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the island of conclusions

War between all our peoples...endless war (5.10)

the island of conclusions

bright star

War between all our peoples...endless war (5.10)

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bright star
Shore clash with shore, sea against sea and sword
Against sword—this is my curse—war between all
Our peoples, all their children, endless war.

Dido, Queen of Carthage, curing Aeneas, Aeneid Bk. 4

I’m still up, and I think that rather than wait and write a thoughtful response to this episode, I should just go ahead and give my impressions.

Because if I were to wait and think about it, I would probably feel compelled to analyze all the things that I suspect were annoying about it—and that I would only find more annoying it I thought about it more.

Chief among them the fact that Sam and Dean were—what was it Crowley called them? Barely functioning morons? Low-functioning morons?—throughout, and were utterly out-BAMF’ed by everyone else onscreen—most especially by Jo and Ellen, who each had more balls and brains than Sam and Dean put together (I know, I know, --I’m surprised by this?).

My favorite moment in this respect was when Dean was having his PTSD-I-can’t-deal-with-hell-or-hellhounds moment and Bobby was trying to shore him up, and Ellen came over, and, with her hands covered in her daughter’s blood, coolly explained to Bobby how many reapers there were in town.

Hope you were taking notes on how to keep your head in a crisis, Dean!

Also, the end dragged: Lucifer digging, Dean being unconscious, Sam remonstrating seemed to go on for a long time, with no pay-off for it….The episode was, like Edlund’s last fabulous episode, kind of like a snake eating its own tail: lots of action, lots of emotional drama, but in the end you realize only negative things have been established (the colt doesn’t work; Dean shouldn’t push Sam away).

But really? While it was going on, I was completely distracted by all the fun characters (Crowley—kissing boys no less! Lucifer! Meg! Badass!Jo n’ Ellen), and their fun interactions (Lucifer and Castiel! Crowly and the boys! Meg and Castiel!, emo!Dean and Bobby—‘cause I did like that scene even though I just ragged on it--and, OMG, Dean kissing Jo on the forehead first!).

And, while I was very, very sad to see Jo and Ellen go, that was really a scene of supreme awesomeness. Their love for each other? And the fact that Jo thought up the plan and enacted it? I might be wrong, but I think this might be the first time we’ve seen a death like that on SPN: protracted, conscious, agonizing agency.

Also very distracted by? Castiel’s face lit by flames.

Seriously, I feel like there are two SPNs at the moment: the one Ben Edlund is writing, and the other one that we’ve been subjected to for the past five weeks (okay, that one had its moments too, but it's completely different).

ETA: On 4 hours sleep, of course I have more theories. The episode clearly wanted to recur to the SPN themes of familial love and, importantly, sacrifice. I'm not sure Ellen and Jo's deaths are ever going to mean anything for the narrative or myth arc. But they did seem (deliberately?) to recall the last scenes of "Croatoan." Only to reflect kind of weirdly on Sam and Dean, however...Otherwise, why have Ellen's pitch-perfect "I will always love you, baby" followed so closely by Sam's "Any last words?" and Dean's "No, I think I'm good." Either Dean is being pretty darn butch here, or it's kind of a kick in the teeth to Sam, who is clearly looking for some reassurance.....
  • (no subject) -
    • No--you didn't miss anything--it was a completely unexplained transition from L. raising Death to them being back at Bobby's (without Cas--why?--he was in the picture they were burning...). And I think that just increased the sense that something was missing from the ending--there should have been some kind of payoff there--even if it was just more bleakness and hopelessness.

      both Alona and Samantha were ON and Samantha really moved me -- I've always liked Ellen and last night I loved her.
      Oh, I know--I loved her so much in those scenes--that she could be so strong and so loving at the same time. <

      I felt like his Sam was floundering -- not Sam but Jared as Sam -- and not a lot but enough where I thought of K. Manners and actually said in my head, "If he was directing this episode, it'd be what it should be."
      Yeah, I agree. The scene with Lucifer, especially, did him no favors--the lines were stupid, and he just waffled around with them...JP has the capacity to be good, but he did need strong direction in that scene--or better writing (though Edlund wrote awesome scenes in this ep for everyone else, so maybe it was the actig/directing--must re-watch). I think you're right, that as S5 goes on, everything they lost when they lost Kim Manners gets more and more apparent...sigh...

      In some ways I'm glad for the hiatus--I won't be up at 1pm writing episode reactions--*g*--but of course I'll be back to see what happens!
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