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The S7 rewrite that never was...

As many of you know, I didn't particularly care for S7. I know some people did, and I'm happy for them, but I didn't.

Back when I rewatched S7...because I'm a masochist and I had to catalogue the clothes anyway... I started keeping an outline of how I would have rewritten S7 to make it better. I used one part of this outline to rewrite 7x08, but then never did anything with the rest of it.

So, I thought I would post it for your enjoyment...

(Please keep in mind that this is written in a way that I use to talk to myself and not other people, so there might be places where I just assume you know what I'm talking about because you're me. And any spelling mistakes are because I type all notes to myself in notepad, which doesn't have spellcheck)

----
girl next door:
-8 weeks or no mention of time. Sam still hallucinating, still needing Dean to talk him down sometimes. Maybe they realize that talking directly about lucifer actually makes it harder for Sam to get out of the visions.
-Still sees paper and goes after Amy.
-Dean still freaks out, but for better reason this time (Sam's actually not stable). Sam answers Dean's phone call, tells him where he is.
-Dean still comes. Sam still tells him the same thing, but is confident that he made the right decision - maybe Lucifer wanted him to make the other decision.
-Dean still kills Amy because of not trusting monsters after Cas, but doesn't want to tell Sam because Sam was feeling so confident about his decision making skills.

Defending your life:
-Sam and Dean hunting ghosts to try to ease Sam back into hunting, see if he can handle it.
-Not quite sure how to resurrect this one... maybe Dean feeling guilty about Sam's madness...if he had killed Cas earlier, before he broke down Sam's wall. Maybe feeling guilty about lying to Sam too... or maybe realizes that Osiris can just march out everyone Dean failed to save for all of eternity and of COURSE he's going to win, so just gives up.

Shut-Up, Doctor Phil:
-Again, another attempt at a simpler hunt. Maybe plays out the same...only Sam noticing that Dean is upset, and having bad dreams. He worries, wants Dean to talk to him, but Dean doesn't want to talk about it.
-Sam is doing much better, is quite proud of himself that he hasn't slipped up - that he came through for Dean. Dean doesn't want to tell him that he made the wrong call with Amy.

Slash Fiction
-Dean really concerned about Sam going after Leviathans even though he seems to be doing better. Sam is confident.
-Episode plays out pretty much the same. End fight is definitely because Dean lied to Sam. Sam can't trust him, and that makes it hard for Sam to cope.

The Mentalists
-Plays out pretty much the same. Dean apologizes, Sam accepts it. Dean promises not to lie again - maybe tells Sam that he feels like he dropped the ball with Cas, that Cas hurt people, and he didn't want Sam to have that happen with Amy. Sam complains that Dean can't baby him if he makes the wrong call - he has to know. Sam tells him that he misses Cas too, that even Sam wouldn't have killed him...that Dean can't blame himself for that.

S7, Time for a Wedding
-Not Becky, but OC - amature witch who drugs Sam - similar to Mallus where witch doesn't know her witch-leader is a demon.
-Dean calls in Bobby, is sent Garth. Notices the other cases in town. Sam is NOT pursuing them, thinking his beloved is a civilian.
-Maybe the drug makes the Lucifer-vision go away temporarily, so that Sam feels sane...attributes it to being happy with the girl, tells Dean he doesn't need him.
-When the drug starts to wear off Sam starts freaking out, because he can't tell what's real anymore - wants Dean.
-She still knocks him out, ties him to a bed (not another cottage, because she can't move him herself.) When he wakes up he freaks out more, because of rape history. Hurts himself on restraints. witch doesn't know what to do, flees to find demon/witch. Sam overhears conversation before she leaves, even though he is panicking.
-Dean figures out what's going on...goes to confront witch, finds Sam... saves him.
-Meanwhile, witch with demon - demon yelling at her for picking the ONE person she shouldn't have picked. Dean, Garth and Sam sneak up on him - attack ensues pretty much like episode, only no heroic moment for witch. Crowley arrives...same deal as episode, cancels contracts. Dean wants to kill witch for hurting Sam. Sam tells him not to...he got married under a false name anyway, so he just ditches that ID.

