Warning: Spoiler Alert
Turns out that the CW veteran series “Supernatural,” utilized the old Muhammad Ali trick, rope-a-dope for most of season ten. Ali, the greatest heavyweight fighter, I’ve ever seen, would allow his opponents to waste their strength in the early rounds, landing body blows on the Champ, as he leaned back against the ropes. When they started displaying fatigue, Ali went on the offensive, making quick work of his opponent. After viewing episodes 17 and 18, of season ten, I think it’s safe to say the show will stay laser focused, over the final four episodes of the campaign.
The show returned after a week off, with a tight, well conceived episode “Book Of The Dead,” as we followed Sam, Dean and Charlie Bradbury, attempt to remove the Mark Of Cain from Dean, while Castiel and his prisoner the former scribe Metatron, locate Castiel’s grace. Adding Felicia Day as Charlie, and Curtis Armstrong as Metatron, added greatly to the episode.
We haven’t seen Charlie, since she trekked off to Europe earlier this season, in search of the Book Of The Dead, she’s the first character we see in this episode, wearing a raincoat and hood. She’s sneaking around an alley and her audible breathing, reveals how nervous she is. She hides behind a dumpster, then two men appear, one holding a strange-looking compass. They follow where it tells them to go, Charlie kills the big guy slamming the blade of her sword in his chest. The other guy pulls a pistol, Charlie slices his hand, the gun falls to the street.
She asks why they’re following her, then guy responds, they weren’t following her, just the thing she has in her bag, that he claims belongs to his family. She says finders-keepers, he smiles and tells her she can’t comprehend it or read it. She gets distracted by the tattoo on his wrist, he knocks the sword out of her hand and grabs the pistol, hitting her in the side but she gets away. He screams she can’t run forever.
In the previous episode, Metatron admitted he had no idea how to remove the Mark, but told Castiel, he could show him where his grace is kept. They’re on a road-trip together, Metatron excited by the emotions he’s feeling, as he’s mortal, and getting on Castiel’s nerves. Cas calls Sam and asks if he can just kill him now, Sammy tells him to remain patient, he’s almost got his grace back. Dean walks in and Sam quickly says goodbye.
Sam tells his brother his search for removing the Mark’s come up empty, but he’s going to keep trying. Dean tells him that Rowena’s Crowley’s mother and she says it’s just a curse and can be broken. The cellphone rings and Dean picks up, it’s Charlie calling from a phone booth in Des Moines. She tells them she got guys following her, and she’s gotten shot, she also has the Book Of The Damned. Dean gives her directions to a safe house and then before they leave, he grabs a lead-lined box, to store the book in, to keep the family from tracking it.
Metatron and Cas have stopped at a restaurant and the scribe’s in ecstasy over the pancake dinner he has in front of him, it’s his first time tasting food and he’s in love. Cas asks why they’ve yet to find the grace, and asks if Metatron’s stalling. He admits he is, then suddenly noises start emanating from his stomach, Cas takes him to the restroom. We see an Angel sitting at the counter, examining his knife.
“THE BOYS,” reach Charlie and hugs get shared, then Bradbury tells them what she’s found out. Seven hundred years ago, a nun locked herself away , after having visions of darkness. A few decades later she emerged with this book, each page is a layer of her skin, each word written in her blood.
She hands the book to Dean, as he starts turning the pages, he goes into a trance, snapped out of it by Sammy yelling his name. He gives the book to Charlie, says he better not touch it again and walks out of the room, while Sam puts it in the lead-lined box. Charlie asks what was that about, the younger Winchester says Dean’s getting worse, not better.
Cas and Metatron head to the parking lot, when they see the man in the restaurant, he’s not an Angel, but a Cupid and wants to kill them both for destroying Heaven. Cas and he get into a knife fight, he pushes Cas down and gets ready to stab the scribe, but Castiel stops him. He knocks the knife out of the Cupid’s hand, but the adversary grabs Castiel’s blade. He’s about to take him out, when the Cupid’s stabbed from behind. Metatron gives the second knife to Cas and tells him he owed him that one. Castiel says this changes nothing.
The guy who shot Charlie and another accomplice arrive at the gas station, Charlie called Sam and Dean from. He pulls out his compass and shakes his head, telling the other guy she found a way to hide it. But they’re going to check out the area, to see if they find someone who saw her.
