‘Supernatural’ Season 8, Episode 22 Review – Crowley’s Vengeance

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supernatural season 8 episode 22 clip show Supernatural Season 8, Episode 22 Review   Crowleys Vengeance

This week, writer Andrew Dabb returns to Supernatural with “Clip Show”, a fascinating episode in which Sam and Dean feel the true wrath of Crowley, while Castiel teams with “Marv” to put an end to humanity’s angelic tribulations. And with this being the last episode before the season 8 finale, there’s no sign of the series slowing down – or “pulling a Leviathan”, so to speak.

When Sam and Dean stumble across a “cure” for a demons, the duo are forced to piece together a former nemesis in order to test out this experimental antidote. But when Crowley begins to attack those once saved by the Winchester brothers, Sam and Dean are forced to drop everything to protect the familiar faces from the past. Meanwhile, Castiel and Metatron, set off on their own journey to close the gates of Heaven.

Since it was Dabb’s episode from earlier this season that introduced the “trials” storyline, it’s only fair that he returns to explore this element even further. And in staying true to this this rejuvenated, re-energized series tone, he does just that and then some. This time, truly divided, though equally compelling tales are presented for Sam and Dean and Crowley as well as Castiel and “Marv” – which touches upon the many years of series mythos, while at the same continuing to push the story that is Supernatural, as well as its characters, to new heights.

supernatural season 8 episode 22 sam Supernatural Season 8, Episode 22 Review   Crowleys Vengeance

“Clip Show” is, for all intents and purposes, an awkward title for this episode given what’s included, yet more than fitting for the impressive depths that this tale successfully reaches. As Sam and Dean continue to search through the history of the Men of Letters, Castiel, too, sets out to find his own answers. Each story, though truly independent of each other (at this time), presents itself as two compelling halves of a complete story, masterfully handled by those who helped turnaround the series this season.

In a sense, this “normal” episode of Supernatural feels much more like a super-sized, extended version of what we’d typically get each week. And though the Supernatural season 8 finale is but a week away, nothing in this episode feels overtly rushed or out of place; instead, it’s as if the limits of what a 60-minute episode can be are pushed to the max, meaning its success relied on a perfect execution, otherwise it would be an over-bloated disaster too obvious to overcome this late in the season.

supernatural season 8 22 demon Supernatural Season 8, Episode 22 Review   Crowleys Vengeance

An impressive challenge, no doubt, and one the Supernatural took on and bested with ease, as if this episode, itself, was fueled by the return of its past characters and what the series was back when they first appeared. This is not to lessen the work that has been done since then, though, as the new tales of demonic and angelic are equally as enjoyable and will no doubt be as memorable.

In all the years of Supernatural being on the air, this is the first time that the actual legacy and success of the Winchester brothers has been at risk. Though, at times, it might feel a bit odd to delve so deep into the series past to threaten the lives of those once saved, it allows viewers to actually “feel” for the Winchesters. After all, the death of anyone hasn’t been a real concern for many years, especially when it comes to Sam and Dean.

supernatural season 8 22 castiel Supernatural Season 8, Episode 22 Review   Crowleys Vengeance

As for Castiel, this season has served him well but still left much to be desired. Though Castiel’s sparse appearances are more the result of Misha Collins not being a series regular this season than the writer’s not wanting to use him, its seems as if they’ve finally dusted off his wings and put him to good use. When Collins’ Castiel is paired with Curtis Armstrong’s Metatron (or “Marv”) it is, simply put, delightful. Both actors excel at portraying the gruff, intellectual angels, and their interest in closing the gates of Heaven is a wonderful juxtaposition to Sam and Dean’s interest in closing the gates to Hell. It’s currently unclear which “team” will succeed first, but the exploration into more mythology is never a bad thing; in fact, it’s what Supernatural excels at.

The Men of Letters storyline, too, has helped expand the impressive universe that Supernatural exists in, and the newly introduced “curing” of the demons is no different. This element still seems to be in its infancy, though, but the options made available by its inclusion could make for some poignant moments in the future (or perhaps sooner). Still, this episode, at times, seems to be slightly confused as to its intended purpose, as the exploration of the demon “cure” slightly muddies Crowley’s ingenious plan of attacking the Winchesters through their old cases. That said, these very slight missteps never feel unwelcomed or overly detrimental.

