Jack knows something the Winchesters don’t. He needs a frightened Dreamwalker to make things right with them. Too bad only the psychic knows how it’ll all end.
Supernatural – “The Bad Place”, Season 13, Episode 9
Airdate: December 7, 2017
Director: Philip Sgriccia
Writer: Robert Berens
Created by: Eric Kripke
What You Should Know:
In a desperate attempt to save not only her sons, ut the world, from the devil himself, Mary Winchester attacked Lucifer, pushing him into a closing portal to another world. But he managed to drag her with him. While Dean believed her dead, no way Lucifer hadn’t killed her, Sam had tried to hope she wasn’t, for his own sake. In truth Lucifer had forced her tag along with him, claiming he might need her to escape, and he’d ended up getting her captured by Michael.
Lucifer’s illegitimate son, the Nephilim Jack, was taken in by Dean and Sam for questionable reasons. Eventually Sam gave up his initial goal of getting Jack to reopen the portal, and Dean came around to seeing the good in the kid. But when Jack accidentally killed an innocent man he freaked out, worried he might hurt the only people he cared about, and ran away.
Missouri Moseley’s granddaughter, Patience Turner, had been attacked and nearly killed by a wraith before her father finally told her the truth about her grandmother’s gift. By then Missouri was dead, leaving Patience to have learn on her own, though Jody Mills had given the girl her contact information in case she needed to reach out before she and Dean departed when the case was done.
What You’ll Find Out:
A couple is making out in an artist’s studio. The woman pulls away, saying she has to go, and the man – the artist – tells her about a buyer he’s expecting. He walks her to the door as someone knocks, his buyer is a bit early. His buyer is Jack. The woman takes her leave politely and the artist, Derek Swan, leads Jack into the main room. Derek tries to show him some of the work, but Jack quickly starts asking him pointed questions. Questions about his process and how he claimed to be a Dreamwalker. Derek laughs it off, saying those were stories he told for an article, that dreamwalking isn’t real. Jack pushes the issue, finally pulling out a small wad of cash and offering to pay for his particular skillset. In a financial bind, Derek hesitates, eventually asking Jack where he might want to go if such a thing were possible. Jack looks around the room briefly and points to a painting. A painting of the world he’d once opened a portal to when he’d still been in his mother’s womb.
Derek sets up to dreamwalk, and it takes him a moment to find the world Jack seeks. Accessing it seems difficult so Jack, desperate, jumps in to help. He merges his power with Derek’s, somehow able to see through Derek’s mind’s eye. He sees into the world, into the structure where Mary is being held. He even sees Mary herself, in the exact same kind of cage Lucifer had been in before his escape from that world. She’s alone, suffering, occasionally bumping into the sharp protrusions of her cage. But the process is taking its toll on Derek, who begins screaming in pain as Jack’s own power overwhelms him. He pleads for Jack to stop with agony in his voice.
In the bunker, Dean’s leaving a message for the psychic girl he and Jody Mills recently saved, in a desperate attempt to find Jack. He leaves a semi-detailed message, requesting a call back, and hangs up as he takes a seat at the main table across from Sam. Sam says he got in touch with Cas again, who’s working on a lead in Tucson and will call if he finds anything. Leaving them both with nothing more to go on, again. Dean’s phone rings and, seeing it’s Jody, he puts it on speaker. The boys greet her before Jody tells them why she’s calling. She’s heard of a case in North Dakota, an artist by the name of Derek Swan, found dead in his studio. His eyes burned out, like an angel attack. From the description of the suspect that Derek’s wife gave the police, it sounds like Jack.
Patience Turner, sitting at her desk in her bedroom but not really doing the paperwork spread out before her, looks at her phone which displays multiple missed calls from Dean Winchester. She turns the phone over as if trying to ignore them. Her father comes into the room to talk about how she’d gotten her first-ever C on a test. He wants her to have her pick of Ivy League colleges, she needs to do better. She tells him Dean Winchester called, that he’s asked for her help with finding someone. That she didn’t answer him. Clearly uncomfortable, her father asks if ‘everything’s working’, whether or not she’s having visions. Patience looks away briefly before smiling and saying she hasn’t. Satisfied, her father goes to leave her to her studies. Patience looks at her phone again.
