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Quick Reaction: 11x23 Alpha and Omega

Hello!! So, I'm back in Vancouver and back to my old habits  - just in time for the Season Finale. So, you'll be happy to hear that I've been drinking. Also, I've still only seen the episode once (while drinking) so, although I took rough reminder notes, all quotes will be paraphrased (or made up) and things might end up out of order.

Let's get to it!

We begin where we left off, with God collapsing to the floor, the Darkness disappearing, and Lucifer being "gone" - and let's get to that last point immediately.

Sam and Dean divide the check-in's appropriately, with Sam checking in on his God, and Dean checking in with his angel. Cas is indeed back! Much to Dean's surprise and complete relief. Cas tells us that Lucifer was "ripped out" and is "gone" but he doesn't say DEAD. He doesn't know where Lucifer went, but he doesn't know whether he's dead or alive either it seems. So that's a door left open right there.

Chuck is not doing so hot, but is still conscious for the moment.

Rowena comes in, and I LOVE Dean going bad-ass and drawing the gun - but yeah, it really is just Rowena, and then Crowley, and they both complain about the plan obviously not working - and Rowena tells them about the whole problem with ye olde sonne.

In my notes here, I also have "wish I were Chuck" which refers to the fact that Chuck was leaning on Sam with his face plastered to those beautiful pectorals. Mmm... muscling cushion.

ANYWAY....

The sun is dying! Yay! Chuck zaps them to ye olde bunker, and everyone looks to Dean to see what the hell to do next. This is one of my favourite things about Dean's character - people often look to him to lead, but Dean's actually HIGHLY uncomfortable in that roll at all times. So, Dean decides that now is the time to drink.

Meanwhile, in London, the news anchor on the telly says "observa-tory" instead of "observa-tree" which we thought dubious, though my friend agreed that perhaps there were parts of england that pronounced it the American way, but still DUBIOUS.

British news is saying that a 6% drop in the sun's output is "nothing to worry about" which is a super duper lie and obviously a ploy from the authorities to keep the apocalypse riots at bay for as long as possible.

But what is actually important about this scene is that we meet a blond woman named Toni (I believe) who is a WOMAN OF LETTERS! Dun dun DUN! Not only that, but she has a whole wall of her basement devoted to tracking Sam and Dean Winchester - which is WICKED COOL!  (but also gives me crazy mixed feelings, which I will obviously get into later).

Back to the Bunker, where Rowena calls Chuck "Charles" and I find it super endearing, even though I actually kinda hate the name Charles (but love the name Charlie, ironically.)

Sam yells at Dean about the drinking and declares - in true Sam fashion - that now is not the time to give up! That Sam is going to find a Plan B! (Sam is pro-choice in all matters). Dean decides they're going to need more beer, and he commands Cas to join in him in a beer run. Cas complies.

Crowley tries to warn Chuck away from Rowena - saying that she's just using him. Uh, Crowley, Chuck's GOD, I'm pretty sure he knows Rowena's MO by now. But I do love Crowley's parting shot of "I'm not calling you Dad." (Ha!)

Toni is GOING TO AMERICA.

Sam wants to do something. He decides that since God is dying anyway and the fabric of the universe is ALREADY at stake, they might as well kill Amara.

Meanwhile, Dean is having a heart to heart with Cas. Dean forgives Cas for saying yes to Lucifer, admitting that at the time it probably was their best shot and he understands why Cas did it - especially since neither Dean nor Sam could have. (I'm not sure I agree with this, but whatever.) Dean then goes on to make sure that Cas knows that he's appreciated and that "you're a brother, Cas." (And me and my friend laugh, because I had, just before the show started, explained to her the whole joke about gals being pals and "just a couple of dudes being bros")

But I shouldn't cheapen the moment. Cas is now as canonically as you can get in SPN, cemented as being an adopted Winchester Brother.

Sam calls Dean back to the Bunker, and Dean and Cas turn the car around. (Sidenote: Was it just us, or did you guys find that the car sounds in the Dean and Cas scene were WAY too loud? Not to disparage the sound-mixers of course, but it was slightly annoying.)

Sam's idea is that since God dying causes the universal scales to be unbalanced, then a possible solution would be to kill Amara. and then the scales would be empty and the sides balanced. So, how do you kill Amara?

Light! Which makes sense. Only you need a ton of it. 10,000 suns going supernova. Sam, I think, suggests that they could perhaps use souls. Because Sam knows that Souls are super bright and have the power of 100 suns. It's a really cool fact to bring back into play - to actually USE the fact that we know souls contain power.

So, they decide to build a bomb. Cas says he'll ask Heaven. Dean and Sam figure they'll catch a bunch of ghosts - they know just the place to get them too - and Crowley says he'll go raid his stash in Hell.

Meanwhile, Amara is accidentally killing plants and then looking disappointed. (Trust me Amara, I feel the same way about my houseplants - Winchester and the Weasleys are hanging in there, but Jefferson keeps threatening to quit on me.)

