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6.17 Episode review/reaction 
17th-Apr-2011 09:16 am
Thinky thougts
How much do I love that I can write that as a subject line..\o/ Welcome back Show. I missed you.



I really, really enjoyed that. There were so many little things that I just plain enjoyed and then there's a couple of big things that gave it some meat, which added to my overall enjoyment of it.

Counting the ways.

Let's start with:

1. The completely trivial:



Sam's mussed hair! \o/ More often than not Sam's hair was mussed up with a bit hanging over his face. (hey! I never claimed to watch this ONLY for the plot...) I love that we are beginning to lose the robo!Sam quaffed hair look. Just saying...

2. The boys being on the same page. The sam'ndeanness of this episode was so very heart warming. (AND STILL CONTINUES!! YAY!) Starting with the miming of "you say something". Loved that! I think my favourite might have been Dean calling Sam a nerd and Sam giving the patented bitch!face. Oh boys... when you're like this I can let the rest of it all wash over me. (Not that there was too much to wash over me this time....). We even had PSR and it was only in hindsight that we understood why Dean won when it's usually Sam. Nice little twist.

I know this was an AU so maybe that's why they were so connected. Though I think they've been heading to this place for a while so it didn't really feel out of place.

3. Ellen! \o/ I remember Samantha Ferris saying at the AHBL con that if she was brought back (and she thought she would be) she didn't want to have to play Ellen if she ended up hurting the boys. And she didn't. I love that she played the surrogate mother to Bobby's surrogate father here. The role that I think she was initially set up for. It never really played out to its fullest so it was so nice to see it recognised. I adore her presence on screen.

4. Bobby/Ellen. I was spoiled for Ellen's return so I figured the only way they could do that is in some sort of alternate universe. As soon as she mentioned she was Bobby's wife it became obvious - but I did enjoy the mystery surrounding that until it was revealed. Bobby and Ellen are such a believable pairing and I loved the gentle way this was handled. She was Bobby's (and the boys') rock and I really felt her loss (again) by the end of the episode.

5. KAZ 2Y5!! \o/ So, so wonderful to see the old number plate again. I love that Show not only resurrected Ellen but also the old number plate. What a shame they didn't take the opportunity to have Dean wear the amulet. They could totally have gotten away with that I reckon. Though it does give me hope that they will resurrect it in the future. (I'm still holding out hope that it's still significant in some way. How can it go from God Finder to trash...?)

6. Gore and Blood. See... I'm one of those viewers who laughs out loud with the schlock horror elements in this show. So I love it when they go to town with heads being severed by garage doors. Twitching bodies and all... *g*

7. Final Destination anyone? I'm surprised they haven't ...um... homaged..(probably not the right word) it until now. I did get a kick out of seeing the domino effected deaths. Particularly has it mirrored the domino effect of not sinking the Titanic. I'm sure this was deliberate.

8. Aww. The Titanic. I SQUEALED! I honestly did. I HATE that movie with a passion so I was THRILLED that Balthazar voiced my thoughts. What a damn good reason to save the Titanic from sinking. (Even though it wasn't the entire truth...) Balthy you're in my good books! <33 Thank you.

9. BLONDIE! YAY... I love when they use songs like this. And that sequence may well have been my favourite in the episode. I often struggle with the boys doing slapstick stuff (as in, when it's OOC) but I thought the mix of humour, tenderness, mystery and a rather big reveal was nicely handle. (mostly..). Their faces were priceless and to watch the Js work off each other like this just was pure joy to watch.

10. Did ya catch this:



CLINGY DEAN! "Big!Sammy will save me from those nasty dogs (that look a bit like hell hounds..)" *heart flutters*

11. Castiel.

This falls into the "big" moment in the show that made me love it that bit more.

See. Castiel confuses me. I think the Show struggles to find a place for him. They want him there (possibly due to the fans..) so they have to give him purpose. But how. Why would an angel hang around Sam and Dean? I don't think this episode answered that completely but it might have shed some light. Hee... and no - I don't think it's because he's "in love" with Dean.

