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

Rewatch S10: About A Boy (10x12)

Rewatch time! It's time for Adam Glass' last episode...

About a Boy

I liked Adam Glass. He tended to write fairly solid episodes and he seemed to have a particular soft spot for the weechesters and Dean's character arc. Also, I met him once, and he seemed a very warm and loving fellow towards fans. Anyway, I hope he continues to do well in life, now that he's left SPN.

And I wrote all that over the teaser death, because I didn't have anything to say about the teaser death.

Now we get more research montages! I love research montages! Also, Dean angst montage.

They have him three different shirts during this montage. Ending in his new orange and blue one. And yes, it's orange not red - I know, because I bought one for a fan in the states after this episode aired. I am a secret source of those sweet sweet Canadian plaid shirts that don't ship south. ;)

Dean: "Alright, why don't you check it out? I'll hold down the fort."
Sam: "Dean, you haven't left the Bunker in a week."
Dean: "And?"
Sam: "And you can't just live the rest of your life locked up in this room."

- Aww, poor Dean. Also, I just love that Sam knows exactly what Dean's doing.

Sam: "Look, I know you're worried about the Mark."
Dean: "Yes, Sam, I am!"

- *snort* Sam I Am.

Sam: "Charlie forgave you! How about you forgive yourself?"
Sam: "...reading the same lore books over and over again. It's not exactly helping you! You need to get back in the game! For your own good! You can beat this, Dean!"
Dean: "Do you really believe that?"
Sam: "Your damn right I believe that!"

- I actually think Dean's right here and Sam's not... that whenever Dean's around violence, he slips up, does something violent, feeds the Mark's desire for violence, etc. But, maybe he'd go stir-crazy in the Bunker too and end up in the same place.
- That being said, I like Sam's pep talks. I like the fact that Sam tackles everything Dean-related with complete faith and confidence in his brother at all times. I'm not sure if it's always been like that, but I like the fact that it's like that now.

Dean: "You know, you also believed in the Easter Bunny until you were twelve."
Sam: "No I didn't... look, I was eleven."
Dean: "And a half."
Sam: "And a half..."

- I talked about this when the episode aired, but it actually makes perfect sense to me that Sam would believe in the Easter Bunny for much longer than other children - after all, he learned around the age of 8 that monsters were real, and ghosts, and werewolves... and Sam has ALWAYS been the "if bad things exist, good things must exist too" type of believer. So, yeah, the Easter Bunny must also be a thing! It only makes sense. Dean is fascinating to me because he's not like that - he was an atheist in a world where he had confirmed proof that hell existed. He was probably an atheist even after he met angels and got confirmed proof that heaven existed... he might, in fact, still be an atheist, even when he's met beings that have spoken with the now absent God. I'm getting off track though, Dean is the type of person who ONLY believes what he sees. He doesn't extrapolate. Sam sees evil and extrapolates that there must also be good. Dean sees evil and says "well, there's evil and there's me, and that is all that I can be certain of."

Sam: "You smelled flowers? What kind of flowers?"
Guy: "Flowery flowers."

- I love that line.

I DO take a little bit of issue with the mental-health of the homeless dude being a sort of punchline. Though, it wasn't really FILMED for laughs, more very matter-of-fact and in a manner where it's mostly just commenting that Sam and Dean sometimes have unreliable witnesses.

Sam: "Alright, I'll go scope out JP's place, you go scope around inside."
Sam: "Or, you know, we don't have to split up!"

- Again, I just love that Sam can read Dean off a look and he doesn't give him a hard time about it - he doesn't say "oh, suck it up, you'll be fine." He offers Dean support immediately with absolutely no judgement attatched.

The bartender is also wearing Windriver brand plaid shirt, i'm sure of it. I've been in MWW enough to recognize them now. They've always got the most ridiculous colours (imho.)

Bartender: "What can I get for you?"
Dean: "Screw it, I'm going to believe in myself."
Bartender: "Thatta boy."

- Hahaha, so cute.

It's interesting, because after Dean takes the shot, we get the heart-beat and him putting his hand on the MoC - and so I wonder if alcohol actually DOES make it worse.

