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Recap / Supernatural S 08 E 21 The Great Escapist

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Recap of Supernatural
Season 8, Episode 21

The Great Escapist
All the time you've been hiding here, how much suffering have you read over? Humanity's suffering! And how much of it has been at the hands of your kind?!
What you brought to His Earth, all the mayhem, the murder, just the raw, wild invention of God’s naked apes, it was mind-blowing.
Metatron to Sam and Dean

Written by Ben Edlund.

Directed by Robert Duncan McNeill.

Air Date: May 1, 2013.

Kevin has been captured by Crowley and his short-term memory was erased so he believes he is still on Garth's boat and that Sam and Dean have brought him the other half of the demon tablet. Kevin is initially suspicious when the fake Sam and Dean working for Crowley do not use the secret knock when they arrive, but when he sees the other half of the tablet, he is so excited he reveals to the demons that he should now be able to discover what the third trial is which will allow them to close all the Gates to Hell.

Meanwhile, at the Men of Letters' bunker in Lebanon, Kansas, Dean is trying to get the feverish Sam to eat some stew when they receive an e-mail link to a video from Kevin. Kevin had set up this video to be e-mailed to Sam and Dean along with his notes on the tablet if he does not reset a command each week. The only reason he would not reset the command is if he is captured by Crowley or dies. Sam starts to study Kevin's notes, and Dean berates himself for failing to keep Kevin safe.


Castiel is drinking coffee in a Biggerson's Restaurant in Santa Fe, New Mexico. There is a buzzing noise, and Castiel notes vibrations in his coffee. Castiel disappears just before two other angels, Ion and Esper, appear in the restaurant. Ion and Esper report back to Naomi, explaining how Castiel is using the similarity of the layout between the different Biggerson's Restaurants to be in all the locations of this ubiquitous restaurant at once until he appears in a single location he chooses. This tactic is making it impossible for them to catch Castiel and recover the angel tablet, and Naomi insists they make Castiel stop. Castiel is seen appearing in the same position in Biggerson's Restaurants in Palm Bay, Florida, Denver, Colorado, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Portland, Oregon, St. Louis, Missouri, Bangor, Maine, Lincoln, Nebraska, Reno, Nevada, and Tucson, Arizona.


Sam recognizes a symbol in Kevin's notes, which is used every time God's scribe, Metatron, makes an editor's note, as a symbol used by the Two Rivers Tribe in Colorado. Sam and Dean arrive at Two Rivers Hotel and Casino off Route 34 in Colorado. Sam starts to have a ringing in his ears and becomes even more ill. Dean questions the gift shop owner and learns that Two Rivers Tribe settled in this location because the great spirit's sacred messenger dwelt here, and if they offered the spirit stories, he would bless them. Sam notices boxes of books being delivered to a room in the hotel, and concludes that this is where Metatron is staying. However, Sam collapses from the fever, and Dean has to put him in an ice bath to bring his temperature down.

When Castiel teleports back to the Biggerson's in Santa Fe, he finds the staff and patrons dead, except for Kara, the waitress who previously served him coffee. Kara has her eyes burned out and is repeating, "They said you have to stop." When he kneels down to help her, Ion appears behind Castiel with his angel blade at Castiel's throat. Naomi starts interrogating Castiel, but he will not reveal where the angel tablet is. A search of the other Biggerson's Restaurants does not turn up the tablet. Crowley suddenly appears, shooting Esper through the neck and Ion in the arm with bullets made from a melted-down angel blade. Naomi starts to glow with light, but when Crowley points the gun at her, she disappears. Crowley then shoots Castiel in the stomach, and Ion, who is actually a double agent for Crowley, helps Crowley bring Castiel back to Crowley's office. Crowley says he knows that Castiel won't tell him where the tablet is, but he has already figured out where Castiel hid the tablet. Crowley then reaches into the wound in Castiel's abdomen and pulls out the angel tablet.

