With humanity erased, the Winchesters have no one to turn to for help taking down Chuck. Or do they?
On Supernatural Season 15 Episode 19, Sam, Dean, and Jack grapple with the fact that they are the only people left on Earth. But with the help of two surprising allies, they might still have a shot at defeating God.
An Empty Planet
The episode picks up with Dean meeting Sam and Jack in Minnesota. The streets are littered with dropped belongings and abandoned cars. The boys are alone—and as Jack notices—even more alone than they should be. Jack asks where Castiel is, and Dean freezes. It takes him a few tries to get the words out: Castiel saved him. Castiel is gone.
The only reactions Sam and Jack can allow themselves are disbelief and stunned surprise. Sam hurries to call all the hunters he can think of, getting voicemail every time. Jack stands motionless as Dean claps him on the shoulder. Later, he’ll try praying to Castiel, and like Sam he’ll get no reply. No one cries or screams or breaks. This is why Sam’s quote from the previous episode is so important: with their job, the Winchesters don’t often get the luxury of dealing with their emotions.
Still, I wish that they were allowed to. Even watching Dean crumble at the end of the last episode feels like a fraction of the reaction Team Free Will should be feeling at the loss of Castiel. Dean just tried to sacrifice his son and then watched his best friend die for him within a few hours. Jack just exploded and then lost his father. To have them find comfort in each other by having Dean pat Jack’s shoulder and say, “I’m sorry,” before just walking away felt so incredibly stunted.
Out of options, Sam and Dean summon Chuck to make a deal. They’ll give him whatever ending he wants if he brings everyone else back. But Chuck tells them it’s too little too late. All he wants is to watch them suffer alone on an empty planet, and know that it was all their fault.
The Ally From Heaven
Isolation doesn’t treat the Winchesters well. But just when hope seems lost, and Dean is lying on the kitchen floor after a bender, Jack senses something. Sam and Dean are nonplussed, knowing that when Billie brough Jack back, he had no powers. Jack can’t explain it, but he can sense some kind of energy, and knows that they are not alone.
Following Jack’s intuition, the Winchesters end up at a church. Inside, they find a familiar face: Michael, the archangel of their world. Michael explains that even though he still has the body of their half-brother, Adam, his consciousness evaporated when God started the Rapture. Michael survived by taking refuge in this St. Michael’s church and laying low. None of this story makes much sense with the show’s mythology, but there’s too much work to be done for the show to get into it.
The Winchesters are hesitant to trust Michael, since he’s been ignoring their prayers for the last several weeks. But Michael says that’s in the past. Watching his father destroy worlds has made him question the love he had for Chuck. As they stand in the church, Michael admits that he burnished God’s image, that instructing millions to blindly follow his father might have created this very problem. He’ll do whatever the Winchesters need him to do to solve it.
I’m always happy for the chance to have Jake Abel back on the show. I do take offense to the fact that Adam was so easily done away with. In the finale of a show about family, having Adam around could have made things so much more interesting and fulfilling. But realistically, this episode had so many twists and turns that factoring Adam in was a wild card the writers couldn’t afford.
The Ally From Hell
Sam and Dean’s first plan is to ask Michael to read Death’s book. Unfortunately, because he’s not Death, he isn’t even able to open the book. This kicks them all back to square one and scrambling to find a new path. Dean is just telling Sam that they’re screwed when his phone rings—Castiel. Amazed, he picks up the phone and runs to the front door to let Cas in. But it isn’t Castiel that’s waiting for them, but Lucifer.
The Winchesters are in disbelief of course. The Apocalypse World’s Michael killed Lucifer two seasons ago, when Dean offered to be his vessel. In Supernatural Season 15 Episode 19, Lucifer informs them that he was dead, and asleep in the Empty. Of course, that was before they sent Jack in to explode, and supremely pissed off the Empty themselves. Lucifer insists that the Empty kicked him out so that they could end God once and for all, and they could finally go back to sleep.
As a show of good faith, Lucifer has brought a captive reaper with him, Betty. By killing the reaper, he ensures that she will become the new Death, and will read the book for them. Things seem to be going well at first. I genuinely thought the final plan was going to Michael and Lucifer teaming up against their father. But at the last second, Lucifer snaps his fingers and kills Death so he can steal the book. He reveals that he was actually resurrected by Chuck, who wanted to get his hands on the book.
A fight ensues, and Michael is able to kill Lucifer with an archangel blade slipped to him by Sam. Thankfully, when Lucifer dropped the book, it stayed open.
The Fake Plan
Sam is able to translate the symbols in Death’s book into a spell. Supposedly, it will release a shock of energy that will find Chuck wherever he is in the universe, and kill him. The Winchesters prepare the spell and head to a specific lake where the sun will be at the correct angle. But when they perform the ritual, the light quickly goes out.
