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Quick Reaction: 7x04 Defending Your Life

Yay! Episode! 

So, how did it start? Oh yeah, recap includes Amy-death-by-Dean, so nice that that's still important. Then we get the dude running through Gastown - uh, I mean Dearborn, Michigan. And he's being chased by a car! And then he runs into his apartment, and he sees his breath, and at this point I actually said outloud "And the car is IN THE APARTMENT!" and then it WAS! HAHAHA!

Sam and Dean arrive on the scene on a sunny day and Sam snaps out of his absence seizure in like a SECOND, yay Sammy! You're doing good! And Dean is all like "ugh, life sucks."

And then Sam is like *whistling and smiley* "Thanks for being a good brother Dean! I'm so happy you didn't kill my childhood crush! I LOVE YOU!" and Dean is like "uh, yeah, I totally did not kill her...right...ugh, life sucks."

Anyway, there is DIRT! 

Next! Um...oh yeah, they figure it's the little girl that the dude once killed. I also like the fact that they might be finally addressing Dean's alcoholism....what with Dean making fun of AA and being creeped out by it, and Sam being like "yeah, I wonder why, Drunky McDrunkerton." To be fair though, I don't like AA either, but that's because it has a religious component, and I don't like anything with religious components. I'm all for not killing children with drunk-driving though, just for the record.

So, um...why did they go all the way to the graveyard just to look at a headstone? Couldn't the florist have just, you know, skipped the whole grave visited and looked up the name on the internet? But whatever...nitpicking, stopping now.

They salt and burn the little girl, and then they are DONE AND DONE.

Only then a dude gets ripped apart by an adorable dog inside a bathroom of a diner. AND THERE IS DIRT! DUN DUN DUN!

The dirt is from an apple farm outside of town! And I totally forget how Sam figures that out. So they drive out there! And they come across an old man who is very upset.

Ok, I'm recapping way too much, it's not like you guys didn't watch the episode. I should just talk about the main points...

So, option to check out the bar they all have in common, or the orchard-barn, And Dean picks the bar...surprise surprise. And Sam goes to the orchard...

And I totally thought the bartender must be in on it, because bartenders aren't REALLY that chatty, you know? But apparently not. Dean drinks 6 shots of scotch (3 doubles) before switching to beer, because the bartender tells him that she'll sleep with him. Well, that's one way to curb alcoholism :P 

Meanwhile, Bobby is living in a storage locker. 

I love the line where Bobby tells Sam that he and Dean need to leave town, and Sam's like "why?" and Bobby says that Osiris preys on those that feel guilty "who does that sound like to you?" and Sam has the classic "OH SHIT!" face.

Only, IT IS TOO LATE.

I also like Dean psyching himself up to sleep with the bartender. "You're Dean Winchester, this is what you do." Um, Dean, you don't HAVE to sleep with bartenders if you don't want to...we won't think any less of you. 

Then, YOINK!

And the bartender wasn't in on it. BUT THERE IS DIRT! 

BACK TO THE BARN! 

Oh wait...the old dude gets killed somewhere in here too, because Sam didn't adequately explain about the importance of salt.

BACK TO THE BARN!

In the version of the Osiris myth I learned, Osiris can't actually leave the Nile. You see, Set killed him and chopped him into pieces and threw him in the river...and then Isis put him back together and resurrected him, except he couldn't leave the Nile after that....and that's why it floods or something. But, anyway, in Supernatural, Osiris is footloose and fancy free and traveling the world punishing people for having an overdeveloped sense of responsibility.

Oh hey, and congrats on them getting an actual Egyptian looking guy to play an Egyptian god! YAY! Diversity makes the world beautiful! 

Sam steps in to be Dean's lawyer, and I love the exchange "I was pre-law." "Yeah, PRE!"

Still, it's cool to see Sammy act the lawyer...even if he is getting his cues from The Good Wife.

Jo! I was spoiled for this, because I watched the promo-clip...I really have to stop doing that, but my willpower is weak.

