"Devil May Care" was the perfect flip side to Sam and Dean's problems with the angels because it focused on the demons and Abaddon's rise to power.
The saucy redheaded knight of hell has returned (brought back in naked Terminator fashion) and she wants Crowley. She's tired of demon deals, weak meat suits and playing by the rules.
Abaddon is played a bit over the top in some of her delivery, but her evil sexy attitude feels like the right combination. Dean's line about not knowing whether to fight or make out was spot on for her character.
She's definitely a take charge kind of demon, and leading the brothers into the obvious trap geared the episode up for an entertaining action set piece.
Not only were we introduced to some new hunters, but Tracy's role in the supernatural world was related to Sam releasing Lucifer from his cage. It was a nice little nod to the past that was later discussed, recognized and then moved on to worrying about the present and saving the now.
Additionally, it's been a while since Sam and Dean have really gotten knocked around. These demons, who used assault rifles and bulletproof vests, were dangerous and threatening. Sure, we all knew that they couldn't actually defeat the Winchesters, but the fight wasn't an easy in and out quick kill.
Dean nearly was ripped apart in his one on one with Abaddon. It is interesting that she salivated over taking his body (much like Ezekiel has done with Sam). In a way, the concept reminds me of a reversed version of Sam/Lucifer and Dean/Michael. Yes, Michael was (as Castiel would say) an ass butt, but he was technically on the side of good while Lucifer was evil. And now Sam is with the good angel and Abaddon, eager to jump into Dean, is the bad one.
Can Abaddon do that? Will she get a chance or was that just all talk? Who would you rather lead Hell, her or Crowley?
Clearly, she's still scared of angels, especially after Ezekial put the nuclear take down of three demons.
That was a very cool scene watching Sam's eyes glow before he stood up and his angel shadow (with feathers lacking in the wings) spread out behind him on the wall.
And I like that Ezekiel and Dean spoke about trust and him being the good guy. It's a question I've even had about the angel taking over and am curious to see how long it takes before something bad happens or Sam figures out he's got a guest hanging out with him.
It's also very entertaining to see Jared Padalecki act out out another "version" of Sam. Having Tahmoh Penikett portray Ezekiel in "I Think I'm Gonna Like It Here" was a great blueprint for how this new Sam would act when possessed. I still can picture Penikett's Ezekiel saying the things the way Padalecki acts as Ezekiel possessing Sam. It just works.
Of course, this episode (already packed with goodness) finally let Crowley out of the trunk. And it was fantastic that both Sam and Dean (who were on the same page the whole episode, well, besides the angel secret) stick to just leaving Crowley alone with his thoughts. No torture or anything. Simply a close the door.
It gave the perfect opportunity for Crowley to seduce Kevin to the dark side. Crowley may have enjoyed getting beat up and messing with Kevin's mind as just a means to an end for Sam and Dean. But rather than have Kevin run off for a few episodes, Dean and Kevin hashed it out immediately. Dean is able to assuage Kevin's fears and express his importance as an addition to their family. It's not perhaps the overt love love Ezekiel was expressing for Sam for Dean, but it held the same type of meaning and concern.
And how great was Kevin Frickin Solo on the phone?!? I was so used to Bobby handling those calls or even Garth, but Kevin using his own set of skills was able to handle everything just fine.
There's a lot of plates already on the table for the Winchesters to deal with, and it was nice seeing Sam and Dean lay it out at the end of the hour. Angels, demons, Crowley, Abaddon, human Castiel, ghosts, monsters... you name it, the boys are ready for it. It's going to be a busy year for them and a fun entertaining time for viewers. It's great to see Supernatural Season 9 off to a running start.
Sean McKenna is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow him on Twitter.