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2006, TV Show

Supernatural Episode: "Torn and Frayed"

Season 8, Episode 10
Episode Synopsis: Castiel tries to rescue a fellow angel, who is being held captive by Crowley. Meanwhile, Amelia asks Sam to either stay with her or leave and never contact her again.
Original Air Date: Jan 16, 2013
Guest Cast Amanda Tapping: Naomi Misha Collins: Castiel Liane Balaban: Amelia
Full Episode
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Season 8, Episode 10
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Length: 42:15
Aired: 1/16/2013
Also available on iTunes, Amazon Instant Video and VUDU
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Supernatural Episode Recap: "Torn and Frayed" Season 8, Episode 10

The show's eighth winter hellatus is over. It's time for the Winchesters to make some tough decisions about their lives. Are the brothers going all in when it comes to hunting? Or are they going to continue to split their interests? Will Sam choose Amelia? Will Dean continue to be friends with Benny? So many questions.

The first Supernatural of 2013 is dark and kind of depressing, but did delve into the mythology, which is always good in my book. It has to accomplish a lot of things like deal with the troubled state of the sibling relationship. It has to weave Cas and Benny back into the action. Plus, Sam has a choice to make. It turns out Dean has to make one too. Add a worse-for-the-wear Kevin into the mix as well as an angel that gets tortured Crowley-style, and you see why I referred to this episode as kind of depressing. For the most part, all these elements are dealt with successfully.

Sam and Dean

In the beginning of "Torn and Frayed," the brothers Winchester are mighty prickly with each other. Sam's upset over Dean's fake text that sent him racing to Amelia's and in effect got him out of Benny's way. I remember from my last blog (the one for "Citizen Fang"), many people thought that was an okay thing for Dean to do. While I was cool with Dean coming up with a way to get his brother off of Benny's scent, I really didn't like him using Amelia to do it. So I think Sam has a right to be upset. But, in that hotel room in Kermit, Texas, Dean steps up and admits he was wrong.

What I still don't like is how Sam remains so adamant about Dean needing to be done with Benny. Sam says he can't trust the vampire. Once again (I've said this many times), doesn't he get that the only reason why Dean is even standing before him is because of Benny? And how about he let Dean explain what went down between Benny and Martin that resulted in Martin's death? Dean's right. That was self-defense. Wish he had been given the chance to tell his brother about Martin using a human (Elizabeth) to get to Benny.

So this first confrontation between the Winchesters didn't go so well. Dean exits stage left and ends up tackling the latest mission with Cas. Ultimately, our favorite angel of the Lord has to bring Sam into the situation. Rescuing the angel Samandriel from Crowley's clutches is a job for both Winchesters. So they are forced to work together again.

Cas and the angels

Poor Cas. He's on this whole self-imposed penance kick. For him, it's about atoning for his sins. He's going around helping people. He seems content with doing that. Unfortunately, the not so heavenly Naomi keeps breaking into his life. She's manipulating him big time. With Crowley having captured Samandriel, Naomi is forced to turn to Cas for help. She seems panicked but she lets Cas know he needs to make sure this rescue mission idea comes from him and him alone.

Ultimately, Cas feels very strongly about going after Samandriel (aka Alfie). Crowley has had him for weeks. What they put the Dean-described "most adorable angel" through looks brutal. There are lots and lots of screams -- screams that start manifesting into strange supernatural occurrences like a burning bush talking to a man.

What we learned

-Torture an angel enough and you can eventually access his "operating system" and tap into some major secrets of the angelic kind.

-An extremely afraid Cas has flashes where he can see Naomi doing something horrible to him up there in heaven. I'm super curious as to what she's doing to him. Why she's doing this to him. How much longer before we get some answers?

-There's not only a demon tablet but there's an angelic version as well. Samandriel tells Cas he gave away more secrets about heaven and Naomi and said: "they're controlling us, Castiel!" It all has Naomi scared. It doesn't help that Crowley knows about this as well.

-Naomi's manipulations include getting Cas to save Samandriel then ordering him to kill him. And he did it. What a step back for Cas this has to be. He's already angst-y over the angels he decimated when he was out of control. There's no way he's OK with having had to kill Alfie, especially with him being unaware of the reason why he offed the angel.