I like that Jo was still kick-ass. That she didn't admit to liking Dean, and that she wouldn't let Osiris lead her answers. 

When Sam got up to question her, I totally thought the first thing he said was "So, you're dead..." and I'm like, "geez, Sam, way to be sensitive." But then I realized he had said "So, your dad..." Hahaha and I like the fact that Jo gave him a smile.

And then it was SAM TO THE STAND. And it never occurred to me that Dean would blame himself for Sam getting dragged back into the life, but it makes sense. I also like how they brought it back to the simple fact that Dean just doesn't want to be alone. But the thing is, both Sam and Dean are delusional if they think any of that is there fault - it's their mum's. I mean, Sam was marked from the age of 6 months to go down the road he went down - he was going to get on it one way or the other.

I thought it was interesting how Osiris basically hands them the key to escaping the trial, by telling them that it doesn't matter what Osiris things, it only matters what Dean thinks.

Sam calls Dean to the stand and manages to convince him that his heart isn't heavy with guilt, it's just heavy...and it's not his fault that life blows. And it ALMOST works...except that Osiris threatens to call Amy, and Dean IS actually guilty on that one. So yeah, he's gonna die.

I don't really understand why Osiris sends Jo after Dean though, I mean, it would make more sense to send Amy...but whatever.

We have a montage of Sam pacing, and then Bobby comes through and tells them that they need a rams horn - and Sam looks it up and discovers that it's used in the Jewish faith, so he runs off to steal one. I loved Dean's line of "You're going to steal from a temple!?!" Because that totally supports my personal fanon of Dean having hung out in a Jewish community as a teen.

I don't really understand why they had the Rabbi discover Sam stealing though...I mean, they didn't even really use it that much. He had the one line about Sam not being there for Barmitzvah  lessons, but...it just seems odd, it all. 

Once Sam is gone, Dean stands in a salt-circle and tells Jo that she can come out. I really like this scene. I feel like perhaps, if I had a soul, it may have made me emotional. It's nice that Dean and Jo have time to talk - and Jo actually tries to give Dean a measure of peace. 

Then she turns on the gas....but, uh, then she breaks the window to get rid of the salt...so, uh...ventilation! This is where me and my friend started making "Whenever Jo turns on the gas, she opens a window" jokes.

I did like the loving face pat that Jo gives Dean, before she doesn't light the lighter...and Dean doesn't actually see her disappear.

Beautiful talk-by-the-Impala scene! (I thought maybe Whiterock, but I'm not sure where that location was...it was pretty though.) And Dean asks Sam why HE doesn't feel guilty, and Sam is like "well, I went to hell, I've done my time." REALLY?!! Sam has to get tortured and raped by the devil for anywhere between 1.5 to 180 years in order to not feel guilty about shit that WASN'T HIS FAULT IN THE FIRST PLACE?!?! Ugh, Sam, you break my heart.

But whatever, I'm just glad that Sam doesn't feel guilty anymore. Dean should not feel guilty either...well, except about the Amy thing. 

Anyway, I think they are setting up this season to be a "for chrissakes someone help Dean!" season. That boy is in crisis.

Oh, we also learn this episode that the boys are not catholic. I am not surprised.

So, what did you all think? 

Comments

( 48 comments — Leave a comment )
missyjack
Oct. 15th, 2011 07:07 am (UTC)
I thought of you with Dean's line about Temple! And yes the Rabbi was rather random - I suspect something got cut there...

Also we knew from John's dogtags that he identified as "NON-RELIGIOUS' and I don't see the Campbells as being believers.A although Mary did have that thing for angels, but I always put that down to some remnant of her remembering her encounters with them.

I think the think with Dean is he feels responsible for EVERYTHING - i mean as a four year old he felt he had the job of looking after his mother. I am fascinated to see where they take this, and how Dean will cope if Sam is well-adjusted.
hells_half_acre
Oct. 15th, 2011 07:20 am (UTC)
I'd like to see whatever got cut, if that is indeed the case! (which is hopefully is, otherwise that was just random.)

