Reading reviews, it looks like folks were pretty pleased with this episode. There was plenty to like. There were a couple of pieces that seemed pointless, like Dean following the guy with the cart of auction goods and picking the lock on the storeroom if he wasn't ever going to come back and try to swipe the tablet. The episode was written by Dabb and Loflin, who can write good episodes like Frontierland or Weekend at Bobby's or awful ones like Yellow Fever and the S7 episode That Must Not Be Named. This was one of their better ones. All the pieces were there even if they felt a little rough in spots. John Showalter directed it and did a nice job with it. He's done several SPN episodes including Clap Your Hands, Out with Old, and Slash Fiction.
It was fun to see the title make a reference to Woody Allen's movie What's Up, Tiger Lily. He took a Japanese spy movie and overdubbed it in English with a crazy plot about trying to find a top-secret egg salad recipe. It's just about the least politically correct thing possible but it's on Youtube if you're curious. In the mid-80s, my younger brothers watched a bunch of movies on VHS over and over. This was one that I heard in the background enough to still have random lines of dialog pop into my head. It has its moments.
This episode had its moments too. Sam did a backwards exorcism, crunched numbers and finally got called Samantha in canon. Mrs. Tran punched Crowley, ran in heels, called a Ferrari Eurotrash, and was generally awesome. There was an incident with a tie, one with a hammer, and Cas was found. Crowley offered the moon.
As far as the color and set dressing I watched for, it's hard to know if they are using what they did last season or not. Flowers were back. Green and red seem to show up a lot, particularly red accents. I think this was the first time we've seen an angel in red. Pink on female victims seems to have been replaced by dark wine red.
We started out with some nice footage of Chicago.
There's a little old man who wants something from his safety deposit box. The assistant is wearing the same dark red that Channing had on last week. When you look up G. Bale, you get info on Gareth Frank Bale, a Welsh footballer who plays for English Premier League club Tottenham Hotspur which sounds like a character in bad cowboy porn. (Sorry, if that's your team I just insulted.)
Turns out this is Vili, Odin's brother in Norse mythology.
We flip to Kevin trying to convince Dean to go check on his Mom. Dean's right that Kevin's Mom is bait. While they are arguing about it, they are surrounded by a white picket fence mocking them with the life none of them are ever going to have. In this case, Kevin's white picket life is going draw him into a trap and the fence echoes that too. Maybe Bobby can go pick up Mrs. Tran...oh, right.
Against Dean's better judgement, they go to check on her. After watching this show for 7 seasons, I have to agree with Dean that this is crazy dangerous. I'm glad to see that post-Purgatory Dean still has enough of an emotional connection with people to go do this anyhow. I like smart Dean being good at stakeout observation. In all the time I've been looking at this car, I never gave it a lot of thought that it has no B pillar, the metal structure most cars have between the front and back doors. Not having that in the way lets the filming happen with a nice wide view of all the car's occupants. Is that Sam's knee he's resting his hand on? How does Jared even do that?
It is. How come the Neighborhood Watch doesn't call the cops on three guys in a classic car just sitting in a subdivision? Either the Impala has a cloaking device or every one of the neighbors in Neighbor is possessed. Oh don't mind them, they're birdwatching.
If this was last season, I would point out all the flowers at Mrs. Tran's. I'm not sure they are still an indication of danger but let's go with it because in this scene, it still works. Her house is surrounded by flowers being tended by a possessed gardener. There is no such place as Neighbor, Michigan, but maybe that's just as well.
There's a shot of Mrs. Tran next to yellow roses. Mary Winchester was often surrounded by roses, too. She's thinking, "Birdwatchers!?!"
Then Kevin brings trouble back to her door.
When we get a close look, Mrs. Tran has blue flowers all over her shirt. It's a nice piece of continuity that we met Kevin playing the cello and Mrs. Tran has either the cello or a bass at the house.
Kevin gets the vase of red flowers.
The possessed friend has a cautionary yellow sweater but no flowers.
I don't know about leaves being common this season but Sam and Dean are pictured in front of them as well as in front of a lot of red and green. That's not a good color combo on SPN.
There are flowers here on vases (and books on golf).
They did a good job making the tattoo look like Sam's had it a while. It's surrounded by a red shirt. That's why this cap is here. Really.
Oh Sam, don't go changing...how does Jared even do that?
Sam and Dean were in front of a lot of red and green at the Inked Pig. I like how the Trans' hands were joined across Sam and Dean presenting a unified front. They aren't part of this family.