Tina: "How do you know the Royale Motel in Scanton?"
Dean: "My dad, me, and my bro, we got snowed in there for a week!"
Tina: "Well, I was there for about three months, after my father drank all our money away. Lived on white rice and tictacs until they kicked us out! Good times."
Dean: "My dad was always working, so I came up with about a hundred and one different ways to make macroni and cheese."
Tina: "Serious?"
Dean: "Oh yeah, add ketchup for spice - tuna, hotdogs, fluff marshmellow mix."
Tina: "Ugh! That sounds disgusting."
Dean: "Yeah, well, my brother thought it was exotic."

- Fun stories! It's interesting though, because the first time I saw this episode, I thought Dean was talking about making mac and cheese during the week that they were snowed in... BUT, he clearly says that John was snowed in WITH them that time, and that the different mac and cheese varieties were other times, just when Dad was out working. I know, I know, "what different does it make, Alix?" Well, none, unless you're me and like to always have details correct in your head, even when they don't matter.
- Also, I love that there are now two interpretations of the marshmellow mac&cheese - 1)Sam was just being nice and calling it 'exotic', because he knew Dean was scraping the bottom of the barrel for making cheap food interesting, or 2)Sam honestly did like it, because we find out in S11 that maschmellow nachos were also a thing that Sam enjoyed. So, Sam could just have REALLY WEIRD TASTEBUDS. I blame the demon-blood.

Tina: "I should go... before you fall hopelessly in love with me."
Dean: "You going to be okay?"
Tina: "I always am!"

- I love this, because Dean clearly spent several hours drinking with this woman, and chatting in a friendly manner with this woman... and if this women were me, and this had been my night at the bar, and I honestly just wanted to go home, this is the part where the guy would get pissed off because BUT YOU HAD DRINKS WITH ME! WHAT DO YOU MEAN I CAN'T SLEEP WITH YOU? Because dudes are the WORST. And I just love how Dean doesn't do that - it's obvious that he's a bit sad to see her go, but not even in a disappointed because-no-sex way, more just like a "well, that's the end of a surprisingly nice evening" type of way. And then he asks her if she's going to be okay [getting home] and he accepts her answer that yes she will be... instead of insisting that he walk her, and then her having to come up with an excuse to ditch him so that he doesn't see where she lives, in case he's a creepy stalker. (Which again, I have had to do.) Anyway, dudes are the worst, and I'm glad Dean isn't. And for the record, if I had spent the night having a good chat with DEAN, well, I don't think I'd go home alone if I could help it, so Tina is indeed a woman of great will power.

Sam: "His landlord said [...] and that his bathroom was, quote, like staring into the devil's butt."
Dean: "That's vivid."
Sam: "And accurate. I saw it."
Dean: "You saw the john, or ah-"
Sam: "Don't."

- I'm with Sam on this one. Don't. Because thanks to S7, I can't help but see Sam being raped by Lucifer as canon, so... not a good joke to make. That being said, it is true, that of all people on the planet, Sam would know. :P (she says, making a joke that she just told someone else not to make, because she is a hypocrite.)

I love Dean seeing Hansel follow Tina out and his "Sammy, I think I got something."

And then Dean is SMALL AGAIN!

Dean: "Seriously?" *looks at clothes* "Seriously!?"
- Yeah, waking up in clothes that you weren't wearing when you were last awake is HELLA DISCONCERTING. (For the record, the only time this has happened to me it was because I was so drunk that I blacked out and couldn't remember changing into my pjs - but all evidence pointed to the fact that I did it myself... and also, I had gotten drunk with family, so even if they had helped, it would have been embarassing, but not creepy.)

Tina: "This is crazy. How are you so calm?"
Dean: "Practice."

- I love Dean. Also, I love Outsider POVs.

And Sam gets there just a little too late...

I love the camera angle when Dean takes the cover off the cake. Oh hey, this is Serge's directorial episode. No wonder there are cool angles in it!

Sam: "Hey buddy, where'd you get that?"
Bartender: "My barmitzvah. It was a magical night."
Sam: "Yeah, I bet" *slams guy's head on the bar* "Why don't you try that again."

- I love Sam when he's super super pissed.

I love how Dylan Everett is twenty or something ridiculous - but he's so tiny looking.

Tina: "You know, before I thought you were just another drunk."
Dean: "I prefer functional alcoholic."
Tina: "Seriously, who- what are you?"
Dean: "That is a long-ass story."

- Firstly, whether it's a joke or not, I like the fact that Dean acknowledges that he has alcoholic tendencies. I'm divided on whether Dean is actually an alcoholic or not... but, that's just me... and probably fans could argue about this until the cows come home.
-Secondly, I love that Tina starts with "who" and amends it to "what" - again, this is my love for ascending Winchesters - for Winchesters that become legends, become "other" through the course of their actions in life.
- Thirdly, once again, I just love the Outsider POV in this episode, even if it's a relatively simple one.

