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10.17 episode poll and thoughts 
3rd-Apr-2015 09:17 am
Ain't heavy
Oh yay, I actually have some thoughts on this one. :)

I've been thinking lately about what makes a "classic" episode of Supernatural. I often find myself saying "that's old school" or "it's like the old days" or "that's classic spn". For me there's two types of episodes that I consider "classic" Supernatural. One is a MoTW episode where our boys are solving the mystery, swapping banter, facing peril and then share a drink and a beer at the end.

The other is this kind of episode - a myth arc episode that leaves you will all the feels but doesn't leave you wondering why someone has acted out of character or leave you scratching your head because of a reinterpretation of canon.

It's curious to me how Crowley and Rowena were SO much more interesting this week than last week. Their scenes were short and to the point. And, more importantly, by the end of the episode there was some sort of resolution. It actually went somewhere.

I think that's why this episode succeeded for me when so many haven't this season. After 17 episodes we actually had some progress. Sam was finally allowed to do something and Dean had some nuance (I admit to not being a huge fan of the Dean staring into the mirror with angsty eyes to show us his turmoil. I want to SEE that turmoil in action, and we did in this episode).

I loved the varying layers we saw in Dean. His cheekiness when he pranked Sam's room, going out and hustling pool, being badass, fighting and succeeding to control the mark AND words of wisdom to Crowley. The scene with Crowley felt genuine and opened up a mess of conflicts. Feeling sorry for Crowley never sits well with me (I will never forgive him for torturing Kevin or the many other people he's tortured), but it opens up the discussion of forgiveness and whether a person (demon?) can truly change. If Crowley's story line is about changing and redemption then I like that they're playing the long game. It was highly satisfying when he kicked out Rowena. It was also highly satisfying to see Crowley's arc making sense.

I'm not entirely sure why Dean's given up though. In terms of the narrative it makes some sense - Sam can then go behind Dean's back and try to find a cure with the help of others etc etc, but in terms of Dean I can't work out his motivation for doing nothing (other than "just fight it"). He's been told he's going to kill Crowley, Cas and Sam. We've seen that he's scared for himself and death from last week (though, I don't take anything from the last episode too seriously), but we haven't seen his concern for what he might actually do to others - in terms of driving him to find a cure. Dean sees the inevitability of his demise - that the mark will take over and he could possibly become a demon again. I'm not sure why he doesn't want to find a cure to stop that. Perhaps we'll see more of this over the next few episodes (the black eye flash in the episode was a great surprise to me. Loved it).

The biggest (and nicest) surprise was actually getting some Sam POV. AND, knock me over with a feather, he actually connected with someone (Bobby!) and was given some words he desperately needed to hear. I really enjoyed seeing him working with Cas. I would love to think Cas is as concerned from Sam as he is for Dean. I think he is - we've seen evidence of this in the past, so I'm hoping when Sam goes "dark" (whatever that will mean), Cas will be there to support/help him. Bobby's letter was ominous and signals the path ahead for Sam may be a dark one.

I had no idea how much I missed Bobby until I saw him again. His appearance helped make this a "classic" episode. He imbues so much warmth in an episode. I had forgotten that and boy, it was lovely to feel again. I've never been a big fan of the "spnfamily" catch phrase, but this episode had "family" written all over it. Seeing all the characters come together to help Dean gave me warm fuzzies (and seriously, if Dean doesn't actually ACT on his words rather than just spout them I'll probably scream. People care for you Dean, so stop thinking you can do this on your own. Surely you've learnt that by now!).

I also loved seeing some connections to past episodes - the radio connection in hell (Dark Side of the Moon) and the boys pranking each other (Hell House). It's been AN AGE since we've seen them be playful with each other. Sam "provoking" Dean to go into his room (I'll always see that as a dare from Sam. Some Sam psychology, knowing a bit of pranking will cheer Dean up) and Dean marking</strike> messing up Sam's stuff. And Dean calling Sam's name in EXACTLY the same way he did when he was in hell (No Rest for the Wicked). I will never not love them running to each other when one of them is in danger. We also had the seance in order to connect with heaven (Lazarus Rising).

So yeah, a good "classic", myth arc episode that left just the right about of warmth and pain. I hope this signals the beginning of strong myth arc eps in the remaining 6 episodes.

