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Stream of Consciousness, Epi 11.18

So, that was...interesting.


First off, once again I'm sorry for being late. We are selling our house and that means showings at any time and right now my job is almost literally kicking my ass. Let's just say that if there really is a board room in Heaven, I don't ever want to die. So! I just got a chance to see it, and it's Saturday. So if I don't see as many of you as per usual, I understand.

Also, after such a delay, I may disappoint you guys by not exactly raving about this episode. Some scenes were intriguing, some were hand-wavey, and some were just...clunky. After the last two episodes being so amazing in storytelling method and/or acting prowess, I was a bit disappointed in the form and flow of this one. Still, that said? What transpired was necessary to get us from mid-season to the final six (six, right? there are 23 episodes this season still?) episodes of the season, which, based on the path they carved with this one, have the potential to be emotionally gutting.

And we love being gutted by this show.

Okay, here's what I think happened (at least to me): I was spoiled. Not like...omg how could you tell me something about an episode I haven't seen yet spoiled. More like...pampered. We had a decent run with episodes that were 98% focused on the brothers and the last two episodes had some great bro-bonding moments. I got used to that, in a way. And with this one being rather brother-lite and having the scenes with the brothers being rather...well, less than effective...I think that's one of primary reasons I wasn't quite as engaged.

Honestly, my favorite scene? Was the inner-vessel cage match. The moment Crowley vacated his 'meat suit' and jumped into Castiel's vessel I perked up. That was new. I don't think I've seen three beings contained in one vessel before. And the fact that inside Cas it looks like the Winchester's kitchen is kind of adorable, actually. It's where Cas feels safe, while he's waiting for Lucifer to do whatever it is he's going to do with Amara. However, Cas' detached, "Well, I suppose you have a more informed opinion on the matter," response to Crowley's desperate plea to expel Lucifer from his vessel was a very different Castiel than the one who fought his way to the surface to save Sam.

So...either Lucifer has beaten the resistance out of Cas (in a manner of speaking) or Sam is right and Cas really does want this--he just didn't want Lucifer to kill Sam. Which is also confusing because Lucifer was like thisclose to killing both boys before Amara showed up. Honestly, I'm really not sure what is going on with Cas at the moment--but I was amused by his instinctive protection of the TV while Lucifer and Crowley fought and his this is why we can't have nice things irritation in his tone when he said, "Guys! You're gonna break something."

Jimmy Novak must have been one helluva dude--either that, or when God brought Castiel back from being splattered at the end of Season 5 he coated the vessel with Scotch Guard--because that vessel has some staying power. It's not only held Castiel for all this time, but it's holding Cas and an Arch Angel and for a short time added the King of Hell into the mix. That's some party. Also makes me wonder if Crowley had been successful in convincing Cas to expel Lucifer...where would he have gone? Existed as a non-corporeal entity? Invaded a former vessel? *ponders*

I do like that Sam and Dean were consistent in their arguments on how to handle Castiel--even though choosing to argue about it in front of Crowley was probably not the smartest move. I like that Sam stuck to his "Cas' choice should be respected" guns--a stance he's made and kept for several seasons now. He doesn't want to lose Cas any more than Dean does, but he also knows that Cas willingly and knowingly made that choice because they all thought that having Lucifer go up against Amara was their best shot at winning--and Sam wanted Cas to be able to take that shot.

Conversely, Dean is consistent in his "Cas' choice was short-sighted and puts his life in danger so we have to ignore it and do everything we can to save him" thinking. It's exactly what he did--twice over--with Sam because he didn't want to lose him. And while he probably wants to defeat Amara more than any of them because of how she affects him, he would rather die than see his friend risk his life to aid in her defeat. He doesn't think defeating Amara is worth losing Cas.

I like that they kept the continuity of character approaches there--though the end kind of confused me a bit. It seemed that Sam was, essentially, apologizing for being right: Cas did want to stay there. He knew, though, that the confirmation of that would be hard on Dean, so he apologized to help soften the hurt Dean held constant in his eyes when Cas was brought up. But then Dean says, "Didn't we swear off getting in the way when one person makes a choice the other doesn't agree with?" Which made me think okay, so he's conceding that Sam was right and he isn't going to fight saving Cas if Cas wants to stay. They agree that is their new policy...and then Dean says, "Let's go find him and bring him home." So, wait...they are going to try to save Cas? O_o

I'm going to just ride that one out because I don't get the undercurrents of what transpired there, and that's unusual for me. Even if I don't quite understand the statement, the motivation usually resonates with me. So, I'm writing this off to Real Life distractions complicating the issue and moving on. Especially since Amara wasn't defeated by an Arch Angel wielding the power of God. They're all going to be in for it now--including Rowena, who switches sides more often than my kiddo changes her socks.

