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dean spiderfucker winchester

Happy "Supernatural Day"!
where's perry
This weekend while I was hanging out with a friend in Indianapolis, I found this excellent shirt at the Hot Topical:

I'll have to save my "are these dots and Xs canonically sound" examination for my next rewatch. Also, it took me a good hour to figure out the relevance of 9/13 to SPN. I was like "I do not see how these numbers have any narrative relevance" but of course they don't; it's just the day 1x01 aired, because of course it is. Even if it's just a TV date, however, and therefore significantly less interesting to me than an in-narrative date, at least it's ours!

Happy September 13th! May you be raised like warriors, and masterfully infodump on a dimly lit stairwell today. <3

Who Do You Love?
"Who Do You Love?" by George Thoroughgood came on on shuffle just now and my spirit left my body and ascended because!!!! 9x01!!!!!! 9!!!! x01!!!!!

Fun with Photoshop: Image Compositing
I wanted to try image compositing in Photoshop, AND I AM SO PLEASED WITH HOW THIS TURNED OUT??? Please excuse the dust; this Impala has survived eight different moves and as many shelves.


And these have nothing to do with image compositing, but it's hard to work with this diecast without appreciating the level of detail. It has a carpeted interior, y'all. The seats are adjustable. The front wheels turn when you turn the wheel. Look at that engine bay?? There's a spare tire in the trunk (not to mention the tires are all rubber), and the undercarriage/chassis is fully articulated. *mwah*

Process picsCollapse )

Quiet judgment
where&#39;s perry
I literally burst out laughing when I saw this gifset. I know it's supposed to be an affirming scene and that Sam's supposed to be reassured and trusting here, but when I look at this now I swear to god Sam really looks like he just saw the next 12.5 seasons flash before his very eyes. XDDDDD And then those very eyes issued a quiet but resolute "Fuck you, Dean. Fuck you to the moon."


I just laughed out loud, because what in the actual fuck, Dean. WHERE DID THIS TURN OF PHRASE EVEN COME FROM? XDDDDDD

[source: @thejabberwock]

"Cram it with walnuts, ugly." - 5x01 "Sympathy for the Devil"

"So the monsters in Purgatory. Did they come after you? Like, full-on," Sam asks one day, shortly after Benny and Amelia become figments of some distant past. They are 82 miles into a shapeshifter case, though most of those 83 were only circling Spokane again and again. It's the first question Sam has ever asked about Purgatory.

"What the fuck else would they do?" says Dean.

Sam's nose twitches as Spokane blows a tickle of hair across it. "Not like that. I just meant-- I wondered if they still had that kill drive, or food drive, or whatever. They're technically dead over there, right? So there's no reason to eat. No need to, anyway. Without that, what do they do?"

Dean stares hard at the red light before them. He says, "Did you run out of Sudoku or what? They kill things, Sam. They're monsters."

"I'm not saying they didn't, man. I was just wondering if maybe--maybe that's the difference between a monster and an animal. I've always figured it had something to do with survival instinct versus sadist instinct. Or something."

Dean considers this. "You mean like, all vampires want blood. But some of them are dicks about it. Which makes them monsters."

"Sure, I guess," Sam shrugs. "It's not a perfect taxonomy. Your average wendigo isn't an asshole. Just creepy."

"Still cannibalistic, though, which is kind of a dick move. On the other hand, hamsters eat each other all the time. Have you ever seen--"

"--Okay! Cool, Dean. I don't need to imagine R-rated Animal Planet right now."

"Hey, you started this."

They circle Spokane another time. A girl went missing in the mountains three days ago. Generally the way shapeshifters work is people come up double, not zero, but it might be worth a shot.

"Dean," Sam asks. "In Purgatory. What did you eat?"


8x05 "Blood Brother"
free fall
I love all of SPN's quirky little motels, but I've been remiss in not giving the one in 8x05 nearly enough (read: any) recognition before this year, because IT IS A TRULY EXCELLENT MOTEL.

Look at all those colors! And the little plastic chairs outside! (I've stayed in maaaybe two motels that came with chairs outside; this is a rare gift.) And the colors are mismatched and everything. The backs are smooth vs. scalloped, and the handrails are angled vs. arched. The two chairs are as immaculately mismatched as possible. <3

And look at that sign!!! And that weird "the 70s and IKEA mated" lamp!! Also, I'm not sure why I find this so endearing, but I find it so endearing that Sam still has his beer in his hand when he follows Dean outside, lol. In the scene, Dean hands Sam a beer and then is cryptically like "okay I'll see you in a day!" You know there's no way Dean thought that that was going to actually work, but at least disappointing Sam now gives Dean time to ease into those waters and protract the experience. Like, he knows eventually Sam is going to have to know about Benny, and where Dean needs to go right now. But he doesn't have time to explain all that, nor the will, so he does that Dean thing that frustrates Sam so much. Even now Dean can't actually tell Sam about Benny--but if it has to come out, then Dean will do it slow. He'll show Sam Benny because he can't tell him. And then when they have to talk, they'll talk. But not a moment before.

