Two great episodes: one gave me a hell of a time with the timeline and the other gave me a hell of a time with my HEART.
Death Takes a Holiday
This episode really fucks with the timeline (pardon my language), but MAN...it's the first time since I started the timeline that I've actually said, "NOooooooooooooooooooo...." because, my friends, apparently it is December in this episode. Yes, that's right...December, only a month after the whole Anna thing that was EPISODES ago. It doesn't make any sense, but there you have it. Stupid show...if they had just said "equinox" instead of "solstice" things would make a lot more sense.
Anyway, let's talk about the actual episode and not my dorky pursuits...
The cool thing about watching this episode again is that you already know that Sam isn't actually talking to Bobby. So, let's see what Sam says to Castiel: "No no no, you're right. It's definitely weird....Thanks Bobby." -Haha, I can't help picturing Castiel doing an impersonation of Bobby and saying the word weird...hilarious.
Then we get right back to the role-reversal I was talking about in my post about Sex & Violence. Because Sam gets off the phone, fills Dean in, Dean takes the first bite of his burger, and then Sam stands up and says: "Ok, get that to go" and starts walking off.
Wow, you know, if anyone ordered me around like that while I was trying to eat, I'd cut them a new one....or at least glare at them. Sam is not only filling Dean's role, he's moving on up to John's...and dude, Dean just got rid of John (not that he wanted to be rid of him, but still).
Sam: "If he was the last person to die around here, he may have seen something. We should talk to him."
Dean: "I love how matter-of-fact you are about that. Strange lives."
-This is also a role-reveral. It brings to mind the S1 conversation in Route 666, when Dean says, "So this killer-truck..." and Sam interrupts him and says, "I miss conversations that didn't start with 'this killer-truck'" - this time it's Dean, who always seemed to relish the fact that their lives were weird, commenting on how strange it is that their lives are so weird.
Then we launch into the best example of this of all:
Sam: "I don't want to die either, Dean, but there's a natural order..."
Dean: "You're kidding, right? You don't see the irony in that? I mean, you and me we're like the poster boys of the unnatural. All we do is ditch death."
Sam: "Yeah, but the normal rules don't really apply to us, do they?"
Dean: "We're no different than anybody else."
Sam: "I'm infected with demon blood. You've been to hell. Look, I know you want to think of yourself as Joe the plumber, Dean, but you're not - neither am I. The sooner you accept that, the better off you're going to be."
-It used to be Sam who wanted to be normal, and now, we see Dean's version of wanting to be normal...he fully accepted that he lives in an underground society of Hunters, sure, but despite that, he's not willing to admit that both he and Sam have surpassed what anyone could define as normal...even for Hunters. Sure, there's an element of anti-freak to it that we've always seen from Dean, but it still fits the role-reversal theme - it's Sam who is completely accepting of not being normal and encouraging Dean to do the same.
Now, of course, whether or not Sam should be thinking that the normal rules don't apply to him is another matter altogether.
I found this amazingly adorable:
Dean: "I think I have a concussion."
Sam: "You want some aspirin?"
Dean: "No thanks, House."
Then we learn that Sam is a horrible liar! Haha. Really Sam...you are a horrible horrible liar.
Dean: "Sam, do me a favour: You gonna keep your little secrets, I can't really stop you, but just don't treat me like an idiot, ok?"
-See, Sam, only complete idiots would ever fall for your lies...you really need to work on that, or maybe tell the truth, you know, whichever.
I like that "Bobby" called again and said that Sam was right and then quoted an archaic version of Revelations...ah Castiel found a goldmine in impersonating Bobby, because the boys never question how Bobby knows things. In my book, this also counts as Castiel-Sam interaction.
Of course, this is where the stupid "Solstice" thing comes in and fucks with the timeline (pardon my language). Sigh.
Dean: "If ghosts are the only ones that can see them, then we become ghosts."
Sam: "You *do* have a concussion."
Dean: "Sounds crazy, I know."
Sam: "It *is* crazy. How?"
-I love Dean's innocent shrug.
