‘Supernatural’ Season 14, Episode 17 Recap: “Game Night”
Supernatural returned this week with the episode “Game Night,” and it was far from the light-heartedness you would expect from such a fun title. It was a wild ride of emotions that only intensified as the episode continued, and it left viewers with one astonishing cliffhanger. Let the games begin!
The episode begins focused on Donatello. While we do not see him, we can hear him humming and singing “Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head” as he bakes cookies and cooks dinner. The scene shows him happy and carefree, and you just can not get the feeling something bad is about to happen.
As if on cue, his doorbell rings. We do not see the person’s face, but whoever is at the door is clearly is not a good person, as Donatello gets pushed inside his house, tied up to his dining table, and then injected with something. Poor Donatello never seems to have the best of luck.
In the next scene, we see something I doubt anyone ever expected over this past 14 seasons: Dean setting up the game Mouse Trap! Well, trying to anyway. It does not appear to be going smoothly for him. And while Jack pops some popcorn on the stove and Mary grabs beer and snacks, hearing Dean curse his famous “son of a b***h!” line is indication of that indeed. They are both hopeful Dean’s favorite childhood game will relax him and give everyone a nice night in.
Meanwhile, the changes in Jack are more apparent than ever. Mary asks how he is doing because, as she says, they are family. But Jack just finds her questions annoying. If you look closely, you can even catch Jack purposely setting his face to a smile before turning towards Mary. Jack is clearly not doing okay in the soul department, but it is still at this point hard to tell just how bad it is. But with the appearances of everything ok, Jack and Mary return to a much calmer Dean who finally has the game all set up. All they have to do is wait for Sam with the “two double pepperoni meat-blasters. And a pineapple.”
Mary hands Dean his phone, claiming he missed a call. And that is where the fun of Winchester game night starts to fade. Dean’s face shows instant concern as he listens to the voicemail. When he puts the voicemail on speaker, it is Donatello’s voice begging for help before he starts speaking another language. Dean tries calling Sam, but he can not get through. So, Jack stays behind as Dean and Mary set off to help Donatello.
Elsewhere, Anael enters a diner, much to the dismay of her fine tastes, to meet Castiel. Cas needs her help and offers her a gorgeous pair of 16th century ruby earrings (albeit, a little cursed) as payment. Cas knows just exactly how to get Anael on board to help him. It is through Castiel’s request to help him get in contact with God that we learn more about who Anael was before she took on the life of Sister Jo on Earth. She was Joshua’s right hand, the only angel God would speak to. Cas wants the knowledge of how to contact God in order to save Jack’s soul. He knows God is the only one with the power to restore it. Anael refuses to help at first, until Cas moves to take the earrings back. That is when she admits there was a rumor that Joshua once contacted God, and God answered. She was not there, but she knows who was.
Back at the bunker, Sam is frustrated he is not with Dean and Mary. But he works to translate Donatello’s message anyway. He believes the language to be ancient Hebrew. While he works to translate with Jack’s help, Mary and Dean have a talk in the Impala. Mary is clearly dealing with the fact that everyone, not just Sam, is stressed. Dean assures her that she is there, but that is not enough for Mary. She thinks she should have been there more. She knows she can be “closed off and hard,” which Dean replies that it is where he gets it from. That makes her smile, and she tells him she is grateful for the time that is spent with her sons. It is kind words, but it has the ominous feeling of an unspoken goodbye.
Meanwhile, Sam finally translates Donatello’s message and figures out that it is from the Bible, specifically Peter 5:8. The passage, unfortunately, warns to be vigilant about the devil. But Sam will not have much time to warn Dean and Mary as they pull up in front of Donatello’s house and quickly make their way inside with their guns drawn. They hear his pleas for help, only to find they are a recording on a phone left on the table, with no Donatello in sight. Who is in sight, however, is Nick, wearing an apron and saying “Good, you made it.”
Dean makes good timing to get Nick handcuffed, and while Nick uses his particular brand of sass to not answer where Donatello is, Mary moves to check the house. Nick vaguely explains how he escaped from being locked up before Mary comes back with the needle Donatello was injected with. Donatello is not there, but at least they have a clue. Nick tells them he injected Donatello with poison, thallium, that will quickly work to shut down his organs. And that it was all to get their attention. For further proof, Dean hits the livestream on the phone to see Donatello tied up in another undisclosed location. And they are not getting his location until Nick gets what he wants, which is to talk.
Back to Cas and Anael, they pull up in front of “Orlando’s Emporium.” Inside they find Methuselah, the only friend of Joshua’s as well as his roommate after the fall. Methuselah is a grumpy one who clearly wants no part of whatever Cas and Anael want, leaving Cas to threaten to burn the emporium down along with Methuselah himself. Methuselah fails to call Cas’s bluff and instead tells him the thing Joshua used to contact God was around somewhere, but they had to find it themselves.