Chuck shows up on the shoreline, alerted to the Winchester’s plan by Michael. The angel is still desperate for his father’s approval, but Chuck isn’t one to forgive a grudge. He kills Michael with a burst of energy and moves onto Sam and Dean. Given the circumstances, he no longer feels that eternal isolation is an appropriate punishment. He’s going to kill them and wipe the planet clean—but not without getting his hands dirty. Chuck kicks and punches and beats the Winchesters without breaking a sweat, leaving them bloody and broken but still smiling.
The one person Chuck has forgotten to factor in is Jack, standing calmly on the shore behind him. Chuck snaps his fingers, but this third time, it doesn’t work. Jack is completely unaffected by Chuck’s powers. Jack claps his hands around Chuck’s head, and as Chuck screams, absorbs all the power of God himself. Chuck is left trembling on the ground, scared and confused. He demands an explanation, and after Jack snaps his fingers to fix them up, Sam and Dean are all too happy to oblige.
The Real Plan
They knew from the start that Michael was going to betray them. Neither of them could read Death’s book at all—it’s blank. So they laid a trap that would get Chuck in the right place, so that Jack could take him out. Jack might have returned from the Empty powerless, but ever since the explosion, he’s been a black hole of cosmic energy. And since “God is in everything,” he’s been absorbing power from the moment he got back. Between Michael and Lucifer and Chuck, Jack became unstoppable, and now Chuck has officially lost.
But even lying on the floor, Chuck isn’t too upset that he lost. He reiterates that this is why the Winchesters are his favorite characters. They’re unpredictable, and always manage to surprise him. He asks what they have planned, how they’re finally going to kill him. He’d consider it glorious to die at the hands of Sam or Dean Winchester, “the ultimate killer.” But Dean has finally, finally learned a lesson from Castiel’s speech. And he looks God in the eye, and tells him that that’s not who he is.
Sam and Dean prepare to leave with Jack. They’re not going to kill Chuck at all. They’re going to leave him, powerless and alone, to die like any one of the other humans he created and abandoned. It’s a fitting ending for any villain, to live the life of those they terrorized. And as Sam, Dean, and Jack pile into the Impala, Chuck crawls behind them, begging to be saved.
The New Jack
With all that power inside him, Jack is able to summon back all of the humans with a snap of his fingers. There’s no chaos or confusion. Everyone simply picks up their belongings and goes about with their day. It seems like, for now, order is restored.
Dean is already celebrating the win. He assumes that Jack can do whatever he wants, since he’s now “the top dog.” Already Dean’s talking about getting Jack a TV for his room, and letting him eat what he wants back at the bunker. But Jack informs them that he’s not coming back to the bunker. Dean is hurt to hear it, accusing him of bailing on them. But Jack insists that he isn’t bailing, because in a way, he’s already at the bunker.
Sam asks Jack if this means that he is “the new God.” Jack is hesitant to pick up the mantle, because he’s just himself. But in a way, he has stepped up to take Chuck’s mantle. Along with Chuck’s powers, he also absorbed Amara, and both she and Jack are coexisting in balance. Jack vows not to interfere with Earth. People won’t need to pray to him or sacrifice to him. He’s already with them. Because with the power of God, he too is in everything.
Jack bids one final goodbye and walks away, disappearing on the horizon. Sam and Dean are left to return to the bunker alone. And while it’s quiet and solemn, it’s also peaceful. They’re finally in charge of writing their own story. And that’s all they’ve ever wanted.
Supernatural Season 15 Episode 19 has some masterful details, alongside some glaring plot holes. It’s important to keep Chuck’s most iconic line in mind: “Endings are hard.” (Okay, second most iconic. The first should be “Writing’s hard.”) While I’m mostly happy with the way everything turned out, the path we took to get there was messy.
The plot twists in this episode are insane. The plan to take down God changes so much in these 40 minutes that at some point I’ll admit to mentally checking out. Last episode ended with Castiel sacrificing himself because the only entity powerful enough to take on Death was the Empty. In this episode, Lucifer snaps his hand and evaporates Death on the spot. I still don’t understand the logic behind Jack not immediately bringing Castiel back. Jack’s growing powers are barely addressed at all until the final reveal, which takes all of 3 minutes. For more thoughts on the jerky plot twist this season, read our review here.
But at the same time, there’s poetry to this episode. Having Rowena die at the start of the Season so that Sam could fool God himself with magic at the end. Having Sam and Dean be pawns for fifteen seasons only to have them raise the new God under their own roof. Having the characters take on a life of their own, one their original creator couldn’t predict, and preaching “death of the author” on a meta-television show. The story of Supernatural is what we make of it, because it didn’t exist in a vacuum. And none of the writers or cast or crew could have known fifteen years ago that we’d end up here.
The series finale of Supernatural airs tonight at 8/7c on the CW, after a series documentary at 7/6c.