On the road so far, the Impala has clocked in 326 miles. While there have been times where the familial question of “Are we there yet?” has coasted in the back of our minds, none of us were ever truly ready to check its mileage, knowing when its wheels would slow down approaching its sunset lit destination. Thankfully, there’s still a little gas left for the Winchesters to fight over whichever rock ballad filters from the radio’s speakers, but this episode held a certain finality. It had us questioning if the view outside those rolled down windows was already beautiful, then what could Andrew Dabb possibly have in store for us? Well, that’s next week’s detour as we take a tiny gas break to discuss “Inherit the Earth.”
Warning: Spoilers beyond this point!
We re-enter the Supernatural universe short of a few angel feathers with the remaining three: Dean, Sam, and Jack, who are met with an isolated reception sans any people. They’re truly alone, and the other two only realize that upon asking Dean where Cas is. There may not be much said despite the simplicity of “he’s gone,” but it’s in the admittance where he questions if he’s worthy of such a declaration. He consoles Jack, understanding the absence will leave a dent in him too.
Jack’s outside of Lonzo’s Lager, a small cafe where a television sits displaying what is coined as a sudden death match, having the players zapped from the pitch. The Empty could be outside of a prayer’s radius, but that doesn’t stop him from at least trying to communicate with Castiel. Words aren’t his forte at the moment either, leaving him to walk back towards the brothers, each potted plant that he passes, making for a crunching sound effect.
Back in Lonzo’s Lager, Sam is dealing with some inner-turmoil himself, wondering if he hadn’t chosen to stop the Kill God IV mission, the world would still be saturated with people. What’s embedded is more so what’s their identity if it’s not attached to saving them? As we mull that over, the darkness creeps in as the brothers wait for Chuck’s arrival.
Chuck is zany, a misplaced witty remark acting as his greeting for an otherwise gloomy admittance of saying they’re ready to turn back the pages on the final draft. Backspacing on the words they’re currently at to bring forth the character they dearly miss, Cas. However, Chuck’s swept over the next few paragraphs, tying into their new story, deeming it an epic tale majoring in the central theme of loneliness.
Jack’s on a bed looking up at the ceiling, Sam’s pacing the halls, and Dean’s asleep beside a foray of liquor bottles. The first has sensed a presence. What that is? They’re unsure. Taking to the road makes the highway their magnet as each fallen leaf under the tires leads them to Tod Buz’s Service. That presence turns out to be Miracle, the whimpering furry bundle wrapped in Dean’s arms, yet also known as the disappearing dog as he vanishes mere minutes after sitting in the Impala. Chuck throws a salute.
That’s not the unknown presence, though, as it’s currently residing in a church. Opened bibles litter the pews, lightning struck from outside, but our attention is drawn towards Michael walking out of its shadows. He does his own previously on, recapping where he’s been: he’s the only spirit kicking around in Adam’s meat suit now that he’s gone. He supposedly can see the error of his father’s ways. The brothers, alongside Jack, introduce him to death’s book, thinking his archangel prowess could possibly be able to open it. Sadly, his juices aren’t enough.
For anyone who doesn’t know Dean, one would attach the phrase “friendly concern” to him, rushing up the staircase upon hearing Cas’s voice trickle out of his phone, thinking a once far out of reach situation has occurred, and he’s back in the bunker. For us, the sleuthers, the ones who know him so intimately well, we see what he’s still unable to vocalize. It’s a lot like a trail of clues, the first being the grief, the next being the rush of hope. This is Supernatural, and just as quickly as he opens the door, he slams it behind, being met with Sam’s could-have-been destiny, Lucifer. The empty ordered him to find death’s book and use it on Chuck. More than that, he creates the newly designed death taking form in a former reaper named Betty.
Side problem: Betty’s not only sorta feisty as she head slams Dean but alarmingly independent when making sure she’s the only one in the room upon reading death’s book. They all assemble around the bunker’s table where Lucifer and Michael quarrel. See, they haven’t reached a point of being indifferent to the situation. Cas leaks into the scene with Betty uttering “ass-buts.” She’s about to read a scripture from the death book before Lucifer snaps his fingers, turning her into stone.
In a chain of events that surprises no one, this entire time, he’s shadily been working for his father, now with the book planted in his hands to return to the sender of the mission. He cheekily throws a “Mickey’s a c*ck,” then a “buddy” to Jack. There’s a decision to be made. Does Jack forgo the redemption arc that’s been worked into the season to join his biological dad and gramps, or does he have a moment of character and stick with the Winchesters? Although we all know the answer, the question remains open-ended as Michael rams a blade into Lucifer. It thus sends him up in smoke.
We’re given a brief insight into Michael’s mindset when he has a conversation with Dean in the dimly lit kitchen. Sam’s going to use Enochian to see if he can work out their end. As Michael cracks open a book, a spell is brewing. The spell takes place on a stranded beach with the sun streaming over the sand in an otherwise wooded area. It’s pretty, serene, but not for long as they set the small bowl on fire, sending an energetic signal for Chuck’s appearance. It all ends here, the thread of free will they’ve so desperately tried to grasp. Only as much as we have free will, there’s also an anchoring to our relationships, wanting to do our best for other people’s validation. Michael knows this most of all as he’s taken a leaflet out of Lucifer’s manipulation book and told Chuck everything. There’s a sneaking suspicion Lucifer was always his favorite again as Chuck looks down on Michael siding with the Winchesters in the first place. Michael’s the second archangel to end up in smoke as Chuck kills him.
The easy work would be snapping Dean and Sam into oblivion, but this needs to feel earned. It needs to be the page-turner, bated breath epic finale that comes with this story. So, Chuck fights them. Each kick and punch ends with another part of them bloodied-up, and the easy task for them would be to sit it out. To give in, but that’s not the moral they’ve given us. Arms linked, they get up one last time with this piercing grin uttering, “you lose.” Jack’s there, behind them. It turns out he’s somewhat of a vacuum, whereas he’s been bottling the power of others, including Chuck’s. The best bit is that he’s now more powerful than even him. Chuck’s ending? It’ll be in the stale days, the hours that won’t seem to pass, and the greying of his beard where he will think back to the power he once had. He’ll be one of the forgotten.
The streets are still stranded as the Impala’s final miles sneak upon us, but Jack’s a better version of his grandfather, and that means it’s not long before there are other voices. It also holds the mention of Amara; they’re in harmony. While it’s a speech about Jack embodying his new God-like self, the writers have always had their way of speaking indirectly to us through monologues. Soon we won’t be returning to the bunker; there won’t be conversations overheard between Dean and Sam. Yet that doesn’t mean they’re no longer with us. It’s in the ticket stubs of past conventions, the posters we have up on our walls, the group chats made up of people with a unified interest, but mostly, in the person that we are now having the previous 15 years help shape us. Supernatural will be both nowhere and everywhere.
The last scene isn’t one seen through the perspective of a script but rather two actors who hold a legacy. It might be one of their last remaining times in the bunker, as we don’t know what the next episode will hold. It’s quiet, just the two of them and the ghosts of the people they’ve known. They tip one back, a beer that is, meeting the sentiment of free will their respective characters have worked so hard to attain. There are now five names on that table: Dean, Sam, Mary, Cas, and Jack. If we need time to process that, it sinks into a montage cultivated from those scenes that have made our hearts hum across the years.
This isn’t the book closed, though. To know how it does, you’ll have to tune in next week for the two-hour series finale and special at 8 p.m. ET on The CW.