This has been a hell of a week. The US election happened on Tuesday and Americans (and most of the rest of the world) waited through constant anxiety attacks to find out who won as results trickled in. Everyone was on edge, tensions were high, and I really needed my number one comfort show, Supernatural. On Thursday, the third to last Supernatural episode ever aired in the midst of all this uncertainty and anxiety – an episode ominously titled ‘Despair’. True to Supernatural form, its third to last episode aired in the middle of unprecedented chaos and caused even more chaos, both in the fandom and more broadly in terms of anyone watching trending topics that night. In fact, #Supernatural not only trended, but #Destiel and #Putin trended – often in the same tweets. Who the hell had that one on their 2020 bingo card??
As Supernatural ends its run, it’s no longer the major player on Tumblr that it once was, but on Thursday all those 2012 Supernatural accounts rose from the dead en masse to comment on whether or not “Destiel Is Canon” with a mind blowing range of unironic celebration posts alongside an equally mind blowing array of shitposts and hilarious memes making fun of the show for how that possibility played out. I admit I never thought that if Supernatural once again ruled Tumblr memes, it would be for making fun of a scene that was the opposite of intended to be funny.
But it’s been that kind of a week. I have mixed feelings all over the place that I still haven’t sorted out and the US Presidential election was just decided after 987 years, so I’m not likely to sort them out any time soon. Instead, I’ll try to dig into the entire episode, not just those three minutes, and see where it brought us, for better or worse.
The episode picks up right where 15.17 left off, Sam helping an injured Jack. Jack tells them all to leave him, for their own good.
Jack: I don’t wanna hurt you, don’t let me hurt you…
Alex Calvert is so good at making me feel for Jack, that plaintive ‘don’t let me hurt you’ going right to my heart. Dean has changed his tune completely, insisting passionately that they’re not gonna give up on him. Poor Dean must have whiplash with how the writers keep making him change his tune so often.
Billie appears, blaming them for her plan not working and then zapping Jack out of there to the Empty.
Which means we get to see Rachel Miner again, so yay. Jack promptly explodes, though, so boo. The explosion wakes everything up and makes a lot of noise and totally pisses it off. Enraged, the Empty attacks Jack, crushing his head.
Poor Jack, he’s been through a lot in the last two minutes.
Billie gives us some exposition about the Empty being pissed at her too for sending an explosive Jack there, and reminds us that the Empty can’t come to Earth unless it is summoned, which we already knew. And Sam reminds us what we figured out last week about Billie’s plan – that anyone who was resurrected will die, including Sam and Dean. Billie also is pissed that Sam took the God book and wants it back, refusing to return the maybe still alive Jack until Sam gives it to her. Sam finally goes to get it; instead of putting it in her outstretched hand, he drops it on the table instead. Sassy, Sam.
Billie underestimates the Winchesters for some reason and walks away to read the new portion of the God book, her scythe left behind and her back to the Winchesters. She zaps Jack back to them but insists he’s coming with her, since he’s still “useful”, and that’s when Dean has had enough. He grabs her scythe and attacks her, injuring her. She zaps herself out of there, leaving Jack (and her scythe) behind.
Lisa Berry can be very scary indeed and she proves it in this episode, telling the reapers in her library when she returns, clutching her shoulder, that “the plan has changed.”
That night, neither of the Winchesters can sleep. Dean drinks in the dark, and Sam joins him.
Dean slides a glass and the bottle to his brother and they settle in, mirror images of each other. It’s a beautifully filmed scene from director Richard Speight, Jr. but melancholy as hell.
Dean: Sam, I’m sorry…about everything.
Sam: Dean, you don’t have to…
Dean: I pulled a gun on you! I couldn’t stop… we were so close to beating him… I couldn’t snap out of it.
Sam: Yeah, well, you did. And you’ve snapped me out of worse.
Sam: You have.
Sam is hanging onto hope for both of them, saying they’ll regroup. Somehow.
Dean raises his glass.
Dean: To somehow.
They clink glasses, drink together in the dark.
I loved that scene, perfectly depicting how the Winchesters work. They get each other, and need few words to come to an understanding after there’s been a breach in that understanding. They sit in companionable silence after, sharing the burden of what’s to come.
Meanwhile, AU Charlie and her new girlfriend Stevie enjoy some home cooked breakfast before a hunt, which is all normal and nice until…
Stevie vanishes, plate full of scrambled eggs crashing to the floor and shattering.
She calls the Winchesters and they rush to her place, which makes me cry because it’s called “Kim Manor”, a shout out to the late Supernatural director Kim Manners, who was so influential in crafting the show and making it what it is. I’m guessing that’s director Richard’s Easter egg, but it could be anyone’s, since they all loved and miss Kim.
While Sam and Dean meet with AU Charlie, Castiel has a chat with Jack, asking him how he’s feeling. Jack confesses that now that the plan is ended, his destiny averted, he feels lost, unsure of his purpose.
Jack: I wanted to make things right. I was ready to die. For Sam, for Dean, for the world.
Cas: You never needed absolution from Sam and Dean, or me. We care about you because you’re you.
(A nice reflection of Castiel’s eventual tearful understanding of a similar message later in the episode).
Jack confesses that he’s scared, and Castiel agrees, saying that he is too.
It’s a nice moment between Castiel and Jack, ending with Cas gripping Jack’s shoulder in reassurance (perhaps a little foreshadowing there too).
Inside, Charlie regrets falling in love again, and bristles when the Winchesters tell her what’s going on and why Stevie may have disappeared. She lashes out at them, which didn’t seem very fair to me, since it’s only because of them that any of the AU people escaped their world before it was destroyed in the first place. Bobby calls and says that another AU hunter just vanished, and everyone realizes that it’s happening – that anyone who’s been resurrected is in danger.
They race to Eileen’s house, Sam texting her on the way, when suddenly the texts stop. Sam glances at Dean, wordlessly conveying his alarm, and Dean floors it.
They pull up to find her duffel and phone on the sidewalk next to her car, her last text to Sam unfinished.
Dean (in full big brother concern mode): Sammy?
Sam: (straightening up) No no no, I can’t. If I let myself go there, I’ll lose my mind. I can’t right now. We have to get everyone to safety.
Dean agrees, but says that while Sam does that, he’s going after Billie.
Dean: I started it, I’m gonna end it.
Dean: We didn’t make Chuck pay, but Billie? Her I can kill.
Cas offers to go with him, and Sam agrees to the plan after Dean says they have no choice.
The whole conversation is a little unclear to me, since I’m not sure why Dean says he started “this” or why they have no choice but to go after Billie now, but they all seem in agreement that they do.
Sam: Be careful.
Dean steps forward and I start to cry because oh shit, it’s not even the end of the episode and we have a Sam and Dean hug? That only happens when things are very very very bad.
