?

Log in

No account? Create an account
 
 
29 September 2006 @ 01:06 pm
Supernatural 2.01  
Why am I the only one feeling kind of irked after this episode?


I have such mixed reactions to this one.


Of the good:
The Reaper concept altogether.
Bobby was in fact the post-DT goto guy, as many fic authors had predicted.
Sam's refusal to give up on the Impala, which is a symbolic representation of Dean (and he was right about Dean's feelings)
The Ouija board solution (!)
John's REAL plan to save Dean (and the excellent conflicting feelings we have about it, knowing that it will screw the boys up good pretty much forever)
We found out JDM was a lefty...

Of the bad:
Dean wandering around the hospital half-monologuing didn't work very well for me. This wasn't Jensen's best acting, and the lines were a little wooden.
John's lack of an appropriate goodbye to either son.
THE TOTAL LACK OF TOUCHING OF ANY KIND during these traumatic, end-of-life events.

Sorry, but that last one pissed me off bigtime.

It just rang horribly false throughout the episode. I don't care what macho issues the family might have (which I think Kripke has gone overboard on, BTW). But when someone is near death, in a coma, and maybe not coming back... you touch them. You hold their hand, in case "feeling" is the only thing that might break through to them. Because you have to, and it's the only emotional reassurance you're going to get just now. Because you can't help yourself, and there's no-one there to criticize you for doing it.

The brother that raised you and loved you, and has pretty much always put your interests before his own? No way do you not hang right by him and touch him, knowing that he might disappear at any moment and hoping to god that he doesn't.

And you say goodbye to your sons by sending one off on a fool's errand (understandable, but not even a shoulder pat on the way out) and... you don't even hug the other one, knowing that this is it? Not to mention not being a great deal more broken up about the choice you're making and the finality of this particular moment?

Those parts just didn't even seem realistic to me. The seemed like enormous character missteps, and they blunted the emotion of something that should have been overpoweringly painful to watch.

Does Kripke have Wincest paranoia? Is that what's at work here? Because taking this path won't get rid of it, but it sure takes some of the punch and realism out of the characters. :(

Now, John's decision? A double-edged sword, because the boys will blame themselves forever for that one. But he did at last put his sons above his own obsession with vengeance.

And I'll miss him, though I think his choice was the right one.



 
 
 
★彡 artificial nocturne.: picard wtf is this shitusagiko on September 29th, 2006 08:29 pm (UTC)
I also noticed the lack of touching. o_o; iawtc re: paranoia of wincest.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Sam & Dean Genhalfshellvenus on September 30th, 2006 02:05 am (UTC)
It was just bizarre really-- I mean, at times like these, people can't help touching their loved ones.

This is when adults will treat their own parents like their children, if the parent is in that kind of desperate condition. They never question whether that role-reversal is appropriate. They just do it.

It smacks of a fear of something that exceeds the desire to write good television. And that bugs me no end. :(

Your icon, on the other hand, rocks my socks off with its delicious irony. ;)
(no subject) - usagiko on September 30th, 2006 02:50 am (UTC) (Expand)
dc_longwing on September 29th, 2006 09:11 pm (UTC)
I hear you, honey. The not-touching at heart-wrenching moments seemed real wrong/off to me, too. And more than a little surprising, given the slash-tastic S2 promo pics TPTB did....
DC
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Sam & Dean Genhalfshellvenus on September 30th, 2006 02:07 am (UTC)
And more than a little surprising, given the slash-tastic S2 promo pics TPTB did....
All joking about RPS slash aside, the lack of touching just doesn't fit with any past that Sam and Dean could possibly have had together. They were close, and they were each other's support system.

Even rough spots in their relationship cause by Sam leaving would just fall by the wayside at a time like this.

The directorial decision to take that tack on these scenes just feels really, really wrong. And given some of the unfortunately spoilers I've caught wind of for the upcoming season... may not bode well. :(
(Deleted comment)
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Sam & Dean Genhalfshellvenus on September 30th, 2006 02:09 am (UTC)
no I liked it - the lack of John/Sam hug particularly I though worked ok; Sam was being quite prickly and would have known something was off.
I wouldn't have expected a hug here, for exactly that reason.

But a pat on the shoulder as Sam passes by? How could John NOT do that? It just seems off...

