“Screaming like a Banshee”. I’ve heard and said that phrase my whole life but never knew it had its roots in folklore. I guess you really do learn something new every day – especially from Supernatural!

I loved “Into the Mystic”. The music was outstanding, or maybe I’m biased because it used some of my favorite oldie tunes. “Will you love me Tomorrow”, first recorded by The Shirelles (an African American female vocal group), was the first song by an all-girl group to reach No. 1 in the United States. It was their version that was featured at the beginning of this episode. The song was co-written and later recorded by Carole King, another groundbreaking female artist. I think that’s noteworthy in an episode that introduced two impressive, strong female characters.  “Wonderful, Wonderful” is also a favorite song. Music adds so much to these episodes.

“Into the Mystic” was sweet, touching, healing, honest and real. It was also full of new plot threads.

New Strong Female Characters


s11e11 303 Mildren at tea

First and foremost, Dee Wallace was outstanding as Mildred Baker. Her confidence, poise, humor and smile dominated her scenes. Her playful advances to Dean; her wise, motherly advice on life; her comfortable interaction and signing with her new friend – really everything about her performance – truly made this show a joy. Just as Nate Torrence (Skully) made “Just My Imagination” a superb hour of television a few weeks back, Dee stole this show. I truly believe that Robbie Thompson located this case just 15 minutes from the bunker to open the possibility of Mildred becoming a recurring character. It’s been a long time since the boys had a motherly presence in their lives – probably not since Ellen. Mildred also had an interesting back story. No one believed her when she saw a ghost ten years ago. She mentioned this experience in her first long conversation with the brothers, then she repeated it, in detail, when she talked with Sam. Something that is repeated twice is important. The only reason to give this relevant, intriguing history is to set up a story about Mildred’s past. Robbie is responsible for so many strong, female, recurring characters (Charlie and Dorothy to name two). I’m sure there will be a future hunt about the trauma Mildred experienced and the ghost that got away. All these things considered, I’m predicting we will look back on this episode years from now and fondly remember that this was when the brothers first met the Mildred, a new friendly light in their lives.

s11e11 521 Eileen hunter

The second new female character that was introduced was Eileen. She’s a hunter and a MoL grandchild, just like the brothers. She became a hunter because a monster killed her parents when she was a baby lying in her crib, and she has spent her life tracking down the thing that killed her parents. She has trust issues, is isolated, roams around helping people, has a hunter’s journal from the hunter who raised her and her alternate profession would be a lawyer. Again, just like the brothers, in fact, she could be Sam’s doppelganger. Robbie expanded the Supernatural universe with another hunter, this time a woman with a disability and a lot of courage.

The Darkness/Dean

Sam: What about the Darkness? What about Cas?
Dean: We’ve got zero on Amara. And Cas? Cas will be fine. He always is.
It’s interesting that Sam referred to their overwhelming foe, and his constant worry, as The Darkness but Dean replied with her first name, Amara. He called her Amara every time he talked about her. Dean’s connection to The Darkness is personal. He doesn’t see the threat as an “it” or an “entity” or a “monster”. He knows her, relates to her, is bonded with her, and his feelings are betrayed by his use of her name.

09

Casifer: The two of you are connected somehow by the Mark.
Dean: No, it’s more than that.
Casifer: Attraction? Oh, Dean…  In the end, it may help draw her out. This may be a good thing… The next time you face Amara, you won’t be alone.”
No wonder Dean has a hard time sharing his feelings. He finally opened up …and it was to his archenemy. It makes me crazy that he can bare his soul to Castiel and he can’t admit the truth to Sam!

The damage has been done, though. Once Lucifer heard the details about Dean’s encounters with Amara, he immediately concluded it has to do with the Mark. Is that just familiarity with the Mark, or does that hint at some prior personal experience with Amara? Dean feels the ‘connection’ runs deeper than the Mark. It’s more than bonding? Does Amara have some kind of siren power over her men? Dean was the Banshee’s victim. With all the elderly and ill available to her, it chose him as the most vulnerable. Is he being weakened by Amara? Is she breaking down his will power, his strength? This is an extremely important clue to their bond and Dean’s future. She said she can’t be resisted. Does that mean something more tangible than she is persistent and very charming? Does she have some kind of supernatural power over those she targets? Did an archangel also once find her impossible to resist?

The theory that Lucifer’s motivation is to join forces with Amara, not defeat her, gained some credibility in this episode. His intense curiosity (“tell me everything”) and his comment about being at Dean’s side implied he may try to use Dean’s bond to find Amara. Their entire conversation hinted (to me) that Lucifer is also drawn to Amara by his time with the Mark and when he heard or felt her release, he needed to find a way to reunite with her. The story that she (or rather her Mark) corrupted him and is the reason for his downfall, and that they were both caged to protect the world because they each have the goal to ‘do things differently’ than God is consistent with his current actions. Why would he care about protecting the world from her? Why would he care what happens topside at all? Since he was corrupted after her imprisonment, his actions the first time around were altruistic and loyal to God. His motivation now, after his loyatly was transferred by the Mark from God to Amara, is more likely to be with her, or to help her realize the dream world she and the Mark want. He could see himself as her #2, as he was originally to God.

One last thought on this: Casifer’s remark that the bond may help draw out Amara seemed to parallel Sam and Dean’s phone conversation about using Mildred as bait. We may be headed toward Dean being used as bait in the ultimate showdown.

Castiel/Lucifer

s11e11 90 casifer in park

Luci does seem uncharacteristically happy. Sure he is out of the cage, but whistling, enjoying nature, feeding birds?
“I come in peace brother. I’m not looking for a fight. In fact, I am your only hope at beating the Darkness. I heard you kids had your big shot at the title and you missed it. You don’t need to be afraid brother. I’m out of that awful, awful cage and I’m here to save you all”.

He heard this? Besides being able to pose as Cas, Lucifer has access to all of Castiel’s memories. That makes a bad situation worse. Lucifer knew the location of the bunker. He had Castiel’s key (or however Cas gets inside on his own). He has the brothers’ trust. They will eventually learn the truth but what will give him away?

s11e11 386 samifer dean hand

Casifer’s betraying mannerism, his ‘tell’, is putting his hand on the shoulder of the person he is ingratiating himself to. He first laid his hand on the doomed angel in the park. Red shirt angel recognized him as Lucifer, so the archangel acknowledged his identity and was talking as Lucifer. Later, however, he held Dean’s shoulder as they engaged in an intimate conversation in the bunker. At that time, Lucifer was pretending to be Castiel, so in both personas he is playing the long con. He wants to gain people’s trust and get them as his ally (either as Cas or Lucifer). He is working hard to convince everyone that he is the new savior (“I’m her to save you all”). Isn’t that the very thing that the Darkness is trying to do – save the world from the suffering allowed by God? So the Winchesters are fighting against two universe-level powers that have a “God Complex” and believe their way is better - for angels, humans and creation. It was often said that the show couldn’t find a bigger threat than the apocalypse; that once that was averted, no other plot could come close to those stakes. The show rose to the challenge by doubling down. The brothers are now facing TWO apocalyptic evils, either of which will annihilate the world, and this time there’s a sleeper agent within Team Free Will. We surrender Show. You proved us wrong. This IS worse.

Lucifer was looking for something in the bunker, though. Although there’s no way to know now what it is, he needs something or someone. An inventory of the room he was tossing would probably be insightful. Maybe their clean up may make them more suspicious.

