#TransformationTuesday: How Rowena went from villain to beloved witch


Photo Credit: Supernatural/The CW/Dean Buscher Image Acquired from CW TV PR

Rowena MacLeod was introduced in Supernatural Season 10 but quickly became a character to root for.

Many Supernatural fans are still not happy about Rowena MacLeod’s ending in Season 12. There are beliefs that she’s not actually dead, especially since the showrunners recently confirmed that Ruth Connell would reprise the role. When she was first introduced in Season 10, she was viewed as the enemy and the potential big bad of the season. That quickly changed, as she captured the heart of the fans.

Just how did she transform so much? Here’s a look at the storylines that helped develop her character to make fans fall in love with her.

Constantly on her own

Rowena’s backstory was told over the period of a few episodes. Initially she said she didn’t know who Crowley’s father was, but that story changed. It turns out Rowena had had an affair with a married man and the married man abandoned her after the birth of Crowley. From that moment, Rowena refused to be weak and rely on others.

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It’s not that surprising that she developed an interest in magic. She was a neglectful and abusive mother to Crowley, but there was the ability to feel for her as a woman of her time. It’s worth remembering that she was born in the 1600s, when women were viewed as second class citizens and being a witch was an extremely dangerous thing.

As a natural witch, she had powers that weren’t linked to the selling of her soul. She needed help to harness and control those powers, but was constantly rejected in Scotland. Eventually she learned, but it was in Milan and she’d left her son behind for power. This was a storyline that should have made fans hate Rowena, but they realized her desperation.

Realizing power didn’t make her happy

Throughout her time on the series, Rowena has straddled the line of good and evil. She’s helped the Winchesters, God, and others time and time again, but mostly when it was in her own interest. Her aim was power, because she feared being left weakened like she was after Crowley’s birth.

In the end, Rowena learned a harsh lesson. Power wouldn’t make her happy and she needed people in her lives. She also realizes that sometimes her actions have bad consequences and helps the Winchesters put some things right. This character growth helped fans love her even more, seeing that she wasn’t entirely selfish.

Later she even helped to save Dean without the promise of anything. Sure she wanted the Black Grimoire out of it, but she never got it and never did get revenge. Instead, she accepted that the Winchesters owed her one for her help.


She had sass, confidence, and was relatable

One of the reasons Rowena became such a loved character was by being relatable. There were genuine fears and worries. Past experiences made her the person she was, leading to her searching for power and forming the belief that power would be the only way to make her happy. She worshipped the wrong people, realizing that they weren’t quite who she thought. She had a false belief in Lucifer, only to learn that he wasn’t quite the arch-angel she was promised.

Rowena would hide behind sass and confidence. She would try to manipulate events but would sometimes fail. There were times her plans paid off, which helped to create a person that was easy to accept. Her flaws made her human and being relatable made it possible for people to fall in love with her. The transformation and adaptation over the years made her go from distrusted to loved by the fans.

The Supernatural showrunners have said that Rowena will return. Whether she comes back as the fans’ Rowena or one from the alternate world is unknown. However, Ruth Connell is reprising the role at some point in Supernatural Season 13.

Next: #WCW: Rowena MacLeod

Supernatural continues on Thursdays at 8/7c on The CW.

Is Rowena a character you love? Are you excited for her return? Share in the comments below.