Well, it turns out that Sam was far from cured. In fact, he was basically dead. I thought finishing the trials was going to kill him, but it looks like he was dead either way. And Dean being the loving and desperate brother that he is decides to offer himself up to any angel who will come to Sam's rescue.
Dean: "OK, listen up. This one goes out to any angel with their ears on. This is Dean Winchester and I need your help."
As soon as he sent that prayer out over angel radio I thought we were going to have another deal on our hands. There is no doubt in my mind that Dean would trade his life in for Sam's. He's done it before and he wouldn't hesitate to do it again.
As the angels flocked to the hospital I assumed they were coming for Dean's vessel; Sam's life in exchange for a healthy vessel. But it turns out all they wanted was to find Cass. We knew Cass was in trouble right? Of course he would take the fall for Metatron's spell. Sure he didn't know the angels would fall, but he was trying to close the gates of Heaven which really isn't helping his case either.
This is where we meet our new friend Ezekiel. I use the word "friend" hesitantly. So far he has a few things going for him. He saved Dean and he claims to still believe in his mission. Cass seems to trust him which is a good sign. (Although Cass also trusted Hale so we'll take that with a grain of salt.) And let's not forget he saved Sam from certain death. He gets something out of it of course. While healing Sam from the inside, he'll also be healing himself.
Sam was really about to do it, wasn't he? He was ready to die. His whole internal struggle was so interesting and sad to watch. Dean is cast as the part of Sam that wants to fight for his life but he can't figure out a plan to do so. Meanwhile, Bobby (!) plays the part of Sam that wants to just give in and die already. The proverbial angel and devil on his shoulder. The hard part for Sam is that both sides make a compelling argument. Sure he wants to fight to live, if only for Dean's sake, but he doesn't know how. And at the same time, he's been through a lot. His body is weak and broken and it might just be time to let go.
So once again, Dean steps in and makes a call for his brother. He let's Ezekiel possess Sam and wipe his memory. With the help of Ezekiel, Dean is able to step into Sam's mind and persuade him to keep fighting.
Dean: "I made you a promise in that church. You and me come whatever. But hell if this ain't whatever. But you gotta let me in, you gotta let me help. There ain't no me if there ain't no you."
Sam: "What do I do?"
And for the second time in two episodes Dean is able to persuade Sam not to give up on him yet. Was he being totally honest about his plan? No. Was it selfish? Yes. Was it fair to Sam? Probably not. Am I happy with Dean’s decision? Hell yes. I can’t take another dead Winchester. And while I’m not feeling overly confident in this plan, it’s better than nothing.
Here’s the deal as I understand it. Ezekiel possesses Sam to fix him from the inside. This also benefits Ezekiel as he uses Sam's vessel to heal himself. (I'm still a little fuzzy on how that works) He wipes Sam's memory so that he doesn't remember his decision to die. In return, Dean has to keep the possession from Sam because if Sam finds out that Ezekiel is still inside of him, he can eject him which will kill both Sam and Ezekiel. Once Sam is healed, Ezekiel claims that he will leave Sam's body. That remains to be seen.
I know some of you are thinking the same thing as me. Will this secret become another wedge to drive between Sam and Dean? I like brotherly drama as much as the next person but I'm really happy with where Sam and Dean's relationship is right now. I'm not ready for them to be keeping secrets from each other. I do understand that this has to be done in order to save Sam and since I'm all about keeping him alive, I'm not upset with this decision. But I do wonder if Sam would even be mad if Dean just told him the truth? Dean tells Ezekiel that Sam would never say yes to Ezekiel possessing him, but I don't know about that. Even while Sam was struggling internally, he seemed open to the idea of continuing to fight if Dean could offer him a plan to do so. Isn't this a plan? I mean, possession isn't ideal, but at least it's an angel that Cass trusts. What do you guys think, would Sam have been pissed if he knew what Dean did? And now we wait for him to find out because, let's face it, he will.
I am really excited about the world of possibilities this season premier has left us with. Obviously, there are many questions to be answered; will Sam ever truly heal? If he is healed, will Ezekiel honor his agreement and leave Sam's body? Will he expect a vessel in exchange? How will Cass adapt to being human? What's up with Crowley? Is he good, is he bad? Where is Metatron? And what the heck are they going to do about all these angels?
At this point, I can't even begin to wager a guess. What about you guys? Any predictions for this upcoming season? (Please warn us before including spoilers!)
And finally, here are some quotes and stray observations worth mentioning.
Am I the only one who worries that the title of this episode is some kind of foreshadowing to Ezekiel getting a little too comfortable in Sam’s body?
The Road So Far - What a great montage and I love that song.
The new angel wing title card is really fun. They do a great job with these every year.
Doctor: "I'm afraid that's in God's hands now."
Dean: "God has nothing to do with this equation at all. That's not good enough!"
I ask again, will we ever meet God in this series?
Cass: “I would fly, but I have no wings. Not anymore.”
Bobby: “Excuse me, are you dead? Because I am.” Oh Bobby, I’ve missed you!
Payphone guy: “I’m gonna finish this call, then I’m gonna stab you.”
Dean: “I’ve got the king of Hell in my trunk”
This quote can only be surpassed by Dean calling Crowley “the junk in his trunk” in next week’s promo.
I loved when Hale talked about building “a grand canyon”. And Cass says, “The Grand Canyon, yes.” It was such an early Cass moment. I bet he got a little taste of what Sam and Dean experienced from him when he came into their lives.
Bobby: “How many people can say that they left this god-forsaken hunk of dirt a better place?”
There was quite a lot of tension going on in Sam’s mind.
Dean kills Bobby “I know it stings, but he had to go”
And then he punches Sam “My plan is to fight, My plan is to try”
Dean: “Anybody ever tell you you hit like an angel.”
Dean: “If Heaven is locked, then where do you go when I do this?” What a badass.
I love that Death considers it an honor to collect Sam.
Sam: “If I go with you, do you promise that this time it will be final. That if I’m dead, I stay dead...nobody else can get hurt because of me.”
Hale’s broken legs were one of the goriest things we’ve seen on this show to date. I couldn’t look away.
Ezekiel is acting as Sam’s “Angelic pacemaker.”
I felt so bad for Cass in the laundromat. He wanted to clean his bloody clothes but he was clearly hungry and needed the money for food. But then I have to ask why he spent money on water which is free! Just saying… And he left his trenchcoat behind which just broke my heart.
Sam: “We’ve got work to do.” This shout out to season one made my fangirl heart explode.