Arriving at the scene of Derek Swan’s death, Sam and Dean meet up with Derek’s widow, who lets them in. She confirms that Jack was the man she’d last seen her husband with. Sam asks about his work and Dean comments on his ‘freaky imagination,’ so she tells them Derek hated the word ‘imagination.’ He called it ‘reportage,’ because Derek was a Dreamwalker. Moments later Dean finds the painting of that other world. They reconvene in the Impala a short while later to go over what they know and theorize what they don’t. Dad’s old journal doesn’t have much on Dreamwalkers, but Dean cuts him off anyway. Because like it or not, it sure looks like Jack might be searching for his father. Lucifer. Sam is more resistant to the idea, but he can’t fully dismiss it. He does, however, successfully convince Dean that at the very least they need more information first. The best way to get it at this point is to talk to another Dreamwalker, and from what Sam’s found in Derek’s email, he’s found one. A girl named Kaia that Derek’s been coaching on how to control her power.
Over in an addict’s recovery group, Kaia is picking at the edges of her Styrofoam cup and obviously doing her best to be invisible. The counselor calls on her to share, pushing when she declines by pointing out that she won’t be released until she’s cleared and for that she needs to open up. She maintains that she doesn’t want to talk about it. He asks her directly about the massive overdose which had nearly killed her and landed her there, and still Kaia refuses. But the counselor’s persistent, so instead he asks about the long scars running up her forearm. Having had enough, Kaia finally snaps. She exclaims that she doesn’t belong there, that she hates putting that poison in her body, but it’s the only thing that keeps her awake. Keeps her from “the bad place.” The counselor calmly agrees that, yes, they all have their ‘bad places.’ Kaia slumps back into her seat, knowing she hasn’t been heard.
When the meeting is finally over, Kaia starts to leave but her attention is called by a new face. Jack. She tries to brush him off, not interesting in being his “day one buddy,” but he follows her to the coffee station and tells her that he’s a friend of Derek’s. That Derek told him all about her, including that she’s the most powerful Dreamwalker he’s ever known. She becomes visibly uncomfortable, telling him he doesn’t know what he’s talking about, but he interrupts her to say he needs her help. Absently he adds that he can also get her out of there. This gets her attention so when he tells her to follow him, she does. Outside, Dean and Sam pull up, with Sam filling Dean in on what he’s learned of Kaia’s unfortunate background. One family member dead after another, lost until she OD’d.
Jack simply strolls out of the room and into a hallway, where they come upon the group counselor. The counselor calls to them, telling Kaia she knows she’s not supposed to be out there, but Jack taps him on the forehead, knocking him out. Kaia freaks out for a moment but continues to follow Jack. A few turns later they reach an exit door, apparently triple locked, which Jack merely uses his powers to blast open. Alarmed, Kaia asks what he is, which Jack says is complicated before moving to guide her in the direction they need to go. But she cuts him off, telling him she’s done. He stops, confused, and she explains that their only actual deal was that he’d get her out. So now she’s gone. He grabs her by the arm, telling her she can’t go, but before an actual fight can break out the building door swings back open with Sam and Dean bursting through, calling his name. Jack looks over in surprise and Kaia takes this advantage to kick and punch her way free before running off.
Sam rushes up, grabbing Jack by the arm, but Jack takes this as a sign of assistance, still stunned that she’d punched him. As Dean moves to Jack’s other side Jack exclaims that Kaia’s getting away, they need to go after her, but Sam and Dean hold him firmly in place, with Dean getting into his face enough to tell him that he’s not going anywhere until he tells them what the hell is going on. Jack argues that they need her, Sam asks if he needs her like he needed Derek, and Jack emphatically replies “yes!” But he takes a breath and adds that he’s doing this for them. Dean incredulously clarifies that he killed Derek for them, seeking to understand how that makes any kind of sense. Jack looks over at him in shock, seeming to have no idea that Derek was dead. Picking up on this, Sam takes over again, asking Jack to start from the beginning and tell them everything.
