I did not expect this episode to bring on the waterworks quite so much. Maybe I’m just feeling overly sentimental as this season draws to a close but I felt like I was riding a rollercoaster of emotions during this episode. And I mean that in a good way. And the best part of it is that it ended on a good note with a moment of heartwarming, brotherly encouragement.

This episode felt a bit all over the place. It took me quite a while to figure out what this episode was really about. At first it felt like a bunch of different episodes put together. Dean wakes up looking smokin’ hot as a 1950’s army doctor, Sam is in a weakened state but he wants to hunt, Charlie shows up with a case and a lot of personal stuff going on and then there’s the djinn. I needed a little clarity. I wasn’t sure what the parallel was that was holding all these stories together? Once I realized that this episode was about fear, it all started coming together. If you let it, fear can control you. It can rule your life much like it did in Charlie’s djinn-induced nightmare.

Charlie was living with the fear of losing her mother. She felt guilt for letting her own fear as a child deprive her parents of their lives. And she was letting that guilt drive her. She couldn’t let her mother go even though she knew she was already gone. It is sad to think how long Charlie has been holding on to this guilt. I’m so glad that Dean was able to help her let go. I was also happy to learn a bit about Charlie’s backstory. It makes her character a little less one dimensional. She loves what she loves because it’s something she and her mother bonded over and I think that’s beautiful. So if it’s possible, I like Charlie even more now.

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Dean seems to have let a bit of his own fear go as well. We all know Dean’s biggest fear is losing Sam. It’s always been that way. And it seems he has every reason to be worried. Not only is Sam attempting these trials, which are hard enough on their own, but he’s doing it in a weakened state. So yeah, I’d be scared too. But being in Charlie’s nightmare seems to have showed him that he has to let some of that fear go. It’s okay to be worried about his brother, it would be strange if he wasn’t, but he can’t let it control his decisions. The sad truth is that Sam’s not getting any better, at least not until the trials are over. And maybe not even then. And what Sam needs is support. He needs to know that Dean believes in him, that he thinks Sam is strong enough to do this. At the end of the episode it seems that Dean is trying to take that step. He’s been able to let go of some of that fear and now he’s ready to find Kevin. This support couldn’t have come at a better time for Sam. Lately it seems he has been wasting a lot of energy trying to convince Dean and himself that he’s strong enough to get through these tasks. It would be nice to have Dean take some of that weight of Sam’s shoulders by showing Sam that he believes in him. We started to see just that with their epic man hug which I may or may not have watched on repeat. So I’m feeling good about Sam and Dean’s relationship at this point. They have something big ahead of them and they are strongest when are on the same page. Or as Charlie put it: “There is pretty much nothing the Winchesters can’t do if they work together.”

As far as the djinn storyline goes I wasn’t overly interested. We’ve dealt with djinn before in past episodes. My mind goes straight to “What is and What Should Never Be” which is easily the best example. It’s probably not fair to make that comparison though. In that episode, the dreamlike state that the djinn puts Dean into is the entire focus of the episode. In “Pac-Man Fever” the djinn storyline serves as a means to an end. It tells us what this episode is really about; fear. And it gives us the chance to see Dean with his 1950’s hairdo. So really, I can’t complain!

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As I mentioned earlier, there were many moments in this episode that had me choked up. Obviously, the aforementioned man hug makes that list. But there were also some very touching moments between Dean and Charlie. Inside her nightmare, Charlie and Dean bonded over the potential loss of a loved one. And in Charlie’s case, that loss turned out to be a very real one. Let’s hope it’s not the same case for Dean! Their goodbye at the end of the episode was also especially touching. When is the last time someone told Dean that they love him? (And me saying it to my TV screen doesn’t count.) That seemed to make him so happy and I was glad to see it. I also choked up as Charlie read The Hobbit to her mother for the last time. That is some heavy stuff! What about you guys? Were you as emotional as me during this episode?