I was thrilled with Dean's line about the Temple. :)

Yeah, I always saw the Winchesters being raised as atheists, save for Mary's thing with angels - which I think was a joke that Michael played on Dean, really.

Very true about Dean. I'm hoping that Sam being well-adjusted means that Sam is in a good frame of mind to help Dean out...I mean, yes, he still has his hell-flashbacks to worry about, but emotionally Sam's pretty solid, and that's what you have to be if you're going to be any help to someone who is an emotional wreck.
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ramblin_rosie
Oct. 15th, 2011 07:07 am (UTC)
Dean seriously looked done in this ep--I don't know if we've seen him this wrung out since "Point of No Return." Jensen hit it out of the park (as usual). Just please, somebody, help that boy turn around; it's breaking my heart.
hells_half_acre
Oct. 15th, 2011 07:21 am (UTC)
Yes! This!

Dean needs a thousand hugs and a nap. Jensen did a great job...but you are right, he's as bad (if not worse) than he was in Point of No Return, and nothing good can come of it.
raloria
Oct. 15th, 2011 07:08 am (UTC)
Hee! I love your reviews. They're really the only ones I like to read before I do my own.

THE DIRT! LOL! XD

The sad thing for me it that this really didn't change anything. Dean's still carrying around guilt that he shouldn't and he's doing that because that's the way he is. Killing Amy or not, he feels responsible for everyone because he's had to look after others from the age of 4. It's all he knows.

I too was thinking White Rock for that final scene, but I looked on Google Maps and nothing quite looks right. I'm thinking River Rd. just south of Westham Island.
hells_half_acre
Oct. 15th, 2011 07:17 am (UTC)
Thanks! I'm glad you like them - I never know what the heck nonsense I'm typing, but I find people like my reviews more that way. ;)

You're right, this doesn't change anything for Dean...though, it DOES bring is issues more to the attention of Sam. Which, you know, hopefully will lead to something good? I know Dean's not going to magically feel better about anything, that's for sure.

Hmm, I think you might be right on that location. Also, BTW: Did you ever find Bobby's house? My friend knows approx. where it is, so if I remember, I'll get her to write it down for me.
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ravelqueen
Oct. 15th, 2011 07:39 am (UTC)
I quite liked it overall.

I think they could have done a wee bit more with the concept, but I like that the show really is telling us that with Amy was a shitty thing to do and they are not going to let Dean forget it.

Also my last week prediction that against all odds this is finally going to be about Deans EPIC issues, because he can't hide behind "but Sammys got problems" anymore

Ohh Sam you warm my heart! Its like you are not in fact emotinally constipated despite the long odds what with your upbringing. Dealing with stuff! Moving Forward! Being so so beautiful! You are my sunshine in this show, never ever change! (also lawyer!Sam was awesome! Protective!Sam in general is pretty awesome)

Now I just hope that the Amy thing will actually come up again, because isn't that a shit-storm waiting to happen (still holding on to my hope that the Lisa-Ben thing will come and bite Dean in the ass again. I have no sympathies for that Dean you totally deserve lots of grief over both those horrible, stupid decisions)
hells_half_acre
Oct. 15th, 2011 07:43 am (UTC)
Also my last week prediction that against all odds this is finally going to be about Deans EPIC issues, because he can't hide behind "but Sammys got problems" anymore

Yes! This!

Also, I agree about Sam. He's warming my heart too. I also love Protective!Sam - I have a feeling we'll probably be seeing more of him.

I'm sure this Amy thing is not going anywhere soon. It seems FAR too important an issue for them to push too far to the side - and also, Dean has a horrible track record for keeping secrets. It's going to come up, and it's going to be nasty...but it's probably what Dean needs to have happen in order to turn himself around.
4422shini
Oct. 15th, 2011 08:00 am (UTC)
I have to say I think I have a rather unpopular opinion of this episode.. I didn't like it very much. Not all of it. But some.

