Supernatural: Reading is Fundamental
October 7, 2021 5:58 AM - Season 7, Episode 21 - Subscribe

Sam and Dean have a tablet containing the Word of God in their possession, but are unable to read it. They find a young prophet who can help, but soon realize the angels and leviathans are after him.


Castiel: Can you not see that? This is the handwriting of Metatron.
Sam: Metatron? You saying a Transformer wrote that?
Dean: No. That's Megatron.
Sam: What?
Dean: The Transformer -- it's Megatron.
Sam: What?

Castiel: Did you know that a cat's penis is sharply barbed along its shaft? I know for a fact the females were not consulted about that.

Kevin: You're one of the Angels?
Castiel: [touches Kevin's nose] Boop.

Castiel: Pull my finger.

Sam: Here. Leviathan cannot be slain but by a bone of a righteous mortal washed in the three bloods of the fallen. Uh... it says we need to start with the blood of a fallen angel.
Castiel: Well, you know me. I'm always happy to bleed for the Winchesters.

Dean: What are you gonna do, Cass?
Castiel: I don't know. Isn't that amazing?

Meg: He's been like the naked guy at the rave ever since he woke up. Totally useless.
Castiel: Will you look at her? My caretaker. All of that thorny pain. So beautiful.
Meg: We've been over this. I don't like poetry. Put up or shut up.

Kevin: It's okay, Mom. They brought me back. They're keeping me safe.
Detective Collins: I don't believe that's true. [kills the angels] Rock beats scissor. Leviathan beats Angel.

Reporter: ... At a loss to explain the continent-wide storm system that appeared seemingly out of nowhere, blanketing a good part of the nation in freak lightning displays. Here with Dr. Marlon Price of the U.S. Meteorological Society, which had a press conference earlier today.
Price: "Baffled"? No, I'm not baffled. Frankly, I'm offended. This is not the way weather behaves.

Dean: Great, so now we're kidnappers?
Meg: Not if we shut up about it. Why? Who'd we kidnap?

Hester: You smote thousands in Heaven. You gave a big, scary speech. Then you were gone. What the hell was that?
Castiel: Rude, for one thing.

Hester: [Looking at Meg and Sam] Kill the demon and her lover.
Meg: That's not how it... we're not...

Sam: What's it say, then?
Castiel: Uh... "Tree"? "Horse"? "Fiddler crab"? I can't read it. It wasn't meant for angels.

Dean: That's a lot of fuss over a caveman Lego.
Sam: Yeah, well, whatever Dick wants is bricked up inside that.
Dean: All right. [hits stone with hammer; thunder rumbles outside] That sound like somebody saying, "no, wait, stop" to you?
Sam: Uh... Yeah. Yeah.
Dean: Yeah. Oh, well. [continues breaking stone, storm gets more violent]

Castiel: [on the phone] I'm in a place called Perth
Meg: Perth?
Dean: Perth? As in Australia?
Meg: [listening to Cass] What dogs? [to Dean] He says he's surrounded by unhappy dogs.
Castiel: They're chasing a rabbit around...
Meg: Oh. Okay. He's at a dog track in Perth.
Castiel: I'm surrounded by large, unhappy dogs.
Meg: Yeah, they're unhappy 'cause the rabbit's fake.

Meg: We both call, who do you think Cass will come to? I'm guessing me. You heard him -- thorny beauty, blah, blah. I'm the saint who stayed with him. He owes me. His words.
Sam: Yeah, what about what he owes us?
Meg: Well, work on him a little. Maybe he'll start crushing on you, too, hot stuff.

Edgar: Isn't it strange that someone would choose to be called "Dick?"

Dean: [to Cass] You realize you just broke God's Word?

Castiel: You know, we weren't sure at first which monkeys were gonna make it. No offense, but I was backing the Neanderthals because their poetry was... just amazing. It's in perfect tune with the spheres. But in the end, it was you; the homo sapiens sapiens. You guys ate the apple, invented pants...