As with most episodes, there were a couple of things that were a little too convenient. I’m able to look past most of them, but the one that kind of bothered me was the African dream root. I’m not usually one to split hairs, and they did rationalize it pretty well, but I still find myself questioning it. Dream root allows you to walk around in someone else’s dream and I guess for all intents and purposes, the djinn does put you in a dreamlike state. It’s not fair to criticize the writer’s choice when I can’t even articulate why it bothered me, but here I am doing it anyway! Did anyone else have an issue with this solution? Was there a better way to handle it? Am I being crazy? Probably.

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I think it goes without saying that overall I really enjoyed this episode. There was a lot of really interesting emotional development and I think Sam and Dean are in a good place to take on the third trial. I’m excited to see Kevin and Cass in next week’s episode. I can’t wait to find out what really happened to Kevin. Does Crowley have him or has he finally lost it completely? I am also anxious to see what is happening with Sam! So what did you all think of the episode? Any non-spoilery predictions?

As usual, there are quotes and moments worth mentioning!

Dean: “I’m telling you, give me five minutes with some clippers.” Sam’s hair was looking especially wild for a minute there!

Dean: “That’s why we don’t have nice things, Sam.”

Charlie: “That’s what they get for the sexist name.”

Charlie: “Thanks for saving the world and stuff. Sorry you have zero luck with the ladies.”
I love how disgusted Sam and Dean are about the fact that the Carver Edlund books exist.

Charlie: “Montage...”

Sam: “Dean, you cannot take care of the both of us. Play through the pain, right?”
Dean: “Come on, don’t quote me to me!”

Sam: “I hate that thing. I want one.”

I knew something was fishy about Dean borrowing Charlie’s phone. Smart to turn on her GPS!

I had completely forgotten about the second djinn until Charlie told Dean about it. Thank goodness Sam is still a badass!

Charlie: “You know you’re going to be ok, right? Those books portray you as one tough customer. If anyone can get through the trials, it’s you.”

Charlie: “What about you? You gonna let it go?”
Dean: “Never.”
Charlie: “That’s my boys.”

Charlie: “I love you.”
Dean: “I know.”

Comments  

Slammy
# Slammy 2013-04-25 18:32
I didn't have a problem with the dream root in general, I just want to know why they just happened to have some with them. That sure was convenient!

And wow, Marine Colonel Dean Winchester? Smoking hot.
EireneS
# EireneS 2013-04-25 20:45
I think they have lots of stuff in the trunk of their car and the dreamroot seemed to be dried. have no idea what that fluid was that they poured the dreamroot into but it looked like swamp water.
Leah unlogged
# Leah unlogged 2013-04-25 21:00
I was thinking the same thing :-) That trunk is deceiving isn't it? A trunk that can hold most anything they would ever need for hunting. To the naked eye it looks like an Impala sized trunk but inside it must the size of the Super Dome.
Grace232
# Grace232 2013-04-25 21:16
I think I can help - I do not think they just happened to have some dream root with them. I think they went and got it, and we saw the important part - them using it. Similarly, Charley did not just start talking about the trials out of the blue - Dean was telling her about it and we came in mid conversation. I could name a dozen examples like this in every episode. The movie magicians do a good job of keeping the pace moving for us - but to do so, we do not see every detail of everything that happens. At least that is my explanation. OR - since it is something they know about, maybe it is one more tool of the trade the brothers keep in the trunk of the Impala, just like the guns and salt.
Anon
# Anon 2013-04-25 21:38
Charlie: “What about you? You gonna let it go?”
Dean: “Never.”
Charlie: “That’s my boys.”

My favorite. And I'm loving all of these brother hugs!
chrisgranny
# chrisgranny 2013-04-25 23:13
The bat cave has so much info and stuff why not dream root? They have been checking the place out and could have seen it catalogued there and it was in one of the drawers Dean was looking thru.
Slammy
# Slammy 2013-04-25 23:20
I was thinking it would've had to have been in the impala... If they took the time to drive back to the bat cave to get it why wouldn't they take Charlie back with them.
Ginger
# Ginger 2013-04-26 00:18
Yeah, the convenient dream root jumped out at me. I was wondering which one of the brothers were carrying that jar around in their pocket.

