Last week’s Supernatural episode was the mid season finale, though only the 8th in this 20 episode season. However, it ushered in the month long holiday hiatus, so it still felt like the big mid season cliffhanger. Luckily, this episode fell to Richard Speight Jr. to direct, so although the episode’s writers don’t always tend to be my favorites, I knew I’d enjoy the way Speight brought the story to life at least. He didn’t let me down – and neither did the amazing cast.
My perspective on the show this season is different than any other, because every episode that airs brings us closer to the last. Fans and cast are acutely aware that we only have a limited amount of time with these beloved characters, so emotions are heightened about what we’re all hoping for from these last moments with them. In previous seasons, if there’s a part of a season that doesn’t really work for me, it’s been relatively easy to shrug it off and say oh well, it will get better. After all, there are always things I love and moments that are profoundly satisfying when it comes to Supernatural. This season, though, it’s harder to shrug. So I was really happy to enjoy this episode. It was a solid episode that moved the story along and took us to a sort of tipping point. And the acting performances – every single one of them – were magnificent. Maybe it didn’t make me jump up and down and scream OMG I love my Show (which is what I always hope for when watching Supernatural) but my mantra has been cherish the things you do love while you still have them, so that’s the lens I watched with. And there was a lot to cherish in this one.
The first scene was pure Speight, a visual example of why I like his directing: a decadent casino, the floor littered with dead bodies. A terrified cocktail waitress carefully steps over her former colleagues and customers, balancing a drink – which she serves up to Chuck (of course). I loved the way the scene was filmed, full of dark humor and an undercurrent of genuine fear because it’s clear that Chuck could snap at any time. God is bored, engineering constant wins but without any surprises, and that’s making him cranky.
Chuck to terrified waitress: And you don’t want me cranky.
It’s still hard to look at Rob Benedict’s adorable face and be scared of him, but somehow Rob pulls it off.
I haven’t been to many casinos, so this one reminded me of the Rio, where the Supernatural convention in Vegas is held every year. The Rio always seems surreal to me with its smoke and decadence and pervasive sense of desperation mixed with boredom, and it almost seemed like Speight and Rob Benedict amplified all that a thousand fold. It gave the whole scene a feeling of emptiness and sadness. (Sorry, Rio, but I haven’t entirely forgiven you for that time our toilet spontaneously combusted in the middle of the night while we were all asleep and gushed something putrid and horrible that escaped the bathroom like a brown plague and sent us running out of the room in our PJ’s.) Anyway…
Flash to the next scene, Eileen hunting – and doing a bang up job of it. She’s badass and kickass and doesn’t need any help, taking out the bad guys alone, and I’m here for it! I’m also relieved that she’s not only still alive, but still a hunter in every sense of the word – even dying on the job couldn’t change that.
As she goes after the last one, she nearly stabs Sam Winchester instead, not expecting him to be there. Once the monster is dispatched (by Eileen who literally did not need any help), she turns to Sam.
Eileen: Were you tailing me?
Sam: You could’ve left a note… You think I’m being over protective?
Eileen: Little bit.
Shoshannah Stern is so good, just that little line was priceless. But seriously, she’s right – Sam is maybe being a tad over protective. The Winchesters were used to their mother hunting on her own and letting them know when she needed backup, and they’ve known and respected many other kickass female hunters, so I don’t think they treat female hunters any different than male hunters. Sam knows she’s a hunter; it’s who she is and what she does and what we love her for. So why was Sam tailing Eileen and not even letting her know? That seems a) dangerous, as in he almost got himself killed and interfered with her hunt, and b) not entirely in character. I’m assuming we’re supposed to believe it’s because he’s romantically involved with her and that’s affecting his judgment. But damn it, Eileen was doing A-okay on her own and I love her independence and her mad hunting skills.
Back at the bunker, Dean – whose newly found sense of motivation has stayed intact from last episode – excitedly tells Sam and Eileen that he’s found a way to maybe get to Chuck. He unwraps the demon tablet, they share some exposition about what it means and why it was created, and then get to the bottom line – maybe Chuck isn’t untouchable after all.
Dean is so cute when he’s hopeful – it’s like he becomes twenty years younger.
Sam: So he has an Achilles’ heel.
Dean: No, I’m saying he has a weak spot.
Sam: (looks frustrated)
Me: (looks positively murderous)
Seriously? You want me to believe that Dean Winchester doesn’t know what an Achilles’ heel means??
I know some people decided to head canon that Dean was just faking not knowing in order to mess with Sam, but I’ve rewatched it several times and that is not how either of them played it. There’s no comic tell from Ackles at all, and I think there would be.
It wouldn’t be so egregious if Dean hadn’t said such an iconic line himself using that exact expression.
Dean: The point is, maybe we are each other’s Achilles’ heel. Maybe they’ll find a way to use us against each other, I don’t know. I just know we’re all we’ve got. And more than that, we keep each other human.
He knew what it meant then!
It’s a small thing, but it threw me out of the moment.
Castiel goes off in search of someone who can read the tablet – the soulless prophet Donatello.
I love Donatello, so I was happy to see him back. Keith Szarabajka makes the character both hilarious and lovable. Maybe it’s his soullessness, but he sees the Winchesters and Castiel for who they are (ie, dangerous) and has no qualms about making it clear how much he does NOT want to be mixed up with them. That’s the most logical way for anyone to feel, and it’s refreshing to see it!
Donatello reluctantly agrees to try to translate the tablet and figure out how to lock God up like he did Amara, since they can’t kill him without disrupting the balance of the universe. While Donatello reads and munches his ever present fried chicken, Sam and Dean and Cas all huddle around, doing a very bad acting job of pretending to read.
Donatello: STOP IT!
TFW: (pretend not to be watching his every move)
All the kudos to Jensen, Jared and Misha here; without saying a word, they all pulled off a genuinely funny scene just with their expressions and body language.
Eventually Donatello reads Metatron’s personal notes on the tablet that give it context, including that God guards his secret fear and shares it only with his favorite at the time, ie Michael. It was also Michael who helped Chuck overpower and lock up Amara, so he seems to be the key to figuring all this out.
I might have squeed a little at the mention of Metatron because I love Curtis Armstrong to the moon and back. Just saying.
Chuck manages to speak through Donatello, warning them to back off.
Chuck: Usually I love our little process, it’s fun – like tennis. With monsters. But let this go or…
He threatens to hurt the people they care about – Jody, Donna, Eileen – which struck me as a little close to the ‘hurt/kill the women to motivate the men’ trope that the show began with, but I guess those are pretty much the only people they care a lot about who are still alive.
Anyway, Keith Szarabajka did an amazing job of channeling Rob Benedict for this scene. He sounded just like Rob and like Chuck – his inflection, his tone of voice, even his manner of speaking changed completely! The acting performances in this episode, all around, were nothing short of magnificent.
Dean tells Donny to head home.
Donatello: Oh really, I have to leave? Oh that’s too bad. I’ll go get my stuff.
I laughed out loud. I just need some of this genuinely funny little bit of comic relief sometimes with this show. And without any of that dreaded “hey something funny is happening music” too – they just let Keith’s performance carry the humor, along with the Winchesters’ reactions.
Sam and Dean decide not to back off, knowing that no one will be safe unless they take Chuck down.
Cas (incredulously): Are you seriously thinking about going to Hell to speak to Michael? Who is insane?
I kinda thought Cas had a point, but Dean clearly did not.
Dean: Cas, if you wanna stay here, why don’t you just stay here?
