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Rewatch S8: 8x09 Citizen Fang

Okay! Back at it after a week away...

We're finally coming to the end of the OC!Sam storyline, so in that respect, I'm pretty happy - but we still need to get there...

We start off in Caranco, with Benny at the Gumbo shack. The actress playing Elizabeth was one of the moms in The Kids Are Alright, back in S3. She must be a local actress. I like her.

I do love Benny's voice.

Old dude: "You got designs?"
Benny: "Nah, she's more like a little sister to me, you know?"

- I guess "little sister" is more easily understood then, "she's like a great granddaughter to me, you know?"

Old dude: "So you don't mind if I take a shot?"
Benny: "She's all yours, chief."

- I like the look that Benny gives him like - just, completely amused. I also like the fact that the old dude has so much self-confidence that he thinks he has a chance.

And Martin's there too... dun dun dun...

And the old dude is dead - but surprisingly, it was a knife sound we heard in the woods, I thought. Which I think was Benny trying to take off Desmond's head, possibly, and failing? It sounded like a knife sound to me, anyway. (PS: The name Desmond always reminds me of that Beatles song - Obladee Obladaa...or however you spell it.)

To the boys!

Sam: "Yeah, and you're certain? You're sure? Okay, great, just hang tight until you hear from me, okay? No, listen to me, I said hang tight!"
- Foreshadowing that Martin isn't going to do as he's told.

Oh yeah, this was the episode that they filmed after the famous Toronto Con hotel room wrestling match! Wherein Misha ended up with a hurt elbow and couldn't lift his kids for a few weeks, and Jensen ended up with rug burn across most of his forehead... and make-up can't cover everything. Oh boys... you know, I could write a whole essay here about the sexualization of affectionate touch in American society and how it leads to guys doing things like...well, getting into wrestling matches with each other because they've basically been led to believe that it's the only socially acceptable way to touch each other - so it becomes a really really violent form of affection... but I will refrain, because this is supposed to be about the show, not about how western men are all touch-starved oddly-violent crazy people... and also, I think there's such a thing as pathologizing people too much.

Sam: "We got a vamp kill, Dean - Carancro, Louisianna"
- I think part of this is Sam testing how much Dean is in contact with Benny - whether he knows where Benny is.

Dean: "Crazy Martin from the looney bin?"
Sam: "Glendale Springs discharged him last month."

- Try to be a little more insulting there, Dean, you ARE talking to your brother who was crazy just a year and a half to two years ago.

Sam: "Look, he called me when he got out, okay, asked if I got anything for him that might ease him back into the game. He seemed okay, mostly, so I said yes. I've had him tracking Benny for the past week."
Dean: "You put 'mostly okay' Martin on Benny. What is 'mostly okay' doing hunting at all?"
Sam: "Not hunting, Dean, tracking. Observe and report only, I was crystal clear on that."

- I think Sam and Dean have a different definition of what is safe for Martin to do. I can understand Sam's reasoning - give Martin a tracking job, one where he's tracking a supposedly non-violent, non-threatening, monster... something that isn't currently doing any damage, but might. Dean, meanwhile, knows what Benny is capable of (to defend himself) and also knows that 'mostly okay' doesn't mean 'makes good decisions.'
- The problem, as Dean sees it, is that mentally ill people can't necessarily be trusted. That sounds really horrible when I just write it like that, but let me explain - you can trust them to have good intentions, to want to do the right thing, but you can't trust that they're always going to have their head in the game - you can't trust them to be reliable when it comes to their decisions or reactions to things. On a good day, they could be your rock in a storm, but on a bad day, they could be the storm.
- Again, we have Sam suggesting that he had to be EMPHATIC about what Martin was and wasn't allowed to do - another warning sign that Martin perhaps didn't like the sound of following Sam's orders.

Dean: "Wow, I can't believe that."
Sam: "Really, Dean? You don't believe that? Because Benny's a vampire, and any hunter worth his salt isn't just going to let him walk around freely, so I had Martin keep tabs on him, and right now it's looking like I made the right call."

- The Winchesters are having two different conversations here - Dean can't believe that Sam thought it was safe (for Martin) to send him to track Benny down, and he also can't believe that Sam doesn't TRUST him when it comes to Benny. Sam, meanwhile, can't believe that Dean just let Benny go out into the world without keeping tabs on him.
- That being said, I still maintain that this is out of character for Sam. Sam has ALWAYS been willing to give people/monsters the benefit of the doubt. He let Lenore go - and according to Lenore, she only went back to killing because of Eve... and he let Amy go, though later conceeded that maybe Dean was right to kill her. So, has he just come around finally to Dean's POV, just in time for Dean to swing around to his? Or is it a matter of Sam not trusting DEAN - Dean didn't tell him about Benny, maybe Sam thinks there was a reason? Maybe Dean doesn't want to admit that Benny can't be trusted...

You know, it would have actually been a more believable route to have SAM be the one that was hiding a vampire friend. Yes, I know that they needed to write Dean a way out of purgatory and Benny's knowledge of purgatory is needed later... but think about it for a moment? What if Amelia had been the vampire? One rogue vampire trying to live off animal blood, so she became a vet? She helps Sam out, because she's the only one that understands what it's like to be a freak and to have everyone you love die... of course, the fans (and myself) would have hated that storyline because it'd be a rehashing of Amy/Ruby with Sam once again falling for the femme fatale.... but at least it would have been in-f*cking-character!!

Dean: "So Martin's saying Benny did this?"
Sam: "Yeah"
Dean: "Okay."
Sam: "Okay?"
Dean: "If Benny's in Louisiana draining folks, we should look into it."

- I really do think this is all a test of Dean for Sam - all a test for Dean AND Benny... so that Sam can understand what's going on with his brother and whether or not Dean can be trusted when he claims that Benny can be trusted... and I think Dean DOES give the right response to this test. I think Dean actually acts correctly throughout this entire episode UP UNTIL he sends that text to Sam and tricks him.

Dean: "Does this sound like the Benny you know?"
Sam: "I don't know Benny"

- These lines hurt. Because Dean is treating Sam like Sam is an extension of himself, but meanwhile, Sam is just reminded that Dean kept secrets from him, that Sam DOESN'T know Benny. Not at all.

Martin: "The Benny you know? Say what? Why do I get the distinct impression that your brother is vouching for a vampire?"
Sam: "Guys, let's not argue."
Dean: "Nobody's arguing, but if this is Benny, and that's a big if."
Martin: "Oh it's him."
Dean: "I got history with the guy, okay? I'm not signing up for a witch-hunt, I owe him more than that."
Martin: "What in God's great creation could a Winchester possibly owe a vampire? Am I hearing this right?"
Dean: "Look, until we get the facts, we stow the blood-lust and we work this case right, or we work it separately."