Wait, I was talking about the disco lamp, not Winchester psychology. (Is there a difference?)

Also, here's a beautiful shot of SAM USING THE PLASTIC CHAIRS. He's really just out there to tee him up for one of SPN's awkward flashback transitions, but I like to think that the weather was all right and the room smelled a little too strongly of cleaning solvent, so Sam decided to work outside. They never get to. Not for this part of the job, anyway.

Dean doing endearing Dean thingsCollapse )

And okay, I feel like drawing comparisons between Benny and Sam, and Dean and Amelia, is pretty basic. Like, okay, there are parallels, whatever. But there was some really neat stuff in this episode, and I don't think what I was responding to was just SPN plopping down some parallels, you know?

I think it's super interesting that during his car ride with Benny, Dean realizes that Benny's main backstory--rolling with his vampire fam until he met a woman who showed him the alternative and greater possibilities of life--is what Dean perceives Sam's Purgatory year to have been. Dean doesn't react the way he does with Sam, though. And of course he wouldn't. It's not just because Sam is more important to Dean than Benny is; but Dean's hold on Benny's story and who he is is flexible enough to naturalize this new information. For Dean with Sam, that's way harder--especially since in Sam's case Dean would be on the receiving end of that departure. But even if he weren't I think Dean would have a much harder time fitting this into his idea of who Sam is, and the trust and security he finds in that. And I think Dean's aware (or becomes aware during this adventure) of the parallels, too. Because when Benny starts waxing about doubting reality Dean freaks out a little and tells Benny that he's seen someone go down that road and it's never a good one. I'm sure Dean's seen plenty of hunters lose their grasp on reality for any number of reasons, but I'm certain that right then, he means Sam during S7.

I think Sam's struggle is similar, though instead of freezing up and grasping for some static picture of who his brother is, Sam goes the opposite way and lets his idea of who Dean might be spool way out (re: my 8x03/04 comments about Sam making room for the things that are different about Dean (and himself) so as not to have to brush elbows with things messy and immediately past). He can recognize "angry lady" Amelia as someone who's experienced some kind of trauma, and sort of work within that arena to get to know her and how to interact with her. He doesn't quite do that with Dean. And again, I honestly thing everything is just harder the closer you are to someone. What's interesting is that Dean watches Benny fall out of love with Greek-pirate-vampire-lady because now that she's a monster she's lost what Benny found attractive about her (her humanity). That would be hard to watch, given that Dean also thinks Sam is giving him up for something else/something better, and knows that he's come back different, too.

This episode also ups the ante on the question of how different, too. Because we get increasing snatches of Castiel's fate in Purgatory, and his coming apart/his hurtling toward the reality that he is not going to make it out. And by the end of the episode, we get Dean expressing concern about Benny's mental state, and how he's coping with the world post-Purgatory. Dean's Escape Purgatory Hero Team is disintegrating, having escaped the hot zone (well, not in Castiel's case just yet, but) only to be crushed with the weight of living with the aftermath. Outlook? Not great. D:

Sam doing endearing Sam thingsCollapse )

I love this episode so much. I love this show so much! Especially since I haven't seen any of S8 (except for the Amelia scenes) since 2013, so there's a lot of the nitty-gritty that feels essentially all-new to me. :D

8x03 "Heartache" and 8x04 "Bitten"
free fall
So... today was interesting! Or, it really wasn't, because I wasn't conscious for the interesting part, but as you may recall I occasionally participate in research studies. I don't do any of the ones that require you to take drugs and/or placebos, or any of the ones that invite you to sit in rooms and express yourself, but I've done some that required you to drive around with a tester doing tasks until you got wretchedly carsick. (Not fun!) Today's study was about pain, and boy howdy there was so much pain involved I passed out. :S

That makes it sound like the study was run in some kind of torture chamber, in the 1940s, but I swear it was legit. I wanted to describe the building to convince you all that it was not a torture chamber, but the building's decor was bison and cactus-themed, in Michigan, which I suspect does not lend itself to impressions of legitimacy.

Anyway, leading up to passing out the pain stimulus was making me super nauseous and dizzy but I didn't ask the study administrator to stop the test because I figured the pain was so intense it was probably about to be over.