Curiosity: Since Lucifer didn’t fall from Heaven when its gates were closed, does he still have his wings? Can Casifer fly again? Maybe he will made a mistake and arrive somewhere too quickly, tipping off the brothers that it’s not Castiel. Just a clue to watch for.

Sam/Dean (No, the slash doesn’t have a double meaning!)

s11e11 53 Sam in bed

“Get it out of my Head!” That was what victims of the banshee screamed as they were being tortured to death. There is a double meaning in that plea for help. Did you notice the lighting over Sam’s bed when he was having his nightmare (one of the many reasons Supernatural continues to deliver the highest quality shows is Serge Ladouceur’s cinematography!)? Sam was still imprisoned in the cage of his feelings and guilt. These thoughts were in his head, plaguing him, and according to Lucifer’s “Ghost of Christmas Past” tour, these thoughts would hold him back from being the hero once again.
Dean: “Kind of nice to be back on a case, huh? Get your mind off of things?”

Sam needed to “let go” of his guilt, to “get it out of his head”, and he did so by acknowledging his feelings in his confession to Dean. This was cathartic for Sam. As is so often the case, forgiveness is available to us if we just ask for it.

s11e11 557 sams apology

I know a huge part of the fandom is elated that Sam apologized, but I was actually disappointed in the closure of this three year open wound. I’m happy that this issue can be put to rest, and I’m thrilled that Sam is no longer burdened with such disappointment in himself. Personally, though, I always felt Sam was justified in believing that Dean died in the leviathan explosion and there wasn’t any reason to look for him. When the moment arrived for Sam and Dean to talk about that pivotal moment in Sam’s life, I hoped Sam would have said something like, “I had reached my breaking point. 100 years in hell being tortured, being driven mad by Satan memories, then this happened, then that happened… I had every reason to believe you blew up and I was alone and I just …stopped.” I know that may be a biased Sam POV, but I would feel the same way if the situation had been reversed and Dean broke. I feel badly that Sam carried around guilt for what was essentially a very human limitation. Dean forgave Sam for not looking for him, but I always hoped the conversation would not confirm that Sam was wrong, but rather that Dean didn’t blame Sam to begin with. I had hoped Dean would have said “I’ve made my share of mistakes. You had no way to know what happened, and you needed a moment to regroup. I survived. We’re back. Move on.” Instead we’re left with Sam blew it and Dean forgives him. I would have preferred a more neutral resolution, and a recognition that even heroes break. I would have found that comforting and inspirational. As I said, I know a lot of people are elated with this conversation though, so I am content that at least the brothers finally (for the love of Chuck!) talked about something important and real. This episode gets credit for tackling REAL.             

Traumatized Children/Family

s11e11 509 Eileens kill

“In the Mystic” continued the long line of stories about how being traumatized as a child establishes the pattern of your life. In this case, it was Eileen whose life as a hunter was determined when she lost her parents, and her hearing, as a baby. She carries pictures of the parents she never knew because ‘they’re family’. It will be thrilling to finally learn what childhood trauma and family feud determined Amara’s fate.

Follow Your Heart/Long Life


s11e11 470 Mildren Dean

Dean: Do you ever miss life on the road?
Mildred: Nah, I had my fun. “Do you want to know the secret to living a long and happy life?
Dean: Actually, yes I do.
Mildred: Follow your heart. You do that - All the rest just figures itself out.”

There are two potentially significant aspects to this advice. First, right now Dean’s heart will lead him to Amara’s side. Mildred recognized he was pining for some lucky lady. Does he really want to be with Amara? Is that his true feeling or her influence? If he gives in to his attraction to her and lets the rest ‘figure itself out’, we might have a very interesting twist in the story. He’s all about family, though. Maybe his heart will lead him back to Sam (again, no slash intended!).

s11e11 597 Dean last shot

The second interesting thread in this advice is the emphasis in this episode on a possible future for the brothers that doesn’t end in them dying on the job. This open conversation with Mildred about how to live long and happy life opens up a new line of thinking for Dean. He’s always been ready to die, and expected to die in a blaze of glory. He expected Sam would be the one to sit on a porch in his old age. On this case, though, Dean considered making a reservation at a retirement home (not that they would need it since they have the bunker). He was surprised, or rather concerned, when Sam’s response implied he expected them to die soon. Dean also told Sam that Cas would be okay, because ‘he always is’. Sam filed away the retirement home brochure with his most treasured items. All these actions imply a hopeful, open mind on the part of the writers as to the brothers’ future. I’ve told you many times that I see a happy ending for them, so I couldn’t be more thrilled with this latest optimism.

Those are my first impressions. Fill in the blanks and tug and pull at these threads! Let’s figure this out together!


Sources:
http://www.springfieldspringfield.co.uk/
http://www.supernaturalwiki.com/
https://www.wikipedia.org

Comments  

cheryl42
# cheryl42 2016-01-28 22:53
I noticed the lighting on Sam in the promo pictures. The look on his face really looked like he was still trapped in the cage. His thoughts didn't turn out to be memories of the fight or the Cage but his guilt. I think that Dean expressed how he felt in the church and when he saved Sam's life in the hospital. Nothing that Sam did or didn't do mattered. All that Dean cared about was that Sam was with him and safe. Sam told Dean once he never needed to apologize to him. Not for any reason. No matter what he did or didn't do. I know that some fans were happy with Sam's apology and some weren't. I think it was the shows attempt to put that story to rest forever. The characters moved on a long time ago. Lucifer opened up an old wound and Dean squashed it. All that mattered was that Sam was with him and safe.
Regardless I think that chapter is over and never needs to be revisited. At least for me.

I hope that Mildred is a recurring character. I also noticed that the ghost story was brought up twice, emphatically the second time. I actually expected that she was going to go into more detail. But I would be thrilled if it turned into another episode. Eileen was fantastic as well. The brothers circle of hunters seems to be depleted lately. She would also be a welcome repeat character. That final scene between Shoshanna and Jared was unscripted https://41.media.tumblr.com/45851210b316357a2a515b18371e3525/tumblr_o1njc0km7d1r7hjzto1_1280.jpg they did a fantastic job coming up with a real moment between two hunters and now friends.

So far Dean hadn't seemed to be feeling the affects of Amara (good catch that Dean calls her Amara and Sam called her the Darkness) unless he was near her. The Banshee targeting Dean now looks like something deeper is happening to him. I don't think it is love or lust but something is making Dean vulnerable to her influence. That was an unexpected twist in the story.

Since not much was focused on Casifer (or as Misha tweeted Lustiel) other than he was looking for something (the First Blade?) I have no idea what his mission might be. I hope you are right that the guys put it together as they clean up the mess he made or by whatever slip up. But I also like the theory that Claire as a previous vessel for Cas might notice the change too.

Sam's treasure box of hope and memories...sigh.