- Dean's use of the word "blood-lust" reminds me that this is actually Supernatural's FIRST vampire-themed episode that does not have "blood" in the title.
- Also, I really like the way the actor playing Martin played Martin. You can tell that he's just full of manic energy - he can't stand still, he can't have a reasonable measured conversation. The problem is that Sam sent him to track a vampire, and he's been doing it for a week...and he's had a whole week to build this hunt up in his mind, to fill up with adrenaline and energy and potential scenarios. Basically, he's had an entire week to psyche himself up for a vampire hunt and now Dean is trying to get him to be calm and to think things through thoroughly - but Martin's in fight or flight mode, he's all adrenaline and snap decisions.

Dean: "I just need some time, Sammy."
Martin: "Oh yeah, let the fang take another life, I don't think so."
Sam: "How much time do you need?"
Martin: "You're not actually considering this-"
Dean: "A couple hours, tops."
Martin: "And what if it turns out to be Benny?"
Dean: "Then it's Benny and I'll deal with it!"
Sam: "Couple hours, Dean, no more."
Dean: "I'll be in touch."

- I also love how Sam and Dean basically just ignore Martin, and when Dean finally does address him, it's to yell at him to basically shut-up because Dean knows what he's doing.

Martin: "You're joking, right? We're doing this as soon as he pulls away."
Sam: "No, we're not, Martin. We're going to give him a little bit of time."
Martin: "Hey, it's your brother, it's your call. I don't know how he can go on like this, it's staring him right in the face!"
Sam: "Yeah, well sometimes it's not easy to see things for what they are."

- With a flashback cue like this, and an episode with "crazy Martin" in it, it would have been SO EASY to have Amelia be a product of Sam's PTSD imagination... so easy for the flashback to be his carefully crafted dream world starting to crumble and reality beginning to shine through the cracks. AND YET THEY DIDN'T DO IT! Uuuuuuuuuugh.

FLASHBACK FOR SAM

"Look I'm sure you've got a lot of people telling you what the right thing to do is here-"
"Sam-"
"He's your husband, Amelia. But I don't, I don't want to do the right thing - I mean, this is the right thing, you and me. And maybe I'm going to hell for saying this, but I'm not ready to give this up."
"Neither am I."

- I feel for Sam, I do. This is Sam being selfish and knowing it - I think his last "selfish" act was to go to college.
- "maybe I'm going to hell" isn't really much of a consequence when it comes to the Winchesters, I don't think... "maybe I'm going to hell, but it's okay, I've been there before, I can deal."

Amelia: "Would it bother you if I just took a few days to clear my head?"
Sam: "Ah, of course, take whatever time you need."

- And I think here is where Sam starts to realize that things might not go the way he wants, even if he does give up his martyr act and try to fight for what he wants. I think what Sam was looking for was Amelia immediately jumping on the bandwagon and declaring that she'd never leave him, but instead, she's honest and tells him that she needs time to come to a desicion - and that decision might not be him.

END FLASHBACK

Dean: "Yeah, he putts around in a beat up camper - thing looks like a rolling death trap."
Elizabeth: "Yeah, haha! I thought I was the only one who gave him trouble over that piece of junk."

- I like this exchange, because it's basically Elizabeth saying "I thought I was the only one who cared for him" and Dean recognizing that - them recognizing that they're both in Benny's corner.

Dean: "Um, listen, I tell you what - if he pops up before I can find him. Do me a favour, just have him give me a buzz, or you could just drop a dime yourself."
Elizabeth: "Sure thing, Dean."

- Oh Dean... do you not see the family resemblance...or perhaps you do. ;)
- Unrelated to anything: "drop a dime" is one of the reasons I find English kind of fascinating. We haven't used dimes to make phone calls in years, yet it's still the idiom for calling someone. We don't even really have payphones anymore - yet people are expected to understand what "drop a dime" means. It's stuff like that that makes English really hard to learn.

Benny with another body... oh dear...

Benny: "It's not me, Dean."
Dean: "And which me are we talking about, Benny or Roy?"
Benny: "I'm just trying to blend in."
Dean: "Blend in? Who'd you plant, Benny?"
Benny: "Victim number two. You're concerned about the missed calls. I didn't want to get you involved. Now, you want to safety that thing, talk a bit, or what?"
Dean: "I'm all ears."

- I love the fact that Dean is just standing there with his hands behind his back... like, yeah, that's not suspicious at all. I also like the way this scene kind of mirrors Dean and Benny's first meeting, where they are kind of circling each other again (though not literally) trying to figure out just how much they can trust each other.

Benny: "... he remembers me from the good ol' days."
Dean: "The good old days?"
Benny: "I know it's hard to believe, but I haven't always been this cute and cuddly."

- I just love that last line of Benny's, because he IS cute and cuddly. Awww.

Benny: "No amateur is going to kick me out of my hometown, not this time!"
Dean: "Hometown? You grew up here?"
Benny: "Born and bred. With Andrea gone, and you out hunting again, it seemed like the right time for a homecoming. You two being the only ones that keep all my ducks in a row. Went back to my old job at the cafe. I even found someone to hold myself accountable to. Best kind of someone, Dean. Family."

- It's interesting that Benny needs someone/something to keep him in line. Before he died, he had Andrea, when he came back, he had the revenge quest and Dean... but with Dean not around so much, he had to find someone new - and it can't just be himself.

Dean: "Elizabeth."
Benny: "My great-granddaughter."
Dean: "Really?"
Benny: "Now hold it now, you didn't-"
Dean: "No, no - does she know?"

- Hehehe, awkward.

Benny: "No, as far as she's concerned I'm just another drifter. I'd like to keep it that way. It's been tough, walking the line here, with all those years of purgatory not having to deal with the hunger. But Elizabeth, she keeps me honest, I finally feel like I got a handle on this thing."
- I'd like to point out that Benny wasn't hungry in Purgatory. In my headcanon, and I fully believe CANON, there's no need to eat in purgatory (or sleep, but that's not confirmed - and actually, the way Supernatural has written the soul before, it suggests that sleeping is a soul-activity, which means it should occur everywhere the soul is). A lot of fics will have Dean eating animals or something in purgatory, but um, did you SEE any animals? Why would there be animals in purgatory? Those fics kind of drive me nuts a little bit.

Dean: "A handle on it. Benny, you got two stiffs on your hands and two hunters on your ass."
Benny: "Oh please, that half-wit that found me at the cafe. I'll take my chances with-"
Dean: "That half-wit was sent by my brother and trust me, my brother is not someone you want to mess with."

- I do love that Dean recognizes that Sam is a badass. That Sam will fuck people up. Sam and Dean are basically the top tier of hunters at the moment, whether the other hunters know it or not... Dean knows exactly what Sam's capable of.

Dean: "Vampires pick prey off at the edge of town. Not in the cafe's they work in with their great grand kids. In fact killing any human, it's not his style."
...
Sam: "Listen, Dean, we came here on a dead body. You asked for some time and now there's aother dead body, are we just going on trust here?"
Dean: "Yes."

