Jensen Ackles as Dean Winchester, Jared Padalecki as Sam Winchester in "Supernatural"
Jensen Ackles as Dean Winchester, Jared Padalecki as Sam Winchester in "Supernatural" YouTube/The CW Television Network

“Supernatural” season 12 episode 18 is another filler episode with a twisted version of “the family business” line. “The Memory Remains” is all about family legacy, which Sam and Dean Winchester (Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles respectively) have finally understood what theirs is about.

The following recaps ‘Supernatural’ season 12 episode 18. Spoilers are ahead.

After receiving an assignment for a case from Arthur Ketch (David Haydn-Jones), who was posing in email as the now-dead Mick Davies (Adam Fergus), Sam and Dean went to a town in Wisconsin to investigate. Dean was still trying to get a hold of Castiel (Misha Collins), but the angel is apparently still in heaven trying to gain his fellow angels’ trust.

Their case turned out to involve a family’s legacy, which the surviving son shunned. From the late 1800s to 1997, the Bishops sacrificed people to the god Moloch, who gave them riches in exchange for their service. When local sheriff Barrett Bishop’s father died in 1997, he refused to kill people and decided to put an end to it instead, leaving Moloch to starve to death.

However, Barrett’s half-brother, Pete, discovered Moloch and was promised riches in exchange for feeding the god. And so he continued the family legacy of sacrificing people. He was supposed to sacrifice Barrett next, but instead got Dean when the Winchesters paid the sheriff a visit.

“That’s what we do, right? Hunting people, killing them. The family business,” Pete told Dean the Bishops’ apparent motto, which was completely opposite the Winchesters’ own (“…saving people, hunting things. The family business.” – season 1, episode 2).

Sam and Barrett rescued Dean, with Sam killing Pete and the Moloch, whom he shot using the Colt. The Winchesters offered to help Barrett afterwards, but the sheriff refused, saying that was his cross to bear as that was his family’s legacy. This had the brothers pondering their own legacy.

“We’re not exactly the type of people they write about in history books, you know? But the people we saved, they’re our legacy, and they’ll remember us, and we’ll eventually fade away, too. That’s fine because we left the world better than we found it,” Sam, who is definitely correct, said.

Dean then carved his initials in the library table at the bunker, prompting Sam to follow suit. They had done the same thing to the Impala when they were kids.

Mr Ketch spies on the Winchesters

The case that Mr Ketch (as Mick) sent the Winchesters turned out to be just a distraction. While Sam and Dean were gone, he led a team in the bunker (the US Men of Letters headquarters) to leave spy equipment all over the place. While checking out the place, the British Men of Letter henchman stumbled upon a picture of Mary (Samantha Smith) with a 4-year-old Dean. He took the photo for himself.

Later, when Sam called Mick on the phone, Mr Ketch answered, telling him that Mick was sent back to England after the fiasco with Dagon in the last episode. He then informed Sam and Dean that they would be reporting to him from then on. The brothers, after hanging up the phone, said that they didn’t trust Ketch, unaware that the person they were talking about could hear their every word.

‘The Memory Remains’ review

Although the episode was a filler, it was full of quotable lines. What Sam said about their legacy proves that he ties with Castiel in the running for the most developed character in the series. Sam, like Barrett, was reluctant to go back to hunting in the first season, even previously shunning it for a more normal life.

He has become more accepting of his role as the show progresses, but it wasn’t until season 10 – when he told Claire Novak (Kathryn Newton) that helping people and making a difference were enough of motivation to go hunting – that it was apparent he not only accepted his life as a hunter, but also lived for it. It was also in this season’s episode 9 when he said, “We’re the guys who saved the world,” that he has now appreciated and acknowledged their heroism.

“Supernatural” season 12 airs Thursdays on The CW in the US. In Australia, it airs on Eleven on Mondays.

Read more:
‘Supernatural’ season 12 episode 17 recap and spoilers: ‘The British Invasion’ kills promising character, brings back Eileen
‘Supernatural’ season 12 episode 16 spoilers and recap: Claire reunites with Sam and Dean, Mick grows a conscience in ‘Ladies Drink Free’

Watch ‘Supernatural’ season 12 episode 19 ‘The Future’ trailer