Clearly Dean and Cas are not done with their spat.
They do Rowena’s spell, Dean cuts his hand and adds the blood.
Cas: Here, let me.
He heals Dean’s hand, which was a nice gesture considering things are still so cold between the two of them.
The spell kicks in, bringing a stiff breeze with it, and Sam’s hair blows around majestically.
It’s the little things.
Sam, Dean and Cas make their way through hell for about five seconds before they’re attacked by a trio of demons, who all happen to be in female meatsuits. Richard tweeted that they wanted Rowena to have female minions and for them to be pretty damn powerful – and they were! Rob Hayter later tweeted a shout out to the stunt women, all of whom did a fantastic job, along with Rob himself. The fight scenes this season are off the charts!
As TFW get their asses kicked, Dean yells: Are any of us winning?
I laughed out loud at the time and wondered if that was an Ackles ad lib – which it apparently was. Just when they’re all about to be killed, a familiar voice rings out.
Holy shit, it’s Rowena. I suspected that we’d see her again as Queen of Hell, but I still wasn’t prepared for the sight of her looking so incendiary. It’s no secret I adore Ruth Connell, and Rowena has always been hot, but whoa. WHOA.
Rowena: Hello, boys.
I love that she uses her son’s familiar greeting, though it makes me miss Crowley a lot.
I also love that Rowena is the powerful one now, and Sam and Dean and Cas are all clearly aware of that. Yet she remains loyal to the Winchesters, ordering her minions to find Michael.
Shout out to Jared Padalecki for Sam’s little flinch when Rowena shouts; being back in hell has to be making Sam’s PTSD go into overdrive, so his hypervigilance is on point. Those little bits of genuineness go such a long way.
Sam is still feeling guilty for going along with killing her, but Rowena reassures him that killing her was one of the best things that has happened to her. Of course she does miss physical sex…
Rowena: And Amazon doesn’t deliver down here…yet…
She also sends Sam out of the room to get her a drink and tells Dean and Cas to fix their “wee tiff”.
Rowena reminds them that it’s too late for her to fix things, and that she has regrets, including “everything with dear Fergus…”
I loved that acknowledgement of her feelings for her son. When Crowley and Mark Sheppard were still on the show, I so wanted them to explore that complicated relationship more deeply, and I’ll forever be disappointed that they didn’t. But at least I feel a little validated that my own head canon for the deep feelings she did have for him wasn’t off the mark.
Rowena’s minions eventually figure out that Michael is no longer in the Cage – or in hell for that matter. So where is he?
Flash to another scene, a diner called “Jaci’s Red Wagon”, an homage to Richard Speight’s wife Jaci. We all knew Jake Abel was returning as Adam/Michael, so it was no surprise to see him, but I had no idea his performance would be such a tour de force. Holy shit, that guy can act! When they were filming this episode, Jared and Jensen both said that Jake was so good that they had to up their game to keep up with him, and now I see why. He played both Adam and Michael – having a conversation with each other no less – and there was never a time you couldn’t tell exactly who he was. Everything changed – facial expressions, way of sitting, voice inflection, emotionality, formality – everything! Brilliant.
I also have to credit the writers for how they depicted the unusual symbiotic relationship that has developed between Adam and Michael over their many years in the Cage together. It’s fascinating, and not what I expected – and wow, do I love it when Show can still surprise me. Adam and Michael are both feeling very alone in the world, as they did in the Cage too. What has developed between them is a relationship of equals, with Michael allowing Adam not only to exist, but to have autonomy and opinions. When Adam wants to enjoy French fries, Michael encourages him.
Michael: Go for it, kid.
There’s affection in his tone; he clearly cares about Adam. They also talk frankly about their disillusionment with their respective families, including Sam and Dean.
Adam: I met them once, and they let me rot in hell. Family sucks.
You can’t blame him, really.
Their idyllic diner chat is interrupted by Lilith, who tries to convince Michael to come with her to see Chuck.
Michael: I’m not accustomed to being fetched.
Damn. Jake Abel can also make Michael very very scary indeed. When Lilith refuses to back off, Michael incinerates her just like that with a click of his fingers.
Diner patrons: WTF?
Michael merely tells them “remember nothing” and snaps again. Donatello feels the disturbance, and is able to tell the Winchesters where Michael is.
Meanwhile, Eileen keeps the spell going while the boys are in hell, and answers a call on her laptop. It’s a hunter named Sue, randomly asking for help with some vampires when she ostensibly has no idea where in the world Eileen is or even if she’s alive.
Sue: People keep saying you’re…
Eileen: Dead? Didn’t take.
Once again, Shoshannah’s delivery makes me giggle in the best of ways. But if Sue’s call isn’t the most suspicious thing ever, I don’t know what is. Coincidentally, Eileen is right in the exact area that Sue needs help in. Seriously? That’s way too much coincidence.
Once they’ve returned to the bunker, Sam and Dean have a slightly awkward conversation about Eileen. Or at least Dean does; Sam doesn’t have much to say.
Dean: Eileen okay?
Sam: Yeah, I guess.
Dean: You guess?
Sam explains that they have an agreement, that Eileen will let him know if she needs anything.
Dean: That’s adorable.
Dean says that he tried the family thing, and it’s not for him.
Sam: Yeah, me too. That’s not for us.
That seems to be Sam being fairly clear, but Dean continues to encourage him, pointing out that if it were ever going to work in terms of a relationship, Eileen gets it, and she gets them, and she gets the life. Also, she’s hot. (Which? Accurate.)
Sam looks distinctly uncomfortable throughout this conversation, which Dean then deflects and makes into brotherly teasing, saying that while Sam could do worse, Eileen could do better. So much better.
He clasps Sam’s shoulder as he gets up.
Dean: I’m happy for you, Sammy.
Dean has always wanted nothing more than for Sam to be happy, and there have been several times he’s tried to facilitate that happening for Sam through a romantic relationship. I’m not sure where Sam’s head is at, though; he says here and he’s said multiple times in the recent seasons that family life is not for either of them. Dean looks both soft and wistful and maybe fleetingly sad as he walks away, and Sam stares after him as he goes. What’s he thinking? I wish we had a convention coming up soon so I could ask them just what they were portraying their characters thinking in that scene!
Back to the goal of the episode: finding Michael. I’m not entirely sure why we needed Donatello to say where Michael was, because instead of going to Egypt to get him, Cas just sits down at the chess board on the landing and reaches out to him on Angel Radio. But that’s okay because this is a beautifully filmed scene, Castiel glimpsed through the grate, behind bars, the chess board in front of him as he plays a rather brilliant game to get Michael to help them.
Cas: I’m not your enemy anymore.
Misha did a great job with this monologue, and with all his interactions with Jake/Michael.
Sure enough, Michael appears.
Castiel: Thank you for coming. Do you remember me?
Michael: You called me Assbutt and set me on fire.
Michael: Now you come to beg forgiveness?
Cas: Oh, I didn’t come to beg.
Everyone: holy shit, BAMF Cas is back!
A ring of fire traps Michael, and then two shadowy figures approach the curtained archway on one side of the room. It’s the Winchesters, and damn if they don’t make one of the most epic entrances we’ve ever seen on this Show. I gasped out loud and started fervently hoping for a gif to appear, and wanted to send all the kudos to Richard Speight for that iconic shot. Damn!
To make it even more powerful, Dean is dangling handcuffs.
Luckily I had a cold drink with me.
