Supernatural: Season 11, Episode 10 - "The Devil in the Details"

Jessy Krupa

The show returns from winter vacation with an episode that was well worth the wait.


Airtime: Wednesdays, 8pm
Cast: Jensen Ackles, Jared Padalecki, Misha Collins, Mark A. Sheppard
Subtitle: Season 11, Episode 10 - "The Devil in the Details"
Network: CW
Air date: 2016-01-20

If you haven't seen the latest episode of the CW's Supernatural, then be warned: serious spoilers await you. The following review includes some critical analysis and look at what the show's fans have been saying mixed with some educated guesses about future plotlines; if you haven't seen “The Devil in the Details” yet, then go watch it, be pleasantly surprised (or not) by the plot’s new directions, be shocked at the (seeming) death of a major character, and then come back here to read this and tell me if you agree (or not) with anything I’m saying.

The episode opens with the same Christmas-themed hallucination that we seen in promos, only here we learned that it was one of Rowena's (Ruth Connell) dreams. The characters are all where we last left them, with Rowena and Crowley (Mark Sheppard) bickering in Hell, Dean on the run from where the angels smited Amara (Emily Swallow), and Sam (Jared Padalecki) stuck in The Cage with Lucifer (Mark Pellegrino).

Apparently, Lucifer has quite the A/V setup in there, as he takes Sam on an imaginary journey through his past. While reliving a moment from Sam's teen years, his big sacrifice in season five, and part of season eight, when he befriended a veterinarian (Liane Balaban), Lucifer berates him, saying that he "didn't recognize [Sam] anymore" and that Sam had "lost his edge". (Fans online have been saying similar things about his character. Is this a sign/inside joke from the writers?) Sam makes a good point when he asks why Lucifer’s so confident that he can stop Amara alone, even though the last time he did it, God and several archangels helped, as well as what he’d do once the Darkness is defeated; Lucifer just cracks a joke about FOX's upcoming Lucifer TV series: "I don’t know; move to LA and solve crimes?"

Dean (Jensen Ackles -- who was just named 2016 People Choice Award winner for "Favorite Sci-Fi/Fantasy TV Actor") and Castiel (Misha Collins) were searching for Amara after a host of angels seemingly wiped her off the face of the earth. In what was the episode's worst moment, they discovered that Dean can't get too close to the surrounding area because it gives him "smiting sickness". This is not only an excuse to see Dean vomit, but also gives Cas the chance to befriend the awkward angel Ambriel (Valerie Tian), one of Heaven's “expendable” clerks, who’s been sent to see if Amara is still alive. Unfortunately for us, and the now dearly departed Ambriel, she is.

This marks the first time that Castiel and Amara have appeared on screen together, but not much happened. He attempts to kill her; she insults him and throws him to the gates of Hell with the words “I AM COMING” carved into his chest. For Supernatural, this is rather dull.

Billie the reaper (Lisa Berry), a character the show just doesn't seem to know what to do with, guards the gates of Hell because she might "need a favor someday" from Crowley. While this’ll probably mean something later on, for now it's just a way for Dean to get a “witch catcher” in his possession, which Crowley uses to trick his mother into hopping on one foot, psychoanalyzing herself, and helping Dean and Castiel into the Cage. As Lucifer takes on two Winchesters and an angel in an epic cage match, Rowena's forced spell manages to save the day.

The episode ends with Sam and Dean driving back home, but the real question is: where's Castiel going? If you haven't guessed it by the sneaky smile on his face, he's going straight to Hell because he's actually Lucifer. A flashback shows us that Castiel really did let Lucifer possess him in order to kill Amara. Rowena's thrilled to see him, until he snaps her neck. So, is Rowena dead? Next week's episode may or may not give us some answers, as Sam and Dean continue to save people, hunt things, and wonder why Castiel's acting so strangely.

Fans of Supernatural have complained about this season's first half, but considering that the show seems to have finally made some progress and interesting plot choices, perhaps that’ll change. What do you think? Will you miss Rowena? Are you as amused by Castiel's Lucifer impression as much Misha Collins seems to be? Let us know by commenting below!


