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Review of the season 7 finale "7.23 "Survival Of The Fittest" 
by sweetondean
"See here's the thing when dealing with Crowley, he will always find a way to bone you."

Supernatural season finales, is there anything as exciting and harrowing? I must admit I spent the whole week sweating on it. I'd managed to stay relatively spoiler free. I didn't read any of the preview articles. I didn't watch any of the preview clips. Then the Upfronts came along and I'm afraid I'm weak willed and couldn't stay away from Jensen in that grey suit, shiny tie and hiatus scruff, so bam...suddenly I knew more than I wanted to know about where the brothers were going to find themselves at the end of "Survival Of The Fittest". Between Mr Ackles and his extra tall buddy, apparently masquerading as Grizzly Adams, I was spoiled rotten; both in plot possibilities, prettiness and the wonderful visual of the boys voting with their 5th extremity. Thank you Jensen. That will forever be seared into my mind's eye to muse over!!!!!!

What was I saying? Oh right. Finale. 

So Saturday comes along (remember I'm an Aussie) and I wake up extra early, feeling slightly nauseated and in a flop sweat. The closer it gets to the time the more I'm overcome by a sense of dread. I mean I literally feel like I might throw up a little. I'm so concerned about Sam and Dean Winchester I'm having a minor panic attack! Is this normal? I know most of you would say, yes, yes it is and I know nearly everyone outside of my Supernatural family would say, no Amy it certainly is not, please get a life. Then I would explain to them how I have a life, rich with stories of love and loyalty, of brothers and family, of heroes and villains, of rising above expectations, of falling to temptation, of shiny black cars and the myriad of emotions and frailties that make up humanity and they would walk away shaking their heads as I grinned triumphantly! But I digress. I was so nervous before watching this finale I didn't know what to do with myself. Then Carry On Wayward Son started and then I cried.  

I never compare season finales to each other. I never say, oh it wasn't quite "Swan Song" or it didn't grab me like "No Rest For The Wicked." I let every season finale stand on its own merits. They each sit within the structure of an overall season arc. It's like comparing apples and oranges, they taste different, so why bother. "Survival Of The Fittest" launched us with a jetpack strapped to our backs, screaming towards season 8. Holy fudgin' crap. What a kicker! For some reason I didn't see it coming even though I'd discussed ad nauseam what the end might be and Purgatory was certainly on the discussion list. I knew Dean would find himself in a tricky situation, I just didn't think it would be alone in Purgatory with Sammy back on Earth not knowing where Dean had gone. We were left with them apart and normally that would leave me in a state of horror. But not this time. On the contrary. I'm so damn excited about what this opens up that I can't stop thinking about it. Sure we've done the brother's separated and in Hell before, but that was through self-sacrifice and to some degree choice. We've also done the brothers separated through emotional conflict but that was once again, through choice (and you'd be right in assuming I don't like that). This time Dean was simply zapped away, caught in the jet stream of Dick Roman's whatever the hell that was. Sam's left behind with no real clue what just happened to his brother, though being the brainiac he is, it's not going to take him long to reach the conclusion Dean has been sucked into Purgatory. But they weren't prepared for this. They weren't prepared to be separated. It wasn't discussed, they weren't expecting it, they didn't want it. This makes the whole thing feel very different to me and I dig it! I gotta say though, who the hell would want to save the world? Look what happens when you do! First Sam goes to Hell after stopping the Apocalypse now Dean goes to Purgatory after stopping the Chompocalypse. That sucks ass! But it's so goooooooood! Ooooo it's so good! The possibilities! 

First things first. So we've despatched Dick. The Levis have been neutered, with Dick sent back to Purgatory (WHERE DEAN IS!) and the rest of them left wandering the earth Dickless, practically impotent. Their story reached a climax and exploded. They couldn't pull off their master plan for creaming humanity. It was all cocked up by those pesky Winchesters. Awww come on! It's my last chance to get in as many dick jokes as I can! Ok I'll stop now. Sorry.(Yeah, I'm so not sorry). Anyhooo, I enjoyed the Leviathan as the big bad this season, but I think their one failing was their lack of interest in the Winchesters. It made them feel less of a threat because their threat was global and in being about everyone, it lost the personal touch. Also, the Leviathan represented people we might have come in contact with, as in the corporate douche-bag up on level 5, so in some ways they were too familiar to be really scary though in other ways that familiarity made them all the more frightening. But, for me they lacked the creepiness of say Lucifer. Actually I found Lucifer disturbingly hot; (even though we know he burns cold), my bad, but I'm sorry, the Devil was smokin', so he's probably a bad example for me to use! But do you see where I'm struggling to get to? The Leviathan were almost too worldly to be otherworldly and in that sense lacked a bit of punch. But I did enjoy them or I should say, Dick. I love Dick Roman. He was smarmy and smug and so awful he was wonderful. James Patrick Stuart relished that character. You could see how much fun he was having with Dick Roman. Totally great villain. Also, the Leviathan plan was masterful and they were certainly different and I applaud the Supernatural creative team for pushing the big bad a bit and creating something that wasn't your typical monster. Can I ask a question though? This might be a dumb one. It came to me while watching that last scene of Dean being surrounded but the critters in Purgatory. If the Leviathan are goo, how do they normally get around? Ok, so they shifted into humans on earth, but I wonder what form they take in Purgatory? Are they just a slick of ooze sliming their way across the ground? That doesn't seem very frightening! Unless they're like the Blob! The Blob! Oh we need a Blob monster next season. How cool would that be! Whoa, I digress!

