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NoWillToResist

Supernatural Relationships: Blood Is Thicker Than Water

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The hunter and the angel.

 

Foes to friends to family.

 

In each other, they've found a missing piece, IMO. Dean can share his burdens with Cas and let himself be vulnerable and weak (whereas he normally has a stiff upper lip around Sam), and Cas has found family and belonging and purpose with Dean.

 

I always love their interactions (thanks to Misha and Jensen's awesome chemistry). For the longest time, I simply enjoyed their close bond. In late S7/S8 though, I felt that the writing kind of...shifted? It seemed that TPTB were using many romantic tropes in the Dean/Cas story and the directing/acting choices were...curious. I have no idea if this is intentional from TPTB as some kind of foreshadowing, or if it is just to keep the "Destiel" fans tuning in. Various interviews with cast and crew make it clear that they are aware of how Dean and Cas are viewed by a section of their fandom, so I can't dismiss the writing as accidental or unintentional.

 

Anyway, whether they stay as best buds or develop into something more, I just hope to see a lot more of them on screen together. I'm saddened at how little time they've had together this season.

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I like the name of this thread. Thanks for starting it.

 

Yeah, I never really saw much in their bond beyond deep friendship and brotherhood.  But now, I'm not so sure. I don't really care what they do with the relationship per se, but I hope whatever they do, it's organic and believable to the characters.

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I don't really care what they do with the relationship per se, but I hope whatever they do, it's organic and believable to the characters.

 

I agree. And here's the kicker: I slam TPTB a lot for their hit-and-miss storytelling, but I actually think that the Dean/Cas relationship - however you want to define it - has been very well done. There has been a slow build and development, a deepening trust/bond etc. It has felt very organic to me how much they have come to mean to each other.

 

 

I like the name of this thread.

 

Well, I wanted to keep it neutral, you know? It's canon dialogue, not inflammatory or divisive or fanwank.

 

Whether one just sees them as 'brothers from another mother' or secretly in love/lust with each other, there is indisputedly a strong bond between these characters. I've often found myself bothered when I read online where someone dismisses Dean and Cas as Cas merely being a tool Dean likes to use. I was very relieved this season when Dean was pushing Cas to join him on a case, Cas reminds Dean that he's is powerless, and Dean was all "yeah...so?" That made me so happy because I felt that was solid proof that Dean doesn't want Cas around just for his powers and what he can DO for the boys.

 

 

I never really saw much in their bond beyond deep friendship and brotherhood.  But now, I'm not so sure

 

When they 'killed off' Cas in 7x01, I kind of tuned out, but it seems like Dean went through a pretty ugly rough patch after that. And, again, regardless of the nature of their relationship, I appreciated that Dean was shown to be strongly grieving and in a dark place. I still didn't consider it to be more than a friendship. And then The Born Again Identity aired and I was...taken aback.

 

Dean's reaction to seeing Emmanuel? To me, that was not a "hey, long lost friend! I found you!" reaction. The shock/surprise was fine, but his reaction upon seeing Emmanuel with Daphne? Dean's quivering lip and eyes and facial expressions just screamed a heartbreaking "I love this person but they don't know who I am" to me. I was really surprised that the scene was approved(?) to air that way. Why wouldn't they just have Dean express confusion or bafflement? Hell, or even joy since 'Cas' is back and can probably help heal Sam. But instead, Dean looked in PAIN. I just cannot watch that living room scene and see 'platonic'.

 

Then their conversation in the car further pushed me over the edge. Dean has seen and experienced some shit; he has bounced back from some truly heinous things. Yet he tells Emmanual that he can't get past what Cas did and he doesn't know why. And that really stood out for me. Why was the situation with Cas so much harder to let go of? Why was it different from other betrayals and hurts in Dean's history? Then, plot intervened and there wasn't much chance to really delve Dean's feelings until Purgatory.

 

The whole Purgatory and post-Purgatory business was what finally 'turned' me, if you will. Dean had an 'out'; a way to get back to his darling brother Sammy, yet he stayed. He had no way of knowing if Cas was alive or dead, but he prayed to him every night and cut his way through every monster he found, demanding intel on Cas's whereabouts/status. He refused to give up. When he finally found Cas? That smile and hug killed me. So much emotion. Then he refused to leave without him, looked like a lost little boy when Cas let go of his hand, MADE UP a scenario in his head that made DEAN responsible for Cas being left behind (because apparently it was easier to feel like he'd failed Cas than to remember that Cas chose to stay behind), and appeared traumatized and looked broken whenever Cas was mentioned when Dean got topside.

 

And when Cas came back, Dean was acting strange around him. Dean was the one who asked to speak to Cas alone; Dean was the one who expressed hurt that Cas didn't seem to trust that Dean could get him out of Purgatory, Dean was the one who wanted to make it clear to Cas that Dean did NOT leave him behind. Meanwhile, Cas was just all "buh?" because that wasn't at all what had happened. During the rescue of Kevin, Dean was constantly worried about Cas, even ignoring Kevin on the ground, in favour of going straight to Cas in order to check on him. When they talk alone later, he again reiterates that he felt like hell for failing Cas, like he failed every other Godforsaken thing that he cared about. All of this emotional honesty from Dean was really surprising to me. It happened again in Hunter Heroici when he asks Cas to talk to him about what's bothering him. Dean "No Emotional Talk" Winchester was encouraging Cas to confide in him and talk about how he was feeling.

 

The crypt scene mind control break was a very egregious romantic trope/parallel used for these two. Dean often prayed to Cas and expressed worry about what was going on with him; I can't remember another time when there was so much focus on Dean reaching out to connect to Cas. When Dean met Naomi, she was all "I know you are hoping that Castiel will return to you" and again Dean looks like he's about to fucking cry. Return TO YOU. Not "return". Not "come back". Return to you. That is straight up romantic dialogue, IMO.

 

And this season, Dean's tearful prayers and "I need you here, man" were so emotionally raw. When the Reaper killed Cas...Dean's hitched cry of "Cas!" just broke my heart. When they got Cas back to the bunker, alive and well, Dean looked so fucking happy, his smile was blinding. Only to be wiped off his face minutes later when he's told that Cas had to leave. He then goes to visit Cas, refusing to tell anyone where he's going and why, and just acts like an ex-boyfriend who has no idea how much he's hurt his ex. That Misha was given the direction to act like a jilted lover blows my mind.

 

Since Purgatory, there have been repeated "I need you"s from Dean to Cas: the "I need you, buddy" in Purgatory, the deleted scene "I need you to come in" when Cas is AWOL, "We're family, we need you, I need you" in the crypt, "I need you here, man" in the S9 premiere. These pleas have been getting more and more emotional from Dean. I want to know whether we can (or should) expect a response from Cas to these heartfelt statements.

 

There's just no doubt in my mind that TPTB are doing this shit on purpose now. My only question is: is there an in-show point to this or is it just to keep Dean/Cas fans tuning in?

 

Wow. This was long. So sorry. Um...apparently I had some feelings and thoughts about this. Heh.

Edited by NoWillToResist
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I think Cas is the first person who in Dean's mind genuinely just cared about Dean. Who made the HUGE gestures (rebelled against Heaven!) for DEAN. And Dean knows it. He doubts just about everyone else's motivation for being nice to Dean or discounts what they say. But for some reason he BELIEVES Cas. So when Cas betrayed him, it cut him so deeply because he truly had trusted Cas on a level that he had never trusted anyone else.  Even Sammy.  Sammy left Dean. And Sam is a completely different relationship.  But Cas -- Cas "has gone to the mat" so many times for Dean.  There's no guilt motivataing Cas. Cas does it FOR DEAN.

 

Is it romantic?  IDK.  I call it Agape (self sarificing love). It kind of transcends romance, and it's not about the physical. it truly is a RARE and profound bond.

 

I'm nearly 100% certain we will never have a Destiel kiss.  I think if Dean turns dark he might taunt Castiel regarding their relationship.  He will do what he can to hurt Castiel out of self-loathing and self-hate.  But canon non-hetero sexual relationship?  I just don't see them going there.  And really, is it necessary?  Must ALL love be physically represented? IDK, it seems both unlikely and unnessary to me.  I want them to continue to share moments like they shared in Meta Fiction.  I want more talks.  To me that is more profound than any thing else.

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I don't know if it's necessary but if they going to there with Destiel it would be nice if they didn't shy away from showing the physical part of the relationship. I don't need a full on sex scene but a kiss? Why not? We did see Charlie making out with the fairy so the show isn't opposed to showing a physical homosexual relationship. 

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Is it romantic?  IDK.  I call it Agape (self sarificing love). It kind of transcends romance, and it's not about the physical. it truly is a RARE and profound bond.

 

I'm at the point where I believe that Dean and Cas love each other but, while I don't think it's as 'tame' as familial love, I don't know that there is a physical element to it either. It is very unique. And compelling. There is a part of me that would rather it transcend the physical, because I almost believe that it would make their bond even more meaningful. Going to those levels for someone who is neither family nor lover? If Dawson's Creek hadn't ruined the word forever, I'd be tempted to say they were soulmates.

