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Recap / Supernatural S 08 E 10 Torn And Frayed

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Recap of Supernatural
Season 8, Episode 10

Torn and Frayed
I know. They're controlling us, Castiel.
"We need everything, Dean. And I need both of you, as you say, to stow your crap. Can you do that?"
Castiel [to Sam and Dean]

Written by Jenny Klein.

Directed by Robert Singer.

Air Date: January 16, 2013.

Dean drives to Kermit, Texas, and he and Sam get into an argument about whether Benny can be trusted, which leads to Dean leaving for Rufus' cabin. Naomi instructs Castiel to save Samandriel from Crowley, and Castiel goes to Dean for help. Dean and Castiel know that Samandriel is in the vicinity of Hastings, Nebraska, and search for odd events that occur when angels scream. They find an account of a man being badly burnt by a bush, and after questioning the victim find that he heard a phrase in Enochian when the shrubbery burst into flame. They continue to search abandoned factories nearby until they find a factory guarded by demons disguised as derelicts. Dean realizes they need more help to take on that number of demons in a warehouse with angel warding, but balks when Castiel says they need Sam. Instead, they go to Garth's boat and find Kevin trying unsuccessfully to translate half of the demon tablet. Kevin gives them the ingredients needed for the demon bomb, and Castiel says he will get what they need. Besides getting the ingredients for the bomb, Castiel talks a reluctant Sam into joining them in the rescue attempt.


Sam and Dean remove the angel wards from the warehouse, killing several demons in the process. While the brothers are attacking his mooks, Crowley has tapped into the default programming of angels by inserting spikes into Samandriel's brain, and finds out that there is an angel tablet. Castiel is finally able to enter the warehouse, but is not at full power and is suffering flashbacks, wherein Naomi seems to be inserting a device in his eye. By the time they they break down the door of the room where Crowley has Samandriel, Crowley has escaped, but Castiel manages to save Samandriel, who tells Castiel that they are being controlled and Naomi is behind this. Before Samandriel can reveal more to Castiel, Naomi asserts her control over Castiel, and Castiel kills Samandriel. Castiel tells the Winchesters that he needs to take Samandriel's body back to Heaven, but the brothers realize something is wrong with Castiel.


Sam has to decide whether he wants to be part of Amelia's life. He decides not to go back to her, and remain a hunter with his brother. Dean decides to appease Sam, and tells Benny he cannot be part of his life.

Body Count:

For this episode = 8 demons, 9 humans, and 1 angel.

For the series so far = At least 853 humans (of which 6 were witches), 121 demons, 59 angels, 48 ghosts, 43 vampires, 36 Jefferson Starships, 19 zombies, 19 gods, 9 hellhounds, 7 skinwalkers, 6 changelings, 5 shapeshifters, 5 werewolves, 4 ghouls, 4 Leviathan, 3 djinn, 3 dogs, 2 Amazons, 2 arachnes, 2 kitsunes, 2 rugarus, 2 vetalas, 1 crocotta, 1 dragon, 1 fairy, 1 Khan worm, 1 lamia, the Mother of All, 1 okami, 1 phoenix, 1 Purgatory creature, 1 rakshasa, 1 rawhead, 1 reaper, 1 shojo, 1 shtriga, 1 siren, 1 wendigo, 1 whore of Babylon, and 1 wraith.


