As winter comes to a slow close here in Minnesota, we start to see layers fall away little by little. As people shed coats, gloves, hats, and heavy boots, we see them revealed once more. Each layer exposes just a little bit more. It's easier to see a smile or to know who's been under the bulky winter gear all season long. In many ways, Supernatural follows this concept. It's shown wonderfully in “Blade Runners.” Each layer builds up to make the full picture. As we strip the layers away, though, we can see how each one shapes the story and its characters. It allows us to get to the heart of it---and see what's really there.

Let's examine our first layer: the First Blade---and the search for it.

The First Blade was introduced to us in “First Born.” It is the very weapon Cain used to kill his brother, Abel, thus committing the world's first murder. It's a hunk of bone with teeth that might kill an average human with the right amount of force, but it can't kill Abaddon without that Mark.

So, what about the Mark?


Biblically, we know that God gave it to Cain in order that he may never be slain. It was his punishment for his crime. He may have taken a life, but he would never know death. God tells him, “You are under a curse and driven from the ground.” The mark is placed so others may know this---and therefore not kill him for his crime. Cain is cast from Eden, made to wander the earth as a vagabond, bereft of his home and fruits of the land. Supernatural takes this angle and shapes it to its own story---making it a powerful layer.

Cain informs Dean that he acquired the Mark not from God but from Lucifer himself. We're not informed as to when Cain acquired it. We're not told if Cain was still human---living or dead---when he was given the Mark. We're only told why he accepted this Mark. He tells Dean in “First Born,” “Lucifer was gonna make my brother into his pet. I couldn't bear to watch him be corrupted, so I offered a deal -- Abel's soul in heaven for my soul in hell. Lucifer accepted... As long as I was the one who sent Abel to heaven. So, I killed him. Became a soldier of Hell -- a knight.”

And to bear this Mark comes with a burden---perhaps a curse. We're left to wonder what it might mean---especially when combined with the First Blade. Did it and the Blade shape Cain? Did they, together, drive his base murderous rages? What effect did it have on him after he accepted his fate as Lucifer's “pet?” It's clear that these two things, in concert, has some power over its wielder. Cain tells Dean, “I picked the First Blade back up, and it felt so good to have it in my hands again,” as if both Mark and Blade perhaps feed on anger and blood-lust. Dean accepts this Mark, however, in order that he may use the First Blade on Abaddon. Cain will not pick it up again, so now Dean chooses to inherit this legacy in order that he may destroy the last Knight of Hell.

But the First Blade will be hard to find as Cain cast it into the deepest ocean. This is where “Blade Runners” picks up the story: the search for it.


In the beginning of the episode, we see Dean trying to reach Crowley while Sam searches about Cain and Abel. They're trying to pinpoint where their “ally,” Crowley, may be and why he hasn't called back to tell them he's managed to retrieve the First Blade. After all, the King of Hell did tell him he'd bring it to him.

Dean seems agitated, impatient, and beyond frustrated. Granted, much of this emotion may be connected to his distaste for working with Crowley, but it might be possible that the Mark itself is calling out to the Blade in some way---thus effecting Dean, too. We see it in how he paces, the tenseness of his body, and the edge in his voice as he leaves yet another voice mail. It makes us pause a moment on this layer, trying to see a glimpse of what might be underneath. Is the burden of the Mark truly beginning now?

The brothers eventually receive a distress call from Crowley, and he tells them that not only is he empty handed, but that Abaddon now knows that they're trying to find the First Blade. Now it's a race against the clock---and whomever gets the weapon first wins. Sure, the First Blade can't be destroyed, but Abaddon can certainly hide it forever if need be.


The brothers take Crowley back to the Bunker---and lock him back up in his now familiar digs. There, he confesses to Sam, “And the First Blade was not, as hoped, in the Trench. It had, in fact, been scooped up by an unmanned sub, from whom it was stolen by a research assistant, who reportedly sold it to Portuguese smugglers who, in turn, lost it to Moroccan pirates in a poker game. “ After that, he's not sure what happened to the object. Nevertheless, they must find it and fast.

They track down a seller to discover if he knows where it might be or who might have purchased it recently. He's not forthcoming, and so Crowley briefly possesses him to discover that the First Blade is at the National Institute of Antiquities. Unfortunately, it seems they're not fast enough. The guards are dead---after being possessed and trying to rob their own vault. Abaddon got there first, even if she did end up leaving empty handed in the end.

The curator of the Institute, however, knows where the First Blade is---and who bought it. His name is Magnus, and if they can find him, they can find it. She figured that they could never truly authenticate it, so rather than keeping it in the museum, she decided to turn a quick profit first.


This does indeed lead them to a rather odd hideout. Magnus, the mastermind behind the Men of Letters Bunker and its protective wards, has created another place that can only be found if Magnus wishes it. As the Winchesters call out, identifying themselves as Men of Letters, he lets them in.

Indeed, they do find the First Blade there. It's in his collection of supernatural odds and ends, proudly on display. Sam and Dean have found it---and before Abaddon, too.

But it won't be that simple---for the Winchesters, it never is.

Magnus is a master at magics of all types. He may be nearly ninety years old, but he looks young. He's rather eccentric---and a strange recluse. He's proud of his extensive supernatural collection---including the First Blade. Furthermore, he was ousted from the Men of Letters. He was found to be far too radical for them. He tells the Winchesters, “I would say, "we could stop all this. We could rid the world of monsters once and for all if we just put our minds to it", but, "oh, no," they said. "No, no, no. It's not our place. We're here to study. We're here to catalog"” Magnus---his real name Cuthbert, which means brilliant---may be extraordinary, but he's most certainly an egomaniac, too. His pursuits in the magics have slowly corrupted him into the man we see here.

Essentially, Magnus has taken the mission of the Men of Letters and perverted it. Instead of trying to understand the supernatural world around him for the good of humanity---including helping trusted hunters---Magnus has chosen to shape the supernatural world to his own liking. Due to his mastery of magics, he sees himself as superior. He flippantly tells the Winchesters, “There's a spell for damn near everything.” Anything he desires---be it an object or creature---can be his simply because he can magically make it so.


Magnus is curious as to why Sam and Dean want the First Blade anyways. What value could it have for them? It has every value to someone like Magnus. He can boast about it being in his collection. But to anyone else? It's useless---unless one possesses the Mark of Cain. Dean reveals it on his arm---and this is a grave mistake. Magnus is stunned, but pleased. With one spell, he ousts Sam from his home, leaving Dean in his clutches.

