Supernatural S11E19 “The Chitters” REVIEW
Essential Plot Points:
- Two brothers, Matty and Jesse, are talking about Jesse’s new boyfriend, and how he needs to be careful; people in their town aren’t all that accepting. Tragically, their conversation is cut short when Matty gets dragged off by a monster.
- With no leads on Cas or Amara, Sam proposes a distraction: a new case where people are being turned into monsters.
- The sheriff tells them how this has happened two times before, with 27 years between each occurrence, each time including a monster with flashing green eyes.
- Dean questions a witness, Cori, who saw her friend Livvy transformed, left shuddering and buzzing with the tell-tale green eyes.
- Mostly it’s a dead end on leads, except for one woman, Etta Fraser, whose husband disappeared back in ’89. They go talk to her, and she tells them about the “chitters”, where once a generation people go nuts, have orgies and disappear. Plus, it makes the victims’ eyes turn emerald green. Bingo.
- Two high school kids come across two people demonstrating that exact behaviour. The girl gets away, but the boy isn’t so lucky.
- Cori calls Dean to tell him that she’s just seen her friend walking out of the woods. Dean goes to check it out, and sure enough, Livvy is there – along with more of the monsters. He’s saved at the last second by two hunters, Jesse and Cesar.
- They tell Sam and Dean how what they’re hunting is a Bisaan, indigenous to Malaysia, normally. They can only reproduce by possessing humans, and the chittering is their mating call. Creepy.
- Turns out Jesse is the same Jesse from the cold open, who’s looking for revenge for his brother with Cesar, his hunter husband. They’re trying to find the Bisaan’s burrow, but time is running out.
- Dean and Cesar head off to try and find the burrow, whilst Sam and Jesse go to question the former sheriff, Cochran. Turns out he’s been hiding vital information all this time, traumatised since his daughter was possessed in the last wave of attacks. He knows where the burrow is.
- Meanwhile, Dean and Cesar have found the burrow, which, it turns out, is more like a grotesque maternity ward. After grappling with the remaining Bisaan, Dean goes to grab gasoline to burn the whole thing down.
- Before it goes up in flames, Jesse goes to find his brother’s body, and vows to give him a proper burial.
- The next day, as they burn Matty, Dean talks to Sam about asking their two new friends to join forces with them – but Jesse and Cesar had agreed to quit hunting once they’d gotten Jesse’s revenge. Dean agrees, acknowledging that it’s a rare thing for any hunter to get their happy ending.
Once more into monster-of-the-week territory for season 11! A little jarring, considering the showdown between Lucifer and Amara last episode, but hey, at least “The Chitters” is an entertaining watch.
We’re introduced to a new breed of monster this week, the Bisaan, who seem to have a pretty one-track mind. Being possessed by a demon is one thing, but possession by a monster who just wants to use its host for breeding purposes is nightmare fuel! Add in the green flashing eyes and the creepy shuddering and you’ve got one of the creepier monsters of the season.
Sam and Dean aren’t alone hunting these new monsters, though; lucky for them they team up with two veterans in Bisaan hunting, Jesse and Cesar. As is typical for hunters, Jesse was dragged into the world when his brother Matty was dragged off and turned into one of the horrifying monsters, leaving him thirsty for revenge. It’s a path well-worn on Supernatural, with the message often being that revenge doesn’t equal happiness – and, in fact, Dean and Cesar discuss that exact point in the Impala, with both pointing out that they’ve seen hunters get their revenge in the past and still lead miserable lives.
One of the great things about this episode is how casual it is about Jesse and Cesar’s relationship. In the vein of Charlie before them, their sexuality doesn’t define them, and is fully accepted. They aren’t stereotypically gay, which interestingly isn’t the first time Supernatural has put that point across: season eight’s finale showed two gay men who could have easily passed for Bobby Singer-types. It’s another notch on Supernatural’s “inclusivity” belt, of which there’s been a pleasantly surprising amount this season! Keep it up, SPN.
Not to mention, Jesse and Cesar really do get their happy ending, which is more than a little unusual! Jesse gets his revenge, finds his brother and is allowed to give him a proper burial, and receive real closure. He can live the dream: go off and live on a farm with his husband. It’s a bittersweet reminder of something that the Winchesters, in all likelihood, aren’t going to get anytime soon… if ever. They’ve got another apocalypse to avert, after all.
- Nancy Won’s new monster slots well into the Supernatural universe, especially since it’s so creepy! The Bisaan feels almost like an early-season monster.
- Jesse and Cesar are great additions to SPN, and we’d say we definitely want to see them again if not for the fact that it would take them away from the happiness they’ve managed to find.
- Jesse and Cesar are also another example of characters who are gay, but have personalities that don’t revolve around that. You would hardly be able to guess if they hadn’t said! Robbie Thompson has done similar things, notably with Charlie Bradbury, but more recently with the lesbian couple in Safe House – although Jesse and Cesar are much more involved in the goings-on than they were.
- Won’s script is great; she has Sam and Dean’s voices down perfectly.
- It’s kind of annoying that we have to sit through another monster-of-the-week episode rather than ploughing on with the plot, particularly when things are getting really interesting. The constant “we have no leads so let’s do something else” excuse Sam throws out every time it happens is getting so stale.
And the Random:
- Director Eduardo Sanchez is best known for co-directing and co-writing The Blair Witch Project.