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Unabashed Spoiler Hound & Fanfic writer

Reveling in the fickle nature of fangirlishness

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Two Minutes to Midnight: "You know you can't cheat Death"
A coward is incapable of exhibiting love; it is the prerogative of the brave. -Mahatma Gandhi

Freedom is not worth having if it does not include the freedom to make mistakes. -Mahatma Gandhi

The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man who lives fully is prepared to die at any time. - Mark Twain

This episode was WONDERFUL! A great second to the last one in the way things are beginning to wrap up and yet still leaving SO MANY unknowns as to boggle the mind. If Kripke's intention was to leave us wondering with what seems like an obvious conclusion, he's been successful because despite knowing some  facts such as Crowley's deal with Bobby which can go either way (though I fear the way we all believe it will go), that now Michael is using Adam as his vessel (half a Winchester is better than none, after all -- this assumes that while trapped in the beautiful room Adam consented to be Michael's vessel or didn't have any choice once Michael was called upon by Zachariah, enveloping the room with his visage, among other things, I'm sure), and it seems that Sam's "destinty" to becoming Lucifer's vessel is a fait accompli with the hope that Sam will either be strong enough to beat Lucifer or die trying as Bobby said.

This leaves only one thing I have NO CLUE about.  Where does Dean fit into the scenario now? Other than giving Sam permission in a way to saying yes to Lucifer. He's no longer heir apparent to Michael (a good thing in my book, sorry, Adam), yet he seems to be able to kill a false prophet, making him presumably a servant of Heaven as, according to Cas, only they can kill false prophets or he's an angel prototype (or both) because he was able to kill Zach and supposedly only angels can kill angels.  He was also able to endure Zach's visage as he died without being blinded.  These little facts better NOT go unexplained or I will be more than a little miffed. So, the final episode, Swan Song, teaser just revealed that Sam is taken over by Lucifer and that Dean seems to be beat up pretty badly.  Whether it's Sam/Lucifer or something else doing the beating we don't know, but that doesn't bode well for Dean having anything special up his sleeve or in his cache.

Sidenote: I'm with the camp who doesn't want Dean to have any superpowers because the beauty of Dean is his humanity, that who he is as a human is what makes him special, but I'm okay with some kind of "hail Mary"  set of powers that maybe just gives Dean enough to save the day, to save Sam. I'm okay with that. I'd be even better with it if the powers were endowed because of some inherent goodness  in Dean and for being a righteous man. Lest we forget that though all roads SEEM to lead to SAM finding a way to cage Lucifer, the prophecy states that the righteous man who breaks the first seal is the ONLY one who can stop the Apocalypse so, in my view, it doesn't take Dean off the hook, I just don't know where he comes into the equation. Unless by some fluke, which I'll hate if they do this, the prophecy is no longer in play because Dean is now no longer Michael's vessel. This will tick me off no end if they do this.

I LOVED that this episode did a great job of moving Sam towards what seems to be his "destiny" with a sense of courageous inevitability. Sam, Cas and Bobby all seem to be leaning towards the same conclusion, that Sam has to become Lucifer's vessel, there is no escaping that. It's now up to Dean, the one person Sam needs to trust him, to say he's okay with it, which, for now, he isn't. Jared has been doing a great job these last few episodes to show Sam's darkness, but his ultimate goodness as well.  That's important because to be just a "white hat hero" without flaws, without shades of shadow would make that person hard to root for and Jared is making it very easy to root for Sam. You see that he wants to make up for all of his shortcomings, he so much as admits them:

“Look, Dean, for the record, I agree with you. About me. You think I’m too weak to take on Lucifer? Well so do I. Believe me, I know exactly how screwed up I am. You, Bobby, Cas: I’m the least of any of you.”

"Ah, Sam..."

"It's true, it is, but I'm also all we got. If there was another way...but I don't think there is.There's just me so I don't know what else to do except just try to do what's gotta be done."