So the boys burnt the flask. No surprise there, it's what I thought would happen. Bobby did indeed request that the boys burn the flask and put him out of his misery. It was his choice. How it was done was beautiful and unexpected though. To not see Bobby flame out and to only see the glow of the flames on the boy's beautiful, tragic faces was a masterful touch. It made it a far more personal to just have Sam and Dean experience it (and Cass silent on the stairs I guess), and it also saved us the distress of seeing one of our favourite characters go up in smoke. Watching Bobby die the first time was enough for me. The burning of the flask held the emotional wallop I knew it would and once again I bawled my eyes out for the loss of Bobby Singer. I was never in love with the GhostBobby scenario, as much as I enjoyed the moment we saw him again and the extra time we got to spend with him. In hindsight, I'm not really sure what the reasoning was in bringing him back. He helped the brother's work through the clues, but they could've got there alone and frankly I would've preferred that they did and though he offered more information on what he remember from Dick's office prior to being shot in the custard, most of that Frank had already worked through via the numbers. So really, in the end, what was the point? I love Bobby to pieces so from that perspective it was good to see him, but the circumstances were so harsh and so unfair. Still, I don't feel his original death was marred by his reappearance as a spirit with vengeful tendencies. I still look at "Death's Door" as being his true out. The question now of course is whether he's gone for good, or as much as anyone ever is in Supernatural. Being as we are about to explore Purgatory, I imagine there's a chance he could pop up again. I prefer to think of him in Heaven with his wife and all the people he's loved over the years, it seems unfair that after everything he's done, after everyone he's saved, he be in Purgatory with monsters. But it's been said before that we really don't know where spirits go when they flame out. Are they put to rest? Or as they were spirits and didn't move on after death, does that put them in the realm of Purgatory? Because Bobby possessed a maid, does that put his eternal soul in jeopardy? I hope not. I don't want Bobby's story to keep dragging on. I'm kind of done with it now. We've said goodbye to him twice, I don't want to say goodbye to him again. I guess there's the chance that when we get Dean out of Purgatory, if Bobby is there he could ride Dean's coat tails out, but, to be very honest with you, I don't want that. As much as I love Jim Beaver, as much as I love Bobby Singer, I don't want to have an easy out. Is this the end of Bobby Singer? A big part of me says yes and I'm cool with it. Thank you Bobby and R.I.P.

Seeing Dean in Purgatory at the end of the episode left me wondering if he's going to think he deserves to be there. He's alive I gather, though that's weird because everyone else in Purgatory is dead. I'm hoping he doesn't get overcome by the malaise of the season and start to think this is his destiny. He believes he's a monster, a killer. He carries guilt about everyone he's ever known who got caught in the crossfire of his life and ended up dead. He carries guilt for each and every soul he tortured in Hell. Is this the place he always thought he'd wind up? Will his stint in Purgatory help him get over some of those feelings of self-loathing and give him a new view on life when he emerges? In biblical terms, Purgatory is where the soul goes to be cleansed of all past transgressions in preparation for ascension into Heaven. This could be a good thing for Dean. A bloody good cleansing. As much I was freaking out about Dean being in Purgatory, in the dark and murky woods, surrounded by God knows what, part of me got a little thrill. I like nothing more than seeing Dean go into full on Hunter mode. The guy is so skilled and so smart, seeing him faced with insurmountable odds and conquering them is a joy to behold and let's face it, we know he's going to be ok. I just hope that he's not shell shocked when he emerges. I hope this experience isn't another one that damages his psyche. I hope it makes him stronger somehow. I'm wearing my rose coloured glasses again aren't I?

Seriously though, I have absolutely zip idea how this is going to play out. One must imagine there are a lot of monsters down there who'd like to see Dean Winchester dead. Are you kidding? A bunch of them are there because of him. But who else is there? There were monsters and spirits who weren't evil that would've ended up in Purgatory. What about all the people Ash couldn't find in Heaven? Angels? The dead ones, are they there? They don't have souls, so you'd think not but who knows. Is Adam there because Michael has a hold of his body and so his soul has been expelled? Who and what is actually in Purgatory? See how exciting this is! What a great big fat unknown. There's an opportunity here for the writers to create a whole new Universe, with new lore and exploration and development of existing lore. I'm so thrilled by this twist. It's an absolute corker. 

Of course Dean is not entirely on his own, Castiel was sucked into Purgatory with him. I'm pretty sure Cass just went on a recon mission when he disappeared. We needed to end up with the visual of both the boys alone. It wouldn't have done to have Cass by Dean's side while Sam is shown alone in the lab. We needed the synergy of the two shots of the brothers in their isolation. Cass zapping away was for creative and cohesive emotional resonance. Did you notice Cass' voice at the end when he spoke to Dean? Sound familiar to you? It was deep, gruff and straight talking Castiel. No bees. No craziness. I think that feeling like Dean is offering some form of forgiveness and helping the Winchesters to put an end to Dick and not destroying everything as he feared, has brought Cass back. I said in my write up of "Reading Is Fundamental" that I thought Cass was hiding behind his craziness because to do otherwise is to face what he'd done. We saw this idea come to fruition when he said he couldn't help because he'd destroyed everything and he'd destroy everything again. He was terrfied to try; terrified he'd blow it. I'm glad Dean yelled at Cass to clean up his mess. It may not have seemed to get through to him in the moment, but I'm sure that it did. Add to that watching the boys suffer as they put Bobby to rest and Dean's "Bottom of the ninth and you're the only guy left on the bench, sorry I'd rather have you" speech and Cass seems to be coming back from his place of self doubt to be more like the Angel we remember. He was the only one who could help, so he had to help. It was his fault. He needed to "nut up" and I'm glad he did. How he helps in Purgatory is yet to be seen. Can he pop back and forth between the dimensions of Purgatory and Earth? Or is he stuck in there with Dean, which will be interesting seeing as their relationship is still not quite solid. I'm very interested to see what has become of Cass, what his abilities are in relation to Purgatory and to what level he is reborn and able to assist.

