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curled around these images
just enough to make us dangerous
Musing... 
15th-Mar-2013 01:17 pm
Thinky thougts
I wonder if it's deliberate that Sam doesn't haven't any male friends.

I mean, I figure he had good friends at college (we know there was Zach and Brady), but we've never seen him with a male "buddy" like we have Dean. We see Dean bonding with other males - Bobby, Gordon, Frank, Cas, Garth, Benny and even John, but Sam is seen as either butting heads with them or being downright enemies of them (Lucifer, Walt, Roy, Gordon, Kubrick, Greedy).

I know that Sam was close to Bobby but not in the same way that Dean was. Same with Garth and Cas. Both Garth and Cas attached themselves to Dean first, then got to know Sam. I figure they are as close to "friends" as Sam has in the show, but they're not just his friends.

I wonder if that's because Dean fulfils that role completely? Maybe Sam doesn't need anyone else (whereas Dean possibly does?).

I'm sure not if this is because there's never been a story line that has allowed Sam to develop a male friendship or because they have deliberately made this part of Sam's character (like his disastrous relationships with women).

It's not a complaint - just an observation.

Hmmm. *hugs* Sam. Maybe books are his other companion.

This is what happens when I enjoy a day off (yay back to 4 days a week!) and get my hair done. :)



I hope they don't use Cas to miraculously "fix" Sam this time. Surely the effects of these trials can't be fixed with a mere touch to the head (I mean, they could if they wanted them to be, but I hope they can't).

That is all. :)
Comments 
15th-Mar-2013 05:35 am (UTC)
I remember noticing that and deciding it was just a repercussion of the way Sam was sheltered by Dean while growing up. I figured that as a kid, part of the way Dean protected a younger and smaller Sammy was to put himself - Dean - out there first, kinda of like a road block between Sam and anyone new and getting to know the guys first; keeping Sam kinda tucked out of the way and behind him, and once the newbie friended Dean, he would get access to Sam. So I think it is just a part of that. Sam is just used to Dean feeling out male newcomers first and when Dean is around, Sam just defaults to the background like that.

Another thing I suspected is that while Sam is friendly, he is hard to get to know because for all the crap we give him about being EMO, Sam actually keeps himself pretty well hidden and isn't easy to get to know - he is pretty emotionally cautious like that. I think that once he left Stanford, he didn't let himself open up again to making buddies. Dean is a lot more in your face and his brashness lends itself to a charm that draw people to him; getting to know Sam is more work.



Edited at 2013-03-15 05:36 am (UTC)
15th-Mar-2013 06:22 am (UTC)
Yeah - that makes a lot of sense to me. I find it interesting that Sam is the one we see comforting the victims and being accessible and yet he is actually pretty closed off when it comes to sharing himself with anyone else. I think that goes for women also. It was pretty telling that Sam didn't give a lot away to Amelia - he keeps everything close to his chest. And as we've seen, Dean knows Sam so well Sam doesn't really have to say much. When Sam does talk, it's usually about wanting Dean to open up.

I like the consistency we've seen with both Sam and Dean when it comes to making friends.
15th-Mar-2013 04:35 pm (UTC)
Holy crap, you've just put your finger on why Samelia bothered me so much.

16th-Mar-2013 11:21 am (UTC)
Oh man...there are so many things that bothered me about Samelia...:(
15th-Mar-2013 05:35 am (UTC)
Don't forget Luis. (Zombie-costume dude in pilot.)
15th-Mar-2013 06:24 am (UTC)
Oh yes Luis! So Sam seems to have had quite a few friends at Stanford and pretty much none since then. Kinda sad I think. (but fitting because Dean once told him he can't get close to people).
15th-Mar-2013 07:36 am (UTC)
I think Sam did have male friendships in the early seasons, when they were still doing the whole 'psychic children' thing. He was able to bond with the likes of Max, Andy and Jake over their shared experiences in a way that Dean couldn't. Jake in particular strikes me as a sort of 'Gordon-esque' figure for Sam, in that the two of them clearly got on and understood each other - and then ended up in conflict.

There's also After-School Special, which shows little Sam developing a close bond with another kid and a bit of hero worship for a male teacher. There are the Campbells, too, because they were much more Sam's people than Dean's, but I'm not sure how much that counts, given that Sam's behaviour was abnormal there pretty much by definition. But he and Samuel were a pair for a while.

