Jared and Jensen have often said that it takes a huge team of extremely talented people to make Supernatural the high quality production we see each week. Fans often comment on the superb set designs, lighting and music which are a visible part of each story’s presentation. This week, though, it was the costume department that really came through for the team. A giant rabbit head? A killer jester and clown, then as the climax a homicidal deer head?

s11e07 469 Deer Eye

Done poorly, these costumes could have been the mill stones that sunk the entire episode to the depths of the inane. Instead, they were the highlight of the show! The inanimate eyes surrounded by oversized features made these creatures haunting! I had to laugh out loud because they were making everyone squirm so much! That bunny head was just freaky, and the deer head looked alive. I’m guessing costume design for this episode was done by Kerry Weinrauch (the most recent credit on IMDB). Congratulations and thank you to whomever was responsible! You elevated this episode to be uncomfortably creepy.

s11e07 338 Clown Scalpel

The actors who stood frozen in place creeping people out with anticipation also did a phenomenal job selling the story.  The best scene of the show was Sam in the elevator with that clown. That’s going to make my next list of best comedic scenes of the series. Jared’s expressions were priceless as that clown just stood there while Sam freaked out.

s11e07 355 Sam Scared

Alice’s tweet about that scene captured the moment perfectly:

“Sam summons the inner strength to fight the clown after seeing the scalpel. This man was in a cage in Hell with Lucifer right?”

Rabbit, Jester, Clown and Deer have joined the suicidal teddy bear in Supernatural’s hall of fame!  How many of your phobias did they hit? Well if you didn’t have any before, I bet you have a few new ones now!

s11e07 81 Donna

As far as the rest of the episode, I love Sheriff Donna, but some of her dialog was very contrived. In fact, quite a bit of the dialog was forced, slow, too obvious, or out of sync with a cohesive emotional flow in the episode. Still, several layers of season 11’s themes were present so let’s pull on some of these threads.

Visions/The Cage

Sam’s very serious, personal prayer of desperation and fear just didn’t have the emotional impact it should have had because it followed the silliness of adults being attacked by a bloody rabbit, and it was clumsily set up to be overheard by Dean! That aside, Sam is obviously and justifiably scared by the visions he is having.

s11e07 51 Sam Praying2

Dean’s reaction was extremely telling, though. Ridicule? Why is Dean so threatened by Sam’s prayers?

  Dean: All I’m saying is don’t count on God. Count on us.
Good advice, but it is most interesting because it is a reiteration of VisionJohn’s words in “Baby”: “God helps those who help themselves”. That’s twice that we have been told God will not take over and hand wave this problem away, and that Team Free Will must find the answers themselves. I don’t think either comment gets us any closer to knowing if it is God, Lucifer or someone else (Michael?) who is getting inside Sam’s head, though. Luckily, other conversations offer additional clues about the Cage.

s11e07 207 BunnyFire

In lamenting about having to kill Mike (bunny head boy), Donna and Sam teamed up to seek redemption for the “victims”:

Donna: The kid was innocent…if the mask was cursed, he was just a puppet, right? He was a victim too.
Sam: No one else dies. Not like this.
Reread those quotes, replacing the word mask with mark. It’s a simple substitution of one letter.

The hidden message is that since the Mark was cursed, its bearers were innocent victims, nothing more than puppets who didn’t deserve what happened to them. We certainly believe that about Dean, because we strongly empathize with him. Besides, Sam spent an entire season telling us (and Castiel and everyone else) that Dean was innocent and didn’t deserve his fate. If we already bought into that conclusion, though, why is this being emphasized now?

Dean wasn’t the first person to be taken over by the Mark. Its first victim was Lucifer. Lucifer bore the original curse. He was possessed, or corrupted, by its will and changed from being God’s most trusted lieutenant to being the most reviled, feared evil in the universe. Perhaps he didn’t deserve what happened to him. Even more dire, like poor Mike, maybe Lucifer doesn’t deserve to die for what he did while possessed (Sam’s “No one else dies. Not like this”). As punishment for his crimes, Michael passed the death sentence on Lucifer before the final battle of the apocalypse, a moment in the brothers' history reintroduced into this plot by Dean:

You kidding me? He [God] didn't feel the need to show up for the Apocalypse. Why would he give a crap now?
The implication of Donna and Sam’s sympathies is that now that Lucifer is free of the Mark he doesn’t deserve to die for the things he did while he was possessed.

s11e07 277 Jester Unmasked

Donna’s advocacy for the application of justice continued when faced with the second possessed victim. When the young girl was freed of the jester mask’s curse, Donna and Sam again empathized and desired mercy:

Donna: ‘The poor thing doesn’t deserve to be locked up
Sam: So let her go.
Donna did let the girl go, a benevolent action that was later repeated when Sam let the innocent grandfather (clown) ‘escape’. Neither perpetrator deserved to be jailed for life for things they were forced to do by the curse, without either their knowledge or consent.

s11e07 286 Jury

In contrast, Lucifer was sentenced to life in a cage for his actions. Sam’s admission that he had visions of the cage conveniently reminded the audience of Lucifer’s plight.

s11e07 582 Car Sam2
Sam: I keep praying to God because if it is God -- and I know you think it isn't, but if it is -- then he's showing me something I don't know what to do with.
Dean: What?
Sam: The cage.
Dean: Lucifer's cage?
Sam: Yeah. What if he's telling me I have to go back? What if he's saying that's where the answer is to beating the Darkness?
Dean: Sam, no. No, okay. I don't know if these visions are coming from God or PBS or what. But we've been down that road. Anything having to do with that cage is -- it -- it's suicide. You of all people know that. So, no. Just...Not gonna happen.
Sam: Okay.
Dean: Okay.

One of the messages of "Plush" was clearly that once freed of their curse, innocent victims like Mike, the girl, the grandfather, Dean or Lucifer, should not be ‘caged’ or killed for crimes they were forced to commit. This merciful stance also supports Sam’s renewed commitment to saving all the people. In “Out of the Darkness Into the Fire” (11.01) Sam advocated to save the lives of the infected, and in “Our Little World” (11.06) Sam chose to not kill the hosts who were possessed by demons. It sounds like we are being told that Lucifer should be set free and pardoned because his curse has been lifted and he is back to being a “good” archangel! 

Could someone else have also been wrongly imprisoned for life?

In “The Bad Seed” (11.03) a pivotal conversation between young Amara and the adult Darkness reminded us of their incarceration:

Grown Darkness: You look confused. Troubled.
Young Amara: God did all of this after he locked me away. I didn't know it was so much.
Grown Darkness: All for his own ego. And no matter what he made, that doesn't excuse what he did to us.
Young Amara: I know.
Was this a case of another unjustified life sentence?

Abusive Parents/Abused Children

s11e07 474 Bridge

In “Plush”, the townspeople killed Chester because they suspected him of child abuse. In “Thin Lizzie” (11.05), Lizzie, Sydney, Jordie and the Innkeeper were all abused or controlled by uncaring, unfit parents. With child abuse now being the theme of two episodes so far, one has to ask, “Who is the abused child that is obviously been foreshadowed?”  Since Metatron said that the Darkness is God’s sister, their relationship seems to be that of siblings not parent/child. Oh the other hand, Amara was intensely interested in Lizzie, the abused child who ended her suffering by (supposedly) killing her parents. In “Thin Lizzie” Threads, I presented the argument that Amara could be the daughter of the Darkness (the mirror conversation, several abusive mothers being killed, Amara’s identification with Lizzie). The recurrence of child abuse as a theme and motivation for murder in “Plush” adds credibility to the idea that the Darkness is a controlling mother who should fear the retribution of her abused daughter. The episode presented even more evidence than this, though.

Family

This episode’s vengeful spirit was an uncle who was wrongfully accused of abusing children. The choice of the ‘monster’ being an uncle is interesting since, now knowing that the Darkness is God’s sister, if my theory is correct, God is Amara’s uncle. Max gave an additional detail about Uncle Chester that might bolster the theory that God is an uncle:

Dean: Hey. Poker? I can show you a move or two.
Max: Magic trick. Something my uncle taught me.
Dean: Ah. Yeah, you were pretty close to him, huh?
Max: Yeah. He was cool. I miss him.
Dean: He sounds like a good guy.
Max: He was. What those men said about him wasn't true.
An uncle who knows magic? Metatron told Castiel that people want to believe that God knows magic.

If we entertain for a moment the idea that God being Amara’s uncle is what was being hinted at here, suddenly the numerous references to uncles this season become extremely important. Crowley donned the name “Uncle Crowley” to Amara. In “Thin Lizzie”, Len specifically tried to exonerate the child and implicate the uncle:

Lizzie has been so misunderstood by history. It's pretty obvious her uncle had the stronger motive and opportunity.
In a scary foreshadowing, though, Amara stated her belief that the abused child was the killer:

Oh, no. Lizzie definitely hacked them. You can see it in her eyes -- serial-killer eyes.
If Amara was right, then Lizzie’s uncle was innocent of wrong doing. Max’s testimony and the existence of Chester’s vengeful spirit seem to imply that Uncle Chester was also wrongly accused. In her conversation with Amara through the mirror, the Darkness accused Uncle God of being unjustified in locking “them” away. The parallel would seem to imply that God too is innocent.

