Supernatural: Season 8, Episode 19

Taxi Driver (3 Apr. 2013)

TV Episode  -   -  Drama | Fantasy | Horror
8.7
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Ratings: 8.7/10 from 892 users  
Reviews: 4 user | 2 critic

The second task is to rescue an innocent soul from Hell and deliver it to Heaven.

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Title: Taxi Driver (03 Apr 2013)

Taxi Driver (03 Apr 2013) on IMDb 8.7/10

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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
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Crowley (as Mark A. Sheppard)
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Ajay
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Guard Demon
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Male Hell Prisoner
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Praying Hell Prisoner
Jennifer Huva ...
Wretch Hell Prisoner
Emile Bertrand ...
Homeless Man Demon
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The second task is to rescue an innocent soul from Hell and deliver it to Heaven.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


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TV-14
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3 April 2013 (USA)  »

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Quotes

Naomi: Let me see if I've interrupted the situation correctly. The Winchesters have freed an innocent from hell, to which you are wrongfully are trying to return.
Crowley: Siding with them, Naomi? You don't know those two. Before they're done, we'll both be locked away.
Naomi: I'm just hoping they lock you away, dear. The rest I'll figure out.
Crowley: Bureaucrat. You're fighting outside your weight class.
Naomi: Don't call me a bureaucrat.
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User Reviews

Second trial, here we come!
3 April 2013 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Sam and Dean receive word from Kevin saying that he knows what the second trial is: they must rescue an innocent soul from hell. Now, we know that Sam is the one who has to do the trials, so Dean isn't able to go with him or help him on his journey to hell and back. Seems like an impossible task!

While Sam is off to hell, we have just as many conflicts occurring back on earth. Kevin being one of them; who is going a bit off the rails and claiming to be hearing /things/. Then we have the whole situation with Naomi, which is also an issue brought up in this episode, but ultimately leaves us with more questions than answers.

There is so much to love and a bit to dislike about this episode. Though I feel the good outweighs the bad.

As seen in the promo, our friend Benny is reintroduced, but the circumstances for his return is not known unless you watch the episode. I feel that saying why he returns would be giving away some major spoilers for this episode, so really I can't say much about Benny. However, there is one particular scene between Benny and Dean that I think was the greatest part of the entire episode, and held my interest even more than Sam visiting hell. Benny was one of the greatest parts of Taxi Driver, I honestly love his character much more after watching it.

And of course this episode wouldn't be complete without our wonderful angel. No, I'm not talking about Cas. I'm talking about the cruel angel who has been manipulating Castiel ever since he was pulled out of Purgatory, and has the actions and personality that is fit for a demon. THAT wonderful angel. I thought I had Naomi all figured out for the most part. This episode twists her character in a clever way that makes me questioning her true intentions, and certainly twists the way our main characters might see her. Could we have misunderstood her, or is this just an act? The first scene where this takes place is not as heavy or intense as I would have liked, but it is the main thing I am concerned about for all future episodes. I know this talk about Noami is incredibly vague, but just like Benny, I can't say much without spoiling the episode. Essentially, Naomi's time in this episode can be summed up as: What the hell is she doing? And why?

Naomi, Crowley, Kevin, and Benny were all positives in this episode. All of them contributed to the progression in plot, either directly or indirectly.

Now looking at some of the negatives: The beginning felt a little rushed. Acquiring the information about the second trial and how to even accomplish it was done in less than ten minutes, which felt like not enough. However, if they had extended those beginning scenes, I would probably be saying that the intro was dragged out and the actual doing of the second task was much too short. So, there is nothing to be done about that, since we do have a time frame to fit into.

The other negatives, in my opinion, were unfortunate because this entire episode really revolved around it. Hell. Yes, hell was honestly the biggest disappointment for me. A small portion is seen in the promo: a short clip of Sam walking down a hallway toward a cell where /somebody/ is being kept. This is honestly not how I imagined hell whatsoever. It did not seem evil or cruel enough. Perhaps there's different levels of hell, and what we saw in this episode was a lesser version of what we might expect. That's the only way I'll be able to convince myself that hell is truly supposed to be the worst place imaginable. Back in season 3 - when Dean is sent to hell - we see a very short glimpse of him in an endless void of near darkness full of chains. And in the middle of those chains we see Dean being held by hooks that were driven through his skin. Then in season 4, when Dean dreams of or remembers hell, we never actually see what happened. I loved that. Because what we are lead to believe is that in hell they experience pain and suffering beyond description. And not only could they obviously not show that on TV, but it also gives the impression that we CAN'T imagine what goes on down there. So, when Sam visits hell, let's just say I was a little disappointed. I expected the trial to be more difficult. Not for Sam to stroll down a hallway of cages.

I suppose it's a bit harsh to expect MY idea of Supernatural's hell to fit into the show nicely. It's a lose–lose situation. If we don't show Sam going into hell for the second trial, that would end up being very boring. But by showing a TV-appropriate version of hell ends up shattering some of the horrors and fears that we expected to be held within it.

Altogether, despite any negatives I mention, this episode was enjoyable and I still carry high hopes for this season. Next episode seems to be an episodic and hopefully fun episode, but soon after that I imagine we will start addressing the real issues here, and get some more work done! We still have a third trial AND Naomi and Crowley to deal with... hopefully. Crossing fingers for an exciting and well thought-out conclusion to season 8.

Taxi Driver could have been better, but was still good! 7 / 10


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