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Recap / Supernatural S 14 E 08 Byzantium

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Written by: Meredith Glynn

Directed by: Eduardo Sánchez

Air date: December 6, 2018

Jack's death causes turbulence for those around him. Wanting to try everything they can to bring Jack back to life, Sam and Castiel seek out the help of Lily Sunder, with Dean reluctantly acceding. Meanwhile, Jack's reunion with Kelly in Heaven is imperiled when the Empty attacks Heaven to claim the Nephilim.



  • Afterlife Antechamber: Anubis resides in one. It looks like a dusty old office where all the files on the souls he judges are stored.
  • Back from the Dead: The ritual and Castiel's actions in Heaven allow Jack to come back to life.
  • Bargain with Heaven: Sam and Dean summon Anubis, as part of their deal with Lily, to have her judged and get her into Heaven. It doesn't work as Anubis tells them that, while he administers the test that judges them, its ultimately the deeds that humans commit in life that decide where they go after they die.
  • Birth/Death Juxtaposition: The moment Jack is resurrected, Lily suffers a fatal heart attack.
  • Continuity Nod: When Castiel explains about Anubis, the Egyptian god of the dead, Sam mentions his and Dean's encounter with his father, Osiris, in "Defending Your Life (S07, E04)". Dean comments that he was a major dick.
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  • Death Seeker: Played with. Lily Sunder stopped performing spells after killing Ishim, which causes her to rapidly age and eventually die. Since she got her revenge, she no longer has a reason to live. However, she also gives a different reason for the decision: her soul has been eaten up by her continuous use of spells, there is only a little piece left. If she uses it up, she can't enter any afterlife, and by extension, Heaven, where her daughter May resides.
  • Drowning My Sorrows: Sam, Dean, and Castiel drink heavily at their wake for Jack.
  • Heaven Seeker: Lily Sunder, albeit not for the usual reason. She wants to go to Heaven because that's where her daughter is in.
  • Hell Invades Heaven: The Shadow invades Heaven so it can claim Jack, which it believes is its property. Played with in that the Shadow is not allied to Hell itself, but its own plane of existence.
  • Heroic Sacrifice:
    • Castiel trades his life with Jack for the Shadow to claim. Fortunately, the Shadow decides to postpone the payment.
    • Lily helps the Winchesters resurrect Jack at the cost of her remaining life force even with the threat of going to Hell hanging over her head. This act of sacrifice is enough to reverse Anubis' previous judgement and allow her to go to Heaven.
  • Judgement of the Dead: After God left Heaven, Anubis was given the job to judge which afterlife souls will go after they die. When Dean and Sam say that they aren't familiar with him, after their multiple experiences with death before, he casually handwaves this by saying that they met his assistants.
  • Karma Meter: Anubis possesses an abacus that can measure a person's deeds. If the white beads outnumber the black ones, they get to enter Heaven, while if the opposite is true, they enter Hell.
  • Mama Bear: Kelly shows what a protective mom she is even in death. When the Shadow attempts to claim Jack, she holds him in a protective gesture while Castiel is duking it out with it, and even attempts to help him fight it.
  • The Needs of the Many: Naomi reasons that if the Shadow's demand for Jack is not satisfied, it will wreck Heaven and disperse 46,750,000,000 souls it contains, emphasis on the latter part.
  • No Immortal Inertia: Lily has stopped using magic, allowing age to almost catch up with her, although she doesn't quite look like someone who was an adult in 1901.
  • Pet the Dog: After Lily dies Anubis meets with her, redoes his previous judgement of her and allows her to go to Heaven even telling her to say hello to her daughter from him.
  • Reality Ensues: Jack is half-human half-angel, with both a soul and a grace. When he dies, there is a bit of a headache which afterlife he would go to, since, as a human, he can go to either Heaven or Hell, but as an angel, he is bound for the Empty too.
  • Secret Test of Character: Lily's aiding of Jack and the Winchesters after Anubis has told her she has no chance of escaping Hell results in a reverse of judgment.
  • A Wolf in Sheep's Clothing: The Shadow tags along with Castiel while possessing Duma.

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