Michael: Sam, you look well. Last time I saw you in the Cage…
Sam shuts that down immediately, without hesitation, and in a voice that brooks no argument.
Sam: Doesn’t matter.
Jared delivered that line perfectly. There was so much emotion behind it, acknowledgement of Sam’s trauma and at the same time his determination to do what has to be done without “going there”. Sam Fucking Winchester, man.
Dean explains that they said goodbye to their brother because they thought they had to, and that they were wrong.
Michael: Don’t tell me, tell him.
Sam and Dean: Adam??
There’s a poignant moment when Dean realizes just what that means, obviously comparing the situation to his own losing battle with Michael in which he was kept drowning and unable to assert any sense of self at all.
Dean: (brokenly and in wonder) Michael lets you… talk? He lets you… be?
Sam flinches on Dean’s behalf as he hears that, Jared portraying Sam’s empathy for his brother in that subtle way that was nevertheless so powerful.
Adam: We only had each other. We had an agreement.
You can see how much it cuts Dean to hear that, to know that he wasn’t able to have that with ‘his’ Michael. Michael unfortunately doesn’t want to hear what they all have to say about God’s betrayal. Later, Adam tries to reason with him. Once again, it’s very clear they have a relationship of equals, of respect. Adam is comfortable disagreeing with the Archangel, and Michael listens to him. The “good son”, however, still refuses to doubt his Father.
Castiel doesn’t give up, though. He comes to see Michael alone and goads him into a physical fight, telling him at one point that he used to “have an entire oak tree shoved up your ass”. It’s a ploy to get Michael to grab him, and when he does, Castiel gets his hands on Michael’s head and says “see the truth for yourself”. Jake Abel once again does an amazing job – I was half convinced his head was really going to explode at one point!
It looks like even that didn’t work for a while, as a forlorn Castiel tells Dean. Michael sees everything that’s happened, including the AU version of Michael. He’s crushed with all he’s seen, but still unwilling to help.
Dean: Maybe you went too far.
Dean: What did he say?
Cas: Leave, get out, I want you dead. We didn’t bond.
Poor Cas. He tried his best.
Meanwhile, Eileen gets another call from shifty Sue, and when Sue taunts her with “do you have to ask permission?” (which just made it even more suspicious), Eileen agrees to help her. Just then, Sue seemingly gets attacked. I was relishing Eileen’s kickass independence at the start of the episode, so I was a little surprised that this time she knocks on Sam’s door and asks him to come with her – and that Sam does, even with Michael in the bunker on the verge of finding out how to lock up God. It was set up to seem like a pretty dire situation, though.
Of course, it’s a trap.
Eileen: Sue, you’re okay, thank god.
Chuck: Any time.
Well, that can’t be good. Did Chuck engineer Eileen’s return just to get to Sam? Is he still controlling the story to that extent? That just occurred to me. Damn it, Eileen is not your pawn, Chuck!
Back at the bunker, it turns out that Michael did listen; he gets a clue and says he’ll help. That what they did to The Darkness they can do to God. He hands over the spell, which requires the nectar from a leviathan blossom from Purgatory. Boom, he waves his hand and an entrance to Purgatory appears just like that – and will stay open for twelve hours.
There was a bit of retcon in this episode, because so much of the show has been about how difficult it is for anyone, archangels included, to get into Purgatory or hell or whatever. In Season 6, it certainly wasn’t easy to go to Purgatory and grab souls. Now it’s a simple spell or a finger snap and off we go.
Dean asks to talk to Adam before Michael leaves.
Dean: We are sorry. What happened to you, you’re a good man, you didn’t deserve that.
Adam: Since when do we get what we deserve? Good luck.
It’s an appropriate question for the entire show, isn’t it? And for contemplating how it’s going to end. With the characters getting some version of what they deserve? We’ll see.
So as we head into the mini hiatus, it almost seems like we’re back in Season 8, Sam having a romance and Dean and Castiel headed to Purgatory. The first part of Season 8 was not my favorite season, though I agree with Ackles that the Purgatory scenes were pretty awesome and Eileen is certainly no Amelia (apologies to Liane Balaban, who did her best with the part). At any rate, the episode left us in a double cliffhanger situation, not knowing what Chuck has up his sleeve for Sam and Eileen or what will befall Dean and Cas in Purgatory. The brothers go into 2020 separated once again, which has been the case for parts of most episodes in Season 15 and is never going to make me want to jump up and down, but I’ll reserve judgment and see what happens when we return.
Thanks to Richard Speight’s directing and every single cast member’s brilliant acting, I enjoyed this episode. Shout out to guest stars Shoshannah Stern, Ruth Connell, Jake Abel, Rob Benedict and Keith Szarabajka for absolutely kicking it in the ass (and Anna Grace Barlow in her brief return as Lilith). The episode had a lot to say, as the title implies, about fathers and sons and daddy issues, which is quintessential Supernatural. There was also a subtler commentary on independence and choice, with Eileen, with Adam and Michael and their negotiation of a relationship of equals, and with Castiel, who seems to have come back from his time away newly comfortable with making his own choices and not needing anyone’s permission to carry them out (including Dean’s, much to Dean’s annoyance). Both those themes tie directly into Chuck, and set us on the path to finishing up the series next year.
This episode was also noteworthy for some real life reasons. It was the first time that Rob and Rich were on the show together, after all this time of doing conventions and sharing a stage! We also were treated to one of Richard’s songs playing from his new CD – if you haven’t checked it out, do it! Another musically talented cast member – we’re a lucky fandom.
I’m okay with having a break right now, because it’s the holidays and my to do list is about a billion pages long – crossing my fingers that Show comes back with a bang in 2020 for its final twelve episodes. Til then, enjoy whatever holidays you celebrate!
Caps by kayb625
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50 thoughts on “It’s The Last Mid Season Hiatus for Supernatural!”
Knowing this pair of writers always make Dean a dullard when it comes to phrases, I noticed it. However, because Dean had used the Achilles heal phrase before I choose to head con it that Dean plays a bit to evoke a reaction from Sam. I equate this with Dean singing on key in in “Last Call.”His off key singing in the car with Sam must be to annoy Sam. How else could Dean suddenly have such a mellifluous voice? That is where head con over rules.
An understanding between Sam and Eileen could cover many areas. Excellent episode so I don’t lose much sleep over the Achilles heal or dependency issues.
I admit I was not a Jake Abel fan in Season 5, especially in Swan Song, but he did a bang up job here. Cudos. Good episode. I do always seem to have the same issues as you, though.
Donatello, what a joy. Jake shone in his dual role and the story rolled on in quiet way.
Eileen is unfortunate, a pawn in Chuck’s game. Sam’s behaviour around her and around Dean in relation to Eileen were inconsistent. Does he care, in which case following her made sense, if they are just friends and there’s nothing there, why did he not trust her? Something is off there and I’m not buying what the show is selling with the “romance” when Eileen is out of sight Sam is not acting the same( has some kind of
love spell been used?)
Dean proved to be both giving and understanding in response to the possibility his little brother could have a bright future, but when it came to thwarting his end goal of bringing Chuck down he would not be deterred. Dean has a target to aim for and showed that whilst he could work with Cas, he will not be swayed by him from his target.
Cas came across as overly forceful, he jumped right in with Michael not giving either Michael or Adam chance to absorb what had happened fully when the were clearly rational and not the mess the Winchesters had been lead to believe. The same happened last week, Cas rushed right in to probe Sam’s wound and hurt him, that should have been a warning to Cas to slow his roll a bit. I agree with Dean , Cas was harsh and I think he was projecting his still festering anger at Dean in the wrong direction.
Splitting the Brothers up was very transparent and a little disappointing and the weakest part of the plot. Sam and Eileen walking into a gangster style meet in a garage? They are experienced good hunters so it made them look at best distracted by the so called romance or at worst, incompetent.
In a way it’s a probable rerun of season 8, which is not a place I care to be, it’s my least favourite season as it was season that totally wrecked the Winchesters relationship and took years and much suffering to repair. Let’s hope they do not repeat that, it would be disappointing.
You stated *exactly* why I can’t stand the Sam/Eileen thing. It took until season 11 for Sam and Dean to *really* recover from the damage done in Seasons 8 and 9. And this is the last season we’re getting, so if the (unrealistic) Sam/Eileen thing damages the brother’s relationship even a little of how the (equally unrealistic) Sam/Amelia thing did, we don’t have another three seasons to work through it and get the brothers to a good spot with each other. We’ve got 12 flipping episodes with a show runner who has no idea how to pace a narrative.
I’ve a feeling you and I and spent so much of Seasons 8 and 9 yelling at the screen to no avail. Even now if someone mentions those years I get wound up. They were tough, mean and harshly cruel seasons
I yelled myself hoarse throughout seasons 8 and 9. Did a lot of crying, too, especially over Benny. And then all the unnecessary cruelty of season 9 that is never not going to hurt on a rewatch. But at least they had seasons 10 and 11 to bring the brothers back together again. If they carry on the Sam/Eileen ridiculousness much longer I really don’t know how they’re going to come back to the show being about Sam and Dean if she’s still here with seven or eight episodes left. At least with the way Jared and Jensen played the whole, “I’m happy for you” scene it seems like Sam feels as forced into whatever the thing with Eileen is as the audience thinks the narrative is doing to him.
Yup a lot of ugly crying happened. I never understood if part of Dean’s journey to who he was meant to be always intended him to be demonic, why didn’t they do it post Hell?
Oh because Kripe understood the power of keeping Dean one of the good guys.
that iconic scene of the guys walking thru the barrier in sync was worth tuning in for. I have not been happy with S15 so far. I hate when they are separated. but happy camper about that scene. and I agree with you Lynn about everything. thanks for being able to write and share what I can only feel.
Awesome recap as always. I’m already distressed over the fact that you can only do this 12 more times! Sigh. I’m going to need therapy. I can feel it. Jared will have to do a whole new anti depression campaign for all of us. No joke. Looking forward to Cas/Dean making up. I hope some part of Destiel makes it into canon. If not we’ll always have fan fiction
no offense meant, but Jensen has said time and again, destiel is not real. i think, as someone who knows the show inside and out, that he knows what he’s talking about. I hope and pray that destiel is never ever made canon of any kind, in any way shape or form. we don’t need any love interests at all, especially in the last season. not eileen/sam and certainly not the angel and dean. yes, there’ll always be fan fiction. which i hope that writers will still write after the show is over.
^^ That. And I can’t imagine that the thing Jensen had a problem with in the finale is him suddenly deciding to enter into a relationship with a celestial wavelength the size of the Chrysler building. There is no way anyone could talk him into that. He’s made his position on destiel quite clear.
I look at this last season as a long homage filled goodbye where anything can happen. A large part of fandom loves Destiel. I think they are giving the fans what they want instead of any sense making last season. It’s easier to think of it that way for me.
I never thought I could love a show so much it would be stressful when it ended, that wasn’t me. But this little show just grabs your heart. I even thought I was prepared for a while, but I’m not. So I understand where you’re coming from.
All I can say is I have prepared myself for the worst. I’m pretty sure many of us may not like the ending for many reasons. If I don’t get what I want, I will just hold onto the good bits and I hope you can too Marilyn.
The scenes for the January 16th episode at the end of this one crushed me. I’ve been trying to stay positive, hoping that maybe in the 2nd half of the season the show will find it’s footing again but I’ve given up hope.
I do not want a Sam and Eileen romance. Supernatural isn’t about “romance.” I liked the Eileen character when she was introduced but she should have stayed as a one-off. This whole thing feels so forced. They even have Dean trying to force it.
I’m also ready for the parade of returning guest stars to stop. I thought Jake was great. And I know we will have Jody and Bobby coming up. I’m sure we will get Donna at some point but then they really need to stop. I want to focus on the brothers.
Besides just hating the shoehorning in of whatever is going on between Sam and Eileen (I agree with Marion that I’m getting season 8 vibes and I HATED SEASON 8, is causes me physical pain on rewatches, it is not how I want to feel in the last season of the series), I overall hate the way women in the Dabb era are superheroes and just so awesome and god forbid one of the guys worries about someone who happens to be female and happens to be a hunter, because “omg misogyny!!!!!”
Eileen is DEAF. The idea that she is a hunter, let alone a hunter on her own, is RIDICULOUS. This is not a slam against deaf people. This is REALITY. There’s a reason deaf people aren’t allowed in the military. It’s not to be discriminatory, it’s to keep them from being killed in combat. Given how the hunting life has always been correlated to the life of a soldier, it is LUDICROUS to expect the audience to buy a deaf hunter, on her own, surviving this long. Is it terrible and unfair the way she was killed? Absolutely. But it was also very realistic, which is something the Dabb era no longer allows when it comes to female characters. In the name of “empowerment” they are no longer real in any way, shape, or form.
The reality is that Eileen can’t hear if something comes up behind her. If she’s working a case alone and the monster manages to flank her, that’s it, she’s done for, unless she’s somewhere that she’s tapped into a surveillance system or has mirrors on her sleeves so she can keep track of everything around her. I’m sure this sounds horrible and it’s undoubtedly not something I’m allowed to point out because I’m someone who can hear, but my husband works in a four man auto shop with a mechanic who is deaf. Not even fully deaf, not like Eileen, he has hearing aids and VERY limited hearing, but the way he communicates is by reading lips. The first time I met him was when he came to plow our driveway. I instantly liked him. He’s an incredibly intelligent, very kind man who used to be an electrical engineer and just got bored with it so now he works on cars. I also spent half of our conversation of me telling him which of our two driveways plowed with my face turned away from him like a dumbass, while he was struggling to figure out what the heck I was trying to tell him because the only way he knows what you’re saying is by reading lips, and as I said – I’m a dumbass. Fortunately as I also said he’s incredibly intelligent and was able to figure out from my dumbass pointing where he could put the snow, and I made a mental note to make sure that the next time I talked to him I didn’t turn my face away, so he would actually know what I’m saying.
My husband is a volunteer firefighter, and he thinks so highly of his coworker – despite the learning curve of having to remember that he needs to get the man to turn and look at him before he can ask him for something – that he convinced his coworker to join the same fire department. I was thrilled by this idea, given how much I like the guy and how it’s obvious he hasn’t had that great of a time connecting with people in our little town, because again, you gotta remember that you need to be looking at him when you talk to him and that can be hard to do when you don’t see him regularly to reinforce “You need to look at him when you speak.” On the very first event they worked together – fireworks, just last weekend – they had him and my husband directing traffic, and at the end of the event he ended up causing a car accident because the fire chief stationed him too far away to read my husband’s lips and know what he was saying. It was really the fire chief’s fault, and it was entirely foreseeable and preventable if he’d put any thought into it at all, but both my husband and his coworker still felt awful. Would I want this guy with me during a zombie apocalypse? Abso-frickin-lutely, because he’s an electrical engineer and engineers would come in handy in a zombie apocalypse. Would I scream to high heaven if my little band of survivors ever let him go off on his own to scavenge supplies or whatnot? You bet your butt I would, because HE’S DEAF. He can’t hear threats coming up behind him, if you’re a dumbass who turns your face away from him when you’re giving him directions he has no clue what you’re saying (and thankfully is too polite to say, “Hey, dumbass, stop turning your face away from me”), and if he got lost there’d be no way to find him because it’s not like you can wander around calling his name.