s11e07 442 Ritas Story

This season’s references to family were deepened by Max’s misguided, protective mother:

I couldn’t do that to Max. He already lost his father and his uncle. He couldn’t lose me [his mother] too.
She also made an obviously foreboding prediction that could apply to either Sam or Dean:

“I spent my whole life sticking up for my brother. But what if I couldn't see him for who he really was?...I had to suck it up and face my biggest fear. If not me, then who? But I should've talked to him. I just should've gone to him first.”…Fear cripples you. Makes you do nothing, or worse. Makes you do something you regret. I should have trusted my brother.

s11e07 446 Bros

Both brothers have spent their whole lives sticking up for each other yet each has wondered if they could trust the other. Dean spent years worrying that he didn’t really know Sammy, and that Sam was some sort of agent of Satan. Sam’s visions of the cage might reawaken that fear. Throughout the entire last year, people challenged Sam that he wasn’t accepting who Dean had become. Dean’s supposed bond with the Darkness might also give a renewed reason to question Dean’s loyalties.

Both brothers also have something to fear. Sam obviously fears having to go back to the cage. Dean fears …what? The bond with the Darkness? Facing his ‘savage’ instincts (e.g. liking torture in Hell, the simplicity of killing in Purgatory, not winning his battle with the Mark. Savage was his alias in this episode). We know they should talk to each other. They should go to each other first. They should trust each other.  Even Dean recognized that the universe believes they are stronger together than apart. Since right now Sam is being more open than Dean, I have to wonder if this message is being aimed at Dean. Dean hasn’t yet come clean about his conversations with the Darkness or Amara. I have speculated that he is refusing to recognize, deal with or talk about these interactions because they frighten him so much. In a sense, he is frozen with fear. Applying Mrs. Johnson’s confession to Dean’s future, though, is a deeply troubling omen.

Taken literally, Mrs. Johnson described how she was tricked and betrayed by Chester’s killers. Betrayal has been constant theme the past few years. Castiel was tricked and betrayed by Metatron; Dean was tricked and betrayed by Gadreel, who turned around and betrayed Metatron (I seem to remember Metatron mentioning betrayal last week. Anyone remember for sure?). The Darkness feels betrayed by God. Was God also betrayed somehow? Is anyone telling the truth?

Truth

s11e07 431 Truth

Sam's plea to Mrs. Johnson (Rita) to tell the truth was partially responsible for her reflections and regrets on not being courageous or honest:

Sam to Rita: Look, we need to know the truth.
His earlier prayer also revealed that telling the truth and getting to the truth is utmost on Sam's mind:

So, uh... on the off chance that you're actually listening, uh... Uh, I gotta be real honest. The visions aren't making a whole lot of sense to me. Truth is... I don't know what's what. Please. What are you trying to say?
With all the predictions about truth being their only chance, when will these boys talk to each other??

s11e07 580 Car Dean

Just Wondering

s11e07 65 Aramaic

How did Castiel get things from Gaza? Cas’ wings are broken. He can’t fly anymore.

s11e07 561 Donna Smile

For the record, I didn’t care for the way Donna’s character was “developed” in this episode. Why did they emphasize yet again that being overweight was a distinguishing characteristic of Donna’s? “Fat sucker Donna”? Why would Sam refer to the case when they met her as opposed to the more recent case when she learned of the supernatural world around her? Why name the lead officer Doug? Did they have to work that hard to show that Donna had relationship baggage? The “Somebody might have a crush. Once bitten twice Doug-ed” scene was slow. I was embarrassed for the actors and uncomfortable watching the socially awkward silence. Then the “Lady cops can’t handle the heavy liftin’? Watch and learn” scene was also forced and awkward.

The “Lay off the HGH. You might have to pee in a cup” scene was also painful to watch. The poor actors had to pause then snicker? Was it supposed to lay the foundation that the coach was a lowlife? What about the quarterback’s stereotypical bravado “Why would I know? I’m the quarterback”. It made perfect sense for him to say “and I hold the state bench record” but then why would the dialog waste time asking him how much he benched (“4 plates each side”)? Was that meant to establish a measurement of the attackers’ strength?

When Officer Doug repeatedly questioned the rash of costume killings, Sam and Dean stood there with nothing to say. They have been coming up with cover stories all their lives yet all of a sudden they couldn’t think of an excuse? Donna’s “copycat” story was actually fairly good. It could have been passed over quickly, but instead everyone paused on it, causing another 5 seconds of awkward silence.  

s11e07 273 shotgun

A shot gun blast in a police station and NO ONE rushes in to investigate gun fire in the holding area?