After Sam regains consciousness, Sam and Dean enter the room where the books were delivered. They find an older man with a shotgun surrounded by stacks of books who has no idea who the Winchesters are and asks them if they are working for Michael or Lucifer. They realize that he is Metatron, and that the Scribe of God has so isolated himself that he did not hear about the Apocalypse or the Civil War in Heaven. Metatron recognizes the tinnitus Sam is suffering from as resonance from being so close to him, the source of the Word of God, and knows that Sam has undertaken the trials. Metatron explains that he has been hiding from the archangels since God disappeared, as he knew they were scheming to take over the universe, but would need the Word of God and him to do this. Sam and Dean try to explain the suffering humans have experienced at the hands of angels, and tell Metatron about Kevin, whom they presume is dead.

Kevin asks the demons pretending to be Sam and Dean to get him barbecue and Pad Thai, but when they return he says he is still having trouble translating the portion of the tablet he has, and Kevin asks them to get the other half of the demon tablet, which Kevin hid. These demons find themselves in a devil's trap when they go to the location Kevin gave them. The demons call Crowley, who is furious and goes to confront Kevin. When Crowley asks how Kevin knew the charade was not real, Kevin explains that the real Sam and Dean would never have gone to get him barbecue when there were leftover burritos in the fridge. When Kevin refuses to tell Crowley what is on the tablet, Crowley strangles Kevin. Metatron erases Crowley's angel warding and transports Kevin's body, still clutching the second half of the demon tablet, in blinding white light that burns Crowley. After Kevin's body appears in Metatron's room in the Two Rivers Hotel, Metatron touches Kevin's chest, bringing him back to life and healing him. Kevin wakes up and says he knows what the third trial is, but when Sam asks what it is, it is Metatron who answers, "To cure a demon."

Castiel was left alone with Ion, who is trying to excuse his actions by explaining how hard it was to work for Naomi in Heaven's intelligence division. Castiel digs the angel-blade bullet out of his gut and distracts Ion, knocking him to the ground. He then pushes the bullet through Ion's eye and into his brain, killing Ion. Sam and Dean are driving in the Impala, discussing what the consequences of completing the trials might be, when a figure suddenly appears lying in the road. Dean slams on the breaks, and they avoid hitting the wounded Castiel.

Body Count:

For this episode = 13 humans and 2 angels.

For the series so far = At least 902 humans (of which 7 were witches), 132 demons, 61 angels, 50 vampires, 48 ghosts, 36 Jefferson Starships, 20 gods, 19 zombies, 10 hellhounds, 7 skinwalkers, 6 changelings, 5 djinn, 5 shapeshifters, 5 werewolves, 4 ghouls, 4 Leviathan, 3 dogs, 2 Amazons, 2 arachnes, 2 kitsunes, 2 reapers, 2 rugarus, 2 Thule, 2 vetalas, 1 crocotta, 1 dragon, 1 fairy, 1 familiar, 1 Khan worm, 1 lamia, the Mother of All, 1 okami, 1 phoenix, 1 Purgatory creature, 1 rakshasa, 1 rawhead, 1 shojo, 1 shtriga, 1 siren, 1 Titan, 1 wendigo, 1 whore of Babylon, and 1 wraith.


