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Rewatch S11: Plush (11x07)

I've got, like, 2 hours to do this - so, let's see if it happens!

Donna episode!! Let's go...

Plush

Then - oh man, I forgot that Sam's clown fear comes back into play in this episode.

Now...

Are Eric Charmelo and Nicole Snyder still on the writing staff? I remember liking this episode. So, hopefully?

CREEPY BUNNY HEAD!

CREEPY BUNNY MURDER!

Sam: "...I gotta be honest - the visions aren't making a lot of sense to me. Truth is, I don't know what's what. Please, what are you trying to say?"
Dean: "Really, I mean, really?"
Sam: "Ever hear of privacy?!"
Dean: "You want privacy close your door."

- I mean, really, Sam should just be whispering - there's no reason, given an omni-everything God, that you have to speak aloud when you pray to him.
- Also, it must be super weird living in a vast bunker and yet STILL your older brother walks by your open door just at the moment you don't want him to.

Dean: "I thought we talked about this!"
Sam: "Yeah, we did, Dean, but why is it so hard to believe that God might be sending me visions about the Darkness."
Dean: "Are you kidding? He didn't feel the need to show up to the apocalypse, why would he give a crap now?!"
Sam: "I don't know, maybe it's because she's his sister! What do you want to do? Sit back? Ignore them? Do nothing?"
Dean: "No, that's not what I'm saying."

- I love this argument, mainly because they're both right. Dean doesn't have any faith in God, never has, and he's got evidence to back that up - given that apocalyptic crap has gone down before and God was a no-show (to Dean's knowledge... you'll notice he doesn't say anything here about Cas' resurrections or how they ended up on the plane when Lucifer rose)
- Meanwhile, Sam is having visions - and the fact that Dean doesn't believe their visions from God doesn't change the fact that they're visions... and it's much more comforting to believe their from God - and so, of course my favourite optimist is going to run with that idea.
- I also love this argument because it's an disagreement, not a fight...they aren't mad at each other, they're slightly annoyed, perhaps, but it's only because the other person isn't agreeing with them, rather than because the other person did something horrible for which they must grovel for forgiveness.

Dean: "I'm saying don't count on God, count on us."
- YES! This is my favourite message that SPN always tries to get across. Whether God exists or not, it's the actions of humans that matter.

...and I just took 10 minutes to map out where Sam's room is in relation to the library/entrance. I now want to study all their other walk-n-talk scenes and see if it's consistent.

Sam: "This is everything Cas dug up in Gaza. Every last bit of pre-biblical lore. Half I couldn't read, it's in Aramaic, and the other half, nada, not a single mention of the Darkness, so..."
- Okay, so here's something that just occured to me that effects timelines - Cas can't fly anymore. So... Cas going to Gaza? He had to take an airplane. He had to take an airplane, travel by rental car/bus/foot, and collect all that stuff without popping in and out of places. So... that's... quite the trip, that would take quite the amount of time, even if everywhere he went was angel-friendly and just handed what he asked for over to him. Best case scenario, Cas has a vault of some kind in Gaza that only he or angels have access to and he could just waltz in and take what he needed - but he'd still have to take a few days for the air-travel.
- Also, Sam... you translate aramaic in the next season, so... maybe you should just work harder? Personally, I have a headcanon that Sam CAN read these languages, if only slowly and with a bit of work, because of his exposure to Lucifer. But, that's more for enochian, and I know I don't have much canon backing for it, but still.

Dean: "Well, I'll be damned." *answers phone* "Donna, what's shaking?"
Sam: "Fat-sucker Donna?"
*Dean gives Sam a look*

- I like how Jensen and Jared took a bad line and like, ACKNOWLEDGED it was a bad line. I don't know what the actual script said for Dean's reaction, but I love that what they chose was for Dean to give Sam a "that's a very rude way to refer to a lovely person" look.

Then it's off to Minnosota!

I love Donna.

Sam: "You did the right thing, for sure."
Dean: "Eh, maybe - I'm still just not 100% sure this is our kinda case, but if uh, you got a wild hare..."
*Dean smiles*
Dean: "See what I did there?"
*Donna laughs*

- I... don't... get it. Imma have to look this up...
""Wild hare" is a pun on the term "wild hair," which refers to a person who does something sudden or unexpected. It is derived from the expression "to have a wild hair up one’s ass" or various variations of the phrase."
- Wow... I did not know that term nor a varient of that expression at all.
- I do love though, that Dean purposefully is like, listening to Donna, and then also thinking 'How can I make Donna laugh?' and that's what he comes up with. It's nice to have friendly/flirty Dean back again.

Dean: "Hey, it's not our business, but it looks like somebody has a crush."
Donna: "I was born at night, Dean, not last night."
Sam: "Then what's the deal, he seems nice!"
Donna: "He is! But he's a cop, named Doug!..."

- Aw Donna...
- I mainly just like how they're all FRIENDS.

CREEPY BUNNY!

Dean: "What's up, Doc?"
[...]
Sam: "Let me guess, Rog - you were FRAMED!"
*Dean gives Sam an unimpressed look*
Sam: "What?"

