Reasons I'm Sure Other People Didn't Like It, and I Totally Don't Even Need to Look to Confirm This
- 2x03 except with werewolves
- werewolves with wild new mythology!
- WHERE WAS SAM THE WHOLE TIME
- UNCONSCIOUS AGAIN, PROBABLY
- (okay, those last two... touche!)
The mythology thing I'm actually fairly on board with, because as of S6 and all those alphas, it follows that just like those vampires, somewhere out there there has to have been a werewolf alpha with a bloodline, right? Granted, I am exactly as interested in this elaboration of SPN's world mythology as I was in S6 (i.e. not at all), but there's plenty of precedent. As for the Fenrir tie-in, well, they gave it the old college try. XD
SOMETHING I AM SUPER INTERESTED IN, THOUGH. Search the Web! Which continues to be the best web browser in the history of the world, because when I Google "ragnarok," my second hit is an MMORPG, not a detailed and highly reliable page about the Cult of Fenrir's practices. (I'm getting the impression that plotting a case and finding a way for it to unfold naturally is not one of Adam Glass's talents. Same goes for the fight in the barn between Stepmom Werewolf and Dean. Would it have been so wrong to have her actually as full of surprises as she claimed, to make it more of a fight? A fight that perhaps Sam would play a part in?)
But wait, there's more! Because who's even running Search the Web? THE EVER CONVENIENT SEARCH THE WEB. How secure are Search the Web's servers? What if there was a monster out there, hacking Search the Web, guiding the Winchesters every which way, them being none the wiser until they tried to use Search the Web to find something dumb and they realized something was amiss?
Or what if the monster was itself a coded virus? A semi-sentient supernatural digital virus????
Okay, so half of that is the plot of a dozen different hacker movies, an half of it is kind of dumb, but I'm positive there's a way to make insidious!Search the Web not a dumb thing. And I want the not-dumb version of this badly. *_______*
Two Random Points
- I actually really loved the actress for the werewolf stepmom; she did a great job.
- needs more Sam!!!
TWO LINES I LOVED.
- Werewolf Dad commenting on Dean's heartbeat. Nice touch. I just loved how visceral that was--it's the kind of detail you'd write into a fic, but is much harder to convey through film; I'm glad they went for it here.
- Sam's "No, let's do this right." Because you know there is something broken in here when you're like, yeah, you know, our jobs are literally a matter of life and death--often our own, but mostly other people's. We should really dot all our Is and cross our Ts and make sure we don't off an entire family because we don't give enough of a damn to "do this right." And I don't mean that facetiously--I mean. I really. Yeah, anyway, I liked that as a signifying phrase, or something. XP
The scene that would have happened over the hood of the Impala if Dean had got out of the car faster, and if he hadn't parked so close to those hedges
A lot of it was kind of pointless rehash, inarticulate mumblings and grumblings reasonably characteristic of these talks since forever. (Though my least favorite season for Over the Impala talks is S7.) What Sam said to Dean, and what Dean said to Sam didn't really open any new avenues for dialogue, or productively subvert anything between them. And a lot of it literally is stuff they've said to each other before, probably multiple times, for years and years and years. XP
But at the same time, it also wasn't pure, unproductive rehash. I felt like their conversation hit certain, familiar walls, and glanced off them at odd angles. Odd in the sense that you know there's something wrong, and something missing (like that uncomfortable flutter your brakes give you when you're trying to drive on ice and failing to maintain traction--yeaaahhh that one!). And the rhetoric slinks, limping, to some new dark hole.
So while I didn't think their talk was helpful, and I didn't think it solved anything, or brought anything strictly emotionally new to the table, it definitely worked in a different way than past conversations. Or experienced itself in a different way, perhaps is more accurate.
I think what it needs to round itself out is some tense, wordless, emotionally deadened tag!fic that brings home the utter anticlimax with which they parted two weeks ago, and fell back into each other now, having solved nothing.
Also, I thought it was craaaaazy interesting how blase they both were about what went down in their respective portions of 9x11, be it Gadreel's grace or the Mark of Cain. And it's not even like, "yup, while you were out, some supernatural bullshit happened. The usual"--because neither of those are usual hunting things! XP So it's not even like it's normal levels of familiar bizarre. There's this refusal to unpack that, a pointed lack of curiosity, or willingness to follow through on the information. And that's just fascinating to me, it really is.
And it was interesting that the thing Sam apparently found most at issue here was that Dean "split," since he takes the time to correct him. The church and sealing Hell and the angel thing and all of that nonsense doesn't actually seem to figure as prominently for Sam as it does for us, as fandom. Like Sam mentions to Castiel in 9x11, it's not (entirely) about what Dean did. Tricked into accepting an angel pacemaker, okay, fine, whatever. But the general schema that motivates and narrativizes Deans behavior? Sam's so not having any of that. I don't know if I could articulate what it is, exactly, that Sam's so not having any of, except that 1) Dean absenting himself from the situation is not a solution Sam finds remotely adequate, and 2) we care about Gadreel more than Sam does. XP
Meanwhile, Dean has no idea what he's doing. Which, fair enough. I wanna see how this plays out.
Mostly just observations and notes that have less to do with the episode as a contained piece and more to do with things to keep in mind, or that might bear teasing out, should anyone have a need to write fic in or around 9x12. Writing for S9 is not easy!
In that vein, I must also express my empathy for Adam Glass's distinct inability to plot case!work or develop satisfactory conclusions to said case. It's something that's true of every single episode he's written (though he's not the alone in this, re: any other writer on SPN)--except perhaps 8x06. I do not remember what happened in 8x06 and therefore can't judge. Oh, and 8x18, which was subjectively flawless in my mind.
Regardless, I feel your pain, bro. XP Whenever I try to write case!fic, I run into the exact same set of problems this episode has, and am about as effective as this episode at muddling through them. I FEEL, AND AM ATTUNED AND ATTENTIVE TO, THIS PAIN.