Len, Lonnie – The names struck me as unusual. Two male characters’ names that begin with L? Subliminal reminder of Lucifer? This week's victim was a Mike and the baby Amara's father was Mike. A reminder of the archangel Michael? Then Gabriel was mentioned in an earlier episode too (as a detective name). Are the archangels reuniting? Am I reaching too far?

Please share any good explanations or insights for the above curiosities. Sometimes there are reasons I miss.

Despite picking on the slow dialog, I actually enjoyed "Plush". The stuffed animal heads won me over. That, and having Sam deal with another clown. That bit just doesn’t get old. How did you rate it in balance, and what do you think of its themes?


Addendum:
I need to show you something. A member of my family is color blind. When he saw the picture of Dean, Sam and Donna around the burning bunny head in the woods (ironically in the Vision section above), his first question was "whose face is in the back ground?" I didn't see it the same as he did until he pointed out the eyes, eye brows, chin, head, etc. I changed the lighting on the pic (but did not otherwise manipulate it). Here is what he saw:

s11e07 207 BunnyFire shadows
It's pretty cool isn't it? Explanation in the comments below.


Some direct quotes courtesy of: http://transcripts.foreverdreaming.org
and www.supernaturalwiki.com

Screencaps courtesy of: http://www.springfieldspringfield.co.uk/

Comments  

sugarhi15
# sugarhi15 2015-11-20 21:23
Very interesting thoughts to ponder once again....

When the episode ended, one I enjoyed very much by the way, I actually felt that there was indeed a moral to the story here...which really had nothing to do with psychotic/pisse d off spirits at all. IMHO, the moral of the story here is represented not by Chester the pissed off ghost, but in fact his sister. She pretty much said it all when she made these two very important statement, which after is was said, camera panned to Dean's reaction.....Sh e said "I should've trusted my brother" and she said "fear cripples you". There it is ladies and gentlemen, what I believe to be the true focus of this story.....fear and trust.


Fear. Well it cripples you doesn't it. That's a very true statement. Fear can prevent you from taking action. Fear can keep you from facing certain situations. If these fears aren't faced and conquered they can control you. Well that's kind of like what Amara is doing to Dean. She put this idea in his head that they are bonded. This in turn has Dean afraid. He doesn't know what it means. He doesn't know, but kind of now has an idea of what that entails. In her presence she has control over him, is part of that control based on fear? When Sam got hurt, Dean reacted, he snapped out of it. At that moment, did his concern/love for Sam overpower his fear? Dean isn't telling Sam the truth partly I think because he's afraid to face up to what it all means. Then we have the second and more important part of the message that Chester's sister gave.....I should've trusted my brother. I think the point is, that regardless of Dean's fear, or should I say in spite of them, Dean needs to trust in his brother and tell him what's going on. If they're going to handle this situation, Dean needs to realize that it's something they need to do together. Dean needs to trust in his own statement that he made in the Werther Project, that they are stronger together. I think fear may also play a role in Dean's inability to accept the notion that God is responsible in some way for Sam's visions. Dean is frustrated that Sam prays. Dean's fear that God doesn't care has in a way crippled him. His lack of faith and trust that God could possibly be out there and does in fact help when the boys don't realize that it's happening, could very well be what attracts Amara to Dean in the first place and it could very well be his negativity/dark ness towards God that she plans on using to her advantage. I think it's very possible that the part Sam might play here is to bring light into Dean, possibly change Dean's attitude towards God. Sam represents the light....Dean's fear the dark....If Sam can help to conquer Dean's darkness then perhaps it will help in breaking the hold Amara seemingly has over Dean.

Symbolism was used in this episode to represent what I feel to be Sam's fear. Did anyone else connect Sam being trapped with a killer clown in an elevator to Sam being trapped with Lucifer in the cage? Well I did. I felt like Sam afraid of that clown, momentarily crippled by fear, locked in a small box with no escape....defin itely felt like Sam being trapped with Lucifer in the cage...In this case though, Sam faced his fear and beat it. In a way, Sam faced his fears with luci in that cage for centuries, and survived. Yes, he was broken, and nearly died from exhaustion due to hallucinations which he fought and fought against, but once Cas took those hallucinations away, with time......a lot of time...years... .Sam fought and survived. I think the scene with Sam and the clown is metaphorical. I think, as it seems Sam believes as well, that he needs to face his biggest fear. He's beginning to realize that these visions are leading him to the cage and possibly to Lucifer. When he confesses this to Dean, Dean's legitimate reaction is a Hell No, to which I totally understand as it would be mine as well. That's Dean's fear again as well as my own. This fear is crippling....as it could very well be preventing the boys from getting the necessary information they need to stop the D. Sam is afraid, but based on certain information, this fear he will face.....The question now is can Dean put his fear aside and trust in his brother enough to face it with him?




