“First Born” is a powerhouse of an episode, showing off Robbie Thompson’s narrative skills and fuelled by compelling performances from both the regular and guest cast. Not only does the episode tell its own story beautifully, it weaves together strands from previous seasons to illustrate the overall arc for this one. Free will is the key concept, between the boys and in every realm.

I’m going to discuss free will first, because the whole season is structured around it, as heaven, hell and Winchesters struggle with it.

The first five seasons were a meditation on family and free will, as Sam and Dean fought to define themselves despite being heroes in a tale long set up by cosmic forces. Castiel’s fall from grace signalled his own embracement of the concept, but really, free will had been on the heavenly table ever since God left the building with no warning or instructions. The archangels made sure to obscure that fact from the heavenly host because they didn’t intend to extend free will to the masses. Instead, they intended to rule with an iron rod themselves.

9.11PBJ 1240

Castiel has always been allied with God’s view of his creation, and when he seized power in heaven, he tried to walk in God’s footsteps, becoming a vengeful eye for eye Old Testament God. What he didn’t realise was God walked off the playing board for a reason, and that reason I believe was to give the angels the same gift he gave humans: free will. Castiel’s first crack at leadership was inherently flawed, because he didn’t realize he had to let go of absolute power in order to reshape heaven.

With Metatron at the controls, trying in his own way to become the new all-powerful and authoritarian God, heaven is again under siege not only by opposing combatants, but also by opposing philosophies. While the angels struggle with choosing between leaders like Bartholomew and Malachi, Cas remains the wild card. I’m not sure how he will become a player in the war over heaven, but I am sure he will be crucial in its reconstruction.

Cas has always been a troublesome angel, willing to protest against what he feels is wrong, and his reprogramming never stuck. The seeds of free will apparently were always there, sprouting when he encountered the Winchesters and their refusal to bow to fate.

At this point, Cas has also tried to be God and human, and he’s learned from all his experiences. He’s redefined what an angel can be, which makes him the logical choice to extend free will to his brothers and sisters, though no doubt there will be a cost to him.

A very similar struggle is taking place in hell. Crowley, the salesman, has always known the value of buy in. Under his control, demons relied on making deals, keeping their word as a way to lure greedy humans into their grasp. Crowley’s power was based on demons liking the set up because there was something in it for them.

Abbadon is a very different creature. Arrogant and used to power, she rules through fear and violence, crushing demons as often and as easily as she kills humans. She represents the old order vs. Crowley’s new one, and I suspect we’ll see the struggle play out as free will vs. dictatorship, though of course it will be a demonic version of free will. Crowley’s been changed by his touch with his humanity, but he’s still a demon, as this episode points out at the end.

That leaves the Winchesters, who have already saved the world through their insistence on free will on the cosmic scale. It seems, however, there is still work to do on free will between them, and that’s the territory their personal journey is exploring. Thompson expands the mythology to bring in Cain, who has always been a parallel to elder brother Dean.

With free will as the backdrop, “First Born” pairs each Winchester with an unusual partner, allowing each brother to get a different perspective on his troubles.

Sam and Castiel are in the bunker, trying to extract Gadreel’s left behind grace from Sam’s head. The problem is getting enough grace will kill Sam. Thompson creates a similar situation to the one Dean faced with his brother in the season’s premiere. The parallel allows Castiel to try and reframe Sam’s perceptions of Dean’s actions, just as the angel tried to reframe Dean’s perceptions in the last episode. Perception, as Carver mentioned last season, is another key concept.

Cas takes on the role of relationship counselor and his method is one found in cognitive behavior therapy: sort through hurtful feelings to find the thoughts driving them and then examine those thoughts to see if they are realistic.

Sam insists Cas extract the grace needed to trace Gadreel, even at the cost of his life, but the angel refuses. He overrides Sam’s desire, and he does so because he believes Sam is still running toward death as a way to atone for his mistakes in season four.

There’s a lot of support for Cas’s position in the scene. Sam tells Cas being human means settling your debts, and he still has to balance his books. But Cas knows something about the balancing of books, telling Sam he’s the one person whose mistakes have caused more damage than the younger Winchester’s.

9.11 Sam Cas Hug 1611

And here Cas shows the impact of his brush with humanity. He connects with Sam at the human level by acknowledging and apologising for the hurt he caused Sam. Sam accepts the apology—and later accepts Cas’s contention that while Sam’s life is not worth more than anyone else’s, it’s not worth less, either.

Earlier, Sam pleaded with Cas,” Please help me to do one thing right.” Cas’s reframing manages to shift Sam from seeing his death as a necessary part of atonement. However, he’s not ready to do what Cas thinks would also be the right thing: reaching out to Dean. Wisely, Cas doesn’t push the matter. If the brothers are to come together, it has to be by their own free will.

Even after acknowledging he sees his death as balancing his books, Sam is still very angry with Dean. I think that’s because there are two issues with what Dean did. One is overriding Sam’s consent to save his life. Sam’s anger on that point may have lifted a little due to Cas pointing out Sam’s own distorted thinking on the value of his life.

But there is a second issue and that’s the lies Dean told. Interestingly, Cain was punished by God for two things: killing his brother and lying to God about the deed. Dean’s story differs from Cain in that he saved his brother, but he too lied about what he did. I believe that is what Sam is struggling to forgive. Dean’s lies are bound up in his belief he needs to protect Sam and that he knows better than Sam how to do that. Sam needs to feel Dean accepts him as a capable adult. The relationship needs rebalancing, which I believe is the point of the boys’ personal arc this year.

The parallel between Dean and Cain gets a lot of play this episode, but their differences are as interesting as their similarities. Cain killed his brother to save him, as John Winchester charged Dean to do if necessary. This season, Dean saved his brother instead, meaning in this story, Abel is still active in the narrative. I don’t think the writers intend to retell Cain’s story, but rather to show how Dean responds to similar pressures.

9.11 Dean car 1652

We pick up with Dean drinking in a bar, contemplating picking up a waitress. His headspace is dark—this Dean is very like futureDean in “The End.” Little of the caring side of the elder Winchester is visible. Instead, the hunter is in full view, ready to do what he must to get his revenge. The story has a clear parallel to seasons four and five (and for this insight I thank the very perceptive bookdal for her comments on twitter!) as well as Cain and Abel.

The twist is Sam and Dean have switched places. Sam is working with an angel and wondering if he can forgive Dean, while Dean is working with a demon to get revenge.  The thread that connects the stories is whether the brothers are stronger together than apart.

The narrative raises the question during Cain and Dean’s confrontation. Cain asks Dean why he saved Sam. Dean replies, “ Because you never give up on family. Ever.” The first man pointedly responds, “Where’s yours now then?”

It’s a good question because if Dean’s revelation during “The End” that he and Sam keep each other human is valid, Dean is going to need Sam very much indeed. Just as Sam still sees himself as tainted, Dean still sees himself as valuable only as a blunt instrument, a killing machine. Even Crowley tells him, “You are worthy. Your problem, mate, is nobody hates you more than you do.” Dean has as much of a problem with distorted thinking as Sam does, and unfortunately, that makes him as reckless with his choices.

Cain offers to transfer the Mark of Cain to Dean so he can use the First Knife. He also tries to tell Dean the price, but Dean has no interest in hearing it. He expects a price; he feels he deserves the price, whatever it is. He’s on a mission to punish himself not just for his specific mistakes with Kevin and Sam, but for being who he is.  Unfortunately, that means he’s accepted a burden that has the capacity to allow his dark areas to take him over.

9.11 CDC 1534

Cain became a demon when he received the mark, the worst of the lot according to Crowley. We know Dean is capable of very dark things. He was Alastair’s protégé in hell. There is a duality that shapes Dean, hunter and caregiver. The Mark of Cain is unlikely to magnify the power of the caregiver, the part of Dean that chose to save Sam rather than kill him.

Having killed his brother, Cain had no one to try to bring out his humanity until he met Collette. Her unconditional love and forgiveness of his sins saved Cain from his demonic nature. I suspect we’ll see Dean follow Cain’s dark path as he loses more and more of his humanity.

Unlike Cain, he doesn’t have to rely on meeting a Collette to save him. It makes more narrative sense to have Abel/Sam realize he can forgive his brother and that Dean’s insistence you never give up on family is as powerful now as it was in season five.

This season also seems to be picking up narrative threads from season eight. Not only does Sam have to revisit why he chose to live, he’s also going to have to decide if he will try to save Dean. My guess is the answer will be yes.

That yes should result in that needed rebalancing of the brothers’ relationship. Sam saving Dean will not only show Dean through actions he is loved, something Dean has trouble accepting even from Sam, it will also show Dean he and Sam are on the same playing field, helping each other through their weak areas. I think the struggles this year are building to the boys truly choosing to stay together by their free will, rather than fear of who they are without each other.

It’s been a tangled narrative web to get to this point! This season is shaping up to be a hell of a ride.


Comments  

Grace232
# Grace232 2014-01-23 23:27
Yes yes yes. Thank you for this analysis. It is everything I was thinking about this masterful episode - but laid out in a coherent, eloquent fashion, rather than the squirrel's nest of fragmented ideas that have been circling around in my thoughts since watching the episode. Wow, I love this show! Thanks again, Gerry.
Grace232
# Grace232 2014-01-23 23:27
Yes yes yes. Thank you for this analysis. It is everything I was thinking about this masterful episode - but laid out in a coherent, eloquent fashion, rather than the squirrel's nest of fragmented ideas that have been circling around in my thoughts since watching the episode. Wow, I love this show! Thanks again, Gerry.
bjxmas
# bjxmas 2014-01-23 23:48
Awesome review! You brought out points I was already considering and added a few I hadn't yet pondered! What I do know is, the writers are taking us in a new direction with some very scary prospects but also some very welcome and intriguing possibilities. I am so happy to see Dean going down this dark path even tho it is quite terrifying to see just how far he might go. I know he will never go too far, that his own basic humanity and Sam's love will pull him back from the edge. It sure will be one hell of a ride though! It's so satisfying to know Jensen has a meaty story to dig into, only good things come from challenging that man!

Thanks again, B.J.
bjxmas
# bjxmas 2014-01-23 23:48
Awesome review! You brought out points I was already considering and added a few I hadn't yet pondered! What I do know is, the writers are taking us in a new direction with some very scary prospects but also some very welcome and intriguing possibilities. I am so happy to see Dean going down this dark path even tho it is quite terrifying to see just how far he might go. I know he will never go too far, that his own basic humanity and Sam's love will pull him back from the edge. It sure will be one hell of a ride though! It's so satisfying to know Jensen has a meaty story to dig into, only good things come from challenging that man!

Thanks again, B.J.
Sharon
# Sharon 2014-01-24 02:56
Interesting review and clearly you appreciated the Castiel scenes with Sam more than I did. I did not like them and .felt they did not overly do anything for Sam .
Sharon
# Sharon 2014-01-24 02:56
Interesting review and clearly you appreciated the Castiel scenes with Sam more than I did. I did not like them and .felt they did not overly do anything for Sam .
E
# E 2014-01-24 06:35
Gerry, nice review! I pretty much agree with your take on things here…. I don't think that the MoC story will be about killing/saving Sam, I think it will be about saving Dean. Dean needs to know on a more immediate level that Sam cares about him especially after season 8, and Sam desperately needs to "do one right thing." I think that this is why they have been revisiting Sam's "transgressions " from season 4. It's not to make him look bad, its more to show how Sam feels about his past, to show that his issues are still unresolved and have been compounded by the events in season 8 both in the 'not looking' his being used to kill Kevin and in his willingness to die. I think that it has also been referenced by other character's as well specifically to keep Sam's issues fresh (remember the Daisy Duke hunter in episode 3?).

