Okay, system issues done.  So what did you think? 

Just a word about the episode title.  "Free To Be You And Me" was a best selling childrens album from the 1970's and a cult classic for any child of that era.  What did that have to do with tonight's saga?  No idea.  I'll try to come up with that one.  No holding back, so much was thrown at us!  The trailer for next week!  Whoa!

For posterity, I'll post the rules again for reference:

-  Sam fans, Dean fans, Castiel fans, Sam haters, Dean haters, Castiel haters, all kinds are welcome.  If something upset you about THIS episode, feel free, rant away.  I will even protect you from blatant attacks by other posters (respectful disagreements though are allowed).  However, once you've stated your opinion, move on.  Do not repeat the same complaint over and over again.  Repeated complaints will be edited.  Spirited discussions are welcomed.  
-  Be respectful to other posters, and try to make your comments as constructive as possible.  Any disprespect or personal insults will be edited.   
-  DO NOT complain about spoilers on episodes that haven't aired yet.  ONLY aired material can be judged.  Any complaints about spoilers or speculation will be edited. 
-  If you want to gush about every detail, by all means, gush away!  After all, we love our show. 
-  If your post is long, copy it before hitting submit.  I wish I could say I had the best commenting module on the planet, but I don't.  The verification at the bottom is snippy sometimes. 


# Seraphim 2009-09-24 22:29
Found ya.

OH MY GOD!!!!!!!

That is all. Until I can breathe again.
# Alice 2009-09-24 22:31
Kripke you magnificent bastard!!!

Jeremy Carver too. More coming, after I'm done being a babbling mess. I'm still chuckling over the Michael/Lucifer vessel stuff. We knew we were getting setup for a brotherly conflict!
# Alice 2009-09-24 22:59
LOVED the opener, going back and forth between Sam and Dean to classic rock!! I know that was Lynryd Skynrd, but I gotta dig for the song name. Three episodes in a row with great classic rock. I'm getting spoiled!
Amanda P.
# Amanda P. 2009-09-24 23:23
I laughed I almost cried (from excitement) and my jaw dropped something serious. This episode was all sorts of amazing... perhaps I'm just saying this now because the shock still hasn't passed... but boy did I love it.
What a way to end the episode too. leaves questions
Is god really dead? if not does he need a vessel? if so who? omg will john have some sort of come back since both sam and dean are vessels? (floating around twitter that John maybe God's vessel, perhaps it runs in the family... the works)
# Alice 2009-09-25 00:01
So, what did everyone think of Dean being glad that Sam was gone? I'm still trying to wrap my head around it. I'm thinking he'll eventually get lonely. I'm sure next week's episode will change all that!
# Tigershire 2009-09-25 01:02
This isn't a very happy comparison but, I took care of my mom when she had cancer. And as sad as I was when she passed away, I was also relieved because it was SO much work for someone who is NOT a nurse or a doctor or a health care provider. I did what I did because she was my family and I love her. But it was very, very taxing - I couldn't cure her, couldn't make her better and it was very very frustrating.

Sometimes I find I identify with this show too much. But as much as it hurts to hear Dean say he's happy with Sam gone, I understand where he's coming from all too well.

But, enough of the sad part. I KNEW Sam was being set up as Lucifer's vessel. But to make the connection tonight between Sam and Dean - I do not want to see that brotherly showdown. Even if it is Lucifer and Michael - I don't know if Sam and Dean's bodies would make it.

And Cas - WHEE, he's awesome when he's rebelling. I loved the panicked look on his face at the brothel.

Ah, too much to process right now. More later.
# staceycp 2009-09-25 02:12
OMG this was a amazing episode! this season looks to be heading to achieve the impossible and top season 4!

