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Stream of Consciousness, Episode 6.21

“I don't believe in happy endings, but I do believe in happy travels, because ultimately, you die at a very young age, or you live long enough to watch your friends die. It's a mean thing, life.” – George Clooney


Though they were shown together, I’m writing the rambles for the final two episodes separately as they were very distinct stories only dove-tailing together as any other episodes do. If you choose to read, I’d love your thoughts on both.

I’m hoping that I work my thoughts out on them as I write these. And I will admit: one is going to be easier to write than the other.

I’ll skip the THEN with this one as basically it was just a remember Lisa and Dr. Visiak? Okay, they’re gonna be back…oh, and here’s what happened last week with Cas in case you missed it.

NOW isn’t exactly now as the date reads March 15, 1937. It’s Providence, Rhode Island, and we’re in the old-fashioned study of a writer. A fire is burning desperately in the fire place, thunder, lightning, and rain are pelting the windows and jarring the writer as he pecks feverishly at the old-school typewriter. He’s drinking some sort of liquor. Made me chuckle a bit, that.

I always find it a bit easier to create with a glass of Cabernet next to me (one glass…I do have limits). I saw a quote once, though, that gave me pause: I’m a drinker with a writing problem. Made me think how it seems that sometimes, only the damaged can write the things I enjoy reading. Anyway! Moving on.

The writer is a scholarly-nerdish looking guy, oiled back black hair, thin, wire-frame glasses. I kept thinking I should know who he was, but I hadn’t watched the previews and I hadn’t been spoiled, so I was looking around the room for clues. Just as he types THE END, the door to the study opens creepily. Pulling open his desk drawer, the guys grabs a gun (a hefty one by the quick glance I got of it) and approaches the door, obviously frightened. There’s no one in the hall.

He shuts and locks the door, turning around and pours himself more whiskey/bourbon/whatever it was and just then, the window explodes into the room in a fury of glass and thunderstorm. A figure is standing in the shadows. It starts to approach him.

The writer stammers, “Please…we didn’t know…I’m sorry.” As he's backing away from the dark figure, he knocks his manuscript off of the heavy desk. Our focus is drawn to the manuscript as a terrible scream erupts off camera and blood splatters everywhere—and across the title page of the manuscript. The page reads, “Haunter in the Dark,” by H.P. Lovecraft.

I squealed a bit at this. Some of you might know I’m a huge Stephen King fan; I read in an interview by him once where he said that H.P. Lovecraft was an inspiration to him and for so many of the weird concepts and possibilities he creates in his stories. I hadn’t really investigated this writer beyond that, but I always thought If he inspired King, then he had to be pretty wonderfully twisted. I’m not sure how the man actually died…after this episode, I think I want to look into him a bit and see what they used and what they spun to make his lore and legend work for them.

I will admit that I thought he’d be a bigger player in the encompassing rest of the story, though. *shrug*

We move from 1937 to now now and are back at Bobby’s. It’s apparently the morning after Cas’ midnight visit to Dean. The boys are sitting in Bobby’s study surrounded by copious amounts of books. Dean has one open in his lap, but he’s not looking at it. He’s staring into the middle distance, obviously running last night’s encounter with his friend over and over in his head.

What could I have done – said – differently? Was I wrong? Why didn’t I see this before? How do I keep missing these signs from people I love? What is he doing? What are we going to do?

Sam, at Bobby’s desk, sighs a bit and looks up from the ginormous book he’s peering sightlessly into and tell Dean that at least he tried.

Dean: Fat lot of good it did. Why’d he even come? Samuel’s journals are pointless. Jebediah Campbell has squat to tell me about how to stop Cas from cracking open Purgatory.

I’m hoping, though, that those journals become more important in Season 7 when (and this is a bit of a spoiler jump past the next episode, but if you keep reading you’re going to find out anyway) they have no hope of angelic intervention for investigative help. Mainly because it would help make Samuel’s appearance and return in this season more meaningful.

It’s one of a list of things that still bugs me about the overall plot of the season: Samuel’s return and subsequent death. This may be me tugging at the loose thread that I should instead just cut off so that I can avoid unraveling the shirt, but…Crowley brings Samuel back to help find Purgatory since Cas won’t let him use the boys. He promises Samuel that he’ll bring Mary back as the incentive to work for him. Perhaps he even lies about where she is to prompt his obedience. We don’t know.

That’s the thing, I think. They don’t tell us enough details with some of the occurrences. Crowley ended up using Dean and Sam anyway, Dean had to go through the pain of not only seeing his grandfather back from the dead but seeing his extended family, killing a cousin, feeling a sense of betrayal when he found out that Sam had been hunting with Gramps the whole time he’d been separated from Dean. And then Sam -- our resouled Sam – was forced to kill his own grandfather. All because…why? Crowley wanted help that just wasn’t moving fast enough for him?

So, I’m hoping that we haven’t seen the last of Samuel’s influence; that the Campbell family library they found as a result of Samuel being back and Sam working with him will aid them in Season 7 in a way we weren’t able to see it work in Season 6.

Bobby comes downstairs and interrupts the maudlin frustration permeating the study. He tells them that the big deal isn’t the journals they have – it’s the journal they don’t. A journal of one “Moisha” Campbell (of the New York Campbells). Dean’s side-of-the-eyes glance when Bobby says this name is perfect. *grins*

Bobby reveals that Cas didn’t just come by for a midnight chat; he took Moisha’s journal. Sam, still sitting at the desk is all, uh, then we gotta get it back. Bobby hand Dean a manila envelope and says that they could just read the copy he made. *loves Bobby*

Bobby: Hi, glad to meetcha. Bobby Singer, Paranoid Bastard.

*hi-fives the grizzled old hunter*

So, they read. Dean comes in from the kitchen holding two cups of coffee and some papers. He hands one cup to Sam as he reads aloud. And, total aside? Something about that gesture…bringing his brother coffee…it said so much to me about where those two were now. Where Dean was in his head-space with Sam. They were back to being partners, a team, yes. But Dean had staked his flag squarely in Protective Caretaker Camp for Older Brothers. Others (like, admittedly, myself) might want more for him, but this is it for him in this moment: keeping Sam Sam and hunting down the monsters.

Everything else just hurts too much.

Dean (reading paper): Went to Dr. Phillips about the events of March 10th

Bobby tells them that happens to be March 10, 1937, and that Dr. Phillips is actually Lovecraft. Sam, bless him, immediate geeks out and has me grinning.

Sam: H.P. Lovecraft?

Dean, sipping his coffee, has a question mark painted all over his face.

Bobby’s like, Hello?!? Horror writer? Cthulhu?

Dean: Ah, no. I was too busy. Having sex with women.

*GUFFAWS* I love Dean. I just do.

Bobby: One notion that keeps coming up in his stories – opening doors to other dimensions and letting scary crap through.

Huh. Well, that definitely explains the world of weird that was King’s From a Buick 8.

Sam: So you think Lovecraft knew about Purgatory?

Bobby: All I know is, Moisha paid him a visit.

SO, they finally have a lead, right? To get to Purgatory first and stop Cas and Crowley from letting out all the monsters? I have to say this now because between you and me, I started to forget what the threat of Purgatory was to them.

For Dean, Sam, and Bobby, it wasn’t about the souls as is the apparent theme of the season. It was about the danger opening the door would pose to the world: releasing monsters for them to fight. Monsters like the Alpha’s they were dealing with at the beginning of the season (who…went away, apparently, when Mom came home).

Looking at it all through Cas’ eyes last week, I forgot about why it was scary to open Purgatory. I started thinking about Cas freeing those souls. Taking them up to Heaven – to fuel his war, sure, but at least they wouldn’t be suffering in Purgatory, right? So, it started to get turned sideways in my mind as to why Dean and Sam and Bobby were trying so bloody hard to stop him.

But…then I remembered the monsters. They’re hunters. Of course their focus is going to be on monsters. Stopping them from getting out. Stopping them from hurting people. Souls are secondary to monsters in their world.

We shift from Bobby’s, unexpectedly, to the Braeden’s. Ben is laying on his bed listening to his iPod (and I wish I could have figured out what song he was listening to because it sounded kinda cool) reading a graphic novel called “Cthulhu” (of course…why wouldn’t he be?). Downstairs, Lisa and a good-looking African American man are watching baseball on TV. Lisa brings him a beer, then snuggles down against his side. Ben confirms it later, but I could only assume that was the mysterious Dr. Matt.

Out of nowhere, a man crashes through the front door/window thing and grabs Lisa. Upstairs, Ben hears the commotion and sneaks to the top of the stairs, peering through the bars. Another big, scary man comes in behind Matt who has stood up to implore Big Scary Man #1 to let Lisa go. Big Scary Man #2 breaks Matt’s neck (gah!). Lisa sees Ben on the stairs and tries to turn Big Scary Man #1 away from the stairs, crying out as his grip tightens. Ben runs back up to his room, blocking the door handle with a chair.

As a mother, I can’t imagine what Lisa must be feeling right now. Terror for her own life, horror that she just watched her lover die, and absolute rage that her child was in danger and she was helpless to stop it. Guh, my belly just coiled at this part and it only got worse.