  • Abandoned Area: Crowley's staging area is a wrecked movie theater with a bank of security monitors and mummy cases decorating the walls. The simulation of Garth's boat is on the other side of the torn film screen.
  • Acting for Two: Jensen Ackles and Jared Padalecki play two different demon versions of Sam and Dean, which each have slightly different characteristics than the Sam and Dean they usually play.
  • Ascended Demon/Find the Cure!: The third trial is to cure a demon.
  • Awakening the Sleeping Giant: Metatron had withdrawn from the world, Heaven, and Hell to the point that he hadn't heard about the events of the Apocalypse, but now he's back in the game.
  • Awesome, but Impractical: Castiel is seen holding a mechanical 17 jewels watch, instead of a more accurate modern quartz watch. The watch face is dirty, and Castiel puts it back in his pocket when the waitress approaches. This watch presumably belonged to Jimmy Novak, and it leaves one wondering if Castiel has kept Jimmy's wedding ring in the same place he kept the watch.
  • Badass Bookworm: Metatron, found among stacks and stacks of books which put even Bobby Singer's collection to shame.
  • Bad Vibrations: Castiel teleports out to the next Biggersons when he sees his coffee cup vibrating.
  • Bathtub Scene: Sam is submerged in a bathtub full of ice cubes to bring down his fever. The fact that he is fully clothed makes this less fanservicey than most bathtub scenes.
  • The Big Board: Sam is once again sitting in the Men of Letters' Mission Control at the table with an illuminated world map with red and black discs and a protractor on it.
  • Big Brother Instinct: Dean wants Sam to let him take care of him. Dean is also quite distraught about failing to keep Kevin safe after they receive the video message from Kevin.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Metatron rescuing Kevin as Crowley was strangling him.
  • Bizarre Taste in Food: Subverted Trope, with Kevin's extremely specific and odd food requests being an Impostor Exposing Test.
    Fake Sam: Garlic mashed potatoes, mixed greens lettuce, cornbread, and, uh, Pad Thai?
  • Bland-Name Product:
    • Biggerson's Restaurant has many similarities to T.G.I. Fridays, including the ubiquitous nature of the restaurant chain. In this episode, we also see more of Biggerson's menu items including "new south-west tacos", "smart-heart beer-battered tempura tempters", and "ham, cheese, and tomato sandwich", which would not be out of place on a T.G.I. Fridays menu.
    • The packages outside Metatron's room had logos for Quick Post and DHF, which resemble FedEx and DHL.
  • Blood Is the New Black: Crowley does not wash his hands or the angel tablet covered in Castiel's blood before going to see Kevin.
  • Brain Fever: Sam's trialberculosis seems to have evolved into this, with a case of tinnitus when near Metatron.
  • Buffy Speak: Sam's illness or his closeness to Metatron reduces him to this when he calls the hotel manager "Dr. Scowley-scowl".
  • Chronic Hero Syndrome: Castiel, clearly upset by the destruction inflicted by angels, kneels beside the blinded and injured Kara, which provides enough of a distraction for Ion to catch Castiel with an angel blade against his throat.
  • Comfort Food: Dean makes Sam John Winchester's "cure-all kitchen sink stew" with enough cayenne pepper to burn your lips off.
  • Continuity Nod:
  • Contrived Coincidence: Sam learned about a petroglyph used by a tiny tribe in Colorado in a humanities course he took on Native American Art at Stanford, which is lampshaded by Dean. In addition, he is able to pull a book off the shelf behind him that contains an illustration of the very same petroglyph.
    Dean: They taught Word of God at Stanford?
  • Cutting the Knot: All the Biggersons look the same, so the angels massacre everyone in the Santa Fe branch and wait for Castiel to turn up.
  • Death Is Cheap: Kevin is killed by Crowley, but is brought back to life by Metatron.
  • Death of a Child: Naomi reminds Castiel that the angels slew many firstborn infants in Egypt, and implies Castiel played a role in these events.
  • Depleted Phlebotinum Shells: Crowley melted down an angel blade to make bullets.
  • Dissonant Serenity: Crowley kicks down the door to find Kevin Tran munching on his meal and smiling at him.
