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This is my first international ‘Ramble.’ I'm writing this from a hotel in Sydney, Australia while here working on a training session. Copious amounts of gratitude showered upon lovinjacksonfor not only traveling up from Melbourne to hang out with me for one day but also bringing a copy of this episode with her for us to enjoy together. I’m posting this earlier than I anticipated, but apparently a wicked time change + insomnia = Ramble On.

While there have been better episodes – and worse episodes – I most certainly enjoyed this one. I have been well and truly entertained throughout this entire season, to be honest. Obviously, you all have seen this and have discussed it amongst yourselves, so this will be old news to many of you, but even so, I bring you my one-time-viewed, on-the-road recap/review. This “Ramblette” isn’t as detailed as I usually provide but I hope you enjoy and look forward to your thoughts.


When I was in high school, at the after-ballgame dances, there were three songs that could get every kid on the floor to ‘dance’ (even those of us who were sadly born sans rhythm): Steve Miller Band’s “The Joker,” Kenny Roger’s “The Gambler,” and AC/DC’s “Shook Me All Night Long.”

Now, however, “Shook Me All Night Long” will forever hold a different memory for me. *sighs happily* I have some specific story reactions and plot observations, but right now, from this tired mind, this episode will be The One With Shirtless Dean, and as I reflect back on the season…I’m pretty okay with that.

The THEN pretty much (IMO) gave away the whole “what lesson did we learn today, kids” ending of this episode when they brought up the Amy situation. And I have some thoughts about that when we get to the end. The thing I found the most interesting, though, is how much they focused on Bobby’s demise in the THEN. Our musings that the Mystery of the Disappearing Beer last episode could possibly be Bobby’s spirit watching out for the boys was, for me, all-but solidified with the way they set up this episode, reminding us that Bobby had to make a choice to ‘stay or go.’ I think they’re telling us that Bobby’s spirit stuck around to watch out for the boys – tied perhaps to his flask that Dean can’t bear to part with.

Works for me – Mary’s spirit stuck with the house, right? And I like the idea of the boys having that “crazy, drunk genius” watching out for them. Plus, since we found out from Sam during an argument that they cremated Bobby’s remains, I feel oddly reassured that if they have to “deal” with his spirit down the road it could be done so in a peaceful way (like John going to the light, or the spirit in “Roadkill,” for example).

The opening of the episode set up the MotW aspect with a decent level of gore. A man (who looked like he could have been James VanDerbeek’s stunt double) hanging out in his modern, nicely-appointed living room, working on his laptop. He hears a sound, thinks it’s his wife or something equally as innocuous and unthreatening, but this is Supernatural ya’ll. Every sound is threatening.

In a rather gore-filled, blood-cast-off attack, the man is thrown across the room, slamming into a wall, then his hands and feet are cut off – while he’s still alive – and a symbol is carved into his chest. Yowza.

When we first see our boys, Sam’s driving and Dean’s sleeping against the door on the passenger side. In fact, I think he’s even snoring a little bit. Hee. I couldn’t figure out what they were driving – and ya’ll know how I love my cars, so if you know, I’d be obliged if you shared with the class. I don’t think it was the Skylark – mainly because they hadn’t had that in the previous episode, so I figured they would be changing up on a regular basis (else why not just bring back the Impala…*misses the Impala*).

Dean wakes, wiping his mouth with the back of his hand, and immediately pulls out a flask. I think the lessening of drinking in the last episode was more due to the fact that he was busy traveling through time than anything else. Sam gives him what should be a copyrighted Little Brother Look Of Irritation And Worry and makes a comment on the fact that Dean’s drinking from Bobby’s flask. Interesting, I thought, because when they first discovered the flask, Dean sniffed it and put it back.

Dean claims that using Bobby’s flask is “grief therapy” – which, honestly, I can totally buy. Dean drinking as a coping mechanism is hardly new. He’s been doing it since Season 2. Dean holding articles of others close to him to keep them close and helps him feel less alone is his M.O. – John’s leather jacket, Sam’s amulet, the Impala…. A flask from Bobby – yep. Works for me.

However, Sam’s worry about Dean’s drinking, his not ‘dealing’ with things as he should, or just…the state of things in general has him calling attention to Dean’s drinking and Dean’s auto-deflect mechanism has him pointing out that the hunt they’re on is a “wild goose chase.” Sam breaks it down for us – 4 guys in the last “X” days (I can’t remember) were killed just like the guy we saw at the start. Dean = *grumble, grumble, grumble* But they carry on.

They show up suited up at the morgue to check out dead guy #4 (the James VanDerbeek guy) and the M.E. comments on them working late. Dean cracks wise that the hours suck, but they have a “great benefits package” – especially the coverage for drugs. Not just generic, either, he says. Sam brings the conversation back to the body on the table in front of them and gets the 411: there was DNA at the scene and actually found on one or two bodies, but it didn’t match anything human.

As they leave, Dean concedes that it’s, “generally in the vicinity of the ballpark of our thing.” Hee.

Sam proposes the return to the hotel and break out the laptop part of the hunt, but Dean counters with a, “you do that, I’ll mingle with the locals.”

Sam: You’re going to a bar.

Dean: If you want to oversimplify it.

Sam gives him a look which I’m sure was supposed to be another one of irritated concern, but he uses it so much in this episode I started just thinking of it as more of a bitchface than anything else. However before you throw lost shoes at me, I will say I noticed something about their brotherly dynamic a bit later that had me dialing back my frown at Sam’s bitchfaciness. Which is a word I just made up.

So, as Sam goes back to spend some QT with his laptop and dig deeper into the hunt, Dean heads to a schwanky bar (they actually say the name of the bar a couple of times, but I’m sorry, I didn’t make a note of it and it’s left my brain…not a big deal, but the bar location is important because of the links for the MotW so I’m just going to call it Hunting Ground Bar) and is at a high-top table talking with a pretty girl named Lydia. The conversation is very flirtatious, and it’s obvious where things are heading. Whoever directed this episode did a fantastic job with this scene, IMO.

The basic important parts of the conversation include Dean passing himself off as an investment banker (the suit helps seal that deal) and his usual self-deprecating demeanor that just pulls us – and Lydia – in. The way he half-smiles, a high ball of whiskey hanging from loose fingers, glancing down slightly as he replies, “Yeah, look at me,” in response to Lydia’s obviously attracted, “Well, look at you,” could turn any perfectly mature, sane woman into a quivering ball of goo.

What the director did, though, was push the conversation to the background allowing us to pull out whatever we deemed important about the words they’re saying. The focus instead is on body language: the camera pulling close to  Lydia’s eyes and then her lips – showing us what Dean is seeing. Then broadening the shot before shifting close to Dean’s eyes and mouth (bottom lip rolling up against his teeth as he swallows). It’s seductive and sensuous and tells us all we need to know about how things jump from “can I buy you a drink” to “you want to take this conversation somewhere more private.”

And then the director makes another interesting choice – interspersing scenes from Dean’s first love scene in three seasons with vicious murder number five. Now, the Dean girl in me would have loved to have focused the whole shebang on the sex scene because seriously…hummina hummina. But I thought stylistically and storytelling-wise, it was effective. The only thing I’d say is that doing it this way pretty much hit us over the head with the anvil of reveal that Lydia was A Bad Guy (not that any of us thought it would be different based on, y’know, previews and Dean’s sad track record with women).

Doesn’t mean I can’t recap it though. *wicked grin*

So, the murder is pretty much the same as the first one we saw – man thrown across room, man hacked up with blood everywhere, man dead. But the pacing and timing is in line with the hard-rocking chords of “Shook Me All Night Long” and Lydia and Dean hurriedly pulling at each other’s clothes, Lydia shoving Dean hard against the French doors of her bedroom, Lydia tearing Dean’s shirt off -- *pauses for a moment to remember that lovely moment* -- and then shoving him back on the bed. She definitely drove the entire encounter.

And I have to say, it’s so rare that Dean is shirtless – when we’ve seen Sam sans shirt quite a few times over the years – I was appreciative on a basic level. It wasn’t (just) a gratuitous oh-my-god-he’s-so-hot-look-at-those-hip-dents appreciation. It was more that everything I found attractive about Dean was enhanced because de-clothed, he appeared both powerful and vulnerable at the same time. I was happy to see the anti-possession Devil’s Trap tat, but noticed when he rolled Lydia over, curving over her with his body (*pauses to bite lip*) that the hand-brand from Castiel wasn’t there. Don’t know if that was meant to insinuate that the mark ‘healed’ – or if it was a continuity ‘oops.’ I prefer for the sake of our Show to believe the former.

Lydia doesn’t let Dean to dominate the situation long. She turns him over on his back, their rhythm matching the drive of AC/DC’s song until finally she rolls away leaving Dean to look up at the ceiling, exhaling with a world-has-been-rocked, “Whoo.”

Whooo is right. *fans self*

Next day, the boys are together, suited up and heading to the newest murder scene. Sam’s giving Dean a hard time – in the traditional guys-give-guys-a-hard-time-the-morning-after way. Dean, though, does comment a bit that he’s getting too old for this, and that he feels worse than he looks, insinuating that the series of drinks + high activity + (presumably) lack of sleep caught up with him rather fast. That…and I think that Lydia’s, um, energy level, shall we say, was probably a bit more than he was used to. For good reason.