Clearly, Rowena is in it for only one thing: herself. Always has been. But I think she might be realizing that hitching her wagon to the biggest power she can find might not work out for her in the end--it certainly did not with Crowley or Lucifer...not sure why she thinks it'll be different with Amara. And she looked downright terrified there in that old warehouse-abandoned church-thing. I'm not sure how Rowena even found Amara when she was weak and vulnerable--unless she did that "warging" thing to find her. Just...the whole thing with Rowena was mildly annoying in that it was just dropped in with convenient writing reasoning and little purpose (or so it appeared) beyond returning a familiar face to the mix.

If she doesn't have a bigger part to play in all of this (which, I'm sure she probably will), I'd rather them bring someone back from the dead who actually supports the boys...like Charlie. Or Bobby. Just saying.

Finally, Amara's tactic to torture Lucifer in an effort to finally grab God's attention. Does Amara not know that Lucifer was cast out of Heaven? I mean, when he helped his brothers and God defeat her and lock her away, he was still God's favorite. He became the lock that kept her contained. But then things went a bit downhill, so I'm wondering if she realizes that using a fallen angel to "lure" God into confronting her may not exactly be the best choice. Not only that, but...what does her torture do to Castiel trapped within that same vessel? Is she just harming Lucifer, or is she harming the vessel and all that are contained within?

As for Sam's logic about why Casifer wasn't successful in defeating Amara with the Hand of God...I liked it. It resonated with me that a fallen angel would not be able to effectively use God's power any more than a demon would. But it made me wonder...would a human being who had died and been revived by the power of a mark once placed by God and who had at one time been identified as a Righteous Man be considered one of God's Chosen able to wield the power in the Hand of God to defeat Amara? *ponders* That would make the whole connection Dean and Amara have--and Dean's belief that he cannot kill her because of that connection--a bit interesting. Says me.

Okay, so...lists. With a slight alteration of category headings.

Liked:

  • The Horn of Joshua being a Hand of God. And that it was located in Saudi Arabia and not conveniently secreted away in some storage unit in Newark or something. Can't wait to see what artifact they manage to find next.

  • Watching Crowley be evil -- cashing in on the deals he made as a CRD, forcing the guards to kill each other. He really doesn't have one scrap of care for humanity as a whole, just for the Winchesters. It's good to be reminded that he is, in fact, a demon and not just the grumpiest member of the Scooby gang.

  • "Very few of the world's secrets I haven't cracked. Seemed worth a soul. At the time." "It always does."

  • "I don't jig."

  • Boys saying "If..." to Crowley in unison, waiting for the conditions of his offer to provide the Horn.

  • "Did I say this would be easy? No, I did not."

  • Dean giving Crowley his "you're smarter than this" speech.

  • "Kindness gets you a hug. Not a seat at the big boy's table."

  • "What they call destruction, I call renovation."

  • "First impressions can be deceiving, Moose. For instance, I once thought you were dull and plodding. Never mind. Bad analogy."

  • "We've got the blaster to do it." Always love a Star Wars reference, however small.

  • "Guys! You're gonna break something."

  • Sam rattling off that exorcism like he was reciting the Pledge of Allegiance. I love it when these guys remind us they've been doing this their whole lives. Bonus points for the trio inside Castiel's vessel all hearing Sam's voice.

Mostly Liked (similar to...mostly dead):

  • Amara referring to Crowley as 'Uncle Crowley'.

  • "Humanity brought us Hiroshima and got a redo. I merely questioned his priorities and got the boot."

  • "It's marketing." That actually made me laugh out loud as recently I've used that same argument to explain certain things at work.

  • Crowley's expression in response to Dean's: "There are times I want to get slapped during sex by a girl wearing a Zorro mask; that don't make it a good idea." The line itself felt a little forced and oddly placed, but Crowley's expression was funny.

  • Sam: "This is exactly how we screw ourselves: we make the heart choice instead of the smart choice." Very insightful, young Winchester.

  • "I don't think Aunty Amara appreciated your half-assed smiting." I kinda forgot she would, technically, be his Aunt.

  • "So we all saw what happens when she's in a bad mood, which apparently she's been in since the dawn of time."