 

 

I don't need a full on sex scene but a kiss? Why not? We did see Charlie making out with the fairy so the show isn't opposed to showing a physical homosexual relationship

 

But I find that there is a huge double standard where homosexuality is concerned in media. It seems that two women = hot, but two men = ew, no. Perhaps some of that is due to the prevalence of men in charge of the networks and their own personal discomfort with the notion? I don't know.

 

 

I think Cas is the first person who in Dean's mind genuinely just cared about Dean./snip/  There's no guilt motivataing Cas. Cas does it FOR DEAN.

 

I think this is partly why Cas became such a fan favourite. Finally, someone genuinely cared about Dean and wanted to help and support him. No ulterior motives, no hidden agenda, no sense of obligation to do so. Just a third party who saw Dean and said "yup. This person is good. I'll do anything and everything for him. Need a warrior? Here I am. Need a sympathetic ear? I'm here. Need some mojo? Consider it done. I'm going to die? Meh, it was worth it if it helped him."

 

Dean's self-esteem is so non-existent that it must have been a shock to find anyone - nevermind a billions-old heavenly creature! - so honestly devoted to him.

 

As I've said in other threads, I have no expectations that the show will 'go there'. I just find their choices curious. Heck, I'm not even sure that I would want their relationship to take a romantic turn considering this show's track record with romance.

 

I will be happy if we can get back to where Dean and Cas are actually around each other again so I can once again sit back and enjoy their mutual appreciation and support.

 

I like to think that Dean's path to darkness and his distance from Cas is not a coincidence. I hope that Cas is instrumental in Dean putting down the Blade.

Edited by NoWillToResist

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I thought with the re-watch starting we could use a character thread for Sam and Dean. I know there's already one for Dean, but I find it increasingly difficult to discuss one brother without talking about the other.

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I'm still pleased by just how much I can enjoy the brothers' dynamic in those first few seasons. Sure, there were conflicts and angst and even some drawn out, mawkish, but-I-thought-you-said-no-chick-flick-moments! conversations by Metallicar, but that was still balanced by the sense that Sam and Dean still actually LIKED each other more often than not. I'm always happily surprised all over again to watch those early seasons and see that even in the more conflict-ridden episodes, there are moments of respect, subtle affection and humor. They actually SMILE at each other, which makes so much more of a difference to me than it probably should :) Their relationship was always complex and difficult, but it also sometimes served as a strength-builder, solace and buffer against the toxic outside forces they were faced with on a daily basis. Starting in S4 (IMO, obviously), their relationship is the most toxic force of all! They seem drearily, miserably obligated to stay tethered to each other, like a lifelong prison sentence rather than any sort of affectionate familial 'bond', are forever bringing out the worst in each other and seem to almost never 'get' or like each other at all.  Gone are the small moments of connection, joy, humor, affection and fun that balanced out the show's penchant for relentless angst and which made me care more about both characters and the overall show. Now, with sadly few exceptions, to me they're like a horribly unhappily married couple who feel obligated to stay together but who make each other utterly miserable. Speaking just for myself, I haven't found it enjoyable to watch. Their relationship has been so broken for so long that I'm honestly not even sure how the writers could fix it in a way that feels organic and believable to me. There are a lot of things I prefer about the earlier seasons (I'm partial to myths/urban legends over quasi-epic 'end of the entire wooorld' storylines, I couldn't care less about the endless parade of generic angels and demons, I thought the show did a better job of combining humor and drama in the same episodes  rather than overloading on angst for several episodes and then giving us an overly 'wacky' meta episode out of nowhere, etc.), but it really comes down to me liking the show so much more when Sam and Dean liked EACH OTHER so much more. 

Edited by mstaken
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All the talk in TPTB thread about Sam not being a defined character always leads me to think about what Sam's favorite music is. Ironically, I'm sitting at work with my iPod playing and Sam's theme song (or what should be his theme song) started playing--Death Of A Clown by The Kinks.  Here's some of the lyrics:

 

My makeup is dry and it clags on my chin
I'm drowning my sorrows in whisky and gin
The lion tamer's whip doesn't crack anymore
The lions they won't fight and the tigers won't roar

 

La-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la
So let's all drink to the death of a clown
Won't someone help me to break up this crown
Let's all drink to the death of a clown
Let's all drink to the death of a clown

 

The old fortune teller lies dead on the floor
Nobody needs fortunes told anymore
The trainer of insects is crouched on his knees
And frantically looking for runaway fleas

 

 

Anyway, it just struck my as very funny and I thought this could be a sort of fun diversion...What do you think Sam's theme song should be?

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Any nu-metal song where the lead singer screams on and on about how much he hates his father.  ;-)  Honestly, though, I'll have to get back to you on that one.

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What do you think Sam's theme song should be?

 

Even though some of it applies to Dean also, I'd say "30 Years of Tears" by John Hiatt (an almost impossible song to find, even on you tube, but beautiful, in my opinion). I think the words fit Sam well, even the second verse about the women. And Sam seems a bit more introspective, so I give this one to him.

 

Is this a place I can rest my poor head

To gather my thoughts in sweet silence?

And is this a place where the feelings aren't dead

From an over-exposure to violence?

And is this a place I can slowly face

The only one I truly can know?

 

(Chorus:)

These are tears from a long time ago

I've got these tears from a long time ago

And I need to cry 30 years or so

These are tears from a long time ago

 

Darling oh darling say unto me

"Where have you been all my lifetime?"

Well, I have been swimming these seven sad seas.

Fair women have thrown me their lifelines,

But I pulled 'em in to the water's dark grin.

I'd have warned them, but I didn't know.

 

(Chorus)

 

Well, I've cried me a river, cried me a lake

I've cried till the past nearly drowned me.

Tears for sad consequences, tears for mistakes,

But never these tears that surround me.

Alone in this place, with a lifetime to trace

And a heartbeat that tells me it's so...

These are tears from a long time ago

I've got these tears from a long time ago

And I need to cry 30 years or so

These are tears from a long time ago

These are tears from a long time ago

I've got these tears from a long time ago

These are tears from a long time ago

Edited by AwesomO4000

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I didn't have anywhere to put this really, but the thing that struck me upon starting season 1 over was DAMN, the boys looked YOUNG! Sam was a baby in Season 1!

I agree with mstaken, I loved their relationship in the first few seasons. I remember squeeing in the first season when we'd get an almost-hug, I smile just thinking about it (feeling like such a dork right now!). They cared about each other, genuine concern, and still had moments of genuine fun together. I'm in season 4 now and I'm hating their relationship. I haven't watched the later seasons yet but I'm sad to hear it apparently doesn't get much better. So much damage has been done that if / when this show ever ends, I really worry how they'd even fix and humanize the brothers and their relationship (my best friend is all caught up and spoiled the S9 finale for me). I'm trying to enjoy the show and the episodes for what they are, but I miss the format of S1 and 2. It's like the X Files - the stand alone episodes are mostly great, but once the arc starts getting so convoluted, the myth arc episodes just get so not fun to watch.

I loved so many Sam and Dean moments - in "Nightmare" when Dean is all worried at the end, in the earlier episodes of Season 1 when he would let Sam drive the impala, their practical jokes in "Hell House", in the "Mystery Spot" episode when Sam gets all depressed and reclusive over Dean and sews up his own wounds and stuff. Solid gold, man. Solid gold. *Sigh*

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II haven't watched the later seasons yet but I'm sad to hear it apparently doesn't get much better.

 

For some it might be different. I personally liked much of the relationship in season 5 and then again from the second half of season 6* all the way through season 7. That second stretch for me brother-wise was even better than some of season 3, mainly because the brothers, in my opinion, communicated better in 6.5 - 7 than they did in much of season 3. There are quite a few great brotherly moments in my opinion. However, if you really like the brother relationship, I personally would not recommend season 8. In my opinion, new show runner Carver (the same person who wrote "Mystery Spot") completely undoes much of what I saw in season 6.5 - 7 and returns the brothers to a season 4 dynamic (or worse.) I hated it.

 

* There's a blip in the first half of season 6 that seems bleak, but is explained and repaired mid-way through the season.

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For some it might be different. I personally liked much of the relationship in season 5 and then again from the second half of season 6* all the way through season 7. That second stretch for me brother-wise was even better than some of season 3, mainly because the brothers, in my opinion, communicated better in 6.5 - 7 than they did in much of season 3. There are quite a few great brotherly moments in my opinion. However, if you really like the brother relationship, I personally would not recommend season 8. In my opinion, new show runner Carver (the same person who wrote "Mystery Spot") completely undoes much of what I saw in season 6.5 - 7 and returns the brothers to a season 4 dynamic (or worse.) I hated it.

 

* There's a blip in the first half of season 6 that seems bleak, but is explained and repaired mid-way through the season.

That gives me something to look forward to! I heard seasons 6-7 were pretty awful but you've encouraged me. And I've heard season 5 is great so good to know I have stuff to look forward to

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That gives me something to look forward to! I heard seasons 6-7 were pretty awful but you've encouraged me. And I've heard season 5 is great so good to know I have stuff to look forward to

 

It depends on what you like. The overall arcs of season 6 and 7 are not as strong as earlier seasons, but there are some really good standalones and even individual arc episodes, in my opinion. I also appreciated the brother relationship in these seasons (not including the beginning of season 6). Speaking of which, the beginning of season 6 was not great for me, but if you stick it out, I thought that the second half of season 6 improved greatly. And for me the season 6 finale / season 7 opening episodes were the strongest since probably the season 1 finale/ season 2 opening... I know some will disagree since a strong argument can be made for the season 3 finale/ season 4 opening, but I had issues with the season 4 opening in terms of Sam's part of the story, which I thought was unnecessarily muddled and vague, and that tone carried through into much of season 4 for me.