- Dean is being COMPLETELY honest with Sam, which is the smartest thing to do - but unfortunately, the damage has already been done when Dean didn't tell him about Benny before. Sam still doesn't know what to believe... and that's a huge problem when it comes to asking him to back down solely on trust. It's Sam whose not sure he can trust Dean.

Sam: "Okay, because we've killed for a lot less, and you know how these things turn out for us."
Dean: "Yes, I do, too well. In fact every relationship I've ever had has gone to crap at some point, but the one thing I can say about Benny - he has never let me down."
Sam: "Well good on you, Dean. Must feel great finally finding someone you can trust after all these years."

- And here's where Dean makes a mistake. He doesn't know, at this point, where Sam's mind is at - where Sam's self-esteem is at. Dean just means that Benny hasn't given him a reason not to trust him, but all Sam hear's is what Dean said under the influence of the spectre - that Benny is a better brother than Sam, that Sam's 30 years of service by Dean's side doesn't mean anything, because his mistakes have been too many, too unforgivable. Sam only hears that SAM has once again not made the cut in the "people Dean trusts" list.
- I also really like the fact that Dean uses the word "relationship" here - the very all encompasing word that could mean friendship, familial relationship, or romantic relationship.

Dean: "All I'm saying is that Benny is innocent."
Sam: "No, you're too close to this."

- Dean, I think, might know that he made a mistake with his wording - but he's sticking to the point here and trying not to get sidetracked by family-drama... but I think in this case, it might have been better if he had - if he had thrown out a "I didn't mean it that way. Of course I trust you."
- Sam is also making a good point though, and it's the same one Dean made to him back in S7 during the Amy fiasco - Sam was too close to her, Dean was objective, therefore Dean made the call. Sam is applying the same standards - Dean is too close to Benny, he can't be objective, therefore Sam needs to make the call. It's not necessarily that Sam has decided that Benny has to die, it's simply that Sam has decided that HE needs to investigate it while Dean sits out.

Dean: "You're not going to find him, and if you do, I'll tell you this, you'd be lucky to get out alive." *turns to Martin* "And you, you go with him? You're a dead man, period."
- I love this line of Dean's, because it tells us just how many things Dean is trying to juggle here - just how many people he's trying to protect. He's trying to protect Benny from Sam, yes, but he's also trying to protect Sam from Benny. Dean fought alongside Benny in purgatory for close to a year - he knows how skilled Benny is. Sam might be a badass, but that doesn't mean he's invincible, and he and Benny could be well matched in a fight and just end up killing each other. Martin, of course, is no match for Benny at all.

Sam: "These are innocent lives we're talking Dean, and you're willing to risk them on Benny's word alone."
Dean: "Damn right, I am"
*Martin punches Dean out*

- I think, had Martin not punched Dean out, that Sam would have capitulated - because the fact that Dean was willing to risk innocent people on Benny's word alone MEANS A LOT, and Sam knows it. Instead though, Martin knocks Dean out and Sam really has no choice but to go with Plan A - keep Martin in check and investigate the case himself, while Dean sits out on the sidelines because he's potentially compromised.

Martin: "I'm glad your dad wasn't around to hear that. He'd have a mind to take you both out to the woodshed and show you what's what. I'm half inclined to do it myself."
Sam: "You listen to me, I brought you into this, I can bring you out, just as easy - so the only thing that you're going to be inclined to do is shut-up and follow my lead."

- For the record, I don't think that Martin is saying that John actually used to take the boys out to the woodshed to show them what's what - I think he's implying that's what his OWN father would do, and that he believes it's normal parenting behaviour. I say this, mainly because I don't actually think that John was physically abusive, nor resorted to corperal punishment... and I also think that Martin is the more likely candidate for having been abused as a child (or being the recipient of corperal punishment as a child - given his generation.)
- That being said, don't EVER bring up John Winchester in front of Sam and Dean, especially if you are claiming to know how he would feel about their behaviour. :P
- Also, Sam is huge, and if I were Martin I would listen to him and shut my trap. "I brought you into this, I can bring you out"...because, um, how's same going to bring him out? Again though, we see Sam having to forcibly get Martin to stand down.

Martin: "I'm just saying, your brother chooses a vampire over a brother - I'd know how I'd feel."
- Not helping, Martin! That wasn't what Dean did at all. He wasn't leaving Sam for Benny, nor did he attack Sam on Benny's behalf - he was trying to explain the situation so that they could go after the REAL threat. But Sam's got such weird self-esteem problems when it comes to Dean, that he's just going to hear what Martin says and believe it.
- As a lead in to the flashback though, this is an interesting choice - because it's about someone Sam loves CHOOSING someone over him, which is very apropos to what caused Sam to leave Amelia - because it WAS Sam who did the leaving.

SAM FLASHBACK

Don: "You are Sam, right? Relax I ain't here to fight."
Sam: "I heard about what happened to you - rough deal."
Don: "Yeah, well, I appreciate that. We got outselves a situation here now though, don't we?"
Sam: "Yes, we do."

- What happened to Don?! My headcanon is that he was captured and presumed dead, and then he was actually a POW, and they tortured him and crap - and then he was rescued.
- Sam's "rough deal" seems oddly insufficient - but then, Sam was locked in a cage with Michael and Lucifer for 18 months/180 years/who-knows-how-long, so really anything that happens to people in the real world probably looks a little like a stubbed toe to him. :P

Don: "I know part of her loved me and now part of her loves you. But the only one who knows what's best for Amelia is Amelia, so when all is said and done and she makes her decision, I'll respect it. And if you truly love her, you'll do the same."
- So, I know I was complaining about Don and Amelia's shitty relationship before, but this is actually a decent thing for Don to say - and I think Sam recognizes that. I think Sam realizes here that Don is a decent guy, and Sam, being Sam, can't really say the same for himself - case in point, he just that morning told a woman that he wanted to steal her away from her husband. Sam's the other man, whether he did it intentionally in the beginning doesn't matter, because he's doing it intentionally now.... and Sam's moral standards won't tolerate that for long, no matter how selfish that he wants to be.

END FLASHBACK

Dean is cuffed to the radiator - Sam's kindly taken off his coat (probably to remove cell and lockpicks from his person), but that's no match for Dean, who has still found a way.

Benny: "What'd they say?"
Dean: "They didn't go for it. I'd get scarce."
Benny: "No offense Dean, but your little brother doesn't exactly put chills up my spine."
Dean: "Benny, listen to me, do not underestimate my little brother, he can and will kill you given the chance."

- Again, Dean's trying to keep everyone alive - Benny is formidable, and knows it, the fact that he isn't afraid of Sam speaks a lot for his skill level. Meanwhile, Dean knows Sam's skill level too.

Benny: "Dean, it's my fight - are you in, or are you out?"
- Again, a call-back to their first meeting.

