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The Road So Far, Season 5, Part 2, by Elle2
Whew, the wait to part 2 was certainly shorter than the nine weeks it took to get to Sam, Interrupted! Thank goodness.
Like the first part of the season there were good to great episodes, two clunkers "“ one clunked more than the other at least for me "“ and a lot of superb episodes. We get some old friends, some new allies and tie up a lot of loose ends, not all but that's impossible.
Here we go, Part 2 of Season 5's The Road So Far:
Anytime we get a looksie inside the Winchester's noggins I'm a happy girl. Here we get inside both boys' heads and as we suspect it's a mess in there.
Crazy works! So does honesty that is if you're looking to get admitted to a mental health institution and your name is Winchester. No breaking the laws here akin to Folsom Prison Blues just straight out telling it like it is, Sam started the apocalypse 'cause he was high on demon blood. Yep, room for two, please.
Dean trades honest answers with a shrink in order to get information. Sam's anger issues raise their head again "“ truth be told, if we'd gotten a bit more continuity in Sam's anger issues I would have believed this more but Sam was contrite in Sympathy, only flashed anger at Dean in Good God, as he struggled with Dean's constant reminders of his failures. We saw very little anger in Free To Be and The End and Fallen Idols as well as in I Believe the Children. In The Curious Case Sam was calm and controlled, in Changing Channels he was as confused as Dean, The Real Ghostbusters he was politely amused and the only time we got real anger was in Abandon All Hope so his quick change to all out anger to attack the doctor comes as a bit of a surprise. Then again, he was under the wraith's spell so perhaps this kick-started things into gear because Sam had been dealing quite well up to here.
The goal of this episode appears to be dismantling Dean's mental state and revving up Sam's anger as well as keeping alive the wedge between the brothers; Dean asks Sam twice at the end if Sam is still with him in this fight. Sam says yes but clearly Dean does not believe him as the rest of the season will show.
Uh, the opening teaser was great. Dean telling Sam he thinks perhaps they don't know what they're missing after Sam says the kid's life 'sucks ass' adds to the idea that Dean is rethinking the hunter life. Other than that it does nothing for me; now at least I know why. It was supposed to be a lot more body swapping, including the long-asked-for fan wish of Sam and Dean swapping bodies, but again this is an example of a high concept that does not translate.
Since they apparently reworked this episode on the fly during actual filming, I give them much credit for coming up with what they did"¦still, not one for many rewatches "“ but out of 104 episodes I count this one with maybe four others that are really at the bottom of my list"¦that's pretty darn good at a near 95% rewatch ratio for me.
The Song Remains the Same:
And it's a sad, sad song. Dean gets another chance to tell Mary not to go into Sam's room but the angels fully intend for events to unfold as they already have and she gets her brain 'windexed.' Tragic.
Sam gets a chance to see who his father was prior to hunting and it's a sorrowful glimpse as Sam realizes that his father wasn't always the obsessed hunter he knew. His dad was a loving, gentle, open man who was horrified to discover that Sam's father had exposed him to such dangers. It's a wonderful scene where Sam gets a chance to apologize to his father through defending him. For that, Anna, I thank you.
Anna's confusing storyline is wrapped up "“ SPN just can't quite figure it out with the 'younger' ladies although they got Ellen and Pamela written superbly. The effect shot of Anna finally being smote by Michael is quite excellent.
The only nitpick I have with this episode is that I believe Sera Gamble missed a golden opportunity with Dean during his dream scene. I think it's safe and simple and frankly a bit uninteresting to have Dean dreaming of an 'angel' and a 'demon' playmate, especially since the episode before we have him pondering what he's missing of the 'apple pie life' and four episodes later he's going to be knocking on Lisa's door telling her he envisions himself happy with her and 'the kid.'
I think here is where Sera could have laid a bit more groundwork for that, perhaps not with Lisa and Ben actually there but perhaps the suggestion of his secret longing. Dean waking up in a hammock as the sounds of neighbors in pools or lawn mowers to the sight of hamburgers being grilled and a woman calling from the house for Dean to come in and wash up, dinner is almost ready. He sighs in wonder, like in The Rapture as he was fishing, and then Anna is standing there. This was a missed opportunity to tell us Dean has these thoughts in his head.
Aside from that I love this episode and hope that young John and young Mary can make another appearance, one that makes sense as the two thus far have, in Season 6"¦maybe I should make a list.