But, yeah, I think there's a combination of things here - that Sam is more naturally reserved than Dean, that his friendships seem to have ended catastrophically even more often than Dean's (which is impressive, considering), that he has often been led to doubt his own nature and therefore withdrawn, and that in some cases where Dean has been let down late in a friendship, Sam has been let downright away (Castiel, say, turned on Dean eventually, but acted like Sam was a piece of dirt the first time they met).
15th-Mar-2013 12:14 pm (UTC)
I had forgotten about Andy, Max and Jake. And you're right, he did connect with those guys through a share experience.

I always think of Sam as being the one to connect with people - and it's probably from those early relationships that make me think like that. It's just when I stopped to think about who Sam could turn to if he wanted to talk to someone that wasn't Dean I came up blank.

I also think it's perfectly right that we saw Sam bond with friends in school and makes it more poignant that we don't see him with "friends" now. Whereas I imagine it might have been opposite for Dean - he would never have taken the time to make good friends because he knew he'd be moving on.

The missyjack mentions Kevin, who I suppose Sam might consider a friend (maybe?).

And, tbh, I pretty much blank out anything that soulless!Sam did because I in my mind it wasn't Sam. /o\ Though his relationship with the Campbells is interesting. I wouldn't have said that was mateship, but he did turn to them when he was Dean-less.

and that in some cases where Dean has been let down late in a friendship

Oh yes. I think there could be some very interesting meta written about Dean and friendship. I am particularly interested in Dean and Benny. I think they got that combination so right - I am really curious to see where they take that from here.

15th-Mar-2013 07:47 am (UTC)
My take on the boys friendship patterns, has been that they look different for a few reasons – one being that maybe Sam had the chance to form more normal friendships at school and at college, while Dean didn't really have that – he was hunting most of it. At school I think Dean probably mainly had (fleeting) connections with girls, because they were the easier ones for him to form.

I think this partly led to Dean maybe diving in more quickly to intimacy with people, partly because he never knew how long those people would be around.

I think maybe another difference is that Sam's sense of self is more internally formed, whereas Dean derives his from how he thinks other people see him.

Post Stanford there hasn't been much chance for either to form friendships. Of course when Dean was bonding with Cas, Sam had Ruby. And when Dean met Garth, Sam had Becky. Sam did of course, even sans soul, hook-up with the Campbells.


This season started with a particular point being made about Sam making friends with the family who ran the motel. And I would certainly say that Sam is as close to Kevin as Dean is.

For me, I see both Sam and Dean as being capable of both functional friendships and romantic relationships, in the right circumstances. Which makes it even more tragic that their life works to precludes these, but also more wonderful that having these options they choose each other.
15th-Mar-2013 03:39 pm (UTC)
Oh, these are all good points. I like the way they have shown the different ways the boys form friendships and the development over the seasons.

I didn't consider Kevin or the Campbells I have to admit. I suppose I don't think of the Campbells as actual friends (and I never know how to take anything that Soulless!Sam did or experienced as I find it hard to connect him with actual Sam). I suppose Kevin is a friend - though I think he's yet to cross over to that real buddy or mate. Though I think they are perhaps developing that.

I was thinking about this because I was pondering Dean and Benny's friendship (which I think has been really well developed) and then I thought about who Sam has that's like that.

Which makes it even more tragic that their life works to precludes these, but also more wonderful that having these options they choose each other.

Very much so. :)))))
15th-Mar-2013 11:26 pm (UTC)
Well I think this season Amelia was the analogue to Benny. I think the poitn was made that Sam and Amelia were in an emotional "purgatory" and similar to Dean and Benny bonded as two people battling the same thing - brothers in arms against grief as it were.
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16th-Mar-2013 02:02 am (UTC)
Which is why I think it's easier for Dean to interact with almost all of the secondary characters. He does so out of necessity, whether for the hunter or for previous use, where as Sam is more emotional, for example like Kevin he is trying to almost 'guide' Kevin very similarly like he did Adam.
15th-Mar-2013 08:46 am (UTC)
Sam doesn't really open up to others. He is not the having buddies type to me, but rather with himself, his thoughts and observations of life. I think it really fits his overall character and knits in nicely with the demon blood curse that made him withdraw even further from friending easily.

But wait, no, the real reason, of course, is that he is sparing himself for you. Your icon gave it away.. *g* ;)

It would be disappointing if they make Cas come in whenever they get stuck with the story telling to just save the day. I hope they keep him busy with his own issues so that he adds to the story rather than be a quick solution at hand.