...And then I was on the ground!

Which, all things considered, wasn't as deeply unpleasant or as long-lasting as previous similar experiences I've had, though I'll admit I didn't feel super great for the rest of today. But wow. Wow wow wow! Pain is a powerful thing. O_____o;; (Note: I reiterate, this was a totally legit study and the study administrators were very nice and fed me juice and made me lie down for longer than I think I needed to afterward.)

8x03 "Heartache"
In this episode Sam actually suggests that what Dean might really want is to hunt solo, without being responsible to anyone and without the potential of facing castigation from anyone. Which is interesting, because Sam of all people has gotta know that the last thing in the world Dean wants is to be alone.

Why would Sam think that? Partly because it would alleviate some of the guilt of leaving, if that's what Sam were to choose to do. (At this point in the season, he's looking into "options" that involve more college and more Amelia, and fewer dead things.) Partly it's because that's what Dean fucking told him, in so many words. Dean told him Purgatory felt pure, and whatever that actually means, in a lot of ways Dean's still acting like he's there. Not enough to arouse real concern, but enough to be evident. (And honestly, Dean's pretty good at not arousing concern, in spite of the number of times things tend to blow up in their faces anyway.) But I think it's mostly because that's how Dean's acting. He's not giving Sam anything to relate to; he's not really interacting with Sam and when they do talk about things that might be headed down the path toward meaningful, Dean's distant, defensive, dismissive--any number of words brought to you by the letter D. If Sam knew for sure that the one thing Dean pre-Purgatory didn't want to be was alone, then Sam is also here confronting the possibility that that piece of Dean might be different now. Sam's not acting like nothing's changed (even though he keeps saying things like "stop being mad at me you're fine" lolll), but making room for the potential that everything has. Not just for him, but for Dean, too. Is he doing it wrong? I mean... XP But he's trying. (I would imagine this is one of the seeds of Sam's many feelings that he finally expresses in 8x23. For all that we focus on Sam leaving Dean, or failing him, that street and/or those fears of course have always gone both ways.)

Also, Dean hasn't mentioned Cas since his two lines in 8x01 and Sam still has no idea whatsoever about Benny. For all Sam knows, Dean DID spent his year in Purgatory both "pure" and alone.

Dean's half of all thisCollapse )

8x04 "Bitten"
Thinking through that possibility is what I really loved about the ending to 8x04 this time around. Because I feel like it's not off-base to say that Sam and Dean watched the found footage video, felt sympathy for the kids, and decided not to kill Kate just get on that basis alone. But that's not as interesting to me as, say, the possibility that Dean's reticent about going after Kate because if she's got a shot then maybe he's not a worthless lost cause either, even though his comfort zone right now is killing things and that's really not that far removed from a werewolf's comfort zone. I don't meant to suggest that the parallel is supposed to be direct or one-to-one, because what I like about it is that it's not. Dean probably doesn't think about it the way I just explained it. But whatever Dean is thinking by the end of 8x04, Sam gets it, and I feel like that's the first real understanding they have between them all season. Given that 8x05 is about to launch them headfirst into all of their Purgatory-year baggage, this moment is sort of like the lighthouse before you see the rocks.

And since we went all found-footage on this, I feel like I should note from an aesthetic vantage point that I love the smears and toothpaste flecks on the mirror Michael is filming into here:

And this is a great dramatic angle to shoot from, when newly-turned Kate demolishes their sink (between this and my 5x20 thoughts, this journal is one more sink away from just being a blog about SPN sinks):

This isn't pseudo-found footage anymore, but it's still a great shot. We start with Kate following the rails in a wooded area, with all the aesthetic trappings of someone headed into the wilderness, the Wild West even. Following the railway tracks is like, peak lonesome cowboy/renegade rock band/wayward drifter behavior. Feral behavior. But it turns out Kate is actually not headed into the woods, but into a city of reasonable size. Look at all those high rises! Sure, it's no Chicago, but that's not a dusty one-horse town, either. She's not headed for the wild.

8x02 "What's Up, Tiger Mommy?"
Hands up for the Tran Family
This episode has two of my favorite moments of the season! The first being Linda taking Kevin’s hand as they get their anti-possession tattoos. I love the Tran family to the moon and back. <3333333333

The second being when Sam and Dean and Kevin and Linda are pooling their resources for the auction—which seems absurd, because surely they realize that the auction prices wouldn’t be in US DOLLARS. On the other hand, Bela absolutely traded priceless magical items via US currency, so I suppose there’s precedent. But when Linda throws in her Costco membership and gives them this reassuring nod, it’s so wonderful. XDDD Because it’s so true. Costco memberships are like dwarven gold and what good Asian family would be without one??