  • Double-Meaning Title: The title can, in different ways, refer to Castiel, Kevin, and Metatron.
  • Drama-Preserving Handicap: Sam's trialberculosis.
    Dean: [to Sam] The bloody handkerchiefs, the fever, the shaky legs...this is not good.
  • Eiffel Tower Effect: Outside the window of the Biggerson's Restaurant in Palm Bay, Florida, a palm tree and a shop called Organics can be seen. In Denver, Colorado, there are skyscrapers in front of blue mountains. In Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, the Roberto Clemente Bridge and historic Fulton building are seen.
  • Esoteric Motifs: Metatron is identified with a symbol consisting of an octagon surrounded by a triangle inside a larger circle with three smaller circles along the sides of the triangle.
  • Evil Brit: Crowley throws out a couple of terms more often heard in the U.K. After Crowley tears the tablet from Castiel's belly, Crowley, covered in Castiel's blood, smiles and says, "Oh, you're a pip, you are." "Pip" could also be meant as a reference to the protagonist of Great Expectations. Later, when he realizes that Kevin has seen through his masquerade, Crowley calls Kevin a "little prat", and he says he has "deals and plans up the jacksie".
  • Exhausted Eye Bags: Sam.
  • Eye Scream:
    • Kara, the waitress left alive as a message to Castiel, had her eyes burnt out by Naomi's agents.
    • Castiel overpowers Ion and kills him by shoving the angel-blade bullet through his eye.
  • Famed in Story: The brothers are astonished Metatron does not know who they are.
    Sam: You really haven't heard of us? What kind of angel are you? We're the freaking Winchesters.
  • Flash Step: Dean isn't impressed by his first sight of Metatron, until he suddenly appears behind them, showing he does have some powers.
  • Forgets to Eat: Sam hasn't eaten for three days. Dean is so desperate to get Sam to eat he offers to do the airplane spoon.
  • Geometric Magic:
    • The devil's trap on the ceiling of the storage room where Kevin sent the two demons impersonating Sam and Dean.
    • There is also a large devil's trap in front of the door on Crowley's version of Garth's boat. However, the demon versions of Sam and Dean have no trouble walking over this trap, suggesting it must have had a small break in it or was in some other way nullified. When Crowley visits Kevin after Kevin has figured out that he has been captured, Crowley does not risk walking over the devil's trap and instead breaks down the door so it covers the trap, suggesting Kevin may have repaired or re-drawn the devil's trap.
  • Gods Need Prayer Badly: Metatron asks the people of the Two Rivers Tribe for their stories as offerings.
  • Good Guns, Bad Guns: Crowley's angel blade pistol is a Luger.
  • Gosh Dang It to Heck!: One of the demons refers to Kevin as a "dab of crap" and Crowley calls him a "smudge". Sam says "freaking".
  • Gutted Like a Fish: Crowley shoots Castiel in the gut, and then reaches into the wound and tears out the hidden angel tablet.
  • Healing Hands: Metatron places a glowing white hand on Kevin's chest and his bruises fade.
  • Heroic RRoD: Sam collapses from the transformations he has undergone by completing the first two trials and being so near the source of God's Word.
  • Historical In-Joke: Naomi intertwines the story of Passover with the history of Supernatural's angels.
    Naomi: There was that day, back in Egypt, not so long ago, where we slew every first-born infant whose door wasn't splashed with lamb's blood. And that was just PR.
  • Holy Burns Evil: For all that he is the vaunted King of Hell, Crowley sure gets a bad case of sunburn from Metatron's power, in addition to getting knocked on his ass.
  • Homage: Kara, the waitress at the Santa Fe Biggerson's, is wearing an impressive piece of flair with a blinking pair of hearts pierced by an arrow. The hearts pierced by an arrow may also be meant to recall Castiel's visit to a Biggerson's in "My Bloody Valentine" (S05, E14).
  • Humans Are Special: Metatron is amazed by the inventiveness of humans and has presumably spent millennia listening to their stories and reading books.
  • I Can Still Fight!: Sam insists on continuing, but Dean is concerned.
    Sam: I'm not going to be good until we can start moving again. Until I can start the third trial.
    Dean: Trial? I wouldn't let you start a moped.
  • Idiot Ball:
