Friday, February 10, 2012

Supernatural 7x14 "Plucky Pennywhistle's Magical Menagerie"

Wow. Oh man. I have not laughed that much at an episode since probably French Mistake. Definitely one of my favorites of the season so far. Nearly every line leaving Dean's mouth was a winner; I haven't written down so many quotes in a long time. If you didn't laugh at least half the time, I'm not sure we can be friends.

Moving on to the actual plot! The Winchesters arrive in town after someone is seemingly killed by a giant octopus, which is decidedly not normal. They think, however, due to the weird bite on the guy's neck, that some vampire with an octopus fetish might have killed the guy. They decide to talk to the wife to see if there's any merit to this pretty wackadoo idea, and don't really get any leads on the subject until Sam talks to the daughter and finds out that she thought that a giant octomonster was hiding in her closet, and that's what killed her dad.

Recap/review of Supernatural 7x14 "Plucky Pennywhistle's Magical Menagerie" by
Behind you!
Still not a lot to go on, though, so it's helpful when we get our second death of the episode when a dude is literally impaled by a rogue unicorn. Yes, you read that right. A dude was running away from a unicorn, thought he got away by jumping over a metal fence thing, but I then yelled "Stabbed through the fence!" and wouldn't you know it? He got stabbed through the fence by the unicorn's horn! Of course, when Dean comes to investigate, it's not so clear that it was a unicorn horn quite yet, but he does find out that the dude's son had gone to a birthday party at a certain national pizza chain called Plucky Pennywhistle's Magical Menagerie - where all your dreams are good! Where all your dreams are good?! Oh man. What a tagline. Why is that such a good clue? Because the daughter of the other guy had also just been there. To Plucky's!

Actually, it's just Sam that gets sent to Plucky's right now, even though he desperately does not want to go since, apparently, Dean used to drop him there as a kid while he went trolling for chicks. Sam talks to some of the employees and finds out that the kids draw their worst fears for the wall, and the two from the other kids earlier are missing from said wall. He also is approached by the janitor, who wants him to come meet him after hours. Oh poor janitor, we barely knew ye. Because he never does get to talk to Sam. Instead, he's tasked with cleaning up the ball pit, only to be hunted by something swimming inside the balls themselves! Blood! Mayhem! Death! Bye bye, shifty janitor with secret knowledge!

Just what seemed to kill him? A shark! In a ball pit?! What! Yeah, something is definitely afoot at Plucky's. Sam decides to try to shake down the employees by going all bad cop on them, which was sort of hilarious because he really just said nondescript things like "are you really?" and such. The manager and the uber-happy guy both seem to check out, but when he talks to the guy in the lion costume, the dude freaks out and bolts out of there. Dean chases him down, as he was hanging out inside the place as well to check for suspicious behavior. But this guy was no evil genius, he's just a dude whose brother used to run a meth lab and may or may not have gotten high and played in the ball pit with the dearly departed janitor. But! He does have some valuable intel. There is a sub-basement beneath Plucky's, and he and janitor dude used to hear strange noises coming out of it sometimes while they were having their after hours fun.

Recap/review of Supernatural 7x14 "Plucky Pennywhistle's Magical Menagerie" by
Sam's worst nightmare: check!
Also, while Sam was doing his "grilling" of suspects, Dean was getting to know one of the kids who had to constantly hang out at Plucky's because his mom works there. She's generally being kind of mean to him because she's so overworked, and they seem like a prime pair for the next fear monster, despite Dean getting the kid to understand a little better what his mom is going through. It's too late, because the kid's drawing of a giant robot with laser beam eyes has already been taken by the culprit.

So, Sam goes to try to head off a possible robot while Dean heads down to the basement to find out what's going on. It turns out, someone has been working some seriously shady hoodoo down there. Who? I think we can all agree that it's no surprise that it's the overly perky one. You just can't trust people who are constantly perky. It goes against nature to be that happy all the time. He and Dean get in a standoff, and he lets Dean know that he didn't go after the kid after all, but rather has turned his attentions to Sam, who he sensed had a thing about clowns.

Indeed, a couple nasty clowns have appeared and start tormenting Sam. They get into some nasty fisticuffs while Dean uses cunning and smarts to figure out what the bad guy's own fear is, which turns out to be that he blames his parents for his brother's death. He throws some stuff into the hoodoo fire, and the guy's dead drowned brother turns up to make him drown out himself, which makes the clowns, who were doing some serious damage to our dear Sam, disappear into a poof of glitter confetti. Done and dusted.

In the end, Dean gets one of the best laughs he's had in awhile when he sees Sam covered in blood and glitter, as do we all.