This is the very reason why he was booted from the Men of Letters. He's far too dangerous to have in their ranks. Magnus doesn't want to impart wisdom to Dean. He's not going to help him with the First Blade in order to kill Abaddon. Instead, Magnus sees Dean as another item in his collection. He now has the First Blade and the Mark of Cain. Given enough time, Magnus thinks he can turn Dean into his own weapon to acquire the supernatural world---and then shape it to his own design.


He forces Dean to hold the weapon. He needs to know he does indeed have the genuine article---and the only way to know for sure is to combine the weapon and the Mark. Magnus is awed and giddy by the response it has on the elder Winchester. He's very pleased that the Mark is indeed authentic and operable. It means that he truly has both rare items in his grasp. Magnus sees Dean as a possession. In this single moment, he's taken the purpose of the Men of Letters and corrupted it utterly.

Magic is a drug to Magnus. He's spelled his home, his body, and everything else he comes in contact with. The more magic he's used, the more corrupted by it he's become. It's allowed him to become arrogant and overbearing here. Magnus has no problem with using Dean as he uses the vampires and shapeshifters contained in his zoo. His power, in his lair, is absolute---and that has tainted him completely. Whatever brilliance he may have had as Cuthbert has been forever replaced by Magnus, the monstrous magician.

And he has a spell for Dean, too. He casts it, sapping all of Dean's will to fight. It's temporary, for now, but Magnus isn't worried. He has time. He can renew it as many times as he needs---until Dean's completely molded to his will.


It isn't until Sam and Crowley find their way back inside his home that Magnus shows the real multitude of his corruption. He realizes that he's wasting his time trying to spell Dean when he could coerce Dean by other means. He may not know Sam and Dean, but he can tell that Sam's the key to making Dean do his biding. So, he sets out to torture Sam and make Dean watch until he gives in.

He makes a critical error---underestimating the Winchesters. With Crowley still loose and undetected, the King of Hell makes his move and frees Dean. The First Blade wants blood, and it shall have it. With one stroke, Dean slays Magnus, leaving his head rolling on the floor. The rogue Men of Letters magician is no more.


Crowley. What about our King of Hell, though? What does he reveal about the story? What is his layer saying?

In the beginning of the episode, we watch him on a bender. His addiction to injecting human blood has gone off the charts. Part of it is an after effect of his near-cure. Part of it might be grief over Kevin---after all he was genuinely saddened to hear of the Prophet's passing. Part of it is craving the human feelings the blood gives him. Whatever the reason, Crowley's consumed by this need. It's his “burden.”


Crowley is helpless to this drive. We see that as he sits watching Casablanca. We see it as he stares in the mirror after killing Lola. Crowley's falling apart, and there's seemingly little he can do about it by himself. This helplessness is a key clue in his layer. It may seem to center on Crowley's story, but paying attention to this very feeling will teach us something about the rest of the story---and in particular about both Sam and Dean.

After he calls Sam and Dean---and they do a crude intervention on the King of Hell---we see the lingering effects of his bender. He's emotional, volatile, and trying to reach out to both brothers. He shows concern for Sam. He tells them that they're partners. He cares about Dean enough to help Sam get them inside the magical fortress Magnus built.

Certainly, Crowley helps because he wants Dean to use the First Blade on Abaddon. Helping the Winchesters is a means to an ends. But that's far too simple. If that was the case, he wouldn't seem so comfortable with them. He wouldn't try to push Sam's buttons in order to get the younger Winchester to focus on something else than being anxious about his brother. Crowley wouldn't tell them, in the end, “You can't trust me. But, sadly, I can't trust you, either.” His wording reveals his true feelings---sadly being the key word. He wanted them to believe his sincerity, but now he knows they won't---or can't.

Crowley's been changed, fundamentally. He's not forgiven, by any means, for his past sins---but it's clear that there's something different about him. Pursuits like sex and killing don't seem nearly as pleasurable for the King of Hell, either. We may see him indulge in these things in the first portion of the episode, but they leave him feeling empty. This leaves doors open for what might happen to Crowley down the road. What does he want---besides Abaddon removed from the picture?


We know, in “Sacrifice,” that Crowley begged to be loved. Could it be that he wants to be human again? Now that he's seen a glimpse of what it might be like to be free from Hell's greatest torture---the absence of love---could it be that he's seeking this? Is it forgiveness? He also begged for this. Is it possible that Crowley's past sins haunt him almost more than Sam and Dean's anger over them? He spent an awful long time locked away with nothing but his thoughts---his past deeds possibly were front and center for him.

It's clear that he's found a high in feeling human emotions again. It's clear that they torture him---and yet he needs more. Crowley once told the Winchesters, “What are you gonna do to me that I don't do to myself just for kicks every Friday night?” Is this what this new found addiction is? Crowley seems drawn to it, needing the self-flagellation that comes with the injections. Much like Pinocchio, he wants to be a real boy again.

Crowley knows he has a lot to make up for---but he's also not one to crawl for Sam and Dean's acceptance. He feels he has proven himself numerous times now---helping with the Wicked Witch, giving a few demon names, reading a snippet of the Angel Tablet, and helping Sam get rid of Gadreel to name a few. At this stage, Crowley feels he should be included with the Winchesters. He should be considered an ally, not an enemy.


Crowley makes the comment about Magnus, “So difficult -- brilliant, ahead of your time, despised for it. Trust me, I know.” Crowley may have become more human during these past few months, but he's certainly not without his own ego. He's still the King of Hell, and he's still evil. Crowley doesn't seem bothered that he's killed human beings in order to get his human blood high, either.

In the end, we see him tell the brothers that he'll keep the First Blade. After all, Crowley knows how to do one thing well: put Crowley first.

So, what do these layers say about Sam and Dean?

Let's look at Dean first.
 

In the beginning of the episode, it's clear that Dean is frustrated. He's pacing and agitated as he continually fails to get a hold of Crowley. Part of this is because Dean wants nothing more than to kill Abaddon and remove her threat. But this seems different. He's a tad more on edge and it shows in how he interacts with nearly everyone through out the episode. Could this be the Mark of Cain calling out to the First Blade and vice versa?

This seems it may be the case---for as they get closer to it, Dean becomes a bit more riled. He's forceful with the seller and the curator. He's testy with Crowley. He's frustrated---albeit rightly so---with Magnus. Dean's never been known for his patience, no, but it would seem he's growing restless. He wants the weapon so he can finish what he's set out to do: kill Abaddon.