- Ah ha, I love how Sam's not allowed to make bad jokes, but Dean is.

- Also, I love how they signal movement out of frame by just keeping the camera on Sam and having him react. It's super effective to instilling that "oh god! What's happening!?!" feeling, before the camera pans back.

Interviewing Kylie...

I do feel so bad for Mike, who basically gets his body hijacked.

And poor Mike is now dead. :(

Dean: "You okay?"
Donna: "No, not really. A 19 year-old kid is dead."
Sam: "That's not on you, or Doug - he was just doing his job."
Donna: "I know, but that kid was innocent - I mean, if that mask was cursed, he was just a puppet. He was a victim too."

- Yup...
- I do love how they don't let this JUST be a funny episode. That they keep the gravity of the situation.
- I also love Sam defending both Donna and Doug for their actions.

Second death time!

Oh man, I just remembered that this episode has to do with false? accusations of child molestation - I totally forgot about that and now I can't remember if it ruined the whole episode for me or what? Ah well, I guess we'll find out.

The quarterback is such a douche - no need to write out the dialogue.

Donna gets Ghosts 101.

*Donna offers a salt shaker*
Dean: "Well, that's cute, but I was thinking something more like this" *takes out shotgun*
Donna: "You said no one else was dying!"
Dean: "Salt pellets."

- Man, Dean... that's still going to hurt like a sonovabitch.

Also, it's hard for me to believe that the quarterback dude could tackle the mascot and not discover it had boobs.

Donna: "Poor thing doesn't deserve to be locked up."
Sam: "So let her go. No one saw her face."
Dean: "It was a drifter, overpowered you, escaped."
Donna: "Well there's some female empowerment for ya."

- I love this line, because it subtly points out the different standards that men and women are held to. If Dean were the sheriff, then being overpowered and having someone escape would be shitty, but it wouldn't be blamed on something he fundamentally can't change about himself, nor would it reflect badly on anyone but him. Whereas, with Donna, it would be seen as happening because she's female, and would also then reflect not only on her, but on her entire sex and/or gender.

And we find out about Chester... I love Sam's reaction to the clown photo. I love that Sam has that phobia.

I will say the boys are making at least one of my jobs easy this episode by not changing out of their suits.

CREEPY CLOWN! Seriously... how can that possibly be okay for a children's performer to wear? I mean, that's the creepiest clown costume I've ever seen.

Oh man, this elevator scene is AMAZING. Sam's facial expressions, every single micro-expression, is just perfect and wonderful.

And I'm also SO PROUD OF HIM! Because he's paralyzed with fear, yet he still attacks and disarms the clown. Like, man, if you ever wanted an example of how brave Sam is... and the whole Lucifer's cage thing wasn't enough for you.

Donna: "I told you! Copy-cat killers!"
Doug: "So, this is a copy-cat of a copy-cat?"
Donna: "Come on, Doug. It's not that hard to wrap your noggin' around, is it?"
Doug: "Whatever you say, Sheriff. I'm going to go get the woodpecker."

- Aww, poor Doug. Also, Donna needs to learn to lie better.

Sam: "Or is it that you're treating New Doug like Old Doug and not even giving him a chance?"
Donna: "You know what I think? You need to mind your own beeswax. We've got a case to solve."

- I do love that for all her bubblyness, Donna has a hard edge somewhere in there that you can come-up against.

Dean: "Killer clown. You're serious?"
Sam: "No, Dean, I'm joking. Because clowns are really funny to me
."
- I love you Sam.

Rita: "Chester was always a little off. Only got along with kids - that's why he became a party performer. I spent my whole life sticking up for my brother - but what if I couldn't see him for what he was? [...] but I should have talked to him. I just should have gone to him first...."
- So, at first, I remember being confused by this monster-parrallel, because we're so used to comparing sibling parrallel's to Sam and Dean, but in this season, we actually have a second sibling dynamic to consider. This isn't a Sam and Dean parallel, but a God+Amara parallel. Who's who? We don't know - is God Rita, who condemned his sister without talking to her first? Or is God Chester, who is about to be targetted by his sister, when she should really talk to him first? Or maybe they're both simultaneously.

Accidental death! Oops, you're murderers.

Rita: "Fear cripples you - makes you do nothing. Or worse - it makes you do something you regret."
- Awww, and here we get what sounds like a warning to Sam. Fear cripples you, and you can't act out of fear or else you'll do something you regret. Which is, actually, really good advice (most of the time - I mean, if you're in danger of being attacked in a dark alley, for goodness sake, listen to fear and run away). And, I remember thinking that this was directed at Sam, who is getting visions of the place he fears most... and telling him he had to act on those visions anyway, much like he did with the clown in the elevator. BUT... we find out that's actually poor advice for Sam, who would have done well to listen to his fear and stay the hell away from ever setting foot near the Cage or its inhabitants again.

Max attacks with the deerhead... then it's ghost fight time!

Donna: "Let's hope something less murderous brings you back to Minnosota. Like Prince! Or cheese-curd fest!"
- Awww, Prince.
Dean: "You had me at curd."
Donna: "I don't know how you two do this - day in, day out - figuring out who's possessed, who isn't. Your life's just one big poop-storm, isn't it?"
Dean: "Spoken like a true Hunter."
Donna: "Really, Hunter?"
Sam: "Oh yeah, with three cases under your belt. I think you earned it."