 

I personally loved season 5, but again this is my opinion only as you will likely find many here who will disagree with me greatly...

 

(Of course, I can also "cheat" for you and let you know which episodes I think are most worth your time, which have brother moments I loved, etc.)

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Every season has some moments of Sam and Dean loving each other, but some of the spirit of fun isn't as strong in season 7 & 8.  But I've been watching some music videos, where they show the brothers getting along and showing how much they care for each other and there still are several eps you can enjoy.

 

Which ones will be up to your flavor.  I started watching really in season 4 and some of the eps of season 3 that some of the fans hated I liked.  I think 6 has several good moments and seven has some good moments.  The end of season 8 sets ups the brothers in a strong place but they like to tear them apart over and over again which is really the complaint most have about the show.  Nine grabbed my attention more than 7 & 8 so watch with zero expectations and you might find you like a lot more than those of us that watched it live.  Sometimes I enjoy the show on the rewatch more than I did the first time around. 

Edited by 7kstar

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I find I have to watch each episode twice to really pick up so much nuance in the acting that tells so much more than is in the dialogue and almost inevitably that happens with the boys relating to each other. i think that's the only reason I'm still invested.

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It all depends on your own tastes--personally, I liked some of S6 (I actually preferred the first half) and liked a lot more of S7. I'd say, I generally find something that I enjoy about almost any episode--eh, it gets harder for me throughout the second half of S8 and even harder than that for most of S9. Personally, not really huge on S5, but there are a few really good one-offs (which I generally enjoy more that the myth heavy ones anyway.) That's probably why I actually like S7 better than most folks, I found they had quite a few one-offs that were quite good. I think I just prefer the show when they don't take themselves quite so seriously and have a little fun which seems to be lacking in the last couple years. And I too prefer the show when the boys are working together.

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Brought over from the "Spoilers with Speculation" thread. No spoilers here though:

 

I'm not a fan of Season 7 I barely remember it, I didn't watch it live and I really hated what they did with Sam.

 

@7kstar: I'm curious as to which things the writers did with Sam that you hated? The hallucinations? Because for me, season 6.5 through the end of season 7 Sam - with maybe one or two bad episode exceptions - was a Sam I liked. Throughout that time Sam was concerned about Dean, he appreciated Dean - and told him so - he listened to and took Dean's advice on multiple occasions (especially in season 7 - His faith in Dean's "stone one" is one of the things that got Sam through.), acknowledged that Dean took care of him, admitted that he needed Dean watching his back, admitted when he was wrong and Dean was right, encouraged Dean to laugh at (and with) him while giving him a present, and when Dean disappeared, Sam worked the case until he dropped from lack of sleep, working until he got Dean back. For me, there's a lot to like there.

 

The only thing I didn't like Sam-wise was that awful trial episode. That one really made no sense, especially Sam supposedly forgiving himself (which was actually a Dean proposed thing from season 6 with the "blanket forgiveness/clean slate" thing.), since that clashed with his Lucifer hallucinations which were partly a manifestation of Sam's guilt, in my opinion. (A guilt-free Sam shouldn't be hallucinating a Lucifer telling him all his shortcomings. Since Lucifer comes from Sam's thoughts, to me that doesn't make sense.)

 

But Sam has been bossy since the beginning.

 

While Sam can be bossy sometimes, I don't see him as always bossy. Sam is perfectly willing to follow Dean's lead, often with little question - something I would never imagine John doing. When Sam has something he feels strongly about he will push his agenda, but Dean will do the same - Dean just usually goes and does it on his own without discussing it to avoid argument.

 

I find both brothers to be very stubborn and both can be bossy. Dean was a bit more bossy in the beginning and Sam was exceptionally so in season 4.  With a couple of exceptions, I thought Sam had been much less so from early season 5 on (until season 8 which ugh and not a good choice on Carver's part in my opinion.) For example, one of the things that told Dean that Sam was "off" in early season 6 was Sam calling Dean up and telling Dean that he found a case and to hurry up and meet him somewhere. Dean commented with surprise something like "who died and made you boss" and it was just one more thing telling Dean that something was wrong concerning Sam - turning out that he was soulless.

 

HOWEVER I really hope the line gave in the Season 9 finale will mean something.  I don't remember it exactly but it was something along the lines, let's take down Metatron before we find something else to fight about.

 

Unfortunately this is the way that Carver has them now. Sam and Dean were much more in tune, in my opinion, from season 6.5 through 7. In the second half of season 6 the main thing they disagreed on was trusting Castiel, otherwise they were on the same page. In season 7, the main things they really differed on were Ghost Bobby and that Sam thought that Dean should get himself some help while Dean didn't want to talk about it or get himself help. Other than that, they were mostly on the same page and complimented each other - Dean staying on the main course/goal (killing Dick Roman) and Sam finding the side case diversions (one of the things Sam used to keep himself grounded), and between the two of them, they got both things done.

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Brought over from the "Spoilers with Speculation" thread. No spoilers here though:

 

 

@7kstar: I'm curious as to which things the writers did with Sam that you hated? The hallucinations? Because for me, season 6.5 through the end of season 7 Sam - with maybe one or two bad episode exceptions - was a Sam I liked. Throughout that time Sam was concerned about Dean, he appreciated Dean - and told him so - he listened to and took Dean's advice on multiple occasions (especially in season 7 - His faith in Dean's "stone one" is one of the things that got Sam through.), acknowledged that Dean took care of him, admitted that he needed Dean watching his back, admitted when he was wrong and Dean was right, encouraged Dean to laugh at (and with) him while giving him a present, and when Dean disappeared, Sam worked the case until he dropped from lack of sleep, working until he got Dean back. For me, there's a lot to like there.

 

The only thing I didn't like Sam-wise was that awful trial episode. That one really made no sense, especially Sam supposedly forgiving himself (which was actually a Dean proposed thing from season 6 with the "blanket forgiveness/clean slate" thing.), since that clashed with his Lucifer hallucinations which were partly a manifestation of Sam's guilt, in my opinion. (A guilt-free Sam shouldn't be hallucinating a Lucifer telling him all his shortcomings. Since Lucifer comes from Sam's thoughts, to me that doesn't make sense.)

 

 

While Sam can be bossy sometimes, I don't see him as always bossy. Sam is perfectly willing to follow Dean's lead, often with little question - something I would never imagine John doing. When Sam has something he feels strongly about he will push his agenda, but Dean will do the same - Dean just usually goes and does it on his own without discussing it to avoid argument.

 

I find both brothers to be very stubborn and both can be bossy. Dean was a bit more bossy in the beginning and Sam was exceptionally so in season 4.  With a couple of exceptions, I thought Sam had been much less so from early season 5 on (until season 8 which ugh and not a good choice on Carver's part in my opinion.) For example, one of the things that told Dean that Sam was "off" in early season 6 was Sam calling Dean up and telling Dean that he found a case and to hurry up and meet him somewhere. Dean commented with surprise something like "who died and made you boss" and it was just one more thing telling Dean that something was wrong concerning Sam - turning out that he was soulless.

 

 

Unfortunately this is the way that Carver has them now. Sam and Dean were much more in tune, in my opinion, from season 6.5 through 7. In the second half of season 6 the main thing they disagreed on was trusting Castiel, otherwise they were on the same page. In season 7, the main things they really differed on were Ghost Bobby and that Sam thought that Dean should get himself some help while Dean didn't want to talk about it or get himself help. Other than that, they were mostly on the same page and complimented each other - Dean staying on the main course/goal (killing Dick Roman) and Sam finding the side case diversions (one of the things Sam used to keep himself grounded), and between the two of them, they got both things done.

It's three eps that I watch and I just was so sick of this Sam.  I blame the writers for some, the acting for some but his I'm sorry's never felt more than I'll say this and this will make it all better.  Maybe because I have a relative that does just that.  The thing with Amy, instead of going okay Dean...I'm not helpless anymore, let's talk he just does his usual and walks away with how dare you.  Sam has been guilty of that through all season's. 

 

I'm not talking about him going to college...never had a problem with that and I'm not even talking about Soulless Sam.  I actually like Soulless Sam in small doses but they drew it out too long.

 

I'm also tired of poor Sam needs to be rescued.  I do think one of the funny things that Jared talked about here is Sam with a small boo boo and Dean recovers from a terrible broken leg quickly but Sam's takes forever to heal.  This I blame on bad writing choices.  I was tired of poor upset Sam in Season 4 and he has never gotten me to feel he really got where his brother is coming from.  He says I'm sorry but then is surprised that Dean will kill a monster that is feeding?  Sure he can be upset and even angry but to run away once again.  I'm talking about season 1 not college.

 

The line that most turned me off  the most was Sam supposedly forgiving himself.  It felt like a last straw and my dislike for the season made it much worse.  I really thought they had so much better stuff they could have done with that ep and for Dean to feel the most guilty over Amy was just plain stupid.  He has other wounds that are so much stronger IMO.  I blame the writers for missing the mark.