The thing that bugs me most is the Impala sitting out there in front of the super secret bat cave on a paved road, and then Charlie just drives up to the bunker and parks behind the Impala. The MoL bunker is lovely, but not having a place to put the Impala, I'm finding is an annoyance every time there's an exterior shot shown.

I'm also not liking that the bunker is no longer super secret. I keep looking for the "No Prophets Allowed" sign, since anybody and everyone except Kevin seems to be welcome there.
percysowner
# percysowner 2013-04-26 00:43
The thing is, I can almost see that there COULD be a "No Prophets Allowed" sign, if they hadn't brought Prometheus in. A quick handwave, that no supernatural beings could enter could conceivably cover Kevin who is now a something more than human. But they did let Prometheus and his not quite human kid in, so I'm just throwing up my hands here.

I know, they don't have the budget to pay for Kevin and Mrs. Tran, to be in the bunker episodes, but man they just left them out there hanging. I don't understand why they didn't bring Kevin to the bunker. I also don't understand why they didn't have Mrs. Tran WITH Kevin, badgering him into eating and sleeping, instead of getting (possibly) kidnapped and murdered by Crowley. Except it wouldn't have fit the story, but YEESH. It's the part of the season that seems very sloppy to me.
Jean
# Jean 2013-04-26 02:59
I remember Kevin was originally supposed to be taken to the desert to work on the Word of God without anyone else bothering him? And he also made his mom leave the boat so that he could work in peace...Maybe Sam and Dean did offer, but it's Kevin who doesn't want to be around people except for the occasional necessary visits from Garth...That's how I explained it in my head, anyway :)
Ginger
# Ginger 2013-04-26 07:43
Lebanon, KS has a population of just over 200 people -- farmers. That's about as close to a desert as one can get :)
It's a giant plot hole that can be fanwanked in any way.

The thing about the Impala, though, is that I can't get it past my small brain that every danged farmer (and probably the cows, too) would notice that beautiful car and it would be the talk of the town (especially with Dean doing so much grocery shopping there).

You see, I was raised in Kansas, and I know how those small farm communities, so having no place to hide the Impala just doesn't work for me.
sweetondean
# sweetondean 2013-04-26 22:17
I explain it in my head as...

The bunker is full of too many secrets to risk having Kevin there. Kevin is very much on Crowley's radar. If for some reason Crowley was able to trace Kevin to the bunker and if somehow was able to force his way into the bunker - like by holding Mrs Tran hostage and telling Kevin that he'd kill her while Kevin is in the bunker alone - those secrets would fall into very wrong hands. No-one brought into the bunker has proved any risk to those secrets being revealed or stolen. Kevin, just in the fact that a powerful demon is on the search for him, does prove a risk.

Too risky to the secrets of the MoL to have Kevin hidden there...that's how my brain explains it to itself.
eilf
# eilf 2013-04-26 22:32
See I have a question about that. The bunker only has one key right? And the super-duper magical door can only be opened with that key and if you lose it, tough, that's you locked out big time (like for all eternity).

So does that mean that when one of the guys goes down to the shop to buy pie the other one is locked in? Or can the magic door be left on the latch?
percysowner
# percysowner 2013-04-26 23:31
I wonder why the MEN of Letters only had one key. Did they have to go get the Keymaster if they wanted to do some research? Did they all have their own and the keys just got lost in the fire. Did the last Man of Letters from Henry's day go into the fire and collect the rest of the keys? If so, what did he do with them? Did Sam and Dean find a magical key maker in the bunker and make themselves a duplicate set?

Oh, dear, your very logical question now has me nitpicking to beat the band. But really Men of Letters should mean more than one key.
eilf
# eilf 2013-04-27 12:00
I know this isn't what you meant :D but now I have this picture in my head of if you go far enough down below the bunker there is an entire dwarf market selling things for the MOL like memory foam mattresses and keys.
sweetondean
# sweetondean 2013-04-26 23:54
Maybe the door can still be opened from the inside, so if you're inside and need to get out in an emergency, you can...but if you get out without a key, there's no getting back in.

