"A 'no' uttered from the deepest conviction is better than a 'yes' merely uttered to please or worse to avoid trouble." -Gandhi
OH.MY.GOD!! Literally and figuratively!!!
There aren't enough adjectives, yet again, to describe this, once again, PHENOMENAL season premiere episode! I was sobbing, aching, shocked, horrified, smiling, heartbroken and much, much more all through the episode. There were so many great moments and they just ranged off the emotional charts. Of course as SO MANY of Supernatural's episodes have shown, the ending killed and this one slaughtered me. It was beautiful in that nothing in it reflected anything false in my view or that it was quickly wrapped up and resolved in a pretty bow, as if to say, they resolved their issues over the summer hiatus out of sight and out of mind of us fans/viewers. This isn't going to be one of those shows that says, "oh, let's make everything happily ever after and be done". No it's not and I LOVED that they didn't. I LOVED that there's going to be pain, suffering, regret, and sorrow, before they can reach redemption (hopefully), salvation, and the inevitable and eventual (hoping again) saving of the world. More on the ending in a minute. Don't worry, I won't be able to hold out for long.
Okay, have to say that when Dean and Sam found themselves on a plane after Lucifer's eardrum-piercing entrance into the world, I went "What the...?" Many tweeters noted this as I lived vicariously through them until it aired here on the West Coast. No spoils so I was DYING!! The only curse to living in California, well, time zone and our economy, but other than that...When I saw it for myself, I understood the confusion, but then later I had this idea, not necessarily the one that Eric Kripke had in mind when he wrote the script probably, but I thought it was clever when it came to me, what a great way for Sam and Dean to be pulled out of the room as Lucifer rose? Ostensibly, they were trapped and yet they found themselves on a plane, a crashing plane, but a plane. I then thought to myself wasn't that a hilarious way for God to "airlift" them out of harm's way? Cool, huh? Okay, onward. I just had to share that.
All right, like a lot of my other blogs and because these episodes just end so damn well, this starts with the ending. And what an ending it was. Once again, Jensen just pulled all the emotional heart strings, though he didn't out and out sob this time, he didn't have to, the crack in his voice said it all and for every word he delivered, he totally showed Dean's pain and loss, a loss for the brother he had depended on and now no longer trusted. Trust is so elemental in any relationship. When Dean said that he couldn't trust Sam, I felt that, understood it. I consider myself someone who implicitly trusts someone until they give me a reason not to, but if they give me that reason, cross a line that I can't abide by, I can never trust them again. I might come to forgive and forget, but I can never trust again unless it's earned back. So when Dean said that, I completely defended his right to feel that way. Sam will have to earn that trust again, if he even can. Some might argue that it's cold hearted, that family forgives no matter what, but I think that for now, Dean has earned the right to feel that way and I know that deep in his soul, Dean will forgive Sam. He loves him, he's his brother, that will never change, he so much as said that, but the trust can't come easily anymore, implicitly anymore. It would be too convenient and completely unbelievable if it did. Dean is forgiving by nature, I know he'll find the capacity to give it, but he deserves the time to mourn its loss just for now.
"I tried, Sammy. Man, I really tried, but I just can't keep pretending that everything's all right because it's not and it's never going to be. You chose a demon over your own brother and look what happened?"
"I would give anything. Anything, to take it all back."
"I know you would and I know how sorry you are, I do, but man, you were the one that I depended on the most and you let me down in ways that I can't even...I'm just...I'm having a hard time forgiving and forgetting here, you know?"
"What can I do?"
"Honestly? Nothing. I just don't...I don't think that we can ever be what we were, you know? I just don't think I can trust you."
I LOVE this moment because it was heartbreakingly calm compared to their other confrontations. I saw the deeply felt guilt Sam was feeling and I have to say, it was WONDERFUL to see some of that Sam back. Jared did an AMAZING job of playing the old Sam in some aspects, playing the contriteness so achingly honestly and carrying the guilt physically in his shoulders, in the bowed head, almost curling his height down, no longer imposing, threatening, menacing. It is such a contrast from the Sam of last season. It was all there throughout the episode, but especially in the moment between him and Dean at the end and I LOVED it. I missed that Sam, the Sam that was compassionate instead of arrogant, the Sam whose eyes reflected the respect and love that he has for his brother and all that he's done for him instead of the contempt and superiority of last season. This isn't weakness, this is the first step towards redemption and the first time in a long time we've seen the real and true Sam, the Sam, who, yes, wanted to genuinely save the world, I believe he honestly wanted to be the one do it, but who now feels incredible shame over what he's done instead. He's almost little Sam again in some ways. I LOVED this and Jared was just FABULOUS! Oh, my friend Tiffany also made a great point that as the scene pans out and up you can even see the physical distance between them too. It's a wide divide, but I believe it's traversable.
