‘Supernatural’ Season 15 Episode 20 Recap: “Carry On” Series Finale

Supernatural Season 15 Episode 20
Jared Padalecki as Sam and Jensen Ackles as Dean in ‘Supernatural’ season 15 episode 20 (Photo: Robert Falconer © 2020 The CW Network, LLC)

The day finally arrived for The CW’s Supernatural to end, and it sure did conclude in such a way that this brotherly tale is over. After last week’s episode finished off in such a way that it seemed to be the ending, the actual finale served as an epilogue to everything that’s happened so far.

Things start off in wonderfully mundane fashion, as the Winchesters do stuff like their daily chores but are happy to do so since they’re finally free of Chuck’s influence.

It seems as if there’s a serious case on their hands when it turns out that Dean (Jensen Ackles) only wanted to go to a pie festival and try out six different types of pies. Sam (Jared Padalecki) is still missing Castiel and Jack, but Dean assures him that their sacrifices were supposed to be for the brothers’ benefit and they would want them to be happy. In agreement, Sam smacks Dean in the face with a pie, feeling better since that’s something he always wanted to do.

As for the final case ever on the show, it shows a family being attacked with the father killed and the mother’s tongue removed. The masked assailants seem to have kidnapped the sons and Sam and Dean show up to investigate – called Agents Kripke and Singer after the creator and longtime director of the series, respectively. The oddness of the case reminds the boys of something in John’s journal and the two track down the location of what they believe to be vampires.

It happens to be at a barn where the boys quickly realize they’re outnumbered. After killing a few off, they’re overpowered and Dean realizes one of them is Jenny, the vampire from the first-ever episode to feature these beings back in season one. Jenny’s hopes for revenge are cut literally short as Sam decapitates her from behind and turns the tide of the fight. The boys are able to win the struggle but at the expense of Dean who gets rammed into an exposed nail on the barn post.

Realizing this is it, Dean asks Sam not to call for help and to stay with him. He makes Sam promise not to bring him back because things always go wrong for them this way. He confesses how he thinks Sam is stronger and wiser than him, and how he had stood out staring at his door for hours back when he’d reached out to him in the first episode because he was scared Sam would turn him down. A distraught Sam pleads for Dean not to die, but the latter assures him he’ll always be with Sam in spirit and asks Sam’s consent in letting him pass away. Sam tells Dean it’s okay and that he can go now and watches his brother die in his arms.

After burning Dean’s body as a hunter’s funeral goes, Sam starts life alone. He’s shown depressed and completely lonely in the bunker as he wanders around the empty halls thinking of Dean and remembering how his brother, Mary, Jack, and Castiel used to be with him. In Dean’s room, Sam picks up his brother’s other “other” cell phone and gets a call from someone in Texas for a case. With his mind set to keep fighting like Dean wanted, but wanting to move on, Sam walks out of the Men of Letters HQ all packed up and leaves the place behind for good.

In Heaven, Dean arrives to find Bobby (Jim Beaver) – the real one, not that lame Apocalypse World version – waiting for him outside Harvelle’s roadhouse. Dean believes he’s seeing a memory, but Bobby informs him that Jack, before he left, fixed Heaven by tearing down all the walls and removing the endless loops of memories. Now, Heaven is open for every soul that enters and they can meet each other whenever they want. John and Mary are not too far away either, as Bobby points out, and Jack apparently resurrected Castiel from the Empty to help him out.

However, Dean still thinks it’s only “almost perfect” because Sam’s not there, to which Bobby responds that time flows differently in Heaven and Sam will be here soon enough. As for now, Dean decides to take a ride in the heavenly version of the Impala and sets off.

The series’ trademark song of “Carry On Wayward Son” begins as, on Earth, Sam is shown walking hand in hand with his son, Dean Winchester Jr. Yes, Sam has settled down in the normal life he’d always wanted and he even has his own house, wife, and child that he adores. The years pass in this montage as Sam becomes old and is shown in the Impala he’s treasured while still remembering his older brother.

Cut to several years further, and Sam is now on his deathbed, with pictures of his life and his family surrounding him. His now-adult son comes by his side and tells him it’s okay and that he can go now. Accepting his death, Sam holds his son’s hand and finally passes away.

In Heaven, Dean is done with his ride and ends up at a bridge resembling the one seen in the first episode. He looks on before turning around to see his little brother, once again young and happy to see him. The two embrace each other after such a long separation, finally reunited and never to be apart again.

The show ends there, but Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles deliver a special message thanking all the fans that watched for 15 years. The final shot is of the entire crew waving goodbye as director Robert Singer calls cut.

The series was never going to give a completely satisfying ending since expectations always run wild, but I did love this episode for its heartwarming sentiment. The fact remains that the show was always about the love story of the brothers, and there couldn’t have been any other way to end things. I’d have liked to have seen characters like Adam and Castiel show up and get their deserved happy endings, but I’ll take what I can get. Plus, it’s clear the Covid-19 pandemic prevented the showrunners from going all-out with the presentation of the finale.

It was an honor for me to follow this show right from the first episode, having been 12-years-old at the time and now finishing things up as a 27-year-old. Supernatural will always be near and dear to its fans and we’ll have these memories to cherish forever, just like Sam and Dean.

Saim Cheeda