Hell's Half Acre (hells_half_acre) wrote,
Hell's Half Acre

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Quick Reaction: 8x14 Trail and Error

Quite the episode tonight! So much to talk about, that even before I start, I feel like I've missed half of it.

Did we start with Kevin or did we start with Dean? I can't remember now. I'm going to guess Kevin.

Kevin getting up and marking off a calendar, and giving me a mild timelining heart-attack, because there is no possible way they are still in January. Luckily, it was a time-passing montage, and they never actually showed us the calendar when we were at the end of it. Speaking of the calendar though - I actually have a calendar that I use in the same way to force myself to do my job. Every day I work gets an X, so that I can shame myself into doing it. (I also have a calendar where if I have to do something BESIDES be on the computer in order to put an X... that is how pathetic my life has become. Speaking of which, just put an X on it, because I had dinner with my friends tonight! Yay!)

Anyway, back to Kevin... Kevin is working himself into an early gave, the poor boy - but it seems to have paid off, as he's finally been able to decipher something from the half of the tablet he has. Sadly though, he's so overjoyed that he passes out.

So, onto Dean!

Dean has set up his room! He decorates like me!! Okay, well, not exactly like me, mainly because I don't own any guns. But until I moved to Vancouver, I did have a crossbow hanging over my bed for about 7 years. :P

And awww, the picture of Mary and Dean!! Guys, Dean has a picture of his MOM in his wallet!!! Did your heart break? My heart broke, and I'm not even sure I HAVE a heart! There's nothing sadder than a Mama's boy without a Mama. :(

But he's all proud of his room - and Sam comes to see. And Dean set it up all nice. He's got memory foam, because "It REMEMBERS me!" Guys... he's excited because he might be in a place long enough for a MATTRESS to remember him?! Seriously.... how is everyone not a bucket of tears at this point?

Sidenote: The last time Sam wore that shirt, he was hit by a car and put in a mental hospital.

And I like how Dean leaves to make food, and Sam sees the picture of Mary, and takes a moment to look around the room and smile... this is the thing, when kids have their own rooms, they fill it with their personalities. My eldest sister (she has a different mum and lived with her in a different city) once told me that she always loved coming to visit and walking into my room, because she said it was like being completely surrounded by me after being away for so long. I'm not explaining it well, but I'm sure you know what I mean... when you walk into your sibling's house, or your even your parents house, or your grown children's house, or even a really old good friend's house, and there's this feeling of being home even though you don't live there, because the place is such a reflection of the people you love. And Sam and Dean never had that, because they never had a place they could decorate. So, yeah, I just love that scene, because Sam was looking at HIS BROTHER and he was smiling, because he loves Dean more than anything, and so he loved that room - even if he wasn't going to actually tell Dean.

Then they eat - and Dean makes burgers. And Sam really shouldn't have been all that surprised. I mean, Dean DID live with Lisa for a year, even if he didn't know how to cook anything but canned chili before, he would have learned how to cook while living with her and Ben. But I love the fact that Dean's "nesting" as he says... Dean is such a mom, and I love it. It's also why I'm loving this whole MoL/Hunter dichotomy with John/Mary that they introduced - because Dean has ALWAYS taken more after Mary than Sam has. Sam's always been John's boy (even if Sam hated being John's boy) and Dean's always been a mama's boy (even though she was dead.) So, I love the fact that they have Dean learning more towards enjoying the hunting side of things (as he's always done) and Sam finding joy in the MoL (which John was supposed to inherit).

I also think they aren't showing us Sam's room, because Sam hasn't bothered to decorate. Closing the gates of Hell might still be his last gig, in his opinion...so he's probably not looking to put permanent routes down in the life like Dean is. Dean, I think, after trying to live with Lisa for a year and not really being able to live without hunting - and then going to purgatory and actually finding it PURE - he's happy with hunting being his life now. He knows that there's nothing else that leaves him as happy, even if it happens to kill everyone he loves....well, actually, I think that's what he's planning to avoid by devoting himself so wholeheartedly to it, which is in fact another symptom of Dean being a mom, but we'll get to that...

Kevin calls, and interrupts supper time. I love how they had Sam take the burger with him. :)

Off to the boat! Again, Dean goes a LITTLE bit into mother-hen mode, but sadly not FAR ENOUGH into it.. but we'll get to that.

Who else thought it was adorable when Dean hugged Kevin and lifted him up completely?! *raises hand* I'm hoping my tumblr people come through for me and gif that posthaste.

So, in order to close the gates of hell forever, there are three trials. Like "Hercules" trials, not like "Law and order trials" (you gotta love English and how you have to explain these things... I'm sure other languages handily have more than one word for both.)

Zuerst! You have to bathe in the blood of a hell hound. Sounds lovely. So, it's off to pick up supplies while Sam researches!

