So a demon and an angel are having a drink at a bar...
After finding Castiel on the floor of the bunker and begging for help, Sam and Dean know their friend doesn't have much time. Meanwhile, in a warehouse with broken down cars, Rowena pitches the idea of a mega coven to a few of her fellow witches. Unfortunately for her, the pitch falls flat so she just kills them all. Back at the bunker, Sam and Dean are trying to track down Rowena for a cure for Castiel or Metatron for information about the darkness but aren't turning up much. Suddenly Castiel is overtaken by curse and drops to the floor where he starts convulsing as the curse begins to take a heavier toll. Elsewhere in hell, Uncle Crowley is trying to mold a young Amara into his own little force of nature that can reshape existence to his will but that's not going as well as he hoped. Amara is a faster leaner than he would like and her hunger for souls continues to grow as not even the demons are safe from her insatiable appetite. Back on earth, the Winchesters have tracked down Rowena but they have another problem: Castiel's curse has driven him mad and he's escaped the bunker and if they don't find him soon, the curse will eventually destroy him.
While not quite the epic disaster as last week's Form and Void, The Bad Seed wasn't exactly the leap in quality we may have hoped for. It took a few episodes but Rowena made her return in a rather comical way. Besides a few moments of comedy with the "mega coven" and Sam's lack of surprise at Crowley's scheming, the episode was short on laughs and felt like a paint by numbers story. Castiel was affected by the curse, Winchesters needed to catch Rowena, they caught her, she lifted the curse and she got away after giving a clever remark. The monster of the week formula doesn't fit Supernatural anymore but at least there is some type of mystery going on.
Another ongoing issue with Supernatural is that their stories continue to be simple and lack a lot of the subtext that other shows have used so well over the years. Characters like Sam and Dean have more so been narrating what has been happening opposed to giving us insight to how they feel. Dean's trademark wit isn't as present as it was before and Sam largely mirrored the thoughts of the audience when he commented that, of course Crowley is plotting something and it isn't good.
Strangely enough, the highlight of the episode was the most out of place scene. The scene that took place between the angel and the demon chatting in the bar while having a drink did not fit into the story whatsoever and nothing came of it but it was a great reflection on the direction of Supernatural over the past few years. Demons used to be a big deal and then it was angels but now the two factions don't have the slightest clue of what to do and are almost left behind amidst the chaos of recent events. The angel even commented on how heaven sucks since Hannah died (because it made no sense to kill the character off) while the demon feels just as lost in hell. They feel confused but we are just as easily in the same boat as newer and more powerful forces have emerged that have taken their place yet don't have the same appeal that the old guard had. As powerful as Amara will become, it's unlikely she will have the same lasting impact that Lucifer had.
Despite its faults, The Bad Seed had some humour and the poignant bar scene between the angel and the demon and it feels like the show needs to find its rhythm for the season before it gets going. It looks like the Winchesters will take a break from the Darkness when they take on the case of the werepire... wereghoul or whatever it's called in next week's episode, Baby.