Dean steps back and ducks his head, makes sure Sam is looking him in the eye before he asks, “Okay?”
Sam nods, and I cry harder because big brothers, man.
Both Jared and Jensen did an amazing job with this scene, putting so much emotion into their performances. Sam looks devastated, swallowing it all back because he has no choice, and Dean has always been the most devastated by seeing the people he loves in pain.
Dean to Cas: Let’s go reap a reaper.
Sam and Jack head toward an abandoned silo that Donna found; when they stop to get gas, Sam notices how down Jack is. Surmising he’s feeling useless, Sam says that he needs Jack to drive so Sam can do some research, hoping to give Jack back some feeling of usefulness. Daddy Sam to the rescue.
They meet up with Donna, so we get to see her ‘D Train’ license plate again and I’m glad to have Briana Buckmaster back before the end. Another hug, which makes me emotional again – doubly so because it’s been so long since most of us can hug anyone not in our ‘bubble’ in real life. This was the last episode filmed before Covid, so Sam and Donna could share a nice long hug.
Donna says Garth and Jody and the girls are all on alert, and they’re joined by AU Charlie and AU Bobby and the rest of the AU hunters in the silo, which they paint wards all over and enhance them with a spell from Rowena. Bobby reminds Sam that he’s the boss and that people listen to him (and, oddly, that they have no port-a-potty). Jack’s hands start to feel funny, and when he goes to pull up a plant that’s mysteriously grown inside the silo through an opening near where he was painting, the plant withers and dies.
(So Jack will be the next Death then, I’m guessing? Or the bringer of both life and death? Like Chuck and Amara?)
Sam looks around, once again the ‘Chief’, at the AU people making up their beds and settling in, feeling responsible for them like he did when they all first came back from the apocalypse world.
Then suddenly one of the kids who’s with them disappears, just like that.
Panic ensues, and while Sam stands there helplessly watching, one after another the AU people get zapped into nothing ala Infinity Wars.
Charlie: Sam, what do we do?
Sam turns to Bobby.
It’s only Sam and Jack, looking around at the empty silo in horror.
We are supposed to be feeling horror too, but unfortunately we don’t have any real connection to any of the Apocalypse World people so it doesn’t have anywhere near the impact that it did when Thanos did it. AU Charlie and AU Bobby were never our Charlie and Bobby, and it’s clear even in this episode that they have no connection to or affection for Sam and Dean. The only death that made me gasp was Donna’s because that was our Donna and because we didn’t expect it, thinking that only people who had been resurrected or brought from another world were at risk. Apparently it’s everyone.
Sam and Jack exit the silo, looking around at the eerie quiet.
Jack: Sam? Was it just them?
Sam: I don’t know.
We see empty swings still moving back and forth at a playground, empty baby carriages, abandoned gas stations. I definitely read this fic once. Okay, more than once.
Dean and Cas, meanwhile, go after Billie, Dean armed with her scythe. Which was, frankly, really hot.
Billie: Is this where I say, hello, boys? Hello, boys.
Lisa Berry gives me chills at that moment.
Dean is pissed as hell at this point, after seeing AU Charlie and his brother lose someone they cared about and how much that hurt them, so he’s all for killing Billie. She, however, gets the upper hand and attacks Castiel, choking him.
Billie: Remember when you stabbed me in the back, Castiel? Because I do!
Dean grabs the scythe and manages to cut her again, pinning her against the wall with it.
Dean: Call it off! Stop killing my people!
Billie (laughing bitterly): I didn’t hurt your friends. I’m guessing it’s Chuck. You’re in the wrong place, Dean.
She also lets them know that when Dean cut her, that nick was actually fatal. She’s dying.
Billie: You killed me, Dean.
And there’s just one thing she’d like before she dies.
Billie: I’d like to see you dead.
Richard Speight, Jr. filmed an awesome pursuit scene then, Dean and Cas escaping back into the bunker through the secret door and trying to get away, Billie taking her time following them through the bunker’s long hallways, menacing as she stalks after them, taunting them, scraping her scythe along the walls and leaving sparks in its wake.
Billie: I’m so glad you came…
Dean collapses, clutching his heart.
Billie: It’s always been you, Dean. Death defying. Rule breaking. Everything I love to put down. You are human disorder incarnate.
I love all those themes coming together, all those times Dean really has defied death, defied the ‘natural order’. All those warnings he ignored about how dangerous all that was.
Dean staggers, and Cas throws an arm around him and pulls him along.
Cas: I’ve got you.
They barricade themselves in a room, and Cas draws Dean’s knife from his pocket and cuts his hand, painting a blood sigil on the door to stop Billie’s attack on Dean’s heart. It works temporarily, but both Dean and Cas know that it won’t stop her forever. Time is not on their side.
Billie bangs on the door.
Dean sags, hopeless.
Dean: We’ll lose. I led us right into another trap. All because I couldn’t hurt Chuck.
(What??? Dean certainly was all for hurting Chuck, so I don’t think that’s on him.)
Dean: Because I was angry…It’s all I know how to do…
(Huh? Everyone was on board with this plan, Dean. And why wouldn’t you be angry? What is with this show and the pathologizing of anger, even instrumental anger?)
Dean: Everybody is gonna die, Cas. Everybody. I can’t stop it. I’m sorry.
Dean’s sorrow snaps Cas out of his own hopelessness, and he confides to Dean that he made a deal with the Empty to save Jack’s life, so that if he has a moment of true happiness the Empty will be summoned. And that’s the only thing that can go up against Billie.
Cas: I always wondered, what it could be, what my true happiness could even look like. I never found the answer. The one thing I want is something I know I can’t have.
Castiel is tearing up now, though he looks hopeful and is smiling through them.
In real life, I feel my own eyes welling up.
Castiel: I think I know now. Happiness isn’t in the having, it’s in just being. It’s in just saying it.
Dean looks confused, not understanding what Cas is talking about, or why he’s both crying and smiling.
Cas: I know how you see yourself. Destructive, angry, broken. Daddy’s blunt instrument, motivated by hate and anger.
Dean flinches, forehead creased in confusion and recognition.
Cas: But that’s not who you are. Everyone sees it. Everyone who knows you knows that what you’ve done, you’ve done for love. That is who you are. You’re the most caring man on earth, the most selfless, loving human being I will ever know. Knowing you has changed me. You cared — so I cared. About you, about Sam, about Jack. I cared about the whole world because of you. You changed me, Dean.
Misha is openly sobbing now, and so am I. It felt as much like Misha’s heartfelt message to Jensen and to Supernatural about how the show has changed his life as it did Castiel’s message to Dean, and the genuine emotion really got to me.
Dean: (beginning to tear up too) Why does this sound like a goodbye?
Cas: Because it is. I love you.
Dean: Don’t do this, Cas!
But Castiel looks determined, and entirely at peace with his decision. The familiar black goo of the Empty starts to seep through the wall behind them, and Dean turns to it, looking stricken.
