Supernatural Season Finale Review: Major Deaths and a New Villain?

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The super-sized finale of Supernatural Season 12 definitely went out with a bang. And a lot of deaths.

But will they stick? Are we done with the alternate dimension? What the heck is up with Lucifer’s creepy baby?

It’s actually fantastic that I’ve got so many questions about where Supernatural Season 13 is headed, and I can’t help but be intrigued by this turn of events.

Lucifer has arrived - Supernatural Season 12 Episode 23

Yet I really hope the people behind the show have a game plan for where they are going with of all this because they made some pretty wild and bold decisions in those last moments of Supernatural Season 12 Episode 23.

To kill off Rowena, Crowley and Castiel? Just wow.

I thought maybe one might happen, but all three?

Lucifer makes a phone call - Supernatural Season 12 Episode 23

Rowena’s never been a favorite of mine, but I did think she deserved to have a better death than just a minuscule scene with a charred body. Why bring her back just for her to get wasted like that?

That just seemed like an odd decision on the writers’ part.

As for Crowley, it was a major choice to end the round-and-round struggle and sacrifice himself to stop Lucifer.

Sam, Dean and Mary map out a plan - Supernatural Season 12 Episode 23

It was his big moment, and I applauded him for doing the heroic thing despite him being the bad guy.

But I also couldn’t help but think how his character has been wasted this season and that there was no real buildup to the moment aside from the fact that he’s been on the show for so long now.

So I’m conflicted about that.

Castiel has purpose - Supernatural Season 12 Episode 23

Then there’s Castiel’s death, which surprised me, especially with his newfound faith in the nephilim.

Just running in to take on Lucifer seemed dumb, especially when Crowley made his sacrifice. Seeing him survive was a relief followed by some confusion when Lucifer popped back out and stabbed him.

It was weird seeing Castiel get killed, not in some grand sacrifice or battle, but a simple stab that revealed Lucifer is really that powerful.

I get that Lucifer is super powerful, and maybe that was the point, but it just seemed like there should have been more for such a longstanding character.

Castiel checks in on Kelly - Supernatural Season 12 Episode 23

Still, Supernatural has had a hard time playing the “dead is dead” game, so what’s to say the nephilim doesn’t snap his fingers when the show returns and Rowena, Castiel and Crowley are all back, and those deaths were just minor moments to mess with fans' emotions for the summer?

Shouldn’t Castiel have a bigger role to play now that the nephilim is here?

Maybe it’s the shock that Supernatural went there or that I’m skeptical it will all stick, but I’m conflicted about all those deaths.

Mary comforts Kelly - Supernatural Season 12 Episode 23

Oh, and let’s not forget Mary getting dragged into the alternate dimension. I saw it coming a mile away, but does that mean Sam and Dean have to go on a rescue mission to save their mom next season?

And they had just found a way to reunite as a family, too.

What’s more, the nephilim definitely looked like the next big bad, right? I mean, what else could that actually be?

Sam is uneasy - Supernatural Season 12 Episode 23

So much happened in the last few minutes it’s no surprise that it will completely overshadow the fact that most of Supernatural Season 12 Episode 23 was a lot of sitting around and waiting.

The baby stuff with Kelly was just boring, and I was annoyed every time the hour cut back to whatever she was doing.

Granted, that reveal of Bobby was super awesome, which piqued my interest again. What a neat way to bring him back in that Mad Max alternate world.

Maybe we will see him again, too? There certainly seems to be a lot to explore with this new place...

Mary looks concerned - Supernatural Season 12 Episode 23

It’s also funny that the storyline that I cared about the least, the British Men of Letters, had the more riveting hour, and the Lucifer’s baby story, which I was looking forward to more, dragged for the most part, losing the momentum of the first hour before it picked up to the multitude of shocking moments near the end.

Because it was Supernatural Season 12 Episode 22 that captured some real character moments, some fantastic emotional scenes, and finally got rid of the British Men of Letters… hopefully.

Hunters raid the compound - Supernatural Season 12 Episode 22

It was certainly disappointing that the British Men of Letters storyline ultimately had no real payoff or dramatic reveal or any tie-in to the Lucifer storyline besides telling Sam he’s back.

There was no grand plan behind them at all… unless Supernatural Season 13 plans to bring them back and reveal it then.

I hope not.

Mr. Ketch attacks - Supernatural Season 12 Episode 22

I mean, the fact that the whole "trapped in the bunker" plan by Ketch even happened was just stupid.

Thank goodness Dean called him out on it, too. At least there were characters who recognized how ridiculous it was.