When they show up on-scene, Dean wryly comments that the nicely-appointed house had “nice décor, very early slaughterhouse.” The blood everywhere really does add a certain… je ne sais quoi. The M.E. is there as is a blonde woman who I gathered was the local detective assigned to the case. She reiterated that this victim was the same as the others – early 30’s, decent looking, very successful, no known enemies….

Sam talks to the neighbor and finds out victim #5 had a one-night fling, but they quickly rule out his potentially jealous wife as a suspect. As they talk through the facts, Dean realizes that he left Bobby’s flask at his “work-out partner’s” house. He calls her – prompting Sam to comment on Lydia giving him her number and Dean to respond, “They always give their number.” But she blows him off saying she’s really busy.

Yeah, no joke. When the camera pulls away she looks about 12 years pregnant.

Dean’s reaction to her shutting him down is obvious on his face, prompting a somewhat hilarious expression from Sam. Sometimes I wonder if Sam’s penchant for giving Dean a hard time about his bedroom companions might be a little out of envy. Not important. Just…musing.

Okay, so next thing we know, Lydia’s in a room with a bunch of other women as she gives birth. A dark-haired woman who looked a bit like Morticia Adams is telling her that the pain is an honor. Sweetie, I’ve had a baby. The pain is painful. Full stop. Lydia has a baby girl and names her Emma. Done and done.

Meanwhile, the boys are visiting a Professor Morrison – thanks to Sam’s research – to help them figure out the symbol carved on the victim’s chest. Hilariously, the Professor just so happens to be the same actor who played The Evil Mayor in Buffy and infuses this character with the same kooky vagueness that made The Mayor actually likable as a bad guy. When the boys ask the Prof if he can figure out the symbol, he answers, “Maybe. It’s possible. I could. Even likely. For suitable remuneration.”

Dean is not impressed, but Sam’s convinced this guy is their only link to figuring out the symbol. He tells the Professor that his government needs him. Prof answers that his housekeeper needs a green card. Heh.

As they walk away from the Professor’s office, Dean’s disgruntlement spills over into their conversation. He feels like they’re spinning their wheels, but it’s clear he’s thrown by having left Bobby’s flask at Lydia’s. He tries to get a hold of her again, but she isn’t calling him back. Sam’s all, “Some girl actually dumping you the next morning.” His attitude irritated me for a bit – until I realized later on in the episode that Dean was pretty much treating Sam the same as Sam was treating Dean.

They both were playing on their assumptions of each other’s habits, allowing those habits to irritate them and choosing to be grumpy about it. Sam was all over Dean’s penchant for one-night-stands and missing BIG clues that Dean was actually in danger. Dean was taking for granted Sam’s penchant for thorough research and leaning on that to get to the facts of the case (without having to do the research work himself).

Not only that -- but Sam paying attention to the things Dean's doing that are worrying him shows how much he IS worried about his brother. How much he cares about him. He's so focused on the every day things that he's scared will take Dean from him that he almost misses the right there things that almost DO take Dean from him. And he doesn't listen to what Dean is saying because his ears are full of what he thinks Dean isn't saying. I've done that before. Been so worried about someone because of what I think is wrong that miss what is actually wrong.

Anyway, Dean needs that flask, so he heads over to Lydia’s house…where he finds that she has a baby. A baby he overhears talking. And not just coo-talking. Full on, “Hey Mom, who is that guy?” talking. The WTF expression on his face was rather perfect. Sam calls him while he’s there trying to get him to hurry up and get back so they can go meet up with the M.E., but when Dean hears the baby talk, anything the M.E. could give them goes right out the window as far as he’s concerned.

So, Sam goes by himself and while there runs into the blonde detective who warns him to hurry up and get things wrapped up. She’s not liking his interference. He also finds out that there were ‘cold case’ files (thanks to the innocently chatty M.E.) about other similar cases and asks for help getting them to review. While he’s going through the files, Sam finds a link to the Hunting Ground Bar and calls Dean to fill him in on the facts. Dean is parked outside of Lydia’s house…watching.

Dean: I have been eating at the buffet of strange all afternoon.

At first Sam keeps up with the hard time, harping on Dean obsessing over Lydia. But then he listens to Dean breaking down how Lydia had been kidless the day before, and reluctantly offers backup. When Dean declines, Sam tells him about the other cases (the similarities to what Dean was dealing with are glaringly obvious) as Dean is watching a 5-ish year old little girl being led out of the house by Lydia and handed over to Morticia Adams.

Dean follows Morticia’s car to a random building, watching the woman lead the little girl inside. Next thing we know, he’s back at the motel and is pacing around, telling Sam about Lydia being kid-free when he spent the night with her. No baby, no crib, no rubber ducks (hee – rubber ducks…I love our Show). Next day she has a baby named Emma and then later that same day, a little girl named Emma is being led away from Lydia’s house? What the hell doesn’t begin to cover it for him.

Sam is so focused on getting facts about the hunt he completely misses facts about the hunt. He just gives Dean flack about what he’s saying, teasing him and being sarcastic because what Dean’s talking about is not focusing on what Sam’s been researching – which is the evidence they’ve gathered.

Dean: Are you deliberately messing with me? I know weird.

Just then, the Professor calls.

Dean: Oh, great. I bet he’ll crack this wide open.

Hee.

Back at the warehouse – or Convent of Weird – Morticia Adams is making the now 10ish-looking little girls eat something saying they have to “consume their kill” as a symbol of their unity and a tribute to the one who created them. Emma has to be ‘encouraged’ to eat her piece. Blech.

The boys head to the Professor’s office and he tells them that he ID’d the symbol as coming from the goddess Harmonia. Boiling it all down, the killers are Amazons – exclusively female culture, no use for males except for procreation. While the boys are there finding this out, the blonde female cop is on the phone with Morticia Adams IDing the boys as hunters. Yipe!

The boys head back to the motel and they’re digging through the boxes of books that Sheriff Mills retrieved from Bobby’s storage locker. And, query. Didn’t Bobby say that he had copies of his books hidden everywhere? I don’t know about you, but when he said that, I pictured like…reams of paper or something, not actual book-copies. These boxes are filled with a bunch of ancient-looking, dusty books.

Logistically speaking, it’s going to be hell for the boys to keep boosting different cars and then filling the new cars with the boxes of books. I personally think they should go back to Buffalo and get into John’s storage locker and add Bobby’s books to the collection there. And I also think they should use the Impala to do that. I’m just saying….

ANYWAY, Dean’s digging through the boxes looking for some “Grecian encyclopedia of weird” that he’s sure Bobby has somewhere. Sam’s continued research (the guy was relentless with the whole ‘getting to the bottom of this’ search) turns up another side to Harmonia’s Amazons – where a deal they made with her turned them into a race of monsters. Here’s where I realized that all the poking Sam’s been doing to Dean on the one-night-stand and drinking was being turned right back around by Dean in demanding Sam feed him more information.

It’s just another layer of their relationship that highlights (for me) how very realistic their sibling connection is.

As Sam is rattling off how the Amazons continue their race – find a successful, powerful male, ‘mate’ with him, then they have a baby the next day and the baby grows into a teen in three days time – the penny is dropping for Dean. The look of horror on his face would be slightly humorous if it weren’t so heartbreaking that he has a child – but that child is literally a monster.

Sam’s coming to the same conclusion and reacts first with denial, then with incredulity that Dean could “let this happen.” I actually hadn’t gone there until Sam did – figuring that Dean’s done this enough he wouldn’t be so stupid to not use protection. Dean’s reply is simply that accidents happen; he’s not brain dead. And as Ross and Rachel can attest, condoms are only 97% effective. It says it right on the box. *grins*

Elsewhere in the Convent of Weird, the now-teenaged girls are doing some kind of weird Skulls-like ceremony where that symbol that’s been carved on the chest of the dead guys is being branded onto their wrists. Emma winces and Morticia is again with the “pain is an honor” schtick. Yeouch. The actress who is playing 16 year-old Emma looked familiar to me and lovinjackson confirmed that she’s the same actress who played young Missy Bender five years ago. Gotta say, that wins the Most Creepy Recycle of an Actress Award in my book.

Back with the boys, Sam wants to know why Lydia – an Amazon – would have hooked up with Dean if they’re so picky about their gene pool.

Dean: She may or may not have thought I was a rich investment banker.

Whoops.

As they’re talking, though, there’s a sound like a sigh and Dean looks over on the bed saying that the papers moved. Frowning, Sam gets out the EMF and it redlines. He walks all around the room, redline going wacko, then says that there are power lines outside the open window – completely dispelling the possibility of a helpful ghost in his mind. But, not necessarily Dean’s.

The paper that moved was a piece with a bunch of Greek writing on it that neither of them can read…’cause…it’s Greek to them. Heh. They don’t know if it’s helpful because it’s in the pile of stuff that might be helpful.

Dean, holding the flask he’d finally rescued from Lydia’s house, supposes with a look of hesitantly awed wonder that it could be Bobby. Sam’s face closes down on that possibility – their body language once again telling a bigger story than the actual dialog. Dean’s shoulders are back, down, relaxed almost. His eyes are rounded with a small tinge of hope. Sam’s shoulders are square, his body tight, his face lined. He says that they cremated Bobby, and it can’t be him basically because they want it to be.