Heartbreaking but right. The Aftermath will be interesting.
And there's always the possibility that the sacrifice isn't what it looks like-- which would be intriguing as well. :)
(Deleted comment)
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Johnhalfshellvenus on September 30th, 2006 02:11 am (UTC)
The lack of touching-- and the disconnected acting at times (mostly Jensen)-- are what really bugged me about this.

But this raises the idea that I've read in several journals that John isn't necessarily dead DEAD. Grasping at straws as I'm wont to when I don't particularly care for the given situation I'm willing to accept every and any explanation I've heard coming down the pike that doesn't make John permanently dead. You've heard them. I'll take 'em. Any one of 'em. I don't care which. As long as Sam & Dean - and we - get John back. Alive.
Yes, I've read this in other journals too. And I find THAT concept (not permanently dead) utterly fascinating...
Kronette: SPN-Father and Son same lookskronette on September 29th, 2006 11:29 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I have a lot to say about the episode, but since I was watching with friends, I couldn't really "get" into show as if I watched it on my own. I need to watch this weekend when I'm on my own.

We got some great stuff with John talking to Dean, but with Sam it was a near-apology, but nothing more. *sigh*

I think the whole non-touchy thing (which drove me nuts!) was maybe about Sam's psychic ability coming into play. If Sam had touched Dean, would he have a vision of what was going on? Is that why Sam could hear Dean yelling? If that's the basis for the no-touching-Dean, then I'll accept it.

I will not, however, accept that John wouldn't touch either of his sons before he made good on the deal. This is the same man from Shadows who grabbed them both in hugs? Serious hugs, too. No, he's done something, I'm almost sure of it. If he was telling Dean "bye", that wasn't a look of "don't do it" on Dean's face. It was more WTFBBQ!? dude you're on CRACK look. So, I don't think we've see the last of John Winchester. He did make some sort of deal with the devil, but we all know those never turn out quite the way we want.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Sam & Dean Genhalfshellvenus on September 30th, 2006 02:15 am (UTC)
I think the whole non-touchy thing (which drove me nuts!) was maybe about Sam's psychic ability coming into play. If Sam had touched Dean, would he have a vision of what was going on? Is that why Sam could hear Dean yelling? If that's the basis for the no-touching-Dean, then I'll accept it.
I think it was just a bad directorial decision, myself. Kripke could always have played it that even though Sam is touching Dean, he's not a touch-telepath per se, and then there's the take on it that Dean may not be entirely IN there.

Because going the other way, as a psychic Sam would WANT to touch Dean if that would work for him-- he'd being trying to drag Dean back into the world Vulcan mind-mend-style. Either way, it just doesn't work (whether it's to dodge more complex writing, or what-have-you).

If he was telling Dean "bye", that wasn't a look of "don't do it" on Dean's face. It was more WTFBBQ!? dude you're on CRACK look. So, I don't think we've see the last of John Winchester. He did make some sort of deal with the devil, but we all know those never turn out quite the way we want.
I liked somebody's point that John couldn't possibly be telling Dean what he'd done, because nobody is that big of an ass. That knowledge would destroy Dean-- he is eaten enough by his guilt as it is. I do think he probably told Dean something about Sam-- and that it wasn't anything like what Dean expected or would have liked to hear. Dean looked horrified. So that has intriguing possibilities.

And I'm interested in seeing whether this IS the end of John, as the season goes on...

Raven: Supernatural - Heart & Soulsxeraven on September 30th, 2006 01:24 am (UTC)
You're not the only one, really. I noticed on the acting too... I thought Jared came across best as Sam here, but Dean was stilted, and I've never liked John, but this episode, at first, keeping him in character though making him less likable... but then the complete 180 was ridiculous.

And yeah... Sam at least could have grabbed Dean's shoulders & held him after he woke up... I mean, they hugged more in Home when Sam couldn't breathe.

I think the parts that really got me... Sam's eyes when they were doing the electroshock on Dean... Dean saying "thanks, Sammy, for not giving up on me." and when John told Dean to watch out for Sammy and Dean was all "OMG how could you" in his expression and all he said was "Yeah... I will. I always have."
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Sam & Dean Genhalfshellvenus on September 30th, 2006 02:53 am (UTC)
I thought Jared came across best as Sam here, but Dean was stilted,
Yes-- Jared came off great (far better than usual). Dean was good _except_ for the wandering-around-and-investigating parts-- that just didn't work very well for me.

I mean, they hugged more in Home when Sam couldn't breathe.
It just made no sense, none of it. It came off as so false and wrong, it seemed more about Kripke being afraid of giving off vibes than him wanted to create an episode that rang true.