Honestly, leaving them to die a slow death like a mustache-twirling cartoon villain simply took away any tension or threat of Sam and Dean being in danger.

Sam searches for a way out - Supernatural Season 12 Episode 22

Yes, it led to a cool conversation about how it might end one day for the brothers, maybe like Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. And it almost feels fitting that the two of them going out in a blaze of glory would be how the show ends.

And it is interesting that Sam and Dean’s fate, their journey, and the discussion of an end has continued to be brought up this season. Does that mean the people behind the show have an end game mapped out?

And yes, Dean finally got to use his grenade launcher complete with a “Die Hard” “Yippe-ki-yay” line. It was a decent payoff that after getting denied its use throughout the season it would be the one thing that saves them from the bunker death.

Dean and Toni face off - Supernatural Season 12 Episode 22

But again, why even write them into that situation in the first place when it’s so ridiculous and so obvious that Sam and Dean would make it out?

Ketch even continued his dumb decisions by only killing Toni and then deciding to wake Dean from his dream so he could get into a fist fight.

OK, maybe he was asking for a fight because that’s what he likes, but seriously, I thought he was smarter than that.

Mr. Ketch returns - Supernatural Season 12 Episode 22

The bigger fist pump moment in regard to ending the British Men of Letters was Sam denying another team-up to deal with Lucifer.

It was a great continuation of his leadership and not following the British crew, especially after his fantastic ramp up speech to the other hunters.

Sam was much harder on himself over the whole ordeal than he should have been, but Jared Padalecki gave a heartfelt speech rallying the troops and explaining what makes them so much different than the British Men of Letters.

A win for the hunters? - Supernatural Season 12 Episode 22

To see him step up and take charge was a great moment, and his speech was a powerful one. It definitely made me want to see the hunters take down the British Men of Letters once and for all.

Because unfortunately, outside of Mick, the whole storyline with the British Men of Letters wound up being a letdown.

At least the raid was pretty entertaining to watch. It was a bit different seeing hunters facing off against other humans rather than just supernatural creatures.

Don’t mess with Jody - Supernatural Season 12 Episode 22

I was worried Jody was only brought back so she could get killed because even though some of the other hunters have been on the show before, they really weren’t memorable enough to be some big dramatic death in the battle.

I was frustrated that Dean stayed behind, but we got an intense and heartbreaking scene where Dean opened up to his mom.

He was pretty hard on her by saying “I hate you,” but the more his speech went on, the more it explained everything.

Dean is strapped in - Supernatural Season 12 Episode 22

From the forgiveness to the love to the recognition that he, too, has made deals to understanding it’s all made them the men they are today.

Jensen Ackles really got to shine in that moment.

It was great seeing Sam, Dean and Mary reunite and forgive each other at the end of that first episode. And then it was all taken away an episode later.

Mary’s back! - Supernatural Season 12 Episode 22

But again, I wouldn’t be surprised if most of what people wind up discussing will be those final moments of Supernatural Season 12 Episode 23.

It makes me wish the two episodes had their time to breathe and weren’t packed together as one, especially since they focused on two totally different storylines.

Bound and gagged - Supernatural Season 12 Episode 22

Supernatural Season 12 had some good ideas but the execution wasn’t always there, and there was often a bit of meandering as if the writers were still trying to figure out where it might end up.

Still, there were definitely moments when the season shined, when that true Supernatural came through, when it was exciting and engaging, and for the most part the big finale managed that.

Yeah, there was a lot to be frustrated about or question what the heck, and at times it slowed way down when it came to Kelly’s baby, but Sam and Dean each had some major moments, the British Men of Letters were nixed and Supernatural ended with some shockers and that cliffhanger baby.

While I'll need some time to fully process all those deaths, and I didn't love all of what Supernatural Season 12 was trying to do, most of the finale was engaging and entertaining to watch. It definitely will be one to remember, and it's got me intrigued as to what's next for Sam and Dean.

There definitely will be a blaze of glory for Sam and Dean in the future. But not quite yet. They've still got work to do.

What did you think of the deaths? Is that the end of the British Men of Letters? What will happen to Mary? What's with Lucifer's baby? Sound off below, and be sure to see it all again and watch Supernatural online now!

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Sean McKenna was a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. He retired in May of 2017. Follow him on Twitter.

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Supernatural Season 12 Episode 22 Quotes

Sam: Wait a minute. So we’re gonna…
Dean: Straight “Shawshank” this bitch.

Sam: Is this how you pictured it? The end?
Dean: Oh, you know it’s not. I always thought I’d go out Butch and Sundance style.
Sam: Blaze of glory.
Sam: Blaze of glory.