The Official “The Scorpion and the Frog” (13.08) Live Recap Thread

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I’ll also be simul-recapping on Wayward Children.

Sorry about the big delay, but I had a book event last night and lots of errands today. FYI, The Supernatural Codex: Season 1, my collection of recaps and reviews from Innsmouth Free Press (plus some extras) is out on Kindle and will very soon be out in print, too. Check it out.

Anyhoo, we start off with a standard, no-rock recap of the season so far.

Cut to Now in Cambridge, England, at “7:45 pm on a Friday.” A young woman with a red suit jacket and a smug smile enters the Cambridge Museum (there are several, but the show doesn’t say which one this is) and goes down to one of the archival labs, where she enters by busting in the door (after the key card number doesn’t work). She extracts two leafs of manuscript (looks like Greek) after examining them and puts them in her alligator skin (faux?) satchel.

It’s at that point she’s rousted by a puzzled guard. She then opens her mouth and out smokes a demon. As she calmly collapses, it immediately goes into the hapless guard, who goes outside into the alley and meets up with a man in a nice suit and coat. The demon gives the man the satchel, wondering aloud how Asmodeus will reward them. The man responds by killing the demon and the poor guard he’s wearing with an angel blade.

Then the man gets on the phone and calls one Dean Winchester. He tells Dean he has something Dean might like.

Cue title cards.

Cut to Dean cleaning a gun, which never fails to be hot. Sam comes in and suggests the gun is plenty clean, indicating that something is on Dean’s mind. Sam hasn’t been able to find either Ketch or Kevin – sorry, Jack. This missing persons are what’s on Dean’s mind.

The phone rings. It’s Teaser Killer Guy making his Teaser Call. He wants to talk about Jack having gone off on his own. Sam quickly susses out and sotta voce’s to Dean that it’s a demon. Dean rolls his eyes at Sam. Since when are these things not about demons, Sam?

The demon gives them a time and address of a cafe (a public place) and the Brothers discuss the wisdom of coming as they head there. Sam thinks it’s worth a shot. Dean figures it’s risky. They’re probably both right.

Dean says that since Crowley died, he’s “sworn off demons.” It’s just not worth it and dealing with them never ends well. Sam suggests that they at least “hear him out,” to which Dean replies, “all right, and then we kill him.”

Inside, they find a guy who looks like Crowley-lite and head over to his table. Cue the sneak peek. The demon introduces himself as “Barthamus – Bart’s fine.”

Bart: The Famous Winchesters.
Dean: Some Random Demon.

Bart and Dean exchange banter, then Bart gives them one of the manuscript leaves. He says it’s half of a finding spell for a Naphil and also tries to bribe Dean with pie. Sam asks him what he’s about. Bart says he became the new head CRD after Crowley became King of Hell (a hint that the CRD we saw in season two really was Crowley). He says he wants to do a deal with the Brothers (not their souls) for the other manuscript leaf. Dean points out that the Brothers generally just kill demons like Bart, so Bart calls Sam “the smart one” and suggests he have a look at the manuscript to see if it’s real. Then he leaves. I’m a bit weary of demons calling Dean stupid, especially when Dean is calling them out on their game. Calling Sam the smarter brother doesn’t make Sam look good, either, considering the number of times a demon did that to butter up Sam’s ego (at least Sam doesn’t seem to fall for it this time). It feels more like a lazy writer insert than organic.

Anyhoo, Sam is a little shocked when Dean just goes ahead and eats the pie.

Cut to Sam finishing up his analysis and Dean asking him how it went. Sam is surprised to say that it went pretty well. He says it’s Ancient Hittite and that it appears that King Solomon created it so that he could “stalk his girlfriend” (as Dean put it), the Queen of Sheba, who turns out to have been a naphil. Dean points out that dealings with demons never go well with them.

Sam then says that this is true, but that Jack is out there and he needs them. And they ought to take the risk on his behalf (damn, Sam, I actually bought that and I’m not even missing Jack very much), so Dean agrees.

Bart is waiting in what looks like Oliver Queen’s office-dungeon (but with windows), with two nervous associates. He assures them the Brothers will be there. When Sam and Dean arrive, Bart introduces the two as Smash (a safe cracker) and Grab (a demon who is an expert on “supernatural security”).

Dean perks up when he realizes this is a heist. Didn’t know the Brothers quite as well as you thought, eh, Bart? Should’ve led with that.