O.K now to the nitty grity. I am going to do a little analysis on the aspects of the episode that i personaly find important, first off the seperation between sam and dean was done perfectly. showing sams inner termoil and dean clearly missing his brother and im not just talking about those lonely shots of dean driving in the impala alone that was apart of it but not all.

as hillarious as it was to see dean and castiel in the bar and geting into all sorts of crazy antics their is a deeper meaning in this split too. dean needed this. he needed this experience to fully take him out of the role as the surrogate parent for sam so that when they do come back together they will not only be stronger as brothers but two men who can handle their own responsibilitie s without either one having to shoulder eachothers burdens and drag the other down.

now deans speach to castiel at the end-I don't believe it at all. he is definately lying. not only did his experience with castiel in the club remind him of his brother and the antics they get up to but that look at the end when he kinda turned alittle glum after laughing i believe he felt sad that it wasnt his brother he was laughing with. and what he said to castiel is his own way of lying to himself that he is fine cause he is not. see now the roles have changed. sam is out in the open with a spotlight shone on all his mistakes and now dean is the one trying to hide his feelings.

ok now to the mythology, i guess i should of seen it coming that sam was lucifers true vessel-but i didnt. It completely shocked me in a great way. and this also fills in a few plot inconsistancys i had they goes way back to season 2.

my theory is the whole point of the azazel army of the psychic kids is so azazel could find that one in the bunch that would be strong and worthy enough to be lucifers vessel. I think the short way that they were trying to do that was kill sam and send him to hell. bring him to lucifer. if you look in season 2 and 3. demons were clamoring for sams death. although I do think most of the demons werent aware of the plan and just wanted him dead anyway. but by the time season 3 came by i think he was trained up and all ready which is why i believe lilith tried to kill him. i believe azazel unleashing lilith was a double edged sword. the short lilith being a strong enough demon to be able to defeat sam and thus sending him to hell so lucifer can take him as his vessel and return in sams body thus i think would bypass the breaking of the seals completely. but when lilith found out sam was immune to her thats where ruby came in. her back up. if she couldnt kill sam then he would have to kill her. ruby coaching him along making sure he was strong enough thus the plan was complete.

now lastly I want to quickly mention about the fact that sam is lucifers vessel and dean michaels. now I aint gonna go into the argument on whether the big battle should go down to the big good and evil going head to head in the brother bodys.

but I am going to see this is almost the fullfillment of everything eric kripke mentioned in interviews.

destiny vs freewill. can family rule over destiny. everything has lead to this. their destinys are to fight against eachother as vessels in the apocalypse. but the real facinating part which we will no doubt see over the season is how they will be able to overcome that its the ultimate test family vs fate.
# Bethany 2009-09-25 03:15
just a brilliant episode funny (who knew cas could down a pint?) and heartbreaking at the same time. Rafael was creepy yet so sad and tired.....

and lucifer, just so creepy, like the parallel with nick, using the dead love as a way to connect.

just so brilliant can't wait to watch it again....damn the pesky little thing called work!

oh and i love kripke so much right now
# Anene 2009-09-25 04:25
Season 5 theme: "A broken family is the root of all evil" Kripke, i am officially your bitch. :-)
I loved this episode to death. I thought last weeks episode would be hard to top but Jeremy Carver did it. I love his scripts. And whoever directed this episode is made of win. The first 10 minutes of Sam and Dean separately but doing things that parallel each other was made of awesome. And Sam looked very Beautiful and forlorn through-out the episode. Too bad i was distracted by him half-naked,(he could have very well had been fully naked for all we saw) wearing that beautiful baby blue shirt that is definitely his color and using his huge biceps to fight of douche-bag hunters. Did anyone tear up when Jessica and Lucifer made him almost cry? I was sad for my poor Sammy.:cry::
I think the show has giving up trying not to have homoerotic subtexts and have just fully embraced it as part of its charm with that Lucifer-in-Nick s-body-cloaking -himself-as-Jes sica laying in bed and getting very comfortable with Sam scene. Did that confuse you? me too.

Lucifer was just as slick a salesman as he was since we last saw him. That angel is beautiful, no denying that but also pure evil. He is out to destroy what's left of the Winchester family with fake remorse.

I loved the archangel Raphael. The actor was all sort of piercing and his voice definitely put the fear of smiting in me.

Castiel and Sam share the award of most badass tonight. I hated Castiel after his rude betrayal of Sam and Dean back in "when the levee breaks" and also for putting all the blame on starting the apocalypse on the brothers shoulder alone like he had nothing to do with it but after this episode, i have officially forgiven him. He is now back to his glory of "Monster at the end of the Book." Welcome back Castiel to my good grace. You were missed.
He kicked ass in this episode. Even though the whole trapping an Archangel was a little bit too weird for me, i loved how Castiel trapped and totally called him his bitch. Another reason why Castiel rocked, he said please to Dean, and i can honestly say, his love for God is just the strongest point of Castiel. I wouldn't stand in his way of searching for God because he might just do anything. He is changing and i like it. I also enjoyed it when he searched for Sam automatically because even he knows Sam and Dean belong together. I love how he ditched Dean when Dean was saying how much he was very happy to be Sam free. It was like, here he was searching for his father, his family, while Dean is telling him he is happy to be free of his. Not only that, he probably smelled through Dean's bullshitting and couldn't even be bothered to call him out on it. I also loved F.B.I Castiel.:D