That being said, Dean has no desire to be part of a supernatural collection. He tells Magnus, “And what if I take a knee?” The Mark and Blade may have called to one another, but that doesn't mean Dean will willingly become someone else's weapon, either. Magnus won't take no for an answer, and he shoves the Blade into Dean's hand, forcing the elder Winchester into a corner.

It isn't until we see him grasp the First Blade for the first time that we truly understand what is starting to happen to Dean, however. It seems that it has called to him since they started the search at the beginning of the episode, but now that he's holding it the angry emotions whirling inside have now found a laser focus. He vibrates with the sheer power of it, the Blade demanding blood and fury.


It's easy to see that this could indeed become addicting, too. Like Magnus and Crowley and their own addictions, the power of the Blade could corrupt Dean. We know from Cain's story that it “felt good” to pick up the First Blade when he slaughtered all the other Knights of Hell. It's apparent that the “burden” of the Mark of Cain is in part an unquenchable rage---a blood thirst that has no end. All it took for Dean to fall somewhat under its powerful spell is to hold it briefly once.

And yet, that first taste seems to sear him. He drops the Blade, frightened by the anger it found inside him.

But Dean's not strong enough to resist Magnus---not yet---and so he must stand there, unable to fight back from being nothing more than a statue on display. He lacks even the strength to fight against his bonds, added security for when the spell wears off. It isn't until Sam makes his way back inside that the fight that the Blade has awakened re-surges forward.


It is in this moment that the First Blade claims Dean from Magnus. It's clear that the weapon, combined with the Mark of Cain, has a dark power all of its own. It sings for blood---and now that it has tasted it, we know that Dean's also fallen under its powerful and terrifying allure. It's clear in how helpless he is to drop the weapon after Magnus has fallen. He's almost animalistic, border-lining on snarling into a berserker mode.

In the earlier layers---especially Magnus and Crowley's---we see flashes of foreshadow for Dean's possible future.

On one hand, we see the sheer helplessness to the addiction. We see how overwhelming it may be for Dean. We see how drawn to it he will become. It is pure rage. It is pure hate. It is pure blood thirst. The First Blade and using it could quickly become a drug for Dean---and while he's only had one taste, one kill, we know that it's possible for him to fall to its siren song and feel the withdrawal while Crowley has it in his hands.

It could also isolate him---harkening back to the Biblical curse of banishment---reflected in the story of Magnus and his expulsion from the Men of Letters. The brothers are already at odds, but could the First Blade and the Mark of Cain amplify this? Will Dean be able to fight back?

Will this withdrawal make Dean angrier? Now that he's killed with the First Blade---and activated the Mark---will other kills done with other weapons feed the growing bloodlust?

Will Dean become like Magnus? Magnus was corrupted utterly by his magic. He was an egomaniac that thought he could do whatever he pleased because he had the power to do so. Will Dean, in his growing rage, be corrupted this way? Will he, too, feel that he's unstoppable?

Both the addiction and the potential isolation are frightening paths for Dean to follow. Both could end tragically for him and those who care about him.


That brings us to Sam.

Despite the purging the brothers are undergoing in their relationship, it is clear from the beginning of “Blade Runners” that Sam cares very much for his brother. He's the one researching Cain and Abel. He's the one watching his brother become more agitated the closer they get to the First Blade. He's the one that has to watch his brother be taken hostage by Magnus---and then by the First Blade itself.

Sam is as frantic this episode as Dean is agitated. It comes out in bursts of irritation and anxiety. He's irritated with Crowley---both when they're back at the Bunker and again when Sam's trying to find his way into Magnus's home. He's wound tight when they talk to the curator and the seller---we can tell that Sam wants to perhaps take Dean the other way and run, even if he knows they must stop Abaddon and he's chosen to stand with his brother on it.

Sam doesn't know what the Mark of Cain or the First Blade will do to his brother---or what it all means. He also doesn't know what effect this may have on him. Cain had killed Abel, so we don't know if Cain and Abel would have been driven apart by this. Could it make the Winchester's relationship that much harder to repair?

For Sam, that's a frightening prospect. It's harder to fight something you don't understand---and this falls under that category. To Sam, not understanding what is happening is the most terrifying part. It leaves him feeling helpless---harkening back to Crowley's layer---and that is a feeling Sam has never handled well.


Sam's also concerned by Dean's growing reliance on Crowley. Pointing back towards the front half of season nine, it's clear that Sam sees Crowley as another serpent, trying to worm his way into Dean's life---and between him and his brother. Considering how disastrous the previous serpent turned out to be, we can't blame Sam for his worry. After all, Sam knows Crowley's not one to be trusted.

Sam knows they must kill Abaddon by any means---but it doesn't escape him that Crowley's the one that brought Dean to Cain. It doesn't escape him that it's Crowley that went to find the First Blade. Given his own past experience with a demon leading him, he knows that the path can turn dark and cruel quickly. He knows it can also be addicting.

So how do the earlier layers point to Sam's story?

Crowley is the biggest layer that reveals Sam's own. Just as Crowley was helpless to his human blood addiction---and to its side-effects---Sam is helpless to do anything about the Mark of Cain and the First Blade. He can't take it away. He can't stop it from changing Dean. He's in the dark about what this might mean or where it might lead. Much like Crowley's not entirely sure what his brushes with humanity may do to him, Sam doesn't know what type of Dean he'll have after they do manage to kill Abaddon.

But Crowley also exposes another layer for Sam: that of his caring.

Sam has always been an empathetic character---Soulless period aside---and therefore in touch with the emotions around him. No matter how angry he is with Dean about what happened with Gadreel, it's clear that he cares very much about Dean. Why else would he research the first brothers? Why would he want to be in on this case so desperately? Why else would he fight his way back to Dean---to stop Magnus?


Crowley's fumbled attempts to reach out to Sam throughout the episode reflect some of Sam's attempts to do the same with Dean. Crowley tries to make small talk with Sam, telling him, “You and I both know we shared a mo back in that church. And on some level, we are bonded.” When being “nice” fails, we see Crowley hit back in a form Sam is much more familiar with---angry barbs. He tells Sam, “If memory serves me, I'm the one who helped your brother find Cain so that we could find the Blade, so that Dean could receive the Mark. I'm the one who flushed that lout Gadreel out of your noggin. So, lately, big boy, I've seen more playing time than you,” goading the younger Winchester to take action and dig himself out of the rut he's in on trying to break into Magnus's home.

Much like Crowley's addiction may foreshadow Dean's path, we can see that the King of Hell's behavior may foreshadow Sam's reactions to what may happen with Dean. The angrier Dean gets, the more likely it is that Sam may react in kind. It won't be because Sam doesn't care or is angry back---it'll be because he's scared. This situation will test both brothers emotionally---and it seems it may get darker before it'll get better.