Day off and getting your hair done sounds great!
Have a hug as well! *squiiidge* :D

x♥x
15th-Mar-2013 08:50 am (UTC)
Oh, and I forgot to say I got my friend Olly in England interested in the show by constantly saying stuff like:"Can't talk now, must watch my fav show" and generally pointing out how good it is. So he borrowed the DVDs from his friend, (who is also a fan) and started watching. Right from the start. S1E1. His comment:"Brilliant!" He is hooked now... :D
15th-Mar-2013 03:48 pm (UTC)
Oh YAY! New fan! And a guy! (I don;t know why, but I'm always interested to know when guys get hooked on the show. I suppose because I think they are a rare breed...:DD)

There are times I wish I was discovering it for the first time. All those episodes to watch!!! :))
15th-Mar-2013 03:46 pm (UTC)
Yes - Sam is indeed more introspective and that part of his nature has developed over the seasons. I think he has good reason to be like that, after everything he has been through.

(hee! Love my icon....;D)

I will be very disappointing if they use Cas to solve their problems. I know they keep finding ways for him not to be able to, but with Dean praying to him it makes me wonder if he will come to the rescue. I suppose I hope not purely to allow the boys to have to find other solutions. It will also be better for Cas to have his own issues (which seems to be the way they are going).

Day off = YAY! :))

*hugs* ya back sweetie!
15th-Mar-2013 09:11 am (UTC)
Isn't it obvious? He's got DAAAAAAADDY issues ;), like every self-respecting yet damaged man on TV....

No, seriously. Sam and Dean both had both a slighly dysfunctional relationship with John, and I guess that's playing out in their relationships with other men as well. Dean was constantly trying to get his Dad's approval and gain his respect, and now he's seeking encouragement and approval from his friends. Sam had fallen out with his Dad and managed to move on and become independant, his main confidant being his girlfriend, so he misses being in a relationship more than Dean does (he's more a one night stand man,mostly, and struggles with commitment, no?) and his friendships with males are more flexible and loser, because they do not have to fullfill a specific need.
16th-Mar-2013 07:58 am (UTC)
Yeah - good points. I think being raised by a father only (well, mostly for Dean and Dean and John for Sam) has to have an impact on how they form relationships later on. I sure they take that into account when looking at they way both of them interact with other people.

xx
15th-Mar-2013 09:41 am (UTC)
I think over the course of the show Sam has become more and more isolated, and I always thought that made sense, given that most of Sam's relationships either ended disastrous (Jess, Ruby) or were revealed to him as not real (Brady and all the others that were pointed out by Lucifer in Swan Song). Sam already saw himself as cursed back in Provenance and I think that feeling was only reinforced by his personal experiences these last couple of years.

I hope they don't use Cas to miraculously "fix" Sam this time.
Ugh, I am going to throw a fit if that happens.
16th-Mar-2013 11:35 am (UTC)
I think over the course of the show Sam has become more and more isolated

Yes, I agree. He probably can't trust himself when it comes to making close friends. They've both lost so much and it must be safer to not get too close as he knows what usually happens.

It's curious to me that they mostly give Sam women to connect well with (Ruby, Madison, Sarah, Ava, Jody) and Dean men. Though I suppose Dean has Lisa, Cassie, Jo and now Charlie. Hmmm... not sure there's any real pattern there. Dean just seems to get on well with most people.

I think as Cas "fixed" Sam last time they won't do that again - but, I won't rest easy until we actually see that he can't.

15th-Mar-2013 12:01 pm (UTC)
Flippant answer: Because when Dean is around, Sam doesn't need anyone else. ;)

Serious answer: I really think it's part and parcel of Sam's character. While Dean is outgoing like whoa and likely to form a bond over a beer (Gordon), Sam is more introverted. The friendships he forms are deeper and more caring (Barry, Amy). Younger Sam eventually gave up on in-depth friendships, because why bother to form deep connections when Dad's only going to drag you away in a few weeks. But while on his own at Stanford and out of John's influence, Sam again allowed himself those friendships . . . and after Jess's death, once he hit the road with Dean, the old patterns re-emerged and Sam disconnected again. He tried for a while to stay in contact, but eventually let the Stanford friends go. It may not be very healthy, but Dean is his world.