Dean and Sam head to an abandoned insane asylum/hospital to pick up the ghosts... and part of me absolutely loves the fact that they just KNOW this place is sitting here full of ghosts - like, all hunters must know - and no one ever bothers to do anything about it. They're just like "ugh, too much work." No wait, that's not even what I like about it - what I like about it is that they're like "huge building full of thousands of ghosts? No problem. It's a milk run." I love leveled-up Winchesters... and the Winchesters have been beyond level 10 for a while now.

Dean does a Rowena impression. Then they "bust some ghosts" (love ghostbuster references) - and I also love them getting impatient and Sam being like "I'll go piss them off" - like, not only is a building full of ghosts not a problem, Sam is going to deliberately antagonize them too.

It works, and they are in a ghost fight, until Dean manages to throw the crystal and say the magic word, and all the ghosts are trapped inside.

This gets the attention of Billie the Reaper though!

Cas has no luck in Heaven, because the angels are pessimists and Crowley has no luck in hell, because demons can't be trusted with your things while you're gone.

Meanwhile, Amara talks with an old woman who is feeding pigeons. The woman talks about how much she loves the pigeons and about her son (or son in law?) and how he wants to put her in an old age home - and she kind of hates him for it, but really she still loves him. Amara experiences regret.

Billie follows the boys back to the Bunker - and as a neutral force of the universe - enters easily, though the sensors go off. She listens to their plans and then offers her own supply of souls from the veil. Which...does that mean there's a temporary shortage of ghosts?

Also, question - but if they HAD used the souls from Heaven - aren't those souls PEOPLE - I mean, are they destroyed in this bomb scenario? I guess it's mostly a moot point, but I gotta wonder...

Billie is also flirty with Crowley. Which is amusing. Also, I like Billie.

The thing with the bomb of course, is that they can't just drop it on Amara. Someone has to BE the Bomb, and that someone has to be Dean, because he's the only one that Amara might let close enough to her. So, sounds like death for Dean! Sam is not happy - this whole thing was caused by Sam saving Dean, and now he doesn't even get to enjoy that victory.

Toni arrives in the US.

Sam and Dean have their heartfelt goodbye. Sam tells Dean that he doesn't have to do it, but Dean says he does. They're at Mary's headstone (which, FYI, is just a headstone, as Mary's body didn't survive the fire.) Chuck doesn't want his sister to die, he loves her, but he understands why Sam and Dean are doing what they're doing.

Cas and Dean then have their heartfelt goodbye, which involves Cas initiating a hug. AWWW. Dean tells Cas to look after Sam. And thanks him again for being a bro.

Dean demands that they give him a big funeral with a Black Sabbath coverband and then they spread his ashes there - in the same graveyard as Mary's headstone. He then gives Sam the car keys and tells him no chick flick moments. Sam argues that Dean loves chick flicks, and Dean admits that yes, he does. (AWW!) HUGS!

Finally, Dean is sent to Amara.

The rest of Team God head to "The Lazy Shag" (Ha!) for a beer, to wait out the end.

Dean and Amara chat. Amara knows that he's a bomb. She doesn't think that Dean is able to hurt her though. Dean argues that after what she's done to the sun, he might be able to. She says the sun problem isn't her - Dean says it's because the scales are tipping towards darkness. But Amara seems to suggest that the sun is more closely just tied with God, and has nothing to do with the balance of the universe, but rather God's life - and that once God is dead, Amara will be dead as well. So, is Sam's solution flawed? A dud?

We'll never now. Because Amara then goes on to explain how she just wanted to hurt God, and Dean gives her the whole "revenge is unfulfilling in the long run" speech, and also the "my brother and I fight all the time, but it's better when we love each other" speech. Amara admits that she was just really lonely.

Dean then goes on to say how everything is a big MAYBE in the world, but that you need to put aside rage and hate and focus on what you actually want.

The answer, it seems, is Chuck. He disappears from The Lazy Shag and reappears in the garden with Amara, and Amara attempts to settle their differences. She was jealous that he loved other things than her. (Her and Lucifer have a lot in common.) And she admits that his creation is beautiful. God's super pleased, because that's all he ever wanted was for her to see how beautiful life was.

The sun gets bright again. Amara heals God. Then they "go away for a while", but first God disarms the bomb in Dean's chest (phew). Dean wonders about whether the earth will be okay without God around, but God tells him that the earth will be fine, because it's got Dean and Sam in it.

Since Dean gave Amara what she wanted, Amara wants to give Dean what he wants the most.

(And here, my friend and I derailed into giggles, because my friend said "A *something-something year-old boyfriend" and  then told me that her friend Dean - who is an older gay gentleman - just got himself a 27 year-old boyfriend named Julio. And so then we had to laugh at how cliche it all was.)

Sam, of course, sees the sun's return (and Chuck's disappeance) as signs that Dean successfully deployed the bomb, and it worked, and now Dean is dead. He heads back to the Bunker with Cas, who also thinks Dean is dead and is trying to console Sam.

