OKAY, SO, I actually didn't hate it? It did feel like a lot of set-up for the finale, and probably too many loose ends for them to tie up in one more episode. This episode felt like it should have been two before the finale, not one. But oh well, I'm sure there will be a cliffhanger to keep us wanting more for next season, which is fine.
Firstly, let's talk about Sarah. I can't say that I didn't see it coming, and yeah it was disappointing to bring back a beloved character just to kill her off, but hear me out. Sarah's death was needed (I'm not saying justified, but needed). Until this point, I haven't quite been buying Crowley as the Big Bad this season. Besides going after Kevin a bunch of times and torturing Samandriel, he hasn't done anything big enough to be The Villain. The boys have just been playing a game of keep-away with the tablets, and it was getting boring. They needed a bigger reason to take down Crowley and close the gates of Hell, bigger than "slam the gates on those sons of bitches forever," which honestly isn't enough. Sarah's death solidified Crowley as The Villain, he made it personal (and let's face it, his monologue was pretty damn awesome).
As for Crowley vs. Abaddon, I'm interested to see where it goes, but it did feel like they dug her up and sewed her back together just for the sake of having one more problem to deal with in the finale, so I don't really have a lot of stake in it. But if the boys somehow help her take down Crowley (lol the salesman XD), maybe she'll strike some kind of deal with them. Or, while I don't really want Crowley "cured" because he's awesome as-is, it would be cool to have him beon the boys' side at the end. We'll have to see how that all shakes out.
And now we can talk about Dean and Cas. I don't have as much wank as other Destiel fans seem to. I personally think Dean is justified in his anger. The scenes with the three of them in the bunker were great. Poor Sam stuck there while his brother argues with his boyfriend. XDD I really liked that Sam told Dean to take it easy on him, "because it's Cas," because Cas has always been Dean's exception so of course he gets special treatment. Dean being a huffy teenager about it all was just amusing to me. But I think it's important that Dean said "just stay here, get better," instead of something harsher. That suggests that he wants to talk this out with Cas, but he knows Cas is hurting and they don't really have the time to hash out this relationship with so much else on their plate. So the only thing he can really do is tell Cas to stay put and heal up. And of course he's hurt when Cas is gone later, because that looks like Cas doesn't want to fix what's wrong between them. Dean's anger and hurt and frustration is completely justified here, and I hope they're able to resolve it next week.
As for Cas, I don't really get why everyone is saying that Cas is just being used again and has to faculty of his own. Cas has a lot more in common with Metatron than he does with any of the other angels, teaming up with him seems logical. At the very least, Cas would have heard him out, which he did. Cas's whole game this season has been that he needs to atone for what he's done (even last season, too), so it makes sense that he'd listen to Metatron's plan to fix Heaven. Cas feels like he owes it to the other angels to at least try to fix things, and he owes it to humanity to keep that war from spilling over onto Earth, so closing Heaven's gates makes sense to Cas. I don't think he's being manipulated. However, I do wish that Metatron had given Cas the same speech he gave the boys, to think about what it will cost to do this, and what it will be like once it's done. We don't know yet if Cas went through with that frist trial, we just know that he killed her and she attacked. He might not have cut her heart out.
Side note, it's interesting to me that the Hell trials are actually damaging Hell, they're all about purification and salvation. And the Heaven trials seem very, very dark. I'm not sure Cas will be able to go through with them, especially after all he's been through these past two seasons. You can't erase bloodshed with more bloodshed.
I need to watch the promo again, but the one thing I do remember is that Sam all of a sudden has hope that they can win this. This episode ended with Sam being completely hopeless, so I'm wondering what happens to change his mind. Hmm.