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Rewatch S7: Meet The New Boss (7.01)

Okay, disclaimers first...

1. I didn't particularly like S7. I felt like it had a lot of problems. Previously, S3 was my least favourite season...and I think for similar reasons. It felt like there was trouble behind the scenes. In S3, it was interference from the network and the writer's strike...this season, well, I don't know if there actually was trouble behind the scenes or not, but it FELT like there was. THAT BEING SAID: Just because I didn't like the season overall, doesn't mean that it doesn't contain some really good episodes. Some of my favourite episodes are from S3, which is another season that I didn't like overall. So, yeah, I'm not saying it was all crap - I'm just saying that it had some problems and I don't think it was their strongest year. But, that only makes me more interested to do this rewatch. Maybe the problem isn't Show...maybe Show just decided to go subtle on us or something, and I was so used to anvils that I couldn't see the winks...I don't know. I'm hoping that by doing this rewatch, I'll gain a better appreciation for the season.

2. Dean/Castiel...listen, I'm not a destiel shipper. I actually blocked the tag on tumblr, because I find that the ratio of rational to crazy in that section of the fandom is not to my liking. That being said, I think this season is largely about Dean and Cas and their relationship. So, as usual, this is my disclaimer that when I talk about "love", you are free to interpret that however you want, but personally I mean it in an asexual platonic sense.

Okay, now that that's done...

Slow Ride... take it EASY. I love this song. Anyway, um...yeah, S6 feels like EONS ago, geez. This should be fun. I have to be careful to remember what everyone's relationships were like all the way back then...

So, we begin where we left off - with Cas in the lab...everyone still wearing the same clothes.

Cas: "Stop. What's the point if you don't mean it? You fear me. Not love, not respect, just fear."
-I wonder if Cas understands what love is, or looks like. We know he can look at someone and know at least part of their feelings - he did it the first time he met Dean, "You don't think you deserve to be saved", and when he told that prostitute that her father leaving wasn't her fault... but I wonder how accurate he is, or if he gets it wrong. Cas is pretty naive about a lot of things. And I think Dean and Sam DO love him, but Cas can't see that for some reason... I think he is confusing fear FOR him for fear OF him... or maybe they are afraid OF him, but I'd see it more as in the sense of someone being afraid of a drunk loved one. They're afraid because the person is not themself, they've been changed by something and their behaviour is now unpredictable...and people always fear things that are unpredictable...like earthquakes and startled moose.

Sam: "Cas-"
Cas: "Sam, you have nothing to say to me. You stabbed me in the back."

- I kind of think that Sam was going to tell Cas that he loved him here...that's my personal headcanon. But then, Castiel does have a point, Sam DID just stab him in the back. But Castiel totally stabbed Sam in the metaphorical back first! Also, Sam's working off pure adrenaline here...I hardly think you can blame the guy for anything.

Dean: "Cas, come on this is not you."
Cas: "The Castiel you knew is gone."

- I think Dean takes Cas at his word here - and why wouldn't he, given what Cas says next...

Dean: "So what then? Kill us?"
Cas: "What a brave little ant you are, you know you're powerless. You wouldn't dare move against me again, that would be pointless. So I have no need to kill you, not now. Besides, once you were my favourite pets before you turned and bit me..."

- I love Sam swaying where he's standing...his brain wanting to shut down again and try to heal.
- Also, Castiel is re-enforcing what he just told Dean about "the Castiel you knew" being gone. The other thing Castiel is doing...and I do apologize, because I'm going to really sound like a shipper here... he's doing the the classic "You can't break up with me, I'm breaking up with you!" thing. He's putting Dean down, because if Dean is tiny and stupid and not worth Cas' time, then Cas should be thankful that their friendship is over rather than sad. Dean is a pet that Castiel doesn't love anymore, so good riddance.... but Castiel DOESN'T kill him, which really should tell Dean something, but being Dean, he hears 'I hate you' and he understands 'I hate you', because Dean always expects people to hate him rather than love him.

Cas: "Not doing so well are you, Sam."
Sam: "I'm fine. I'm fine."
Dean: "You said you would fix him. You promised!"

- I think it also says a lot about how focused Dean is on Cas that it took him this long to realize that Sam might not be okay.
- I also think this is another test by Dean, a final push to try to see if Cas is still in there somewhere...if he were, he'd keep his promise, because Castiel always kept his promises before the whole mess with Crowley.

Cas: "If you stood down, which you hardly did. Be thankful for my mercy, I could have cast you back in the pit."
- And this might sound brutal, but think all the way back to 4x02 - "I dragged you out of Hell. I can throw you back in." Castiel USED to be a badass Angel of the Lord who could make Dean Winchester cower...and then he fell, and it made sense that Dean helped him, but that put Dean in a position of authority over Castiel, rather than the other way around...and in retrospect, I think S6 is very much also about where the power lies in Castiel and Dean's friendship...who is in charge of who/what. Here, Castiel, high on power, is reverting back to the way he was when he first met Dean - full of the power of heaven and not afraid to use it to put the human in his place.

Dean: "Cas, come on, this is nuts. You can turn this around. Please!"
Cas: "I hope for your sake this is the last you see me."

- And Dean IS begging here. He doesn't want to lose his friend... and, yeah, Dean's pretty goddamn devastated here, because really, he's seeing absolutely no trace of the "man" that was his friend.

Sam collapses...nose bleeding. I do wonder what this is doing to his brain.

Cas's speech in heaven over a bunch of dead bodies...
"I thought the answer was free will, but I understand now - you need a firm hand. You need a father. And I am your father now. Be obedient children, or this will be your fate. It is a new day, on earth and in heaven. Rejoice."
- That last part reminds me of one of my favourite hymns.... that sounds weird to say, especially since the hymn is quite cheerful. But anyway...
- Cas DOES have a point. Angels when left with free will went either mad for power or fell into hedonism... of course, humans do the same thing, so I can't really judge, but the only altruistic angel seemed to be Castiel...and maybe Gabriel, though his methods were questionable. Then again, Castiel's methods are questionable too, given the fact that he IS giving this speech over a bunch of dead bodies.

Dean fixing the car... I love that opening shot of him upsidedown and then rightsideup but upsidedown...

Dean: "Come on, baby!"
Bobby: "So, are you fixing her, or primal screaming?"

- Does anyone know what primal screaming is anymore? Sometimes I wonder if these references are lost on most of the viewers... primal screaming was popular in the 70s, as some sort of new-agey weirdo thing. Not to make fun of new-agey weirdos, but I totally am. My dad did it. It obviously didn't help.

Dean: "Sam?"
Bobby: "He's still under, but alive."
Dean: "Yeah, what about God part deux?"

- So, Sam's been unconscious for a while. I wonder if they put him back in the panic room, or if they put him in one of the bedrooms this time. Also, he's "still under" - to me, that sounds like he's sedated, rather than sleeping of his own accord. It makes me wonder how they got him home and what exactly happened after he's brain started to melt out his nose.
- I can't actually tell if Dean says "part two" or "part deux" (with a Texan accent)...but I like to think he said "part deux", because it reminds me of Hot Shots, which is a stupid movie, but I remember laughing and laughing at Part Deux when I was a kid...especially the point where they come across the white picket fence in the jungle.

Bobby: "I don't even know what books to hit for this, Dean."
Dean: "Well figure it out!" ... "I'm sorry. This ain't in no book. If you stick your neck out, Cas steps on it. So you know what I'm going to do? I'm going to fix this car, because that's what I can do. I can work on her 'til she's mint. And when Sam wakes up, no matter what shape he's in, we glue him back together too. We owe him that."