I love that there are parallels for what addicts really have to deal with when they face up to their addictions and to what they did while addicted. Sam is seeking forgiveness, but he's also not shirking his responsibility. When Bobby, while possessed, railed at him for his actions, at first, I thought it was just Bobby giving tough love to Sam like he had with Dean, but when he disowned him, told him to lose his number, I knew then and there that wasn't Bobby. Bobby would never say such a thing to either Winchester. He would never abandon them especially after his very recent lecture to Dean about family and how they're not supposed to make you happy. Bobby, above anyone else, would know better than to disown family. More on Bobby in a sec. BOBBY JUST ROCKED!!!!
Back to the ending because I must have my unrepentant DeanGIrl moment. Once again, Jensen just ruled that scene! You felt every hurt and ache in him. You heard the truly sincere words that he knows Sam regrets what he's done, that he'd do anything to take it all back, you know that Dean believes him and understands, but he just can't get past the betrayal of Sam choosing a demon over his own brother and it's no small one. Some might argue that Dean should be the bigger man and just forgive Sam straight out, no questions asked, but I wholeheartedly disagree.
My friend Tiffany whom I was chatting with throughout the episode made a great point. Dean sacrificed EVERYTHING for Sam, his life and his SOUL! Now, I know what SamGirls are going to say, that Dean's actions were selfish, that he made them to get Sam back because he didn't have the courage to live without Sam, that by selling his soul, he was selfishly leaving Sam alone to deal with a world without Dean, that Dean was selfish to think that Sam would deal so much better. Okay, okay, selfish operative word, I get that and give on that since Dean so much as admitted that, but it doesn't change the sacrifice of his life and his soul for Sam. He still did those things, loved Sam enough to want him to live even if it was to eventually leave him and go to Hell, told Sam not to do the same thing, that Dean did realize that the martyr complex of the Winchester family had to end with him. I believe that Dean was honestly telling Sam to let him go in the most realistic and devoted way that he could. It was Sam's choice to take the route that he did, just as it was Dean's choice to resurrect Sam. They made terrible choices, granted and usually for the other's sake. They're both guilty of that, but I still think that despite the selfish reasons and as an unrepentant DeanGirl, I don't think it was all selfish, I truly believe that Dean wanted to give Sam something more than just regret, that he wanted to give him a chance at leaving "the life". I'll give that Dean didn't think much about his own worth to Sam enough, that's sadly his nature, but regardless, I truly believe that Dean did everything for love, out of love and devotion to his family, that in his eyes, misguided or not, he had to protect his little brother, the little brother he had raised. Dean's done so much more, put Sam first in so many ways in the early years, killing his own dreams of being a fireman to take care of Sam and John and without complaint, John so much as said so as his last words to Dean. I think that all that entitles Dean to a little resentment, a little distrust. I also know it's temporary. Dean's gift is his ability to forgive Sam anything, he just needs time.
From a practical point of view, no one is sure, let alone Sam himself, what he is now. He seems like the old Sam, but will one whiff of demon blood drive him to give into this addiction, essentially a blood lust like a vampire would? No one knows yet. Sam says he's not feeling any withdrawal, but can that be dismissed as being purged during the plane ride like he said? Loads of questions that need answers and loads of reasons to be distrustful. The fact that Sam acknowledges it all is a good sign and that he's on the road to recovery.
Now, Bobby! OH! What a hero!!! He proves to me every episode that he should have been the father the boys deserved to have. I mean, wow! He does deserve a medal! Every moment with Bobby in his episode was powerful and just cements how important he is to them. As I mentioned before, I knew he had been possessed when he disowned Sam. He'd never do that and as I said, he so much as said that to Dean, that you don't abandon family, those you love just because they make a mistake, again, Sam's mistake is pretty HUGE, but nevertheless, Bobby's assurance later to Sam is proof of his devotion:
"I ain't cutting you out, boy. Not ever."