Science 101: How to Make a Demon
Sam also said something super interesting: He’s trying to explain what Hell does (because what else would you do with a year in Kermit, Texas but do some anthropological research on demons, I guess) and he says that it burns your soul away until there’s nothing but black smoke. So Sam’s theory is that demon’s present as smoke because there is a metaphysical/metachemical process that directly takes souls and transforms them into smoke.

Maybe it’s something he learned from Ruby (pillow talk one night. Ruby chatting about campfires and long hot American summers. Sam ignoring her. Thinking of fire. Thinking of Dean). Maybe it’s just a theory he has.

Maybe this is totally obvious to everyone else, but I’d never thought about the human soul and the substance of a demon being that immediately and directly related, and I think that’s really neat.

What it makes me think about is how, then, the demon cure works. If demon smoke is what’s left of a soul, if you inject a demon with sanctified blood is it condensation you’re after? Do you want the liquid of the blood to bind to the smoke of the demon, turn it liquid, turn it soul again?

I really love that Sam and Dean are on each other’s edge enough, and Dean seems to have a handle on it enough that Sam’s willing to not press the issue and just act like everything’s normal. I think the fact that Dean’s not really out there, chomping at the bit, has him convinced that Dean’s going to be fine (he needs Dean to be fine). And Sam’s ability to ascertain what constitutes “fine” is definitely skewed, because, well. It’s S8, and they’re Sam and Dean Winchester. What does “fine” mean?

Which is why I love the opening scene where Sam and Dean and Kevin are eating, and Kevin’s trying to convince them that he should get to see his mom. Dean’s super against this and being all jaded about it (and Sam’s not saying shit, either), and Kevin is just like, “Do you really not understand why I want to see her?”

It’s not an accusation. He’s actually asking; and he’s figuring out who he’s dealing with, and what sort of psychology he’s roping his fate to.

At this juncture, between Sam, Dean, and Kevin, Kevin is probably the one who understands them the most. Dean doesn’t even realize he’s lost that step, and Sam isn’t presently capable of grappling with it. </3

Then we get to the interrogation scene (beautiful beautiful scene <3333333) and see some pretty concrete evidence of this. Dean goes off on the locker thief guy, and all Sam does is tell Dean off verbally and bang the table a few times, like he’s trying to obedience train a dog; he doesn’t get up from his chair, or try to get physical at all. He’s super hands off—so he’s lucky Dean doesn’t actually kill the guy, because what would Sam have done, then?

Then Linda bids her soul for Kevin’s well-being, and Dean’s super nonchalant about this, too. And if there’s something Dean feels strongly about, it’s definitely those. Not today, though. Not right now. He doesn’t give a good shit about Linda’s soul, or Kevin’s family, or Kevin’s girlfriend, or any of it. Even though in 8x01 he definitely had strong opinions about Sam not answering Kevin’s calls; by 8x02 he’s actually backslid on that front, and it’s just seal Hell seal Hell seal Hell. (Aside from Hell being Hell and the job being the job, it’s interesting to think about sealing Hell as being a way of warding your space. Like when you salt the doors and windows in a motel room after a hunt—when you’re back from Purgatory, you lock as many doors as you can find.)

Having the appearance of being decently put together and then having that facade steadily crumble is also kind of Dean's MO. (Like in S4's "Afternoon Special," or what Dean seemed to be asking for in the pilot "help me find Dad" and what it turned out over the course of the season he was actually asking ("help"), or Dean's response to having risen from Hell.) I love it. <333

Terrible Winchesters
What’s really heartbreaking to me is that Linda turns down Samandriel’s offer of care because the last time she entrusted her son to angels, they lost him. Instead, she chooses the Winchesters. But she makes this decision without knowing the full story—without knowing the very real role Sam and Dean also had in Kevin’s disappearance, and without knowing that she could have been reunited with her son much sooner were it not for the Winchesters’ failings. She puts her full trust in them thinking that they’re something they’re not. (Or they haven’t been—not to her family.)

And Crowley’s comment about the Winchesters’ nasty habit of using people up?

1) Totally true, though not always their fault (and it’s still true. See: the chicken wing-obsessed former atheist chemistry professor prophet from S11/13 whose name is escaping me right now and who I’m too lazy to look up). edit: DONATELLO LOL. THAT GUY.

2) What happens to Kevin, ultimately. What happens to Kevin in this very season, when Sam and Dean lock him on a boat and ply him with migraine pills and amphetamines.

And before I forget! I feel like logic-ing out Dean’s upset at Sam not going to look for him, or Sam stopping his search is kind of a moot point, because the big psychic rift at play there isn’t itself grounded in logic.

