Saturday, May 5, 2012

"Reading is Fundamental" Supernatural Recap and Review

I was out late tonight, so I started watching late. I generally watch through once, then again with pausing to do my recap/review. But I don't have time for that this week, so I'm pausing at the commercials to write my impressions of each act.

So we open this episode with parallel storylines. Kevin Tran, a stereotypically driven Asian-American teenager, is following his rigid schedule and fretting about getting a perfect math SAT score and having nothing to say for his college application essay. In the meantime, Sam and Dean are holing up in another abandoned property, this time with their stolen goodies: Whatever Dick was so desperate to find with all his archeological digging.

I love that the boys wear safety glasses. I mean, they live the most reckless, death-defying lives... They don't wear seatbelts! But protect those eyes, kids.

Dean, ever subtle, strikes the hardened clay with a hammer. Which immediately kicks up a thunderstorm. After it happens again, he says, "Does that sound like 'wait, no, stop' to you?" Then he shrugs and does it anyway. As he pulls out an ancient tablet, Kevin Tran is possessed by something we've never seen before, and Cas awakens.

In the morning, Sam has found nothing about the item or the writing, which he doesn't recognize. But it caused very odd lightning storms and every woman within a month of her due date to go into labor. Bobby's around, but his juice was apparently sapped by the haunted house adventure, a good enough reason to explain why Jim Beaver didn't guest star in this episode.

Since Dick will be coming after the tablet, they agree to go to ground in Rufus's cabin. Before they can, though, Meg calls, says Cas is awake and different, and tells them to start driving.

In the meantime, Dick's right-hand man gets a call from his boss, for whom he seems to have little respect. "Strange, isn't it? That someone would choose to be named Dick?" He's been going over plans for a building, and says something about the line panicking when they turn the corner and see the blade assembly up ahead. I'm thinking they're building their human-processing plant.

Also in the meantime, Kevin Tran awakens in control of his body, but only enough to really panic that he's missing his test. Then his possessor takes over, and next thing we know, the day is over, he's in a suit and driving his mother's car to who-knows-where. He's with it enough to answer the phone and relay his orders (take the car, don't stop), but not enough to apparently comprehend what's going on. He's in a total trance.

Okay, on to Act II! :)

And OMG I want to just transcribe this whole scene. I died laughing! Cas is back in his trench coat. Despite Sam and Dean's concerns, he's pretty calm and happy, even though he claims he remembers everything. He plays "pull my finger" and blows out all the lights. And snickers!

He apparently turned into the kid from Touch. "It's all right there, the whole plan, there's nothing to add." He does manage to convey some relevant information. He heard a ping pierce him and wake him up. Sam shows him the tablet, and Cas is all, "Oh, of course. You were the ones. If someone was going to free The Word from the vault of the earth, it would be you two. I love you guys!" Group hug!

But wait, wait. This is the best part.

"Did you know a cat's penis is sharply barbed along its shaft? I know for a fact the females were not consulted about that."

And then this exchange:

Cas: "This is the handwriting of Metatron."

Sam: "Metatron! You're saying a Transformer wrote that?"

Dean: "No. That's Megatron."

Sam: "What?!"

Dean: "The Transformer. It's Megatron."

Sam: "What?!"

Cas. "Me-Ta-Tron. He's an angel. He's the scribe of God. He took down dictation when Creation was being formed."

I loved Sam's reaction. That's what I think whenever I hear his name! LOL Given Sam's research geekhood and all the religious texts they've had to consult, some might scoff that Sam had never heard of Metatron. But no one can know everything. And his repeated "What?!" is said in the manner of someone not used to knowing something, so I thought it was all in character.

Cas can't read it, though. It wasn't meant for angels. When Meg reaches for the tablet and the boys tell her to back off, Cas says "Don't like conflict" and disappears, dropping the tablet, which breaks.

Meg, annoyed by Sam's silence, takes off. He chases her, leaving the bag in the room. Of course, it's gone when he hears something and goes back. He chases Kevin Tran, and he and Meg stop him. But Kevin, who is again himself, has his arms locked around the bag. He literally can't let go.

I love the music in this episode. Very reminiscent of season one.

Dean goes to find Cas, and wants his help with the Leviathans. He asks Cas if he remembered what he did. Cas picks up the game of Sorry and shakes the box, laying out the board and pieces in half a second. "You go first," he tells Dean, a little pointedly. They play, Cas being all philosophical and stuff. Dean gets pissed and sweeps the board. He wants Cas to take ownership for what he did. Cas seems to keep deflecting. I'm not sure if he's actively implying that Dean's as culpable as he is. If so, he's not wrong. Dean did contribute to Cas's path. He ignored him, demanded help but offered none in return. But the thing is, Dean never stopped trying to fix whatever mistakes could be laid at his feet, so he's justified in his anger at Cas.