Metatron takes Cas to a library, where his grace is hidden, Castiel can sense it’s there but Metatron hid it somewhere, well another Angel hid it for him, so he wouldn’t reveal the answer via torture. He says however, that he told the Angel to leave clues in some of Metatron’s favorite books, he hold up his handcuffs, for Cas to unlock them, asking Mother may I? He grabs the first book, Cas takes it from him and a note falls out, it’s a riddle asking what’s the maddest thing a man can do? Metatron, doesn’t know the answer, but he says have patience and they keep searching.
Sam and Charlie use every source that’s out there, however can’t decipher the book, Dean says maybe that’s a good thing. He tells them about the family following Bradbury, the Steins a group he describes as every shade of wrong, saying that the family started practicing Black Magic in the early 1800’s. They’ve started diseases, financial depressions, even aided the Nazis before they took power, making a profit on all their activities.
He then tells them that any positive outcome from the Book Of The Dead, creates a negative reaction, far worse than the original problem, he says of Biblical proportions. He says they’ve dealt with Black Magic in the past and they know it comes with a cost. He says the Book will cure him, but at far too costly a price and they need to destroy it. Dean then says he’s taking a ride to get Charlie snacks.
The Angel’s losing his patience and the scribe says he doesn’t care, if he’s going to die, he wants answers. Exactly who is Castiel at this point, no longer an Angel of the Lord, does he think it’s his job to round-up all the rogue Angels on Earth? What will he do when he finds them all, he’s not going to Heaven, Hannah’s got it running as smooth as silk over the last few months.
Castiel’s usual eloquence evades him as his anger’s too strong, he tells Metatron to shut up. Metatron walks ahead, saying well I tried, then he finishes making symbols out of blood from his leg wound on some books’ binders, the symbols light up and Castiel’s dying. The scribe sarcastically says poor Castiel, after swimming so far to drown in such shallow waters. Cas falls to the floor.
The guy who shot Charlie, kills a convenience store clerk behind the counter and he’s there when Dean walks in to get the snacks. Dean gets his stuff, the two exchange pleasantries, then Winchester sees the tattoo on the guys wrist. He pulls out his pistol and aims it at the guy, but his accomplice grabs Dean from behind.
The shooter sees the Mark Of Cain on Dean and asks how he got that, Dean says it’s none of your business Mr. Stein, he replies his friends call him Jacob. Dean says they’re not friends, breaks free of the guy holding him, shoots him and escapes.
Metatron says now to concentrate what he was really looking for, finds another clue and reads it out loud, then answers it. Castiel realizes the cues are quotes, and his quote’s from Don Quixote, the maddest thing a man can do is to die. He grabs the book and finds the vial with his grace. Metatron finds the Demon Tablet, he’s ready to grab the grace as well, but sees Cas has it in his hand and he leaves. Cas unplugs the vial and for the first time since season eight, Castiel’s whole once again.
Dean makes it back to the cabin, telling them Stein’s on his way and they need to burn the book. Stein arrives with two accomplices, they attack first Charlie skewers one with a sword, Dean has to empty his entire clip to kill the second one. Then Jacob enters and Dean screams to Sammy to burn the book. Dean unloads his clip on Stein but he doesn’t miss a stride, Sam throws the book in the fire and Jacob picks Sammy up by the neck and starts strangling him, Sam plunges a knife into Stein’s gut. He keeps pushing and twisting the blade, Stein finally falls.
Cas and Dean are at the conference table at the Men Of Letters building, when Charlie and Dean arrive, she says oh my and asks Sam if it’s really him, Sam smiles and nods. Charlie hugs Cas as tight as she can, then she says she thought he’d be shorter. She asks if now that he’s back to full strength, can he cure Dean, he sadly tells her no. She asks if he can cure her carpal-tunnel, he puts his finger on her forehead, and tells her he cured her carpal-tunnel and healed her bullet wound. Dean comes in and the four start eating, drinking, talking and laughing.
Sam looks uncomfortable, then we see him talking with someone. He says that he doesn’t trust them, but this is their wheel-house. He then reveals he didn’t burn the Book Of The Dead, instead substituted a book in its place. He says that there is a way to remove the Mark Of Cain in this Book, the only question he has is will the person help him? The camera pans to Rowena, who smiles and says let’s talk terms.