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Last one before the hiatus, huh?

I had high hopes for this last SPN episode because Ben Edlund is my fave writer on staff and um, well, that worked out better for me on his other eps this Season. Not that I hated it but I definitely liked last one's better for example. Still,

Not really a gore girl, here. I could bear it but I'm not getting off on it either. The guy grabbing the fries from boiling oil - that was the creepiest for me.

The Cupid bits were very amusing. All actors seemed to have great fun with it.

Was not fond of the return of the soooper-powers because I never liked the concept in the first place. Anyway, I would want show to make up its mind about it: either human heroes triumph by human means is gonna be the message or it will be a heroes with superpowers show. In any case, you gotta bring BOTH protagonists in, either WITH powers or WITHOUT.

Maybe it wouldn't have been so bad if Dean hadn't stood there like a slack-jawed yokel while Sam saved the day with powers. He had the knife, Famine was distracted yet he didn't even make a move. Why? No reason but it wasn't in the script. So, the way they staged it the scene brought home how he CAN'T do anything while super-powered beings duke it out. Splendid. That is not what I want from a vital protagonist during the big battles. I don't mind if they lose n occassion, I don't mind if they have to be saved on occassion, I don't mind if they are not always on top - that is called suspense after all but I have to feel they have something to contribute in an action sense.

At least the powers seem to be connected to the demon blood which gives them a much necessary boon. However, I'm not really understanding what Lucifer's point was if Famine could be believed. Sam can drink epic amounts of demon blood without ever getting too full, just like "Satan wanted." And, that was terribly important for the Lucifer vessel because...? Lucifer is an angel, he doesn't care much for his demonic children and has apparently the power to smoke them out on masse. He also has all the powers of an archangel. Which are far greater than powers we have seen come from the blood. Not to mention his vessel won't get a voting voice on matters once Lucy is in. So, why the hell does he care if his vessel can stomach drinking demon blood?

It's already the right bloodline (and destiny) if you can believe all the angels. I mean Michael supposedly didn't take any steps to "upgrade" his vessel for anything. What Heaven did was kick-start a breeding program, mix up the right bloodlines - John and Mary - and get them to have the two necessary vessels. Is more really required? Apart from literally their human bodies the brothers can't offer archangels anything they don't already have.

I thought the depiction of Famine was pretty cool. I seriously don't want to see Pestilence now. Probably a giant swarm of locust riding around in a what-the-hell-colour (yellow?) car.

Nice that Cas got a bit of real screentime here. Annnnd we're already at our next nitpick. Jimmy is still in there? Did you think about that in the brothel-visit episode? Nope? I didn't think so. Besides, they had the perfect excuse to say Jimmy has gone on since he was blown up.

But good to see Dean and Castiel share a few funny bits again. I missed those fiercely.

Loved Dean getting in the line about the "remarkably patronizing concern" over the dog remark because that is pretty dealing with a central issue I would want to see adressed since pretty much forever but Season 4 brought it to a forefront. You know, show, actual people would get frakked up when someone close told them basically they thought of them as dumb or weak. People with low-selfesteem would get frakked up ten times as hard. And at some point, actual people would let that show. They'd simply ASK about it at some point. If someone told me something really unflattering about me when they're drunk, I would seriously not get through my whole life wondering if they just didn't say it sober because they didn't wanna hurt my feelings. I would wanna know.

That is not to say I think Sam meant the dog remark as a put-down here, I think he was truly concerned, just phrased it badly, but if you have a history with shit like the above and something says something in a way that indicates to me, hey maybe this IS still an issue, I would clear the air. To me, it's like a Freudian slip.

I did like Sam being honest about the blood addiction and asking for help. Definitely growth from last Season.

Whereas the way they are going with Dean now confuzzles me. First he comes back from hell, then PTSD are on-off-on-off-on to the point of getting him totally broken (Head on a Pin) and then he gets a quick fix, consisting of "stop whining already" (you tell that to a lot of torture victims?) and snap of a finger, he seems over it. For episodes we never see it again.

This Season there is nothing about it up to maybe episode 9 where Dean says his life sucks - to be shot down by people with pretty cozy lifes as to how great he has it. Apparently, from the way the scene looked, I was supposed to agree with them? Then in episode 11 the PTSD are miraculously back again. Michael makes a devastating entry (devastating for Dean and free will, that is) and drops the clue that he won't damage Dean by vesseling him up. Case in point, a giant neon arrow that Dean will say "yes". Otherwise, why put that in, right?