    • Even though Castiel was released from Naomi's influence when he touched the tablet, why didn't Naomi at least try using her mind control device to extract the whereabouts of the tablet from Castiel's mind?
      • Naomi would have had to transport Castiel back to Heaven in order to do so, and it might take a considerable amount of time, depending. She may have hoped to break him down on Earth to get to the tablet faster, but no doubt would have busted out the mind control if necessary. She may in fact have been referring to it when she said she'd have to "pull [Castiel] apart," given what it entails.
    • Why didn't Castiel transport to another location when Crowley shot Naomi's assistants and she was distracted?
      • Since neither Naomi nor Crowley bothered to restrain Castiel in any way, presumably it's not so simple for an angel to port out too close to the presence of a powerful enemy. Castiel explicitly states in Purgatory that he can't blip out because Leviathan are "too close." Perhaps someone with enough juice can suppress or block a teleport depending on the circumstances, particularly if the prisoner's power level is decreased at the time. And while Naomi was distracted, Ion was only a bit injured, and was no doubt interested in keeping Castiel around for Crowley, so it might have been his influence that kept Castiel there, as he apparently did later when Crowley told him to keep an eye on Castiel.
  • Impairment Shot: When Sam starts noting the tinnitus, there is a camera shot with an out of focus view of the casino. This is used again when the ringing returns when Sam is in the hotel hallway.
  • Impossibly Cool Weapon: Crowley's angel-killing gun. Although it does make one wonder how you melt down an angel blade (maybe only in the fires of Hell), which then leads you to wonder how and of what angel blades are made.
  • Impostor Exposing Test: Kevin squirts Crowley's "Sam" and "Dean" with what he thinks is holy water in a Super-Soaker. As Crowley also staged Kevin's environment, it is unlikely the Super-Soakers actually contained holy water.
    • What actually finally decides Kevin is that the demons are too nice to him to be Sam and Dean.
  • Instant Waking Skills: Kevin opens his eyes and then jumps out of the bed in the teaser.
  • Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique: Esper punches Castiel in the face as Naomi interrogates him.
  • Jive Turkey: Dean is the Winchester who uses slang, not Sam, as Crowley points out.
    Crowley: You. Fake Sam. If you're gonna tip our hand, I'll have to scrub Kevin's short-term memory again. And that's risky, so watch the patois in there.
    Demon: "Patios"?
    Crowley: Your slang. "Special K", "nose to the God-stone", that's the way Dean speaks. Sam is...more basic, more sincere. Remember, I want two distinct, authentic characterizations.
  • Kinda Busy Here: Despite the fact that Crowley's hands are still covered in Castiel's blood, he reaches into his pocket and answers his cell phone.
    Crowley: This is the king.
  • Kinetic Clicking: The loud keyboard clicks as Dean opens Kevin's video in his e-mail.
  • Laser-Guided Amnesia:
    • Crowley wipes Kevin's short term memory.
    • We learn that Naomi had manipulated Castiel's memories long before he returned from Purgatory, like around the time of Exodus.
      Castiel: How many times have you torn into my head and washed it clean?
      Naomi: Frankly? Too damn many.
  • Lotus-Eater Machine: After capturing him, Crowley scrubs Kevin's short-term memory and places him in a reality-bubble duplicate of his boat hideout. Going in there makes it possible for his demons to assume Sam and Dean's forms and manipulate Kevin into translating their half of the demon tablet. Kevin figures it out, tricks the demons, and taunts Crowley when he comes to confront him.
  • Magical Native American: The Two Rivers tribe seems to have received the blessing of long life from Metatron, based on the old photo showing the hotel manager looking the same age he is now.
  • Manchurian Agent: All of the angels, according to Ion, but those in the intelligence division were never allowed to forget their crimes completely.
    Ion: You soldiers, down in the garrison, at least they let you believe the lie. Upstairs, working for Naomi, working in Intelligence, we had no option but to live in the dirt. She never reset me completely. I always knew too much, I had to...I had to do my job.