Cas: Goodbye, Dean.
(A nice call back to Castiel’s signature ‘Hello, Dean.’ and an echo of all the other goodbyes Dean has had to hear over the course of his life, which made it cut even deeper)
The familiar strains of Jay Gruska’s family theme start to play, bringing even more tears (to me, in real life).
Castiel clutches Dean’s shoulder, then abruptly tosses him aside and gives himself over to the Empty.
The black tendrils start to engulf him, for a second looking like his angel wings behind him, and then they engulf Billie too, pulling them both into it and disappearing through the wall, leaving Dean on the floor, alone, a bloody handprint on his shoulder (an intentional call back to the handprint Cas left on him when he pulled him out of hell – apparently something Richard, Berens, Misha and Jensen came up with together)
Outside the silo, Sam calls Dean’s “other other phone” and gets voicemail.
Crumpled on the floor, Dean stares at his phone, the screen reading “Sam” as it buzzes again and again.
He puts it down, burying his face in his hands and sobbing.
Cut to credits.
My immediate reaction as the episode ended was to start yelling at my tv screen that there’s no way Dean wouldn’t answer his phone when Sam has just been through another phone interaction that ended with Eileen being (presumably) dead. I still think that didn’t make sense, but I’ll go with a) he’s still in shock and crushed by the sudden loss of Cas and b) he doesn’t want to tell Sam that they’ve lost someone else important to them. I was also still wiping tears off my face, because Misha Collins really went there in that last scene and, knowing it might be his last on the show, it hit me extra hard. This show has meant so much to its cast, and their relationship with each other has been so strong and so life changing, that I have no doubt that some of those tears were Misha’s tears. The reality of that – of their real life emotions at that moment – pulled all my own real life feelings of loss right to the surface. (Today in an online panel Misha said that he and Jensen went to Jensen’s trailer for a drink after shooting that scene, so yeah. I can’t even imagine how emotional they were, in real life.) Cue ugly crying.
I was thrown out of my sobbing a little as I started to wonder if the scene was in part about the show trying to cater to its fans and keep all of them happy (which is never actually possible). I’m not always against some fan service, but I didn’t want to be pulled out of that moment when Misha had me entirely pulled in. I’ve said before that Robert Berens is deft at writing scenes that intentionally provide for multiple interpretations, and this was another one of those. There were plenty of cues to read it as a declaration of romantic love if you were looking for one (and perhaps waiting a very long time for one). But it was also ambiguous and open for interpretation as the agape that angels are supposed to specialize in, an ‘I love you’ not an ‘I’m in love with you.’ Misha said today at a panel that it was his intention that Castiel’s declaration was one of romantic love despite the ambiguity, so at least for the person portraying the character, that’s his interpretation and what he was conveying.
There are, predictably, a million different reactions from fandom. Some people who ship it are feeling very happy and lord knows happiness is a rare and precious thing these days so you go, people, revel in that happiness. Others who ship it are feeling let down because this seemed one sided, or worse was both one-sided and a someone-comes-out-and-gets-thrown-into-hell-for-it trope. There are accusations of homophobia being thrown around, and warring factions of yay and boo that I wish weren’t happening in the midst of everything else going on in this world. Fans who don’t ship it are also divided, some of them interpreting it as a platonic declaration of Castiel’s love and fine with that (interpreting the thing he wants and can’t have to be accepting that Cas loves Sam, Dean and Jack and is loved in return but not being able to stay and actually have that). Other fans who don’t ship it but love the character wanted his sacrifice to be more about love of humanity than romantic love for one human so were not as fine with it, or were just caught off guard by the unexpected turn of events and are more confused than anything.
In other words, there are a lot of very different perspectives on this episode. I was surprised because there was a lot of lead up to Castiel wanting more than anything to be part of a family, accepted and loved by Sam and Dean and as a father to Jack. Just a few episodes ago, he expressed his joy and sense of fulfillment in being a parent to Jack, so I expected that would be the happiness that would eventually take him as he sacrificed himself for his family and his son. I was thinking a lot about Castiel’s evolution after this episode, and realized that the show has moved away from its initial depiction of angels as non-gendered and fearsome and awe inspiring, to portraying them as very human, from Serafina as besotted with Adam to the fangirl angel wanting an autograph that Chuck encountered in Heaven last episode. I loved Lee Majdoub’s portrayal of Hannah as essentially non-binary that he wrote about in There’ll Be Peace When You Are Done, but the show seems to have abandoned that idea and gone with a gendered conceptualization. That was necessary to allow what Castiel said in this episode to have the meaning it has for a lot of fans, I realize now, but I do miss the original take on angels.
The fact that Cas was yanked away and sent to Turbo Hell (the Empty) immediately after his declaration of love caught the attention of seemingly every corner of the internet (Misha acknowledged the criticism of the show playing into the bury your gays trope in the panel today as well). That part has been the fodder for an incredible number of memes all over the internet with a lot of criticism for the show and this episode for potentially sending someone who just came out to their best friend straight to hell, along with a bunch of pretty problematic other deaths all in the same episode.
Tumblr: As if people needed more reason to fear coming out, now they have to fear being yeeted into the abyss.
Suffice it to say, this has been one of the most controversial Supernatural episodes ever, which is a lot to take when there are only two left. While some of the memes are hilarious, it also kinda hurts to see so much making fun of the show when I just want to take it seriously as it comes to an end. Most of the larger general audience just seems confused.
In keeping with Supernatural always being the most improbable of little television shows on the CW, this episode ran on the Thursday night after the US election, when emotions were running high and people all over the world were on pins and needles waiting for results and glued to social media and the news. First #Supernatural trended, and then, as the Dean and Cas emotional scene ended, #Destiel trended too – incongruously mixed in with US election results! If that wasn’t weird enough, a tweet went viral that has inextricably paired Destiel and Vladimir Putin.
@Lilyloo: Future history books: The 2020 election was shaken by one singular event. On November 5th, Destiel became canon, and one long-time Supernatural fan was so overwhelmed by the news they chose to resign their job. That man was none other than Vladimir Putin.
(There was, at the time, a rumor going around online that Putin had in fact resigned). The juxtaposition of Destiel and Putin is definitely a legacy that nobody saw coming for Supernatural, I’m fairly certain. And while it was again hilarious, it added to how surreal the entire night felt for this fandom.
It’s not a night I’ll soon forget, that’s for sure!
The episode definitely kept my attention, and there were quite a few scenes that were beautifully directed and acted. Richard Speight, Jr. has a good eye for making the show as gorgeous as it should be, and for creating the suspense that a scene like Billie’s slow almost casual pursuit of Dean and Cas needed. The little touches, like Billie dragging her scythe along the wall, the scraping sound and the sparks flying, were perfect. Richard said in a convention panel this weekend that it was very hard to be in the room filming the emotional scene between Dean and Cas, that it was “very powerful to be in that space”. He said there was nobody who wasn’t affected by it, which I’m sure is true – Misha’s emotions certainly affected me!