Now this episode served the same purpose as OTHOAP, breaking the character to the point of no return. Um, did we not have that storyline last Season? Ending on an unsatisfying note? I get that this time they want to show him breaking down to saying "yes" but I swear if it ends up in another round of "you are so weak" again, I will become violent. Ditto for "stop whining".

There are good reasons to say "yes" as it is. It doesn't need to have a great psychological mindfuck as a motive. Simply play it as a choice. It doesn't have to be about being weak, or broken or anything, it can be a fucking simple tactical choice.

Because I'm not buying the "dead inside". Because to me that means having no feelings anymore. Not just not getting excited for anything. Anguish or hurt or despair ARE feelings. If you still feel them, you WSIH you were dead inside. The problem is that you aren't.

I liked that Dean wasn't affected but IMO they could have easily explained it in that he usually likes to indulge in simple pleasures, Famine worked opposite on people like him. Would have made sense to me. Much more than dead-inside-guy who just last week still enjoyed the stipper dream. That was real nihilistic right there.

Eh, it wasn't a bad episode but I do expect more from Ben.

If this had come from the comic writers or Siege, I'd have probably been more lenient.

Comments

( 9 have dazzled me — Dazzle me )
leelust
Feb. 14th, 2010 12:08 am (UTC)
Maybe it wouldn't have been so bad if Dean hadn't stood there like a slack-jawed yokel while Sam saved the day with powers. He had the knife, Famine was distracted yet he didn't even make a move. Why? No reason but it wasn't in the script. So, the way they staged it the scene brought home how he CAN'T do anything while super-powered beings duke it out. Splendid. That is not what I want from a vital protagonist during the big battles.
YES THIS. *headdesk*
astri13
Feb. 14th, 2010 12:13 pm (UTC)
It was maddening. And since I can't stand the Hand of Ipecac scenes, it was ten times worse for me. Eh.
leelust
Mar. 8th, 2010 12:42 am (UTC)
ITA. Again. I can't stand it too. I wish that scene were cut out.
rheasilvia
Feb. 14th, 2010 12:17 am (UTC)
Just watched it myself... and, oh well. To be honest, I don't have any expectations anymore when it comes to this show; at this point I'm just waiting for Michael to slip into Dean because I want to see what Jensen Ackles does with that, and I think the transformation will be awesome in terms of acting.

Logic... characterization that makes sense... villains that are scary rather than pathetic... what are those things you speak of?
astri13
Feb. 14th, 2010 12:14 pm (UTC)
To be honest, I don't have any expectations anymore when it comes to this show; at this point I'm just waiting for Michael to slip into Dean because I want to see what Jensen Ackles does with that, and I think the transformation will be awesome in terms of acting.

I'm pretty much at the same point. Which is disappointing because last year I saw some real potential in that storyline but frankly those writers can't hack it. :/

Logic... characterization that makes sense... villains that are scary rather than pathetic... what are those things you speak of?

I know, what am I thinking, right?
rheasilvia
Feb. 14th, 2010 02:48 pm (UTC)
Yes, it is definitely very disappointing... this show has always had enormous story-telling potential, IMO, and hasn't ever had the writers necessary to do anything much with it. The fundamental good ideas are there, it's just the execution that is inevitably irretrievably flawed. It's a shame, and it's become more and more clear to me with every passing season. :-/

This latest season has been like a demonstration of what not to do with an apocalypse storyline, for me. I have never seen such pathetically lacking villains. The horsemen are a joke, Lucifer is a pontificating fool with bad dress sense and the scare potential of a rotten egg, and the archangels are a bunch of losers who can't even get their history straight. And don't even get me started on the plot, or the characterization, or the lame back doors they're already holding open, or anything else. *rolls eyes*

So, yeah, the Michael storyline is really the only thing I'd still like to see right now. It's sad, but, well.
astri13
Feb. 14th, 2010 03:27 pm (UTC)
This latest season has been like a demonstration of what not to do with an apocalypse storyline, for me.

Exactly. I mean, I used to have problems with Buffy Season 7 handled the apocalypse and the first evil. After starting out reasonably well, it just became one big bla-bla and the First Evil not being able to interact other than bla-bla-ing itself contributed to it.

But by Jahwe, oompared to SPN "funny Wal-mart apocalypse", I have to basically now call it a success. Because they at least tried to present it as an arc and an actual feeling of danger. There weren't a gazillion time-outs with insignificant little hunts and frat-boy comedy.

Okay, the characterization sucked doney-balls for a lot of it, too but that's not exactly something I cared to see again.