My problem with the episode is that Dean was supposed to be tracking Gadreel and trying to get revenge for Kevin's death and for what he did to Sam. It seems a little clumsy that Dean was so easily side tracked into this MoC thing. Why didn't he say early on in the ep… "hey Cowley, you're on your own dude.. you want to kill Abbadon? Great, good luck with that, I'm off to find Gadreel." How did Dean so easily allow himself to be lead around by the nose? Dean is more on the ball than that. I hope that they somehow connect the MoC to the Gadreel story so that it makes Dean look like less of a dupe. Kudos to Crowley though; how clever is he to trick a Winchester into being his 'blunt instrument.' He is able to take on Abbadon but not put himself into any direct danger while doing it, good for him!
E
# E 2014-01-24 06:35
Gerry, nice review! I pretty much agree with your take on things here…. I don't think that the MoC story will be about killing/saving Sam, I think it will be about saving Dean. Dean needs to know on a more immediate level that Sam cares about him especially after season 8, and Sam desperately needs to "do one right thing." I think that this is why they have been revisiting Sam's "transgressions " from season 4. It's not to make him look bad, its more to show how Sam feels about his past, to show that his issues are still unresolved and have been compounded by the events in season 8 both in the 'not looking' his being used to kill Kevin and in his willingness to die. I think that it has also been referenced by other character's as well specifically to keep Sam's issues fresh (remember the Daisy Duke hunter in episode 3?).

My problem with the episode is that Dean was supposed to be tracking Gadreel and trying to get revenge for Kevin's death and for what he did to Sam. It seems a little clumsy that Dean was so easily side tracked into this MoC thing. Why didn't he say early on in the ep… "hey Cowley, you're on your own dude.. you want to kill Abbadon? Great, good luck with that, I'm off to find Gadreel." How did Dean so easily allow himself to be lead around by the nose? Dean is more on the ball than that. I hope that they somehow connect the MoC to the Gadreel story so that it makes Dean look like less of a dupe. Kudos to Crowley though; how clever is he to trick a Winchester into being his 'blunt instrument.' He is able to take on Abbadon but not put himself into any direct danger while doing it, good for him!
mary9930
# mary9930 2014-01-24 06:36
So many interesting points! I love the parallels to seasons 4 & 5. Also, I agree that Sam wasn't mad that Dean lied to him. It goes much deeper:

"Dean’s lies are bound up in his belief he needs to protect Sam and that he knows better than Sam how to do that. Sam needs to feel Dean accepts him as a capable adult. The relationship needs rebalancing, which I believe is the point of the boys’ personal arc this year."

About the Mark of Cain, I would love to know exactly what happened to Cain because of the Mark itself and what was Cain's own choosing. What exactly was his deal with Lucifer? Of course that isn't necessarily the same deal for Dean.
mary9930
# mary9930 2014-01-24 06:36
So many interesting points! I love the parallels to seasons 4 & 5. Also, I agree that Sam wasn't mad that Dean lied to him. It goes much deeper:

"Dean’s lies are bound up in his belief he needs to protect Sam and that he knows better than Sam how to do that. Sam needs to feel Dean accepts him as a capable adult. The relationship needs rebalancing, which I believe is the point of the boys’ personal arc this year."

About the Mark of Cain, I would love to know exactly what happened to Cain because of the Mark itself and what was Cain's own choosing. What exactly was his deal with Lucifer? Of course that isn't necessarily the same deal for Dean.
Sylvie
# Sylvie 2014-01-24 08:35
Thanks Gerry, that was a great review.

Quote:
Sam saving Dean will not only show Dean through actions he is loved, something Dean has trouble accepting even from Sam, it will also show Dean he and Sam are on the same playing field, helping each other through their weak areas. I think the struggles this year are building to the boys truly choosing to stay together by their free will, rather than fear of who they are without each other.
I'm hoping that will come to pass, because, as you pointed out, Dean is headed down a dark path indeed. Sam will be the one to save him from that inner demon that is now moving to the surface. I think Castiel's words really made an impact on Sam, he's not quite ready to call on Dean just yet, but ultimately he will realize that they need to stick together. It's a very interesting road we're heading down, so full of angst.
Sylvie
# Sylvie 2014-01-24 08:35
Thanks Gerry, that was a great review.

Quote:
Sam saving Dean will not only show Dean through actions he is loved, something Dean has trouble accepting even from Sam, it will also show Dean he and Sam are on the same playing field, helping each other through their weak areas. I think the struggles this year are building to the boys truly choosing to stay together by their free will, rather than fear of who they are without each other.
I'm hoping that will come to pass, because, as you pointed out, Dean is headed down a dark path indeed. Sam will be the one to save him from that inner demon that is now moving to the surface. I think Castiel's words really made an impact on Sam, he's not quite ready to call on Dean just yet, but ultimately he will realize that they need to stick together. It's a very interesting road we're heading down, so full of angst.
Gerry
# Gerry 2014-01-24 09:55
Thanks, everyone, for the comments! This was a fun one to write, so many threads are weaving together.
Gerry
# Gerry 2014-01-24 09:55
Thanks, everyone, for the comments! This was a fun one to write, so many threads are weaving together.
Gerry
# Gerry 2014-01-24 10:00
Quoting E:

My problem with the episode is that Dean was supposed to be tracking Gadreel and trying to get revenge for Kevin's death and for what he did to Sam. It seems a little clumsy that Dean was so easily side tracked into this MoC thing. Why didn't he say early on in the ep… "hey Cowley, you're on your own dude.. you want to kill Abbadon? Great, good luck with that, I'm off to find Gadreel." How did Dean so easily allow himself to be lead around by the nose? Dean is more on the ball than that. I hope that they somehow connect the MoC to the Gadreel story so that it makes Dean look like less of a dupe. Kudos to Crowley though; how clever is he to trick a Winchester into being his 'blunt instrument.' He is able to take on Abbadon but not put himself into any direct danger while doing it, good for him!


E, I agree that in some ways the MOC seems a distraction from Gadreel, but at the same time, the boys have always taken on other jobs while trying to solve their main problem.

In season four and five, when chasing Lilith and Lucifer, when they had no leads, they took on other jobs. Abbadon does matter to Dean, as she has already threatened to kill him; Sam and Dean are on her radar. Taking her out will remove an obstacle in Dean's path to Gadreel.

I think Dean's isolation from his family unit will also make him more vulnerable to outside forces. He won't have access to all the knowledge about Gadreel, because he won't have access to everything Sam and Cas know when they know it. Neither Sam nor Dean will be as effective alone as they are together.
Gerry
# Gerry 2014-01-24 10:00
Quote:

My problem with the episode is that Dean was supposed to be tracking Gadreel and trying to get revenge for Kevin's death and for what he did to Sam. It seems a little clumsy that Dean was so easily side tracked into this MoC thing. Why didn't he say early on in the ep… "hey Cowley, you're on your own dude.. you want to kill Abbadon? Great, good luck with that, I'm off to find Gadreel." How did Dean so easily allow himself to be lead around by the nose? Dean is more on the ball than that. I hope that they somehow connect the MoC to the Gadreel story so that it makes Dean look like less of a dupe. Kudos to Crowley though; how clever is he to trick a Winchester into being his 'blunt instrument.' He is able to take on Abbadon but not put himself into any direct danger while doing it, good for him!
E, I agree that in some ways the MOC seems a distraction from Gadreel, but at the same time, the boys have always taken on other jobs while trying to solve their main problem.

In season four and five, when chasing Lilith and Lucifer, when they had no leads, they took on other jobs. Abbadon does matter to Dean, as she has already threatened to kill him; Sam and Dean are on her radar. Taking her out will remove an obstacle in Dean's path to Gadreel.

I think Dean's isolation from his family unit will also make him more vulnerable to outside forces. He won't have access to all the knowledge about Gadreel, because he won't have access to everything Sam and Cas know when they know it. Neither Sam nor Dean will be as effective alone as they are together.
Gerry
# Gerry 2014-01-24 10:03
Quoting mary9930:

About the Mark of Cain, I would love to know exactly what happened to Cain because of the Mark itself and what was Cain's own choosing. What exactly was his deal with Lucifer? Of course that isn't necessarily the same deal for Dean.


I'm interested in knowing more, too! We may get more, because Cain did say he would call on Dean to kill to him, so there's opportunity for another heart to heart.
Gerry
# Gerry 2014-01-24 10:03
Quote:

About the Mark of Cain, I would love to know exactly what happened to Cain because of the Mark itself and what was Cain's own choosing. What exactly was his deal with Lucifer? Of course that isn't necessarily the same deal for Dean.
I'm interested in knowing more, too! We may get more, because Cain did say he would call on Dean to kill to him, so there's opportunity for another heart to heart.
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2014-01-24 10:27
.

Quoting E
My problem with the episode is that Dean was supposed to be tracking Gadreel and trying to get revenge for Kevin's death and for what he did to Sam. It seems a little clumsy that Dean was so easily side tracked into this MoC thing. Why didn't he say early on in the ep… "hey Cowley, you're on your own dude.. you want to kill Abbadon? Great, good luck with that, I'm off to find Gadreel." How did Dean so easily allow himself to be lead around by the nose? Dean is more on the ball than that. I hope that they somehow connect the MoC to the Gadreel story so that it makes Dean look like less of a dupe. Kudos to Crowley though; how clever is he to trick a Winchester into being his 'blunt instrument.' He is able to take on Abbadon but not put himself into any direct danger while doing it, good for him![/quote.

E This is my problem with this episode as well. This seems far more serious than another job. Dean had to take on the mark of Cain, which evidently is going to involve a long quest with Crowley. It seems more of an abandonment of his original goal of hunting down and killing Gadreel and suddenly deciding to join forces with the Crowley to help him regain control of hell. I have faith this will all make sense but right now I don't know.
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2014-01-24 10:27
.

Quoting E
My problem with the episode is that Dean was supposed to be tracking Gadreel and trying to get revenge for Kevin's death and for what he did to Sam. It seems a little clumsy that Dean was so easily side tracked into this MoC thing. Why didn't he say early on in the ep… "hey Cowley, you're on your own dude.. you want to kill Abbadon? Great, good luck with that, I'm off to find Gadreel." How did Dean so easily allow himself to be lead around by the nose? Dean is more on the ball than that. I hope that they somehow connect the MoC to the Gadreel story so that it makes Dean look like less of a dupe. Kudos to Crowley though; how clever is he to trick a Winchester into being his 'blunt instrument.' He is able to take on Abbadon but not put himself into any direct danger while doing it, good for him![/quote.