Poll #2006409 10.17 reaction

I thought 10.17 was:

Awesome! So many feels!!
Pretty good! Some great moments.
Ok. I liked some of it, but not all of it.
Meh. I was bored through a lot of it.
Nope. Didn't like it one bit.
3rd-Apr-2015 02:05 am (UTC)
This really was a good episode! It's nice when they seamlessly transition from one arc to another and have them relate to one another. :)

*He's been told he's going to kill Crowley, Cas and Sam.*

Huh, I thought Cain was just taunting Dean to make him angry enough to stop holding back. I guess I will have to rewatch. A hardship, I know. :p
3rd-Apr-2015 05:45 am (UTC)
He may well have been taunting Dean but I felt like there was some truth in it (some foreshadowing). If we are to believe that he could kill Sam (which I think we are suppose to believe), then I'm thinking he could possibly kill Crowley and Cas. I think it would be very interesting if he did kill Crowley (and tbh, I have no idea where they could go with his storyline next year), because it would leave the threat of killing Cas and Sam open. I doubt they'd kill of Cas, but the threat might be there.
3rd-Apr-2015 02:39 am (UTC)
1000% agreed with all of this post. This episode was great -- it's like they finally figured out how to link the Sam & Dean / MoC / demon / angel storylines together.

I had no idea how much I missed Bobby until I saw him again.

Oh, my gosh, yes! "Surly" has never been so wonderful to behold. :D

3rd-Apr-2015 05:47 am (UTC)
It was a very solid episodes and covered a lot of character arcs.

I've missed Bobby a heap it would seem. Great to see him being able to help the boys (I always figured he'd be bored in heaven anyway…)
3rd-Apr-2015 02:50 am (UTC)
I *loved* this episode! Both boys got some great action and Crowley kicked out Rowena. Perfect!

The only thing that I wish they did differently (or made clearer) was when Dean was in Sam's room. I didn't catch on the first time around that that was in fact Sam's room. I just thought that was a weird thing for Dean to be doing to a toothbrush. I got it though the second time around. ;)

3rd-Apr-2015 05:48 am (UTC)
Haha! It would have been so weird thinking he was doing it to his own room! As soon as Sam said "don't go into my room" I was hoping we'd see some antics...
3rd-Apr-2015 03:20 am (UTC)
Dabb is just a stronger writer then the rest of the SPN staff. They all suffer from pacing issues in it shows. I see that he don't write alot anymore, in that sucks cause the show need more episodes like what we got last night. Quality, POV and resolutions.
3rd-Apr-2015 05:00 am (UTC)
Dabb writes four episodes a season, including this one (he's also writing 10.22), so he actually writes the most episodes out of any single writer.
3rd-Apr-2015 04:09 am (UTC)
Agreed agreed agreed! I just rewatched it again and loved it even more. Every scene made sense and every scene felt important and organic. Also, Dean was very pretty. Shocking, I know.
3rd-Apr-2015 11:20 am (UTC)
Pretty Dean!! I loved when he messed up his hair. :) Even Sam's hair was less awful than usual! :D

Good, solid episode. yay!
3rd-Apr-2015 04:35 am (UTC)
It felt so satisfying to see both Rowena and Metatron both get their comeuppance in the same episode!

So many hints--was Metatron's reference to Lucifer a red herring or a foreshadowing? Will freeing Lucifer be the 'dark thing' we keep getting teased about Sam doing? Why can't Dean give himself some credit for his strength in resisting the Mark so far? (Oh, who am I kidding with that question.) Is Crowley really becoming a lovable curmudgeon or is he playing some really long con that is going to devastate us? What will the angels do to Bobby? Maybe kick him out of heaven and back to earth???

That's the thing with this show after so long--you get used to okay episodes, and then one like this comes along to show what it really is...
3rd-Apr-2015 11:25 am (UTC)
It felt so satisfying to see both Rowena and Metatron both get their comeuppance in the same episode!

Yes! I think that's what made it so wonderful. It's so hard watching them all being played, so it's great to see them wise up! :)

And all great questions! I love that we had an episode that generates good questions rather than trying to piece together re-worked canon.

