Repeat after me: “I will not panic about the bargain that Sam is making with Rowena. I believe (i.e. hope) Sam will not do something cataclysmic with the Book of the Damned. I will take each episode one at a time. I am not going to panic. I am NOT going to worry about this.”

Is it working?

Yeah, not for me either.

I loved “Book of the Damned”. It was unexpected, sharp, dynamic, intense, emotional and fun…until the very end, when my heart stopped (figuratively speaking of course).

This episode was outstanding partly because of the excellent pairings and chemistry between actors – Metatron’s overbearing, sarcastic wit played against Castiel’s (Misha’s) deadpan expressions;

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Charlie’s non-threatening empathy paired with Sam’s terror over what is happening with his brother;

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Styne’s confidence delivered through a Louisiana drawl going up against Dean’s menacing delivery of lethal fighting skills.

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The direction was also outstanding, for example, when Dean got absorbed in the book, and the audience lost time as Dean mysteriously ended up with the Book in a different room of the cabin (Jared compared it to Frodo getting lost in the world of the One Ring. Great visual!).

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That was an intense scene with very little dialogue but it will become the signature scene for this episode. It was also somewhat reprised later when Sam caught Dean staring at the book.

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Then there was the Castiel’s exciting and dramatic reemergence as a full-fledged, singed-wing angel! Outstanding! Books blown off the shelves, celestial level event!

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While the casting, acting and directing were exceptional, it was all based on a script that was superbly written by Robbie Thompson. Unexpected and provocative twists in the plot kept the audience deeply involved in the story - the close of Castiel’s almost two season long search for his grace; the flashback that revealed what really happened when Sam switched the books; and Sam approaching Rowena. Of course, the episode was full of touching emotional scenes that are a mainstay for Supernatural - Dean’s honesty and self-knowledge that allowed him to openly talk about his situation; the wonderful, long awaited insights into Sam’s thoughts, and the confrontations between the boys about the wounds that they’ve ignored for so long. 

And rock music. Classic, epic rock songs. They are as much a part of Supernatural as Sam, Dean and the Impala. The music is the emotional hook that pulls me in and hold me tight in Supernatural’s endless embrace.

All these things combined to make a spectacular installment in Supernatural’s distinguished history.  The episode will be one of my favorites, for all these reasons, but also because it was steeped in myth arc. I love the long story, the mythology, the suspense and the mystery (you might have guessed that by the fact that I write about it every week!). “The Book of the Damned” advanced and introduced fundamentally new plotlines for Supernatural.

MoC

Starting with the simplest thread presented in this episode (who ever thought we would say that the Mark of Cain was the simplest subject we’d have to tackle??), Dean finally acknowledged as canon a MoC attribute we’ve been discussing.
Charlie: So you’re giving up?
Dean: No, I’m not giving up! Charlie, I don’t have a death wish. Even if I did, I can’t die, not with this thing on my arm.

It’s as if Robbie has a list of all the loopholes or ambiguities that were created in prior episodes then makes it his business to add one line of dialogue to clarify the relevant canon going forward. Thank you Robbie. We appreciate your endless, faithful dedication to the details of the story.  Actually, though, Dean did die at the end of season 9. The Mark transformed his soul and hijacked his body to make Dean a demon, then Sam repaired Dean’s soul and restored his humanity to resuscitate Dean back to life, so Dean's existence cannot be extinguished because he is locked in an endless loop of death and resurrection.

I also sensed a new voice from Dean. I’m calling it the DemonDean voice. When he told Jacob, “Well I ain’t your friend”, did he sound like Demon Dean to you or was it just me?

On the surface, this episode depicted just another failed attempt to rid Dean of the MoC.  In reality, though, “The Book of the Damned” was a pivotal turning point in Supernatural’s mythology. It introduced one more ancient text into the Supernatural world, a book written in blood on skin that seems to be on the same cataclysmic scale as the Colt that could open the gates of hell, the angel tablet that could evict all the residents of heaven, or the demon tablet that could close the gates of hell.
Charlie: The Book of the Damned is a spell book for creating or undoing any kind of damnation there is. [italics added for emphasis]

The exposition of book’s apocalyptic power was reinforced by everyone who spoke of it. Everyone seemed to be afraid of it:
Charlie: According to the notes I found, it’s been owned and used by cults, covens, and the Vatican had it for a while. There is spell inside that thing for everything. Talking some black mass dark magic, end-of-times nastiness.


Dean: Sam, read the file. The way the book works is when you use it there is a negative reaction. I’m talking biblical negative. Dark magic always comes with a price. We know that. We’ve been down that road before. …You guys don’t understand. The book’s been calling out to me ever since I laid eyes on it. It’s been calling out to the mark. I can hear it like it’s alive. It wants me to use it, but not for good.


Jacob Styne:  “The book can remove that mark but you mess around with that? You’re gonna do far more harm than good.

…everyone that is, except Sam. To be fair, he probably IS afraid of it, but not nearly as much as he fears losing Dean. In the same episode where the Demon Tablet is put back into play, Charlie and the brothers have uncovered a new apocalyptic danger that will probably be explored across multiple seasons. Since Dean is the one in danger, he isn’t willing to open this Pandora’s Box to save his life:
Dean: It’s calling to me Sam, ok? I can hear it. It’s calling to the mark. It wants me to take the book and run away with it. Burn it. Now! Sam, burn it Now!

In reviewing the threads introduced in “Paint it Black” I speculated that Sam’s defiance when Dean ordered him to burn the diary was very important. Sam did not obediently burn the book, but instead saved it, translated it, read it and found the cure he needed. That act, as it turns out, foreshadowed Sam once again finding himself in the exact same situation. He was ordered to burn a book that he alone believes is the key to defeating a supernatural killer (the MoC).

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The stakes are much higher this time but when Sam previously refused to obey Dean and burn a book, Sam saved innocents and ended a reign of supernatural terror. Will his stubborn independence again save everyone? I draw hope from that example. Maybe it means that Sam holding onto the Book of the Damned will have good consequences? (…“I will NOT worry about Sam’s actions …”)

Witchcraft

Beyond the cataclysmic portents that surround the book, two other things were introduced in this episode that were particularly interesting. First, the book has been used by covens before. That introduced the context that powerful, learned, skilled witches, like Rowena, would probably be able to decipher and use the spells it contains. Again, the plot emphasized witchcraft. Obviously Sam picked up on this detail given the preview of next week’s episode (“…I will only worry about one episode at a time...”). An obvious concern, however, is that in looking through the book to find the cure for ancient curses, Rowena will also learn ancient curses and “end-of-times nastiness”. In “Paint it Black, Rowena said “I’m capable of greatness. Given free reign, I’d be unstoppable.” Sam’s projection that they’ll deal with the consequences later may very well be the set up for season 11.

Monsters and their Families

The second thing that was interesting was that in addition to Dean being able to “hear” the book, Jacob Styne also seemed to be able to listen to its call, first in the alley when he was chasing Charlie, then more conspicuously at the gas station when he told his muscled goon to “shhhh” because Jacob had lost the book’s trail. The Men of Letters may have known about cult families that span the centuries, but we did not. This episode introduced not only a family who has masterminded some of the worse evil in human history, but they also seem to have some kind of super powers (don’t die easily and hear cursed books) and they will "never stop looking for that book”. I believe we have just met the next species of monster that the boys will battle in future seasons.  The enemy are humans, organized by the endlessly powerful force that motivates the Winchester boys – family. In a way, this is the “Bloodlines” story redone – ancient families that operate in the shadows manipulating history for their own power and preservation.

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The episode also brought to a climax the long examination of how families react when they learn of the supernatural. Some use the supernatural to save their family members (Sam, Dean, werewolf girl), some betray their families to use the supernatural for their own individual power (Rowena, vampire hippie girl, werewolf girl’s sister), some try to ignore and stave off the supernatural (“Ask Jeeves” family), while some it seems, use the supernatural as a weapon to control and elevate their family to power. This episode did more than introduce a new nemesis for the brothers. It elevated a theme, a thread, that has been at the core of Supernatural since its beginning – family – and will focus not only on the good that family can do but also the harm they can do when the blood is the connection not to salvation and strength but to corruption and evil. It also will delve deeper into the idea that humans can be just as bad as any supernatural monster the boys have had to hunt.

