Filed under: Recaps & Reviews
The life of a hunter just got that much worse.
After Maggie fails to update her regular check in, Sam and Dean watch her body cam footage and see that she may have been taken by a ghoul. With no time to waste, the two drive out to Oklahoma and investigate the property where she was last seen. They talk with the groundskeeper and convince him that they are with the city's historical society and would like to speak with the owner. It's then that they meet Neil, who is surprised that the city would have sent another group of people to inspect the property. Imagine Sam and Dean's surprise when they see Mary and Bobby is sitting there, waiting. They settle the confusion and investigate together but Bobby is pretty upset with Sam that he sent Maggie by herself and suggests that she wasn't ready. He says that a real leader wouldn't have done that and would know better. Sam takes this to heart but no one knows if Maggie is dead or alive or what is even happening at the house. As it turns out, Neil is the nurse to the owner of the home, Mr. Rawling, who happens to be near death and hooked up to several machines keeping him alive. Also a coincidence is how Mr. Rawling looks like the exact ghoul that attacked Maggie in her video. Either Mr. Rawling is only a ghoul by night or something else may be going on here. It's possible Mr. Rawling is able to psychically manifest monsters to attacks those around him but Maggie is still out there and needs help.
For the traditional monster of the week story, Nightmare Logic was a pretty tough watch with an uneven story and scattered moments that never ended up being greater than the whole. As far as intros go, Nightmare Logic had a good setup with one of Sam's new hunters being attacked and going missing. It's a safe start but one that I was immediately interested in as Maggie hasn't had a lot of screen time this season and it's a great way to show the bond that Sam has with the team that he now works with every day. Their safety matters and this was the way to show it. After arriving at the Rawling property, things started to feel pretty shaky. Bobby's comments that Sam messed up were valid but Sam offered nothing in return. Let's not forget that this isn't the same Bobby as the past but one from a different reality. The result was Sam looking like a punching bag when he never stood up for himself. Having Sam called out for being a bad leader is one thing but not having anything in the episode to show us different was pointless. It wasn't as if Sam came up with the plan or killed the djinn at the end - that was Dean. Nightmare Logic was the opportunity show that Sam Winchesters is becoming a leader but it was really just his mom and brother supporting him and then Bobby apologizing for a weak ending at the end. It's a small thing but something that should have been the cornerstone of the episode.
Another problem with Nightmare Logic is how it never had a focus that drove the episode forward. Originally, that sounded like it was finding Maggie but based on how little Maggie had to do with the plot, it wasn't. Then it sounded like it may have been Sam's journey to be a leader but that didn't get much attention either. Finally, there's was Bobby's past with what happened to his son and also Dean's chat with Sasha on the resentment that she had towards her father. All of it felt disconnected and not tied into the djinn that was at the root of the problems here. On top of all of that, the djinn mentioned that he could bring people's nightmares to life but that only happened to Bobby and not Sam, Dean or Mary. Cool idea but it never amounted to much. Sasha didn't believe in the supernatural (pun intended) so why was she attacked by one? It may be a power upgrade from Michael but how is it any better than trapping people in a fantasy and slowly killing them? Don't even get me started on the Mary and Bobby romance that may be happening.
Nightmare Logic is probably the weakest episode of season fourteen so far. Are there only five episodes? Sure. It's still pretty bad though. Maybe things will improve when Dean takes a case with Jack in next week's episode, Optimism.