Random Thoughts:

- Seeing the flashbacks to season two. Aw. Sammy looked so young!

- Always dig when they alter the title card a little bit. Glitter card!

- When that unicorn started spouting a rainbow out of its butt, I literally said out loud "this show is crazy!" Of course, that was a reference to a past episode (Houses of the Holy) where Dean says unicorns shoot rainbows out of their ass. Which at the time was a sarcastic remark, but hey, we've come full circle.

- I kind of loved it when Dean could tell Sam was freaking out about the clowns at Plucky's and he said "Sammy" to try to calm him down.

- Was wishing that we'd gotten some kind of flashback scene to whatever happened to Sam at Plucky's when he was a kid!

- Plucky's definitely seemed like a riff on Chuck E. Cheese. Somehow I think "where a kid can be a kid" is a better slogan than "where all your dreams are good" haha!

- Did the janitor guy also play one of the clowns? I may be making this up.

- Hoodoo versus voodoo. What's the difference?

- Dean wanted a giant slinky, and in the end Sam got him one, because they earned it. Dean's gift to Sam? A clown doll. I mean, he is over his fear of them, having had to face them head on, right? Clown, meet asphalt. Guess some things are not meant to be gotten over.


"If it bleeds, you can kill it."

"Hey, you spawn a monster baby, see how quick you wanna dive back in the pool." - Dean

"So what are we looking for? Octovamp? Vamptopus?" - Dean

"Mom. Dad. Nanny. That is a love triangle right out of Casa Erotica. Of course in those, the jealous wife tends to channel her feelings more productively." - Dean

Sam: Wait, now unicorns are evil?
Dean: Yeah, obviously.

Sam: They think the ball washer did it.
Dean: The what?
Sam: The ball washer.
Dean: The what?
Sam: The ball--

"Shark week, man. How do you not watch that? Whole week of sharks." - Dean

"Yeah, guy in his thirties hanging out at Plucky's by himself, that's normal. Not pervy at all." - Dean

"I'm sorry, you look like you got attacked by some PCP crazed strippers." - Dean

Previous Episode -- Next Episode


  1. Oooh, I didn't even think of this ep as a missed opportunity to see Colin! Although I suppose Colin is too old for a flashback for that era now, and I would cry my eyes out at this point if they ever had to get ANOTHER young Sam, Colin is just it for me. <3

    Great review! I agree, this episode was awesome. So much fun. :)

    ~ Tahirire

  2. I'm really curious about exactly what went down at Plucky's to give Sam such a phobia too. And how young are we talking when Dean ditched him there to go trolling for chicks? I mean, say Dean's 14-16, that pegs Sam at 10-12...I feel like he would be bored out of his mind and miserable, but definitely old enough to handle whatever trauma a clown could throw at him. And if Dean was YOUNGER when he ditched Sam? I...I don't really want to think about a 12 year old Dean trying to pick up chicks. It's both creepy and sad (but a little bit cute and now I can't help but think of a Milk Money scenario aww).

    ANYWAY. The ballpit stuff was priceless. As a former ballpit attendant myself, pretty much everything they hit on is the stuff of both fact (vomit right before you're supposed to go home? RAGE.) and lore (killer ball washer! Shark in the pit!) and yes, ball-washer itself is an amazing term.

    So excited for next week!

    -- Maryann/Kettle

    1. Clowns have been known to frighten Sam at an early age. Dean by leaving him at a Plucky's those years ago could have just used Sams fear to tease him. Just as he has in past episodes with the Ronald McDonald commercials and forcing him to sit in the clown chair.

  3. Not only did the clown meet the asphalt but I'm pretty sure he was torn in half as well. Sam may have gotten over his fear (somewhat) but does that mean he likes em now? Not in the slightest.

    As for the episode itself it was a hoot. As I said last week Loflin and Dabb re the only ones who seem to write decent episodes they know how to write the characters and balance the scares with the laughs although I do think the jokes were a lil too heavy this week and the clowns more playful than frightening. Other than that it was enjoyable.

    Plus was I the only one who thought Plucky's was more nightmarish than it needed to be? As a kid I would have hated to have been there all the freakish clowns decorating the place. Shivers down the spine.

    Plus the great mind of Ben Edlund wrote the sure to be a classic episode for next friday. I'm so excited.

    To conclude my rant, Jen, wonderful recap as always I never laughed as uch at your other reviews the way I have here. Great job! Also did you notice Lucifer's voice in the teaser for next week. You think Sam's gonna go nanners at last?

  4. Fun episode. I too have always hated/feared clowns, so I completely understood poor Sammy.

    Great review-- LOVE that you pointed out the unicorn thing. I do remember Dean saying that. Love the full circle thing, always.