Meg: Not a demon or a chomper. What the hell are you?
Kevin: [panting] I'm a... Kevin Tran. I'm in advanced placement. P-p-p-p-please don't kill me.

Dean: What is that?
Sam: It's, uh... Kevin Tran. He's in advanced placement.

Dean: So big daddy chomper lands here, he grabs himself some Dick...

Castiel: Outside today, in the garden, I followed a honeybee. I saw the route of flowers. It's all right there, the whole plan. There's nothing to add.
Sam: You might want to add a little thorazine.

Kevin: So, these Leviathans; these monsters are real. And angels with wings?
Sam: No. Uh... No wings. No anything.
Dean: No junk. Junkless.

Meg: I've been busy with Cass. He's just a tad different than when he dozed off, 'kay?
Dean: What do you mean, different?
Meg: Hey, Seacrest, guess what -- not a nurse. Just playing one on TV.

Dean: So, Kevin, you can, uh, read the chicken scratch on the God rock, huh? And you're saying that there's some sort of a "how to punch Dick" recipe in there somewhere?

Sam: When we broke this thing open last night, every maternity ward within a hundred-mile radius got slammed. Looks like any woman in the last month of her pregnancy went into labour.
Dean: [holds up tablet] Hmm. This one goes out to all the ladies.

Rosco: Castiel -- he's dead.
Meg: Right, 'cause you're in that loop.

Castiel: You know, those racing dogs were absolutely miserable. They can only think in ovals.
Dean: Cass, don't make me pull this car over!

Kevin: This is all too much. What's happened to my life? I'm just a kid from Michigan. I didn't want to be a Word-keeper! [hyperventilating] I am not prepared to factor the supernatural into my world view!

Castiel: Garrison code dictates you take the keeper to the desert to learn the Word away from men.
Dean: What kind of sense does that make? He has to tell us so that we can use it.
Castiel: That's God and his shiny red apples.
Kevin: I can't live in the desert! I'm applying to Princeton!

Castiel: My old Garrison. Looks like Hester's taken over. We were assigned to watch the earth. Often, it was boring. The wars were very boring and the sex -- you know, the repetition.

Meg: [to two demons] I want to know how many of you jerks I have to cut in.
Rosco: You think we're stupid? We didn't tell anybody.
Meg: I love demons. [kills them both]

Castiel: [to Sam] You seem troubled. Course that's a primary aspect of your personality, so I sometimes ignore it.

Meg: For me currently, the cause is bringing down the King. And I know I'll need help to do it.
Dean: Crowley ain't the problem this year.
Meg: When are you gonna get it? Crowley's always the problem.

Hester: [beating Castiel] No more madness! No more promises! No more new Gods! [she punches Castiel repeatedly and then holds up an angel knife]
Inias: Hester! No! Please! There's so few of us left.
Hester: [pushes Inias away and turns back to Castiel, ready to stab him] You wanted free will. Now *I'm* making the choices.
Meg: [stabs Hester]
Everyone else: ...
Meg: What? Someone had to.

Kevin: [at Rufus' cabin] This looks like a sex torture dungeon. Is this a sex torture dungeon?
Dean: No this is not a sex torture... Sit down and read, would you?

Castiel: I don't fight any more. I watch the bees.

Channing: The essays are at least as important.
Kevin: [looks at blank college admission essay document on computer] I have absolutely nothing to say.
Channing: I know what you mean. I read one by a kid who got into Cornell. He didn't have any arms or legs or anything. He had to type the whole thing with his mouth. It was beautiful.

Inias: These are strange times.
Castiel: I think they've always been.

Kevin: I just want to be the first Asian-American President of the United States.


Sam says that after Dean opened the tablet, every woman in her last month of pregnancy gave birth. Coincidentally, Jared Padalecki's wife Genevieve gave birth to their first child during the filming of this episode.

When Dean and Kevin go back to Rufus' cabin, while Dean is showing Kevin around one of the weapons on the table is Death's hand scythe. Death took it back from Dean when they met, so the weapon shouldn't be there.