Sam gets a text that seems to be from Amelia - "Sam, I need your help, come quick." So, he gets in the car and goes - leaving Martin alone in the bayou. :P
Martin: "Sam? Sam! SAM! SAAAAM!! Winchesters, man."
- And you gotta laugh at the fact that basically, the Winchesters are known to be just as unpredictable as any mental patient. They're ruled by their emotions, really, when it comes right down to it.
- Yes, it was horrible of Sam to leave Martin alone in the middle of the woods. Yes, it wasn't very professional... and I know a lot of people have issues with the fact that he did it. At the same time though, I think he figured that Martin would have a long walk into town - maybe calm down, or uncuff Dean (if Dean hadn't uncuffed himself already, which I think Sam figured he would sooner rather than later). Sam knew that Dean would take care of the vamp one way or the other - even if Sam didn't completely trust him on Benny. I also think that the only thing going through Sam's mind at that moment was that his life had caught up to Amelia - that he'd arrive to find her burning on the ceiling - or worse.

Dean: "You're not going to talk a lot, are you? I have been dealing with crazy all day."
- I like this line that Dean gives Desmond, mainly, because I know exactly how "crazy-fatigue" feels. And yes, that makes me sound horribly insensitive, I apologize for being honest.

*Benny stares longingly at Dean's bloody neck*
Dean: "You okay?"
Benny *though closed lips*: "I'm fine."

- They did this scene very well. I like how Benny doesn't show us his teeth. Also, there's something inherently very sexual about vampire hunger - I mean, I'm pretty sure that's the whole appeal of the vampire-trope... and I kind of like the kinky nature of Benny basically lusting after Dean, if only for his bodily fluids blood.

Benny: "My life here is over, isn't it?"
Dean:"'fraid so. Once word gets out..."

- And I think this is another reason why Dean was so pissed at Sam about letting Martin know about Benny. Martin can't be trusted to keep his mouth shut, so that one act of mistrust on Sam's part could bring the entire hunting world down on Benny.

Dean: "Guys like us, we don't get a home. We don't get family."
Benny: "You got Sam."
Dean: "Yeah. Benny you gotta go deep underground [...]"

- I think Dean kind of misses what Benny's saying here, or he just doesn't know how to address it - because Dean is lumping him and Benny together, but what Benny's saying back is that Dean isn't actually like him - Dean DOES get to have family, Benny doesn't. And the fact of the matter is that wherever Sam is, that's Dean's home. So, Dean does get a home, he does get family - it's only Benny who, because of who he is, is denied even the basic comforts of life.

Sam, driving like a maniac, has another flashback...

SAM FLASHBACK

Amelia: "What are you doing?"
Sam: "I'm leaving."
Amelia: "What? Don found you at the bar, he threatened you."

- Again, I know I just said that what Don said was a decent thing to say - but when your wife's first reaction is to believe that you THREATENED someone, um, that's not a good sign.

Sam: "Amelia, no, he didn't threaten me. I'm just trying to do the right thing here."
Amelia: "The right thing? This morning you and I were the right thing, remember?"
Sam: "I know you and Don deserve a chance, okay, and I think you know that too. Just give him a chance, like you gave me. I mean, Amelia, you saved me."

- WHY DIDN'T WE SEE HER SAVING YOU!!
- *cough* I mean - this is basically Sam pulling the old "you can't break up with me, because I'm breaking up with you!" move. Don's a decent guy. Don's Amelia's husband. Amelia hasn't made up her mind, which means there's a possibility that she won't choose Sam...and given the previously mentioned facts about Don, odds are that Amelia will choose Don - that she probably has already chosen Don and just not admitted it ('because who would choose poor broken Sam?' Sam wonders)...so really, it's better to be the one to walk away and feel like you've been the bigger person, rather than be the pathetic loser that gets kicked to the curb.

END FLASHBACK.

Dean: "Time to go, buddy."
Benny: "Thanks for not giving up on me, brother."
Dean: "Don't give me a reason to."

- And this is the thing with Dean, he's loyal to a fault... as long as you don't give him a reason, he will NEVER give up on you...and even if you do give him a reason *cough*Cas*cough*, he will eventually forgive you, if you apologize.

Martin: "Hey Dean"
Dean: "Look, I'm just telling you know that the situation is resolved [...]"
Martin: "Oh, that's good, Dean."
Dean: "Shut-up and listen to me, Benny's long gone, and he won't be coming back ever again - so for your own sake, don't follow him. Are we clear?"
Martin: "You don't have to worry about me, Dean, I'm long gone too."
Dean: "Oh, and Martin, find a new line of work."

- I like how as soon as Martin answers the phone, the creepy voice is in place - and you just KNOW that nothing good will come of this.
- I also like Martin telling Dean that he's "long gone too." Does he mean that he's long gone when it comes to the Winchesters? Never to work with them again? Or does he say that so that Dean thinks he's left town? Or does he say that because he knows that he's long gone mentally, has been for a while, no matter what Glendale Springs says or the fact that he can pass for 'mostly okay'...

Benny: "You leave her alone. Now."
Martin: "How far away are you?"
Benny: "An hour."
Martin: "You got forty-five minutes."

- Creepy Martin is creepy. But what this episode comes down to, besides trust and brother issues, is the question of: who are the bad guys? Who are the monsters? It's an old theme in Supernatural and one that they're continually exploring. Sam and Dean are by virtue of being hunters, just as outside society and sociopathic as the monsters that they hunt... Dean lumps him and Benny together and says "guys like us", but Benny points out that no, Dean isn't like him, Dean gets to have family, he gets to have a home... Benny doesn't. Dean can stop being a hunter any time he chooses, but Benny can't stop being a vampire. And here, we see a hunter threatening an innocent human in order to lure Benny, who has done nothing, to his death...so who is the monster?

Martin: "Lay down your arms you unholy thing!"
Benny: "You got me here now, why don't you just let her go and walk away."
Martin: "I don't think so."
Benny: "You realize that I'm not asking."
Martin: "I realize that completely."

- Benny makes it clear to Martin what's going to happen here. He's going to kill him, and I have to wonder whether Martin understands that like he claims he does.

Benny: "Please, I'm asking you, do not do this, the bad guy is gone, okay?"
Martin: "She doesn't know, Benny."
Elizabeth: "Roy, who's Benny?"
Martin: "Who's Benny? Let's find out shall we? [...] Tell her he won't feed off his own flesh and blood."
Elizabeth: "Flesh and blood?"
[...]
Martin: "...tell her about the monster that you are!"

- It's interesting that it's at the lines where Martin flat out calls him a monster that Benny is able to control his bloodlust. I think Benny's drive, more than anything, is to be human. So he makes himself the friend/partner of a human that he cares for, whether by act or by blood, and then through sheer will of not appearing as a monster in front of them is able to resist the cravings. Just because he's a vampire, doesn't mean he's a monster, and that's fundamentally what Benny wants to convince himself of.

Benny: "What do you want?"
Martin: "Isn't it obvious, I want your head on a stake."
*Benny lies his head on the counter*
Elizabeth: "Roy, no..."
Benny: "I'm sorry."