Ben calls Dean. We switch back and forth from Bobby’s to the Braeden’s as they talk. Dean on the phone is totally focused on Ben, his face tight, his eyes lazer-points of thought. Bobby is watching him, worried. Sam, though…his expression bruised my heart a little. I know he had to be aware of what Dean had gone through with Lisa and Ben because of him—leaving them, twice…scaring them when he was vamped, giving up on the normal he’d promised Sam he try for, all because of his love and devotion to his brother—and watching Dean go through this now was visibly wounding Sam.

Ben tells him that there are men in the house, they got mom, they killed Matt.

Dean: What are they? Did you see their eyes?

It was so telling that he said what. Ben didn’t see the eyes. Dean asks if he can get to Lisa’s closet – he left a shotgun in there. Ben can’t. Dean closes his eyes. For a brief moment I was reminded of this movie I saw once with Liam Neeson. I can’t remember the name of it straight off, but in it his daughter (Shannon from Lost) was kidnapped and she was on the phone with him. He asked her specific questions – enough information to help him find her.

Dean reminded me of Liam in this moment. Terror-filled about what was happening to this kid that he felt close enough to to be his, helpless to stop it, needing to focus him so that he could be saved. He tells Ben to jump out his window saying any bones he breaks won’t compare to what those men would do to him.

Ben goes to the window, but before he can jump, the men burst into his room. Dean is left yelling Ben’s name into the phone saying he was on his way, he was coming to get them now. He promises.

Dean: You with me, Ben?

Nothing. And then. Crowley picks up the phone. Sam is watching his brother and when Dean’s face shifts upon hearing Crowley’s voice, Sam’s eyes go almost flat with anger. I knew Crowley’s promise didn’t cover anyone other than Dean and Sam. I thought it would be Bobby, though, honestly. This is worse. This is much worse.

Crowley: Hello, Dean. Fancy a chat?

I noticed with this episode how Dean says the demon’s name. His lips push out and he says it like Cr-OWE-lee. When I’m talking about the demon, I find myself saying CRAW-lee. Funny what you notice at the end.

Dean threatens to kill him if he doesn’t let them go. It’s standard Dean – helpless or not, he’s still going to promise death to those who do harm to ones he loves. And he’s going to do his level best to follow through. I kinda hope he still gets his chance, as much as I love that British demon.

Crowley: Let’s get to the bit about how this goes. Your chocolate’s been in my peanut butter for far too long.

Hee. I love how they write Crowley’s dialog. I actually remember those Reese’s commercials.

Crowley ignores Dean’s threats, though Dean is pacing like a caged tiger in Bobby’s study, oblivious to the worried eyes pinned to him, his whole focus on putting weight to the threat in his words. Sam never takes his eyes off Dean. Bobby’s eyes kinda dart between the two. Crowley tells Dean that he is keeping them until Dean backs the hell off.

Crowley: I won’t hurt them – provided you and Jolly Green stand down. Got it? Splendid. Kisses.

Dean’s face as he shuts down the cell phone puts a whole new spin on “spitting nails.” He’s kinda bowed, his shoulders curled in a bit, and he looks – and talks – like he can’t quite breathe right.

Dean: He said Lisa and Ben keep breathing as long as we sit on our thumbs.

Sam: Think Cas knows?

Dean: Gotta assume he does.

That hurt a bit, his assumption. But, honestly? I couldn’t blame him. They found out so much about Cas in the recent days that they never thought he’d be capable of doing…knowing he’s working with Crowley is enough to not put anything past him.

Sam: What are we gonna do?

Dean: I tell you what we’re NOT gonna do. I’m gonna get them.

Atta boy! That’s my hero.

Sam: I’m coming with you.

Dean halts like he runs into an invisible wall, half turns and tells Sam he and Bobby have to stay on the Lovecraft thing. Sam’s eyes go hot and he tells Dean he’s crazy if he thinks Sam’s letting him do this alone.

Atta boy! That’s the Sammy I love.

Dean (looking at Bobby): This is a big ball. We can’t drop it now.

Bobby: Fine. But how are you two gonna find Lisa and Ben?

So, with those words, the teams were decided. No further argument from Dean about Sam accompanying him. Bobby fires up the Charger (yay!) and heads out to follow up on the Lovecraft thing. Sam and Dean summon Balty to the classic car graveyard behind Bobby’s house.

Balty: I’m sorry, boys, but do I look like a man servant to you? No? Then quit ringing for me.

Dean: It’s important.

Balty: I was drinking a ’75 Dom out of a soprano’s navel when you called. That was important.

Dean gives him the eyebrow shrug that basically says yeah, okay, I’ll give you that. Hee.

Sam tells Balty that Crowley’s alive and Balty, totally smug, says that they’ve been scooped – Cas already told him. Dean wants to know if Cas also told him that he’s Crowley’s butt-buddy (his words, not mine). Balty flinches slightly, his eyebrows folding. Sam presses the advantage and said that Cas and Crowley are going halvsies on the souls in Purgatory. Balty falters saying that yes, he knew, but it’s obvious this is news to him.

Dean: Look, Crowley and Cas took two people who are very important to me.

Balty’s like, and I care because….

Dean appeals to any shred of decency the angel might have, asking for help to save these innocent people. Balty’s like, hummm…and then leaves. Dean’s son of a BITCH echoes through the lot.

Sam: Let’s just call Cas. Maybe he doesn’t know anything….

Dean (his voice hard and hollow): We are Not. Calling. Cas.

Sam: So what then?

Dean just gives a helpless shake of his head.

Meanwhile, Bobby – cleaned up and looking like an investigative reporter for National Geographic – is interviewing some random guy who is apparently a collector of all things Lovecraft. This guy has a definite…um…respect…for Lovecraft's…talents.

Collector: He should be taught in schools. He’s up there with Dickens and Dean Koontz.

Heh.

Bobby: You must be catnip to the ladies.

Collector: I’m in a long-term online relationship.

Heh again.

Bobby asks him about March 10, 1937. The Collector wants to know if Bobby is working with the other guy – trench coat, looks like Columbo, talks like Rain Man. Bobby, his face shifting with the realization that they are still one step behind Cas, sits back slightly and tells the Collector that they’re with rival magazines.

The Collector tells Bobby that H.P. had a dinner party on March 10th – and the invited were six worshipers in a Black Magic Cult (he says it with capital letters). He says that they tried to open a door into another dimension. But, since there was no mention of cthulhu in the morning papers, they weren’t successful. He says he has a collection of letters about the night, but when he goes to get them, he sees that they’re missing. No prizes guessing who took them.

Bobby leaves and calls Sam – who is walking through the junkyard as he talks.

Bobby: Lovecraft tried to jimmy a dimensional door. Idjit.

He dug further and found out that every guest invited to the party was either dead or missing within a year. He’s going to have a chat with one of the guests that wasn’t invited. The maid had a nine year old boy and he’s currently locked in the same mental ward he’s been at since that night. *sad* He asks Sam if they have a lead on Lisa and Ben.

There’s a noise from the garage that Sam has finally reached in his trek through the junkyard.

Sam: We’re making a few inquiries.

We see inside the garage and Dean is torturing a demon, finally stabbing it to death with the Demon Killing Knife.

Bobby: How’s Dean?

I love that he asked. *rubs heart*

Sam: ‘Bout how you’d expect.

Back in the garage, Dean raises the bloody knife, saying, “Next customer.”

Sam steps inside the garage and there’s a bald-headed demon strapped to a chair in the middle of a Devil’s Trap. This whole scene made me hurt for Dean. First of all, the methods of torture used upon him and that he subsequently used on others during his tour in Hell have obviously not gone far from his mind. And with as caring as he can be to those few he lets in, he is definitely a dangerous person.

It made complete sense and was at the same time so very sad that he’d been pushed to this again – forgetting that the demons were possessing people. Two years ago, when Sam would dispatch demons in such a manner, it shocked Dean. It was one of the reasons, I think, that Sam thought Dean would understand his logic that using the demon-blood-enhanced-Force to pull the demon from the body without stabbing them to death was the better way to go.

But now, after all they’ve been through – after tours in Hell, after a year separated and a half a year with a stranger staring at him from his brother’s eyes…after loss after loss and facing down the Devil himself…after betrayal after betrayal and watching his last friend walk away from him – Dean has come back to using torture to get what he needs, damn the consequences of killing whomever the demon rode.

Sam: Dean, you’re running on whiskey and coffee…and whatever else you’re taking.

*yipe*

Dean: Yeah. And?

Sam: We’re grasping at straws here, man.

Dean (half-turning so that we see his profile, then darting his eyes slightly to the side to look at Sam): If I kill enough of these demons, eventually one of them’s going to tell me where Crowley is.

Sam: You’ve been at this for awhile. You need a break. Let me take over.

Dean moves away and Sam puts a hand on his arm to stop him. Dean pulls himself free.

Dean: Sam, back off! Lisa and Ben…wherever they are…it’s 100% on me. And if they’re hurt…. (his voice chokes off and he looks away) I’ll yell if I need you.