Finally, I wholeheartedly agree with your point that "books are his other companion." Books, libraries, his beloved laptop, and the Batcave library -- they all seem to make him very, very happy. :)

Edited at 2013-03-15 12:06 pm (UTC)
16th-Mar-2013 12:53 pm (UTC)
Flippant answer: Because when Dean is around, Sam doesn't need anyone else. ;)

Hee...tbh, I think there's something in that. I mean, the show revolves around these two so they can't really give us much of them developing relationships outside of themselves (yay). I think it's interesting to see how they resolve the, I suppose, "problem", of keeping them together (considering the first half of the season was all about showing us that they really can't be with anyone else but each other).

And well put re why Sam doesn't form relationships now - whereas he did at Stanford. *nods*

And I LOVE that the batcave library makes Sam so happy (and Dean!- if Sam's happy, Dean's happy....).

Oh boys...





16th-Mar-2013 01:33 pm (UTC)
(considering the first half of the season was all about showing us that they really can't be with anyone else but each other).

Undoubtedly why the first half of S8 was so damn difficult to watch. They went from being physically separated to suffering an emotional gulf wider than the distance between Earth and Purgatory ever was. Yikes.

if Sam's happy, Dean's happy....

. . . and I'm happy, too. ;)

*loves me some nesting!Dean*
15th-Mar-2013 01:08 pm (UTC)
It's not just male friendship and not just deeper and ongoing friendship, either: Dean has bonded more with Charlie, and he reveals a lot more in passing to characters of the week (the bartender in the Osiris ep, the stripper in Time for a Wedding, Krissy in adventures in babysitting, he had conversations with Frank in a way Sam never did, he interacted more with Henry Winchester). The vast majority of what we know about Dean's feelings comes from hearing Dean tell someone, whereas a huge amount of what we know about Sam's feelings come from times when he's trapped with bits of himself through hallucinations or coma. And we generally do know more about Dean's feelings; Dean is more of an open book, Sam more of an enigma. (This is sometimes a criticism I have of the show, but I also think it's a characterization point -- I do wish, though, that they'd make more of a point of how isolated Sam has become, because sometimes it seems like they don't even notice that most of the significant exchanges with secondary characters fall to Dean.)

Maybe, with his tendency to fragmentation, Sam feels like the only way he can hold himself together is to keep himself bottled up: if he didn't practice rigorous containment, the dam would give way. And I think part of him may feel that precisely because he's so often the one in external crisis (the aftermath of s4, the Wall, Hallucifer, now the Trials), he needs to be the one who is not making demands of Dean emotionally. If someone keeps saving you from peril, I think it gets harder and harder to also call on them for more emotional forms of support.

I've been mulling some of this over as I try to work on both my last year's BB and my this year's BB: last year's is more about why Sam lies sometimes and how it has affected him to be lied to, but this year's is more about why he's secretive, which is a different kind of thing.
15th-Mar-2013 03:03 pm (UTC)
If someone keeps saving you from peril, I think it gets harder and harder to also call on them for more emotional forms of support.
Very true. Especially if that someone is in a perpetual state of depression and in need of emotional support himself. These last couple of years there has been a tendency of Sam holding back in order to disburden Dean and offering himself as emotional support in spite of his own issues. As a result Sam has become even more isolated than before. However, even though he doesn't initiate friendships anymore, he still reacts favourably when someone reaches out to him, like Jody in Time after Time, for example, and he bonded with Amelia as well, despite his emotional issues. So I think he is still open to emotional attachment, but the initiative has to come from the other party.
15th-Mar-2013 03:20 pm (UTC)
the initiative has to come from the other party.

We don't know how his Stanford friendships formed, of course, but I wonder if that may always have been true of Sam. It's certainly the case that, for all his assertive style when it came to sex, the romantic partners we've seen him hook up with have usually taken the initiative in getting the encounter going. And between Dean's protectiveness and John's expectations, Sam has been so formed by having his relationships coming at him, as it were. Not that he's passive by nature -- in a lot of ways he's far, far more proactive than Dean -- but he's sort of reactively proactive, with rebellion or response a foundational element in all that goal drivenness.