  • The message to Crowley from Mommy Dearest: Back from the dead, Fergus.

  • "These mail-order spells aren't what they used to be."

  • The fact that the boys decided the only clear choice after Amara took Casifer and left them alive was to go back to the bunker and play beer bowling.

Really, writers?

  • Rowena's convenient resurrection magic. I can't be the only one who thought that was a bit of a Hail Mary from the writer's room. I mean, yes, Rowena is a witch and has had access to ancient magic for hundreds of years, so sure...I'll buy that it could work. But with zero indication previously that she'd ever had such a thing inside her or even that such a thing was possible, this felt very hand wavey to me.

  • Casifer just...showing up...in Heaven. Like it was no big thing. One would think that they'd have extra security knowing that Lucifer was out of the Cage and that their smiting of Amara didn't work. Heaven is really unimpressive right now. Wussy angels, white board rooms, a whole cadre of them quaking in their wings while Casifer insults them and climbs in their laps? No wonder the Earth is in dire straits in this 'verse.

  • So, we just skip over the boys' reacting to Rowena not being dead and deciding to work with her again? They really need to stop trusting her, especially since she, um, got Sam locked in the cage with Lucifer.

  • Sam saying that the Horn of Joshua doesn't look like much. That felt odd coming from Sam, too. He saw the chunk of wood that was the first Hand and had been from the Arc of the Covenant -- it didn't look like much either. And we're talking about an artifact that was thousands of years old. Didn't feel like something Sam would have thought, let alone said out loud.

How does that work exactly?

  • Why has Amara stopped aging? At the rate she grew from baby to now, theoretically she should be bearing a passing resemblance to the Crypt Keeper at this point. I thought perhaps it had something to do with when she was boxed away--but wondered if any of you had theories.

  • How did Crowley get the words 'Help Me' to show up on his meat suit? I have always assumed that when the demon vacates their vessel--as Crowley did--the 'meat suit' was an empty vessel...so there really wouldn't be anything left behind inside to carve out such a plea. I mean, don't get me wrong, it was a cool (and effective) trick, but...had me head-tilting with a whoa, wait, how did that happen reaction.


Okay, so we have a mini-break until April 27th. I would imagine that is the last break until the finale, but who knows. I'll be back on the 27th and try to have the Ramble up the next day, as I prefer to do. Hope ya'll have a good April! Thanks, as always, for reading.

Comments

( 31 Tall Tales — Tell Me A Story )
vyperdd
Apr. 10th, 2016 04:07 am (UTC)
That was new. I don't think I've seen three beings contained in one vessel before.

Ummm. No it wasn't new at all. It was pretty much exactly the same as we saw in S9's Road Trip with Crowley possessing Sam to get him to expel Gadreel., right down to seeing the Angel's original vessel (Tahmoh and now Mark P) and the possessed soul (Sam and now Cas) in one of the bunker's rooms.
gaelicspirit
Apr. 10th, 2016 04:43 am (UTC)
You're right! I had completely forgotten about that (obviously). Huh. I don't know if that makes me like the scene more (due to consistency and continuity) or less (due to unoriginality). I'll have to think on that one.

Thanks for the reminder.
(Anonymous)
Apr. 10th, 2016 05:29 am (UTC)
Thank you vyperdd for posting that as I was a bit disappointed with the scene. Maybe because I had just rewatched it that morning on TNTrewatch. I did like seeing Mark P. again. Cas is really broken but so is Dean, neither of them feelling like they are worth anything. Cas seems to mirror one of the boys every season. What I got out of this episode: Crowley plus rod of Aaron equals failure. Casifer with horn of Joshua equals failure. Since the whole season was bring the brothers back together, I am going to say its going to take both Dean and Sam to defeat Amara. Anyway, another good review. I like the way you think.
gaelicspirit
Apr. 10th, 2016 03:19 pm (UTC)
I'm thankful for those of you who are able to course-correct me when it comes to scenes like that. I had genuinely forgotten that when Sam was possessed by Gadriel literally the exact same thing had happened. Maybe I just blocked it out. ;)

. Since the whole season was bring the brothers back together, I am going to say its going to take both Dean and Sam to defeat Amara

I would love this to be true.

Thanks for reading!
borgmama1of5
Apr. 10th, 2016 05:36 am (UTC)
Cas' detached, "Well, I suppose you have a more informed opinion on the matter," response to Crowley's desperate plea to expel Lucifer from his vessel was a very different Castiel than the one who fought his way to the surface to save Sam.

