I don't actually have much written for this one...not sure why. Let's see if I get rambly anyway.
The boys wear suits for 3/4 of this episode if not more. It's the longest I've ever seen them in suits, I think.
Ugh, the opening scene...ok, so, full disclosure: I could not watch that again. I skipped it. Now, that being said, I love it when the show centers episodes around holidays/calender events, because it makes timelining so much easier. I'm REALLY hoping they do it again in S6, otherwise I will be at a complete loss for dating anything.
"Talk about co-dependent"
-Hahaha, oh Dean...I think he's still a bit sore over that psychiatrist commenting on his and Sam's relationship. I've been there buddy. I once wrote a not-so-well reasoned rant about why co-dependency wasn't a bad thing. (Not realizing in my youth, that co-dependency is by definition a bad thing.)
"I'm just going to go through some files. You can go ahead and get going."
"Go ahead - "unleash the Kraken". See you tomorrow morning."
"Where am I going?"
"Dean, it's Valentine's Day! You're favorite holiday. I mean, what do you always call it? "Unattached Drifter Christmas"
-Hahaha, this is sort of bittersweet - because it takes us back to an earlier Dean, and gives us an insight into, perhaps, Sam's teenage years...but it also goes to point out how much things have changed for them. Famine or no, I don't think Dean has much lust for life these days...but I'll get into that in a minute...
"So, you're not into bars full of lonely women?"
"I guess not. ...what?"
"It's when a dog doesn't eat, that's when you know something is wrong."
"Remarkably patronizing concern. Duly noted."
-Now, this early in the episode, this line is played mostly for laughs...but actually, Sam's not wrong. Dean's horribly depressed. I guess I'll talk about this more later when Famine is monologuing, but yeah...it's my opinion that what Dean craves is death (only, without the afterlife...which is why he doesn't start actively offing himself).
"It seems like no matter what we do, something in life is always going to keep us apart - work, family, sleep-"
"Now prison maybe"
-I usually don't quote the victim dialog...but i get such a laugh out of the way the actress delivers that line.
"Hey, *Dean pushes tuperware with heart in it closer to Sam* ... be my Valentine?" *smiles*
-Awww hahahaha....oh god, Dean, why are you so adorable?!
"I'm there now"
"Yeah, I get that"
"I'm going to hang up now"
-One of my favorite Castiel arrivals. This has actually happened to me with my friends/family a few times...and it's similarly awkward. I'm a little like Castiel with phones - crazy awkward.
"Technically it's a cherub, 3rd class."
-I love classifications and order systems.
Cas: "What I'm saying is that a cupid has gone rogue and we need to stop him before he kills again!"
Dean: "Of course we do"
-I absolutely love the look Dean gives Castiel. It's the famous "humour the insane person" look.
Misha is great at the longing looks towards Dean's burger.
"Is this a fight? Are we in a fight?"
"This is their handshake."
"I don't like it!"
"No one likes it."
-Hahaha...oh Mr. Edlund, you are so awesome.
Of course, the only thing more awkward than a naked man is a crying naked man. This poor guest actor did an amazing job...imagine getting a gig and then finding out you're going to be "naked" on set with three other guys and you have to cry? I can't even...there's a reason I'm not an actor (besides my lack of acting talent).
You know, Sam actually shows remarkable restraint in this episode. It's a shame that Dean's in a place where he focuses on the negative rather than the positive...but I'll talk more about his later. But I will say that even Castiel gives in before Sam does...and yes, you could argue that burgers are harmless and there was no reason for him NOT to give in...but I say that's bull.
I can't watch the introduction of Famine either...SO GROSS!! Seriously...I love Ben Edlund, but he writes some of the more disgusting episodes.
The actor who plays Famine though does such a great and completely creepy job. That was really well cast.
"Wait. Your. Turn!"