E This is my problem with this episode as well. This seems far more serious than another job. Dean had to take on the mark of Cain, which evidently is going to involve a long quest with Crowley. It seems more of an abandonment of his original goal of hunting down and killing Gadreel and suddenly deciding to join forces with the Crowley to help him regain control of hell. I have faith this will all make sense but right now I don't know.
Gerry
# Gerry 2014-01-24 10:59
Quoting cheryl42:
.
E This is my problem with this episode as well. This seems far more serious than another job. Dean had to take on the mark of Cain, which evidently is going to involve a long quest with Crowley. It seems more of an abandonment of his original goal of hunting down and killing Gadreel and suddenly deciding to join forces with the Crowley to help him regain control of hell. I have faith this will all make sense but right now I don't know.


The way I view it is although we haven't seen a lot of Abbadon since her confrontation with Dean, she's very much a player this season and is an obstacle that must be removed for the boys' safety as much as Crowley's. The boys have been holed up in the MOL bunker for a lot of this season and she can't get them there. But she can get to Dean on the open road.

The MOL bunker changed the dynamics of the road show a bit, because it was such a safe haven. Dean's back on the road.
Gerry
# Gerry 2014-01-24 10:59
Quote:
.
E This is my problem with this episode as well. This seems far more serious than another job. Dean had to take on the mark of Cain, which evidently is going to involve a long quest with Crowley. It seems more of an abandonment of his original goal of hunting down and killing Gadreel and suddenly deciding to join forces with the Crowley to help him regain control of hell. I have faith this will all make sense but right now I don't know.
The way I view it is although we haven't seen a lot of Abbadon since her confrontation with Dean, she's very much a player this season and is an obstacle that must be removed for the boys' safety as much as Crowley's. The boys have been holed up in the MOL bunker for a lot of this season and she can't get them there. But she can get to Dean on the open road.

The MOL bunker changed the dynamics of the road show a bit, because it was such a safe haven. Dean's back on the road.
njspnfan
# njspnfan 2014-01-24 11:13
Quoting Gerry:
Quoting cheryl42:
.
E This is my problem with this episode as well. This seems far more serious than another job. Dean had to take on the mark of Cain, which evidently is going to involve a long quest with Crowley. It seems more of an abandonment of his original goal of hunting down and killing Gadreel and suddenly deciding to join forces with the Crowley to help him regain control of hell. I have faith this will all make sense but right now I don't know.


The way I view it is although we haven't seen a lot of Abbadon since her confrontation with Dean, she's very much a player this season and is an obstacle that must be removed for the boys' safety as much as Crowley's. The boys have been holed up in the MOL bunker for a lot of this season and she can't get them there. But she can get to Dean on the open road.

The MOL bunker changed the dynamics of the road show a bit, because it was such a safe haven. Dean's back on the road.


Speaking of the MOL bunker, it is supposed to be warded against all known evil. The mark of Cain would be associated with the ultimate evil, Lucifer himself. Will carrying that mark stop Dean from even entering the MOL bunker?
njspnfan
# njspnfan 2014-01-24 11:13
Quote:
Quote:
.
E This is my problem with this episode as well. This seems far more serious than another job. Dean had to take on the mark of Cain, which evidently is going to involve a long quest with Crowley. It seems more of an abandonment of his original goal of hunting down and killing Gadreel and suddenly deciding to join forces with the Crowley to help him regain control of hell. I have faith this will all make sense but right now I don't know.
The way I view it is although we haven't seen a lot of Abbadon since her confrontation with Dean, she's very much a player this season and is an obstacle that must be removed for the boys' safety as much as Crowley's. The boys have been holed up in the MOL bunker for a lot of this season and she can't get them there. But she can get to Dean on the open road.

The MOL bunker changed the dynamics of the road show a bit, because it was such a safe haven. Dean's back on the road.
Speaking of the MOL bunker, it is supposed to be warded against all known evil. The mark of Cain would be associated with the ultimate evil, Lucifer himself. Will carrying that mark stop Dean from even entering the MOL bunker?
Sakii
# Sakii 2014-01-24 11:16
I'd like to address the question, "How did Dean get sidetracked from Gadreel to Abbadon?"

1. Crowley said, "Gadreel has left the building" Dean has no idea where Gad is. That's evidenced that he's in a bar, considering sex. If he had a lead, he wouldn't be sitting there. He'd be following up.

2. At least with Crowley he's not alone and has someone 'safe' he can take out his anger on. I know that when I went through my worst breakup, I didn't want to be alone. I didn't want to be bothered either, so I was alternatively 'piss off' and 'I love you guys'. During a breakup, you really do go insane. Why do you think we put up with so much whacked out behavior from our true friends and respond with compassion? We know they are pretty messed up in the head, and liable to do behavior we would never see our friends do otherwise. Who really expects logic at a time like this?

3. He expects Crowley to screw him over. He deserves to be punished. He hopes something will happen to help balance the score. He feels harsh, and would probably only respond to the type of harsh truths your enemies can dole out. "So where is your brother now?" Also, what did Crowley say? "You don't know. That's why it'll be fun". (which leads to..)

4. He wants something else to think about. Wouldn't you? At least he's doing something other then mulling. He's a man of action. Take out Gadreel, take out Abaddon, take out Cain, Crowley, himself… Who cares? He doesn't. Not right now. He's itching for a fight and possibly the pain to stop. No matter how. Besides, he wants Abaddon dead. He gets her, she gets him, its an all around win for him.

And that's why it makes sense to me for Dean to run off with Crowley. Ironically, for his mindset, Crowley is actually the perfect choice. Cas would be to compassionate, which would not be helpful at this point.
Sakii
# Sakii 2014-01-24 11:16
I'd like to address the question, "How did Dean get sidetracked from Gadreel to Abbadon?"

1. Crowley said, "Gadreel has left the building" Dean has no idea where Gad is. That's evidenced that he's in a bar, considering sex. If he had a lead, he wouldn't be sitting there. He'd be following up.

2. At least with Crowley he's not alone and has someone 'safe' he can take out his anger on. I know that when I went through my worst breakup, I didn't want to be alone. I didn't want to be bothered either, so I was alternatively 'piss off' and 'I love you guys'. During a breakup, you really do go insane. Why do you think we put up with so much whacked out behavior from our true friends and respond with compassion? We know they are pretty messed up in the head, and liable to do behavior we would never see our friends do otherwise. Who really expects logic at a time like this?

3. He expects Crowley to screw him over. He deserves to be punished. He hopes something will happen to help balance the score. He feels harsh, and would probably only respond to the type of harsh truths your enemies can dole out. "So where is your brother now?" Also, what did Crowley say? "You don't know. That's why it'll be fun". (which leads to..)

4. He wants something else to think about. Wouldn't you? At least he's doing something other then mulling. He's a man of action. Take out Gadreel, take out Abaddon, take out Cain, Crowley, himself… Who cares? He doesn't. Not right now. He's itching for a fight and possibly the pain to stop. No matter how. Besides, he wants Abaddon dead. He gets her, she gets him, its an all around win for him.

And that's why it makes sense to me for Dean to run off with Crowley. Ironically, for his mindset, Crowley is actually the perfect choice. Cas would be to compassionate, which would not be helpful at this point.
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2014-01-24 12:18
Gerry I see what your saying it just seemed to me that Dean joined up with Crowley pretty easy and even after he knew that Crowley was playing him he still went along with the plan. Gadreel may or may not figure into Dean's story from here on but it just took me out of the story for a moment. I still absolutely loved this episode and your review.
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2014-01-24 12:18
Gerry I see what your saying it just seemed to me that Dean joined up with Crowley pretty easy and even after he knew that Crowley was playing him he still went along with the plan. Gadreel may or may not figure into Dean's story from here on but it just took me out of the story for a moment. I still absolutely loved this episode and your review.
Gerry
# Gerry 2014-01-24 12:34
Quoting cheryl42:
Gerry I see what your saying it just seemed to me that Dean joined up with Crowley pretty easy and even after he knew that Crowley was playing him he still went along with the plan. Gadreel may or may not figure into Dean's story from here on but it just took me out of the story for a moment. I still absolutely loved this episode and your review.


Hi Cheryl, I think your question is very valid! I hope I didn't come across as thinking it wasn't. It was a shift in emphasis. I think Sakii above did a better job than I did at giving a possible mindset for Dean that explains his reasoning. I wasn't jarred myself, but I can understand why some people might have been.
Gerry
# Gerry 2014-01-24 12:34
Quote:
Gerry I see what your saying it just seemed to me that Dean joined up with Crowley pretty easy and even after he knew that Crowley was playing him he still went along with the plan. Gadreel may or may not figure into Dean's story from here on but it just took me out of the story for a moment. I still absolutely loved this episode and your review.
Hi Cheryl, I think your question is very valid! I hope I didn't come across as thinking it wasn't. It was a shift in emphasis. I think Sakii above did a better job than I did at giving a possible mindset for Dean that explains his reasoning. I wasn't jarred myself, but I can understand why some people might have been.
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2014-01-24 12:37
No worries and yes Sakii did have make very interesting points.
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2014-01-24 12:37
No worries and yes Sakii did have make very interesting points.
JuliaG
# JuliaG 2014-01-24 14:10
I agree with Sakii. I think at at this point, Dean just wants to kill something, anything, and hopefully die in the process. That was exactly Sam's mindset when he hooked up with Ruby in season 4. Dean took the mark of Lucifer for the same reason Sam started drinking demon blood: He doesn't care about anything anymore. He thinks he's poison anyway. Dean has given up instead of facing his role in Kevin's death.

Gerry, I loved your review, especially about rebalancing the relationship. I also think that this story is about Sam saving Dean, not Dean killing/saving Sam. PLEASE writers!

I don't agree however with equating Sam dying in the season opener, and Sam wanting the grace extracted even if it kills him last episode. It was different. Sam was accepting of death and going with his reaper, like Dean getting ready to go with Tessa in "In My Time of Dying". It's not like Sam was standing there with a gun to his head and Dean had to trick him to get the gun away. You talked a lot about free will. That's what Dean denied Sam and I have a feeling it's going to be what Sam tries to explain to Dean in future episodes.

But I agree so much with just about everything else, I think that it's my favorite review of this episode.

I think that I also finally realized that in the wake of season 8, Sam only wants to live for Dean's sake. He chose life at the end of last season not to let Dean down. He chose life in the season 9 opener because the Dean in his head said "There ain't no me if there's no you". Sam has to decide to live for his own sake.

My one hope for the remainder of the season is that If the personal story for the guys this year is truly balancing the relationship, I hope it also means that the focus on the characters is balanced as well. You can't do a story on Sam and Dean by focusing so intensely on one of them and having the other talk in Hallmark card quotes (Being human is settling debts!). It's sad to me how hollowed out as a character Sam has become. The show and the drama between the bros would be so much better if both of them were 3-dimentional, dynamic characters. So that's my hope.
JuliaG
# JuliaG 2014-01-24 14:10
I agree with Sakii. I think at at this point, Dean just wants to kill something, anything, and hopefully die in the process. That was exactly Sam's mindset when he hooked up with Ruby in season 4. Dean took the mark of Lucifer for the same reason Sam started drinking demon blood: He doesn't care about anything anymore. He thinks he's poison anyway. Dean has given up instead of facing his role in Kevin's death.