So the longer they have Eileen on the show, and the longer they make Sam look unreasonable for having a REASONABLE amount of concern for her hunting on her own, the more I resent the whole, “She can totally overcome her deafness and take on solo hunts because she’s got boobs and boobs are magic!” The magic plot armor female hunters have in the Dabb era is insulting to no end, and started with Mary turning back up and being the best hunter out there, despite having GOTTEN OUT OF THE LIFE when her parents died (except, of course, New Canon). Even if Mary hadn’t gotten out of the life, she’d been in Heaven for decades. The game had completely changed, but nope, she had boobs, and boobs are magic, and if we side-eye her ability to get right back out hunting and have multiple storage units and all kinds of other crap that it took John, Sam, and Dean, a lifetime of hunting to build, then if you’re a man you’re a sexist and if you’re a woman you’ve internalized your misogyny. And that’s *crap.*
Eileen would have been killed long before she met Sam and Dean if she’s always been hunting on her own like she was in this episode, Mary should have had a much harder time getting back into the swing of things, even with the BMoL helping her, and Claire should have been *shredded* by the werewolves in Wayward Sisters, showing up with her perfect hair and perfect makeup and trying to take them out head on with basically no real attempt at subterfuge. I am sick to *death* of female hunters on this show being all badass and better than the boys when there’s no reason on earth that they would be other than having ovaries. I miss the days of Jo and Ellen like you can’t *believe* where Ellen was hunting with Jo because she *knew* she couldn’t stop her daughter and she *knew* Jo wasn’t cut out for the life, and they both ended up dead, with Ellen unwilling to leave her eviscerated daughter behind. I weep puddles every time I watch “Abandon All Hope” because it’s horrible and it’s tragic and that’s why it’s real. Jo and Ellen were realistic. Their deaths were believable and earned. There was nothing sexist about Dean’s “Women can do the job just fine, amateurs can’t” speech. Jo had an idealized version of hunting, AND she’d been around hunters her whole life, and she still got shredded by a hellhound. Give me a well written female character full of flaws and foibles who needs someone to open a pickle jar for her any day of the week over this kind of “girl power” B.S. that started last week when Eileen strangled Sergei, who is LITERALLY a foot taller than her, as well as making Sam look like some kind of regressive chauvinist this episode for worrying about THE DEAF GIRL WHO MIGHT GET AMBUSHED BECAUSE SHE’S DEAF.
I mean good lord, look what happened to Pamela Barnes the very first time Sam and Dean dragged her out for help after she lost her vision! She got stabbed by a demon! Because she was BLIND!!!! That’s not a criticism of blind people! That’s not negating their value! That’s an ACCURATE representation of what would happen to someone WHO CAN’T SEE when they end up in a room with something that wants to kill them!
And while *all* of this is happening and the women on this show are being written as more powerful and more competent and practically superhuman because they apparently have spidey senses, Dean doesn’t know what an Achilles heel is. Because boys are dumb. Which, as a woman and an actor, *enrages* me (you may have noticed) because dumbing down men to make women look more competent DOES NOT EQUAL WRITING A STRONG FEMALE CHARACTER. This becomes a HUGE problem when your two main characters *are men* and your writers are incompetent and apparently have never met an *actual* woman in their life. Because strong women are strong women, full stop. They are not strong women because the men in their life are weak, they’re simply strong women. And the fact that they’re using the StrongWomanTM as a narrative in a quasi-romance that they’ve shoved into the final season, which makes it feel like one of the most painful seasons of the series, just makes me long for Eileen to die yet again.
I don’t want to feel that way. I don’t want a few scenes with an guest star to overshadow the rest of the mid-season finale and poison it for me, or the two episodes running up to the mid-season finale, but that’s exactly what’s happening. Eileen is being wedged between Sam and Dean, put up on a pedestal as just the bestest of the best because magic boobs, and I certainly don’t want the MEN this show is about to be made to look like buffoons or overbearing worrywarts for having legitimate concerns about someone who’s deaf going off on their own IN THE FINAL SEASON. I would expect that Sam and/or Dean would be just as concerned about a deaf man going off on his own to hunt, who they considered a friend, as they would a deaf woman. Just look at how they reacted to Adam the first time he showed up before they knew he was a ghoul! The first thing Sam wanted to do was train him how to defend himself, and Dean’s response to that was, “Hard no, we are *not* pulling him into the life.” Was *that* because he was infantilizing what they thought was their baby brother, or were they just being realistic about him not being cut out for the life? Because I’m sick to *death* of the idea that anyone and everyone not only can, but should want to be a hunter when it’s plainly not so.
Also, Jake Abel was absolutely fantastic, and can we PLEASE ACKNOWLEDGE THAT DEAN WENT TO HELL AT LEAST ONCE BEFORE THIS SHOW ENDS?????
I just hate what Dabb has done and continues to do to this show and I really have no faith that he’ll end it in any kind of satisfying way.
Mer, powerful words. I love how you think. this comment and last week’s comment were so amazing. thank you for sticking up for our show and being not afraid to state your views. you sound like a strong woman.
The Eileen-Sergei thing last week had me rolling my eyes so hard I almost pulled something. Did no one on the current writing staff watch Born Under a Bad Sign with the way Sam manhandled Jo? He didn’t need to be possessed by a demon to do that. That horrifying interaction in a bar is what *generally* happens when a woman, even a woman trained in self defense, tries to take on a man who is a foot taller than her. It typically doesn’t end well for the woman, and that isn’t a slam against women, that’s REALITY. Anyone who doubts this should go back and watch that scene and just look at how much larger Sam’s hands are than Jo’s. Nothing else – just their hands. Unless you’re someone who has a black belt or has taken krav maga, if you get in close quarters like that with someone so much bigger and with so much more muscle mass, you are going to be in serious, serious trouble. I get that the show is called “Supernatural” and there is a necessary willful suspension of disbelief that comes with watching a show about two brothers who hunt ghosts, but the writers didn’t used to completely deny the *reality* that Sam vs. Jo or Sergei vs. Eileen wouldn’t even be a contest.
The worse thing was the stunt person stood out a mile it the action shots.
Right???? Eileen is TINY! I don’t even know what they were thinking with that scene, except of course they simply weren’t.
As you so eloquently put it Mer, people can hunt regardless of their gender, disability, how long they’ve been dead/ resurrected, whatever, but not in an amateurish fashion.
Eileen is a prime example of ruining a character to be the love interest. Back when we met her she hunted very differently, she was cautious and smart, she got one up on Sam using her brains and she had a plausible back story, she was trained by an expert hunter who accompanied her until death. Not all women need to be superheroes to be strong and resourceful. My go to example is Jamie in Monster Movie, a barmaid no discernable hunting skills , but she used what skills she had ( listening, empathising) to help Dean with beginning to talk about Hell she tried the same with the monster and to some extent it worked. In the end she saved herself and the Winchesters.That’s what a smart woman can do.