And Sam finds Dean's shoes and gun... covered in pollen... which miraculously doesn't make him sneeze.

And Dean makes his escape, thanks to Tina.

Sam: "Yeah?"
Dean: "Heya, Sammy."
Sam: "Dean?"

-I LOVE Sam answering the door to find young Dean. I love that he doesn't recognize him and his curt "yeah?"
- I also love that it just takes Dean saying something Dean-like that causes Sam to be like "holy shoot, this little dude who looks like my brother is TOTALLY MY BROTHER!"

Sam: "Wh-wha- wait a second, yer-a"
Dean: "Uh huh."
Sam: "How?!"
Sam: "Why would someone turn you into-"
Dean: "Don't know. Don't care. Hey, we got any grenades?"

- I just love that Dean's just business-Dean, regardless of what body he's in.

Lady: "Your son is so polite!"
Sam: "Thanks."

- Heheheh, it's the little jokes that are the best ones.
- I also think though, that this is a HUGE mind-trip for Sam, more so than it would be for Dean if Sam were the one deaged - simply because Dean has never been SMALL or YOUNG to Sam. Dean has always been old, ALWAYS, because when you're a kid, older kids are still old - even when they're kids. My older brother, who is 5 years older than me (or roughly 4.6 years older than me) has ALWAYS been an adult in my head, even as kids, he was a kid-adult. Whereas my little sister, I mean, I know she's in her late 20s, but I'm surprised every time that I see her that she's not still 16. I'm sure we'll be in our 80s one day and I'll be like "when'd you get old? Weren't you a teenager two days ago?"

*Dean adjusts seat*
Sam: "Okay, okay, hey hey, wai- uh, maybe I should drive? Yeah?"
Dean: "yeah."

- I love the fact that Sam was just getting in the passenger side anyway up until this point - like, it didn't occur to him before Dean adjusted the seat that there might be something wrong with a 14 year-old driving. Again, it's just my point that your older siblings are ALWAYS your older siblings.
- Really though, I love the fact that they call attention to the fact that the four-door Impala has a BENCH FRONT SEAT! It's one of my pet-peeves that a lot of fanart/fic describes two separate seats in the front - so, yeah, I just like everything that draws attention to the fact that you CAN'T adjust the seats independently of each other. Sam can't put his seat back and sleep while Dean is driving - he can ONLY curl up into a ball and rest his head on the window, because Dean needs the backrest to drive. Likewise, if they have been driving and Sam's asleep and Dean pulls over, Dean can't suddenly put the seat back so that he can sleep too - because that will totally wake Sam up as he falls suddenly after having his backrest removed. So, Dean either has to also curl up into a ball and rest on the window, or he's gotta jump in the back.. OR, he's gotta wake Sam up and rearrange both of them. Blah blah blah, I'm rambling at this point.

I wonder where that tunnel is that they drive through... I wonder if that's footage they took when they sent a small crew to the Okanagan for driving shots... which, for the record, I think is a really cool thing for them to have done. The Okanagan is technically a desert, so you get much different foliage out there than in this temperate rainforest that the show and I currently call home.

Sam: "Why would they give you cake?"
Dean: "I don't know. It wasn't even good cake. Too dry."

- I love Dean and his cake connoisseur-yness.

Dean: "What?"
Sam: "Nothing... okay, not nothing. This is bizarre! Even for us, this is insane! Dean, you're like- you're like- fourteen?! How does it even feel?"
Dean: "Well, I'm me. I'm old me, but I'm a kid. It's freaking weird, dude. And..."
Sam: "What?"
Dean: "There was a Tailor Swift song on the bus that I hopped to get to the motel and I uh- I liked it, Sam. I liked it a lot."
Sam: "Okay."

- I love Sam's face - like... no, this is indeed the most disturbing thing that Dean has ever said to me.
- That being said, I like how Sam is actively curious about what being fourteen feels like for someone who has the experience of an adult.

Dean: "And my voice is weird and I've got like nine zits, and I've got zero control over this - I mean it's up, it's down, it's up for no reason-"
Sam: "That's enough! Yeah, thanks. That's called puberty."
Dean: "Yeah, which sucks, again!"