But I agree with percy, Men of Letters suggest that at one point in time, there must have been more than one key, just by the use of the word Men.

Maybe they just used to leave it under the matt. Or maybe they had one of those fake rock key hidy-hole things?

Ok, now I'm getting silly. Also, you say Keymaster and I see Rick Moranis :D
eilf
# eilf 2013-04-27 00:44
Perhaps this high-security one-of-a-kind only-has-one-en trance facility has a little known other entrance that leads dan-dan-daaaann n ... to Purgatory :D

Or, you know, Costco or somewhere. Mama Tran did say the Costco card had value...maybe it is really a key, so there must be a lock...

I should probably sleep now.
LEAH
# LEAH 2013-04-27 01:01
Too funny eilf!!! :lol: I almost spewed DP on my keyboard. Sleep deprivation works for you. Go to your bed now. :-)
eilf
# eilf 2013-04-27 12:03
I got locked out of my car not long since, it left an impression of the extreme value of having more than one key for stuff :D.

But by watching the tow-truck driver I did get a $50 lesson on how to break into a car (wow, that was easy!), so every experience has it's uses I guess.
LEAH
# LEAH 2013-04-27 13:13
:lol: I just bought one of those fake rock things. I tend to lock myself out just going to the mailbox. Multiple keys for everthing now!

I think Rick Moranis was the gatekeeper. :-)
winmomwannabe
# winmomwannabe 2013-04-26 01:10
I did think the dream root showed up pretty quickly. My resolution is that once the guys come across something to fight a monster or has a useful purpose, it goes in the trunk if at all possible. Just my take.
Alice
# Alice 2013-04-26 09:17
I have no problem believing that Sam and Dean kept the extra very rare African Dream Root that they got in "Dream A Little Dream of Me" in the trunk arsenal. Remember how they had to get it from Bela? I'm sure they didn't want to go through that predicament again. I'm sure they thought it would come in handy someday.

Remember, they keep other things there, like what it takes to make a box for the crossroads and goofer dust, not to mention holy oil. So for me, it wasn't a convenient thing. It was continuity!
percysowner
# percysowner 2013-04-26 09:35
I agree Alice. For one thing, The Dream Root is small, so it wouldn't take up much room or displace any really necessary weapons. Now if they produced Thor's Hammer I'd call foul, because that thing was BIG and they haven't had a use for it yet, and maybe never will. But Dream Root didn't bother me.
sofia
# sofia 2013-04-26 12:27
For me it's not so much the issue of them having the dream root. That I can believe pretty easily. If it's hard to come by they certainly wouldn't get rid of their supply. And where else would they keep it but in Baby's trunk? Makes sense.

I think it's more just that the dream root worked to get Dean into Charlie's nightmare. I feel like a dream and a jinn-induced coma are two different things. But as it turns out, they're not. Like I said in the article, it's not fair for me to judge the decision if I can't really point out the problem with it. I just thought one thing, and it wasn't right.
Ale
# Ale 2013-04-26 12:43
WIAWSNB (the djin episode) and DALDOM (the dream root episode), both situations are very similar.

The djin poison put Dean in a coma and, at first, he wasn't able to realize he was dreaming. He had to discover it by himself and, then, took control of his dream, waking him up by killing himself.

And Bobby was in a coma - he was trapped in a nightmare and wasn't able to realize he was dreaming. Dean had to tell him to take control for him to wake up.

So, both were coma induced states against the victims will, with others controling their dreams - the djin and the guy who couldn't sleep. The dream root was a way to access the person in the dream to take control and wake up.

It's how I see it. Does it help?
sofia
# sofia 2013-04-26 13:14
That does help! I may be coming around....thank s!
Lkeke35
# Lkeke35 2013-04-26 12:58
Quote:
For me it's not so much the issue of them having the dream root. That I can believe pretty easily. If it's hard to come by they certainly wouldn't get rid of their supply. And where else would they keep it but in Baby's trunk? Makes sense.