When Dean finally tracks down Castiel in Purgatory, he’s instantly at ease (and starts doing this weird borderline “uncle at a barbecue” schtick, haha). But when he finds out Castiel ran away and abandoned him, all of that instantly goes up in smoke. Snap your fingers, and there’s Dean’s rage. Castiel does get a chance to explain that he ran so as not to bring Leviathan down on Dean, which Dean accepts, but the tables turn on that emotion instantaneously. So I feel like the particulars of how Dean came to feel like Sam abandoned him don’t necessarily matter (at least inasmuch as it affected Dean). Whatever the particular, he still would’ve had that same psychological response to abandonment. Maybe if Sam had offered an explanation Dean might have listened, but if that explanation did not involve Leviathan, maybe it wouldn’t have mattered, since fight-or-flight is really the only thing Dean has a 100% handle on right now.

Dean's Tongue
Also, I love that Dean sliiiiiiides right into Benny’s accent. Toward the end of the Castiel-reunion scene in comes in SUPER thick and it’s amazing. I’ll admit I haven’t thought a lot about Dean and Benny, because I spent 98% of S8 being obsessed with Sam and Amelia and Linda Tran that’s about it (what is the rest of this season even? I’m not sure, who knows), but I think that little tic alone would sell me on that relationship, honestly.

I just love Dean’s tongue, okay? I love his makeshift idioms and the drawl he gets when he’s drunk and the wrong intonations he sometimes uses (S9) and the fact that if he spends enough time with Benny he sucks up the accent like pure, thirsty little sponge. :3

Sorry for the big spam day. I can guarantee the rewatch will slow up dramatically so don't worry about this being a whole long-term inundation. XP

[Fic] Devil You Don't - gen, Dean (POV), Sam, 5x20 "The Devil You Know" aftermath
(Can you tell from my 90908098 tl;dr posts yesterday/today that I'm on vacation?)

I wrote this in response to 5x20 and metallidean_grl, and it felt so weirdly, deeply retro? It's not that I never write early-season fic; but I feel like barring my initial plunge into SPN fandom I generally write it with some reflection onto present canon. Writing this made me feel like, well hello there 2010, how nice of you to stop by??? Like it's exactly the tag I probably would have written if writing tags for episodes had occurred to me when S5 was airing.

That is... it's literally the exact same post I just wrote about 5x20, except in fic form and with no mentions of the dramatic zoom salt (alas). XP

Dean POV, 5x20 "The Devil You Know" tag, eight years late.

It’d be weird if he went for the radio, right? Dean gets an image stuck in his head, of people piled in the back of a pickup blaring music, rowdily celebrating their kill. The image takes place in that Apocalyptic world, Satan wearing his brother and Cas all strung out on meth or whatever, even though he knows that’s not what it was like there. Music attracts monsters. Those people were out there trying to live.

His hand leaves the wheel and flutters towards the knob, and Sam jumps away from him. It’s not a large movement—there’s only so far you can jump in a car—but Dean notices.

It hadn’t occurred to Dean to reach for Sam, but now that Sam’s pulled away Dean wants to.

Dean’s not sure what he wants. The only thing keeping him awake right now is pain—that and the nauseous sense that the world’s about to end, but if you live under it long enough you can convince yourself that even that is a blanket and a lullaby.

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5x20 "The Devil You Know"
free fall
Part 2 of my birthday watch. 5x20 first aired on April 29, 2010, which is the episode closest to Sam's 27th birthday. 13x21 had me thinking about 5x20 already, because of where all everyone was at leading into the final two episodes of the season. In my earlier post I said that the end of S13 was “S5 levels of holy mayhem”—but having now rewatched 5x20 I can safely say that S13 was not S5 levels of holy mayhem and that their plan going into their grand Cone World Michael finale was significantly better than the plans they’d managed when attempting to quell their original Michael and Lucifer, holy shit. XP

For all that their traumas have only accrued and all the allies they’ve lost, in the last 8 years Sam and Dean have actually managed to make hugely important gains. They have a library of new and powerful allies like Rowena. They have a literal library that for all its poor organization has really given them a lot. At the end of S13, however deeply unmatched they still were, the playing field’s been leveled a lot. Heaven has come down a lot, for sure—the chaos that was brewing in S4 and warring in S5 has been bombed and emptied now for years. If the world had hierarchies—Heaven, earth, Hell—these are flattening. S8/9 may have been about the chance to seal and separate them, but really they’ve just been headed for collision. Mundiphagy. (That’s not word but it might need to be one headed toward S14. World-eating.)

