Can you believe that we're about to watch Season 11 of Supernatural ? That means many of us fans have been watching the Winchester brothers fight monsters, demons, angels, and the apocalypse for more than a decade — and loved every single insane second of it. Now Dean and Sam are about to face quite possibly their biggest threat yet: The Darkness has been released and it's looking to be quite the rampage on the world. How exactly does one stop an unknown, unformed entity that can overtake people and destroy them in the most bloody fashion? If anyone can figure that out, it's Dean and Sam. But before we get to the dangers of Season 11, let's look back and recap Supernatural Season 10 to truly understand what the boys might be up against.
Season 10 began with quite a bang. We had just seen Dean die in the Season 9 finale only to be resurrected as a demon with the help of Crowley. So what could possibly come next? The show fully embraced the idea of Demon Dean, or Deanmon, which is quite possibly the greatest nickname ever. But while it was fun to see Deanmon singing karaoke, he was clearly empty and dark, and it was hard to see him like that. While he was eventually cured of his demonness, there was still a lot of danger left for the boys to face in Season 10.
Dean's life as a demon isn't off to the best start... For the audience at least. Dean himself is living it up, but he's clearly in a dark place, as between karaoke performances and one-night stands, he's beating people up and not remotely caring about Sam. He's even working for Crowley, but after defying his orders, Crowley sends Dean's address to Sam, so he can go get his brother back. In return, Crowley gets the First Blade from Sam. Dean is eventually cured of his demonism thanks to sanctified blood (using the same method they tried to use on Crowley in Season 8). But the problem isn't completely solved, since Dean still has the Mark of Cain. Throughout the rest of the season, Dean is forced to try and keep the violent streak caused by the Mark of Cain at bay. Unfortunately, it gets tougher and tougher, especially after Dean kills Cain himself.
The Mark of Cain's effect eventually gets so bad, with Dean massacring people left and right, that he turns to Death for a solution or a way out. Death suggests that Dean be sent away from Earth to stop himself from hurting anyone, but says he has to kill Sam first, because Sam would work tirelessly to get Dean back. When the time comes to do the deed, Dean instead stabs Death, who disintegrates. In the meantime, Rowena helps Crowley and Castiel get the Mark off of Dean by using the Book of the Damned. When the Mark leaves Dean, it turns into a black fog that envelops the land. The Darkness has risen, and Dean and Sam attempt to make their escape but are trapped.
Sam's story is all about Dean in Season 10. In the early episodes, he spends most of his time trying to find Dean so that he can convince him to return home and be cured of his demonism. After that miraculously works, Sam has to contend with the fact that his brother is deeply affected by the Mark of Cain. As he sees Dean slaughter people and give in to the bloodlust, he tries not to let his faith falter and focuses on finding a way to remove the Mark. Still, Sam is quickly losing hope.
Dean eventually runs from Sam, and when he is called back by his older brother, Sam knows he's there to die. Thankfully Dean "kills" Death instead and turns to Sam when the Mark finally disappears from his arm. Things look positive for about five seconds before the Darkness descends.
For the first time in a while, we actually got to see Crowley have a legitimate story outside of his interactions and stories involving Dean and Sam. In Season 10, Crowley is reunited with his mother, Rowena, a powerful witch who went from being the most hated person in Crowley's mind to manipulating him into hurting the boys and generally doing all kinds of hateful, evil things. All of this was an effort for Rowena make herself more powerful, and she didn't once seem to actually care about Crowley. He turns away from the Winchesters for a while, but then comes back together when he discovers his mother's lies. But their relationship is tainted.
When we last see Crowley, Rowena has just helped removed the Mark of Cain from Dean using the Book of the Damned. Once Rowena gains more power from the book, she puts a spell on Castiel to attack Crowley, so his future is now uncertain.
Castiel does some major support work for the Winchesters in Season 10, but he also gets a bit of character development for his previous identity as Jimmy. While trying to help Sam un-demonize Dean and then later get rid of the Mark of Cain, Castiel encounters Jimmy's daughter, Claire. She is living in a rather unfortunate situation with a man named Randy, who robs convenience stores and tries to sell Claire off to loan sharks to pay off his own debts. Castiel, Sam, and Dean find Claire in time, but Dean goes Mark of Cain on everyone and slaughters those who were holding Claire.
Instead of allowing Castiel to help her, Claire later meets with a couple who tell her to kill Dean to avenge the deaths of their fathers. She ultimately can't go through with it and leaves, but she does promise to keep in touch with Castiel, even thought she wants to start a new life. At the very end of the season, Rowena places a spell on Castiel that makes him determined to kill Crowley. It'll be interesting to see where Castiel is when Supernatural returns, especially since it seems like The Darkness will keep Sam and Dean pretty busy in Season 11.
Images: Katie Yu (3), Diyah Pera (2)/The CW