Thank you Nightsky for your threads review. Now off to do a rewatch and see what I missed.
AlyCat22
# AlyCat22 2016-01-29 00:43
Exactly. As I put it in another thread - They have both been through the fire, there's no sense in sifting though the ashes - Dean was letting Sam know that whatever they did or didn't do in the past is just that, in the past. Water under the bridge. What is important now is that they are here together, going forward, side by side. I think Sam got the message.
samandean10
# samandean10 2016-01-28 22:56
Quote:
Personally, though, I always felt Sam was justified in believing that Dean died in the leviathan explosion and there wasn’t any reason to look for him. When the moment arrived for Sam and Dean to talk about that pivotal moment in Sam’s life, I hoped Sam would have said something like, “I had reached my breaking point. 100 years in hell being tortured, being driven mad by Satan memories, then this happened, then that happened… I had every reason to believe you blew up and I was alone and I just …stopped.”
YES YES YES YES YES YES YES ........

Quote:
I always hoped the conversation would not confirm that Sam was wrong, but rather that Dean didn’t blame Sam to begin with. I had hoped Dean would have said “I’ve made my share of mistakes. You had no way to know what happened, and you needed a moment to regroup. I survived. We’re back. Move on.” Instead we’re left with Sam blew it and Dean forgives him. I would have preferred a more neutral resolution,


YES YES YES YES YES YES .....

Beautifully stated on both points and it reflects my own thoughts to a T.

Quote:
She mentioned this experience in her first long conversation with the brothers, then she repeated it, in detail, when she talked with Sam. Something that is repeated twice is important. The only reason to give this relevant, intriguing history is to set up a story about Mildred’s past.
I did notice the repetition, but I wasn't sure what to make of it. You are probably right that we will be seeing Mildred again. I would be quite happy with that, and even more happy to see Eileen again. You know, I was getting a vibe of a Sam/Eileen love connection. They had more chemistry in just a few short scenes than Sam ever had with Amelia. And there were some striking parallels between Sam and Eileen's lives. Moreover, it would fit in with what Sam said in Baby, when he asked Dean if he ever thought about having at least some kind of relationship with another hunter. Maybe RT was laying the groundwork for Eileen.

Quote:
Casifer’s betraying mannerism, his ‘tell’, is putting his hand on the shoulder of the person he is ingratiating himself to. He first laid his hand on the doomed angel in the park.
That gesture of Casifer's kind of annoyed me because it seemed OOC for Luci, and why would Luci have assumed that it would be characteristic of Cas? Angels are most certainly not a touchy feely bunch. But your comment reminded me that when Lucifer first came to Sam in a dream as Jess, he revealed himself as Lucifer while his hand was on Sam's shoulder. Coincidence? probably. But who knows?

Quote:
Sam filed away the retirement home brochure with his most treasured items.
That scene, along with the fact that Sam even had a box of personal treasures, was the most touching scene in the ep for me. After everything he's been through, Sam still isn't quite ready to give up on that light at the end of the tunnel--even if it's in a retirement home! His little smile as he gently placed the brochure in the box was kind of heartbreaking in a way.

Great threads Nightsky! thanks.
Jen
# Jen 2016-01-28 23:18
Agree Samanddean, I found the keepsake box a bitter sweet moment I wonder if it will come into play latter in the season as a way to bring Dean back
samandean10
# samandean10 2016-01-29 07:40
Quote:
I found the keepsake box a bitter sweet moment
Perfect description Jen.
Didi
# Didi 2016-01-28 23:33
I was also moved by Sam's box of personal treasures. I love that we're getting this kind of insight into the brothers' personalities. These moments are so tender and touching. Yes, these these guys are bad ass hunters, but they are relatable bad ass hunters. :)

These types of momentos have saved them in the past and brought them back from the brink - the family pictures in Brothers Keeper, the army man in Swan Song...

I suspect we may see this memory box again. Probably in the last 10 minutes of the last ep of the season - under similar circumstances as SS or BK. Billie and all her talk of the big empty, and Luci and all his talk about Sam being willing to die or watch people he loves die, has me thinking one of brothers may end up in the big empty at the end of the season, while the other brother clutches the samulet in despair. Sigh.
samandean10
# samandean10 2016-01-29 07:52
Quote:
I was also moved by Sam's box of personal treasures. I love that we're getting this kind of insight into the brothers' personalities.


It reminded me of when the boys moved into the bunker and Dean was so carefully setting up his room. I too love it when the show takes the time to give us a quiet glimpse into their emotions. But these little moments are so bittersweet, as Jen said, because they only serve to highlight just how grim the brothers' lives have been. It's heartbreaking to see the toll the hunting life has taken on them and just how few wonderful, happy memories have been created for them.
Mark russel
# Mark russel 2016-01-29 04:05
well said. but There is a double meaning in that plea for help. Did you notice the lighting over Sam’s bed when he was having his nightmare .Research paper writer service ("http://resear chpaperwriting- service-online. blogspot.com")
YellowEyedSam
# YellowEyedSam 2016-01-29 05:09
Quote:
Did you notice the lighting over Sam’s bed when he was having his nightmare (one of the many reasons Supernatural continues to deliver the highest quality shows is Serge Ladouceur’s cinematography!)? Sam was still imprisoned in the cage of his feelings and guilt. These thoughts were in his head, plaguing him, and according to Lucifer’s “Ghost of Christmas Past” tour, these thoughts would hold him back from being the hero once again.
Woah :o Well spotted! I can't wait for Casifer to meet with Sam though :o
disgruntled viewer
# disgruntled viewer 2016-01-29 06:28
Great article as always, Nightsky. But I'm not very sure about this one
Quote:
Sam was still imprisoned in the cage of his feelings and guilt. These thoughts were in his head, plaguing him, and according to Lucifer’s “Ghost of Christmas Past” tour, these thoughts would hold him back from being the hero once again.

You know, banshi chose their victims because of their psychological vulnerability, but she didn't choose Sam despite that he was torn apart by his feeling of guilt, and that means she didn't find any inner weakness in him.
Fazzie
# Fazzie 2016-01-29 09:03
Quote:
but she didn't choose Sam despite that he was torn apart by his feeling of guilt, and that means she didn't find any inner weakness in him.
Correlation doesn't mean causation.

The banshee going after Dean means that psychologically Dean was the most vulnerable person around at that point. It doesn't mean that Sam can now put his boxers on outside his pants and leap tall buildings in a single bound because the banshee is saying he's the supernatural version of Kal-el as it would have gone after someone else if Dean wasn't there. That means she could have gone for Mildred or Eileen or Sam or anyone else in the home depending on who was the next most vulnerable in line.
spnlit
# spnlit 2016-01-30 14:18
I agree.
nightsky
# nightsky 2016-01-29 09:47
I thought about that actually. I concluded that Sam was facing his guilt, he was admitting it to himself and processing it, resulting in a decision to deal with it openly. A person gets stronger when they release or let go of something that's been bothering them, so Sam was strengthened, not weakened, by admitting his guilty feelings. This is consistent with the strength he displayed in his confrontation with Lucifer. Sam was shown things that should have made him vulnerable to Lucifer, but instead it deepened his resolve. Defying Lucifer showed Sam's strength. I think the banshee choosing Dean was meant to symbolize that right now Sam is mentally/emotio nally strong while Dean is vulnerable because he is not openly admitting or facing his feelings. Rather he is hiding them, or denying them, which is giving him a vulnerability that enemies can exploit.
Fazzie
# Fazzie 2016-01-29 15:17
I don't know if I can agree because at the point of the attack Sam was still processing his guilt, he didn't truly face it until the end when he talked to Dean as shown by the fact he could sleep.