In the previous episode, the tablet is in red clay, now it appears to be in stone.

In this episode, Meg calls Sam "Bullwinkle". Crowley has always called Sam "Moose". Bullwinkle the moose was a lead character in the 1960's classic cartoon The Rocky and Bullwinkle Show.

First mention of Metatron. Metatron is stated to be an Archangel even though it's made very clear when Metatron is introduced in season 8 that he is NOT an archangel. He was a run-of-the-mill angel in the secretarial pool before God picked him to take down the Word.

Dean says, "We need the tablet to end Dick Roman's soylent us crap." He is referring to the 1973 sci-fi thriller Soylent Green.
posted by orange swan (9 comments total)
Supernatural tends to go in cycles where they realize they need people besides Sam and Dean to do X, create characters that fit those roles (some more interesting than others), decide that the cast has gotten too large and try to get the show back down to just Sam and Dean and kill off the side characters, and then realize that they need people besides Sam and Dean. . .

It seems like the beginning of season seven was a real paring down moment, but the back half is adding new characters/resurrecting old ones. I love Charlie and Kevin, they're some of my favorite side characters in all of Supernatural, but by this time I knew not to get too attached.
posted by dinty_moore at 7:00 AM on October 7, 2021 [4 favorites]

Castiel set up a game of Sorry with one shake of the box. Bet he's a whiz at jigsaw puzzles.

Meg likes movie magazines? I suppose she had to learn her pop culture references somewhere.

In this episode we meet Kevin Tran and his mom, both awesome characters.

I googled Osric Chau. He's a Canadian. He spent years taking intensive martial arts training (tai chi and wushu) because he wanted to do stunts, and even became a member of the Canadian National Wushu Team, but wound up getting cast as an actor instead -- he pacifies himself for this by doing as many of his own stunts as he's allowed to do. He was 25 years old when this episode aired to the 16 Kevin was supposed to be, but he passed for a kid remarkably well. He has said Supernatural was his favourite set of any he has ever worked on, saying the experience was "nothing but positive". He has said, "Supernatural has been an incredible blessing, but … Kevin Tran hasn’t always been that character that I loved. It started off as being the most stereotypical character I’d ever played. He was an Advanced Placement student, he was playing the cello and the shot was going over all of his honours, he had a schedule going, he had a tiger mom, a type-A girlfriend as well. It was all these things that was just very, very stereotypical, and it wasn’t until [the writers] changed their mind on killing Kevin, and kept him on… we got to see the layers of the character. He became my favourite character."

He comes across as upbeat and friendly on Twitter. He mostly seems to use his account for promoting his work and interacting with fans, and doesn't get very political or share much personal stuff, but he's definitely pro-vax and pro-mask. He opened a restaurant in Richmond, B.C. during the pandemic (!) and recently posted a video of him rock climbing in which he repeatedly swung from one hand. I haven't been able to find anything confirming that he actually plays the cello in real life -- I suspect he doesn't.

So, he's another Supernatural cast member I'm adding to the "decent so far as Google tells me" category.
posted by orange swan at 7:04 AM on October 7, 2021 [1 favorite]

God, I missed Meg. This show really needs somebody who can call the Winchesters on their crap, match (or surpass) them in verbally and physically, and it certainly doesn’t hurt that it’s a woman/female demon, which seems to confound the boys. They’re so used to dealing mainly with men, that when they have to interact with a woman over an extended period of time, they get thrown way off their game.

I still don’t know how the boys decided that what they were seeking was inside the stone. Why couldn’t it have been the stone itself? Yes, I know they were proven right, but the, “let’s jump to a wild assumption and possibly ruin an important artefact and magical object” didn’t seem like the smartest of moves.

I’m far from a handwriting expert, but if you had shown me Kevin’s transcription notebook, I would have said “written by a girl, not a guy.”
posted by sardonyx at 7:16 AM on October 7, 2021 [1 favorite]

Poor Kevin.