The construct of a family was also explored by our ostracized angels:
Castiel: No more of our brothers and sisters should die.

Metatron: brothers and sisters? Listen to you. Still spitting out the company line like anyone cares. Like we’re actually a family, when what we really are are a bunch of glowing lights filled with self-loathing or delusions of grandeur, or both.

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Castiel draws strength and his moral compass from the idea that he is bound to the other angels by birthright if not blood. Metatron, whose only moral compass is arguably his own self-interest, rejects the entire concept that angels are capable of kinship. The point seems to be that our heroes are heroes because of their belief and loyalty to the best ideals of a family. It is not only worth fighting for, it provides their personal strength and code of conduct. Obviously, both brothers intensely subscribe to this tenet, yet they are still struggling to believe that the other brother’s actions are always guided by love. The following emotional exchange between the brothers carried the weight of Dean’s vision of his only possible future, Sam’s emotional cascade into desperation, Dean’s continued wounded belief that he is alone in his pain and Sam’s denial and disbelief that his loving actions are still outweighed by his past hurtful words:
Dean: But what I can do is fight it as long as I can until…
Sam: until what? Tell me. Until what, Dean? Until I watch you become a demon again? Until then? I can’t do that. I won’t do that.
Dean: Then you’ll just have to lock me up. Bind me to the bunker like you did last time.
Sam: Look, just let us translate the book, okay? If there’s a cure, we’ll do it and deal with the consequences later. I can’t lose you.
Dean: Really?
Sam: Yeah Really.
Dean: You change your mind on that ‘cause that’s not what you said last time.
Sam: Oh come on man. You know I didn’t mean…
Dean: This is my cross to bear Sam. Mine. And that book is not the answer. Now we got to destroy it before it falls into the wrong hands, and that includes me!

The brothers desperately need each other, they rely on each other for their lives, they love each other above all else, but they still don’t feel that love in return.

Saving People

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That reference to the brother’s isolation didn’t go unnoticed by Charlie. Her neutral presence allowed a touching, heartwarming, troubling epilogue of the brothers’ emotional quagmire:
Charlie: What did Dean mean when he said you changed your mind?
Sam: So, a while back we had a chance to close the gates of hell and in order to do that, I would have had to die and I was Ok with that and AM ok with that, but Dean was not and so he uh…
Charlie: He saved you.
Sam: Yeah, he saved me.
Charlie: and let me guess: In doing so he did something you didn’t want and that pissed you off and you said something that hurt him?
Sam: Yeah, that sounds about right.
Charlie: Brothers!

Sam: …. I guess I really understand now that this is my life. I love it but I can’t do it without my brother. I don’t want to do it without my brother. If he’s gone then I’m…

There ain’t no me if there ain’t no you. It seems to go both ways now.

I know that some fans are concerned that this ratifies the belief that Dean’s season 9 actions were justified and Sam was ungrateful. I don’t see it that way. The only thing acknowledged in this dialogue was that Sam said something that hurt Dean and Dean hasn’t forgotten it. Sam’s reflection of history restated the facts accurately.

1. Dean did save Sam’s life. The dialog doesn’t address whether it was right or wrong, but the outcome was that Sam did not die.
2. Dean did something that Sam didn’t want. Absolutely true.
3. Sam said something that hurt Dean. Yeah, that does sound about right.

We are all responsible for our own actions. Dean’s actions may have warranted an outburst from Sam. Sam may have been absolutely justified in lashing out, or maybe in his angered state Sam truly believed he would never save Dean in a way that was expressly against his known wishes (foreshadowing of what might be coming). How we are goaded, pushed, angered or frustrated into something might explain what we do but doesn’t excuse what we do. Sam did say things that were deeply hurtful and he needs to own that. He can apologize or help Dean understand that that is not how he truly feels. That is on Sam. IN ADDITION, Dean needs to own what he did to Sam and apologize for the lying and blatant disregard for Sam’s wishes, however well-intentioned Dean’s actions were. Again, his desperation explains his actions but doesn’t excuse them. That is on Dean. They each need to take responsibility for their part of the debacle that is still plaguing them both. Sam is now desperate to save his brother, because he feels the love he didn’t profess before. Dean is still hurting so he passive-aggressively, continually, reminds Sam that he disappointed him, repeatedly hurting the person Dean tried so hard to save.


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No one knows what it's like
To be the bad man, to be the sad man
Behind blue eyes

No one knows what it's like
To be hated, to be fated
To telling only lies

But my dreams, they aren't as empty
As my conscience seems to be
I have hours, only lonely
My love is vengeance that's never free

No one knows what it's like
To feel these feelings like I do
And I blame you

No one bites back as hard
On their anger, none of my pain and woe
Can show through

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- Who - Behind Blue Eyes Lyrics | MetroLyrics

Boys, the fact is, despite your reasons, you each hurt the other. It doesn’t matter who hurt who the most. You were each both right and wrong. Seek redemption for where you were wrong and forgive for where you were right. Maturity means recognizing and accepting emotional responsibility. If the brothers are supposed to be maturing, do you think they’ll heal from “The Purge” by the end of season 10 (probably at the moment of pending death again?) Do you think we’ll ever see the end of this ping pong match of saving each other at all costs?

Castiel and Heaven

This episode focused a spotlight on Castiel’s form of existence. Metatron first brought it up in the diner: 
Metatron: You were human. Don’t you miss the feeling of all of this? Like the taste of these waffles. The sound of a child’s laughter. Look at us. We’re a couple of angels who have touched not only the divine but the mundane.

This reminder of Castiel’s transient mortality laid the foundation for the more important diatribe that came later:
Metatron: If I’m going to die, I want answers. Like: Who are you now? You are obviously not an Angel of the Lord. And what about all of this walking the earth, like Kane from KungFu crap, cleaning up Heaven’s messes? How many more rogue angels are there out there? What are you going to do once you’re done with all that? Go back to Heaven? Please! The Angel formerly known as Hannah has restored order up top. Smoothest it’s run since God cut the ribbon on the pearly gates. So tell me, Castiel, truly, what is your mission now?

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That is the question, isn’t it? Fans have been asking it for a while now. Where are they going with Castiel’s story? This filled me with foreboding.  Are they asking these questions to reignite Castiel’s mission in “life”? He has been wandering aimlessly (ala Kane) for a while now. A new direction is needed and would be very welcome. His subsequent transfiguration back into a fully charged angel, powered by his own grace was a fabulous reward for his (and our) patience! I am still worried, though. I can’t dismiss Cain’s (the other Cain) prediction of Castiel’s death (“…I will not worry about things that have not yet happened, and may not happen….”). Here’ hoping for a newly energized, morally centered, smarter-from-his-experiences, Castiel.

Stories, Confessions and the Truth

Appropriately, Metatron was the person who reminded us of that stories are a recurring theme this season:
Metatron: I’ve always loved lyrics, words, stories.
Yet, ironically, Dean was the person who displayed a dedication to the truth. He continued his new found confessional skills (ala “Paint it Black”) and furthered his pursuit of redemption through heartfelt apologies (ala “There’s No Place Like Home”):
Dean: “Anyway, I’m sorry. I probably should have told you that.”
Sam: Uh, yeah.

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I really, really hope that the continued placement and use of the thread of truth and redemption means that the boys will be honest with each other about their feelings and begin to feel the love and support they both give so freely.

So

“The Book of the Damned” masterfully launched new mythology that will take us well into and beyond season 11.  It was a wonderful, brilliant kismet of writing, acting and direction; myth arc, emotion and action that will place it with Supernatural’s very best episodes. It made me a happy fan… until I saw that stupid preview of next week…

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Curiosities

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  - “The Pirates of the Caribbean” compass! Loved that it could tap into the Book. Great job by the props department.

  - “Gambit” Styne and Benny must come from the same part of the bayou. Love the accent!

  - Robert Singer must be building his resume for voiceovers. Great voice!

  - Can you even believe that “The Boys are Back in Town” has never been on Supernatural?? It is a tradition at all conventions and is so perfect for the brothers and the Js. I was sure it came from the show!

What are your thoughts on the brother’s emotional state? Do you think Sam was justified in saving the book? How do you think Castiel will reinvent himself now that he his quest for health and wholeness has been achieved? Are you more worried or hopeful for the rest of the season’s developments? 

