Supernatural Season 12, Episode 12
“Stuck in the Middle (With You)”
Posted by Dawn and Erica
We missed last week’s recap for the amazing and heartbreaking “Regarding Dean” because both Dawn and Jaymee were nailed with what may well have been the Croatoan virus. Poor Jaymee is still feeling the effects, so this week we welcome Erica McCarthy back to the SPN fold. And we’re going to need her, because this was the episode that reduced damn near every SPN fan’s twitter feed to cursing, screaming, crying, and almost total incoherence, resulting in a flood of standing ovation gifs at the hour’s end.
This week SPN basically caved in our heads and our hearts with episode 12: “Stuck in the Middle With You.” It was directed by
Dawn’s boyfriend SPN’s favorite archangel Gabriel, Richard Speight, Jr., and aired 10 years to the day after the episode “Tall Tales” aired, which was the very ep where we first met our beloved Trickster.
Our expectations were pretty high. This was Richard’s second time in the director’s chair and he did a great job with “Just My Imagination” (11×8), giving us a sweet and funny episode featuring Sam’s imaginary childhood friend (Erica LOVED this episode, by the by). Plus, the second half of season 12 has been stellar so far, so there was a lot to live up to.
We didn’t need to worry. Y’all, he nailed it. NAILED IT. Like, nailed it so hard no one even has to worry about stopping Dawn from waxing rhapsodic about Richard because he deserves every accolade. Bring him back. Let him direct more. A lot more.
This recap is going to be split into two sections: On-Screen Heroes and Off-Screen Heroes. The actors get most of our attention every week and rightly so, but the crew needs a whole lot of love this time around because damn. Writing, editing, cinematography, choreography, soundtrack, and every set of hands on a camera created a Chuckdamn masterpiece, and we need to make sure that gets recognized this time. But first, let’s talk plot and cast.
We’ve said it before and now we are saying it again: give Misha Collins all the Emmys. Castiel has had more to do in the past few eps and it has been flawless every time. This episode almost killed us dead, and if anyone ever doubted Castiel’s humanity and his utter love for these ridiculous humans who always seems to get themselves into trouble and take our poor angel along with them, all those doubts are now gone. Misha made us weep this week when he said goodbye to his family.
Erica: I damn near couldn’t with this one. Like. For real. It hurt so damned bad – especially after knowing that Cas killed Billie to save all of the Winchesters. After hearing EXACTLY how Cas feels about them, to watch him say goodbye was heart wrenching, and damn near killed ME. Why, oh why, does this man not yet have an Emmy for this role, I’d like to know.
Dawn: I don’t want to hear a bad word about Misha or Castiel ever. From anyone. I will cut you. He is a precious thing and my heart shattered like a glass goblin during this scene. Un. Be. Lievable.
On the opposite end of the emotion spectrum, however, we have Mary Winchester. Mary, Mary, Mary. Girl, what are you even doing? It’s takes some hard work to make us all think maybe John was the better parent after all, so we guess well done there. Mary is just…we don’t even know. Sure, yes, fine, she has a lot to adjust to, but WTF, Mary? The British Men of Letters? They tried to kill your son, remember? They think American hunters are morons. Also we’re all pretty sure Ketch is a sociopath, so really? THIS is who you choose to ally with? Yeah, keep your opinions on Crowley and Rowena to yourself. Your buddies are WAY worse.
Erica: Okay. So in watching this episode, upon realizing that Mary was…I don’t even know what the hell she was doing, but my first response was “Mary, what the FUCK did you do?” My second response was “Oh Mary. What the fuck. You stupid idiot.” In those exact words, because I have no filter. I really thought she was going to be the GOOD parent–you know, the mom that actually takes care of her kids and shit. Apparently not.
Dawn: Remember when we all thought John was the shitty parent? Good times. I can’t decide if Mary’s Campbell is showing too much because she is being selfish and stupid, which she clearly got from her father, or if her Winchester is showing since she has clearly learned the trait of “keep everything of actual importance from your family members.” Because here’s a thought, Mary – instead of giving the Colt to the sociopath, maybe you might have considered discussing it with your sons first? You know, the ones who have actually killed demons before and have, at this point, more years of actual hunting experience than you do? And also they have an angel, and a demon, both of whom might also have some knowledge on this topic. JUST A THOUGHT, MARY. BUT BY ALL MEANS, YOU DO YOU.
Erica: Dude. I completely forgot about Samuel Campbell and all of HIS “awesomeness.”/sarcasm If there’s one thing about this family that I will never understand, it’s their constant need to “shoot first, ask for help later once you’ve already cocked it all up.”
Now that we’ve vented that spleen, let’s get back to things that make us happy. Crowley. Our King. Hail to the king, baby. He saved the day. He saved the angel – his buddy, “Feathers.” (a moment of collective “awwwww” from the fandom). And he does it all with such damn style. And we got some backstory, which was just the most delicious little amuse-bouche that has left us salivating for a main course. More Crowley, please and thank you. Much more.
Dawn: Remember when I said I didn’t want to hear a bad thing about Cas? I don’t even want to know a bad thought about Crowley. I will cut you, bring you back to life, then cut you again. Let’s be clear, kids – Crowley has been saving Winchester asses AND Castiel’s ass for several seasons now. SEVERAL SEASONS. And this time? He snapped an archangel’s weapon IN HALF to save Castiel. Snapped it in half. Imagine the power that took, first of all. Now imagine the power in the staff of Michael, and imagine that power in Crowley’s hands and what he could do with it, and yet he STILL snapped it in half to save the life of an angel. He is bad ass; he is clever AF; he is slick and stylish. In fact, given the choice between hunting with the boys and serving as Crowley’s girl friday, I am pretty sure my response would be “How do you take your coffee, highness?” Always.
Erica: MY LIEGE, PLEASE COME BACK. Seriously, though, Crowley in this episode is clutch. This would’ve been the end of Cas entirely were it not for Crowley – and that’s not the first time one of us can say that. In fact, it’s becoming very clear over the course of this season – especially the second half as we’re going through it – that our “villains” are not as villainous as we’ve previously thought. If anything, they’re becoming allies and friends in a way that one wouldn’t have expected. Sure, we’ve seen Crowley get closer to the boys, and there were instances before where Rowena was helpful….to a certain extent. But we’re seeing these characters evolve and I’m curious to see where it goes. Certainly it should be outside Crowley’s character to help as often as he does. And yet.
Dawn: “And yet” indeed. My King.