The target is a man named Luther Shrike. He collects “rare supernatural objects,” as well as something that Bart owns. Bart admits that he can’t get in himself because he needs the blood of a person who has been to Hell and back – literally. Then he pointedly looks at Dean. I could have sworn Sam had been there, too (not just in the Cage, which isn’t the Pit – what Bart may really have meant – but in the execrable “Taxi Driver”), but this is straight-up ignored in favor of targeting Dean and our seeing some flashbacks to Dean’s time there.

Dean says fine, take some blood, but Bart says that he actually needs it still inside Dean. But he also needs the Brothers’ expertise at handling “curve balls.”

Sam’s the one who says no when Bart won’t say what the object is he’s looking for. Bart saying Luther is human, but a very bad man, doesn’t budge the Winchesters on the subject. But Bart says he’ll give Asmodeus the spell if they won’t cooperate, which brings Sam up short.

The Brothers go off to consult. Dean says a double-cross from Bart is a sure thing. Sam agrees, but says they need to play along to keep the spell out of Asmodeus’ hands. And then, once they get it, they’ll double-cross Bart first and kill him. Dean likes that plan, so they come back and agree to Bart’s terms.

Bart’s positively gleeful about the plan, saying Luther will never see them coming.

Cut to Luther hearing that Bart is coming from a demon minion of Asmodeus. The demon asks that Luther give Asmodeus a heads-up once Bart & Co. show up. Luther responds by leading the demon into a devil’s trap and exorcising it, saying he doesn’t need a demon’s help to defend his own house.

Cut to outside Luther’s house as the Brothers arrive. Sam is driving and tells the gate security camera he’s there about an artifact he’d emailed Luther about (and giving a false name).

Dean is hiding in the back of the Impala with Smash under a blanket. Dean’s head is down by her feet. This precipitates a crack based on the famous line near the end of Ocean’s 11 (“Ted Nugent called. He wants his shirt back”): “Hey, Winona, the 90s called. They want their shoes back.”

Anyhoo, Sam is allowed in and drives up the crappy dirt road a bit before stopping and saying “Clear.” Out gets a nervous Smash and a calm Dean. The Brothers exchange a quick “Don’t get dead” then Dean and Smash disappear into the woods to the sound of thunder and rain while Sam drives up to the house. He rings the bell and the door opens on a foyer with a devil’s trap. Luther calls from another room and Sam enters it.

Dean and Smash go into a shed where Dean makes a spell in the dirt. While she waits, Smash drinks from a can. Dean recognizes it as an energy drink (“Nerve Damage”) he used to practically live on as a kid and gets nostalgic. They bond a little when she offers him a can, but she gets grumpy again when he probes her reasons for working for Bart.

Dean finishes the spell, which is to summon in Grab. Grab admits that he doesn’t know where the vault they’re looking for is, but Dean’s blood will lead them to it. Grab then says a spell in Latin (basically, it says, “Infernal blood, show the way”). Nothing happens at first, but then Dean’s flashlight hand gets a mind of its own and drags him after it. Smash and Grab follow.

Inside, Luther offers Sam some homemade gin, which Sam downs with a grimace. Luther shows Sam a basilisk’s fang (a test, maybe?), but Sam says it’s actually a gorgon’s tooth (that basilisk fangs are hollow). Sam says he’d love to see more of Luther’s collection, but Luther just wants to stick to business.

So, Sam shows him the artifact he brought. It’s Ruby’s spork.

Outside, Dean is leading Grab and Smash through a sort of park. They arrive at a cellar door with no lock. As Dean puts it, no lock is “never a good sign.” With a grumpy sigh, Smash opens up the door, but Grab won’t go in. Dean and Smash have to go in without him. Inside, there’s a door with a lion’s head on it. Smash tells him he has to put his hand in the lion’s mouth.

Upstairs, Luther is on to Sam and says he’s with Bart. For a practiced liar, Sam sure does stutter. But Bart has it wrong that Sam is a demon and goes after him with the Spork. Luther gets a shotgun and Sam goes for the Spork, but when he stabs Luther, Luther doesn’t die. Oops. Luther knocks him out.

Downstairs, Dean is dithering over sticking his hand in. Once he finally does it, a mechanism grabs his hand and gets a drop of blood. The door opens, but when an exasperated Smash enters, Dean saves her from a poison dart. As they try to figure out what to do next, Luther stabs Grab and comes down after them.