But I don't want Castiel to grip Dean tight and rescue him again. It's Sam I want to save Dean. Neither of the brothers have been able to rescue the other from the big threats"¦i.e. being in Hell. Sure on smaller issues they've had success. Like in "Faith" when Sam took Dean to the healer or in "Appointment in Samara" when Dean got Death to restore Sam's soul or "The Born-Again Identity" when he brought Castiel to restore Sam's mind. Under those circumstances they've been able to save each other and they've always found a way to save each other emotionally, but neither could find a way to get the other out of Hell, however, Sam knows how to crack the door to Purgatory. The trouble is, what gets out if he goes in? That's if the story goes that route. Sam's never done very well on his own, neither has Dean for that matter, they aren't whole without the other brother, but Sam's not really as alone as Crowley attests to. He does have a few friends still alive that he can call on for help, or support. There's Sheriff Mills, there's the hunter Garth. There are people out there for Sam. Crowley is wrong on that count. But Sam's been through a hell of a lot this season, his mind is only just starting to repair and now he's without Dean and doesn't know where Dean is or if he's alive. The guy's on shaky ground at best, how will he deal with this blow? Man, poor Sammy. Something tells me he's going to go at this problem like a dog with a bone, because there's no way he'll rest until he knows his brother is ok. Remember how he was when the Trickster/Gabriel killed Dean? Gah! I scared for him! But on the flipside, I have so much faith in Sam and his strength and his smarts and his love for his brother. I'm pretty excited to see where he goes with this problem. I'm also interested to see how long the writers keep the brothers apart. 

And even though the brothers are apart, they kind of are still together, because you know their primary focus will be worrying about the other. Dean also has the task of staying alive and Sam has the task of cleaning up the Leviathan mess and rescuing Kevin and possibly Meg from Crowley but you know neither brother will be far from the other's mind. So, that's why I'm ok with this separation, because it's not coming from a place of anger between the Winchesters and I can only see it making them stronger both as individuals and as a team. I'm not one of those fans who's all, oh Dean needs a story, Sam needs a story, for me it's THEIR story. I'm happy when we explore both of their characters individually and see their individual development, but it's their relationship that holds the most joy for me and I can't wait until we see them restored. Having said that, I do hope we get at least a couple of episodes to explore this separated scenario. I hope the writers are brave enough to believe we can cope with that. I know I can, because the aftermath will be epic. 

And speaking of Crowley, why does he need Kevin? What's he want with a Prophet. I get why he took Meg, she's been a naughty girl in his eyes, but Kevin? I'm scratching my head at why he'd need the protector of the Word of God. I'm really starting to pitch a tent in the Crowley's not a demon camp. I don't know what he might be, but I'm starting think he's not what he seems. He has way too much power. Look at the power he was wielding in this episode. He got out of his contract with Dick, which you'd imagine he couldn't have as demon contracts are unbreakable, he seems to know everything, he has a veritable army at his disposal, he appears to be more powerful than the Leviathan, than Lucifer. He totally boned the Winchesters again and got everything he wanted. Is he just damn clever or is he something else completely? I'm pretty sure our frenemy Crowley will be a major player in season 8 and seeing as I totally love him, that can only be a good thing. 

Of course the other character that featured in "Survival Of The Fittest" was The Impala! Baby is back and looking purdy! I may have fist pumped the air and hollered WOOOOHOOOO, when she came down the highway! How lovely was that first scene"¦silent, except for some birds tweeting, until you start to here her thrumming in the distance and then Born To Be Wild kicks in. It was perfect. Did you notice when she was hooning down the highway and bursting through the gates of Sucrocorp there were two guys in the front seats? And did you notice that we didn't see the lines "Don't die" "Yeah you too" that were in the promo? I heard a lot of people complaining that we saw Meg drive the car but not Dean, but go back and look. I think they cut a scene. I think Sam and Dean are in the front seat and somewhere between the burst through the gate shot and Meg driving through the sign shot, they cut out a scene. I reckon after crashing through the gate they originally pulled around the back, Sam and Dean got out, told Meg she knew what to do"¦maybe there was a snarky line about not hurting his car from Dean, Meg tears off, Sam, Dean and Cass are at the back door of Surcrocorp, they do the don't die lines we saw in the promo and go inside, maybe Sam goes in that way and Cass and Dean another way "“ that's how they split up "“ and then cut to outside again and Meg drives through the sign. This is how I think it went down before they had to lose some time in the edit! Because there are definitely Sam and Dean look-a-likes in the front of the Impala right up until Meg gets out. Go look! Wait"¦finish reading first. I promise I'm nearly done. 

So there we go. "Survival Of The Fittest" was a doozy and I think it was pretty damn awesome finale. Once again, everyone's performances were spot on. Jared's alone Sam at the end was excruciating to witness. Season 7 has come to an end and we are left with a lot of very cool and exciting questions. How will Sam find out that Dean is in Purgatory? Will his fragile, barely healed mind be able to cope with this latest crisis? How will Dean survive Purgatory? Who or what is in there with him? Any old friends that might help? How hot is he going to look fighting for his life? How will he get out? Will Sammy be able to rescue him? What's Cass' role in getting Sam and Dean reunited? What's with Crowley and what's he want with Kevin? Will the boys rescue Meg? Is Bobby gone for good? Who's going to tow the Impala out of that sign and was Sammy paying enough attention to Dean to be able to fix her, or will her repairs go on Burt Aframian's credit card? Why didn't everyone run when Dick started pulsating! If they'd just got out of range, we wouldn't be in this sticky mess! Sorry"¦just had to get one more in there. But the biggest question of all, .HOW ARE WE GOING TO SURVIVE UNTIL OCTOBER?!