So Jack explains. He tells them that he left in order to gain control over his power, to prove to them that he was good. He wanted to do one really, solidly good thing – for them. So tried to figure out how to open portals to other worlds. He says he got close, but he couldn’t see what he was doing. Taking the lessons he learned from them, he researched, and eventually found a Dreamwalker in Derek. He further explains that when he found Derek he actually dreamwalked with him and he found it, the Apocalypse World. More importantly, he found their mother. She’s still alive. But when the vision was over, Derek was still alive, and Jack even apologized for overtaxing him. Then, to prove his point about their mother’s survival, he shares his vision of the other world with Sam and Dean. Convincing them not only of his innocence, but also of their mother’s survival.
Kaia’s found a road and is hitchhiking her way out of the area. A car pulls over and a woman steps out, asking where she’s headed. Kaia says she’ll go anywhere, so the woman opens the back passenger door for her while the driver sits in wait, his angel blade at his side just in case. When Kaia’s back is turned the woman hits her over the head, knocking her out.
Patience, pulling out of her parking space at school, is overtaken by a vision. Blurry, repetitive visions of Jody being impaled and killed on some kind of spear in a dark, bushy green forest. Sam. Dean. All there, maybe alive, maybe not. A horn blares, but she doesn’t hear it until the vision releases her, and she proceeds to leave school.
The unnamed angels, one male, one female, have tied Kaia up to a chair in the middle of an empty warehouse. Kaia asks what they want with her and the woman tells her they want nothing. She elaborates on their real goal, to find and capture the Son of Satan, Jack. The angel tells Kaia they’ve been looking for him, that they found him when he used his powers on the other Dreamwalker, Derek. They interrogated Derek, torturing and threatening him, but Derek gave them nothing and they were forced to kill him. She remarks then that that was when the Winchesters got involved, “as they always do,” but that this time they’re trying a different tactic. Kaia’s purpose is to be their bait.
Dean, Sam, and Jack are in the Impala, and Dean is succumbing quickly to guilt. Guilt and anger. He apologizes to Sam, realizing now that Sam had been right all along about their mother’s fate. Sam assures Dean he couldn’t have known, admitting really he was just clinging to the hope of her survival ‘because he needed to.’ But both brothers agree that finding a way to rescue her has become top priority. The conversation is barely over when a terrible, screech-like ringing shrills through Jack’s head. A signal from Angel Radio. Dean stops the car and when Jack seems to recover he tells them that he knows where Kaia is, and she’s being held by angels.
Meanwhile, Patience has made the decision to take action. It will missing a few days of school, but it also means taking an opportunity to save lives. Her father tries to stop her, admitting he was wrong to withhold the truth about her grandmother – and her heritage – from her, but also reminding her of the dangers even associating with that life can bring. How he grew up in constant fear of the monsters his mother hunted and he doesn’t want that for her. Patience tells him she has to do what’s right, credits him for instilling that in her, and that this is what’s right. She leaves, even though her father tells her that if she goes she’ll never come back.
While the male angel takes guard duty, Kaia tries convincing the female that her plan sucks. She argues that no one is coming for her because she’s not the kind of person people come for. That she doesn’t matter in this world. The angel agrees, but says their targets think she matters, and that’s enough. On cue Jack, Sam, and Dean – leading the male in with an angel blade at his throat – enter the room. The female angel focuses on Jack, asking him to come with them, ‘where he belongs.’ She tries appealing peacefully, saying she wants to take him home. Jack looks over at Sam and Dean, then back to the woman, and declares that he is home. The fight breaks out, with the male angel suddenly pulling Dean’s arm from his neck and breaking free. The female angel extends her own angel blade and goes to rush them, to join the fight, but Jack holds out his hand and blasts her back with the same energy of power he once used to hold Sam and Dean aloft, then to kill the ghoul in Dodge City. After several moments, where the angel is held immobile in the air, he throws her backward into a smaller room, crashing through a wall. Then he turns his attention to Sam and Dean, who are struggling against the other angel. The angel has the upper hand and is just about to land a bad blow to Dean when Jack catches him in the same energy. But this time he manipulates the angel, instead somehow forcing the angel to stab himself in the chest with the blade, killing himself.