Those parts you describe in the end there-- those were all fantastic. But the weird lack of touching had a distancing effect for me for the episode as a whole. And that is NOT what I should be feeling, given the subject matter!
Ice-T: an actor, also a refreshing beverage: SPN - gay subtextfiddleyoumust on September 30th, 2006 01:25 am (UTC)
Okay, gotta jump in.

I think John's lack of a proper goodbye in the way of "So long son's catch later" *hugs all around* was purposeful on John's part. Because I don't think either of the boys KNOWS what he did. His little speeches to both children can be chalked up to him realizing Dean almost died and wanting to tell them both how much they mean to him. I don't think either one of them knew he was about to die. I don't think he wanted either of them to know. Telling Dean he gave up the colt and his life to bring Dean back? Dean would hate himself forever if he knew that. Hugging his sons and having some touchy feely goodbye would totally make them suspicious and wonder what the hell was going on.

I think it was his intention for them to think the demon came for the colt and killed John to get it. This saves them both the agony of knowing about the deal, and at the same time selfishly ensures that both boys will continue on the quest to kill the demon.

And on that note, while I do think that was a selfish thing for John to do, I also recognize it was the only thing he could do, because the demon has plans for Sam. Sam's never going to be safe as long at it's alive, which means Dean's never going to be safe either. We all know the only way that Demon is getting Sam is to go through Dean first.

And yes, Sam's lack of physical touching bothered me a little. But, I just prefer to think he did it when the camera wasn't rolling. :D I also sort of think that despite what people say, Dean's the more physically needy one of the two of them. If the positions had been reversed, I think there would have been hand holding and whispering and begging.

I totally disagree with you on Jensen's acting. I thought he was wonderful, but then again I'm biased. :P Maybe it just seemed not as good because Jared actually acted okay this episode and so you didn't have anything truly horrible to compare it to.

I will agree that scenes where Dean is wandering around talking to himself, trying to scooby things out were a little slow and boring to me, but as a whole I thought it was an excellent episode. Far more good than bad.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Diner Deanhalfshellvenus on September 30th, 2006 05:55 am (UTC)
Hugging his sons and having some touchy feely goodbye would totally make them suspicious and wonder what the hell was going on.
Oh, I agree with this entirely. BUT... it's hard not to be selfish in those situations, to take that last little piece of something that matters so much and that you know you'll never have again.

But, I just prefer to think he did it when the camera wasn't rolling. :D
I could think that, but it struck me as glaringly weird here. :(

I also sort of think that despite what people say, Dean's the more physically needy one of the two of them. If the positions had been reversed, I think there would have been hand holding and whispering and begging.
Actually, I think most people think Dean IS the more physical of the two-- both the more giving and the more needy (but denies the latter to the death). But here, it just makes Sam look like a jerk-- because you know what the reverse would have been like. It looks like he loves Dean considerably less. And he really might-- older siblings/parents may indeed love the younger ones more than can ever really be reciprocated. :( Still seemed really wrong.

I will agree that scenes where Dean is wandering around talking to himself, trying to scooby things out were a little slow and boring to me,
These were the parts that didn't really work for me-- they annoyed me, and I didn't think Jensen carried them off well. Interacting with other people-- oh, yes.
(no subject) - fiddleyoumust on September 30th, 2006 06:11 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - halfshellvenus on September 30th, 2006 06:25 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - fiddleyoumust on September 30th, 2006 06:34 am (UTC) (Expand)
mooyoo: Sam - Muh?mooyoo on September 30th, 2006 04:14 am (UTC)
Not to mention not being a great deal more broken up about the choice you're making and the finality of this particular moment?

Yet another reason that I tend to believe that John is not gone forever, and knew that he wouldn't be. Or something. I'd think if he knew that this was it for him, that this was the end of his life, he would have done something more, like say something more to both of them - Sam especially, as he kind of got the shaft on the final father/son talk - or write a message for them or write down everything he knows about The Demon and how to kill it, etc etc. I may again be reaching here, but I want to believe that he knew he'd be back eventually or something.

As for the general reactions of each character - while I agree that I would expect more touching, more hugging, etc, especially from John at the end, I do have to argue that everyone has a different reaction to this type of situation. For some people it's too hard, too scary to even go see someone they care about in the hospital, let alone sit with or touch them. It's not a logical response, but people are rarely logical in these types of situations, and we know that these guys aren't very big on touchy-ness. I don't know, to me it wasn't even that noticable, and I'd argue that John easily could have taken coma!Dean's hand or Sam the same thing off-screen, but you probably want to actually see it.