Well, thanks for reading and supporting me here. I'm really stoked to be a part of the team at The Winchester Family Business and can't wait to get into writing up the next season. Of course with it being on Wednesdays now, it puts a spanner in the works for me a tad, but I'll figure it out. I'll still make sure I have everything up for you to read over a cuppa on the weekends. In the meantime, I have the All Hell Breaks Loose III convention in Sydney next weekend with Misha, Jim, Richard, Traci and the Ghostfacers, AJ & Travis, so that should be a hoot and I'll be writing that up for you. Plus I'm off to VanCon in August (insert epic squee here) and in the mean time, I promise to think up something so that I can still contribute to this awesome site.

Oh one more thing. I'd like to thank Sera Gamble for 7 years of beautiful story telling. She's one of my favourite writers of the series and many of her episodes are amongst the ones I go to constantly. "Faith" is probably my favourite episode ever and those of you who know me are aware of how I've chosen to express that. I love her work. I find her personally inspiring both as a would-be writer and a female television professional. I will miss her voice terribly and I wish her all the best. I'm excited to see what she does next and I know I'll be following her career with interest. I'd also like to welcome aboard Jeremy Carver, he too is one of my favourite writers and I couldn't be more thrilled with his inclusion back into the fold for season 8. Very few writers have delivered such beautiful narrative as Jeremy has and I'm sure the show will flourish under his deft touch. Who else can see this show doing a Smallville, 10 seasons anyone?

So, let me know your thoughts and theories on the episode and I'll see you soon with a write up of the shenanigans at the Aussie con"¦we are a little naughty us Aussies!

Bye for now, keep the faith, October will be here before we know it!



# Thisoldbag58 2012-05-19 23:51
OMG, I laughed so hard at the beginning of this review I had to wait a bit and dry my tears before continuing. Thank You for that!
# Vanda 2012-05-20 00:47
Loved your light hearted approach at the beginning. After the flask scene, & the Impala raising all hell scene, I felt like the final part of the episode was definitely edited, some parts were not completely smooth. I too noticed the 2 guys in the car. Even the death to Dick part seemed a little rushed. I have a feeling that after the season 8 announcement they may have added the purgatory scene in... Just my opinion, but that's how it seemed to me. Like they had to cut it up to make room for the last scene.
# Joyful 2012-05-20 01:00
Thanks Amy - really love your reviews, they are refreshingly frank, honest and best of all, upbeat! I am with you, soooo looking forward to the possibilities of Season 8, but really not sure I can wait until October!! I too am going to AHBL III next week - would be cool to meet you, but I guess unlikely to happen. Again, thanks for your reviews this season - start the countdown until Season 8! :lol:
# sweetondean 2012-05-20 01:04
We should definitely meet up. Are you on twitter? Follow me @AmyInSydney... you'll see what I look like too (wrapped around Jensen) :lol:
# Joyful 2012-05-21 03:33
We should definitely meet up. Are you on twitter? Follow me'll see what I look like too (wrapped around Jensen) :lol:
Sorry, I am a bit of a technophobe so not on Twitter..... yet! I will ask my friend Kate to follow you instead! Mmmmm wrapped around Jensen sounds wonderful! I am jealous! lol
# sweetondean 2012-05-21 03:46
Ok...make sure you tell her to say hi so I can follow back :-)
# LEAH D 2012-05-20 01:07
Loved and laughed at your review, as usual. I am so glad that Bobby went out as we had hoped! There are those fans that will always hold the possession against him but I think he said no to the reaper with the best of intentions and found he could not control what was happening. I agree the flaskburning scene was beautiful and touching, much more so then had they focused on Bobby's flameout.

I hope the great opportunities that they opened up for storytelling will not be squandered. As it stands now I am very excited for next season and the possibilities!!

A quick weigh in on the new leather jacket. The first thing I thought when I saw that deep reddish brown color, is that it won't show the blood as much. I guess I'm a little twisted. Anyhow I like it, he looks more like a grownup in it.

Oh yeah, Aussies rock.
# rmoats8621 2012-05-20 01:07
Bravo, Amy. This was a superb article and it's refreshing to find someone who feels the same way as I do about Supernatural. I'm so excited about all the possibilities for this next Season. I really believe that it has the potential to knock all of our socks off! :D

With that being said, I would just like to add one more theory to your idea about Crowley. Could he actually be Metatron or another archangel pretending to be a demon? I'm thinking of Gabriel and how he masqueraded as the Trickster for eons before his secret was out of the bag. Just a thought.... Well I'm looking forward to your report on the Aussie and VanCons...You LUCKY duck! I plan to be at the one in Vegas next year! Take care and have a wonderful summer ,although I think it's your winter now, right? :D
# sweetondean 2012-05-20 01:26
I've been think Angel for a while, but how's he hiding that from the other Angels? Something's fishy that's for sure! And he loves to click his fingers like the Trickster...of course he could be a Trickster!
Hey, see you in Vegas!! :lol:
# percysowner 2012-05-20 09:17
I would love it if Gabriel's final trick was that he didn't die and instead became Crowley although I would miss Richard terribly and would miss Mark Shepard more if Gabriel took his original form. OTOH, Crowley could be the real Trickster, who was smart enough to hide from Lucifer until everything died down.
# rmoats8621 2012-05-20 15:39
Gabriel was able to hide from the other angels while he masqueraded as the Trickster. I always believed that he was able to because he was actually an archangel. Therefore, he was more powerful than the average angel in the garrison and the other archangels were too busy with their own pet projects. So, they didn't bother looking for him.