We see this truth best when we see Sam coax Dean to drop the First Blade after he's killed Magnus. It takes all of Sam's empathy, all of his patience, and all of his love to reach Dean. Underneath that, though, we can clearly hear his helplessness. His brother is standing before him, nearly ready to fly apart, and all that stands between him and a possible repeat of Cain and Abel's tragic story is finding a way to coax his brother off the ledge with his soft words.

It scares both brothers greatly. We can tell just in how they act after the fact. Both have spooked expressions---and we know that Sam is afraid to let his brother handle the First Blade anytime soon by how he holds onto it, keeping it away from Dean.

We're left to wonder where these layers will take us. What more will be revealed? How will Sam and Dean continue to fix their relationship while this “burden” threatens to tear both of them apart?

When Sam was facing the uncertainty surrounding his psychic powers in the aftermath of Max Miller, we see Dean tell Sam that he has something Max didn't: him. For Dean, he has something that Cain didn't have: his little brother, Sam. It is this that will give them a fighting chance.


Nicole Polizzi brought Snooki from the Jersey Shore to Supernatural with tongue firmly planted in cheek. She plays a crossroads demon summoned by Sam and Dean in order to learn where Crowley is. It's clear, in her performance, that Polizzi has no problem poking fun at herself. She comes off as the stereotypical version of Snooki we all imagine here---right down to the twirling of her hair and eye-rolling. Of course, the shot taken from above shows just how small Polizzi is in comparison to Ackles and Padalecki, adding to the surreal humor here. Sure, “Snooki” may be a demon, but it's clear that Sam and Dean are the bigger threat! It was a short scene---but Polizzi made sure to have fun with it---taking Ackles and Padalecki along for the ride.


Kavan Smith played the rogue Men of Letters, Magnus. When we're first introduced to him, Smith makes Magnus seem rather eccentric, but a possible ally. There's a charm in how he delivers his lines---and we find ourselves liking him at first. He's full of great knowledge and wisdom---and he seems very intrigued by Sam and Dean's connection to his former student, Henry Winchester. Smith makes Magnus seem almost larger than life in some ways here---but as he makes comments about the Men of Letters, we can tell that he's still bitter. Once he uses a spell to make Sam disappear, the real Magnus is revealed. He's more egomaniac than brilliant---although that's exactly what Cuthbert means. Smith shows us just how much his magic addiction has consumed him---for that's what it is---and we see this in his keeping of creatures in his “zoo” and especially in his attempt to keep Dean as part of his collection. He makes Magnus particularly cruel when he uses the spell to start zapping Dean's will---and again when he starts to torture Sam---and in turn, Dean---to get what he wants. In many ways, Magnus stands in for the old adage “power corrupts, but absolute power corrupts absolutely.” Smith showed us that Magnus had been totally corrupted with a subtle and smart performance.


Mark Sheppard brings a new side to Crowley in “Blade Runners.” It's clear that the near-cure---and Crowley's subsequent addiction to injecting human blood---has taken some of the King of Hell's edge. There's a strange vulnerability in that performance---even amongst some of the debauchery and death. It shows best in the scene when Sam and Dean intervene with Crowley's blood habit. He needs help. Sheppard puts a great blend of comedy and drama into this performance. We can't help but laugh when we watch Crowley sob his way through Casablanca or read Little Women. It all seems ridiculous. Juxtaposed with this, however, Sheppard shows us that Crowley's emotional state isn't necessarily all fake. He may be a bit more “sentimental” while the human blood is pumping, but Sheppard shows that Crowley's bonding with both Winchesters in his own way. He wants in as a full partner---and it's clear that he may want to be trusted, even if he knows by the end that they won't. Sheppard shows this best in the scene back in the Bunker with Sam and then again during the rescue mission after Magnus ousts Sam from his hideout. Sheppard has great chemistry with Padalecki, and it shows in both the comedic moments when Crowley tries to get Sam to open up and again when we see him push Sam's buttons during the rescue. Sheppard also shares great chemistry with Ackles, evidenced best by the comedic scene surrounding the vending machine and dramatic by the way Crowley exits at the end. Comedically, he shows Crowley almost like a little boy caught with his hand in the cookie jar, slinking away from the vending machine after Dean's chided him. Dramatically, we see this in how he directs his lines about keeping the First Blade at Ackles. Sheppard knows how to make Crowley a great foil to Sam and Dean, taking the script to another level.


Jensen Ackles showed us all of Dean's frustrations and anxiety about acquiring the First Blade well. From demanding Crowley get back in touch with him to the race to track it down before Abaddon could, we see how Dean's becoming more and more agitated. Ackles also shows us great but understated comedy, exemplified when we see Dean chide Crowley for trying to steal from a vending machine. The way he delivers the line, “You're the King of Rotten. Act like it,” makes it all the funnier. It captures all of Dean's frustration and exasperation, all the while falling like the punchline to a great joke. We see Ackles build on that in the final scene as he sees Baby damaged and scratched up by Abaddon's followers. He's angry---and yet Ackles makes us laugh at how Dean tries to rub away the scratches that damage his beautiful car. That being said, Ackles also gave us fantastic drama. We saw it best in the scene at the home of Magnus. Once Sam is whisked away, we see Dean backed into a corner quickly. Ackles shows Dean's stubborn nature and anger best here---all masking the fear written clearly on his face. He wants the First Blade, but we can tell that as he looks at it, he's also terribly afraid of it. This is compounded when we see him grip it for the first time---against his will. Ackles makes this a powerful moment, just by how his arm trembles and his face betrays all of Dean's inner turmoil---emotions like rage, hate, murderous intent, fear, and self-loathing all flicker by to tell us what's happening inside the elder Winchester. This becomes even more apparent after Dean kills Magnus, the Blade singing out to him. Ackles shows us how powerful it is by squeezing his hand tighter around the blade hilt, his expression one of pleasure and pain. The cruel snarl mars his features, showing just how close he's coming to falling under its spell, something not even Magnus could have controlled. Ackles doesn't have to say anything. Instead, he captures all of Dean's heightened feelings beautifully with just his eyes, facial expression, and body langauge. As soon as Sam has convinced him to drop it, we see that pleasure become terror. Now that the Mark of Cain has been truly activated, it'll be interesting to see how Ackles tells Dean's story for the remainder of the season.