A freaked-out Smash knees Luther and flees up the stairs. Dean puts a lot of bullets into Luther, but Luther just keeps coming, after admitting that Sam is still alive last he saw him. Sam shows up and warns Dean that Luther is immortal (well…on the property, anyway). Dean punches Luther and knocks him out.

Dean interrogates Luther, but Luther won’t talk, so Dean puts a strip of duct tape over his mouth and the Brothers put their heads together over how to get to the vault. After some babbling that he only ever watched Entrapment, and that was because he had a crush on Catherine Zeta Jones, Sam gets an idea he calls “crazy.”

“I’m good with crazy,” Dean says.

It turns out that Sam wants to put Luther’s situational immortality to their own use. They tie Luther to a chair and shove him through all the traps. He gets darted and the Brothers are able to walk in behind him. Dean is quite impressed.

Smash shows back up, after having fled out to the gate and encountered Bart, who calls her “Alice” and reminds her of her deal. The Brothers note she sold her soul. She says that as long as she does jobs for Bart, he doesn’t collect. The Brothers offer to help, but she doesn’t think they can (honey, did you forget how Dean found the vault?).

So, she cracks the safe and they get the trunk, but Luther has escaped. He comes after them in a pickup. Dean backs up and Sam shoots out Bart’s tires. Once they get him out, he tells them his story. His son was dying and he traded his soul to save him. But his son drowned a few years later, anyway. Once he got down to Hell, Luther negotiated a new deal. Oh, and he found some new leverage – he found Bart’s bones. That’s what’s in the trunk when they open it up.

His infodumping task done, Luther gets beheaded from behind by Bart. He’s off the grounds, you see.

Bart says that Luther was two centuries old and then tells the Brothers to hand over the goods. Dean’s not thrilled, but lets Sam make the decision and Sam says no, the deal’s off. Bart asks if they’re stupid and Dean says no, “We just don’t like you.”

Bart then grabs Smash and threatens to kill her. The Brothers are forced to stand by as Bart takes possession of the trunk and, for added cruelty, insists Smash get in with it. But as she approaches the trunk, she sees that Dean has dropped his lighter in there. She picks it up and lights up Bart’s bones before he can react. Unfortunately, though Sam is able to go after the other half of the spell when Bart drops it, it burns before he can put it out (you just stomp the fire out – oh, never mind).

So, the Brothers see Smash – sorry, Alice – off on a bus, after she thanks Dean for saving her life and soul. Dean tells her to “stay weird” (he called her that earlier) and she sticks her tongue out at him.

Back at the Bunker, Sam is depressed that they lost the second half of the spell. Dean says that at least they saved someone and that they will find another way. Well … also, they kept the entire spell out of Asmodeus’ hands and didn’t Bart say he made copies? But that doesn’t get mentioned.

Anyhoo, they clink glasses over it.


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50 thoughts on “The Official “The Scorpion and the Frog” (13.08) Live Recap Thread”

  1. So I went back and watched excerpts from several episodes involving CRDs. I don’t think Crowley was the CRD in Crossroads, because her eyes were black, and she smoked out black. The one in AHBL II, though, had red eyes and may have been. I’ll bet Dean caught Crowley’s interest after the prowess he showed in handling the first CRD and decided to go deal with Dean himself.

    Now I have a question about Alice. It appeared that the brothers were able to completely rescue her, soul and all. I thought maybe killing the Demon that holds the contract, but that didn’t stop the hell hounds from coming for the wrestler in Beyond the Mat. And Ellie in trial and error was given a hex bag and told to try to avoid Crowley. What was the mechanism behind that?

    Also, Alice was pretty young. Assuming she was at the end of her contract, she would have been a child, twelve or thirteen when she made her deal. That’s an age that could have thought safe cracking and heists would be cool, but too young to suss out the consequences. There was no sense that there was a darker motivation, like Bela, behind her deal that would have taken her to Hell regardless. It made me wonder if Bart was the Grandma CRD in season 9.

    1. Killing the demon you made the deal with doesn’t negate the contract because the deal is actually with the head CRD (the CRD at the end of “Bedtime Stories” pretty much spelled this out with her “I got a boss” speech). But if you kill the head CRD, that’s probably a whole other story. We’ve seen how killing key figures can throw everything into chaos, at least for a while, and chaos seems to be Hell’s usual MO. I seriously doubt Asmodeus is spending any time worrying about how the CRDs are doing, or if any deal-makers have slipped through the cracks.