I mean, I loved parts of it. I thought Dean's self loathing and guilt were pretty awesome. His little self pep talk outside of the bar was pretty adorable (he hasn't gotten laid in like a year!). Lawyer!Sam is always welcome.

But... I thought some of the story elements were kind of slapped together. Like the temple thing... it's like they were going somewhere with it and then changed their minds.

I think the main thing I had a hard time was with the Egyptian god. He seemed kind of slapped together and done before (maybe because this is the EXACT plot of Red Dwarf and the Inquisitor). The little convenient piles of red dirt... the cheesy giant statues... I dunno. I'm being a negative Nancy...

I think the location with the Impala at the end may be Steveson area. If it's not there, I have no idea where it would be.

Did you see the Canada Post van in Gastown?
hells_half_acre
Oct. 15th, 2011 08:08 am (UTC)
Ah well, they can't all be winners! And you can't please everyone all of the time!

Oh man, that's true about Dean not being laid in a year...no wonder he needed the pep talk. :P

I agree about the temple thing - I mean, why have a Rabbi find Sam JUST to make a barmitzvah joke?

But yeah, it IS a classic plot. I mean, it's also a little like the first episode of Star Trek TNG with Q....but it's a classic for a reason.

I just thought the piles of dirt were classic Supernatural - they're always doing amazingly convenient things like that. It's like a staple of the show. :P

Hmmm...you might be right about it being Stevenson.

I missed the Canada Post van, but that's hilarious.
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franztastisch
Oct. 15th, 2011 10:46 am (UTC)
I hope they revisit this theme, cos I don't think it's been covered enough. But I guess that's because essentially it's all from Dean's POV and as such, you get more about Sam's problems because Dean represses his so much.

And I really, really want Sam to turn round one day and go "You know what, Dean? I don't blame you. And you shouldn't blame yourself." I dunno how much it would help, but I want him to say it.

Nice to see a regular job though. I've missed those. :)
hells_half_acre
Oct. 15th, 2011 07:37 pm (UTC)
I think Sam kind of did do that in this episode - explaining to Dean why it wasn't his fault that Sam was dragged back into the life. Of course, it didn't do much, because Dean's guilt is woven into his bone marrow...but it's a start.

I like the regular jobs just as much as the epic-plot. Especially when there's so much character-plot in them. :)
marlowe78
Oct. 15th, 2011 12:18 pm (UTC)
When Sam got up to question her, I totally thought the first thing he said was "So, you're dead..." and I'm like, "geez, Sam, way to be sensitive." But then I realized he had said "So, your dad..." Hahaha and I like the fact that Jo gave him a smile.

Oh really???? I thought he stated her state of ... life. *blush* Dammit, English language!.

Funny... it makes more sense now ;-)

I thought it was interesting how Osiris basically hands them the key to escaping the trial, by telling them that it doesn't matter what Osiris things, it only matters what Dean thinks.

Yeah, I liked that too. Osiris isn't judging - he's only doing what people's hearts tell them is just. Even though other people might disagree, and that's why any good justice-system doesn't base its punishments on what the sinners think they deserve. It ISN'T just.

And we all know that Dean is as good as dead when it comes to his own heart.

Sam calls Dean to the stand and manages to convince him that his heart isn't heavy with guilt, it's just heavy...and it's not his fault that life blows

Well, for me, Dean didn't look convinced. He looked guilty as hell, and of course he would. People feel guilty for less things, and there isn't really much you can do in a short "trial"-thingy to make them stop feeling like that.
After all, it took Sam 100 years in Lucifer's Cage to stop feeling guilty.
So no, Dean wasn't convinced, in my opinion. He only didn't really wanna die.

I don't really understand why Osiris sends Jo after Dean though, I mean, it would make more sense to send Amy...but whatever.