Jared Padalecki captured all of Sam's anxiety, irritation, and fear wonderfully in “Blade Runners.” We see it from the very start as Sam sits at the laptop, searching Cain and Abel. It's in how Padalecki sits at the table, the concern on his face as he scrolls. We see it in the gestures. There's too little information for Sam's comfort, and Padalecki shows that brilliantly in the nervous gesture of biting his nails. He also tells us how Sam feels about Crowley being a part of this---both in vocal tone and facial expressions. He's firm about killing Crowley once they acquire the First Blade, and Padalecki makes that clear in how he stresses certain words. He shows all of Sam's irritation with Crowley brilliantly, especially in scenes Padalecki shares with Sheppard. There's an exasperation in his tone as he delivers his lines that adds both comedy and drama all at once. We laugh because he's annoyed with Crowley's antics---but we see through it to know that Sam's scared and anxious for his brother. It's this aspect that Padalecki shows us best. Sam's anxious about what's happening to Dean---and we see it in glances at his brother, in how he approaches each stage of the case, his irritation really a signal that he's apprehensive about getting the weapon, especially once he's been ousted from Magnus's lair. Padalecki makes Sam's frantic search back in seem both restrained and frenetic. Once he's back inside, and we've seen Magnus defeated, Padalecki shows us all of Sam's fear at what's happened to Dean. He's desperate to reach his brother---and it's all in his voice and facial expressions. He breaks our hearts with just the look on his face and the soft tones of his voice. Padalecki punctuates this best in how he says Dean's name, putting everything Sam has into that one word. Once he's managed to break through to Dean, we see Sam's fear---and it'll be interesting to see how Padalecki conveys Sam's story for the remainder of the season.

Best Lines of the Week:

Sam: Did he drunk dial you?

Dean: Demon mitts all over my baby. Oh, come on! Now they're keying cars?

Dean: Hey. Hey! Image! You're the King of Rotten! Act like it!

Sam: Your slimy followers were counting on you to kill Abaddon, and you let them down.

Crowley: Back in this fetid pit. Could have at least added some throw pillows.

Crowley: Turndown service? I'd like a mint on my pillow.

In next week's episode, it looks like things will indeed get darker before they get better for the Winchesters.


Comments  

lkeke35
# lkeke35 2014-03-23 05:13
An excellent review as always, Far Away!

I particularly like the part where you discuss Sam's empathy. It's given me much to think about regarding the brothers approach to being hunters and killing. I once said in a post how Dean knows his truest sense of self when he's killing. On the battlefield ,in the midst of a fight,he is utterly and completely assured of himself and in his rightful element and it's why Cain was so impressed with him. He acts and reacts with feeling and instinct.
It's how he approaches living as well. Unfortunately it's not a great approach to some one like Sam :

Sam is the exact opposite. Sam approaches a battle and life in general through his intellect. He arms himself with as much knowledge as he can and I think the reason why this is is because of his empathy. Feeling what others feel can be overwhelming and a distraction and Sam retreats to his intellect as a way of coping with his emotions and conquering his fears and blocking out other peoples emotions as well. His intellect is the only way he feels any autonomy. Through various mind controls, addictions and possessions, Sam ,the person, keeps being erased and negated but knowledge and intellect can't be erased and so those are Sam's weapons.

But This battle to save Dean is not one that can be fought with knowledge from books as there is none to be had beyond his own personal experiences with addiction and possession. He's going to have to fight this one in a manner he's not used to doing. He's going to have to fight this battle the way Dean fights all his battles, through instinct and emotion . It's as you said, his love and empathy is what will be able to reach Dean as nothing else can just as in this episode.

Thanx for this great review. It has definitely spurred some thinky-thoughts on my end.
Far Away Eyes
# Far Away Eyes 2014-03-23 10:53
Thanks for the great comment!

I think you're absolutely right. Sam relies on information, on knowledge to help him understand his world. I find it intriguing that you say he uses that to create a buffer between himself and others on an emotional level. I agree with that. He needs to protect himself on some level, and that's how he does it.

For this situation, though, Sam can't just do that. He'll have to tap into all his emotions and be able to use them to help Dean now. It won't be an easy road by any means. They still have to work through their issues, but now they have to face this. It'll take everything in both of them to face this one down. I'm hopeful, but anxious. And I think we'll have to see Sam tap deep into his emotions for Dean---undernea th his own anger and hurt over what was done with Gadreel/etc---a nd use those reserves to help his brother.

I'm glad I could give you some thinky thoughts! Thanks again!
lkeke35
# lkeke35 2014-03-23 17:15
Trust me ,I'm not really that insightful. I recognize this in Sam because this is what I do/have done in my personal life. I've spent the past few years integrating these two sides of my personality as they were once quite separate. I recognize that Sam is about to go through this same process of integrating these parts of his personality too. He has to in order to save Dean.
Far Away Eyes
# Far Away Eyes 2014-03-23 18:57
I think you're right. Sam has to do this if he wants to save Dean, and I think we've seen him wanting to do that several times this season. I think it'll be a fascinating journey for both Sam and Dean. It'll give them room to grow and deepen their relationship on the other side, too.
Lilah_Kane
# Lilah_Kane 2014-03-23 06:22
Great review again Far Away,

I always like when you always dissect the characters and the actors in the episodes balanced and researching manner. It is the same like I feel too because the story is about the brothers. Both Dean and Sam make it. If we take one of the brothers away, there is no story, No Supernatural. I loved how you pointed out that Sam might feel helpless because of the mark. That there is not enough information about it for him. Not the important parts. Many of the people that has seen the episode remembers most of all the one sentence Sam says: "Take me to my brother." Sam is frustrated about the situation between them but he is still thinking in my opinion that they can solve it until the Blade and the Mark shows their influence on Dean. Then Sam's mind turns more to fear that he will loose Dean to something else. Something he knows himself so well and how destructing that something is.

As for Dean, I think you struck immediately to the right point with him. The humor from him still in this episode comes from his humane side. Also the fear what he feels when he has held the blade. But the anger and the act when he killed Magnus that was all gone. He was a killing machine. Like Sam with Dean also I have liked that they have taken a more "mature" direction with them and the writers have gone deeper than the surface of their skin this season. Fully making them different kinds of people but connected as family. (Even though they are fighting.)

All the other characters made a good impression too in this episode. It felt they belonged to the story. I hope the rest of the season continues the same way as I am very eager to see where it is going and that people get answers to the questions these few episodes have risen in their mind. The key players of the story feel like they are being under a veil of fog. Like we can't grasp the whole story yet. Like something is hidden with every character. The intentions for some and to viewers and at least me I am anticipating but also fearing like Sam what we will see next.