How to Win Friends...
-When Bobby hears what happened to Sam, he decides to hunt with him and Dean for a while - too help Dean watch over Sam a bit?
Death's Door
-As is.

Adventures in Babysitting
-Emotionally wrecked Sam is more susceptible to hallucinations. He tries to distract himself/cheer himself up with hunting.
-Dean sinks further into depression over Bobby. Blames everything, including Sam's madness on leviathan. Starts gunning for Roman.
-When visiting Frank, and Frank mentions "there's no pill for that" or whatever the line is, Dean asks if the pills help - obviously worried about Sam. Wonders if Frank is a good example of someone surviving despite madness, or a bad one.
-Episode ends with the boys slightly cheered up, but Sam's still messed up, now from the Vitala venom as well. Dean doesn't know how he's supposed to cope now that Bobby's gone and he realizes that he's the only one that has Sam's back.
-Change in how fight scene plays out, space between talking to Lee and saying goodbye to Crissy is longer.

Time After Time
-Pretty much can stand as is.
-More emphasis on Sam without Dean though - maybe he ASKS Jody to help him. Scene with him almost talking to Lucifer before the phone rings, then immediately asking for Jody's help while his eyes centre back on that fixed point in the room.
-Possible scene with Jody noticing that Sam seems under a lot of additional stress.

The Slice Girls
-If bring in Bobby's ghost, as per show, then have it overtly affecting Dean negatively - ghosts lingering cause those that are still alive to not be able to move past their grief, etc (per 4x15).
-Sam freaking out more immediately when it looks like Dean might be in danger...taking it more seriously than he does, believing Dean right away.
-At end, after telling Dean not to die, we see Sam look in the rearview mirror and rub his hand before the fade to black.

Plucky Pennywhistle
- Phone call between Dean and Sam after the clown attack - Sam DOES need some talking down, but it still fine (or pretends he is) when he meets up with Dean at the end of the episode.
- Possibly place before Slice Girls for continuity of emotional story-arcs. (In which case, take out opening scene with Dean referencing Slice Girls).

Repo Man
-As is. (?)

Out with the Old
-needs something. I'm not sure what.

Born-Again Identity
-As is.

...I don't even know for the rest of the season. I'd prefer not to have Bobby's ghost around and Sam and Dean actually figure out the Leviathan plan themselves (maybe that's what Out with the Old needs, actually progress made by SAM AND DEAN on the Leviathan plot.)
----


In other news, I do have an idea for a canon-esque fic that would span the end of S7 to the beginning of S8 (mainly 7x17-8x01/8x03)... it'd be Cas-centric which is something I have never done before. It'd be along the lines  of a fix-it as well, which is why posting this reminded me of the idea. As you can tell from the above outline, I didn't like how Sam's madness was handled in S7, and that INCLUDES when it was transferred over to Cas.

Anyway, we'll see we'll see - I have a few things on the go at the moment that I should be focusing on instead for the time being.

Comments

( 13 comments — Leave a comment )
etoile444
Feb. 20th, 2013 03:50 am (UTC)
That was great. The ones you would leave alone were definately my favorites of the season.
hells_half_acre
Feb. 20th, 2013 03:56 am (UTC)
Yeah, mine too. :)

Glad you liked it! I mainly just wanted to post it so that I'd have it somewhere but could delete it off my desktop. :P
borgmama1of5
Feb. 20th, 2013 05:00 am (UTC)
Sigh...Why couldn't the writers see the problems in what they were giving us?

I think they should have an ordinary fan look over their scripts and point out the continuity issues, both physical and emotional. I'd nominate you for the job!
hells_half_acre
Feb. 20th, 2013 05:03 am (UTC)
Haha, thank you. I think there was probably a lot of stuff going on behind the scenes last year that affected how much thought was devoted to maintaining emotional continuity - in some cases, I think the writers may have just underestimated how many sign posts they actually needed.