-Oh man, I know this is a horrible thing Sam is doing, but DAMN, I love it when he goes all BAMF. Also, just while I'm using internet acronyms, I'd like to say that I'm very jealous of the actress who got to have Jared pretend to suck blood from her neck.
"You sic your dog on me, I just threw him a big steak"
-See, this is what I'm talking about with the fact that even CAS couldn't resist Famine as well as Sam did. He's left Dean wide open for attack and can't pry himself away from a tray of meat to help him.
"I can see how broken you are, how defeated. You can't win and you know it, but you just keep fighting, keep going through the motions. You're not hungry, Dean, because inside you're already dead."
-So, this is the line that tripped most of the fandom up...because like usual, they took things far too literally. Famine doesn't actually mean that Dean's DEAD inside...he means that what Dean craves is death...for it to just all be over. What he means is that Dean is severely depressed. Things that used to bring him joy, no longer do...hence why he's not craving his usual pleasures.
So why isn't he actively killing himself? Because that's not death for Dean, and Dean knows it. He's been to Hell already (at this point, he probably thinks he'll go there again if he offs himself), so that's not an option. Instead he's craving for it to be over manifests itself the way it does in animals - Famine preys to our reptile brains, so why wouldn't it?
Anyway, yeah, I think anyone who has been depressed (not just sad, but depressed) should recognize that that is what Dean is suffering from, and that's what Death meant. I just remember a lot of people writing about how Famine says Dean is dead inside, and then pointing to the fact that Dean is crying at the end of the episode as evidence that he CAN'T be dead inside because he can still feel. People who are depressed can still cry, people...what they can't do is muster up much of desire to do anything else.
"Sam, I see you got the snack I sent you"
"Don't worry. You're not like everyone else. You'll never die from drinking too much. You're the exception that proves the rule, just the way Satan wanted you to be."
-Ok, so, this is my theory, because I like to tie up plotholes based on little to no information. The reason for the demon-blood at 6months? So that Sam could drink copious amounts of demon blood without dying...and also so that Sam wouldn't burn away like Nick. It seems to be an added catch to being Lucifer's vessel - the fact that Lucifer burns through the bodies. He had to drink demon blood as Nick too, and Nick was still burning away - presumably, if Nick had been a special-kid, he wouldn't have burnt away as quickly. Anyway, that's my theory, which I think I'll stick too, because it makes everything work out nicely.
Now, one could look at Sam's remarkable restraint in this scene two ways (or both ways). 1) Sam is AWESOME. Even in the presence of Famine, he holds strong and destroys the horseman rather than give in to his craving. 2) Where Famine went wrong was the fact that Sam didn't crave the demon-blood, but rather the power that it gave him. Sam's pleasure was in exorcising that power (hence the orgasm face when exorcising 5 demons at once).
And now the end...I touched on this a little already...
I think the problem is that because of Dean's depression, when he hears Sam's screams from the panic room - all he can hear is a sign of Sam's weakness. What he SHOULD be hearing is a sign of Sam's strength. Sam resisted consuming the blood of the demon in the alley - he ASKED Dean to tie him up as a precaution when he realized he was infected...he resisted IN THE PRESENCE OF FAMINE. He only submitted because demons basically offered themselves on a platter, and even then, he used the mistake to their advantage by using the power it gave him on Famine. THEN, he WILLINGLY went to Bobby's panic room to go through the painful process of detoxing.
Dean doesn't see all that though...he just hears his brother in pain, and calling out for help, because of an addiction...and the world at large sees addictions as weaknesses. He only sees that Sam's relapsed, not that it was basically forced on him. So, yeah, that's not fair to Sam...but that's depression for you. Depressed people tend to see the negative before they see the positive.
ETA: Also, as mymuseandi pointed out in the comments - Dean's sense of powerlessness and failure is also affected by the fact that Sam's in the panic room screaming for help, but there's actually nothing Dean can do to help him. It's all rather depressing and heartbreaking for Dean.
Man, the rest of this rewatch is going to be pretty depressing...