I wish I could write as well as some of the reviewers do or some of the ones that comment. They make their point out very well when sometimes I am not even sure what I am talking about. Thanks again Faw Away Eyes for your thoughts. :)

- Lilah
Far Away Eyes
# Far Away Eyes 2014-03-23 11:05
Thanks for the comment.

I'm glad you enjoyed this take. I found I had to break this one down by its various characters/stor ies to grasp what it said to me. I'm glad you enjoyed the result.

As I did a rewatch, it struck me that Crowley was helpless and Sam was helpless. It all fell into place as metaphor for their stories. Sam may be struggling still with the aftermath of what happened with Gadreel, but he also loves his brother very much and seeing Dean changed by this is scary. I think it's not just scary, however, because he knows a bit about what Dean may end up feeling/experie ncing considering his own history with the demon blood addiction/use of psychic powers. It'll scares Sam because this is one of the first times in his life that Dean won't be just Dean---somethin g that is beyond either of their controls will be changing his big brother, and that's something that terrifies him. That makes him feel helpless, and I really felt that portion of the story deeply.

I think Dean's still Dean here, but the more he has contact with that Blade and now that the Mark has actually been activated, I think we'll see Dean struggling to fight back to his humanity. It's something he's never really had to do before. I think he'll need Sam's help on this one---although I think it will try to divide the Winchesters even more, making Dean angrier and in turn Sam react with an anger based in fear. It's going to get worse before it gets better---but I do have faith in Sam and Dean. I really do. They have to pull together on this one.

Each character had a poignant role in this episode---ones that I would have missed if they hadn't been there. I'm always amazed how well the story can wrap itself around the brothers even when we're not seeing their story directly on screen in those moments. Both Crowley and Magnus did that for me here. It made me appreciate Sam and Dean's story all the more because those stories gave them context.

Thanks so much again for the great comment! I got everything!
lkeke35
# lkeke35 2014-03-23 17:23
Back in season seven Dean told Sam to think of him as "stone number one". But all he really was doing was reminding. Sam that Dean has always been Sam's rock. Dean has always been ,for Sam as consistent and reliable as the sunrise. The car, the music, his love of pie. Now I think Sam is more than a little terrified that he is going to have to be the rock now. He's going to have to be Deans stone and it's a new role for him.

Also. Dean has never had to fight to be who he is. He just was who he was. Sam has been fighting to establish his identity from day one, especially in the presence of such massive personalities like. Dean and John. It's the reason that he finds it so easy to quit the hunting life or go to Stanford . He is well in the habit of decidin/ knowing what he wants and pursuing it. It's the reason that he's able to bounce back so much easier after being possessed or having his personality erased by some outside force. Dean, not so much. this is something that Sam will have to teach him to do
Far Away Eyes
# Far Away Eyes 2014-03-23 19:00
Absolutely. Dean has always been Dean. Despite all his growth and development over the years, his essential core has remained more or less the same. He's Dean. This is the first time that Sam will watch his brother become something else or change from that fundamental self. I think it's going to be difficult at first for Sam to help his brother.

I think it'll be interesting to see Dean have to struggle for his own identity, too. He'll have to turn to Sam to find a way to cope with that. It'll be a roller coaster ride for certain. I look forward to seeing just how both brothers end up working on this portion of the story.
mary9930
# mary9930 2014-03-23 09:56
Excellent as always Far Away Eyes. At first I thought you had your blinders on about Crowley. Crowley wants to be human & feels some need to bond with the Winchesters?? Then I realized that in no way diminishes him as a threat. He can be just as conniving, evil, & dangerous while wanting those things. Maybe even more dangerous. At least that was my take on what you said. Crowley the ultimate frenemy
Far Away Eyes
# Far Away Eyes 2014-03-23 11:09
Thanks for the comment.

Oh no. I don't think Crowley's ever going to be a good guy or totally on their side. He is a "frenemy" of the highest order. He's still the King of Hell, and that means he's out for Crowley and to torture/kill/co mmit evil. I think we'll see him flip back and forth between wanting to be their allies/friends and being the evil mastermind we know he can be. I think that's what has always made Crowley an interesting character. He's always had one foot in the camp of the Winchesters---g iving them the Colt for instance---and one foot out as their enemy---killing their friends, plotting to get the Tablets, etc---so we never know which Crowley we're gonna get. It makes it very difficult for Sam and Dean to trust him, too! I can't wait to see what he does next, to be honest.

Thanks again!
lkeke35
# lkeke35 2014-03-23 17:36
Oh I think in the past he was fairly predictable. He does really really like the Winchesters and he never underestimates them and he's seen them take down some pretty "heavy hitters" hitters bigger than him and so when he was fully demonic he learned to keep his distance from them except when he needed them or could get something out of them. He only ever messed with them when the Winchesters made a point of stepping on his toes or disrupting his plans, and then never made the mistake of attacking them directly but through proxies like Bobby, Meg ,Kevin or Cas. Now that he's partly human is now that he's become truly unpredictable because we have no idea when his humanity might decide to come into play. But he's always liked them. I think his new emotions are pushing him to form bonds of intimacy with human beings and the Winchesters are the closest ones to him.
Far Away Eyes
# Far Away Eyes 2014-03-23 19:03
In some ways, I think you're right. Crowley's always managed to use the Winchesters to eliminate big players that threaten him. It's how we met him. He wanted Lucifer gone, so he gives them the Colt. When that fails, he helps them find Death. But I think it's always hard to know just when Crowley will flip from ally to enemy, and that's always made him unpredictable.

I do think that he'll become much more so because he'll feel more like Crowley one moment and more human the next. That'll confuse him and his actions greatly. I think it'll make for a fascinating story for Crowley and how he'll relate to the Winchesters. He does want to be their friend/ally/par tner, but he also wants them to remove Abaddon so he can be the big bad of Hell again. It's gonna be fun.
lkeke35
# lkeke35 2014-03-23 17:36
Oh I think in the past he was fairly predictable. He does really really like the Winchesters and he never underestimates them and he's seen them take down some pretty "heavy hitters" hitters bigger than him and so when he was fully demonic he learned to keep his distance from them except when he needed them or could get something out of them. He only ever messed with them when the Winchesters made a point of stepping on his toes or disrupting his plans, and then never made the mistake of attacking them directly but through proxies like Bobby, Meg ,Kevin or Cas. Now that he's partly human is now that he's become truly unpredictable because we have no idea when his humanity might decide to come into play. But he's always liked them. I think his new emotions are pushing him to form bonds of intimacy with human beings and the Winchesters are the closest ones to him.
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2014-03-23 12:00
I think that Crowely orchestrated this whole set up. In the park when they met with the go between there was a shot of Crowely in the foreground. He was leaning back acting like this was going exactly according to his plan. He had a lot of time in that dungeon and I don't think he was just sitting there waiting for his next fix. His brush with humanity may still play a part but I don't think it was Ababadons minions that injured Baby. Even in the house/zoo Crowely was standing in the background watching to see how the blade was affecting Dean. Crowely is letting the Winchesters take him exactly where he wants them to go. Crowely never does anything that doesn't benefit Crowely. And it is nice to see Sam getting on the not trusting The King of Hell band wagon. I am sure that Sarah is still pretty fresh in Sam's mind not to mention what the blade is doing to Dean. And since when does summoning not work. I mean cell phones? Really?
FarAwayEyes your reviews are the perfect read for a Sunday morning. Thank you.
Far Away Eyes
# Far Away Eyes 2014-03-23 12:21
Thanks for the comment.