 

I haven't watched Season 7 other than one viewing and I really thought that 7 would be the end of me watching the show.

 

Season 8 storyline with Dean peaked my interest and I watched for those parts but not faithfully either. 

 

 I liked Sam 1-3.  I understood that 4 was suppose to be this big bad Sam because Dean was too weak and he did a lot of damage that season, nothing the show has done repair the damage he started back then at least for me. 

 

I get he put up with Dean in Season 5 to try to prove to Dean that he really wanted to fix things but it just feels like the show won't let that end and the solution felt like see I've fixed it, now if you don't agree too bad.

 

Yes I get that you can't control the other person's reactions and at some point you have to say I've done the best I can and move on.  But it just feels like the show starts to fix it and then rinse and repeats so it is once again broken and nothing was solved.

 

I don't own anything past 5.  So rewatching 7 isn't happening cause I don't like it enough to buy it.

 

But I think we both agree on wanting them to move on.  That perhaps with Sam's last line in the Season 9 finale it can realize that they will never agree on somethings and just to accept Dean for who he is.  And maybe for me that was my biggest problem with Sam.  Dean did, yes he faltered sometimes and struggled with it but it seems like he gets Sam way better than Sam gets him. 

 

Now the writers have given Dean some stupid lines as well but emotionally Jensen sells it better than Jared, so I can feel it by the expressions and sometimes I don't feel it with Sam.

 

Dang got long winded again.  Maybe a bit of mine is I can't separate Sam from Season 7.  Hopefully some of this makes sense.  And maybe one day I'll watch some of it on youtube when it finally gets old enough that they don't mind it being there. 

 

I really hated the Leviathans storyline  but if you can say what eps focuses on this and the Leviathans aren't a core part of the ep, I might watch one or two on itunes.  (encouraged Dean to laugh at (and with) him while giving him a present, and when Dean disappeared, Sam worked the case until he dropped from lack of sleep, working until he got Dean back.)

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The line that most turned me off  the most was Sam supposedly forgiving himself.

 

That episode was awful and really didn't fit with the rest of the season. As I tried to explain, for me it made little sense. Sam's Lucifer hallucination was Sam's brain, and it pointed out Sam's shortcomings and things that Sam should feel guilty about during season 7 which wouldn't make sense if Sam didn't feel guilty. Even though that episode was awful, I liked the first two episodes and especially Sam listening to Dean and taking his advice *, so I kept watching past that and it got better for me.

 

* (the "stone one" speech, and Jared did a good job of keeping that affectation of Sam's - pressing on his hand to remind him what was "real" and of what Dean told him - even in the background sometimes, using it in subtle ways throughout the season)

 

The thing with Amy, instead of going okay Dean...I'm not helpless anymore, let's talk he just does his usual and walks away with how dare you.  Sam has been guilty of that through all season's.
He says I'm sorry but then is surprised that Dean will kill a monster that is feeding?  Sure he can be upset and even angry but to run away once again.

 

I don't know if you got that far, but Sam only ran away for one episode, and it turned out that Sam was really more angry about Dean's lying - especially since Sam was having trouble with knowing what was real, so the lying kinda hit home. But when they finally did talk Sam agreed that Dean was right to kill Amy and when Dean explained why he lied, Sam understood that too. Sam was the one to make most of the concessions there. He only asked that Dean not lie to him anymore and in return he also made sure to tell Dean the truth - which he surprising did throughout most of season 7 after that - no "I'm fine, Dean"s or if so always with a disclaimer that he was still hallucinating or he was still messed up but dealing. I was kind of impressed at how truthful Sam was with Dean after that about his mental state and how he was doing whenever Dean asked him. He really did seem to learn after his freakout and unnecessary weapons discharge in "Hello, Cruel World."

 

To be fair about Sam not talking though, Dean isn't one to actually want to talk about most things, so Sam running away - while it is a flaw - Dean's not wanting to talk - and his lying about Amy was part of that - was in force that season. Fortunately it was all wrapped up an episode later, and it was a pretty good episode as well. (And the episode after that - which was not great for other reasons - was the episode where Sam told Dean that he did need his brother to watch his back).

 

And maybe for me that was my biggest problem with Sam.  Dean did, yes he faltered sometimes and struggled with it but it seems like he gets Sam way better than Sam gets him.

 

I not as sure about that. It varies for both brothers a lot. For example in season 5, Dean couldn't tell that someone had switched bodies with Sam for a way too long a time, but Sam knew right away how and where to find Dean in "Point of No Return" and even guessed that Dean had visited Lisa. And in "How to Win Friends and Influence Monsters" (season 7 again), Sam also figured out very quickly that Dean wasn't acting like himself (it turned out he was under the influence of an "evil" turducken sandwich - i.e. he was mildly stoned). I can't comment on season 8, because for me Sam was written somewhat out of character for a lot of that season.

 

And maybe one day I'll watch some of it on youtube when it finally gets old enough that they don't mind it being there.

 

If you're in the U.S. and have cable, you could also catch it, tape it (and yes I still have a VCR), or DVR it (I don't have one of those) on TNT in the mornings.

 

I really hated the Leviathans storyline  but if you can say what eps focuses on this and the Leviathans aren't a core part of the ep, I might watch one or two on itunes. (encouraged Dean to laugh at (and with) him while giving him a present, and when Dean disappeared, Sam worked the case until he dropped from lack of sleep, working until he got Dean back.)

 

The first episode is "Plucky Pennywhistle's Magic Menagerie" - which for me was just a fun episode in general. Sam's fear of clowns is always amusing for me, and in addition there's Dean/kid bonding, fun, crazy monsters, brother teasing and bonding, Sam playing "bad cop", Sam repeating Dean advice to keep himself from freaking out, and did I mention the evil clowns? Nothing to do with the Leviathans. The second one is "Time After Time" with Dean ending up back in the 40's with Elliot Ness (awesome) and Sam working with Jodi Mills to get Dean back (also awesome) and another case where even though Sam and Dean are apart (in this case reeeeally far apart) they manage to work together. Also nothing to do with the Leviathans. There's a really nice extra bonding scene included in the DVDs that I can describe for you if you watch the ep. Too bad it was cut for time.

 

Those two episodes along with the first two, "Slash Fiction," "The Mentalists," and "How to Win Friends..." are my favorites from the season.

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@AwesomO4000

If you take what I saw of Sam in season 7 and 8, he didn't seem out of character.  Unfortunately it only fueled my dislike for his character. 

 

Before Season 6 I could understand some of his bad traits.  And I kept hoping they would resolve them and move on.

 

The writers are weird about some things.  They like to create patterns and one they have created with Dean that anytime his brother or Dad is really really nice to him, they are NOT them?  So that explains why he didn't recognize Sam earlier in that ep, so they could pull Sam not nice to you card.

 

Yet when Dean came out of the grave, he had no problem tracking Sam down even though Bobby didn't have a clue.  So I still say Dean knows his brother reactions unless its a fault or issue he doesn't want to deal with, then the blinders come out.

 

Both brothers have flaws and both have done things to this relationship but for me, Dean has balanced the books more than Sam.  I'm hoping this time instead of Sam criticizing and saying damaging things that he sticks with his growth and recognize that they will always see things differently but they need each other to be human.  I also hope they keep him as a strong hunter and avoid the Sam's not capable of doing anything unless big brother is there to watch his back.

 

Of course the writers seem to enjoy pulling out the drama and not really deal with things other than repeat and rinse. 

 

I watched the going back in time ep and I liked that Sam and that ep.  I just had forgotten it since I tend to not remember 7.  I'm not a fan of Sam in Season 8.  I agree with you that the writers really messed things up if they had the brothers working together and once again drugged him backwards.

 

Sam had legit arguments and complaints but they didn't use them, instead they focused on him tearing his brother down and now he may regret that.   Certainly Dean by himself feeling like he's the worst thing in the world never turns out well.  Of course without that part, Dean would have gotten the mark and wouldn't be a Demon and yes Dean is responsible for his actions. 

 

But I wish they had shown Sam talking about his struggles because now maybe Dean could understand and it would have helped them but if they did that the conflict would have been destroyed and Dean wouldn't have become a Demon.  LOL.  So I'm clear it is the writing that I have the most problem with.  Carver seems to only be able to write half of good stuff and the rest just seems to be a great big disappointment.  Dean and Benny good, Dean and Mark good, finale good and I even liked Sam.  But Sam's reactions for most of season 8, not so much. 

 

I don't get it unless the writers know nothing about the show.  Maybe that's the problem, the writers are writing as though Season 8 is the start of Supernatural and forgetting there is so much richness that they are totally ignoring.

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But I wish they had shown Sam talking about his struggles because now maybe Dean could understand and it would have helped them but if they did that the conflict would have been destroyed and Dean wouldn't have become a Demon.

 

I agree - this is what I meant in another thread when I talked about throwing other characters under the bus in order to keep Dean's character the way they want him - in this case to give him sympathetic reasons to go dark. It seems that as long as they have that and the "conflict" that they want, it doesn't really matter to them how it makes other characters look. They have done similar things to Castiel as well. This seems to have stepped up for me since Carver took over.