Him and Mama Tran were (eventually) such good characters.
posted by Faintdreams at 8:02 AM on October 7, 2021

I had zero memory of this episode but it was actually pretty enjoyable.

I’m not super sorry this exact version of Castiel didn’t stick around forever, but he worked for this point in the show, and he and Meg have a fun vibe going.

It's hardly a new joke setup, but Sam’s bewildered outrage that a Transformer wrote the tablet—that it wasn’t enough to have expanded their worldview to include vampires, angels, and Purgatory goo monsters, that now he has to deal with the fact that Decepticons are real and they talk to God—still made me laugh. But very happy to see the Trans, and also oh lord, it’s almost time for Metatron to be all over this show for like a hundred fucking years.

Meg's bit here about committing to a cause was interesting to me. I think the way she's often played like a Chaotic Evil/Neutral who's 100% in it for herself, but I want to pay more attention to how she comes up as, maybe not an ideologue or fanatic, but somebody with a larger agenda than her own. She's either literally or figuratively Azazel's daughter and she genuinely believed in Lucifer, she did her part for both and is definitely not sorry about it, and is stuck trying to make sense of her place in the post-Michael/Lucifer world like everybody else, which makes her an interesting person for the Winchesters to have around all this time and I wish they'd leaned into that a little more.

I wonder if the Leviathans were gone for so long the angels had no idea they can die that way, because otherwise sending a terrified 16 year old back to his mom with just a couple of angels seems very dumb. But I feel for Hester, some angels' free will is much more welcome than others.
posted by jameaterblues at 8:38 AM on October 7, 2021

Osric (from Hamlet; Robin Williams played the role in the Branagh production) is such a British HK name of a certain era. I have cousins named Vulcan, Hephaestus, Plato, Lysander, etc.

I had an immediate kneejerk antipathy towards Kevin as a character, but he turns out cool? I hate his mom mother.

Vancouver is chock full of conventionally attractive female Asian actors, casting someone extra "stereotypical" is making me side-eye the producers/ showrunners hard, again.

Yeah, from the opening scene, I'm not completely convinced that Chau plays the cello, or at least at a particularly high level.

I'm less fazed that the boys cracked open the tablet envelope (encasing something [usually already fired clay or stone tablet] in [lower quality] clay, then baking it [again, or just let it dry] is a thing) than that they put on eye protection to do it. They don't normally have much respect for OSHA.

I find it ludicrous that Sam doesn't know who Metatron is. If not from very salient bible study as part of a hunter's curriculum, then at least from 'Dogma' (1999) (which Dean makes an allusion to; "No junk. Junkless").

The 'Sorry!' gag would have worked better with 'Risk.'

Waitwaitwait, how do angels recognize each other while the other are in random mortal vessels?

Is Lucifer inside Cas now, and having someone to chat with - is that what's making Cas feel better?
posted by porpoise at 7:35 PM on October 7, 2021

Maybe angels are junkless, but I'd presume their human vessels retain their sexual organs and can use them. Meg and Cas played pizza man (whatever that entailed).
posted by sardonyx at 7:48 PM on October 7, 2021

Angels certainly can have sex, at least when in human form. Balthazar and Gabriel did. Anna had sex with Dean. Castiel is a virgin and doesn't seem to have very much interest in sex and/or perhaps he's simply too awkward to be good at hooking up, but it was implied that he got an erection when watching porn in Sam and Dean's motel room, so the basic capability is there.
posted by orange swan at 8:34 PM on October 7, 2021 [1 favorite]

Glad to hear Osric is nice IRL.

Meg has good lines in this one.

"Edgar: Isn't it strange that someone would choose to be called "Dick?"


Throughout the entire run of the show I always thought Castiel was pretty much asexual/uninterested, except in whatever episode he was rolling with hippies in a commune in, high as balls, or whatever was happening in that one.
posted by jenfullmoon at 3:48 PM on October 15, 2021

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