Supernatural on CW

2006, TV Show

Supernatural Episode: "Family Matters"

Season 6, Episode 7
Episode Synopsis: Dean believes his grandfather is harboring a secret and reluctantly goes on a hunt with him, which goes horribly awry.
Original Air Date: Nov 5, 2010
Guest Cast Mitch Pileggi: Samuel
Full Episode
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Season 6, Episode 7
Free | TNT
Length: 17:04:00
Aired: 11/5/2010
Also available on iTunes, Amazon Instant Video and VUDU
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Supernatural Episode Recap: "Family Matters" Season 6, Episode 7

In "Family Matters," the action picks up shortly after the events of "You Can't Handle the Truth." Sam wakes up after being on the wrong end of a Dean pummeling; he's tied to a chair facing Dean and Castiel who want answers. Even though Sam can't give them any, by the end of the episode we're given some. Actually, we get answers, more questions, plus, we're left sorting out what I assume is the season's big story arc.

At the end of the first time I watched "Family Matters," I sat there stunned. I really didn't know what to make of it all. So I watched it a second time, as is par for the course in Season 6. Here's a breakdown of what we learned:

-Sam's soulless. That's something I think we've all suspected for a long time. Not to mention we learned it in the sneak-peek that came at the end of the last episode. Boo to that preview, by the way. Too. Much. Information.

-Sam's soul is trapped in Lucifer's cage down in the depths of hell. Again, not a shocker because if Sam's soulless, where else would it be?

-Crowley's a true blue villain; there doesn't seem to be the same shades of gray with him that existed before.

-Crowley's responsible for pulling Sam's body out of hell. He's also responsible for pulling Samuel from wherever he was. I thought it was heaven, now I'm not so sure.

-Granddaddy Campbell is Crowley's bitch. We know that he's been talking to someone, taking orders. We finally find out it's Crowley. For some reason, even knowing that the former Crossroads Demon is "King of Hell," I still didn't suspect Samuel's reporting to him.

-Christian's a demon. Crowley said Christian's been possessed for a while; he needed someone to keep an eye on Samuel and the crew. That Crowley is pretty impressive, isn't he?

-Crowley's looking for purgatory. I'm not sure I understand exactly why he wants Limbo Land. He says it's "location, location, location." Is this just a power thing? Is this to get closer to Heaven and then wage a war on Castiel and the angels? I'm just not sure right now. I don't mind admitting that this is a little above my pay grade. Supernatural has done the Hell thing and the Heaven thing; I guess it's only logical purgatory is the next great unchartered territory for the show. I'm very curious to see where this is all going.

-Crowley's holding Sam's soul hostage. If Granddad and the boys do his bidding and bring him creatures (preferably Alphas, I presume), than he'll snap his fingers and give it back. If not, he'll send Sam back to Hell. I guess the higher on the food chain these creatures are, the more information they can give him. Plus, like the Alpha Vamp says, purgatory is "filled with the soul of every hungry thing like me that ever walked this earth." I guess that's pretty valuable.

-The heavenly civil war seems to be getting serious. When Cas has to leave it sounds urgent and he seems upset. That didn't stop me from loving when he told Dean and Sam, "Of course, your problems always come first. I'll be in touch." Now it's Cas, so I haven't a clue whether sarcasm entered the picture here. Misha Collins has a great way of delivering his lines ambiguously enough where I have no clue as to the meaning behind the words. And by the way, I still want more Cas. There's a little more in "Family Matters" than in "You Can't Handle the Truth," but that's still not enough in my opinion.

-The Alpha Vamp (awesomely played by Battlestar Galactica alum Rick Worthy) has a hold of Sam and says something interesting. He mentions how a boy without a soul makes for the perfect animal. There's nothing holding him back. Is this something Sam's going to have to deal with as the season continues?

-Crowley says Samuel knows a lot of things. Does he know more than what we found out in this episode? I guess time will tell.