For Dean I don’t forsee fair acknowledgment that he’s a good guy who deserves better, his tenure in Hell , his trauma is too long ago and mostly forgotten by show runners even though his Hell scars were never taken from him. The writers often make jokes at his expense , when he’s laughing too that’s fine, but sometimes it’s just petty and small or he get perceived as a jerk. Which he is not. Jensen is then left trying to fix the mess.
I had a sinking feeling in my gut the prophetic way Adam pointedly said to Dean ( the only Winchester to even try to extract him from Hell ) “We don’t all get what we deserve” so many echos of Billie’s “see you soon Dean” it would not surprise me in the slightest if at the end if all this Dean does not get what he deserves
Spot on, Marion. One of the reasons I liked Eileen when she was first introduced is because she was *smart.* She understood that she’s deaf, and that it could be used against her, and she acted accordingly. I weigh all of a buck twenty, soaking wet – you can *bet* that’s something I’d take into consideration if I had to hunt down a vampire or a werewolf, and I’d use stealth and strategy over brute strength every time, because I know if it came to a wrestling match between me and a monster, *I would lose.* Eileen was written as having a realistic view of her weaknesses and compensating for them, not just charging in and deciding to pick a fist fight with a man twice her weight. That’s *dumb.* Eileen didn’t used to be dumb. Only now, as you say, she’s been brought back as a love interest, and therefore must be just as physically tough and fearless as Sam and Dean, which can only be accomplished by making Sam and Dean weaker and stupider.
Women on this show used to be smart before Dabb came along and started wrecking everything. Look at a character like Jody Mills, who took *years* to develop into a competent hunter and had a leg up on civilians because she was already a sheriff. The first two times we see her she’s completely out of her depth, but she’s smart enough to help out our heroes (Bobby included). The third time we see her she almost gets eaten by a Leviathan, she’s just had an appendectomy, she’s drugged to the gills, and the *only* reason she escapes is because she’s smart enough to call Bobby and tell him what’s going on. She figures out how to kill Leviathans purely by accident while she’s helping Bobby clean a cabin (GASP, you say, THAT’S WOMEN’S WORK, HOW DARE THEY???), she specifically brings Sam and Dean in on some mysterious deaths the next time we see her because she *knows* she’s out of her depth, and then we don’t see her again until Crowley almost kills her. It’s after *that,* four whole seasons after she’s first introduced, that we first see her really tangled up in a case and killing her first supernatural creature.
Even the women who are one-offs are competent, even as they’re sometimes playing damsels in distress. Haley in Wendigo is determined to go out into the forest and find her brother. Sure, she ends up getting taken by the monster and has to be rescued, but she couldn’t *possibly* have known what was out there, and she sure as heck wasn’t about to sit around waiting for someone else to decide her concerns were valid when her brother didn’t check in. Katherine in Asylum shocked everyone by knowing how to use a shotgun and handled the whole, “We’re being haunted by insane ghosts” way better than Gavin did, plus she let him know straight out he was getting dumped if they made it out alive. Officer Hudak in The Benders helped the boys take down cannibals. I could go on, but I really don’t have to for anyone who has watched this show, the *whole* show, because we know that there used to be smart, capable female characters as one-offs all the time, and ones that stuck around longer used to take time to be developed. Heck, even Lisa, who was brought in pretty much solely as a love interest, was presented as *real.* Nothing about Eileen is real.
The whole “Sam went to Hell!” thing this season really is starting to grate on me, I’m not going to lie about that. And while it has been a while since Dean went to Hell, as you said, his memories have never been taken from him. Sam’s were. EXPLICITLY. Cas took on all of his Hell trauma in season 7. And then – oh right, Dean spent a year in Purgatory, which is a trauma also never to be acknowledged again. At least there was a teeny tiny acknowledgement of what happened with Dean and Michael last season, though quite frankly all that did was leave me even more bitter about the way that plot was completely abandoned in favor of making SPN “The Jack Show”. I am sick to death as well of Dean being made the butt of jokes, having him not know things he previously knew (like “Achilles heel”), and just in general reduced to something pretty (but not too pretty, because he doesn’t look 26 anymore, hardy har har) to look at but whose emotional journey isn’t worth bothering with. I don’t believe for a second at this point that Dean is going to get what he deserves. The best we can hope for is that he’ll end up as Dean “The Giving Tree” Winchester, though it’s far more likely he’s going to end up as Dean “The Doormat” Winchester. While Sam goes off with a woman that he just doesn’t seem that into.
You’re right Mer, I look back and wonder, there were all sorts of accusations of misogyny or inequality levelled at the show over the years, things I never saw( but I’m not one of the hip and happening so maybe it was just me?) However, I believe that the early women portrayals were some of the best because they were grounded in truth. The successful suspension of disbelief requires that and in an effort to please everyone and get ratings the fundamental truths have been ignored which fails to do this show the best service. Like you I’m small and slight, I couldn’t beat my way out of a wet paper bag. I know that, so I know Eileen can’t either. Even the three sheriff’s, Kathleen, Jody and Donna have been respectively been overpowered, because that happens, that’s also happened to the male sheriff’s, take Doug.
As for Sam’s trauma, I can’t help but wonder if Cas took on the Hell Scars, why isn’t he the one with the trauma? I also don’t understand if Sam does still has memories ( which is the route they’ve taken ) then why he just doesn’t talk to his brother if it still bothers him? Dean would be the one person in the world who could relate best. Dean went through much worse than Rowena ( and before anyone asks, I do like Rowena a lot and think highly of Ruth) yes Lucifer killed her more than once, he may have toyed with her a little , but she was not tortured for months on end, hanging from a rack, isolated and alone ( being alone was particularly cruel as Dean does have issues with that)
Yes , I do wish they’d stop with the dumbing down just to make the women/ guest star/ villians stronger. The way to do that is to write them smarter. It gets to be hard work at times and completely throws me off the story because, stickler for detail. I remember a long way back, been watching since it came out( and re-watching) I REMEMBER stuff , even quirky things, as I’m sure others do . The writers need to pay attention to detail and whilst I know there’s many years of information to wade through, some do manage very successfully, because they love the show and use the details well. J2 can only do so much with what they are given to work with and time and again it’s been them that have salvaged things, so kudos to them.
Yes and what was the look at Dean with the cutaway to Cas? Teasing Destiel? Or teasing Castiels fate in the Empty.
Speaking of. Cas made the deal that Jack would stay out of the Empty but then Chuck killed him and he ended back there. Would that be considered breaking the arrangement? The Emptity could send Jack back the same as when he let Cas return. No? Yes? Maybe?
I took it as 1) Dean’s going to have to make huge sacrifice 2) Castiel needs to treat Dean better,that he doesn’t deserve what happened to him. But meh, who knows. Our show is just so up and down lately anything could happen. I liked this episode better than some ( day time Ghosts anyone?) but parts of it made no sense to me.
OMG Mer. Same, girl. Same. If I could upvote this a million times I would. Well put and clearly explained.
I keep thinking there has to be more to this. Surely this simplistic storyline can not be it. Tho it’s Dabb so… Fairly certain there’s a twist coming for Chuck but what of the supposed SamEileen love connection. You know, the love connection that isn’t. Even tho they keep shoehorning her/it in. And the Dean and Cas thing. Please tell me Dabb isn’t going to go full Destiel.
Whatever Dabb has up his sleeve he’d better get a move on as he’s running out of episodes to wrap things up. And honestly the story has been pretty much “Meh” so far. I’m just not feeling the urgency much less the drama.