As for Sam wining the bad-ass award, just him shirtless was an automatic win but to be fair, he had to be doing something other than showing skin to officially get recognition so I'll go for spitting out the blood at the hunters face and kicking their ass and also for having the courage to look them in the eyes and admit his albeit skewed perspective of him starting the apocalypse.

I loved that Sam is Lucifer's true vessel. I know that a bunch of fans are going to scream that it is just a set-up for Sam to be the bad brother and Dean to be the good brother. Good and Evil, blah blah blah. But they couldn't be far from the truth. What was told to us was that both brothers fate are now intertwined with the mythology literally seeing as two angels are gunning for the use of their bodies to quibble with each other. Which sets us up for what Kripke is intending and has always preached to us to be the theme of this show besides the sweet, sweet brotherly relationship. That of the endgame being free will triumphing over destiny and family standing above it all. Neither Sam and Dean are the good and bad guy respectively. They are instead both human, flawed, broken, courageous and brave hunters who will discover that they're stronger together and will reunite as all broken families should and together keep their free-will and save the world from Lucifer and his endgame. hence why the seasons theme is "a broken family is the root of all evil"

Dean wins the most-in-denial and pitiful award for this episode. I felt so sorry for him. He clearly misses his brother but while at the same time feels exonerated not to have Sam with him because the full weight of how much he cares and gives to Sam hit him. I did believe him when he said that he hadn't had that much fun like he did with Castiel in a long time. Because after season 2 with his deal, their live has gone nowhere but down hill filled with pain, misery, and blood just like the Trickster predicted. The road they both took to keep each other by their side was truly a hard road with its consequences that they are having to deal with now. They have fought so hard to keep their family together but life hates the Winchester clan. (Not to mention a sadistic showrunner at the helm) It was nice to see him laughing and just relaxing even though Lucifer was running around. But at the same time, i though it sad because i don' think Dean believes that he could win against the apocalypse and was just getting by.

Sam in the other was missing Dean very badly and wasn't trying to hide it, just cope with it. I love how he called Bobby and talked to him about the hunt and how his voice faltered like the kid who would rather let the ground open up and swallow them than introduce themselves to their classmates when Bobby wondered why he was calling him. Jared was fantastic in conveying Sam's pain with the topic.

sidenote: I love to no end the inner circle that is still Sam and Dean as they don't share with anybody their hearts. Gives me hope. :D

I loved Lucifer's seduction of Sam using Jessica. I loved the girl who worked with Sam in the bar. I also loved Dean in just a t-shirt. This episode had both boys in a t-shirts. A rarity that was not taken for granted writers. We will be very good fans if you promise to give us more of those scenes in upcoming episodes. ;-)

Lastly, this was the first episode that had the best balance of all three protagonists in the history of Supernatural. I loved it. There was enough of all three characters mixed properly and done seamlessly. All the future episodes had this kind of balance, there would be less of fan grumbling over Sam getting less screen time, and Castiel replacing Sam and would spare the rest of us listening to them.

By the way: anyone else thrilled that Dean requested back his amulet? I was!
# Suze 2009-09-25 06:51
HHHHMMMN. So everyone's a vessel. Destiny V's free will ... No prizes for guessing which way that'll go.

Good points - Tunes are back, Yay! Caz and Dean show full of chucklelishous moments. Sam with his shirt off ... Sigh. Oh, so plausable Satan ... Ooo-er.

Not quite so good points - I'm finding the pinging too and fro between the stories a bit off putting and nosey whats'erface was getting on my nerves.