I think you might be right about Crowley--to a point. I think Abaddon was in hot pursuit of the First Blade. I don't know if Crowley had someone else key up Baby, but I won't totally dismiss it. We know Abaddon knows that the Blade is out there again, and she wouldn't want Crowley or the Winchesters to get it. How fast she was at pursuing, we don't know just yet. I do think those were her goons at the vault. I see Crowley doing more smooth talk than smash and grab there. However, I do think Crowley knew more than he was telling. I think Crowley is totally getting the Winchesters to do his dirty work for him. He wants Abaddon out of the way, what better way than to make his enemy do all the work for him! I won't be surprised if we find out that he was really pushing Sam and Dean around---and I think Sam already can see that it's happening. Dean may be clouded with the Mark and the Blade now, but it's clear that Sam's wary of anything and everything Crowley's doing. I can't wait to see how that plays out in the end.

I'm glad I could make your Sunday a good one! Thanks again!
strawhair
# strawhair 2014-03-24 00:31
Wonderful review. I've been enjoying your pieces a lot.

Crowley has been showing a softer side, raising the possibility that he's become more human emotionally, even if he's technically still a demon. And that could be a problem for him and the Winchesters. If he doesn't pass muster with the angry and cruel denizens of Hell, even removing Abaddon from the picture might not be enough to get him his old job back. This could be quite the power vacuum.
Far Away Eyes
# Far Away Eyes 2014-03-24 07:24
Thanks for the comment.

I think you might be right about the aftermath---som ewhat. If Crowley's really that changed by his human blood addiction by the time they do kill Abaddon, it's possible someone in her group may step in to take her place and rally to the top. Or, several of them could jockey for power and push back and forth with Crowley constantly putting out fires and never really gaining that control he used to have. Knowing Crowley, he's probably already thinking some of these things on some level, so it'll be interesting to see how he responds to that.

Thanks again!
E
# E 2014-03-24 06:11
Hi Far Away Eyes,
Wonderful review as always. I appreciate the depth and attention to detail. Your reviews always make me want to watch the episode again. I think you are pretty much dead on here about where each of the brothers are. I am half convinced that Crowley and Gadreel are in cahoots to pull a long con; maybe they have concocted a scheme between them that allows Crowley to get control of hell through killing Abbadon and Gadreel to get control of heaven through killing Metatron. I guess I feel that because it seems to me that Crowley is up to something much larger than just getting rid of a rival; this seems bigger than that, and we have all these other unfinished story lines, so it wouldn't surprise me if they all get drawn together somehow.

I am loving the MoC storyline but I am concerned that the crisis that it causes will force the brothers to put their issues on the back burner and when this crisis is over it will all get swept under the rug per usual, never allowing Sam any resolution to his very real, very valid problems with how Dean operates where he's concerned. I am worried that he'll be so relieved that Dean has been saved that he'll do exactly what Dean wants, to put a couple of "W's" in the win column and move on, never addressing any of the issues between them, leaving the door open for all the dysfunctional and destructive behavior to continue. I am worried that Sam's feelings will never be validated by Dean or the fandom and he'll continue to be seen as the brother who was "mean to Dean and doesn't care about him," which is how a large segment of the fandom is viewing him now. It will be another instance in a loooooong line of 'Dean is right and Sam is ungrateful,' which is becoming tiresome in the extreme IMO and has been going on in one form or another since season 1. Just when I think the brothers are going to FINALLY get into it, begin to hash out their crap, along comes the next crisis to push it all under the rug, and so here we are, nine years later, still trying to deal with the SAME issues and getting nowhere.
Far Away Eyes
# Far Away Eyes 2014-03-24 07:39
Thanks for the comment.

I don't know that Crowley and Gadreel are working together. I don't see Gadreel being smart enough to work against Metatron that way. If he is, it's all because of Crowley, but I don't know if I see that happening. It is possible that Crowley's trying to do much more than regain his throne. I do see him having a bigger picture in mind. That tends to be how he operates. What you see on the surface isn't always what you get. He's always holding back another scheme that gets him much more.

As for Sam and Dean working their way through their issues, I actually they may have to work through their issues while dealing with the Mark of Cain/First Blade. I see them having many conversations or situations where they have to face some of the anger between them. The only reason I say that is because of the brief preview for this week's episode. It looked like the brothers were going to be a bit contentious. I'm hopeful they can do both things.

Thanks again.
Bluepony
# Bluepony 2014-03-24 09:09
Far Away Eyes I want to thank you for your review. I've waited to comment because I needed to read a couple of times and think about what you stated here. I at first thought you were giving Crowley too much credit on the "human high" he is on. But as a poster up thread stated this doesn't lessen his ability to be treacherous it probable enhances it. This could lull both Dean and Sam into thinking Crowley is off his game when in reality he is being a master manipulator. Hopefully Sam will stick to his distrust because I'm not so sure Dean will be able too.

I also think that Sam is going to have to step up and find a way to communicate with Dean if he wants to save his brother. Dean has built so many walls to protect himself after the one-sided "purge" that he may not listen to his partner no matter what is said. Hopefully, Carver will allow both Dean and Sam to "walk a mile in the other brothers shoes". This could be an eye opener for both and a way to communicate to heal the rift between the two. As this episode showed, they both care deeply for each other. They just can't talk to each other right now.

Finally, I wanted to think you for your insight into the episodes. Science I understand and love. So at times I take these episodes at face value. The beginning of your article was like reading poetry. I could immediately picture the concept you were trying to convey. Your review adds so much and I have to slow down and think about what Carver is trying to tell us with this story. I am already so excited about this season but you have added to the enjoyment of this show.
Far Away Eyes
# Far Away Eyes 2014-03-24 16:46
Thanks so much for the comment.