      Also, Alice thanked them at the end. It really irritated me how cowardly and ungrateful Charlie was toward the Brothers in the first episode, considering she was directly involved in what was basically an assassination attempt on them. She was lucky they didn’t take her out instead of putting her on a bus a la “Scarecrow.”

      Alice, on the other hand, was working with them on the heist and was under the compulsion of a deal. She didn’t have Charlie’s options and she didn’t enter the stage already screwing the Brothers over before she even met them.

      1. I got the impression that Bart was king of rhe crossroads and therefore the top of the food chain, especially now that Crowley is mia.

    2. I thought the demon that made Dean’s deal (Ona Grauer) came back in Sandy McCoy’s body in Bedtime Stories because she said SHE was the one herself. Now I always thought Sandy/Demon was telling the truth, that she was also Ona/Demon.

      Do you think Sandy/Demon was lying?

  2. I liked Smash better than Charlie. She wasn’t trying too hard.
    I really didn’t get why the brothers sympathized with the collector. Of course his demon deal went sideways. His son survived the fever. There was no guarantee nothing else would kill him.
    And frankly a powerful demon that did not like Asmodeus wouuld be useful to know. And he warned them about complications.
    Meh. I did like Jensen a lot and the Indiana Jones/Ocean’s 11 mash-up vibe.
    Every episode I find myself thinking thank God I am not a Sam fan. The character is gefting the old style Dean treatment and Jared does not imbue the charscter with life and subtext the way Jensen does, so much so that he made Dean seem like a focus when the writing wasn’t t there.

    1. I liked Smash/Alice better than Charlie too. She was no MarySue. Her skills were probably demon acquired and a result of a bad choice when she was too young and dumb to know better. And her general taciturnity kept her from being loved by just everybody, but she was not necessarily unfriendly either. She had an actual personality.

      1. While it was obvious she was a Charlie knockoff, I thought Alice worked better than Charlie because they fixed a lot of the mistakes that made Charlie unbearable. Alice’s personality made more sense for a young woman who had been on the street a long time. She was harder, warier, none of that annoying Annie/Oliver-style optimism that made no sense in Charlie (especially since Robbie Thompson piled it on by making Charlie gay as if being gay were just some quirk or cutesy fictional disability). Also, the writer wasn’t constantly pimping her for the audience by having everybody in the story fawn over her and tell her she was special. The only person who liked her at all was Dean, and that was due to the brief bonding moment over the energy drink and Dean’s soft spot for mentoring lonely, difficult young women. Sam basically ignored her, Bart was all creepy uncle about her and her deal, and Grab didn’t care if she lived, died or was damned for eternity. To the rest of the world, she didn’t exist.

  3. Paula, I thought about the Hittite spell thingie some more: the corollary is that Claudius, the Roman Emperor, was the last person who was supposed to be able to speak Etruscan and read their ancient writing and spells.

    Now if I remember right, Hittite floruit ended with the end of the New Kingdom around 1200BCE (?) and Solomon was supposed to be Iron Age about 1000BCE (?) (I am not sure of my date for Solomon because I have read of the lack of actual archaeological evidence for Solomon so he is difficult to date) so what is ‘wise man’ Solomon had his Naphil spell in Hittite because he was one of the few people who could still read Hittite? It would be a ‘code’ like the Navaho Code Talkers, a language that nobody spoke in Japan so could not be broken.

    Anyway, that is one way the spell being in Hittite worked. It would’ve made more sense for Sam to say it was ‘obscure Aramaic’ or ‘Nabatean’ or ‘Amalekite’ just to name some ancient languages.

    1. Hittite faded out around 1180 BCE. If Solomon lived, it was over two hundred years later. More to the point, there’s no real reason for Solomon to use Hittite. Hittite was well-known when it was in use, but the Hittites don’t appear to have been a very erudite people. I’m not sure there’d even be enough vocabulary in it for him to pull it off and he’d have no real connection to it.

      Solomon and David are semi-legendary, though David has some archaeological historicity. Solomon, due to the fabulous tales of his wealth and knowledge, and his reputed building of the First Temple, is harder to fit into the archaeological narrative. I think the biggest proofs of the House of David are that we know the dynasty existed due to archaeological and textual evidence for the century or so prior to the Babylonian Exile, but that doesn’t really help us with Solomon.