  • Mind over Matter: Naomi uses this to snap the waitress's neck and to pull up a chair to sit on.
  • Missing Mission Control: Garth is MIA, and Keel, who is presumably another hunter, has not heard from him. Given The Law of Conservation of Detail, Dean's phone conversation establishing this may be more important than it seems.
  • Mission from God: Despite all Castiel has been through, he still believes in protecting God's creations and His Word.
    Castiel: Ion, how far can we let it all drop? This charge was left to us. It's our mission.
    Ion: Do you even know what the mission was? They've been in all our heads.
    Castiel: We aren't machines for them to program and reprogram. That wasn't what this was meant to be.
  • Mythopoeia: Castiel implies that the story of Kaldi and his jumping goats is true.
    Castiel: [to the waitress refilling his coffee cup] You know, I remember when you first discovered it. Before you started brewing it, you'd just chew the berries. Folk tale is true, by the way, you learned it from the goats.
  • The Mole: Ion is working for Crowley.
  • Madness Mantra: The angels program the Sole Survivor of the Biggersons massacre with a message for Castiel. She keeps repeating it until Naomi gets annoyed and snaps her neck.
  • Native American Casino: The Two Rivers Hotel and Casino.
  • Neck Lift: Crowley lifts Kevin by the neck, slams him against the wall, and strangles him.
  • Neck Snap: Naomi kills Kara this way by snapping her fingers.
  • Never Hurt an Innocent: Castiel's view of an angel's role, but Naomi argues that this has never been their role.
    Castiel: We were supposed to be their shepherds, not their murderers.
    Naomi: Not always, angel.
  • The Nicknamer: Dean in the one who hands out nicknames, not Sam. Crowley reminds the demons imitating the brothers about this after the demon pretending to be Sam dubs Kevin "Special K".
  • No Infantile Amnesia: Either as a result of the trialberculosis or because Sam is near Metatron, Sam starts recalling memories from his early childhood that Dean thought he had forgotten or that Dean did not recall himself.
  • Office Golf: Perhaps in part due to his Scottish roots, Crowley has selected an office with golfing statues and a set of golf clubs in the corner.
  • Only a Flesh Wound: Crowley shoots Ion in the arm with a bullet made from an angel blade.
  • Only the Knowledgable May Pass: Kevin is suspicious when the fake Sam and Dean do not use the secret knock.
  • Only the Pure of Heart: Sam recalls that he felt tainted even as a young child, but he believes that the trials are purifying him of the demon blood.
    Sam: And I remember looking at this picture of Sir Galahad, and he was kneeling, and light streaming over his face, and, I remember...thinking, uh, I could never go on a quest like that. Because I'm not clean. I mean, I was just a little kid. You think, maybe I knew? I mean, deep down, that I had demon blood in me, and about the evil of it, and that I'm—wasn't pure?
    Dean: Sam, it's not your fault.
    Sam: It doesn't matter anymore. Because these trials...they're purifying me.
  • Other Stock Phrases: The last words of the episode: "A little help, here?"
  • Platonic Cave: Kevin is in a fake version of Garth's boat, and when the demons leave the boat they walk through a blue, rippling barrier into a wrecked theater with security monitors.
  • Politically Incorrect Hero: Dean, at least from Sam's point of view. Also, a bit of a Running Gag, recalling Sam correcting Dean's "Siamese twins" with "conjoined twins" in "Tall Tales" (S02, E15).
    Dean: And you think this Metatron is hiding out in the mountains with a bunch of Indians?
    Sam: Yeah! Yeah, I do. You're not—you're not really supposed to say Indians, it's...we should go.
  • Pop-Culture Pun Episode Title: Playing with the title of the film The Great Escape. This movie was previously referenced in the episode "The Usual Suspects" (S02, E07), when Dean addressed a note to Hilt and signed it McQueen, to signal that Sam should escape from the police station. Dean also made reference to it while in prison in "Folsom Prison Blues" (S02, E19).