Images courtesy of www.screencapped.net


Comments  

njspnfan
# njspnfan 2015-04-18 16:05
Hi Nightskly - sigh, I'm working on a beautiful spring day here on the east coast. Just noticed you posted a new Threads article. Some questions, comments, and concerns.

Dean - very heavy on the anvils with Dean's dedication to the truth. This was designed to stand in stark contrast to Sam and Castiel's lies and deception. However, he does continue to withhold what Cain told him, that Dean will end up killing Castiel and Sam. This MoC thing is confusing me because they're all over the map on its effects on Dean. They keep telling us it is getting worse but we're really not seeing that, other than the nightmares.

Castiel - I'm glad he finally got his grace back but Metatron did ask the question of the episode; what exactly is Castiel's mission now? Will Castiel try to make amends for some of his past transgressions, is he now dedicated to finding a way to save Dean?

Metatron - why did he want the demon tablet? Didn't he write it in the first place? Or can power be derived by the holder of the demon tablet, just as it could be from the angel tablet?

I liked the introduction of the Styne family; this might have worked, and may still work, as a spin off in place of Bloodlines.

Sam is facing a no-win scenario, his own version of the Kobayashi Maru. Dean hasn't forgiven Sam for not looking for him in purgatory, nor has he forgiven him for the things he said mid-season 9 after Gadreel was expelled. So Sam is damned if he goes to extremes to save Dean, and damned if he doesn't. Maybe that's why he hung on to the Book of the Damned, because he thought it was his autobiography :):) This sudden dedication to the hunting life is also kind of out of left field, isn't it?

The Book of the Damned should have been destroyed. I know a lot of fans really like the over-romanticiz ed version of the Winchesters, that they stop at nothing to save each other, but I was hoping part of Carver's "maturing of the brother's relationship" would be that the word NO does need to enter in to the equation at some point. I fear we are heading towards another end of S4, where Sam ends up breaking the world; no lessons learned whatsoever, and S11 is a repeat of S5, with them trying to clean up Sam's mess. I hope that's not the case, but they have been repeating a lot of themes from the Kripke years.

I often wondered what Dean would have done if going in to it, he was aware that someone close to him would die as a result of saving Sam at the start of Season 9?

On a positive note, they are certainly opening up some interesting story possibilities for S11.
Barbara Maake
# Barbara Maake 2015-04-18 19:50
Hi njspnfan. It WAS a beautiful day here in the northeast, and another one in store for tomorrow. Sorry, that has nothing to do with SPN but damn, it feels good. Anyway I was wondering, and speculating, the same thing as you about the demon tablet; why does the ostensible author of the tablet need it, and can it give power to whoever possesses it? I actually feel fairly confident that it will factor into the finale, otherwise why bring it back into play?

Also, I LOVE the Kobayashi maru reference- die hard ST fan here (original version only! no next generation for me). It is a very apt description of poor Sam's lot in life. Or as Charlie Brown says, "everything I touch gets ruined!" He really is like poor Charlie Brown, and Dean is like Lucy, forever pulling the football away at the last minute. Although I loved your hypothesis that:

Quote:
Maybe that's why he hung on to the Book of the Damned, because he thought it was his autobiography :):)
I laughed loudly at that and scared my dog.

I agree that the supposed "maturation" arc has been completely abandoned at this point, because TPTB changed their minds last year and decided that the angel possession wasn't such a bad thing after all. What bothers me is that I thought Kripke had made that maturation part of HIS 5 year arc, the resolution being that Sam, with Dean's grudging OK, went to hell to rectify his mistakes. Maybe Carver is accordioning the maturation into next season along with the MOC.

Finally, I'm torn about the prospect of Sam breaking the world again. Sure, it will set him up as the object of everyone's (i.e. Dean's) scorn and censure, but if it will actually give him something to do next year, an actual role in the story, I might prefer that to another miserable year of playing Where's Waldo/Sam? every episode. OK I'm done rambling on.
nightsky
# nightsky 2015-04-20 07:56
NJSPNFAN, As far as Dean not telling the truth about Cain's prediction, I believe it is just too painful for him to talk about it. Maybe he believes that the idea that he would kill those closest to him is so preposterous that he doesn't deem it possible. Maybe he thinks he just won't allow it to happen, e.g.would kill himself before he would kill them. Maybe he's ashamed because he believes it just enough to be afraid of it and therefore can't bring it into the light of day (hence subconscious nightmares). Anyway, I think him telling all other truths is him trying to be as honest as he can be with everything except the unthinkable. Each brother is holding back something. I think Dean's truth-telling is the message that both Sam and Dean WANT to tell the truth but sometimes the truth is too hard to handle (Dean can't handle his secret and Sam doesn't want his desperate acts to be stopped).

It would take way too much effort to speculate what Metatron's plans are for the demon tablet! I'm going to let that plot unfold more.

I don't think the producers would try to revisit a "supernatural crime family" for another spinoff. Now that I say that, though, if they introduce sympathetic characters throughout S11 (ala Michael Corleone), they might well be taking the long road to try to set up a "Godfather" or "Sopranos" replacement. That series was certainly a mega-hit. They may be reworking their idea to fix what went wrong rather than scrapping it altogether. In 3 sentences I think I've changed my mind and now take this idea seriously!
njspnfan
# njspnfan 2015-04-20 08:50
Nightsky - One of the reasons I think the Styne family will play a factor in S11, or possibly as part of some spinoff, is because of the direction the show seems to be moving. In S10, we had very little in the way of confrontation between the Winchesters and demons or angels; now granted, Dean started the season as a demon but, other than Dean's face off with Cain, can you remember the last time the Winchesters had to fight or kill a demon? Rowena is right; Crowley has gone soft. And heaven has not been a problem either, what with Hannah whipping things in to shape. Even the most troublesome angel not locked in a cage, Metatron, is human now. So, most of the evil the Winchesters have had to deal with are their own personal demons, monsters that used to be human (werewolves, vampires, etc.), or witches, who are/were human as well.
E
# E 2015-04-20 09:21
Quote:
Maybe he believes that the idea that he would kill those closest to him is so preposterous that he doesn't deem it possible. Maybe he thinks he just won't allow it to happen, e.g.would kill himself before he would kill them. Maybe he's ashamed because he believes it just enough to be afraid of it and therefore can't bring it into the light of day
Hi Nightsky. That's an awful lot of maybe's and I am not really seeing any of them be explored in any meaningful detail. If the show had indicated in any way in the past few episodes that this was Dean's fear then it might be working better for me now. There has been a single nightmare that was actually pretty non-specific and for me that is not enough to show that Dean is being plagued by what Cain told him. Remember how clear it was during the the Gadreel possession how out of sorts Dean was, how much he wanted to tell Sam, how scared he was pretty much all the time? Well that isn't happening here. Until Dean had that nightmare I had pretty much assumed he'd forgotten all about the Prophesy there was so little indication that Dean even remembered hearing it let alone was thinking about it. The writers are doing a TERRIBLE job in showing what is motivating Dean right now. He keeps trying to get Sam to stop looking for a cure for absolutely NO reason other than to put them at odds. He isn't showing any concern for anyone other than himself and if he's worried about the fact that he might end up killing Sam and Cas and even Crowley he's not showing that at all. And I highly and vehemently disagree with Dean's statement that the MoC is HIS burden to bear. To me that comment was supremely selfish. Dean didn't think that the Trials were only Sam's cross to bear, or being soulless was only Sam's cross to bear or falling into the cage, or suffering hallucinations or even the demon blood, or the visions; how Dean felt about those things, his sense of responsibility weighed heavily on his mind and heavily in the writers narrative. He felt very involved in what was happening and was clear to indicate that he felt very much connected to what was happening then even though those things basically concerned Sam. So his desire to shut Sam out now, his refusal to see beyond the end of his own nose is grating on my very last nerve.
Shante
# Shante 2015-04-18 18:57
hi Nightsky, i just wanted to say i have both songs Behind Blue Eyes and The Boys Are Back in Town on my Spotify Spn playlist. :) i didnt have to update it this week
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2015-04-18 19:17
"I'm not going to panic"? Too late....:o
sugarhi15
# sugarhi15 2015-04-18 19:53
This was a fantastic episode and I really enjoyed your thread. Thanks. I thought everyone was fantastic..I enjoyed ea. and every scene.