      1. The Hittites were in What is now Eastern Turkey.
        Pretty far from Israel.
        And they wrote on stone cylinder seals and mudbrick tablets
        The earliest known beer recipe is Hittite.
        Dabbler and Hacks didn’t think things through or do their research.
        What Language was the Key of Solomon written in… oh dear it’s a medieval grimoire…

      2. I have read so many conflicting dates re Kingdom of David. Just keeps me from making a judgement. My point about Claudius and the Etruscans was THEIR floruit had ended centuries before Claudius existed but there were writings around and Claudius learned the language. I was making the point it was possible Solomon could do the same thing.

    2. The Etruscans occupied the same terrain as the Romans pre-conquest. And claudius was educated and probably interested in ancient Roman history.
      The Hittite occupied what is now eastern Turkey.
      A far cry from Israel. They were good record keepers.
      Not sure they exported much so there is little reason to suppose there was much contact. They were conquered too so not influential.
      The Harrapans made luxury carnelian beads that everyone wanted. Egypt was highly influential culturally and artifacts made from faience were exported and reputedly their technology for patinated colored copper alloys, similar to the Japanese technology that produces shakkudo and it’s relatives, got around.The Greeks and Romans used it.
      The Egyptians also used magic and spells.
      Hieroglyphs on papyrus would have been more

      1. I think the writer was referencing that old theory that the Hittites were the invading “Sea Peoples” of Egyptian papyri who may or may not have been the inspiration for the Exodus story (hence, ancestors to the Israelites). Personally, I think that’s a bit thin, especially with what we know about the Hittites now.

        1. The colony of Quebec extended all the way from the Gulf of St Lawrence down the Ohio Valley to the Gulf of Mexico only two centuries ago. Dutch was the main language among many communities in Upstate New York well into the 19th century. That doesn’t mean the President of the United States would be likely to have a spell made up in either French or Dutch to spy on his mistress in 2017.

          1. The reason the Egyptians and Hittites fought at Megiddo (which ‘was’ Canaan) was because their empires had ‘run next’ to each other.

            My point again about the Naphil-spell was that it was on paper (which would’ve been used in Canaan) and if Solomon was supposed to be wise ‘and’ smart a way to explain Hittite being used in a spell used by the Hebrew King because he ‘was’ using a ‘dead’ language that maybe only he knew to ‘hide’ the spell from others. Just an idea how to make the whole scenario possible.

            I agree: Sam could’ve said it was Canaanite. He could have said it was Amalekite. He could’ve said it was Nabatean. ALL peoples with written languages that we can translate ‘now.’

            I am trying to make sense of some of the verkaackte ‘side issues’ the show has put in, like Dean having ‘hell blood.’

            1. The spell would have been on a clay tablet or papyrus. That didn’t look like either. I think the author had vellum in mind.

              I don’t get Hittite. As I said before, the Hittites weren’t noted for their erudition. They weren’t Zoroastrian Magi or Babylonian priests. I’m not even sure the Hittites had the appropriate vocabulary to write such a spell. Hebrew, even this early, I could about see, since it’s Solomon and obviously (as evidenced by the Bible), later Hebrew scholars had the vocabulary and knowledge, but not Hittite.

  4. Dean is special. Callback to his role as the righteous man… which I never thought I wouuld see… and reference to his special blood
    Setting up Dean!Michael.

    1. Yes, I want that so much I could/can TASTE it.

      Now maybe Michael is ‘pretending’ to be catatonic because Lucifer is just so annoying. Or maybe Michael IS catatonic and Dean thinks he can ‘hold’ his power and not deal with being possessed per se? Or maybe Dean makes a deal with Michael and Michael breaks it? Or keeps it?

      I think Rowena IS alive; I think Dean will want her to do that ‘adjacent cage’ thing with Michael so he can talk to Michael and suss out the situation. I think Lucifer will want her to do that ‘adjacent cage’ thing with Michael so he can slit Michael’s throat and steal his Grace and power up again. (Because about half of his Grace was taken by AU!Michael and used in Kevin’s spell and so it’s GONE. Like Castiel’s. Which is why Castiel is not a fully powered-up Angel.)

      1. Strictly speaking, Dean can expel Michael any time he wants. And if Michael was desperate enough to agree to Dean’s “conditions” last time, think how desperate he is now. I can see it being a time-share kind of thing, not unlike Sam and Gadriel, but with Dean knowingly doing it. Or maybe Dean has some control over Michael’s powers himself, albeit with Michael being crazy and Dean being both crazy and not used to archangel powers, it’s bound to be a disastrous combination.