Gerry, I loved your review, especially about rebalancing the relationship. I also think that this story is about Sam saving Dean, not Dean killing/saving Sam. PLEASE writers!

I don't agree however with equating Sam dying in the season opener, and Sam wanting the grace extracted even if it kills him last episode. It was different. Sam was accepting of death and going with his reaper, like Dean getting ready to go with Tessa in "In My Time of Dying". It's not like Sam was standing there with a gun to his head and Dean had to trick him to get the gun away. You talked a lot about free will. That's what Dean denied Sam and I have a feeling it's going to be what Sam tries to explain to Dean in future episodes.

But I agree so much with just about everything else, I think that it's my favorite review of this episode.

I think that I also finally realized that in the wake of season 8, Sam only wants to live for Dean's sake. He chose life at the end of last season not to let Dean down. He chose life in the season 9 opener because the Dean in his head said "There ain't no me if there's no you". Sam has to decide to live for his own sake.

My one hope for the remainder of the season is that If the personal story for the guys this year is truly balancing the relationship, I hope it also means that the focus on the characters is balanced as well. You can't do a story on Sam and Dean by focusing so intensely on one of them and having the other talk in Hallmark card quotes (Being human is settling debts!). It's sad to me how hollowed out as a character Sam has become. The show and the drama between the bros would be so much better if both of them were 3-dimentional, dynamic characters. So that's my hope.
lkeke35
# lkeke35 2014-01-24 15:42
You guys all have great viewpoints but nobody mentioedn that both Sam and Dean are mentally in the same place right now. Both filled with suicidal forms of guilt, emotionally paralleling each other through the whole episode but to opposite effects.

Robbie Thompson really needs to be lauded for this episode. Emotionally they're both brothers are in the same place. Sam is having something extracted from him to make him more human and hanging out with an angel. Dean is being infused with something to make him less human and hanging out with demons. Both of them being couneled to return to each others good graces (and what lends creedence to the idea that Cas was lying about finding Gadreel with the spell,) Dean is being used and decieved by Crowley to kill Abaddon, so Sam being used and decieved by Cas to kill Gadreel is a very is a very distinct possibility.

I really have to admire Robbie's storytelling skills here. I wonder what other parallels I'm missing here. Does anyone else see any?

Anyway, great review. Very positive and I like that. A lot of my own thoughts in echo .
lkeke35
# lkeke35 2014-01-24 15:42
You guys all have great viewpoints but nobody mentioedn that both Sam and Dean are mentally in the same place right now. Both filled with suicidal forms of guilt, emotionally paralleling each other through the whole episode but to opposite effects.

Robbie Thompson really needs to be lauded for this episode. Emotionally they're both brothers are in the same place. Sam is having something extracted from him to make him more human and hanging out with an angel. Dean is being infused with something to make him less human and hanging out with demons. Both of them being couneled to return to each others good graces (and what lends creedence to the idea that Cas was lying about finding Gadreel with the spell,) Dean is being used and decieved by Crowley to kill Abaddon, so Sam being used and decieved by Cas to kill Gadreel is a very is a very distinct possibility.

I really have to admire Robbie's storytelling skills here. I wonder what other parallels I'm missing here. Does anyone else see any?

Anyway, great review. Very positive and I like that. A lot of my own thoughts in echo .
E
# E 2014-01-24 15:57
Good points to both Gerry and Sakii about how Dean got onto the Abbadon track, but I tend to agree with Cheryl42; Dean committed to the search for Gad at the very end of Road Trip and then got side tracked into the Abbadon fight within the first 5 minutes of First Born. It's just too quick. Maybe a 40 second montage of Dean trying and failing to find Gad with his frustration maybe driving him to go the bar to drink and flirt would have helped the flow. I had a few problems with the editing on this one; it seemed choppy and clunky in a few places, and I am going to chalk it up to that I guess. Dean's switch in focus didn't feel earned to me.
E
# E 2014-01-24 15:57
Good points to both Gerry and Sakii about how Dean got onto the Abbadon track, but I tend to agree with Cheryl42; Dean committed to the search for Gad at the very end of Road Trip and then got side tracked into the Abbadon fight within the first 5 minutes of First Born. It's just too quick. Maybe a 40 second montage of Dean trying and failing to find Gad with his frustration maybe driving him to go the bar to drink and flirt would have helped the flow. I had a few problems with the editing on this one; it seemed choppy and clunky in a few places, and I am going to chalk it up to that I guess. Dean's switch in focus didn't feel earned to me.
amyh
# amyh 2014-01-24 16:16
Loveing the conversation here.
amyh
# amyh 2014-01-24 16:16
Loveing the conversation here.
Gerry
# Gerry 2014-01-24 16:26
Welcome amyh! I am enjoying the conversation so much, too. Thanks, everyone, for adding your thoughts. So many different and interesting takes on the episode.

Ikeke35, that's an interesting take on Cas and Sam. To me, your point that Sam's journey is becoming more human, or i would say, more himself, while Dean's journey is becoming less human, or less himself is what I also see being set up.

With that in mind, I didn't read Cas as deceiving Sam about the grace due to an ulterior motive. I don't really see how getting rid of the left over grace, whether by extraction or by healing, helps Cas convince Sam to kill Gadreel. Sam already wants to kill Gadreel and the finding spell would have helped him. I'm not what Cas's goal would be in deceiving Sam.

To me, Cas's interactions with both Sam and Dean seemed that of a friend who due to his time spent as human has some empathetic insight to offer to people he cares about. Crowley is another story. :lol: Manipulation and ulterior motives are standard operating procedure for him. What's going to be interesting is watching to see if his brush with humanity makes him offer Dean some real support. His words about being worthy came from somewhere positive, I suspect, even if his words about making omelettes reminds us of his ruthlessnes.
Gerry
# Gerry 2014-01-24 16:26
Welcome amyh! I am enjoying the conversation so much, too. Thanks, everyone, for adding your thoughts. So many different and interesting takes on the episode.

Ikeke35, that's an interesting take on Cas and Sam. To me, your point that Sam's journey is becoming more human, or i would say, more himself, while Dean's journey is becoming less human, or less himself is what I also see being set up.

With that in mind, I didn't read Cas as deceiving Sam about the grace due to an ulterior motive. I don't really see how getting rid of the left over grace, whether by extraction or by healing, helps Cas convince Sam to kill Gadreel. Sam already wants to kill Gadreel and the finding spell would have helped him. I'm not what Cas's goal would be in deceiving Sam.

To me, Cas's interactions with both Sam and Dean seemed that of a friend who due to his time spent as human has some empathetic insight to offer to people he cares about. Crowley is another story. :lol: Manipulation and ulterior motives are standard operating procedure for him. What's going to be interesting is watching to see if his brush with humanity makes him offer Dean some real support. His words about being worthy came from somewhere positive, I suspect, even if his words about making omelettes reminds us of his ruthlessnes.
CASTIELs cat
# CASTIELs cat 2014-01-24 23:24
Excellent analysis. These blokes do love their parallels. I predicted during the summer hiatus that Sam would have a human arc and a redemption arc towards Dean. I certainly didn't see it playing out quite this way. It's a very exciting season.
I agree that Cas' words weren't meant to put Sam down; however, they were tactfully meant to give him perspective. Dean is not the only member of TFW to make a mistake or a poor judgement call.
since Cas is not in every episode and appears as loyal to Dean as ever, I am not sure It is as simple as Sam has the angel now. Nor is Crowley and Dean comparable to Sam and Ruby. Dean is always eyes wide open when it comes to demons. I think his line last episode that he deserves to burn explains his mindset in this episode.
It will be fun to see Dean and Abaddon again. I also wonder how Crowley expects to stop Dean from killing him next.
Dean is also linked to Gadreel who did things for him like resurrect Cas and Charlie (should have said no to that one) and has resisted killing him; and Metatron who has mentioned him by name as someone whose death would be desirable. Wonder how the blade works on angels and archangels.
Are we sure Cain is a demon? No eyes.
CASTIELs cat
# CASTIELs cat 2014-01-24 23:24
Excellent analysis. These blokes do love their parallels. I predicted during the summer hiatus that Sam would have a human arc and a redemption arc towards Dean. I certainly didn't see it playing out quite this way. It's a very exciting season.
I agree that Cas' words weren't meant to put Sam down; however, they were tactfully meant to give him perspective. Dean is not the only member of TFW to make a mistake or a poor judgement call.
since Cas is not in every episode and appears as loyal to Dean as ever, I am not sure It is as simple as Sam has the angel now. Nor is Crowley and Dean comparable to Sam and Ruby. Dean is always eyes wide open when it comes to demons. I think his line last episode that he deserves to burn explains his mindset in this episode.
It will be fun to see Dean and Abaddon again. I also wonder how Crowley expects to stop Dean from killing him next.
Dean is also linked to Gadreel who did things for him like resurrect Cas and Charlie (should have said no to that one) and has resisted killing him; and Metatron who has mentioned him by name as someone whose death would be desirable. Wonder how the blade works on angels and archangels.
Are we sure Cain is a demon? No eyes.
Russ
# Russ 2014-01-25 00:29
Quoting E:
Good points to both Gerry and Sakii about how Dean got onto the Abbadon track, but I tend to agree with Cheryl42; Dean committed to the search for Gad at the very end of Road Trip and then got side tracked into the Abbadon fight within the first 5 minutes of First Born. It's just too quick. Maybe a 40 second montage of Dean trying and failing to find Gad with his frustration maybe driving him to go the bar to drink and flirt would have helped the flow. I had a few problems with the editing on this one; it seemed choppy and clunky in a few places, and I am going to chalk it up to that I guess. Dean's switch in focus didn't feel earned to me.



Felt natural to me. His search for Gadriel is personal, however the need to eliminate Abbadon is far more important. She's the bigger fish, so she takes priority.

He'll come back for Gadriel - actually, I think it'll be Sam & Cas that get to punch that particular ticket. At least I hope so. With the Mark of Cain, Dean is the only one that can kill Abbadon, so if he's also the one to kill Gad, then that pretty much renders Sam & Dean useless.

Both brothers are on their own missions. This should get interesting, so long as the writers don't buckle and force the brother back together too early to appease the Superfans.


Also ... with the introduction of Cain, I wonder if they're going to touch on the subject of he and the WInchesters being blood relatives? (Going back to what Michael said in "The Song Remains The Same")
Russ
# Russ 2014-01-25 00:29
Quote:
Good points to both Gerry and Sakii about how Dean got onto the Abbadon track, but I tend to agree with Cheryl42; Dean committed to the search for Gad at the very end of Road Trip and then got side tracked into the Abbadon fight within the first 5 minutes of First Born. It's just too quick. Maybe a 40 second montage of Dean trying and failing to find Gad with his frustration maybe driving him to go the bar to drink and flirt would have helped the flow. I had a few problems with the editing on this one; it seemed choppy and clunky in a few places, and I am going to chalk it up to that I guess. Dean's switch in focus didn't feel earned to me.
Felt natural to me. His search for Gadriel is personal, however the need to eliminate Abbadon is far more important. She's the bigger fish, so she takes priority.