The song Behind Blue Eyes....I didn't see it being about Sam as much as I saw it being about Dean. I know the song panned on Sam, but I felt it was more about his point of view. What I mean is, I don't think it was guilt on his face for lying to Dean about the book, to me, it seemed Sam looked afraid and sad as he watched his brother pretend, knowing full well that time is running out. Dean, laughing with too much gusto, pretending to be ok when the real truth is dean is putting on a show. It seemed to me that the harder dean laughed, the more Sam knew he was pretending and the more desperate he looked....I thought the bad man behind blue eyes represented the demon that Dean will become because of the mark...imho, to me, it seemed they played the song and focused on Sam's face and his fear to bring awareness to the fact that he's scared to the point of desperation, which leads him to Rowena, and using the book. Then again, that song fit everyone at that table. :D

I do believe we have reached the part of the story where ea. brother is now walking in the other's shoes. Dean is the one who's sick and now Sam is the one standing by having to watch as Dean has done with Sam. Sam is coming to understand Dean's perspective as now it's become his own...and now Dean is acting as Sam once has, more accepting of his upcoming fated doom, as Sam has been. This is the part of the story where ea. comes to understand and accept the other's perspective. I really do believe that after the storm has settled, dean will let go of the anger he's held onto for so long....they both will. but first they have to deal with the situation at hand....

i'm not in a state of panic, because I don't think lessons have been forgotten...jus t kind of placed on hold. here's what I do know...sam is smart. sam admitted that he doesn't trust Rowena and never will...sam is aware of consequences... and as of late, there has been a few times this season where sam has come up with a plan b....as I always do, I still have faith in sam. no matter what.

my real worry is metatron....he knows what's on the tablet, he wrote them...so why does he want it? i'm more worried about what he'll do. what if metatron goes to Crowley?

as for cas' role...maybe whatever the consequences of saving dean or whatever metatron does will give cas a role to play...

judging from the promos for next week i'm not surprised what Rowena wants from sam....now that's not much of a stretch for sam because he's destined to off Crowley for sarah alone....still, I can't help but wonder if sam has a plan b....I mean sam's not going in blind...this is different than ruby...hell sam learned his lesson because of ruby...I know sam is desperate...I know he's scared and I know dean as a demon is the greatest threat to humanity right now...what i'm not 100 percent on is believing that sam will disregard the possibility of negative consequences entirely...it's a wait and see. I know we're going to be emotionally toyed with in the season finale....i'm just not sure if the dire consequences are actually the result of sam saving dean or something metatron does....the story can go in any direction...it' s all very exciting.
nightsky
# nightsky 2015-04-20 08:10
Sugarhi, Thank you for expressing an alternate interpretation for "behind blue eyes". I liked your ideas very much. I think the song had multiple applications, which is why it was so perfect.

Quote:
I do believe we have reached the part of the story where ea. brother is now walking in the other's shoes.
I agree. This is why I'm not ready to abandon the maturing theme. Once they have each experienced the others' pain, they will be more empathetic and understanding, which is a big step in adulthood. Frankly, I think they're hitting it a little earlier than most. That level of non-judgmental insight doesn't usually hit until later in life! ;)

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here's what I do know...sam is smart.
I actually hope beyond hope that he is playing the long con. I sense a 'sting' operation here. I can't think of the example, but I feel he's already done that this season. Can anyone help me here? Wasn't there an example of Sam acting naive then instantly pulling the rug out from under the bad guys? Is that just my head canon? Anyway, that is what I WANT to see but I believe enough groundwork has been laid that it truly might happen. Especially when his first words were "I don't trust [Rowena] - and I never will".
Barbara Maake
# Barbara Maake 2015-04-18 20:09
Hi Nightsky. As usual, you have me reconsidering the parts of the episode that I hated--not necessarily changing my mind on all of it, but at least re-evaluating. :) As an aside, if your real world job doesn't involve sales, you should consider a job change! Anyway, I largely agreed with your analysis of the fallout from the Gadreel possession, and I would be satisfied if the writers ever resolved it the way you suggest. I don't know if they're aware, or even care, that some fans are still very unhappy with the way it unfolded, but I would be thrilled if they addressed it further from BOTH brothers' perspectives. However, I'm just not optimistic on that count. They continually have Dean throwing in Sam's face every grievance, even from years earlier, even things that Sam had no control over. So either they've decided that it's part of Dean's character to nurse a grudge like a hungry newborn, however unflattering that is to Dean, or they are satisfied to portray Sam as being eternally in the wrong. These are the things that drive me crazy about the show under Carver. I do agree with you that I'm intensely curious, and very nervous, about how everything shakes out. I have optimistically high hopes for Ep. 22, by Dabb I think, because of Inside Man, and for Ep. 23, because I usually love Carver's writing, however unimpressed I am with his show running. Anyway, as usual I loved your insights!
Barbara Maake
# Barbara Maake 2015-04-19 12:16
Nightsky, I've been thinking more about the part of your review concerning how the brothers have to acknowledge that they've hurt each other. You said

Quote:
Dean is still hurting so he passive-aggressively, continually, reminds Sam that he disappointed him, repeatedly hurting the person Dean tried so hard to save.
referring to the Purge statements. But Dean/the writers are very contradictory on this issue. Right now Dean wants to Sam to stop trying to cure Dean and to get rid of the Book because they know from past experience what happens when you screw with powerful, dark magic. If that is genuinely how Dean feels then what he should have said to Sam was "Look, I know now why you said that in some circumstances you wouldn't try to save me, you wouldn't use supernatural measures just to save my life. Because those things have always come back to haunt us, like when Gadreel killed Kevin. And I know why it seems like the right thing to do because you can't stand the thought of losing me. But trust me, we will both regret it if you don't let this go." And Sam could have responded along the lines of, "well too bad, because now I know what you were going through when I was dying, and I'm not going to let this happen to you. I'm going to do what I can to save you from a fate that's worse than death, even if I have to take some risks to do that." Then, if the boys really had matured over the past 2 seasons they would have tried to come up with a way that saved Dean without risking catastrophe, and which they mutually agreed on. But instead, the writers have Dean on the one hand constantly telling Sam to back off, it's Dean's cross to bear and his choice to make, and the Book is off limits because it's bad mojo. Yet he also is still blaming Sam for the hurtful words in the Purge, words that Dean now apparently agrees with! The writers/Dean can't have it both ways. If Sam was wrong in the Purge, then he's right to do what he's doing now; if Sam was right in the Purge, then he's wrong to take the risks he's seemingly about to take. And Sam is smart enough to recognize the contradiction in Dean's attitudes, and to call him on it, instead of weakly saying "that's not what I meant." Bottom line, I think the writers have the characters say/do whatever fits the planned story line, consistency be damned.
AlyCat22
# AlyCat22 2015-04-19 19:38
I think it was implicit. Sams not stupid he knows where Dean is coming from and the same with Dean. The extra dialogue would have been unnecessary. It's really not that complicated. The hurt is still there (on both sides), that's human nature but Dean knows he didnt mean it especially in light of all Sams done or tried to do since Deans "cure"
Barbara Maake
# Barbara Maake 2015-04-19 20:39
I'm not sure which part you think was implicit. And I disagree with this statement:

Quote:
The extra dialogue would have been unnecessary.
I think almost every problem that has arisen between the brothers has been caused, or at least exacerbated, by the lack of communication between them, a lack of communication that has gotten more pronounced the past few years. And as a viewer I've been finding it very frustrating that so much is left unsaid between them. What one viewer finds implicit, another viewer might interpret in a very different way, as evidenced by the widely diverging opinions on this site. I truly have no idea what either brother now thinks about the whole Gadreel possession. So I'll take as much dialogue as possible between Sam and Dean. They've had very few conversations of substance this entire year, and I for one would welcome more.
E
# E 2015-04-19 20:56
Sorry AlyCat but I have to agree with samandean on this one. I don't think it was implicit that Sam would automatically know where Dean is coming from and be able to interpret what Dean means despite what he is actually saying, and frankly why should he have to? It also means that we, the fans have to as well, divine what Dean means in and around what he's saying. If taken at face value, Dean is once again contradicting himself. He went to extreme measures to save Sam, damned the consequences, and now that the shoe is on the other foot he his demanding that Sam NOT do the same thing. But at the same time he's berating Sam (erroneously I might add) with his comment "oh, so you've changed your mind on that have you?" for NOT going to extreme measures in the past. These two attitudes are contradictory on their face. Why should Sam have to interpret what he thinks Dean means, and why should we? Quite frankly, Dean has changed his tune so many times that I can't keep up. I no longer have any clue what he means or what he wants.
nightsky
# nightsky 2015-04-20 10:47
I love your proposed dialog! The lack of communication between the brothers is mind-blowing! I remind myself of 2 things though:
1. the writers are supposed to create and perpetuate some conflict between the main characters. That is story-writing 101. It keeps us coming back over and over again to see how it is resolved.
2. In my real life, I quite often play out scripts that I want to say to my closest family members. I wish I had said this, or why can't I just tell them that. In the moment, though, it is brutally hard to say those things and in fact I often hope they "just know" what I mean. In almost all cases, I later learn they did not know what I really felt. That's why friendships are often easier relationships - we aren't with them as much so we don't have to explain the deepest parts of our feelings or actions. Sam and Dean are together SO much that keeping their relationship honest and healthy is a LOT of work! That's why I'm glad when Cas or Crowley or Charlie (what's with the "c's"?) get them to open up so at least WE get to hear something.
Barbara Maake
# Barbara Maake 2015-04-20 13:21
I completely agree with you that conflict is necessary to keep things interesting, and it would be very unrealistic if there was no conflict between the brothers. They're two very different people living impossible lives in which they have to make really difficult ethical and moral choices almost every day. And one thing I'm not liking about this season is the almost complete lack of conflict. Their relationship has seemed kind of dull and artificial because Sam almost never argues with Dean. And he was a pretty argumentative guy back in earlier years! So I'd love some conflict. But that conflict should not all have to arise from miscommunicatio n or lack of communication. It often seems so contrived and artificial with them keeping secrets, in many cases for no credible reason, just to create conflict. They could have a huge brouhaha right now if Sam just told Dean "tough crap, I'm not going to stop trying to find a cure" and went about doing just that. I do agree that with close family it can be very hard to always say what you mean and mean what you say. We say things in the heat of anger that we later regret, or we swallow our pride and grievances just to keep the peace and it can end up backfiring. So I'm not asking for non-stop heart to hearts between Sam and Dean (not that I'd object to that!). Just a bit more honest communication.
E
# E 2015-04-22 18:19
I agree that in a television show that there must be conflict. And I also agree that sometimes, in life, that we have trouble saying difficult things to the people we love most. And while that is realistic and probably even common it does not make for good television; television requires that the characters talk, otherwise what is going on between them is lost on the audience. The thing that I find so wrong about what has been happening lately regarding the conflict between Sam and Dean is that it is largely silent. They misunderstand, get the wrong impression, keep their silence, let misunderstandin gs perpetuate in a grossly unrealistic fashion. The conflict is contrived. In the earlier seasons Sam and Dean would discuss their differences over and over, in multiple episodes. Their fundamental differences would cause them to conflict with one another often, with those brotherly arguments being the mainstay of the show. Now, they have a disagreement and remain silent with one another, letting misunderstandin gs fester unrealistically in a bid to create a kind of tension between them. Not only does this tension not ring true, its boring. Why do I want to watch them sit stiffly together in the car and NOT say all the things that we know need to be said? Realistic? Maybe. Bad drama? Definitely. I think the Carver administration has discussion confused with resolution. He thinks that if the boys talk that they will automatically resolve all their differences, so he has them keep silent. It's short sighted IMO. Kripke was a master of deepening the boys conflict through their discussions sometimes. And little bits of understanding could be reached also making those conversations golden moments that WISH could be resurrected.
Barbara Maake
# Barbara Maake 2015-04-23 07:17
Quote:
Their fundamental differences would cause them to conflict with one another often, with those brotherly arguments being the mainstay of the show.


I cannot convey strongly enough how much I agree with this statement. I miss that dynamic so much.
nightsky
# nightsky 2015-04-20 10:35
Thank you for the compliments! I guess I'm eternally optimistic? (BTW, I specifically avoided the sales aspects of my job. Persuasion, however, was a huge, huge part of my job!)

Quote:
They continually have Dean throwing in Sam's face every grievance, even from years earlier, even things that Sam had no control over.
I agree that this is tiresome. I haven't yet understood the point of it for either brother's character. The only time it really, really bugged me was that episode with Garth when Dean was possessed by anger (whatever that ep name was).

I am also very excited about ep 20, with Robbie wrote. I haven't looked at who did 21 yet.
AlyCat22
# AlyCat22 2015-04-18 20:15
Gah! I typed up my thinky thoughts hit submit and it all disappeared! Darn it. Great read! I'll return shortly with a few questions...
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2015-04-18 21:41
Great analysis as usual Nightsky. I loved this episode. Just everything about it was A+ material. Robbie Thompson knows how to write for both brothers. He gave both of them the voice they needed...Dean needed to remind Sam of his hurtful words but unfortunately as it was with the trials all that is going to do is guilt Sam into doing something desperate (yes biblically desperate) to save his brother. Sam finally got to say how all of this is affecting him. How devastated and freaked he is. Sam needs to save his brother. He has never been able to do that and he really needs to do it. I think the solution keeps smacking both of them in the face but neither one seems to realize it. It is always Sam's voice that brings Dean back from the influence of the Mark. I really think this is the mistake Cain made with Abel. It should have been his love for his brother that saved him from Lucifer not ending his life. I think that is what drove Cain mad. He knew it was wrong but convinced himself it was the only way and it ate at him for centuries. Somehow in the end it will be their love that will save Sam and Dean but the road to get there is going to be a nightmare (I just know it).
I was dreading another boring road trip with Castiel but thankfully this was hilarious until Metatron got the demon tablet. It was a very cool visual of Cas getting his grace back (thank goodness Metatron gave Cas all that meta knowledge). Finally! But I agree with Metatron. What is Castiel's story now? Is he going to make it his mission in life to right all the damage done by the fallen angels? Be Claire's guardian angel forever? I can't really imagine where this is going.
Charlie was actually perfect in this episode. Her role was to deliver the book to the brothers and be a sounding board for Sam mostly to express his fears. The fangirl moment with Cas was so funny and sweet.
I love the introduction of the Styne family. They look like a formidable adversary for the brothers in future episodes (or maybe an introduction to a future spinoff). The confrontation in the convenience store was intense and yes DemonDean does have a bit of a drawl and Jensen did bring it out in that scene.
Dean....yes Dean is in trouble and he knows it. I go back and forth about Dean bringing up that conversation in the Purge. Was Dean trying to remind Sam about how he hurt him or was he reminding him that Sam promised he wouldn't save him if the consequence's or the price was something that Dean would never want. Dean would not want Sam to save him at the cost of innocent lives. Dean hasn't owned up to his conversation with Cain either. I think he knows that Sam would easily sacrifice himself so that prophecy never comes true. Man the web these two have tangled themselves up into. Neither one can fight their way out it seems.
There are so many different ways this story could go now. What a twist RT threw at us. Yes I have worries.
Barbara Maake
# Barbara Maake 2015-04-19 10:27
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.Dean needed to remind Sam of his hurtful words
Not trying to start anything Cheryl, but I'm curious about why you think Sam needed yet another reminder. Dean has thrown those words into Sam's face at least twice that I can recall. There should be some kind of statute of limitations. Is it going to be like the demon blood and not looking for Dean, which Dean has thrown into Sam's face YEARS after the fact? Will we still be hearing about the Purge words in Season 11, 13, 15? (I wish :)) To me, it just gets tiresome to have Dean bring that stuff up since Sam is never permitted to respond and defend himself. I know in this instance the writer's purpose was to make good and sure that Sam knows he REALLY, REALLY has to redeem himself for those hurtful words and save Dean at all costs, thus setting Sam up for a fall. It's very frustrating. Just once when Dean dredges up old grievances, I'd like to see Sam take a swing at him, like Dean has on a number of occasions when he didn't like what Sam had to say.
anonymousN
# anonymousN 2015-04-19 10:40
Quote:
To me, it just gets tiresome to have Dean bring that stuff up since Sam is never permitted to respond and defend himself
Thank you thank you for saying what is bothering me (the bolded part).
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2015-04-19 13:13
No worries I figured that would get a response. Dean was hurt by Sam's words. Sam was totally justified in saying them (see my rant about that on Alice's last review). But Sam needed to be reminded that he did hurt Dean they were words said in anger meant to hurt. And at some point I figure that Dean will be reminded that he did hurt Sam. Particularly when Sam does something biblically stupid to save Dean's life. Dean doesn't want to be saved at the expense of innocent people either. When he is faced with the same situation he put Sam in it is going to hit him in the face. RT is a careful writer that line was put there for a reason. It will be addressed later I'm sure.
sylvia37
# sylvia37 2015-04-19 14:46
This is really optimistic of you and I want to have your surety, but we really hardly ever see evidence to support this. I have yet to see Dean put in the same position as Sam as far as seeing things through his brother's eyes. Case in point, look at the end of season 8. Sam is finally so beaten down by the trials that he confesses to Dean that he is willing to die so as not to be a disappointment to him. Now, you would think that there might have been some reference to this conversation at some point in the last two seasons. Nope. Not one. You would think that Dean might have learned something from this conversation about how Sam looks at him. Have we seen any evidence of that at all? Nope. But words that Sam said in hurt and anger and that were somewhat justified if harsh, have been brought up again and again and again.