That bothered me a lot. They had better have a really good explanation for Cas' behavior...unfortunately, given this writing pair, it could very well just be the way they felt like writing Cas, they are not very consistent in writing characters true to canon.

Rowena clearly read the Harry Potter books and made herself a horcrux, then put it in her leg for safekeeping.

How could they all miss the problem with expelling Lucifer and then getting him to help with Amara? Where would Lucifer go? He would need a replacement vessel--where are they going to find a volunteer for that? Although my spidey-senses tingled because when they said the line about finding Luci another vessel, the camera was focused on Sam...I really hope I'm completely misreading that...

How convenient that they happened to have everything for an exorcism right at hand--exorcisms are for demons, Lucifer is an angel...and they referred to exorcising him from Cas???

Your confusion about what the boys' last conversation is supposed to mean is not because of your mental state, it was strange. It would have made sense if Dean had said his last line about 'let's go save him' with irony or some kind of inflection that acknowledged his words were in direct opposition to what he'd just agreed on with Sam, I could have totally understood it. But Dean's inflection was the same as when he agreed they shouldn't save someone from a choice they didn't like. ????

This is such an enormous mytharc, and it needs a really impressive resolution...and a big part of me is scared that they're going to screw it up, and it will hurt more because we've gotten so many great episodes this season.

It's not just the plot of the show that gives me anxiety anymore, it's the worry over whether show will live up or down to its own standards!

jackien1968
Apr. 10th, 2016 11:27 am (UTC)
They weren't exorcising Lucifer, they were rescuing Crowley by exorcising Crowley, and Sam changed a few words at the end so that he wouldn't be cast into hell and would only be extracted.

As far as I know, Alastair is the only being who knew an exorcism for angels. He expressed regret that he couldn't kill angels and could only send them back to heaven.
(no subject) - gaelicspirit - Apr. 10th, 2016 07:13 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - gaelicspirit - Apr. 10th, 2016 07:10 pm (UTC) - Expand
jennygeee
Apr. 10th, 2016 08:35 am (UTC)
I’m sorry you didn’t enjoy this one as much. I actually enjoyed the episode.

Regarding Rowena, if she had mentioned the resurrection magic before then it would not have had such an ‘impact’ (slight sarcasm here) when she did return as we’d have expected it at some time.

I think that Amara has finished aging at the age she is now as that is the age she was ‘locked away’ that is how we first saw her when Dean lost the MOC.

Thanks again Gaelic hope you sell your house soon.
gaelicspirit
Apr. 10th, 2016 07:21 pm (UTC)
Yay! I'm glad you enjoyed. That makes me happy when you're happy. And my 'meh' attitude about it could have very easily been from outside influences. I couldn't believe it was Saturday and I hadn't watched it yet, so I shoe-horned it and this Ramble in. Sometimes I need to just...slow down, y'know? Yeah, you know. :)

Regarding Rowena, if she had mentioned the resurrection magic before then it would not have had such an ‘impact’ (slight sarcasm here) when she did return as we’d have expected it at some time.

You have a very good point and I agree to some extent. But where I go with this is when I'm writing a story. If I get to chapter 8 in a 10 chapter story and I'm like 'Ta-da! Here is this solution to this problem and I never once indicated it was a possibility, but hey, surprise factor FTW!' so many readers would call BS on me. In fact, I actually learned that lesson the hard way when in a story I made it seem like someone had died (an OC, not one of the boys) and when I revealed he actually hadn't, some readers were like, that didn't work for me, Gaelic.

I can see where the element of surprise could definitely be attributed to this resurrection but for me I was like, yeah...that didn't work for me, writers. If they had even dropped a hint previously -- like her making an off-handed snide remark about it being too bad the boys didn't have the ability to hide that kind of magic within their bodies -- I would have been more like, "Oh, so she wasn't kidding with that remark she made last season...she really COULD do this."

Ah, it's not that big of a thing, really. Just something that pulls me out of the immersive magic of the storytelling.

RE: Amara's aging. That's what I was thinking, too. She grew to where she had been previously.

Oh, and guess what? We got an offer on our house! :) If all goes well, we should be relocated by the end of May. Hooray! :)
(Anonymous)
Apr. 10th, 2016 11:12 am (UTC)
Maz here...
Gah!...I cannot believe they brought Rowena back. Enough! I'm sure the actor is very nice & seems loved by the cast but the character is so, so annoying to me. And, as you say, the whole special-spell-under-the-skin-to avoid-death stuff is ridiculous.