In the bunker, we get a slo-mo shot of Dean and Mary leading a handcuffed Nick through the hallway towards the dungeon. Around the corner, Sam and Jack are walking towards them, anger and disgust clearly visible on Sam’s face. The scene speeds up as Sam slams Nick into the wall, leaving Dean to pull him away. With Nick tucked away and tied up in the library, Sam, Dean, and Mary try to make sense of what is going on with Nick. Dean has to stop Sam from “talking” to Nick, knowing they need information. And with Sam’s anger, that will not be the end result. Instead, Dean goes to talk to Nick while Mary works to ease Sam’s guilt of letting Nick go and reminds him that he is a good man. She is proud of Sam and tells him so, but it still feels like the continuation of her goodbye tour.
Much to her chagrin, Anael helps Cas search for the mystery item amongst Methuselah’s mess of random things. She thinks the search is fruitless, because God will not care. Anael once believed in the angels’ mission, until she saw all the suffering on Earth with no God in sight. Joshua’s response? “God does not meddle.” And that is the reason that, although she takes money, she heals those suffering. She meddles and intervenes where God will not.
It reveals another layer of Anael, that underneath her surface of conceit, she truly cares about humans. She also reveals she is happy, and while she is lonely, believes everyone to be lonely.
The scene changes to Dean punching Nick, questioning him for information on Donatello. It too is fruitless, because all Nick wants to do is try to mess with Dean’s head about Michael. But he also wants one other thing: to talk to Jack. Dean checks in with Mary, Sam, and Jack on what Nick wants. Jack agrees to do it, telling the others that he is not afraid, but Mary and Dean are adamant he should not. Sam, however, realizes it may help to find Donatello. Jack wants to help his friend, and Sam concedes they have no other choice. It has all the makings of a trap, though.
Nick uses his words once again claiming Jack broke Lucifer’s heart, and he angers Jack by claiming he has no soul left. Jack moves closer, and the contact between Nick and Jack leaves Jack’s nose broken and bloody, and blood left on the shoulder of Nick’s shirt. Jack uses his replenished grace to heal himself, stalking towards Nick with his eyes still glowing, as Nick repeatedly says he is sorry. The next thing we see is Jack opening the door and claiming Nick will show them the way to Donatello. That leaves Sam and Dean on the road with Nick handcuffed in the backseat.
Meanwhile, Anael gives up searching for the item after unfortunately stepping on a rat. (Ew, gross) Anael tells Cas to skip the conversation they will most likely have and to get to the real reason he is searching for God. Anael realizes it is easier for Cas to try to get in contact with God than to admit to Sam and Dean that Jack has no soul. It is enough for Cas to give up the search and give Anael the earrings for helping.
But as Anael reaches for her purse, it redirects Cas’s line of sight to a display of necklaces. And one of those necklaces is a familiar sight: the amulet! Cas instantly recognizes it as the one the Winchesters possessed that would glow in the presence of God. Methuselah explains Joshua made the one in the Emporium after the angels fell and that it will allow them to talk to God. Anael is skeptical, but Cas gives it a try anyway. He holds it in his hand, and with his eyes closed and faced towards Heaven, he pleads that he, Sam, and Dean need his help. With no response, Methuselah explains it never worked for Joshua either.
Something tells me though, that will not be the last we see of the amulet. And that maybe, just maybe, Castiel was heard.
With snow falling and a no trespassing sign giving its warning, the Impala pulls up in front of what looks to be an abandoned warehouse. The plan is that Dean will go search for Donatello while Sam stays back and keeps an eye on Nick. If anything goes wrong, Sam will shoot Nick. Sam gives Dean the antidote to the poison, and with that, Dean is out of the car and on his way inside the warehouse.
Since Cas received no response, Anael and Cas begin to part ways, with Anael a little disappointed she did not get to give God a piece of her mind. Cas prepares that he has to go home and tell Sam and Dean the truth. He gives Anael her earrings and offers to give her a ride, but she turns down the offer to take a cab. Cas leaves her with his thoughts about her view of the world: that she is wrong about everyone being lonely, because we all have each other.
In the bunker, Jack asks Mary if she has heard from Sam and Dean as Mary sorts through a box of Donatello’s things. In the box is the needle Donatello had been injected with. Jack can feel that it had been filled with grace. Mary realizes that Nick had been lying about the thallium, and she rushes to warn her boys about it.
Dean climbs the stairs to the warehouse, as Nick continues to use words to torment Sam, not unlike Lucifer used to do. But Sam’s phone rings and he steps out to take his mom’s call to avoid Nick’s annoying tormenting. But while he is on the phone with Mary, Nick removes a key he had hidden and beings to work on unlocking his cuffs.