Kevin tells Sam and Meg the tablet is for him, he's supposed to keep it. When Sam has him open the bag, he heals the pieces. He can also "read" the text, in a manner of speaking. More like understand it. It talks about Leviathans. Sam wants to know how to kill them. But two angels appear. They call Kevin a prophet and are about to kill Sam and Meg (his demon lover—once you have a reputation...). But Cas sensed them and comes in, smiling. Hester and Anais seem shocked, maybe a little happy, a little angry. Cas can't give them what they're looking for, though. He gets flustered and awkward. Hester says, "You're insane." But Dean uses the old blood symbol and blows all the angels back to their corners, buying them a few hours. Kevin goes a little crazy himself, pushed to the limit by these nonstop revelations.

They go to the cabin, Meg bringing Cas back to them. He helpfully explains the angels from his garrison want to take the prophet to the desert to learn the word of God. Instead Dean takes Kevin to the basement ("Is this a sex torture room?") to translate the Word. Kevin freaks again (yay, someone who has realistic reaction to the supernatural! LOL). He's been reported missing and it's gone federal, and Meg has a couple of demons on her tail. She dispatches them (wow, equipped with an angel blade and a demon knife, this chick's got some serious survival focus!) and goes back to insist to the others that she's on their side. She says she figured out this world, that one has to have a cause, a reason to get up in the morning. She's simpler than they think. Her cause used to be YED and raising Lucifer, but things change. Now it's taking down the King. She insists Crowley is always the problem.

But killing the demons alerted the angels, who blast their way in. Cas and Dean try to convince them they'll take care of the prophet. Dean says they're trying to clean up an angel's mess, but doesn't out Cas. Cas backs him up. "Even after they begged and begged him not to." Hester wants none of it. She's furious about everything, and she's about to kill Cas when Meg kills her. Cas looks more than a little in love at this point.

Anais says these are strange times. Cas says they always were, and declines to go with him, saying he's not part of the garrison anymore.

Kevin has finished translating the "in case of emergency note" and the angels take him home to watch over him. Nice! Someone who has crossed the Winchester path and came out okay on the other side.

Meg's gone. Cas says she enjoys laying low.

Sam finds the recipe for slaying the Levs. "A bone of a righteous mortal washed in the three bloods of the fallen." They have to start with the blood of a fallen angel. Cas looks like he knew this all along, a little smug as he says, "You know me, always happy to bleed for the Winchesters." He hands over a bottle. Dean asks what he's going to do. "I don't know. Isn't that amazing?" Very.

I'm suspicious of this FBI guy. Yep, He's a goo-man. He kills both angels and turns into the right-hand man. I wish I could remember his name. Victor? Oh, man. I spoke way too soon about Kevin!

Whew, what a preview! The blood they need appears to be Crowley's and the alpha vamp's, but the vamp decides his interests lie on the other side. Yikes!

Only two episodes left! What did you guys think of this one?


Anonymous said...

You know I'm not sure what I thought, Nat. Which is weird. I wanted Bobby there giving his two cents because he has so much knowledge the boys don't. I liked Kevin and enjoyed his reactions for their believability. The Rain Man Cas annoyed me. He had his charm at times, but I just found myself irked by another change for the worse. I did like that Meg didn't sell them out to the demons. But overall the episode just kind of left me bleh.

And a little OT, did you read that Jensen said he wasn't happy with the reunion with Cas? Both guys felt the dialogue was out of character for them and felt Sera made it too mushy because she's a girl. Apparently they went round and round to make it something they could at least live with. I find it interesting that the boys have never really voiced displeasure with the show before this season.

Natalie J. Damschroder said...

At least it looks like Bobby will be there for the end game, even if he wasn't on site for this episode.

I saw headlines that mentioned Jensen being unhappy, but I don't read spoilers and didn't know if that meant the REAL reunion, which happened a few episodes ago, or this "reunion" when he woke up.

And OMG, come on. I'm seriously pissed off at any implication of mushiness because she's a girl. First of all, there has been TONS of mushy dialogue in 7 years, all written by guys, much of it by Kripke himself. Secondly, "at least live with" is interesting because there was zero mushiness between them. It was just Dean being angry and not having a single kind word for Cas, only demanding his help, just like in all of season 6.

Thirdly, calling SERA mushy? She gets credit for 90% of the deaths of major characters! She's the anti-mush! AND she didn't write the episode, Ben Edlund did. I haven't been happy with the new edges and some of the changes Sera made as showrunner, but I have to scoff at that accusation.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, the girl comment rubbed me wrong too. The episode they were talking about is when Cas first comes back, before the nut house. It's the conversation between Dean and Cas in the car.

Natalie J. Damschroder said...

Okay, that makes more sense. LOL Sorry I got so het up in the wrong direction!