Lucifer is a pontificating fool with bad dress sense and the scare potential of a rotten egg

Awesome description. :) And I knew we were in deep guano when at the start of the Season the writers were all gleeful about how "Lucifer should be the most sympathetic person in every episode" and how they would "go out of their way to make the angels dicks".

A) your freaking main VILLAIN should not be the most sympathetic person in any given episode. *headdesk* That role should fall to your freaking PROTAGONISTS. And b) I don't need the angels to be fluffy bunnies but why make one side as bad as the other? It's not grey if you don't have black and white at some ends at the pendulum.

The point of a show like this should be to create a sense of suspense and root for the heroes to triumph. I don't even know what I'm doing now but it's not that.

Dean apparently doesn't get a development other than "we'll break him completely apart and then...well, then we will...um...then the Season will be almost over and we fix him quickly...to start anew next Season." Any fresh ideas there, guys?

With Sam it's not really better. I think they have dropped the ball hugely on any of the real, significant issues they build up last year. So, it's a whole big of whatever.

Which goes doubly and triply for their relationship.

I can only hope I have seen the last of those damn powers. I never liked them in the first place and I certainly don't want them to save the day in the end.

So, yeah, the Michael storyline is really the only thing I'd still like to see right now. It's sad, but, well.

Yup. I'm kinda excited for the 100th episode for that reason. Then again, who knows how badly they can screw that up still. :/

It's uncanny. I LOVE angels vs. demons stories. I love both Lucifer and Michael as mythological figures. It takes a lot to put me off with that but damnit, show has found a way.
rheasilvia
Feb. 14th, 2010 04:28 pm (UTC)
I can only hope I have seen the last of those damn powers. I never liked them in the first place and I certainly don't want them to save the day in the end.

Yeah, same here, but I'm sure we'll be seeing more of them. OTOH, remember that stupid, pointless and illogical antichrist kid the SPN people stole from "Good Omens" (where he was actually a great character)? My money's on that dumb plot device coming back to Deus ex Machina things to hell and back. Even Sam's powers would make more sense.

It's uncanny. I LOVE angels vs. demons stories. I love both Lucifer and Michael as mythological figures. It takes a lot to put me off with that but damnit, show has found a way.

Ditto. I have a devil kink that ensures even the cheesiest devil plotlines have a good chance of succeeding for me. I loved Brimstone, and The Collector, despite all of those shows' flaws. But on SPN, there's no spark to it at all. Boring, dumb and pointless, with eye-rollingly, annoyingly badly drawn characters.

I would love it if Lucifer were a truly sympathetic character - that would/could make him scary. But he's just lame. Like pretty much everyone else in this ho-hum cut-budget apocalypse, which seems to be taking place in three small towns in the American outback, with a cast of half-hearted low-powered rejects from a real apocalypse.
astri13
Feb. 14th, 2010 05:02 pm (UTC)
OTOH, remember that stupid, pointless and illogical antichrist kid the SPN people stole from "Good Omens" (where he was actually a great character)? My money's on that dumb plot device coming back to Deus ex Machina things to hell and back.

I still half-think they are going to do a literal deus ex machina - by having God show up and solve things. I mean, they already said we'd see him. *headdesk*

But the anti-Christ kid - gee, humans and demons alone don't have the powers to even sneeze at the Heavenly Host but a crossbreed can destroy them with a thought? and humans have never ever thought of creating one if it is so easy? Aaaaaaaah. - is a front-runner, too, certainly.

Next up, I'd group Sam's super-powers, suddenly perfectly good and great enough to defeat Lucifer himself. Just like White!Wig!Willow in the Buffy Finale. Yuck.

And Dean? Well, he could say yes. Other than that he's got nothing.

It's not exactly like hunters or anybody has organized or prepared or even read Revelation backwards and forwards to find something. After all, there are poker-witches to play, conventiones to be visited or asylums to be haunted.

Hasn't Death risen recently? Wonder what HE is up to.

Like pretty much everyone else in this ho-hum cut-budget apocalypse, which seems to be taking place in three small towns in the American outback

Well, the apocalypse has been greatly overhyped. Last year when everybody was all "eeeh, Lucifer will rise", it actually sounded like something monumental. Now that he is actually there... I guess everybody feels like Chicken Little.

They did the same with the Seven Deadly Sins - biiiiig overture, liiiitle pay-off - but at least that was juat one, dumb episode, not a Seasonal plot.
( 9 have dazzled me — Dazzle me )