But hey! First time in a fortnight I don't have to traipse off to work in tears! :D
# Random 2009-09-25 07:15
The song that played in the beginning was Simple Man By Lynryd Skynrd.Just thought I save you the google search alice.If you like it Shinedown does acoustic version of it.
# Andrea 2009-09-25 08:24
Maybe it's only me, but Dean's so-called relaxation and 'happiness' were remisniscent of the way he acted in the beginning of Season 3 when he was doomed to hell so he thought he had nothing to lose. It felt forced and non-authentic. And what did that longing look at the passenger seat mean??
On Sam's side, I don't see his being Lucifer's vessel as a set up to make him the bad guy. On the contrary, I think this is an opportunity given to him to heroically resist evil and find redemption.
One last note: loved Sam's hair in this episode! :-)
# Supernarttu 2009-09-25 08:48
I. L.O.V.E.D. I.T. :D

Jeremy Carver, I'm your bitch *hugeassgrin*

This was the best ep for me so far, hands down.

Too fricking psyched to even TRY to write anything coherent so won't bother. *g*

Awesom ,'nuff said ;-)
# DMentis 2009-09-25 09:13
The episode was epic in too many ways.

Cas is getting funnier.

Sam, you can do whatever you like I'll be right behind you. Team SAM!! WOOT!!
# elle2 2009-09-25 10:32
I've only watched it once and I know I have not retained a whole lot of it but I'll say this...it worked really, really well despite Sam and Dean having no scenes at all together, none. Wow!

Classic rock...I love it, whoever has ponied up a few bucks to get us a song in each of the first three, Thank you very much!!!! -- heck, last week we got two!

I like how Sam and the girl interacted, she was excellent and believable and I love how she drew Sam out, she's smart, sassy, confident and completely her own person, love that. Sam was bad a@@ even with his iissues and shows that he really does not want to go back to being what he had been before -- go Sam! It won't be easy now that there are hunters out there who know his weakness either. Poor guy. As for the whole Lucifer vessel and Dean as Michael's -- I don't believe for one second that we're going to see our boys be anything other than what and who they are, especially after the reveal that Raphael's vessel is an empty shell, damaged physically and mentally, and that Dean would be far worse after Michael left him, so I don't believe that's going to happen.

Kripke, it better not either!

Dean and Cas were great together, as we've come to know they are, and both shined magnificently in their own ways, Cas so uncomfortable in the brothel and Dean having so much fun, even admitting he's been having more fun with Cas who isn't that much fun. Sure, it hurt to hear that but it does make sense. JUst like at the beginning of S3 when Dean had decided to give his life in a year and thus he really had no reason to hold back on anything, there is a liberation to not having all that responsibility.

His saying about being so wrapped up with his family rang true, he's never done or given anything for anyone but his family and never put himself first or relied fully on himself, this is good for him. Especially because it will eventually show him that family is to be cherished and he will miss it.

From the looks of next week's episode we're getting the same formula as last season, four heavy mytharc eps in a row and then a breather, I believe episode 5 is the breather so another heavy one to come. I can't wait, as Dean would say... "Bring it!"

Excellent Jeremy Carver writing and fabulous directing from J. Miller Tobin (I think, I only read the creds, once)
# Randal 2009-09-25 11:49
What a phenomenal episode. Sam and Dean both working class, the former cleaning, as he himself tries to get 'clean,' one day at a time, Dean doing what's in his blood, all against the perfect backdrop of a classic Skynyrd track, brilliant.

Of course, Castiel with a lady of the evening, many, many laughs. I understand that he's getting more comfortable with the quirks of humanity, flatbread notwithstanding , but sounding like Dean in the face of Raphael? Quick learner, I suppose.

Dean lying to himself about having fun without Sam - as surface slapstick, sure, but w/o his bro? Hell no.

Yeah, Sam being the vessel isn't surprising, but still, to see it said on screen (Pellegrino can really sell the sympathetic angle, can't he?) still gets at you.

What a goddamn great outing.
# Narcissus 2009-09-25 13:25
Holy divinity on a tortilla!!!

I gotta say, I always had a feeling that Sam was supposed to be Lucifer's vessel. I just got thrown off my speculation track when we found out that Dean's supposed to be Micheal's vessel..I so didn't see that one coming. So now this looks like it's supposed to end up as a major epic omgwtfbbq battle between our very own Abel and Cain. I so, so, so DO NOT want Sam and Dean to get to that point. Kripke is cruel!

Did anyone notice that Dean is acting like Cas's big brother..showin g him the ropes and stuff? See!! He cannot live without Sam no matter what he says..he's gone and found himself a replacement without even knowing it!