Dean pulls in on himself when confronted by Sam’s denial, but Sam’s words kinda broke my heart a bit. It’s so sad to see how they are forced to accept a life where they don’t even get the smallest chance of a break.

Anyway, even after figuring out that Dean probably-definitely fathered an Amazon, Sam heads off to get more intel from the Professor, leaving Dean with the equivalent of, “Lock the door and hope they don’t have blasters.” I honestly don’t get why Dean didn’t just go with him – leaving Dean behind at this moment was just…illogical. And a convenient writing tool to amp up the drama and what happened next.

Sam barges into the Prof’s office and takes the Greek paper that “somehow” fluffed up to the top of the pile and asks him to translate it. The Prof is hesitant because the gov’t isn’t paying him enough.

Sam: I’ll sweeten the deal. We’ll remove your wire tap.

HA! I love conniving Sam. *grins*

Back at the hotel, there’s a knock at the door. Dean cautiously goes to open it – and he does that thing where he licks his lower lip as he’s centering himself…*love* -- and on the other side of the door is Emma. She looks at him pleadingly and asks for his help, saying she doesn’t want to be like the others and she knew he would help her because…he’s her father.

(Gaelic mentally inserts image of Dean replaying Luke Skywalker’s devastated NOOOOOOO!!!)

Here’s something I found interesting at this point – the other Babyzons went right to their rich daddy’s houses and without remorse or discussion took them out. They ate their “offering” without being prodded and didn’t wince when branded. Emma is the child of a hunter – a hunter who was at one time tagged as Michael’s sword, even – and she was a bit difficult. She still goes for the kill at the end, but goes about it decidedly differently.

To me, it just showed how unique Dean is, period. Even his monster offspring rebels against the norm. He may live his life as a battle-weary warrior, thinking he’s not really worth anything because of what he does or what he’s done (which he basically reiterates as he’s talking to Emma), but when it comes down to it, he and his brother are unique. And the universe in which they live would not exist were it not for them. End of story.

Dean lets Emma and her little pink suitcase into the room and she says that her mother told her Dean was a good man. Dean says he seriously doubts that is true. Emma says she believes he’s a good man.

Dean: If you knew me, you would seriously doubt that’s true.

*rubs heart*

Emma tries to go into the whole “I know you don’t want me, but…” and Dean (rightly so) tells her this is not even close to a normal situation – it has nothing to do with Dean not wanting her (or, by a broader definition, wanting a child).

Meanwhile, Sam’s back with the Prof trying to figure out what’s on the paper.

Prof: Where did you get this?

Sam: A crazy, drunk old genius.

Prof: They always have the best stuff.

Hee.

So, basically, the paper reveals that it’s the kid who has to kill the father, not the Amazon mama – which I kinda already knew, but maybe it wasn’t that obvious…? Sam runs out, but the blonde female cop is there, stops him by telling him she knows he’s a fake and we see the scar of her Amazon brand. She goes all freaky-red-eyes and throws Sam down some stairs, but he rolls over, gun up, and shoots her. It surprised me that act took her out. Maybe they were like…silver bullets or something. I just expected the Amazons to be harder to kill for some reason. *shrug*

Back with Dean, Emma’s looking sad and vulnerable so Dean goes to the fridge to get her some food. His back to her, he’s peering into the nearly-empty fridge giving options of cheese or a leftover burrito when Emma stands up and a gigantic knife drops down from her sleeve. Dean doesn’t see her, but he senses the danger because he turns around, pulling his gun up fast in one smooth motion.

I totally dig it when he does that. *Toe. Curl.*

Sam’s booking it home – realizing that Dean’s ‘accident’ is on her way to kill his brother—and in the hotel room, Dean’s got his gun on Emma, his face impassive as he tells her that he figured she’d chat him up, catch him off-guard and it almost worked because he was expecting her mother. Emma says this is hard for her, but she looks pretty dead-eyed about it. A lot like her alter-ego Missy Bender, you ask me.

Dean says killing her won’t be hard for him, but she calls his bluff because he hasn’t done it yet. Then she figuratively twists the knife, causing emotion to spark to life in his eyes.

Emma: You’re my father. I wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for you.

*ouch*

Dean softens, doesn’t drop his gun, but his body shifts subtly from I can take you out any second to this is going to hurt me more than it hurts you. He says she hasn’t killed anyone yet – meaning maybe she could go against her nature and live a normal life. He just wants so badly to believe that there could be good in him – from him – even as he doubts it with every statement about himself. Emma says she doesn’t have a choice.

Nature vs Nurture goes out the window when you go from zero to sixteen in three days….

Sam reaches the room, standing outside the door in time to hear the last exchange. The look on his face when he hears Emma say she doesn’t have a choice is a mixture of fear and anger. He bursts through the door, causing Emma to whirl and face him, her eyes going all freaky-red like the blonde cop, before she turns back to Dean (who has not lowered his weapon, mind you). Plaintively she looks at Dean and says, “Please don’t let him hurt me.”

Sam doesn’t hesitate – he shoots her. Dean…works to swallow as he slowly lowers his gun. He looks…crushed. But not shocked. Not upset at Sam or angry at what he did. But…crushed that it had to happen at all.

Here’s the thing. I think Dean would have shot her. I think he needed time to untangle his mind about the fact that he was going to have to kill what was ‘technically’ his own child. Not an easy thing to come to grips with. But just like he took out Amy, who was a monster, I think he would have done it. Like the Top Gun quote – “He’d have hated it, but he’d have done it.”

He’s a hunter. He knows what has to happen – a monster is a monster, end of story. That said, when it comes to kids, he has a soft spot that he’s just not going to be able to ignore. That’s why he let Amy’s kid go – the kid hadn’t killed anyone yet, there was still a chance for him to overcome his monster side. Personally, I think that will come back and bite him in the ass, but still, it’s a personality  aspect that he can’t just end. So he hadn’t done it yet when Sam took control, but my opinion is that he would have done what needed to be done.

They head to the Convent of Weird to take out Morticia and her crew, but it’s empty. The rest of the Amazons and their offspring got away. I kinda liked that twist – they quite literally can’t win them all.

It’s night and Sam’s driving again. And he’s Not. Happy. It’s like that…heavy quiet where you know there are copious amounts of words just waiting to be said.

Dean: I don’t like it either. I wanted to torch them as much as you. We’ll get them next time they surface. (pause) Fine, just sit there and be pissed, then.

Sam is angry and brings up Amy – saying that this was the same situation. Sam did what needed to be done. Which (IMO) they telegraphed he was going to the moment we saw that scene in the THEN. I even said out loud to lovinjackson the moment Emma showed up at the hotel door that Sam was going to be the one to kill her because that’s the way the writers slant the moral dilemmas sometimes. I’m not surprised or even disappointed. BUT. I will say I think it would have been better character development and growth if Dean had been allowed to kill Emma.

First of all, he hasn’t struck the final killing blow of the MotW in several episodes. And second of all, he was able to “do what had to be done” when it was Sam’s situation…it would have been good to see him able to carry that through with his own situation. However, that brings us to the real issue: how each of them is 'dealing' (or not) with things - like Bobby's death. 

Sam takes the argument one step further and says that Emma wasn’t Dean’s, not really. Dean argues that she was his. That’s the whole point. 
They lash out like weak, wounded animals. Both acutely aware of how much they’re hurting but neither willing to admit it and expose a gaping internal vulnerability to each other. Just...they break me. But in a good way, odd as that sounds.

Sam needs to believe he’s okay and the easiest way for him to do that is if Dean believes Sam’s okay. Dean just doesn’t want to ever look too closely at himself – he never has.

Sam (worried): When Cas died, you were wobbly, but now….

Dean (irritated): You’re just as screwed up as I am. You’re just…bigger.

Sam (incredulous): What?!

Dean (grumpy): I don’t know!

They aren’t looking at each other but are drawn back to their worry like magnets.

Sam: The thing is, tonight it almost got you killed. I don’t care how you deal…I don’t. Just…don’t get killed.

*rubs heart* Aww, Sammy. That said so much. He gets that Dean’s a functioning alcoholic who isn’t going to put down the flask anytime soon because right now it’s his only way of finding balance and now is his only tie to a friend he still desperately needs. But he can’t handle this without Dean. If Dean were to get killed because he’s not focused, It would kill Sam. *rubs heart again*

Dean (softly, almost reluctantly): I’ll do what I can.

Sam: What’s that supposed to mean?

Dean (in a very I can’t give you anything else right now tone): It means I’ll do what I can. Shut up about it.

They quiet down, each glowering into the night with their own disenchanted, disgruntled feelings, trying to find a place to put all that they can’t control.

I think that the “Sam’s coping better than Dean” set up is going to come crashing down on them pretty soon. Because I was watching a download, I didn’t see previews, so this is totally shooting in the dark speculation, but I don’t think Sam’s scar-rubbing is going to hold him together much longer – how can it? We’re talking about a serious mental issue that he isn’t going get over.

So…my speculation is this. Dean’s purpose has always been Sam. That’s no secret. Since the return of Sam’s soul, protecting his brother has been at the forefront of his strategy – it was even the reason he gave Frank for why he couldn’t/wouldn’t quit hunting. “I’m not gonna leave my brother.” Not “I can’t do anything else,” not “I was meant to do this,” not even “I’m good at this.” He didn’t want to leave Sam.