I see two reasons. 1. He genuinely likes, admires and is grateful to them for helping him understand what it means to be "free" and not bow to destiny and 2. (and this is probably just me being hopeful..) he has a purpose for them. By showing us that he is capable of "minting" souls and can lie quite blatantly to the boys show us (well, me) that he may indeed have something else up his sleeve.

It would make a whole lot more sense to me if he keeps saving the boys because he needs them. Or maybe their souls?? The price of souls keeps popping up so maybe Sam and Dean's souls are worth more than any other human? I don't know... it just opened a window for me and gave me hope that there is indeed a plan for Castiel. I like the idea of a manipulating Cas. Or at least one who has a reason for sticking by the boys.

Of course... fans will have a field day with "the angel who's in love with you" ... and why not! Show does love us (well, Dean/Cas fans..*g*) after all.

12. Alternative Universes. If this devise is not overly abused I am quite happy to see them go into alt universes. It allows them to do some exciting things but I would hate to see it over used. I enjoyed it tonight because we got to see Ellen, a married Bobby, the old number plate and the dialogue about the fact Titanic was never made. (That would also allow for the possibility that Avatar was never made either...yay..). I like that this universe was subtly different.

If I had a negative it would probably fall on the character of Fate. Can't really pin point why. Maybe because the actress didn't give it the gravitas I felt it needed? Maybe it's because young, pretty blonde actresses scream "hollywood" to me? I'm also not sure why antagonistic females need to be refer to as "bitches" so often. I dunno. I think maybe I felt more could have been done with her. Though I did like that she called Cas on his soul making and that he's the boss of Balthazar.

So. Overall really enjoyable I thought. Had a nice "old SPN" feel about it. Though I suspect anything where we see the boys working together like this will bring back that feeling.

So...um... Cas being in love with Dean.... Is that now, like, canon? Or was Balthy just saying that to stir up the boys?
Comments 
17th-Apr-2011 01:50 am (UTC)
LOL! I took the 'you' as being Dean AND Aam - I didn't get the feeling that it was directed at Dean :P but I am sure the Dean and Cas shippers will squee :P

I enjoyed seeing Ellen was well. I never had a problem with her. Jo irked me but I enjoyed Ellen most of the time so it was nice to see her back.

Good point about the amulet. That would have been nice to see since the overall feeling I got was, that while most things were similar, there were definitely changes and the boys didn't feel that they had gone through as much hell as we know that they did - they weren't as jaded and there was still a certain naiveness to them. Makes me wonder if Lucifer actually got out of his box or not in that AU... :)
17th-Apr-2011 02:01 am (UTC)
Oooh... so he said it to both of them eh? I thought he was looking at Dean particularly. But that might just be where my brain went. (not sure why as I don't/can't ship Dean/Cas.

Jo grew on. I did love her in their final episode. I was watching that the other day and couldn't help think how far she (as a character) had come.

and there was still a certain naiveness to them.

Aaah yes. There was. It was so nice to see them with less weight on their shoulders. It would have been great to get some more info about that had happened to them in this 'verse. They said the apocalypse had been averted but never said how (I don't think..)

xx
17th-Apr-2011 02:11 am (UTC)
You're right, they never said how the apocalypse was averted - I would have loved the backstory there because, like I said, they didn't feel as damaged as we know them be.

As for the love comment. Sam wasn't in the frame but it didn't feel directed at either one of them in particular so that is why I didn't pick up that it was a Dean and Cas thing, and Dean certainly did not squirm or make a bitch-face like I would expect him to if he thought Bathazar was being serious. I thought it was more sarcastic than anything honestly. But I've always tried to look at Cas's relationship as one with both boys anyways. I'm not a huge fan of him being one-sided and have taken a loooong time to warm up to him at all.
17th-Apr-2011 02:19 am (UTC)
Yeah - my personal reading is that it was probably directed to both of them and was meant sarcastically. Though as destina mentions below I think show made it ambiguous enough to have it open to interpretation. :)

I too prefer to think of Cas being there for both of the boys. I think it's taken longer for Cas to warm to Sam but now that he has I feel that he's as protective of Sam as he is of Dean. Though, as I mentioned above, I'd love there to be more going on with him. I'm sure it will be revealed over the next few weeks...

xx
17th-Apr-2011 03:35 am (UTC)
I think, in the beginning, Cas was prejudiced against Sam because he knew Sam was supposed to be Lucifer's vessel, and I suspect it never occurred to him that Sam might be a good man. We have seen a lot of growth from Cas in that department.