Kaia is cut free and, once Dean confirms that the female angel has fled, they agree to leave the area before she opts to return. As soon as they’re outside, however, Kaia declares she won’t go with them. She tells Jack the angels only took her in the first place because of him and she’s not interested. Sam pleads, telling her they need her to rescue their mother. That if she helps, Jack can open a portal to the world where she’s trapped and enable them to save her. Jack says his plan had been to go to the Wind Caves, one of several ‘Sacred Sites’ Derek had mentioned where the walls between worlds were thinner. Where it would be easier to cross over. Still, Kaia refuses. She tells them her power doesn’t work like Derek’s. She only ever goes to one place. She shows Sam and Dean the scars on her arm, explaining that it’s just one of many on her body that she’s gotten from ‘the bad place.’ So she can’t help them. Sam relents, unwilling to push the issue further, but Dean isn’t willing to give up on their best chance at saving Mary. He pulls out his gun, startling everyone, and in no uncertain terms demands Kaia get in the car.
The atmosphere in the Impala is tense. Sam leans closer to whisper without Kaia overhearing, asking Dean what exactly they’re supposed to do after they get to the Wind Caves. His point is clear, Dean’s not behaving acceptably. Dean tersely responds that they “get Mom back. No matter what.” In the backseat, Jack tries to apologize to Kaia. He explains that Derek thought perhaps they could help each other, but Kaia only accuses him of being the reason Derek is dead. Instead of looking away, Jack asks her to give him five seconds. Five seconds to show her what he saw through Derek’s eyes when he first joined him in the dreamwalk. Curious to see that world from another perspective, Kaia agrees, and Jack shares a vision with her of entering the dream world. Of having worlds to choose from, and how beautiful it is. He tells her they’re powers aren’t just bad things to be afraid of, but the conversation is ruined when they’re nearly run off the road by the female angel driving at them head-on.
Dean barely manages to swerve in time, pulling off the road and into an old shipyard. Sam takes Jack and Kaia into a large, abandoned ship while Dean attempts to stall the angel. She tells him that Heaven needs the boy, that he’s the only one who can make more angels. Dean says “you dicks can fry.” Two more cars pull in behind her, indicating she brought back-up, and Dean recognizes a losing fight when he sees one. He grabs his duffle bag and runs after Sam and the others for a last stand. Sam is painting angel warding on the interior walls of the ship, stopping every now and then to add another symbol as the group makes their way up to the top. The angels line up at the edge of the dock, unable to board thanks to the warding. But not forced to quit. The angels set up a formation and begin pounding the ground, chipping away at the warding one blast at a time. Each blast rocks the boat harder than the last. Knowing that if the angels make it inside they’re all done for, Dean takes a moment to apologize to Kaia. He says this wasn’t her fight and he shouldn’t have dragged her into it. Jack comments that if the angels come they’ll take him and Kaia says no, he said he can help her open a portal to other worlds. She wants to try it. It’s their only way out. Jack and the Winchesters are surprised, but she’s not changing her mind, so they tell Jack to do what he has to as the boat continues to rock.
Jack joins her in her dreamwalk, where she’s already landed in the bad place. The dark, mysterious forest with large skeletons scattered around from Patience’s vision. Only this time there’s a cloaked, human-like figure coming in for an attack. As if it had been lying in wait. Jack tells her let go as Sam and Dean, barely keeping their balance, watch helplessly. Eventually she’s able to pull back, seeing the available worlds to walk through. Jack finds the Apocalypse World and guides her there. They find the building, and then the room, where Mary’s still hanging in her cage. The angels are melting away the final ward now, the boat rocking harder than ever. The bad place still calls to Kaia and she snaps back, struggling to maintain her hold on the world she wants. Jack tries to help, but the harder she fights the harder the bad place seems to fight in return. Her consciousness snaps rapidly back and forth, almost in time to the intensifying cadence of the angels’ pounding on the dock. Then Kaia’s power flares, and Jack’s power alongside hers, as she opens her eyes and screams in terror. Blinding yellow light bursts forth, easily destroying the angels on the dock. When it finally fades, the boat is empty, Dean, Sam, Jack, and Kaia gone. And in their place, a familiar jagged rift floating in the air.
