?

Log in

No account? Create an account

Previous Entry | Next Entry

Quick Reaction: 8x09 Citizen Fang

And we enter Winter Hellatus! But, my friends, what has become of us!?


Let us begin at the beginning... and we begin with Benny. Benny is a chef at a back-water diner in the bayou. Having never been to Louisiana, I personally, think that the did a good job recreating it in Canada. I liked all the cricket and cicada sounds the sound editors put in.

Anyway...Benny knows how to close a restaurant, even though Martin Creaser is stalking him. And then SUSPICIOUS BODY! Though, really, I agree with Benny and Dean, it's TOO suspicious.

Still, Martin calls Sam and we find out that Sam had been the one to send Martin there in the first place. I wonder how it is that they knew where Benny went after "Prentiss Island, WA"? (seriously, they mixed up the locations in the last Benny episode - I think on the first draft of the script it must have been on the east coast and then on a later draft it was on the west coast, and the finished product ended up kinda confused as to where it was...but that's neither here nor there.) I figure Sam must have tracked Benny somehow to Louisianna and then sent Martin to follow him when Martin called Sam.

That also gives us timeline information though - because if Martin's been out for a month, it means that Sam has known about Benny for a month. So, yeah...I mean, I still have to do a proper timeline in this episode (there are a lot of phone screens) but I'm always happy when I at least get something to work with in the dialogue. ETA: Sigh. Sadly, I was wrong about this. Martin may have gotten out a month ago, but Sam has actually only had him following since "about a week ago"...so yeah, doesn't actually tell me anything, since I already knew it'd been at least a week since Sam found out about Benny. Also, Sam has an android phone! I've gotten off track...

Dean takes the whole "I went behind your back to ask a slight-crazy person to stalk your friend" thing very well, in my opinion. They head off to Louisiana to see what's what. There, they find Martin, who is perhaps not ready to return to the hunting life. I could criticize him for wanting to go kill things with very little evidence, and evidence that doesn't even necessarily make sense, but as Sam points out - the Winchesters have done the same thing on even less. So, fair enough point.

Dean argues that this is BENNY and could they at least give Dean a couple of hours to try to get Benny's side of the story. There are a couple of things I like about this scene:
1) "Does this sound like the Benny we know?"  "I don't know Benny" - I love this exchange because it reminds me of me and my best friend, back when we spent 12 hours a day together every day...at one point, we'd really just forget that the other person didn't live inside our head. "I thought we were eating at my place tonight, where are you?" "What?! When did we decide that?!" "This morning when I was brushing my teeth and thinking...oh, right, you weren't there. Sorry." This exchange actually says a lot about how close Sam and Dean are, and also why it's frustrating to Dean that Sam doesn't seem to understand how important Benny is to Dean...that there's an attachment there.
2) I love that Sam AGREES and gives Dean a couple of hours when Dean asks for it, and he makes sure Martin honours it too. I'm sure some people will view this episode as the brother's relationship going to shit once again, but I actually think it speaks a lot to how much respect they have for each other. 

So, Dean goes out to track down Benny - and he meets Elizabeth, who doesn't have any pecan pie, and for some reason Dean doesn't order the cherry/raspberry pie that she DOES have and he pointed to...but whatever. He leaves his number for "Roy" and herself, wink wink...and then it's off to the swamp to find Benny.

I love the little exchange where Benny tells Dean that Elizabeth is his great grand-daughter, and Dean is like *awkward*...hehehe.

Benny DOES make me sympathetic to him though...it's true, unlike Dean, he doesn't really have anything to cling to in this world. He's finished his revenge-quest, so now what? So, he finds the remnants of his human family and tries to make his life about serving them...and that's a pretty good idea, only that he suffers the same curse as the Winchesters - once you are part of the supernatural world, it will ALWAYS find you and destroy everything you love. The Winchesters have learned this time and time again, but Benny is late to the game, so we can hardly blame him.

Benny points out that at least Dean has Sam...and Dean is like "yeah...." in a completely unconvincing way...but, I think the problem here is that Dean's been through an experience for once (or rather AGAIN) that Sam hasn't been through. So, we come back to the problem of "Sam doesn't live in your brain, Dean"...it will take WORDS from Dean to make Sam understand what purgatory did to Dean, and Dean probably doesn't even know how to put it into words for Sam...so we end up with a problem similar to S4, where Dean is living with a mess in his head that Sam doesn't understand...whereas Benny KNOWS that mess, which, of course, is why Benny is so important to Dean. Benny and Cas both, arguably. 

Anyway, turns out the killing is a young stupid vampire that's trying to put the pressure on Benny to join his wannabe nest. So, Benny's going to kill him and all will be well! And could Dean please go explain it to his little brother and that crazy dude, kthxbye.

So, Dean goes and explains it to his little brother and the crazy dude. And again, DEAN GOES AND EXPLAINS IT TO THEM. Dean could have easily not trusted Sam at all - so again, all I see is respect.

