After Sam and Dean receive a haunting message from Kevin, the two of them set off looking for clues to the final trial but the road will take them to the one angel that has never heard the name Winchester.
Though it would seem that Kevin is safe with the Winchesters, Crowley has Kevin deciphering his half of the tablet as part of an elaborate ruse to reveal its secrets. Back at the lair, Sam's condition is only getting worse but when Dean tries to help, Sam insists on continuing, even though the trials are changing hin in ways he doesn't understand. Just then they get the video message from Kevin; telling that that if they haven't heard from them by now then he is probably dead. Meanwhile in Santa Fe, New Mexico, Castiel is having a coffee at Biggerson's while he evades the angels but as soon as he feels them getting close, he flees to another one cross the country. Naomi's patience for Castiel's antics is running thin and if they can't catch Castiel, they will lure him in. As per Kevin's message, the boys are off to Colorado to find the Metatron, the angel that translated God's words onto the tablet. When they get there, Sam's almost collapses but is given a clarity towards the Metatron. Castiel isn't faring as well after falling into Naomi's trap but it's Crowley's surprise visit that has them all scared. Once he gets his alone time with Castiel, there will be nothing stopping him from getting both halves of the tablet.
Following last week's Pac-Man Fever, The Great Escapist finally sees the Winchesters continue their pursuit of Kevin Tran and the tablet. The Great Escapist really managed to get the momentum going in a big way as Sam and Dean now have Kevin, Castiel, the Metatron and both halves of the tablet. What was both a strength and a weakness of the episode was that there was two concurrent stories (sometimes three) taking place at once. While each had their high points, the scenes with Castiel took quite a while to get the story going. Though the end paid off, the build made for very slow pacing in the early going.
Though I don't usually give him credit, Jared Padalecki did an excellent job this week. Sam's journey through the trials has been arduous to say the least but Padalecki is showing Sam more vulnerable than we have seen him before. Padalecki's balance between delirium and clarity swung back and forth but the direction for his individual scenes and tight shots complimented the performance perfectly. Also surprising in his performance was Osric Chau as Kevin. Chau's performance has been mostly lackluster throughout the course of the season but in his video to Sam and Dean you could feel the anger and resentment; not as much at the two of them but how his life was perfectly normal and then fate decided to take it all away for a greater purpose. Kevin's parents weren't prophets and he didn't ask for it but the few scenes that he had he wasn't screaming so that is always a plus.
While the angels have been key players for years now, their reasons for their actions have largely fallen by the wayside. I know, I know, it's more of a season long nagging thing but they have also been more evil in previous seasons than they are now. Remember when Zachariah wanted to end the world to start over? That was some heavy stuff right there. I'm hoping that Naomi and the angels get a lot more screen time next week since we are only two weeks away from the season finale.The Great Escapist is a great starting point for the last few episodes. The gang is back together and only one final trial remains for Sam. Hopefully the momentum only picks up next week in Clip Show.