He'll come back for Gadriel - actually, I think it'll be Sam & Cas that get to punch that particular ticket. At least I hope so. With the Mark of Cain, Dean is the only one that can kill Abbadon, so if he's also the one to kill Gad, then that pretty much renders Sam & Dean useless.

Both brothers are on their own missions. This should get interesting, so long as the writers don't buckle and force the brother back together too early to appease the Superfans.


Also ... with the introduction of Cain, I wonder if they're going to touch on the subject of he and the WInchesters being blood relatives? (Going back to what Michael said in "The Song Remains The Same")
paloma
# paloma 2014-01-25 11:20
Hello, there was a lot of time since I write.
With all my respect, what is the problem for Dean don't hunt Gadreel? Dean has never been an obsessive hunter, Ok one time, but it is said that there was always an exception for the rule. He didn't have a clue with Gadreel, he is going to hunt another things. It has happened in all the seasons. In my opinion it was one of his best characteristics , and Abadonn was a heavy too.
The scenes with Cas and Sam, I think that there were strange. They didn't talk at each other alone since Castiel were introduced and now they were huging? Last season Dean was in the kitchen and I say that I didn't want more of that. Well I didn't expect that Sam would have finished in a bed more than half season, and I didn't like it either.
Respect a Crowley I don't see what is the diffence with Abadonn respect how they ruled hell. Except that Abadonn want to risk and Crowley wants the status quo. The second episode the demon feared Crowley's repercussion not his part of the cake. Frankly, the winchester put him in charge, the winchester were the one keep him in charge and the winchester were the one to remove him when he was more a problem than a solution. I expect that someone put the knife in his heart more sooner than later.
paloma
# paloma 2014-01-25 11:20
Hello, there was a lot of time since I write.
With all my respect, what is the problem for Dean don't hunt Gadreel? Dean has never been an obsessive hunter, Ok one time, but it is said that there was always an exception for the rule. He didn't have a clue with Gadreel, he is going to hunt another things. It has happened in all the seasons. In my opinion it was one of his best characteristics , and Abadonn was a heavy too.
The scenes with Cas and Sam, I think that there were strange. They didn't talk at each other alone since Castiel were introduced and now they were huging? Last season Dean was in the kitchen and I say that I didn't want more of that. Well I didn't expect that Sam would have finished in a bed more than half season, and I didn't like it either.
Respect a Crowley I don't see what is the diffence with Abadonn respect how they ruled hell. Except that Abadonn want to risk and Crowley wants the status quo. The second episode the demon feared Crowley's repercussion not his part of the cake. Frankly, the winchester put him in charge, the winchester were the one keep him in charge and the winchester were the one to remove him when he was more a problem than a solution. I expect that someone put the knife in his heart more sooner than later.
Gerry
# Gerry 2014-01-25 14:46
Quoting CASTIELs cat:
Excellent analysis. These blokes do love their parallels. I predicted during the summer hiatus that Sam would have a human arc and a redemption arc towards Dean. I certainly didn't see it playing out quite this way. It's a very exciting season.
I agree that Cas' words weren't meant to put Sam down; however, they were tactfully meant to give him perspective. Dean is not the only member of TFW to make a mistake or a poor judgement call.
since Cas is not in every episode and appears as loyal to Dean as ever, I am not sure It is as simple as Sam has the angel now. Nor is Crowley and Dean comparable to Sam and Ruby. Dean is always eyes wide open when it comes to demons. I think his line last episode that he deserves to burn explains his mindset in this episode.
It will be fun to see Dean and Abaddon again. I also wonder how Crowley expects to stop Dean from killing him next.
Dean is also linked to Gadreel who did things for him like resurrect Cas and Charlie (should have said no to that one) and has resisted killing him; and Metatron who has mentioned him by name as someone whose death would be desirable. Wonder how the blade works on angels and archangels.
Are we sure Cain is a demon? No eyes.


Thanks so much for commenting! I'm loving the discussion. I agree that the boys will not remain solely in the unusual pairings they were in this episode. Cas will interact with Dean as well as Sam. And Sam and Dean will at some point end up working together--as Carver said, he isn't stupid. (-:

But Dean will be more cut off at least emotionally from Sam and Cas than he has been in the past, I suspect and he's going to have more of an alliance with Crowley than he's had, so that will be interesting to see play out. I love that Sam and Cas have now established they have a relationship of their own and recognize their parallels. Hopefully, we'll see more of that play out.

It's a good point that Cain never showed demon eyes. Crowley did call him a demon, so I guess we'll see what that ends up meaning.
Gerry
# Gerry 2014-01-25 14:46
Quote:
Excellent analysis. These blokes do love their parallels. I predicted during the summer hiatus that Sam would have a human arc and a redemption arc towards Dean. I certainly didn't see it playing out quite this way. It's a very exciting season.
I agree that Cas' words weren't meant to put Sam down; however, they were tactfully meant to give him perspective. Dean is not the only member of TFW to make a mistake or a poor judgement call.
since Cas is not in every episode and appears as loyal to Dean as ever, I am not sure It is as simple as Sam has the angel now. Nor is Crowley and Dean comparable to Sam and Ruby. Dean is always eyes wide open when it comes to demons. I think his line last episode that he deserves to burn explains his mindset in this episode.
It will be fun to see Dean and Abaddon again. I also wonder how Crowley expects to stop Dean from killing him next.
Dean is also linked to Gadreel who did things for him like resurrect Cas and Charlie (should have said no to that one) and has resisted killing him; and Metatron who has mentioned him by name as someone whose death would be desirable. Wonder how the blade works on angels and archangels.
Are we sure Cain is a demon? No eyes.
Thanks so much for commenting! I'm loving the discussion. I agree that the boys will not remain solely in the unusual pairings they were in this episode. Cas will interact with Dean as well as Sam. And Sam and Dean will at some point end up working together--as Carver said, he isn't stupid. (-:

But Dean will be more cut off at least emotionally from Sam and Cas than he has been in the past, I suspect and he's going to have more of an alliance with Crowley than he's had, so that will be interesting to see play out. I love that Sam and Cas have now established they have a relationship of their own and recognize their parallels. Hopefully, we'll see more of that play out.

It's a good point that Cain never showed demon eyes. Crowley did call him a demon, so I guess we'll see what that ends up meaning.
JuliaG
# JuliaG 2014-01-26 23:24
Castiel's Cat, I'm pretty sure that Castiel's words to Sam weren't meant to put Sam down when he's at his lowest. Cas is still pretty clueless about some human emotions, but I give him more credit than that. Cas wanted Sam to forgive himself and value his own life.

Yes, they have all made bad choices, but it took months for Dean to even start to forgive. So I won't begrudge Sam, being angry for a week or two. And after what Dean did, I hope he's the one who will eventually seek a path to redemption, not Sam.

But, all the same, I hope that Sam saves Dean. It would go a long way in balancing the relationship, Dean may finally believe that Sam loves him as much as he loves Sam, and Sam might finally think that he's done something right.
JuliaG
# JuliaG 2014-01-26 23:24
Castiel's Cat, I'm pretty sure that Castiel's words to Sam weren't meant to put Sam down when he's at his lowest. Cas is still pretty clueless about some human emotions, but I give him more credit than that. Cas wanted Sam to forgive himself and value his own life.

Yes, they have all made bad choices, but it took months for Dean to even start to forgive. So I won't begrudge Sam, being angry for a week or two. And after what Dean did, I hope he's the one who will eventually seek a path to redemption, not Sam.

But, all the same, I hope that Sam saves Dean. It would go a long way in balancing the relationship, Dean may finally believe that Sam loves him as much as he loves Sam, and Sam might finally think that he's done something right.
percysowner
# percysowner 2014-01-27 00:12
I think it was made very clear last season that Dean hasn't forgiven Sam for anything going all the way back to leaving for college, so I think Sam being ticked for all of 48 hours to a week is not unreasonable.
percysowner
# percysowner 2014-01-27 00:12
I think it was made very clear last season that Dean hasn't forgiven Sam for anything going all the way back to leaving for college, so I think Sam being ticked for all of 48 hours to a week is not unreasonable.
CASTIELs cat
# CASTIELs cat 2014-01-27 00:15
Quote:
Castiel's Cat, I'm pretty sure that Castiel's words to Sam weren't meant to put Sam down when he's at his lowest. Cas is still pretty clueless about some human emotions, but I give him more credit than that. Cas wanted Sam to forgive himself and value his own life.

Yes, they have all made bad choices, but it took month
for Dean to even start to forgive. So I won't begrudge

Sam, being angry for a week or two. And after what Dean did, I hope he's the one who will eventually seek a path to redemption, not Sam.

But, all the same, I hope that Sam saves Dean. It would go a long way in balancing the relationship, Dean may finally believe that Sam loves him as much as he loves Sam, and Sam might finally think that he's done something right.
Lol. I didn't say Cas was putting Sam down but he was putting things into perspective and he did bring up Sam's mistakes as well as his own. Cas knows that Dean takes responsibility and blame, hence he didn't
blame Dean last week but sought to comfort him.

The writers have Sam on a human redemption arc regarding Dean, as opposed to overcoming his dark Destiny/Lucifer and putting the devil back in Hell. This is why Sam's choices keep getting brought
up, and why they made a point of saying he was purified of the demon blood. He no loner Can blame the Devil or demons. You can defend him to me until you are blue in the face, but this doesn't make the repeated reminders disappear. I do not write the
show; I do interpret what I see and pay attention when something is repeatedly discussed. I hope Sam actually helps Dean rather than make a big sacrifice to prove a point to Dean. That isn't what Dean wants and needs.

Dean cared enough to find a way to save Sam's life (again) just like he cared enough to rescue Sam from purgatory last year (Ahem). Believe me I wish that he hadn't and I hope the Cain parallels finally hammer it
home that he is not his brother's keeper. Let him wander the earth smiting evil with Saint Benny and Cas at his side. Dean actually smiles around those two and they appreciate him.

If anyone can honestly say they would be happy if Sam was dead because Sam wanted it, then have at Dean for depriving him of death. If you love Sammy ... then I find it a bit hypocritical.

If my husband were dying and there was nothing legally blocking me, I would do everything in my power to save him.

I find Sam feeling guilty about Kevin silly after he abandoned him to Crowley without a thought for a year with no sense of responsibility over people dying because he bowed out. Dying is another way to bow out and it is as much a sign of weakness as running away.

Dean is not at fault for Kevin either but I expect him to take the blame regardless because he's Dean and he considered kevin family and his responsibility. He considers Kevin dying on his watch a personal failure.

Kevin died because Metatron wanted him dead and Gadreel was willing to do it. Metatron would have found another patsy because he doesn't want the tablets translated. He'll regret it in the long run unless of course he was just looking to create a great epic story.
CASTIELs cat
# CASTIELs cat 2014-01-27 00:15
Quote:
Castiel's Cat, I'm pretty sure that Castiel's words to Sam weren't meant to put Sam down when he's at his lowest. Cas is still pretty clueless about some human emotions, but I give him more credit than that. Cas wanted Sam to forgive himself and value his own life.

Yes, they have all made bad choices, but it took month
for Dean to even start to forgive. So I won't begrudge

Sam, being angry for a week or two. And after what Dean did, I hope he's the one who will eventually seek a path to redemption, not Sam.