Actually at that point Dean can be argued to be more open and facing his problem at that point as he has talked to someone about it, just not Sam. They just couldn't resolve things in a way that truly helped him because it wasn't Cas but Lucifer.

At this point I think the take away is that out of the two Dean is the more vulnerable emotionally to the banshee than Sam was at that point but it doesn't mean Sam at that particular point was emotionally golden. He didn't really finish dealing with his guilt until the end seeing how Sam can sleep and Dean can't as Sam has resolved his issues by opening up but Dean after opening up to what he thinks is his friend can't because he opened up to wrong person.
anonymousN
# anonymousN 2016-01-29 10:29
Quote:
but she didn't choose Sam despite that he was torn apart by his feeling of guilt, and that means she didn't find any inner weakness in him.
I agree with you whole heartedly.That is what is admirable about Sam.Sam deals with his issues and is open about his thoughts and it is a welcome development.Rat her than suppressing or hiding his weakness or issues he is not letting his fester.I do not agree that Sam had anything to apologise abt purgatory..but if he does then it is better he does not let it spiral into guilt-overload. As you said his inner strength shone.
nightsky
# nightsky 2016-01-29 09:38
I didn't think of this until after I had posted Threads, but the plea of "Get it out of my head" may also apply to Dean. His motion of running both hands over his head when he couldn't sleep stuck with me. At first, I interpreted it as a Jensen mannerism to show worry, but I think it might also indicate that thoughts of Amara are in Dean's head, so much so that he can't sleep. When people are first attracted to another person, they 'can't stop thinking about them'. Dean wishes his 'attraction' to Amara would get out of his head, so this theme applied to both him and Sam.
Fazzie
# Fazzie 2016-01-29 09:40
Thanks for the review, I never noticed the lighting over Sam's bed at first but went back and yeah it is there and is such a simple effect that says so much.

As for the apology, it was overdue even though I do wish they had presented it as you said right from the beginning as if they had a lot of grief would have been saved.

Quote:
I hoped Sam would have said something like, “I had reached my breaking point. 100 years in hell being tortured, being driven mad by Satan memories, then this happened, then that happened… I had every reason to believe you blew up and I was alone and I just …stopped.”
I think that the reason the issue dragged on as it did was two fold from Dean fans is two fold - one, Sam's reaction to Benny and how Sam's role in introducing Martin to Benny's world and helping it to explode was presented during season 8 as less of a problem than textgate and all because Sam was feeling inferior to a vampire who helped Dean out when he decided not to look. And second and most important, the way Sam clung to the reason he didn't look was the agreement. It began to become a Pavlovian response the writers put in Sam's mouth Someone say to Sam 'You didn't look' Sam's response 'Only because Dean and me had an agreement'. The continued presentation put the decision onto Dean even though Sam made the call, it eventually felt like Sam saying 'Dean told me not to and I did as I was told'. It wasn't just cutting the autonomy out from him, it was the writers, while saying Sam was the mature one, handed Sam's autonomy and ability to own his own actions to Dean while Dean wasn't around to say anything and Sam was hoping at some point to be rewarded with a trip to Disney land.

As Lucifer said, Sam would have been okay with his decision if Dean hadn't come back but Dean did so he had to face his decision. He made a call and had to face the consequences and when faced with them didn't like them, but didn't own them either and he knows that. And because of that and how it did taint his relationship with his brother for so long he went hell for leather on curing the mark even when told by everyone it was bad. I like them actually having someone say that was Sam's reasoning instead of just wanting to save Dean because he couldn't handle Dean falling apart infront of him and knowing that it was time to return the favour because Dean had saved him when he was in a somewhat similar state and nothing stopped Dean doing that. The writers having Sam have somewhat selfish reasons on curing the mark is good, something he accused his brother of with Gadriel. The thing was it wasn't Dean throwing it in his face it was Lucifer who can take a truth and make it a festering wound. But having someone say it in the terms Lucifer did, well it gave Sam his big boy pants again with regard to his relationship with Dean even with the guilt.

As for the rest of the episode I only have three things

1) Mildred has to come back!!

2) The part in Ireland in the beginning. The idea that Eileen's folks lived in a 'Oirish' Cottage is kind of well.. Murder she wrote. Her mum was a lawyer, even if they couldn't have afforded a big place they could have afforded to decorate the place outside of the set of the Quiet Man. We could have real 80's wall paper!!

3) Eileen, right now I feel she can go two ways. Right now she is great and capable and not only that she is a deaf actress playing a part that isn't playing on her being deaf. She is capable and strong and....possibly risking into falling into Charlie 2.0. She seems to tick every box that RT was criticised about Charlie, who became an uber hunter after reading a book series. Eileen though, tragic backstory - check with Charlie, always on the move - check with Charlie, trust issues - check with Charlie, uber capable - Eileen being trained and needing to be to survive without a sense, Charlie - being Charlie, special attribute - Eileen Deaf and Charlie Geek/Larper god However doesn't need to be rescued all the time - Charlie criticism. Is a hunter because she was training all her life - Charlie criticism. Able to fit into the Men of Letters - Eileen is a legacy, Charlie fixed a valve computer with Windows 8, knows lore and how to use it best -Eileen because she has been trained all her life, Charlie because well she is Charlie.

However if RT does bring Eileen back and stuffs her into little sister role there is a risk it is going to be taken because of her deafness seeing how every other female of a similar age to the boys who is unattached is presented as a possibly a love interest or ship that passes in the night unless completely stated otherwise - Charlie is a lesbian. I'm not saying that she should come back to simply date Sam but don't have her come back to be a little sister/RT insert.
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2016-01-29 10:13
Charlie did spend 40+ years in OZ fighting along side uber hunter Dorothy. She may have learned a few things along the way. But having Eileen return as another hunter in the Winchesters world would be great.

As a Dean fan myself I had a problem with the lack of story for Sam in the beginning of S8. Sam didn't look. No explanation. He just didn't look. We didn't find out until almost the end of the season about some agreement that Bobby taught them that we never knew about. Sam was short changed by the writers from the get. Benny was nothing but a wedge character that also made absolutely no sense. Sam had always been the one sympathetic to friendly monsters. Did Dean fall on his head in Purgatory? Why didn't he remember that? The first half of S8 was a mess. I think that Robbie Thompson would have liked to have said more on the subject (he has said he wanted to write an ep for Sam before he hit the dog) but now hopefully we can all move on.
Sharon
# Sharon 2016-01-29 10:39
Maybe and certainly now some of got the story they wanted. I did not like the begining of season 8 not because Sam did not look but that the storytelling on Sam,s behalf was so bad , and yes we can certainly move on now the writers used Lucifer to do their job and Robbie came up with something and Sam duly apologized which clearly pleased some.

Dean however is a different kettle of fish and one that I would love to see addressed (not likely but) just like Sam or the one -sideness will continue to undermine the brothers for me personally .
spnlit
# spnlit 2016-01-29 13:13
Quote:
Benny was nothing but a wedge character that also made absolutely no sense. Sam had always been the one sympathetic to friendly monsters. Did Dean fall on his head in Purgatory? Why didn't he remember that?