        1. Yeah, Dean is ‘aware’ of how to kick out an Angel; he has the willpower to push him out IF he misbehaves. Maybe there is some spell like that egg thing the BMOL had and Sam keeps it around secretly if Michael ever tries to ‘take over.’ What was that egg thing called again?

            1. Wouldn’t it work equally well for archangels, since the basic principle is the same? Like how both angels and archangels have to ask permission for a ride-along in the first place?

    2. Dean’s callback as righteous man, and Billie’s input on Adv Than. do seem to be leading to something. I wonder if that lock needed blood that was not just from someone returned from Hell, but someone righteous who returned. After all, Luther took the deal for his dying son, and his blood worked, but Sam’s was never considered.

      1. The Righteous Man blood might have something to do with it. That may explain why Grab had such a hard time making the finding spell.

        1. I think the hand hole dithering was a nod to Indiana Jones. Wasn’t Indie terrified of snakes. Likewise Dean… spiders apparently.

          1. I think there were a few things going on with that scene. One is that the lion’s mouth and the poison darts/tiles are a nod to Raiders and Last Crusade, but that the specific test is from this film (and frankly, after seeing that scene, I wouldn’t be sticking my hand in a hole like that, either):

            Another is that this is a callback to the earlier episode where Dean didn’t want to go into the tunnel after Sarge (apparently, that was all Ackles improv and originally lasted much longer). Ackles has always played Dean’s various phobias for laughs, but his more existential fears far more seriously.

            But I think a big thing here is that Dean is being portrayed as almost superhuman in the episode and there needs to be something in the story that grounds him again and makes him still relateable to the audience. Hence, this scene.

      1. It seems a little late for Hittite, but I suppose it’s possible. Might be Hebrew, though that might actually be a bit early.

        I thought of the mud brick and wax seals thing. They didn’t generally go in for parchment during that period in that area. Maybe the idea is that it’s a late Hellenistic period copy. But then, why would it still be in Hittite?

        1. It would be in Hittite just because somebody who spoke/wrote Hittite wanted the spell. Works for me. It’s probably a copy of a copy of a copy … though the Hittites were ‘way before Solomon’s time by about 500yr or so.

          Did you think Alice’s shaky hands were related to Parkinson’s disease or something?

          When Luther complained that Bart had cured his son and then let him die I thought of one old story I heard about the devil and his deals: they always give you what you ask for but then something happens so you can’t really have it. One thing that was awesome about Crowley was that he decided that making deals and keeping them to the letter was how he created a customer base of people who went out and talked him up. He believed in a ‘fair’ deal in that respect (I found it hard to believe that the Cassity family on Trial and Error did not know the ramifications of their 10yr deal).

          So you think Crowley was the demon in Crossroads? Was Crowley the demon in AHBL2? We know Crowley was not the CRD in Sin City because Sam wasted ‘her.’ I think Crowley was just the first demon and then the same demon appeared in AHBL2 and Sin City. The only reason why is that Crowley, after being trapped in Crossroads would want to study the mark more before he approached him.

          As for Dean’s Hell Blood: Dean died and went to Hell, he was ‘subject’ in Hell and then returned to Life and Earth. Say was in The Cage which appears NOT to be in Hell proper; I agree Sam when to Hell in Taxi Driver but he was not ‘subject’ in Hell. Does that make sense to you?

          1. Crowley’s deals may have been “fair”, but you sure as hell better read the fine print. Devil in the details and all that.

            I bet Alice ‘s hands were shaky from too much caffeine. Mine do that when I’m on my 8th or 9th cup of coffee.

            Your explanation of Dean’s hell experience vs Sam’s makes as much sense as any.

          2. Solomon wanted the spell. Solomon’s main language (assuming he existed) was Hebrew. There’s no reason for him to have it made up in Hittite. Hittite was effectively extinct by his time. He might have known it, but why use it?

            I think Alice was shaky because she drank a ton of energy drinks and was hyped up on caffeine. What I find interesting (and rather sad) is that Dean drank them as a kid. As if his childhood could get any sadder.

            It’s generally been a truism in the show that demon deals never work out well for the person making the deal. Even Crowley had fine print.

