Mark Watches ‘Supernatural’: S07E23 – Survival of the Fittest

In the twenty-third and final episode of the seventh season of Supernatural, the Winchesters and their allies go after Dick Roman. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to watch Supernatural.

Trigger Warning: For body horror

This was a good finale and a satisfying “end” to the Leviathans, but it definitely didn’t feel as shocking or as huge as many of the past finales of Supernatural. That’s not to say it’s awful or anything. But we were led to expect both Bobby’s and Dick Roman’s death, so neither of them felt particularly surprising. However, I don’t think they were supposed to be. This was more about the machinations of Crowley, about Castiel’s decision to clean up his mess, about Bobby’s acceptance of the inevitable. These stories were better than the plot twists, though I have THINGS to say about THE THING because NO.


So where does Bobby go at this point? Heaven? Hell? Purgatory? Is he a monster, or did he give himself up in time to avoid becoming that? It was sad to see him come to this, but he had gone way too far, possessing Louise twice, despite that she clearly didn’t consent to it. Then he nearly killed Sam and upset their entire plan to infiltrate SucraCorp. The longer he spent on Earth, the closer he got to becoming something he could never turn back from.

And so, because Supernatural is the cruelest show in the universe, we’ve got to watch Bobby Singer die. Again. And I don’t think he’ll play a big part at all in the next season. I really think that was it for him, the final time he’ll be on this show in any significant way. It’s weird to say goodbye to him twice, you know? I found it fitting that as he burned away, the camera never panned over to Bobby. When we lose him again, the camera focuses solely on Sam and Dean as we watch them silently say goodbye to their friend. It works for me because we don’t have to see Bobby’s spirit in a violent state. He’s just gone, and I imagine that Sam and Dean don’t have much grieving left to do. They’ve already done it.


Assault on Dick Roman

It was clear that the odds were stacked against Sam and Dean going into SucraCorp, but here’s how I figured out that Crowley had chosen to “help” the Winchesters. When it comes down to it, he’s a character who values himself and his own power more than anything else. So who was the bigger threat to Crowley? Who would have a greater chance of upsetting his quest for power? Dick Roman. I think Crowley sees the Winchesters as annoying insects. I think he saw Dick Roman – the same creature who offered Crowley the entirety of Canada while he took over the whole world – as the most legitimate threat to his own happiness and power.

He had to take Dick Roman out, because Dick’s threat was real. Sam and Dean were just two humans – irritating ones! – who were up against a veritable empire. And because this is Crowley we’re talking about, he also made sure that all his bases were covered in the event that Sam and Dean failed.

More on that in a bit. Castiel spends a good deal of this episode refusing to help in any significant way, despite that he’s well aware of the stakes. It’s certainly frustrating to watch, and I was glad that the show had Dean openly remind Cas that this was all his fault. It’s also infuriating that he suddenly decides to be non-violent and non-confrontational when his participation would help clean up the mess that he made in the first place. (Cas is immensely adorable when he goes and gets the Winchesters sandwiches. IT’S SO CUTE. Also, those sandwiches looked fantastic. I’d like one.) I do think the show does a good job of explaining why Castiel is so reluctant to get involved. We know exactly what Cas is like when he gets carried away, so it makes sense that he’d want to not get involved. But is it fair of him to count himself out at this point in time?

Of course, there’s another issue at hand: Dean’s own anger at Castiel, separate from the Leviathan threat. I don’t know where Castiel’s characterization is headed in the future, since we don’t get any hints about that by the end of “Survival of the Fittest.” But this most recent arc of his invokes a bit of drunk/high Castiel and takes him in a new direction. It was a chance to explore an angelic story that wasn’t centered around power. But how fair is that to the world? Castiel has decided to remain neutral during one of the worst disasters the Winchesters have ever faced, and Dean voices his willingness to have Castiel by his side regardless. It’s a neat little scene, one that signifies that Dean and Cas might be able to be friends again while not ignoring the immense harm that Castiel has done. Just because Dean might be ready to start to forgive Cas doesn’t mean it’s going to be an easy process, you know?

But that’s something they’ll have to pick up on in season eight. Over the course of this season, we’ve seen how Leviathans obey and respect the hierarchal nature of their society, so it’s kind of fascinating to me that this finale doesn’t wipe them all out. Edgar is apparently dead, and with the triumphant death of Dick Roman, the Leviathans will most likely scatter to the wind. But they’re not gone, and the threat of individual Leviathans still remains. I am interested to see how the show will deal with this. Will we still see the Winchesters hunting them down? How could you even track them? Well, these questions are kind of child’s play compared to the fact that KILLING DICK ROMAN SENT CAS AND DEAN TO PURGATORY. First of all: Sam’s face when Crowley tells him he’s all alone? 100000% the least okay thing in this entire episode. Can a nice thing happen to Sam Winchester??? Can it??? Will you just let this poor man have a good day??? Secondly: WHERE IS CROWLEY TAKING KEVIN? What does he need Kevin for? Thirdly: THE DESIGN FOR PURGATORY IS GREAT. If it’s canonically the place where the spirits of all dead monsters go, then I love the idea that it’s eternally a dark forest where monsters perpetually hunt one another. I mean, that’s not to say I’m totally thrilled that Dean was left there all alone with no weapons. Where did Castiel disappear to??? Hopefully to get backup??? HOW DO THEY GET OUT OF PURGATORY?

I’m definitely interested to see where this goes (particularly in Sam’s case, since I want to see what he’ll do without Dean again). This was a solid finale, but I wouldn’t say it was the best Supernatural has to offer. Just good, not great.

The video for “Survival of the Fittest” can be downloaded here for $0.99.

Mark Links Stuff

Mark Does Stuff is now on Facebook! Feel free to Like the page, which I’m running myself, for updates and SILLINESS.
– If you would like to support this website and keep Mark Does Stuff running, I’ve put up a detailed post explaining how you can!
– Please check out the All Mark Watches videos for past shows/season are now archived there!
– My Master Schedule is updated for the near and distant future for most projects, so please check it often. My next two Double Features are now in the schedule! I will be watching The Sarah Connor Chronicles and then Leverage. Commission away!
– I will be at quite a few conventions and will be hosting events throughout 2015, so check my Tour Dates / Appearances page often to see if I’m coming to your city!

About Mark Oshiro

Perpetually unprepared since '09.
This entry was posted in Supernatural and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.