Other than that, my squee level is overloading. Plus I absolutely love love love and adore the montage to Skynyrd. Oh and Lucifer is a bastard. Kripke too. :lol:
# joelsteinlover 2009-09-25 13:46
"You got wasted by a Teenage Mutant Ninja Angel?"

I like died laughing at that part.

When Dean was like "So can I have my damn necklace back?" I squealed. And like the person above me said, he's found a replacement in Cas. Which I don't mind because I lovelovelovelov e Misha, but still. Harrumph.

He totally misses Sam. He's only trying to convince himself when he says he's not. And poor Sam being Lucifer's vessel. But oh my gosh I LOVE the guy who plays Lucifer, he was very...adorable.

And I like how the angels, all they want is Paradise. If you're going to be a jerk, that's a pretty good goal. I might not understand what Paradise is though.
# Antoinette 2009-09-25 15:22
It's hard for me to believe that was the same writer/director team that brought us the brilliant A Very Supernatural Christmas.

Not happy to see a return of piggy Dean. To have him care about Cas's virgin status and take him to a whorehouse was just gross. That's the vile character that made me quit this show in the first season.

To have Cas even care about being a virgin and agree to sleep with a prostitute was out-of-characte r, unearned, and gross. I don't know who that character Misha was playing in the whorehouse was, but it wasn't Castiel. Stupid, stupid, stupid.

Since we made it through the first two episodes without Sam being revealed as Lucifer's meatsuit, I had relaxed that they weren't going there. And then they did. Crap. I *hate* that plot for Sam. If he tells Dean, I suppose that will give Dean one more thing to be self-righteous about regarding Sam. Yay?

And I hate that other than that, we didn't see much new at all with Sam's work on himself this episode, and that Jess was pretty much wasted, giving Sam the same old "you suck and you will always suck" speech we saw from the characters in Levee last season. Also, I knew she was Lucifer since I saw the promo pics for this episode, so no surprise there. The show has narrowed its focus so far down that there was simply no other explanation.

On the direction side, the episode was ugly and disjointed, and some of the effects were way over the top.

After the depressing muck of season four, I've been rating season 5 on a rewatch scale. Meaning, am I excited to rewatch this episode or will it just sit on the DVR? Episodes one and two this season rated highly, but I won't be watching this one again any time soon. Not even for shirtless Sam.
# biggs 2009-09-25 18:23
Just an idea, this whole business of the boys being "vessels"...eve ryone keeps mentioning some sort of hereditary link with John. I think it's more likely to be Mary. Through her, we know that Dean and Sam are, at least, third generation hunters. How far back does the line go? Clearly most hunters take to it out of trauma or revenge (like Bobby, or Gordon) but what if there are families of hunters that are somehow linked to the angel bloodlines? YED was clearly not just picking children at random. Also, why is Michael not talking to Dean himself? Is he really on board with this plan? Maybe I just keep hoping for there to be at least one other "good" angel. Also, as my daughter turned to me and said, "OK, Where are the girl angels?" Except for Anna, and the one killed by Uriel, we haven't seen any. Also, ooooo that Lucifer is so smooth, you can see why he gets the big money.
# Dany 2009-09-25 20:07
I've got only two things to say, damn you Kripke! And damn you to Jeremy Carver!

This episode is amazing!

Shirtless Sam (squeeeeee), Jess appearing, and I have to say that it looked so much like what Lucifer did to Nick using is dead wife that I saw what was coming, Dean and Cas were hilarious I'm giggling just by thinking of it, Cas needs to work the FBI thing, and the brothel? I cried laughing :D. Sam working in a bar, making friends (ok friend was not what she was thinking but was what she got), and unfortunately like Lucifer/Jess said the past caught up to him, but I liked how he handled the all situation, I liked Raphael but I liked Cas even more (go Cas!).

The all situation thing with the Dean/Michael, Sam/Lucifer vessels I'm still trying to wrap that around my head, but I do trust in Kripke (you better not disappoint me on this).

As for what Dean said about not missing Sam at all, after all what happen since season 1 I understand him, but I don't buy it for one minute! I think he's just trying to convince himself (and by the look on his face not even Cas buy it).

After this episode I'm not sure if I'm to lauigh or cry, but I'm sure of one thing this one's going strait to my top 10 list! And I'm rating an episode for the very first time and it's an A!