Hope we have more like this one! :D
3rd-Apr-2015 04:54 am (UTC)
I would have voted for "awesome" but you know the word "f**ls* is against my religion lol
3rd-Apr-2015 05:40 am (UTC)
haha! But it's the best word evaaaaa! (I initially had "feelings" and thought nah, this is fandom baby…)

Glad you like it though. Nice to get a solid ep. :)
3rd-Apr-2015 07:53 am (UTC)
Before I read anything I just have to... BOOOBBBYYYYY!!!!... *sniff* So much love for that character. And remember how I just told you my fav dream the other day about Bobby coming down from heaven sorting everyone out? Well, at least for this one episode he did. I had no idea he would be in this ep since I hadn't come across anything spoilery. I honestly teared up a little when I saw him slowly zoomed into the picture at the beginning. *hearts him* - To then be insta bored by Crowly and Rowena again. lol
I enjoyed the ateist psychic. He was funny and also good at his job, haha.
Yay, Cas and Sam going badass and shooting the scribe in the leg. God, that annoying character. lol. I'm so not sorry he lost his grace. :P

On watching Dean and Crowly in the bar I thought: and that is exactly what is wrong with SPN these days.
And I so hoped Crowly would off his mom dearest and finally and truly become a real king of hell who's presence alone makes people crumble in fear. Ah well. And, omg, I'm getting invested again, aren't I?! :O

Time to read what you wrote..

Edited at 2015-04-03 08:16 am (UTC)
3rd-Apr-2015 12:24 pm (UTC)
Oh, I didn't write anything else after reading your post because I basically found myself just nodding quietly and couldn't think of anything extra to say. I'm seeing all the things you pointed out (except for the connections to past eps. I never remember detail. So thanks for pointing them out. :) )
In the meantime I'm starting to hide in my little, emotional snail house again as I'm expecting the next episode to not live up (or follow up) on this one. We'll have to see. :)
3rd-Apr-2015 11:28 am (UTC)
i dont know what to think, it had some nice moments, but i dont want end scene to be forgotten by the next ep to make it seem like what was said meant nothing. my grade is a C for the beginning, Sam pov, and the end
4th-Apr-2015 12:19 am (UTC)
It's been one of my faves so far. There's been some good ones this season (and some duds), but this one seemed to move things along which felt satisfying.
3rd-Apr-2015 12:19 pm (UTC)
Surprisingly after last week, I found this one much better! Even the performances, goes to show, give actors something to do and you'll get a much better outcome, everyone felt a lot more convincing in their roles.

Bobby took me totally by surprise! However, no wonder Dean doesn't think Sam should die, good grief SPN's version of Heaven is THE most depressing and sad place I've seen in a long, long time, I thought like this last time, but this was somehow worse as this is down and dirty truth. Seeing Bobby exactly as he died? All alone. For eternity? Or at least until the angels have drained his battery and by the age of some of those cells that's a bloody long time. How awful.

Much better way of separating the brothers, giving each a share of the plot and still keeping the plot as one entity. This time around even the tie backs to the older episodes were well thought out and made logical sense, liked the mention of Lucifer maybe knowing the answer, although I'm a little unsettled if show goes down the road of Sam letting Lucifer out again. However, if Dean is powerful enough to withstand Rowena, powerful enough to maybe kill Crowley and take his place on the throne of Hell, maybe Lucifer is the only one powerful enough to stop him, but I have to ask myself if Dean wouldn't make a pretty good ruler of Hell and leave him be as long as he leaves Sam be, but we know the next step would be to kill Sam and condemn him to eternity in one of those solitary cells.

Ack! I am confused by this plot.

3rd-Apr-2015 12:30 pm (UTC)
*barges in to exclaim* Omg, yes, that depressing heaven!! I explained it away withit being a "lower" heaven and the true, true heaven is when Bobby (and any other soul)really goes beyond all earthly attachments. (Hey, I'm trying. lol)
Actually I thought he should be with his wife in heaven. But since angels are dicks not much is to be expected of heaven either in the SPN verse I guess. ;)
3rd-Apr-2015 01:30 pm (UTC)
I loved this episode! It's pacing and storylines were perfect. Nothing boring, even the guy playing Hannah was awesome. It didn't feel like the Dean show, while having plenty of Dean, and Sam, and arc storyline going on. And it progressed, like you said.

Headcanon accepted: Sam provoked Dean into pranking to cheer him up!! Awesome brother Sam, yes.