However if Crowley is really Metatron, he's really high up on the angel food chain. He could take on any disguise and no other angel would bother him. Plus, I believe he would be very interested in the prophet who could read his work. So, that could explain Kevin's abduction. Kevin is really under disguised angel protection.
# LisaM 2012-05-20 01:37
I agree that I felt Cas was hiding behind his insanity, feeling if he acknowledged what he had done, he would lose it. But once he saw that there would be no bad repercussions, he came back. I loved the little smile he gave Dean when he realized Dean didn't hate him. In fact, in the Bourne again identity, when Cas was castigating himself and saying they didn't part friends, and Dean said "so", I knew Cas had to be the one to accept. Dean already was starting to. Crowley is an inigma. He has always seemed like the guy who does things with himself in mind, what HE can get out of it. Anything they do different will catch me off guard. Poor Sam, how will he even begin to hunt for Dean? He has no clue. Will Crowley help him out? As for the Impala scene, I felt they had wanted the boys to be driving and filmed it as such, but changed the script. Bad editing to not fix that. Anyway, I was not impressed with the entire episode (the whole Bobby compels them to leave once they reach Sucrocorp), but in rewathcing, it's not as bad as I thought.
# strgazr04 2012-05-20 02:24
however, Sam knows how to crack the door to Purgatory.
Wait, he does? Does this have something to do with Luci or his wall and I'm just forgetting it? Enlighten me?

Loved your review. I absolutely agree that I want Dean to face his issues in purgatory. That was my first thought post finale. I also want Sam to save Dean sort of like making up for not getting him out of hell because you just know Sam still feels bad about that.
# sweetondean 2012-05-20 02:46
Remember Dr V gave them the spell when Cas was trying to get the souls & they also used it to try and put the Leviathan and souls back with Cas.
Ginny Anderson
# Ginny Anderson 2012-05-20 02:53
LOVED your review! You had me laughing so hard it brought tears to my eyes. And then crying...Bobby. was beautiful the way they did it. I am so looking forward to Season 8 to see how Sam & Dean handle it alone. And how awesome will it be when they finally get back together? ! I too noticed Sam & Dean in Baby and then only Meg got out. I rewound a couple times cuz it confused me. I wish the "don't die" scene had been left in too. Anyway SO. excited for next season and all the possibilities! How am I going to survive til October?!
# Shelley 2012-05-20 03:45
Perfect review to finish off the season, Amy! I don't have much to add, except for lots of squeeing about where the story s going to go in S8 - there are endless possibilities!
I hope that S and D are apart for at least a couple of eps. And I hope that Cas is stuck in Purgatory with Dean, I don't want him to be able to zap in and out and back to Sam etc, I don't want to boys to have that direct line of communication, or an easy out. But I have faith that Jeremy Carver won't give them an easy out.
I also would prefer it if they picked up S8 where they've left us, instead of a few months after. I don't want to miss anything!
# Ginger 2012-05-20 08:19
Isn't it nice to be so upbeat about S8? I haven't looked this forward to a new season starting in years.

What struck me about the finale is that Carver can take the series in any direction he wants. I actually hope he's more creative than Dean learning something about why he hunts while in Purgatory. That's been hanging over Dean's head since S2, never has been addressed, and I'm ready to just drop it and move on. However it's played, I loved leaving Dean in Purgatory and I hope to see a badass, hardened hunter Dean come out of it.

I'm not so sure about Sam's direction, but I do hope that it is Sam that rescues Dean. Jared said in an interview they were going to address a past story and do it right this time. Sam rescuing Dean from Purgatory would do that for me. For that reason, I was not happy to see Cas in Purgatory with Dean or that Sam may go to Jody Mills for some kind of help. I hope to see a determined, focused, smart, stubborn Sam come out of it. We'll see how that plays out.

The way things were left, Carver can use past characters a little or a lot. Crowley, for instance. Crowley can be the big bad or a sub-plot. Meg can be left unmentioned or rescued. Kevin can play a big role or get a one-episode conclusion. We could see Bobby again, or Bobby's story is over. It's like we're at a real 'reset' position, and that is so exciting to mull over while we wait forever for the summer hiatus to be over.
# KELLY 2012-05-20 08:42
So, that’s why I’m ok with this separation, because it’s not coming from a place of anger between the Winchesters and I can only see it making them stronger both as individuals and as a team. I’m not one of those fans who’s all, oh Dean needs a story, Sam needs a story, for me it’s THEIR story. I’m happy when we explore both of their characters individually and see their individual development, but it’s their relationship that holds the most joy for me and I can’t wait until we see them restored. Having said that, I do hope we get at least a couple of episodes to explore this separated scenario. I hope the writers are brave enough to believe we can cope with that. I know I can, because the aftermath will be epic.
I completely agree with this! I'm all about the brothers. I love them both and live for those brotherly moments. But I'm okay with them being separated for a few episodes, as long as it is only a few. I read couple people speculating a half or almost a whole season. That would be TOO long. I could deal with 4 to 5 episodes MAX. That was my only real problem with Soulless Sam. I liked the concept and several of the episodes were fantastic but it went on too long.
Because even though Jensen and Jared were on the screen together, Sam and Dean were still apart and the show suffered for it. As opposed to Time After Time or Usual Suspects, where the brothers were separated but still working together. But it we had half a season of these type episodes it would feel like overkill. (Plus with too many episodes they would have to be working separate MOTW "cases". Yeah too much)
# suzee51 2012-05-20 16:35
"I'm OK with them being separated for a few episodes, as long as it is only a few. I read a couple people speculating a half or almost a whole season. That would be TOO long. I could deal with 4 to 5 episodes MAX."

Kelly - While I commiserate with your love of the brotherly moments between Sam & Dean, I was deeply struck by the words of Laura Prudom yesterday as she wrote in The Huffington Post:

"We might like to ignore this fact when we're selfishly enjoying one of our favorite shows, but Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles are pretty much the only actors on TV who don't have a full-time supporting cast to lighten their filming load. Padalecki has recently become a father, and I can attest from set visits that "Supernatural" is one of the most labor-intensive shows to film, in terms of the cast and crew's working hours, night shoots, stunts and special effects. The fact that these actors have managed seven years with practically no time off without having a meltdown is somewhat miraculous to me, and yet Ackles and Padalecki are still just as passionate and invested in the show as they were at the start. Splitting Sam and Dean up, as much as some fans may hate it, allows these hard working dudes a couple of extra days off a week to spend with their families, and if that keeps them from getting burned out and makes them more inclined to keep making the show for another couple of seasons, I'm all for it."