            Regarding Crowley, I think there was probably more than one CRD, but Bart made it sound as though Crowley was the one you usually got and especially if you were a big fish. I’ve long thought Crowley might have been the CRD from season two, which would explain some of the origins of his obsession with Dean. But I was a bit surprised to see the show bring that up so late in the game. Didn’t Dabb want Crowley and Mark Sheppard off the show in the first place?

            I think Dean’s Hell blood thing was intended to show that he had been partially demonized during his last ten years there. Sam got tortured a lot by Lucifer, and his soulless body did some terrible things, but Sam never had that experience. It seems to be a mix that makes one more powerful, the way a naphil is more powerful than its human and angel parents.

            But I also think the writers basically just wanted to focus that aspect of the story on one brother – the way, for example, “Salvation” in season one went on and on about genetics being a factor in being a Psykid for Rosie and Sam, but ignored the obvious corollary that Dean had the same genetics. It didn’t work for Kripke to have Dean have psychic powers and it didn’t work for the writer of this episode for Sam to have Hell-blood.

          3. So many people were insulted and upset that Deans Hell was considered but not Sams. Dean was the one who made a deal and ended up in Hell proper. Sam was in the cage. It made sense. It wasn’t Sam pain erasure. 🙂

            Speaking of Sams “Hell pain” – I thought Cas took all of those pesky memories away. So all of the suffering he experienced that (we’re told) out did Deans is basically null and void. And didn’t Sam say he no longer felt guilty like Dean because he believed he paid his dues? It’s about time Show acknowledged Deans time down there. I loved the Hell flashback too.

            1. I think it’s becoming quite obvious that the people who kept saying that Dean had an important role (and Jensen Ackles got to do all the fun stuff), in the seasons when Dean’s role was to hold Sam’s cape, were … well, perhaps not lying, but perhaps it was more that they didn’t really care what kind of role Dean had as long as it didn’t get in the way of what Sam got to do (which also meant that anything cool Dean somehow got absolutely had to be given to Sam). And now that Sam actually has the same role (more or less) that Dean had in earlier seasons, those same fans are not happy and don’t perceive the irony of that.

              Personally, I thought Sam got a pretty respectable amount to do this week. He managed to figure out a whole bunch of things that kept the plot going, as opposed to some of his Plot Stupid moments earlier this season, and he was the one who snowed Luther (including a decent fight scene) while the others went underground. Granted, his blowing on the parchment rather than stomping out the fire was dumb, but it wasn’t any sillier than Dean dithering over whether or not to stick his hand in the lion’s mouth. It was that kind of episode and the show obviously didn’t want to make things too easy for them by letting them get the second half.

              As far as Sam’s hell-pain experiences, there never was much to them aside from “Oh, poor Sam, he suffered so much worse than Dean,” so I guess they decided to go with the Hell experience with a real storyline that actually changed a character and that would be Dean’s. Maybe now that Castiel has taken away Sam’s hell-pain, it’s considered over and done with for Sam.

  5. FYI that looked like standard museum storeroom to me although best practices for storage of fragile manuscripts, scrolls and papyrii was absent in some respects. Items would not be stored in a way that would cause them to be manipulated directly whenever an item was retrieved. There would be auxiliary supports and highly visible accession numbers. Most likely everything would be in mat board folders to reduce the possibility of damage.
    Showrooms usually have examination areas to reduce artifact movement.
    Nice storage furniture. Set design understood the furniture but not the fine details.

    1. Yeah, wouldn’t they be in between plexiglass forms, or something similar? I found myself wondering if those sleeves were acid free (I have an MLIS with an archival concentration).

      With stuff that delicate, it would all be microfilmed or otherwise recorded, anyway, to reduce all necessary handling to an absolute minimum. But then again, the likelihood of the survival of 3000-thousand-year-old parchment is pretty freakin’ low, anyway.

      1. It survives in the right conditions.
        No plexi. No closed enapsulations.
        Yes. It would all be photographer and the photos scanned. And most likely the scans would be online.

    2. I thought “Surely they are copies!” when Bart just bent it in half and shoved it into his suit pocket. There was more care taken over the Nazi necromancer list than these rare, ancient scrolls. Just wondering about it threw me out of the episode.

      What do you all think about Danneel being a recurring guest star? I liked her on OTH, I think it should be interesting. Tho if they have Dean try and hook up with her that is going to be weird… Even weirder if it’s Sam… 😉

      1. I’m fine with Danneel coming in for a recurring, though I am worried that it appears her character appearances will all be written by the Nepotism Duo.

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