So far J. J. Abrams and Rian Johnson resemble children at play, remaking the films they fell in love with. As an audience, however, we desire a fuller experience.

As recently as the lackluster episodes I-III of the Star Wars saga, the embossed gold logo followed by scrolling prologue text was cause for excitement. In the approach to the release of any of the then new prequel installments, the Twentieth Century Fox fanfare, followed by the Lucas Film logo, teased one's impulsive excitement at a glimpse into the next installment's narrative. Then sat in the movie theatre on the anticipated day of release, the sight and sound of the Twentieth Century Fox fanfare signalled the end of fevered anticipation. Whatever happened to those times? For some of us, is it a product of youth in which age now denies us the ability to lose ourselves within such adolescent pleasure? There's no answer to this question -- only the realisation that this sensation is missing and it has been since the summer of 2005. Star Wars is now a movie to tick off your to-watch list, no longer a spark in the dreary reality of the everyday. The magic has disappeared… Star Wars is spiritually dead.

Keep reading... Show less

This has been a remarkable year for shoegaze. If it were only for the re-raising of two central pillars of the initial scene it would still have been enough, but that wasn't even the half of it.

It hardly needs to be said that the last 12 months haven't been everyone's favorite, but it does deserve to be noted that 2017 has been a remarkable year for shoegaze. If it were only for the re-raising of two central pillars of the initial scene it would still have been enough, but that wasn't even the half of it. Other longtime dreamers either reappeared or kept up their recent hot streaks, and a number of relative newcomers established their place in what has become one of the more robust rock subgenre subcultures out there.

Keep reading... Show less

​'The Ferryman': Ephemeral Ideas, Eternal Tragedies

The current cast of The Ferryman in London's West End. Photo by Johan Persson. (Courtesy of The Corner Shop)

Staggeringly multi-layered, dangerously fast-paced and rich in characterizations, dialogue and context, Jez Butterworth's new hit about a family during the time of Ireland's the Troubles leaves the audience breathless, sweaty and tearful, in a nightmarish, dry-heaving haze.

"Vanishing. It's a powerful word, that"

Northern Ireland, Rural Derry, 1981, nighttime. The local ringleader of the Irish Republican Army gun-toting comrades ambushes a priest and tells him that the body of one Seamus Carney has been recovered. It is said that the man had spent a full ten years rotting in a bog. The IRA gunslinger, Muldoon, orders the priest to arrange for the Carney family not to utter a word of what had happened to the wretched man.

Keep reading... Show less

Aaron Sorkin's real-life twister about Molly Bloom, an Olympic skier turned high-stakes poker wrangler, is scorchingly fun but never takes its heroine as seriously as the men.

Chances are, we will never see a heartwarming Aaron Sorkin movie about somebody with a learning disability or severe handicap they had to overcome. This is for the best. The most caffeinated major American screenwriter, Sorkin only seems to find his voice when inhabiting a frantically energetic persona whose thoughts outrun their ability to verbalize and emote them. The start of his latest movie, Molly's Game, is so resolutely Sorkin-esque that it's almost a self-parody. Only this time, like most of his better work, it's based on a true story.

Keep reading... Show less

There's something characteristically English about the Royal Society, whereby strangers gather under the aegis of some shared interest to read, study, and form friendships and in which they are implicitly agreed to exist insulated and apart from political differences.

There is an amusing detail in The Curious World of Samuel Pepys and John Evelyn that is emblematic of the kind of intellectual passions that animated the educated elite of late 17th-century England. We learn that Henry Oldenburg, the first secretary of the Royal Society, had for many years carried on a bitter dispute with Robert Hooke, one of the great polymaths of the era whose name still appears to students of physics and biology. Was the root of their quarrel a personality clash, was it over money or property, over love, ego, values? Something simple and recognizable? The precise source of their conflict was none of the above exactly but is nevertheless revealing of a specific early modern English context: They were in dispute, Margaret Willes writes, "over the development of the balance-spring regulator watch mechanism."

Keep reading... Show less
Pop Ten
Mixed Media
PM Picks

© 1999-2017 All rights reserved.
Popmatters is wholly independently owned and operated.