She makes an EXCELLENT point. Maybe it is time for us to cut Jared and Jensen a little break so that we can ALL keep enjoying SPN?
# KELLY 2012-05-20 19:48
I read the same article and I agree they can use more time off. But to be completely separated for a half or god forbid a full season would basically, for me, be like not having a season of SPN. For some like my brother it would be just fine he really only enjoys the MOTW and doesn't give a crap about the family stuff. But I have say I think he's in a small minority. Even critics, say the show suffers from TOO much time apart. Purdom even said it was not likely to go beyond a few episode. Now after Dean gets back if they want to do a handful more episodes where they are working apart but still connected-that' s fine, like it TAT and Usual Suspects and even in Plucky's they didn't have that much screen time together and I loved all those episodes.

If they added a little more heart back to the time spent on screen together then I would be fine with less per episode.
But still would not be okay half a season of complete separation. How would that even be SPN? As Kripke, they choose family isn't that the point.
# sweetondean 2012-05-20 20:21
I don't believe for a second they will keep them apart that long. The show is about 2 brothers, the writers know that, I don't believe they'd take that direction. They understand the brother dynamic is a driving force for the show. I think we'll only get a few eps of separation, and frankly, anything longer than that and I'll start to twitch!

As for the Js, they do amazing work and I'm sure they'd love a couple of extra days here and there, but I doubt they'd ask for that and I doubt that will happen long term and I'm quite sure they are well aware of it. It's a show with 2 leads, which is something they often talk about. The fact that they are still so excited and passionatley committed to the show, even though it takes them away from their home and their families, shows the kind of down-to-earth, appreciative, professionals they are. Bless them!
# KELLY 2012-05-20 20:37
I find it unlikely too. But Fringe had Peter gone for several at the beginning of this season and even when he came back he was fairly isolated from Walter and Olivia (in all honestly I was more upset by lack of P and W than P and O). But I don't THINK that SPN writers would do that. Fringe is more plot driven(although it still suffered) and SPN is DEFINITELY more character driven. But I can handle a few episodes, especially if we get more insight (and badassery) into BOTH characters.
# sweetondean 2012-05-20 21:42
Agree with you 100%. Go the badassery! I'd like to see them struggle but thrive, miss each other but work well on their own, learn and grow and then when they get back to each other (after a few eps) be even closer, because they realise that though they can do ok alone, they are better together. Hug it out bros. Ok....even I'm laughing at my optimisim! :lol:
# subwoofer 2012-05-20 08:48
Y'know, towards the end there, when they got Baby outta the corner, I had real fears we'd see some wonky version of "Thelma and Louise", mercifully that didn't come to pass.


The rest....

Dean and Cas- I see purgatory as therapy for Cas. There is no way he can keep his rose colored glasses on with this kind of stuff falling from the sky. And Dean? SOL. Is there food in purgatory? Is there toilet paper? Plumbing? No books, no resources, no phones, no lights, no motor cars, not a single luxury... The only way this could be happy is if Dean stumbles along and finds another hunter, maybe his dad, who carved out a niche in purgatory with some kind of stronghold or something, kinda like the last movie of Aliens vs. Predator where Lawrence Fishburne plays the wily guy in that.

Dean's psyche? I am thinking Frodo post LotR RotK- there is no peace for him on these shores, he's going to have to get on a boat and take a trip to a far off land.... a plucky pennywhistle land...

Sam- the "Time after Time" episode was a primer for him. The way the Brothers found each other there is going to be the way Sam is going to have to do things S8. And step on it buddy, Dean doesn't have a paddle.

Dick. Well, the guy was a douche. My thing about Dick is that he is like all the corporate douche out there, not scary, just slimy and out of touch with the rest of the world. Type of folks that wipe there butt with $100 bills and blow wads of cash on houses and cars just because they can, while the rest of the world starves, goes broke and worries about the future. Not a good baddie, just a sign of the times.

What Dick will look like in purgatory- I'm picturing a giant worm a la Dune. Leviathan implies big.

Bobby- the man put it all out there for the boys. He was always their backstop and it is no surprise that even in death, he could not separate from the ones he loves. Any parent would do the same if there kids are in trouble. I'd come back from the dead to watch over my daughter to keep her out of harm's way.

Crowley- There's going to be some serious payback with that guy. King of Hell becomes a dictator with no serious guerrilla faction to stop him. Gah.

The Prophet. Word of God folks, it is a powerful thing. Dean- hammer- "oh, wait, stop". Nothing good could come of that for next season.

As for the rest, well, lets hope for happy moments here, because to start with, they are going to be few and far between for Dean at least.

Thank you for the review, Sweet :D

# Nitewoman7 2012-05-20 11:58
Sweetondean 7x23 comments

Supernatural season finales, is there anything as exciting and harrowing?

Hell no! nothing has ever compared to watching a Supernatural Season Finale.

I must admit I spent the whole week sweating on it.

No other show period have I suffered anxiety attacks leading up to a Finale, then the whole day of the Finale airing I have Condors in my stomach and they don’t leave until I can head over to read your take do they start to settle down. Speaking of which you are a dream writer on this show. Thanks for another season of just incredible reviews. I get so much from your clever way of writing them.

I’d managed to stay relatively spoiler free. Then the Upfronts came along and I’m afraid I’m weak willed and couldn’t stay away from Jensen in that grey suit, shiny tie and hiatus scruff…

I did stay spoiler free – wasn’t a piece of pie (oops cake). I saw the pics of the Upfronts, drooled at Jensen in that grey suit and hyperventilated . (Hell’s Bells where Dean when you need him!!!) and my willpower hung in so I didn’t see any of the videos –Free now to go watch as many times as I want :?. Hiatus scruff- love it. Describes the look perfectly ?.

