This review may contain spoilers
As the boys begin to hammer on Dick's clay block without any particular regard for the durability of its contents, a massive (global?) lightning storm begins, sort of syncing with the hammering. They ignore this blatant supernatural warning.
As they reveal the stone tablet within, honor student Kevin (Osric Chau) is struck by lightning in the middle of his room. The stone tablet is covered in glyphs. Kevin's eyes glow; he is seeing a vision of the tablet as he lies unconscious in his room. Simultaneously, Castiel (Misha Collins) wakes up in the hospital. Edgar (Benito Martinez), Dick's right hand leviathan, notices the event. Also, all women in their last month of pregnancy within 100 mile radius of the tablet go into labor.
Visions impel Kevin to get into a car and drive to Indiana where Castiel is, despite the fact that he is missing the SAT test being given at his school -- what had been the sole focus of his life for months. Receiving the news from demon Meg (Rachel Miner), the boys head for Indiana as well. Castiel is awake and functional but cannot focus on much as sudden insights into God's designs constantly interrupt his thought processes. Also, he has become pacifistic and adverse to the least conflict.
Kevin takes the tablet when Sam (Jared Padalecki) is not paying attention, but they catch him. Kevin can read the tablet and it responds to his touch. Angels, friends of Castiel, appear. The tablet is The Word of God; when it was revealed, the Keeper of the Word was awakened. Protocol has it that the angels will take the Keeper, a type of prophet, into the desert so that he can learn The Word away from distractions. Dean (Jensen Ackles) banishes Hester (Emily Holmes), Inias (Adrian Glynn McMorran) and Castiel when Hester wants to "punish" Sam, just because he's there.
Running to Rufus' cabin, they cover it with angel camouflage glyphs and Kevin translates the tablet, it is an in-case-of-emergency note on the leviathans. Hester finds them when Meg makes a mistake and still feeling betrayed decides to kill Castiel. Meg stops her with an angel knife in the back. Kevin finishes the translation, and the other angels take him home where leviathans easily snuff them and take Kevin.
To kill leviathans, other than decapitating them and keeping the parts apart, or getting them to eat each other, you need the bones of a righteous mortal and the blood of three fallen angels. Castiel provides the first ingredient and wanders off to do something random. Meg is lying low after killing an angel and two demons; so the boys have just Bobby to help, as usual.
Points Of Interest
1. After his battle with Dick last episode, Bobby was left without the energy to manifest himself for a while.
2. Kevin Tran is an advanced placement student who plays the cello and is scheduled down to the minute. He wants to go to Princeton and be the first Asian-American president. His best friend is Channing (Khaira Ledeyo), also an advanced placement musician type.
3. Edgar is helping with the design of the abattoir. He recommends that a big blade assembly not be placed where it's visible at the end of a long corridor where the humans will be queuing as they await processing.
4. Due to Meg's stint as Castiel's primary caregiver, she has formed a bond with him that she believes is stronger than the one he has with the Winchesters.
5. The angel Metatron, the Scribe of God, wrote the tablet. Castiel recognizes the handwriting even though he cannot read it; it is not meant for angels.
6. Reading the Word of God is not simple. It hurts if he focuses on it for too long.
7. A national Amber Alert was issued for 16-year-old Kevin after he disappeared.
8. Hester and Inias were both in Castiel's garrison and hence under his direct command. Hester feels completely betrayed and confused by Cas' actions and conflicting speeches about free will. Inias is just glad to see him again and would like him to come back to the fold.
9. When Cas first remembered his life, after his period of amnesia as Emanuel, he was lost. He thought of those he killed and those he did not save and was being crushed under the emotional burden until he took on Sam's pain and that somehow helped. He did see visions of Lucifer at the beginning, but now he sees everything.
10. Meg encounters two demons when the group is refueling and arranges to meet them later. After she has determined that they spoke to no one else, she kills them. This event alerts Hester to their whereabouts. So demon violence of any kind is tracked by angels.
11. Meg explains that she is still loyal to Lucifer and wants to destroy Crowley. She has no desire or incentive to betray either Castiel or the boys who have helped her, especially Castiel, who is powerful.
12. Leviathans are immune to angel powers. They can nigh instantly kill angels by infecting them with black goo that oozes out of their orifices. Inias is not one of the angels killed at the end.
13. The death of the angels guarding Kevin should precipitate the appearance of an archangel, unless Keeper of the Word is a second class of prophet. So, are there any archangels left? How does an archangel fare against leviathans?
Edlund wrote and directed an excellent episode. All the guests (Kevin, Hester, Inias, Channing) had enough breathing space and were so well written that they could showcase distinct and inhabited characters in their brief time onscreen -- characters it would have been nice to get to know better.
Cas to Sam: "You seem troubled. Of course, that is a primary aspect of your personality; so I sometimes ignore it."
Kevin to Dean: "I just want to be the first Asian-American president of the United States."
"Then do your homework."
Dean to Cas: "What are you going to do, Cas?"
"I don't know. Isn't that amazing?"
What Didn't Work
Didn't Dean learn his lesson when he blew up the dragon killing sword in "Like a Virgin"? Magic items are not indestructible and extracting them should be done with care.
Demons keep finding out where the boys are and deciding that the boys aren't as important as whoever the boys have found, threatening them. Then, they wander around for a while, but come back without having told anyone else, allowing them to be killed without causing a larger demon mob to descend on the boys. Repeatedly.
With the exception of Anna (and no, Rafael's female vessel doesn't count), no female angel has lasted more than one episode in contrast to Uriel, Zachariah, Balthazar and Gabriel.
Giving Credit Where Credit Is Due
"Supernatural" stars Osric Chau, Jared Padalecki, Jensen Ackles, Misha Collins, Rachel Miner, Emily Holmes, Adrian Glynn McMorran, Khaira Ledeyo, Benito Martinez. "Reading is Fundamental" was written and directed by Ben Edlund.
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