  • Poster-Gallery Bedroom: As opposed to the Ascetic Aesthetic of Naomi's office, Crowley's using the office of what appears to be a Chinese attorney with bookshelves, a large wood desk, leather chairs, and framed certificates. There is also golfing paraphernalia and what appears to be a white statue of Buddha with a red smile on the top shelf.
  • Post-Victory Collapse: Cas, who just manages to teleport into the road ahead of the approaching Impala after killing Ion and escaping captivity.
  • P.O.V. Cam: When Kevin opens his eyes in the teaser, there is an out-of-focus shot which shows the room upside down, representing Kevin's viewpoint when he wakes up lying on his back.
  • Power Glows: Light as well as blood flies out of Esper's wound from being shot in the neck. Light also escapes from Ion's arm wound and Castiel's gut wound. Naomi's eyes and then entire body glows in a threatening way before Crowley points his gun at her. When Castiel pushes an angel-blade bullet through Ion's eye, light escapes from Ion's eye and then his whole body as he dies.
  • The Power of Creation: Metatron is amazed by humanity's ability to create stories.
    Metatron: But, really...really, it was your storytelling. That is the true flower of free will. At least, as you've mastered it so far. When you create stories, you become gods of tiny, intricate dimensions unto themselves. So many worlds! I have much as it's possible for an angel to read, and I haven't caught up.
  • Prima Donna Director: A new and surprisingly-fitting aspect of the King of Hell.
    Crowley: I was born to direct.
  • Reckless Gun Usage: Dean flinches as Metatron starts casually waving his shotgun past their faces. Then Sam grabs hold of the shotgun and holds it against his chest while delivering a What the Hell, Hero? speech.
  • Retcon: In "A Little Slice Of Kevin" (S08, E07), Kevin identifies Metatron as an archangel who wrote the tablets, but in this episode Metatron says he is not an archangel.
    Metatron: I'm not one of them. I'm not an archangel. Really more run-of-the-mill. I worked in the secretarial pool before God chose me to take down the Word.
  • Rewriting Reality: One of Metatron's abilities.
    Dean: How did you get past Crowley's angel-warding?
    Metatron: I'm the Scribe of God. I erased it.
  • Room Full of Crazy: Kevin adds the Post-It stuck to his face to the numerous notes covering the walls. The windows and walls of Crowley's simulation of Garth's boat are also covered with sigils in red paint.
  • Rustproof Blood: The bright red, paint-like blood decorating the table and other surfaces of the Santa Fe Biggerson's.
  • Schrödinger's Cat: Castiel exists in a quantum superposition which allows him to exist in all of the Biggerson's Restaurants at once due to the similar layouts of each restaurant. He then chooses which restaurant he will manifest in and is able to elude the angels chasing him.
    Ion: He's using a clever tactic. It's a restaurant called Biggerson's. The humans have built hundreds of them, almost exactly alike.
    Naomi: What are you talking about?
    Ion: It's their sameness. Castiel is using it against us. Now, we try to orient ourselves, but it's as if we're in every Biggerson's at once—trapped in a quantum superposition. Now, he chooses which to go to next. That's what's giving him the edge.
    Naomi: You're saying that you can't catch him.
    Ion: There's—there's just so many Biggerson's.
  • Screw Destiny: Unlike most angels, Metatron does not appeal to fate and celebrates free will.
    Metatron: You really intend on closing the doors of Hell?
    Dean: Seems like the thing to do, don't it?
    Metatron: It's your choice. And that's what this has all been about, the choices your kind make.
  • Series Continuity Error: Sam tells a story about Dean having a flatulent mule when they visited the Grand Canyon as young children with their father, but in "Croatoan" (S02, E09), Dean said he had never been to the Grand Canyon.
    • Remember, Sam's now remembering things more clearly.
  • Shout-Out:
  • Shut Up, Hannibal!: Castiel is tired of Ion's explanations.
    Castiel: Ion. [hits Ion, knocking him down] Shut up.
  • Sinister Surveillance: Crowley has a panel of security cameras being monitored by demons showing Kevin's actions.
  • Sole Survivor: Kara was left among the carnage with a message for Castiel.
    Kara: They said you have to stop.
  • Sophisticated as Hell: Naomi provokes Castiel into this.
    Castiel: In the words of a good friend...bite me.