 

Maybe that's the problem, the writers are writing as though Season 8 is the start of Supernatural and forgetting there is so much richness that they are totally ignoring.

This is how I see it exactly. I was happy with how things were left at the end of season 7 - the brothers were mostly in synch. Dean had a potential interesting arc in purgatory and Sam with his own conflict of being left alone. However - see below - I think the purgatory story could've been much more, and how in the world someone thought that a soap-opera love triangle and Sam dragging up "normal" again (something he hadn't wanted seriously in at least 3 seasons) was in any way an interesting continuation of what season 7 left I have no idea? Did they forget that this is a genre show focusing on guys who hunt monsters?

 

Dean and Benny good

 

I kind of agree with whoever said somewhere that purgatory would've been more interesting if Dean came across some of the monsters that they had actually killed while hunting - Gordon for example (that would've been awesome) - or who he already knew personally. Lenore maybe, the shapeshifter he killed, Dick Roman, maybe even Madison. Maybe that could have been interesting... Dean bringing back Madison for Sam, especially after all the changes they made with werewolf canon.

 

Dean and Benny for me just ended up being repetitive, and then they gave Benny a soap opera background story too that I had no interest in. They used Benny as yet another wedge between Sam and Dean - with Sam again acting out of character to do so. So for me no, Benny while potentially a great character was wasted potential and the execution wouldn't put that in the good category for me.

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I agree - this is what I meant in another thread when I talked about throwing other characters under the bus in order to keep Dean's character the way they want him - in this case to give him sympathetic reasons to go dark. It seems that as long as they have that and the "conflict" that they want, it doesn't really matter to them how it makes other characters look. They have done similar things to Castiel as well. This seems to have stepped up for me since Carver took over.

 

This is how I see it exactly. I was happy with how things were left at the end of season 7 - the brothers were mostly in synch. Dean had a potential interesting arc in purgatory and Sam with his own conflict of being left alone. However - see below - I think the purgatory story could've been much more, and how in the world someone thought that a soap-opera love triangle and Sam dragging up "normal" again (something he hadn't wanted seriously in at least 3 seasons) was in any way an interesting continuation of what season 7 left I have no idea? Did they forget that this is a genre show focusing on guys who hunt monsters?

 

 

I kind of agree with whoever said somewhere that purgatory would've been more interesting if Dean came across some of the monsters that they had actually killed while hunting - Gordon for example (that would've been awesome) - or who he already knew personally. Lenore maybe, the shapeshifter he killed, Dick Roman, maybe even Madison. Maybe that could have been interesting... Dean bringing back Madison for Sam, especially after all the changes they made with werewolf canon.

 

Dean and Benny for me just ended up being repetitive, and then they gave Benny a soap opera background story too that I had no interest in. They used Benny as yet another wedge between Sam and Dean - with Sam again acting out of character to do so. So for me no, Benny while potentially a great character was wasted potential and the execution wouldn't put that in the good category for me.

Since I use to watch Soaps and I don't think they really do the soap stuff that much.  Soaps is all about triangles and the constant back and forth will they get together or will they get back together which I don't see them doing with anyone other than Sam and Dean.

 

Yes on that level they write Sam and Dean as a soap opera.  Will Sam like Dean this season?  No wait, it's Dean's turn to be upset this season.  This part I am so done with.

 

I wouldn't have minded seeing what you suggested but I liked Benny and the only part I didn't like was Sam wanting to kill Benny but that I blame on writing. 

 

the supernatural I stayed home to watch live and missed doing things with my friends is over.  I haven't been that way since season 4.  I don't have a way to record shows now, my dvd/vcr died and so now I watch on the internet or if I happen to be home I watch it live.  But sometimes I'm flipping channels if I find I don't really feel drawn into the characters.

 

Some stuff I don't get worked up about if the acting is good as I switch into director mode and watch from that point of view so I'm not bored when I switch from audience to director. 

 

Of course I wish my life had allowed me to do it professionally but it is a difficult field and on that level I respect their right to create even if I don't love their choices, if that makes any sense.

 

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Since I use to watch Soaps and I don't think they really do the soap stuff that much.

I did too, but except for a few years in high school and early college where I watched Guiding Light (it had some great storylines when I watched it), the only other one I watched was Passions and I'm not sure that counts as a regular soap - heh that show was delightfully twisted. I had a strange affection for Eleanor (Ellie) the purgatory denizen, because the actress played naughty role-playing mistress Ivy on that soap. (Timmy, the doll was my favorite character - and I think I've got something in my eye - damn that was sad.)

 

For me though, that whole Amelia story from the meeting after running over the dog to the but wait her husband isn't dead after all seemed kinda soapy to me.

 

Maybe you're correct about the Benny backstory being not so much soapy. It was kinda sappy though. Except for that though, Benny wasn't bad. I didn't dislike him. I just didn't get that attached to him - not like say Rufus or Hendricksen or Jody Mills now (they better not kill off Jody - I'll be pissed). I would actually like a Jody/Sam relationship myself.

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Hi, my name is SueB and I'm easy.  NO, not that way.  I'm easy when it comes to falling in love with the characters and seeing the best in them. 

 

For me, one of the highlights of S7/S8 was when Sam was Fever babbling about finally burning the evil out of himself.  To me this felt REAL.  This felt like Sam being totally truthful.  Sam's the intellect saying that he doesn't feel guilty because he spent 100 years in hell never rang true.  But I don't consider it out of character, I consider it part and parcel of who is Sam Winchester. And Sam has a GREAT capacity to delude himself.  Where Dean just beats the shit out of himself for everything, Sam rationalizes some whoppers and keeps moving on.  So Sam rationalized he had served his time and thus he should not feel guilty.  He compartmentalizes well and feeling guilty about all the deaths related to Lucifer Rising?  That goes into the corner of "don't go in there."  But when Tracy reminds him of it in S9, it's clear he has ZERO defense.  If he was truly "over it", he'd have something to say. 

 

Other examples of him compartmentalizing (IMO):

- Not hunting for Dean - Sam literally couldn't deal with it so he runs away and decides he did something HEALTHY.  And he's going to stick with that attitude even with Dean bitching at him.  Intellectually he's not wrong -- he truly thought Dean was dead and NOW was the time to leave the life.  But at the end of S8, the guilt he's feeling over failing Dean is part of what makes him ready to die.  Sam was in a bad state mentally at that moment but his brother's logic (which was really shitty regarding why it was okay to not close the gate) didn't matter.  He was feeling forgiven and loved by Dean so he did what Dean wanted him to do.

- Not scratching at the wall Death made - at first he's gung-ho to fix what evil he did. Then he gets a peak over the wall and yep -- he's on the no-scratching train.  It was only Cas breaking the wall that caused him to confront his time in Hell. And only the threat to Dean and Bobby that made him pseudo-functional. 

- Him being okay with his own brand of crazy - he spent two-thirds of a season seeing Halucifer and ignoring him thru the hand pain -technique.  Now that's some mighty good "world-view" control. Up until he let Luci in again (i.e. slipped), he was pretty functional.

- Him saying he was in a "good place" at the start of S9... until he couldn't feel physically good again.  And then doubt creeps in.  He starts to wonder, AGAIN, if he's just wrong somehow.  That he is intrinsically never going to feel right.  (Rock and a Hard Place).

- Saying he and Dean could work together but not be brothers.  What kind of bullshit is that?  That right there is a guy who IMO knows how to compartmentalize.  He knows how to take a bad topic and not deal with it. From Sam's perspective he was seriously violated and lied to -- AGAIN -- by his brother.  But I think S9 WAS different.  He was openly compartmentalizing.  He wasn't actually ignoring his pain -- he was just letting it lie while continuing on.  And this is reaffirmed in 9.23 when he essentially says 'let's do what we should do and not fight right now'.  I don't think he's forgiven Dean at that moment, but he knows they need to move on.

Now when Dean is dead - AGAIN - I think that was Sam dealing with what Dean meant to him.  If that "no brothers" thing was true, he'd have burned Dean's body and moved on.  But of course the "no brothers" thing wasn't true and he never actually believed that compartmentalization. So of course Sam is going to do something to get Dean back.

 

So... what can I say?  I love Sam.  I see a man who has a history of using his intellect to create ways to compartmentalize his pain.  In the past he did a good job of believing it himself until it comes crashing down.  And when it came crashing down we saw a serious amount of self-loathing and hopelessness.  But I took his grim determination at the end of S9 to actually be a good thing.  He wasn't compartmentalizing his pain.  He was hitting it head on.  And not the out-of-control Mystery Spot or lost-summer-with-Ruby pain.  Nope, this is a steely eyed Sam who is in pain but has faith in his ability to force Crowley to help him.  Even if that doesn't work, I don't expect despair.  I'm confident he'll work til he solves the problem.

 

And icing on the cake? If when he gets Dean back they deal with the unresolved Angel-possession issue. 

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@sue b  I want to believe that this time will be different and your interpretation certainly works.

 

But I will have to wait to see if your right or if they once again take it down the yellow brick road.

 

I'm hopeful but I was hopeful at the end of Season 8 and man did the writers take that down a rabbit hole. 