Sam looks almost chastised as he watches Dean return to the demon. Dean left them to protect them – and whether or not Sam remembers any of it, by now he obviously knows that truth. To have this happen to them despite Dean's efforts to the contrary…well, it’s killing him and Sam can see that. He leaves the garage and calls out to Cas.

Sam: Cas, I don’t know if you’re in on this Lisa and Ben thing, but if you have any heart…bring them back to us, man. Please. I’m begging you. I am begging, do you understand?

I love that he said ‘us’….

Cas doesn’t answer…but then we see that he’s standing there with his Invisibility Cloak on, watching as Sam walks past him. Next thing we know, Cas is walking into Autopsy 101. He confronts Crowley about taking Lisa and Ben – revealing to us that he knew nothing about it. Cas tells Crowley he should have talked to him first – to which Crowley snarkily replies that he’d rather ask forgiveness than permission. Cas repeats that he’s not to harm them.

Crowley: You’ve maxed out on putting humans off limits. You want to stop me? GO FIND FRIGGIN' PURGATORY!

Cas hears some kind of high-pitched sound and puts a hand to the side of his head.

Crowley: Call on the Batphone? Never call during business hours, do they?

Cas: I’ll be back.

He says it with as much inflection and promise as The Terminator. Turns out it’s Balty and he wants to know if Crowley is “in flagrante” with the King of Hell. Cas lies, saying of course not. Balty calls him on it, saying he's always been a rotten liar, and wants to know why. Cas says it’s a means to an end, but Balty wants to know what the end is. Cas tells him it’s to win the war.

Balty: I can only assume you’d be the vessel. Suck up all those souls into yourself. All that power.

Huh – I hadn’t thought of that. I had just been assuming the souls would go to Heaven to fight on his side or something – burn brightly there or something. I should have realized when we saw Cas use Bobby’s soul as fuel to save the boys in Frontierland that it would be more…personal…than that.

Cas tells Balty it’s the only way, Balty says it’s too much power and he’ll explode and take half the planet with him. Cas assures him with an eerie calm that that won’t happen. Cas demands to know if Balty is with him or not and Balty, with a shift of his eyes that may as well be fingers crossed behind his back, says in for a penny, in for a pound.

Cas wants to know how he found out and Balty says that Dean and Sam (only he calls them Cas’ howler monkeys) are just a touch worked up about this kidnapping business. Huh. Wonder why?

Anyway, Bobby is at the mental institution that is home to the now 80-something year old maid’s son. Cas had been there, too, it seemed. The Old Guy pegged him for a liar: He’s not who he says he is. He didn’t have the same shining about Bobby, though. Must’ve been the angel-thing that got the Old Guy. Bobby presses him for information about the dinner party on March 10th.

Old Guy: Everyone wants to know about the night with the great H.P. Lovecraft.

Then, sounding like the nine-year-old he was, the Old Guy leans forward and asks, “Do you believe in monsters?”

Bobby says he does and the Old Guy tells him not to say it too loud or they’ll lock him in here, rest of his life. So. Sad. He saw something real – something very real and very scary – and they thought him crazy and he spent his whole life locked in a mental institution. Makes me think about how close John or even Dean – at four – came to the same thing happening to him. If they hadn’t managed to fall off the grid, if they hadn’t been subversive and careful…yikes.

Bobby promises him that no matter what he says, he’ll buy it. The Old Guy says that the spell worked. The door opened and something came through but no one saw it except him. Bobby wanted to know how he knew.

Old Guy: It took my mother. It went into her. She wasn’t the same. She even smelled different. She disappeared and one by one, they all start dying.

Aww. I think I liked the Old Guy the best in this. He just got to me – especially the bit about her smelling different. I always say I could be blindfolded and pick my kid out of a crowd just by smelling her hair. You just…you know.

Bobby: Sorry. About your mom.

Old Guy (looking teary, sorrowful, and thankful all at once): You’re the first person who ever said that.

Guh. Good Lord in 80-some odd years no one told this man they were sorry for what he’d gone through? *loves Bobby more*

Old Guy (perking up): Hey! You wanna see a picture?

He hands Bobby an old picture of his mom and Bobby looks horrified, whispering, “I’ll be damned.”

I was like argh! Show us! Who is it?!? I had no clue. I should have, but I didn’t.

Anyway, back in the garage-of-pain, Dean is getting tired and sloppy. He fills a syringe with what looks like blood and approaches the beat-up bald demon still strapped to the chair spouting threats of skinning him and such before he kills him. Unfortunately, he drags his foot and smears the edge of the Devil’s Trap so before he can make good on any of his threats, the demon mind-thrusts him back against a parked van (presumably the one they used to round up these demons to torture) hard enough that it breaks the window.

Before Dean can do more than gasp, the demon breaks free and advances on him, grabbing him by the throat and telling him to shut up. Dean is quickly weakening. I had just started to wonder where Sam was when Cas suddenly shows up and fries the demon with his hand. Dean gasps, staggers loose, then gapes at Cas.

Dean (barely breathing): I didn’t ask for your help.

Cas: Regardless, you’re welcome.

Dean (walking past Cas and seeing the broken Devil’s Trap): Why are you here?

Cas: I didn’t know about Ben and Lisa.

Dean: Yeah, right.

Cas (looking sad): You don’t believe me.

Dean: I don’t believe a word you’re saying.

And though it’s sad, what’s happening to this relationship, I don’t blame Dean. Cas has lied to his face – for months – and Dean believed every word and found out that he was wrong about so much. His trust compass is totally screwed. I have a sister who has done that before. Lies with guileless eyes and you swear it’s the truth, but then you find out you’re wrong and no matter what she says, or how much you want to believe her or how innocent she appears, you are afraid to be wrong again. You’re afraid she’ll get you again.

Cas: I thought you said we were like family.

Dean, watching him speak, has tears in his eyes.

Cas: I think that, too. Shouldn't trust run both ways?

Dean (giving in): Cas…I just can’t—

Cas: I do everything that you ask. I always come when you call. And I am your friend. Still. Despite your lack of faith in me. I just saved you again. Has anyone but your closest kin ever done more for you? All I ask is this one thing.

This is hard, it really is. Because Cas can’t see why Dean doesn’t understand – or at least just trust him, regardless – and Dean can’t see why Cas doesn’t understand – or just trust him regardless. They both are convinced they’re right…and in their own ways, they both are. And both are too stubborn to give in. One doesn’t really know how and the other has had too far too many times.

Plus, I think it goes back to the analogy from last episode about Cas being a child in so many ways – especially when it comes to the human emotions he’s playing with. He may be confident about the power of the souls, but he has a lot to learn about the power of human emotions. They don’t follow logic. They’re stronger than logic.

Dean: Trust your plan to pop Purgatory?

I kept thinking in this moment that if Cas had just told him how he could guarantee that the monsters wouldn’t get loose – if he’d just give Dean some more details – Dean might’ve been willing to trust him further. But by just saying “trust me” after it had so recently been revealed that he lied about so much…no wonder Dean is gun-shy.

Cas: I’ve earned that Dean. I came to tell you that I will find Lisa and Ben. And I will bring them back. Stay behind me. The one time I ask.

(Well, it’s not really the one time, though, is it? He did ask that – and in a more violent way – when Dean almost said ‘yes’ to Michael. At least from my POV.)

Dean: You’re asking me to stand down? (His whole demeanor changes from weary sorrow to total anger as he advances on Cas.) That’s the same damn ransom note that Crowley handed me. You know that, right? No thanks. I’ll find them myself. Why don’t you go back to Crowley and tell him that I said you can both kiss my ass.

Dean turns away, swallowing, and puts the side of his fist to his mouth. Cas looks bereft for a moment, then leaves in an angel woosh.

Bobby’s Charger is outside a house with some kind of protection symbol painted on the door. He knocks and…Dr. Visiak opens. Ah-HA! So that’s who was in the picture. She invites Bobby in and he says that he knew how to find her because he knew of her safe houses—and this one isn’t very safe. He tells her he know what she is (though they never really tell us, dammit).

It’s a cute conversation – rather than a threatening omg you’re a monster conversation. She’s not exactly from Milwaukee and she kinda flubbed her age by about 900 years.

Bobby: What’s your game? Eve came through and raised all kinds of Hell quickly. What’s with the slow build?

Visiak says that they’re not all alike, even if she is from Purgatory. She says she is what she is (though…what that is we never find out) and she happens to be a friend. She says they’re lucky she came through – she likes it here. Bobby asks if she killed Lovecraft and she says, “Please. That guy couldn’t even write ‘Hello.’” She goes on to say she wants to help – why did they think she gave Dean the sword?

But…it leaves a hole. If Visiak didn’t kill Lovecraft, then what did? Seems like something else came through that opening besides her. Because something also killed the rest of those people. And since we never go there in the final two episodes, I’m hoping it’s a hole they intentionally left to allow the boys something to hunt – a real monster to fight instead of a season’s worth of Red Herrings. But…I’ll get to that in the next ramble.

Bobby warns her that this all comes down to one angel who is looking for Purgatory and if Bobby found her, Cas isn’t far away. He says the only way to stop him is to get ahead of him, but she won’t tell Bobby where Purgatory is because it’s too dangerous – for anyone. Bobby offers her protection, but she says he’s ‘just a man’ and she’s better off protecting herself.