And I admit that we've seen in previous episodes that the boys (and John too, to an extent) hug, thump backs, etc when they get into serious situations, but maybe because it wasn't an immediate reaction - rather than "oh my god Sam just almost choked to death!" and Dean grabbing him before he really thinks about it, it was Sam and John spending long hours sitting around watching over Dean and thinking about what's going on. If that makes any sense :p

As for Kripke and Wincest paranoia, I would guess not if only because of the Dean/Sam gay jokes that pop up every so often (like everyone thinking they're a gay couple in Bugs and the motel kid making a crack about "two queens" in Something Wicked).
The Good, The Bad and The Lanathelana on September 30th, 2006 04:44 am (UTC)
Am I the only one who thinks that JDM will at least come back (if they can hire him) to torture the boys in evil demon/shapeshifter form? Seems to way too good an angst opportunity to pass.
(no subject) - mooyoo on September 30th, 2006 05:06 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - thelana on September 30th, 2006 05:12 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - halfshellvenus on September 30th, 2006 05:59 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - halfshellvenus on September 30th, 2006 05:58 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - mooyoo on October 1st, 2006 06:41 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - halfshellvenus on October 2nd, 2006 05:57 am (UTC) (Expand)
:insert witty name here:popmusicjunkie on September 30th, 2006 04:57 am (UTC)
Wincest paranoia...hee!
I really have nothing of substance to add, that phrase just made me giggle.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: SN Lovershalfshellvenus on September 30th, 2006 06:00 am (UTC)
:D That's okay! Ramblings ought to be worth a good laugh once in awhile, if nothing else. ;)

Where are the kissing outtakes from S1? I demand them, I tell you! :D
Skywalker-Winchesteranakin415 on September 30th, 2006 10:34 am (UTC)
Ok what I was concerned about was who wrote Dean ?? I wouldnt actually go as far as wooden but some of his shit was like Sam talking through him. There wasnt enough "what the fuck" from him. I would have hoped Dean would be a little more "fuck that I'm waking up" - the point where he busts daddy with the whole you know more bit = gold. I am kinda miffed Dean as of right now doesnt remember anything. I have to agree one thing the "good bye" scene was crap but i dont think its over with daddy and i dont mean flashbacks. Lets hope the vacation didnt melt their brains. See what happens next week.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Diner Deanhalfshellvenus on September 30th, 2006 11:57 pm (UTC)
Ok what I was concerned about was who wrote Dean ?? I wouldnt actually go as far as wooden but some of his shit was like Sam talking through him. There wasnt enough "what the fuck" from him. I would have hoped Dean would be a little more "fuck that I'm waking up".
I think that's what I'm saying too-- when Jensen's performances go less well (which is really rare for him), it tends to be because his character is written badly.

Out-of-body shock and all aside, he really didn't seem much like Dean to me. The characterization felt off.

"the "good bye" scene was crap but i dont think its over with daddy and i dont mean flashbacks."
Yes, yes-- I'm hoping that ISN'T the end, that something tricky is going to grow out of it (which I look forward to seeing, if it does).
zora_sourit: Hotch and Gideonzora_sourit on September 30th, 2006 12:41 pm (UTC)
Just coming off watching the season opener and was curious what you thought about it.

I have to agree about the non-touching thing. Totally right and I was really waiting for it. I thought maybe John would take Dean´s hand when he was sitting with him right at the beginning. it would have been great after Dean yelled at him for not saying anything.

And Sammy had more than one chance to go through Deans hair... meh.

(understandable, but not even a shoulder pat on the way out)
Exactly. I totally feel you. But who knows, maybe John already has a plan to come back... nothing is the way it seems on SN.

Does Kripke have Wincest paranoia?
I think he tried to tone it down a little, since the end and John´s speech were very emotional *shrug*.
*Loved* the speech, btw.

Do you think John´s out for good? Didn´t JDM sign for four episodes?

Loved your thoughts on this :).
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Johnhalfshellvenus on September 30th, 2006 11:59 pm (UTC)
I thought maybe John would take Dean´s hand when he was sitting with him right at the beginning. it would have been great after Dean yelled at him for not saying anything.
Oh, I would have loved that-- for poor Dean to get smacked with the irony after the fact. But no...