Huh. I wondered myself. But I think... it could be because he doesn't REALLY feel guilty for Amy, but for going after her behind Sam's back?
If he didn't think it was necessary, he'd not have gone and killed her. So his guilt isn't for killing Amy, but for not trusting Sam's judgment, for lying to Sam and for making the poor Kid see his mother die.
But he DOES feel guilty about Jo dying.
He feels more guilty for things that happen because he was in some way "selfish" - I might think that this definition of selfishness is based on his non-childhood *kicks John against shin* - then for the deaths he caused by his own hands.
Like... he feels guilty for dragging Sam away because HE didn't want to be alone. And for getting Lisa in trouble because HE wanted to not be alone. And for having Jo die because HE didn't feel up to facing Lucifer alone.

I'm seeing a pattern ;-)

I don't really understand why they had the Rabbi discover Sam stealing though...I mean, they didn't even really use it that much. He had the one line about Sam not being there for Barmitzvah lessons, but...it just seems odd, it all.

Maybe there is a missing scene for that? Or to "heighten the tension" - like: does Sam come back on time? Or doesn't he??

*eyeroll* If the writers think we would actually think he WOULDN'T come back on time, they have lost touch with reality ;-) So I'm going with missing scene here. Maybe a funny one.


About Sam and not-guilt: I'm glad he doesn't feel guilty anymore, though I think it would have taken less time for him to reach that phase than 1,5 to 180 Years. But that's the time he was down there... I think he'd be "perfectly unguilty" if he'd have only been there for um, 4 months (40 years)
Soooo, why isn't that enough for Dean?
Well, my guess: because in Hell, he heaped up even MORE sins and guilt. He didn't stay strong, he broke, and he LIKED torturing souls (I fully believe that he did, in that twisted, torture-based way. He didn't have a choice but to like it, so yeah... he liked it. And it still killed him all over)

So yeah, I tentatively hope it's gonna be a "help Dean"-Season. Sam is fin(er) and he's got capacity to do so. He's already noticing the drinking-problems. So that leaves me hoping. And YES: season 7 ROCKS!!!


Oh, we also learn this episode that the boys are not catholic. I am not surprised.


We did? Where did I miss something?
marlowe78
Oct. 15th, 2011 12:22 pm (UTC)
Ugh... I totally forgot:
(imagine this before my post)

Hey you! *waves*
I loved that episode, not as much as the others but I liked it pretty much.


(now, this comes AFTER my post but before the Catholic-thing)

I liked Jo and Dean's exchange. Jo makes Dean all mushy and soft and vulnerable, and I like that about her. Ok, she's dead so she's forgiven for forgetting that wind blows gas away ;-)
But she was really nice to Dean even though she wanted to kill him. What made it all more heartbreaking was that Dean didn't even think about defending himself. Apart from trying to catch the salt, he just would have let her blow him away. In a way, I think, he'd have welcomed death. (not Death, probably)

It's weird that his executioner had to tell him that she really doesn't want to kill him, and that he doesn't deserve it.
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dairygirl
Oct. 15th, 2011 02:24 pm (UTC)
This episode featured quite a cynical Dean. While previous episodes (and seasons) rarely touched on Dean's alcohol addiction, I guess they decided to more overtly cover the issue? Honestly, one episode does not an issue make. Regardless, I loved Sam stepping up to defend Dean and then even with his assertion of pre-law, he still takes tips from a TV show. (When do they have time to watch TV?) Sam was a surprising second witness to Dean's guilt but Amy was the likely third but I still wondered if Castiel could have been called. Honestly, I liked the introduction of Osiris (more mythologies, the better) plus I would like to think when Sam was caught by the rabbi, he was able to talk the rabbi into loaning him the ram's horn. And the end-of-the-episode talk revealed a really odd revelation for Sam but hey, I guess being locked in a cage with Lucifer and Michael has benefits? Or guilt can be burned out of Sam Winchester anyway.
liliaeth
Oct. 15th, 2011 03:07 pm (UTC)
I was thinking that Adam could have made a third, if not for the fact that his soul is stuck in hell (though Adam's mom could have been a replacement for that)

Dean did have to make the choice whom to save, Sam or Adam and he picked Sam.
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quickreaver
Oct. 15th, 2011 03:49 pm (UTC)
I think this is going to be the season of Dean Realizing Sam Is An Equal. Here to date, Dean felt he had to look out for Baby Brother; that has been his entire life's work. Dean's issues took a waaaay back seat to Sam's. I sense those tables turning.