Inside the warehouse, Dean quickly finds the room Donatello is hidden away in, but we see a shadowy figure pass behind Dean as he steps inside. Regardless, Dean goes to untie Donatello, the imagery complementary to Nick trying to free himself. But Nick works quickly to hide the key as Sam ends the call with Mary, the news of Nick’s lie now known. Sam throws the door open, and with his gun pointed at Nick, orders him out of the car.
Sam wants answers about why Nick injected Donatello with angel grace. The answer? To communicate with Lucifer and get the info on how to bring Lucifer back. We also learn that Nick needed Jack’s blood to perform this task, which is why he hit Jack back at the bunker. Everything was a ruse and manipulation on Nick’s part with the help of a few demons.
That is when the trouble starts. Nick frees himself of the cuffs as Sam yells for Dean, but Nick punches Sam. Just at that time, a demon crashes through the room where Dean is. Dean manages to punch the demon, mirrored with Nick’s punch to Sam. Sam gets the upper hand though and manages to throw Nick to the ground. Dean has his own problem as another demon enter the room, but still manages well on his own. Sam starts to strangle Nick, as his anger and frustration really come through, but Sam pulls back. Unfortunately, it was a poor choice as Nick grabs a rock and smashes it across Sam’s head.
Disoriented, Sam is thrown against the Impala by Nick, once again mirrored with Dean throwing a demon against the wall. (I loved the direction of this episode!) Sam clearly struggles as Nick continues to punch him, even getting his hands around Sam’s throat. But Sam manages to break free, knocking Nick away long enough to get in the car and close the door, locking it quickly. Nick torments him through the window, and Sam honks the horn to get Dean’s attention. He is hurt and scared.
The horn is almost a distraction for Dean as the demon gets the upper hand, pulling out an angel blade. Dean is pinned, using his strength to keep the blade from piercing him. He wins, quickly pushing the demon back, spinning him, and managing to stab him with the blade. With the demons taken care of but the horn still honking, Dean tells Donatello to follow him as he leads him out of the warehouse and towards Baby.
Sam falls out of Baby, yelling for Dean and gasping for air. Dean is there in a flash, and you can see two emotions rush across his face as he looks at Sam and looks around: he is frightened at how badly Sam is hurt, and he is confused as to how it happened and where Nick escaped to. Nick is already gone, having stolen a truck and driven off.
Dean is on the phone with Mary and Jack, fear clearly filling his voice. He explains Nick is gone and is trying to resurrect Lucifer. He tells them Sam is really badly hurt, but an ambulance will not be there for 20 minutes. With that, Mary and Jack are on their way. Things are definitely not looking good, and this scene makes you wonder if 20 minutes will be too long to save Sam’s life.
Nick pulls up to an abandoned cabin and gets to work preparing what he needs to resurrect Lucifer. Jack and Mary are not even out of the bunker yet when Jack can feel the spell working. He tells Mary that it feels like his blood is burning. With Mary’s ok to use his powers, he transports himself and Mary to Nick’s location in order to stop him.
It works, and Jack quickly pushes the Empty version of Lucifer back, foiling Nick’s resurrection of him. But Jack does not stop. His powers break Nick’s bones and burn him from the inside out as Mary pleads with him to stop. He appears to be dead when Jack finally does stop.
Before they can process what Jack did to Nick, Mary tells Jack to go to Sam because he is hurt — and just in time, too, as Sam falls unconscious. Jack quickly puts his fingers to Sam’s head, dissolving his injuries. Dean quickly stands up, turning around as the emotions of almost losing Sam hit him. Jack explains that the thing with Nick is over, but he does not explain exactly what happened. Mary walks out of the cabin, and Jack transports back to let her know he healed Sam.
The episode ends with Jack explaining to Mary that he had to do what he did to Nick and that he deserved it. Mary does not agree and just wants Jack to take her home. But before Jack does, he needs to hear Mary tell him it is ok. Unfortunately for Mary, it is not. She tries to explain that the Jack she knows would not have done it. This sparks anger in Jack. He walks away, explaining Sam and Dean would be grateful, but Mary counteracts they do not know how and that they would be just as worried as she is. Jack is worried Mary will tell them, and she tells him she will because they are family and that they will help him.
Something is very wrong as Jack seem to have some sort of angelic panic attack, repeating over and over for Mary to leave him alone. His vision goes all wonky, and Mary pleads for Jack to listen. The camera is on Jack’s face as he screams “Leave me alone!” one more time with his eyes glowing. The screen goes black as Jack whispers, “Mary?”
What is Mary’s fate? Find out next week when an all new episode of Supernatural airs Thursday at 8/7c.