So as much as I'd like to believe that the show will have Dean learning something from this debacle, I don't share your optimism. However, I'm pretty darn sure that Sam will get quite different treatment.
Barbara Maake
# Barbara Maake 2015-04-19 15:01
I actually don't think Sam's words in the Purge were said in anger. He seemed more thoughtful than angry when he said it. I think Sam had really thought about it and truly believed at that point that, given the consequences of the Gadreel possession (Kevin dead, etc), he WOULD NOT have done the same thing in those circumstances. So I never had any problem with what Sam said, although I thought if push came to shove Sam would in fact have done exactly what Dean did. The words Sam said in anger, to hurt Dean, was his statement in Sharp Teeth about not being brothers. That was clearly an angry Sam lashing out, and truly I found it totally OOC. I've always thought that those are the words that would have continued to hurt Dean. But clearly the writers disagree!
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2015-04-19 15:48
According to Jared's comment shortly after the episode his take was that Sam was angry and he said those words to lash out and hurt Dean (the fan specifically asked about the kitchen scene). And yes I am being optimistic (or as I like to say optispastic) but the pacing for the last year and a half has been glacial and I think they are just getting around to addressing those scenes to set up Sam for whatever he is going to do. I feel like it is going to finally open Dean's eyes that Sam has learned his lesson well. Dean has taught him for almost 3 years now that you save your brother no matter the cost. I think Dean is going to realize what that really means. And he is going to try to stop Sam from making that mistake. As I said above Sam's is the only voice that can get through to Dean and that was Cain's mistake. He should have tried loving and trusting his brother instead of killing him. That is what Dean should have done with Sam and the angel possession. He should have trusted Sam. That is what drove Cain insane, killing his brother not becoming a demon. That was why Cain was trying to wipe out his entire bloodline he wanted to atone for the crime he committed. The love between Sam and Dean is going to save them in the end but the ride is going to be....well you know.
nightsky
# nightsky 2015-04-20 11:03
I actually agree with you 100% in that Sam believed what he said. However, I think he WAS angry and that skewed how he looked at the situation. He believed what he was saying, but his thinking was skewed by his pained emotional state. How often do we firmly believe something is right then a few years later, we say "What was I thinking??? How could I have ever felt that way??" I know that Jared said those words were said in anger, but I've always subscribed to my longer interpretation that said in anger meant "believed because he was angry", not "said to purposely hurt because he was angry".
anonymousN
# anonymousN 2015-04-20 12:56
personally for me "he believed it and only said it because he was angry".
lala2
# lala2 2015-04-19 23:26
I doubt Dean will ever be reminded that he hurt Sam. As most here know, I hated Sam's speech in TP (and not b/c I didn't think Sam had a reason to be mad but b/c I found it to be OTT, OOC and poorly written), but Sam does not need to be reminded that he hurt Dean. Dean reminded him all last season, and he continues to be reminded of it to this day. I think Sam gets it. Dean is hurt and will forever be hurt since it seems Carver's Dean never forgives and holds grudges for decades!
TeresaPezzino
# TeresaPezzino 2015-04-19 13:11
In reference to where this may be going for Cas, I put together the possible closure the writers seem to be giving him with Jimmy's family in an upcoming episode, the questions about what his purpose is now, the return of his mojo, the probable use of the book of the damned by Sam to cure Dean and the probable 'biblical' consequences of that use with Cain's prediction and Misha's recent vague comments about the finale and I fear we may be seeing the end of our favorite angel. I hope fervently I am dead wrong.
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2015-04-19 15:55
I do think Cas is going to meet his demise but since he is God's (and the fans) favorite angel I don't think it will be permanent.
nightsky
# nightsky 2015-04-20 11:08
I agree this is a very real probability, but I can't believe for a moment that it would be permanent. I believe the producers know how big a fan base they have with Misha and I don't think they would ever, ever give that up (audience and ratings wise) unless they were planning out the end of the series, which I don't think they are doing.
sugarhi15
# sugarhi15 2015-04-18 23:20
watching the ep again and reading over that conversation... I didn't get the impression that dean was trying to hurt sam....sam's words to dean echo dean's own words to cain when he took the mark and look at what those consequences were. when dean tricked sam into possession, there too dean figured he'd deal with the consequences later and look at what those consequences ended up being. the way I see the conversation: sam's echo of dean's words scared dean....when dean gets scared he gets defensive.....w hich is what he did....but then sam says c'mon you know I didn't mean...and when you see dean's reaction to sam just then, you can see that he knows that's the truth and historically when dean is hit with the truth that he doesn't want to deal with, he avoids it by running off, hitting or changing the subject..which is what he did here....he knew sam didn't mean it, that strategy wasn't working so he hit sam with the gut buster...claimi ng it's his cross to bear alone....

that statement seems twofold to me...one, in his own way he's owning up to the mistake of taking the mark and possessing sam without regarding the negative consequences and two, he's trying to protect sam from making that same mistake. that's just me. ;)
AlyCat22
# AlyCat22 2015-04-19 02:01
Interesting take SH! I was thinking about the visual where Cas having been regraced, regracified, whatever, that sounds like a breakfast cereal... ugh, I digress. So Cas is rising up from his knees to stand there all magnificently glowy eyed and re-badassed (What!? It's a word! Mayyyybe) and all around him are books blown to bits. Could this be a foreshadowing of what Cas will do to Metatron? Afterall Metatron said he loves books, stories, words... and Cas destroyed everything in sight. That's all I could think of during that scene.

I was also thinking of the dual nature of DarkCharlie/Goo d Charlie, Rowenas comment to Crowley about 'splitting the baby', or the Wizard and his earth bound bro...and I can't help but think that somehow Deans MOCDemonic half is somehow going to be divided from his "good half" but neither is going to be a good thing or a cure. The 3 levels of witches. One gains strength by accessing a demon (unless Sam turns out to be a Natural, like Rowena). What if Sam tries to do just that by 'splitting the baby'? And what of that spell of Rowenas used only by her to bind and purge? What if she binds MOC/DemonDean and purges Dean? So she will have control of him like Magnus tried before while essentially "splitting the baby". I think she would find she had her hands full and was out of her league just like Crowley did. If Dean is split into two halves of a whole would our Dean be able to survive? What if Sammy is a Natural? To be a student would be Hella boring and to be a Borrower, not much better. What if Sam realizes his capabilities but hides them from Rowena, from everyone? Always with a Plan B. That's our Sammy! So many heartbreaking ways this can go.