- Firstly, I love how situations are finally outstripping what Bobby can help them with. Eventually, Sam and Dean have to be the experts on everything (which is actually another thing I think they did wrong this season, but I'll mention that when it's more obvious.) Bobby is still their emotional rock, but he's not their knowledge rock as much anymore.
- Secondly, the line  about Dean fixing the car tells me all I need to know about how much hope he has for Cas. HE'S ALREADY MOURNING. The last time he gave the "I'm going to fix the car" speech was when John died.
- Thirdly, I love Dean saying that they'll glue Sam back together again and that they "owe him that." I love that no one's forgotten the sacrifice Sam made that broke him in the first place.

Sam: "Hey Dean,"
Dean: "Hey...you're, ah, walking and talking."
Sam: "Yeah, I, ah, put on my own socks - whole nine."

- I love how "I put on my own socks" is a measure of how well someone is doing in Winchester-land. It also makes me crave a whole bunch of fics where Winchesters CAN'T put on their own socks.

Dean: "Well, that's, um, I mean, uh...you sure you're okay?"
- It might be easier for Sam to tell you that he's not okay, if you two weren't so awkward when talking about whether he's okay. :P

Sam: "Yeah, my head hurts a little, but, basically."
Dean: "Seriously?"
Sam: "Look man, I'm as surprised as you are, but yeah, I swear."
Dean: "Good! No reason putting a gift horse under a microscope, right?"

- I absolutely love it when people mix up sayings. I do it too... on purpose... my favourite is "We'll burn that bridge when we come to it." I think mixing them up makes NEW sayings that are more specific for what you mean.

Sam: "Yeah, so what happened with Cas?"
Dean: "Why don't you come help me with the car, I'll fill you in."

- Of course, this time through the grieving process, Dean isn't isolating himself from Sam, like he did when John died...mainly because at the moment, Dean doesn't have any secrets from Sam, besides, perhaps, the depth of his grief. So, this time Sam gets to help him with the car. Yay! The only thing hotter than one Winchester fixing the car are TWO Winchesters fixing the car.

Sam hears a freaky noise, and makes a worried face... something is rotten in the state of Sam.

Cas: "You're wrong, you know. I'm utterly indifferent to sexual orientation."
- Woo! You know, for all Castiel is batshit insane with power, he does do things that I approve of. Actually, personally, I think Castiel is just doing what a lot of us would do if we were made God. Or at least, I would do.

Douchebag pastor: "And who are you?"
Cas: "I'm God... and he who lies in my name shall choke on his own tongue, and his poisonous words shall betray him. For I am the Lord, your God."

- I mean, seriously, who wouldn't want to do this?

Voices inside Castiel: "Castiel...Cas..."
- Yeah, because that's a good sign.

And then replacing himself in the stain-glass. Classic. Oh, Cas.

Sam's basement vision - flesh on meat hooks. You know, maybe it's just me, but I kind of picture that that was something that happened to Sam...that Lucifer at one point cut him up into very very little pieces and hung each piece on a meat hooks, and Sam could see them, could still feel each one.... and as horrible as that imagined torture is, I still think it's better than what Lucifer keeps implying that he actually did to Sam.

Bobby: "Hey Sam, what are you taking a nap down here?"
Bobby: "It's Cas, we think, come on."
Sam: "Yeah, coming..."

- Yeah, because the first thing I do when I find someone who is obviously recovering from some sort of severe mental breakdown is to COMPLETELY IGNORE THE SITUATION. Seriously, it's no wonder Sam didn't tell them - all of their social cues were saying "if we ignore this, it will go away." That being said, it's not like Bobby has a PVR on that old TV, so Sam really does have to get upstairs if they want to catch the news program.

Woman Witness on News: "We all saw him. No beard. He was young...and sexy. He had a raincoat."
*Dean turns TV off*

- Okay, I know I'm already going to sound like a destiel shipper without mentioning this...but it IS kind of hilarious that it seems to be the "sexy" part that pisses Dean off.

Radio: "...the klu klux klan has been forced to disband"
Dean: "Can't argue with that one."

- See! I mean, I know there's probably a better solution then to kill a bunch of people, but honestly, God!Cas isn't ALL bad.
- Also, RED PLAID SHIRT OF ANGST! It still counts as angst, because Dean is in mourning.

Sam: "Motivational speakers?"
Dean: "Yeah, I'm not sure New Cas gets irony any better than Old Cas did. But then, Old Cas, wouldn't smite Madison Square garden just to prove a point. He is off the deep end of the deep end and there is no slowing down."

- Dean's already divided Cas into two separate people. He's grieving for one and the other is a monster... the problem, of course, is that they're both technically the same person.

Sam: "So what, try to talk to him again?"
Dean: "Sam."
Sam: "Dean, all we can do is talk to the guy."

- I love how Sam's weapon is WORDS. Later, he'll try to think of an actual weapon...but I love how his default is "this is Cas, we just have to reason with him." Oh Sam, I love you. Like I've said countless times before - to me, Supernatural is a show about an optimist and a pessimist living a tragedy.

Dean: "He's not a guy, he's God, and when God gets righteous, you get the hell out of the way, haven't you read the bible?"
- And this is MY problem with destiel as a romantic pairing. It's not that Cas is a dude and Dean is straight. (I happen to think Cas is genderless and Dean isn't an extreme on the Kinsey scale)... it's that Cas isn't human. And Dean reiterates that here - the problem is that Cas is "not a guy."

Sam: "I guess."
Dean: "Cas is never coming back... "
*Sam's face*

- This is the point where Sam's heart breaks. It's the first time that SAM has considered that Cas might be lost to them. Dean jumped to that conclusion back at the lab, but even though Cas broke him, refused to heal him, spoke down to them, and then disappeared to wreak havoc, Sam STILL didn't entertain the idea that Cas might in fact be gone. Not until Dean flat out tells him here. And for all we tend to focus on the Dean-Cas relationship, we can't forget that Castiel is ALSO Sam's friend. They have a much different, more awkward, friendship, but if you think about it, Castiel is Sam's only friend "outside the family" just as much as he's Dean's only friend.

Dean: "...He has lied to us. He used us. He cracked your gourd like it was nothing. No more talk, we have spent enough on him."
Sam: "Okay."
Dean: "Hand me that socket wrench."

- There is a direct correlation between Dean working on the car and the amount of grief he's experiencing, I tell you.
- It's funny to watch this scene having seen the gag reel and knowing that Jensen was cracking up to the point of tears while filming. You certainly can't tell in the final cut!
- Seriously though, Dean reads off a laundry list of betrayals... and if there's one thing Dean hates, it's betrayals. And this is VERY similar to S4, and how Dean almost gave up on Sam after his betrayal. This isn't odd behaviour for Dean. He's hurt and it's going to take him a while to get over it.

And now we come to Crowley's trailer and one of my favourite songs "these boots were made for walking..."

Castiel healed the leppers! That's good!

"Hello Crowley, you look stressed."

- Hehe, I love that entrance.

Crowley: "So, the jig is up. You found me."
Castiel: "I never lost you. These...scratches...they're all useless."
Crowley: "Still, can't blame a girl for trying."

- I just like that last line of Crowley's.

Castiel: "I'm not going to kill you Crowley. I have plans for you."
- I do love Crowley's "prepared to be smited" face and stance.

-The plan: Cas controls the flow of souls.
Crowley: "...Hell's being downsized?"
Cas: "I would have done away with it completely, but I need a threat to hold over my enemies. And we need to keep Michael in Lucifer's cage."