 

Now do I hate Supernatural, of course not, if that was true I wouldn't still be watching at all.  Point, I started Lost but watched only a few seasons, I started the Superman - Smallville but had quit way before Jensen even became part of the show.  So when I give up on something I don't come back.

 

But I am still trying with Supernatural and I like Sam and Dean.  I'm find with them dealing with their pain differently and I felt that Sam at the end of 7 was just in shock, and couldn't deal with being alone and just driving.  Drifting until he hit the dog and desperate for a connection any connection, he starts to like Amelia.  So if the writers had gone that angel and avoided the whole I refused to look for you because of our deal...I would have liked it and it might have made the relationship better.

 

On one hand I thought Carver is really trying to make Sam be in a place of I'm not hiding, I will deal with this.  I just hope we avoid a time jump at the end of the year especially since the writers forget about it anyway. 

 

On of the wonderful things in life is how we love things differently and we don't have to see it all the same.  The characters are so wonderfully rich and raw, and just itching for a good story.  So I hope they deliver.  I can look over a lot.  I like season 1 even though there are some really big flaws.

 

@AwesomO4000  I'm right their with you if they kill of Jody Mills.  It's time to leave the few left alive.  It might be interesting to see Sam with a cougar love interest.  lol

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Since I use to watch Soaps and I don't think they really do the soap stuff that much.  Soaps is all about triangles and the constant back and forth will they get together or will they get back together which I don't see them doing with anyone other than Sam and Dean.

 

It's probably just a personal definition of what soapy means to each of us, but I tend to think the "shocking" dying and coming back to life; the overwhelming melodramatic angst; and the constant and entirely unnecessary ::gasp:: secrets and lies to create forced conflict would qualify as soapy writing. That's not to say that soapy writing is inherently bad, just I didn't know I was signing up for a soap opera when I first started watching this show.

 

 

 

So... what can I say?  I love Sam.  I see a man who has a history of using his intellect to create ways to compartmentalize his pain. 

 

Well said @SueB, everyone handles their pain and self loathing differently, doesn't make one necessarily better or worse than the other, just different, IMO.

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Re: This is a big mileage may vary thing but myproblem with the s8 finale was that I thought Sam never asked for forgiveness for not being trustworthy but for not being trusted, if that makes sense.  I think part of the problem was that Jared IMO played it like he was still hurt that Dean had a vampire friend. Okay that I could understand, but then he brought an angel(Cas) and I thought wait what?  He never seemed like he felt bad for not looking for Dean  which pushed Dean towards Benny but more that he was still mad that Dean had a friend. 

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Okay that I could understand, but then he brought an angel(Cas) and I thought wait what?

 

I actually thought Sam had a good point concerning Castiel. As Castiel himself points out in season 9, if there's anyone who messed up worse than Sam, it's Castiel... and more recently. There was the regrettable Benny incident where Sam was not trustworthy, but before that, Sam had been fairly trustworthy since season 5... and way more trustworthy than Castiel in that time period. Season 6 was full of Castiel being fairly untrustworthy, betraying Dean, and ultimately breaking Sam's wall. There was more in early season 7. Then he was fairly trustworthy - if a little mentally handicapped the rest of seaaon 7. But through only a little fault of his own (Castiel really should've let Dean get him out of purgatory - that was a bad, bad decision on his part), Cas was completely untrustworthy again in season 8.

 

So it may just be my opinion, but yeah, if anyone needed a chaperone there - and that was the remark that stung Sam, I thought - it was Castiel not Sam... evidenced by Sam doing what he was supposed to, even fighting and beating Abaddon to do so, and getting through the trial while there was Castiel... not listening to Dean and trusting the wrong person... again... resulting in a big mess. But in the conversation with Castiel, Dean was sounding like he (Dean) thought Sam needed his help/supervision/etc. more than Cas did. Sam may have interpreted it wrong - I personally thought that that was what Dean meant, though he could've meant that Sam physically needed Dean's help more. Dean didn't clarify that to Sam though.

 

And that's what I interpreted as Sam's complaint concerning Cas - that even after everything that Cas had done recently (most wasn't Cas' fault of course, but that didn't change the main fact that he was not trustworthy), it sounded to Sam like Dean thought Sam was the one who needed watching rather than Castiel. And Sam had questioned it previously - when he mentioned Dean praying to Castiel despite Cas' erratic behavior, so this wasn't a new gripe with him. And considering the wall thing, I can understand this. Sam may have forgiven Castiel, but that doesn't mean he shouldn't question his judgement sometimes, especially since they knew Cas was "off."

 

I don't disagree that Sam has done some things that would make Dean question his trustworthiness. However, compared to Castiel, Sam post season 4 is more trustworthy in my opinion, and much less likely to get into major trouble... and there was all of season 6, some of season 7, and much of season 8 as proof of that for me. So I didn't see Sam as being angry that Dean had a friend, but more that Sam was upset that Dean was appearing to trust the mentally questionable angel with an arguably crappier track-record than Sam to get the job done more than he was trusting him (Sam) to get the job done.

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I just couldn't and still don't know what I was expected to feel during that scene. I mean I think I know what they were trying to do, but I think they missed the mark by a mile. Sam saying " an angel" instead of 'Cas' was weird to me. I couldn't decide if Sam resented Dean for having two best friends that were not human and I thought .well Sam, you did fuck a demon so...why are you condemning Dean for those friendships, which actually benefited you when Dean sacrificed Benny ? I thought  Jared's line reading had a lot of disdain so that colors how I view that entire scene.  It was odd acting with odd dialogue.

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To some extent that whole speech is weird.  The only person that hasn't betrayed Dean is Benny, as far as the three being mentioned.

 

But I think for Dean, Sam is the weak one, he's ill so he's not capable of normal physical responsibilities.  Cas at least wasn't so weak in Dean's eyes but too trusting of the wrong person. 

 

Which is why Dean makes the statement, you seriously think that, NONE of that is true.  I killed Benny to save you.  I'm willing to let all the demon's walk to save you.  Basically your the one I've put in front of everyone.  However I think Sam hasn't forgiven himself for trusting a demon over his brother and is still feeling the guilt.  He buried it and said he had forgiven himself, but he isn't the one that can give him the forgiveness he needs and in this moment he's had to seriously look at his worst sins and the regrets that are eating away at him. 

 

So I can take that last speech but then comes the turnaround in the beginning of season 9 and no wonder Dean can't keep up.  It was as if the whole speech meant nothing and suddenly it hadn't been spoken but Dean was still reacting to it.

 

This is where I wish the writers would think about the interpretations of their lines.  No wonder the fans can't agree when the writing is all over the place.  So I guess I just pick out the parts I like and ignore the rest since the writers choose to do the same.

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I think that scene was written very poorly, but I also think that Sam wasn't saying that Dean can't have friends or trust anyone outside of himself. I think he's saying he wishes he wasn't such a screw up so Dean wouldn't have to pray to an angel to look out for him or ask a vampire to save him. And I also think he's saying that he wishes he was the brother that he thinks Dean wants him to be, and he's sorry he's never lived up to what he thinks are Dean's expectations. I think that scene is supposed to show us that, even though Sam said in S7 that he forgave himself and doesn't feel guilty, he really never forgave himself for anything and his biggest regrets are letting Dean down. I don't think he begrudges Dean's friendships--he's always been very supportive of Cas in the past--but would like to be someone he feels Dean trusts as much as Cas or Benny.

 

So much of that scene is really about what Dean said to Sam at the beginning of S5, "I don't think that we can ever be what we were. You know? I just don't think I can trust you." I'm in no way suggesting that what Dean said there was wrong or that he shouldn't have the right to feel that way, I just think that Sam has never moved past that moment in some ways even though he may have compartmentalized it (thanks @SueB) so they could deal with the bigger worldly problems at hand.  I think that it was the show's attempt at showing us that Sam does really care about these things, just doesn't show it very well.

 

I usually think that if they would stop focusing their energy on having "feels" and just write it as it needs to be written there would be a lot more clarity and then everyone wouldn't need to argue about whether Sam or Dean is a douche to Dean or Sam.

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I think "another angel" was intentional foreshadowing by Carver regarding Gadreel.  And it comes across clunky because it's a bit of a force-fit.

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I absolutely love your optimism @SueB, but I don't think they had a clue about Gadreel until they started planning out S9 after they wrapped S8. I know Carver has said that he had a three year plan, but they say that kind of stuff all the time and the commentaries and other interviews seem to contradict themselves.  I do think he has a general idea of where it's heading, but I'm not sure he has any real specifics lined out ahead of time. I don't know, I could be way off here, and I don't want to actually discourage your optimism--it's something sorely needed here and delights me greatly.

 

Also, if that "another angel" line was supposed to foreshadow Gadreel, what's with the "another vampire" part?

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Also, if that "another angel" line was supposed to foreshadow Gadreel, what's with the "another vampire" part?

Obfuscation.

Makes its slightly less obvious it's a hint if they throw in some chaff.

I'd pay real money to ask Carver at Comic-Con if Gadreel was already a plan.  I'd contend he had to have something up his sleeve when he had Cas say Sam was already damaged beyond standard angel healing.  Angel possession (that Dean trusted) makes sense at the macro level IMO.

 

And I'm always happy being an optimist.  Hopefully I'm not setting up unrealistic expectations.  I think avoiding expectations on specific storylines is best.  I just am optimistic they've got a plan, that they'll surprise me a bit, and it'll be a fun watch.   