Dean is Chachi...which makes Sam Joanie...and I have no idea what that means.
Pamela: "...how you gonna save it?"
Dean: "With style and class."
Oh course, then we get the brillance which is:
*Dean puts his arm through Sam's chest*
Dean: *smiles then notices Sam's expression, "Am I making ou uncomfortable?"
Sam: "Get out of me."
Dean: "Such a prude."
Dean: "From the hospital, after the accident."
Sam: "The accident with Dad?"
-Dude, how man accidents are the Winchesters in every year?
Then Sam lies to the kid...at least this time he looks like he really doesn't like lying. You know, on this CU shot, you really notice how much Jared's face has broadened out since the first season...he's one handsome fellow.
When Dean is talking to Tessa about how he felt...well, he basically admits that after his Dad died, and especially after Sam died, he wished that he had died in that accident instead...actually, he repeats it later, I'll talk about it then.
Dean sees his ressurrection as a chance at redemption, and Tessa sees it as obligation...maybe I'll write more on this later too.
The kid doesn't get the Karate Kid reference and both Sam and Dean are SHOCKED AND APPALLED AT TODAY'S YOUTH!
I love how neither Sam nor Dean want to hit a kid, even the ghost of one. It's sort of funny, because they hit kid ghosts all the time I'm sure when they're hunting.
Alastair's sycth is on loan from one of the horsemen...Death, I guess. I think that's the one that rides the pale horse (or doesn't, as the case may be).
Dean: "You made an exception for me."
Castiel: "You're different."
-Again, someone telling Dean that he's different.
Dean: "But trust me, staying here is a whole lot worse than anything over there."
Dean: "Because one day your family will be gone and there'll be nothing left here for you."
-I think this offers a great insight into what was going through Dean's mind when he made that deal for Sam. He knew what it was like to survive something that should have killed him (he's done it twice now), so he knew that at the time he didn't want to die - not because he was afraid of death, but because he didn't want to leave his family - but then when his family were all dead, what the heck did he have to stick around for? He might as well just die, and if he was going to die anyway, he might as well use his life to resurrect Sam.
I find it interesting that Tessa tells Dean to look after himself. Not because it is offering a hint that things are not what they seem...but because I think it shows that Tessa actually CARES about what happens to Dean, maybe not DEEPLY, but a little. I find the allies of the Winchesters in the Supernatural world to be very interesting...so far, we really only have the Trickster and Tessa (Ruby doesn't count for obvious reasons), both of them play by their own rules, still uphold to their 'place' or their 'job', but both have expressed differing forms of both concern and affection for the Winchesters - despite the fact that the Winchesters have tried to kill them in the past (or at least said very nasty things).
I also like the fact that Tessa tells Dean that he's lying to himself. She doesn't say that he's wrong...he's LYING. Deep down, he DOES know that something awful his waiting for him...and it's kind of sad that Dean wants to believe that he was resurrected because someone thought he deserved it, and that was just ripped out from underneath him...but then again, this is the season of secrets and lies.
On The Head of a Pin
It's my favorite Cas superpower! Turning off car alarms! :-)
The boys are upset about Pamela dying. They apparently just came from her funeral. Sort of odd that they'd still be in Wyoming, given that Pam lived somewhere in or around Illinois...but maybe it was a Hunter's funeral and they just burned her themselves. Now there's a fic waiting to happen.
Dean: "Like I said, I'm just getting tired..."
Sam: "Well get angry!"
-Ah Sam...you really need to let go of your anger. This is the same problem Sam had with his father in S1, he could just never forgive him for anything and he let it come between him and Dean. Now, of course, he has way more reason to be angry at Lilith, but once again, he's letting his anger at someone else come between him and his brother.
Dean's their most qualified interrogator...and I am not ashamed to admit that Interragator!Dean is friggin HOT! I've always been attracted to the cold-blooded "we have ways of making you talk" kind of person....so, yeah, this was the episode for me. Maybe there's something wrong with me, but I don't friggin' care.
Uriel: "Who said anything about asking?"