Now that Supernatural is preparing to close off season 8 next week, anything and everything is possible – and at this point, there’s no need to be worried about what, exactly, that is. As this season has shown, there’s so much more life left in this series, its characters, and the beautiful mythology that has, so far, been constructed, and all it takes is a skillful hand of someone who loves the series as much as it fans to bring it out. Thankfully, showrunner Jeremy Carver is that person.


Supernatural returns next Wednesday with its season 8 finale, “Sacrafice” @9pm on CW. You can check out a preview of next week’s episode below:

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  1. This 2nd half of the season has been great! Supernatural is back, looking forward to whats in store next

  2. Cas and Booger..ops I meant Metatron are awesome. Love the show!

  3. best ep of season so far

  4. Great ep loved how they brought back some characters all the way from season 1 but only to kill them off =( I really hope Sam kills Crowley since he killed sarah

  5. If Heaven and Hell get boarded up, what happens to human souls that die? Reapers will no longer be needed and the Earth will become infested with ghosts. Can’t imagine Death being too pleased with this.

    • Wow Josha you are right! Death my pop up at so e point in the future and have a few choice choice words for the winchesters and the Cas/Metatron duo.

    • I don’t know about that, I think Death really only cares that the souls are being reaped, I mean the reapers give the souls the choice to either move on or stay. So I think the destination is of no concern.

  6. I don’t get the “pulling a Leviathan” references. But seriously though, what the hell happened to them. Also Crowley is awesome as the main villain and hoped that Ben Edlund write more episodes next season.

    • The Leviathans are still around, without a leader they’re disorganized. They’re no different than any other monster lurking around, albeit tough to kill.

      The producers said they would use them again in season nine, if they could think of a good story/organic way to bring them in. Same goes for the Ghostfacers.

  7. couldnt agree more with the last statement season 6 and 7 were perhaps the weakest due to sera gamble. but 8 is simply amazing. i hated seeing how naomi caught metatron somehow in next weeks trailer. does anyone have any theorys on what happens when the demon has been cured and returned to normal but the host i still inside.

    • If the demon is cured then it will still be in possession of its host. The only difference is that it has human emotions or something like that. I’m thinking that the cured demon can still be exorcised though.

    • Easy with the Spoilers. This article is about this week’s episode and not about next week’s. I don’t watch the promo trailers to avoid that kind of info, so please don’t just spill it without a warning.

  8. This has a Lord of the Rings Two Towers feel about it, with the Company separating into two groups, fighting along two fronts. Cas and Marv are the perfect analog to Sam and Dean!

    The only thing is, this story line is TOO perfect- how can we keep this going for another two seasons?! Nevertheless, Supernatural has surprised us with its longevity before and will no doubt do so again.

  9. If Heaven and Hell are closed- either all the souls will go to Purgatory or will start possessing people. My bet is on seeing a lot of possessions next season lol. You can exorcise the ghosts but they will just find another host or linger around or go to Purgatory. I could also see Reapers going rogue and harvesting the energy of the souls for themselves, either way, Death will be upset lol.

  10. Although this episode was great, to assume there was only ONE nephilim on the planet did seem a bit contrived. When is there ever just ONE of anything? This might be a plotline to explore in the future. Might have some implications for Cas and Meg too ;-)

    Yeah, I always thought Sam would see Sarah again- but not this way :-( I actually saw her as having hunter potential one day.

  11. [Quote]After all, the death of anyone hasn’t been a real concern for many years, especially when it comes to Sam and Dean.[/quote]

    Apart from Bobby you mean? Their surrogate father and mentor? Yeah, no real concern…

    I think people might be looking at the gates closing the wrong way. I think they’re closing the 2-way access so that angels/demons can’t appear on Earth at will because when you think about it, their near limitless powers as ‘deus ex machina’ throw all kinds of logic problems into the storylines.

  12. It was a great episode and this is a spot on review. After all the funny and somewhat charming quips this episode did a great job with reestablishing Crowley as a dangerous character that is to be taken seriously. He is done joking around and has dealt some serious damage this time around. Killing Sarah to bring the point home was a smart move by the writer, because other than some random cannon fodder we had a connection to her (at least I did). That really raised the stakes for next week.

    Hm, I wonder if they are going to actually cure Crowley and make him a regular of the good guys, just like Cas. That would be really weird but also could make for some really interesting and funny scenes. :D

  13. I think this curing can have some unintended consequences- where exactly does the “evil” go?

  14. Psyched up for the Supernatural and Arrow season finales tomorrow night!