What is missing from your analysis of this situation is that Dean was in a 24/7 war zone. He had to be on guard 24/7 to kill monsters. He was jacked. So did he fall on his head? No but he was placed in a situation that was kill or be killed and he spent a year there. Benny was a monster topside but down there he helped and protected Dean and thus he became a brother in arms. That is how Jensen played it. Yes, I know that Benny wanted to get out of purgatory and used Dean (no blackmail) who was the human to use the portal. But, when topside Benny followed the no kill plan, trusted and relied on Dean as a friend, tried to make a straight life and then sacrificed himself for Dean because Dean needed him to help or save Sam. So, no I would not see Benny as a wedge. It was an organic situation. Sam was feeling a bit of guilt about not looking for Dean but also knew how he felt on the inside in regard to imploding and being depressed. Dean just returned and was in war mode and still trusted the only friend he really had for the last year. Later, Sam saw the true Benny and accepted him. And yes, Dean gave up Benny for Sam and later asked his friend to help Sam because Sam is first in Dean's life. Yes, Sam was the one who saw redeeming or human qualities in monsters and maybe Dean remembered what he learned from Sam and applied it to Benny who was the only thread of survival he had in Purgatory. I recall specifically the Lenore vampire episode when Sam's compassion and acknowledgement that the vampires abstaining from killing humans deserved to live. T1his caused Dean to rethink and see the murky gray areas of good and evil. Remember he said it jacked up the game(hunting) for him. This is why he thought Purgatory was pure; not because he got off on killing but because it was straight forward.... bad was simply bad no gray areas and he killed without wondering if the being was good. Cas abandoned him on the night of arrival due to his thought that he was a detriment as an angel and his own sense of penitence. Then when jacked up Dean got back topside, yes he just went through hell, he learned that his only hope... Sam, did not even look for him. ( Don't get your knives out yet); which is understandable based on his current life experience. And no I do not think Sam should have felt guilty about this. But Dean was the equivalent of a Vietnam MIA soldier and he had a right to be upset or distraught to know that while he was suffering to survive his family was not looking for him and assumed he was dead. It just hurt.... No, I do not think Dean was feeling guilty about his relationship with Benny and took it out on Sam, he was just hurt. But Dean got over this because he understood , knew Sam loved him, and all Dean really wants and has ever wanted was his brother by his side while they go through this life that was handed to them both on silver platter.
Fazzie
# Fazzie 2016-01-29 13:49
Quote:
Then when jacked up Dean got back topside, yes he just went through hell, he learned that his only hope... Sam, did not even look for him. ( Don't get your knives out yet); which is understandable based on his current life experience. And no I do not think Sam should have felt guilty about this. But Dean was the equivalent of a Vietnam MIA soldier and he had a right to be upset or distraught to know that while he was suffering to survive his family was not looking for him and assumed he was dead.
If they hadn't held onto the agreement we had never heard them discuss before and shown us Sam falling apart before the dog like RT wanted then I would completely agree with you. He went through hell and the guy was due a break down. But they didn't show that, they had Sam repeat the mantra over and over again 'Me and Dean had an agreement'. Because like it or not the agreement didn't really cover Kevin and it doesn't excuse Sam, previously willing to give everyone a second chance including monsters, going ape over Benny in the manner he did. If anything if the agreement was the reason Sam didn't look he should have shaken Benny's hand and said 'thanks and if you kill I'll send you back to Purgatory.' But he didn't and he acted like a petulant child while still holding onto the agreement.

Also as you said Dean coming back from purgatory was wired and to find out his main hope didn't look would have hurt but Sam continuing to say about the agreement and go on about how his life was so comparatively wonderful without him that he wanted to go back to version of it was kind of cruel - it was rubbing salt into a wound because he was telling Dean, him not looking was as much Dean's fault as his and hey he was better off without Dean because we never saw Sam discuss how normal with him and Dean hunting was really going to work. The only one to broach it was Dean and it was 'Sam you are in or out' and Sam didn't fight that discussion. It was the writers throwing Sam under the bus in the worse way possible and still the agreement was his response to every time not looking was an issue even though he could see it getting everyone's backs up when he mentioned it, including Bobby who would have gotten Sam breaking and wanting to curl up into a ball as a reason for not looking. And it is good that they also had someone say that Sam's guilt over it that he hadn't vocalised in terms of 'I got that not looking hurt and yeah I feel guilty about it' drove a lot of his drive in season 10.

IN some ways I get the writers were floundering a bit with Sam because up until half way through season 9 he was the inflicted with supernatural plight while Dean ran around getting character development and making pals. Now they've reversed that I get it will take a while for them to do what they did for 9 years with Dean in a couple of years with Sam. Though it is good he started with Eileen, I do hope she stays a friend but hope that RT isn't going to be allowed to make her Charlie 'adorkable' 2.0. Keeping Eileen real would be good, Charlie for me was just too much - hell a spin off with Eileen and Mildred would be great.
anonymousN
# anonymousN 2016-01-29 13:57
Quote:
when topside Benny followed the no kill plan,
This is untrue or more accurately it has not been established on the show.Quote:
Dean because Dean needed him to help or save Sam.
but not coming back was his decision.He could have come back and he did not .why?Quote:
( Don't get your knives out yet)
https://encrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQAoXYH8EVsl_9A27aCsHjfTYz9rD78o3VUMuKuc01fDVyYGPAQ Quote:
Sam, did not even look for him.
Like in season 4 when Dean was so elated with the thought that Sam got him out.The problem with Dean is.He berates Sam for wanting something...(not just Dean mind you) and then when he gets convinced of Dean's way guess what Dean does a 180 and is angry with Sam now for wanting something which he wanted Sam to want.Sam wants normal nooo...now Dean wants normal and Sam is not interested ...what the sacrilage.https://encrypted-tbn1.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcTWOQedfcsvef2SjkSuEC2BhMJLsfPNyBmFwDaub0lpeWj4_Q4b .I am over Dean's ever changing expectations.Quote:
all Dean really wants and has ever wanted was his brother by his side
except when he did not want to.I am even over such "ideal-brotherifying" Dean.Quote:
not because he got off on killing but because it was straight forward
who cares if is bad or good.why? because you see even monsters like lenore also went to purgatory.Who knows if he killed one such "monster".Quote:
So, no I would not see Benny as a wedge.
Benny was a monster who should never have come back topside.
njspnfan
# njspnfan 2016-01-29 14:53
folks... let's skip the Sam vs. Dean stuff. Dean has asked Sam to move on, and by proxy, I think the writers are kind of asking fandom to move on as well.
Fazzie
# Fazzie 2016-01-29 15:21
I don't try to inflate I try to discuss and then I get attacked even if I say I amnot trying to open up a brother discussion just a bit about one aspect of one bit.