  • Source Music: Kevin's "hunter mousetrap" which caught the demons impersonating Sam and Dean includes "Spanish Flea" by Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass, the theme song to The Dating Game, playing at an obnoxiously loud level. When the scene cuts to Crowley, the song can be heard coming from his cell phone.
  • Spammer: Sam received an e-mail yesterday from "Free Money" with the subject line of "Follow our easy 15 step program to riches."
  • Spanner in the Works: Discussed Trope. Naomi calls Castiel this.
    Naomi: You're the famous spanner in the works. Honestly, I think you came off the line with a crack in your chassis. You have never done what you were told. Not completely. You don't even die right, do you?
  • Spotting the Thread: Kevin eventually catches on that the "Sam" and "Dean" that visit him are just demons in disguise. When Crowley asks him how he found out, Kevin says it was minor things, such as forgetting their secret knock, but what really gave them away is that they were far too nice, such as bringing him a complete barbecue dinner when he asks for one despite the fact that there were leftover burritos in the fridge.
    Crowley: demons were too polite?
  • Stealth Hi/Bye: Castiel just disappears from the Santa Fe restaurant, to the shock of one of the waiters.
    Perry: [on all fours under the table where Castiel was sitting] I swear to God, Lance, the guy just disappeared.
    Lance: You on that crack again, Perry?
  • Stern Chase: Castiel is trying to keep the tablet and himself out of the clutches of Naomi.
    Kara: Been on the road a long time, huh?
    Castiel: Feels like I've been on the run forever.
  • Straw Nihilist: Ion.
    Ion: Nothing matters.
    Castiel: You are so wrong, brother. It all matters.
  • Supernatural Sensitivity: The transformation by the trials allows Sam to sense Metatron and actually causes him to hear a ringing sound when Metatron is nearby.
    Metatron: You've undertaken the trials. You're trying to pull one of the great levers, aren't you? You're pretty far along, too. You get that far along, you start resonating with the Word, or with its source on the material plane, with me.
  • Team Mom: Deans tries to get Sam to eat and takes his temperature with a thermometer.
  • Terms of Endangerment: After shooting two of her assistants, Crowley calls Naomi "darling". When he points his gun at her, he calls her "love".
  • These Are Things Man Was Not Meant to Know: Castiel says the tablets were not meant for the angels or for Crowley.
  • Thinking Out Loud: Crowley recounts his thoughts to himself, allowing for exposition.
    Crowley: I was thinking to myself, "Self, if Cas got away from her by touching the tablet, why would he ever stop touching the tablet?" And then I thought to myself, "Self...he hasn't stopped touching the tablet, now has he?"
  • The Three Trials: The third trial is curing a demon.
  • Toilet Humour: Fart jokes involving a donkey.
    Sam: You rode a farty donkey.
  • Treasure Chest Cavity: Castiel tries to misdirect Crowley by saying he'll never say where he buried the Angel tablet. But Crowley has already figured out that Castiel is hiding it inside his body, in order to resist Naomi's conditioning.
  • Video Wills: Kevin left a video message to be e-mailed to Sam and Dean if he did not reset it with a command once a week.
    Kevin: Which means, if you're watching this, then I...then I—I'm dead. I'm dead, you bastards! So screw you, screw God, and everybody in between!...Crowley must've gotten to me.
  • The Voiceless: The Two Rivers Hotel manager does not say a line, but is still menacing.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: Naomi has Ion and Esper kill everyone in the Santa Fe Biggerson's trying to recover the angel tablet.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Sam and Dean call Metatron out on the fact that, while he has been enjoying stories and reading about people suffering, he has done nothing to ease that suffering, even when it was done by his brother angels.
    Dean: So you have been holed up here, or, or, or in a wigwam, or before that in some cave, listening to stories, reading books?
  • Who Dares?: Naomi is outraged by Crowley's audacity.
    Naomi: How dare you.
    Crowley: I'm the daring-est devil you've ever met, love.

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