On a personal level Sam and Dean have definitely found ways of dealing with their lives that work a lot better than what they were doing in S5, as well. Because if things were messy in S13 (like, “throat ripped open dead in a mineshaft” messy, or "we have 36 hours to find two people in an entire world full of danger and not much transportation to speak of so let's get to it??" messy) both Sam and Dean were a true mess by the end of S5, in ways that are actually stunning by comparison. Poor babies, they were so sleep-deprived and so mentally all over the place. <333 Which isn’t to say that isn’t still the case now but Sam and Dean both had scenes in 5x20 where they didn’t know what to do in the face of impending Apocalypse and they just sat down in an ugly chair like “Well. Fuck, I guess.” D; </3

Also Sam was drinking excess amounts of hard liquor straight from the bottle and drunk-dialing Bobby and Dean was following Crowley with little resistance, to the point where it seemed more like he was doing it because it had plopped in front of him and was the path of least resistance (even if "least" here means "get the shit beat out of you") and less because he really thought it was the best--or even only--plan. It's not that he was enthusiastic about working with Crowley, per se, but we've definitely seen him broker similar partnerships (including with Crowley) with a little more caution, and a sharper idea of what it is. They are just totally stripped and exhausted by the end here, and it's so sad.

Some of my favorite scenes/characters in 5x20:



And because I’m me, here’s your 5x20 Dean H/C overlay: Read more...Collapse )

I also love the ending scene in 5x20, because it’s like… This guy’s supposed to save the world in two episodes and he just shanked someone in a dark alleyway while his brother watched. Then he stalked away without saying a word.

What’s the car ride like after that? Silence, probably. But what about the motel? What’s the next thing they talk about together? How do you bridge that kind of silence?

How long did Dean stand there, staring at Brady’s body?

Did they salt and burn it?

Soooooo that's what Sam was up to when he turned 27! Cheery stuff.

2x12 "Nightshifter"
free fall
I know I said yesterday "I'm gonna resume my rewatch with S8!" but then I remembered that for my birthday, I wanted to watch the two episodes closest to Sam and Dean's 27th birthdays, because Winchester birthdays are the most important birthdays. <333

"Nightshifter" first aired on January 25th, 2007, which would have been a day after Dean's birthday, and for simplicity's sake we'll just assume SPN time mostly aligns with that. Of course, that was his 28th birthday, not 27th... But I can't math so I messed it up and watched that one instead. XD But whatever. I have absolutely no issue with also rewatching 2x12 next year, too! And I don't really want to rewatch 1x12 "Faith" or 1x13 "Route 666" right now (Dean's actual 27th birthday would've fallen in between their airdates), so it all works out.

I adore 2x12, because "in trouble with the law" is one of my favorite SPN themes, and Ronald Reznick is one of my favorite one-episode characters. One one hand he was a total kook, with the laser eyes and the holding up a bank with an assault rifle, but the episode had a lot of empathy for him, too. (Without excusing his behavior--Dean supplied the empathy, Sam supplied the reminder that you can't purely romanticize quirkiness because sometimes lovable nerds hold up banks with assault rifles and that's a big NO.)

What I love about S1 and S2 is how much Sam and Dean both struggle with the basic tenets of who they are and where they fit into the rest of the world, if they do at all. And it is a struggle. On one level we still have Sam rejecting the crazy and Dean embracing it ("One of us!") but it's more than that. Because we consistently get these moments where Sam is absolutely furious with anyone from the outside who's getting mixed up in "their kinda stuff," in a way that's different from Dean grumbling about police doing their job but being bad at it because they don't know that's what they're doing, etc. And honestly until Sam comes back around I don't know that Dean even had a ballpark from which to draw parameters around what is normative and what isn't. He's coming from such an extremely specific place and he doesn't see it until Sam's back in the picture struggling to draw lines, too. Dean thinks he's got it down but come S2 he realizes he really doesn't (re: monsters [2x03 "Bloodlust"]; re: John [the whole season]; re: society [2x12, for example]).

Also, HOW MUCH DO I LOVE ANALOG??? I LOVE IT. If they were doing this kind of legwork in S14, Sam probably has a GIS program installed on his laptop, and he'd just pull up digital layers and work from there. But hey, party like it's 2007, because we got a red Sharpie and some municipal maps of the city of Milwaukee as well as its sewer system, which they probably had to scan out of the local history section of some random Milwaukee library. <3____<3

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♥ 2x12 "Nightshifter" ♥

Next up, Sam's 27th birthday episode!