Ooh and I definitely believe there is something else going on with Cas. He let Sam and Dean remember saving their lives, for a reason beyond them just being his friend; there really was no lesson for them to learn about fate since that was wound up last season, so I can see an ulterior motive somewhere.

He got caught with his fingers in the cookie jar and apologized, basically. But that does not mean he wouldn't do it again :P Should be an interesting ride.


17th-Apr-2011 01:57 am (UTC)
AND ALSO ALSO! The scene where Sam and Dean are talking to Bobby on the phone and Sam shifts CLOSER to Dean even tho there's already no daylight between them! \o/!

So...um... Cas being in love with Dean.... Is that now, like, canon? Or was Balthy just saying that to stir up the boys?

Personally, I like the fact that it can be taken any way the viewer wants to take it. I'm just happy that the show is serving up delicious treats to any and all fan groups, at this point, because multi-pairing is the way SPN fandom is meant to be. To each their own and all that. *g*
17th-Apr-2011 02:07 am (UTC)
Sam shifts CLOSER to Dean even tho there's already no daylight between them! \o/!

YES YES!! Oh, I loved that opening scene with the two of them. They looked like naughty little boys...:D :D

I like the fact that it can be taken any way the viewer wants to take it.

Yeah - I can go with that. I like that Show gives us these nuggets to play with every now and then. :D :D
17th-Apr-2011 02:40 am (UTC)
Photobucket

that delicious moment captured in .gif!
17th-Apr-2011 03:46 am (UTC)
Oohhh - THAT bit... YES YES!! \o/
17th-Apr-2011 02:03 am (UTC)
YES! YES! YES! to all that :) I so loved this ep for all the reasons you mention. Even though it was AU, it had such a familiar feel of "the good ole Wendigo" days. You couldn't have knocked the grin off my face with a lead pipe. I'm still grinning actually. :o)

I agree re: Fate too. I don't know what to think about Sam referring to her as a librarian ... was it the glasses??? The fact that she looks and acts like she has a stick up her butt? Being a librarian in real life, I don't know if I should be insulted or not ... I think I will just appreciate the fact that Dean recognized that there's more than one type - and he has one! See? Still grinning.

17th-Apr-2011 02:25 am (UTC)
Hee! Still grinning about sums it up. So much to smile about.

HA! I wondered how real librarians might take that observation. It was probably the book holding thing...maybe the glasses.. or the hair... *shrugs* who knows. But I did enjoy that exchange between the boys ... love it when Sam can get in a quip of his own. <3
17th-Apr-2011 02:12 am (UTC)
Oh! I also just wanted to say how much I loved that scene shared between Bobby and Ellen when he explains to her that she and Joe should be dead. I loved the close-ups, how their eyes are framed. This choice really highlights the talent of these two veteran actors. Their chemistry together is amazing, and I really bought them as a couple :)
17th-Apr-2011 02:26 am (UTC)
That scene was fabulous. They played it so well together. Such a shame we can't see that chemistry at work as a regular part of the show. At least we got this bit I suppose. :)
xx

17th-Apr-2011 02:43 am (UTC)
~I thought it was a very clever script - i mean we had gore, comedy, pathos and a weaving together of some of the mytharc strands. Add to that delicious Sam and Dean moments as the icing on the cake!

The Cas revelation was huge, and his conflict was palpable. The fact that he's so desperate to lay down some groundwork for Sam and dean understanding what his done, means he knows they are not going to like it.
17th-Apr-2011 03:52 am (UTC)
I agree that it was clever. It brought together each of those elements so nicely. And I loved that we got some more mytharc info. The Cas reveal came out of the blue and I was nicely surprised.

The fact that he's so desperate to lay down some groundwork for Sam and dean understanding what his done, means he knows they are not going to like it.

Yeah. I find it interesting that that even matters to him. In the grand scheme of things Sam and Dean shouldn't really come into it - but they continue to do so. Maybe the "bond" is much more profound than just friendship. Dunno... I'm probably reading more into it than is there.