Finale was great. Sorry Dick is gone just for the pure enjoyment of scene with Dick and Crowley by far the best scene, they are experts at chewing up the scenes. Ok not really sad to see Dick get his just desserts. Yipee Crowley next season love Crowley and Mark.

Wish Sera the best & for 7 years she wrote some wonderful episodes, as showrunner, not so much I expected better. Her idea getting the boys back to only having each other was disaster. I will never forgive her for killing Bobby! I have faith Jeremy will make S8 awesome, still can’t see with everyone Sam and Dean ever loved except Castiel dead and gone why the hell would they want to ever get out of bed ever???? Did I mentioned I hate everyone dead and gone!!!

Jensen, Jared, Jim and Misha hit every scene out of the ballpark. Watching Dean and Sam burn the flask and see their expressions as the flare from Bobby burning torn me up again. It was BEEN THERE DONE THAT DIDN’T LIKE THE FIRST TIME! HAVE THE T-SHIRT

Got to really like Rachael’s Meg. She grew on me. Since Nicki’s Meg body was destroyed and Nicki is one busy actor The old Meg can’t come back. Love we have one demon who managed to survive through 7 seasons. Even tho Crowley has her I’m sure we have not seen the last of her. Rachael Miner has done a marvelous job of maintaining Meg’s snarky attitude she also added to the character making Meg her own. Love the many names Meg comes up with for Dean and Sam.

Must say I did not see that cliff hanger coming, but makes sense to me Dean as been to Hell and Heaven so why not Purgatory! Dean lying on ground in Purgatory remined me so much of Season 3 Finale Dean in hell and didn’t he look just delicious Leviathan story was not the best big evil and the plot line didn’t really work in terms of being scary. Alpha Vamp now that is one scary dude!

I so admire Jensen and Jared’s commitment to Supernatural and are fully aware how hard they work with just 2 main characters, so any plot line that gives either one a few days off through the season is just fine with me. The fact that Jensen and Jared still play Dean and Sam so brilliantly after 7 seasons is just the testament of what great actors they are.

So now begins the speculation on Season 8 – BRING IT ON!
# Nitewoman7 2012-05-20 11:59
sorry I forgot "Carry on my wayward son" started the water works.
# Sylvie 2012-05-20 12:44
Thank you so much for this absolutely epic review. What an ending to a great season, IMO. It opens up so many possibilities for next season, so many questions that can be asked: what is Dean going to meet in Purgatory, is Cass going to be his old fighting self, how will Sam fare on his own? Oh, I can't wait! And I will quote you on this because I happen to agree 100%: I’m not one of those fans who’s all, oh Dean needs a story, Sam needs a story, for me it’s THEIR story.

I will be looking forward to reading up on the cons you will be attending, lucky you. I live in Canada, but Vancouver is still too far and expensive for me to travel to, so I will have to live vicariously through you and all others that will be in attendance.

One last thing I need to mention. Thank you so much for those beautiful words you wrote about Sera Gamble. I will miss her so much, she has been my favourite writer on SPN these past seven years. I wish her well, she deserves nothing but good in her future endeavours.

Oh, yeah, and from now on, Sam & Dean will forever be referred to as Frik & Frak, thank you Mr. Roman!
# Amy 2012-05-20 13:38
I think saying Dean is truely alone is false...the visual symatry of showing Sam alone and ten Dean alone (after cas pops out) does Sam a dissefvice since Sam os the only one who is truley alone. Dean ...ven with the starytling visage of him alone....when its said and done Dean has Castiel. So the symatry of the boys being alone and isolated is a lie.

Sam is the only one alone; isolated from everyone else. Dean has ALWAYS had someone when Sam has had no one. Examples? Frank spoke only to Dean. Ghost Bobby only interacted with Dean...dean had one offs falling over themselves to talk and give him adive...even if it was wrong advice.

If Dean wants to understand why he no longe rwants to hunt he just has to look at his connections? His best friend/chosen brother? Supernatural. Except for Sam Dean has severed all his HUMAN connections and even then there has been a divide between the boys. I think there is merit in thinking Dean feels more of a connection to the Supernatural then he does humanity.

he used to see value in saving people but now there is no value in saving HUMAN lives. I think Sam still values humanity but he fears getting close to them.

I hate Sam is going to be isolated. Fans can say ther eis Garth or Jodie but what evidence ..what proof is there that Jodie or Garth will be in Season 8?

I'd love it if Sam saved Dean but I'd love it even more if Sam concentrated on destorying the last of the Levi...maybe joining a Hunting Unit dedicated to this while he searches for a way to save Dean...even if he fails,wich he will since I feel the writers need to keep sam sidelined in favor of the Dean/Castiel show.

Edlund said it best through Castiel (wasn't he supposed to be Sam's friend as well?) when Castiel said he mostly ignores Sam. The writers ignore sam. Sam forgives castiel and Cas doesn't even see an value in Sam's forgivenss.

Bobby would rather watch Tory spelling and get chinese pedicures then help his supposed son when he was suffering Lucifer hallicinations and needed his familes' support.

Dean has HIS best friend/new brother...why can't Sam have ONE person to care about him? I'm not counting Dean because the brothers will be seperated. Sam should have someone he can talk to...someone he can trust.
# Bevie 2012-05-20 15:22
Oh, Sweetondean, my favourite reviewer! I agree with 99.9% of your lovely review. Only thing I differ on is that I dearly want Bobby to be back in the flesh eventually. Hoping he is in purgatory too so he can ride piggy back with Dean when Sammy gets Dean out. Sammy has to be the one to do that this time. Has to!!!

Hope Sammy remembers that lady professor who got out when the Lovecraft group opened the door briefly. When he discovers where Dean is (how I have no idea) he can bring his brainiac researching powers to find out how they did it back then. Can't wait for the humongous hug to come! :P

If Dean discovers the lady prof in there she could be a great big help to him.