Yeah, well, we’ve seen how ‘just a man’ has saved the world countless times, sister. You shoulda trusted him.

Back at Bobby’s, Sam’s pouring himself a drink and Balty pops in, calling him on it, saying that’s more Dean’s gig.

Sam: Stressful times.

Balty: We need to talk. Because…and I know I’m going to regret this, but…I’m officially on your team. You bastards.

Hee. I love snarky, British baddies. We need more next season.

Sam fetches Dean and they all stand in Bobby’s dark kitchen and hear Balty out. He’s on their side for survival. He didn’t like the answers Cas gave him and thinks Cas is insane for wanting to swallow a million nukes, so they should consider him their double agent. Plus? He found Lisa and Ben. But he can’t get them out because the place is angel-proofed.

Balty: Guess Crowley doesn’t trust Cas. Seems that marriage is going swimmingly.

Emotions follow thought like ripples across Dean’s face as he absorbs the implications of what Balty is saying. His instinctive self-preservation that led him to not trust Cas is being shaken a bit. He asks Balty to get them as close as he can. Balty agrees, but says that after that? They’re on their own.

He takes them to some alley behind a warehouse.

Balty: All right, boys. This is where I get off. God be with you and what have you.

They go into stealth mode and Dean knifes one demon, tossing him over a rail to Sam, who catches him and sets him silently on the ground. They go inside – Sam carrying a shotgun and Dean a knife and a bag o’weapons. Dean nods to Sam and says, “Be careful.” He goes one way, Sam the other. They move silently through the dark and look TOUGH doing it. But…it’s not good enough.

Sam, covering a hall and some boxes with the shotgun, gets jumped from above and knocked out. The demons drag him into a side room and lock him inside, unconscious. Whoops.

Meanwhile, Lisa and Ben are tied, sitting, to a post in some lower room. Three demons enter and head down some stairs to a table across the room. Ben looks really pale – like…vampire pale – and Lisa is watching everything. Next thing you know, the sound of a struggle is coming from the outside of the room. Demon #1 goes to investigate and the sounds increase. Demon #2 follows suit and BLAMMO! Demon #2 is blasted through the door. Dean fights Demon #3, dispatching him using The Knife and then kicks him back over the rail.

Bad. Ass.

Lisa: Dean, thank God.

Dean (hurrying down to them): Gonna get you outta here.

He cuts them loose and turns to lead the way out when Lisa surprises him, grabs the knife and then Ben, holding the knife to Ben’s throat. Ben is silent, scared. Dean is like WTH? He turns, eyes darting in a slowly dawning realization as Lisa’s eyes go demon black and she tells him that the brats going nowhere and neither is she.

Dean’s expression falls and then goes flat.

I started to think about the Old Guy knowing the moment the creature took over his mom – how she smelled different. I wonder how long Ben had known something was wrong with Lisa.

Demon Lisa: Crowley thought you might come, so he had me jump this hot little piece of ass for insurance.

Demon Lisa is fabulous. I don’t mean in a good way...except that I do. She’s wonderfully wicked. I think they should have had Lisa be bad a lot earlier in the season – would have added to her level of angst in Dean’s life. She was just very cruel. Well-played cruelty.

Dean advances but she presses the knife to Ben’s neck and tells Ben that she can hear his mother thinking. Dean tells him not to listen. Demon Lisa teases Dean that she was just going to say Dean was Ben’s real dad and the look on Dean’s face when he hears this is crushing. For one tiny, brief moment, he almost believes it. Then Demon Lisa says she’s kidding and who knows who Ben’s dad is – his mom is such a slut.

Dean: You shut your mouth!

DLisa: Oh, now you’re her white knight? She wishes she never met you, Dean. You’re the worst mistake she ever made. (She looks at Ben) Second worst. After keeping you.

Dean (to Ben): It’s not your mom. She’s lying.

DLisa: Says the C minus lay with ten miles of daddy issues. Whatever gets you through the night, Tiny Tim.

Dean advances again (and I have to say that ticked me off as well on his behalf).

DLisa: Back off cowboy.

She continues to taunt Ben. Dean is working a flask of Holy Water down his sleeve and calls out to Ben.

Dean: Ben, look at me. Look at me. You’re gonna be just fine.

Ben’s eyes are wide and afraid and they cling to Dean’s face desperately. Dean takes advantage of Demon Lisa’s attention on Ben and throws Holy Water in her face, pulling Ben away to safety. Demon Lisa launches at him and they struggle, Dean losing the knife. He yells at Ben to grab it, which Ben does. Dean backs away, not hitting Demon Lisa, who taunts him about that. Lifting his hand, Dean starts to recite the exorcism.

Demon Lisa shakes a moment, telling him he better stop. She hits him, chokes him and he keeps on with the rite. Then she grabs a narrowed length of pipe, backs away from him and stabs herself in the side. Dean chokes off the words of the exorcism, looking completely destroyed. He glances quickly at Ben, and then in a hollow voice, continues the exorcism. The demon ejects from Lisa and she falls to the ground.

Dean hurries over to her as real Lisa comes around and gasps out in pain.

Dean: I know, honey.

Oh, my goodness, my heart. When he said those words to her, pressing his hand on her wound and causing her more pain, but saving her life, my heart just flipped over.

I knew then what would happen with them and emotion welled up inside of me so that it sat like a football at the base of my throat. It’s just Dean’s plight, to be continually left alone even as he unconsciously, desperately reaches out. Sometimes he ends up pushing them away – like Cas – because the gray he’s learned to live inside just isn’t gray enough. Sometimes he pushes them away – like Lisa and Ben – because he loves them too much to risk hurting them as only his life can.

*rubs heart*

He breaks my heart. And God help me, I love that he does that to me. That a character can me feel such real, raw emotions. I love that I can’t let go of his plight days after I turn away from an episode. And I love that I worry about what is going to happen to him.

Ben is in shock, staring at his mom, unmoving. Dean is all motion, though. He is in a world of hurry and there’s no time to comfort or coddle. Suddenly I saw John Winchester in him, saw how he might’ve learned, might’ve reacted to a moment of tension and tragedy. Dean calls Sam on his cell, but gets his VM – because, of course, Sam is unconscious in a side room. Dean can’t get Ben to snap out of it with words so he smacks him. Ben grabs his cheek, but blinks and finally looks up at Dean.

Dean tells him, gently, that he has to pull it together, his mom needs him. Tells him to get the salt gun and that he’s going to have to carry Lisa, so Ben has to handle the gun. If anything comes at them, shoot it. Dean picks up Lisa, tells Ben to get the knife, and they head for the stairs.

Dean (to Ben, all business): Keep your elbows in, gun tight to your shoulder, and watch for the kick.

A bad guy comes immediately.

Dean: Ben!

Ben: KA-POW!

Bad guy down. Ben is staring at it, sick. In that moment I remembered the first episode when Ben wanted so badly to fire Dean’s gun, wanted to do what he did, pointing out that Dean had done it when he was Ben’s age. I remembered Dean’s vehemence that he never touch the gun, that Ben’s life was going to be different, that he was going to have choices. I remembered the moment in Ben’s room when Dean said he was leaving to protect him from this life and Ben said he was walking out on his family.

And still, they ended up here. Talk about a tragedy.

Dean (over his shoulder to Ben): Pull it together! Do you want your mom to die?

Harsh, but necessary. Sometimes there’s no time to use soft words. I’ve hated it, but sometimes I’ve had to say the truth to my daughter about her father’s health so she’ll know why she needs to be very, very good – extra-special good – on some days. I’d love her to believe in magic and unicorns forever and never see the more serious side of life, but that’s just not possible or realistic. I really felt for poor Ben, though. His innocence was shattered. Completely.

They get up the stairs and we hear Sam banging on the inside of the door where he’s trapped. Dean lays Lisa down and shoots the lock off of Sam’s door. Picking her back up once Sam is free, he tells his brother they need a ride. That’s the draw-back of angel transport, I guess. No get-away car. Sam handles that job nicely and boosts a Jeep Cherokee. Dean climbs in the back, cradling Lisa, and Ben sits in the front looking nervously over his shoulder.

Dean: She’s fine, Ben. (He voice is thick and shaky with worry, fear, and tears – he sounds just like he did at the end of AHBL1 when he held Sam in his arms in the mud of Cold Oak). She’s gonna be fine. Sam, you gotta go faster, man. She’s fine. She’s gonna be fine.

*Heart. Breaks.*

At the hospital, Lisa is hooked up to machines and Dean and Ben are flanking her looking numb and sad. Dean looks over at Ben and says, very softly, that he’s sorry.

Ben gets up and walks out and Cas is suddenly standing there.

Dean (his voice empty): What do you want? She’ll be dead by midnight.

And I remembered that Cas hadn’t found them for him. Hadn’t saved them as he said he would. Not that Dean agreed to the terms of Cas’ request. But this is what I’d wanted in a way – less angel intervention. I mean, it doesn’t stay that way in this situation, but…I wonder. I wonder if Dean would be better off if Cas hadn’t come to him in this moment. If nature had been allowed to take its course. I mean, he still loses them. Just…wondering is all.

Cas: I’m sorry.

Dean (sounding a bit like a child himself): I don’t care. It’s too little, too late.

Cas: Regardless, I didn’t come for you.

He moves over to Lisa and places his hand on her head, saying she’s fine now and would wake soon. Dean stands, close to tears.

Cas: I said I’m sorry, and I meant it.

Dean (choked up, forcing out the words): Thank you. I…wish this changed anything.

Cas: I know. So do I. All else aside, I just wanted to fix what I could.

Oh, the ending of this friendship, this brotherhood…it’s so sad. It’s not what I’d hoped for after watching everything through Cas’ eyes last episode. I suppose if I make myself, I can see why they are taking Cas down this road – turning it back to all the brothers have is each other. Which is both cool and completely tragic. They are destined to have such a lonely life, these two brothers. I would love more for them – and at the same time, I love that their unity is returning. It’s…confusing to say the least.

But I am missing Cas already. The one-liners of uncertainty he’d throw our way. I’d grown accustomed to it. And it’s going to be a strange change in Season 7. But, I’m getting ahead of myself. Sorry.

Cas begins to walk from the room and Dean stops him, asking him to do one more thing for him. I knew exactly what he was going to ask, and I saw his logic and realized I’d known the minute he’d asked Ben to pick up the gun back in the warehouse that this was the only choice for him, the only way he could live with himself. But it hurt. It hurt on his behalf.

Moments later, Lisa wakes up and Ben is sitting by her, watching her. He tells her that they were in a car accident and she’s like, omg are you okay which would be any mother’s first reaction. He says he’s fine but she hit her head pretty hard. Dean, hovering outside the door, knocks on the frame. Lisa looks over and there’s a flicker of interest when she sees him (I mean, what woman wouldn’t look at him like that) but no recognition. Ben asks who he is.

Dean: I’m Dean. They guy who hit you.

Lisa (in a small voice): Oh.

Dean: I…lost control for a moment. I just…wanted to say I’m sorry. I’m real happy you two are okay. Glad…your life can get back to normal now.

Lisa (smiling at him): We’re okay. So that’s what’s important.

Dean gives them a shaky smile that’s happy and sad all at once.

Dean: I’ll leave you two alone. (He looks at Ben) You take care of your mom.

He turns away and there are tears in his eyes. Not once this whole time does he let them fall, though. He has to pause and brace himself against the wall as if someone just punched him in the gut. He pulls in a shaking breath and that’s when I realized I was crying. He may not have let them fall, but I did.

This is the woman – the family – that he thought of when he was making a choice to die. This is the family that his brother made him promise to go to after he made the choice to die. This is the family that sheltered him through a year of nightmares and loneliness, the helped him put the pieces of his shattered self back together again, that brought him into their home and made him feel worthy of love for a brief time. This is the family that he chose his brother over. This is the family that he left to protect. This is the family that was his only -- only -- contact with peace and hope outside of the only life he’s ever known.

And he has to remember all of that. He has to remember everything.

He leaves the hospital, rubbing a hand over his mouth. Sam is waiting for him in the car and they climb in, Sam watching him with accusatory eyes.

Sam: Dean, you have pulled some shady crap before, but this has got to be the worst. White-washing their memories? Take it from someone who knows—

Dean looks over at him and his expression is one in serious, physical pain. His eyes are red-rimmed and his face is tight.

Dean: You ever mention Lisa and Ben to me again, I will break your nose.

Sam blinks at him, shocked. “Dean….”

Dean: I’m not kidding.

The tears swim in his eyes and he turns back to the steering wheel.

The thing is, until Sam said something, it never crossed my mind that erasing their memories of him was shady. I mean, I did wonder if the white-wash came with an at-home clean up. They have a broken house and a dead man in their living room last we knew. That’s gonna be hard to explain or understand if Cas didn’t fix that, too.

But, I didn’t see it as shady because I saw why Dean felt he had to do it. All the pain in their lives came from him. From the moment he came back to them. And from his point of view, if they didn’t remember him, their innocence was returned. Ben never killed a man. Lisa was never demonized. They could live as they had before – as 90% of the population of this universe does. Clueless of what really lurks in the shadows.

It doesn’t necessarily make them any safer; I mean, technically they were only used because of what they meant to Dean. And Dean hasn’t forgotten. I mean, he doesn’t get to forget anything – even for one moment of peace.

He remembers Mary’s death, John putting himself back together again. He remembers keeping the truth about Monsters from little Sam and mending his father. He remembers the look on John’s face when he made him promise to save Sam or kill him. He remembers feeling Sam die. He remembers making the deal for his life. He remembers Hell – all forty years of it. He remembers fighting to avert the Apocalypse. He remembers a past where his parents were young and happy and a deal was made. He remembers seeing the future and Sam as Satan. He remembers searching for his brother in the eyes of the being pummeling him to death. He remembers watching Sam fall into the earth. He remembers the year without Sam and the six months with only the shell of him.

He remembers Lisa and Ben.

And I saw him feel the weight of those memories so keenly is bowed him in the hospital hallway. So this choice was the only humane thing he could do. It was, from his point of view, a gift of life to them.

But then, I heard Sam say “take it from someone who knows” and I realized that for Sam, what Dean did was unfair and took away a freedom that every human should be allowed: choice. He may understand why he’s not be able to remember Hell (in this moment) or all the horrible things he did while soulless, and he may agree to it, but it doesn’t mean he’s come to terms with it. And I could understand Sam seeing it as shady. I just wanted him to step outside himself for a moment and look at it from Dean’s viewpoint so that he didn’t hold it against his brother in the future.

Although, I doubt I have to worry about that. This was the writer’s way of closing the Lisa and Ben chapter in Dean’s life. Taking them from him without killing them (and recycling the Jessica storyline in a way). I highly doubt we’ll ever see them again. Doesn’t mean Dean won’t think about them and feel the pain of their loss, but I don’t think S7 will bring them back to him. If they did…it would just be to hurt him and there are plenty of other ways (as we’ve seen) to do that.

The boys drive away from the hospital and the final tag to the episode is of Visiak leaving her safe house, getting to her car and Cas showing up behind her looking dangerous and grim. He puts his hand on her shoulder and they vanish.

I’m going to roll right into the next ramble, but it’ll be a few hours before it’s up. That one is going to be a bit harder to write for a number of reasons (and I’ve discovered that writing these on Saturday is a bit hard with my Mo Chuisle anxious for Mama-time). I hope to hear your thoughts on both. I can imagine there are many – and that they’re rather diverse. I’m still sorting out what I thought about the finale.

But what I thought about this one…Dean is the kind of hero that would sacrifice his own heart and happiness for the sake of others, time and again. Because of that, he makes some tough choices but he also doesn’t see clearly some of the choices of others. He’s lost a love, a son (in a way), and a friend in this episode and all were because he felt he knew what was right. I can’t help but agree with the way he sees the world for the most part, though I know that it will always leave him lonely.

I just hope that when the dust clears and we reach the true end, while it may not be happy, he has the one person he’s sacrificed the most for by his side: Sam. Because if they end up losing that…the soul that is Dean will be empty and there’s nothing heroic about that.

Thank you, as always, for your time. I hope you found this worth it.

Slainte.

As the episodes were shown back-to-back, here's the link to the ramble for 6.22.

Comments

( 81 Tall Tales — Tell Me A Story )
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princess_pavi
May. 21st, 2011 07:30 pm (UTC)
That was ... wonderful. Great ramble, and as always, it helped me pick up things I'd missed the first time around, like Dean bringing coffee for Sam too. Those are the little things I love.

I've never been a big fan of the Lisa/Ben storyline, though Sorry, but, I don't know - I've felt, once or twice, when Season 6 began that she could have been a bit more understanding of Dean and his lifestyle (esp during the vamp epi. But maybe that's just me). I didn't expect the way this epi ended - that came out of the blue. But somehow, it felt right.

The moment when Dean exorcises the demon out of Lisa and she stabs herself (or rather the demon does), and says, "You exorcise me, and she dies," and there's this stricken look on Dean's face as he falters, and then continues - gah. Wonderful.

Felt horrible for him and Cas though. Considering what came next. :o

Again, thanks for the ramble. They make my day (night, really):)
gaelicspirit
May. 30th, 2011 01:12 am (UTC)
Thank you so much for reading and taking time to share your thoughts. I can't tell you how touched and thankful I am that you've enjoyed these rambles. You (and comments like yours) make the time I spend writing these worthwhile.

I think my attraction to the Dean/Lisa storyline wasn't so much Lisa, specifically, but Dean having love, a family, a life, a home outside of Sam and hunting. Something that gave him hope and the chance of peace.

I don't know if he has much of a chance for that outside of Lisa now. Not the way they've written things, anyway.

Dean (and Jensen's portrayal of that character) has captured my attention and my heart like no other character before him. And I've watched a LOT of TV. ;) I agree with you whole-heartedly. Wonderful.