- I think Dean knows what puberty is called. Sam - He's been through it, he watched you go through it, he briefly had a son who was about to go through it..
- But I love that Dean is so matter of fact and unembarassed about it. Like, he's just ANNOYED. Because he DOES know exactly what it is. I mean, I'd be super annoyed if I had to go through puberty again too... girls have their own issues, though not quite as visible to others as random boners are, poor dudes.

Sam: "I checked out the alley where you got jumped and found yarrow."
Dean: "Which means?"
Sam: "It means we're probably dealing with a witch. Yarrow is a flower. They use it for..."

- It really annoys me that Sam tells Dean what yarrow is. Mainly, because yarrow is FREQUENTLY the shows go-to for "there is a spell here" also, because I'm pretty sure that it was Dean in Crossroad Blues who looked around an intersection and was like "man, someone has planted yarrow - there are SPELLS AFOOT AT THIS CROSSROADS!" Or you know, words to that effect. Both brothers know what yarrow is.

Sam: "So, we'll get you turned back, then light Sabrina's ass up!"
Dean: ...
Sam: "Right?"
Dean: "Uh, yeah about that - turns out this whole freak show has an upside. The Mark's gone."
Sam: "How?"
Dean: "Well, I figure if the hoodoo shoved me back into the body I had when I was 14.."
Sam: "You didn't have the Mark then?"
Dean: "And if we reverse the spell..."
Sam: "Then it's going to come back."
Dean: "That's what I'm thinking, so... maybe we don't."
Sam: "Wait a second, are you saying you want to stay like this?!"
Dean: "No, no - but if it's between being a psycho-rage monster slash borderline demon or a teenager-"
Sam: "Really?"

- So, this is the other thing that annoys me about this episode - if this really was problem solved, why didn't Sam just get Rowena to do an aging spell on Dean, instead of having her remove the Mark with a super complicated spell? I mean, was Sam just trying to have Dean as he was? I guess Sam didn't find out about the consequences of removing the Mark until Dean called him out after meeting with Death, and by then it was too late to change the plan... but, well, you gotta wonder, after being handed a solution in this episode, why Sam ignored it. Maybe it WAS simply that Sam didn't see it as a viable alternative, because he wanted to preserve Dean's age/physical form.
- I also wonder about how viable this solution is though - if Dean doesn't have the mark because he didn't have it at 14, does that mean that his 14 year-old body is now his to do with as he pleases - an alternate timeline for the body? Or, is there only one body, and alterations will show up on it as he reaches the ages where they occurred. When he reaches however the heck old he is in S9, will the Mark just show up again? Or, would he be free to avoid ever getting it again? (Which would bring up the problem of how the heck they would have defeated Cain, when he goes on his crazy murder spree in a couple of episodes - they'd have been screwed, because only the MoC can kill Cain - as far as we know - and Dean and Sam are both on his hit list.)
- Anyway, I guess Sam just wanted a BETTER solution and figured there was one in the coded book - and he didn't foresee the Stynes attacking, or not falling for his "I burnt the book!" ploy, and he didn't get enough warning about the Darkness to make a decision one way or the other about whether following through with the spell was a good idea - though, we'll talk about that when we get there, because I think it's clear that Sam didn't give a damn. Still though, deaging Dean seems like a better solution.

Dean: "Some good news though - virgin liver! So, what do you say, when we're done doing our hero thing, we take her for a test drive?"
Sam: "Yeah, sure, I mean, you can drink again in what, like seven years?"
Dean: "That's not funny."
Sam: "That's kinda funny - come on, dude, that's kinda funny."

- Hehehe. I'm sure Dean was drinking by the time he was 14, and that Sam would be cool with it - but I love the brotherly joking here.
- Also, I know "take her for a test drive" is practically a phrase - but it tickles me that Dean would refer to any part of his body as "her."

Dean: "Alright, let's go."
Sam: "Dean, I'm way to big to fit in that."
Dean: "First time you've ever had to say that, huh?"
Sam: "Big talk coming from the dude wearing underoos"
Dean: "Okay, good one."

- Heheheh

And then Hansel plays them.

Then we get some witch backstory while Dean stalls for time - and we find out that she's sent by the Grand Coven to get rid of Rowena.

I love how Dean's RELUCTANT to get the cure, because he knows that was his shot without the Mark.