11x11 "Into the Mystic"
everything ends
Do you ever just stumble across a favorite musical cue from Supernatural and perish from how wonderful it is? The Warren Zevon "Prison Grove" montage of Sam and Dean going to sleep (or failing to) after the case at the retirement home with Eileen is amaaaaaaaazing. <3333333

Also, the comments thread on this video are hilarious, because everyone is just like, "How did we all get here from Supernatural."

[Fic] While You Were Sleeping - gen, Sam (POV), hurt/comfort, early S12
Because sometimes you just want some self-indulgent H/C, and you didn't get to write enough S12 fic during S12. I love writing in the early parts of seasons, because there's a little more space to have Sam and Dean doing, dealing, just kind of floating. <3 Nothing epic, just non sequiturs and mommy issues.

Title: While You Were Sleeping
Genre: gen, hurt/comfort, S12 (around 12x03/12x04)
Characters: Sam (POV), Dean, Mary (in mind if not in body)
Rating: PG-13
Word Count: ~2900
Warnings: PTSD (both), alcohol abuse (Dean)
Summary: It’s always better to kill werewolves when they’re wolves. It’s not that you can’t kill them off the cycle, it’s just... It’s better, when they’re wolves. But then Dean gets sick; and then Dean gets sicker. Sometimes there are tradeoffs.

We're running out of moon, Dean says, urgently. And Sam replies, I know.Collapse )

8x01 "We Need to Talk About Kevin"
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All right, all, please don't @ me with your S8 crit! I know, I'm familiar, we did that whole thing in 2012! It's 2018 now and guess whaaaaat


I also understand Dean's rage here. His scene listening to all of Kevin's messages on the phone, and then the amped up ambient noise in that motel room? I love it so much.

This is one of my favorite shots in all of SPN because man, you can feel that motel. You can feel the temperature--the pavement's still hot even though the sun has set and the air is cooling. It's a touch humid. You're sweating and yet you're halfway to a shiver. It's that kind of witching hour. I love the sick orange tinge to the sky, urban light pollution such that this highway wasn't known true darkness, pure darkness, in decades. You pull around the back and the doors open into the backlot--sign facing outward, reading backwards--because the highway's right there. It's right there.

I love how deeply awkward and stilted all Sam and Dean's convos are, except for the ones where they're not talking about anything at all. I love how many shots there are of Sam observing, Sam watching, even as anything he says doesn't help at all. He understands more than he's able to say and he just can't do it. He can't do it.

I love how forthcoming Sam is about Amelia and not hunting yet is silent about any of the context that would have made that make sense. Maybe he knows that he will never make it make sense--not to Dean. Maybe not even to himself. He can't talk about that feeling, what led him there, even as it ghosts everything he does and says in this ep.

I love that Dean does the opposite; he's scarily forthcoming about his feeling, the hurt, the trauma. The jaggedness of Purgatory feeling pure. Even enjoyable. Which he has to know sounds fucked but it's also definitely the only thing that got him through so how can Sam speak against that, huh? And Sam can see it, all of that, written on Dean's body, so there's no point in leaving it out. But he doesn't say jack shit about Benny.

From the looks of it, Dean doesn't even call Sam until he's hitched from Maine all the way to Louisiana. Maybe he tried a couple phones, but he clearly wasn't trying that hard if he stopped before he got an answer. He didn't ask a ride with Sam to Louisiana. Clayton and Kermit are 11 hours from each other yet they still both drove up to almost-Canada northern MONTANA to reunite. That's how much Dean doesn't want to say jack shit about Benny.

Put together, by the end of their first days back together, Sam and Dean have one whole story. Usually that's good enough, since they're together; it's the Sam and Dean story. Barring their very different experiences of all events, there's at least a concrete commonality there. Unfortunately, a story about how it felt to be in Purgatory coupled with the concrete details of what went down in Kermit, TX, doesn't to either of them any good. There's no weaving those. So they don't really have one story; just two halves. (And as we will learn from shattered tablets over the course of the rest of the season, halves are only as good as none.)

8x01 "We Need To Talk About Kevin"
free fall
I started this rewatch so long ago (e.g. in between S9 and S10, OMG) I feel like I need to start with S1 again, but in the interest of finishing, ever, I'm picking up where I left off, saving people, hunting things, the family business!

Usually when Dean waves guns in civilians' faces I'm like, okay, they don't really deserve that kind of trauma, but I'll be honest, these kids might have.

They backpacked in... a gigantic frame tent? And camp chairs? I applaud their back strength but that's just zany. I'd say they backpacked the 12 miles from the road to a pre-existing shelter, but if that tent were sitting out there all exposed it wouldn't be so clean. Also, they left their packs outside the tent??? On the ground??? In bear country??? They're lucky it was only a half-deranged post-Purgatory guy who found them.