Thanks again for your comments. See you next year?
ramblin_rosie
May. 21st, 2011 07:32 pm (UTC)
Very well said, all of it--I appreciate your rambles so much, Gaelic. And while I understand Cas' asking Dean to trust him and support him *just once*... what he's asking is *wrong*, and Dean has told him so point blank. (Rule 51, Cas!) So no, of course Dean can't get behind him.
gaelicspirit
May. 30th, 2011 01:21 am (UTC)
Thank you, Rosie. I always love seeing your name in my inbox in reply to these rambles. You help make the time spent writing them worthwhile. :)

I love you referring to Rule 51. *grins* The whole journey with Dean and Cas' friendship this season was so hard to watch. Hard on my heart, that is.

We'll have to see what happens next year, yeah?

Thanks again.
chemm80
May. 21st, 2011 08:12 pm (UTC)
It’s Providence, Rhode Island, and we’re in the old-fashioned study of a writer. A fire is burning desperately in the fire place, thunder, lightning, and rain are pelting the windows and jarring the writer as he pecks feverishly at the old-school typewriter.

Was I the only one who saw that and thought, "It was a dark and stormy night..."?

I will admit that I thought he’d be a bigger player in the encompassing rest of the story, though. *shrug*

I feel like they tried to cover an awful lot in the last two episodes, possibly bit off a bit more than they chould chew, there.

Bobby’s like, Hello?!? Horror writer? Cthulhu?

Dean: Ah, no. I was too busy. Having sex with women.


It was cute, but I feel like Dean would have SOME idea, since "Call of Cthulhu" is the title of a Metallica song, and you know...his life kind of IS a horror novel. But it was a humorous way of handling the required exposition. They could hardly have had Bobby or Sam not know who H.P. Lovecraft was, considering all the trouble they've gone to to paint them both as bookish geniuses.

Demon Lisa is fabulous. I don’t mean in a good way...except that I do. She’s wonderfully wicked

I agree. Sampson's a good actress--even though her character wasn't as complex as some, she made me buy every bit of it--willing to give Dean chance after chance because of what she saw in him for Ben and for herself, while clearly realizing he was damaged.

And I think the part where Lisa got possessed, stabbed, exorcised and rushed to the hospital was my favorite part of the episode. Such badassery, all around. And I'm gonna have to rewatch for sure, because I missed Dean saying "I know, honey." :D

I realized that for Sam, what Dean did was unfair and took away a freedom that every human should be allowed: choice.

Exactly. It's kind of horrifying, really. I tend to think that Cas must have made some changes to the timeline rather than just wiping their memories; otherwise Lisa and Ben are going home to a dead boyfriend in the living room, right? And if it's an altered timeline that only Sam and Dean remember, or whatever, like in My Heart Will Go On, then the rest of the world doesn't know that these two mean anything to Dean either, right? Mostly I think they just wanted to bring the Lisa and Ben story arc to an end without killing them, as you alluded to later in the Ramble.

Overall I think I liked this one well enough. Having two together like this, especially ones that they crammed so very much into, and this late in the season, makes it awfully hard to process everything. Oh well...we've got all summer, right? :D
gaelicspirit
May. 30th, 2011 01:41 am (UTC)
Hey you -- before I reply to this comment, I want to say a sincere thanks for reading and taking time to comment on several of the rambles throughout the season. It always makes me smile to see you.

Was I the only one who saw that and thought, "It was a dark and stormy night..."?

Nope. ;)

I feel like Dean would have SOME idea, since "Call of Cthulhu" is the title of a Metallica song, and you know...his life kind of IS a horror novel.

You read my mind. *laugh* But I think sometimes the writers forget some of the aspects of the character they created. Somewhere along the line -- and I'm aware that this is going to sound totally out there -- I started separating who Dean is from how some writers write him. As if were it not for certain choices by certain writers, he would have or wouldn't have done x, y, and z. So if he ever does something like this where I'm like, really, Dean? I find myself being more really writers?

*hides face*

Did you go back and watch to hear the "I know, honey," part? Because that? Just totally turned my heart over.

The logistics of the mind wipe is a bit of a hand-wave, I think. He would have had to not only clean up their house and removed Matt's body (or brought him back to life), but he would have had to alter the memories of the people in their lives that knew of Dean as well.

But they do stuff like that all the time with our Show. Time travel, alternate universes, it's all bound to mess things up that it doesn't end up messing up. Y'know?

Still, regardless of how much sense Sam makes, I can't bring myself to blame Dean for making that choice. Or judge him for it. I can see why he did it, and I don't blame him. I mourn the loss, and worry for the fact that it doesn't keep anyone any safer, really, but I don't blame him.

Yes, we have all summer -- and I hope to "see" you over the summer. You'll be back next year, yes? (say yes)
(no subject) - chemm80 - May. 30th, 2011 04:37 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - gaelicspirit - May. 31st, 2011 02:58 pm (UTC) - Expand
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gaelicspirit
May. 30th, 2011 02:08 am (UTC)
You never fail to disappoint with unique and interesting viewpoints. I want to thank you for reading and commenting on each ramble this year -- even when you weren't watching the show. I look forward to your thoughts and you always give me something to think about. *HUGS YOU*

Bobby telling the man he was sorry about his mom touched me on multiple levels. I don't know anything about the mental health industry so the idea that this man had been ridiculed and institutionalized because he'd told the truth and others couldn't believe him...well, it was horrifying. As I'm sure it was meant to be, storytelling-wise.

But it's so interesting to hear from you and your experiences and makes me feel very lucky to know you -- someone who listens, validates, and cares.

I understand Dean's point of view but he should have asked them about it before actually having it done. I am a HUGE believer in personal choice and he took that away from them. Like I said... I get why he did it... I understand the want to protect people (I'm a mother hen) but I'd rather the choice been left up to them.

I'm with you here -- but at the same time? If he had asked them, I doubt they'd have agreed to it. I wouldn't, y'know? All of the bad memories in my life -- even the ones that to this day hurt my heart -- have culminated into who I am today.

And Dean knew that -- he knew they wouldn't agree to that. And because we get why he did it -- to give them back their innocence -- then the fact that he didn't ask? I also get.

I think for me, with this character, what I would choose in life (like being an advocate of personal choice), goes out the window. It's ridiculous, I know, but I can't help it. He's my hero. ;)

I read your comment to the other ramble and I fear I may have let you down as I didn't get the sense you shared your opinion about it. I'll mention it again over there when I reply to your comment. Thank you again for your time, words, and attention.

I appreciate you so much.
chiiyo86
May. 21st, 2011 08:51 pm (UTC)
Hey, it's been a while! For some reason I kept missing your reviews or forgetting to go back to read them. It's good to read one again, it always makes some things clearer for me.

I agree that the Campbells seem a bit pointless in that season... It's almost as if the writers had other plans for them that they gave up on halfway. I also agree that there is a plot hole about Lovecraft's (and his friends') death, but we can hope that it is intentional and that they will come back on it. After all, the reason they knew something came out was because it took the little boy's mom (poor Old Guy *sniff*). So there is no reason why something else couldn't have been invisible too and coming out at the same time.

As for the memory wipe of Lisa and Ben... I feel like it was definitely shady, and I'm glad Sam called Dean out on it. Because even if Dean thinks he brought them nothing but pain (I imagine he took to heart what Demon!Lisa said about meeting him was the worst mistake in her life), even if I imagine Dean would like to be able to forget some things that happened to him, it still wasn't right of him to take away their agency like that.
gaelicspirit
May. 30th, 2011 04:07 am (UTC)
Hi you! It's has been awhile -- I've wondered where you've been. Happy to see you again. :)

There were several storylines this season that just...well, died. I'm totally with you in hoping that it was intentional and they come back to some of them.

Believe me, I get that Dean took their choice away. And I understand why Sam felt it was shady. But, that said? I don't blame either of them. Dean for doing it or Sam for accusing him of shadiness.

Dean could do nothing else -- he was making the only choice he felt he could with the tools at his disposal to save the innocence of people he loves. Much like Cas, he wanted to fix what he could. And it was the only way he could spare them all the pain he brought to their lives.

Though it spared him from none of it.

And Sam...there's no way Dean could understand where Sam was coming from, what it felt like to have a whole corner of his life blocked from him. No one can understand that. I mean, it's not like he even has amnesia -- he's not allowed to remember. It's a suffocating feeling and unless they're experiencing it, no one can know how suffocating.

So, I don't blame either of them. And I kinda think it was the only thing in this crazy, weird, mixed-up world that could have happened.

*sigh*

Man, these boys kill me.

Thank you for reading and posting your thoughts.
borgmama1of5
May. 21st, 2011 09:50 pm (UTC)
Reading your recap made me cry again at what has been taken from Dean.

It bothers me, though, that Dean had Lisa and Ben's memories wiped. De_nugis explained it very well, and I am paraphrasing here, but Sam was a damaged character, went through his demon blood addiction with the intent of doing good, saw the truth of what he'd done and spent season 5 attoning.

Dean is also damaged, and he projects his belief that he is 'bad' for everyone he cares about onto Ben and Lisa, so he arbitrarily fixes it. But there is an underlying selfishness here, that he is the only one allowed to suffer. Again, his intention to spare pain is good, but the decision was not his to make.

After all, when he was offered the opportunity to live happily ever after in What is and What Never Should Be, he rejected it because he wanted reality even if it was painful.

