Article Index

Yellow Fever
 
Sure, this is for the most part a comical episode, but we do get a glaring look at Dean's two biggest fears: Going back to Hell and Sam going evil. It becomes obvious when he sees yellow in Sam's eyes even though the hallucinations have stopped that evil Sam is the stronger of the two. It gives us a good understanding of why Dean has been so hard on Sam. By using his powers, that fear is coming true.
 
It's The Great Pumpkin Sam Winchester/Wishful Thinking
 
These are the PTSD, Dean-starts-to-remember-Hell episodes. Now he's pushing Sam away because he believes Sam wouldn't understand. Oh boy, these guys are really brothers, aren't they? "You wouldn't understand" is a great defense mechanism for "I don't want to deal with it." Dean's drinking amps up since the flashbacks he's getting are shaking him to the core.
 
Alas though, Dean see's Sam's powers in action against a powerful demon like Samhain and with stunned expression must accept there's no going back for Sam. It bothers the crap out of him, but he has a better understanding of why Sam went there. He just saved the world. From this point, he backs off on Sam using his abilities.

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There's also a big shift in Dean's relationship with Castiel. They gain a bit more mutual respect, especially with Castiel being honest over things to come at the end. Dean has never liked being fed bullshit, and Castiel did a ton to earn his trust.
 
I Know What You Did Last Summer
 
I bring this up for the one exchange with Sam. Dean still doesn't understand why Sam trusts Ruby so much. "I come back and you're BFFs with demon." Sam tries to explain she helped him go after Lilith, but that's not enough. "Well thanks for the thumbnail, real vivid. You want to fill in a little detail?" "Sure Dean, let's trade stories. You first, how was Hell, don't spare the details."
 
Dean does finally calm down and gets the honest truth out of Sam. He finally figures out an approach with his brother that works. Too bad it doesn't last.
 
Heaven And Hell
 
Setting aside grace in a bottle and Dean nailing an angel he has absolutely no chemistry with (I'm still pushing for Anna and Castiel in season five though), Dean has a ton of crap to deal with here. The angels threaten to send him back to Hell if he doesn't give up Anna. This is where Dean glowingly passes one of his big tests. He doesn't give in and calls Uriel on his bluff. He is willing to go back to Hell if that's what it takes. Of course everyone knows Dean's weakness, and the threat goes over to harming Sam. Family wins in the priority game and he gives up Anna. He is forgiven though by Anna for his choice.   
 
While I'm still uncertain of Dean's part in the plan of the angels and demons to get together, the fact that Dean jumps in against Alastair to save Castiel is pretty awesome. The angel has grown on him. It's that mutual trust and respect thing getting stronger.
 
Of course since Sam shared his story, Dean finally shares his trauma from Hell with Sam. He resisted for 30 Hell years, being carved and torn apart day after day, but he ended up becoming a torturer. It's a long overdue caring and sharing moment, complete with tears, heartbreaking honesty, respectful listening and its even better on top of the Impala. It's the purest family moment this show has had. Dean has truly grown from his "no chick flick moments" rule.   Dean shares again in the next episode about how much he liked the torture, but that didn't have anywhere near the impact as this scene.
 
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Sex And Violence
 
Any goodwill Dean had with Sam implodes. Of course Sam starts it because he's sneaking around with Ruby behind Dean's back again. That's a slap in the face to Dean and instead of trying to find out why he reacts with anger much like he did in "Metamorphosis."   Again he alienates his brother with a biting comment rather than confronting him with the truth. "First Madison, then Ruby and now Cara. What is it with you and banging monsters?" Sam reacts by throwing the phone across the room. Not a bonding moment.

SV 75
 
Thanks to the deliciously evil and very bored siren, they are forced through the spell to come clean in the most confrontational way. Sam's words did more damage than anything. Seeing that side of Sam, the defiance, shook Dean pretty good. At the end while Sam is remorseful but unapologetic, Dean is still mad, even though he's the one that almost killed Sam. It isn't Sam's words as much as his actions that cause that anger to linger. He brushes them off as "good" though, for at this point, he doesn't know what to do with Sam.
 
Death Takes A Holiday
 
Dean's still internalizing his issues with Sam, but it's never his nature to hold back too long. As Sam's getting ready to leave the diner, Dean acts reluctant and hurt. "You sure you want me going with you? I don't want to be holding you back." Sam still won't apologize, blaming it on the siren, so Dean drops it. 
 