But, all the same, I hope that Sam saves Dean. It would go a long way in balancing the relationship, Dean may finally believe that Sam loves him as much as he loves Sam, and Sam might finally think that he's done something right.
Lol. I didn't say Cas was putting Sam down but he was putting things into perspective and he did bring up Sam's mistakes as well as his own. Cas knows that Dean takes responsibility and blame, hence he didn't
blame Dean last week but sought to comfort him.

The writers have Sam on a human redemption arc regarding Dean, as opposed to overcoming his dark Destiny/Lucifer and putting the devil back in Hell. This is why Sam's choices keep getting brought
up, and why they made a point of saying he was purified of the demon blood. He no loner Can blame the Devil or demons. You can defend him to me until you are blue in the face, but this doesn't make the repeated reminders disappear. I do not write the
show; I do interpret what I see and pay attention when something is repeatedly discussed. I hope Sam actually helps Dean rather than make a big sacrifice to prove a point to Dean. That isn't what Dean wants and needs.

Dean cared enough to find a way to save Sam's life (again) just like he cared enough to rescue Sam from purgatory last year (Ahem). Believe me I wish that he hadn't and I hope the Cain parallels finally hammer it
home that he is not his brother's keeper. Let him wander the earth smiting evil with Saint Benny and Cas at his side. Dean actually smiles around those two and they appreciate him.

If anyone can honestly say they would be happy if Sam was dead because Sam wanted it, then have at Dean for depriving him of death. If you love Sammy ... then I find it a bit hypocritical.

If my husband were dying and there was nothing legally blocking me, I would do everything in my power to save him.

I find Sam feeling guilty about Kevin silly after he abandoned him to Crowley without a thought for a year with no sense of responsibility over people dying because he bowed out. Dying is another way to bow out and it is as much a sign of weakness as running away.

Dean is not at fault for Kevin either but I expect him to take the blame regardless because he's Dean and he considered kevin family and his responsibility. He considers Kevin dying on his watch a personal failure.

Kevin died because Metatron wanted him dead and Gadreel was willing to do it. Metatron would have found another patsy because he doesn't want the tablets translated. He'll regret it in the long run unless of course he was just looking to create a great epic story.
CASTIELs cat
# CASTIELs cat 2014-01-27 00:18
Quoting percysowner:
I think it was made very clear last season that Dean hasn't forgiven Sam for anything going all the way back to leaving for college, so I think Sam being ticked for all of 48 hours to a week is not unreasonable.


Well Dean does beat himself up and actually apologizes. Sam didn't say I am sorry once last season. Not even in Sacrifice... now I've thought of a lovely Elton John song... sorry seems to be the hardest word...
CASTIELs cat
# CASTIELs cat 2014-01-27 00:18
Quote:
I think it was made very clear last season that Dean hasn't forgiven Sam for anything going all the way back to leaving for college, so I think Sam being ticked for all of 48 hours to a week is not unreasonable.
Well Dean does beat himself up and actually apologizes. Sam didn't say I am sorry once last season. Not even in Sacrifice... now I've thought of a lovely Elton John song... sorry seems to be the hardest word...
Sharon
# Sharon 2014-01-27 03:39
Quoting CASTIELs cat:
Quoting percysowner:
I think it was made very clear last season that Dean hasn't forgiven Sam for anything going all the way back to leaving for college, so I think Sam being ticked for all of 48 hours to a week is not unreasonable.


Well Dean does beat himself up and actually apologizes. Sam didn't say I am sorry once last season. Not even in Sacrifice... now I've thought of a lovely Elton John song... sorry seems to be the hardest word...

I think this argument has been done before .If Dean can be allowed to hold onto his grudges and as you yourself put it 'a natural human response' then Sam should be allowed the same courtesy considering what Dean has done to him . Sam's body is his , what happens to it is his right . Dean overode that for his own need to keep Sam alive .

That cannot be changed neither can the fact Kevin died because of it . Dean is not the only one that has to live with what he did and Sam is not wrong for any feelings he has.
Sharon
# Sharon 2014-01-27 03:39
Quote:
Quote:
I think it was made very clear last season that Dean hasn't forgiven Sam for anything going all the way back to leaving for college, so I think Sam being ticked for all of 48 hours to a week is not unreasonable.
Well Dean does beat himself up and actually apologizes. Sam didn't say I am sorry once last season. Not even in Sacrifice... now I've thought of a lovely Elton John song... sorry seems to be the hardest word...
I think this argument has been done before .If Dean can be allowed to hold onto his grudges and as you yourself put it 'a natural human response' then Sam should be allowed the same courtesy considering what Dean has done to him . Sam's body is his , what happens to it is his right . Dean overode that for his own need to keep Sam alive .

That cannot be changed neither can the fact Kevin died because of it . Dean is not the only one that has to live with what he did and Sam is not wrong for any feelings he has.
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2014-01-27 04:21
Since Sam and Dean have made globally catastrophic choices I don't think putting blame on one brother or the other is the point of the show. What the show has always been about is the brothers very complicated lives, their unbreakable bond and their undying love for each other. They may be at odds but they always manage to come back together for he greater good and for each other. It is this bond that brought us to the show to begin with (at least for me). Of course I'm thrilled that Dean saved Sam, of course I understand how horrified Sam is that he was used as a weapon, I also understand Dean's crushing guilt for the death of Kevin, I understand how this turn of events will take time for each brother to come to terms with and I know that they will forgive each other in the end. I really don't think the point of the show is to place blame on the characters. I really think I is to root for the brothers to prevail against all odds.
Castiescat go back and watch 8.1 Sam does say he is sorry.
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2014-01-27 04:21
Since Sam and Dean have made globally catastrophic choices I don't think putting blame on one brother or the other is the point of the show. What the show has always been about is the brothers very complicated lives, their unbreakable bond and their undying love for each other. They may be at odds but they always manage to come back together for he greater good and for each other. It is this bond that brought us to the show to begin with (at least for me). Of course I'm thrilled that Dean saved Sam, of course I understand how horrified Sam is that he was used as a weapon, I also understand Dean's crushing guilt for the death of Kevin, I understand how this turn of events will take time for each brother to come to terms with and I know that they will forgive each other in the end. I really don't think the point of the show is to place blame on the characters. I really think I is to root for the brothers to prevail against all odds.
Castiescat go back and watch 8.1 Sam does say he is sorry.
Gerry
# Gerry 2014-01-27 08:30
Cheryl142, we have a similar read of the show. To me, the core of the show is the bond and how the brothers manage to keep going because they are stronger together. That they go through rough times with each other and don't always communicate well makes the show realistic in regards to relationships.

I don't think we are being positioned to blame either Sam or Dean, just as Cas doesn't. Dean's protective love for his brother does need to evolve to give Sam his autonomous space, but that Dean values Sam's life and will fight for it is not a bad thing.

That Sam is a different person than Dean and that he feels violated and disrespected by the possession and lies is very understandable. To me, the story is also exploring the thoughts behind Sam's willingness to die and feelings of inadequacy, allowing him the space to rethink how healthy or unhealthy they are.

Both Sam and Dean take on guilt when they make wrong decisions and to a certain extent that's healthy. Taken too far, it isn't. I think they can see that more clearly with each other than themselves. That's why a perspective like Cas's is so useful.

I think Cas's apology to Sam was a hint of what Sam needs from Dean. Acknowledgement of the hurt Dean's actions caused, but also reaffirming the value of Sam's life. I think both brothers would find that healing.
Gerry
# Gerry 2014-01-27 08:30
Cheryl142, we have a similar read of the show. To me, the core of the show is the bond and how the brothers manage to keep going because they are stronger together. That they go through rough times with each other and don't always communicate well makes the show realistic in regards to relationships.

I don't think we are being positioned to blame either Sam or Dean, just as Cas doesn't. Dean's protective love for his brother does need to evolve to give Sam his autonomous space, but that Dean values Sam's life and will fight for it is not a bad thing.

That Sam is a different person than Dean and that he feels violated and disrespected by the possession and lies is very understandable. To me, the story is also exploring the thoughts behind Sam's willingness to die and feelings of inadequacy, allowing him the space to rethink how healthy or unhealthy they are.

Both Sam and Dean take on guilt when they make wrong decisions and to a certain extent that's healthy. Taken too far, it isn't. I think they can see that more clearly with each other than themselves. That's why a perspective like Cas's is so useful.

I think Cas's apology to Sam was a hint of what Sam needs from Dean. Acknowledgement of the hurt Dean's actions caused, but also reaffirming the value of Sam's life. I think both brothers would find that healing.
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2014-01-27 10:36
I did love Cas's counsel to both brothers. I also love that both Cas and Crowley have basically told both brothers they are stronger together. Now if they will just listen.
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2014-01-27 10:36
I did love Cas's counsel to both brothers. I also love that both Cas and Crowley have basically told both brothers they are stronger together. Now if they will just listen.
Gerry
# Gerry 2014-01-27 13:41
I agree cheryl42, rather than other characters counseling the brothers that they need to separate in order to be themselves, the brothers are hearing they are strongest together. I really think this story line, while changing some aspects of the relationship, is still portraying the relationship itself as positive and necessary for the boys.

I expect it will take time for the boys to get to that realization themselves, as they are both in a dark place. Sam still needs to figure out whether he really is angry at Dean for doing what ever he could to save him, or whether he's really angry Dean lied about it to him afterward and didn't allow him to either go with it or reject it. It seems to me Cas helped lift some of the anger at Dean's initial decision by pointing out Sam's thinking about himself was distorted. But there's lots of anger still there at the lies and distrust of Sam's own decision making.

And since Dean's reaction to his own feeling of guilt over his decisions was to leave, Sam's not getting the satisfaction of releasing his anger and feeling heard by Dean. Dean tried to circumvent having to hear Sam out by anticipating what he would say and giving the action he thought Sam would want.

The boys need to be together to get the real conversation started they need to have. But now that Dean's leaving led him to taking on a mark that can change his soul, there's even more issues to wade through to get to the core conversation.

So I'm not expecting a quick resolution to their problems. I do think Sam will eventually get Dean to listen to what he actually thinks about their relationship, rather than what Dean assumed Sam thinks, and that will be healing rather than wounding.

That's my take so far, at any rate!
Gerry
# Gerry 2014-01-27 13:41
I agree cheryl42, rather than other characters counseling the brothers that they need to separate in order to be themselves, the brothers are hearing they are strongest together. I really think this story line, while changing some aspects of the relationship, is still portraying the relationship itself as positive and necessary for the boys.

I expect it will take time for the boys to get to that realization themselves, as they are both in a dark place. Sam still needs to figure out whether he really is angry at Dean for doing what ever he could to save him, or whether he's really angry Dean lied about it to him afterward and didn't allow him to either go with it or reject it. It seems to me Cas helped lift some of the anger at Dean's initial decision by pointing out Sam's thinking about himself was distorted. But there's lots of anger still there at the lies and distrust of Sam's own decision making.

And since Dean's reaction to his own feeling of guilt over his decisions was to leave, Sam's not getting the satisfaction of releasing his anger and feeling heard by Dean. Dean tried to circumvent having to hear Sam out by anticipating what he would say and giving the action he thought Sam would want.

