Supernatural: You know where good intentions lead...
Look at this face. Is this the face of a consorter-with-demons? How can you not trust this face!?
Supernatural gives us Castiel's side of the story this week, and it's heartbreaking. Everything he's done has been for the best of all possible motives -- to save the boys, the save the world, to prevent Apocalypse 2: Electric Boogaloo -- but it's all turning bad. Plus, we got a statement of breathtaking hypocrisy and/or obliviousness from Dean, which makes us wonder if he's been watching the same show. Come on!
In the beginning
Our boy Cas has a long memory -- that happens when you're around for the birth of the universe -- but the most extraordinary event he witnessed was the one that didn't happen: The Apocalypse. He saw that choice and free will could save the universe. Granted, he also saw that choice and free will can get you messily exploded, but sometimes, you come back. And when you come back, you want to make things right.
In Cas' case, that means he wanted to rescue Sam from Hell -- which went badly -- and let the angels know about free will -- which went even worse. "Explaining freedom to angels is a bit like teaching poetry to fish," he says. Observe:
Castiel: No one leads us anymore. We're all free to make our own choices, to choose our own fates.
Rachel: What does God want?
Castiel: God wants you to have freedom.
Rachel: But what does He want us to do with it?
Yeah. It's a problem. Then Raphael decides that freedom really doesn't work for angels -- he's going to take over, and he's going to restart God's plan. You know, the plan that ended with the Apocalypse and the boys serving as meat suits for Michael and Lucifer. Cas objects, but Raphael is much, much stronger than him. What can he do?
Read on for more moral quandaries, plus Dean's stunning oblivious statement, after the break!
Cas is tempted to ask Dean for help, but he resists, reasoning that Dean deserves his retirement. And that's where Crowley catches him, and makes him an offer -- if we work together, we can find purgatory and you can use the energy of all those monster souls to power up and take on Raph. "God chose you to save us," Crowley says, "and I think, deep down, you know that. " Oh, Cas. Pride is a sin for a reason...
But Cas takes the power of some loaner souls and forcefully rejects Raph's plan and starts his rebellion. Of course, if he wants to defeat Raph once and for all, he'll need those monster souls, so he keeps working with Crowley. Yes, he saves the boys from Crowley's henchmen -- and threatens to barbecue Crowley himself if he harms the boys -- but he's making compromises, and doing things he knows aren't that great, and... well, he's on his way to hell.
All this time, he's doing his damnedest to make sure the boys don't realize he's working with their enemy. But eventually he slips up. He repeats something he shouldn't have heard, which is enough to make even Dean realize that Cas isn't what he seems. The boys trap him in holy fire and confront him, but Cas is unrepentant, if a little desperate. He tells Sam that he's the one who grabbed him out of Hell, which doesn't go over as he hoped: "Wait, did you bring me back soulless on purpose?" Cas is aghast that he can even ask that. Sorry, Cas, but your credibility is pretty much shot now.
Dean is furious and betrayed when Cas tells him that he had no choice. Of course you did! "When crap like this comes around we deal with it, like we always have. What we don't do is we don't go out and make another deal with the devil."
We had to pause for a moment to clean up the drink we spit out, scream at the television, and then coax the cat out from under the couch. SERIOUSLY? The Winchesters seems to do nothing BUT make deals with one demon or another. Mary made the deal with Old Yellow Eyes, as did John 20-odd years later. Dean made the deal with Crowely, as did Bobby, as did Samuel, and Sam would have done the same if he'd gotten any takers. We get where you're coming from, Dean, and we love you, but maybe THINK before you talk, okay?
ANYway. Dean begs Cas not to follow through with whatever plan he's got cooking with Crowley. Trust me, it's not worth it, and we'll have to stop you. Cas seems to be unmoved. He leaves, and we next see him talking to God. Am I doing the right thing? Should I stop? Send me a sign, or I'm going through with the plan. God doesn't answer. It's all Cas' choice. Now what?
Highlights, thoughts and odds and ends
This episode, which could sub in for a philosophy lecture on the perils of free will, could have been really dry, but we were carried along with it. Granted, most philosophy lectures don't include the sort of snarky lines we've come to expect, so that helped.
Castiel: I remember the tower of Babel -- all 37 feet of it, which I suppose was impressive at the time. And when it fell, they howled divine wrath, but come on, dried dung can only be stacked so high.
We discover that Eve is most sincerely dead, but her reproductive system is not. She keeps producing eggs. That strikes us as ominous.
Crowley shocks Eve's dead brain. A vampire howls with pain.
Crowley: Chocula here feels every tickle.
Castiel:What good is that for?
Crowley: Apart from the obvious erotic value, you got me.
Crowley: I am the only game piece on the board who doesn't underestimate those denim-wrapped nightmares?
Crowley also referred to the boys as "Teen Beat models" and promised not the harm a hair on their "artfully tousled" heads. We think Crowley's got a crush on the boys... and we don't blame him.
Bobby: I gotta tell you, Red, for a filthy, lower-than-snake-spit hell-spawn, you seem to have turned yourself into a damned fine Hunter. I don't know whether to kill you or kiss you.
Demon: Oh, please, kill me.
Demons have a Bobby -- he wears a trucker cap, he's got a bank of phones so he can pretend to be FBI, and he's just as cranky. Our favorite part? He's named Ellsworth, which is the name of Jim Beaver's character on Deadwood. Hee!
Crowley improves the torture aspect of Hell by transforming the place into one endless line. It's like the DMV on steroids. Hey, Crowley watched Reaper!