- It's interesting that Castiel is more concerned about Michael. Michael was ruler of heaven - and would be the only competition for Castiel's rule if he were to escape...but you'd think that if there were a danger of Michael getting out, there'd be a danger of Lucifer getting out - and that would be a bigger concern. I'm not sure where I'm going with this. I just thought the Castiel's focus was interesting.

And Castiel's hand is melting. That's always a good sign. :P

-Uh, that's all I wrote in my notes. I guess that encompasses my feelings about the scene where Sam believes he's being hung. But, um, I'll say it in a few more words: I love this scene. I love the lighting, and I love how he comes out of it. And I love how deep his voice is when he calls for Dean or Bobby. Actually, Sam saying Bobby always makes me smile...there's just something about the way he says it that sounds kind of ridiculous, yet endearing.

Bobby: "She's looking good, considering."
Dean: "Considering? I should do this professionally!"

- I see you've read some curtain!fics, Dean.

Bobby: "So, seen Sam lately?"
Dean: "Yeah, why? ...what?"

- Uh, there's just the three of you in a relatively small house, Bobby. I'm pretty sure Dean's seen Sam.
- Okay, seriously though, I love how Dean is like "oh god, what now."

Dean: "Come on, spit it out."
Bobby: "How is that kid even vertical? I mean, Cas broke his damn pinata!"
Dean: "I know"
Bobby: "I get how he came to help us back at the lab - adrenaline, but now?"
Dean: "He says he's okay"
Bobby: "How?"
Dean: "I don't know. I just pray to God it's true."
Bobby: "We need to come up with a new saying for that."

- Okay, I like Bobby's last line, but I also want to talk about the fact that it's VERY obvious that something is not right with Sam. It should have been very obvious to Bobby, and Dean has doubts about Sam telling the truth, you can tell with his phrasing and what he says next...

Oh Sam, eavesdropping never works out for anyone...except Laura Secord and the Canadians, I guess. (Canadian History jokes FTW? Y/Y?)

Dean: "Seriously though, Bobby, I mean look at our lives - how many more hits can we take? So if Sam says he's good, he's good."
Bobby: "You believe that."
Dean: "Yeah...no, want to know why? Because we never catch a break. I mean, just this one thing, you know? But I'm not dumb, I'm not going to get my hopes up just to get kicked in the daddy pills again."

- See this is the thing, and why I can't blame Sam for lying by omission. Dean is basically saying "this is a farce that we are deciding to believe in order to get through the day." He's basically saying that he KNOWS Sam isn't alright, and he doesn't care - not in a "no one cares about your problems" type of way, but just in the way that he's happy to pretend that Sam is okay, even though he knows different.

Sam: "Hey,"
Bobby: "How you feeling, sport?"
Sam: "Can't complain."

- And really, Sam isn't necessarily lying, he's just not telling them everything. He's not saying, "I'm fine. Not hallucinating at all!" He says "Can't complain" - this is Optimist!Sam we're talking about here. "Can't complain" basically translates to "I'm having hallucinations of torture and they may or may not be escalating, but really, things could be much worse - I could, for instance, still be in the cage with Lucifer rather than just hallucinating that I am. That'd be MUCH worse. So yeah, no complaining here. I'm thankful - these are good problems to have!" Seriously, Optimist!Sam breaks your heart just as much as Pessimist!Dean does.
- Also, Bobby calling Sam "sport" is adorable.

Sam: "Guys the body-count is really getting up there, we've gotta do something."
Bobby: "What we gotta do is hunt the sonovabitch, unfortunately I lost my god-guns."
Sam: "[...] ...there's gotta be something that can hurt him."
*Dean pauses*
Dean: "He's God, Sam, there's nothing, but there might be someone"

- I love how Dean remembered Death there. I also love how we see his lips move just a little, like he's actually remembering the exact words that Death said.
- That being said, I think Dean was avoiding this. It's one thing for him to declare that the Castiel he knew is dead and mourn his friend - it's another entirely to actively HUNT said friend.

Crowley is summoned.
-I'd love to be dropped into a room with those three people staring at me...but, hey, I'm not a demon. :P

Crowley: "My new boss is going to kill me for even talking to you lot"
Dean: "You're lucky we're not stabbing you in your scuzzy face you little piece of-"
Sam: "Wa-wa-wait - what new boss?"
Crowley: "Castiel, you giraffe."

- I love how angry Dean is. Crowley is the one, in Dean's eyes (and probably quite correctly) that lead Castiel down the path that betrayed Dean and "killed" Castiel.
- I also love how the show can sneak in obvious about-to-swear lines and then cut them off and have it sound natural, instead of a gimmick for laughs. I'm a huge fan of authentic language and I kind of wish that the Winchesters were allowed to swear, so I like it when they can sneak it in somehow.

Crowley: "He's everybody's boss. What do you think he's going to do when he finds out we're been conspiring! ... you do want to conspire, don't you?"
Bobby: "No, we just want you to stand there and look pretty."
Crowley: "I'm listening."

-Haha, oh Crowley, I do love you. Also, I love the way he says "you do want to conspire, don't you?" like he's almost afraid that they DON'T. Crowley loves conspiring, no matter what he says.

"We want a spell to bind Death."
"Bind? Enslave Death? You having a laugh?"
"Lucifer did it."
"That's Lucifer."
"A spell's a spell."

- I do love this about the Supernatural-Universe. When it comes to "magic" a spell is a spell... and anyone can do anything.

Dean: "Death is the only player on the board left that has the kind of juice to take Cas."
Crowley: "They'll both mash us like peas. Why should I help on a suicide mission?"
Bobby: "Look, you really want Cas running the universe?"

- Firstly, this is when we know that Crowley DOES believe that Cas has managed to become God - or "a God" - because he believes that Cas is somehow a match for Death, that there will actually be some sort of fight. If he knew Castiel was just a mutated angel, I don't think he'd be as worried.
- Secondly, I love Bobby's line...because it's true. The problem with Castiel is that although he means well, he's very naive and very literal. The motivational speaker massacure proved that, but also I think, the very fact that he can't SEE how much the Winchester's love him, speaks to the problem. He's got god-like powers without the required omniscience.

The blind dude... I think I'd freak out way more if I was blind and then could see.... and then I'd have amazing grace stuck in my head for the rest of my life.

Voices inside Cas: "Mistake. Too late. Let us out. LET US OUT!"
-So gross. But I do wonder if one of those voices is Cas's.

Back to Bobby's where there is a mysterious delivery but no one at the door...
- That's how my SPN DVDs were delivered...well without the note signed with "Kisses :)" and who doesn't love the fact that Crowley signs his note with "Kisses :)"?

Dean: "Who feels like hogtieing Death tonight?"
Bobby: "Old age is overrated anyhow."

- This is the thing about Bobby. He is ALWAYS prepared to die for the Winchesters.

Sam: "Grey pupon? Seriously?"
Dean: "It's what popped in my head."

- I wonder if this is actually word for word what was said in the writer's room :P And this is another reference that I wonder if the younger fans even get.

Dean: "Hi, I don't want to hurt you, really."
Guy: "I'm the one with a firearm, son."
Dean: "Yeah, I get that."
*cut and then we see Dean tying up the guy...*

- Haha, I love BAMF!Dean.

Dean: "Um, hello? Death?"
Death: "You're joking."
Dean: "This isn't what it seems."
Death: "Seems like, you bound me."

- I love this scene because this is the third time Dean's seen Death, but the first time that Bobby and Sam have spoken with him. They have SEEN him before, when he gave Sam back his soul...but man, they must be pretty terrified. Actually, everyone plays this scene so well, because they ARE all terrified...and Death is just annoyed, of course.

Dean: "Fried pickle chip? Best in the state."
Death: "That easy to soothe me, you think? This is about Sam's hallucinations, I assume."
Dean: "What?"
Death: "Sorry Sam, one wall per customer. Now unbind me!"
Sam: "We can't...yet."