I think that Sam cracking will be the thing to help Dean find a way to “deal” as Sam keeps asking him in various ways to do. Now, part of me appreciates this and part of me doesn’t like it. Because I want Dean to be able to crack, too. Not (just) because I want to see that performance, but because he’s human and he’s taken more than his internal dam should be able to stand. That box inside him is getting more and more full.

And I think he needs a ‘straw’ moment – some random moment that catches him and allows him a chance to turn that release valve and break down – just a bit – to give him more room to breathe. Emma could have been that random moment…but she wasn’t. I don’t know if they’ll allow that, but it would be so much healthier to see him break down a little bit rather than the two extremes of not at all or all together. Because that line about "I'll do what I can" worries me a bit about his state of mind.

If he's not allowed to bend, the break could be permanent and that is NOT a performance I wish to see. *sniff*

Okay, so there you go! Sorry for the lack of details/quotes this go-round, but I should be back to that for the next one airing on the 10th. I need to find previews for that, though, because I have no clue what it’s about.

Thanks for reading! Slainte.


Comments

( 71 Tall Tales — Tell Me A Story )
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a_phoenixdragon
Feb. 7th, 2012 07:36 am (UTC)
OMG thank you for this. I can't even pick out one thing I loved the most in this eppie, but you covered it all damned well - even your speculations covered what I was thinking. I started off annoyed at Sam, but I realised - they are both distracted, both hurting - and they are missing obvious points in each other's behavior. But...ohhh...BOYS.

And yeah...the scar rubbing - mentioned that in my upcoming ficcy. *Grins* but then...you already knew that, lol!

*HUGS*

Stellar ramble, dear! Gosh I miss these!!
gaelicspirit
Feb. 8th, 2012 08:45 pm (UTC)
YAY! Glad we were in each other's heads in this one. :) Sam irked me with the way he was picking on Dean and missing the truth in what Dean was saying, but I kept trying to see it from his POV because he's gotta be barely hanging in there himself, y'know?

I forgot about your scar-rubbing in your fic! Looks like your crystal ball is nice and shiney! :)

Thank you for reading and taking time to comment. *loves it*
suprnatrlkiwi
Feb. 7th, 2012 07:59 am (UTC)
PS: As per Jensen at the latest NashCon, when Cas healed Dean in Swan Song, he healed all of his scars, including the handprint.
etoile444
Feb. 8th, 2012 02:14 am (UTC)
A good explanation, but it makes me sad, as if all that came before does not matter. :(
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fifimom
Feb. 7th, 2012 08:07 am (UTC)
Thanks for sharing. It was a good episode. I enjoyed it. Dean would have killed Emma and that would have been huge but I'm okay with what the show gave us. I thought the exchange between the guys in the car was perfect.
gaelicspirit
Feb. 10th, 2012 06:55 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I really liked the car scene as well. And you're right -- pushing Dean to that point would have changed things more than the story is probably ready to handle right now.

Thank you for reading and taking time to comment. :)
jesters_tear82
Feb. 7th, 2012 09:01 am (UTC)
Hello!! How lovely it is to wake up & find your ramble posted, a great start to a l-o-n-g day :) Can't wait to read your report of the journey down-under, just looking at the pics I know you're having an awesome time! & obviously watching SPN + H50 with Tara was a special treat ;)

* The episode was very good in my eyes actually, some people said these specific writers (the Ross-Lemming / Buckner duo) shouldn't write anymore on show but this was my favorite of
their 3 written so far - before that were "Route 666" & "Shut up Dr. Phil".. so I considered this an improvement. Also thinking that these guys must really love a naked Dean sex scene as they've given him 2 already in their short resume ;)
Also (I'm such a trivia fan :) in their previous eppy they had 2 Buffy stars & now the mayor.. nice coincidence. Ohhh & Emma was Missy? How cool is that!! LOL that girl does not have a good track record with Sam&Dean :)

* Like you I noticed the fine directing & checked it out, the director was Jerry Wanek who has worked on show for years but this was the first ep he directed! Nice work, Jerry. The seduction scene in the bar (The Cobalt room) was very well put together & the bedroom scene mirroring the attack taking place at the same time made it pretty clear what Lydia & Dean's "workout" was really about. Another little thing was how Sam drove the beginning & end, showing us he's the "strong" one at the moment (we'll see for how long though).

* As far as Dean & Sam's relationship - I kinda loved Sam's bitchface :) That's what brothers do, drive each other crazy because it's their prerogative. & you're right, they were both going back to old habits, Dean as the woman chaser, Sam as the info-nut.. At the end I thought Sam was really upset because like you said he's holding on to his sanity & after nearly losing Dean in time the ep before he needs to know Dean is taking care of himself, they're literally each other's lifelines at the moment. BUT it's interesting to see how for Sam Dean is the center & he's being practical, not wanting to get hurt again so he shoves every notion of Bobby being around away, while for Dean Sam is clearly not enough, he keeps losing important people so he's looking for meaning, for a justification for his own existence. In a way this reminds me of season 5, Dean losing hope until he's (like in your speculation) forced to defend his brother against all odds. I'm really loving this season after a mostly Blaaaa season 6 & that makes me happy :)

Next one on the 10th is: Clowns!! I won't spoil you much but here's a cute promo in case you want to check it out:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W53kMr2fXRs

*hugs you & the kangaroos & the tasmanian devils ;)*
jesters_tear82
Feb. 7th, 2012 09:05 am (UTC)
Ohhhh & I forgot to say I love the boys going to the anthropology department for help, it reminded me of season 2! (of course Bobby is better but what can you do) & the whole case being connected to mythology, even if some points were left unknown like how does one kill the amazons exactly.. OK I'm finished :)

LOL this is silly, I keep thinking about stuff! Had to tell you I agree Dean would have ended up killing Emma himself, but a Dean that would have done that = even more broken than the one we know & love :( Besides seems like he never believed her from the start, she was different from the other girls because she's a hunter's daughter (& has kick-ass Winchester genes :) but also part of her act was to get him off his guard, with the other men the talk wasn't needed, here maybe her instructors warned her Dean requires a special treatment.

OK shutting off my computer because I only watched the ep yesterday so thoughts are still spinning in my head BUT I must study for a big test!! Ouch! See you soon G.

Edited at 2012-02-07 09:17 am (UTC)
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lovinjackson
Feb. 7th, 2012 11:54 am (UTC)
*Memories of pausing and rewinding certain parts* Hahaha

I completely agree with you about the whole Dean needing to break down himself ... I mean like you said, aside from the obvious Awesomeness that would be to see Jensen act that out. He is only human, a incredibly awesome amazing human ... but a human nonetheless.

I miss the Impala ... I know I said that numerous times when we were watching it but I really, really do. They are going to bring it back at some point right?

As much as sometimes Sam does shit me ... I do like the worry he has for his brother. I dont like it when that worry is double standard. Of course Dean has himself shown that double standard worry towards Sam as well ... so I guess I would be showing a bit of double standard if I didnt acknowledge it ...ah well cant help myself LOL

It's kind of sad that Dean's child turned out to be a monstar :( ... but i loved the little differences Emma had to the other kids.

I feel like I have seen Morticia in something else but I cant put my finger on it.

So cool that we got to watch it together :)

Word, Rodge.

(Anonymous)
Feb. 7th, 2012 04:02 pm (UTC)
Awesome
Great international ramble - I liked the epi too, altho I think the writers missed several opportunities to give us more depth, perhaps even build up some sort of arc involving Dean's offspring - not that I want a father/daughter thing but it felt kind of abrupt to introduce such an opportunity for Dean-needs-family-Dean-loses-or-even-has-to-kill-family (again!) angst then close it down so efficiently. The Amy parallel was so signposted - Sam was bound to have to kill Dean's daughter but I totally agree with your judgement that it would have been better if Dean had done it himself. I also feel certain he would/could have.

Dean shirtless sex scene = Heaven! (thinking of it now - might have to go watch ti again!)
I agree, the inter-cuttingof the murder and the sex worked really well and AC/DC was perfect.

So happy to see you had a good time down under.

Maz
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gaelicspirit
Feb. 10th, 2012 07:33 pm (UTC)
One of the things I find so amazing about this show is how we can each of us relate to the characters on different levels and at different times. Your relating to Sam this season is fascinating because I know you started out relating more with Dean. And despite all the flaws along the way, I say that's good storytelling.

The thing is... he takes it all on himself... he doesn't need most of it. He can let a lot of it go and be just fine. But I understand why he doesn't. He feels like he'd be betraying people if he did.

This? This is me. I find myself feeling guilty for things I haven't done and can't control simply because of how those things affect people and I'm powerless to alleviate their suffering. I feel as if I should be able to do something or should have been able to prevent something.

It's ridiculous because logically I 'get' that there isn't anything I can do, could do, could have done, but it doesn't stop me from feeling the weight of that burden.

*sigh*

This show. I tell ya.

It's really good to hear from you, my friend. Anytime, all the time. :)
qultng1
Feb. 7th, 2012 03:34 pm (UTC)
Not sure about the car. I remember when that ugly ass thing was originally on the road what my dad had to say about the rear end. *not for polite company* :D It was a Buick or a Pontiac as I recall, but the grill was wrong for a P and there were no holes on the side like a B. *shrugs* Sorry.

I noticed the lack of a hand print, too, and wondered if it was supposed to have healed up. Should have been a hint of it, tho. Tsk.

I guess in "Bobby speak" 'copies' could either be paper or books, whichever he had been able to get. Paper takes up a lot less room, but harder to keep straight. The Greek page was a piece of paper, so maybe he had both.

I HOPE it's Bobby! *sniff* But I have a feeling they're setting us up for what I know. :( Oh well.

And of course Lovinjackson knew who the girl was! I was with you, familiar, but not for sure. Our friend knows everything and everyone! She cracks me up and I marvel at her capacity for that knowledge until I remember that I USED to be that way. I blame my car accident. :D

Emma's behavior really gave me some hope for her, but I rejected it, because nothing good ever happens to our boys. :( The good in Dean really seemed to be struggling to come to the forefront with her, tho. Kept me off-balance for a while.

And that instant switch when Sam came in when she called Dean "Daddy" made my heart plummet, but I knew Sam would do it. I agree that Dean would have ultimately, but Sam did what was necessary and saved his brother the burden of having killed his-own-child-which-was-a-monster-but-his-own-child-none-the-less.

Poor Dean. *sniff*

Their exchange in the car where Dean ended up saying "I don't know!" had me laughing out loud and chuckling ever since then. Really another sign of their 'sibling-hood'. Just really funny. :D

I did enjoy it a lot and am happy you got to watch it with our friend!

Safe trip home, my friend! *hugs*
gaelicspirit
Feb. 10th, 2012 07:37 pm (UTC)
guess in "Bobby speak" 'copies' could either be paper or books, whichever he had been able to get. Paper takes up a lot less room, but harder to keep straight.

Hahaha! Yeah, that's true. It was only my perception that put parameters around it.

Yeah, I wanted Emma to be different -- for it not to be a ploy just to get Dean to drop his guard. But like you, I knew better. Poor Dean. :(

I love our brothers. And the way they poke at each other. And love each other.

See you soon. Thank you for reading.
ladyarcherfan3
Feb. 7th, 2012 04:00 pm (UTC)
Great Ramble as always!

This episode will be The One With Shirtless Dean
Yes, basically. I'm not shallow or anything, but yes. :)

Just...they break me. But in a good way, odd as that sounds. I understand completely.

That last conversation in the car, with Sam telling Dean just not to get killed just about killed me. There was just a hint of desperate fear in his voice and on his face... and then Dean's "I'll do what I can". Ugh. Dean, Sammy needs you, and you need help too. Help each other.

One last little note: (hee – rubber ducks…I love our Show>
I was watching the episode, and he said that line, and it kept bugging me - rubber ducks why does that sound like there is a joke of some sort in it? Read your Ramble and went "Oh, I get it!" *facepalm*

Take care and here's to waiting for the next episode and Ramble!




Edited at 2012-02-07 04:01 pm (UTC)
gaelicspirit
Feb. 10th, 2012 07:46 pm (UTC)
Sometimes -- just sometimes -- being shallow is okay. ;) It's not objectifying...it's appreciating. :)

There was just a hint of desperate fear in his voice and on his face... and then Dean's "I'll do what I can". Ugh. Dean, Sammy needs you, and you need help too. Help each other.

Yeah. They are quite literally all they have left. And it's just...I mean how do you figure out how to hold your brother up when you lack the strength to stand on your own?

Thank you for reading and taking time to comment.
borgmama1of5
Feb. 7th, 2012 04:46 pm (UTC)
"but his body shifts subtly from I can take you out any second to this is going to hurt me more than it hurts you"

Jensen does so much without words!

I am sure the writers set us up to wonder if Emma, because she was Dean's daughter, would have been redeemable. The only thing that sets me to thinking everything she did was a set up was the line that her mother told her Dean was a good man. Because I didn't see anything to indicate Lydia gave Dean a second thought.

"I think Dean would have shot her."

I asked Jensen this at NashCon and he said yes, Dean would have. I don't think Dean was upset with Sam, though, I flashed to more of the scene where Sam had to shoot Madison but Dean offered to spare Sam the pain. This felt more like that than a parallel to the Amy situation.

Re: the handprint, I also asked Jensen about that and he said that there was discussion of it and it was decided that when Cas fixed Dean at the end of 'Swan Song' he healed the scar as well.

Oh, one other thing, Jensen said the script specified that the Dean/Lydia scene was intercut with the murder, it was not a director's choice.

As far as Dean and Lydia--scorching because of the look on Dean's face!!

Edited at 2012-02-07 04:51 pm (UTC)
juppschmitz
Feb. 8th, 2012 10:35 am (UTC)
You asked him significant questions??!! *envies you*
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thruterryseyes
Feb. 7th, 2012 09:23 pm (UTC)
Buick Riviera early 70's. UGLY.

This was mediocre episode plot wise, but I still enjoyed it. I loved the look on Dean's face while that woman basically manhandled him. If you noticed Sam was wound up tighter than a watch spring thru this whole ep, very short tempered and snappy and almost mean to Dean. I think it was a preview of how hard he's finding it to cope anymore. The effort is becoming to much for him when you add all this other crap on top of it.

I think Dean is just struggling to cope with anything period.

I don't have a lot of comments, but I was waiting for your ramble so I could read and enjoy. Glad you had a good time with Tara and got to see the show.

The next show has clowns.

gaelicspirit
Feb. 10th, 2012 08:00 pm (UTC)
I think I have a thing for '70's cars. Ugly or not. I like the bulk of them. The power it conveys. My Dad's always been a fan of the sleeker sports cars. Porsches. But I like the muscle cars.

I think that anytime you get a chance to focus on Dean like that there's something to enjoy in an episode. :)

Thank you for reading and watching for me. :) I MISS YOU! Can't wait until we can get back to talking each day. Oy. 16+ hour time difference is a killer, man.

And, um, clowns? *gulp* You know how I feel about them. Pretty much in line with how Mo Chuisle feels about Edward. ;)
iontas
Feb. 8th, 2012 04:46 am (UTC)
I hope you are having fun in Australia! Thanks for the ramble. I agree that Dean would have shot her. He pulled his gun out for a reason. I doesn't mean he was going to enjoy doing it though. But he was giving her a chance, just like he gave Amy's son a chance. He told her she hadn't killed anyone yet. That was consistent for him. Sam was wrong when he compared the situation to Amy, because Amy had already killed humans. And yes, Sam had bitchface flying in this episode and I was sort of happy to see it for awhile. Then I realized that he was totally missing what was going on. Sam is not on his game at all. He is trying to hard to be ok. I don't know what is going to happen, but I think it that other shoe is going to drop. As for the ghost being Bobby, I know that is what they want us to think, but I just feel like it is a red herring. Time will tell I hope! Have a good trip home!
gaelicspirit
Feb. 10th, 2012 08:06 pm (UTC)
Hi there! Thanks for reading and taking time to comment. I know it was late, so I am glad to hear from you. :)

They're both not on their game, really. Sam acts like he thinks he is, but he's flying blind. Desperate. I mean, how do you hold up your brother when you lack the strength to stand on your own? That's what I see from both of them.

I hope the 'ghost' isn't a red herring. They've done that too much, y'know? I want it to be something -- even if it's not Bobby.

Hope to see you again soon!
primrose_1
Feb. 8th, 2012 05:17 am (UTC)
I liked the episode a lot- I really liked the idea of Dean having a monster child, and the play between the brothers. I REALLY didn't like the Amazons. They were not well thought out at all. Think about it. Every two years, ALL the childbearing females go out and get pregnant, and grow an infant to maturity in only three days. The Amazon population would be HUGE, we'd be overrun with Amazons! The whole point of the Amazons was that they were a warrior race changed by a Goddess....so who were they fighting now? Without an actual enemy other than an occasional hunter and the fathers of their children, there's nothing for them to fight, so nothing to deplete their ranks like in ancient times. It's a wonder that we aren't ALL Amazons!

gaelicspirit
Feb. 10th, 2012 08:16 pm (UTC)
Y'know, I didn't even bother to put a lot of thought into the Amazons themselves, to be honest. Part of it was that I was just too tired and wanted to just enjoy and part of it was that when it comes to 'lore' the show has gone sideways a lot over the years so I just kinda accept what I see.

Your logic makes total sense, though. And is true to your storytelling bones.

Maybe we are all Amazons, in a way. Just not the monster kind. ;)

deangirl1
Feb. 8th, 2012 06:15 am (UTC)
This may be a double post - LJ hates me - maybe because I am so wordy? GAH

I have a confession to make – You Shook Me All Night Long – has had those visuals associated with it in my mind for about 6 ½ years...

I’m disappointed that they are going with Bobby as spirit. I think it debases his memory in a way – we know it’s stupid to stay as a spirit because you will eventually go crazy. I mean it’s a wonderful sacrifice for him to stay and look over the boys, but the way the episode went, he shouldn’t be able to remember anything useful anyway – remember everything going blank? Or maybe he just gets all his memories back when he quits trying to stay alive and he’d only be a blank slate if he managed to stay alive on life support? *shrugs*

Anyway, if it is the flask – and it’s pretty clear it is – embedded saliva providing the requisite DNA, no doubt – at some point Dean is going to have to face losing Bobby all over again to release him....

The car is a Buick Riviera... boattail – see buick-riviera DOT com/

I think it’s the same flask – the point being that when he touches it, he seems to summon Bobby...

I liked the banter in the car. I thought Jared actually did a really good job with this scene – you can tell he’s starting to feel the strain of looking out for his brother on top of everything else – the two scenes in the car – beginning and end worked especially well as bookends this episode.

Loved Dean’s banter at the morgue – and the high level of gore in this episode...

I was really annoyed at the continuity of the time at the beginning. Sam wishes Dean good morning, the ME asks them about the long, late hours, and _then_ Dean goes to a bar?????? How does that work?

Cobalt bar – hence all the blue ambience lighting...

THE SONG THEY PLAY IN THE BAR (which buts up against Shook Me All Night Long) IS “WORLDS COLLIDE” FROM THE ALBUM ESKIMO WHICH IS ROB BENEDICT’S BAND LOUDEN SWAIN’S NEW ALBUM!!!!!!!

I think that love scene cut with the murder may be the best directed/edited scene all season (sorry Jensen). I’m not sure if it would have been the director or editor to make that choice. Ordinarily I’d go with director, but the director was...... JERRY WANEK – our production designer, responsible for all those hotel rooms!!!! And he wouldn’t have been able to do the final cut in LA – as Jensen doesn’t get to do either... BUT that was such an important scene, he may have blocked it that way – or it may even have been written that way.... Good question for a con, I guess!

And speaking of con questions... here are two that were answered in Nashville – that I actually got to hear... 1. The HandPrint. Someone asked where it went. Jensen’s answer was that it was healed when Cas healed him in Swan Song. Makes sense as we haven’t seen it since then – ie the love scene with Lisa... Jensen wished Cas had healed the tattoo as well.... LOL! 2. When Lydia pulls down her skirt and is mostly naked? Jensen was waiting right beside the camera with a robe so she could walk right into it... Someone asked about why Dean is badass in regular life and Sam is kind of soft/emo and yet in bed Dean is the tender one and Sam is rough. Jensen explained that for the most part, we see all of Dean’s love scenes with women he has a tender relationship with – Cassie, Lisa, Anna – Jared pointed out that the scene with Ruby was when Sam was in a bad place and it was angry sex with Ruby.... which doesn’t explain Madison... Anyway, Jensen also said THOSE kinds of scenes for him were all about making sure the other actor was comfortable and protected. Both Js said how all actors feel those types of scenes are uncomfortable and a bit exploitative/objectifying.

And yet... I still enjoyed it... Jensen also commented on Dean trying to roll on top of her and Lydia totally taking the control away...
gaelicspirit
Feb. 10th, 2012 08:28 pm (UTC)
Double post...triple post...as long as you post, I don't care. :)

Both brothers are feeling the strain. How could they not? Dean may not be hearing voices from Hell, but he's got his own weight. And how do you hold your brother up when you lack the strength to stand on your own? I see this from both of them.

That is SO COOL about the song!! Yay Rob!! :)

Kudos to Jerry Wanek for the directing of this one. Even if I didn't want to focus on Jensen's portrayal of Dean (and why would I not...?) I wouldn't have been able to help myself.

1. Hand print makes sense. :)
2. What a gentleman. Seriously.

Like that I noticed the same thing he did in the filming/pacing of the scene. ;)
deangirl1
Feb. 8th, 2012 06:16 am (UTC)
Yes. Of course there is more...

I was irritated at Sam – full stop. About enjoying Dean getting dumped – I think it was actually a bit insensitive of Sam given Dean’s fragile state. BUT what I think it showed more, was that Sam was a bit preoccupied by having to take up the slack with Dean being preoccupied and off his game. As I said, we’re seeing Sam starting to struggle with having to pick up more of the slack. Dean gets back in the game pretty quickly when things don’t add up to Lydia being a normal one night stand – and he was pretty observant even when preoccupied with getting it on – to notice no baby things at that time...

“buffet of strange”; “fruit-fly fast”; and the rubber duck reference – awesome moments within about 5 minutes!!!

I ADORED the look on Dean’s face as he “went over” the evening, making sure he HAD been safe. I also really liked that he was so adamant that he wasn’t “brain dead” – go show in promoting safe sex!

I had NO idea that was Missy Bender until Jared asked at the Con breakfast if anyone recognized her – obviously it was all over fandom by then. Jensen, bless him, confessed that he worked with her for an entire day without the penny dropping – I’m assuming someone had to tell him eventually....

I thought it interesting that Dean was so willing to hope it was Bobby and Sam was so NOT willing to go there. Even though Dean is so close to despair, he still DOES have hope – I’m just not sure he realizes it. Maybe that IS his curse. It hurts more to continue to be denied if you still have hope in your heart. Which makes me sadder for Sam...

When Sam came up with the wiretap line, I wanted to kiss him – I LOVE when he is all protective of Dean... (see? I do love Sam! And especially Jared – because he’s always adorable about giving me a hug when I ask in photo ops...)

Oh yeah – GLARING logical problem number 2 was leaving Dean alone in the room – just utterly stupid....

Dean’s “If you knew me, you would seriously doubt that’s true.” Damn near broke my heart....

“Prof: Where did you get this?
Sam: A crazy, drunk old genius.
Prof: They always have the best stuff.” --
So many great lines in this epi!!!!

The kid killing was only obvious to us because of the ritual we see and the boys don’t – remember the murderer was supposed to be able to bench 350...

I too am putty for Dean’s gun work... *sigh*

I totally agree that Dean would have done it. Sam had the advantage of having seen BOTH Amazons go freaky monster-eyes – Dean only say eyes brimming with tears – his own daughter. I also thought it was interesting that there was NO resentment of Sam at all – even while there was grief and regret...

I really liked that last scene – I think it was the most brotherly scene they’ve had in a very, very long time. Dean’s “you’re just bigger” comment was the only thing he could say that wasn’t hurtful. He wasn’t trying to push Sam away, really, and definitely not lash out and hurt him, he just doesn’t want to talk about himself and how he is screwed up. And I fear we are never going to see Dean get that moment to really break. I think he’s gotten all the reprieve he’s going to. Sam has taken up the slack for a few episodes – even, symbolically, driving in this episode. But Sam has never been the foundation – it’s Dean who is brick number one, who has held the family together, who gives EVERYTHING for his family.
And Dean won’t stand for people to be hurt because of his weakness – which is how I’m betting he will spin Emma’s death. Next week is a “funny” episode apparently. Then we will get a few Sam-centric episodes as they are trying to give Jared less to do in March when his and Gen’s baby arrives – so the end of the season may be more Dean-centric than we are used to...
I’m off to Albuquerque this weekend, so I may be late again with responding – and likely won’t have good juicy con stuff to infuse!!! LOL!!!

Thanks for your thoughts! You were very much in my thoughts as I was watching...
gaelicspirit
Feb. 10th, 2012 08:39 pm (UTC)
There were definitely some great lines in this one -- from both of them. And I think that the push-back from Dean was partly because he doesn't want to talk about himself, but also because he's hurt. Not hurt by what Sam did, but by the fact that the life they live makes it so they can't avoid running into situations like this over and over.

I'm looking forward to seeing how the rest of this season plays out. Really looking forward. :)
juppschmitz
Feb. 8th, 2012 11:02 am (UTC)
Hi there! Good to hear from you earlier than expected!!

Yeah, I think this was another fairly non-controversial episode. I liked it but my mind needs to dwell much more on the idea that Dean - of all people - has a supernatural child... (Just imagine she'd lived. I know, not possible on show, but still. Imagine!) And even though JA says differently, I don't think Dean would have killed her unless in self-defence or if she'd actually killed someone else. Hey, for all we know, Amazons really only kill their fathers. Nobody said they go around killing every male...

The whole Bobby thing is kind of un-subtle, but with the EMF going like crazy it does point to a ghost. Hmmm.... Still, could be Ellen. Seeing as how she worries from the great beyond.

Anyhow, whatever they have planned for this storyline, in the film in my head cinema it's Cas. Cause that's what I want and it's my head cinema. Ah well, maybe someone will fic it...

I was wondering about the handprint, but the explanation borgmama1of5 got is good enough, I suppose. Still, I would have liked to think it's still there.

Thanks for your ramble and the thought you put into it. I love the opportunity you give us to exchange opinions on Show.

Edited at 2012-02-08 11:12 am (UTC)
gaelicspirit
Feb. 10th, 2012 08:46 pm (UTC)
And even though JA says differently, I don't think Dean would have killed her unless in self-defence or if she'd actually killed someone else.

The way I see it, Dean would have given her every out possible. She'd already shown her hand by dropping the knife from her sleeve before Sam showed up. If Sam hadn't have been there, I think Dean would have tried to talk her out of it, she would have charged, and he would have killed her out of self defense. But he'd still would have done it, IMO.

I would rather it be Bobby that's the spirit only because I want Cas to be able to come back as more. Do more. I want there to be more to his story than a vessel for Leviathans and drowning in the water supply. But...I'd be happy if it were anything other than a red herring. :)

Thank you for reading and taking a moment to comment. Means a lot to me.
seesmooshrun
Feb. 8th, 2012 11:33 pm (UTC)
To me, it just showed how unique Dean is, period. Even his monster offspring rebels against the norm.

good catch! Very true.

I actually posted a couple *very quick* reactions -- three in all -- that pretty much nobody has read, but I did muse about the handprint in one -- no, two -- of them. The issue was settled in the comments.

The actress playing teen Emma looked vaguely familiar to me, but I didn't dwell on that. One of my pet peeves (aside from reusing actors for different roles, but it worked this time) is people on TV having families that look nothing like them. So I was checking out this kid for being Dean's daughter. Golly, it really worked for me: high cheekbones, lovely facial structure, full lips, similar shape faces, eyebrows... yeah, I totally bought that Emma could be (was) Dean's daughter, especially given the mother's looks. I could really see Dean in her. So, it's all good.

Thanks for posting even though you were out of the country!
gaelicspirit
Feb. 10th, 2012 08:50 pm (UTC)
Okay -- next stop is your journal so I can see your quick reactions. :) I love that we're all so keen on the details of our boys and this show that we pay attention to things like that. :)

I love how you noticed how well that actress -- Emma -- looked like she could have been Dean's daughter. :)

Thank you for reading!
marlowe78
Feb. 8th, 2012 11:38 pm (UTC)
Hey there. Oh man... I'm envious, even though you probably didn't see (or won't see? How long are you down under for?) much of that amazing country.

*sigh* I left parts of myself there... no, really. My shoes and my camera will forever rest in some dumpster over there :-D

*cough*

back to topic

Dean shirtless.

That's the topic, right??

Now, the Dean girl in me would have loved to have focused the whole shebang on the sex scene because seriously…hummina hummina. But I thought stylistically and storytelling-wise, it was effective.

Duh... Of course! But it was a good scene and what I really, REALLY liked was the subtle way they set the differences of their goals. Dean wants to be slow, wants to lose himself in the sex and feel and touch. Lydia wants his sperm. (how can anyone JUST want that? Duh...Stupid)

Throughout the scene, Dean tries to be sensual but is thoroughly pleased when Lydia pushes him around. So... lovely scene. And my... that chest... and the tattoo - we saw it! but... the handprint? I think it wasn't there, was it?

Here’s the thing. I think Dean would have shot her. I think he needed time to untangle his mind about the fact that he was going to have to kill what was ‘technically’ his own child. Not an easy thing to come to grips with. But just like he took out Amy, who was a monster, I think he would have done it. Like the Top Gun quote – “He’d have hated it, but he’d have done it.”

Yes. I agree. Jensen agreed, too :-D But yeah, though it might have needed a little more aggression from Emma's side, I'm sure Dean would have pulled the trigger. But: that hesitation might have been the last thing he did, and Sam wasn't too far off taking that choice away.


This ep hurt me a little, more because of the brotherly stuff and the loss of Bobby we got to witness than the whole kid-story. But... Sam. Oh man... he breaks my heart, a little, in his very typical, little-brother-bitchy-way of his.

I also very much agree on your speculation about Dean's cracking. I think, too, that it will be Sam cracking that might bring Dean to pull some last remains of strength from his soul, but I have this idea that maybe some catalyst will help him along. Like... I dunno. Shouting out his issues with a however-existing Cas? I'd love that scene :-D

Anyway, see you next time!
gaelicspirit
Feb. 10th, 2012 08:58 pm (UTC)
If I'd been able to stay longer -- or had more time outside of an office environment while I was there -- I think the country would have hit me harder. As it was, it was such a whirlwind...I kept having to say to myself I was in Sydney. And it was lovely to see my friend in person -- something we thought would be so rare, practically impossible.

But I'm very tired now. The traveling, long flights, long days of working, trying to soak up another country in the sparse amount of free time I had...it tanked me. Feel a bit like I got hit by a truck.

The handprint wasn't there. And based on other comments, I guess it was to be assumed that Cas healed it when he healed Dean in Swan Song.

I think Sam did the right thing, sure. I think he did what he thought he had to. But I still think Dean would have done it. And I think it would have been an interesting turn to his character's story if he had. But that's not the place they took it and that's okay.

The thing I worry about now is that if Sam cracks and Dean doesn't have the strength to hold them both up...well, he's already lost Bobby and Cas and if Sam cracks, well, Dean is just this side of keeping it together.

*takes deep breath* Oh, boys.

Thank you for reading and taking time to reply. I really appreciate that.:)

Edited at 2012-02-10 08:58 pm (UTC)
(Anonymous)
Feb. 8th, 2012 11:59 pm (UTC)
hey gaelic-it's meggin
Look at you all international and everything! (((gaelic)))

I gotta say this one bothered me. Mostly for what I felt was the missed opportunity of having Dean be the one to kill Emma and thus begin his breakdown.

I think Dean would have pulled the trigger had not Sam burst in the room and saved him from that trauma. Because Dean is the best hunter in the world and that training would have kicked in. But putting his daughter down would be the 'straw' moment for him. And the writers didn't make this episode about that. I just hate to see the writers making Dean seem like some two dimensional superhero that won't be brought down by anything.

Granted this episode showed more brotherly interaction in a long time, and I'm loving that Sam has reversed his role and is now very worried about Dean getting hurt or worse. And Sam's on thin ice in the 'non compass mentas' dept too. I almost see it as Sam realizing that since Dean is helping him be anchored in the present if he looses Dean he's lost all hope of ever escaping Lucifer's lingering hold on him.

They are more codependent on each other than they have ever been.

And I'm firmly in the camp of wanting to believe Bobby's spirit is some how tied to that flask. You're right about the older Winchester in this regard, for such a tough hombre Dean is very sentimental about keeping mementos of the ones he loves close to him.

But if the whole hour could be reduced to just the all too brief moments of Shirtless Dean (Jensen has been busy at the gym again- did you SEE those ABS?!!) I'd let the missed opportunity of Dean's breakdown slide (LOL) Yeah, I'd be good with that.
gaelicspirit
Feb. 10th, 2012 09:06 pm (UTC)
Re: hey gaelic-it's meggin
Yeah, Dean would have been able to do what needed to be done. I'm sure of it. But I wonder what it would have done to him, y'know?

How do you hold your brother up when you lack the strength to stand on your own? That goes for both of them.

I don't know that I see him being written as a two-dimensional superhero, though. Mainly because he's not making the kills, taking the shots. He's barely keeping it together. As is Sam. You're right -- they're more codependent on each other now than ever before.

Thank you so much for reading and commenting. And yes. Those abs. Good Lord. :)
cathy1967
Feb. 9th, 2012 05:48 pm (UTC)
Great ramble as always.

I'm not the least bit annoyed at Sam's behavior. He's coming undone. It's very evident. He's got enough going on in his head that he doesn't have anything left over for his brother. And yet he tries. You gotta give him credit for that. But I can totally relate to him having a short fuse these days. Then again, I'm not trying at all to stay spoiler free. *g*

I'm happy you had a great trip and got to hang out with another fan. That's always wonderful. :)

I'm looking forward to next week's ramble. :D
gaelicspirit
Feb. 10th, 2012 09:08 pm (UTC)
Thank you so much for reading! And taking time to share your thoughts. I like that you are able to see things so clearly from Sam's POV. Even at this stage I still have to pause and think about it. But once I did, I see how the two of them are really struggling -- not just Dean. BOTH of them. And it hurts (in a good way -- an intriguing way) to watch.

How do you hold your brother up when you lack the strength to stand on your own? *sniff*

I'm really looking forward to how this story rolls out.

Take care of you.
jazzyirish
Feb. 10th, 2012 10:43 pm (UTC)
Hey Gaelic, I was surprised to see this posted so early, so I'm late to the party. I liked this episode overall, and LOVED shirtless, sexy Dean. I thought that the two of them kissing while she was pulling his jacket off his shoulder especially enticing - something about that - yummm. But I digress...;)

I liked the close-ups in the bar and like you, Dean's looking down while he said "Yeah, look at me" just broke my heart. Although it was a writing choice, not a directing choice, I thought that the abrupt cuts from the Lydia/Dean sex to the killing were well done. I wish we could have feasted our eyes a bit longer on a certain subject, but oh well... That rough stuff is more Sam's style than Dean's, though.

I agree that Dean should have been allowed to face his "daughter" that was a monster and kill her himself because it needed to be done. I can see why Sam thought he should handle it, but it would have been nice for Sam to say, later in the car, that he (Sam) killed her so that Dean wouldn't have to. Also, I'm with you that I'm tired of Sam killing everything out there while Dean stands by. Not realistic in my opinion. I suspect the writers are trying to show how Dean is off his game, but it's not working for me because it feels so predictable at this point. The writers need to change things up to make them realistic. Just saying...

One last thing - I thought that Dean sounded very angry with Sam in his final words - repeating that he would do what he could to not die. Dean is *this close* to checking out mentally, which could cause a very serious injury or complication to himself or Sam.

Thanks for the ramble - hope you've had a chance to catch up on some zzzzzzzzzs. ;) Well, it's Friday, so I'll be back soon for the next installment.

Until then,
Irish
gaelicspirit
Feb. 16th, 2012 08:14 pm (UTC)
Hey you! Yeesh, talk about being late to the party. I think I'm about two weeks late to this reply. But I'm here!!! :)

Writing choice/directing choice -- either way, I loved the resulting effect. It just pulled me right in, up close. Not that I wouldn't have been anyway because, well, it's Dean, but this just enhanced it all.