It’s all been pretty frustrating hasn’t it? No clear direction , someone pass him a roadmap.
“Tho it’s Dabb, so…” is EXACTLY my problem AlyCat22. After last season and the Michael arc that wasn’t, any faith I had that the man can come up with a coherent plot is nonexistent. He couldn’t write a decent story if someone walked him through it with a step-by-step PowerPoint.
I really doubt that “Destiel” will ever been canon. People tend to forget that there is an entire fanbase out there – the causal viewer. I know many people who watch “Supernatural” but aren’t involved in fandom things – they don’t ship (or even realize that there is such a thing as “Destiel” or “Wincest”), they don’t go to cons, etc. If the show were to hit them with “Destiel” it would be a huge WTF moment for them. I believe it would alienate a lot of their fanbase. People have said a large part fo the fandon wants “Destiel” to be canon. I respectfully disagree. It’s a very vocal part of the fandom.
Look, ship who you want to ship. Have fun with it (I do). I think the show gives everyone little nuggets to take and run with so you can for your own “head canon.” But I don’t understand the need for the vadlidation for the ship to be canon on the show. I’ve heard “representation” but the show has had LGBTQ characters on throughout its entire run.
I’m not trying to stir the pot with this response. I just felt the need to get this out there.
I agree, the representation has been there through the run of SPN. Certainly more so than many other shows . Charlie for example was a wonderful character, diverse, quirky , smart and beautiful. Importantly Charlie was well incorperated into the story, had progression and growth . In all ways she was a perfect fit in the makeshift Winchester family. Other characters don’t need to changed to cover diversity and the audience needs to be considered as a whole.
You’re 100% correct, Dawn. A very small but *very* loud percentage of the fandom wants it to be canon, and because they are so loud (and tend to be younger, using platforms like Twitter and Tumblr much more than the average viewer) it gives the illusion that everyone likes and wants Destiel, which simply isn’t so. In fanon, absolutely, ship whatever you want to your heart’s content. Read and write fanfiction, make and watch fan videos, make and enjoy fanart, no one will or should stop you, just don’t expect to see it on the screen. If Dean and Cas suddenly tumbled into bed the general audience, who make up the overwhelming majority of viewers, would go, “WTF????” People who ship Wincest understand this, which is why they’re perfectly happy to write fanfiction and are giddy whenever they get completely platonic, fraternal underscoring of the brother’s relationship without demanding more. They have no desire to see Sam and Dean actually tumble into bed and would be over the moon if they just said, “I love you” to each other before the show ends.
Wow! A lot of slamming Eileen going on here. The fire fighter experience aside this is a show about characters that have extraordinary abilities fighting sometimes pretty stupid adversaries. Our hero’s have bested 1,000’s of monsters, angels and demons over 15 seasons in sometimes the most ridiculous unbelievable ways. That has been the case since S1E1. Why is it such a stretch to accept a hearing impaired character to also be capable of surviving the world she was born into? Compared to all the other unrealistic scenarios on Supernatural this seems to be pretty far down the list of stretching the imagination of a fantasy television show.
Because Eileen used to be smart, and now she’s a PowerPuff girl for the sake of turning her into a romantic interest. This isn’t Arrow or The Flash. These people may be highly trained, but they’re not superheroes, and no matter how “extraordinary” your abilities are, if you are a 5’2″ woman it is stupid to pick a fight with a 6’2″ man. Eileen in her original incarnation was not stupid, and it was what made her so great. There’s suspension of disbelief and then there’s asking the audience to accept total crap, and the writing of superhuman women in the Dabb era falls into the latter. Nothing is treated seriously by him. There are no real stakes. Encounters that should have laid Sam and Dean up for *months* if not outright killed them are glossed over like paper cuts, and before you say the show has always been this way, it hasn’t. Dean nearly died of heart failure in Season 1. He was laid up with a broken leg in Season 7. There was no one who batted an eye when they wrote Jared’s surgery into Season 10 because it was completely believable that Sam would have been badly injured trying to find Dean.
And since you mentioned the firefighter story, my husband was just on a call last night, town DOT building fully emgulfed, 7 fire departments were called in, and my husband’s coworker spent the whole time glued to his side because people kept looking at him, saying, “Okay, what I need from you is…” and then turning and walking away while telling him what they needed. The only way he knew what to do is because my husband stood with him and repeated everything. It is *impossible* for me to buy Eileen off hunting on her own without getting killed when her time in hell clearly killed off a whole bunch of brain cells and she’s now relying on brawn instead of intellect when she’s hunting. If I wanted to watch a superhero show, there are plenty of other options right on CW for me. But I don’t, That’s why I’m watching Supernatural, which has yet to put forward a convincing recurring female character in the Dabb era, and it’s insulting not only to my intelligence, but that he thinks the kind of B.S We’re being shoveled with the Eileen story is actually *sufficient* to illustrate what a strong woman looks like to fans of the show who are *actually* strong women. It doesn’t actually advance the idea that women can be warriors if all you do is take a tiny woman, have her do the exact same things a man can do, have her act like one of the main two men on the show, and go, “Voila! Strong woman right here!”
No, you’ve essentially given me a man who wears makeup and braids his hair, not a woman. Because you see, anything that might make a woman “womanly,” like caring for her children (see Ellen) automatically equals “weak” to Dabb and must therefore be erased, and that’s an *actual problem* when a male heavy industry is largely in charge of presenting to the public how “strong women” behave. There was very little actual misogyny in Supernatural before the Dabb era, and now it’s rife with women who are nothing more than two dimensional stereotypes.
I mentioned your personal story because it was a real life event involving real people. Supernatural is not that. These are fictional characters that can accomplish “heroic” acts that no real life human being could possibly do. And for the record everyone in my family is in Law Enforcement and one is a Firefighter. Their sacrifice for our safety is not lost on me. My brother has been shot more than once and unfortunately had to kill someone to protect others. Yes he is a Big Fucking Hero. I get it.
Eileen is supposedly a single, go it alone Hunter with a hearing impairment. Not sure why she wouldn’t also qualify as a strong woman.
Having a romance or relationship with Sam does not weaken the character. Her hearing has not been an issue for the character as a hunter before. The BML killed her,not a monster. She is heroic in spite of the hearing loss. Isn’t that Shoshana’s take as well ? Good representation and inclusion. Writers don’t always get it 100% accurate but they try to represent.
What works is that these characters are not super powered heros, but just human. Even Sam and Dean have had weaknesses to overcome. Not seeing misogyny on such an intense level. And it is fictional so chill. Just enjoy the last moments of show as best you can without the dissection is my plan.
Strong women of Spn. Mary,Ellen,Jo, Charlie,Abaddon,Rowena, Mrs. Tran,Kelley, Eileen. Not perfect but strong in their belief of self and making tough decisions. Other minor ones thru the years. Just imho. Happy holidays.
To be fair, the issue of how a particular episode is viewed is personal. Everyone has their own take and that’s ok, we don’t necessarily have to agree.
On that we agree. Just don’t want to see anyone get depressed.
I appreciate what you’re saying. It’s difficult time right now for many, I count myself among them. It’s amplifying many things that I might have previously hand waved. I know I’m not alone in that. I’ve been very forgiving and hopeful in the past, but that hope has been absent a lot from the show which is having a knock on effect.
