Episode: Supernatural 8.21 – “The Great Escapist”
Original Air Date: May 1, 2013
Screencaps by spn-caps
Heading into the home stretch of the season, we get new characters, new mysteries, and new reasons to wonder, “Will the Winchesters make it out of this alive?” Big things are happening and the world as we know it is about to change.
Note: This recap may contain spoilers!
This episode seemed to hit every character with purpose and plot progression. Then again, with Ben Edlund writing it, I would expect nothing less. It also marked the return of Robert Duncan McNeill behind the camera. The last time we saw the actor/director on Supernatural, he was directing “Skin” way back in Season One. The time away didn’t harm him one bit, as he and Edlund gave us an episode to think about.
First up, we have our favorite prophet Kevin. Crazy, messed up, stressed beyond-belief-Kevin. I feel very sorry for this guy, who had his perfect life ripped away from him just so he could serve as a prophet and ultimately get hooked up with the Winchesters. What have we learned so far about that? Anyone who crosses paths with the boys will likely end up dead, or at least have their lives ruined. Kevin’s almost two for two on that one. However, even from the beginning, I knew that he was living in some kind of dream world because Fake!Sam and Fake!Dean were acting too strangely. Or, in this case, too polite. It was an interesting type of torture that Crowley put him through, but Kevin was Advanced Placement. Of course he figured it out early on in the game. He’s a strong, smart young man and I hope he will make it out of this whole thing alive. I fear for his life, just like I fear for all their lives at this point. His mother’s already dead. Will the prophet be next?
Cas is the other soldier of misfortune that’s involved with the Winchesters in all of this. He’s weathered through revolts and rebellion, mental breakdowns and mind control. He’s a tough little angel, I’ll give him that, and he’s no less determined when it comes to protecting the angel tablet from pretty much everyone. Once he learned of Naomi’s control over him, he was even more adamant that his brethren could not get their hands on the knowledge the tablet held. I admire that he’s so determined to see his mission through, and the whole popping from one Biggerson’s to another was genius, but I think this time around he’s even more hardcore than we imagined. He had to keep the tablet safe, somewhere that no one could find it, but he also needed to be in direct contact with it at all times in order to break through Naomi’s mind games. To him, that translated into carrying the tablet around inside him! Disgusting, but successful to a point. And once he is captured, he pulls the angel bullet out of himself to use it as a weapon against his captor. Yeah, I will never doubt his strength again after this.
Considering what Cas and the rest of them are up against when it comes to Naomi and Crowley, drastic measures are needed. Naomi is ruthless and will stop at nothing to see her plan through, even if that means killing everyone at the restaurant and burning the poor waitress’s eyes out. And Crowley’s so determined to be the victor that he will kill anyone in his path, as we well know. Melting down an angel blade to make a gun and bullets was pretty smart. However, I still want to know more about Naomi and Crowley’s history because there seems to be a lot of it there. Will we soon find out that they are actually gunning for the same endgame? Or perhaps we’ve underestimated Naomi all along and she’s actually working for the good of all? Many answers remain with the two of them. And now that we’ve thrown Metatron into the mix, it’s about to get serious. Here’s an angel who has been so deep in hiding that he knows nothing about what went down in the world around him. He’s much happier observing from afar, reading books on ancient histories of long-dead participants, than to step up and play a part in the war that has been waging. You know he’s out of touch when he doesn’t even recognize the boys. Loved Sam’s reaction to that admission, too. How can you not know Sam and Dean? They are legends on Earth, in Heaven, and in Hell.
Finally, in our round-up of affected characters, we have Sam. The trials have done a real number on him, and they have already changed him in ways we cannot imagine. Not only is he coughing up blood, unable to walk or stand well, and looking like the walking dead so much that Dean’s in a constant state of worry, but now he’s resonating with the Word. Loud screeching noises inside his head, that’s not going to drive him crazy again, right? But a benefit is that he’s remembering long-forgotten and unknown parts of his life. Delirious Sam was fun, yet a bit heartbreaking when he questioned whether he knew he wasn’t pure even in childhood. And he thinks the trials are purifying him, which fandom has long-speculated on, but what might this mean for the outcome of the trials? Will his purification result in death? If demon blood remains, and they close the gates of Hell, does that mean Sam might die, too? And if they do make it out alive, will Dean end up with an ulcer with how much he’s been worrying about his baby brother? Well, yeah, probably. First he can’t get the kid to eat, then he has to put him in an ice bath to bring his temperature down so Sam’s brain doesn’t cook in his skull. I love seeing Dean taking care of Sam, but life and death situations are not the best circumstances to see that in action. I’d take a common cold over what’s going through Sam’s body at the moment.
What will the world be like after the trials are done? What sacrifices will the boys have to make? And how are they going to cure a demon in order to complete the third trial? All these questions will hopefully be answered in the next two weeks. I fear, but highly anticipate, seeing how it will turn out.
Rating: 5 / 5 Stars