The Inked Pig is worth the price of admission just to see the matador lamp behind Sam. i wonder who the bull is. There is a lot of red around to make him mad,
There were some cool shots at the tattoo parlor. (The artist's tat has coincidental red flowers.)
The Trans are surrounded by burgundy. Funky skull candleholder.
The wall painting contemplates the boys.
Off to the bus station which has a green cast to it and a couple of yellow caution signs.
Oh oh, not pink AND burgundy....
John Showalter likes to take shots from inside things like the microwave in Clap Your Hands or the safe in Out With the Old.
Then we go to interrogate some guy. These lights usually show up a lot in episodes with angels and they're back. I like how this shot makes Dean loom so much larger than the others. I like the reflection, too.
Here's a nice shot of Sam to make up for earlier.
Something is definitely missing with Dean. Maybe compassion?
ash48 did a great picspam comparing the Purgatory interrogation with the one at the police station. There is a witness to each one. Sam covers his eyes just before the tie comes off.
Dean's the one with (or without) the red tie this time. That's why this cap is here. Really.
I think Dean partly killed the monster guy in front of Benny to drive a point home. Don't mess with Purgatory Dean.
Nothing says demon deal quite like a Ferrari outside a pawn shop. Another (very nice) bit of red.
What? I had a lot to make up for earlier so here's Sam again.
Every now and again Canada leaks through unless gas is only $1.37 a gallon in SPNland. It would explain how Dean can fuel the Impala.
A few more touches of red including the star on the bottom of Lyle's shoe.
Last time I saw this actor, he was playing Hunter, the HIV+ hustler kid that Michael and Ben took in on QAF US. That shirt....
When they were talking about taxes for the vehicle, I completely spaced that they were in Wyoming and figured they were calculating GST...
Here's another bunch of shots with Sam and Dean in front of a lot of green with red highlights.
Enter Willy Wonka with Kevin's golden ticket. Even he got some hot pink.
Jiminy Cricket he's not. I like how Kevin and his mom are still a unit as are the Winchesters. Mrs. Tran is centered in the shot and is so much smaller and lighter colored. The shot feels very balanced.
Dangerous red and yellow spray paint. NOTICE.
Dean's in green now.
Those can't all be Dean's, can they? Throwing stars, holy water flask, guns, demon knife there on top to remind us who we're dealing with.
On to the auction where a lot of the bidders are wearing red and red velvet is in a lot of the cases. If you read the label, this is Excalibur, King Arthur's sword.
And DaVinci's codex...Hee.
The first thing they auction is the amulet of Hesperus. He's the embodiment of the evening 'star', Venus, not to be confused with the Morning Star, Lucifer.
Samandriel, the angel of fertility, imagination and creativity. I don't remember any other angels in red but I don't think it bodes well.
Dean ends up remembering Cas. I love how they filmed this with a lot of shadow and desaturated color. It makes things like Cas's bashed fingernail more visible.
I don't think praying has ever really helped these guys.
He does get Dean though. My first thought was Gollum.
Cas gets a hug. Dean smiled here and when he hugged Benny but his face was very different hugging Sam.
Cas doesn't really seem to know what to make of a hug. Do you buy his story on why he left Dean?
I like how the image is split with Cas and Dean facing off and Benny and darkness looming larger behind Dean, who's right in the middle.
Then we're back to the auction and everyone's favorite demon. The red lights behind Crowley are perfect.
The array of who Crowley is up against.
Kevin, so small and trapped. Another red shirt.
Both Sam and Dean in green.
Dean in front of the instructions for how to punch your time card to get paid. Hmmm.
This turns out to be a boondoggle.
So Crowley's eyes are crossroad-demon red.
Red smoke. Awesome.
Dean goes after Mrs. Tran and Beau (Brummel) goes to shoot Kevin. I love how they have Sam in really bright white light here and the lightning is a great effect.
Then he notices Vili and manages to tangle with more of the Norse pantheon. Vili has an appropriate lizard or snake skin pattern tie.
Awesome, isn't it? If I had a hammer....
Vili disappears to return later?
I hope they keep the hammer (with it's spray of red blood).
Just a shot framed nicely.
Shadow Sam behind a door.
What's up with these guys? More darkness than light.
We're left with this awful, awesome look at Cas. Misha does great things with his face here. His eyes....
Caps from homeofthenutty