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Supernatural - The Trap - Review

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Supernatural returned from the break with “The Trap” written by Robert Berens and directed by Robert Singer. The episode picks up right where we left off. Dean (Jensen Ackles) and Cas (Misha Collins) head to Purgatory and finally make up. Chuck (Rob Benedict) is restored to full power and Sam (Jared Padalecki) is healed. We lose Eileen (Shoshannah Stern) by the end of the episode, but at least they haven’t killed her yet. And finally, this episode finally brings us back to the first episode with Billie (Lisa Berry) and Jack (Alexander Calvert) in the Empty. So, a pretty busy episode! Stern and Ackles get kudos for particularly good performances.

Chuck takes Sam and Eileen to his casino and begins to torture them. Eileen apologizes to Sam, and Chuck tells her that he’s been “helping” her for weeks. He confides that he only had to give Sam half a spell because he knew that Sam was a good guy and would do the rest. He also tells them that he couldn’t “see” Sam so he used Eileen to spy on them. Talk about a total relationship killer! Eileen isn’t shy about telling God to screw himself, and once again the show goes meta as Chuck tells them he couldn’t stand missing his favorite show. Chuck admits that they are connected by their wounds and as long as they are, he’s stuck in this world – but he’s got a solution and it involves a scalpel.

Back at the bunker, Dean frets about not being able to get hold of Sam while Cas packs for Purgatory. Eileen manages to turn her phone on – but Chuck notices – and classically says “C’mon Eileen” – quoting the famous and very danceable Dexys Midnight Runner song. Chuck picks up the phone, says hi, and breaks the phone, returning to Sam’s wound with the scalpel.

Dean immediately tracks Sam’s phone and finds Chuck’s casino. Dean is ready to blast off after Sam, but Cas tells him not to be so stupid! They have to go to Purgatory. Chuck may torture Sam but he won’t kill him because that’s not the ending. They can’t stop God as they are – they have to go to Purgatory, get the Leviathan blossom, trap God – and that’s how they’ll save the world.

When it comes down to it, Chuck is squeamish about actually sticking the blade into Sam. Sam and Eileen join forces in taunting and demeaning him. Sam accuses him of the ultimate impotent pastime – Chuck just likes to watch! And Eileen calls him pathetic. Chuck admits that he does like to watch and he forces Eileen to take the scalpel and dig into Sam. Chuck calls it poetic and wishes he’d thought of it first. Again, this scene is pretty meta – here’s the writer, forcing words and actions onto an actor – and they aren’t always pretty or subtle.

Meanwhile, Cas has convinced Dean to come to Purgatory with him. They both reflect that in all the time they spent in Purgatory, they never saw a bloom. But then it’s likely the only flower there. Dean muses that Benny is likely King of Purgatory by now. They only have a little under 11 hours left and Dean suggests splitting up, but once again, Cas is the smart one and refuses to split up.

Chuck plays guitar as Eileen savages Sam with the scalpel. Sam tells him it’s not working and he’s going to bleed out before it does. Chuck heals him and is furious that Sam is still defiant. Sam points out that it’s not his first time on the rack. But Chuck sees it’s something more – it’s hope! Chuck taunts him that Sam still thinks Dean and Cas will swoop in to save him, that Sam thinks he’s still the hero of the story, and that Sam still thinks he can win.

Dean is convinced that they are going around in circles, and it’s hilarious as Cas insists that his sense of direction is excellent and Dean is looking at a different corpse. The two are then attacked by a Leviathan (Tom Stevens) – and who hasn’t missed those ridiculous mouths? They’ve been waiting for him to attack them. They take him prisoner and he tells them that there is a blossom that grows out of the ground when a Leviathan dies – and rots for a while! The Leviathan gives Dean the bad news that Benny was killed by his own kind not long after he returned to Purgatory.

Chuck tells Sam that his hope is misplaced. He does tell him that if Sam stays firm and Dean and Cas don’t screw up their part, with the exact right role of the dice, Sam could win – but he doesn’t want to. Chuck then shows Sam what happens if they do win. Sam and Eileen are working, Dean is snoozing and denying it, and when Cas comes in, Dean declares it movie night. But then the phone rings. It’s Jody (Kim Rhodes). She and Claire had gone after a nest of vampires and Claire is dead. Chuck has a magic pocket watch that will show Sam the future – and this first glimpse is just the beginning.

As they walk, Cas tells Dean he’s sorry about Benny. Dean points out that Benny saved Sam by going back and Dean owed him his life. Cas points out that he’s still carrying all the guilt for letting the Leviathans out in the first place and everything that came after. Dean finally tells Cas that he knows Cas is sorry. Clearly, losing one friend has made Dean worry about losing his other best friend. But Cas is talking about Jack and he knows Dean is still refusing to hear that apology. Dean then ridiculously accuses Cas of “up and leaving” them – when he really didn’t give Cas a choice and he didn’t stop him.

The vision from January 6, 2021 shows Dean and Sam in the car, coming from a bad hunt. All the victims died because they waited, but Dean insists that there were too many wolves. As Sam listens in the backseat, he learns that Cas isn’t around anymore – dead?? Dean says that the monsters are winning.

Back in Purgatory, the Leviathan leads them to the blossoms, but it’s an angel trap! The Leviathan tells Cas that his mother – Eve – has a problem with Cas. Dean is knocked unconscious. And for some reason, they don’t eat him, but they do take Cas and all the blossoms??