This is another good scene, two favourite things:
1) Dean uses the word "relationship" when discussing Benny, as in "every relationship I've ever had has [gone to crap or something]"...I like it when people use the word "relationship" when not-necessarily referring to a sexual relationship. Mainly, I like it because it IS ambiguous. I might not ship anything in this fandom, but I like it when the show leaves the door open a crack for me in case I change my mind. ;)
2) Okay, so, I'm sure a lot of people will be up in arms about Dean's whole "unlike everyone else, Benny has never let me down," because it seems like a personal attack on Sam for all the crap that Dean yelled at him for when he was possessed a couple of episodes ago. The problem is though is that I think people will take it as that because that's how SAM interprets it...because SAM suffers from an eternal guilt complex and just assumes that's what Dean means, because Sam still regrets it. Personally, I don't think that's what Dean meant - I think he meant that "there is no precedent for this kind of betrayal in mine and Benny's relationship. He has always been a man of his word." Sam just takes it personally because that's what Sam does! 

And I really think that Sam COULD have been presuaded by Dean to hunt the younger vamp before going after Benny - if Martin hadn't been around and taken the decision out of Sam's hands. Martin knocks out Dean and cuffs him to the radiator, and then Sam and him take off to go find Benny.

Martin talking about what their father would say - and about how John would have taken Dean out to the woodshed to set him right...yeah, not the best move there Martin - but I thought it was a pretty cool juxtaposition. Because Martin, having been locked up, is in a very weird way channeling a world that doesn't exist anymore. Martin is in the black and white world of S1, where monsters were bad and hunters were good, and never the twain shall meet. Starting in S1 (but really in S2), Sam and Dean started discovering more and more of the grey area...and these days they know the grey better than anyone. Sam KNOWS that, which is why he commands Martin to do as he says - I think, had Sam stayed on the hunt, that he would have bowed to Dean's wishes and given Benny the benefit of the doubt - even if he did so begrudgingly.

Though, maybe I'm overestimating him. Sam DOES have a point - every monster they'd ever tried to give the benefit of the doubt to has ended up going back to killing. Thanks to Lenore breaking down during S6, they don't actually have an example of a vamp who successfully held out. That being said, they let the werewolf girl go this season, and Sam was cool with that...and, since I'm the only one that ever points it out, CAS IS NOT HUMAN EITHER AND THEY'RE FINE WITH HIM! I mean, Cas has killed more people than Benny could ever imagine killing, albeit under special circumstances...and Sam is always thrilled to see Castiel, heck, Cas was the one who believed the most that they could save Cas even when Cas was out killing hundreds of people. So, I do think that Sam would have given Benny the benefit of the doubt...but maybe I'm in the minority there.

Dean doesn't want to take that chance though and as soon as he comes to, he escapes and takes the decision out of Sam's hands...but I'll get to that.

Dean warns Benny and off they go to kill stupid-young-vamp. I did think, when they entered the warehouse and Benny disappeared into the shadows to circle around behind the young-vamp, that there was a chance that it was a set-up and Benny really was going to turn on Dean. Mainly, because I hate vampires and part of me kind of wants Benny to die on principle (I guess I have a lot in common with Sam)...but, the part of me that wants Dean to have a friend that doesn't end up hurting his feelings was happy when Benny instead came to Dean's rescue.

I loved the part with Dean's neck cut and Benny almost vamping out on him. I must admit, I giggled and said "Dean is delicious!" and then when Benny turned and walked away, I couldn't help but adding dialogue in my head - "I'll just sit in my truck consumed with lust for the rest of the evening." Heheheh.

But, stupid innuendo aside, I loved that bit because it reminded us that Benny IS a monster, he DOES have a weakness...and Dean IS partially a walking potential snack to him. They're friendship is sort of like one of those stories where a young lion and a deer become best friends...part of you thinks "this is going to end badly."

Anyway, while that whole thing is going on, Sam gets a call from Amelia - or rather, a text. "Sam, I need help. Come quick." So, Sam drops everything and goes...and by "drops everything", I mean he leaves Martin out in the middle of the forest - which, I mean, really, Sam? I know the guy is annoying and he's talking shit about your brother, but you don't leave a dude in the forest in the middle of a hunt!

Though, again, I think the fact that Sam DOES leave Martin in the forest speaks to the priority the case has. I think if Sam wasn't already doubting Martin and wondering if he should give Benny the benefit of the doubt for Dean's sake, he wouldn't have been able to leave the hunt so easily.

So, Sam drives to texas...and yes, he's been suffering from his flashback illness the whole episode too. (He should really see someone about that...at one point I was worried he was going to stop walking in the middle of a road and get hit by a car.) Sam's flashbacks are about what happened once Don came back...how he at first tried to convince Amelia to stay with him, but then Don told him that they should respect Amelia's choice and not try to pressure her, so Sam overcompensated and made the choice for her. Oh Sam. There's being self-sacrificing, and then there's being an idiot - and you, my friend, are kind of an idiot. So, Sam took off because Don was back. So, was that why he was heading up to the cabin in the first episode? Did she convince him to spend the night and then leave? Was it Don standing outside Amelia's house like a stalker? What's our timeline on this? 

