A “Supernatural” Theory

Rowena

Rowena

I am obsessed with Supernatural.  I jumped on the ship about a decade late, but I think I am all the more thoroughly obsessed due to the month-or-so-long binge and I have a theory.  Well, it is more of a prediction or perhaps a wish.  For those of you unfamiliar with the show (if you are not up-to-date with this season and want to avoid spoilers, bail out now), one of the main characters, Dean, got the Mark of Cain last season, became a demon, became human again, and is now fighting unimaginable rage to avoid killing just everyone.  In an adjacent and slightly overlapping storyline, Crowley, the current king of Hell, has been reunited with his mother, Rowena, who is an ancient and powerful witch.

Rowena is slowly manipulating Crowley to take over Hell and seems to perhaps want the First Blade (the blade Cain used to kill Abel).  Now, before I go on, I should describe Rowena.  She is awesome.  She is a terrible person who threw everything, including her son, aside to pursue power.  She is insanely manipulative and not at all nice.  Just a really fun character to watch.  She is wildly independent and only seems to participate in organized groups, such as the Great Coven, when is benefits her.  She is also a crazily powerful witch.  She is the only known person to have a spell that kills demons and it is pretty gross when she does it.  She is clearly evil, or at least wildly amoralistic, and has her shit together.

Now, here is what I want to to happen.  Having the Mark of Cain seems to make a person a demon eventually without all the years and torture is Hell (maybe, Dean kind of did some of that early on in the show) and this could, presumably, give Rowena some power.  Perhaps she will need this to become Queen of Hell which, based on her enjoyment of Crowley’s throne, seems to be her current goal.  So, I want her to get the mark.  This would solve Dean’s problem (although I also like the storyline of him battling the murder urges and winning) and take the mark from him.  But, more importantly, I think the wielder of the Mark and the First Blade is less powerful than Rowena.  I want her to become a demon, her new demon powers to override her in-born witch powers, and for her, while still a very powerful demon, to be less powerful than she was before.

The First Blade

The First Blade

Why do I want this?  First, it is a pretty classic Faustian bargain situation and I always enjoy those stories.  People wanting something dangerous or stupid get it and hate it.  I think the writers of the show could tell this story really well.  Second, and most importantly, it would be an amazing feminist storyline.  This amazingly strong woman who has always gotten her power by defying convention, doing what she wants until she needs to run, buys into perhaps the second biggest patriarchy (perhaps first, it is contenting with Heaven) on the planet.  True, she is trying to take it over, but by their rules.  She literally becomes one of them in order to lead them and, while she may be able to succeed, becomes less powerful for it.

It is not a story about how a woman could not hack it in a male-dominant organization.  It is a story about how she can do quite well there, but loses just about everything else she works for to do it.  This could be seen as a  metaphor for women giving up x, y or z for corporate success, and that is certainly true. However, I would want to see it be more about perhaps having to work a little harder and littler longer, but still achieving something great, to maintain who you are while doing it. Rowena is proud to be a witch.  She clearly thinks it is the best thing to be ever.  But her son’s throne is such a shiny bauble for a power-mad individual, especially one that is still essentially a long-lived human, how can she resist?

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About Tori

I am a graduate student working on my masters in Women and Gender studies. My masters thesis is on the gender nonconformity and ambiguity in modern film.
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