The boys need to be together to get the real conversation started they need to have. But now that Dean's leaving led him to taking on a mark that can change his soul, there's even more issues to wade through to get to the core conversation.

So I'm not expecting a quick resolution to their problems. I do think Sam will eventually get Dean to listen to what he actually thinks about their relationship, rather than what Dean assumed Sam thinks, and that will be healing rather than wounding.

That's my take so far, at any rate!
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2014-01-27 14:19
I go back to Sam's line to Dean at the end of Road Trip and I wonder if Sam is really upset with Dean because he once again isn't going to look to Sam to help carry the burden. I think Sam is also upset that Dean isn't there to help him carry the burden and make sense out of everything that was just dumped on him. After all Sam thought he was on a fun hunt with his brother when Crowley showed up to shatter his life. Dean I think wanted Sam to ask him to stay. If you look at Deans face when Sam tells he won't stop him Dean is crushed. He looks like he has lost everything. And Sam's face when Dean says he is leaving alone, he is incredulous. As in once again you aren't going to let me help. These two I swear!
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2014-01-27 14:19
I go back to Sam's line to Dean at the end of Road Trip and I wonder if Sam is really upset with Dean because he once again isn't going to look to Sam to help carry the burden. I think Sam is also upset that Dean isn't there to help him carry the burden and make sense out of everything that was just dumped on him. After all Sam thought he was on a fun hunt with his brother when Crowley showed up to shatter his life. Dean I think wanted Sam to ask him to stay. If you look at Deans face when Sam tells he won't stop him Dean is crushed. He looks like he has lost everything. And Sam's face when Dean says he is leaving alone, he is incredulous. As in once again you aren't going to let me help. These two I swear!
Gerry
# Gerry 2014-01-27 14:48
I think the aspects you point out are part of the over all picture for both boys. I think Dean took Sam's words as confirming all his worst thoughts on what Sam thinks of him, which are his own worst thoughts on what he thinks of himself. I think as Cain's mark takes hold of him, he's going to think it makes no difference because he's muck anyway and always has been. Hearing from Sam differently should make a huge difference - it's basically a revisiting of the Sacrifice scene but with Dean needing to hear from Sam what he really feels.

From's Sam's perspective, I do think he's incredulous Dean would shoulder everything without him and that it's more proof Dean doesn't regard him as an equal. But I also think there still anger about Dean's decision to lie to him about Gadreel to get through as well. But Sam's already started processing - I suspect the conversation he will eventually have with Dean will not be exactly the same one he would have had at the roadside if Dean hadn't cut and run.

I think Sam facing the idea of losing Dean's soul will make him cut to the chase and figure out what he really needs to hear from Dean and what he has say to Dean in return that Dean needs to hear. The Sacrifice conversation always felt to me like the beginning of a conversation, not a complete one. I'm so glad there's more to say on both their parts.
Gerry
# Gerry 2014-01-27 14:48
I think the aspects you point out are part of the over all picture for both boys. I think Dean took Sam's words as confirming all his worst thoughts on what Sam thinks of him, which are his own worst thoughts on what he thinks of himself. I think as Cain's mark takes hold of him, he's going to think it makes no difference because he's muck anyway and always has been. Hearing from Sam differently should make a huge difference - it's basically a revisiting of the Sacrifice scene but with Dean needing to hear from Sam what he really feels.

From's Sam's perspective, I do think he's incredulous Dean would shoulder everything without him and that it's more proof Dean doesn't regard him as an equal. But I also think there still anger about Dean's decision to lie to him about Gadreel to get through as well. But Sam's already started processing - I suspect the conversation he will eventually have with Dean will not be exactly the same one he would have had at the roadside if Dean hadn't cut and run.

I think Sam facing the idea of losing Dean's soul will make him cut to the chase and figure out what he really needs to hear from Dean and what he has say to Dean in return that Dean needs to hear. The Sacrifice conversation always felt to me like the beginning of a conversation, not a complete one. I'm so glad there's more to say on both their parts.
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2014-01-27 16:03
Yes I always thought that the church scene was just the beginning of a long overdue conversation about what these brothers actually mean to each other. Sam has never thought he measured up in Dean's eyes. He always felt like a freak or a monster and a failure. He has always been afraid that is how Dean sees him too. Dean has always felt that he was never good enough to protect his family and in his eyes that has been proven over and over, his dad's sacrifice, Sam's death, now Kevin's just reinforces his opinion of himself. I see a very dark road for Dean. If Sam can't help him no one can. I really hope it is Sam that saves Dean this time. Not to prove his love for his brother that for me is a given. But to prove to Dean that he is capable of sharing the load. Even if it means the ultimate sacrifice it is Sam's choice not Deans. Dean needs to see this as well. He needs to trust and value Sam and his right to share in the burden of their lives. Dean needs to learn to accept Sam's help and not look elsewhere (Crowley??) even if it means that Sam has chosen to sacrifice himself to save others. It is his choice to make not Dean's. That is the level of maturity I hope we see.
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2014-01-27 16:03
Yes I always thought that the church scene was just the beginning of a long overdue conversation about what these brothers actually mean to each other. Sam has never thought he measured up in Dean's eyes. He always felt like a freak or a monster and a failure. He has always been afraid that is how Dean sees him too. Dean has always felt that he was never good enough to protect his family and in his eyes that has been proven over and over, his dad's sacrifice, Sam's death, now Kevin's just reinforces his opinion of himself. I see a very dark road for Dean. If Sam can't help him no one can. I really hope it is Sam that saves Dean this time. Not to prove his love for his brother that for me is a given. But to prove to Dean that he is capable of sharing the load. Even if it means the ultimate sacrifice it is Sam's choice not Deans. Dean needs to see this as well. He needs to trust and value Sam and his right to share in the burden of their lives. Dean needs to learn to accept Sam's help and not look elsewhere (Crowley??) even if it means that Sam has chosen to sacrifice himself to save others. It is his choice to make not Dean's. That is the level of maturity I hope we see.
Prix68
# Prix68 2014-01-27 17:12
I think the lesson Dean needs to learn is that, in fact, Sam's life is not more (or less) valuable then anyone else's and that Dean making it more valuable then anyone else's (including his own) puts an unreasonable burden and guilt on Sam. It's true Dean doesn't see Sam as an equal, he sees Sam as better and more important then he is. More worthy, if you will. What Dean said in Sacrifice was just that. He puts nothing above Sam, not even himself. I think maybe that is part of what Crowley was saying to Dean when he said, "you are worthy, you know."
Prix68
# Prix68 2014-01-27 17:12
I think the lesson Dean needs to learn is that, in fact, Sam's life is not more (or less) valuable then anyone else's and that Dean making it more valuable then anyone else's (including his own) puts an unreasonable burden and guilt on Sam. It's true Dean doesn't see Sam as an equal, he sees Sam as better and more important then he is. More worthy, if you will. What Dean said in Sacrifice was just that. He puts nothing above Sam, not even himself. I think maybe that is part of what Crowley was saying to Dean when he said, "you are worthy, you know."
Sharon
# Sharon 2014-01-27 17:36
Quoting Prix68:
. He puts nothing above Sam, not even himself. I think maybe that is part of what Crowley was saying to Dean when he said, "you are worthy, you know."


With respect he did put something above Sam , his own need's and his own need for Sam to be alive.
Sharon
# Sharon 2014-01-27 17:36
Quote:
. He puts nothing above Sam, not even himself. I think maybe that is part of what Crowley was saying to Dean when he said, "you are worthy, you know."
With respect he did put something above Sam , his own need's and his own need for Sam to be alive.
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2014-01-27 18:23
Don't you think that for Dean it goes back to the responsibility that was put on him from the time he was 4 yrs old. Even Sam to some extent was tasked with saving others no matter the cost. They were taught by John, especially Dean, that their lives were not as important as the people that needed to be saved. That is why Cas asked Sam why must the Winchesters run towards death. Sam will sacrifice himself for the greater good, Dean will pay any price to make sure his family is saved, evidently now no questions asked. Cas's lesson to Sam is that his life is precious and it should be to Sam not just to Dean. I think Cas tried to tell Dean that he is human and he made a human mistake. He trusted to much. To Dean I don't think at the time he thought that saving Sam in the hospital was any different than saving him in the warehouse during the Lucifer hallucinations. All he saw was that Sam was going to kill himself and that Dean had a plan. As it turned out not a very good one but with the information that Dean had at the time it seemed the right one to make. These two are eternally cursed no matter what decisions they make it seems.
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2014-01-27 18:23
Don't you think that for Dean it goes back to the responsibility that was put on him from the time he was 4 yrs old. Even Sam to some extent was tasked with saving others no matter the cost. They were taught by John, especially Dean, that their lives were not as important as the people that needed to be saved. That is why Cas asked Sam why must the Winchesters run towards death. Sam will sacrifice himself for the greater good, Dean will pay any price to make sure his family is saved, evidently now no questions asked. Cas's lesson to Sam is that his life is precious and it should be to Sam not just to Dean. I think Cas tried to tell Dean that he is human and he made a human mistake. He trusted to much. To Dean I don't think at the time he thought that saving Sam in the hospital was any different than saving him in the warehouse during the Lucifer hallucinations. All he saw was that Sam was going to kill himself and that Dean had a plan. As it turned out not a very good one but with the information that Dean had at the time it seemed the right one to make. These two are eternally cursed no matter what decisions they make it seems.
Prix68
# Prix68 2014-01-27 18:53
#39 Sharon, #28 CASTIELs cat said all I could or would say about that and probably better so I'll refer you back to her comment. I will also point out that John did not say "You boys need to take care of each other, he said Dean needed to take care of his brother, Sam" and that's what Dean has always tried to do.
Prix68
# Prix68 2014-01-27 18:53
#39 Sharon, #28 CASTIELs cat said all I could or would say about that and probably better so I'll refer you back to her comment. I will also point out that John did not say "You boys need to take care of each other, he said Dean needed to take care of his brother, Sam" and that's what Dean has always tried to do.
Sharon
# Sharon 2014-01-28 02:33
Quoting Prix68:
#39 Sharon, #28 CASTIELs cat said all I could or would say about that and probably better so I'll refer you back to her comment. I will also point out that John did not say "You boys need to take care of each other, he said Dean needed to take care of his brother, Sam" and that's what Dean has always tried to do.

Well I am sure Castiel's Cat did but she was not talking for me or my pov. Sam's body was invaded and not with genuine consent I am just not comfortable with that . I understand what John said and how it has played into Dean's actions with Sam since then but surely there comes a point where a line has been crossed in Dean's drive to keep Sam alive.
Sharon
# Sharon 2014-01-28 02:33
Quote:
#39 Sharon, #28 CASTIELs cat said all I could or would say about that and probably better so I'll refer you back to her comment. I will also point out that John did not say "You boys need to take care of each other, he said Dean needed to take care of his brother, Sam" and that's what Dean has always tried to do.
Well I am sure Castiel's Cat did but she was not talking for me or my pov. Sam's body was invaded and not with genuine consent I am just not comfortable with that . I understand what John said and how it has played into Dean's actions with Sam since then but surely there comes a point where a line has been crossed in Dean's drive to keep Sam alive.
Gerry
# Gerry 2014-01-28 08:11
Thanks everyone, for keeping the conversation polite when these sensitive topics are discussed. We all have different and valid points of view.

