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

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What Is And What Should Never Be

I just watched What Is And What Should Never Be (2x20) again for timelining reasons.

I only popped it in because I realized I didn't have John and Mary's birthdates on my timeline, and I realized that I could easily get Mary's birthdate by combining the grave stone in Children Shouldn't Play With Dead Things (2x04) with the date in WIAWSNB. Also, WIAWSNB has a gravestone for John. So, now my timeline is all nicely edited and correct.

Then I was surprised...

I've seen this episode at least three times, five if you include watching it with commentary...and I still managed to see something I had never noticed before: Jared is phenomenal.

It's easy to focus on Jensen's performance in this one. It's a Dean-POV episode, it centres all around Dean's psychology, Dean gives an emotional speech and cries, etc...and I'm not taking away from that. Jensen does a great job, but throughout the episode Jensen is playing DEAN. The same Dean he always is - the Dean who has sacrificed his whole life, has lost his father, misses his mother, loves Sammy.

Meanwhile, Jared is playing a version of Sam that has never hunted, grew up with a family and a home, is studying to be a lawyer, is engaged to the love of his life, wears dorky clothes, and doesn't get along with or have much respect for his older brother. This isn't our regular brooding, messed up Sammy. This isn't Sammy at all...and yet, Jared magically plays him in a way where he's still Sam somehow, where the Sam we do know is still a visible possibility under this stranger.

I've said it a couple of places, (and you are free to disagree with me), but a lot of the time I actually think Sam is the more difficult part to play between the two brothers. You have to be so subtle with Sam. (Alright, I just get kind of tired of everyone going on about Jensen like he's the God of Acting and completely overlooking how great Jared is). I think this episode is a good example of Jared actually having less screen time, but a more difficult acting challenge. In the commentary, Kripke talks about how both boys came up to him independently and told him how difficult it was to play the brothers as though they didn't have the strong bond that they usually do. Still, at least Jensen was playing a Dean that KNEW about the bond. Jared was playing a Sam who thought his brother was an no-good alcoholic.

Anyway, such a good episode.

Also, I noticed that both Wish!verse-Mary and Wish!verse-Sam tell Dean to "get some rest" at one point.  It's a nice repetition that I missed before, but adds a nice little to the "something is not right" vibe.
Tags: season 2
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