It's a beautiful admission and you don't get any feelings of self-pity, just acceptance, heroic, calm acceptance. Jared was wonderful and I cried. I wanted anything else for him than what's seemingly the only alternative left. I can't say enough good things about how Jared played Sam in this. He juggled the heroism with humor perfectly. I'm ready for Sam to shine in the finale. I'm pumped up, but just as sad as Dean is about the prospect.

The scene with Bobby revealing that he had sold Crowley his soul, seemingly just a loan (raise your hands if you believed that...I thought so...) was HILARIOUS because of the look on both Jared and Jensen's faces when they find out about it. Jared's in particular.  There is something about the look on his face when he looks over at Bobby and says, "Bobby? Tell us what?". It's just priceless and I LAUGH every time.  Then later when Sam asks if Bobby kissed Crowley, Bobby denying it, then Crowley showing the picture he took of the act, it took what could have been, probably should have been, a grim moment into a funny one by all involved. Jared and Jensen's timed head turns and equivalent expressions of disbelief and disappointment were just FANTASTIC! I NEVER get tired of the synchronicity between Jared and Jensen. They make the relationship of Sam and Dean incredibly authentic. You believe that they've grown up together, have learned all of each other's quirks and idiosyncrasies, know everything about each other and are in-sync as brothers, even when they are at their most discordant with each other, little things would crop up to make you see how they are still brothers deep down in ways that are never lost.

The humorous break from that serious talk between them when Crowley tells them of Pestilence's "long range plan" to spread the croatoan virus was perfect and made me giggle. When Crowley has to turn the light of understanding on for them, his line just CRACKED ME UP because it plays on Jared's and Jensen's "gifts":

“You two are lucky you have your looks.”

I LOVED the reconciliation between Dean and Cas. It wasn't mushy or maudlin, but said it all and brought a relief for the resolution.  I LOVED that Dean, as usual, bore no ill will towards Cas, forgave him and was just worried about him. It was a sweet moment as well as funny because Cas, still not well-versed in human tact, bluntly tells Dean, he's not all broken as he thought. Dean just takes the intended compliment in his usual stride:

"Dean, wait. You said no to Michael. I owe you an apology."

"Cas, it's okay."

“You are not the burnt and broken shell of a man that I believed you to be.”

"Thank you. I appreciate that."

Crowley was great! Mark Sheppard is just HILARIOUSLY evil good! I've enjoyed every  moment with him. Not likely he'll last, but in some ways, I hope he does. HEE! He brings just the right kind of head slap that's needed at times. I like that he's not played as all bad and though you know that every good act has to have a price, you like that he does them like giving Bobby the ability to walk again.  He didn't have to do that, probably would have been a better advantage if he hadn't and yet he did. Even though you know that there's a price for that gift, Bobby's soul in the end, you can't help but see the joy on Bobby's face and forget about that price. Bobby is grateful and thrilled to be walking again and also probably to be back in action again. He knew that being in the wheelchair made him more of a liability, but he fought for the boys' sake, now, even if he gets taken, he gets taken down with dignity and I LOVED that Crowley gave that to him even if there were strings attached.

"What can I say? I'm an altruist?"

It's a brief moment of joy that can be enjoyed for a second or two.

I loved that prior to that, Cas, feeling sorry for himself for not having his angel abilities gets a dressing down from Bobby:

"You really gonna bitch to me? Quit pining for the varsity years and load  the damn truck."

I LOVED that, it put things into proper perspective and then for Bobby to get "rewarded" with walking again, it just felt great!  In small gestures, there were a lot of "feel good" moments amongst the obvious grim.

Sidenote:  I LOVED it when Sam referred to hunting wendigos as the simpler life they used to have. It felt like full circle again in that moment, remembering Sam and Dean starting out together again, different mission at first, and yet leading them up to that very moment.

I loved Misha Collins in this as well.  He brings vulnerability and humility to Cas that works really well.  Yes, he bemoans not being the angel he was, even Dean apologizes when he comes to the conclusion that Cas is more human than angel now, but he is still committed to helping them, even if he doubts his ability to help them.  Having him shoot the salt gun to save Sam in the warehouse then marvel at how useful it was is just  a hoot and a half. I loved that Cas has come through similar emotional challenges that our boys have only from his own unique perspective such as doubt, betrayal, frustration, and most delightfully, the many ways observing Dean and Sam and how they handle things, surprises him in many ways:

"You and Dean have a habit of exceeding my expectations. He resisted Michael, maybe you could resist Lucifer, but there are things that you will need to know."