My guess....yes.
nightsky
# nightsky 2015-11-21 13:43
Quote:
Dean is frustrated that Sam prays.
Another thought I just had: Maybe Dean is hurt/insulted that Sam is praying to God. Dean might view Sam turning to God to be an indication that Sam doesn't believe Dean can solve this problem. Dean is the older brother. He has always parented Sam. Maybe he is hurt that Sam is asking for help and listening to an unknown voice over believing that Dean can make everything OK.

Quote:
Did anyone else connect Sam being trapped with a killer clown in an elevator to Sam being trapped with Lucifer in the cage? Well I did. I felt like Sam afraid of that clown, momentarily crippled by fear, locked in a small box with no escape....definitely felt like Sam being trapped with Lucifer in the cage...
I had not yet made that connection, but it is brilliant. Everything you said makes perfect sense.
Barbara Maake
# Barbara Maake 2015-11-21 16:03
I have a slightly different take on Dean's attitude toward Sam's visions. While he most certainly should not be discounting them and even mocking Sam for them, it's no surprise that he rejects the notion that it is God trying to assist the brothers. From Dean's perspective, God did very little to help the brothers during the events of S 4 and 5. Yes, he put them on that plane when Lucifer rose, and he later reassembled Cas. But he refused to provide any further assistance and, in the end, he left the brothers with no choice other than having Sam jump into the pit and be consigned to an eternity of torment. No surprise that Dean bears such ill will toward God and that he is unwilling to grant the possibility that this "hands-off" God is now trying to help the brothers by sending Sam the visions. Again, this does not excuse his cavalier attitude about Sam's visions, but I think his rejection of the thought that they are representative of God's effort to assist the brothers is quite understandable.
amyh
# amyh 2015-11-20 21:59
YES!!! I had the same thoughts as you regarding the clown and the elevator and Lucifer and the cage!!! At the end when Sam was telling Dean the answer might be in the cage Sam looked terrified. I could see it and i could see the parellels between the clown/elevator and lucifer/cage. If Sam could face and 'take care of' the clown then I think Sam will find the courage and face the cage again. I'm so proud of Sam.
Jen
# Jen 2015-11-21 00:06
Thank you again for a great read and bringing us back to point Family, Love, Trust. I do so enjoy reading your articles. I sat here and wrote this long story on what I was thinking and it just wasn't coming across they way I wanted so I deleted it and waited to see what others thought. And here is our wonderful sugerhi saying exactly what I wanted to say so eloquently Thank you.
Yes I thought of the cage same as amyh, Sam/Lucifer and the clown. Samanddean wrote that she would have some misgivings if it was Lucifer talking to Sam, Why now, he has no kindness for Sam and definnatly know Love lost between them. I agree. But prior to now why would Lucifer bother with Sam what was done was done, neither Sam or Lucifer had need for the other But now Amara is here and all worlds are at threat Lucifer no longer burdened with the mark and the power it held over him and he may even have some mutual respect for Sam after all Sam did beat him and showed determination and strength every time Lucifer tried to best him So I'm not saying their best friends and that there is nothing to fear by going to the cage, but I reckon Lucifer may be ok. Remember Jensen did say they would be making some out there alliances this season.
I feel really sorry for Dean his self doubt his anger issues his mistrust are and have always held him back. If just this once he would look to his brother for help he would see that "Light at the end of the tunnel" Dean let go the answers are there TRUST and you and Sam will beat the darkness.
nightsky
# nightsky 2015-11-21 13:50
Thank you for the compliments about my articles! In all sincerity, knowing that you all find insights in these ramblings really does help me push through and write them. I also appreciate how kind everyone is when they disagree. I love stimulating thoughts about possible outcomes and interpretations , but I also need to fight against being "frozen with fear" that my theories may be totally wrong! We all learn from these brothers!
njspnfan
# njspnfan 2015-11-21 08:48
Nice Threads article, Nightsky. Is part of Amara's connection to Dean have anything to do with the fact that Dean has no faith and doesn't like God, a common enemy if you will? Since Lucifer (The Morning Star) also carried the Mark, will he have the same sort of connection to Amara (The Darkness) that Dean does?

With child abuse now being the theme of two episodes so far, one has to ask, “Who is the abused child that is obviously been foreshadowed?”
Could it something as simple as considering humanity to be God's children and, in the context of what Amara has witnessed, these "children" have been abused?

