you tell me this before?" "You've seen so much. I just wanted to see you smile."
"That's all right, they're idiots. They can't pick a lock." (Banging instantly stops and zombies start picking the lock)
Favorite Bobby moments
In honor of the show's upcoming 100th episode it's time to reflect. Since this was a Bobby episode I'm wondering what your favorite Bobby moments are. Mine has to be that scene between Dean and Bobby in the junkyard in "All Hell Breaks Loose II" after Bobby realizes Dean sold his soul to save Sam. What's yours?