Castiel is back to manipulating Dean, as it turns out their little ghost riding thing was a setup for Castiel to capture Alastair since the building was angel proofed. He even faked the call from Bobby to Sam. When asking Castiel why he didn't ask him, Dean gets all his defiance thrown right back at him. "Because whatever I ask, you seem to do the exact opposite."  He had Dean there. 
 

Comments  

Bevie
# Bevie 2009-08-18 15:39
Hi Clarice

Just to let you know Alice did Sam's deeper look for Season Four on August 12, 2009.

Just go up top and look in the latest articles list.

And Alice, another great article!

Lol! Although I DO see chemistry between Dean and Anna. Different strokes I guess.
Tigershire
# Tigershire 2009-08-19 00:49
OK, first, loved the article Alice, nicely done. Now, back to When the Levee Breaks - at first I believed that the demon blood was doing all those nasty things to Sam as he started to detox, but.....

Yes, but. We know that Cas is the one who let Sam out. He broke circle and opened the door, etc. How much more could he have possibly done? All of it really. Cas could have flung Sam around the room. He could have inspired all those hallucinations (although I don't think he did). At this point Cas was in obedient soldier mode and NOT helping Dean. He was, in fact, helping Uriel even thought he didn't know it.

Then there was Ruby's comment at the end of Lucifer Rising....You didn't need the feather Dumbo, you had it in you the whole time.

Perhaps the detox was augmented by Cas????

Thoughts?
elle
# elle 2009-08-19 11:42
Excellent article! I enjoyed the look at Dean's journey and the idea that he was subject to character tests. I am really curious to see the result of these tests in Season Five.

Tigershire, you make an interesting observation that Cas could have been puppeting Sam during his seizure. My understanding of the demon blood addiction that afflicts Sam is that while he didn't need the blood to activate his powers, the addiction was still true. I think that Ruby got Sam hooked so he was dependent on her and more pliable and swayed to her suggestions. I do believe he was addicted in the truest sence of the word, like any drug addict or acoholic. Intriguing to think about though.
;-)
Tigershire
# Tigershire 2009-08-20 01:10
Elle, Yes, now that I think about, I agree. The sweats, etc would have definitely be a withdrawal thing. Still, I wonder about how much Cas was involved. The Angels wanted Sam out of that panic room and Cas was still believing in Uriel at this point.

I guess part of the reason I wonder is, with the Devil's Traps on the floor and ceiling, and all the "anti-demon" stuff around, wouldn't it have had some effect on Sam? I mean, sure he never had as much demon mojo as a full on demon, but for the blood to have the effect of tossing him around the room seems pretty heavy weight to me.

Ah, just the rabid thoughts of fan nearing the end of hellatius......
Suze
# Suze 2009-08-22 17:17
Tigershire, that is SO sneaky ...

Cunning as a bag full of weasles. You totally had me going for a few minutes but I don't think all the cold turkey was Cas-induced as we saw Sam hurting on other occasions and if the whole thing was psychosematic and/or Angels messing with his head then the addict recovery storyline they've been touting for S5 ( soon ... soon ... be calm ... ) is going to be a touch on the short side ... ;-)
Tigershire
# Tigershire 2009-08-22 18:52
Hey Suze - what kind of SuperN fan would I be if I didn't over analyze the show hey! GRIN

Actually, I never did think Cas caused the hallucinations but when he peeked out from the side of the panic room after Sam bugged out....I said, out loud to the TV no less, "How long have you been there?" My eyes even went all squinty as I peered at him on my TV screen.

Not to mention that I think Cas had a bit of a hand in getting both Dean and Bobby to take a nap right when Sam needed to leave. But it's speculation on my part there too.

The whole deal is highly suspicious, is all.

And with 5 days til I head to Vancouver, I'm feeling a bit twitchy - GRIN.
Lolita
# Lolita 2009-10-11 14:20
I want to know something! Like, why did Sam leave Dean in the hotel room, when the Levee Breaks? He was after killing Lilith, because she was holding the deal Dean made when he sacrificed himself for Sam? So pretty much Sam is revenge-driven against Lilith, whereas Dean is not? I am really confused, it's an awesome series, and being confused is good (means it's complicated), but can someone explain please?
Lolita
# Lolita 2009-10-12 01:34
Oh, you actually answered me, I feel so special, haha! Love you, Alice.

I still need to get why Sam wants to Lilith at the first place. Is it because she killed Dean? That she held his deal? So the whole revenge thing he has going actually is based on the fact it's all to receive 'justice' (wow, he really is lawyer material!) for what she did to Dean? I just thought of that, it makes sense. Because I always went along that he wants to kill Lilith, and just never really *thought* why.