If they do the Styne family I pray that they don't take it in the direction of Bloodlines. I kept having horrible flashbacks while I watched Weds night. I am cautiously excited but I could see it go South really quickly...
Barbara Maake
# Barbara Maake 2015-04-19 09:32
Quote:
What if she binds MOC/DemonDean and purges Dean?
I don't know AlyCat, won't she then have COMPLETE control of Dean's digestive system? That would make her the most powerful witch in the universe, mistress of all that goes in and out of Dean. I can picture a commercial for her services: "She's a laxative, no, she's a binding agent--wait! she's BOTH!" ;)

(sorry, I know it's immature, but I cracked up when I read that sentence in your comment.
AlyCat22
# AlyCat22 2015-04-19 19:44
I bet you thought Metatrons indigestion scene was hilarious too, you sicko! Kidding! ;)
E
# E 2015-04-19 12:39
Quote:
If Dean is split into two halves of a whole would our Dean be able to survive?
OK. New theory developing that in my mind is even worse than my other theory. Sam, messing around with Rowena tries to banish the MoC and ends up splitting Dean into two halves (it would make the Charlie/DarkCha rlie storyline a kind of foreshadowing). The "bad" half of Dean then kills Crowley and Cas and hopefully Rowena too (that would be the only good thing to come out of this speculative storyline). Then the BadDean takes over hell and goes on a rampage while Sam is stuck with the useless "good" half of Dean who instantly forgives Sam because he's so, so good, and understands Sam's motivations so, so much. But basically he's useless in a fight because he's too good to do bad things like beat people up or kill. Then TPTB could have it both ways; they'd have a Dean that they could actually have to awful things because it's not really Dean, and a good half that will feel horrible guilt over every little thing bad Dean does sot there'll be oodles of angst. Then Sam will be forced to have to unify them like they did with Charlie which will take until the end of season 17. This is now my number one thing I would like to NOT see happen. How likely do you think it is that we are going to get some kind of lame DarkDean/GoodDe an thing going on? God I hope not.
YellowEyedSam
# YellowEyedSam 2015-04-20 13:50
I'd rather that didn't happen. I think I've had enough of Dean being in the spotlight with Sam being sidelined a LOT. Don't get me wrong I'm glad Dean got a story arc but enough is enough. Any more and I feel its stretching it into boredom. I've said it somewhere before but even in the earlier seasons I felt Dean was actually there and part of the story. So for being sidelined constantly I think Sam deserves the spotlight now more than ever. Hopefully that'll change in this weeks episode. (on a side note can people please put spoiler warnings of anything relating to future episodes, even if its small. Thanks :) )

I think your plot given some tweeks would work better as an episode :)
nightsky
# nightsky 2015-04-20 11:13
Fabulous visual symbolism you detected with Cas in the library! Excellent! Thank you!

As for a split Dean, that follows the clues perfectly, but I can't believe they would do that to Jensen, who has repeatedly said "The End" was the hardest ep for him in 10 years.
Lilah_Kane
# Lilah_Kane 2015-04-19 05:05
You know, some of the speculations I have seen has been really great, in a way that people are discussing where the finale will go and most of all we seem to have no idea. NO clear idea at all. And guess what I have seen that that does. It freaks people out. To not know the outcome. I mean season 9 ending was spoiled and guessed pretty much by all. It lost the impact. I mean even Jensen spoiled it or gave a nail to that coffin that it will happen. But the speculation and stories. I wished from those alone people would make a fan fiction book. Season 10! The road not taken!

Aly You have pretty awesome idea and speculation too. I just read it now. Somebody has had sleepless nights to think it all through I imagine? :D

I loved, loved, LOVED! the Styne family. Is it really Styne and not Stein? And you were right Nightsky. My first thought about the family was "This is how Bloodlines should have been". So I actually cheered when you had written the same. Except I want the family to stay in Supernatural. No spin-off just a villain to recon with. I hope and wish actually that Jacob didn't die. I mean that actor was brilliant. He made the character. And with the book, the awesome compass and the family itself. Well, I want to see and learn more of them. I also loved the dagger Jacob had.

What intrigued me about the family that it was clearly said their connection to Nazis. (Aaron and the golem) If you remember that weren't the villain in that episode and the men bloody hard to kill too? Maybe we will be actually getting a continued story to that line that fans have hoped for. That is why I am not that sure that Jacob is dead. Of course if they did burn the bodies it is another matter. Also, I wish if we get more of the family that the rest of them are as good as Jacob was. But sure thing is that they would be big trouble to the boys and the world.

The music was spot on. Even mentioning Ironic. I hate that song btw but it fit the situation. :P

The emotional state is bad with both brothers and I am more worried about Sam. Maybe because Dean is hiding everything and how bad he is. The thing is. We know the outcome if it is not fixed. Dean turns back into a demon. That has been said and by that I don't care if Dean was dancing in flower meadow among butterflies and rainbows because they are on the clock to prevent that outcome. The fight between can be shown what ever way they like. And Sam taking the book also is because they don't have any solutions to the matter so he will use everything that comes their way. And with the previous book he found the solution and he was able to save the day. Like Nightsky I hope that is foreshadowing.

I think what happens to Castiel might be one of the surprises and what he will choose. I like others can't guess it so I am eager to see where it goes.

I am worried about Metatron and why he needed the demon tablet. Like others have said that he knows what it reads but angel tablet was also used as a power source. Metatron might have needed it for that. Or as he knows what it says I am more leaning to that he uses it as a bargaining chip. For the boys he might use it to get his grace back meaning that the tablet actually says how to get rid of the mark. Or he takes it to Crowley and tells what the tablet says. Maybe it has some information that is really valuable. I am sure though that he didn't take it for anything good.

Thanks for the great thoughts again!

- Lilah
nightsky
# nightsky 2015-04-20 11:17
Excellent extrapolation of that nazi line. I missed that entirely. I think that's a real possibility for !
YellowEyedSam
# YellowEyedSam 2015-04-19 05:28
Quote:
Repeat after me: “I will not panic about the bargain that Sam is making with Rowena. I believe (i.e. hope) Sam will not do something cataclysmic with the Book of the Damned. I will take each episode one at a time. I am not going to panic. I am NOT going to worry about this.”
Quote:
It made me a happy fan… until I saw that stupid preview of next week…
WOO! Bring it on! I'm excited about next week. *chants* Evil Sam Evil Sam Evil Sam.. :D

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The 3 levels of witches. One gains strength by accessing a demon
Oh my god. What a brilliant idea you gave me (well for my fanfiction anyway). Think about it... Sam has demon blood. *mumbles about next week's preview* Maybe thats what she did to Sam in the preview

Quote:
I mean season 9 ending was spoiled and guessed pretty much by all. It lost the impact
Before I began watching S1 I spoiled that. I only knew he became a demon, not what season. Unfortunate as the S9 ending then left no emotional impact on me..

Now, about the Styne family. Reading your article made me realise what a refreshing set of villains they could be. Finally a major plot point (the book) that isn't angel or demon related.
Lilah_Kane
# Lilah_Kane 2015-04-19 05:39
I mean right? Now we pretty much don't know for certain what will happen. I am exited and terrified at the same time. :D

- Lilah
YellowEyedSam
# YellowEyedSam 2015-04-19 06:39
Have mercy on the poor soul that disturbs my watching of the next episode ;)

I re watched the teaser again (It so good!) and I had another theory based on what I said before. So look away now for anyone who doesn't want to know about the preview.

Rowena uses Sam's demon blood to bind him to her service not only gaining more power but an unwavering ally. Just before Dean arrives she leans in close to his dazed form and says "Your poor brother as always thinks what you're doing is wrong. You need to understand he's too far gone to make rational decisions." Upstairs they hear the door kicked in by a frantic Dean yelling for Sam. "Now I'm not asking for you to kill him. Heavens no. We don't want him to turn into a demon again. Just open the box and he'll be out of the way for a while until we figure this out" she strokes his shoulder with a creeping smile just as Dean comes into view.

I dunno. I thought quickly writing it would look better... =3
Lilah_Kane
# Lilah_Kane 2015-04-19 07:25
Yikes. :o

You really have quite the imagination and that would make me actually hate Rowena (Well, love her at the same time.) Because that would be pretty evil.

- Lilah
YellowEyedSam
# YellowEyedSam 2015-04-19 10:37
Oh you think that's evil? You should see my re write of When the levee breaks when I finish it.
nightsky
# nightsky 2015-04-22 13:41
Quote:
Have mercy on the poor soul that disturbs my watching of the next episode ;)
I LOL every time I read this!! So true! Our poor families!
love2boys
# love2boys 2015-04-19 10:05
I loved this episode. LOVED IT. And everyone’s comments above were wonderful.