Lisa and Ben should have been given the same choice!

Although I understand completely why the writers handled it that way, I really wish it would get revisited and reversed in season 7. Dean has matured to mostly respect Sam's ability to handle his own pain, now he needs to do the same to others he cares about.

And was anyone else screaming last episode and these two for Dean and Cas to just stop throwing ultimatims at each other and LISTEN AND TRY TO UNDERSTAND OF THE OTHER'S POV about why they made the choices they did?

To me, just like Dean ordering Sam to not trust Ruby worked so well, Dean just ordering Cas to stop doesn't do one bit of good! Imagine if Cas had explained that he'd gone into the deal with Crowley to not have to involve Dean, and now it's gotten way more complicated and he didn't know how to reverse it, and IF THEY HAD PUT THEIR HEADS TOGETHER they might have come up with an end plan around Puratory...

Sigh. Sometimes it's hard watching our characters be at the mercy of cruel writers going for drama instead of happy endings...
gaelicspirit
May. 30th, 2011 02:03 pm (UTC)
Thank you for this -- and for always reading and offering your thoughts. I post this ramble (by request) on another site and got a comment that called me a blithering idiot, so it's good to see you to help erase that from my head.

I can totally see where your friend is coming from about Dean. His selflessness is altruistic because a good amount of what he sacrifices is done to (consciously or subconsciously) spare himself pain.

I understand those that think Lisa and Ben should have been given the choice between remembering and erasing but the thing is, we all know they wouldn't have chosen to forget. Dean knew that as well. And in his blinded state of black and white and hurt, he felt he knew what was best for them -- he felt it better to bring himself more pain and reclaim their innocence than give them the choice.

I can't blame him for that, even if I don't agree.

Oh, the LISTENING thing??? GAH! That drove me nuts for the last THREE episodes!! It's very male of them to declare "I don't have to listen to you because I know I'm right" but it's exactly has you said -- cruel drama for us. :(

Thank you for taking the time to read and share your thoughts. I appreciate that greatly. :)
cece_away
May. 21st, 2011 09:53 pm (UTC)
Great summary. BTW the Liam Neeson movie is Taken which conincidently had blonde Ruby in it, playing the daughter's best friend. And you're right, it was eerily similar to that frightening moment.

These were interesting episodes for me. So many things I liked, a few things I didn't like at all like they were just trying to tie off loose ends too quickly, and a lot of things that left me in a what is going on zone.

Just glad there is another season.

Then again, I would have been happy with the entire two hours filled with nothing but hurt and comfort and forget the rest, so what can I say?

gaelicspirit
May. 30th, 2011 02:06 pm (UTC)
TAKEN! That was it. Thank you. That was going to bug the crap out of me. And I'd totally forgotten that the other Ruby was in it! HA! I just remember how cool (not like...cooool, but calm and collected) Liam Neeson was in that moment and Dean so reminded me of that.

I'm with you, sister -- so glad there's another season because you're right, it did seem like too many loose ends and a lot still going on.

Then again, I would have been happy with the entire two hours filled with nothing but hurt and comfort and forget the rest, so what can I say?

<3 *laughs*

Love this! :)

Thanks for reading and taking time to comment!
impala1967
May. 21st, 2011 10:50 pm (UTC)
awww Cas. I am soooo sad about Cas. And now reading that he won't be a season regular next year, I am going to miss Misha.

I am also going to miss the Dean/Cas dynamic. The relationship that they built, the family that was built. But Dean always loses what he loves. I'm just glad that Cas didn't die (but the Cas we all came to love has) and that Bobby didn't die either.

I don't normally interpret to much into what is said each episode, I usually leave that up to you =) but when Dean said .... he lost control for a moment, that he wanted to say he was sorry .... It made me think he was explaining why he showed up back in S3, he had only months to live and he wasn't coping.

I was annoyed with Sam when he tried to have a go at Dean about wiping their memories. Some times I think that Sam really doesn't know his brother at all.
But I think that maybe its the writers not letting the characters grow, after 6 years and all they have been thru Sam would be supportive, not bitching.

I am wondering if next season is the last, they are talking about the show being like a western, and I'm wondering ifs its planned that they go out like Butch and Sundance
gaelicspirit
May. 30th, 2011 02:15 pm (UTC)
Hi you! Thanks for reading and taking time to share your thoughts.

And now reading that he won't be a season regular next year, I am going to miss Misha.

But y'know what's interesting? Jim Beaver isn't considered a "regular" either. He's a guest star. And we saw more of him this season than of Misha. So...I don't know that I put a lot of stock in the Hollywood titles and labels -- I kinda think that matters more on the other side of the board where contracts and payment terms are concerned.

But what do I know? *shrug*

I'm with you -- soooo glad that they didn't kill Bobby or outright kill Cas (because this way at least there's a chance for Cas to be redeemed), but I'm going to miss our Cas like I missed our Sam throughout the whole beginning of this season.

when Dean said .... he lost control for a moment, that he wanted to say he was sorry .... It made me think he was explaining why he showed up back in S3, he had only months to live and he wasn't coping.

Yeah, I totally went there. His short, simple explanation was a metaphor for his entire involvement in their lives.

The memory wipe thing...I wasn't exactly annoyed with Sam, though I certainly understand why you would be. I think I was just sad that he didn't see his brother's pain and try to understand why Dean made that choice for them. But then...it would be hard for either of them to see from the other's POV at this stage. Sam couldn't know how much Dean's heart hurt having not experienced the loss (three times over) of these two and Dean has no idea what it's like to have a piece of his life totally hidden from him.

It's probably one of the only really good human interactions they had in these last two episodes. IMO.

I am wondering if next season is the last, they are talking about the show being like a western, and I'm wondering ifs its planned that they go out like Butch and Sundance

Between you and me, I hope it's the last. I think that there are always stories they could tell, but the journey they've taken these boys on has surpassed stories and right now they've left them with no hope for light, no way for peace, and nothing outside of hunting. They need something to fight for besides not dying.

I don't want them to go out exactly like Butch and Sundance -- not seeing them die but surmising that's what happened. But I wouldn't mind the 'feel' of a western-ish themed season. One where they're once again on the run, saving people and hunting things along the way.

Thank you for your time -- I really appreciate you. :)
erikaaoi
May. 21st, 2011 11:39 pm (UTC)
Thanks, Gaelic. Great ramble as always! I don't think I can put my thoughts down here other than to say Dean's tragedy was amazing to watch. Thank you, Jensen, for that.
gaelicspirit
May. 30th, 2011 02:16 pm (UTC)
Hi you -- I know it's over a week late, but I wanted to thank you for reading and taking time to drop me a line. Jensen is unmatched in my eyes as someone who has the uncanny ability to make me forget a character isn't real and draw emotion from me through the TV.

*hugs*

Thank you again.
jennierenee
May. 22nd, 2011 12:54 am (UTC)
First, I have to tell you a quick story. It's really silly. On the way home from work the other day I was stopped at a red light and the car two cars ahead of me had a bumper sticker that read 'my hero'.

Can you guess what I thought of? For a split second I thought that it was created specifically for Dean and SPN and thought, wow, that would be GREAT for Gealic. And then rational thought took over and I looked a bit closer. It was a 'my hero' up top and underneath was the name of their soldier. But still...

Okay, to the show. I missed the first part of it (I didn't realize that there were two episodes tonight). My heart just ached for Dean. I thought that Sam's comment was a little harsh, but I think that's because I'm not a Sam!girl so I'm not at all objective about his comments. So...yeah...

gaelicspirit
May. 30th, 2011 02:19 pm (UTC)
OMG! I love that story!! :) I would love a bumper sticker like that! LOL! And only a few people would totally get its real meaning.

I thought that Sam's comment was a little harsh, but I think that's because I'm not a Sam!girl so I'm not at all objective about his comments.

I think that's what happens to me, too. I instantly bristle at comments that appear to cross Dean or not be supportive of him so I have to force myself to stop and see it from his perspective. And once I did, I could see why he'd object to what Dean did. No one can know how hard it is for Sam to have a part of his life -- a huge chunk of it, in fact -- kept from him. To not be allowed to remember it.

Still, that said? I thought he could have either picked a better time or a more gentle approach. Dean was wrecked and anyone could see that.

*sigh*

*they're not real they're not real they're not real*

See you on the other post. ;)
bagginsdvm
May. 22nd, 2011 03:50 am (UTC)
Great ramble, but darn it, my eyes got watery again while I read this.
I really want some happiness (or at least the promise of it someday) for Dean, but right now it just seems so impossible. I cringed to see him be the cold & cruel torturer with those demons, completely ignoring the fact that he was killing innocent humans with that knife. He gets so single-mindedly focused when it comes to his loved ones, that he fails to consider the consequences or think things through or think about himself. Although that should probably be considered a character flaw, it's one of the things I love about him sometimes, because it does make him a total badass (case in point: the Braeden rescue mission). I did love the way he took out those demons. I definitely saw John in Dean's actions as he exorcised the demon, knowing that it could kill Lisa to do so (the look he gave Ben as he chose to finish the exorcism broke my heart), then rapidly got Ben's attention & gave orders, carried Lisa, rescued Sam. I think I forgot to breath during that whole sequence.
I understand his immediate reasoning behind wiping Lisa & Ben's memories but I can't fully agree with it. They should have had the choice, plus I don't see how that would protect them from any evil coming after them again. They'll still be leverage, since Dean still remembers & loves them, no matter how hard he tries to bury those feelings.