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Obfuscation.

Makes its slightly less obvious it's a hint if they throw in some chaff.

I'd pay real money to ask Carver at Comic-Con if Gadreel was already a plan.  I'd contend he had to have something up his sleeve when he had Cas say Sam was already damaged beyond standard angel healing.  Angel possession (that Dean trusted) makes sense at the macro level IMO.

 

And I'm always happy being an optimist.  Hopefully I'm not setting up unrealistic expectations.  I think avoiding expectations on specific storylines is best.  I just am optimistic they've got a plan, that they'll surprise me a bit, and it'll be a fun watch.   

Being optimist isn't a bad thing!  It is one reason I've stayed instead of giving up, I keep hoping that this time they will fix it and move into the right directions.  I believe they have a plan but I don't think they have a solid plan.  More like a vague direction and if the fans like it, they'll add more...if the fans hate it, they'll move on.

 

I agree @DittyDotDot that the speech is really about everyone from Season 5, the hurts that Sam has carried and pretends he's healed and finds himself once again feeling those emotions all over the place.

 

On one hand I get that, I know I've forgiven my mother over and over and each time I thought this was it, only to have it slap me in the face again.  If you are really deeply wounded, it comes in layers and you have to peel back the layers in order to get it resolved.  So I can see Sam talking about Season 5, you don't trust me and I need your trust.  Plus he did try to kill Benny.  So for Sam it is when you can't trust me, you turned to an Angel, Cas and a vampire Benny.  What happens the next time?  Another angel, another vampire or something worse????

 

In this case it was Crowley...and we know how bad that turned out.  I don't know that Carver was forshadowing as much as he had a clear image for this moment.  Looking at several vids, this moment is really strong.  It creates strong feels and Dean responds with his strong feels don't think there isn't anything I wouldn't put in front of you, I killed Benny remember?

 

It's also why Sam being upset didn't work.  He should understand that Dean would do anything to save his life.  Sure he can be upset with the lies Dean told and being possessed, but at that moment Dean declared how far he would go to save his life.  This of course is then the setup for the opening of Season 8. 

 

Just like a poem or song can have many interpretations that the author never intended, so can scenes and lines.  I think this is an example of you can add your own twist and if it fits the storyline, it works. 

 

In acting I tell the kids that if you make up backgrounds about your character, just make sure it fits the structure of the story.  I think that is why we love these characters so much, there is so much to work with and it fits our lives or helps us to see how our lives is at least better than the Winchesters.

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Well Changing Channels is the first thought that comes to mind.  So will season 10 open with a sitcom?  We could have the trickster being the game host.  Not a spoiler because I'm making it all up based on the photo!  Watch someone spread it as if it is true.  Of course the last joke would be on us if they did go with something this obvious!  :)

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And weirdly Dean is wearing what looks like a wedding ring, so is that potentially a really good manipulation? Maybe from a con photo?

 

And awww Demon Dean still loves his brother. Seriously, that thing gets more disturbing each time I look at it.

 

And Dean's expression reminds me of something I've seen before elsewhere, but I can't place what.

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what is it about them that people like?

So I'm here to wax poetic about the Cas and Dean friendship. What I consider a profound bond but in a non-romantic way.  Unambiguously many many people's mileage varies on this but I'm just going for why I love having Cas and Dean interacting.

 

First, I think these guys are on the same wavelength when it comes to what is right and wrong. Their gut instinct is the same. It's why Dean's argument in Lucifer Rising was so effective ('There's a right and a wrong here and you know it'). I'm not talking about practical things at all, I'm talking big picture good vs evil. Cas understood that Dean did the wrong thing for the right reason in putting Gadreel in Sam.  He wasn't being a yes man. He really understood why Dean did what he did.  OTOH, Cas KNEW taking on the Mark was way wrong and told Dean. And you know, Dean knew it too. He just didn't want to talk about it. 

 

Second, whether Dean likes it or not, Dean is Cas' role model. Dean is all about love. Not that he'd admit it. But he sacrifices and loves more fiercely than IMO anyone else on this show. It makes him do some really wrongheaded things from time to time, but it's Dean's heart and DNA-ingrained selflessness that Cas admires. And Dean admires that Cas sacrifices for what he thinks is the right thing. His statement 'how many times has he gone to the mat bleeding for us?' was his number one argument against accepting Cas was working with Crowley.  Dean was wrong, but I believe he verbalized one of the primary ways they are kindred spirits.

 

Third, Cas is generally guileless.  Yes S6 happened, but he wont repeat that. So Dean trusts him.  Which is pretty rare for Dean.  Cas' sincerity is just worn on his sleeve and I think Dean likes that openness.  Some have complained in the past about Dean calling Cas a child but really, Dean admires that Cas just generally doesn't deceive (again, except S6...and S8 doesn't count because he was brainwashed).  And although Dean lies like a rug on most days, he will be straight with Cas. They've built up that trust.  Subsequently, when Dean is talking to Cas or vice-a-versa, we the audience get a more intimate insight into their feelings.

 

So... in short: same moral wavelength, selflessness, and trust. These are the foundation of the Dean/Cas friendship IMO and that's why I like it so much.

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First, I think these guys are on the same wavelength when it comes to what is right and wrong. Their gut instinct is the same.

 

/snip/

 

So... in short: same moral wavelength, selflessness, and trust. These are the foundation of the Dean/Cas friendship IMO and that's why I like it so much.

 

Loved your entire post but I think I have to slightly disagree on one point. I do believe that Dean and Cas are fundamentally on the same page re: trying to do the right thing but I think even big picture right vs. wrong doesn't matter at all to Cas if it would hurt Dean.

 

Working with Crowley? Bad/wrong. But letting Raphael win and bring another apocalypse to Earth? Very bad for Dean. Therefore? Work with Crowley.

 

Want to defeat Metatron? Assemble an army! Wait, the army wants me to kill Dean in order to prove my loyalty to angels/heaven? Bye bye army.

 

I think these choices contribute to why Dean trusts Cas. Because rightly or wrongly, everything Cas knowingly does is for Dean. Not because he has to or feels obligated to but because he wants to. That's partly why the crypt scene last season really touched me because it showed how much faith - FAITH! - Dean had in Cas; that he was in there, that he could hear Dean, that this behaviour wasn't Cas, that Dean needs him. That open vulnerability was quite something, and Dean being so sure that the real Cas would never kill him was lovely to see.

 

Another thing...when Cas fucks up - and boy does he fuck up - he OWNS it, apologizes for it, and seeks to make amends. That also goes a long way towards forgiveness.

 

Don't even get me started on the last episode where Dean acknowledged that Sam and Cas love him. Like, holy shit, Mr No Self Esteem! You're actually starting to get that people give a shit about you!!! :)

 

I just really want TPTB to bring Cas back into the fold. I really enjoy Sam, Dean and Cas together. Each relationship is different but I enjoy all the iterations (when they are working together).

Edited by NoWillToResist
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Brought over from Spoilers thread: 

 

I don't think it's at all a stretch for Dean to be pissed at Cas for things like breaking Sam's head, etc, I just find the interaction of Castiel then kind of logging a bunch of sacrifices in the bank with Dean so that he finally earns redemption from him to be really strange in the context of them being close friends. With friends and family it's more like, you forgive or don't forgive, whichever, but nobody is *redeeming* themselves like that ime. Because I would think that you aren't friends or family with someone because of anything they've done or not done, per se, more like just because of who they are. I dunno, the thing of earning forgiveness, etc, just makes the relationship seem weirdly mechanistic to me, and not like a friendship in that way.

 

Hmmm, I dunno if I agree with this. I don't think in general people forgive or not forgive on the spot regardless of cause. In fact, I think this is especially complicated by family/friends, when they do something you consider unforgivable but out of love end up forgiving anyway. In these cases I think it takes time to be forgiven, it takes effort, change, and gradual earning back of trust. At that point in the story late S6 to S7, Cas had done things that hurt Dean considerably, not least because of how much Dean trusted him (and defended him to the others). On the personal level, Cas physically harmed Sam, Cas working with Crowley indirectly contributed to Lisa/Ben getting hurt and Dean losing them, and Cas lied to their face which all of them saw as betrayal. On the bigger picture level, opening up Purgatory, releasing the Leviathan, becoming Godstiel and going on a killing rampage were... pretty bad things for the human race? :/ I'm not saying this to blame Cas, and I'm very sympathetic to the fact that he was choosing between crap options, but these are things Dean would have been very hurt by - and would consider unforgivable coming from non-family/friends (and would probably gank right then and there) - which is why I don't think it's unreasonable that he didn't forgive Cas immediately, or that Cas tried to earn his forgiveness. It doesn't effect my view of their relationship as being close/genuine at all. When they got stuck in Purgatory together, Dean spent a year doing everything in his power to get Cas out, and Season 8 onward they were pretty much fine with each other (without Gamble trying to write Cas off the show). I dunno, were you referring to a specific incidence I'm not thinking of?

 

If the appeal is that it *doesn't* feel like a regular friendship, what is it about them that people like?