That being said, I'd love that job. ;)
percysowner
Feb. 20th, 2013 05:41 am (UTC)
I like most of your changes. I hope you don't mind how I would tweek it a bit. If you do mind, stop here.


Personally, in Adventures in Babysitting I would have Chrissy thank SAM for going after her father and offering to die for him. I hated that Dean got the big thank you from her when Sam was the one who came when she called and Sam offered himself in her father's place.

Out With The Old needs more of Sam obviously spiraling IMHO. Maybe truly panicking when Dean is attracted to the ballet shoes, a quick hallucination of Dean dying dancing to death. Also, George may have been a cute Leviathan, but he was dangerous and a killer, implying that he just walked away didn't work, especially in a season where Amy didn't. Maybe tie killing George back to killing Amy.

Born Again Identity was probably the only way to end the Sam is crazy storyline and with your additions it would have been more palatable, but I think they needed to show that although he wasn't hallucinating after Castiel shifted the hallucinations, that Sam was still not completely stable. Maybe carry it over to the next episode?

hells_half_acre
Feb. 20th, 2013 05:48 am (UTC)
I agree completely with your tweaks. Though, I did think it was already implied that George was killed at the end of Out with the Old.

As you can see, I kinda fizzled out with the outline after Born-Again Identity - mainly because I couldn't resolve whether the Ghost!Bobby plot should stay or go... but now that you mention it, having a more satisfying resolution to Sam's hallucinations could have easily filled the time devoted to Ghost!Bobby (along with Sam and Dean actually working and solving the mystery of the Leviathans' intentions themselves), though of course it WOULD take more massive re-writes of those episodes rather than just tweaking things a little like this outline does.
percysowner
Feb. 20th, 2013 05:59 am (UTC)
I was never sure about George, mostly because the casting call had the part as potentially recurring and he didn't die onscreen. As much as I love Bobby, I think I would have had him move on and spent the time on Sam's emotional recovery. I would have preferred to see Sam trying to rein Dean in on DEAN'S need for revenge while battling a still shaky mental state. Sam got played by Ruby because he wanted revenge for what Lilith did to Dean, so he could relate to Dean being out of control and going after Dick Roman, but not being smart about it.

Well, they didn't ask me or you. I do think that having a fan consultant might help the show. I also agree with your statement that things were going on behind the scenes that we don't know about. Frankly, once they had the idea that Sam had suffered the worst torture ever and that his soul was damaged, they wrote themselves into a corner and then resolutely refused to deal with the consequences. It's too bad, because I did like season six and I think with some tweaking season seven could have been much better.
hells_half_acre
Feb. 20th, 2013 06:17 am (UTC)
Ah, I don't read casting calls, so I just went with logic on that one - because Dean would never leave a leviathan alive if he had the option not to.

But yes, I'm with you on the Bobby thing too. His death was so well done and beautiful, and as sad as it was, I think bringing him back as a ghost cheapened it. Especially since he wasn't integral to the plot in anyway. Anything Bobby brought to the table, they really could have pulled off without him... even when he saved Charlie from Dick Roman, that could be an easy rewrite.

I think they COULD have made the Sam storyline really really amazing. Hello Cruel World is still one of my favourite episodes because of the potential of that storyline... actually really 6x22-7x02 are some of my favourite episodes... and I don't actually think they were writing themselves into a corner, what they were doing was taking a bolder move than they were willing to take. In order for the storyline to work, they needed to have a permanent or, at least, semi-permanent change to Sam's character and it appears that they were just unwilling to do it. Very odd, since they were fine with the commitment of having Soulless!Sam for 10 episodes in S6. What we needed were 23 episodes of "recovering" Sam where he was allowed to have ups and downs and progress and setbacks. Getting a bit of outside help from Cas would have been fine even, as long as it wasn't the magic inexplicable fix-all button that they actually wrote.

