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Supernatural Round Table: "The Great Escapist"

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Gather around, Supernatural fans. It's time for another edition of the Round Table!

This week, panelists Carissa Pavlica, Sean McKenna and Alice Jester (of The Winchester Family Business) breakdown "The Great Escapist," from farting donkey references to Metatron and more...

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What was your favorite scene or quote from the episode?
Carissa: When Sam was so whacked out he was talking about the farty donkey and the villain from Scooby Doo. He was so cute!

Alice: I cannot say enough about the scene with Sam and Dean in the hallway. Sam’s emotions are already pretty raw after his fever spike, but for him to remember so vividly Dean reading to him as a young child about Sir Galahad just got me weepy. “I remember thinking I could never go on a quest like that because, I’m not clean.” As Sam remembers feeling like that he begins to well up, and then drops the bombshell. None of that matters because these trials are purifying him. He’s teary and Dean is silently stunned. It’s such an amazing scene overall. 

Sean: I too enjoyed Sam and Dean in the hallway talking about the demon blood, but it was Sam's line about "Do you not know who we are?" that cracked me up. It's so typical that every creature or person they come across knows exactly who they are. It was fresh and funny. Come to think of it, Sam had a lot of good lines in this episode.

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What did you think of Metatron?
Carissa: He was a lazy angel, wasn't he? Didn't really want to help anyone and he really should invest in a Kindle. I mean, if that room catches fire, he's toast. Burnt toast.

Alice: I love Metatron. I’m glad he was understated and not very grand. After all, he was a humble scribe when he was chosen for his task by Chuck God. Sure, I wasn’t thrilled with the idea that he had turned his back on all of humanity, but that’s the angels for you. I think Curtis Armstrong is an inspired casting choice.

Sean: He was so different from all the angels we've gotten to see. His name has been talked up so much so to see him not be that grand and glorious being was a welcome change. Still, getting to see him makes me really wonder if Supernatural will ever get to show God...

Were you surprised Castiel hid the tablet inside himself? What's next for him?
Carissa: I was trying to figure out how he had made it invisible when Crowley said he never let it go. Inside him never even occurred to me. That was pretty amazing. I think he's going to start being more Cas-like now that he's out of the clutches of Naomi and needs to help Sam through the trial.

Alice: No, I thought it was quite clever. Although, he had to know that someone would realize that he’d want to keep touching the tablet to avoid Naomi so that’s where he’d put it. Too bad (or maybe good?) that ended up being Crowley.  As for what’s next, he’s with Sam and Dean now, so it’s all good. He’ll recuperate in the Men of Letters cave and come up with a plan. I wouldn’t want to be Naomi right now.

Sean: I hadn't even thought of it inside Castiel. Bummer that Crowley was smart enough to find out. I just hope Castiel can find a way to recover and not be such a lost angel.

What do you think of Metatron's comment about making choices and possible after effects from closing the gates of Hell?
Carissa: I never thought about it, but does closing hell mean nobody can go into it, either? Will the evil be forced into Heaven or stuck on earth? I think they need to figure out what it means if they're completely closed before they finish it out.

Alice: I found that to be fascinating. It goes back to his earlier comment about the power of free will in humans with stories. This sums up this whole series. One of the major themes in this show has been the consequences of free will, both good and bad. I imagine that’s exactly how closing the gates of Hell is going to be. It’ll be good demons are locked out, but it’ll create a huge imbalance with the angels and probably the natural order. I don’t think Sam and Dean truly know the consequences yet, and I wonder if they’ll find out the hard way. Dean needs to take Metatron’s words very seriously. 

Sean: It's so obvious and true but at the same time, something I just hadn't really thought about. What will happen once the gates are closed? It sounds so positive but there are going to be consequences and repercussions somewhere. I know Dean is set on his mission, but he might want to rethink those final actions. I'm not sure if he can do "take backs."

What does the third trial of curing a demon mean?
Carissa: I have absolutely no idea. Does curing Sam count since he has demon blood in him? Maybe that's been the trial all along. Too bad Meg isn't still with us as I think she'd be up for the cure. Or, they can borrow Rebekah from Vampire Diaries. She really wants to be human.

Alice: I have no freaking clue. I can’t wait to find out! I imagine that the answers lie somewhere in that Men of Letters library and Sam has a pretty sharp sense for research right now. The solution is there to be uncovered, I can feel it. Either that or they’ll totally stumble upon it by accident. Either way, I doubt they’ll end the season with them never figuring it out and Sam dropping dead from illness. They wouldn’t do that, would they?  Come to think of it, it is Sam’s turn to die...

Sean: On board with the no idea. Who is going to be this demon? Does it literally mean cure a demon? Some character is bound to come back for this one, right? I'm curious as to how the final trial will go and appreciate that it isn't so blatantly obvious. Keeping a little mystery while packing on the stakes has me raring to go for the final episode of Supernatural Season 8.

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My heart kind of breaks for Sam in this situation, especially after his revelation that he's always known that he was impure and feels as if these trials are somehow cleansing him. You have to remember that he's always had the best intentions, yet always ends up being the catalyst for the next big disaster. Closing the gates of Hell will most likely be another one of these situations, and who knows what will become of him once that happens? I do think it was very intentional on the writers' parts to have Sam undertake these trials instead of Dean because of his history of being the colossal screw-up when it comes to all of these doomsday scenarios. Sam has and probably will always be the ultimate victim of circumstance in this show, sadly.

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I'm astonished at how few people seem to have thought about the consequences of the gates of hell being shut. lol. Of course it isn't going to turn out the way they want it to. They're the Winchesters. It's already sort of been implied that souls won't go to hell if the gates are shut (in the ep with the first trial Dean mentions something about the girl not going to hell if the gates are closed). Obviously heaven and hell are meant to balance each other out. Also I was really hoping Metatron would've been a woman. All of the female angels we've come across have been insane.

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I enjoyed this episode very much...my favorite scene is when Sam is telling Dean that "you really aren't suppose to call them Indians" (I'm sure I haven't quoted that exactly right). As far as bringing back a demon, i.e. Meg, yellow-eyes, Ruby, etc...please don't. Bringing back a demon that is associated with Sam's demon blood, is, for me, a step backwards. The writers need to move forward - hope in S9 we see more of Aaron, the Golem and the Necromancers; those were all interesting characters.

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I am certainly watching a different show but then I am not interested in twisting everything about Sam too fit into a idea of him because I dont like him. The scene in the hallway was revealing and sad and yes I can well believe a young Sam knew something was not pure about him and the scene should for those that care about him that there has been a human being there all along and not just a walking definition of a story or something to just hate on .

Modwild

Hi Jrwt - Sam was saying exactly what you're expressing in your comment. He's wondering NOW if he always knew this would come to pass because as a boy he thought he could never go on a quest. He didn't know anything about demon blood, etc., but now is pondering if even then there was a hint of things to come.

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I guess I'm watching a different show that everyone else. This episode was just another mediocre try. How would Sam know as a child he wasn't pure? He didn't know about the Demon blood then. Also he's always thought he was better than anyone else, even in his own family. That comment "Don't you know who we are" really translated to "Don't you know who I am?" I'm the great Sam Winchester. Yes Dean got the real message once again from an Angel, weigh your choices and don't be so quick to pick what has been the easy road (to me) of these trials. Good can't exist without evil.

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