Sam is proving he can deal with shit on his own, in his own way, and Dean can now move on to dealing with his own considerable problems. AND...best part here...Sam can be the real support system Dean hasn't had since, well, ever? Lisa could've been some sort of support but Dean was not in a place to recognize that. Now Dean just needs to admit he can lean on Sam and Sam can take it. But that's a big step for our Deano.

I've really loved this season, overall! I love that they've stripped away so much of the uber-powerful stuff (though I miss Misha something fierce), so now it feels much more close and dangerous and fragile.
hells_half_acre
Oct. 15th, 2011 07:31 pm (UTC)
I think so too. I mean, Dean took the step at the end of S5 to let Sam make his own decisions and acknowledge him as an equal - but then Sam got dead and then soulless and then amnesia'd so he actually did NEED Dean again in that big-brother role. Now, Sam is coping very well.

I really hope Sam can be a support system. I've been rewatching S6, and you can actually see that Lisa WAS a very good support system for Dean, and had worked wonders in partially mending him - but when Sam showed up all wrong and soulless, Dean immediately reverts back to all his bad behaviours and undoes all the work that Lisa did.

I miss Castiel too, but I'm also glad they are stripping away the powerful stuff. I kind of wanted another season where Castiel was losing his angel-mojo, but I guess they've done that before - so it was easiest to just "kill him off".
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percysowner
Oct. 16th, 2011 12:23 am (UTC)
Your problem with AA is my problem with AA. Unfortunately AA has made a name for itself so suggesting going to Rational Recovery (which is totally non-religious) would not be recognized by the general public as an alcohol rehabilitation program.

Frankly, I'm surprised Sam would suggest AA because of the believing in a higher power element. Lets face it every time the boys have MET a higher power they have to learn to try and kill it, or to run like Hell, or to try and kill it and then run like Hell in case the killing method doesn't work. The only other higher power we know about has made it abundantly clear that it (God)takes a hands off view of humanity in general and is perfectly happy to let the Winchesters be sacrificed in the big showdown. Higher powers do not equal good in Supernatural land.
hells_half_acre
Oct. 16th, 2011 12:29 am (UTC)
I think the other problem is that most people don't even realize how religious AA is.

Anyway, Sam wasn't really suggesting AA specifically, so it's not like it's counter-character. I don't think Sam would ever suggest a program for Dean, AA or Rational Recovery or anything - the Winchesters are very much a "solve our own problems between the two of us" type people, for better or for worse.
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katsheswims
Oct. 16th, 2011 12:32 am (UTC)
"I don't really understand why Osiris sends Jo after Dean though, I mean, it would make more sense to send Amy...but whatever." The only thing I can think of is that maybe Osiris can only send the ghosts of people he called in the trial after the 'guilty'. Though that doesn't really explain the car or the dog-unless they were evidence in those people's trials...

When I heard the Jewish connection I thought of your Dean&Jewish neighborhood theory.

I remember one of them saying they weren't Catholic, but I don't remember what the reason was...

The broken window/fresh air+gas didn't hit me until after the episode was over, but yeah-it doesn't make sense.
hells_half_acre
Oct. 16th, 2011 12:37 am (UTC)
Dean said that he gave up AA for Lent, and Sam said that they weren't catholic.

Also, as Missyjack reminded me, John's dog-tags said "non-religious" - so the boys were most likely raised atheist, but Sam was probably influenced into praying by Pastor Jim.

The death thing: I think they just had to die the same way they themselves had caused suffering...so the dude who ran over the little girl was run over, and guy who hurt dogs was hurt by a dog, and Dean was set to die in an explosion because Jo died in an explosion (I guess it would be too complicated to determine how he would die because of his guilt over failing Sam.) And, someone else pointed out that his guilt over Amy isn't really about killing Amy, it's about lying to Sam about it.
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