So yeah, they didn't so much write themselves into a corner, as take a step down a totally legitimate path and then, instead of walking down it, build a goddamn corner around themselves.

Edited at 2013-02-20 06:19 am (UTC)
franztastisch
Feb. 20th, 2013 12:32 pm (UTC)
SPN should hire you to fix their plotholes. *nods*
hells_half_acre
Feb. 20th, 2013 09:45 pm (UTC)
Haha, thanks. I WOULD like a new job. Sadly, I think if they were hiring for that position, I'd have to climb over a mountain of other fans vying for it... and then I'd probably be assassinated by said fans if I somehow failed to fix a plothole to their liking. :P
franztastisch
Feb. 20th, 2013 10:29 pm (UTC)
That's because SPN fans are mad. :P I still think you'd be awesome at it though.
cordelia_gray
Feb. 20th, 2013 04:49 pm (UTC)
Interesting. I liked a lot of the ideas in S7, but there was a lack of follow-through in execution, for sure.

- Sam's madness seemed to be there when they needed it for plot purposes, or when they could get Pellegrino for a guest spot, but they seemed to forget it completely when it wasn't on screen.

- Getting rid of (or changing substantially) the whole "ghost-Bobby" subplot would help a lot. I thought Death's Door was one of the best episodes of the season, and quite unexpectedly moving, and I felt like the ghost plot really undermined it.

- 7.17 is tricky, because they did need to do something to get Sam functional again, but I didn't really like what they did. There was something a little unresolved about the source of the madness - was there actually a fragment of Lucifer in Sam, working on him for some purpose, or was it truly just Sam's broken mind? If Hallucifer was Sam's own subconscious, why was it trying so hard to kill him? Was Sam suicidal on some level? And if so, was there a way to relate that to Dean, who also seemed to be having suicidal thoughts at various points in the season?

(Looking forward to doing this with S8 when it's over. I have liked a lot of it, and have found a lot of it intensely frustrating.)
hells_half_acre
Feb. 20th, 2013 09:44 pm (UTC)
I liked a lot of the ideas in S7, but there was a lack of follow-through in execution, for sure.

Yes, exactly. The premise had potential, but the execution fell flat.

Sam's madness seemed to be there when they needed it for plot purposes, or when they could get Pellegrino for a guest spot, but they seemed to forget it completely when it wasn't on screen.

Yes, and that's a shame, because I don't think they needed Pellegrino to see Sam's madness. I think Jared was more than capable of showing us that Sam was having a hard time without needing to actually hear/see a hallucination. Especially since a lot of the episodes were from a predominately Dean POV anyway.

I thought Death's Door was one of the best episodes of the season, and quite unexpectedly moving, and I felt like the ghost plot really undermined it.

Same.

There was something a little unresolved about the source of the madness - was there actually a fragment of Lucifer in Sam, working on him for some purpose, or was it truly just Sam's broken mind? If Hallucifer was Sam's own subconscious, why was it trying so hard to kill him? Was Sam suicidal on some level? And if so, was there a way to relate that to Dean, who also seemed to be having suicidal thoughts at various points in the season?

All great questions. I'm especially unsatisfied with the way they solved it because Death said that the damage couldn't be removed from the soul, and yet Castiel somehow "transfers" that damage to himself? How does this work with what Death said? (The idea I have for a Castiel fic addresses this problem.)

But you bring up a good point too - if Lucifer was a manifestation of Sam's madness from the cage (where he would have understandably been suicidal) that could have been related to the storyline of Dean's depression and it would have strengthened both emotional arcs, in my opinion.

(Looking forward to doing this with S8 when it's over. I have liked a lot of it, and have found a lot of it intensely frustrating.)

It's definitely a fun writing exercise, because it's basically dissecting someone else's writing to see where its weak spots are and I think there's a lot to learn from that. I mean, people are free to disagree with the diagnoses, but I think, even if we disagree, it helps show what different things we need in stories in order to connect with them.
( 13 comments — Leave a comment )

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