The winter finale of Supernatural was an episode of big victory (and crushing defeats) for the Winchester brothers. While the end of “LOTUS” saw Sam and Dean arrested by the Secret Service and Kelly determined to carry her literal spawn of Satan to term, the midseason finale also saw Sam and Dean defeat Lucifer … again. Of course this only counts as a victory if you believe Sam and Dean actually sent Lucifer back to the cage. Sadly for the boys there is plenty of evidence in “LOTUS” to suggest they have much more work to do before they put Lucifer back in his cage. 

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It Was Way Too Easy

To the credit of “LOTUS,” the Lucifer exorcism scene was more thrilling than it had a right to be considering what was actually happening. In reality it was just a group of people, one of whom was holding a mystical egg, standing in a motel room, screaming at one another. Supernatural has never been a particularly action-heavy show. Outside of a few shotgun blasts or getting hurled around by a ghost, Sam and Dean don’t usually fight their demon problems head-on. It is more about detective work, figuring out the best method and being emotionally and mentally strong enough to execute it. 

Still, for the banishment of Lucifer to his cage, Supernatural should have pulled out a few more stops. All the CGI light was impressive but considering the last imprisonment of Lucifer involved an emotional scene about the importance of Baby and Sam sacrificing himself, there needed to a bit more gravitas. Here the big event was Lucifer escaping down a heat vent, which is suspicious in itself. Are we really supposed to believe the direct route to Hell is in the ventilation system of a crappy motel? 


Crowley and Rowena’s Disappearance 

Even more confusing is how quickly Crowley took Rowena to disappear once Lucifer was supposedly caged. It’s not that hard to believe that Crowley would want to get away from the Winchesters after their job was finished. Yet Lucifer’s escape was barely even processed before Crowley took his mother and “poofed” away. 

It is even more intriguing how early in “LOTUS” Sam had to complain about Crowley being kept so close to them. Supernatural has never really kept Crowley away from the guys. Crowley really is like a fourth unofficial member of the team, behind Castiel, at this point. So why would Supernatural have Sam bring up Crowley’s untrustworthiness, unless they were planning on Crowley betraying them in the very same episode?

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Crowley obviously wants Lucifer neutralized as much as Sam and Dean. However, he could have other plans for Lucifer before that happens. Maybe Crowley made it so Lucifer will have to be tied up in Hell and forced to be a servant, like Crowley was when Lucifer escaped in season 11. It is a plan that will obviously blow up in Crowley’s face when Lucifer easily escapes but it would be like Crowley to overestimate his power. 

Men of Letters Are All That Are Left 

If Lucifer is well and truly caged for the rest of the season, that means the only villain left for Sam and Dean to fight is the British Men of Letters. There is no doubt that the Men of Letters, especially Mr. Ketch, are a dangerous and ruthless group. But they don’t exactly seem like villains and especially not Supernatural villains. The Men of Letters feel more like not-so-friendly rivals than the arch-nemeses of Sam and Dean. 

They are bad news but it is going to be hard to build a whole season around them. Nothing about the Men of Letters poses a direct threat to Sam and Dean, maybe to the way they do things but not their own lives. The way Supernatural could make things work is if the Men of Letters are tied up with the Lucifer plot. They could start fighting with Sam and Dean on how to bring the fallen angel down. Of course for that to work, Lucifer needs to still be free. 


The (Way Too) Angry Secret Service Agent 

This could very well be grasping at straws but it was a suspicious moment nonetheless. When Sam and Dean were arrested by the Secret Service for attempted assassination of the President, Supernatural made a point of showing the main agent of the episode glaring daggers at them. He seemed way too angry at Sam and Dean, even if he did think they just tried to kill the President. The agent’s face looked so enraged and so personally offended it was shocking his eyes didn’t flick red with Lucifer’s classic expression. It would have been record time for Lucifer to possess a vessel so quickly but the fact that Supernatural let that possibility exist in the audience’s heads suggests that Lucifer has much more havoc to wreak in season 12. 

So what do you think? Is Lucifer still free at the end of “LOTUS?” Do you think Supernatural would have made him being caged so easy? Are there any other reasons you are suspicious? 

Supernatural season 12 will return Thursday, January 26 at 8/7c on The CW. Want more news? Like our Supernatural Facebook page!

(Image courtesy of The CW)