I'm glad you enjoyed my take on this episode. I don't think Crowley's totally human, nor do I see him as being trustworthy by any means. I think you're right. It'll take Sam being vigilant against Crowley. I think he sees the King of Hell for what he is: a serpent in the grass. Dean will be angry after Crowley's theft of the First Blade, but I see him working with the demon easily again. Sam will have to be the one to pull him back on this one. That being said, I do think Crowley truly has bonded with both Sam and Dean and he sees himself as their friend/ally---e ven if that comes with conditions that it has to benefit him. I think he also enjoys the emotions this "human high" has given him, and it seems to have shifted something inside him.

I think you're onto something. I do see both brothers having to walk a mile in the other's shoes. I think it's possibly the only way they might survive this one as individuals and as brothers. They do care deeply for one another. I'm hopeful to see how this will develop in the long run. They may need this role reversal to really complete their purge.

I'm glad you liked my opening paragraph so much. I was just in the process of shedding all my winter gear after we had another spurt of cold after a few warmer days, and it hit me how the layers are falling away in both the boring real life and in the show's story structure. I'm kind of your opposite. I love science, but I don't always understand it or know how to follow it. I earned a Creative Writing degree for a reason. Story is what I love. I do hope I'll be able to enrich the show more for you in these little reviews for the remainder of the season.

Thanks again.
Sylvie
# Sylvie 2014-03-24 09:19
Thanks for another great essay. I really, really liked this episode. I've watched it a few times now, and it frightens me more with every viewing. Everyone was worried about the effect of the blade on Dean, but boy, that was intense to say the least. The look on both Sam & Dean's faces after he killed Magnus was one of sheer terror. I think the fact that Cain threw the blade into the deepest ocean is pretty telling. Even the furthest away from the person wearing the mark, it's blood lust still calls to them. And his deal in giving Dean the mark was for him to come find him and kill him. That means that Dean would become the new Cain, wandering the earth alone because humanity has rejected him. :( I think both Dean & Sam are starting to realize this. The whole situation is actually giving me goose bumps.

I also think Crowley is feeling his humanity, kind of like Cass is remembering what he felt like when he was human. Although Crowley never did become human, he was pretty darn close to it, and like he said to Sam, they did indeed sheer a "mo" back in the Church. Sam also knows first had what can happen if you trust a demon too much and he wants to make sure Dean doesn't let himself get too close to Crowley. Even though the only way would be to kill him, I surely hope they don't, he's way too entertaining. :P

Next week also looks like it's going to be a good one. I can't believe we are almost at the end of this season.
Far Away Eyes
# Far Away Eyes 2014-03-24 16:53
Thanks for the comment.

I'm glad you enjoyed this one. I'm frightened for the brothers. I don't know if killing Cain will make Dean his successor, but that's a scary thought. I think it's key that Dean has Sam while Cain's brother was already dead. From Cain's story---at least how he tells it---we know that he went through with it so his brother would be in Heaven. I think that things may have ended differently for Cain if Abel had lived. I still see Sam and Dean fixing the mistake Cain and Abel made all those eons ago. They have to fight this as a unit, and I have hope that they can do just that.

I don't want them to kill Crowley, either. I know it may happen, but I can't imagine him not running around making deals at this point. I don't want Sam and Dean to trust him too much, but I like that Crowley's always got the snark and the smarts. You love to hate him and hate to love him.

I can't either. It just seemed like it started, no?

Thanks again
amyh
# amyh 2014-03-24 09:26
I loved your opening parapgraph. It was beautiful and poetic and really grabbed me. The rest of your review was just an beautiful and insightful. It made me think. I think Crowley is a master manipulator and he has a very deep, complex con going on and he has strings on both winchesters. Crowly is the entire cast of "The Sting". I hope Sam doesn't forget that Crowly killed Sarah. She doesn't deserve to be forgotten so easily.

I'm in love with the comments by Ikeke35 and Lialah Kane. I hope the writers think lkke they do. However I do have E's worries that the issues will be swept under the rug.

That said......i think Sam has already forgiven Dean just hasn't spoken it outloud because he and Dean DO NEED to change things within their relationship.
Far Away Eyes
# Far Away Eyes 2014-03-24 17:01
Thanks for the comment.

I'm glad you enjoyed that opening paragraph so much.

I think Crowley's conning both the Winchesters and himself to a degree. I think he wants them to think he's out of touch with his evil side somewhat, and will use that to his advantage, but I also think he's buying into the human feelings that have been stirred up in him. He genuinely feels those emotions and wants more of them, but he also wants to be the King of Hell and evil and cruel. If he can use this blood addiction of his and the emotions that are connected to them to tug especially Dean around, he will. I don't think any of Crowley's sins should be easily forgiven or forgotten, either.

I have a lot of hope that this situation will actually give the Winchesters a reason to face their issues. It might be what saves Dean in the end---and in turn their brotherly unit.

I think you're right. Sam has forgiven Dean somewhat. I don't know if he's totally forgiven him, but I think he either has or is teetering on doing so. I think he is afraid to say anything for fear it'll prevent them from fixing things that need fixing.

Thanks again!
lkeke35
# lkeke35 2014-03-24 12:50
I went back and watched this episode again and I don't know if anyone noticed this but the second time Dean held The First Blade, there was a HUM. It was loud but still low key enough that you could hear Sam speaking. I thought that was an interesting sound effect.

Also, when Magnus diapparated Sam, the first thing Dean says after the commercial break is, "What did you do to my brother?" Bookended later by Sam saying almost the exact same thing when he gets back into the Lair.( I'm totally feeling the love here ,guys!)
Far Away Eyes
# Far Away Eyes 2014-03-24 17:03
I watched this episode on my old cable provider live so it was a bit 1980s fuzzy and low grade sound---but when I did watch it on the CW site on my new cable provider (I lost all my DVR episodes), I DID notice that. It was very obvious and awesome. I just don't know if that noise was in Dean's head or if everyone heard that,.

I also loved that Sam and Dean basically told Magnus what for. He deserved it. I think it's another clue that they're far closer to fixing things than they even realize they are.

Thanks again.
nightsky
# nightsky 2014-03-24 13:25
Excellent analysis! I very much enjoy your insights. Really deep thinking that adds to my enjoyment of the show! We seem to always have similar observations, but we come at it from different angles. Fun!
Far Away Eyes
# Far Away Eyes 2014-03-24 17:05
Thanks so much for the comment.

I'm glad you enjoyed my insights on this one.

Thanks again!