As to where we are with two episodes to go and where the rest of this episode took us, I’m not super happy about Billie ending up being a villain. I always loved the snarky but mutually respectful relationship between Dean especially and Death, and I’m sorry that changed so much. Lisa Berry did an amazing job but I wish that evolution hadn’t happened. And what ever happened to all that about Death reaping God someday?
Bringing back the AU people wasn’t my favorite story line either – I didn’t like it in the first place, so it’s disappointing that a story line I so disliked had to make a return in the third to last episode. I love love love original Charlie and Bobby, but the AU versions always seemed a cheap way to bring back some of the fandom’s favorite actors without undoing the deaths that maybe weren’t a great idea. I never cared about the AU versions because they never knew or cared about the Winchesters, so why should I? Making the big goal of this episode saving the AU people didn’t give me much investment in that part of the plot, and neither did Billie as a villain (who really just wanted to put the universe back into working the way it was supposed to, so not all that villainous really). Most of Sam’s interaction with Eileen has also been offscreen, so as much as I love Shoshannah Stern to the moon and back, she wasn’t here for me to get invested in that relationship very much either and once again she exited the show offscreen.
I am also a bit disappointed that Cas didn’t get to say anything at all to Sam in terms of goodbye, that their relationship which had also grown so close was just disregarded, and that Jack, who Cas loves like a son, doesn’t even know that he sacrificed himself and is gone. I do think we’ll see Cas again before the show ends, as much as they’ve gone to great pains to make us think we won’t, so maybe he’ll get that chance then. My Sastiel-shipping friends are feeling pretty sad right now, so I’ll hope for a better goodbye for them.
I think I’m a little disappointed too that Castiel’s ending has been overshadowed by all the discussion of Destiel being or not being canon – by real life fandom disagreements instead of a collective mourning for the fictional character who had such a fascinating evolution and learned so much about free will and choice and fighting for what you believe in. “I did it all for love” is an appealing trope, but in terms of Castiel’s hero’s journey, not the ending everyone was hoping for. However, some fans definitely were, and Misha seems happy and satisfied with his character’s ending and real people’s feelings are always more important to me than fictional characters, so I’m gonna go with that. I think this was important to Misha and something he wanted to give to his fans who have supported him for so many years so passionately, and felt that he could give them a conceptualization of his own character’s journey that many people could relate to. It is a beautiful message that there’s happiness in just being your real self and speaking your own truth, no matter what that is – and that one’s happiness does not hinge on anyone else’s acceptance or approval. It just is what it is, and saying it is joyful in itself. Misha did an incredible job showing us Castiel’s joy in that, even as the Empty comes for him and sweeps him away; you can see the satisfaction on his face, the still radiant happiness he’s feeling. All the kudos, Misha.
As for me, I’m going into the final two episodes feeling incredibly fragile. I’m sad that there are so many divided reactions to this episode out there and that so many people are criticizing the show so brutally right now as it comes to an end. And I really don’t know what to expect from the next episode or the finale at all at this point. Now that we know everyone is gone, I’m guessing everyone will be restored, so that takes some of the gravity away. Whether that’s a good or a bad thing, I honestly don’t know. I guess I just hope what we have to look forward to is not only despair….but I’m afraid to totally count on that! This is Supernatural, after all. And just the fact that it’s ending means the next two weeks are going to be painful indeed.
Caps by kayb625
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52 thoughts on “In The Middle of Sociopolitical Turmoil: Here Comes Supernatural!”
I agree with a lot of your review (again) but also disagree with part of it.
I loved that little bit of defiance on Sam’s part by putting Gods book on the table instead of handing it to Billy. I disliked Sam & Dean being in different places when the final scene happened and I totally agree that I really didn’t care about any of the AU people being taken (I assume the children were there for more sympathy).
I disliked the whole end scene. One minute Cass is helping Dean stumble through the bunker and the next, he’s confessing to Dean about his deal with The Empty. I didn’t buy the emotional change, I didn’t buy the magical happiness. It was too quick and too dramatic. Misha and Jensen were great in this scene. And I didn’t like it. At all. But I know I’m in the minority. I really hope that Cass doesn’t come back. It would make his sacrifice worthless. He’s gone and should stay gone.
Anyway, it’s near the end and maybe that’s skewing my point of view. Who knows?
It did seem to sort of come out of nowhere, though I was drawn into the emotion – perhaps because I could see those as Misha’s tears as well, about the show ending. I think it being close to the end is inevitably skewing all our points of view!
Misha was fantastic in her performance, but I was very hopeful that the four of them could die together, or at least that Castiel would say goodbye to Jack 😭.
I’m so sorry Cas didn’t get to say goodbye to Sam or Jack!
Well, that happened. There was so much time to get this right and now it feels to me like the wheels came right off the trolley
When all is said and done, it’s definitely not on Dean. What we got was what the writers decided. They are the real villains of Season 15.
I agree with you. First Dean’s angry then not. Jack isn’t family then is. Probably all gets blamed on Chucks’ writing.
Kelly, my head is spinning trying to make sense of where this is going!
I think everyone’s head is spinning at this point! Which is not the way we wanted things to end, for sure.
Lynn I can feel your unease through the tablet. We all love Supernatural in our own way and want different things from the characters. Being a Destiel shipper and a Sabriel shipper, I was over the moon about Cas’ coming out scene. Of course Dean was in shock over it and needed time to process it all. Since we haven’t heard from Jensen or Jared about it, I would say that there’s more reaction coming on the show. The acting and directing were superb but i especially noticed the lighting. Serge Ladoucer is fantastic at his job and every frame was perfectly lit. I loved the Twitter madness that ensued and screen shot the Destiel trending at number one ahead of the crazy election. Putin was icing on the cake or pie.
The fandom is complicated and divided. I imagine the bronlies were quite unhappy. There was also disappointment from the Ace community as well.
It’s all good. Fret not. Have tissues at the ready. It’s going to be a very soggy two weeks
Unease, discomfort, dismay at seeing all the venom being thrown back and forth. It’s not how I was hoping the last episodes would be received. I’m still in shock that I didn’t NEED many tissues for 15.19! Better have twice as many for 15.20…
I’ll admit, it was all the Tweeting that drew me to watch the episode. I was hoping to hold off the last few to binge all together (and get all the tears out at once in one big gushy mess), but nah. Had to see what all the fuss was about.
I also have to admit to forgetting about the AU folks; maybe on purpose. ‘Oh, look, Charlie’s back, cool…who’s the other girl she’s with?…oh, a domestic scene.’ ..Poof!…then later Bobby!! It all went completely over my head but happy to ‘see’ these folks back in some fashion so close to the end.