There was just so much talking in this episode - maybe necessary exposition but dull and some of the dialogue was definitely odd (Zorro mask? What?). I too cannot quite figure out what Cas's mind is in this but I loved Dean's last line ...just so *Dean* (I'll have to listen again for the intonation you were taking about - it didn't register with me - only that they were deadpanning the obvious dangers and their simple determination to get him back regardless.)

I really liked the Amara/Rowena set.

The gathering place of the boys and Crowley was curiously 'noisy' - it couldn't have been a real place could it, with actual ambient noise going on outside? *curious*

I REALLY like your musings on whether Dean's true story arc of The Righteous Man might (pleasepleaseplease) come back into play - it's always the way my mind works when there is any talk of vessels but your thoughts over the power of being touched by god being used to defeat Amara have me very excited.

Finally, I realise portraying Heaven is a challenge, but it and all the Angels seem now to be dressed by The White Company. :)

Maz x
gaelicspirit
Apr. 10th, 2016 07:23 pm (UTC)
Re: Maz here...
I REALLY like your musings on whether Dean's true story arc of The Righteous Man might (pleasepleaseplease) come back into play - it's always the way my mind works when there is any talk of vessels but your thoughts over the power of being touched by god being used to defeat Amara have me very excited.

I am glad that resonates with you, too. I don't know where they'll ultimately take it but it would be SO fitting if it could come full circle like that. I would LOVE it. :)

Thank you for reading, Maz. Love hearing from you. If work eases up on me a bit, I'm going to go heads down on my SPN fic and I am looking forward to seeing what you think when I finally get the darn thing posted.
jackien1968
Apr. 10th, 2016 11:34 am (UTC)
The Slice Girls completed childhood "in fruit-fly time" but once adults the Amazons reverted to normal aging speeds. Maybe it works similarly for Amara. Though I think jennygeee's comment that she aged up to her "actual" age as seen in Dean's visions of her and then stopped, actually is a way better explanation than this.

Crowley has demonstrated great competence with witchcraft before. I think he burned letters into his vessel's forehead the same way Rowena burned letters into the wall. It just made sense as a location for his SOS.

I love your Rambles as always, and as always don't care about waiting for them.

<3
Jackie

Edited at 2016-04-10 11:36 am (UTC)
gaelicspirit
Apr. 10th, 2016 07:25 pm (UTC)
Though I think jennygeee's comment that she aged up to her "actual" age as seen in Dean's visions of her and then stopped, actually is a way better explanation than this

Yeah, that works for me, too. I choose to go with that moving forward. :)

Crowley has demonstrated great competence with witchcraft before.

Oh, that's a really good point -- it wasn't because he was trapped inside himself, but using the witchcrafty method. I like that -- I choose to believe that as well.

Thank you so much for reading and taking time to comment!
(no subject) - (Anonymous) - Apr. 11th, 2016 10:22 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - gaelicspirit - Apr. 11th, 2016 02:24 pm (UTC) - Expand
thruterryseyes
Apr. 10th, 2016 02:07 pm (UTC)
As usual I have nothing much to say, this was a bridge episode meant to get us from point A to point B and the construction was shaky and you know how I feel about Rowena, her resurrection was to convenient and easy but I always wonder if they have to plan an out if they get renewed and make some sudden about faces or if they write assuming this season will be it and then suddenly go, "oh hell!" and start doing a lot of mental rewrites.
I agree the best part was Crowley and Castiiel in Casifer. I honestly can;t even remember most of the parts Dean and Sam were in. And I was awake to.
gaelicspirit
Apr. 10th, 2016 07:26 pm (UTC)
As soon as I saw Rowena was back I was like, "Oh, Terry's gonna love this. /sarcasm."

but I always wonder if they have to plan an out if they get renewed and make some sudden about faces or if they write assuming this season will be it and then suddenly go, "oh hell!" and start doing a lot of mental rewrites.

I wonder the same thing.

So, the next episode will be right before I get to come see you; we'll have to discuss live! :)
supernutjapan
Apr. 10th, 2016 02:39 pm (UTC)
I really enjoyed this ep! That last scene between Sam and Dean was really special for me. The expressions on their faces when they were talking about how they decided not to save each other were just crazy awesome. They were definitely not the expressions of people meaning what they say. Dean is kind of searching for a reaction from Sam, and Sam... is devastated by Dean's words. I mean, he knows that logically (the smart way) it's correct to let people do what they wish, but his heart can't take it when he thinks of having to let Cas die. His smile is soooo forced when he tells Dean "so that's our policy then..." and I think Dean just sees that and understands that they are on the same page. To hell with the smart way. That little speech by Sam about the smart way and the heart way, to me, is utter CRAP. Since when is going the "smart" way the right way? So, when Dean started telling Sam that he was right, I was just staring into the screen with tears in my eyes and a silent "no...." on my lips. Was I glad to hear Dean's last words! We know that Cas did what he did because he felt he was worthless and that the only way he could redeem himself was to sacrifice himself. It is exactly how Sam felt in Season 9. He felt that he wasn't worth saving, and that the only way he could make up for his faults was by killing himself to save others. Cas stopped him in First Born. He made that little speech about how if he could change, a Winchester could change too. And now it's Sam's turn to stop Cas from doing this.

As to Cas being different from the usual Cas, this Cas actually reminds me a bit of Cas in Season 7, after he takes over Sam's illness and while he is dealing with his guilt from what he had done. I'm looking forward to the Winchesters waking him up! There better be some pretty awesome love speeches <3

I agree with the person above that Crowley used the same method as Rowena to send the message to the boys.

I don't dislike Rowena, so I didn't mind her coming back and it was an excellent surprise to find out that she was alive! It reminded me of what the Walking Dead did with one of their characters recently - making everyone think he was dead, and then bringing him back. I think they had this planned from the time Lucifer snapped her neck.

I LOVED Sam exorcising Crowley! That whole scene was excellent. Loved Amara blowing in, and Lucifer not having enough power to even leave a scratch. Definitely worried about Cas. I was wondering if Amara was torturing Lucifer only, or if Cas felt it as well. If Amara can kill Lucifer in Cas without killing Cas... the boys could have Cas back pretty easily. At least his body. It would take something special to wake him up and make him realize that he is not useless, and he is worth saving.

gaelicspirit
Apr. 10th, 2016 07:31 pm (UTC)
Oh, I loved reading this. You so helped me tilt my head a different direction.

We know that Cas did what he did because he felt he was worthless and that the only way he could redeem himself was to sacrifice himself. It is exactly how Sam felt in Season 9. He felt that he wasn't worth saving, and that the only way he could make up for his faults was by killing himself to save others. Cas stopped him in First Born. He made that little speech about how if he could change, a Winchester could change too. And now it's Sam's turn to stop Cas from doing this.

This would be fantastic if it ends up being true. A true turn of character development.

As to Cas being different from the usual Cas

For me, it wasn't even so much that he was different from his 'usual' self...he was different from the self we saw a few episodes ago who stopped Lucifer from killing Sam. It was as though he was totally disconnected from any sort of reality, which in the one before he was VERY connected - up to and including making sure Sam knew Lucifer was pulling one over on them. So, I'm just waiting to see what they're doing with Cas - I'm sure it will have a purpose and flow, but I don't quite see it yet.

It would take something special to wake him up and make him realize that he is not useless, and he is worth saving.

Seems like this could be applied to all our guys, y'know? To some degree at least.

Thanks again for reading/commenting.
hunenka
Apr. 10th, 2016 03:19 pm (UTC)
Agreed on almost all points here. Clunky writing, some annoying or too-convenient plot twists, not enough Winchesters. I guess not all episodes can be (almost) perfect. And honestly, I never expect much out of a Buckner & Ross-Leming episode, so for me, it wasn’t even that much of a letdown.

The only part of the episode that really raised my hackles was Sam and Dean’s argument over what to do with Cas. Specifically, Sam arguing that they should respect Cas’s choice. I have to say I yelled “What?” at my computer screen. After all, the whole Amara situation (and consequently, the Lucifer problem) wouldn’t even exist if Sam hadn’t consistently and deliberately disrespected Dean’s choice regarding the use of the Book of the Damned to remove the Mark. A fact that hasn’t been touched on in season 11, not once. So I’m not sure if I’d call Sam’s stance consistent… Maybe consistent excluding Dean-related situations.

And I have to admit I didn’t get their last conversation, either. I rewatched it several times, but it’s still as confusing as it was the first time.

