If you haven't read Darry Jasper's How Supernatural Uses Death So Well
(posted on Sciencefiction.com) then I recommend you do so. It's an excellent account of how Supernatural uses death. It also provides a great summing up of the deaths so far on the show.
For a while now I've wanted to rant a little on why characters need
to die on Supernatural. Here's my chance! :D
As fans we are often tearing our hair out with the amount of deaths on the show. Especially when they are beloved characters. I've had a few discussions in the past about characters dying, trying to make sense of it all. And I always come back to... but that's the whole point.
It can't be called a "motif" because it's not really that. But, for me, it works in the same way. It's something that's repeated for a meaning. They occur often enough that they can no longer be considered incidental or used just
to heighten the drama. Sure, they are often used to end a season or just before the mid season hiatus break but I don't think they kill off characters just to make us angst, weep and tear our hair out. (though yeah, that too!)
I think death and dying has almost become the central theme. Not quite, as I think family (namely, brotherhood) is still at the heart of the show, but death it right up there. As pointed out in the article, the deaths serve to shape the characters of Sam and Dean. Particularly Dean. They act as springboards to actions that create the angst, dilemmas and drama.
The deaths are always about - how will the boys deal with this? What will they do?
I really love it. It's brave. It also shows that they make conscious decisions about killing characters off. It's not flippant or ill considered. It's why I want Bobby to have died in the last episode. Not because I want him gone, but because it's in keeping with their central theme. Death does not mean we will not see the character again. It just means we get to see how they boys will react to it.
I get that it's not what all fans want from their show. In fact, I think it's driven many away. For me though the show has always been about the brothers. I LOVE all the other characters that are brought in to support them, but I equally love that they are prepared to off them in order to remain true to the way the show is structured. The series started with the death of Mary. Death has continued to have a very strong presence ever since - to the point of actually being a character. I wouldn't be surprised if the show ends with death (that cliff is calling isn't it?). It may be sad - but it would make sense. (As much as I would love the see them drive off into the sunset
or settle down in a house where they have to pick curtains
, death would be so much more fitting. After all, it's where their family is).
The article above says it all much better than that but what excites me is that it supports my "that's the whole point" that I've been feeling for a long time.
Oooh Show. You do bring out the thinky. (that's what happens when you go on hiatus and I'm on holiday!).
NOT LONG NOW!! \o/
**removing the preview button is not cool LJ! :( Other things have just changed I've just noticed too. :(((
glitch it would seem *phew*