It’s not the first time the story/writers shifted audience back and forth, but could it be the last? Maybe I’ve seen one-too-many compilation videos that repeat the same word, phrase, or line being said–repeatedly. But even that makes Supernatural what it is after 15!! seasons. The audience forgives so much and with only two eps left, what can we do, really?
I so very much want to type “Another One Bites the Dust” but would that would be cruel, considering how many Poof! effects there were? Let that carrot dangle as a cue to some eager SPN video fan out there. Misha really brought it ultimately, and Jensen reacted with ample surprise. His expression said what my own ears couldn’t believe, too.
Wagering Sam and Jack won’t believe it, either. Two more episodes to go. ~ Blessings!
I think it’s one of the few things that the entire fandom agrees on (which is quite a rarity) – we don’t care about those AU people!
I loved the ending. I don’t particularly ship Dean and Castiel but the moment was delivered with a deep truth by Misha. And true happiness is so rarely lived or spoken. The words were beautiful. I wept buckets. He spoke of a love that I heard as a full and complete romantic, sexual, sensual love. Angels are not particularly concerned about orientation or gender. Dean’s very much capable of introspection but he often lets his feelings carry the day without examining the thoughts behind it. Jensen showed Dean’s shock, sorrow and love with pinpoint perfection. Despair. How Dean loves Cas doesn’t matter right at that moment – even as he does love him, we all know that. Is he bisexual? Who knows? Cause that’s an inward story for another place. Right now he is in despair – so much so he can’t find words to give to Sam. …but he will. … I am heartbroken Cas speaking his happiness and truth had to happen with death and endings but I’ve learned in my life that it is often only through suffering that joy and love come to life. I am heartbroken that Love that isn’t heterosexual had to die. However I feel strongly there will be a recognition of the life of Cas’ Love before the show closes. I rejoice in his handprint upon Dean. …. But what has really deeply upset me is the cruelty and anger in the fandom – in the midst of love so much awfulness came to life. And so as our beloved show closes. …. I am so appreciative of your words and heartfelt wisdom. As always.
Beautifully expressed. I agree with you. Misha gave Cas his all. And Dean was in shock. We know how long it takes for him to process emotion. He’ll get there I’m sure of it. But SON writers don’t always follow through. So if they leave it there I won’t be surprised.
It’s always the real life cruelty that gets to me too. Especially now, with only one episode left. I’m going to cross my fingers that the series finale doesn’t create so much division.
I’m tired and I’m so ready for it to be over. It breaks my heart to type this, but Dabb and company have made this show unrecognizable to me. I had so many issues with this episode. I liked the two brothers moments and that’s about it. I didn’t shed a tear during this episode, instead I shook my head and wondered why – why do they think we cared about AU characters, why did the waste Donna’s last appearance with the lackluster death, why do they keep beating the whole Eileen is suddenly Sam’s true love to death notion, and so much more.
Ever since Jack came onto the scene it’s been pounded into our heads that he’s Cass’s son or just like his son. I thought for sure when we had the Cass and Jack scene in the truck a couple of weeks ago that Cass would ultimately die sacrificing himself for his “son” Jack.
Nope. Didn’t happen.
Instead we got the last scene. I asked friends who are non-fandom, non-shipping SPN watchers what their take on it was. They saw it as a declaration of brotherly love. My one cousin thought Cass was telling Dean that he needs to allow himself to be loved. Those of us who saw the screen cap of the script that was floating around or heard about Misha’s panel know that this wasn’t the intent. Cass was in love with Dean and Dean didn’t reciprocate. I don’t know how this makes “Destiel” canon. It’s a one-sided relationship that ends in death. I’m just disappointed that with 3 episodes left Dean Winchester will be relegated to being one part of a ship in a lot of people’s minds.
I agree with Kelly that Cass should stay dead. The AUs and Eileen as well. This show needs to let characters stay dead because it removes all the dramatic stakes. With two episodes left, this is a moot point because the writers are gonna do whatever they want regardless if it makes sense for the show.
I wish Dabb never got his hands on the show. Sam hasn’t had a storyline since he took over. Sam has been basically regulated to a guest star. Sometimes it felt like Dean was too. Supernatural hasn’t felt like the show about two brothers, fighting evil in a very long time. Jared and Jensen along with glimpses of what the show could be kept me tuning in though.
I had some hope for the last two episodes since they’re supposed to be Sam & Dean focused, but after watching this one I don’t. I don’t think Bucklemming or Dabb even know how to write for Sam and Dean anymore. I hope beyond hope that I’m wrong.
All the worrying, speculating, and fandom fighting has worn me out. I’m ready to process the end and make my peace. I will always be a fan. I love Jared and Jensen and will continue to support them and go to cons (if there are still cons to attend). I’m also prepared to pretend that “Supernatural” ended with S11E20 – “Don’t Call Me Shurley” and that the rest of the seasons were all one big, bad fever dream that either Sam or Dean had.
I love this well thought out comment. And i have to agree with you.
I never liked the character of Castiel as soon as he called Sam an abomination and threatened to throw Dean back into hell. This character has caused nothing but trouble over the years. No love lost for me. I was happy to see him sucked into the empty, I just wish that he didn’t have to declare “romantic” love for Dean who is straight, before he did. Jensen has said many times at conventions that Destiel is not real. He has played Dean Winchester for 15 years so I think he would know, and that is what I will believe too. It just frosts me that there is all this controversy over this scene and that part of the fandom is being obnoxious over a one-sided unrequited “love”. This 3 minute scene has ruined Supernatural for me and that’s saying something, especially since Dabb ruined it as soon as he got his hands on it. It’s too bad. And if they are keeping it under wraps that Castiel will be back in either of the last 2 episodes, then I have to give up. And that makes me sad as I have been a fan since day one.
I also have alot of disappointment over the last few seasons, though I always find things to love as long as my favorite characters are recognizable (most of the time). And I also am very worn out by the constant fandom infighting. How are you feeling now, after 15.19?
Much better. Looking forward to your review of the episode.
I teared up watching the episode, but then the whole rest of the night was full of delirious giggling over destiel trending and the Putin rumor (there was also a rumor about another Sherlock episode) and all the memes and screenshots on Tumblr were just wild. I loved it. For one last night, I felt like a part of something big. Even Stacy Abrams went home to watch SPN, evidently.
That she did! And she just replied to Eric Kripke’s tweet so he must be over the moon tonight. I will admit that some of the memes were indeed hilarious, but some were at the show’s expense so it was simultaneously depressing. But yes, it was something big – and uniquely Supernatural!