Simple. To the point, cut to the chase as only Bobby can hammer a point home. Just beautiful! I cried at that point even after the funny moment with Dean, his GED and his "give 'em Hell attitude". There's a certainty there, a parental guarantee in the statement that is completely reassuring. The parallel is SO opposite of what comes later with Dean, maybe not disowning him, but telling him that he can't trust him. The thread of family and how it's interpreted is so beautifully interweaved in the Supernatural-verse. Bobby is as close to a father as the boys have, short of blood and his bond with them stronger than any father-son connection. Then there's Sam and Dean who are now suffering the painful disconnect that bonded brothers shouldn't have to endure. Blood isn't enough to bring them back to where they were and sometimes blood won't enough, but I know it will be for them. Their bond is the truest, it's been strained to its painful limits, but make no mistake it isn't broken, not yet and I hope not ever. Dean would still take a bullet for Sam and vice versa. It's that simple. Call it what you like, but that's immutable.
Bobby was just also so strong-willed in ways that even John Winchester would envy. Possessed as he was, he still fought it, felt from within what he was about to be made to do and stopped himself and instead stabbed himself instead. The willpower and strength that took also demonstrated how close Bobby feels towards these boys. He would never bring harm to them even it meant harming himself. SO ultimate father figure. Bobby is the BOMB!!!!
Okay so now that I've covered my utmost favorite moments of the episode, there are those that are left and you KNOW where my concentration will lie so escape now while you can.
The angle on Lucifer was clever. Mark Pellegrino was AMAZING and great at playing a good man being seduced, by what? Revenge. That theme runs through clearly in Supernatural and always shows that vengeance is not a good road because it leads you to make very bad decisions. The parallel here of Nick allowing his thirst for revenge to invite Lucifer in and of Sam's seduction last season due to his need for payback from Lillith allowing him to trust Ruby is a cool thread. I LOVED that Nick was a tortured man, tormented by the brutal murders of his wife and child (though I had a moment where I wondered if they died at the hands of a demon, preparing Nick to be "chosen")' and because of that tragedy, he was the perfect one to be "chosen". I can't wait to see how Mark develops as Lucifer. I can see where he could lend a sympathetic presence to Lucifer that might throw everyone off, make people forget that he's Lucifer.
I was very intrigued by the different methods of "recruiting" vessels as well. Lucifer disguised as Nick's wife is almost cloyingly seductive, using his own unjust treatment by God as a way to lead into how a benevolent God could have allowed what happened to his family and not do anything, that he was the only one who could give Nick the retribution he wants although, he calls it justice, interesting twisting of words. If Lucifer is right and he can't lie, then those points were powerful arguments for a man so vulnerable. In contrast, Zacariah was doing a pretty cruel hard sell job on Dean to convince him to be Michael's vessel. He broke Sam's leg, destroyed his lungs, gave Dean stage 4 stomach cancer and threatened Bobby with paralysis, I mean, really! They are doing a really good job of showing the not-so-benevolent nature of angels. Talk about harsh. They cut to the chase and play no games. It's not appealing and Kurt Fuller does a really good job at playing Zacariah with a really sinister coldness. It's REALLY hard to like him, intentional, I'm sure and it's hard to root for them or to hope that Dean could benefit from an alliance with him and his co-horts. All right, admission, I was totally doing the DeanGirl thing when Dean kept refusing, even when threatened with harm to his loved ones. THAT is a monumental change. Dean is finally understanding that he may have to sacrifice, make those hard decisions that Cas talked about in order to defeat Lucifer and stopping the Apocalypse. I hate the idea that he might have to, but even I realize it's part of the gig, the burden that's on him and him alone.
Sidenote: When I saw the clip they showed on Comic Con and I saw Dean put his bloodied hand on the anti-angel markings I thought maybe, just maybe he had been endowed with angel abilities because I thought that only angels could make and enact the power of the symbols with their blood, but then I remembered that Anna was still human when she did it so my speculation was dashed. However, the fact that Dean remembered the symbol and what it did when Cas created it then recreated it, it's just amazing (I know, I'm repeating myself. I can't help it). It just shows how attentive and aware he is as a hunter. Anyway, just as well Dean wasn't an angel-wannabe. Dean being Michael's sword SO MUCH WAY BETTER!!! More on that.
It was awesome to see Chuck again. He's simply a HILARIOUS prophet! I bet my friend Tiffany, the Star Wars fan, LOVED the full on Vader comment he made. It made me giggle when I heard it. I LOVE Dean's defiance with Zacariah even when he digs at him at failing to stop Sam, Dean is unshakeable. Just awesome!!! I couldn't get enough of Dean's rebellion. It was just SO HOT! Dean is so much stronger than he has ever been, so determined. It's a joy to see.
Sidenote: Forgot to mention that Sam creating those hex bags didn't help his situation with Dean. Dean is learning things about Sam that keep creating doubts in him.