Thanks for all your great reviews this season. Loved every one of them! :-)
# MickyK 2012-05-20 18:48
Hi Amy, being a fellow Aussie, I was like you.... woke up Saturday morning excited and looking forward to the finale. And, I wasn't disappointed. It was absolutely sensational and the cliffhanger with Dean and Cass in Purgatory... WOW!

I also noticed Cass' voice at the end. I believe that the real Castiel is back and if Dean is going to survive in Purgatory, he's going to need Castiel at full strength.

I too cannot wait for that 1st episode in season 8, it's going to be fantastic.... the only problem is, I want to see it NOW!

Thanks for a great review.
# hedi 2012-05-20 19:28
love the review and ofcourse the first part was amazing though! :-)
i do liked the finale too , i'm totally looking forward to see what will happen in Purgatory and how sam and dean will find each other again! considering opening a door to purgatory could let out monsters again , it would to risky and too mysterious for sam to do it, if he won't try any other way!

THANK YOU so much for saying that THE SHOW is about The Winchesters' Relationship and its their story! the show is about how they deal with things together , they maybe have some personal issues for themselves but mostly they will figure it a way for those personal issues together too. i just don't get these people who say that Dean and Sam should have a story! they have one and its about their brotherhood , its about each one of them trying to save the other one in the times of hard!!!!

and i did notice Cas's voice in the end too! he looked so serious and so strong just like how he was in s5 or in the very beginning. i hope Cas will have a good storyline that puts with the boys too and although cas is dean's FRIEND , he is Sam's friend too , he is The Winchesters' friends! i don't get Destiel at ALL!

anyhoo , looking forward to season 8 and I JUST CAN'T FREAKING WAIT!
# jily4 2012-05-20 20:22
Amy, Thank you for your, as usual, wonderful review. This, your review, was the perfect ending for S7 for me. I had not thought of several mentioned observations and questions. And, I agree with you on the many possibilities for S8,bring it on!!! I especially agree, and thank you for stating it, the show is about the brothers. I will also suffer thru the seperation of the boys, both because it gives each growing space and new story to share w/other, but mostly, if it gives them more time off and they can continue to film for many more seasons, I'm on board. Now the long 4 month wait begins. I can't even think what I'm going to do until October.Wear out S1-6 discs? Probably need to buy new.....
My daughter (@EdenStarships ) and I will be at VanCon. This year, almost the most important part of the con will be meeting many twitter friends.Party ON!!!
Thanks for your funny, positive and insightful reviews.
# PENNY JAIME 2012-05-20 23:17
I'm excited that Jensen is directing again. Both epi's he did before were 2 of the best of those seasons. Oh, and his "joke", put me in the floor laughing. Leave it to Jensen!

The finale was fantastic. Unexpected ending, as usual. The creatures running by the tree line really creeped me out. It's gonna be a LONG 4 months
# Lynx 2012-05-21 05:01
But I don’t want Castiel to grip Dean tight and rescue him again. It’s Sam I want to save Dean.
^^ This please! ;-) No quick angel fix.

I also want even story telling for both Winchesters. I hope neither brother gets side lined.
# NOLANOLA 2012-05-21 05:30



Michelle Kinseth
# Michelle Kinseth 2012-05-21 23:55
I'm so damn emotional. I was away all weekend long and had no opportunity to watch the episode until tonight...thoug h I had been thinking about it all weekend. Now I'm sitting here, having just finished it, and so very upset over everything and trying not to cry like a silly girl. I mean, it's only a TV show, right? *shifty eyes*

I am most disappointed we didn't see the Sam/Dean "Don't die" dialogue exchange. And that we didn't get to see (REALLY SEE) Dean (JENSEN!) driving the car. Or even see him take the tarp off her (all these scenes better be on the DVD)! And now he's in Purgatory and won't be able to drive her for who knows how long. I'm so, so, so upset about this, like it's kind of ridiculous how upset.

I am very curious to see how season 8 begins (I hope it picks up from the moment of season 7's end) but I really don't want Sam and Dean to be separated for more than maybe 4 episodes. I really cannot handle something like season 6 where we don't get a true Winchester brother reunion until halfway through the season. That's all I want...please Mr. Carver! Don't drag it out that long!

That being said - I won't even speculate about what's going to happen. I'll just stew in my emotions over being slighted by no Dean/Impala scenes. I'm sorry but I care more about that relationship than any other, besides Dean and Sam of course.

And as much as I enjoy, a HUGE part of me is done with him. I don't know what to make of him being in Purgatory with Dean - and I hope he doesn't "magically" bring Dean back. I would like to see Sam have a real win and recover Dean; or better yet, have Dean figure something out himself! Or even better - let Castiel sacrifice himself to get Dean out.

Phew. October is a loooooong time off. But the season premiere will be a birthday present to me. And that makes me happy, anyway.
# EireneS 2012-05-23 18:13
Bevie-I agree with you. Dr. Visniak is a good choice to try to find to help Dean in purgatory. And, if Cas is supposed to be a bridge between Sam and Dean, then, for some reason, Cas cannot get Dean out of purgatory. Maybe, he will be a bridge by moving messages, info, weapons, food, etc between the two worlds.??
Just speculation.
# BagginsDVM 2012-05-23 21:08
I love how upbeat you are in your reviews! I had mostly the same thoughts & feelings about this finale as you did. Saying goodbye to Bobby, again, just broke my heart, but I love how it was done, with the light & shadows of the flames on the boys' faces.
I cheered when Baby appeared, & I was certain Dean & Sam were in the front seat. Perhaps Cas zapped them from the car before Meg got out. I really hope that "don't die" scene shows up on the DVD.
There is so much potential for next season! The closing moments left me speechless but completely psyched for what may come!