(Thanks for the gif. I haven't stopped staring at it. :D :D
17th-Apr-2011 03:59 am (UTC)
i loved that scene on the bed - esp as Sam started off with that long leg tucked under him. It just encapsulated how these boys are closer than they've ever been and obviously having lots of sex. I am going to cling to every moment before the inevitable happens...

I have no doubt Cas does still care about Dean adn Sam, but I also have a sense of foreboding that he may also be using them in his scheme in ways yet to be revealed.
17th-Apr-2011 04:52 am (UTC)
Wouldn't this be Alternate Reality instead of AU? As in, all the characters are the same and they have the same jobs, etc., but there's one piece of the puzzle that makes their reality different? Whereas alternate universe means they can be anything from knights in armor to pirates? Or maybe I'm wrong...

As a Dean/Cas shipper I took that Balthazar line as him poking fun at Dean. Of course, everyone else on the D/C comm is squeeing like mad about it, but no, it's not canon. It's just another Gabriel-esque character having fun at the boys' (and here Dean's) expense and being snarky.

Remember back in the middle of the season there was that line Cas said about doing "regretful" things? He's probably being forced to do things he knows Sam and Dean would not find morally acceptable in order to gain the upper hand in the war -- like bringing back 50,000 souls to help conquer Raphael. His comments to Sam and Dean about freedom and what they've done for him sounded more like, "I've just a terrible thing, but to prevent you from finding out about it and possibly hating me, I want to tell you this."

I'm intrigued by what he's learned from Sam and Dean and how he's putting that into play in the war. Humans fight dirty, and I think he may have learned from that.
17th-Apr-2011 07:09 am (UTC)
I have to say I hadn't really thought about the difference between AU and AR. I supposes I've only thought that if we are shown another version of their lives it becomes an alternate universe. But I'd say AR is probably a better way to describe it.

Of course, everyone else on the D/C comm is squeeing like mad about it, but no, it's not canon.

Aahhh.. see that's what I wondered. I haven't seen the squee that D/C shippers are no doubt sharing so wasn't sure what the take might be. Which I know isn't really important because at the end of the day we can take from it what we want. :)

Humans fight dirty, and I think he may have learned from that.

They do. And so do the angels it would seem. I suspect Cas has had to start playing dirty (as humans do) in order to get the upper hand. I wonder how far he is prepared to go in order to win. I suspect this may form part of the finale...maybe.

Thanks. :)

17th-Apr-2011 07:41 am (UTC)
The beginning with them playing rock paper scissors to decide who talks to Bobby. I missed that.

OLD NUMBER PLATE. I LOVED IT.

I liked Fate, she was not what I expecting at all. I loved that they brought back Heaven as an office beauracracy, she seemed quite a likable character and not as capricious as Cas was making her out to be.

For a light hearted ep, it was quite meotional and twisty plot wise.

In conclusion, welcome back Show!
17th-Apr-2011 12:39 pm (UTC)
Yeah - I'm not sure what put me off of Fate. I mean - it was nothing serious. I think on future viewings she won't bother me probably.

And yeah... there were a lot on unexpected moments in that one. I really got a kick out of it.

YAY! Show...\o/ great to know we have another one coming up in less than a week. :D
17th-Apr-2011 02:22 pm (UTC)
You know... once it clicked that this wasn't their regular 'verse (which slotted into place for me about the moment they didn't hop into the Impala -I'm spoiler free so call me a little slow on the uptake *g*) I thought back to the 'hmm' reaction I had when while rock-paper-scissoring it, Sam drew paper. Dean always goes scissors and Sam is always rock. So in hindsight that should have tipped me off that things were wiggy. :P

And having recently been dipping my toes into the Dean/Cas fiction in search of new authors, hearing Balthazar's flippant comment made me laugh and then imagined how that fandom is going to be having hysterics somewhere. But in answer to your final question, I see it all in good fun and as since I'm a Dean/Sam girl to the end, I guess we shippers got the 'erotically co-dependent' comment earlier and now those folks way over there in their corner have something too. I really do think this show watches (and delightfully, playfully trolls) it's fanbase more closely than I have ever seen a program do. And it geeks me out to no end.
17th-Apr-2011 11:12 pm (UTC)
I didn't really click for me until Ellen appeared and mentioned being married to Bobby. Even the car... I was like... huh... so Bobby kept the number plates and put then on this car and the impala is having some repairs so the boys have to drive this one.... :)