In my usual unwholesome way of projecting my own issues on Winchesters when I write, I was meditating the other day on the thing that happens in canon where often we not only know more about how Dean reacts to Dean's stuff, we even know more about how Dean reacts to Sam's stuff. And I think to some extent that's a narrative choice on the show, but on the other hand -- my mother is a very fiercely protective type. And that means that it would often happen when I was growing up that she would react very emotionally to things that happened in my life, often more strongly than I myself would. And I've realized since that that has left me with two interrelated tendencies: to be secretive about things that I think others might respond to emotionally, and to underreact to things myself. Maybe it's pure projection, but I see some of that in Sam. Dean and John both did so much boundary-blurring reacting to both things that happened to Sam and to Sam's choices, I wonder if that's at the root of Sam's tendency to keep secrets (even as far back as Bloody Mary), to downplay things, and maybe even within himself to be alienated from or have difficulty accessing his own primary reactions.

I think that's part of how Sam does both forgiveness and anger: in a way, they are both distancing reactions that involve defining something quite analytically (when he was angry at John in the earlier seasons, for all the bias that entailed and the emotion it involved, it was also part of a more outside perspective on how their childhood looked in relation to abstract norms than Dean had; when he forgave Cas in s7, he was working very much by empathy through analogy). My latest theory is that while Dean often gets stuck in the complications of dealing with hurt, Sam often tries to skip the experiencing hurt part and move on immediately to a more proactive process, whether that takes the form of anger or even vengeance or whether it takes the form of figuring out and understanding and forgiving. And the post 7.23 crisis gave him a situation where his usual channeling mechanism snapped, and he dealt with shock and helplessness by running off altogether into escape.
15th-Mar-2013 07:37 pm (UTC)
My latest theory is that while Dean often gets stuck in the complications of dealing with hurt, Sam often tries to skip the experiencing hurt part and move on immediately to a more proactive process, whether that takes the form of anger or even vengeance or whether it takes the form of figuring out and understanding and forgiving. And the post 7.23 crisis gave him a situation where his usual channeling mechanism snapped, and he dealt with shock and helplessness by running off altogether into escape.

Wow...yeah, that makes so much sense...wanders off to mull that over a while...
16th-Mar-2013 01:59 am (UTC)
So I think he is still open to emotional attachment, but the initiative has to come from the other party.

This is very true. We see in Sam's younger years he finds it difficult making friends in new schools where as he idolizes Dean's ability to get the girls and become 'popular' even though really Dean didn't care about it at all.

I wonder if this isn't something that developed over the course of his child hood and has just become compounded due to everything that has happened to him?

He seems perfectly content with letting Dean interact with others and handle them, yet when they respond to him like Jody and even Ellen, who was pushy with him but he responded a lot to it.

Funnily enough, and maybe this is a whole OTHER question, ironically Sam deals with a loss of control over his life throughout the show but on the one hand people like Ruby, Lucifer, Ellen, Jody etc. have to make the first move and control the situation and parameters of their friendship before Sam responds.

I guess the poor guy may be so used to having no control over his life that he adapted to it and expects other people to take control/initiate contact first before he does anything?
16th-Mar-2013 02:25 pm (UTC)
As usual, you have the most perfect way of saying stuff.

I adore this:

Maybe, with his tendency to fragmentation, Sam feels like the only way he can hold himself together is to keep himself bottled up

I often feel like Sam could just explode but keeps himself together. Not just for his own sake but for Dean's as well. I think it's been perfectly within character for him to keep what's happening to him from Dean - and for exactly the reasons you've stated here.

I think the way Dean bonds with secondary characters generally is important and I love to think this has been a deliberate part of his characterization (as well as Sam's). I know there's been some fuss made about Dean bonding with Charlie and not Sam, but I think it's all part of who they are and where they've been.

It's also curious that when Sam does reach out to people it's to lend a sympathetic ear, to console, to provide support - but Sam doesn't take that in return. He takes so much on the chin and internalizes so much that's going on with him. I wouldn't be surprised if one day he does explode.

And yay BB! I look forward to it. You have a wonderful grasp on Sam.
16th-Mar-2013 03:37 pm (UTC)
Talking about Sam is one of my favorite things.

I get why so many people think of it as having much more emotional access to Dean and wanting the same for Sam, and I do sometimes feel that way, especially when there are scenes that we know HAPPENED in the fiction but we aren't shown them. But I can't really think of it as an overall injustice to Sam because one of the things that gets me crazy addicted in love with Sam's characterizations is how he experiences deep emotional things in screwy, sidelong, cognitive ways. And I think the show, for all it sometimes falls down on one side or the other of balancing and developing Sam and Dean, has also shown a lot of brilliance in reflecting their different ways of experiencing and reacting through its different ways of telling their stories.
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16th-Mar-2013 01:54 am (UTC)
I think it's simply Sam has never had a motherly figure in his life. Dean, try as he might, still isn't a woman nor does he have a woman's soft voice, their touch. Which is why I think he responded to Jody and Ellen a lot more than he did with men on the show where as Dean, who adored John was always looking for that fatherly figure which he found in Bobby, and also I think it's because of the job. Interacting with mainly male hunters all his life, he might find it hard to interact with women when he's not in the role of the flirty bad boy.
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16th-Mar-2013 02:35 pm (UTC)
I think Sam enjoys the company of women better.