- I love how cute they all are.
- Though despite the cuteness, I gotta admit, this doesn't actually jive with their characters - at least, not Dean's, who tends to want everyone he ever loves and or meets to stay as far away from hunting as they can, and he is usually pretty reluctant to bestow the name of Hunter on anyone unless they've got a long history of it... not just three cases, one of which they weren't even away of.
- BUT, that being said, situationally, I can see there's little harm in telling Donna she's a Hunter. They know she's not about to leave the policeforce and that she's also unlikely to act on her own without back-up, either from them or the police force. So, I can see there being a sort of "this will make her happy, and won't actually cause harm" conversation occuring.

Donna: "...I really appreciate all your hard work and I'm sorry if I was a little tough on ya."
Doug: "You mean, treating me like a punching bag? It's okay, really. I've got baggage too, Donna, everyone does. If it makes you feel any better, you can call me by my middle name, Lonnie."
*makes grossed out face*
*both laugh*
Donna: "I think Doug will do just fine."

- Awww. I also like this because we see that Doug's not an idiot. He knows that Donna is treating him badly because he reminds her of her ex-husband. I also like it because he says that he's got baggage too - that behind the cheery Minnosota accent, Doug's also just human.

Sam: "I keep praying to God because if it IS God, and I know you think it isn't, but if it is, then he's showing me something I don't know what to do with."
Dean: "What?"
Sam: "The cage."
Dean: "Lucifer's cage?"
Sam: "Yeah, what if he's saying I have to go back - what if he's saying that's where the answer is to beating the Darkness."
Dean: "Sam, no, no. I don't know if these visions are coming from God, or PBS or what, but we've been down that road. Anything having to do with that Cage - it's suicide. You of all people know that. So, no. Just, not going to happen."
Sam: "Okay."
Dean: "Okay."

- Awww
- I love Dean's reactions in this conversation, because it's very much reminiscent of S2 or S5, when it was about Dean being freaked out about what Sam's visions might mean, and also refusing to let Sam do anything dangerous - anything self-sacrificial. And I like how after all these years, Sam doesn't come back with a hardedge of "you can't tell me what to do", he comes back with a nod and an "okay" not because he's letting Dean dictate his life, but because he PREFERS Dean's world, where Sam doesn't have to go near the cage, where Sam DOESN'T, and neither of them do anything resembling suicide.

Of course, this doesn't last long, because it's hard to ignore visions, especially when they're being sent by someone who knows exactly how to manipulate you.

Solid MOTW episode, good time was had by all. References to alledged child-molestation did not affect my enjoyment, as they were unconfirmed, so I can just pretend that they didn't happen and Chester was innocent until he was murdered...and only then became a murderer.

AND I FINISHED IN TIME! It's probably short, but that's because I didn't talk about the plot much.

Comments

( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
borgmama1of5
Nov. 8th, 2016 06:25 am (UTC)
My main takeaway with this episode was the foreshadowing to Sam and fear guiding choices...I saw Rita's words as giving Sam a nudge toward taking action even though he was afraid, and those words were indeed steering him in the wrong direction.

I was taken with Rita's performance, her questioning herself about her loyalty to her brother...and then (just like a Winchester) rather than have a hard discussion with her brother, she goes for a shortcut to ease her mind. She so clearly made a mistake in hiding from confronting her brother, and yet it was understandable as a human reaction.

One part I didn't like was when Donna made a big deal out of not needing Doug's help to get the rabbit-head guy out of the wheelchair ("I do crossfit") and then instead of saying she needs help after all, she jumps on Doug for not helping. Something about that just rubbed me the wrong way...
hells_half_acre
Nov. 9th, 2016 07:29 am (UTC)
Agreed agreed - I think a lot of the run-up to the mid-season finale was about leading the audience into Sam's mindset. Basically nudging us in the direction that everything is pointing towards Sam's hunches about the visions being correct. That way, when they prove false, we're, at least partially, as shocked as Sam.

I also didn't like that part with Donna and Doug and the rabbit-head guy. You'd have noticed that I didn't really comment on it at all. Mostly, that was because I couldn't put my finger on why I didn't like it, and also because I was legit in a rush on this one (which I admit might have effected how deep I was willing to go into analysis)...

...but thinking about it more, I think it's because it plays into some sexist tropes about women, particularly feminists. While I know the writer meant it as another example of how Donna was giving Doug a particularly hard time - it also played into the anti-feminist rhetoric that men have where they believe that "there's just no pleasing a woman" or "damned if you do damned if you don't" or that women "want to have their cake and eat it too." That sort of thing where feminists are accused of wanting to be treated like an equal, but then get mad when men aren't "chivalrous".

I think that's why that scene didn't work for me, anyway.
supernutjapan
Nov. 8th, 2016 01:43 pm (UTC)
I enjoyed reading!!<3

hells_half_acre
Nov. 9th, 2016 07:32 am (UTC)
Yay! I'm glad!
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )