Gaelicspirit (gaelicspirit) wrote,
Gaelicspirit
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Stream of Consciousness, Episode 10.13

So I've decided that after a decade of stories about two complex, intriguing characters, writing of complex plots doesn't have to really matter so much.



Twitterland was right: this episode had a very Season 2-vibe to it. In fact, the images tossed our way in the THEN had me actually pausing my DVR to exclaim how young they both looked as we were reminded of different hunts that ended in the culmination of their motto: saving people, hunting things -- the family business. As Season 2 was, in fact, my favorite season, I didn't mind. And honestly? By now, I'm in it for the boys.

I gotta see what happens to them and how they react to it. How it happens doesn't so much matter anymore. It can't. Because if it did, well. *deep breath* Moving on!

The story with Halt And Catch Fire was very I Know What You Did Last Summer meets Transcendence. Not a lot of imagination behind the plot -- even the title, pulled from AMC's show of the same name about the personal computer revolution or some such, kind of gave up the ghost. So to speak. There were some rather creepy moments -- the Siri thing ordering Jane out of the car (gah!) or the sorority girl's Apple refusing to shut down -- and some rather cheesy moments -- the ghost's damaged visage appearing on every computer, tablet, iPhone in the vicinity -- and a moment that let me quote The Lost Boys ("Death by stereo!"), but all in all the story itself was rather tame. It was, as per usual, the affect the story had on our boys that had me putting this one solidly in the 'win' column.

It seems a taste of youth had a positive effect on Dean. He's like Extreme Dean (not the '80's band, which, incidentally, I loved more than words {see what I did there?}) going from The only thing I can control is me so it's sobriety and nothing but kale and wheatgrass to I choose to believe in myself and YOLO, so bring on the junk food bonanza. I like this latter Dean. I think I may have gained 5 lbs watching him eat, but I like it.

There was a peace and acceptance about him that had me breathing easier the whole episode. It wasn't like he was back and everything was normal again or anything like that -- it was more that he was living. He was eating junk food and checking out chicks and following the clues, dismissing red herrings and centering on the true danger. And apparently, even in 2015, after hunting with his technologically-savvy brother for ten years(ish), Dean is still my mother when it comes to the Internet. Hey, cute college co-ed, some of us Gen X-ers are hip to snapchat, ya dig? *grins*

Though, Dean telling Sam to Google the significance of driving the truck of your dead pal was great, if only for their facial expressions during that scene.

While the only thing the college kid's story was missing to be worthy of a true eye-roll was a bit of Jennifer Love Hewitt, I found the story of the actual ghost and his wife to be moving. The way she had him back via a supernatural chat room, kept him with her as long as possible...that made me rub my heart. She had no way of knowing what we all know -- the longer a spirit stays a ghost, clinging to its life, the bigger the chance of it turning vengeful. I mean, it even happened to Bobby. If I hadn't known that bit of ghost-lore, I would have done the same thing to keep my man with me as long as my wounded heart could take it.

And the look of sorrow and longing and regret for lost time in the ghost's eyes -- even through all the charring and scars -- when he listened to her face-time plea to let go kinda choked me up a bit. As much as I scoffed at the fact a ghost trapped in wifi could suddenly becoming corporeal and therefore easier to fend off, I liked that ending, that choice made by the ghost, and how it impacted Dean.

Sam had a very cautiously optimistic vibe the entire episode. Like when he shook his head in exasperation at Dean's heart attack on a cafeteria tray lunch, there was an expression of surprise when he paused and shifted, like he was consciously registering that for a moment he'd forgotten about his brother being a ticking time bomb. He wanted this hunt, but also couldn't lose focus on the fact that Cas was out there somewhere, getting a bead on Cain, and that might get Sam his brother back.

As is typical of his character, when Sam decides that he wants something or that something is the The Right Thing To Do, he fixates on it with a singular focus, anything else be damned. Finding Dad, overcoming Lucifer, completing the Trials. He takes up quests and until the quest is completed, it defines him. Everything else is superfluous details -- even hunts. Even when he is the one to push the hunt (like last week) it's done for the sake of the quest. In this case, the quest is still curing Dean.

It started with curing him of his...demon-ness...and now has transitioned to ridding him of the Mark. He said it as plainly as he could in the previous episode: he wants his brother back. In that moment, it was back to being a 36-year-old PITA rather than a 14-year-old PITA, but overall, he wants, ironically enough, what he once told Dean wasn't possible: to go back to how things were. He wants Dean to not be tortured by nightmares and in danger of killing a roomful of human thugs and at risk of delivering a potentially fatal beat-down on...whomever. He wants the Dean we saw in this episode, only all the time.

I think because despite how much he's resisted and denied it over the years, Sam's self is as much defined by Dean being his brother as Dean's is by watching out for Sam. Yellow-Eyes was wrong: Sam does need Dean as much as Dean needs Sam. It just took some time (and some death) for all Winchesters to get on the same page. On some level, this more-mature, weathered version of Sam knows this and is instinctively driving to get that back.

Dean captivated me in this episode -- which I know, shocks you down to your socks, right? But seriously. The transition this character has made from the dark, brooding, barely-hanging-on-to-sanity guy pre-hiatus, to the I can't go back there, I can't be that again, and I will do everything in my power to resist it guy we're seeing variations of now has been an anchoring effect for me this season. It's no secret that I love watching how Jensen brings the different aspects of Dean to life, and right now he's doing an artful job.

While his eating habits and fumbling through the mysteries of the interwebz was amusing, his pivotal moment, by far, in this episode was the BM scene in the car at the end. Again, there was that play of light on his face, cutting across his eyes and turning them a shade of pale green that had me catching my breath. Not because, ooo, pretty color, but because of the freedom you could see there. The peace in accepting his fate. "My peace is helping people, working cases. That's all I want to do."

The way he looked a bit rough -- scruff of a beard, lines around his eyes -- gave weight to how hard this journey has been for him. But the expression of peace in his eyes coupled with the words he chose infused that whole scene with a thin exhale of hope. I found it interesting how Sam initially resisted what Dean was trying to tell him -- seeing it as Dean giving up, when in actuality it was Dean doing what Sam has been all-but begging him to do for several episodes now: accept that the Mark is a part of him and choosing to live with it. I think Sam wanted Dean to "live with it" while they figured out how to get rid of it and didn't anticipate Dean's acceptance being so...complete.

I could totally see what he was saying, though, about needing to stop waking up with false hope. He needs to know who he is because he's not a quest kind of guy. He's a what do I need to do in this moment and in this situation to get out of it alive and protect as many as I can kind of guy. Sam lives with an eye on the future, Dean lives in the moment. And for an "in the moment" person, not knowing who he is means he doesn't know how to react when he needs to react, and that's incredibly debilitating. His need to just be whoever he was going to be, decide who that is and accept it totally resonated with me as far as his character has evolved.

My only wish was that he didn't sound so fatalistic when he said, "I'm going to fight it 'til I can't fight it anymore. When it's all said and done, I'll go down swinging." It was totally in-character for his "it's going to end bloody" persona that he's carried through the years, but it still made my heart hurt to hear because I want him to not have to fight so much and so hard. And I saw that same hurt reflected in Sam's eyes as he absorbed his brother's words. Of course, it's just when Dean accepts who he is and what he has to fight that everything is destined to be turned on its ear. That's just the way of the Winchester world.

Bring on the Lists!

LIKES:

  • The music had me grinning in this one. Not only did we get a little Avett Brothers (Head Full of Doubt; Road Full of Promise) but they mixed in some Hozier (Take Me to Church) as well. Nice college-esque selection, there.

  • Dean being all Jim Kirk about the female population at the Iowa college.

  • Agents Grohl and Cobain (also love that Dean was Agent Grohl; Dave is one of my absolute favorite musicians like...ever) --> though I did have to wonder that the girls didn't even blink at those names. I mean, I know Nirvana was a '90's band but Cobain? Nothing? Really?

  • The whole Gen X conversation and Dean trying to put the situation in his own language saying the car, "...went all Christine." "Who's Christine?"

  • Seeing the boys use an EMF. I love it when they go back to the basics like that. In fact, I just like a good old ghost story, period.

  • The obvious over-mocking of the hashtag habit before the blonde sorority girl was killed by her Apple. #creepy

  • The fact that Sam and I said "ghost in the machine" at the exact same time.

  • Sigma Theta Delta -- and Dean's deadpan expression as he translates to 'STD'.

  • Junk food Dean. Full stop.

  • "Cafe au Lait for the lady, and for me--" "A heart attack?"

  • "I didn't get half of that."

  • "I'll see if I can get this to go."

  • Death by stereo! (although it was utterly gross -- and goes to show that loud music is detrimental to your health)

  • Dean's whole speech to Delilah about relating to her guilt. "I do my best to make things right, whatever that may be."

  • Dean's pop-culture references to the ghost including both Shocker and Lawnmower Man.

  • The sympathy Sam showed the wife as she confessed to knowing her husband was haunting her laptop.

  • The wife talking the ghostly husband out of strangling Dean and convincing him to choose wisely.

  • "My peace is helping people, working cases. That's all I want to do."

  • "You can't stop fighting!" "The answer isn't out there, it's with me. I can't keep waking up with false hope. I'm going to fight it 'til I can't fit it anymore. When it's all said and done, I'll go down swinging."

  • Dean's face at the end. I just...yeah. You get me.

NOT SO MUCH:

  • Dean asking Sam if he's ready to "take a trip to the Midwest" when they head to Iowa. Um, fellas? You live in a bunker in Kansas. You can't get more Midwest than that. Silly writers.

  • Sam asking Dean, "So, if you died and I drove your car, you'd kill me?" Um...remember when he died and went to Hell for 4 months, Sam? And you inserted an iPod jack in the Impala? Yeah. Silly writers, again.

  • The ghost's image appearing on the laptop and then inexplicably corporealizing (is that a word? eh, it is now) when before it seemed he was attached to the wifi. That was kinda a little too convenient.


BURNING QUESTIONS:

  • Dean challenges Sam about Cain being a potential cure saying that if Cain could remove the Mark, he probably would have done it already, giving credibility to those of you savvy viewers who commented a few weeks back that yes, Gaelic, Cain still has the Mark. I don't know how I got so confused by that, thinking that Cain gave it over to Dean when he transferred it, but, well, there you go. Though now I'm wondering if killing Cain -- since Dean (+ the Blade) is probably the only one who can -- might be the 'cure' Sam is so desperately searching for.

  • So, Cas is trying to locate Cain, Charlie is looking for the Book of the Damned, is anyone looking for the demon tablet? I know it was mentioned previously and they said it was lost, is that where they've left it? I've lost track.

Thanks again for your patience in these being delayed and most of all for reading and for taking time to share your thoughts! You guys are brilliant and I adore seeing what you thought.

Until next week!
Slainte!
Tags: episode review, ramble, stream of consciousness, supernatural, what do you think?
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