I love that Cas has just enough angel mojo to continue to give everyone valuable intell like about Michael taking Adam as his vessel.

"Sam, if you say yes to Lucifer and then fail, this fight will happen and the collateral, it'll be immense."

Then he drops a bomb about the demon blood:

"There's also the demon blood."

"What? What are you talking about?"

"To take in Lucifer, it will be more than you have ever drunk."

"But, why?"

"Strengthens the vessel. Keeps it from exploding."

This was a great revelation. I love how Bobby caps the conversation with his quip about it being the worst plan ever. Again, it lightens a pretty grim moment.

"And how is that not the worst plan you've ever heard?"

Sidenote: Death's introduction was creepy to the soundtrack of O Death by Jen Titus. Not the first time we've heard it. If you want it, here is the link to the download. A couple of lines from the song, seem particularly apt:

When God is gone and the Devil takes hold,
who will have mercy on your soul

Dean's confrontation with Death, creepiest moment in the episode, maybe ever. Jensen played his trepidation with the perfect amount of respect for who he was meeting.  I felt my spine tingle and stiffen for every step that he took towards Death, walking over all the dead bodies left in Death's wake along the way. Really creepy quiet.  The scythe was not long in Dean's possession. Too easy to have it in the first place. The actor who played Death was great! I've seen him in other things pretty much doing the same thing. He's got that kind of persona oozing off of him. Dean and Death meeting over deep dish pizza was as pedestrian and Godfather you could get. I love that Death is intimidating because no living thing on Earth can escape Death, a chilling last word that he managed to make to Dean specifically. It's true and so to have Death have an agenda is a great twist because you can't imagine anyone being able to have anything over Death, but Lucifer does. Back in Abandon All Hope, in Carthage, he casts a spell at the expense of every townsperson to raise Death. I can totally understand that it infuriates Death that's he's been bound by what he considers a bratty child in comparison to him:

“I’m more powerful than you can process and I’m enslaved to a bratty child having a tantrum.”

The battle simply broken down, is about a spoiled brat child, just as Gabriel encapsulated it, boo-hooing about not being "Daddy's favorite" anymore and taking that resentment out on the world. Lucifer is that petty and childish as well as controlling, wanting to bind Death. I can believe Death acting more than just a little annoyed with Lucifer for messing with someone the likes of him, so much so, that he's willing to help Dean defeat him.  I mean, Crowley wants that too, his agenda being so he can feel safe to do his crossroads duties without fear. I can believe their motivations. Lucifer is being shown as not just your average archangel, that as many demons fear him as do worship him and I think that will make his malevolence that much more believable.  I can see why Kripke set Lucifer up, at first, as being almost sympathetic, but as the episodes progressed, his true character has been revealed and now we are seeing Lucifer for who he really is.  Exactly as Death depicted, a spoiled brat. A really, really, really powerful spoiled brat, but a brat nevertheless.

The condition that Death places on giving Dean his ring and the instructions to how to get Lucifer back into his cage is the worst one Dean can think of, allowing Sam to become Lucifer's vessel.  Death's certainty that Sam is the only one who can stop Lucifer is chilling and not to overuse the word, heartbreaking. Death says he "KNOWS" Sam is the only one who can stop him. Again, he's a horseman, not exactly someone you would immediately trust, but he's DEATH and he just confirms what everyone else is thinking, except for Dean, or maybe Dean does too, he just hasn't been able to wrap his mind around it yet.  Dean agrees just to get the ring, but realizing that he has no intention of keeping that promise, he's wondering what consequences must come with lying to Death. He's left with an assurance from Death that he can't cheat Death. Brrrr...great stuff!