(I seem to remember Metatron mentioning betrayal last week. Anyone remember for sure?). The Darkness feels betrayed by God. Was God also betrayed somehow? Is anyone telling the truth?
Metatron said - ....In order to create the world, God had to give up the only thing He'd ever known. He had to betray and sacrifice His only kin. The Darkness -- His sister.
nightsky
# nightsky 2015-11-21 13:58
Thank you for the compliments on the article, njspnfan.
Quote:
Is part of Amara's connection to Dean have anything to do with the fact that Dean has no faith and doesn't like God, a common enemy if you will?
I see where people are coming from with this thought, but it has never really reached out and grabbed me. I'm hanging back on this one. I don't disagree at all; I'm just not convinced. I see their connection being more "fascinating human who set me free" related (she couldn't care less that Sam found the spell. It was Dean's arm that released the key). Because of that, I don't see Lucifer having the same bond with Amara. He was part of the original force that fought and defeated her.

Quote:
He had to betray and sacrifice His only kin.
DUH!! A direct correlation to what Rita did this week!! This just became a formal thread. Thanks!

Quote:
something as simple as considering humanity to be God's children and, in the context of what Amara has witnessed, these "children" have been abused?
Very nice expansion of the theory. I buy into that as the larger application. I still think there is a more literal application, though.
spnlit
# spnlit 2015-11-21 14:50
Quote:
Is part of Amara's connection to Dean have anything to do with the fact that Dean has no faith and doesn't like God, a common enemy if you will?
I agree/ disagree with this statement. Disagree: I do not think Dean has no faith and does not like God. I also do not think Dean considers God an enemy. Superwiki has a great page on Dean and Faith. He really is on a journey towards faith but struggles with the same issues some people have. If God is there why is there suffering, why doesn't he fix things? Which in a way, I agree is how Amara sees things and intends to "fix things" herself. So I would say Amara can capitalize on Dean's doubts and as traditionally does Lucifer worm his way into your soul by the same method. Here Dean says: "All I’m saying is don’t count on God. Count on us." This just means he has more faith in himself and/ with Sam than God. This is Dean's experience but he does not discount God.
Last season Dean had this exchange:
Father Delaney: Do you truly believe in God, agent? Because it can be a comfort.
Dean: I believe there is a God. But I'm not sure he still believes in us.
(YES, I know this is a quote from one of the worst episodes 10:16 Paint It Black- but it still exists- it was said).
I think Dean is on a journey of faith and I truly hope this year's arc includes Sam bringing him into the Light with him. I will be disappointed if Sam's visions are not directed by God and Dean gets to just reaffirm that God is MIA. Do not think that will happen because there is too much going on this season for God not to be shown as involved in some way.
Quote:
With child abuse now being the theme of two episodes so far, one has to ask, “Who is the abused child that is obviously been foreshadowed?”
Could it something as simple as considering humanity to be God's children and, in the context of what Amara has witnessed, these "children" have been abused?
I agree with you, and I think you hit the nail on the head. I cannot imagine Amara being the daughter of the darkness and Amara is seeking revenge on the darkness. I think she is the Darkness as God is the Light.
njspnfan
# njspnfan 2015-11-21 16:02
spnlit; I simplified my original comment for the sake of brevity but I do think Dean views God with disdain and contempt; he has also referred to God as "another deadbeat Dad with a bunch of excuses". I do agree that things are more complicated than that statement but, when it comes down to faith, or who to count on, Dean's statement "Count on us" is very much his modus operandi for a very long time.
spnlit
# spnlit 2015-11-21 19:17
I agree it is his MO but still do not agree that Dean views God with disdain and contempt. Deadbeat Dad with excuses sounds like hurt and frustration and mixed emotional baggage with his own father. When Sam and Dean were turned away by Joshua in the garden, there was vast disappointment, fear and burden and maybe even sadness. But he had no contempt or disdain.
nightsky
# nightsky 2015-11-21 14:51
I added an addendum to the article (because it was easier for me than trying to copying a picture into the comments!). Please go up and look at the very end of the article...
spnlit
# spnlit 2015-11-21 15:42
Nightsky, I saw the face too and went back to the episode and watched. I do not know the technical terms, but the scene was a closeup of Sheriff Donna's face and then her closeup was "over-layed" in the pull back scene which is the picture you posted above. The face is Sheriff Donna. It could foreshadow that a female figure, Amara is capable of watching everyone like God.
Barbara Maake
# Barbara Maake 2015-11-21 16:06
I was glad to see your post spnlit, because my first thought upon seeing the photo was "isn't that Donna?" So do you think they did it intentionally?
spnlit
# spnlit 2015-11-21 19:09
Quite honestly, I haven't a clue. That is a question for the show-masters.
nightsky