- I don't think Benny ever intended to allow Martin to kill him. He needed to get Martin to get away from Elizabeth, to come out from behind her and get the knife away from her neck... and so he laid himself out, passively, AWAY from her, in order to accomplish just that. As soon as Martin came to actually do the deed, that's when Benny struck - because he'd been in Purgatory for 50 years, and Dean was right - Martin was dead as soon as he made that phone call.

Sam...creeping on Amelia's windows...seeing her happy with Don.

Elizabeth: "Dean - you told me to call if I saw him."
Dean: "What? Roy? Elizabeth, is he there? Is he there right now?"
Benny: "Just come."

- I wonder what's going through Dean's mind - does he need to protect Benny from Martin? No. Is he worried Sam didn't leave town? Judging from the fact that he was already on the highway, I'm guessing he knew damn well his subterfuge would work... Is he worried that Benny's gone off the straight and narrow? Why now?

I also really like how Dean gives Elizabeth his handkerchief before he walks in - how he presses it to her throat and she leans into the contact. It's actually a really beautiful silent moment.

And Martin is dead. I think with the bloody knife nearby and the clear slit through his throat - that Benny didn't actually vamp kill him, but just straight-up killed him. That being said, it's REALLY hard to tell.

And Sam figures out where the text actually came from...

Dean: "Sammy?"
Sam: "Sam, I need your help, come quick. Nice one. Swapping Amelia's phone out with a burner, sending a distress signal. You got me good. When'd you do that?"
Dean: "A while back, in case I needed it. Looks like I made the right call. So'd you see her?"

- And I think THIS is actually the ultimate dig at Sam's self-esteem, and also what incites his anger. There are two reasons for Sam to be really pissed here, 1)Dean uses his fear that something will happen to his loved ones against him, 2)Dean set up the trick "a while back, in case [he] needed it." Meaning that Dean foresaw that there might be a time when he needed to manipulate Sam into leaving - why would he need to do that? Because he didn't trust Sam. Oh, and there's also the 3rd reason, which is the fact that Dean forced him to reopen the Amelia wound.

Sam: "Yeah, yeah, I did. She's doing just fine, but of course you know that."
Dean: "Actually, I didn't. I did know that it was the only way to get you to lay off."
Sam: "Heh. So? Is it done?"

- I don't think Dean actually realizes the pain he just caused Sam either. He just figures, and how could he, when Sam hasn't told him anything about her or what happened? He just figured Sam shacked up with a girl for a while and then left, so having him drop by is no big deal... though, Dean must know how hard Sam usually falls for girls... so maybe he DOES know exactly what he did, but figures that it's justified given that he did it to keep Sam (and Benny) safe.

Dean: "Yeah, it's done."
Sam: "Any casualities?"
Dean: "Martin."
*Sam cringes*

- I think Sam knows that Martin is just as much his fault as Dean's, perhaps he feels it's more so, because Sam DID leave him in that forest - whether or not the text was fake, Sam's decision that Amelia was more important than Martin means that something happened to Martin. Also, Sam put him on Benny's case in the first place.

Sam: "Was it Benny?"
Dean: "He had it coming, Sam, I'll tell you what happened."
Sam: "I know what happened, Dean!"
Dean: "You going to listen to me or not?"
*Sam hangs up*

- Again, Dean is trying to be completely honest - Martin WAS the bad guy in this scenario, and Dean knows that Sam will see that if he hears what happened. Sam, though, is just too pissed about everything - mad at Dean for the not being honest from the get-go when he got back, for the subterfuge that evening with the text, for STILL siding with a vampire even when it killed someone they knew.
- I do like the fact though that Sam just hangs up. It's very Sam. When Sam gets REALLY REALLY angry, he always chooses to walk away to calm down... rather than hitting him, which I'm sure is what Sam wants to do. Dean hits. Sam walks away... and you can't really argue which option is better. Dean comes off looking abusive and Sam comes off looking like he's always one fight away from abandoning Dean forever.


Amelia: "I knew that was you."
- Oh yeah, did I mention that Show really pissed me off this episode with making Amelia real. If Sam had discovered that Amelia hadn't been real, if his dreamworld had been a literal dreamworld, then Dean sending him that text wouldn't have worked. Sam wouldn't have had anyone to look at through those windows, because the house would have been empty... and Amelia definitely wouldn't have walked up to him in the bar.
- This moment is also kind of ridiculous for what happens next episode...but I'll get to that.


Yay! I might try to do another one of these tomorrow, we'll see... if not tomorrow, then on Wednesday.

Tags:

Comments

( 24 comments — Leave a comment )
borgmama1of5
Nov. 10th, 2013 07:12 am (UTC)
I completely agree that Amelia should have been a figment of Sam's imagination and am still trying to come up with my own head cannon that makes the whole Sam/Amelia story believable.

That being said, I really love this episode for the way it sets up Sam and Dean being on different pages and for the twistiness of just who is the monster in the end. The whole Martin arc reminds me of the rugaru episode in that the assumed monster is not a monster until forced to be by the hunter. And Martin threatening Elizabeth is indefensible. I watched the whole episode with a sense of dread.

I loved reading your insight on the Sam and Dean arguments about Benny in front of Martin--I think you are right in pointing out the psychology of what was happening.

I think when Sam tells Martin to 'Shut up and follow my lead'--that is a sign that Sam is considering the possibility Dean is right about Benny, and Martin attacking Dean makes Sam put up the united front even while being pissed at his brother--because no one gets to criticize Dean except Sam.

Your explanation of why Sam decided to leave Amelia is one of the only in-character parts of that whole arc.

And the end just hurt.

Looking forward to your next review!
hells_half_acre
Nov. 10th, 2013 07:24 am (UTC)
I completely agree that Amelia should have been a figment of Sam's imagination and am still trying to come up with my own head cannon that makes the whole Sam/Amelia story believable.

Let me know if you ever cement it! :P

The whole Martin arc reminds me of the rugaru episode in that the assumed monster is not a monster until forced to be by the hunter. And Martin threatening Elizabeth is indefensible.

Agreed. As much as the theme hurts, I love when they explore it.

I think when Sam tells Martin to 'Shut up and follow my lead'--that is a sign that Sam is considering the possibility Dean is right about Benny, and Martin attacking Dean makes Sam put up the united front even while being pissed at his brother--because no one gets to criticize Dean except Sam.

Agreed yet again. Like I said, Sam was beginning to believe Dean, because Sam KNOWS Dean, right before Martin knocked him out - so, Sam thought "keep Martin in line, confirm Dean's story" and set out to find Benny... only to be derailed from the "keep Martin in line" part of the mission when Dean sent him that text.

Your explanation of why Sam decided to leave Amelia is one of the only in-character parts of that whole arc.