- It's interesting that Death would assume it's Sam's hallucinations. He must know that purgatory has been breeched and about Cas....so he either believes that Winchesters have strange priorities, or he's messing with them on purpose. ...or I suppose, he might not be as omniscient as I think he is.

"We need you to kill God."
Death: "What?"
Bobby: "Kill God. You heard right, your...honour."

- I really do love how they're TRYING to be respectful. It's kind of hilarious.

Death: "What makes you think I can do that."
Dean: "You told me."
Death: "And why should I?"
Dean: "Because...we told you to, and we're the boss of you. I mean...respectfully."

- But again, I think Death thinks they're talking about the ACTUAL God...which means that he doesn't know that Castiel is going around believing that he's God. So, yeah, I guess what I'm saying is that I'm interested in how omniscient Death is. The Supernatural-Universe paints God and Death as equals really - so any knowledge we can glean about Death, I think would also apply at least in part, to God. Though, perhaps not. Perhaps they're only equal in longevity.

Cas: "Amazing"
Sam: "Cas!"
Cas: "I didn't want to kill you, but now-"
Dean: "You can't kill us."
Cas: "You've erased any nostalgia I had for you, Dean-"

- And Cas DOES raise his fingers to snap here. Which, I just want to call your attention to now, because I'm going to talk about it again in a minute.

Death: "God? You look awfully like a mutated angel to me."
- Have I mentioned how much I love Julian Richings? He's awesome. I absolutely love him and Misha acting off each other here.

Death: "..You think you're simply under the weight of all those souls, yes. But that's not the worst problem. There are things much older than souls in purgatory and you've gulped those in too."
Cas: "Irrelevant. I control them."
Death: "For the moment."
Dean: "Wait, what other things?"
Death: "Long before God created angel and man, he made the first beasts. The leviathans."
Dean: "Leviathans"
Death: "I personally found them entertaining, but he was concerned they'd chomp the entire petridish so he locked them away. Why do you think he created purgatory..."

- First, I love the way Dean says "leviathans"
- Second, I love that Death found them entertaining.
- Third, It makes me wonder if God can destroy. Why lock things away? Why not destory them? And I don't mean kill - because obviously, if God decides you should die, then you'll die...I'm talking about destorying a soul ...destorying the very essence of something. Does he need Death for that?

Death: "Stupid little soldier, you are."
Castiel: "Why? Because I dared open a door that he shut. Where is he? I did a service taking his place."
Death: "Quite the humanitarian."
Castiel: "And how would you know? What are you really? A fly swatter?"

- Oh man, these two are so good. And they both make compelling arguments - what makes Castiel think he's qualified to be God - he's smart enough? And what is Death? What is a being whose sole power is the power of death...not life and death, just death... though, in fairness to Death, he DID have the power to restore Sam's soul, where Cas did not.

Death: "Destined to swat you, I think."
Cas: "Unless I take you first."
Death: "Really bought his own press, this one."

- I read a great history book once - obtusely and arrogantly written, ironically, but good nonetheless. It's called The Hitler Myth, and it basically makes the argument that the point of no return with Hitler came when he started believing his own propaganda. Anyway, my point is: Never buy your own press, people. It's been known to lead to genocide.

Death: "Please, Cas, I know God, and you are no God."
Dean: "Alright, put your junk away both of you. Look, call him what you want, just kill him now!"

- The look between Cas and Dean here is heartbreaking. Cas genuinely just looks completely heartbroken. And you want to feel sorry for him, but at the same time, I'd like you to recall the moment where Cas told Dean that he had no "nostalgia" left for him and he was about to SNAP HIS FINGERS and kill Dean. Dean's justified in believing that any speck of the friend who loved him is gone, that this thing in its place has to be killed. But you can tell from Cas' face that it may not be true, and for a second, I think even Dean sees it. This really is a relationship fight brought to the extreme. Dean and Cas have had a falling out and the whole world is suffering from it. Remember how Michael and Lucifer's fight was going to wipe out half the planet? Well, I don't think Dean Winchester's relationships are any less catastrophic.

Cas frees Death.
Death - "Thank you, shall we kickbox now?"

- I'd love to see that... but man, I love how snarky Death is.

Death "I have a tingle I'll be reaping someone very very soon. Don't worry, not you." *Cas disappears* "Well, he was in a hurry."
- I also love how Dean backs up when Death comes close to him.
- And Death did think that Cas was going to kill Dean...or the all of the hunters. But he doesn't. He flees - he flees because when Dean ordered him to be killed, he was HURT. Which means, that the whole "pretend Dean is an ant you can step on" strategy of getting over the broken relationship isn't working.

Michelle Walker (ie: Bachmann)...I try not to follow American politics, but it's everywhere...and I like the Daily Show. But man, American politics is like the very very worst of America, I have to say.

Castiel: "Everyone, I am a better God than my father! How can I make you understand?"
- This is Cas losing it. This whole time, it's been about convince "the world" that he's a just and good God - but it's not that at all. It's Castiel trying to prove to Dean that Castiel had been right and Dean had been wrong. It's Cas trying desperately to prove that Dean should have trusted him, instead of admitting that he should have listened to Dean... that Dean had been right the whole time, and Cas was in over his head. It's Castiel trying to justify his betrayal of the Winchesters, his act of breaking Sam. At this point, it's not about how he can make "everyone" understand, it's about how he can keep holding onto the lie that he DIDN'T just fuck up the best thing he had going for him. Really, maybe a theme of this season is lying to yourself...because there's an awful lot of it going on.

Dean: "Um"
Death: "Shut-up, Dean. I'm not here to tie your shoes every time you trip."

- I love the looks Bobby and Sam give Dean, like "You talk to him, you're his favourite!"
- And of course, I love how Death immediately cuts him off.

Dean: "Well, I'm sorry. Alright, I've been trying to save this planet, so maybe you should find somebody better to tip off!"
Death: "Maybe I should spend my effort on a better planet. Well, it's been amusing."
Sam: "Wait, hold on, hold on, just, can you give us something? You have to care a little bit about what happens to us."

- First, I'm proud of Dean for sticking up for himself. I mean, I know there's an undercurrent of his usual low self-esteem problem here, but there's also the fact that he's saying that this is just as much Death's fault as Dean's, so Death shouldn't be placing the blame solely on him.
- Second, I love Sam - again, the optimist when it comes to people. He genuinely believes that Death must care about them in some capacity. Also, it takes a lot to speak up to Death, and I'm glad both Sam and Dean do it here.

Death: "You know, I really don't, but I do find that little angel arrogant."
Dean: "Great, let's go with that."
Death: "...Get him to return there and compel him to give up the power."
Dean: "Compel?"
Death: "Figure it out."

- I think Death knows that this is a relationship-fight gone horribly wrong. He knows that what Dean needs to do is ATTEMPT to fix his friendship with Cas, and that's their best chance of setting things to right. Unfortunately, even with the glimmer of hurt in Cas' eyes and the fact that he DIDN'T kill Dean - Dean is still stuck in "The Cas I knew is gone" mode...because, you know, you wouldn't want to ruin a few good weeks of grieving.

"Don't thank me. Clean up your mess."
- Again, clean up YOUR mess - not Castiel's. Castiel IS Dean's mess... and I know it takes two to have a falling out, but it was Dean's rather casual treatment of Castiel and his problems that led to Castiel resenting him enough to not listen to him... or maybe just not want to admit that he was wrong. In any case, when you basically create a rogue angel, you're MARGINALLY responsible for what the idiot does.