Do you think John´s out for good? Didn´t JDM sign for four episodes?
I'm really hoping he isn't. Because that could possibly be twisted and sneaky, and I'm always up for that!
mysfan4lifemysfan4life on September 30th, 2006 09:56 pm (UTC)
I agree on a bit of what you said, but
Sam was insisting Dean wouldn't die he figured there was a way he could help him, so touching wasn't an issue.

Dean't monologuing was natural when you are alone most talk to themselves.

John't emotional break down was about as much as he is capable of, as far as emotions go that I think was just John.

I also think Sam and John had already said there good bye's when he said he wanted an end to the fighting. Sam had to know there was a meaning behind that it was very OOC for John.

Kripke, Wincest issue, possibly I have mega wincest issues, I am TOTALLY against it.

I guess we will see what they have up their sleeves more as the season goes on with the whispering to Dean and the Death of John. **sniff sniff** I was floored by that though he wasn't my favorite Dad on tv.

:-)
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Sam & Dean Genhalfshellvenus on October 1st, 2006 12:02 am (UTC)
Re: I agree on a bit of what you said, but
so touching wasn't an issue.
I just think he would have wanted to-- without even really thinking about it.

Dean't monologuing was natural when you are alone most talk to themselves.
The concept is natural, but the lines and execution really seemed off to me.

possibly I have mega wincest issues, I am TOTALLY against it.
Oh, understandable-- many people are (though I'm not one of them). I just don't want Kripke getting all paranoid about Wincest to the point that he's damaging the believability of the brotherly relationship. Close brothers, at least in the past-- and occasionally close, despite their weird button-pushing moments of cross-aggravation.

I was floored by that though he wasn't my favorite Dad on tv.
THAT was probably my favorite John move of the entire series. Heartbreaking, but the right thing to do. :)
iamstealthyoneiamstealthyone on October 1st, 2006 02:34 am (UTC)
I'm glad you mentioned the lack of touching. That was my No. 1 pet peeve with the ep. As some others have said, I could understand it maybe after Sam knows Dean's spirit is wandering around. Or maybe you could say Sam thought if he touched Dean, he'd totally lose it, and he wanted to hold it together because it helped him believe everything would be OK.

Even so, I think it's highly unlikely that Sam wouldn't have touched him at some point. And I've griped about it extensively in e-mail conversations with other fans.

I wanted my platonic boy touching, dammit. We were robbed!
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Sam & Dean Genhalfshellvenus on October 1st, 2006 05:37 am (UTC)
I'm glad you mentioned the lack of touching. That was my No. 1 pet peeve with the ep.
Well, mine too, clearly!

Even so, I think it's highly unlikely that Sam wouldn't have touched him at some point.
Yes-- it's just so unlikely given the circumstances that I can't make any good argument for why it didn't happen.

And when the only real argument I can make is that Kripke or TPTB are paranoid about Wincest overtones, that is a terrible sign that someone's worrying about side-effects of the show to the extent of ruining its characterization. :( I've seen more than one show go down the tubes for that reason, and I don't want to see it happen here.

They're brothers, one of them is literally on his deathbed, and there's nothing like a blood-feud between them. How is there NOT touching given this situation?
(no subject) - iamstealthyone on October 1st, 2006 03:01 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - halfshellvenus on October 2nd, 2006 06:04 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - iamstealthyone on October 2nd, 2006 12:42 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(Deleted comment)
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Sam & Dean Genhalfshellvenus on October 2nd, 2006 06:08 am (UTC)
although Sam is to a far lesser degree than Dean or John, but maybe Sam just knows that Dean wouldn't appreciate displays like that? I dunno.
Sam is affectionate with everyone BUT Dean (which bugs in a different way, considering who he really owes that affection to). Often it appears that Dean is the usual impediment to that, but the boy's in a coma. I can't see machismo issues stopping Sam at a time like this. It just strikes me as unnatural characterization.

Hard to say with John, since he's been both adoringRepressedDaddy and sarcasticAttackModeDaddy over the course of the season. :( We should have a better feel for the consistency of his character by now.

I don't know what to think of this whole 'physical affection' thing, but though it's seemed blunted-off at times to me it was at an all-time aggravating high with this episode. :(

I swear, I've gotten more comments on this little rant than from some of my stories! :D Nothing like cranky wank to rattle some cages... ;)