I think it's more just that the dream root worked to get Dean into Charlie's nightmare. I feel like a dream and a jinn-induced coma are two different things. But as it turns out, they're not. Like I said in the article, it's not fair for me to judge the decision if I can't really point out the problem with it. I just thought one thing, and it wasn't right.
I'm with you on this one.

I didn't think a Djinn coma and a dreamroot sleep were compatible things. I suppose they could be, but I thought both people had to take the dream root in order to share the dream. That's what threw me off.
Ale
# Ale 2013-04-26 13:05
Quote:
I thought both people had to take the dream root in order to share the dream.
They don't need to. It's enough to drink a piece of the person.
sofia
# sofia 2013-04-26 13:14
Yep! And we saw them pull a couple of Charlie's hairs and put them in the cup.
rhh1
# rhh1 2013-04-26 07:49
Please can somone tell me what dean and charli mean when she asked him what about u?u gonna let go? And dean said never. Thank you
Alice
# Alice 2013-04-26 09:13
She was referring to Sam. If you recall, in the dream she was clinging onto the idea of rescuing her mother, so her mother was a patient. For Dean, it was Sam. Unlike her, he's not letting Sam go on this one.
elle
# elle 2013-04-26 15:13
I LOVED this episode - I cried, I laughed, I swooned, I squeed. It was great all around. Well, written, beautifully shot and, as always, well acted.

Like you point out, the djinn storyline was kind of "meh" for me - more of a means to get into Charlie's head I suppose than anything else. And really - again like you say - when I hear djinn I immediately compare with WIAWSNB to which nothing could ever match, so....

I loved all the emotions in this one though. Charlie rocks. She needs to come back again. I want to see her meet Cas. And maybe Garth - so much comedy potential, haha!

PS - at first the dreamroot gave me pause because they had to involve Bela last time to get some as it was expensive/rare, but I guess they probably kept some on hand and that trunk would hold it. Particularly now that they have the bunker and the trunk doesn't need to house EVERYTHING they own in terms of weaponry right? God I love the batcave. Shooting range? Yes! Can we see them spar in the dojo it must have too?!
debbab
# debbab 2013-04-26 20:56
Concise episode with 4 players and one villain,other minor players. I was not sure where the episode was going for the first 1/2 hour, but enjoyed the references to past threads and the usual quips. Djin with a variation that fed on fear not a happy place.proving once again how smart Dean is to figure it out. Sam's second punch to show us he is not up to par, but can still be in the game and chooses to be in the game even though he is debilitated. Clever way to center a story around another player in order to reveal Dean's inner emotions and Sam's debilitation. He still fears losing Sam. but is willing to push ahead. Loved the Han Solo line from Dean to Charlie at the end. Loved the bro-hug. I could have done without the montage, but it did let us see Charlie, and Dean's activities and face during that section were priceless. We needed to see him play with her phone, and we should know he has manipulated cell phones before-Duh? See how sneaky a good writer can be. It does bother me that the Impala is out in the open, but maybe the town folk know there is a house there and these are new occupants without knowing what is in the house or how big it really is. If you look carefully you can see the town down the road from the bunker, so I rationalize that mid-westerners live and let live.Did anyone see Jared's parents in the scene when they all show up as FBI agents? They are standing against the yellow police tape. I forgave the choppiness at the beginning because it had a purpose and brought me to a fine emotional place; smiles and kleenex.
love2boys
# love2boys 2013-04-26 21:55
I love the smiles S&D can give Charlie, especially Sam. The picture at the top of this page is great.

I loved the episode. I'm glad S&D have Charlie as the little sister they never wanted. She's good for them.

I don't have any quibbles. But I want a garage for Baby to protect her from what must be horrible Kansas winters. :lol:
paula05
# paula05 2013-07-28 22:16
out of the blue, to say, is alex pettyfer, sam+dean love child? i put one pic over the other transparent-ish and it Works. also, is Sarah back cos i wanted her to, i even think i say sth about it, somewhere. also, kate from bitten, sam final girlfriend?