Yup! At least their wrapping the arc with some in-character moments! :P

I look forward to my next review too, since it'll mean that I'll actually have some free time!
ashkiryn
Nov. 10th, 2013 09:02 am (UTC)
Firstly, in regards to vamp-centric episodes always having the word "blood" in them, there was also "Live Free or TwiHard", which didn't have that word in it. *shrugs*

The funniest thing (and by that I really mean ironic) about Dean and Sam in the Amy and Benny cases, when they're trying to claim objectivity, is that they're really not objective at all---Dean was projecting all of his Cas-related issues over Amy, and as you've illuminated, Sam's projecting his brother/inadequacy issues onto Benny. Oh, boys. *headdesk*

Also, I swear to god, these two need a therapist SO FUCKING BAD, or family counseling, or whatever. But I think that if there ever is a time when they actually talk and HEAR EACH OTHER when they're having Issues, I'll collapse and die from the shock.

And my heart just hurts SO MUCH for Benny in this episode in particular (and in the next one...and "Taxi Driver"...FUCKING WHYYYYYYYYYYYY), and just UGH. I think sponsors would be a good idea for the supernatural creatures trying to stay on the straight and narrow...

I don't think Sam has come around to Dean's (apparently previous) view on supernatural creatures....I think it's just that it's BENNY, and that Dean lied and kept him a secret, and that, as you said, Sam is hearing Dean call Benny the better brother. I think that Sam is suppressing this selfish desire for Benny to just GO AWAY...because it's not even Benny being there and getting Dean out of Purgatory that really gets to him. It's that Benny is like Sam in seasons 4 and 5, a bloodsucker and blood-addicted...and in Sam's view, Sam FAILED, and Dean had no faith in him, whereas Dean does have faith in Benny, and Benny is succeeding in staying clean. I think Sam has this suppressed, vicious desire for Benny to fail too, so that maybe Sam doesn't have to deal with him being a better brother to Dean in this area too. Hell, it may even be more of a subconscious desire, but combined with all of the rest...well, it's no wonder that Sam just doesn't want to deal with Benny at all.

Also, Martin is super creepy in this episode, and especially when he invoked John, I was right there with Sam in being pissed off. And I had to laugh, too, when Sam just ditched him in the woods.

*headdesks at the Sam/Amelia/Don triangle nonsense* I think it would have been funny if Amelia was only in Sam's head, because this whole thing with Don seemingly coming back from the dead like he does is straight out of a soap opera...like the ones Dean likes to watch in motel rooms. :P I mostly just sigh at the whole debacle of this storyline though....and really, most everything about the next episode, except for the cute Dean/Cas moments, Cas being tired of Dean and Sam's shit, and the very end, with Dean and Sam's reaction to Cas being compromised. *sighs*
hells_half_acre
Nov. 10th, 2013 08:35 pm (UTC)
Firstly, in regards to vamp-centric episodes always having the word "blood" in them, there was also "Live Free or TwiHard", which didn't have that word in it. *shrugs*

Oh! You're right. I stand corrected.

when they're trying to claim objectivity, is that they're really not objective at all---Dean was projecting all of his Cas-related issues over Amy, and as you've illuminated, Sam's projecting his brother/inadequacy issues onto Benny. Oh, boys. *headdesk*

So true. The more objective brother is actually the brother who is "too close" to the monster in both cases.

I think sponsors would be a good idea for the supernatural creatures trying to stay on the straight and narrow...

Agreed!

I think Sam has this suppressed, vicious desire for Benny to fail too, so that maybe Sam doesn't have to deal with him being a better brother to Dean in this area too.

I wouldn't be surprised in the slightest!

I think it would have been funny if Amelia was only in Sam's head, because this whole thing with Don seemingly coming back from the dead like he does is straight out of a soap opera...like the ones Dean likes to watch in motel rooms. :P

Very true - and they could have made Amelia fake - and then just had Sam come out of it at the end of it to find himself sitting in a fugue state in a motel room watching a bad soap. :P
missyjack
Nov. 10th, 2013 11:44 am (UTC)
" I still maintain that this is out of character for Sam. Sam has ALWAYS been willing to give people/monsters the benefit of the doubt." See i never thought these conversations were about Benny. For me its about Sam and Dean. I think Sam has so many feelings going on - no doubt guilt that Dean was alive and he didn't look for him, and that during that missing year someone else WAS there for Dean, did have his back (remembering at this point he doesnt know anything about Cas in Purgatory). And on the other hand, he's with Amelia, and then Don comes back for her,. So in a way he's replaced int he lives of the 2 people most important to him. The fact that Benny is a vampire, not really relevant (altho there's probably a little bit of - hey NOW you start to see my point of view!)

Also re: American men and their weird touch issues. Totally agree. But I am pretty sure anyone who spends time with Jared is not starved for touch!
hells_half_acre
Nov. 10th, 2013 08:31 pm (UTC)
I think Sam DOES know that Cas was with Dean in purgatory at this point... but yeah, you have a point that this conversation might be about Sam trying to compete for Dean the way he didn't compete for Amelia.

Also re: American men and their weird touch issues. Totally agree. But I am pretty sure anyone who spends time with Jared is not starved for touch!

Hehehe, probably not, no. ;)
supernutjapan
Nov. 10th, 2013 12:00 pm (UTC)
Otsukaresama! Japanese for something like good job, well done, you must be tired ... basically *a well deserved pat on the back*

- And I think here is where Sam starts to realize that things might not go the way he wants, even if he does give up his martyr act and try to fight for what he wants. I think what Sam was looking for was Amelia immediately jumping on the bandwagon and declaring that she'd never leave him, but instead, she's honest and tells him that she needs time to come to a desicion - and that decision might not be him.

And so in the present, he also gives Dean time to figure out who he was going to side with. He also thinks that Dean might choose Benny over him?

Sam: "I know you and Don deserve a chance, okay, and I think you know that too. Just give him a chance, like you gave me. I mean, Amelia, you saved me."

Benny saved Dean. He deserves a chance too? Sam is contemplating leaving Dean?

- I love the fact that Dean is just standing there with his hands behind his back... like, yeah, that's not suspicious at all. I also like the way this scene kind of mirrors Dean and Benny's first meeting, where they are kind of circling each other again (though not literally) trying to figure out just how much they can trust each other.

You're right!Cool! Thanks for pointing that out!

Dean: "Guys like us, we don't get a home. We don't get family."
Benny: "You got Sam."

This exchange - the way Dean reacted was significant I think. I guess he is thinking of how Sam will not trust him, and is still pining for his normal life etc. Sam and Dean do not really have each other at this point. Just as Sam feels Dean doesn't need him, Dean probably feels Sam doesn't want him.

Dean: "A while back, in case I needed it. Looks like I made the right call. So'd you see her?"

Just like Sam set Martin on Benny a while ago, huh? And Dean uses Sam's words back at him.

Somebody said that if Benny had been with Dean when the call from Martin had come, things would have been different. I also think things would have been different if Sam had not run off and left Martin on his own(also partly Dean's responsibility). I think Sam would have been able to stop Martin from doing what he did.

Sam and Dean are both a mess, aren't they.

