Season 11, Episode 11 - "Into the Mystic"
Jensen Ackles, Jared Padalecki, Misha Collins, Mark A. Sheppard
Regular airtime: Wednesdays, 8pm
US: 27 Jan 2016
Last week on Supernatural, Castiel (Misha Collins) was willingly possessed by Lucifer (Mark Pellegrino), who (presumably) killed off the show’s beloved villainess, Rowena (Ruth Connell). But whenever this show kills off one strong female character, it has another waiting in the wings of a stand-alone episode.
And this week’s (mostly) stand-alone episode, “Into The Mystic” opened with a happy family listening to The Shirelles’ “Will You Love Me Tomorrow?” before being brutally attacked by a rather impressive-looking flying creature.
As it turns out, the monster of the week is a banshee: an evil female spirit who preys upon “vulnerable” people with her ear-shattering screams before feasting upon their bodies. This particular banshee’s next victims are an elderly man and Arthur (Jonathan Potts), a lovelorn retirement home worker. The suspicious circumstances of their deaths attract the attention of Sam (Jared Padalecki) and Dean Winchester (Jensen Ackles), who arrive at the retirement home, expecting a vengeful ghost. Dean eventually bonds with flirty eyewitness Mildred (Dee Wallace), who believes she saw a ghost ten years ago. Sam has a similar connection with staff member Eileen (Shoshannah Stern), who corrects his sign language and knows more than what she lets on.
Elsewhere, Lucifer/Castiel strolls through a park and catches the attention of a random angel (Anthony Shim), who he quickly snaps into nothingness. While it didn’t add much to the central story of the episode, the point was clearly to show us that the angels already know that Castiel’s possessed, and for Misha Collins to revel in his spotless Mark Pellegrino impersonation.
Dean caught Lucifer/Castiel rooting around in the Winchester bunker, but this just led to the two discussing Amara (Emily Swallow). Dean feels that he has some kind of attraction/connection to the Darkness and is unable to kill her, but Lucifer/Cas reassures him by saying that they can use that to lure her out.
But back to the banshee: this week’s episode was a little unusual in the fact that Sam doesn’t discover the monster of the week by just searching online or looking through books. Eileen actually captures Sam in some sort of blood-locked symbol, thinking that he’s a banshee because she misunderstood his words to Dean while reading their lips. Eileen’s both another hunter and another descendant of the Men of Letters, who’s been seeking revenge on the creature who slaughtered her parents and left her to die in her cradle. So, perhaps more so than any other character ever on this show, she and Sam have a lot in common.
As they suspected, the banshee seems to strike out at Mildred (who has a heart problem) next, but it’s Dean she nearly devours before Eileen and Mildred team up to destroy it. (So, yes, this is another episode where neither Sam nor Dean kill the monster in the end.) Sam and Dean leave Eileen and Mildred (for now), and go back home to have a heartfelt talk, but with the image of a sleepless Dean ending the episode, we’re left wondering: “Does Amara make him vulnerable?”
Like most Supernatural fans who only want the best for their favorite show, I’ve been a little hard on season 11. Maybe it’s just the recent lack of complex show mythology and fewer appearances by the annoying Amara, but the show now seems headed in the right direction. “Into The Mystic” played like a classic, early Supernatural episode, with some great shots of the Impala, cool musical selections, spot-on humor, a stylized creature-of-the-week, and the hopeful addition of two new recurring characters. Let’s hope next week’s episode, in which we get a look at Sheriff Jody Mills (Kim Rhodes), Alex (Katherine Ramdeen), and Claire’s (Kathryn Newton) home life, lives up to these high expectations.