Hmmm, possibly - but even then I don't see Sam truly opening up with them or being good "buddies". I think he had that with Jess - but I think what's interesting is what's happened to him post Stanford.

I see Sam's relationships with women as disastrous because of what's happened to the women after he's been with them. Ruby played Sam completely so I think that effects how he approaches other women (and men for that matter).

And I gotta admit I never considered Sam being super attracted to women. I see that for Dean moreso, but for Sam I think it's more about companionship and wanting to live that "normal" ideal.

I think Sam could very possibly form a bond with a guy (we have seen him connected with some - like Adam and Andy), but any potential friendships end disastrously so it makes sense that he is wary.

Hmmm..I love how complicated these guys are. :)
15th-Mar-2013 09:15 pm (UTC)
Anonymous
Sam's lack of friendships with men - or women - on the show other than Dean *is* a sore spot and a complaint for me. If we ignore the blatant fanservice to the Dean Show fans (which a great majority of the fandom happily does) I have to say that it has always rubbed me wrong how fans go on and on and ON about how Dean only having Sam for a relationship is so unhealthy, but nobody every says that Sam just having Dean is unhealthy. Which just goes back to meta esorlehcar (on lj) and weecesting on tumblr have written about how Sam is being written as the female lead of the show. And then it makes sense because we all know how misogynistic the show AND the fandom are. So of course Sam has no one else because he has Dean, what else could he need? What else does a woman need but a man? But Sam is never enough for Dean, and frankly it's selfish for Sam to expect Dean not to have relationships with everyone else on the show. And it's not going to get fixed because the fans give the show too much credit, as this post does, and just try and write meta and shape Sam's personality to "Sam just doesn't like having friends". "Sam just prefers to be alone". And it works because the show gives us so little about Sam as a person (therefore making it easy to write Sam meta that's "canonical"), he's just a passive, reactive prop, mostly to Dean, sometimes to a secondary character. Ha, I might as well say ANOTHER secondary character because that's basically what Sam is. It's just a vicious cycle and since we're in S8 of 10 seasons, it's never getting fixed, both because it's gotten this far and no one even cares, and because the fans of Sam that are left in this fandom seem to happy to eat the shit and then try and meta about why it's a culinary masterpiece of Sam characterization.
16th-Mar-2013 02:15 pm (UTC)
I'm not really sure how to respond to this as I can't really agree with it. I appreciate your viewpoint of course, but, as a die hard Sam!gal, I've never felt that Sam has been treated as a secondary character. In fact, of the two, I think Sam has been given the more rich and varied journey. I think Sam and Dean are very different and therefore have to be treated differently. There's no doubt it would be good to see both characters move forward but with 1, if not 2, seasons more to come they need to keep some of their issues open for them. Whether everything will be "fixed" in that time it's hard to say but I think it leaves options open.

I think their relationship with each other is very unhealthy - for both of them - but for me that's what makes them so compelling. The show has to be about the two of them so they have to keep finding ways to keep them together. I admit that sometimes they get that wrong (*yikes* the beginning of this season) but , for me, they mostly get it right. I feel that Sam not having many male friends is part of his charactisation and as many have pointed out here there are good reasons for that.

I most certainly can't get into any character bashing because it's not what I'm here for. I can get mighty pissed off with the show at times but I've never felt one character is given more than the other. And I love both characters equally - just in different ways. :)
16th-Mar-2013 01:48 am (UTC)
It's debatable that Sam had any friends, ever, period. Says a bitter mostly Sam gal who really really wants to get into that big beautiful head of his.
16th-Mar-2013 02:38 pm (UTC)
Hee...I'll fight ya for some time in Sam's head. (Though I don't think it'd be a place anyone could stay for long).

16th-Mar-2013 01:51 am (UTC)
If you also notice, early in the seasons Sam bonded with the victims a lot more. Dean had trouble empathizing with them and talking to them, unlike Sam who excelled at that.