"Try to bind me again, you'll be dead before you start. Nice pickle chips, by the way!"
- Awesome parting line. I love Death, but I agree with Julian about whether Supernatural should bring him back...the reason the character works is because they use him VERY sparingly.

Cas wakes up in a pool of blood...yeah, that's never good.

Sam: "You want some coffee with that?"
Dean: "Eeh, it's 6pm somewhere."

- Dean is my grandmother. He just needs to start smoking, doing crosswords, and watching golf.

Sam: "We gotta hit the road. I mean, how are we supposed to get Cas to that lab by friggin' 3:59AM."
Dean: "We don't."
Sam: "What do you mean 'we don't'?"
Dean: "I mean, we can't bring the horse to water and we can't make it drink. Why fool ourselves?"

- Why fool ourselves... and part of the problem is Sam's hallucinations. Dean had been gladly fooling himself thinking that Sam was fine. ADMITTEDLY fooling himself, yet, still when that illusion shattered, Dean's one-good-thing was gone - and in that fatalistic-Dean way, that meant that NOTHING good could ever be true. Cas is dead and there's no hope for the world.

Sam: "Dean look, I know you think that Cas is gone."
Dean: "It's 'cause he is."
Sam: "He's not. He's in there somewhere, Dean, I know it."
Dean: "No, you don't."
Sam: "No, I don't. But look, I was pretty far gone sometimes myself and you never gave up on me!"

- I love how confidently Sam lies, and how Dean calls him on it deadpan, and Sam just admits it with a shrug in his voice - like it doesn't even matter that Sam doesn't know whether Cas is alive or dead, he's decided to work from the basis of him being alive. This is a rescue mission and Sam is looking for a person and Dean has already buried an empty coffin because he assumes the vultures have eaten the corpse. And that's not to say that Dean doesn't love Cas - it's just to say that Dean is so frightened by the idea of Cas being dead that it's easier for him to accept that he is and be devastated, rather than get his hopes up only to be devastated. Plus, Dean is still trying to work through all the hurt and anger from Castiel's betrayal. What I'm saying is that DEAN IS COMPLICATED.

Dean: "Yeah, and it turns out you're the same open book you've always been. Hallucinations? Really? I gotta find out from Death?"
- I LOVE this line. It's a moment of comedy in an otherwise sombre scene. I just love how ridiculously not-normal the Winchester's lives are.

Sam: "What was I supposed to do?"
Dean: "How about not lie? How about tell me that you've got crazy crap climbing those walls."
Sam: "Why, you can't help. You gotta lot of some pretty severe crap swinging your way lately and I figured why burst the only good bubble you've got left. What? It's under control."
Dean: "What. What exactly is under control?"

- And this is the other thing, Sam was trying to help Dean, he really was - but in true Sam fashion, he did it wrong. Sam thought that the one way he could help his brother was to lighten his load by not adding to it. But what Sam did was exactly what Castiel did... he decided to keep his problems to himself and try to deal with them himself, rather than let Dean know about them. Dean doesn't even know WHAT Sam has under control...what he sees, how bad it is, whether it's affecting his health...etc.

Dean: "You know how I'm going to deal? I'm going to stuff my pie-hole. I'm going to drink, and I'm going to watch some asian cartoon porn, and act like the world's about to explode, because it is."
- Is it weird that I love the fact that they have Dean being a hentai fan? :P

And then there's the security-video of Cas... and the smile he gives the camera...
Dean: "Well I think reaching Cas is out of the cards."
- And there went any hope of Sam convincing Dean to still try, because Dean KNOWS Cas, and he knows what he just saw on the video wasn't Cas.

"Hey Castiel, um, maybe this is pointless. Look, I don't know if any part of you even cares, but I still think you're one of us. Deep down, and way way way off the reservation, but - we still have 'til dawn to stop this. Let us help, please."
- Oh Sam... I do wonder why you don't seem to care that Castiel broke your head. Maybe because once you got back ALL your memories, you realized that you have nothing to atone for when it comes to soulless!Sam's actions? Maybe because you knew the wall was going to break eventually, and you're kind of glad that axe is no longer hanging over your head? Maybe because you figure you deserve every bad thing that happens to you? I have no idea. But this reminds us that Dean isn't the only one who is friends with Castiel... and maybe Castiel isn't Sam's BEST friend, maybe their friendship is awkward and does not include hugs...but it's still a friendship.

Sam goes back to the kitchen where Dean is watching cartoon porn. Dean pours Sam a drink
Sam: "Only if you turn that off."
-Hehehe...well, that answers the "do Sam and Dean ever watch porn together?" question. 

"I heard your call. I need help."

- And I love how Cas does come to SAM for help... I mean, I know he's coming to Dean for help to, by default, but he lands and address Sam. And yeah, I really wish the show would explore Sam and Castiel's friendship more. I mean, even from just the standpoint of Castiel being more friends with Dean then with Sam. It's an interesting relationship, because Castiel and Dean are friends by choice, but Castiel and Sam are friends by association - and that's interesting to me, how they both only relate to each other through Dean.

Cas: "Dean"
Dean: "What you need something else?"
Cas: "No, I feel regret, about you, and what I did to Sam."
Dean: "Yeah well, you should."

- I think Cas' emphasis is important. "I FEEL regret" You have to remember that Castiel was only falling for a very brief period of time before he was restored to full - mostly unfeeling - angel-mode. He's obviously felt regret before - it's what caused him to help Dean, I believe, in Lucifer Rising. But in this case, there's no easy action he can take to fix it. In Lucifer Rising, all he had to do was help Dean, and Dean would be his friend again and Cas could die happy.

Cas: "If there was time, if I was strong enough, I'd fix him now. I just wanted to make amends before I die."
Dean: "Okay,"

- And this is just the thing, Cas is too weak to do the things he needs to do in order to fix things. I do think that Dean's "okay" means that Dean understands that he WANTS to do those things though, and it'll probably work to fix things even though Castiel can't come through...but I don't think Castiel understands that.

Cas: "Is it working?"
Dean: "Does it make you feel better?"
Cas: "No. You?"
Dean: "Not a bit."

- Castiel is HEARTBROKEN. Oh man, it's hard to watch. But Dean's being honest - they both are. Even if Castiel COULD fix things, he'd probably be eternally sorry. I mean, Sam realized his mistake with the demon-blood and Ruby, apologized...but still felt bad about it, maybe even still does. There are mistakes you can make in life where there's no fixing it. And the thing with Dean is, well, I think he'll eventually forgive Castiel, or at least accept what happened and move on - but that time isn't now. Furthermore, Dean's also not feeling better, because the friend he was mourning is back...but what does that mean about everything "New Cas" did? Everything he said? I think Dean had convinced himself that that wasn't Cas - but if it was, if Cas actually WAS in there...then that changes how Dean views those things.

Hallucifer: "I know it all seems so silly, doesn't it? Hi Sam, long time no spooning."
- Oh, Hallucifer... the thing with Sam's hallucination of Lucifer is that we have to remember it's NOT Lucifer. It's Sam's version of Lucifer. Maybe made up of memories, but it's not actually him. So, what Lucifer uses to annoy Sam, are weak spots that Sam is using against himself - they're thoughts that SAM has. Sam's brain is broken, and it's manifesting that brokenness into hallucinations that illustrate HOW it is broken.
- Also, I remember how absolutely pissed off I was after this episode aired and people kept making spooning jokes, like it was CUTE. Which to me, was basically like saying "Hey, remember that time our friend was raped? That was adorable! Let's draw fanart of it." Seriously... I mean, Crowley signing his note with "Kisses" is cute, because he only kisses people with their consent. Lucifer talking about spooning is not cute, because Sam was "spooned" without consent, probably more times than we can possibly imagine, leaving him severely traumatized. But, anyway, I've already gone into this rant before, so I'lll stop.
- Here's a funny thing though: I only really realized at VanCon, but I somehow got it into my head that Mark Pellegrino wasn't in S7...um, because he was only a hallucination. So, yeah, I guess that's a testament to Mark's acting (and Jared's?) or maybe a testament to how much I get into the story and forget about the practical side of filming...like the fact that hallicinations still need actors to act them. :P

Sam: "You're not here, you're in hell"
Hallucifer: "Now that, you're right on..."