(SIDENOTE: I thought it was interesting that Sam emphasized the "you saved me" when he was leaving...part of me wonders if there's something Sam hasn't told us about these flashbacks...like, maybe Sam wasn't as together as he's imagining he was.)

When he gets to the house in Kermit, Amelia's fine...she's snuggled on the couch with Don, and Sam is the broken dude outside...and he realizes that he's been had.

I admit, I was confused myself - I started thinking about angel-conspiracies and all sort of theories....I was wondering where the hell Dean was driving without even calling Sam to see where he was...but Martin was right about Occam's razor. Sam figured it out pretty quick. It was Dean. 

(Sidenote: He should have figured it out by the area-code. 210 is a San Antonio phone-number, Kermit would have had a 432 area code....that being said, Amelia could have had a cellphone from anywhere, and we don't know where she moved to Kermit FROM, so I guess it's not outside the realm of possibility)

I actually think Dean's plan to get Sam off Benny's tail was GENIUS. Again, I'm sure some people will think it's underhanded of him - but again, I actually think it shows a LOT of respect for his brother...mainly, that Dean knew the only way to get Sam off Benny's tail would be to send him out of town. Dean repeats it a lot to Benny in the episode "don't underestimate my little brother." Dean and Sam are probably the two best hunters in the country at the moment and Dean knows it. Also, at the very least, you could argue that Dean's now even with Sam - because you could argue that Sam getting a hunter to stalk Dean's friend was pretty underhanded as well. Though, again, I'd argue that it's a little respectful - Sam has doubts, but he wants to trust Dean; then Martin calls looking for an easy job, so Sam sends him to watch a vampire that's suposedly not ever going to hurt anyone - everybody wins!

I've skipped a bit though...and I've skipped the bit where we once again see the danger of a black and white world-view. Martin doesn't give up the chase. Even when Dean tells him to get a new line of work. Instead, Martin draws Benny to him by threatening Elizabeth...and here we have a hunter scaring/scarring an innocent bystander in the name of "good" because Martin doesn't realize that it's actions that define us, not what we are. Benny ends up killing him, of course, but it's clearly a case of self-defence - and Martin totally had it coming... AND THIS IS COMING FROM SOMEONE WHO HATES VAMPIRES! If that was Martin's modus operandi, I don't think he could be trusted even if Benny really had laid down and let Martin kill him. 

Of course, we don't know that Benny kills him yet - we get Elizabeth calling Dean and telling him to come back to the diner, and Dean finding her covered in blood - but we don't know who's blood. And I love the way they wrote that and filmed it. It's really tense stuff - especially for people like me, who hate vampires, but also think Martin deserved to be killed...I didn't really know what scenario I should be hoping for when Dean entered the diner. I wasn't surprised when it was Martin though - if Benny IS going to die, I know it's going to be at the hands of one of our three main characters.

The question now though is - if Benny ripped out Martin's throat - did he drink him? Is it harder to resist drinking fresh humans if you've had a taste recently? Should Dean be more concerned about Benny, or should he be happy that Benny escaped and has now gone underground like Dean ordered him too. Furthermore, if Benny's gone underground, does Benny have any reason to live? He needed something to keep him in line - he couldn't have Dean; so he chose family, but now that's taken away from him... like I already said - should be more worried now? 

THEN we get the phone call to Sam, and Dean tells him that it was as Benny said, but there's been a casualty and that Martin didn't make it. Sam winces...is he mad at Dean for getting Martin killed? Does he blame it on Benny? Personally, I think Sam probably more likely blames himself for sending Martin to look out for Benny in the first place...he might take it out on Dean though...he's certainly not willing to let Dean explain what happened.

And then Sam turns around and BAM, Amelia! It's interesting that Sam looks more terrified than anything.

So, thoughts in general - I really liked this episode, even with a vampire in it...I must admit that I really don't know how to feel about Benny. Part of me likes him, part of me is an anti-vampire bigot. It's a hard life. In terms of Sam's storyline, I guess I was hoping for a little more of an epic reveal...especially after the weird hints last week that Sam may have been making the entire thing up. I know there are a lot of people who are growing tired of Sam's flashbacks and find them pointless - but I actually find them fascinating, even if there isn't a supernatural element to them - to me, they're windows into Sam-without-Dean and the way Sam's grief manifests itself. I still don't think we're getting the full story - I still firmly believe, as I (probably annoyingly) keep repeating, that they're pulling "500 days of Summer" on us and things are not as they seem.

Where do we stand on Sam and Dean's relationship? Well, I think they're both kind of mad at each other right now, but it's a healthy kind of mad. They still obviously love and respect each other, and they despite spying on each other's friends and tricking each other, I think that they still trust each other.