I just responded to the articles part about why the apology was felt to be needed by the writers, but if my views are so bad I will go.
njspnfan
# njspnfan 2016-01-29 18:31
no one says your views are bad, they just come across as antagonistic at times.
Fazzie
# Fazzie 2016-01-29 21:51
That isn't what you originally said but I get the message loud and clear even though no where have I ever said one brother is better than the other.
spnlit
# spnlit 2016-01-30 14:54
Fazzie, there is no need to leave or stop posting just because one person njspnfan accuses you of instigating Sam vs. Dean stuff. If that is his opinion of you then so be it. I do agree with him that I would prefer the Dean vs Sam stuff to stop. Based on your writing here in regard to this article, I saw nothing that would be antagonistic. Others have been far more antagonistic and they are still posting. What I have personally experienced recently is the antagonistic statements and dean character assassination comments from anonymousN and disgruntled viewer. Particularly in the Dean is a liar and hypocrite arguments. It all revolves around their need to raise Sam and put down Dean. They make these comments even if it is unrelated to my post. No one is criticizing them or calling them out. Now I may choose to stop posting because I find this tedious and not interesting or I will simply ignore their remarks. Please just decide for yourself whether discussing the show on this site is still interesting or enjoyable but don't make a decision based on one persons comments.
edited: This was not intended to be a reply to njspnfan but to Fazzie.
anonymousN
# anonymousN 2016-02-02 04:37
Quote:
Particularly in the Dean is a liar and hypocrite arguments.
yes do feel free to ignore us.
For the record it is not Dean character assassination.It is just how Dean is.I do not see Dean as a brother who wants Sam ALWAYS by his side.When you say this I will disagree with you.When you say Benny did not kill anyone..the fact of the matter is that was not established clearly ..so I will say that has not been established on the show.If being critical of Dean is a crime and we are still posting here there are many others who have been critical of Sam (fazzie included) who are still commenting here.I have made comments realated to your somments...if you FEEL they are unrelated then you are free to.But I replied with whatever I FELT pertained to a reply of your comment.Quote:
I saw nothing that would be antagonistic.
Where did antagonism come in this.When the commenter says that it was an agreement between Sam and Dean but when respects that agreement and says so it is somehow Sam putting it on Dean.If you do not find anything wrong with that so be it..but such statements for me are simply wrong.You and others disagree ..well that is how the world is...some agree some others disagree.The difference is I do not strawman you or tell you are antagonistic and Just because I type in a comment the things that Dean does does not mean I am assassinating his character.
disgruntled viewer
# disgruntled viewer 2016-02-03 12:06
Quote:
What I have personally experienced recently is the antagonistic statements and dean character assassination comments from anonymousN and disgruntled viewer
. Quote:
They make these comments even if it is unrelated to my post. No one is criticizing them or calling them out.
I understand that sometimes we disagree, and sometimes get emotional, and that's all right, and I don't take personal remarks close to heart, that happens, but don't you think that these two sentences in one comment look funny? Moreover it's not the first time you use my nickname in the negative light when you are replying not to me. I kindly ask you not to do that. I don't know about your country, but in my country it is considered highly impolite. If you want to tell me something, I would prefer you to adress to me directly.
By the way, I never used such words writing about Dean "a liar" and "a hypocrite". Just for the truth's sake.
With best regards. disgruntled viewer.
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2016-01-29 14:47
I agree with njspnfan
spnlit
# spnlit 2016-01-30 14:24
Glad you agree with njspnfan but why tell me? Do you think I want to engage in the Dean vs. Sam argument? I simply responded to your post. Quote:
Benny was nothing but a wedge character that also made absolutely no sense. Sam had always been the one sympathetic to friendly monsters. Did Dean fall on his head in Purgatory? Why didn't he remember that?
.
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2016-02-02 10:31
No I don't think you are engaging in Sam vs Dean stuff. I don't think anyone is here really. I think everyone is expressing their personal interpretation of the show.
Fazzie
# Fazzie 2016-01-29 14:13
Yeah Charlie spent 40 years plus in Oz fighting with Dorothy who knew her stuff, but this uber hunter who is smart in all ways is introduced in Book of the Damned hood up, running down dark alleys with a three foot blade strapped to her back.

Great if she is a video game character but really???? Are you telling me that every person she passes in the street thinks she is just got a very thin squash racket? Or that she gets away carrying offensive weaponry out in the open because she is cute and Charlie like considering she couldn't always stay in back alleys?

Plus she attacked the first person who opened the dumpster she was hiding in. Great she got a Stein who I agree was chasing her and the visual was good, but whoops if it was a homeless guy who was looking for food or a place to crash, would have had a sword through the face.

Plus considering everything 'Who brings a sword to a gun fight?'

Eileen, if she comes back seems a stronger more realistic hunter and I hope she comes back.
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2016-01-29 14:35
Quote:
she gets away with carrying offensive weaponry out in the open
Uh Sam and Dean do it all the time. I'll admit they are cute too but I don't think they should get a pass either sometimes.

I imagine if I spent 40 years of my life perfecting something (which I actually have) I would be proficient at it as well (which I actually am). I also imagine there were no guns in OZ so Charlie was more comfortable with swords and knives.

Since Charlie is dead and FD is going on to other projects I would very much like to see other strong women become friends with the Winchesters. That would be awesome. I loved Shoshannah Stern in Jericho and she did a fantastic job in this episode. I hope Robbie gets to write more for her in the future.
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2016-01-29 14:54
By the way this discussion has nothing to do with Nightsky's threads article. If you want to discuss this further I can open a thread in Discussion's. It might be more appropriate there.
Fazzie
# Fazzie 2016-01-29 16:18
You can start a thread if you want.

I just hope Eileen stays in the mold she has started in, She is strong and smart and capable just now without falling in RT insert which Charlie can be argued as did.

The show needs more strong females and the ones on the last episode fit mould.
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2016-01-29 17:37
I agree Robbie Thompson writes some great female characters. Definitely one of his greatest strengths.
samandean10
# samandean10 2016-01-29 16:09
Cheryl, is that actress really deaf?
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2016-01-29 17:33
Yes she is.
spnlit
# spnlit 2016-01-29 13:26
I do see your point that Eileen is a character created pursuant to the Charlie mold. Hope she stays realistic and a friend.
sue
# sue 2016-01-29 12:06
I liked this episode have watched it a few times just can't watch Dean hitting his head on the wall it hurt lots while I was watching I got headache.
Reason Dean maybe thinking a lot about Amara maybe when she kissed him When he said what was that I think the kiss did something to him because she sid she can't be resisted and Dean was resisting her. just an idea. Like to see Mildred and Eileen again. And wondering what Casifer has up his sleeve. He can't be looking for first blade Lucifer is in the angel that hid the blade. And book of damned and codex never saw who took those after Rowena did the spell.
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2016-01-29 13:11
Oh good point! That hadn't occurred to me that Cas would know where the First Blade is. Duh!

I can't watch Dean bashing his head either.
njspnfan
# njspnfan 2016-01-29 13:28
Nice threads article, Nightsky. Plenty of parallels with Dean banging his head against the wall to get the banshee screech/song out, just as he desperately wants to get Amara out of his head. We had a more mature woman, Mildred, playfully hitting on Dean; too bad for Mildred that Dean is longing for an even more mature woman, one as old as the universe, Amara. Based upon this episode, this attraction/allu re runs deep, much deeper than Dean wants to admit.

Mildred and Eileen were both welcome additions to the show and I would enjoy seeing them on the show again. It's nice when they spend time to develop these guest characters, just like with Sully earlier this season.

Some honest to goodness character growth/developm ent for Sam this season, facing his fears, owning up to his mistakes/transg ressions, putting his faith in himself, his friends, and his family. So as not to get pilloried, I'll add "mistakes, perceived or otherwise" but.... for the record, Sam not looking for Dean was very much OOC; thinking Dean was dead never stopped him before; some context would have been helpful in Season 8 but Carver REALLY SCREWED UP by deciding to leave everyone to make up their own backstory or context for this decision. Dean's reply to Sam's apology needed to be said because EVERYONE on the show has been bringing this up for over 3 seasons; Dean excoriated Sam regularly over the course of Season 8, Crowley brought it up, Meg commented on it, Castiel brought it up in his "I'm a bigger screw up than you" speech (which, for the record, is very true). Hell-Bobby judged Sam for it, and Lucifer tried to manipulate Sam in to saying yes by bringing it up. Dean has forgiven him and moved on, and asked Sam to move on as well.