And it's actually Sam who goes into mother-hen mode and tries to get Kevin to look after himself. Kevin's killing himself so that he can be DONE and have his normal life back, but Sam's been there and done that. (I'm pretty sure that was part of his rational for getting hepped up on demon blood and going full-throttle against Lilith back in S4, and that didn't work out so great.) It's a marathon not a sprint.

Sadly, Dean's swoops in with the opposite advice - turn to pills and go all out until the job is done! If it kills you, at least you go down being useful! I mean, those aren't his exact words, but that's where his head is at - as we find out later.

Sam finds a family that mysteriously struck it rich ten years ago, so it's off to visit them in the hopes that they can intercept the hell hound before it kills them. They show up and get jobs as farm hands, hired by the very lovely....(I am horribly with names)... let's just call her Lovely. I thought she was very good looking and I loved her accent. Ellie? Was her name Ellie? Damn it... YES IT WAS! Okay, Ellie.

They meet the husband, who's the Zach Galifinakis (sp?) type. Then they get a tour of the stables and where they'll be sleeping. Man, that room is small - do people still write Wincest or is it all Destiel these days? In any case, that room was small and those beds were very close together - and that's all I'm going to say about that. :P

And they end up mucking out the stables - and Dean tells the horse that he hates it! NOoooooooo.... I'm sure Jensen gave that horse lots of pets and told it that he didn't mean it, but still... don't tell animals that you hate them unless you do it in a sing-songy happy voice!! Doesn't he know the rules?!?!

Then the wife shows up and is all business and success... and she's the actual member of the Cassidy family, so they figure she's the one that made the deal. Oh boys, it's never the first suspect.

Sure enough, both boys tail the wife, and the husband's the one that ends up getting killed by the hound.

So the whole family comes home to console the wife... but first Sam finds her in the barn and discovers that she's coming off what was basically a ten-year roofie. Yikes. I actually think the actress does a really good job of being completely traumatized for the rest of the episode, while her whole family doesn't even seem to notice. Double-yikes. Oh, but it gets worse...

The family flies in and we meet the sisters and father. Sam gets put on server duty and Dean's put on BBQ duty. I loved Ellie's line "I love a man who knows how to handle his meat" - Ah haha, smooth.

We find out that they're all candidates for deals, (except for poor roofied woman)..seemingly, except for the one who actually MADE the deal. And that's where the story gets worse, because the "normal" looking girl actually probably LIKED the dead husband, but he was in love with the sister who didn't want him, not the sister that did... what's more, the girl was actually young enough (I'm guessing she's the younger one) to believe that money would actually make them happy, rather than just give them different problems... so she made the deal with Crowley.

I also loved the scene where they were trying to remember Crowley's name, and they finally came up with it just as Sam walked into the room, and he's like "oh god no." But, just like the first ever crossroads demon we met on this show, Crowley came in for one deal and stayed for many more. And, much like the first crossroads demon we met, he didn't tell them the complete terms of the deal.

Anyway, we find all that out later - first, we have father and daughter going out into the woods to hunt the "wolf" - I could go into a big rant about humans blaming things on wolves, when it's not the bloody wolf's fault! But I won't. Sam quickly goes along to make sure the hell hound doesn't get them...only he kind of fails that spectacularly. I was really nervous when he split off from them though, because I really thought drunk-father was going to get him by mistake.

Meanwhile, Dean gets a call from Kevin, and finds out that you can make glasses that can give you the ability to see Hell Hounds - HOW CONVENIENT! Also, he finds the most adorable old-fashioned glasses to make them with. I wonder if you can see other stuff with those glasses? Dean should look at Cas with them or something and see if he can see wings - that's what I'd do. Or maybe you can see demon's true faces? That'd be more handy than looking at pretty angel wings - though not as fun.

While Dean's making the glasses, Ellie makes a pass at him... and I loved it,  because she comes onto men the same way I do...which is basically "Would you like to have sex with me?" I'm very straight forward that way. Dean turns her down, though, because he's got a job to do... or he's just not interested, either way. It's not happening... and if I had my suspicions about Ellie before, they were confirmed when she told Dean that the offer was "one night only" - because yeah, Dean shouldn't have recognized that from his Anna days as being a "last night on earth" offer.

Still, it's time to go full psychos and handcuff the family to the furniture while Sam and Dean try to hunt down the hell hound. Except, Dean tells Sam to stay with the family and he'll hunt the hell hound himself.... because Sam has a future and Dean doesn't, because if there's one thing that Dean's learned is that every single one of their quests ends up with one of them dead, and Dean's ideal future is Sam alive and with grandchildren.... so, Dean's going to go out swinging.

And again, to me this is just such a MOTHER speech. I mean, if you ignore the low-self-esteem bits ("I'm a grunt"), this is basically Dean telling Sam that he's going to take all the hits so that Sam doesn't have to - that he's going to protect Sam and Sam's happiness with his life. And ugh, Dean, my heart.