Waiting for the recap to know your take on this one Alice!
# Jojo 2009-09-25 20:43
Disclaimer: I am not a Castiel fan.

I am SO very tired of Dean and Castiel being "Hee, we're BF-fucking-F, and we discuss our favourite boybands, and we braid each other's hair, and Castiel is so much cooler than Sam is, and Sam can go off doing something else while there's epic Dean/Castiel TRU WUW"

I did like the "Eat it, Twilight!" line, though.
# Jojo 2009-09-25 22:13
Hee - yes, I liked the Sam stuff. I just... even last season, it was all "Dean is awesome and can do no wrong" and "Sam is evil and nothing he does is right" and I wonder, does Sam even know that Dean broke the first seal? Do either of the boys know that Castiel let Sam out of the panic room? Is this ever going to be addressed?

It's just as much fandom colouring my opinion of canon, too, which I admit is kind of sad - I realise this now that I've cooled down a little.

But still... Dean being all OMG WE'RE BEST FRIENDS with Castiel annoyed me. The whole whorehouse thing was just disgusting. I don't see Castiel, at all, taking on Dean's speech pattern.

I just don't want Castiel as a replacement for Sam. I really, really don't, but I'm worrying that it'll go that way and this episode didn't exactly ease that.

I'm gonna go re-watch Season One now and cry.
# Narcissus 2009-09-25 22:38
Jojo...I get where you're coming from. But don't cry, there's no way in hell Cas will replace Sam. First of all, just because it's Sammy..no one can replace Dean's Sammy. Cas is just the temporary rebound. And second of all, I'm pretty sure Kripke knows that if he let's Cas replace Sam or if he doesn't reunite the brothers, we will definitely come after him :-). For now though, I don't mind this setup because the way I see it, when Dean goes all BFF with Cas like that, it just shows how much he misses Sam.
# staceycp 2009-09-26 01:26
couldn't have said it any beter myself narcissus. (no offence intended to anyone) but I am personaly geting annoyed with how much everyone is misunderstandin g this split and everything that was implied in that episode. all the comical scenes with dean and castiel reminded him of sammy. and that final scene that has many hamstrung when dean says to castiel 'I had more fun with you then i ever had with sam' and then he said 'for the first time in my life im happy' and he turns to look at castiel who is now gone. and the seat is now all empty and that itself is a way of saying 'are you realy?' and deans look after that went almost alittle sad trying to keep that smile going.

also because i never said it before. man mark pelagrino was incredible as lucifer! that final scene was chilling. the way he broke down sams defences with his gentle speach. his truth telling sam that his fight his pointless [which it isnt] this is a incredible take on the big bad himself. and im sure we will see more sides to him as the season progreses. this also makes me wonder if sam becoming lucifers vessel what john was warning dean about in season 2 that he would have to 'save him or kill him if unable to'
# Suze 2009-09-26 04:52
File me with the grumblers ...

Not misunderstandin g the seperation, it had to happen, or resenting the interaction between Dean and Cas ... Dean needs a straight man like he needs oxygen, and Cas is as straight as they come ... But for me this felt like short weight, like half of two stories.

The brothel creeping was funny but Jojo's right, it was miles out of character for Cas.

Sam as Lucifer's vessel has been coming for ages and makes sense what with the YED and all but this business of Dean being the Archangel Micheal's meat puppet just screams fangirl pandering parity ... One seal each, one divine possession each ...

I was quite keen on the split ( well, not actually keen but you know what I mean! ) But this felt a bit flat. I hope Sam gets to do something other than chop lemons and fend off hunters/ snooping co-workers/ Lord of Lies in a slinky nighty and I really hope Dean pulls his finger out and stops acting like an extra from Porkies. I know it's his life-long ambition but focus dude, there's an apocalypse on!

Right, enough whinging, I'm off to kick some orphans ...
# Seraphim 2009-09-26 05:19
Okay, all screaming is now out of my system. It's the weekend and I don't have any papers due until Monday. Here comes the post.

Firstly, I've read all the other posts here.

Secondly, I would like to say that this (to date and for this season) is one of the better shows on network TV (and has been for quite a while). We are given consistently good story-telling [though every TV show has its bomb episode(s)], good acting, direction, editing, music, and week after week, we are treated to something that a lesser team of people would have damaged, and their version of "Supernatural" would have been canceled its second season (if not sooner). We are not blessed. We are privileged to witness well made entertainment by people who truly care about what they are doing.