I think that Dean would have given Emma as many 'outs' as he could and would have only shot her in self-defense, really, but he would have done it. He wouldn't have let himself get killed, no matter what they said in the car at the end. I don't think he's that far gone. Off his game, yes, but not quite suicide by monster levels.

Thank you for reading and taking time to comment. Means a lot to me. :)

G
impala1967
Feb. 10th, 2012 11:06 pm (UTC)
Hey gurl, hope the trip to Aussie was fun for you.

I've been debating on this episode. I've read too many reviews being negative towards Dean (but I supopose whats new), that he's old enough to make sure that he uses protection, that he should have never let the girl talk etc etc that I'm unsure of my own reaction.

First off ..... WOW WOW WOW hotness that we need to see more of. Jensen looks like he's lost a bit of weight. And he does look younger in that scene. I missed Cas' handprint and I'm a bit sad that they say Cas healed it at the end of S05. Just one more link gone for Dean.

Lets face it, that chick would never have let Dean use a condom .... she was there to get pregnant *pokes tongue at bad reviewers*

And Dean has always given people a choice ... become a monster and I'll put you down. I think that he would have done the right thing cause she was there to kill him. She just used a different approach cause he is a hunter. (I had to laugh though, dean having Missy Bender as his daughter. The Benders being one of my fav episodes)

Tonights episode is the last til the 10th I think .... which is good for me. I get back to NZ on the 10th after going to the LA con. So I won't miss an episode.

Catch your next review soon
gaelicspirit
Feb. 11th, 2012 05:52 pm (UTC)
Aussie was definitely fun -- but WAYYY too fast. I was jetlagged big time when I got back.

See, that's exactly why I don't read reviews. I know it's totally hypocritical of me to write a review, hope people read and comment, but not go read other reviews, but...I just don't like to be brought down by negative reviews if I happened to enjoy something differently than someone else.

I try - I do. I poke around cautiously if it's an episode people seem to be enjoying. But usually I just stay in the safety zone of my ramble and your comments. I do wonder, though, if my take isn't resonating with as many people these days. The comment numbers have started to drop. But, what can you do, right? Hopefully those -- like you -- who do still read still enjoy. :)

AND YES - Jensen looked afrigginmazing in that scene. Jimeny Crickets!

Honestly, I didn't give a 2nd thought to the condom issue until Sam brought it up. I figured he'd done his due diligence and either she poked a hole or something.

Dean giving Emma a choice was definitely Dean's style. I totally agree.

Have fun at the LA con!!!! :) Can't wait to see how it all goes.

Talk soon. :)
dripri
Feb. 10th, 2012 11:33 pm (UTC)
Hello. I hope you are enjoying your travels. I too am enjoying this season, and I liked this one also. I have nooo complaints about the scenery either. That Dean Wincester is TASTY! I'd take him and run if he'd let me. Oh, I want french doors on my bedroom too. Hey, if I'm dreaming, get a detailed list.

For the record, if Emma walked, I think Dean would have let her, like Amy's son. If she attacked he would have defended himself. At that point, he wasn't even sure a bullet would work. If these women are procreating every two years, have a spree of a dozen or so kids/killings, that is a lot of Amazons. If they continue to wreak havoc, they would have been on their radar a long time ago. As monsters, they don't seem to do anything else after killing Daddy, though that is bad. It is easy to see Dean's rational, "your not guilty until you attempt it".

Sam annoyed me a couple of time, though I revised my opinion on the second instance. The first time was when Sam was questioning Dean's competence, first during the stake out ignoring Dean's observations and intuitive responses and then with the condom usage issue. It was easy to set aside the irritation at first by thinking Sam hadn't witnessed what Dean had, and Sam did offer backup.

The lack of condom usage accusation is uncalled for. At this point the boys know the women are getting pregnant on purpose. How do you find successful, intelligent men on a one night stand that don't want to use protection for their own sake? Clearly the women are supplying a doctored product to ensure their desired results. Sadly, it isn't a new concept for some women, never mind monsters. Sam's judgmental side is unappealing.

The second time Sam annoyed me was when he was yelling at Dean in the car at the end paralleling the Amy killing. The situations were so different I didn't even understand the argument, especially when Dean didn't beat Sam up about caring for a monster. Especially when Dean didn't seem to blame Sam for doing what Sam felt he had to do. So totally unlike the Amy killing. What gets Sam off the hook here is Sam's fear revealed. Just don't get yourself killed. No wonder he is ranting. I would be too. Jeez, my heart just sank thinking about it.

Yep, our show is damn good.
PS, sorry I am late. It is ski season and my home becomes a really cheap B and B for friends and family. The fee for an overnight is a bottle of full bodied red wine and don't expect me to share. I really appreciate your rambles and look forward to them. My tardiness is not a reflection of my interest. Frankly your rambles and people's responses are my guilty pleasure.
gaelicspirit
Feb. 11th, 2012 05:40 pm (UTC)
Hi there!! I missed your comments -- no worries on being late, though. I was, too! :) And ski season (re: real life) always comes first, in my book. Just happy to see you again! And thank you for saying that your tardiness is not a reflection of your interest. I'm insecure enough to need to hear that.

French doors on the bedroom FTW -- I want a house BIG enough to have that, LOL!

You have a point -- I think that Emma would have needed to actually attack Dean for him to kill her -- but all indications pointed to her taking him out, even before Sam showed up. Guess we could ponder forever since they played it out differently.

I thought the situations were a bit different as well, but the show telegraphed that the end of this one was going to be compared to the Amy situation from the get-go. I thought, though, that from Sam's POV, he could see where he'd done for Dean what Dean did for him. From our POV, we could see levels of differences.

Sam's young plea of "don't get killed" cracked my heart and Dean's "I'll do what I can" finished the job. :( I am so addicted to our boys it's crazy.

Thanks again for taking time to read and reply. I really appreciate it. :)

emptyspaces11
Feb. 11th, 2012 07:21 pm (UTC)
Oh... This episode was hard...
I totally agree: "I will say I think it would have been better character development and growth if Dean had been allowed to kill Emma."
And I don't like to see the way Sam and Dean are going to act. Sam mut be more I don't know.. Sensitive? I think. And Dean more carefull? And this issue...The drink issue... I don't know if I am really expressing myself in a good way. But, I don't know hwo they will end this kind of matter.
Kill Emma looks a kind of revenge. I don't know.
But I loved the way you did the comment.
Thanks!
gaelicspirit
Feb. 16th, 2012 08:16 pm (UTC)
I'm with you in that I'd like Sam to be more sensitive to what Dean's going through...but at the same time it's not like Sam hasn't been (literally) through hell and is dealing with a lot of the same things (though in different ways) that Dean is.

It's a struggle because I want Dean to get a break, but right now, the only one able to offer him one can't really stand on his own, so to speak.

Thank you for reading and taking time to leave your thoughts! I really appreciate it.
bagginsdvm
Feb. 12th, 2012 01:54 am (UTC)
My DVR has gotten a workout while I've watched the shirtless Dean scene more than a few times.... Boy oh boy!

I miss the handprint but it makes sense that it was healed in Swan Song. I agree that it's disappearance takes something away from Dean & Castiel's friendship, just makes Cas' absence more poignant right now.

I definitely think the show wants us to believe that Bobby chose to stay & become a ghost, tethered to the flask. And of course Dean would hold onto the flask. MY heart hurt with Sam's statement about how it couldn't be Bobby moving the papers because that's what they want & they never get what they want. I understand Sam's anger & short fuse right now. He can't lose his Stone Number One too! "Just don't get killed!" Oh, Sammy!

I loved the mention of the rubber ducks! Makes me wonder what became of the 4 dressed up duckies I took to VanCon. At least I know the guys saw them since they held them for my photo ops!

I'm glad you had a good trip to Australia & safe return!
gaelicspirit
Feb. 16th, 2012 08:18 pm (UTC)
HA! I know what you mean. Thru Terry's Eyes sent me some screen caps of 'that scene' and I was like, hoo-lee-she-it. *fans self*

Guh, loved how you said Sam can't lose "Stone Number 1" -- that's so true. They're both barely hanging in there and need each other but also need a break so bad....

Love that you took rubber ducks to VanCon. Hee!! :)

Thanks for reading and commenting -- see you soon!!
ccase13
Feb. 12th, 2012 06:52 am (UTC)
review replies
I would be curious to know if you can count readers as well as those people who leave comments. I would think people are reading more reviewers and having less time to comment rather than you readership dropping.

I've read all your reviews and usually see your take as very reasonable and have little to add.

I do agree with the commenter who thought of course the amazon women were using their own deliberately leaky condoms. It's also very easy for fingernails to puncture a condom the man supplied.
gaelicspirit
Feb. 16th, 2012 08:21 pm (UTC)
Re: review replies
Hi there --

You raise a good question. I don't actually count readers...I'm not sure I know how to do that with LJ. Do you have any pointers? On other sites, like sn.tv, I can see how many hits the review gets, but I don't know how to do that here. *will research*

I'm glad to know you read -- and pleased you usually find my take reasonable. :) I try to be balanced, though my lean is toward Dean.

And yeah, the Amazons totally had their own agenda. Dean was drunk, too, so it would have been easy for her to sabotage it when he wasn't paying close attention since she was in the driver's seat.

Thanks for reading -- always -- and taking time to comment. I really appreciate it. :)
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