Sam doesn't like it much though, it makes him broodily stare out the window while the family argues behind him.

And I KNOW I haven't said anything about the glasses... but, GLASSES! I actually really liked Sam's - they looked surprisingly good on him, even if he did look like a librarian. I like libraries though, so that's alright with me... Sam was a sexy librarian. And Dean's glasses were great, because literally five seconds after my friend made a "Clark Kent" joke, Ellie made one too. So we had a good laugh at that.

Roofied!Widow is actually working on her cuffs though, and I had a feeling that she'd get them off and make a break for it. (Slim wrists and small hands! It's really easy for my little sister to get out of cuffs too. I've never had the occasion to try, myself.)

Meanwhile, Dean hears that 80s classic "I touch myself" - which we started singing along to even before the lyrics were audible - and it leads him to the barn, where he finds Ellie dancing with herself. Um, just a note here guys - if you hear "I touch myself" coming from a girls room.... uh, she might actually be doing what the song suggests, so it's best not to just walk right in there... but, I guess this is an american show, so it has violence, not sex.

Sure enough, it's Ellie that made the deal - to cure her mother's Parkinson's... "what wouldn't you do for your MOM, Dean?!?!" Yeah, that anvil was a little big, we get it... you didn't have to point it out. You've got Dean's sympathy just by doing ANYTHING for your family. I mean, Dean basically just put HIMSELF on a suicide mission for his brother, he's hardly going to be a hypocrite and yell at you for yours (even if he may have been a bit of a hypocrite about such things in the past.)

Sam, meanwhile, has broodily come to a conclusion and just with enough time to see the hell hound, stop Widow from escaping, and then rush off into the night....

Dean goes to fight the hell hound, but it's too quick for him and knocks him to the gound, slashing his side and sending his glasses and the demon knife flying. Sam comes to the rescue with a shotgun and then manages to get under the hound with the knife and basically disembowels it. I mean, seriously... grossest way to bath in something's blood ever?! I guess it's better than what Luke Skywalker had to do on Hoth, but still.

And this is the thing - when Dean was remembering how each of their quests ended up with one of the dead "or worse," he should have also remembered that they ALWAYS take turns:
John in exchange for Dean(S1)-Sam(S2)-Dean(S3)-Break to release Lucifer(S4)-Sam(S5)-Cas(S6)-Dean&Cas(S7)

So, no matter which way you slice it, it is not Dean's turn. Cas has already gone twice in a row too, so it's probably not going to be him again either.

Sam's the one that's going to complete the trials. And Sam makes a good point - unlike Dean, Sam's NOT going into this suicidal. He wants to live and that means that he's got a better chance of making it through (we can all hope anyway.) And Sam doesn't think Dean's a grunt...he thinks Dean's a genius, and a better hunter than John or even Sam himself.... and awwww....bothers. I love they love each other. *single perfect tear*

Because this is the thing with Sam and Dean - Sam might find more joy in the MoL stuff and Dean might lean more towards hunting - but they are BOTH Hunters+MoLs... they've both got the qualities to be either. Sam's not the brain and Dean's not the brawn; they're BOTH the brain and the brawn. :)

(I will say one LITTLE bit of criticism, and this is completely personal to me....but I kind of wish they wouldn't use the swelling emotional music over heartfelt speeches QUITE so much. I think the speeches have more impact when they don't have the audible equivalent of neon signs pointing at them saying "look this is a heartfelt speech!" I will say though, that I've hated swelling music over heartfelt speeches ever since I used to watch Full House as a kid, and basically any music over a heartfelt speech is too much music for me.)

Sam says the spell, well covered in black gross blood.... and um, yeah, that looks painful, and something happens to his arm. Does Sam have a super arm now? Do the trials physically change him?! What is going on?!? Poor Sam... I think he really is his turn to end up dead "or worse." :(

And that's all I remember at this point! It's 1am and I am getting sleepy though (the wine has worn off, and the fact that I actually put in a full day of work earlier is catching up to me... the little red X on my calendar telling me that I deserve sleep)... so, I'm probably forgetting a ton of things that would be wonderful to talk about! Please let me know what they are in comments, and I will slack off a bit from work tomorrow to talk about them with you!

ETA: I also just made three separate spelling mistakes in the last paragraph that I had to go in and edit... I'm not even going to check over the rest, but I have a feeling that as my tiredness grew, so did my spelling/homonym errors. So, I apologize and just assume that I have something to apologize for. (I'm Canadian... in case you didn't know... I also apologize for that too, just while I'm apologizing).

[Question about next week's promo]Next week's promo talked about "an old friend" but I didn't recognize him or his name.... did anyone else? Or is he an "old friend" like "an old friend we have not mentioned until now" type of "old friend"?
Tags: quick reaction, season 8

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