Giving Destiel any kind of canon, even barely implied if you squinted at it through shipper goggles and clearly one-sided because DEAN IS STRAIGHT, is hands down the worst thing this show has ever done. Worse than bringing Mary back and ruining her (and by extension the show’s origin story). Worse than making the entirety of season 14 the Jack Kline hour. Worse than Sam hitting a dog in season 8. What a horrific disservice to Jensen and Jared, relegating Dean to merely one half of a fanfiction ship and acting like Sam wasn’t even worthy of a goodbye from Cas.
God, Dabb sucks. I have no hope for any kind of satisfactory ending. None.
Sending hugs through the screen. I hope you’ll weigh in on my review of 15.19 that I’m about to post – wondering what you thought of that one.
I love them all. Cas was joyously happy to tell Dean he loved him and die to save him. I understand why that’s a trope and an issue but I don’t care – it worked for Cas.
That’s the beauty of interpretation, if it can work for you, enjoy it!
The closer we get to the end, the further I get from your opinions on the show. I once felt that I really alined with the vast majority of your show opinions but I think this is where we might split. (No hard feelings!)
You mentioned all sorts of possible fandom opinions on the Destiel situation except the one I, and many others hold. Disappointment, anger – a bit of betrayal. Becausee, to me, it was pure & simple pandering. I’m A-OK with Destiel in fandom – ship and let ship – but for it to suddenly be canon, seemingly simply because Destiel shippers are the loudest & biggest shipping faction on Tumblr and Twitter? Fan service is this show’s biggest nemesis.
I don’t feel like Cas’ romantic feelings was ever well depicted on screen. I don’t read the paint color & plaid tea leaves – Cas’ declaration literally came out of left field for me. There’s too many instances, looking back, where Cas did not treat Dean as someone who he is love with. For that reason, I didn’t jive with the scene at all. I also didn’t jive with it because I felt that, in that moment/scene, Cas felt more like Misha than Cas. It was Misha’s voice, not Cas’.
It also reduced Cas’ entire journey and arc to something less than the character deserved after 12 years. I have had many issues with late season Cas, but I loved early season Cas. I also have always loved that Supernatural’s central theme has been familial love, not romantic love. Cas’ declaration, in my opinion, dramatically changes that. It undercuts it, really.
Cas’ journey and family was more than Dean. Way more. Sam got shafted. Dean was not the only one who shaped Cas. Not by a long shot.
I also hope Cas stays dead. He was given a proper ending. He had his moment in the spotlight. And we are likely going to see the repercussions of his death reflected onscreen next episode, at the very least. To bring him back after that emotional farewell? Nah. That’s cheap.
You said you’re sad that people have brutal opinions of the show right now, so close to the end. Perhaps the writers should have done a better job? Trust me, no one wants to be having brutal opinions right now about a show we all truly love.
You said you’re disappointed by Cas’ death being overshadowed by Destiel. I’m worried/disappointed that the Winchesters end, and their own relationship (the show’s central relationship), will be overshadowed by Destiel.
I also need, and the Winchesters deserve, an ending all their own. Not an ending that is tied up in mourning Cas or Jack (whatever his inevitable end is) or about God or Adam or Eileen (which the Eileen-Sam thing is still weird and does not work for me in the least).
This season continues to sideline the Winchesters where it really counts. We need the emotional journey and payoff of the Winchesters. It’s still their story – even if this season it certainly doesn’t feel like it.
maermae i have to agree with you. to me, it was not an emotional farewell. i was yelling at my TV the whole time. it was so ooc. i hated that scene and i hate the fallout. especially making money on it. and especially because that part of the fandom is so loud and so intense. it was just fanservice at its worst. i have watched spn since day one. i don’t want the bad feelings that this scene has brought to me to be what i remember about this show. Jensen has said at many conventions that destiel does not exist. he has portrayed the character for 15 years, so i think he would know what his character is feeling and what he is. not some johnny-come-lately writer who came on the show years down the road and doesn’t know or care to look into continuity or canon and wrote something for his own benefit. i just can’t believe that tptb chose this way to thank one of their lead actors. jack especially should have been able to say goodbye to his ‘dad’ and sam will be hurt that he couldn’t say goodbye either. but the angel is in the empty now and good riddance to him. his character made an exciting entrance 12 years ago, but since then, all he’s down is cause trouble. as soon as he called sam an abomination and threatened dean to throw him back to hell, that was it for me. he was in a 1/3 of the episodes and i never missed him. i just hope that dean and sam and jared and jensen get the ending that is deserving of them. the show started with 2 brothers and i’m hoping it ends with them. i hope they get to put their toes in the sand, but if not, then at least let them share a heaven, eating pie and playing pranks on each other.
I thought I was the only one who had an issue with that final scene. Guess not. I have to admit (in a bit of a small minded way) I wasn’t a huge fan of Castiel after he broke Sam’s hell wall. He apologized-true- but Sam was in no condition to realize it was real. It was never mentioned again and Sam seemed to forgive him too easily but Dean didn’t. Oh well. This show just sucked me in. Maybe it’s good that it’s ending. Maybe not.
SO MUCH this. This is everything I’ve been thinking about these past couple of days. For the first time in YEARS, I couldn’t bring myself to rewatch an episode after airing. It hurt me so much that they easily forgot about Sam and Misha saying that Dean is the most important person to Cas. It’s like they’re stuck in season 6 of the show. What about all that character development? Cas caring for Jack because Dean did?! When did that happen?! Omg the things these writers do as a fan-serves. It looks like no one actually paid attention to what Cas was telling Dean. Most of it did not make sense.
In my opinion what makes a ship enjoyable for a fandom is letting it be and stay theoretical. Otherwise it will lose its glow over time and in this case, just became a joke…
I have one question for DAYS now: WHY?! 😭💔
Not only does the “Destiel is CANON!” crap threaten to overwhelm the end of the Winchesters ON THEIR OWN SHOW, but it casts a pall over *everything* Cas has ever done regarding Dean. Cas holds romantic feelings for Dean you say? Well then, it is SUPER creepy (Dean would call it “rapey”) the way he used to watch him sleeping all the time. It’s SUPER creepy the way he used to constantly invade Dean’s space, to the point where Dean had to remind him “Personal space, Cas.” It’s disgusting how many times Cas literally tried to beat Dean into submission. It’s disgusting how he threatened to toss Dean back into hell if he didn’t get with the angels’ program. The year he spent watching Dean and Lisa in secret takes on an absolute stalkerish tone. It certainly makes sense that Cas didn’t fight harder against Dean’s request to wipe Lisa and Ben’s memories of him – that was practically a gift! It’s unforgivable that he abandoned Dean in Purgatory if he loved him so much, when Dean would be in constant danger. His hatred of Benny turns from Cas being a good friend who doesn’t trust vampires into a jealous, wannabe lover who resents that someone ELSE swooped in to Dean’s rescue after Cas abandoned him. I’m even more FURIOUS at everything he ever did to Sam, because now it just looks like he was trying to get Sam out of the way. Letting him out of the panic room? Can we *really* be sure that was just him wanting the apocalypse to happen the way it was supposed to when it would obviously drive a wedge between the brothers? Did he really leave Sam’s soul in hell to be tortured through some kind of accident, or was that on purpose to get Dean to give up on Sam for good? Was his advice not to put Sam’s soul back in really because Sam’s soul was so damaged or because he wanted to keep Sam soulless because Dean was at a breaking point where he couldn’t take what Sam had become any longer? Did he break Sam’s wall at least in part because Dean still put Sam first??? And what about the whole, “He’s gone, Dean” with the vampires in the cave where he wouldn’t let Dean even go after Sam??? Every single instance in the entire series where Cas has made Dean uncomfortable (as evidenced by Dean *saying it out loud*), done something shitty when it comes to Sam, or in any way gotten between the brothers or helped to keep them apart is now called into question, and it doesn’t make Cas look good, it makes him look like a perv. No wonder Jensen was upset about the way the show was ending.