Would a human being who had died and been revived by the power of a mark once placed by God and who had at one time been identified as a Righteous Man be considered one of God's Chosen able to wield the power in the Hand of God to defeat Amara? That’s what I’ve been thinking, too! And I believe Dean really needs it –- to feel like he’s done something right. Some sort of proof that he truly is stronger and more important than he thinks. (Yes, I admit, I just want Dean to love himself a little bit more…)

Though if I’m completely honest, I’m not very keen on this whole Hand of God concept. I mean, if it took God himself and all of his archangels to defeat the Darkness, then I really can’t see how any single person (even chosen by God, whatever that means) using something that contains a dose of God’s power could possibly be enough?

I’ve grown a bit tired of Supernatural’s penchant for coming up with objects/weapons devised for the single purpose of killing the season’s big bad. We had the Colt, which was pretty cool. But then there was the phoenix ash for Eve, the bone of a saint for Dick Roman, the Mark of Cain for Abaddon, and now a Hand of God for Amara.
I’m starting to think they could come up with something new. I know it’s not easy, because the writers tend to create big bads who are supposedly unkillable and undefeatable, but… There must be something else, right?

Anyway, it was a pleasure reading your Ramble, as always. See you in a few weeks! And I hope RL will get less hectic and stressful for you soon…
gaelicspirit
Apr. 10th, 2016 07:39 pm (UTC)
After all, the whole Amara situation (and consequently, the Lucifer problem) wouldn’t even exist if Sam hadn’t consistently and deliberately disrespected Dean’s choice regarding the use of the Book of the Damned to remove the Mark. A fact that hasn’t been touched on in season 11, not once. So I’m not sure if I’d call Sam’s stance consistent… Maybe consistent excluding Dean-related situations.

OMG, you're right. I didn't even think of it that way! I was caught up in how Sam had wanted to sacrifice himself and how he was ready to die and all of that and Dean was like, yeah, sorry, not gonna happen, I'm totally saving your ass...against Sam's "wishes". But I wasn't even thinking about how Dean did the exact same thing and Sam switched his thinking immediately. I think maybe he WANTS to be consistent, but when it comes to each other, they just...they can't allow the other one to die (choice or not) if they can do anything to stop it. And goodness help me, I love that about them.

I mean, if it took God himself and all of his archangels to defeat the Darkness, then I really can’t see how any single person (even chosen by God, whatever that means) using something that contains a dose of God’s power could possibly be enough?

I have been wondering that EXACT SAME THING since they introduced the concept of this weapon idea. Part of me is like, okay...they are going this route because they basically annihilated and/or caged up all the other arch angels and are apparently trying to avoid a deux ex machina solution by having God finally return, so they're replacing all of that effort with this idea of an artifact touched by God turning into a weapon. But then...if no one mortal can touch it, and a demon and fallen angel aren't enough, they now have a new challenge to have it be this "Chosen One"...it's definitely a wait and see approach I'm taking.

Thanks for reading and commenting. I look forward to hearing from you. :)
(no subject) - hunenka - Apr. 13th, 2016 12:57 pm (UTC) - Expand
iontas
Apr. 10th, 2016 06:45 pm (UTC)
It probably wasn't my favorite episode, but it was ok. The ending didn't bother me. They always struggle with this idea. I think that maybe what was realized there was that Sam would try to save Dean no matter what. And Dean would do the same for Sam as well. But Sam is not that invested in Cas as Dean is. And in that scene, Sam maybe had to come to terms with the fact that Dean needs to save Cas almost as much as he always needs to save Sam. Whatever it was, Dean's last comment did not come as any surprise to me. That boy is stubborn.

I don't think that Amara understands how anything works. She thought she could just shout and get god's attention. She is grasping at straws. I don't see god making an appearance for lucifer's sake.

I did like that the person had to be chosen. I am interested to see where that goes. They have a huge amount of work to do yet this season. I wonder if maybe the darkness will be around next season? It does seem like a big thing to defeat in one season. And then what the heck could be left after that?

Oh, and yes, the show's depiction of heaven really sucks. What the heck was the guy doing checking the doors with some electronic meter? Does technology follow us into the afterlife?
gaelicspirit
Apr. 10th, 2016 07:42 pm (UTC)
And in that scene, Sam maybe had to come to terms with the fact that Dean needs to save Cas almost as much as he always needs to save Sam.

I like how you worded this. I think you're probably right. If I think of it that way, it helps make the scene make more sense to me.

What the heck was the guy doing checking the doors with some electronic meter? Does technology follow us into the afterlife?

Right?? I prefer to think of things just...happening in Heaven. Like magic. No need for technology. Ugh.