I'm sure the Dean/Cas fans are having a ball. And I don't blame them. As you say... the Sam/Dean shippers had their nugget with the erotically co-dependent line. :) I think you might be right about them trolling to see what we are latching on to. ;)

<33
18th-Apr-2011 03:03 am (UTC)
I always love your recaps :) And I have a very strong thought about your #11... This does open up a whole new possibility of a manipulative!Cas which, oddly enough, has him 'making his own fate' but also mirroring the pre-apocalyptic angels who thought they held the power and wanted to see things go their own way, consequences and human lives be damned. It makes him seem more angelic, instead of a lost trenchcoat with crazystrong powers, and I like the weight it gives him, especially since we know he *is* concerned with the greater good and won't go off the reservation entirely. But anyway, the point is, now that we know the angels have thrown out all the rules, and Cas is one of the big Kahunas who needs to watch out for the status quo, it may be that he just wants to keep tabs on Sam'n'Dean so that no other angels can reach them. And losing them to heaven (or coughhellcough - you never know where they'll drag the boys next) may well be opening them up to a whole other cast of angels. He obviously has a fondness for them that is very brothers-in-arms-ish, but I also see it as a strategic move that factors into his campaign to beat Raphael.

On a more squee-y note, Sam's hair! Yes! Looks like him again and makes me loose sight of the plot thinking, oh Sam, why so pretty?

And the rock-paper-scissors. Even after it was obviously AU, that bugged me, but you're right. That was another of their tipoffs.
18th-Apr-2011 12:07 pm (UTC)
Hi there. I'm glad you like my ramblings... :)

I like your point about Cas making his own fate by being manipulative. It becomes a double edged sword whereby the very thing that the Winchesters taught might in fact become their undoing if Cas has plans for them. OR if, in fact, he had something to do with Sam being without his soul in the first place.

Though I doubt they'd make Cas internationally hurt the boys. He does seem to be aware of the bigger picture of goodness and genuinely seems to care about them. I like the notion that him looking out for them is strategic - so others don't get hold of them.

I can't wait to see how this will play out. I am so pumped for the final episodes.

Oh Sammy indeed.... how is he so pretty. Prettier why his hair is hanging over his face. *swoon*

And the PSR annoyed me at first also. I thought "they can't mess with that!"... but yeah.... I'm pretty sure it was an early hint that things weren't right.

Thanks for dropping in! :D
18th-Apr-2011 08:07 pm (UTC)
Urck! You know, even with all my musings, it never occurred to me that Cas could have had a hand in Sam coming back with the tank empty. Gah. He just... he couldn't! He wouldn't! But at the same time, he was pretty adamant that Sam's soul be left in the cage. And that always irked me, because yes, Sam might come back a drooling mess, but at least he wouldn't be eternally tormented by Lucifer. It really bugged me how Show focused on what might happen to topside!Sam, instead of emphasizing that the real Sam IS his soul. They had that mentality with Dean. But Cas doing it on purpose... no. My brain stops there, because I just can't fathom it. Can you imagine how Dean's heart would break? (And, subsequently, everyone in the fandom's?) The broken trust there would be irrevocable. And painful. Oh Dean.

18th-Apr-2011 11:21 pm (UTC)
Yes - I agree. I don't think they would take it that far. I'm pretty sure Cas didn't get him. Fandom may indeed explode if Cas was in any way responsible for Sam's soul staying in the cage.

Though I've been musing (to my self as one does with this show *g*) if souls that have been to hell and back are worth more than the average soul. So.... Sam and Dean's. Of course... how that would even work I don't know. But it seems important how many souls an angel has to win this war in heaven. And maybe having S&D's is like worth more or something.

Or maybe getting hold of Sam's soul in its post hell condition is valuable for the other side? Maybe its why Cas didn't want it freed?

I'm curious to see what becomes of Sam once the wall is torn down... which I suspect will be where we are headed. I'm completely unspoiled and have been spending far too much time speculating.

'shall just have to wait 'n see I suppose.
:)
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