- And here's where Sam's mind breaks that little piece further...

Halluficer: "Sam, this isn't you going guano. Everything else has."
Sam: "What?"
Hallucifer: "Everything. From the second you sprung out of that lockbox."
Sam: "That's impossible."
Hallucifer: "No, escaping is impossible. I have to say, I think this is my best torture yet. Make you believe that you are free and then yank the wool off your eyes" *Sam flinches* "You never left, Sam. You're still in the cage, with me."

- First, that flinch is the most horrible thing ever. Bravo for breaking my heart with one head movement, Jared.
- Second, I love the fact that they had this scenario. This very argument is what I pictured going on in Sam's mind in my story Sam Is... even though I didn't write from Sam's POV so none of you ever knew that. But yeah, it makes sense when you think about it. Sam dove into that pit knowing that that was it. That was eternity. There was no escape, no return to Dean...there was nothing powerful enough to get him out of that cage. Furthermore, it makes sense that the ultimate torture is giving hope and then taking it away. There's a line in a Hey Rosetta song that I love - "and when you die... do you start to cry not because you die, but because you die still hoping?" Hope is a pretty fuckin' evil thing when you think about it. I mean, I know it keeps us alive. Love and hope - otherwise we'd all kill ourselves...but that's why it's the perfect torture.

Bobby: "Hang in there, it's a couple of minutes."
- We never really explore Bobby's relationship with Castiel...we have no idea what Bobby thinks of him. Actually, I suppose I should have gotten in line and asked that at VanCon, but I'm not really a question-asker...mainly because I only think of these things a month later. Anyway, I'm always fascinated by the last thing people say to each other. I know Cas doesn't die here, but if he had, this would be Bobby's.

Cas collapses while Bobby reads the spell, and Dean runs over and stands him back up.
- The thing with this is that they didn't NEED to put that in. We knew Cas was weak already. So they must have done it JUST to show Dean standing him back up again, which means it's a statement about the friendship.

"I'm sorry, Dean."
- Again, these are what Cas chose to be his last words, since he did believe that he was about to die.

Bobby: "He's cold."
Dean: "Is he breathing?"
Bobby: "No"
Dean: "Maybe angels don't need to breathe."

- If there was any doubt as to whether Dean still loved Cas....

Bobby: "He's gone, Dean."
Dean: "Damn it."

- .... it should be gone by now, in tone of voice on that "damn it" alone.

Dean: "Cas you child, why didn't you listen to me!"
- And I know I saw at least one person get all uppity about Dean calling Cas a child even when he was dead. Like it was somehow disrespectful - but think about it from Dean's point of view: Cas started falling, and Dean started teaching him the ropes... and he WAS a child. He was Dean's rogue angel who had to be taught things that Dean used to have to teach Sam when Sam was a child... and then Castiel took offense to Dean not believing that he could handle his own problems, much like Sam did... and then Castiel messed up...much like Sam did...and really, if people would just listen to Dean! :P Hahah I don't even know what i'm saying anymore, I've been typing this up for three billion hours.

*Cas wakes up*
Dean: "Cas?! Hey, hey..."
Cas: "That was unpleasant."

-Speaking of the destruction of hope as the ultimate torture... this is about to be very unpleasant.

Cas: "I'm ashamed. I really overreached."
Dean: "You think"

- I'm never sure how I feel about this line of comedy...but I guess I like it.

Cas: "I'm going to find some way to redeem myself to you."
Dean: "Alright, well, one thing at a time. Come on, let's get you out of here."
Cas: "I mean it, Dean."
Dean: "Alright, but let's go find Sam, okay?"

- The thing here is that Dean NEEDs the repetition. You can see it when he looks at Castiel and acknowledges what he's saying with his second "alright" - it's a loaded "alright" it's very clearly a "yes, I am willing to work this out." And the cruel thing of course, it that all that hope for mending the relationship is destroyed...

Cas: "You need to run now! I can't hold them back."
Dean: "Hold who back?"
Cas: "They held on inside of me. Dean, they're so strong!"

- Again, I wish I could somehow write tone of voice - but the way Cas cries out to DEAN in obvious terror. The power dynamics are way off in the friendship, because Castiel is supposed to be the powerful one, yet when he's frightened, it's Dean he wants.

There's this awesome thing while Cas is struggling where his voice starts warping...I like it.

"Go, go, Sam, go to Sam!"
- Those are Dean's instructions to Bobby as he pushed him out of the room. Dean stays next to Cas though. You can interpret that how you want, but I think it says a lot about Dean's priorities.

Levi!Cas: "Too late"
Dean: "Cas?"
Levi!Cas: "Cas is hm, he's gone...he's dead. We run the show now!"

- And Dean's face when the leviathan say that Cas is dead... yeah, did I mention that removal of hope? Don't worry if you missed it. It's going to happen in the next episode too.

Levi!Cas: "Now this is going to be so much fun."
- Oh man, you know, James Patrick Stuart was really good as Dick, don't get me wrong...but part of me kind of wishes we had had evil Levi!Cas for just a LITTLE longer. Mind you, I'm glad that the Leviathan didn't have angel powers.

And that's episode one...holy hell. I need to learn how to be brief again. I blame Sherlock.

I think Sam might have had a new shirt this episode. I'm going to have to consult my notes. (I really should have organized my notes better, but it's too late now!...and by that, I mean that I'm too lazy.)

Stay tuned for more...which hopefully will not be as long.

ETA; Some spoilers for S8 in comments. Read with caution.



( 32 comments — Leave a comment )
Sep. 28th, 2012 01:07 am (UTC)
Thoroughly enjoyed reading this whole thing. I usually get the first two eps of S7 mixed up and combined. They really are like a two-parter, so this helped refresh my memory on what happened when.

While I loved Season 7, I will admit it had it's problems...mostly that whole Dean-killed-Amy debacle that caused the boys (AGAIN) to be lying and at odds with each other. *sigh* It was so unnecessary IMO.

But this was a good Season opener, though I think 7x02 was even better.
Sep. 28th, 2012 01:23 am (UTC)
Yeah, I think 7x02 may be my favourite episode of the whole season... we'll see though. ;)

I have thoughts on Amy...but yeah, the whole thing wasn't handled very well - which is really the problem with a lot of S7. Good potential, but poor follow through.
(no subject) - raloria - Sep. 28th, 2012 01:48 am (UTC) - Expand
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Sep. 28th, 2012 02:26 am (UTC)

I am doing a power-rewatch to finish before the season 8 premiere. (Have watched 11 episodes in 3 evenings after work so far...but I am losing Friday, Saturday, and Sunday as watching time because of the fan con.) So it was enjoyable to read your rewatch comments while everything is fresh in my head :)

And yeah, Dean being broken by Castiel's betrayal--movement toward forgiveness, bit of hope, and then Levi!Cas pretty much set up poor Dean's arc for the season :(

Also, a bit you might not connect, being Canadian :) --The line of Death's "I know God, and you, sir, are no God" is a direct steal from American politics. Unfortunately I cannot say with certainty who said it, but it was during a presidential debate several elections ago. Candidate A was invoking John F. Kennedy's name and Candidate B shot back with, "I knew John Kennedy, and you, sir, are no John Kennedy." My brain cells are saying candidate B might have been Ronald Reagan...That line was considered to win the debate.