Well, that wasn't that depressing. Thank God we are on our way out of this mess.
hells_half_acre
Nov. 10th, 2013 08:28 pm (UTC)
Otsukaresama! Japanese for something like good job, well done, you must be tired ... basically *a well deserved pat on the back*

Thank you! Both for the sentiment and the vocab lesson! :)

And so in the present, he also gives Dean time to figure out who he was going to side with. He also thinks that Dean might choose Benny over him?

Another good parallel.

Benny saved Dean. He deserves a chance too? Sam is contemplating leaving Dean?

Hmm, I think this is a bit of a stretch... but who knows! If this were the case though, then technically Dean DID choose Benny and Sam did not just leave him after the decision. He wouldn't accept it.

This exchange - the way Dean reacted was significant I think. I guess he is thinking of how Sam will not trust him, and is still pining for his normal life etc. Sam and Dean do not really have each other at this point. Just as Sam feels Dean doesn't need him, Dean probably feels Sam doesn't want him.

Good point. I was focused on discussing Benny at that point - but it's true, Dean seems reluctant to agree that he "has" Sam. Because I think that perhaps he believes that he guilted Sam into rejoining him, which he did, so he has a point.

Just like Sam set Martin on Benny a while ago, huh? And Dean uses Sam's words back at him.

Ooo, good point. That being said, Dean's not trusting Sam - Sam's not trusting a vampire. Yes, Dean interprets it as Sam not trusting DEAN about the vampire, but really it's about Sam being worried that Dean is being lied to - after all, Sam's been there before.

I also think things would have been different if Sam had not run off and left Martin on his own(also partly Dean's responsibility). I think Sam would have been able to stop Martin from doing what he did.

Agreed. Sam and Martin may have still gone after Benny - but they would not have involved Elizabeth.

Well, that wasn't that depressing. Thank God we are on our way out of this mess.

No kidding! :P
supernutjapan
Nov. 11th, 2013 12:45 am (UTC)
Benny saved Dean. He deserves a chance too? Sam is contemplating leaving Dean?

Hmm, I think this is a bit of a stretch... but who knows! If this were the case though, then technically Dean DID choose Benny and Sam did not just leave him after the decision. He wouldn't accept it.


I was going to leave it as is, since it is not that important and we are most probably on the same page anyway, but I'm bored (have a few minutes before class) so... Dean actually deciding whether to take Benny or Sam - that comes later aye? With the stay or go ultimatum by Sam. (Sam also decides whether he is going to leave or not at that time) But I think Sam could be thinking here that maybe he should consider giving over to Benny, like he did with Don.




Edited at 2013-11-11 12:47 am (UTC)
hells_half_acre
Nov. 11th, 2013 12:57 am (UTC)
Sam never actually asks Dean to make a decision between him and Benny - it's actually Dean who gives Sam the ultimatum: Amelia or Hunting. Not so much Amelia or DEAN, because Dean isn't feeling threatened (I don't think), he's worried that Sam will try to have both and Dean knows from experience that that only ends in heartbreak. Amelia also gives Sam an ultimatum, but Sam himself never gives any ultimatums to anyone.

But yes, it DOES all happen in the next episode, not this one. So I'll talk about it then (and also confirm that what I just said is true, because I'm working off memory for this comment.)

I still don't agree with you about Sam considering that he should let Dean go to Benny like he did with Amelia and Don - but that's okay! We can both think different things. We're allowed.
supernutjapan
Nov. 11th, 2013 12:59 am (UTC)
Yeah, me too (working from memory).
Looking forward to the next one ;)
hells_half_acre
Nov. 11th, 2013 02:07 am (UTC)
Oh! I was wrong about the Sam-ultimatum thing! He DOES kind of give him one.

Edited at 2013-11-11 02:07 am (UTC)
supernutjapan
Nov. 11th, 2013 02:13 am (UTC)
I thought I remembered Sam in his angry voice there ;)
I always thought it was significant that they "both were there" at the end. (sort of the reverse of Amelia's suggestion)

Edited at 2013-11-11 02:13 am (UTC)
claudiapriscus
Nov. 10th, 2013 03:39 pm (UTC)
Yeah, the amelia storyline was kind of bizarre. It either needed to be revealed as something else, or they should have put more meat on it. I mean, basically, it could have been Lisa 2.0, which the show did a lot better job of selling. Instead...randomness. The other thing that kind of bugged me was that Sam just left her to her husband. He took the choice away from her and pretended he was being noble by doing so. What she wanted or thought wasn't even a consideration, just the assumption that of course she'd fall right back into her husbands arms if Sam wasn't in the picture, which is...strange. And then of course she basically did. She was not a character they gave much thought to. She kinda fails the Sexy Lamp test.
hells_half_acre
Nov. 10th, 2013 08:21 pm (UTC)
Agreed completely!

That sexy lamp cheered Sam up for a while, but then its original owner came back and asked for it, and Sam realized that he's never allowed to have nice things, so he gave it back. :P

Edited at 2013-11-10 08:21 pm (UTC)
claudiapriscus
Nov. 10th, 2013 08:24 pm (UTC)
Dean tricked Sam into thinking someone was about to hurt his favorite Sexy Lamp.
hells_half_acre
Nov. 10th, 2013 08:40 pm (UTC)
:P Yup. Supernatural has totally failed the Sexy Lamp test with this storyline.
borgmama1of5
Nov. 11th, 2013 08:01 am (UTC)
So what is the sexy lamp test???

(All I can think of is that lamp from 'A Christmas Story'--the one that is a woman's fishnet-clad leg with a yellow lampshade.)
hells_half_acre
Nov. 11th, 2013 08:24 am (UTC)
The Sexy Lamp Test is something that Kelly Sue DeConnick came up with to spot problematic writing. Basically, it's a better (in my opinion) version of the Bechdal test.

"If you can replace your female character with a sexy lamp, and nothing changes, then you're a hack!"

It's a really good test, because movies that don't pass the Bechdal test, but are still movies with good female roles - such as the Avengers - DO pass the Sexy Lamp test.

And yes, I'm pretty sure Kelly Sue picked "Sexy Lamp" as the inanimate object to use for the test with the Christmas story lamp in mind. ;)
caranfindel
Nov. 11th, 2013 03:50 pm (UTC)
I don't think Sam took her choice away from her. I think he assumed, deep down, she would choose to be with her husband, because the only reason she wasn't with him was because he was
"dead." And since Sam never gets to keep anything he loves (OR THINKS HE LOVES EVEN THOUGH WE KNOW BETTER) naturally she was going to go back to Don. And even if that wasn't the case, she could have easily made the choice. She could have said "I choose you" after sexy time and he would not have left her. She always had a choice, she just wasn't prepared to make it.
percysowner
Nov. 10th, 2013 06:35 pm (UTC)
I actually have no problem with Sam's reaction to Benny here. Dean and to be fair LIFE spent season 4 on to beat into Sam the idea that supernatural creatures can't be trusted. Yes, Lenore only turned because of Eve, but if Sam had killed the nest how many humans would not have died. I think that Lenore reverting to her nature was a huge blow to Sam's ability to rely on his instinct to give supernatural creatures a chance. Amy simply cemented it. Dean was absolutely resolved to convince Sam that he was wrong to give Amy an chance and Dean was right to kill her. Sam even has to admit to Dean that Dean was probably right to kill her. So NOW Dean decides to switch gears on Benny. He doesn't bother to have Sam and Benny meet. Sam doesn't go full tilt against Benny, he has someone watch him and although you think Martin was looking for a vampire hunt, he spent several weeks watching Benny and finding no evidence that Benny was anything other than on the wagon. He was chalking Benny up as reformed when a vampire attack victim shows up. I think any hunter would take that as Benny fell off the wagon.