Also, I know he shoves the hex bag into her mouth to keep her from yelling spells, but I wish they'd have choreographed the fight a little differently to SHOW that, and to also make it clearer that it was his only option - because otherwise, it's just more like he didn't even think of Tina. Which, could ALSO be the case, Dean IS a psycho-rage monster who survives on murder, currently, so it could very well be that in every fight he gets into, all other things fall to the side and there is only "how efficiently can I kill this person?"

Sam: "We may be able to reverse it if we knew the spell though."
Tina: "Or maybe you don't."
Sam: "Come again?"
Tina: "I've got three ex-husbands, fifty grand in debt, and not much else. I was kinda of a crappy adult. Maybe I'll do better this time 'around. Get out of town, get a fresh start. This is my second chance! Everybody wants a second chance, right?"
Dean: "Sure you're going to be alright?"
Tina: "Like I told you, I always am."

- So, yes, Dean DOES really want a second chance, that much is obvious.
- But, I love how Tina, like Dean, sees this as an opportunity for a do-over. She's basically been granted another life. She'll live to be 134, even if no one else knows it. It IS a fountain of youth, even if it's just a one time deal and it happened at mid-life instead of old-age.
- Really, though, what strikes me is that Sam doesn't understand the appeal - not really - his "come again?" just seems so confused. So, either Sam had such a crappy childhood that he hates the thought of being young ON ITS OWN, or Sam is so satisfied with his current life that he couldn't fathom wanting to be anywhere or anyone else - he doesn't NEED a do-over. Personally, I think both scenarios are a little far-fetched... probably, Sam was just thinking that Tina had to have something in her life that she didn't want to leave - friends, a job, family... that's far more plausible, and he just didn't realize that she was all alone in the world, and that starting again was a good way to not have to pay back 50k in debt. I've got too many friends and family to start over again, but damn, I wish that I had a way to shirk my debt. :P

Sam: "Alright, here ya go, that's all the cash we got."
Tina: "Thanks for everything."

- So, I know there were a few people (myself probably included) wondering why they didn't give her MORE - like, one of their fake credit cards, or something - but, I realized that if she's starting over, it's probably not good to do so while commiting credit-card fraud. If she's 14, it's probably safest for her to travel to wherever she wants to start over and then get all her paperwork in order and put herself into the system until she's 18 and legally allowed to venture out on her own. I'm not sure what her cover story will be, since she's not going to be in the system anywhere or have a birth certificate, but I'm sure they probably brainstormed SOMETHING on the drive to the bus station.

Sam: "Is it back?"
*Dean shows him the MoC*
Dean: "Look, I know what you're going to say, alright - but you were in deep and-"
Sam: "I know, I know, you saved me, and you saved Tina, and you pulled a Dean Winchester - thank you."
Dean: "Anytime."

- Once again, I'm just going to point out that Sam THANKS DEAN HERE. Just because I get really tired of people complaining that *othercharacter* is ungrateful for *mostbelovedcharacter* and poor *mostbelovedcharacter* is so hard done by when it comes to getting decent respect for everything they sacrifice for *othercharacter* - so, yeah, once again, Sam here is making a point to thank Dean.

Sam: "Look man, do I wish the Mark was gone? Yes, of course, absolutely I do, but I wanted you back - and now here you are and you didn't hulk out, so I'll take the win. As for the rest of it, the Mark, everything else - we'll figure it out. We always do."
Dean: "Damn right, let's get out of here."

- And yeah, maybe it's just that Sam really didn't see an aging spell as an alternative, because he doesn't want to live in a world where Dean doesn't look like adult Dean. And yeah, I guess I already went over the reasons why Sam didn't revisit this solution - in that he didn't realize that HIS solution was a horrible one until it was too late to change it - and yeah... that's pretty much Sam's MO right there. Poor dude.

Shake It Off!
- I know Jensen REALLY didn't want to do that scene with Dean willingly playing Taylor Swift, but I agre with Serge - and I think it's an awesome way to end the episode. And I agree with all the meta I've seen out there on it too - how it's a hugely optimistic ending, not just because it's an optimistic song, but because it's Dean basically declaring that he's not beholden to his past, or ideas of who he should be - and it's very much spitting in the face of the toxic hypermasculinity that usually causes Dean all the damage that has been done unto him. So, yeah, it's awesome.

Yay! Okay, new episode of SPN this Wednesday, so I'll have a Quick Reaction up then. Otherwise, next rewatch will probably be next weekend. I had been hoping to get further ahead than I am, but *shrug*.
Tags: rewatch s10

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