[Next Time Promo]The next time looks cool...I know we have to wait over a month for it, but I will await it eagerly. It looks like Crowley still has Samandriel, and Cas needs the boys to work a job with him...so they should "stow their crap" - and I love the fact that Cas says that. I only hope that Castiel's job is to rescue Samandriel, because someone needs to rescue my baby! (oh god, please don't kill him, Show... why do angels have such a friggin' high death count!)


Alright, tell me your thoughts and what I missed! I hear tell on twitter that there's some brother-bashing going on out there on the interwebs, so I remind you not to bring that shit here, because I will not stand for it! Keep things positive and kind. Imagine the characters and each other complexly!

Comments

( 45 comments — Leave a comment )
mymuseandi
Dec. 6th, 2012 09:00 am (UTC)
I don't hate Sam or Dean after this episode. The main reason that I threw my hands up after watching this is out of frustration at BOTH of them.

I'm not mad that Sam decided to let Martin watch Benny. I admit that it's fair of him to keep track of a vampire that seems to be having a big impact on his brother. It's very pragmatic of him, really. And yes, I do like that Sam gives Dean the couple of hours for him to try to figure out if Benny really did kill that guy. You have to respect Dean also, as well, because he did honour his promise, sort of, to kill Benny if he ever killed a person. The phone call and the big knife he had when he met Benny was proof of this. He doesn't shirk away from his responsibility.

And trying to explain Benny's side of the story to Sam and Martin? That's something I didn't expect from S4 Dean, so that shows some maturity on his part. He didn't just assume no one would understand. Instead, he takes time to make them understand the situation. And I agree with you that Sam does look like he's giving Benny the benefit of the doubt, but that Martin took the choice away from him. That one, I feel, is Martin's fault.

I think he meant that "there is no precedent for this kind of betrayal in mine and Benny's relationship. He has always been a man of his word." Sam just takes it personally because that's what Sam does!

I agree with this completely. This is a new relationship to Dean, and God knows he rarely make new relationships longer than a hunt or a one-night-stand, so I feel that he's trying to do the right thing here by being a good friend. That the good friend is a vampire is something that he compartmentalize, I feel.

I know the guy is annoying and he's talking shit about your brother, but you don't leave a dude in the forest in the middle of a hunt!

THIS. This is one of the scenes where I was screaming at the screen LOL You don't leave people literally in the middle of the hunt! That's irresponsible. Martin was stranded right there in the middle of the swamp, because we saw him walk back to the diner, and don't you think that might have contributed a bit to his insane plan to threaten Elizabeth in order to kill Benny? He might have been frustrated that both Winchesters are acting crazy, so he decided, what the hell, let's do it MY way and screw both of them.

And no, I still don't like Amelia, but Sam, leaving when you've agreed to let Amelia decide is still rather cold. And then feeling all wounded when you saw them through the window or glass or whatever when you see them together. Dude, you left her. Was she supposed to wait for you? And the scene is domestic, but for all you know she might be just inviting him to dinner and watching TV together and nothing more than that. And how would you know if you didn't ask?

Haha, a lot of feels for Amelia there. I agree that we're not getting the full story here, but please get on with it, because if that's all there is to it with no hidden agenda or whatsoever then that story arc does fall pretty flat.

I actually think Dean's plan to get Sam off Benny's tail was GENIUS. Again, I'm sure some people will think it's underhanded of him - but again, I actually think it shows a LOT of respect for his brother...mainly, that Dean knew the only way to get Sam off Benny's tail would be to send him out of town.

Again, I agree with you, for the most part. I just didn't think that Dean had thought through what would happen when Sam reached Amelia's house, or that he would leave Martin behind to do that fatal mistake. Dean thinks of the short-term solution, and I guess he thinks that he can clean the rest of it up, if not for Martin being killed.

And the part where Sam just hung up on him? THAT'S what making me compare Sam to my 12 year-old sister. They are both bratty. I hate it when people wasn't given a chance to explain themselves. Yes, the explanation might be bullshit, but still listen! I know that it shows how pissed Sam is at Dean, but that smacks of rude. I think Sam blames Dean for this one: "yeah, you didn't listen to me Dean and now Martin's dead, but Sam, Martin was the one who threatened his family and it was self defense!" LOL

I'll stop here for now. Too long I think :)
hells_half_acre
Dec. 6th, 2012 09:07 am (UTC)
Ah, so we actually agree for the most part! :)

I too was shaking my head at Sam when he abandoned Martin in the forest - and I too think that it contributed to Martin going rogue and coming up with his insane plan. And yes, Dean shoulders the blame too here, because he knew that text would have Sam driving out of town immediately and leaving a frustrated Martin behind (maybe not in the forest, but still!)