In the next vision, Sam is gearing up to go after a nest, and Dean is just done. We learn that the mark (presumably they somehow got the Mark of Cain off Amara?) made Cas go crazy and Dean had to bury him in a Ma’lak box. What they do anymore isn’t hunting – they don’t even save people anymore. It seems that Donna, the girls, and Eileen are all dead. Sam asks what happened to Butch and Sundance and going out swinging – a favorite way the actors have said that they’d like to see the show end. Dean says they lost and walks away. The real Sam says that it’s all a lie. Chuck asks if he’s enjoying the show. Sam tells him that the Dean he knows, the Dean who raised him would never give up. Chuck insists that this is the truth – but I think Sam knows his brother better…

Dean stumbles around Purgatory looking for Cas, and this was my favorite scene in the whole episode. Ackles pulls out all the stops in this scene and delivers one of the best performances from him in some time. I loved the look of desperation and then vulnerability that passes over his very expressive face. He clears his mind and prays to his friend. Dean finally admits that he should have stopped him. Cas is his best friend but it was easier to let him go than to admit he was wrong. Dean goes to one knee and breaks down as he tells Cas he doesn’t know why he get so angry, but it’s always been there and when things go bad it just comes out and he can’t stop it. He tells Cas that he forgives him and that he’s sorry it took him so long to say it. And then he gathers himself up to continue looking. And we know that he gets so angry because he cares so much – and he’s afraid of losing those he cares about.

In the next flash to the future, it’s November 3, 2021. Dean is drinking and Sam is leaving to take out the nest, with or without him. And Dean goes because he doesn’t have a choice. And then they return. Chuck tells him to jump ahead, but the watch stops on December 22, 2022 – that’s the end of the line.

Dean finds Cas bloody at the base of a tree with 2 minutes to go. Dean rushes to hug Cas and asks him what happened. Cas tells him that they only wanted him, so he thought it safest just to go with them, but enroute he took his chance and fought them to escape – after he saw another bloom, which got a little smushed in the melee. Dean tells him he did it, Cas did it. Cas says they should leave as the Leviathans are still after them. Dean says he needs to say something first, and Cas tells him that there’s no need. He heard Dean’s prayer. This was a really great scene too. Let’s hope the writers can resist having another stupid rift between these two for the remaining episodes.

In the final flash to the future, Sam and Dean are making a final stand. The two are now monsters – vampires – and it’s Jody and Bobby (Jim Beaver) who come after them with a few other hunters. It’s their Butch and Sundance moment – but certainly not the way anyone would have pictured it. Jody manages to kill Sam and Dean bites Jody, killing her. Bobby takes off Sam’s head – and of course, that’s all that Sam sees.

Chuck apologizes for a crappy ending. Sam and Dean deserves better – they matter to him. Sam tells Chuck that he’s seen all his other endings – and none of them are better.

Dean and Cas perform the spell, which will cause one of them to take the Mark. Cas insists that it be him as Dean already took it and couldn’t stand it. Cas tells Dean that he won’t be able to destroy the magic ball – really? Just me or did I look like a pool ball? – so Dean or Sam will have to.

Sam insists that when they win, he will make the ending better. Chuck tells Sam that he can’t. He and Dean have been breaking the rules for so long – it’s what he likes about them – it’s so Promethean! But there’s so much about the fabric of the universe that only he can know. Without Chuck, nature rules and the monsters will prevail. Chuck asks Sam if he can live with that. And of course, Chuck has now had ample time to break Sam down.

Dean and Cas arrive and Eileen attacks them, clearly controlled by Chuck. Chuck finally shows himself and Dean punches him, clearly enjoying it – and didn’t we all at this point? Chuck punches Dean back, and Cas rolls the magic ball to Sam, telling him to smash it. Sam can’t do it – because Chuck has crushed his hope – and that’s what Chuck needed to free him and heal the wound. Chuck crushes the magic ball.

Dean asks Chuck if he’s going to dust them now. He tells Chuck that Sam has seen Chuck’s draft folder. Chuck tells him they weren’t drafts – they were memories of other Sams and Deans in other universes. I thought Ackles and Benedict were terrific here. Dean gets right in Chuck’s face and tells him to go back to Earth 2 because they will never give him the ending he wants. Chuck looks into Dean’s unwavering gaze and says “We’ll see” before disappearing.

Back at the Bunker, Eileen is leaving because she doesn’t know what’s real anymore. Sam kisses her – that seems pretty real. And that tidily sidelines the character for a few episodes at least. I’m still hoping the two will be end game.

Cas and Dean are sharing a drink in the kitchen and Sam joins them. Dean tells Sam that he’s sorry Eileen left. Sam knows he’s screwed up their chance, but Sam explains that he still believes what Chuck showed him would happen if they did trap him. Dean says that’s good enough for him. Sam asks what next – and Dean and Cas agree that he’ll be back, and Dean tells them they’ll find another way to stop him.

In the very final scene, it seems that we get a glimpse of what that way might be. Billie tells Jack in the Empty that it’s time. Could they replace Chuck with Jack?

This was one of the better episodes this season so far. As much as I hate the complete retcon the writers have done on Chuck, Rob Benedict really delivers a terrific performance in this episode. Jared Padalecki also delivers a fine performance as a tormented Sam, but I have to give the performance of the episode to Ackles for that one scene. I did like that Sam’s inability to stick to the plan didn’t cause a rift between the brothers, and I can’t wait to see what Billie’s plan is! Let’s hope that Team Free Will maintains its equilibrium for the last few episodes…. What did you think of the episode? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below.

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