Best episode in such a long while.
6th-Apr-2015 01:43 pm (UTC)
Agreed! And I loved the guy playing Hannah. :)

Best episode in such a long while.

Yes. love it when they give us a solid, even episode. Hopefully we'll get more.
3rd-Apr-2015 04:24 pm (UTC)
I just wanna say, love this whole post, all over! :D
6th-Apr-2015 01:43 pm (UTC)
yay! Good eps make for happy posts! :)
3rd-Apr-2015 07:03 pm (UTC)
I loved this episode. The main reason was Sam being such an integral part of the story. They finally used his size and strength (tackling that angel) BAMF-ness (imagining what he was going to do to the mind-reader and scaring the shit out of the old guy), and flying hair! As has also been pointed out, the Rowena/Crowley scenes worked for me, which is amazing.
6th-Apr-2015 01:46 pm (UTC)
So wonderful to see Sam actually included in the story - he's got so much to offer (rather than being knocked out) and it amazes me when they don't use what he's got more often.

Hopefully the trend is changing now. ;)
3rd-Apr-2015 08:32 pm (UTC)
It actually went somewhere.
This. And as for the 'classic episode' feeling, Bobby counts before all, of course, but there were also pranks and... actually, while watching, I thought "Yay, Dean hustling like in the old times, and we've seeing it MORE than ever in the old times!" (I loved this scene.)

His cheekiness when he pranked Sam's room, going out and hustling pool, being badass, fighting and succeeding to control the mark AND words of wisdom to Crowley.
Being quite a lot of Jensen!girl and not really so much Dean!girl (not as much as many others, anyway), I found this episode the second time I really liked and admired Dean, after 6.01 Exile on Main St., and this says something. Please, please, the writers, keep him up like this...

I'm not entirely sure why Dean's given up though.
Me too. And why he'd - presumably? - try to make Sam give up as well. All this keeping secrets before each other is so immensely stupid...

(the black eye flash in the episode was a great surprise to me. Loved it).
Me too. :) I think demons' eyes are my favourite single visual idea in the whole SPN.

I had no idea how much I missed Bobby until I saw him again.
I had. He's my favorite character. The Winchesters need to be told they're idjits once in a while. It's healthy for them, like vegetables for others. *g* I'm worried about him now... *sniff*
6th-Apr-2015 01:54 pm (UTC)
Bobby counts before all, of course,

Oh absolutely! That was indeed one of the main reasons why it had that feel. He brings warmth and familiarity. I loved seeing him back.

I found this episode the second time I really liked and admired Dean,

I think Dean has been harder to like lately. It's one of the criticisms I've had with Carver. He's made both Sam and Dean do things that make them hard to like at times. Dean's self absorption has been weighing his character down a bit (for me). There seems to be some inconsistency with his reaction to the mark - which might be the mark messing with him, or just poorly controlled character arc.

All this keeping secrets before each other is so immensely stupid…

And frustrating as a viewer. We've been here so many times, it would be satisfying to see them actually learn to tell each other what's going on. Of course, it's all about the tension and story telling, but they just don't seem to move on from that.

The Winchesters need to be told they're idjits once in a while.

Oh they sure do! No one else does it - they need someone like Bobby around. I wonder if we'll see more of him now *hopes*
4th-Apr-2015 12:30 am (UTC)
I missed Bobby and this was a fun way to have him back. However, if that is heaven, leave me in the veil, thanks. The pool hustling was awesome. Sam got to do useful stuff. Metatron got part of what he deserves. I liked the Dean and Crowley scene at the bar. It cracks me up how bad Sam and Dean are at lying to each other but they just let it slide. I even liked Cas in this one. I just find Rowena annoying no matter what she's up to. Hopefully the rest of the season will be good.
6th-Apr-2015 01:58 pm (UTC)
However, if that is heaven, leave me in the veil, thanks.

Word! A very mundane and horrible heaven. It makes sense to me because angels are dicks and heaven has always seemed like a bland place. With them confined to cells it's not much different to hell (well, less torture but eternity like that would be a form of torture).

I liked Cas too! I like it when characters have something to do and have a positive affect on the plot. I love Metatron getting what he deserves (though makes me wonder why Cas didn't take his grace sooner…).

Fingers crossed for more eps like that one. :)
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