I admit I have a little trouble believing that Dean didn't know how much his text would hurt Sam. He can't on one hand tell all and sundry that he knows Sam better than "the kid knows himself" and then be able to fluff off the damage he did with a "I didn't think you cared that much". No, Sam didn't give him details about Amelia, but Dean has been poking Sam for the entire season with how Sam left him for a girl. That means Dean believes the girl was more important than he is and that should mean that he knows exactly how Sam will take his text.

I also think that much of Sam's anger is that Dean is so cavalier about Martin's death. For one thing in season five when hunters were trying to kill Sam and Dean, Martin trusted them enough to bring them into a case. It was indicated that they had known Martin for years, maybe not Bobby close, but knew him when they were kid (because we never saw them work with him before). But most of all, Dean had set up the "Amy rule". The Amy rule was clear. If a supernatural being kills a human for ANY reason, they must be put down. Amy was saving her family after possibly 20 years of abstinence and Dean said that wasn't good enough. She killed to save her CHILD. But according to Dean Amy had killed, Amy had to die. And Dean made Sam agree that Sam wasn't competent to judge differently. Now Benny kills, again to save family. Not a child a grown woman. Benny was faster and stronger than Martin. He could easily have overpowered him and had Elizabeth call law enforcement. The story is simple Martin, newly released from a mental institution partly for babbling about monsters, came into the diner, started making wild accusations about Benny being a vampire and held Elizabeth hostage. Elizabeth managed to overcome him and knock him out. Martin would have been shipped off to a mental institution again, or maybe a judge wouldn't have bought an insanity defense, but Martin would have been out of the way, unable to do anything to Benny. Even if other hunters found out about Benny, he would have been long gone (something he was going to do anyway) and safe. Martin would be alive and unable to hunt Benny. Benny would have been relatively safe. But Benny CHOSE to kill Martin and Dean justifies it.

On to part 2 because I got wordy
hells_half_acre
Nov. 10th, 2013 08:19 pm (UTC)
That means Dean believes the girl was more important than he is and that should mean that he knows exactly how Sam will take his text.

Good point. In which case, if Dean knew full well what he was doing - then the "I didn't think you cared that much" was him trying to play innocent after the fact, knowing full well that it was a douche-move. And him making the douche-move was Dean, once again, feeling that this betrayal of Sam is justified, while never recognizing that Sam feels the same way about his betrayals of Dean (at the time he makes them, anyway.)

I also think that much of Sam's anger is that Dean is so cavalier about Martin's death [...] But Benny CHOSE to kill Martin and Dean justifies it.

A good point for a better alternative to what Benny decided to do - also, similar to what Sam did to Gordon back in the day... and yeah, Dean justifying it is totally evidence that Dean IS "too close" to Benny to see the truth - as Sam suggested back in Martin's room.

That being said, it's been a very long time since they brought law enforcement into their world... and Benny's spent lifetimes avoiding it, so I can see why the alternative plan probably never crossed his (or Dean's) mind. But yeah, totally could see why Sam might be pissed off that Benny has DEFINITELY killed someone now - and a hunter at that - and still Dean's letting him live.
percysowner
Nov. 10th, 2013 06:38 pm (UTC)
Sam was trusting Dean right up until Martin clocked Dean. Should Sam have kept on trusting Dean? Maybe? Dean doesn't trust Sam's judgement for beans. Dean refused to let Sam meet Benny and judge for himself. And frankly, I can understand Sam's side-eying Benny's story. "Yes, there have been vampire attacks, Dean. No it's not me. It's this vampire that I knew way back when. The one I can't take you to find. The one you have never seen in your life. Oh, Dean, I found the vampire you never saw before in your life and killed him to stop the killings, which I am in NO WAY responsible for. He'd tell you himself, but I had to kill him, so he can't. I know, I was going around killing members of my old nest, the ones that stayed on a ship so we didn't meet any other vampires, but this guy knew me. Not from my old nest, because if he had been I would have wanted to kill him for my own reasons. No, he's just a vampire who happened to know what I was, who I was strong enough to kill, but who I didn't kill until Martin accused ME, INNOCENT LITTLE ME, of killing people." I understand why Dean believed Benny, but a conveniently dead vampire (well actually a conveniently dead corpse with his head cut off that Benny claimed was a vampire) who couldn't tell his side of the story is not an alibi that should be accepted without question.

I hated this episode for many reasons. I hated Deans actions. I didn't mind Sam's actions until he went with Martin after Martin knocked Dean out. OTOH, when Sam went to investigate Amy Dean hit him in the head even though Sam had just had a concussion, so brothers who aren't injured enough to be hospitalized don't seem to upset either Sam or Dean. I hated that Dean's cruelty to Sam only gets a couple sentence mention while Benny the good gets to go on and on so we think Sam was indisputably wrong. I just really HATE this episode.
hells_half_acre
Nov. 10th, 2013 08:09 pm (UTC)
I don't know what OTOH- OH! ON THE OTHER HAND! Geeeeeez... nevermind. As you may notice from my blogging style, I'm not that great with internet-speak.

I totally agree about the flimsiness of Benny's story when Sam hears it - I mean, technically you CAN tell whether a corpse was a vampire or not, but that would still mean giving Benny more time to possibly kill again (or skip town and get away, killing elsewhere), if he were to be lying.

I do think though that the fact that Dean BELIEVED Benny said a lot to Sam, and that when he did take off with Martin, it was to investigate things himself - and had he caught up with Benny, he would have been willing to give him the (begrudging) benefit of the doubt.

Yeah, in the Supernatural universe, repeat head-trauma doesn't seem to be an issue. At this stage in their lives, Sam and Dean should really have that condition where they'll die if they're hit in the head one more time. :P

There's a weird thing with this show where Dean's motivations and emotions are always really well spelled out and sympathetic to the audience, and Sam's are not. As someone (possibly you?) pointed out in the comments to the Spectre episode, Dean's betrayed Sam just as much as Sam's betrayed Dean, but Dean's actions are always relayed as being perfectly understandable - whereas Sam's are portrayed as horrible mistakes. It's a very odd double-standard.


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