Sep. 28th, 2012 02:35 am (UTC)
Ah cool! I did not know that about that line. I never studied American history at all, so yeah, some references like that are lost on me - they might as well be talking about American football.

Poor Dean...

Good luck with your power rewatch! Mine is decidedly NOT going to be that speedy a rewatch. My goal is to finish by the end of October, if I can. :P
(no subject) - galwithglasses - Sep. 28th, 2012 04:06 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - borgmama1of5 - Sep. 28th, 2012 04:09 am (UTC) - Expand
Sep. 28th, 2012 03:00 am (UTC)
I admit to despising Destiel and even Castiel, so I kind of skipped this review. I will read the rest, until you get to the Castiel ones because, that's just how I feel. I know I'm a minority, but still. The hardest part for me is that season seven makes me feel like Dean no longer give a damn about Sam. Since the brotherly bond is my strongest tie to the series and since I like Sam, this has come close to ruining the show for me.

Like you, I felt that something was wrong behind the scenes in season seven. My gut feeling (that is supported by absolutely nothing) is that mid-season SG lost control of the show. Although I didn't like the Amy storyline and hated the resolution, I still felt like the season was moving toward something right up after Death's Door. Then something I can't define changed. An already somewhat disconnected season seemed to fly completely apart. The Leviathans were out there, but it didn't go anywhere. Sam's mental instability was simply not there. He was functioning better than Dean. Then the decision to insta-heal Sam and give the insanity storyline to Castiel totally took me out of the season. I will be interested in your rewatch of TBAI.

I don't know why, but I felt like the wheels came off the truck this season and it became quite a bit of a mess. I was hoping that JC would fix things, but right now I am not optimistic.

Edited at 2012-09-28 03:02 am (UTC)
Sep. 28th, 2012 04:26 am (UTC)
I admit to despising Destiel and even Castiel, so I kind of skipped this review. I will read the rest, until you get to the Castiel ones because, that's just how I feel.

I understand completely!

The hardest part for me is that season seven makes me feel like Dean no longer give a damn about Sam. Since the brotherly bond is my strongest tie to the series and since I like Sam, this has come close to ruining the show for me.

I agree, with a caveat. To me it wasn't that Dean didn't seem to care about Sam - it was that the show shifted focus from Dean+Sam to Dean+Cas...even in his absence. And that would have been all well and good if they had kept Sam's storyline just as strong, but they didn't...they had a GREAT opportunity to show us Sam's struggle for sanity, and they really blew it. Supernatural has always leaned more heavily on Dean's POV, but it was as though this season they sidelined Sam's POV completely.

An already somewhat disconnected season seemed to fly completely apart. The Leviathans were out there, but it didn't go anywhere. Sam's mental instability was simply not there. He was functioning better than Dean. Then the decision to insta-heal Sam and give the insanity storyline to Castiel totally took me out of the season. I will be interested in your rewatch of TBAI.

Agreed on all points.

I don't know why, but I felt like the wheels came off the truck this season and it became quite a bit of a mess. I was hoping that JC would fix things, but right now I am not optimistic.

I'm still optimistic about Carver...or at least, I'm trying to be. Though, everything I've heard - all though awesome sounding, still seems to be Dean-centric. Which, you know, is fine, but I'm really hoping Sam gets a good storyline too.

(no subject) - percysowner - Sep. 28th, 2012 05:02 am (UTC) - Expand
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Sep. 28th, 2012 03:04 am (UTC)
I always like reading your rewatches because it's so easy to forget parts of the beginning by the time you're partway to the end of the season. I agree with you about Dean and grieving and the car. I was really glad they showed the whole progression of the car being repaired because it gave a good idea of how much time was passing. No matter how great a mechanic Dean is, that required a ton of work plus new parts to be delivered.

Crowley's braced face for smiting was awesome. This episode had most of the secondary characters that I really like: Lucifer, Death, Crowley. Those actors all play off each other and Jared and Jensen really well.

Ah...American politics, especially in an election year, is enough to make a pragmatist wish to live on the moon. Two more months of this....

When Sam went to call Cas, I felt like he knew that Dean couldn't reach out to Cas for a whole bunch of reasons. He's genuinely friends with Cas so it felt like fighting schoolyard friends and Sam's negotiating the making up so they can all sit together at lunch again. Sam and Cas have a lot in common. I like your idea of Sam the Optimist and Dean the Pessimest. It fits.

And triple yeah on the spooning. Shudder. The whole Lucifer bit was extra horrible because it was a pretty clear look at Sam's headspace projected onto the hallucination. He did a really good job of torturing himself through the season.
Sep. 28th, 2012 04:28 am (UTC)
I was really glad they showed the whole progression of the car being repaired because it gave a good idea of how much time was passing. No matter how great a mechanic Dean is, that required a ton of work plus new parts to be delivered.

Me too...especially since it gave an excuse for the whole summer to go by, so that it's easier to timeline for me. ;)

He's genuinely friends with Cas so it felt like fighting schoolyard friends and Sam's negotiating the making up so they can all sit together at lunch again.

Perhaps analogy. Yes, that's exactly what it was like.

The whole Lucifer bit was extra horrible because it was a pretty clear look at Sam's headspace projected onto the hallucination. He did a really good job of torturing himself through the season.

Indeed. Sam's his own worst enemy, really. Always has been.
Sep. 28th, 2012 05:54 am (UTC)
It's a delight to read your note, though season 7 is one of my favourite season.

I think one thing with the 5 seasons story arch is that the show kind of spent the family tension, which to me is Sam's need to be his own man and Dean's need to watch over him. At Swan Song, they've matured to the point where they could respect each other's choices. Gone with that, is a huge part of the emotional driving force of the show.

I'm glad that they looked for ways of creating new tension, rather than reverting back to the old pattern.
Sep. 28th, 2012 05:59 am (UTC)
It's a delight to read your note, though season 7 is one of my favourite season.

That's great! :) Don't let my stupid opinion change that! Everyone is different and has different things they like and dislike, and it doesn't mean that anyone is wrong. A lot of people like S3 too, and I just never took to it...and I love S4, but a lot of people hate it. You can't please everyone!

At Swan Song, they've matured to the point where they could respect each other's choices. Gone with that, is a huge part of the emotional driving force of the show.

I'm glad that they looked for ways of creating new tension, rather than reverting back to the old pattern.

I completely agree. And one thing I do like about S7 is that Sam and Dean are clearly equals in it - just like they should be at this point. Same with the end of S6.

Sep. 28th, 2012 12:13 pm (UTC)
Your rewatches just remind me how much I love this show.

I was a bit distanced from s7. It made me sad how rough they had it. I mean the Winchesters always have it rough, but s7 was BAD for them.

Still, this first ep was pretty strong!

I love stained glass Cas. feel free to swipe if you like!

i hope I have time later to read this again more in depth. I love your meta!! :)
Sep. 28th, 2012 04:11 pm (UTC)
Thanks! I'm glad you like the rewatches :)

Yeah, S7 was very much a "let's take every single thing away from the Winchesters" - and they did!

I think the first two episodes were the strongest, and then 7x10... and those are really my favourite episodes in the season.

