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Supernatural




The existentialist Teddy Bear was a real bit of comedic genius, I think. I cannot decide which part of it was funniest: the porn? the fact that the way he was rocking when Dean and Sam first opened the door made it appear like he was masturbating? The absolutely dumbfounded look Sam and Dean exchanged on realizing it was a real Teddy Bear? Dean's (quite legitimate) fear that shooting it and setting it on fire would simply result in an angry flaming Teddy Bear? The fact that the only answer the poor thing got for the meaning of its existence was to have tea parties with Audrey? Its unsuccessful suicide attempt? The fact that Audrey's bear was clearly recovering from its wounds in the final scene? Just sheer brilliance, the whole storyline.

Though honestly I felt worse for the Teddy Bear than for Joxer the Mighty Ted Raimi's character, who I think we were supposed to sympathize with for losing the one thing he wanted most in life. There were serious issues of consent in his relationship with that woman, and I kind of wish Dean and Sam had brought that up when they were trying to persuade him to take back his wish, rather than just focusing on how life is pain, or whatever point it was they were trying to make to him.

I felt much worse for Sam and Dean than either Ted or Teddy, though. Dean's revelation that he remembers hell, and that hell's horrors are so unspeakable and unforgettable that he will never be free of them, was really stunning. I didn't think they'd say he remembered it all, despite what Uriel said last week; I thought maybe he was having dreams and flashes of things. No wonder he's drinking so much.

And yet somehow I found Sam even more heartbreaking in this episode. Sam's confession that he can't even wish for the kind of dream of a golden life he wanted in the past--the one pretty much everyone in the episode was wishing for--since he's so damaged, kind of broke me. (Ok, he didn't actually say he was damaged, he said he was changed--but I took it to mean he can't even imagine another life now. And of course that's very pragmatic, and it was wise of him to avoid making cursed wishes, obviously, but he wouldn't even play the wishing game, with Dean. The only wish he can imagine is bloody vengeance on Lilith. I think even John Winchester, given a choice between vengeance on Azazel and getting Mary back, would have chosen Mary. And maybe it's true that Sam, now, couldn't go back to a golden life with Jess, and he's embraced things the way they are, but the gap between his desires and what Dean wants for him are just another symbol of the widening divide between the two of them this season.

That rift was really reinforced by Dean's speech at the end of the episode, too; like Sam's speech in Metamorphosis, it underscored one of them was fundamentally transformed by an experience the other one can neither share nor understand. OH, BOYS, you break my heart.

Two more light-hearted things, since I am underplaying some of the sheer comedic fun of this episode:
I love that Sam bogarted the "getting to save naked women" job from Dean. Hah ha ha! Though it was fun that it gave Dean a chance to prove he can pull the research mojo when he needs to. (And I'm glad that Sam didn't hit on the woman after he saved her; one could interpret that as him saving her from Dean's advances.)

And I was a little worried about Dean's adorability-with-kids mojo, because despite working the lollipop disease angle, he seemed to not really connect with Audrey, and he was really FAILBOATING with Todd ("kneel before Todd,")--not even his Spider Man references were effective!!--and kudos to the writers for working a DC and a Marvel comics reference in the same scene!--but the fact that he helped Todd with the bullies even after Todd nearly killed him? was completely made of awesome.

Oh, and did anyone else say "Uriel, you're not supposed to use that wishing well" immediately after Sam got zapped by the lightning? No, it was just me? Never mind

ETA: I almost forgot, my favorite part is Sam writing the book "Supernatural," because it gives fanfic writers another potential series ending besides the "Butch and Cassidy" one that comes up in interviews. After the demon wars are all over Sam clearly becomes a "novelist" (really a memoirist) writing Supernatural, and he and Dean retire and settle down and only hunt very occasionally, when something big comes up.

Comments

( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
redteekal
Nov. 7th, 2008 02:11 pm (UTC)
Ooooh I love your take on a potential series ender with Sam writing a book on Supernatural (even if/when it does only get picked up by the fanfic writers). Ahhh wouldn't it be nice?

And YES I had the same initial thoughts after Sam got zapped by lightning. WTF?? Angelic involvement? No way...of course those initial thoughts were embarrassed heartily into non-existence when they saw Holly chick at the well.

My thoughts at Sam's announcement on what he would wish for? Well Sammy that's just fucked up - understandable but still extremely messed up. I think my heart melted though when I saw Dean process that a little further beyond a proud expression of 'That's my lil' brother' and JA did a good job at blanching a little at the reaffirmation of how much Sam has changed. As much as he's proud of how Sam can take care of himself and is a damn good hunter in his own right I think Dean really wishes Sam could have had that white picket fence life.

