Goodbye StrangerCastiel breaking Dean’s bones and stabbing him to death grabs our attention quickly in “Goodbye Stranger”. Written by Robbie Thompson and directed by Thomas Wright, the episode bear hugs us from the get go. A huge room filled with hundred of dead Deans spread throughout, a nightmare. My goosebumps started there! So who IS Naomi(Amanda Tapping) that she is hellbent on Castiel(Misha Collins) killing Dean? She’s desensitizing Castiel to kill Dean, how else has she mind bent our nerd angel? And why does Dean have to be killed? Let’s start with Sam, who also is not what he seems to be..

Dean catalogueing weapons in the bunker rivals him making hamburgers as nesting. Sam tells him to add the info to his journal which is news, Dean having a journal. Sam researches which is what he does but coughing up blood, not so normal. Instead of letting his brother know that he suffers, Sam just coughs and covers it up by reading out a new case. Dean later notices the bloody tissue but doesn’t address it. Squinting at Sam’s back as he walks away indicates a later showdown.

After interviewing the first victim’s family, the guys talk out demons and what is ‘normal’ demon action. Following up on the death, Supernatural styles it’s first roller haired woman. Demons are close and knock on her door. Fighting ensues where Sam gets the worse of it but lo and behold, Castiel appears and takes care of the demon. Dean’s demon exits it’s vessel and enters the housewife. Fairly certain that we’ve never seen anyone in rollers before which lent itself to Castiel’s comment about the “strange headed” demon. The Winchesters discuss Castiel being different since being yanked out of Purgatory which they still have no idea how he escaped. Sam’s perturbed to discover that Dean tried to contact Cass earlier.

The three play good cop/bad cop with the demon who attempts to give them info regarding Lucifer’s crypts and the angel tablet. The scene darts back and forth between Naomi commanding Cass back at headquarters to Cass quizzing the demon. Castiel kills the demon before it shares the truth in front of the Winchesters which pisses the boys off. Cass diasappears quickly to catch the demon prize which turns out to be Meg(Rachel Miner).

Goodbye StrangerMeg spills the beans about the angel tablet and Castiel acts surprised. In spite of being Crowley’s chew toy for a while(not such a good look), Meg rocks the blonde hair. The four take off to collectively figure out a plan. Meg in her usual sultry way, teases Castiel about “the pizza man” memory which Cass calls a good one. As bad as Meg is, as much damage and death as she has rendered, she is endearing.

Heading out to locate the angel tablet, Dean draws a line with Sam. Dean just calls it out: Sam’s hurt and can’t go into the fray. Castiel responds with an ominous “Sam is hurt in ways that I can’t heal.” We knew it was bad but this sounds terrifying. Sam and Meg spray paint sigils against Crowley and Cass and Dean head inside the crypt to search out the tablet.

Meg and Sam share war stories which comes down to both showing a mutual desire for something unattainable… a unicorn. Living a normal, apple pie life is Sam’s unicorn. Meg’s unicorn is Castiel who she seems to love as much as a demonly possible. Meg quizzing Sam about “you hit a dog and stopped. why?” is important somehow. I really believe that Sam and Amelia’s dog plays a part in the weird, wide world of Sam not looking for Dean this season. Just a thought. This chat exuded truth: Sam sharing his life desires, Meg being vulnerable in spite of her demon-ness, but the reality is that in spite of Meg’s help, she is a demon.

The worst or best scene involves Castiel taking the tablet from Dean. Naomi is determined for Cass to kill Dean so the conflict begins. Dean somewhat realizes the power of the tablet so feebly attempts to escape with it. Naomi pushes Cass to eliminate Dean so that we see him punching in Naomi’s presence and landing blows on Dean’s face. The entire beat down is reminiscent of both Sam and Dean getting pulverized in epic earlier episodes. Dean finally gets through to Castiel: “we’re family, we need you… I need you.”

Cass touches the tablet which cleanses whatever hold Naomi has on him.Goodbye Stranger Explaining the whole Naomi mind Jedi and healing Dean takes a minute but with none to spare. The angel’s last words are to protect the table from Naomi and Dean which is puzzling of course. When Sam runs in and tells Dean they’ve got to leave, there’s no hesitation, they run. Peeling out in the Impala, leaving Meg behind to Crowley’s devices which turns out to be her death. Like all the monsters/demons in Supernatural, Meg’s death is anti-climatic.

The brotherly moment of the week comes while driving. Dean needs the truth, from everyone. Sam agrees. Dean leaves us with another great, serious line: “Listen, I may not be able to carry the burden that comes with these trials, but I can carry you.” Sam: “You realize you just kinda quoted “Lord of the Rings” right?” Yep… Lord of the Rings.

Castiel, the fallen angel, the empowered angel, the Winchester protector and the lover of humanity, now holding the heavenly hosts’ future in his bag, rides a bus off into the sunset.

This episode was a fan’s dream. We had love, we had hate, demons, Crowley, Castiel. My regret is losing sassy Meg. But as it is said about Supernatural, just because you die, doesn’t mean you’re really dead.
Great job Robbie Thompson! A notch in the fandom’s belt. Until next week…. stay supernatural!