The Supernatural season 12 was little more than a bloodbath for how many characters were suddenly (brutally) killed off. Yet as high as the body toll climbed at the end of season 12, there was always a sense that those who got the axe wouldn’t be gone forever. While one of the victims, Castiel, has already returned to life in season 13, Supernatural chose the episode “War of the Worlds” to introduce another. Despite being killed, execution style, by Mary Winchester Ketch is back and badder than ever on Supernatural and that might not be for better, in more ways than one. 

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The Best of the Worst?

If there’s one thing to be said of Arthur Ketch it’s that character does make an impression. Love, hate or love to hate him Ketch was one of the true success stories (in terms of memorability) when it came to the British Men of Letters storyline. While most of the British Men of Letters were reduced to evil men and women in suits, Ketch had a wealth of personality. 

Ketch is a great character but an even better antagonist because he’s so unapologetically screwed up. While there were early hints in season 12 that Ketch might be able to be redeemed, by the end it became clear that he wasn’t just a “company man” as he claimed in “War of the Worlds.” Ketch is a sociopath and monstrous killer but that’s part of his charm. Ketch is a dark mirror to Dean. Ketch represents what Dean would be like without Sam, or any kind of moral restrictions in his life. 

Supernatural has toiled with similar foils in the past. One of the most notable, probably, being Sterling K. Brown’s Gordon Walker back in seasons 2 and 3. Yet Ketch still made a real impression in season 12 as he believes himself to be a good guy. Ketch has a strange obsession with the Winchesters, particularly Mary. This creepy and wildly misguided sense that he’s one of them, takes Ketch from a minor villain to a threatening and engaging monster. 

All of this is true about Ketch and it’s no wonder why Supernatural thought it would be a good idea to bring such a character back into the fold. The show has never been one to turn away effective characters, particularly villains. Yet for all his morbid charisma, Supernatural season 13 doesn’t really need Ketch to be in the mix. 

Too Many Villains

“War of the Worlds” didn’t just bring Ketch back, Supernatural also had him align with Asmodeus. In theory, the right way to go. The worst thing in bringing back Ketch would be to make him a free agent, adding another storyline on Supernatural season 13’s already crowded plate. At least now Ketch will be involved with the primary focus on season 13, so far, Jack. 

Still Supernatural season 13 has bitten off way more than it can reasonably chew for the rest of the season. The season is just getting started, the episode number hasn’t even reached double digits yet. However, Supernatural didn’t need the added element of Ketch’s “resurrection” to make the season more interesting or compelling. The show is already binging around storylines at a dizzying rate, the show needs to slow down not speed up. 

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Between Asmodeus, Lucifer, the new Michael and the reveal that Billie the Reaper is alive and the new Death, Supernatural doesn’t need any more antagonists. In fact, it could use with trimming a few of them to make the season more cohesive. Bring backing Ketch at all isn’t an issue but bringing him into season 13, while its current state, is a bit of conundrum. 

Given how charismatic Ketch is, his return will likely only complicate issues more than usual because he’s just going to naturally draw screen time and attention. Even if he was brought on to Asmodeus’s side as a gun for hire and mercenary, Ketch’s still going to be the focus for a lot of his scenes, no matter who else is on screen. Between Asmodeus and Ketch, Ketch is the much more established which is sure to cut off the new villain at the knees when it comes to development. 

There’s hope that Supernatural will settle down sometime, very soon, in season 13. However, the arrival of Ketch rather than feel exciting or exhilarating just feels vaguely exhausting. It’s impressive that thirteen years into a series Supernatural can still add fuel to the story fire but it might’ve been in the show’s best interest to walk (before they ran) in season 13 and part of that includes not bringing back Ketch.

But do you agree? Are you happy Ketch is back? 

Supernatural season 13 airs Thursdays at 8/7c on the CW. For more SPN updates, follow BuddyTV’s Supernatural Facebook page.

(Image courtesy of the CW)

Derek Stauffer

Contributing Writer, BuddyTV

Derek is a Philadelphia based writer and unabashed TV and comic book junkie. The time he doesn’t spend over analyzing all things nerdy he is working on his resume to be the liaison to the Justice League.