Meanwhile, waiting in the dark, is Toni, the English MoL member. She banishes Cas and she tells him that the UK MoL stayed active and hidden, but has been keeping tabs. That she's there to take Sam in. She asks where Dean is, and Sam says that he's dead. She calls Sam a suped-up hunter who is out of control (or something along those lines) and cites all Sam's previous unintented bad-consequenes as proof that he needs to be stopped. She's holding him at gun point, but at this stage, Sam doesn't have much to lose, so he takes a gamble and stalks towards her, claiming that she's not going to shoot him. She does.

Meanwhile, Dean is trying to figure out where the heck he is, and he hears a woman calling for help - when he follows the voice and stumbles out of the forest, he finds MARY WINCHESTER!! dun dun dun DUN!

So, that's where we leave off for S11, and that's our set-up for S12. Amara and God are out of the picture, so we're done with EPIC for now. Mary Winchester is alive. Cas is around, but temporary at a distance, and Sam is either dead or injured and most definitely captured by another chapter of the Men of Letters.


That's it for the season! Ultimately, I'd say that S11 started stronger than it finished. I was hoping for a more nuanced solution - something that was more about the intricacies of the construction/rules of the universe. For instance - I'm kind of mad that Amara was able to bring back Mary Winchester, because in my mind, that's creation - and Amara should be destruction, as she's the opposite of God, who is creation. But I'll get into that in a minute, because it also ties in with what I would have PREFERRED the ending to be... anyway, I felt that S11 was super strong up until (and including)11x20, and then it kind of...left me a bit unsatisfied. (But then, so did Captain America Civil War to some extent, and I still love that movie.)

Let's get into details...

Things I'm slightly disappointed about:
- I... kinda wanted God to die. Don't get me wrong, I love Chuck... but, I really wanted them to actually end up living in a legit godless universe. I wanted it to be exactly like Dean said way back in S2 - "there's no God or angels, there's just [...] random unpredicatable evil that comes out of nowhere and rips you to shreds." Because Dean's my favourite atheist, and I want him to be ultimately proven right - even though it sounds super depressing, it's not, because Dean believed that and his solution was to get up every day and FIGHT BACK. I love Dean so much, you guys. OR I wanted the ending to be more about the masculine vs. the feminine, and light vs. dark, and how the balance is needed - and it was KINDA like that, but the solution seemed to be about Amara changing, rather than Chuck changing - and not gonna lie, Chuck is kinda an asshole, so I wanted him to not be apologized to, but rather shown mercy.

Things I'm apprehensive about:
- I don't like the idea of warring MoL chapters. It's "politics" and I HATE politics. The only politics I can stand is in the form of Captain America movies. Ultimately, unless it's misguided law enforcement, I don't like human bad guys... and I definitely preferred Sam and Dean being the last (or almost the last, if you include Eileen) Men of Letters in the world. But! I have to remember that a lot of plots that they set up in for the next season end up being resolved in ways that I don't expect, sometimes way faster than I think they're going to be (demon!Dean) or just in a way that I thought I would hate, but actually like (can't think of an example...but I'll just say that S11 was REALLY AWESOME. So, maybe they'll keep that momentum?)

Things I like:
- I really like the idea of exploring what the hell it'll be like with Mary around. She doesn't know her adult children. She doesn't know what happened. (I'm assuming). She's a Goddess to the boys who remains a perfect memory and an ideal of what could have been - so how will that measure up to reality? Not only that, but Supernatural (to me) has always been partially about the tragedy of the supressed and missing feminine and the detrimental effect of the toxic-masculinity that occurs in the absense of the feminine. So... yeah... this change is mindblowing.
- I like the idea of a possible plot for early S12 being that Dean and Mary rescue Sam! That'd be bad-ass.
- I do like the idea of God essentially putting Sam and Dean in charge of keeping the world safe.
- Also, although Sam and Dean are separated, they aren't fighting - so here's hoping we get another full awesome season of the Winchesters working together! Because in my opinion, that was a large part of what made S11 so great.




So, let me know what you thought in comments. Usual positivity rules apply - if, like me, you didn't like certain things, balance them out by also talking about things you liked! One for each! Keep those scales balanced, else you destory the fabric of my world!

For possibly the first time, I don't have any major summer projects planned - but I'm sure I'll miss you guys and do some random posts about random things. :)

Some of you though, I know I won't see until the fall and the show starts up again, so I hope you have a good summer!! Thanks for stopping by each week and listening to me ramble. I LOVE YOU ALL.

Comments

hells_half_acre
May. 27th, 2016 06:56 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I'm often apprehensive and then it all turns out alright - so I'm sure the same will be for S12. In anycase, even if the storylines don't grab me and I don't like the big bad (such as in S7), I'm always captivated by Jared and Jensen's acting and the relationship between the brothers - so there's always SOMETHING for me to enjoy, even if it's not everything. :)

Anyway, I can't remember now what my thoughts were going into S11 - but I'm sure that the season was way more riveting than I thought it was going to be.

And I agree about the dynamic between Dean and Amara being interesting, in terms of how to kill an adversary that you can't kill... I kind of wish they had stressed that theme a little more, because Sam laid it out in the first episode - that they have to focus on SAVING not killing - which in the end is what Dean did. He saved Amara, and in doing so saved God and the world. It was pretty great.