Sam hanging up on him is just Sam's MO. Since the dawn of time, Sam has been walking away from Dean in the middle of a fight instead of hashing things out...this is just the long-distance version. Sam will calm down his rage-monster and listen to his brother eventually, he always does. :P

ETA: Oh, I forgot to say - I don't think Sam was upset at seeing Amelia and Don together. I think he was upset at being FOOLED. That's the way I interpreted it anyway...I think he made peace with the "Amelia+Don 4eva" problem when he decided to leave Amelia months ago.

Edited at 2012-12-06 09:10 am (UTC)
ashkiryn
Dec. 6th, 2012 09:01 am (UTC)
You know, I'm really kind of a vampire bigot as well, but I really wanted to give Benny a hug in this episode. Especially when he was all teary right before he laid his head on the counter, the last time we see him....fuck it. *hugs Benny* And maybe I'm just way too invested in Dean's feelings not getting hurt by him eventually, but I also kind of wanted Benny to just come along with the Winchesters instead of going "underground". Benny gets Dean to hold onto to keep him from killing people, Dean could get a Purgatory buddy to (probably silently) commiserate with (when Cas isn't there...and really, no offense to Cas, but Benny might be better for the job sometimes because he doesn't come with the extra baggage that Cas does for Dean), Sam and Cas can bitch to each other about the vampire they don't like and have that as a reason to spend more time together.... :P :P

But anyway. I did have to wail to myself at the end of the episode though, when Sam hung up on Dean and refused to listen about Benny. SAM, WE WERE ALL DOING SO GOOD ON BEING MATURE FOR THE PAST FEW EPISODES, DON'T LOSE THE MOMENTUM NOW!!!! Though, it wasn't the most immature thing he could have done, but still.

Apart from that, though, I completely agree with you, about the brothers really loving and respecting each other in this episode, and for most of it YAY WE ARE STILL BEING MATURE ADULTS AND STUFF. I don't want to jinx it, but this is now THREE EPISODES IN A ROW!!!!! Even if (when) things fall to pieces later, at least we have this landmark achievement to be proud of. XP (*knocks on wood*)

And, yeah. Sam was an idiot about Amelia. I was pleasantly surprised by Don, though. Good on you, dear! *pats him* Damn right it should be Amelia's choice (SAM).
hells_half_acre
Dec. 6th, 2012 09:14 am (UTC)
Exactly! Benny is making it VERY HARD for me to hate him! I don't know what to do with myself.

I think Benny sitting in the backseat would drive the tension in the Impala through the roof - though, I AM always happy to have more Sam and Cas action, because I really love their weird weird friendship, so I'll give you that!

I also agree that Benny is a less stressful purgatory buddy for Dean, because of the amount of baggage that comes with Cas.

And yeah, Sam hanging up on Dean at the end was typical Sam - it's the telephone version of the scene where Sam angrily walks away from the Impala in the middle of a fight. :P Some things never change, I guess.
(no subject) - ashkiryn - Dec. 6th, 2012 09:37 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - hells_half_acre - Dec. 6th, 2012 09:42 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - ashkiryn - Dec. 6th, 2012 09:56 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - hells_half_acre - Dec. 6th, 2012 10:01 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - liliaeth - Dec. 6th, 2012 10:27 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - hells_half_acre - Dec. 6th, 2012 10:29 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - liliaeth - Dec. 6th, 2012 10:32 am (UTC) - Expand
ramblin_rosie
Dec. 6th, 2012 09:08 am (UTC)
En and I have a different theory, based on the blood spatter on Elizabeth, her level of shock, and where everyone was when we cut away from Martin about to take Benny's head: All she saw was a crazy man who had already injured her and was about to kill her friend Roy, who wasn't going to defend himself. She would therefore be perfectly justified in killing Martin and letting Benny get away.
Soooo ready for Cas to lay down the law on all this nonsense when we get back from Hellatus!!
hells_half_acre
Dec. 6th, 2012 09:15 am (UTC)
Oooo...interesting theory! I couldn't really tell whether his throat was cut or chewed...and wasn't Elizabeth tied up? I'll have to rewatch!
(no subject) - ashkiryn - Dec. 6th, 2012 09:21 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - hells_half_acre - Dec. 6th, 2012 09:24 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - ashkiryn - Dec. 6th, 2012 09:29 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - hells_half_acre - Dec. 6th, 2012 09:30 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - liliaeth - Dec. 6th, 2012 10:28 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - ramblin_rosie - Dec. 6th, 2012 05:49 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - jennytork - Dec. 6th, 2012 01:55 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - hells_half_acre - Dec. 6th, 2012 07:10 pm (UTC) - Expand
ashkiryn
Dec. 6th, 2012 09:16 am (UTC)
Oh, and I also wanted to say---not to you, exactly, and the Winchesters really can't hear me, no matter how long I shout at my TV, but just putting it out there in general---Lenore's breaking down was a special situation, as well, because wasn't it Eve that was making all of the monsters go crazy? All Benny's really fighting is himself, but Lenore basically had her Creator Creator screaming at her and driving her insane on top of fighting with herself. So essentially what I'm saying is that I think Lenore had a better reason for "breaking" than even Cas did, and that it's really rather comparable to Dean breaking in Hell, because it really wasn't either of their faults.
hells_half_acre
Dec. 6th, 2012 09:18 am (UTC)
I totally agree with you. Sadly, I don't think the Winchester's see it that way - but THEY SHOULD! :P