  • Abandoned Warehouse:
    Dean: Wow, will you look at that? Our ninth abandoned factory. Ain't that America?
  • Accidental Misnaming: Dean and Viggo refer to Samandriel as "Alfie", the name on his vessel's uniform. While Viggo presumably doesn't know (or doesn't care about) his real name, Samandriel had previously told Dean to "stick with Alfie" since he couldn't pronounce it.
  • Adult Fear: A sick baby.
    Castiel: [to a tired mother holding a crying baby] She's been crying for two days. The doctors missed something.
  • Always Save the Girl: Dean abused this trait of Sam's to keep Sam from killing Benny.
  • Back for the Dead: Samandriel.
  • Bash Brothers: The Winchester brothers taking out demons and watching each other's backs.
  • Beard of Sorrow: Kevin is sporting unkempt stubble.
  • Beautiful Dreamer: Averted with Dean, who has his own stubble and spills a beer on being woken up by Cas.
  • Broken Angel: Castiel and Samandriel.
  • Bittersweet Ending: The Winchesters are finally starting to repair their relationship after being at odds with each other for most of the season, but Samandriel is dead, Crowley knows there is an Angel Tablet, Castiel is being brainwashed by Heaven, and the Winchesters have cut ties with Benny and Amelia.
  • Conlang: Enochian, with us learning the word for "obey".
    Samandriel: Sal-voch-tay!
  • Continuity Nod:
  • Creepy Monotone: Castiel repeating what Naomi tells him to say to the Winchesters. It's less than convincing.
  • Curse Cut Short: "Your mom is one sexy—" (phone rings)
  • The Cutie: Samandriel.
    Dean: So, who snatched Heaven's most adorable angel?
  • Destination Defenestration: Dean is thrown into a window when fighting Viggo.
  • Depower: Even after the four main wards are removed, Castiel is not at full power in the warehouse, possibly due to the remaining sigils, his flashbacks, the aftereffects of Naomi messing with his head, or Samandriel's screams.
  • Did Not Think This Through: Sam gets up Dean for sending him off to Amelia without thinking about what it would do to Sam mentally, or that it might tempt him to leave Hunting for good.
  • Distress Call: Samandriel sends one to Naomi when the spike is removed from his head.
  • Exhausted Eye Bags: Kevin as he studies the tablet.
  • Eye of Newt: "West Bank witch hazel, skull of Egyptian calf, the tail of some random-ass newt that may or may not be extinct".
  • Eye Scream: Castiel's flashbacks reveal Naomi drilling into his eye.
  • Fantastic Racism: Sam is unwilling to accept Dean being friends with a vampire.
    Sam: You didn't want me to trust you. You wanted me to trust Benny, and I can't do that.
  • Fantastic Slurs:
    • For the demons: "Hell monkeys"; "Hell mooks".
    • For the angels: "feathered friend"; "flying monkey"; "Heavenly pile of filth".
  • Finishing Each Other's Sentences:
    • Played Straight when Amelia keeps completing Sam's sentences.
    • Used in a mocking fashion when Viggo completes Samandriel's sentence.
  • A Friend in Need: Benny, who asks Dean for help, now that he has to deal with his Blood Lust alone.
  • Geometric Magic: Four Enochian sigils on the north, east, south, and west sides of the warehouse keep angels from entering, and no longer have power when an "X" is drawn through them.
  • Glass-Shattering Sound: Samandriel's scream causes a beaker of red fluid to shatter.
  • Headphones Equal Isolation: Kevin.
  • Healing Hands: Castiel with the crying baby.
  • His Name Is...: Samandriel about to reveal how they are being controlled.
  • I Can Explain: Dean trying to hide the porn on his laptop from Castiel, who himself is not a stranger to pornography.
    Dean: You saw nothing.
  • I Knew It!: Most fans had guessed the existence of the Angel Tablet months before, making The Reveal somewhat underwhelming.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: The spikes placed through Samandriel's forehead into his brain.
  • Kick the Son of a Bitch: Viggo pleads for his life, saying he will reveal everything that Crowley knows. Having heard Samandriel screaming in pain, Dean is not in the mood.
  • Kill the Cutie: Castiel murders Samandriel.
  • Literal-Minded: Castiel.
    • When they question a badly-burned Mr. Hinckley:
      Dean: I wanted to ask you a few question about your ambush.
      Mr. Hinckley: Yeah, well, I'd laugh too, if it didn't feel like the sun ate my face.
      Castiel: It's a metaphor.
    • And later:
      Mr. Hinckley: Are you serious?
      Castiel: [looks at Dean] That's his serious face. Yes.
  • Love Is a Weakness: While Sam and Dean do reunite, the episode ends with them alone in Rufus' cabin protected by angel sigils. All of our characters seem more isolated:
    • Kevin cut his mother loose, and compares Garth's boat to a desert where he can dedicate himself to his task.
    • Sam does not meet Amelia, signaling he will never return to her, even though he admits he loves her.
    • Dean cut off all contact with Benny, his Fire-Forged Friend who never let him down.