And they left their coals exposed and burning, unattended. >.>

I'd say maybe they drove in, hence all the extra gear, but if that were the case then Dean wouldn't just stolen their car, right? I doubt fresh out of Purgatory he was taking the time to decide whether or not leaving them without a vehicle out there might kill them.

But maybe in his frenzy the notion of transportation actually hadn't occurred to him. I could totally see that. He's on a mission and he's spent the last year on foot so blinders on, he's just plowing.

It takes him four days to hitchhike from Maine to Clayton, Lousiana, which is a 30-hour/1800 mile drive if you don't have to hitchhike. I wonder what those four days were like--I feel like hitchhiking requires you to be vaguely social; maybe not like, a lot, but more than Dean's had reason to be in a year. Or more, really, since all through S7 Dean and Dean's life were not exactly social. It must have been such a behavioral curve--though probably anyone willing to pick Dean up would've had some major cojones on them. They probably figured he'd just gotten out of prison.

But hey, Dean thanks this guy, and they hold a brief convo even after he's out of the car, so he's handling it.

And why hitchhike, rather than boost someone's car? I guess if you don't have the money to pay for gas for your stolen car, this is the way you gotta do. Especially since the beginning of S8 would've been 2012, and man, gas was like $4 a gallon!

Also, throughout this whole montage they play Styx's "Man in the Wilderness" and I'm in LOVE.

Guys, I haven't even made it to the title card.

me being negative
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I love Supernatural so much I don't know what to do with myself but I know that if I set out into the wilderness of the Internet to find things to stoke my fancies I'm just going to get burned.

Another chapter in the story of how Dean ruined my life
Baby's first circus photoshoot is today and instead of figuring out how to prep for it last night I watched SPN clips and fell asleep in my street clothes, engorged with the full glory of old Dean H/C fics. Fuck meeeeeeeeee

13x23: Blurry Winchesters Edition
free fall
The aesthetic of many SPN finales and mine don't tend to match up that often--the sudden desire to use zany effects, the orchestral bombast, all of that--and for me 13x23 had a lot of the flavors of 7x23, 10x23, and 11x23 for me (probably others but these are the finales that stand out). And like, that's fine. You are always welcome to do you, SPN. XD

In 13x23, My favorite scenes were Jack's (ALL OF THEM) and, actually, Lucifer's.

My favorite aspect of the finale was the insinuation that a fair bit of time had passed between the end of 13x22 and the start of 13x23: Bobby was talking about his refugees settling into town (can you imagine Lebanon, KS with 30 new inhabitants all at once??? what kind of weird cult moved in??). The fire of his hoo-hah speech about going back to save the homeland and honor their fallen brethren and save the rest is now tempered by the notion of finding lives, right now, for these people he's brought over, right now. He's making googly eyes at Mary. He and the others are falling out of a plot-driven narrative about the Apocalypse and Michael's fiery rule and heroes and war and into a different kind of life, where the plot, the whole plot, is to live.

This piece of the finale was sort of like an anti-finale, if finales are meant to culminate and lives are meant to follow heroic arcs. It plays foil to the ridiculousness that is about to go down in the second half (and that second half is not at all shy about being ridiculous! go big if you can't go home, MAN). And like, I don't doubt SPN is very much aware of its bombast in this bit. I can respect that. XDDD

And sure, eventually we learn that Lucifer is actually the one who killed Maggie, but he did it in such a human way--just like he dug his own hole when summoning Death all those years ago, his own hole with his own shovel and his own hands--it's worse, somehow, than death by monster or angel. Darker. That was my favorite part of the episode.

But I'm also an unredeemable ho for the Winchesters, so let's talk about their blurry faces and HOW AMAZING THEY ARE--even when embroiled in ridiculous things--anyway!

I'm getting ahead of myself with this cap, but since the first scene I wanna talk about isn't anywhere near as tantalizing, here's an out of context shot of Sam's neck above the cut. For zest. XD

a visual analysis of Sam and Dean's blurry faces in the background, and Dean H/C stuff because I'm meCollapse )

12x11 "Regarding Dean"
where&#39;s perry
Aaaand now I've fallen into the pit of watching random scenes from the episodes I have on my USB drive (S12 and S13), and in 12x11 "Regarding Dean," when Sam's caught up with a totally blitzed Dean in the diner and suggests that Dean should maybe, you know, pump the brakes a little, Dean says, "One, the Rat Pack partied 'til the day they died, and B, I can still kick your ass."

He starts with a numbered list and continues it--his two point list--with a lettered list instead. I love that little linguistic detail so much. <33333333 WHAT A MESS. XD