Dean & Cas... oh how I wish they would have actually listened to each other & not been so darn intractable in their reasoning! This could have all been averted. But then again, this is Supernatural.

I'll have to come back tomorrow to read your ramble for 6.22.
Until then!
Dawn
gaelicspirit
May. 30th, 2011 02:26 pm (UTC)
Thank you for taking time to read and share your thoughts with me. It's always such a delight for me when your icon comes up on my inbox. :)

He gets so single-mindedly focused when it comes to his loved ones, that he fails to consider the consequences or think things through or think about himself. Although that should probably be considered a character flaw, it's one of the things I love about him sometimes, because it does make him a total badass

Yeah, I totally agree. He's learned to live with a gray area of life over the years for different reasons, but his ground is a black and white world and in that world things get tangled and lost along the way -- like how his actions are going to affect him.

I understand his immediate reasoning behind wiping Lisa & Ben's memories but I can't fully agree with it. They should have had the choice, plus I don't see how that would protect them from any evil coming after them again. They'll still be leverage, since Dean still remembers & loves them, no matter how hard he tries to bury those feelings.

I agree -- it won't fully protect them. And the writers may yet find a way to use that in their nefarious plotting and scheming. But I also found myself understanding why Dean did what he did to the extent that I couldn't blame him for it. And while in real life I'm all for personal choice, in this reality I knew that if given the choice Dean and Lisa wouldn't have chosen to forget and Dean knew that and did the only thing he could from his POV to reclaim their innocence.

But then again, this is Supernatural.

EXACTLY. No one listens when they are 'right'... ;)

Thank you again for commenting. I'm working my way through so I'll find your comments on 6.22 soon.

*hugs*
tobyanca
May. 22nd, 2011 04:57 am (UTC)
This was a great ramble. I thought the episode was really good, but Lisa's memory wipe and Deans pain had me sobbing during the episode. You brought the tears back with your description of the hospital scene. Why can't Dean have them?? Why? *sobs* Jensen was brilliant in that scene and Cindy was perfect as Demon Lisa. So vile and nasty. I kept chanting "don't kill her, don't kill her" I was so on edge for that whole scene with my hand pressed against my mouth. I admit that I did miss some of what Dean said during the hospital scene because I was crying as soon as I realized she had her memory wiped so I'm glad I could read it in here, because I haven't been able to bring myself to watch it again yet. But I will. My husband, who came home right after it was over asked if we could watch it that night cuz he missed it and I said I couldn't, not yet. But I will. Poor Dean.
gaelicspirit
May. 31st, 2011 01:54 am (UTC)
Thank you! I'm so glad you came by to read and comment.

I understood Dean's logic with the memory white-wash. It was terrible and yet it was the only solution for him. And yet, now? Without them? He has so little hope. So little light. I want him to be tight with his brother, but goodness, at the expense of all else? What have they to look forward to? Why are they fighting except for the fact that it's their "job"?

I hope we are given more in the first few episodes of S7 to allow us to hope for them.

Poor Dean is right. *sniffs*

Thank you again for your time. :)
keywester
May. 22nd, 2011 06:11 am (UTC)
hey gaelic-it's meggin
This episode gutted me too. Dean is such a tragic hero and I love him for it but like you I worry. Family has been at the core of what makes Dean tick. He never had a very large one but the people he let in were chosen for reasons. And one by one he's been loosing them.

I worry about him. Because of the line he said in The End, after he met what he'd become in that future, the cold, ruthless soldier with no longer any compassion in his heart; he tells Sam that they really do need to stay together because they keep each other human.

And the people that Dean surrounds himself with and considers his family help keep him human. Especially, the very special healing way Lisa had on him. And that makes his choice to cut them out of his life forever all that more tragic. Sure he had his reasons, but as you pointed out, they weren't any safer before when he got out of their life. Not remembering who Dean is isn't any guarantee a big bad won't use them again as bargaining chips with the older Winchester because HE still remembers them.

Or was choosing to make them forget him part of his constant self criticism, he doesn't deserve the happiness they could bring in his life because he didn't protect them the way he felt he should have? Or First he pushed Ben so hard he went flying into a wall and now he slaps the kid- maybe he saw himself being a rotten father figure- too much like his dad and in that way let Ben down by not being a good enough parent for him?

What ever he was thinking his choice left him grieving once again and further alone and his family circle dwindled by three. You're right if he loses Sam, he'd lose what little comfort he has in this world and could then so easily become that Dean of the future. And I'd hate to see that. I love the snarky jokes and dark "cop" humor he banters during a case to keep the gruesomeness at bay. I Love that he was like a kid in a candy store when he came up with the name Jefferson Starhips for Eves' hybred monsters. I love that he loves pie and teases Sam at every opportunity for eating salad. But I just don't know how much more loss he can take...so I worry.

I’m posting an adendum to the Let it Bleed post earlier:

First thanks for your detailed and thoughtful synopsis of Let it Bleed. It was one of the saddest dramas this show has given us. Not since Sam’s heartbreaking scene with Madison have I held my breath and fought back the tears. And Jensen performance was stunning. I mean that figuratively and literally. Because when he chose to loose Lisa and Ben forever my heart broke for him. There’s been a lot of chatter on the old fanfic forum of how just wiping their memories was not a fool proof plan to assure their safety. And it’s not, some fugley,( or perhaps Crowley again since he escaped), who knows the emotional attachment Dean has with these people can use them again to draw him out, so I don’t think that was the reason he chose to do that. I think that it was part guilt, since he couldn’t protect them the way he wanted to, and as a best option compromise to let them live out their lives without the awful memories of that night. Of course even that plan isn’t fool proof. Dean must be in some family photos during that year he spent with Lisa, he got his diaper changing skills from handling Lisa’s sister’s baby (LOL) so when the Braedens run across a picture of that handsome guy that said he was the one that hit them amongst their cook out photos...I’m sure Lisa will have some questions.-hehe.


Edited at 2011-05-23 10:43 pm (UTC)
gaelicspirit
May. 31st, 2011 02:16 am (UTC)
Re: hey gaelic-it's meggin
Hi you - thank you so much for sharing your thoughts here. I love that you come by and read and I look forward to your comments each week. Thank you so much for spending time with me. I value it tremendously.

I agree with your thoughts here. I will only add that I don't think Dean really white-washed them to protect them. I think he did it to return their innocence. I don't think he really thought about it past "fix this, fix them, heal them" -- it was a gut reaction that he'd not fully thought-through, but I can forgive him that.

He guts his way through life, making choices based on what he feels he knows is right...and for the most part, it is. Y'know? I mean he's rarely been wrong.

As far as the logistics of the white-wash, that was a pretty big hand-wave wasn't it? I guess we just have to assume it came with a complete "clean" of pictures and house and neighbors and family.... It's just one of those things we have to 'accept' I think. *sighs*

Thanks again for your thoughts. :)
primrose_1
May. 22nd, 2011 06:16 am (UTC)
I wish that Dean had made Lisa get an anti-possession tattoo, or at least wear the charm day and night. I really wanted her to be protected from that. I agree with you about erasing their memories. Their normal lives were over forever after what happened. Dean gave that back to them. I DO worry about their safety because now they don't know to salt the doors or how to protect themselves. I'm not sure it's a good thing. We'll see. Either way, it was heartbreaking for him. I was very sad! For all of it!

I was SO EXCITED that they used HP Lovecraft, even if it was in such a small way. You know about our Saturday night game nights. USUALLY we play Dungeons and Dragons, but we like to throw in some other games. Right now we're playing Firefly, but I'm the GM who runs Call of Cthulhu- the game based on Lovecraft's works. I run a Call of Cthulhu game every Thanksgiving. We also have the Arkham Horror board game, and are one of only 12 people who own the expansion Chaos in Kingsport. Bringing him in pushed all my happy little geek buttons forever!
gaelicspirit
May. 31st, 2011 02:41 am (UTC)
Hi!!!

As soon as they brought up Lovecraft I thought of you. :) I knew you would get a total kick out of that.

I agree with you about erasing their memories. Their normal lives were over forever after what happened. Dean gave that back to them.

Yeah, that's totally how I see it. I agree that I wish they'd been given tattoos or some kind of protective charm, first. Because they're not safe.

So, is your Firefly game based on Firefly the show? If so, and I were playing, I'd totally want to be Zoe. :)

See you soon!
(no subject) - primrose_1 - May. 31st, 2011 04:25 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - gaelicspirit - May. 31st, 2011 02:59 pm (UTC) - Expand
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msninacat
May. 22nd, 2011 08:09 am (UTC)
I have nothing of value to add but I agree with you almost completely on everything here.
gaelicspirit
May. 31st, 2011 02:42 am (UTC)
Thank you for reading and taking time to comment. I really appreciate that.
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