# nightsky 2015-11-21 17:03
Thanks for solving that mystery for me. It's pretty cool, but rather anti-climactic. I'll have to rewatch the ep for that "fade-out" of Donna's face.
spnlit
# spnlit 2015-11-21 15:31
Nightsky, I look forward to your articles, insights and the discussion it invokes. Thank you. This season is exciting and well written in the sense that the plot is intricately woven and suspenseful so it does make discussions more complex and interesting.
I think the THREAD of destruction of family, destruction of God's creation was incorporated and played out in this MOTW week episode. Nothing says destruction of families like the suspicion of child abuse. Three people were killed and countless others were scarred and suffered loss. As I side note, I want to point out that Max in this story is a call back to Max Miller, one of the special children in 1.14 Nightmare that was an abused child and ended up killing his abusers- his father, uncle and attempted to kill his step-mom who max thought did nothing to protect him. Again more family dysfunction. The sister/ mom character was strong. Her pain, sorrow, confusion, and loss were well depicted. I agree with njspnfan that the "family" pain and suffering depicted highlighted Amara's other theme that God made a big world filled with suffering ... (Suffering children) and she will be the one to take it all away and give them the big nothing- take your pain, take your soul.
I know facing your fears and trusting your family/ brother was presented and some thought the anvils were flying but I thought it was done well and certainly is tied to Sam and Dean's relationship as well as Sam facing his fears to go to the cage. I have to say that if this show turns Lucifer into a good angel and excuses everything he has every done as being corrupted by the MOC, I will be vastly disappointed. I think it is a possibility but for me defies logic and credibility and just destroys canon.
At first I was not sure how the masks fit in but with some discussion and ideas from samandean10 I think we have a working theory. Since this season is so well written thus far it was carefully selected and matches up with the season poster. The masked characters were compelled to do horrible things.... but it was because they were possessed by the ghost who was the one doing the killing. Makes you wonder why the ghost did not just kill them outright without the use of masks and their bodies. This ties in to Samandean10's observations which we (you Nightsky and I) both commented on.
Quote:
Death did say that the MOC corrupted Lucifer, presumably because of the influence of the D. But it always seemed odd to me that Lucifer's first evil act was to induce Cain to murder Abel. Why not just continue trying to corrupt Abel? Or simply murder the hated humans himself? But it makes perfect sense, because in her anger at God's betrayal of her, Amara is seeking to replicate that same type of betrayal among all of God's beloved creations, just to hurt him.
Why did Lucifer not just kill the humans himself ? Why didn't the ghost just kill the people? Go to the poster with the different faces of our main characters. It points to Amara as the grande manipulator. Looking at the poster she will also be able to effect the emotions of the leads, S & D along with secondary mains Crowley and Cas. Amara is going to manipulate confusion, betrayal, doubt, distrust, in our four main characters and things are going to get chaotic. Until someone figures it all out..... probably Sam;) And I hope with the help of God.
spnlit
# spnlit 2015-11-21 15:55
Other quick points:
I agree- Congrats to the costume department- super creepy.
I thought Donna was developed in the same manner and in line with how she was presented in the past episodes. Her marital drama, food issues were front and center. This time she was dealing with the interest of a man in the aftermath of the divorce and I think she came across real, and just her sweet goofy self. I like her toned down a bit and found her refreshing in the midst of the horror.
The name of the character as Chester, was a bit over the top. "Chester the Molester".
Sam in the elevator (literal view) is an instant classic ! I also agree it invoked Sam's other fear and possible soon to be reality. In the cage with Lucifer.
I enjoyed Sam's sincere prayer and the fact he is staying the course and standing up to Dean. I think Dean's comment about prayer and God was consistent with his ongoing faith struggle and what he said last season: Here Dean says: "All I’m saying is don’t count on God. Count on us." This just means he has more faith in himself and/ with Sam than God. This is Dean's experience but he does not discount God. Last season Dean had this exchange:
Father Delaney: Do you truly believe in God, agent? Because it can be a comfort.
Dean: I believe there is a God. But I'm not sure he still believes in us. 10.16 Paint It Black See also Superwiki page-Dean and Faith
I think Dean is on a journey of faith and I truly hope this year's arc includes Sam bringing him into the Light with him.
danashulps
# danashulps 2015-11-21 19:34
Love your articles Nightsky. You always have food for thought.

Regarding the speculation regarding the cage, Lucifer is without a vessel since Sam flew the coop. So whose are the fingers we saw? I find it hard to believe that a mortal Adam is still there. I wonder if we are all barking up the wrong tree and SPN has some other surprise for us.
nightsky
# nightsky 2015-11-22 13:45
Thank you.

