Oh what a mess this episode was. Fifteen minutes in and the whiskey bottle was open and draining rapidly. This was one of those television hours during which stuff just happens. Plot points are established, resolved, and thrown away like so many Hungry Man Dinners. I thought that the first episode hinted at a possibly intriguing season, but this episode has me rethinking my stance. Maybe when Castiel gets back in the scene things will pick up again, but I dunno if I can fade too much Sam and Dean action this season. I’ll start the recap momentarily, but I want to let y’all know that this is going to be less narrative than the last one was. It should make for a better read, be less redundant for those of you who have seen the show, and less spoilery for those of you who haven’t.
“Devil May Care” picks up where the last one left off. Sam and Dean have returned to the Bunker. They meet up with Kevin and start “Zero Dark Thirtying” Crowley. The goal of this torture? To learn about all of the demons active on Earth. Meanwhile, Abbaddon is up outta hell, and she’s out to wreak havoc. She’s gathered up some demons, and they have a mission. They’re gonna get the Winchesters. The demons seize upon the bodies of some soldiers and prepare to execute mission kill.
The Winchesters investigate the scene where the demons have shifted from their beaten up meatbags to new soldierific bodies. The old bodies are dead, so buckle up ‘cause it’s a murderfest. The military police are on the case, but of course Sam and Dean sneak in with fake names and this time the prophet Kevin (LOVE THAT) intervenes on their behalf in the role of FBI supervisor “Kevin Solo” (Love that too).
Abbaddon and her new friends gather up some hunters and set a trap for the modern Mario Bros. These two hunters, Tracy and Irv are connected to the Winchesters in very different ways. Irv is an old buddy of deceased friend Bobby Singer and former ally to the Winchesters. Tracy, on the other hand, blames Sam for her parents’ death. She’s not totally off base with this. He did let Lucifer out, which evidently led to a demon slaughtering her family (we’ll be coming back to this). I’d say Sam is pretty culpable hear. When the Winchesters set out to help the hunters it sets up a dramatic encounter between the prophet Kevin and Hell King Crowley who remains bound in the Bunker.
Tracy and Irv are 100% unguarded when Sam and Dean arrive. It’s a trap! When the Demons bust up in the place our heroes have escaped! They plan a strike attack during which Tracy reveals her feelings about Sam. They are clearly negative. The final battle of the episode culminates with a surprise appearance from Ezekiel and more secret keeping by Dean for Sam’s benefit. Tracy 180s on Sam, and they all leave. It works out pretty well. The end is some very quickly resolved melodrama, both about Kevin’s relationship with Crowley and the issue of the angel in Sam’s soul.
There’s not much to say about this episode. It couldn’t be more rote. It looks fine, and its serviceable, but without the outrageous mythology every aspect of the show falls pretty flat for me. This episode could do with a heavy dose of magic, and maybe some more inquiry into the Metatron situation. It’s all hinted at early on, but never comes to fruition. I see the utility of reminding the audience about Abbaddon and the threat she presents, especially because it appeared that she was dead at the end of last season. Her return didn’t affect me much. She’d only been dead for a little while, and she’s not a really new threat. Without a totally evil secret plan, there’s nothing too neat about her. I liked the fallen angel story better. Let’s get back to that.