Thank you for reading and commenting, as always. :)
jazzyirish
Apr. 11th, 2016 10:32 pm (UTC)
Hi Gaelic, thanks for taking the time to write this Ramble when you are such a busy, busy girl. I agree that this wasn't the best episode, but I never expect much from the Buck-Lemming duo. It seemed chunky and frankly, either poorly directed or edited.

I didn't like the Rowena resurrection for story convenience sake. I enjoy the actress, but her super-powers are a bit much for me. I think she was in the warehouse to "trap" Lucifer and send him back to the cage when Cas expelled him - at least that was the plan. When that fell apart along with Amara showing up, she hid because she finally realized that this whole thing was out of her league when Amara "called" God.

Thoughts on the boys' discussion at the end (my favorite part of the episode): I think that Dean never had any intention of "respecting Cas' choice", and I also think that the whole discussion was written as a joke or tongue-in-cheek way. Who would believe for one minute that Dean Winchester would not try to save Cas, no matter the consequence? I think that may be why the scene is somewhat confusing.

Thanks again for the Ramble; always enjoy reading your thoughts. Yes, a short break before the next episode and then on to the finale on May 25th without another. Unfortunately, we are being preempted twice during that run - on the next episode and the penultimate episode ("Who says 'penultimate'? tm Jared as Sam as Jared). :) Gotta' love those Cubs. But I shall return after a later viewing of the episode and see you then. In the meantime, good luck with the house sale and all that is involved.

Irish
gaelicspirit
Apr. 18th, 2016 03:46 pm (UTC)
I think that Dean never had any intention of "respecting Cas' choice", and I also think that the whole discussion was written as a joke or tongue-in-cheek way. Who would believe for one minute that Dean Winchester would not try to save Cas, no matter the consequence? I think that may be why the scene is somewhat confusing.

I totally agree. There were nuances there that we were supposed to pick up on...but we didn't actually have TIME to pick up on them because we'd spent so much time with Casifer lap dancing in Heaven.

then on to the finale on May 25th without another

Hooray! And we close on our house on the 26th! Going to be a busy May! :)
(no subject) - jazzyirish - Apr. 19th, 2016 10:29 pm (UTC) - Expand
tyrsibs
Apr. 18th, 2016 03:37 pm (UTC)
Sorry, I'm even later! I hope your house sale is going well.

"Interesting" is a good word to describe this one. There were parts I really liked--the opening scene, the free-for-all in Cas' head, Amara just in general (really like that actress), Dean saying, "Fellas?" (Crowley is a "fella" now? Guess history does count for a lot--)--and I liked where we wound up, storywise, but overall it felt a bit rushed.

I think this is actually my main beef with these writers, Buckner and Ross-Leming. They really do have some good ideas, and their writing tends to be energetic, but they falter when it comes to characters in their haste to move the plot above all else. So their scripts tend to be frenetic, plot-heavy, and overstuffed. I mean, look at their history. A story about a ghost truck? Let's throw in civil rights and star-crossed lovers, and hey, why not a reference to a church bombing! A ghost in a church? Boring! We need flashbacks to 16th century Italy! The First Blade? Why spend most of our 42 minutes with Cuthbert Sinclair, when we can deal with Crowley's blood addiction and send the boys all over the country trying to track the thing on Crowley's say-so? We need to get all the players back on the board for the final show-down with Amara, huh? OK, then--resurrections, a new Hand of God, a trip to Heaven and a long talk with the third- and fourth-string angels that are left running the place, multiple locations, a three-way possession, and a confrontation between Lucifer and Aunty, coming up! Oh, and we'll fit the boys in there somewhere--wouldn't it be funny if Dean confessed something kinky?

Anyway--I don't want to sound like I hated it, since I did find big chunks of it entertaining, and like you said, it set the stage. But if you compare it to how other writers in the SPN room, Berens, Dabb, Thompson, and Won, especially, have managed to weave the overall themes of the season so elegantly through their stories while not losing the characters to the plot, well, this excess of effort falls short.
gaelicspirit
Apr. 18th, 2016 03:44 pm (UTC)
*stands and claps*

What an insightful assessment of the primary issues I also had with this episode. As a writer myself, you'd think I'd pay more attention to who the different writers are as I review, but...I don't. I just react. So, I'm glad there are folks like you out there who remember and see where the weaknesses in the episode really come from. :)
(no subject) - jazzyirish - Apr. 19th, 2016 10:37 pm (UTC) - Expand
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