Another sidenote: Okay, I have to admit that being a fanfic writer, I LAUGHED when Chuck recruited Becky, his "biggest fan". The only thing I hated about it was that she was a slash/Wincest writer and nothing against slash, I'm not a prude, but Wincest, it just gave me the heebies. I know they were probably making a particular point by making the character that way, but I have to admit, I could have done without that. A goofy fanfic fan, that, I can relate to and am guilty of being at times. Still, I admit that I just about busted a gut at her behavior with Sam. The HILARIOUS references to Jared's well-known, well-muscle pecks, along with the rest of him was just priceless. Dean's expression, Jensen does it again without saying a word. And the actress who played Becky, lucky girl and just so FUNNY!
Nothing could have prepared me for the FANTASTIC twist that Dean is Michael's sword. I've been wracking my brains out about how Dean was going to defeat Lucifer. I mean I'm not up on my Biblical stories, but I know that Michael defeated Lucifer, but I didn't know how and to learn that Dean is the vessel for Michael or more accurately he's Michael's sword, it just couldn't be any better. Now, after the glow of the episode, faded a little, just a little, I'm still glowing like a nuclear plant gone China Syndrome, I became worried and scared and not so happy about this twist. Everyone knows how much I LOVE Dean, how his humanness and all that he is, flaws and all, make him so appealing and heroic on their own. The idea of him providing consent (I LOVE THIS IDEA!!!! I love that unlike demons who can hijack just anyone, angels, Lucifer included, have to be given consent to take a vessel, like a vampire needing to be welcomed into a house before they can cross the threshold -- LOVE IT) to allow Michael to take over his body and use him as a vessel distresses me. I envision a Dean that's not the Dean I know and love and I hate that idea. I know that the same thing had to be done when Cas took over Jimmy's body, but Dean, he's well...Dean and I will have a hard time fathoming anyone else controlling his body and suppressing the essence of who Dean is. The scene where Zacariah tries for force Dean to consent and watching Dean resist was awesome and I was cheering, but I know full well that if the only way to save the world is to let Michael take over, Dean might have to give his consent and surrender himself. That awful decision would be too much even for me to bear and witness and yet the kind of sacrifice that Dean would make without hesitation if he had to. I'd love to learn that if that did happen that Dean would buck the trend and not become someone else...or even better that he is Michael in some way, spiritually or something...all right, I'm reaching now. Enough said.
Sidenote: Rachel Miner was a barely passable Meg and I mean BARELY. I REALLY MISSED Nicki Aycox. She was the perfect mix of biting sarcasm and pure evil. That was the only let down of the whole episode. Of course, lucky Rachel, she got to kiss Dean. Plus for her. Hee. Meg escaped so maybe another, better actress will get a shot at her. Oh, I like the idea that all the demons like Meg will be gunning for Dean, to kill him so he can't save the world. Neat little gunslinger angle. Funny how Sam recognized Meg right away. Hmmm...demon spidey sense, maybe? That could come in handy. And there is NOTHING sexier than the two of them arming up. Whoa! *fans herself.
Cas coming to the rescue WAS JUST ALL KINDS OF AWESOME. His confrontation with Zacariah STUPENDOUS! A smackdown that had me cheering!!! SO GREAT. I LOVE the idea that God is still in the game somewhere on the sidelines, resurrecting Cas and intervening when he's really needed. I LOVE that Cas put the "fear of God" into Zacariah. Not so smug now, is he? Oh, and the kicker, Sam and Dean not only have tattoos to ward off possession, but now they have something engraved on their ribs to protect them from angels. JUST SO COOL!!! You gotta know Cas got some kind of okay from the Big Guy to do that. Cas has never looked so self-assured either which was nice to see, but there are hints that Cas will become a fallen angel so he should enjoy the perks while he can or perhaps his silence about how he was saved was already an answer, he was there to do what he did and then once done will be stripped of his powers. Cool concept.
I know I'm probably skipping something because there was SO much GREAT stuff, but the bottom line is the episode was just a FANTASTIC beginning to what I can already tell is going to be just a SENSATIONAL season!!!! IT ROCKED THE HOUSE!!! I can't wait for the next episodes. I'm excited, stoked, ramped up and ready for what's coming and it's all due to the impact and the more than satisfying start with Sympathy for the Devil.
I may be like Bobby said, "nine kinds of crazy", but I'm ready for the ride!
Thanks for reading and yay, we're all back in the saddle again! YEEHAH!!!!!