I think the writers are doing a stand up job this season at getting just the right balance of comedy and angst. I can handle the constant reminders about the hell the boys are going through, have been through and will go through because these scenes are constantly interspersed with the light hearted moments. The teddy bear storyline and the Kneel before Todd to name just a couple sure do help me get through the angst where the boys just make my heart ache. Good review!
norwich36
Nov. 8th, 2008 12:09 am (UTC)
I totally want *some* kind of happy ending for the boys from this series, dammit, and turning Sam into a writer after they have defeated all the forces of evil ever, amen Lilith and the major demons, maybe they could retire.

As much as he's proud of how Sam can take care of himself and is a damn good hunter in his own right I think Dean really wishes Sam could have had that white picket fence life.

Yeah. I think Dean has coped with a lot of the bleakness of his life by sublimating his wishes through Sam, and the idea that Sam has changed so much was really stunning to him.

think the writers are doing a stand up job this season at getting just the right balance of comedy and angst. I can handle the constant reminders about the hell the boys are going through, have been through and will go through because these scenes are constantly interspersed with the light hearted moments.

I agree. And I really love the light hearted episodes, though I fear having so many in a row is a sign that REALLY BAD THINGS are coming.
musesfool
Nov. 7th, 2008 04:30 pm (UTC)
After the demon wars are all over Sam clearly becomes a "novelist" (really a memoirist) writing Supernatural, and he and Dean retire and settle down and only hunt very occasionally

Hee! Yes. I've had them discuss that future in a couple of stories.

This episode had so much going for it, and yet their complete and utter failure to address what Joxer actually did to that woman leaves a really bad taste in my mouth.
norwich36
Nov. 8th, 2008 12:16 am (UTC)
Yeah. I feel like I have to turn the feminist part of my brain off a lot when I watch this show, or I'll just headdesk so hard I'll give myself brain damage. I actually think Ted Raimi's character was on the verge of realizing what he was actually doing, and I kind of wish they'd let him come to that realization and have the woman respond, rather than interjecting Sam and Dean into the mix, but I guess they needed to play a role in the solution.

rsadelle
Nov. 7th, 2008 04:44 pm (UTC)
Oh, the hilarity of the teddy bear. Brilliant!

I noticed the lack of Dean-with-kids mojo, too. Have we seen him be good with kids at all this season? Maybe that's part of his post-hell change.

Dean drinking: When Sam wakes him up from his nightmare about hell and he goes for the bottle, I thought, "Huh. Now he's a functional alcoholic." Also, I loved his line about couples counseling.

Do you think we were really supposed to feel sympathy for Ted Raimi? I didn't at all. I kept thinking that, duh, this is what happens when you make a wish. Clearly he needs to watch more sci fi.

I love how Dean's wish is for a sandwich. Oh, Dean. Also, Sam would wish for Lilith's bloody head on a platter? Wow.

At the end, I actually laughed and said out loud, "I love how they're just randomly on a pier." Actually, I find it funny how often at the end of an episode Dean is just hanging out on a bench somewhere.

The novelist ending: that used to happen with Mulder in fan fic all the time.
norwich36
Nov. 8th, 2008 03:44 pm (UTC)
Huh. I thought I replied to this on my way out to a work dinner--the comment was in the process of posting when I left. I guess it didn't. WEIRD.

I, too, loved the line about couples counselling. Though Dean's complete inability to unburden himself makes me sad.

I think the randomly-hanging-out-on-a-bench (or a pier, or whatever) is just an attempt to make those final conversations they always have in the episodes *not* always be in the Impala.

I do think we were supposed to be sympathetic to Ted Raimi, but they clearly failed at that completely, given the number of outraged posts I've read about this episode.
rsadelle
Nov. 8th, 2008 05:18 pm (UTC)
I was watching him say he couldn't tell Sam, though, and thinking about some cracky humor fic I'd read where Dean is all, "I'm not actually stoic. I'm really the emotional one in this relationship," because as much as Sam's the one who wants to talk about Dean's feelings, I find that I tend to know more about Dean's feelings than Sam's.

But they should be in the Impala! That's their home! It fits with the plot! Although the benches could, too, if they have some plot-based reason for being on them rather than just a nice backdrop for the last conversations.

Huh. I really didn't get that we were supposed to be sympathetic, more that he's a warning about what happens when you make wishes like that. Maybe it's not that he needs to read/watch more sci fi but that I read/watch too much!
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )

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