I don’t think you want to get why we don’t see Eileen as a strong hunter, quite frankly. I, personally, don’t think I could possibly be clearer about what it is that irritates me about the way she’s been treated after her return. It is not enough to say, “It’s fantasy, it’s not supposed to be realistic” as an excuse for why someone who is barely over five feet tall is attacking men over six feet tall and not getting her arm broken when this show has previously been grounded somewhat in the biological reality of what it is to be human, where no amount of training is going to help a petite woman overcome a hulking man unless he’s completely wasted or she has a weapon, and it’s insulting to expect us to handwave away lazy writing as “But it’s a fantasy show.”
Yes, it is. A fantasy show that people get PAID to write. Presumably enough money to keep them coming back. And yet since Dabb took over they have put in the *minimal* effort required to create believable characters or write meaningful stories. The way they write women in particular as “strong” is by making Sam and Dean weak. Look at the whole run-up to Wayward Sisters for a prime example of this. Dean couldn’t possibly have killed the wraith on his own if Magic Sparkle Patience hadn’t been there to yell out to him with her special visions, because Dean is just a dumb old man. Jody completely undermined Dean’s rational, sound advice that Patience stay in school and get a real life by advising her to leave her safe, loving home with her caring father in the pursuit of hunting down monsters. Claire is reintroduced as taking on a nest of werewolves all by herself and surviving because she remembered to do her hair first and that is the source of her magic, as if no one remembers Red Meat and how Sam and Dean both nearly died, despite having decades more experience. We were expected to believe that Kara in the Bad Place could not only knock out and then tie two men twice her body weight, standing *upright* to a *tree*, without any help just because she does an AU version of parkour. And now we’ve got Eileen back, and instead of fighting smarter, like she used to do, she just straight-up fights.
If this were a high school writing club, this would be acceptable, but these are supposed professional who – again – are getting PAID to churn out this kind of crap. Under Dabb, being a strong woman means erasing all aspects of any kind of individuality. All StrongWomenTM under Dabb must like drinking beer and wearing plaid. All StrongWomenTM under Dabb must never show fear. All StrongWomenTM under Dabb must never stop to think, “Do I really want to spend my life fighting monsters at the sake of having any kind of normal relationship with anyone?” (see Donna and Doug). StrongWomenTM under Dabb must be willing to fight a man who could knock them out with one punch straight on without putting any thought whatsoever into strategy or how to counteract his large body mass and reach. In fact, all StrongWomenTM under Dabb would never be knocked out with one punch. This is problematic, as I said, because we rely by and large on an entertainment industry RUN BY MEN to show how WOMEN are supposed to behave if they want to be considered strong, or pretty, or feminine, or whatever, and instead of getting actual well-rounded female characters we’re getting slices of what women actually are, and they must always run towards the masculine. This is one of the reasons most fanfic writers are female, to balance out how the media presents women *must* behave in order to be considered the “right kind of woman” according to whoever is running the show. And Dabb has a very specific, very limited, *highly* insulting idea of what makes a woman strong or competent, which he has now wasted three episodes of the very last season bringing to the forefront with this Eileen and Sam nonsense.
Meanwhile, I cheered when Mary died because she’d spent three seasons abandoning her sons, but still weep buckets that Ellen stays behind with her dead daughter to blow herself up and hopefully kill the hellhounds right along with her. Only one of the characters is a strong, well-written, full character, hence the reason her death makes me cry every time.
If I want to watch a mash-up of Daredevil and Jessica Jones, I will petition Netflix for one. It’s not something I’m at all interested in watching during the final season of Supernatural, particularly when it’s used to make Sam look like a 1950s husband who doesn’t want his little wifey to drive the car by herself.
“I cheered when Mary died”
As did most of the fandom….
It broke my heart for the Brothers though. They shouldn’t have had to live through their Mom’s death a second time.
I will never forgive Dabb for what he did to Mary. The idea that a woman can’t possibly have her own life and be strong and independent *while still taking into account how her actions impact her children,* whether they’re grown or not, is hands down one of the most offensive things he’s ever done.
Mary “You are not a Child”
Dean “I never was”
Says it all . I’m a working Mom and always have been, I walked a few miles in Mary’s shoes in missing some of my son’s childhood. I would never have treated my child that way Mary treated het boys , for simply wanting to have a realationship.
That was the moment I decided I hated her, and that the writers would need to work awfully hard to win me over to her side. They never did.
It’s a real shame with Mary the writers opened up real promising possibilities that could have meant much more to the Winchester Brothers and to the audience. In the end it just destroyed Mary’s character. Granted what we knew were four year old Dean’s memories, but they could have built her up with care, making her return, her knowledge and sense of who they could have been a foundation for a better future for the Brothers and the series.
I have no doubt when Carver brought her back he did not intend for her relationship with the boys to be what Dabb turned it into. The man is simply incompetent and completely lacking in creativity.
I agree. Mary’s return had so much potential. Dabb fumbled the ball. Even the British Men of Letters could have been handled better (but I would have preferred they never existed).
I agree. The idea was sound, the execution was the problem .
And they are doing to Eileen exactly what they did to Mary, which is why I want her gone as well. When introduced, Eileen was unique. She was smart, she was capable, she accepted that she had to compensate for her deafness (which didn’t make her weak – acknowledging that you have something that puts you at a disadvantage that you have to work around doesn’t make you weak, it makes you smart), and she compensated by out-thinking her opponents and using their assumption that because she’s deaf she wasn’t a threat against them. Now she’s just, “Hey, I’m a badass because I’ll choke a guy twice my size without thinking about it!” Straight to physical violence with no forethought, which is the way *men* tend to think, not women, because women have to take into account, “How much bigger is he than me” as just a fact of daily life. Forget throwing in monsters, we’re talking about walking down the street after dark and thinking a stranger might be following you to your car and running through the alternate route you can take to lose them or calculating how far it is to a store you can duck into to see if you’re just being paranoid or have something to actually worry about. Dabb has a cookie cutter template he uses for every woman on this show to indicate, “This is a strong woman, see? I totally understand women!” which doesn’t take into account how real women think as a matter of reflex because the world is already dangerous enough, and he has shoved Eileen into his cookie cutter template, completely stripping her of individuality. If they decided to bring Jo back from the dead, I guarantee you she would be written the *exact* same way they’re writing Eileen because Dabb and co. have exactly one way of writing women. They are cardboard cut-outs, not people, no one on the writing staff takes more than two seconds to try to get into their head space and write them as actual people, and in my opinion we’re wasting a lot of time in the final season on shoving Sam into a relationship with a character who isn’t even a good facsimile of what she once was.
“The brothers go into 2020 separated once again, which has been the case for parts of most episodes in Season 15 and is never going to make me want to jump up and down, but I’ll reserve judgment and see what happens when we return.”
Honestly though, at what point are you (& we) giving them TOO much of the benefit of the doubt and reserving our judgements too much.
We are about halfway through the final season ever and the Sam & Dean dynamic seems to be last on the writer’s priority list. I feel like I have every right to be upset about that.
The Winchesters dynamic has built and sustained the show since Day 1. And here in, in the show’s final stretch, and Sam & Dean are barely onscreen together – and when they are onscreen, their interactions and conversations lack the depth we are used to. Sure, we get some decent, short scenes between the two like when Sam told Dean that he needs him & it was great and all…but it just feels like a cheap bone thrown to us because there is no emotional – or any – follow through.
Their single scene alone together in this episode about Eileen just didn’t feel right or have the easy banter we usually get with them. Dean, especially, seemed way out of character. I didn’t like his flippancy. The whole bit just left a bad taste in my mouth.
It’s beginning to feel like the writers are giving long-time fans and the Winchester legacy the middle finger.