Re: barking up the wrong tree - You could be entirely correct. I'm trying not to get too wed to a single theory about the cage. I don't want to build expectations that are not met. I'm trying to go along for the ride!
Jen
# Jen 2015-11-21 19:52
Oh my I didn't see that face I'm wondering if it is Amara being God's sister she would have the ability in spirit form to watch over everybody That is really spooky I found it hard to see at first but if you concentrate its definatly there. One other thing -- we agree that the pacing was slow and some people suggested that awkward long spots where filled with various camera angles. I have watched this episode again slowed down and paused in different spots. Everything that was said and I mean everything had a facial reaction on both Sam & Dean. I don't think this was so much a filler episode, poorly created but more a lesson for Sam & Dean to listen to and learn from Especially the side glances from Sam to Dean, Dean's frown and unusual silence at times. This episode had to be looked at beyond what we saw. And that vision at the end which we all appeared to miss is proof. This episode was brillant -- I have learnt so much from WFB that I so see things different. Ladies please take the time to really watch this episode again and look beyond what is shown there is a whole different story being told WOW,
AlyCat22
# AlyCat22 2015-11-22 02:27
Looks like just a fade. It's Donna. A directional choice. I don't think it was meant to be anything more in this particular case, but who knows for sure.

Still trying to watch for the possible train clues. RL got in the way and rudely demanded my attention. ;)
nightsky
# nightsky 2015-11-22 13:47
I expect I will watch this ep again for all the good spots. I love the creepy animal sections. I'm just going to fast forward over the few conversations that make me impatient.
Jen
# Jen 2015-11-21 20:01
PS Do you think that this first burning I know it wasn't a hunter or a pyre could have brought up memories of Charlie. Dean was taken over with the mark then and went on his murder spree. This would have been the first time Dean would have thought of that as a human without influence. The horrid memories that would have envoked.

When we all watched Thin Lizzie we commented on Dean's comment, "Working with family can be tough" We thought it odd he said that. But looking at that again it was said as a statment for that moment.
He was at Lizzie's house, because hie brother had a fetish not because there was a case. I believe it was a ribbing toward Sam said as a joke Not as anything sinister.
Doc
# Doc 2015-11-21 21:19
Actually, that was a blended fade out from close up of Donna to long shot of the fire, which is not unusual in film. I don't think there was any other purpose or meaning to it.
nightsky
# nightsky 2015-11-22 13:50
I see that now, but it was still a directional choice. I think there is purpose to it, even if it is only Donna looking at what her life has become (burning bunny heads in the woods at night, don't ya know!)
Jen
# Jen 2015-11-22 04:01
https://scontent-lax3-1.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-xfl1/v/t1.0-9/11988517_1187259661289069_5056531844730724924_n.jpg?oh=f9c5f64dcd3e2f5e47ae29f1d452ea39&oe=56F4ADAC
Great screen shot from Winchester's make Wednesday, on Facebk If we had any doubts about Sam and the clown in the elevator being a paralell to the cage you need to see this . It will change your mind
nightsky
# nightsky 2015-11-22 13:51
Very convincing! My screenshot site didn't have that angle. I hope Wednesday includes that in her visual review (to be posted next week)!
BoGirle
# BoGirle 2015-11-22 20:05
That's very interesting! It certainly seems that Sam will be headed to the cage. Lets just hope that Sam's decision doesn't further end up breaking the world. I see a potentially BIG bus in Sam's immediate future.
disgruntled viewer
# disgruntled viewer 2015-11-24 14:01
You konow, BoGirle, you seem to be reacting not on the content of the show, but on Sam haters' reaction. It's only for them he messes everything, the show doesn't show it and never did. Relax, he will always be to blame for them, even if he ascends in flesh. ;) What I have noticed about haters, they are most hysterical when Sam is shown in some unbelievable and legendary way. Remember how furious they were when Sam saved Dean from the Mark, though it was considered impossible by everybody? Apparently in their book it was a sign of Sam's darkness, it was hilariuos then, it's even more hilarious now. (And also remember that for them turning souls into demos is a good thing, killing a baby-eating monster is a mortal sin). So, if haters are hysterical and call God a baddie, then everything is going in the right direction. What else I have noticed about haters, they seem sincerely convinced that it is Sam who messes everything, but again and again raise the same question: Why is it Sam, who is the hero again? I don't know how they manage to live with such a split personality. :D Just an observation, I've been looking through some old discussions)))
disgruntled viewer
# disgruntled viewer 2015-11-24 15:37
Thank you, Nightsky, what a brilliant and thought-provoki ng article.
Is the scene of Sam and clown in the lift is a kind of foreshadowing? It wouldn't be the first time, his fight with clowns in season 7 was a foreshadowing of his battle with his hallucinations of Lucifer. So, clown is a symbol of Lucifer? There is some symbolics in Medieval Western culture connecting devil and a buffoon, isn't there? Before that clowns appeared twice in the show, Sam struggled with devil twice, is it a foreshadowing of the third struggle? Apparently, it is.
Thanks again, your threads are a real food for thought.