As far as Sam not confronting Dean about his Amara connection, At the end of Our Little World, when Castiel questioned how Amara got away from Dean, Dean said "I'm sorry, what part of "God's freaking sister" did you not understand? She overpowered me -- end of story.". Castiel and Sam gave each other a look that indicates they're not totally buying in to Dean's explanation. Given that, and Crowley's sarcastic comment in front of Sam about Amara and Dean, Sam knows something is up. But... he also knows his brother and pressing the issue will only piss Dean off and shut down the conversation. Maybe we'll see some character growth for Dean in the second half of the season; he has kind of stagnated and needs to learn that asking for help, or admitting his connection with Amara, is not a sign of weakness.
anonymousN
# anonymousN 2016-01-29 14:05
Quote:
Maybe we'll see some character growth for Dean in the second half of the season
Ha ha ha....http://i2 03.photobucket. com/albums/aa7/ Spleener12/Reac tion%20pics/125 7443836328.jpg :P
njspnfan
# njspnfan 2016-01-29 14:55
well... sarcasm aside, I think the show is trying to address a lot of this stuff this season. That's a tall order but, if history is any indicator, I think we'll see the Dean / Amara storyline pick up in the second half of the season.
anonymousN
# anonymousN 2016-02-02 04:57
It was not Sarcasm njspnfan ( i was trying to be funny..looks like it fell flat)...I do not in all honesty think I will see what you are expecting.I did think so in the earlier seasons but this season I simply have accepted that ,no, what I was expecting and what you still are expecting will come on the show.For me it has reached the stage of too late, no not even too late..just never gonna happen.The imbalance has gone on for too long to even come to any semblance of balance.While the excitement I see in sugarhi's comments has left me long back I cannot even think such a thing will happen on the show as Dean character development.
njspnfan
# njspnfan 2016-02-02 08:08
I'm sorry. should have been clearer; I don't view sarcasm as a bad thing; it was kind of funny :)
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2016-01-29 20:44
I read another review where it was pointed out that the treasure box was the same one from Home. It belongs to both brothers where from time to time they put the things in that mean the most to them. I had wondered about the ring that looked like it might be either Mary's or Johns . The baseball, lighter and the Samulet that looked like they might be Dean's. I would love to explore that box more.

Sam cleaning his weapons was also a nice point of continuity with Hello Cruel World when Sam was being tortured by Lucifer's hallucinations. Here he was being tortured by the visions from his past.

It was a fantastic review that touched on threads throughout the episode.
sugarhi15
# sugarhi15 2016-01-29 21:36
In last week's episode, Lucifer tried to manipulate Sam by convincing Sam that he was too weak to take on the Darkness. He wanted Sam to believe that he no longer had the fight that he once had which had enabled him to save the world. Lucifer did this by taking Sam for a walk down memory lane, showing him what Lucifer perceived as Sam's boldest, bravest moments and then showing him when he lost it all. Lucifer showed Sam with Amelia and in that moment Lucifer did his damnedest to convince Sam that by choosing to run from hunting, by giving up, this was the moment Sam became weak, he lost his will to fight and he no longer has what it takes to beat Amara.

Lucifer's attempt to get to Sam failed, but it did manage to cause Sam to feel guilty all over again, this as we saw in the moments when Sam couldn't sleep and the conversation between him and Lucifer kept swimming through his head. The guilt is still with Sam as we all saw and finally got to hear in tonight's episode, but I don't think it's all black and white and I feel that both Andrew Dabb and Robbie Thompson have at last showed the fans what most of us have believed all along, so thank you for finally letting us see for ourselves what we've been saying all along.

Weakness has been a hot topic concerning Sam and Dean this season. They both believe that at one point they have been weak and thus perceive themselves to be a failure/disappo intment to their brother. As we have seen in the last two episodes, and all those previously in one form or another, both these boys are still guilty of this false perception. I think Sam and Dean share the same basic flaw and it's THIS flaw that is their weakness at times, it's their own perception due to their low opinion of themselves which often leads to guilt. Lucifer had Sam thinking his moment of weakness came, not by keeping a promise, but by running away from hunting and hiding in a fantasy world that included a woman Sam never truly loved and a dog. Sam as he admitted, imploded and ran. He didn't have the strength at the time to stay in the life that killed his family, and he didn't have the strength any more to care about the rest of the world. At the time of his grief, until he hit the dog, Sam seemed to stop living and caring about anything. The truth of the matter is, hitting that dog saved Sam's life. Sam shifting his focus to start caring again, to start helping again, as is why he chose a broken Amelia, who had lots of similarities to Dean. In that time he chose to run, he found the strength to get through and even before Sam knew Dean was alive, he left Amelia and went back to the cabin. We saw Sam coming to terms with his need to stop running during his conversation with Amelia's father even before the call came in about dear dead Don's magical reappearance. Amelia's lost husband returned and the bond they shared was no longer there. Sam knew it was time to get back to his real life or at the very most he couldn't share a life with a woman he didn't truly love because love was never what brought them together.

If Lucifer tried to convince Sam that his greatest weakness was in leaving the hunting life and running from it, I disagree with Lucifer's assessment. Though Sam was broken, he found a way to survive. He found the strength to live again and when the time came, he left the life of normal and headed back to the cabin. Finding a way to survive a devastating loss is possibly one of the strongest things a person can do and not too long ago, Dean did the same thing in order to find a way to keep going, to survive as well.

The flaw here in Sam is his own perception of self loathing and guilt. He did nothing wrong in believing his brother died. He did nothing wrong in keeping a promise they made. He did nothing wrong when he broke and ran away from the life that killed everyone, Mom, Dad, Jess ,Dean, Bobby, Ellen, Jo, Ash etc....he did nothing wrong in finding a way to survive. What he did do wrong was allow himself to feel guilty over all of it, to believe that he was a failure to his brother. His flaw was in allowing his self loathing to take over and fall victim to misperception. He did not fight back when Dean constantly ragged on him about not looking. He doesn't give his brother a beat down when Dean doesn't get that he was keeping a promise to his brother and most importantly, he doesn't tell Dean himself that he imploded and ran, that it was hell, that all he wanted to do was look for a way to bring him back but they made a damn promise and that's what Sam believed Dean wanted.

I just wanted to mention something regarding the promise. This pact/agreement that was made is very important. Although made off screen, it was made for a reason. The three of them made this promise because of everything that's happened since Dean made his demon deal. This agreement didn't just come out of the blue, there is precedence for the boys to make this promise to one another. When the Winchesters make a promise to ea. other, they stick to it. We must remember the significance of this pact...if the pact didn't exist, then Sam most likely would never have imploded and ran. What we have to remember is, once upon a time Dean wanted to call it quits when Sam died. He said he gave enough. He said he lost enough...and when Bobby told Dean something big was coming, end of the world big...Dean's reply was "then let it end". The only difference between Dean's circumstance then, and Sam's back in s8, was that Sam was bound to a promise...and Dean, well was free to do whatever it took...Here's the kicker, it's Dean's act in the first place that ultimately led to the pact the boys made. If Sam wasn't burdened with a promise, he would most likely have looked for a way to bring his brother back from the dead. Without the agreement, there would be no implosion.

