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curled around these images
just enough to make us dangerous
Learning that little bit more... 
9th-May-2014 07:20 pm
Sam I Am (not)
I've been thinking more about what Sam said to Cas about his possession and I think it adds another, rather terrifying, layer to his experience.

Sam felt a presence - felt that he wasn't alone. Knowing what Sam had been through with Lucifer it must have been absolutely terrifying to feel like someone else what sharing your "housing". Added to that, Sam wasn't able to talk to Dean about it. Whenever it was brought up Dean diverted his attention. Dean had his reasons of course, but Sam didn't know that. He must have felt like he was going a little crazy - losing time, feeling like he's not alone in his own body. The fact that he's been "crazy" before meant that he's had experience with ignoring it. Which he obviously did.

I wonder why it's taken them until episode 21 to give us that bit of information. I realise that that scene existed mostly for us to start to see that Gadreel could be persuaded to double cross Metatron (and if it was purely for that then I will want to join the indignation some have felt in that scene), but I would truly like to believe they were giving us more insight into what Sam experienced, which might hopefully play out later in the season (shut up! I can hope!).

ETA: Flisties are right! It was retcon so...BOO - ignore that stuff above. :(( *sobs quietly*
ETA ETA: After bouncing back and forth between thoughts offered in the comments I'm back to trusting my first instinct. Mostly, it's canon now so we can take from it what we want (or need). :)

There's also another factor in play I think.

We're seeing the battle between what's considered "good" with what is "right". Dean said he felt calm with the Blade in his hand. A good feeling no doubt. Gadreel possessed Sam with good intentions - heal Sam and begin his journey to be understood. Dean agreed to the possession with good intentions - save Sam. Sam has known what it's like to become powerful, with the good intention of revenging Dean. Cas definitely knows what it's like to want power for the "good" of Heaven. Even way back to Mary agreeing to barter one of her children for John's life - it was a good intention.

We might be left to question if something is considered "good" does it make it right? Even if Gadreel turns out to be misunderstood, an angel seeking redemption with good intention does that make what he did to Sam, Dean and Kevin right? Does Dean allowing Sam to be possessed without consent make it right because it was done with good intent? Does Dean holding the Blade to seek calm make it right? My answer is no to all those things, but maybe it's not as easy as that. Can I dare hope that maybe there's a lesson here in the Winchester world after all? That Carver might indeed have a (cunning) plan in mind when he opened this massive can of worms in 9.01?

I've said to a few that I will reserve my overall judgement of this season after the final frame of S9. I don't expect we'll have all the answers but I am hoping we'll at least see why Carver opened this season with such a divisive, shocking and thought provoking scenario.
9th-May-2014 10:37 pm (UTC)
In the interests of taking another few whacks at the horse that just refuses to die, what Sam's doing here rings very true as part of the process of recovering from gaslighting. Gaslighting is all about convincing a person not to trust their own perceptions, and so there's a lot of cognitive dissonance and trying not to probe too deeply and so forth. And afterward there is a process of "okay, here is what I was trying not to think about, now it's time to fill in the blanks with the information I was deprived of at the time." Sam was an honest character as of the first half of S9, but he was not a reliable narrator, as per Dean and Gadreel's design. So...yeah, my take on continuity issues generally aside, playing "gotcha!" with his recovery process in this back half of the season (whether at Sam or ~~the writers) is, at best, beside the point.

Yes, but then it gets to a point where we're writing the script, you know? I mean, if something comes completely out of left field, makes no sense given 8 years of history, and isn't explained at all, why is it our responsibility to think of a context in which it makes sense?
9th-May-2014 11:36 pm (UTC)
What in that passage sounded as if I was adding to the story, rather than describing how this episode fit in the pattern that was very deliberately happening throughout the season? Because that is the opposite of what I meant, so I would like to clarify if I can.
10th-May-2014 12:17 am (UTC)
In this case, it's not so much that it's impossible or implausible to fit into the story, just that it came out of nowhere. Yes, it makes sense that having been gaslighted (gaslit?), Sam's recovery might follow a certain pattern. But it hasn't. We've been given absolutely no evidence that Sam has been working through his experience in this way. It's sloppy and/or lazy, IMHO, if this is what the writers are doing.
10th-May-2014 06:33 am (UTC)
But we have gotten evidence of that, because it is what happened in this episode. And I don't think it rises anywhere close to being a continuity error for it not to come up often, given that (a) this is kind of an internal process for anyone, but (b) especially for Sam, who in any event (c) has kind of a lot going on right now. Letting something like this come up once in a while, and while it's being dragged out of him for the war effort, is character-consistent and unobtrusive.
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