-The Alpha Vamp makes mention of having a mother. Is this show going to be exploring Mother (Abnormal) Nature?

And while we're on the subject of Sam's soul, just what does this lack of soul mean? He can't feel. Like Dean said, he really doesn't have the instinct of telling whether something's important or not. He lies without blinking an eye and doesn't seem to see what's wrong with that. He admits to Dean it was his idea not to tell him what Samuel was doing with the Alpha creatures they were catching. All he could muster up was, "Oh." Will Dean be able to trust a soulless Sam at all? And let's talk about his soul that's currently trapped in a cage in Hell. Once Sam and his soul are reconnected, how is this going to affect Sammy? Will he have to deal with all that he did while he was soulless? Once he gets his groove back, this may lead to even more dark times ahead for the cursed Winchester. I mean, how sad is it that he doesn't even sleep? Poor RoboSam.

With all this talk of Alpha shapeshifters and vampires, I think in "Family Matters," we also witnessed a super-sized dose of Alpha Dean. Wow. When he feels helpless where his brother's concerned, the Alpha male in him is roaring more than usual. I love a strong and forceful Dean, but he tends to get out of control sometimes. He tells Sam how it's going to be. He does the same with Samuel and he even does it with the Alpha Vamp. Reality is that Dean has no control over anything that is going on. What I did like is that even though he was in Alpha Dean mode he gave Sam a choice. He says to his younger brother he's not going to force Sam to work with him; it's his choice. But if he does make the choice to unite as one badass team, he's calling the shots. I don't know how long that'll last. Sam likes calling the shots too. And while he's without a soul, he's a pretty focused and fierce hunter. He even scares Traitor Samuel some times.

My favorite part comes just after Dean makes his plea to Sam to work together. Sam's "undercover" and goes to talk to Samuel. He tries to get information out of his grandfather. Samuel doesn't go for it so the soulless one goes with his Plan B and that's to activate the GPS on Samuel's cell phone so they can track them to where they're holding the A.V. Sam goes back to the Impala and Dean's a little surprised to see he came back. It's a nice moment that gives me hope the boys can get that great sibling relationship they had when it was the Winchester brothers against the world. It hasn't been that way in a long, long time. And I want it back.

Random Thoughts

-Dean doesn't trust grandpa and the feeling is mutual. Christian has no time for him and Gwen calls him a reject. He no longer has Lisa and Ben in his life; Cas is super busy with his own pressing issues and even though he's with his brother, Sam really isn't capable of feeling anything. There's absolutely no love in his life right now and that's sad to me.

-I do like how Dean tells grandpa what he wants to hear and then goes and does the exact opposite. I also liked them flashing on Dean's vision from his brief vamp period. The Alpha Vamp calling Dean his child was pretty creepy.

-As far as I'm concerned, family does matter, at least the one that exists between Sam and Dean.

-This is the second Season 6 episode named after a sitcom. The first was "Two and a Half Men." The show should feel free to give other episodes sitcom names. Some examples: "Perfect Strangers," "Who's the Boss" and "All in the Family."

-Cas instantly cleaned Sam's face up like he did Dean's in "Swan Song." It always seems like whatever experience one brother goes through the other eventually will too (i.e. dying and resurrecting; going to hell).

-The Alpha Vamp uttered words I'm pretty sure the Yellow-Eyed Demon used at some point. He said something about having plans for him. I wish the show wouldn't do that because the more things change, the more they stay the same. Six seasons in and it's still Sam being hunted down or being used by a supernatural creature.

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In "Family Matters," the action picks up shortly after the events of "You Can't Handle the Truth." Sam wakes up after being on the wrong end of a Dean pummeling; he's tied to a chair facing Dean and Castiel who want answers. Even though Sam can't give them any, by the end of the episode we're given some. Actually, we get answers, more questions, plus, we're left sorting out what I assume is the season's big story arc.

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Premiered: September 21, 2006, on CW
Rating: TV-14
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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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