Sorry for digressing..... Sam's flaw was his low opinion of himself and his belief that he deserved to take the beatings and his belief that his brother saw him as a failure. (which was never the case and Dean's issues were not about Sam, they were about him...but then that goes back to Dean's flaw...same as Sam's ..self loathing....onl y it's worn differently on each of them...but the result is always the same....misperc eption and the false belief that they are a failure to the other).

If the stroll down memory lane did anything, it was having Sam recognize this guilt that stems from how he sees himself and not how his brother actually sees him. Showing Sam the moment with Amelia seemed to have the opposite effect on Sam....the way I saw it, it seemed to clarify once and for all that his time with Amelia wasn't about weakness, it was a sign of strength, Sam found a way to survive, because of his love for his brother. Sometimes one just needs a little time to regroup, by Sam focusing on Amelia, we see Sam not giving up on life, but as a means of surviving it, even he if had to do it by living a life that wasn't a reality. ;) But of course the guilt is still there. Lucifer did remind Sam of the guilt that he does feel. The guilt for breaking in the first place. The guilt for running away. The guilt for seemingly disappointing Dean.

I think Robbie Thompson has continued to use the double meaning method of writing in which the story can be interpreted in two ways, depending how you choose to view it. No matter how one chooses to view it, the same message is there.

Sam: "I should've looked for you . When you were in purgatory, I should've turned over every stone, but I didn't ...I stopped." This statement can be interpreted in two ways.

We have option A.
One can look at it like this; "I should've turned every stone but, I didn't, I stopped"...Does that mean Sam in fact did try? Those first months when Sam said the just got in the car and drove, did he make the attempt to look but failed in that attempt? He stopped because he had no information, no clue, no help, nothing....did he convince himself that his brother had died because he couldn't face up to Dean just being missing and Sam not able to find him.?

or....

Option B
"I should've looked for you." (as in I should've looked for a way to bring you back). "When you were in purgatory, I should've turned over every stone" (meaning, I should've looked for other ways besides demon deals to bring you back from the dead. I should've tried other methods, promise or not.) But I stopped (but instead I ran. I stopped hunting. I couldn't do it. I was weak and I failed you.) *This is of course how Sam sees himself, not at all as I see Sam.

I believe with all my heart that it's the latter, Option B. Dean's non reaction to Sam's confession has me convinced of this. But no matter how you look at it, Sam has borne the burden of this guilt to this day....and even though it would've been nice for Dean to admit that a promise was made, I think by telling Sam to let it go...he's long forgiven him...and all that matters is that they're together, was his way of letting Sam know that Dean loves him and never has truly seen Sam as a disappointment. I also think it implies that Dean understands. I think Dean understood ever since Sacrifice. Sam's willingness to die because he didn't want to let Dean down again, his confession that his biggest sins were letting dean down in the first place...it was then that Dean realized his part in making Sam feel this way, even if he didn't realize he was doing it. I think Dean also at this point understood where Sam was coming from, I think he understood all the way back to Larp and the Real Girl, when he confessed to Charlie. I think Dean's actions in the second half of the season basically was his way of letting Sam know he understood and was no longer angry, after all Dean has been through the same thing. I didn't see it necessary for Dean to talk about the promise and go into it all again, because I felt like he sort of did that in his own way during Sacrifice. Dean didn't need, want or even expect Sam to apologize. Sam's apology was not only for Dean, it was for Sam. Sam has been carrying this guilt for so long now, even still, even after brother's keeper....this was Sam letting go of the guilt. Dean didn't even know Sam was feeling this way....But when Sam does finally let himself free of the guilt....Dean, the king of guilt, is gracious enough not to dismiss it, but to allow Sam this freedom...and to assure Sam that none of it mattered and the only thing that's important to him is that they're together....and I appreciated that. :D

I know that some are angry that Sam even apologized, but I actually understand why Sam needed to. I also don't think it out of character for Sam's apology to be brief and without explanation. Sam's guilt stems from the fact that he stopped. stopped=implodi ng and running. Sam's guilt stems from the fact that he believes he was weak. He imploded and ran. He couldn't deal with Dean's death and he couldn't deal with the life that he thought killed Dean. Sam in essence, gave up. He relinquished any responsibility he might have believed he had in saving people, including Kevin. Quitting is Sam's failure. Even when Dean came back, we never saw Sam defend himself. He never told Dean the truth, about imploding and running....the truth he gave to Amelia. Sam's reasoning with Dean was the agreement, the promise. Sam never revealed the truth to Dean, even when Dean kept on him....Sam had rather incur Dean's wrath, then have Dean learn how he broke and ran and gave up. That's not the Winchester way. Even in Sam's apology he doesn't go into detail about what truly happened...beca use he doesn't want Dean to think him as being weak. Sam's not so unlike his brother, who is keeping the hold Amara has on him from Sam....Dean too has a problem with Sam seeing him as weak. The apple doesn't fall far from the tree. :P

So I just want to give a great big thank you to both Andrew Dabb and Robbie Thompson for finally giving Sam a voice and Dean an ear, and for finally putting all that guilt to a much needed rest. Season 11....moving on.
Sugarhi15
# Sugarhi15 2016-01-30 09:55
This is kind of a p.s.

The reason i also believe it to be option b is because sam never used the words you were missing and i couldnt find you. Right from the start carver made it perfectly clear that sam thought dean was dead.....anothe r reason is that there is no precedence for an agreement to be made about them being missing..everyt hing that has ever gone wrong has been because of resurrections. I totally believe that deans question of not looking for him was not about him being missing, it was about sam looking for him as in looking for ways to bring him back...i dont think dean wasnt hearing sam when he repeatedly told dean he thought he died.


And as i think more about it, i am more sure than ever, given sams new outlook which is the boys old outlook, that sams apology was more about him believing he was weak when he imploded and ran. He has been so driven by his guilt over failing his brother he had forgotten what being a hunter was all about..he forgot about the innocents and his focus was soley on dean...by breaking and imploding, by running away, by carrying this guilt and being driven by it, he unleashed the d on the world. Sams weakness is guilt..by apologizing for it he rids himself of it..and by dean allowing sam to apologise, without going into his part..he is enabling sam to finally let go....now sam can do what itvtakes to stop the darkness without the burden of guilt influencing his decisions.;)
nightsky
# nightsky 2016-02-01 13:40
THREADS readers, we missed something!! Go to LK's Fan Vid of the Wk article ("http://www.th ewinchesterfami lybusiness.com/ article-archive s/episode-revie w/19709-fan-vid eo-of-the-week- supernatural-re flections-into- the-mystic") <=Link

The Episode 5 "Thin Lizzie" Threads review specifically identified 'silence' or quiet as a theme of the Darkness. How did we not see that Eileen's deafness reflected that quiet of the Darkness?!?
cheryl42
# cheryl42 2016-02-01 14:00
That's right. In ep 9 when Amara showed up at the park everything went quiet for Dean and he was transported to a peaceful place. So what, she brings peace and calm before she feeds on your soul? In the very first episode Amara said she felt at peace or calm when she was with Dean. And compared to what Sam was going through it was much quieter for Dean (I still want to know what force knocked Sam out). Why??? We need to know.