    • Castiel murders Samandriel, whom he was desperate to save, and leaves the Winchesters to return to Heaven.
  • Make Me Wanna Shout: Of an angelic variety.
  • Manchurian Agent: Castiel.
  • The Masquerade Will Kill Your Dating Life: Sam has not told Amelia about his hunting lifestyle, and she asks that, if he is going to be part of her life, he no longer be a hunter:
    Amelia: I can't have you with one foot in my life and one foot out there doing...whatever it is you do. That life of yours I have no idea about.
  • Meaningful Echo: Dean echos Amelia's plea to Sam to either be with her or stay away from her.
  • No Social Skills: Why Castiel needs Dean's help.
    Castiel: Yes, which is why I need your help. It seems this is gonna involve...talking to people.
    Dean: Come on, Cas, I thought you were a hunter now.
    Castiel: Well...I thought so, too, seems I—I lack a certain—
    Dean: Skill?
  • Not Now, Kiddo: Crowley ignores Viggo pleading that they're under attack and should flee, as the information Samandriel is revealing is too important.
  • Not Listening to Me, Are You?: After Kevin puts on the earphones in annoyance over Dean distracting him, Dean whispers in Kevin's ear that his mother is hot. Kevin ignores him or doesn't hear.
  • Oh My Gods!: Crowley's "holy mother of sin".
  • OOC Is Serious Business
    • The Winchesters now know something is seriously wrong with Castiel, after seeing him cringe in terror at the sound of Samandriel's torture, then kill a fellow angel whose life he was desperate to save.
    • Kevin's unkempt appearance, and sending his mother away.
  • "Open!" Says Me: Subverted Trope, with the door not opening until Dean and Sam repeatedly throw their bodies against the door.
  • The Penance: Castiel fixes the missed inguinal hernia of the baby. However his rescue of Samandriel is averted when Naomi orders Castiel to kill him.
  • Power Incontinence: The scream of an angel in pain results in abnormal occurrences.
    Castiel: The amount of pain an angel must be in not just to manifest through shrubbery, but to burn. Dean, we have to find him before it's too late.
  • Psychic Link: Evidently it's not just the Winchesters who refer to the angel's link as "Angel Radio". The demons seem to have picked up this term as well.
  • Running Gag: Dean still likes Busty Asian Beauties.
  • Saving the World:
    Kevin: I can't enjoy a world I need to save, Dean.
  • Sexy Shirt Switch: Amelia wears Sam's shirt.
  • Shirtless Scene: Sam.
  • Shout-Out:
    • The King of Hell is not a fan of Neil Diamond.
      Crowley: What on earth could you possibly need now, Viggo? I've given you every torture instrument known to man. Short of a Neil Diamond album.
    • Hinckley says that the Enochian phrase sounds like Klingon to him.
    • When drilling into Samandriel's brain, Crowley says, "Let's find out what makes this flying monkey tick".
    • Dean calls the vampire from the previous episode a "fangbanger".
    • The burning bush is how God spoke to Moses in The Bible (appropriate as the Enochian Samandriel is speaking at the time is the Word of God).
  • Spit Take: Dean fell asleep drinking his beer and was surprised by Castiel's arrival, spilling his beer on himself.
  • Stalking Is Love:
    Amelia: Look, last night at the bar. I just wanted to make sure it was you. You know, peeping in my window.
    Sam: Peeping? You make it so sound, so, uh...
    Amelia: Stalker-ish.
  • Star-Crossed Lovers: Sam and Amelia seem doomed to be apart and even have an An Affair to Remember appointment where only Amelia shows up.
  • Stealth Hi/Bye: Castiel does this to the worried mother, Dean, and Sam. Dean and Cas do it to Kevin.
  • A Storm Is Coming: The headline on the Lincoln Globe website on the laptop reads "Tornadoes, Strong Winds Cause Damage Across Nebraska".
  • Tears of Blood: Castiel.
  • Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: Sam and Dean, to the extent that even Castiel gets annoyed.
  • Throat Light: The demons and Samandriel killed by the angel blade.
  • Time for Plan B: Which is kick down the door.
  • Titled After the Song: "Torn and Frayed" is a song by The Rolling Stones on their album Exile On Main St.
  • Torture Always Works: Crowley finds out about the angel tablet. Although it was less than Samandriel cracked and consciously gave up intel, and more Crowley basically hacking into his brain's "programming".
  • Torture Technician: Viggo, in a Labcoat of Science and Medicine.
  • Trashcan Bonfire: The demons disguised as derelicts guarding the warehouse.
  • Troubled Backstory Flashback: While in the warehouse, Castiel has flashbacks to being tortured by Naomi.
  • Wander Lust Song: "Katmandu" by Bob Seger plays over The Road So Far.
  • Wham Line: "There's an angel tablet."
  • You Know Too Much: Naomi orders Samandriel killed when he tries to tell Castiel about how Naomi is controlling them.
  • Your Cheating Heart: Amelia cheats on Don with Sam without a second thought.

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