Once again, as with past episodes,  it's the ending that defines this episode and how this one leaves us is ambivalent and wondering. Dean and Bobby's conversation is so father-son. I think that Bobby is coming to some realizations. While before he was just as certain that Sam consenting to be Lucifer's vessel was just as bone headed an idea as Dean becoming Michael's, I think by observing Sam's heroic character in action at the warehouse, to really see that Sam is in control and capable under pressure allows him to change his mind, that and listening to Cas's take on it earlier. It can be argued that the realization seemed too quick come, but heck, we only have one more episode to go so I can forgive a little expediency. I think that Bobby's point is well taken in that he's now standing back from people he views as family to see the bigger picture and his question to Dean is valid.  As hard as it is for Dean to accept, he may have to let Sam become Lucifer's vessel to show that he trusts him in the most extreme of ways and that maybe Sam needs to be trusted in this way for Sam's sake as well so that he can prove to Dean and himself that he's not just heir apparent to be Lucifer's vessel that he can exact a different ending.

“Look, Sam’s got a darkness in him, I’m not saying he don’t. But he’s got a hell of a lot of good in him, too.”

"I know."

"Then you know Sam will beat the Devil or die trying and that's the best we can ask for him. So I gotta ask Dean, what exactly are you afraid of: losing or losing your brother?”

It's a great point and one that makes you wonder where Dean is at with all this.  After all, it's been shown that Dean loves humanity, wants to save it, but his love for his brother has no comparison.  What he's done for that love has been seen over and over again in every season. I saw a sadness on Jensen's face that was heartbreaking, but I didn't see an inherent knee-jerk to want to continue fighting and resist. Dean is listening, has been since Sam brought it up and now he's hearing it from Bobby. It's a hard call for him to make, but from the looks of the teaser for next week, Sam does consent, it's more what the repercussions are after the fact that will tell the tale.

With Season 5 coming to an end and the promise of Season 6, I am hoping that whatever Erick Kripke had planned for the 5 year run will end well and to our satisfaction.  There's a part of me that isn't anticipating another Winchester death since some might think they've "died" enough, hee! But certainly there will be casualties and though I'd love to assume a a happily ever after as only the Winchesters can have one, it's never good to hinge too much hope on that.

Here's to a great ending to the season which, for me, for this unrepentant DeanGirl, is a satisfying bit of Dean heroics, oodles of surprises where Dean is concerned and well, maybe just a touch of Dean suffering.  It's the fanfiction writer in me, I guess.

Thanks for reading and see you next week for Swan Song.

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These little facts better NOT go unexplained or I will be more than a little miffed.

Me too! I would be SO FRUSTRATED is they did that...or if they made us wait until next season!

...the prophecy states that the righteous man who breaks the first seal is the ONLY one who can stop the Apocalypse so, in my view, it doesn't take Dean off the hook, I just don't know where he comes into the equation. Unless by some fluke, which I'll hate if they do this, the prophecy is no longer in play because Dean is now no longer Michael's vessel. This will tick me off no end if they do this.

Excellent point! I don't think Dean's off the hook either. It seems a little funny to me that all along they've been telling Dean, "You'll say yes! You can't change your destiny!" And then all of the sudden, "Um, never mind, we've got a backup plan," lol. I wonder if maybe Michael will try to use Adam to make Dan say yes?

I LOVED the reconciliation between Dean and Cas. It wasn't mushy or maudlin, but said it all and brought a relief for the resolution.

Lol, I loved that too! :D Jensen's expressions were priceless there, lol.

Here's to a great ending to the season which, for me, for this unrepentant DeanGirl, is a satisfying bit of Dean heroics, oodles of surprises where Dean is concerned and well, maybe just a touch of Dean suffering. It's the fanfiction writer in me, I guess.

Lol, I second that!

Awesome blog as always! :D


Great meta here!!! :)

I always think that when Dean is in play, destiny gets all muddled! Think of how Zach's future got all changed in "The End", but even before that, in "Lucifer Rising" Dean got Cas to exert freewill and ticked off both Zach and Raphael. Dean is the wild card for the finale. We have no idea what role he will play and how it will throw the "divine plan" off.

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