*flutter of wings and Dean and the angels are gone*
Sam: "DAMN IT!"
-I absolutely love Sam's "damn it" - it's so much like Dean's "son of a bitch!" at the end of BDABR in S3.
Dean: "You guys don't walk enough. You're going to get flabby."
*Castiel states at him*
Dean: "I'm starting to think Junkless has a better sense of humour than you."
Castiel: "Uriel's the funniest angel in the garrison. Ask anybody."
-Hahah, oh Cas, I think you are selling yourself short.
We find out that Castiel is getting too close to Dean...and that emotions lead to doubt. Sucks to be Castiel, he's not allowed to have human friends!
Castiel: "I would give anything not to have you do this."
-I think that line really does show how much Castiel has come to care for Dean...and I also think that's why Dean does it.
I absolutely love the angles we get on Dean's face in this episode. Crazy kudos to the director, Mike Rohl. Really well done, dude.
Oh hey, just noticed that this is a Ben Edlund episode...funny, I always associate him with the absolutely hilariously crazy ones, but apparently he is quite good at heart-ripping-out-serious.
Sam: "He can't do it...he can't get the job done. Something happened to him downstairs...he's not strong enough."
-Here is the crux of the matter for Sam. He sees the changes in Dean since Hell and he doesn't know what they mean, he sees the PTSD and thinks that Dean is too vulnerable and needs Sam's constant protection...and maybe a little bit of that is true, but not to the extent Sam thinks. After watching this episode and catching a few things I missed the first time, I'm thinking that part of the problem is that Dean is holding back a bit because he is afraid of himself. He's seen what he became in hell and he doesn't want to be that person again.
We find out that John was in hell for "close to a century", and then Alastair rounds up to 100 years...fits in with my timeline, so I'm happy.
Alastair really knows his stuff, because he's able to torture Dean even though Dean is the one with the razor blades. He knows exactly where to push at Dean - playing to side of Dean that has always felt like a failure and a disappointment to his father. These feelings aren't new since Hell. Dean has ALWAYS felt that way, and I think that's the mastery of Alastairs torture...finding the most deep-seeded fears and picking at them.
I love Ruby's smile while Sam is drinking her blood. That was the moment I became a fan of Genevieve's and it's also the point that I realized that Ruby was evil....all because of that smile. It was done so well.
Alastair: "I carved you into a new animal Dean. There is no going back."
-Wow, this is a great mirror to what Sam says in the Lucifer Rising at the end of the season about himself. Has anyone written meta on this? Again - it's laying out the problems between the brothers. Because of Dean's death, they are BOTH someone knew - not better or worse, just different...the problem is that they are relating to one another as if the other person hasn't changed at all - and I think anyone who has been in any long-term relationship (romantic, familial, or other) knows what a mistake that is.
Anna: "Stop him, Cas, before you ruin the only real weapon you have!"
- There's a great debate here about what the angels know and what they don't know. Cas swears at the end that he doesn't know what it means that Dean has to stop Lucifer, but we don't know how much or how little Anna knows. In any case, I think she's calling it well here, because whatever they need Dean for - they need him to do as they say, and forcing him to torture, making him do things he doesn't like, well, that's just alienating him from them.
Castiel and Anna so had a thing back when she was his superior...naughty angels.
Jensen's performance when Dean discovers that he was the first seal is beautifully done. I love the fact that he breaks minutely while facing Alastair, but keeps it together, though you can tell that the face is a facade...and then he turns and BAM, devastation...and the best part is the way he closes his eyes just after Alastair says, "...(when the apocalypse comes)...we'll owe it all to you, Dean Winchester." And let me just say how much I love that line, it is cruel beyond compare...because that's his NAME connected directly with the APOCALYPSE. Man, heartbreaking and horrible, and so well done.
I like the fact that they actually show the exact moment that Dean passes out...and that it's right before Cas gets his ass handed to him by Alastair. Dean knows Cas game in and saved him, but he doesn't actually see the ensuing fight.
I'll be posting another chapter of my epic later on tonight, for those of you readers who have me on your flists.