Really, all our characters have broken at some point...maybe that's why they have such little faith in other people's abilities not to.
(no subject) - ashkiryn - Dec. 6th, 2012 09:25 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - liliaeth - Dec. 6th, 2012 10:30 am (UTC) - Expand
claudiapriscus
Dec. 6th, 2012 09:39 am (UTC)
You know, the angel death count is kind of ridiculous. It's sometimes hard to remember how very very badass and unstoppable they were back in season 4. Hell, even in Season 5 when Cas was killing zachariah's lackeys and what not, it was still kind of implied that it only went that way because he was a BAMF.
hells_half_acre
Dec. 6th, 2012 09:44 am (UTC)
Indeed! I really hope they sort of...realize that...and maybe lessen the body-count (and save Samandriel) or at least make them a formidable foe again (which I think they might be on the right track to do with Naomi.)
missyjack
Dec. 6th, 2012 12:15 pm (UTC)
Oh you are SO already shipping Dean and Benny! I actually thought Benny was going to die tonight - and I like that it was somewhat ambiguous as to whether Benny drank from Martin.

I agree with you that there were so many moments where Sam and Dean were trying to do right by the other, but then shit kept happening.

I loved how whichever way you look, none of the main characters is bad or wrong, but just trying and struggling to find a place.

Great writing by Loflin!
hells_half_acre
Dec. 6th, 2012 07:09 pm (UTC)
Oh you are SO already shipping Dean and Benny!

Hahaha, you know, maybe I am... I think I've even started shipping Dean/Cas too. I don't even know who I am anymore!

I like that it was somewhat ambiguous as to whether Benny drank from Martin.

Me too - mainly because it's the first time I've wanted to rewatch so that I can pay careful attention to a bloody corpse. :P

I loved how whichever way you look, none of the main characters is bad or wrong, but just trying and struggling to find a place.

Me too! I love this show. There characters are so complex when it comes right down to it.

Great writing by Loflin!

Agreed! And great directing and fantastic acting - given my bias against Vampires, I'm really giving a lot of kudos to Ty for the way he actually makes me like Benny.
borgmama1of5
Dec. 6th, 2012 01:55 pm (UTC)
You and missyjack are the only fan reviews I've read that are positive...Thank goodness for some levelheadedness in fandom.

When the ep ended I pretty much threw up my hands and yelled, "Boys!" There were so many spots I could see each of them trying to give the other the benefit of the doubt and yet neither one of THEM saw it! However Dean's move in fake-texting Sam was uncalled for--first off, Dean was hunting Desmond with Benny, and Sam and Martin were in the forest, no indication that Desmond's hideout was in the same vicinity (why else did Benny and Dean have to drive there?) so Sam was not an immediate threat to Benny here.

But what really bothered me was the parallel to Dean having Lisa and Ben's memory wiped--another example of Dean deciding to 'play god' and remove other people's choices. Although to be honest, this is a character trait he's had all along, and I think something he picked up from the way John controlled other people by controlling the flow of information.

And as I typed this I just realized Dean arbitrarily removing Sam from the playing field for Sam's benefit is an exact parallel to Sam removing himself from Amelia's decision.

Headdesk.

One last thing--I read Jeremy Carver saying that this ep would reveal who was watching Amelia's house when Sam left in the first ep, so I assume we are to understand it was Don.
hells_half_acre
Dec. 6th, 2012 07:01 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I'm staying away from 95% of the reviews out there, because I have a feeling they'd just anger me. :P

But what really bothered me was the parallel to Dean having Lisa and Ben's memory wiped--another example of Dean deciding to 'play god' and remove other people's choices. Although to be honest, this is a character trait he's had all along, and I think something he picked up from the way John controlled other people by controlling the flow of information.

And as I typed this I just realized Dean arbitrarily removing Sam from the playing field for Sam's benefit is an exact parallel to Sam removing himself from Amelia's decision.


I really think this is an important point and a theme of the season. Sam said it himself in 8x01 "So, free will - that's just for you?" A lot of what's happened so far touches on who has free will and who can take away free will and what free will looks like...I mean, Cas' entire storyline is pretty much based on this concept - he excersized free will when he chose to stay in Purgatory, much to Dean's dismay, but now, of course, Cas is having his free will taken from him.

So, yeah, Sam making the decision FOR Amelia, Dean removing Sam from the playing field, etc... I think it's all variants on a theme.

And I totally agree about this character trait of Dean's stemming from John and being there all along - the old "father knows best" problem, only it's "Dean knows best".

(And I'm not saying that hate on Dean! I don't at all hate him for it - hell, I'm the same way, and I think the majority of people are.)

One last thing--I read Jeremy Carver saying that this ep would reveal who was watching Amelia's house when Sam left in the first ep, so I assume we are to understand it was Don.

Yeah, that's what I'm thinking too. So, interesting. Could just be human problems afterall!
(no subject) - cordelia_gray - Dec. 6th, 2012 09:13 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - hells_half_acre - Dec. 6th, 2012 11:27 pm (UTC) - Expand
katsheswims
Dec. 6th, 2012 06:29 pm (UTC)
"I did think, when they entered the warehouse and Benny disappeared into the shadows to circle around behind the young-vamp, that there was a chance that it was a set-up and Benny really was going to turn on Dean." Yes, same thought! Here and throughout! We are brain-twins sometimes...

I do think (hope?) there is more to Sam's storyline than we're seeing because there is just so much we haven't, we only got little glimpses. Maybe he was suicidal?

Yes, I've seen the hate--Sam in some places Dean in others---it makes me sad.

hells_half_acre
Dec. 6th, 2012 06:46 pm (UTC)
Yeah, the brother-hate makes me sad too. I'm severely limiting whose reactions I'm reading now, otherwise they will make Hulk angry. :P

I'm thinking Sam might have been suicidal, yeah... and he's just not telling us that yet. Mainly because I'm not sure how Amelia "saved" him when in his flashbacks he seemed to be doing just fine without her...but who knows, I could be wrong. I still do think there's more here than meets the eye.
cordelia_gray
Dec. 6th, 2012 07:08 pm (UTC)
I had a *much* more negative reaction than you did, which I won't get into on your LJ, because that would be rude :)

But I wonder if you could elaborate a bit on this for me:
They still obviously love and respect each other, and they despite spying on each other's friends and tricking each other, I think that they still trust each other.


I mean, okay, I'm sure they still love each other under all the bullshit, even if that was not terribly evident this week. Respect - yeah, I can see that. Dean telling Benny not to underestimate his brother was definitely a sign of respect. But trust - to me, things like Dean taking the time to set up a burner phone with Amelia's number cloned into it, just in case he needed to use it to manipulate Sam, or Sam leaving Dean unconscious and locked to the radiator while refusing to even investigate his claims of a second vamp, or Dean telling Sam to his face that Benny was the only person who never let him down - these things are pretty much the definition of a relationship without trust. So I'm curious where you see that, at this point.

(sorry, that got more ranty than I meant it to! I have strong feelings, ok? :)
hells_half_acre
Dec. 6th, 2012 07:33 pm (UTC)
No worries!

I guess it's a matter of interpretation - to me, Sam was coming around to agreeing with Dean before Martin punched Dean out. And then Sam just went with Martin, because he wanted to verify the facts for himself, to make sure that Benny wasn't manipulating Dean... I'm of the belief that even if Dean hadn't removed Sam from the equation, Sam wouldn't have just killed Benny without listening to him first and giving him the benefit of the doubt - because Sam ALWAYS listens and gives people the benefit of the doubt. It's why the whole Ruby thing happened, why he let Amy go, why he let Kate go just a few episodes ago.

Dean telling Sam to his face that Benny was the only person who never let him down - as I said in the post, I don't think that's what Dean meant. Sam took it as a personal attack, but I honestly don't think Dean meant it like that. I think what he was trying to say was that Benny has only ever been faithful to his word, that he's a decent guy... basically, Dean was trying to say "Benny is a trustworthy guy" and Sam was hearing "Benny is a trustworthy guy UNLIKE YOU!" and because that's how Sam interpreted it, that's how the audience interpreted it - but I really don't think that's what Dean meant.

But yeah, the whole phone-charade thing from Dean WAS pretty manipulative, which is why I think Sam had every right to hang up on Dean in anger (which apparently pissed a lot of people off). That being said, I guess I sort of saw Dean setting up that phone thing because Dean trusted Sam to have his back so much that he knew Sam would have Dean's back against Dean's will... so, it's sort of a weird form of trust "I trust you to protect me, but I don't trust you to do what I say." I'm sure that Dean set it up after he took off to help Benny clear the nest and realized that if something like that ever happened again, he needed a way to keep Sam away from the situation so that Dean would be in complete control - even if it meant no one was watching his back.

I think that the boys DO have problems and they stem, as always, from keeping secrets... Dean doesn't know what to make of Sam's desire to quit hunting (and Sam obviously hasn't taken the time to sit Dean down and talk about his feelings, or what really happened when Dean was gone, so that Dean will understand). And Sam doesn't know what to make of a brother who always shot any monster that breathed on him wrong suddenly being BFFs with a vamp, not to mention the PTSD issues and the way Dean keeps biting Sam's head off.

So, yeah, I guess I don't mean that they trust each other COMPLETELY. I mean that they trust each other to watch each other's backs, but not necessarily to listen to or understand each other.
(no subject) - ramblin_rosie - Dec. 6th, 2012 08:43 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - hells_half_acre - Dec. 6th, 2012 08:49 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - cordelia_gray - Dec. 6th, 2012 09:09 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - hells_half_acre - Dec. 6th, 2012 11:35 pm (UTC) - Expand
raloria
Dec. 6th, 2012 10:41 pm (UTC)
Ok, finally reading this. :P

You're so darned sensible about this show. Glad somebody is.

I get most of your points though I'm not sure I buy the whole thing about the boys having respect for each other. I'm sure it's there, under the surface, but there's so much hurt and anger between them at the moment that it's all we're seeing (except for you). I think my biggest beef with the episode is the inclusion of Martin. How would this have all gone down without him? Better, I bet. As you said, a lot of what Sam did seemed to be influenced by Martin. If Martin hadn't knocked out Dean, I bet he would've been more willing to believe his brother...and hopefully go with him to see Benny (I still think that would've been the best way to go). The truth was, there was no hard evidence against Benny. So there are two dead bodies and Benny's a vampire, there aren't other vamps in town perhaps? That possibility was never even brought up in the discussions until Dean returned from his 2 hours and by then Sam seemed pretty dead set on believing anything Dean said.

Gah. We'll be debating this episode endlessly over the next month. Who's responsible for what? Who isn't listening to who? All the while I realize show has us exactly where they want us. Heh. Evil bastards. :P
hells_half_acre
Dec. 6th, 2012 11:32 pm (UTC)
As you said, a lot of what Sam did seemed to be influenced by Martin. If Martin hadn't knocked out Dean, I bet he would've been more willing to believe his brother...and hopefully go with him to see Benny (I still think that would've been the best way to go).

This is what I think too. I think Martin's presence - and the fact that Martin was kind of a throwback to John's more black-and-white thinking - really threw a spanner in the works. Sam had to balance Martin's perception of things with his trust and respect in Dean's decision and his own knowledge of the morally grey zones that Martin refuses to even acknowledge...it's a really hard tight-rope to walk, and the fact of the matter is that we don't know HOW Sam was planning to handle it when he caught up with Benny, because Dean didn't give him a chance to show us. All we have is Sam playing devil's advocate with Dean (because that's Sam's job) and then trying to appease Martin...and we don't really know what, if any, conclusion Sam had come to about whether or not Benny deserved a fair trial.

Gah. We'll be debating this episode endlessly over the next month. Who's responsible for what? Who isn't listening to who? All the while I realize show has us exactly where they want us. Heh. Evil bastards. :P

It's true! And I think that's what makes Supernatural so compelling - it always leaves us with something to talk about. ;)
ellecc
Dec. 11th, 2012 12:18 am (UTC)
I've given up trying to guess what's going on! I'm just gonna cross my fingers and hope that whatever's going on with Sammy, it's supernatural and not lame.

But I do have two comments. The first is that it's really weird when Sam wears solid shirts like he is in the flashbacks with Amelia. Do not like! The boy belongs in plaids and other crazy prints.

And second is that I just put on 8.01 to run in the background while I'm doing other stuff, and lo and behold, Sam's wearing the Plain Blue Shirt in that first scene, when he leaves Amelia. So I think that yeah, the night he leaves in 8.01 follows the day we just saw in 8.09. If it's Don watching the house... that deals a pretty serious blow to the theory that there's something going on that we don't know about so... not trying to figure it out!
hells_half_acre
Dec. 11th, 2012 12:33 am (UTC)
Cool, thanks so much for mentioning that he's wearing the same shirt - I like the idea of that being the same night, because it gives a more realistic timeline to the Amelia/Sam romance.

I usually try not to figure things out when I watch, because I think it makes things more enjoyable...or, well, I try not to ASSUME that I know what's going on. Like, I'm not throwing my hands up in the air and declaring that there's absolutely no supernatural component to Sam's storyline just because we haven't seen one YET. I'm waiting to see...

I actually think wardrobe does that on purpose. In S4, when Sam was acting "out of character" and there was friction between the brothers, they had Sam in a LOT of plain shirts, rather than his usual plaid. I mean, I might be reading too much into it - but I do think that the way the boys dress reflects where they are emotionally/health-wise. For instance, the fact that Dean was in plaid for a lot of 8x01 really threw me off and made me worry about how damaged Dean was from purgatory.

Sam wears the plaids and crazy prints, and Dean wears the solid colours - and when they switch, my "something has gone horribly wrong" radar starts pinging! :P
( 45 comments — Leave a comment )

Profile

The Damned and the Saved
hells_half_acre
Hell's Half Acre

Latest Month

July 2018
S M T W T F S
1234567
891011121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
293031    
Powered by LiveJournal.com
Designed by Tiffany Chow