Most of the other reviews won't be this long. :P
Sep. 29th, 2012 05:13 pm (UTC)
I'm not finished with season 7 yet (last watched Out with the Old), but I have to say it's been disappointing. From what I heard of Sam with Lucifer in his head, I was expecting so much more. The first couple episodes did interesting things with it, then the storyline just dropped. *sigh* I honestly don't like Sam very much, but he's still important to the show and when they focus on Dean to the point where it feels like Sam's irrelevant, it ruins everything. The relationship between the two brothers has always been what drove the show, and this season it feels like they forgot half of that equation. How well they did Bobby's death, and how much that loss infuses the episodes after satiates me, but the season's still been a disappointment. (Haven't gotten to the ghost!Bobby reveal yet, so I have no idea whether that will make it better or worse for me, but so far it's been the Bobby storyline keeping me connected.)
Sep. 29th, 2012 07:52 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I wish I could tell you that it gets better and you won't be disappointed...but, you and I tend to agree on things, and I was disappointed by the ghost!Bobby storyline. Don't get me wrong - there ARE some good episodes in there...but like I said above, overall I was disappointed by this season.

I do try not to be negative though, and I'm still excited and hopeful for season 8.

But yes, I felt that Sam was really sidelined this year - and I'm not just saying that because I like Sam. I really think that both brothers have to have strong storylines for the show to work and be engaging... and, like you said, they seem to have forgotten that and tried to have Dean carry the entire narrative. And as much as I like Dean, that just doesn't work.
Oct. 4th, 2012 02:59 am (UTC)
I loved this review and you reminded me of a lot of nuances I'd forgotton. And you know, I have the same mental reaction to MarkP - "he wasn't really in S7, he was just a hallucination'. :p

and I know it takes two to have a falling out, but it was Dean's rather casual treatment of Castiel and his problems that led to Castiel resenting him enough to not listen to him... or maybe just not want to admit that he was wrong.

This. I love this interpretation, and I love hearing it from you (who is not a Destiel shipper) because it reminds me that you don't have to firmly hold a certain point of view to interpret things in a way more sympathetic to Cas. (I mean, I love Cas, and will always be biased towards him which is why I love reading balanced reviews.)

My other favourite character is Sam, and I really wish that this season HAD been his hallucination. It could've been amazing.
Oct. 4th, 2012 07:16 am (UTC)
Thanks! I'm glad you liked the review...and I'm glad that I wasn't the only one that thought MarkP was just an hallucination. :P

I try to be sympathetic to everyone, really... or, I at least try to understand their motivations and decisions. So, thanks!

I also really love Sam (and Jared), and I really do wish that they'd give him meatier storylines. It kind of feels like they shifted what could have been a whole season about Sam's mental state, into a whole season about Dean's mental state... which, you know, fine, the show is more often from Dean's POV - but it could have been about BOTH their mental states. It didn't have to be one or the other.
Oct. 5th, 2012 07:01 pm (UTC)
First. let me start, by saying that I have been a big fan of yours for about three years. I love your weekly reviews of SPN and am addicted to your rewatches. It is amazing how one has a clearer understanding of the earlier episodes of a season after the last episode has aired. Like season 6, after finding out that Sam had no soul and that Cas was in cohorts with Crowley, those beginning episodes took on a whole new meaning.

Anyway, you mentioned something in your disclaimer here that made me jump up and down and do the happy dance. You said regarding Dean/Castiel, "I find that the ratio of rational to crazy in that section of the fandom is not to my liking". AMEN SISTER. I also think that the average age of a D/C shipper is around twenty. They seem to completely disregard the pain that Cas has caused Dean and/or Sam and use a handful of lines as reason to think that Dean would be romantically involved with Cas. I blame Misha in small part for getting his minions into a frenzy over the smallest of things.

Enough of that, I think that season seven started off so strong and then it just went downhill. I enjoyed this episode and saw great promise for the new season. What did you do, quote every line? LOL. Reading this, I enjoyed the episode all over again and could only shake my head at what a disappointment the season turned out to be. But it did have a few good episodes, as you said.

Just for the record, I liked season three. I think the writer's strike kept some episodes from being made and kept the season from being as good as it should have been. I would have liked a proper follow-up episode to 'Mystery Spot', something along the lines of Sam being afraid of having Dean out of his sight. Sam should have used his powers to get Dean out of his deal or out of Hell, therefore eliminating the need for angels.(Thank Chuck for fanfic).

Since I am older than the Impala, so to speak, I agree that some of the references that make us smile, must leave some of the younger fans shaking their heads. It is funny that I have read articles where they actually have no idea about some of the music used in episodes.

Before this comment gets longer than the rewatch, I will close with this. I look forward to another great season of reviews and rewatches from you. And now that you forced (LOL) me to come out of the shadows, I will probably have more comments. Til next time, Nancy

Edited at 2012-10-05 07:04 pm (UTC)
Oct. 5th, 2012 07:45 pm (UTC)
First. let me start, by saying that I have been a big fan of yours for about three years. I love your weekly reviews of SPN and am addicted to your rewatches.

Hello! I'm very flattered... and slightly amazed, as I've only had this journal for about 4 years...or maybe it's been longer, time does that sometimes.

It is amazing how one has a clearer understanding of the earlier episodes of a season after the last episode has aired. Like season 6, after finding out that Sam had no soul and that Cas was in cohorts with Crowley, those beginning episodes took on a whole new meaning.

Yes! That's why I love doing these rewatches. It's very very interesting to look at word-choices and character reactions when you know the bits of the story that they haven't told you yet.

AMEN SISTER. I also think that the average age of a D/C shipper is around twenty. They seem to completely disregard the pain that Cas has caused Dean and/or Sam and use a handful of lines as reason to think that Dean would be romantically involved with Cas. I blame Misha in small part for getting his minions into a frenzy over the smallest of things.

Misha certainly likes to joke about it a lot, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. But yeah, the Castiel/destiel fandom is a very...devoted bunch. And they DO tend to be of the mindset of "Cas can do no wrong." But, I can't really point my finger only at them for doing that, because there's a very large portion of Dean!girls who do the exact same thing with Dean. And when Dean and or Cas undeniably make a mistake or are a jerk, the response isn't "well, I guess these a fully realistic fallibly human characters", instead it's "the writers wrote him wrong!" Which drives me nuts.

But yes, enough of that... I should point out that those people really are just a percentage, and there are some very lovely rational castiel/destiel/dean!girls out there too - some of whom I am friends with. :)

What did you do, quote every line? LOL.

Probably! Oh man... thankfully, I will not do that for every single episode. :P At least it wasn't like my Sherlock Rewatches, where it took me an hour to get through 8 minutes of the show, and I needed to divide the posts into 2 or 3 parts in order to stay within LJ posting limits. :P

Remember my really early rewatches? You know, where I would do two episodes at once and not quote a single line? Those were the days... I should really do "proper" rewatches of those episodes again someday, now that I've perfected my technique.

Just for the record, I liked season three.

A lot of people did. And I think I dislike S7 more than I dislike S3. My problem with S3 also has a lot to do with aesthetics. They briefly changed the colouring of the show and I just didn't like it...so even with the really good episodes, there's something for me to dislike, you know?

Sam should have used his powers to get Dean out of his deal or out of Hell, therefore eliminating the need for angels.

That would have been really interesting. Part of me is kind of glad they introduced the angels... another part of me is wonders what would have happened if Misha had really only ever done his 3-4 episodes and then left, and NOT been a fan favourite. Not that I don't like Castiel or Misha, it's just that he's a very tricky character to have on a show, which is I think why they tend to have very weird storylines for him.

I look forward to another great season of reviews and rewatches from you. And now that you forced (LOL) me to come out of the shadows, I will probably have more comments. Til next time, Nancy

Thanks! I'm really glad you enjoy them...and I'm glad you came out of the shadows and said hello! I hope you do pop in with more comments. :)
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