Thank you. This changes/colors *everything* Cas has done.
If Cas had been in love with Dean all along – or had fallen in love with Dean somewhere along the way, then the writers should have made other choices so that in this final moment we don’t have a pile of events to look back on and say “wow, that’s kinda creepy” or question Cas’s motives.
As much as I love Misha and Richard I am just keeping my own interpretation of the scene as it was the night the episode aired:
Cas wishes Dean loves him – as a brother – as much as Cas loves Dean. He wishes he could stay and have that deep, powerful, fraternal bond.
Because otherwise I have to second guess so much of what Cas has done and I can’t. I love him too much for that.
This is spot on. Thank you for expressing how I aslo feel.
I think actually I touched on most of those things you did, though not as vehemently. I did cry during Castiel’s tearful goodbye scene, but I’m aware that I was emotional because I think Misha was emotional too. I do think what he said about speaking your own truth was beautiful and true, but that declaration also came out of nowhere for me and threw me out of the moment as I became aware of the fan service part of it. I hope you’ll still read my review of 15.19 which I’m about to post -I’m curious to hear your thoughts on that episode.
I have loved the show from the start to the point have overlooked some of its flaws. S15 though I haven’t been able to overlook them I think primarily the writing has not been as strong and characters inconsistent as with dean liking then hating jack and not convinced by dabb.
For this episode I can’t fault the acting but did find the dialogue in the famous scene to be a bit cheesy. I interpreted that the act of cas being happy for sacrificing bis life for dean was the most Winchester thing he could have done and mirrored the love dean has for sam. Now though after hearing it was meant as a romantic declaration does not make me happy SS it comes out of nowhere. I respect misha wanting to do something for the fans but there should have been done build up for it at least Sam and Eileen got that and even then I was not too happy how rushed that felt.
For the record I have no issue with cas being gay or the shippers as those memes are funny it just didn’t seem consistent. What I have hated seeing is a small minority that have thrown around homophobic comments or accused those as homophobic for disliking the scene. Even worse I have heard some have even attacked Jensen on Twitter for that scene.
I will still love the show but am nervous about how it will end. I also wanted to say thanks Lynne for your reviews I have always found them balanced and often agree except maybe Charlie and wayward sisters (was not a fan but different opinions make life interesting)
I think that scene came out of nowhere for alot of people – I know it threw me out of what was an emotional moment before I realized the path they were going down and had to stop and be shocked for a while. And the real life attacks have been depressing to see. I’m wondering how you felt about 15.19 – review posting soon!
I’m not a Destiel fan but I thought the final scene between Dean and Cas was beautiful. I don’t really get the hate, either from people who don’t like to think of the two as romantically linked or from those who saw the declaration of love followed by death as homophobic.
Cas is a thousands-year-old angel; I can’t imagine that his idea of love would center on sex. When he said the thing he wanted most was something he couldn’t have I took it to mean a deep relationship (familial, romantic, whatever), unfettered by disaster, apocalypse, and the divisions of the past (between him and Dean, him and the other angels, angels and humans in general). Both his desire for connection and his sacrifice seemed heartbreakingly in character to me.
What I liked most about the scene was that it acknowledged love as Dean’s primary motivation. This got a big “YES!” from me, since he’s been told by pretty much everyone that he works so hard to save others only because he’s needy and selfishly doesn’t want to be alone. That acknowledgment also countered some of this season’s focus on Dean’s anger, which I agree is odd and off-putting.
My fear is that they’ve been pushing the whole rage thing in service to one of the role reversals the writers like so much. Sam started off as angry and rebellious so was set up to take on Lucifer’s role to Dean’s Michael. He has grown a lot, which I appreciate, but I’m worried that in lifting him through his hero’s journey the writers will sacrifice everything we’ve come to love about Dean to stuff the two into new roles as God (Sam) and the Darkness (Dean). I really hope I’m wrong about that.
I did like what Cas said about Dean’s motivation being love, because that is true. I’ve been so annoyed by the emphasis on Dean’s anger this season and how pathologized it has been. Why wouldn’t the guy be angry? It’s now post 15.19 so I don’t think you have to worry about that outcome, but I see why you did!
Yes, 5.19 was shockingly positive. If it was all a little too pat I’ll take that over the forced parallel I was dreading. Can’t wait to read your review!
Well so many people have stated what I feel so much better than I can. Out of all of my disappointment that Castiel’s end was so underwhelming, it’s that the show runner’s and writer’s choice to cater to the smallest, loudest part of the fan base that made it that way. How sad was it that after all he contributed to all of their lives, Sam, Dean and Jack, whether you liked him or not, TPTB chose to have him die a pathetic death in a tiny room with the one person who had arguably treated him the worst. Destiel shippers live in a bubble and the showrunners should have stayed true to the show that was NOT about romance and been brave enough to leave it that way. I hate that I wish they had just left Castiel dead in season 12. At least then, he died a hero and with all the people who care about him. Not just some ridiculous fan joke.
Not one person I know who watched that episode interpreted it as anything but friendship so there’s that. And for those of us who are brother fans, we still have a tiny bit of hope left that the show will actually be about them now as the whole season should have been.
The number of people who were disappointed by Castiel’s death, both people for whom his character is the most important and people for whom he wasn’t, is one of the toughest things about the episode. I always want everyone to be happy, and this episode definitely didn’t allow that for everyone. But I guess that’s probably impossible anyway!