 

I am not a shipper, and they could probably write you essays, which I won't. As a Deangirl, I am inclined to like the characters who are good to Dean. With Cas there's a level of intensity/complexity to the relationship which I like. It's not a regular friendship since the first time Dean sees Cas, he stabs him... lol. They were essentially on different sides of a war, they had majorly conflicting goals/interests/ideologies, and despite all that they ended up caring about each other deeply. Cas pulled Dean out of hell - after the first thirty years, I might add - where he saw Dean at his worst and never threw it in his face, and instead in Dean saw the best of humanity and through Dean came to understand that humanity deserves to be saved. They have faced horrible odds and risked their lives for each other.

In this most recent spoiler, there is a non-accusatory, non-judgmental kindness/understanding/support that Dean doesn't get a lot of elsewhere.

In Cas' words, "We've been through much together, you and I".

Yeah there are a lot of things that are quite messed up between the two of them too, but I'm not really watching this show for balanced reasonable people making good decisions. :)

Edited by Mcolleague

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Another thing...when Cas fucks up - and boy does he fuck up - he OWNS it, apologizes for it, and seeks to make amends. That also goes a long way towards forgiveness.

 

Warning: This might be a slightly unpopular opinion. That said...

 

When it comes to Dean, Castiel owns up to it anyway... well mostly. I wouldn't say that Castiel always owns up to all his mistakes though. Especially when it comes to non-Dean people. For example, he didn't own up to letting Sam out of the panic room even though that opportunity presented itself.  (He deflected all the "bad choices" onto Sam.) When he mentioned Samandriel "dying" - and I think he even mentioned being present? - he conveniently didn't mention that he killed him. He also didn't tell Dean that he ratted out Anna, even though that was an important piece of information concerning what Anna's motives might have been when she contacted Dean and wanted to meet. And it wasn't that Castiel didn't know that, because he was concerned about Dean meeting Anna, thereby not preventing a potentially dangerous situation.

 

So it might be more accurate to say that Castiel owns up to his mistakes when he gets caught. Or also maybe when things go wrong - since even when Castiel was caught in his lies in season 6 and Dean called him on them - and the lying was obviously wrong - Castiel still insisted that what he was doing wasn't wrong. Castiel only admitted that he was wrong later when his plans went belly up. He also for a moment tried to blame Dean for his bad choices "where were you when I needed to hear it?" As Dean told him, Dean was right there.

 

So really for me, the Castiel / Dean dynamic is more like family than friendship. Dean puts up with more crap from Castiel and Castiel puts up with more crap from Dean than many friends would for each other. To me, Castiel and Dean are more like honorary brothers than friends - and Sam treats Cas the same way considering how he forgives Castiel for his transgressions.

 

For me - and this is where the potentially unpopular opinion is going to come in - I see many similarities between how Castiel interacts with Dean and how Sam interacts with Dean. Dean, however, seems to put more trust in Castiel - though I personally don't understand why myself though I guess part of that might be artificial character manipulation (due to Sam's character shift / assassination in season 8), but that trust was given to Castiel even before any of that happened (i.e. even though it appeared that Castiel had abandoned Dean, Dean still insisted on finding Castiel, fighting his way through purgatory to do so).

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and Sam treats Cas the same way considering how he forgives Castiel for his transgressions.

 

I wish Sam wouldn't be this forgiving. He is allowed to get angry. I'd like to see more of Cas making amends with Sam.

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So... in short: same moral wavelength, selflessness, and trust. These are the foundation of the Dean/Cas friendship IMO and that's why I like it so much.

 

Great post, SueB, that explains a lot, imo especially from Dean's side. I agree that their moral compasses are drawn to the same magnetic north, and they have pretty much the same values. You're right, Cas is exceptionally dependable and earnest, and I can see how that's appealing to Dean (or anyone, frankly). And I guess Cas just has a huuuuuuuuge crush. Which, tbh, I find the most believable part of the friendship, that Cas just happens to be super starry-eyed about someone the angels must all see as basically some random dude. Happens to the best of us, Cas.

 

Hmmm, I dunno if I agree with this. I don't think in general people forgive or not forgive on the spot regardless of cause. In fact, I think this is especially complicated by family/friends, when they do something you consider unforgivable but out of love end up forgiving anyway. In these cases I think it takes time to be forgiven, it takes effort, change, and gradual earning back of trust.

 

I didn't mean that people forgive/don't forgive on the spot (I agree, they can't), I meant that I don't think that "earning forgiveness" is something that makes sense when it comes to family and very close friends, because ime those relationships are more complicated than that. I guess because those relationships are based on love and you can't "earn" love? You can find it or lose it maybe but it's not something that you get (or don't) because you deserve it (or don't). So it seemed weirdly undermining to the loving relationship the show was trying to sell that Cas could *earn* back Dean's friendship after screwing him (and the world, sometimes) over. The show was pretty explicit that he was actually *earning* it, too. For a while there, Cas would even straight up ask whether he had earned it back yet after basically very good deed, and Dean would tell him straight up that he hadn't. Dean also didn't seem to find it especially painful/distressing to see Cas hurting or to see him sacrificing himself somehow, and even though that again made *logical* sense given that they were legitimately on the outs and Cas was making his own decisions etc etc etc, I felt like it was weird in terms of how close they were supposed to be. That's what I mean about the friendship not feeling loving to me (at least not reciprocally)? I think that we're *supposed* to feel like the characters love each other, but how they act (esp how Dean acts toward Cas) doesn't make me feel like that's the case. YMMV, of course, this is just my personal POV and I expect everyone else to have different opinions. I mostly wanted to clarify that I didn't mean that Dean should be *more* forgiving to Cas. Just the whole process of, for example, how Cas will do something terrible, and Dean will say he's on his shit list and doesn't let love for Cas get the best of him or make him forget that for a minute, and Cas will do a bunch of good things to earn his forgiveness/redemption and eventually work his way back into the fold -- that doesn't look like love at all to me, it's actually way too rational and straightforward.

 

Also, w/r/t the show's portrayal of love:  something that I think that the show actually does well, esp with Dean and Cas (individually), but for other characters like Sam or even John, too, is show over and over that loving someone actually makes you *less* trustworthy and *more* likely to betray your own ideals or even your loved one -- genuinely *out* of love for them. Like how Cas gave up his angel army/war specifically for Dean, or like how Dean wanted Gadreel to possess Sam even though he knew that was a huge violation. Imo I would put Sam deciding to stop the Trials in that category, too, because he really shouldn't have sacrificed closing hell just so his brother wouldn't be alone. Of course, it didn't help that IMMEDIATELY in the season premier, he's ready to kick the bucket. Despite giving up closing hell because it would have meant kicking the bucket. But continuity, what's that.

 

As a Deangirl, I am inclined to like the characters who are good to Dean. With Cas there's a level of intensity/complexity to the relationship which I like. It's not a regular friendship since the first time Dean sees Cas, he stabs him... lol. They were essentially on different sides of a war, they had majorly conflicting goals/interests/ideologies, and despite all that they ended up caring about each other deeply.

 

Told that way, Destiel makes so much sense. Thank you, that does seem very ~grand romance.~

 

It's funny, that's exactly the stuff that's just too much for me, though. Cas's tenderness level is always dialed up to eleven. He's also always giving the sad eyes. I can't take it, it just makes me so massively uncomfortable. But no accounting for taste.

 

Cas is a little much for me in general. He won me over quite a bit when he worked *so hard* as a cashier. And just generally when he was dealing with being human, his constant annoyance with having to use the toilet. But that SL ended with a bang. Sucking out someone's grace like a freaking monster! WTF!

 

As a sidenote, the angel that I *really really really* wish would come back is Gadreel. He was fascinating as a character imo. And Tahmoh Penikett is crazy hot, which didn't hurt. I was shocked/sad when they wrote Gadreel out, especially since they kept Metatron of all people. I can't even pretend to understand that. Wouldn't it have been fun if instead of Hannah, it had been (somehow, I don't know how, but they could have figured out some contrived thing) Gadreel and Cas as the angel team this season? But meh, maybe Penikett asked for too much money or something. I know he's on a Canadian show, or at least has been this season, but production gets around that for a lead on the Originals (they share Daniel Gillies with Saving Hope), so I figure SPN could get around that, too, if they were all agreeable.

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and Sam treats Cas the same way considering how he forgives Castiel for his transgressions.

Oh my yes.  When he called Cas to let them help him in (Meet the New Boss?), I gave a fist pump.  What a GLORIOUS outpouring of love and generosity of spirit.  Sam reaching out got through to Cas. I'm so glad they had that. Because to me, Sam wasn't wrapped up in the betrayal (even though he broke his HEAD), but instead could see how Cas would logic himself into this mess.   One of my favorite Sastiel moments. 

 

Thanks rue21! I think Cas loves Dean but not in a romantic way. But his natural empathetic eyes just kinda look like he sees Dean as the sun & moon & stars. He sees all of Dean's faults and just loves him for all he's done and suffered and still trying.  It's kinda like a Kitten cute emergency sometimes.  Of course he looked a bit at Sam that way last year when he told Sam he was worth saving. 

 

My second favorite Sastiel moment (after Sam calling Cas to fix the Godstiel issue), is Sam teaching Cas to hug.  This is another moment that could substitute for a Kitten cute emergency "this is the part when you hug back buddy".

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