In that respect, "Free to Be You and Me" (great choice for a title) did what most shows stumble over in their third episode of the season. Even established shows. Here, we have to see the plot pushed forward, but not at the expense of the characters. Whereas some shows (one, specifically, comes to mind, but I don't want to mention it here because I don't want to offend anyone) will falter while trying to balance character and plot, unwittingly mistaking one for the other. Character is plot. In TV (movie, novel, etc.) writing, nothing exists in a vacuum; therefore, story affects character, character affects story.

In FTBYAM, we see two hurt, sad, lonely, and hounded young men who have done the wrong thing at the right time. I use that wording because the creative forces in this show are unafraid to go there: people die, bad choices are made, and there are repercussions of those choices that then affect other parts of the story-telling. How often is a TV show unafraid to go there, and not in the sensationalist style where there is then a cliff-hanger ending until next time, but as choices that are intrinsic to the story? A lesser show would have missed these dramatic opportunities and simply hit a reset button where, next episode in, everything is miraculously back to normal, never mind the fact that Hank or Susan just died. Here, the boys have split up, but it doesn't end there. Sam and Dean are family, the only two Winchesters left, and splitting up has made them that much weaker. Dean is in denial and using Cas as a substitute. The trip to the brothel (while hilarious, did make my eyes roll) was not something that Dean could have ever done with Sam. Remember the siren in "Sex and Violence" and all that they did together, namely, the strip club? That was Dean's idea of a perfect friend, someone who does not condemn, but shares in his debaucheries. Dean likes to drink. Dean likes women--let us thank the writers for not giving him a meth problem. Dean is a hedonist and considering the life he leads, he deserves it. Sam, on the other hand, is struggling with his guilt. Although we have always seen Sam's desire to be "normal," "When the Levee Breaks" slammed that fact into our guts, reminding us that this kid never had a chance. His mother condemned him unwittingly (Anyone want to see Mary again? I wonder what she has to say about this current state of affairs.), he grew up in a life he did not want, broke free and tried to build a "normal" life for himself, but that went to cinders, and then the only thing he had left, his own brother, called him a monster, throwing into Sam's face the one thing he never wanted to be. I'm not saying Dean is the reason Sam went off the deep end, but, in a life full of disappointments , and when the one thing keeping you sane fails you, where do you turn? To a demon, obviously. Sam made his own bad choices and Lucifer was set free. Dean made his bad choices, too, and his brother may be lost forever. Together, they could weather this storm. Apart, they are vulnerable and the angels will not let up.

Lucifer appearing to Sam while wearing Jessica's face was ... dark. Sad and dark. It showed Lucifer's manipulative side. He will not lie, but that doesn't mean he can't--or won't--pull the strings, make the puppet dance. Look at vessel-Nick. And if the preview for episode four is any indication, something happened between 2009 and 2014 that made Sam give in to Lucifer. Why do I feel it's family related?

Overall, A for the episode.
# grayj1133 2009-09-26 21:21
I usually just lurk, but am inspired to comment on this one. As a fan, I am in awe of all that makes this show great: writing, acting, directing, and production. But I think the thing that makes me truly love the show is that they are so willing to “go there” in a way that pushes both my thinking and my emotions. I love that this show seems to believe that viewers are smart enough to appreciate complexity and depth; that issues are not resolved in a nice feel-good way (even though I am shallow enough to sometimes want that). Therefore, I am more attached to Sam and Dean than I am to more common characters in more common shows.

So, I am torn a bit about this episode. I loved it. I especially loved the beginning parallel lives scene. I also loved the clear attachment that both brothers felt, even though they were apart. That, to me, was brilliantly done especially when the dialog and actions stated the opposite. But I also wanted them to hurry up and see how much they need each other. I am getting a feel for the humor promised from hiatus interviews, but I guess for me the feeling of the humor is warmer when the brothers are together. Although I laughed with (at) Dean and Cas, it was more superficial than with I laugh with the brothers.

I am also curious that there seems to be some assumption that Dean can turn down Michael, but that Sam will not be able to turn down Lucifer. I don’t have that feeling (at least right now). I also am curious about the statement made now by both Ruby and Lucifer that “it had to be you, Sam.” Surely that will be a great story…I am impatient to have it explained. Enough now, back to lurking.