-Cas bleeds from his eye. What did Naomi do to him?

 The Choices

Dean and Amelia pretty much tell Sam the same thing. He needs to make a decision and then commit to it a hundred percent. So Sam either stays with his brother or he goes back to the hotel room in Kermit to be with Amelia. While Amelia shows up to the room to be with the man she loves, Sam doesn't. He chooses the hunt. Of course. Was there any doubt? I'm not sure this is how I wanted Sam to stay with Dean. But I'm glad he did. I wonder if this is the last we'll ever see of Amelia.

What really affects me, however, is how Dean feels he needed to make his own choice. He calls up Benny, who's having a tough time dealing with vampire life now that he's had a taste of human blood (Martin's). Going back to being on the wagon has to be rough for the guy and he needs a visit from Dean to help straighten him out. But, instead, Dean calls Benny up:

Dean: "Listen, Benny. Everything you've done for me, I will never forget. But, uh, this is it."
Benny: "End of the line?"
Dean: "End of the line."
Benny: "Yeah, well, I never liked these cell phones anyway."
Dean: "You, uh, stay good, all right?"
Benny: "You too, Dean. And uh, thanks for the ride."
Dean: "Yeah, man. Adios."

The look on Dean's face after he hangs up is crushing. So it seems like the personal stories that informed the first half of the season are over. The brothers are back together at the end of the episode and it's great. But it's also a little bittersweet for me because the Dean/Benny friendship is a casualty and I'm kind of in mourning over it.

Random Thoughts

-Shallow TV Alert: A shirtless Sam sighting complete with anti-possession tattoo. Yay!

-The song used in the Previously: Bob Seger's "Katmandu"

-Dear show: Please don't let this be it for Benny. I would like to see him again before the end of the season. Pretty please.

-Anytime Dean and Cas investigate a case is awesome because Cas will inevitably say something unintentionally hilarious causing Dean to either make an awesome face or cover for his very awkward friend. It never gets old.

-Dean's still accessing porn on his computer. Some things never change.

-What the hell was Sam watching in his hotel room? Something about a dung beetle?

-Only Dean can get away with making a joke about an "ambush" to a man that got scorched by a burning bush.

-Cas telling Sam and Dean to stow their crap is a great moment.

-I really wanted to like those Sam and Amelia in the present scenes. They were better than the previous flashbacks for sure. But I still didn't feel much in the way of a connection between the two. So Sam choosing to stay with Dean and the hunt was a no brainer.

-Beer and bacon happy hour? Sign me up.

-Poor Kevin. He's makes the commitment to the demon tablet hunt. He sends his mom to somewhere safe so he can concentrate on translating the Word of God. Cas is right. He looks horrible. It's sad to see him going through this.

-Sam and Dean definitely know something's going on with Cas. They had a secret meeting to discuss their friend and drew some sigils in order to make sure Cas couldn't hear or see them. Hopefully the brothers can figure something out soon.

-Congrats to Supernatural for its People's Choice win for Best Sci-Fi/Fantasy Series and the Supernatural Family for Best TV Fan Following. It was great getting to see Jensen and Jared making an acceptance speech and presenting an award.

-Apparently, this is Misha's 50th episode as Cas. Wow. Just wow. I don't even know what to say about that. Very cool.

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The show's eighth winter hellatus is over. It's time for the Winchesters to make some tough decisions about their lives. Are the brothers going all in when it comes to hunting? Or are they going to continue to split their interests? Will Sam choose Amelia? Will Dean continue to be friends with Benny? So many questions.

The first Supernatural of 2013 is dark and kind of depressing, but did delve into the mythology, which is always good in my book. It has to accomplish a lot of things like deal with the troubled state of the sibling relationship. It has to weave Cas and Benny back into the action. Plus, Sam has a choice to make. It turns out Dean has to make one too. Add a worse-for-the-wear Kevin into the mix as well as an angel that gets tortured Crowley-style, and you see why I referred to this episode as kind of depressing. For the most part, all these elements are dealt with successfully.

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Premiered: September 21, 2006, on CW
Rating: TV-14
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Premise: Two brothers hunt demons, ghosts and other supernatural entities as they investigate crimes caused by paranormal forces.

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