I’m always late to the comment party, so I won’t repeat what most of y’all have already said so well. The second I heard the words, “I love you” come out of Cass’ mouth, I thought, as Dean often says, “Here we go,” because I knew what was coming and I was right. The next day the hateful and sometimes vicious comments directed at some of the fans on Twitter and Facebook who felt that statement was a continuation of the familial love Cass declared to Dean, Sam, and Mary during Season 12’s “Stuck in the Middle (With You)” by those who are hardcore shippers soured the episode even more for me. Then when I saw the ugly things being said about Dean and especially Jensen–again–who has been unfairly accused of being homophobic (and those were the nice comments) for saying Destiel doesn’t exist for Dean, it further spoiled how much I had wanted to enjoy this episode (as much as I can anyway). If we ever get to have conventions again this will certainly be brought up; is Jensen going to have to continue to put up with this unjust criticism of his personal integrity from people who call themselves fans but think it’s okay to accuse him of ugly things just because he disagrees with them about a character and relationship he portrayed for fifteen years? As I have said before, I can tell you a dozen different storylines that could’ve been done to avoid most of the junk Dabb has made us endure because we love this story of the Winchester brothers and keep watching, no matter what, a story that I’m still not sure he understands based on what we’ve seen. I hope with all my heart that the boys and fans get the ending that is much deserved, but I’ll be surprised if we do.
I am also late with my comment, I guess I was still processing the episode. I am not going to repeat what most of people here already expressed. As soon as I watched the scene, I knew it was going to stir a huge discussion. I hate the way it was written. I agree that Castiel should have stayed dead in season 12. It was one of the worst scenes of Supernatural I ever watched. I saw it as declaration of love from a friend/brother, but I knew it was written in a way so it could be read as declaration of love and it made me angry. Little to late for this kind of character development. And no wonder Jensen said he had problems with the ending. No wonder Jared and Jensen decided to end the show now, before the writers completely destroy it…
Yeah, and I can just imagine the future conventions and some of the questions for Jensen…
lisahjohnson you said my feelings. i feel really bad for jensen, and i am not liking how misha, rob, rich, the marks, matt and ruth all had a zoom panel and discussed this without jensen being there. it feels like betrayal and that they threw him under the bus. i’d be surprised if he even wanted to do cons anymore due to the fallout. it makes me sick.
You understand that they didn’t just get together to have a Zoom panel, it was a French convention (that they were in) that as far as I know Jensen and Jared were never part of, so how exactly you suggest that they’ll include him as well?
Jensen has a Stageit Creation one on the 15th so we’ll see what he’ll say himself, and not just some people putting words in his mouth.
I’ve got my fingers tightly crossed for 15.20 now that we’ve seen 15.19. I’m sure it won’t be utopia or please everyone, but I hope it’s more satisfying than alot of this season has been.
I hope in the next two episodes that Dean takes Cas’s words to heart. He lets go of all his pain and goes into the final fight just being the caring and loving person we all know he is. I hope he is able to say to the people who matter most to him what they mean to him. If that stance somehow gets through to Adam/Michael or Amara or even Chuck and that’s how we get back all the human souls we’ve apparently lost (and a redo of who gets into heaven), I’ll be happy.
As for the Dean and Cas of it – for me it is a multidimensional wavelength of celestial intent falling in love with a human soul (and who wouldn’t fall for that soul). Gender has nothing to do with it. In my mind what Cas wants that he can’t have is a human soul which would fully allow him to share in the lives of the people he loves. The happiness he needs to bring the Empty he finds by letting go of fear and embracing the love and care that is the essence of whatever his core is now (grace?). And that care has always been primarily focused on Dean. Dean is clearly a happily heterosexual male, but he needs Cas too. Unlike Sam, who started the show in college with fully developed relationships outside his family, Dean has had very few people in his life (outside of his family) who have seen so thoroughly through his defenses and made his needs a priority. Taking care of Sam (and the world) is the core of Dean’s life but having someone around to help him do that, that has been important and it will be missed. Love isn’t something which bends to a strict definition.
Supernatural is the story of Sam and Dean. For the purposes of the show, all the other characters matter only to the extent that they affect those two. It makes sense then that the end of Cas’s story reflects the way it began, saving Dean.
I haven’t been entirely happy with the way the story has gone this season. The emotional whiplash has been real. Perhaps too much story, too little time? But if Cas’s sacrifice can lead Dean and hopefully Sam and Jack to real peace, I’ll take it.
“Perhaps too much story, too little time” – I think maybe you hit the nail on the head there. It has been an epic story, when sometimes the power of the story comes from its focus on the characters we love so much. Fingers crossed for 15.20.
You said this so well. I totally agree with your perception of Castiel’s declaration to Dean. It is a declaration of pure love that is not related to gender. What Castiel says he wanted but never could have is that ability to love on a human level the way Dean does. He wants to have the brother, the son, the lover, the father and mother and the friend and a human life to share with them without angst and pain, but he never thought he could have that. And yes, Dean is very much a part of all of that. But he realizes that he does have that love in him and he expresses it to Dean.
I honestly think that Castiel’s speech could have been much better written, but we have what we have.
I’m going to be honest as someone who is in a minority here. I am feeling overwhelmed by all of the Cas hatred and anger at Destiel shippers. I do ship them, but only in the fanfic I read. I certainly don’t live in a bubble. I also almost never go on twitter.
I never even wanted them to be canon on the show (and many of my friends that are shippers feel the same), for the very reasons I have seen on social media last week: the majority of fans either have no awareness of, or interest in Destiel, or actively despise the whole idea. I never wanted to see it on the show because it would have seemed odd, it’s just not that kind of a show, imo. AND I thought the writers would screw it up if they even tried.
My first time watching the scene, even as a Destiel shipper, it didn’t exactly seem like absolute canon confirmation. I felt like the script walked a fine line, and I saw it as Cas meaning a brotherly love. I guess I was naive…
There’s been a major problem with inconsistent, sometimes heavy handed writing this season generally , that everything has felt off most of the season, however you view the show. It’s been sad that it’s come to the final episodes and the writing and individual actor perspectives have upset the harmony between fans when we needed each other the most.
Like you I don’t go on Twitter really, but the media have taken the disharmony and run with it exacerbating things.
Not what anyone wanted.
From my own perspective, it really was open to interpretation, celestial beings would probably think and feel differently without attaching the same human emotions. It would be much deeper, more like Dean acted in loco parentis for the absent god, a shepherd and a beacon to follow in the darkness and that was what I took away from the conversation.
Marion, thank you for your thoughtful reply. I am also so disappointed in Dabb and how they rushed through the major story arc of the season (and even before that, it was a pretty weak season, only a few episodes I really enjoyed). The final outcome, with Chuck abandoned and alone, works for me, but not how they got there. It was like no one had a clear plan so they just threw out a lot of red herrings unrelated to the way things eventually ended up. Things were so much better before Dabb took over.
We are in harmony on this, all season to me it has felt they didn’t make the best use of the time they had so the end was rushed, due to insufficient detailed planning.
I’m all for the room for a story to breathe, but it’s felt very disparate, too much breathing space, more like each individual writer was telling an individual story than one bigger story. So we had to make our own way to thread the parts of the story together.
Consequently, I too only properly enjoyed a handful of episodes the way I normally would. This season very much missed a strong guiding hand.