Jody leaves a message for Sam, trying to reach the boys to make sure they’re all right but having failed to get them on the phone. A knock sounds at the door and she opens it to find Patience Turner, a bit shaken, who tells Jody she had a vision. Jody’s expression bespeaks concern but she remains silent. Patience tells her in no uncertain terms that something bad is coming.
In a forest along the side of an old interstate, an unconscious Kaia is sprawled in the dirt. Seemingly unharmed. Mary Winchester, still caged in Apocalypse World, looks down to find an unfamiliar boy on the floor as he sits up. Jack lifts his head and stares up at her in disbelief, but neither speak. In a thick, green, jungle-like world Kaia referred to as the bad place, Dean and Sam awaken to find themselves lost in a massive forest. They start walking, with no clue where they are, jumping into a large ditch that they don’t realize is a massive footprint. A footprint which looks to belong to a tyrannosaurus rex. As they climb out and continue walking, remaining unaware of the true shape of the impression, something large and ominous roars in the background.
What Does This Mean for the Future?
Starting with the most obvious, given that the backdoor pilot for the planned “Wayward Sisters” spin-off is yet to air, it’s safe to say that Jody will survive the events from Patience’s vision. Whether or not this is because of Patience’s interference, or due to the healing of another character, remains to be seen. Patience’s interference seems most likely.
Jack and Mary’s situation is more complicated. It’s not yet known how traveling to another world will impact Jack’s powers, or if it will at all. Lucifer seemed to retain at least the majority of his abilities, making it likely that Jack should be able to do the same. But the same rules do not apply to him. Getting Mary out of the cage will probably be the easy part. Getting past Michael, though, that’ll be more of a challenge. Perhaps that will be where Jack really earns his mettle.
In the meantime, it looks like Sam and Dean are trapped in some kind of Jurassic Park. How they’re going to get home might be the biggest mystery of all. Obviously they will, this isn’t the end of Supernatural, how they’ll manage to rescue themselves with only the weapons they have on them and knowledge from a world that might be entirely irrelevant now is the question.
Final Thought: I wanted a ‘plottier’ storyline, and boy did I get it! They even had me wondering if Jack had gone dark-side for a minute or two! I’m glad he hasn’t. It’s nice to see a crazy powerful being NOT trying to kill our boys or end the world for once. Instead he’s desperate to convince both himself and his makeshift family, Sam and Dean, not only that he can control his powers better now, but that he’s truly good. So he’s actively seeking to make their lives better by giving them something that matters to them – their mother. What a nice change of pace.
The almost casual introduction of a new ‘creature’ in Dreamwalkers was great. For once not portrayed as dangerous, but merely as people with a gift. It was refreshing. Kaia herself I’m not sure about. Not that I think she’s any kind of villain, just that I haven’t decided if I like her or not. It makes sense to her character that she’s distrusting, but she’s distrusting to the point that she seems ungrateful. She might just be the kind of character doomed to rub me the wrong way a little more often than not. A lot will depend on how she handles the results of the blow-out. Assuming we actually see her again, of course.
Dean, oh Dean. Full disclosure: I’ve been a solidly devoted “DeanGirl” since episode one. I recognize that he’s made mistakes, but inevitably I forgive him five to thirty seconds later. That said, the guilt really grabbed hold of him in this one when he found out his mother is still alive and has been suffering all this time. To the point where he actually held a gun to an innocent teenager’s head and forced her into his car against her will. Not his most impressive move, though he at least did have the presence of mind to apologize to her later – when they thought they were all about to die. Now he and Sammy are stuck in the bad place, with monstrous T-rexes and shadowy violent people.
And we have to wait until January 18, 2018 to see what happens next. I hate hiatuses.