I agree Sharon that Sam's feelings on the lack of consent matter and I think that is going to be on the table between the boys.

My own opinion is the lack of consent has been set up to draw on a medical model as well as a violation model: when someone with distorted thinking is a danger to himself or others, we do allow overriding consent in our society. But where the line is, where self-interest comes in, when it's time to step back - these are the thorny issues, especially when the help involves possession.

Clearly, Dean had an element of self-interest and he's not denying that. He can't bear the idea of letting Sam die, perhaps because he has already had to do that in the most terrible circumstances possible.

Just as many fans think Sam was traumatized by the events in Mystery Spot, I think it can be argued Dean was traumatized by the events in Swan Song. He had to help Sam jump into Hell with Lucifer to be tortured for eternity. And that's on top of growing up with the directive to take care of Sam at all costs. Dean had to accept taking care of Sam meant helping Sam destroy himself, because otherwise Sam would turn into something he absolutely thought was worse than death.

Then he had to force Sam's soul back into his body in order not to have Soulless Sam undo Sam's personal sacrifice to define himself, even though that put Sam's life at risk. Cas may have saved Sam at the last minute, but Dean went through the emotions of losing Sam again.

I can understand why the idea of standing by while Sam dies is so triggering for Dean. But that said, in the end, it is Sam's choice what to do with his life and I believe that is where the boys will end up when they finally talk.

I also think Sam will admit his thinking about his life was not the clearest in his talk with Death, as I think he has already admitted to Cas, and therefore forgiving Dean for saving his life will not be an unbridgeable chasm.

Forgiving him for continuing to lie to him about it may take longer, because that involves a lack of trust. But Sam doesn't know yet that Dean tried to tell him and Gadreel used the threat of Sam dying to shut Dean up. I think knowing Dean did realize on his own he needed to tell Sam will matter to Sam.
Gerry
# Gerry 2014-01-28 08:11
Thanks everyone, for keeping the conversation polite when these sensitive topics are discussed. We all have different and valid points of view.

I agree Sharon that Sam's feelings on the lack of consent matter and I think that is going to be on the table between the boys.

My own opinion is the lack of consent has been set up to draw on a medical model as well as a violation model: when someone with distorted thinking is a danger to himself or others, we do allow overriding consent in our society. But where the line is, where self-interest comes in, when it's time to step back - these are the thorny issues, especially when the help involves possession.

Clearly, Dean had an element of self-interest and he's not denying that. He can't bear the idea of letting Sam die, perhaps because he has already had to do that in the most terrible circumstances possible.

Just as many fans think Sam was traumatized by the events in Mystery Spot, I think it can be argued Dean was traumatized by the events in Swan Song. He had to help Sam jump into Hell with Lucifer to be tortured for eternity. And that's on top of growing up with the directive to take care of Sam at all costs. Dean had to accept taking care of Sam meant helping Sam destroy himself, because otherwise Sam would turn into something he absolutely thought was worse than death.

Then he had to force Sam's soul back into his body in order not to have Soulless Sam undo Sam's personal sacrifice to define himself, even though that put Sam's life at risk. Cas may have saved Sam at the last minute, but Dean went through the emotions of losing Sam again.

I can understand why the idea of standing by while Sam dies is so triggering for Dean. But that said, in the end, it is Sam's choice what to do with his life and I believe that is where the boys will end up when they finally talk.

I also think Sam will admit his thinking about his life was not the clearest in his talk with Death, as I think he has already admitted to Cas, and therefore forgiving Dean for saving his life will not be an unbridgeable chasm.

Forgiving him for continuing to lie to him about it may take longer, because that involves a lack of trust. But Sam doesn't know yet that Dean tried to tell him and Gadreel used the threat of Sam dying to shut Dean up. I think knowing Dean did realize on his own he needed to tell Sam will matter to Sam.
Jo1027
# Jo1027 2014-01-28 09:19
Quoting Gerry:

Dean had to accept taking care of Sam meant helping Sam destroy himself, because otherwise Sam would turn into something he absolutely thought was worse than death./quote]


So Dean once again doesn't trust Sam to make the right choice. How did he know that was going to happen? He didn't.

[quote name="Gerry"]Forgiving him for continuing to lie to him about it may take longer, because that involves a lack of trust. But Sam doesn't know yet that Dean tried to tell him and Gadreel used the threat of Sam dying to shut Dean up. I think knowing Dean did realize on his own he needed to tell Sam will matter to Sam.


See the above quote. Since when has Dean ever trusted Sam to make the right choice? He has never IMO trusted Sam to make the right choices and has always with the exception of SS made the choices he thinks Sam should make. I'm sorry, but those are/were not Dean's choices to make.
Jo1027
# Jo1027 2014-01-28 09:19
Dean had to accept taking care of Sam meant helping Sam destroy himself, because otherwise Sam would turn into something he absolutely thought was worse than death./quote]


So Dean once again doesn't trust Sam to make the right choice. How did he know that was going to happen? He didn't.

Quote:
Forgiving him for continuing to lie to him about it may take longer, because that involves a lack of trust. But Sam doesn't know yet that Dean tried to tell him and Gadreel used the threat of Sam dying to shut Dean up. I think knowing Dean did realize on his own he needed to tell Sam will matter to Sam.
See the above quote. Since when has Dean ever trusted Sam to make the right choice? He has never IMO trusted Sam to make the right choices and has always with the exception of SS made the choices he thinks Sam should make. I'm sorry, but those are/were not Dean's choices to make.
Gerry
# Gerry 2014-01-28 09:42
Quoting Jo1027:
Quoting Gerry:

Dean had to accept taking care of Sam meant helping Sam destroy himself, because otherwise Sam would turn into something he absolutely thought was worse than death./quote]


So Dean once again doesn't trust Sam to make the right choice. How did he know that was going to happen? He didn't.

[quote name="Gerry"]Forgiving him for continuing to lie to him about it may take longer, because that involves a lack of trust. But Sam doesn't know yet that Dean tried to tell him and Gadreel used the threat of Sam dying to shut Dean up. I think knowing Dean did realize on his own he needed to tell Sam will matter to Sam.


See the above quote. Since when has Dean ever trusted Sam to make the right choice? He has never IMO trusted Sam to make the right choices and has always with the exception of SS made the choices he thinks Sam should make. I'm sorry, but those are/were not Dean's choices to make.


The choice Dean made to help Sam throw himself into the pit with Lucifer was acquiescing to Sam's request to do so. What Dean wanted to do was keep fighting Lucifer until they both went down; what Sam wanted to do was accept Lucifer and trust he could fight him long enough to open the pit and jump in. Dean went with Sam's call. He not only trusted him enough to do that, he trusted Sam enough to keep on talking to him, trying to reach him, even while Lucifer was beating him to death. He knew Sam was still there and capable of fighting.

Swan Song was about the brothers coming together and trusting each other.
Gerry
# Gerry 2014-01-28 09:42
Quote:

Dean had to accept taking care of Sam meant helping Sam destroy himself, because otherwise Sam would turn into something he absolutely thought was worse than death./quote]


So Dean once again doesn't trust Sam to make the right choice. How did he know that was going to happen? He didn't.

Quote:
Forgiving him for continuing to lie to him about it may take longer, because that involves a lack of trust. But Sam doesn't know yet that Dean tried to tell him and Gadreel used the threat of Sam dying to shut Dean up. I think knowing Dean did realize on his own he needed to tell Sam will matter to Sam.
See the above quote. Since when has Dean ever trusted Sam to make the right choice? He has never IMO trusted Sam to make the right choices and has always with the exception of SS made the choices he thinks Sam should make. I'm sorry, but those are/were not Dean's choices to make.
The choice Dean made to help Sam throw himself into the pit with Lucifer was acquiescing to Sam's request to do so. What Dean wanted to do was keep fighting Lucifer until they both went down; what Sam wanted to do was accept Lucifer and trust he could fight him long enough to open the pit and jump in. Dean went with Sam's call. He not only trusted him enough to do that, he trusted Sam enough to keep on talking to him, trying to reach him, even while Lucifer was beating him to death. He knew Sam was still there and capable of fighting.

Swan Song was about the brothers coming together and trusting each other.
JuliaG
# JuliaG 2014-01-28 18:58
Gerry, I don't agree that Sam was suffering from "distorted thinking" while he was in a coma and in his talk with Death. I think it's Dean POV, but it doesn't mean he's right. When Sam was fighting for his life, (the Dean and Bobby in his head) at one point he said that maybe he wasn't meant to fight this. Like Bobby had learned the hard way, when it's your time, you go. The talk with Death IMO was about Sam wanting his death to be final, not whether he wanted to die or not. So I don't think that we can use it as an excuse for Dean's actions.

I'm not sure how the show will deal with this. To me, the lying was not the worst of what Dean did. Having Sam possessed was so out of line, so wrong, that I'll be disappointed if the writers ignore the impact on Sam.
JuliaG
# JuliaG 2014-01-28 18:58
Gerry, I don't agree that Sam was suffering from "distorted thinking" while he was in a coma and in his talk with Death. I think it's Dean POV, but it doesn't mean he's right. When Sam was fighting for his life, (the Dean and Bobby in his head) at one point he said that maybe he wasn't meant to fight this. Like Bobby had learned the hard way, when it's your time, you go. The talk with Death IMO was about Sam wanting his death to be final, not whether he wanted to die or not. So I don't think that we can use it as an excuse for Dean's actions.

I'm not sure how the show will deal with this. To me, the lying was not the worst of what Dean did. Having Sam possessed was so out of line, so wrong, that I'll be disappointed if the writers ignore the impact on Sam.
percysowner
# percysowner 2014-01-28 20:36
JuliaG I agree I don't think Sam was suffering from "distorted thinking" when he was in the coma. He was absolutely 100% dying. Accepting that, especially when you consider how wrong things have gone every time the boys didn't accept that, was realistic and rational. The doctor had said he was dying and people in comas have been known to be able to hear what is being said. Even if he didn't hear it, he was enough in touch with his own body that he knew he was dying, which is why he had the constructs of Dean and Bobby talking to him about dying.

Even if he wasn't in the right state of mind, Dean stated that he knew that Sam would never agree to being possessed by any angel. Dean didn't say Sam didn't know what he was doing. He said Sam would say "No" no matter what state of mind he was in. Saving Sam was all about Dean and not considering what Sam wanted.
percysowner
# percysowner 2014-01-28 20:36
JuliaG I agree I don't think Sam was suffering from "distorted thinking" when he was in the coma. He was absolutely 100% dying. Accepting that, especially when you consider how wrong things have gone every time the boys didn't accept that, was realistic and rational. The doctor had said he was dying and people in comas have been known to be able to hear what is being said. Even if he didn't hear it, he was enough in touch with his own body that he knew he was dying, which is why he had the constructs of Dean and Bobby talking to him about dying.

Even if he wasn't in the right state of mind, Dean stated that he knew that Sam would never agree to being possessed by any angel. Dean didn't say Sam didn't know what he was doing. He said Sam would say "No" no matter what state of mind he was in. Saving Sam was all about Dean and not considering what Sam wanted.