Now, it's almost as if Sam alienates himself from others. He doesn't actively try to talk to people unless he needs to. Dean interacts with a good portion of the guest stars and does most of the talking and bonding while Sam just stands behind him. I think Sam is perfectly okay with Dean fulfilling that for him. We see when John died Dean desperately tried to fill the void and latched onto Gordon way to easily because of it. With Bobby Dean was looking for that father figure, with Castiel and Garth Dean is looking for those allies/friends.

Sam on the other hand? We see his last relationship with Amelia, which was kind of painful to watch end up in the rubble. I wonder if Sam does it on purpose?
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16th-Mar-2013 02:29 am (UTC)
Funnily enough, you'd expect Dean to be that 'focus on others' mentality but Sam often focuses on everything but himself. In almost every situation where he is often emotionally unstable/hurting either just as bad or worse than Dean he's the first to offer to unburden Dean because it's much easier to help Dean than unravel himself.

Sometimes I think he feels guilty for helping himself.
16th-Mar-2013 02:44 pm (UTC)
I think Sam has definitely changed from those early seasons when we saw him comfort victims and be more empathetic. It's not surprising he's less like that now after everything he's been through.

I'm really not sure what they were trying to tell us with his relationship with Amelia (other than it be about them chosing each other). But it was sad to see that it couldn't work for Sam. TBH I think a anyone in a relationship with either Sam or Dean would be pretty disastrous. All that baggage!

xx
16th-Mar-2013 03:23 pm (UTC)
Interesting observation! I'm not sure what to do with it without thinking on it further, but I think I conceive Sam as more... Withdrawn? Self-sufficient? I think both boys take a long time until they consider someone 'friend' and I think the way friendships work in a hunter environment is less conductive to the way Sam bonds than college was. Uhm. Does that even make sense? XD Like, I see him have an easier time bonding with a study buddy to geek out with at Stanford, than I have him bonding over a beer or five with a fellow hunter.

Edited at 2013-03-16 03:24 pm (UTC)
17th-Mar-2013 10:00 am (UTC)
Yeah - I'd definitely say Sam is self sufficient. I think he always has been actually. He doesn't seem to need other companions. I don't see him as particularly standoffish but I would agree that it takes a while for them to consider someone a friend.

And yes yes - finding someone to geek out with at Stanford would sit easier with Sam than sitting taking (or bonding) with someone over hunting. He attempted to with not!Adam, but that was more about being a protective brother I think.

Curious.
xx
16th-Mar-2013 09:39 pm (UTC)
I've found it a very odd evolution myself. If you look at their childhood it was Sam who made friends and was part of other social circles, the same in college -- so much so that the episode with Zach was all about Dean wanting to cut him off from those contacts. I've always assumed it had more to do with assigning workloads to the actors.


17th-Mar-2013 10:04 am (UTC)
I've always assumed it had more to do with assigning workloads to the actors.

Hmmm - yeah, it could be I suppose. I'd be really interested if they have ever been assigned different work loads. I would imagine that when Jared's baby was born he was scheduled for less time, but I'm not sure if that would have been the case earlier than that. It could be that there's just not been an opportunity for Sam to make males friends. He's turned to Ruby and Amelia when Dean's not been there (and the Campbells).
31st-Mar-2013 04:57 pm (UTC)
That's because SPN is mostly seen through Dean's POV. Like, we know that Sam is in pain because of the trials, but we don't know how he feels about it emotionally. Instead, we see how Dean feels, like when he prays for Cas to watch out for his little brother. We rarely get Sam's pov, unless it has to do with Amelia or him wanting a normal life. So, it's Dean who bonds with other characters.
1st-Apr-2013 06:51 am (UTC)
Yeah, that could explain it. Though we have had times where we've seen Sam doing things outside of Dean. I'm sure Sam is capable of bonding with other males (or characters), but perhaps we don't see it because the show is predominately Dean's POV.
26th-May-2013 05:11 pm (UTC)
You're right, there's times when Sam does things outside of Dean. Even when he's on his own, we usually don't get a look at his headspace. And so many times, Sam is separated from Dean, so Dean can have his "moments" with the guest star.

I'd love for things to be more balanced, so we'd get Sam's POV, too. I'm thrilled that we finally got some of this in the last eps of the season. :)

On one hand, I want Sam to have friends, just like Dean has. But they could just have each other, and I'd be happy with that. <3

Edited at 2013-05-26 05:12 pm (UTC)
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