Lilah – you mentioned what I’ve been thinking ever since I saw the episode: they mentioned Nazis. That leaves it open for Aaron and his Golem to come back. I would love to see what they have been doing since Everybody Hates Hitler. That episode was a gem.

I have no problem taking one episode at a time. I don’t want to write my own SPN story and then get mad at the writers. I just watch and rewatch until the new episode airs and then drink it in. It is mine to watch, not to write. Even in my head…
Lilah_Kane
# Lilah_Kane 2015-04-19 13:54
Yeah,

I hope that is the connection, the story of that episode but Stynes were pretty good even if that scenario doesn't happen. Of course I would be little disappointed but still it would be a shame if they don't take that opportunity. :)

- Lilah
AlyCat22
# AlyCat22 2015-04-19 19:53
Yifalchunbee!!! Golem for 'Take charge' As in, they need to, as in opportunity. But please, olease, pleaseeee no shades of Bloodlines!
Kirabaros
# Kirabaros 2015-04-19 13:03
I have to admit that was a deep analysis especially of the main plot with Sam finally admitting that he loves the hunter life but reveals the key aspect that he can't do it without his brother. Charlie's presence was what was needed to draw that out. It seems that for the brothers the only way to truly expose what they feel is to have that neutral presence and here it was executed very well. We do see a lot wuth Sam's expressions as he watches Dean give that false happy and I can see where Dean was coming from by saying that they could have one thing go in their favor. Two words: Winchester luck.

The Book of the Damned element has me on edge and is like a reminder of a theme that I'm constantly reiterating: just because you may have something that could work the question comes down to whether or not we should. I admit that Sam is taking a gamble here with not burning the book and then going to Rowena. It feels like Ruby and the demon blood all over again. Maybe Sam has learned his lesson and has a contingency plan since I wouldn't trust Rowena with roofer's dust. I actually trust Crowley more since he could have killed the Winchesters back in season five and didn't. Rowena is the wild card in this and I hope that scene for next week where Sam says he will kill Crowley is all for show. Maybe down on some level both Crowley and the Winchesters know there has to be a balance in things.
Daisymae
# Daisymae 2015-04-19 18:34
This episode is an excellent example as proof why this show is still on. So many new and old elements were contained in this episode. There were lies galore, confessions, wonderful emotional moments, and a possible new enemy for the Winchesters. To top it off we got The Who; I could hardly believe it, The Who. Most log running shows rest on their old glory. For Supernatural it's like it's the second season and the producers have to worry about getting picked-up for the next season-so make it good. TPTB have already told us season 10 will end badly for our heroes and I'm just as worried as I was for Season 5. This is why I'm still watching.
AlyCat22
# AlyCat22 2015-04-19 19:56
The Who! 'Nuff said.
LEAH
# LEAH 2015-04-21 16:27
Hi Nightsy. I haven't been very good lately about consistently posting. But I do want to let you know how much I always appreciate your articles. I always enjoy them and find I am in agreement with most of your perspective. It's always good to be reminded that other people see things similar to me. And I want to also let you know how much I love this website. Thank you for taking over the reins from Alice when she tapped out of the daily running of it. In spite of the drama and the volatile nature of the fandom this is one of the best websites out there. Period. Thanks again Nightsky.
nightsky
# nightsky 2015-04-22 13:54
Leah, You have no idea how much I appreciated reading your encouraging words. This week the WFB took non-stop hits of hate. It is very disheartening to read that stuff. I'm monitoring the comments on my articles (including the conference article which started all this) and the Twitter & FB accounts while Alice is monitoring the discussion thread (which is 100X more heated than Twitter) so we're both seeing the hate. She reminded me that we are each putting in 40+ hours/week on this site for our loyal followers and the people who are truly a part of the #WFBFamily. BTW, I've started to use that tag because I realized that so many of us know each other (or at least recognize each others screen personalities!) . We'll never convince the outsiders what we are here, so I appreciate hearing that you all get it. Thank you back.
Lilah_Kane
# Lilah_Kane 2015-04-22 14:10
I agree with Leah and I think I have mentioned few times how much I like your articles. And keeping up a site like this is a tough job when you think how much work it needs. The articles are the main thing what I come to read when they are posted. :)

- LK
Barbara Maake
# Barbara Maake 2015-04-22 16:04
Sorry, I meant to reply to Nightsky, so this is addressed to you Nightsky! I'll just add my own 2 cents of agreement. I'm spending far more time on this site than I should given the demands of job, family, etc, but I can't help it. The reviews and comments are intelligent, entertaining and thought-provoki ng, and pretty damn funny a lot of the time! Now that I see what the uglier side of the fandom can be like by glancing through the discussion thread, I'm so glad that none of those issues crop up on the WFB--at least not in the months that I've been coming here regularly. However heated things can sometimes get, I have yet to see the outright hatefulness displayed by some on the discussion thread. If this site ever attracted the "shipping wars" fans, that would be it for me. And I don't mean people who ship, I mean the loons who have lost all semblance of rationality and common decency over the issue. So thank you for all that you and Alice do to make this site so great. I think your reviews are more thoughtful and better-written than those of media people who get paid to do this for a living.
Kate
# Kate 2015-04-22 16:26
OK, so these comments have got me thinking again and I wanted to throw out another perspective on the comment/convers ation/notconver sation between Sam and Dean.
“Did you change your mind about that”… Dean opened the door for Sam to say he didn’t mean it and take it back and say he was sorry but he cut him off to say this was HIS cross to bear. This is SUPER IMPORTANT!
Its no secret that Dean’s ability to resist the mark has come solely from the knowledge that Sam has his back 100%, that Sam’ll do whatever it takes to save him. He knows that so why would he bring something up to cause doubt. It wasn’t for that reason that he brought up a subject more painful for himself than Sam…And I think that is the point. He is saying that Sam shouldn’t change his mind, that Sam wasn’t wrong. Dean knows he messed up in trying to save him, hurt Sam in the process and killed Kevin. I think he was trying to remind him that the ends don’t justify the means. THIS mark is on Dean, not because Sam hurt him or drove him off or whatever. Just like he owned the fact that his going to Cain started Cain on the path that lead to insanity, he also has to take the hit for this mistake. Only, unlike when his soul was on the line, Sam can’t let go. I think that was his round about way to say, hey stop acting like you had any part of my bad decision. This is on me. I get that….
Because Dean is turning into a demon, not dying. And that, for Sam I think is the worst part about that. Remember the whole half demon, demonblood issue that has always plagued Sam and his own psyche? Yeah. IF there is anything Sam gets, it’s the horror of being stuck with something dark and evil and terrifying inside of you “with no way of scrubbing it clean”.
maybe some insight as to why Sam will go so far; not just because he can't hunt without his brother, but because he can't hunt with his brother a demon chained up in the bunker forever? Yeah, I mean, if my bro was up against those odds, dealing with global disasters would be preferable to that ....justsaying. From Sam POV... Demon killed my mom, Demon killed Jess, Demon killed my dad, demons ruined my life, my brother is a demon....yep, doesn't work for me either.
Why do these two keep breaking my heart with the amount of pain they carry??? #iheartspn

peace yall!
Barbara Maake
# Barbara Maake 2015-04-22 19:26
I like your take on this Kate, especially with respect to Sam. I'm still not entirely sure what to make of Dean's attitude/feelin gs about everything. He seems to contradict himself so much.
E
# E 2015-04-22 22:41
That's an interesting take Kate. I am sorry, but for me, it doesn't work. Sam clearly regrets saying the words he said in The Purge and Sharp Teeth. If Dean was really trying to let Sam off the hook somehow, or transfer all the guilt Sam was feeling onto himself then throwing Sam's own words back at him isn't a very good way of doing that because Sam just ended up feeling worse and even more committed to doing everything it takes to save his brother no matter what the cost. I think trying to make that scene to be about Dean trying to absolve Sam of his guilt somehow is too far of a stretch; it's too hard to discern his meaning from what he said. To me Dean was mad, he threw Sam's own words back at him and left as he's done numerous times before. Maybe we'll hear later that your interpretation is correct, but until then I am going to take that scene at face value.