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Archive for April 19th, 2009

Dean, so much more than pretty face

Dean, so much more than pretty face

Anyone who’s read even one of my Supernatural blogs might have picked up on the not so well hidden fact that I’m an unabashed Dean lover.  I don’t exactly attempt to hide my love for all things Dean Winchester, from the looks to the sarcasm to the attitude.  All of it just works for me.  This weekend I took it upon myself to suspend my Veronica Mars rewatch after I finished season 2 (Yeah, I still like to pretend season 3 didn’t happen) and pick up with Supernatural season 1.  And instead of just hitting a few episodes I managed to watch the entire season.  Yes, I’m aware that I need a life, that’s not what this is about!  This is what happens when football season ends.  I need new things to obsess about, so here I am.

Rameau is doing a season 1 episode break down, this won’t be that because I didn’t have the patience to stop after each episode to write about it.  She’s a much stronger woman than I am.  I’m just going to talk about my overall reaction to the brothers knowing what I now know.  I’ve tried to throw out my current irritation with Sam when watching the season, but that’s pretty much impossible.  Every time he questions his brother and gives him attitude it serves to remind me just how he’s looking down upon his brother these days.  And honestly?  It pisses me right the hell off.  Because while Dean had dickish moments, he always loved his brother more than anybody.  He carried the weight of caring for him on his shoulders since he was 4 years old and Sam has the utter gall to question his strength now?  It really makes me almost too angry.

What’s funny is it’s quite clear that in the early going of the series they clearly were trying to make Sam the rootable brother, the one we’d all identify with and feel sorry for.  He tried to have a normal life and his crappy family drew him back in.  I can and do sympathize with that, nobody likes to have their life path laid out before them the way his was.  But so was Dean’s.  And Dean gets no sympathy from Sam?  For being the brother that bent to his father’s plan and will, Sam looks down on Dean.  Sam had a couple of moments of awareness peak through and it’s clear that he does come to understand eventually just how much Dean cared for and protected him growing up.  I guess that further demonstrates how far they’ve come because Sam seems to have forgotten that this season.

Like season 1, Sam’s all caught up in revenge to the point that he doesn’t give a damn most of the year about regular everyday cases and saving lives.  Dean constantly battles with him over doing what’s right while Sam wants to go find their father and get revenge.  I understand it, it’s just an interesting parallel to this season.  Sam has his brother back, whose death is what drove him for his desire for revenge but he doesn’t even appreciate it.  He can’t put aside the thirst to get back at Lillith despite the fact that he has his brother there by his side, and once again, he’s busy resenting him.

Dean always carried the weight of caring for Sam on his shoulders, that's a lot of weight.

Dean always carried the weight of caring for Sam on his shoulders, that's a lot of weight.

Though my anger issues with Sam don’t appear to have abated, neither does my love for Dean.  Because he really drew me in from moment one.  And it’s not just the looks, though of course they help.  It was his determination to do what was right and his desire to protect his family.  It was those little flashes of pain and hurt when Sam belittled the family and made a mockery of his loyalty to their father.  It’s that instinctual bond he had with the people they helped, from hot women to lonely, scared children.  It’s funny because prior to this season had you asked me who the brother was that was better with people I would have said Sam.  And I would have been completely wrong.  Sam might be better at talking to people but Dean’s the one who understands them and reaches them.

Dean has stayed remarkably consistent over all 4 seasons so far.  His number one priority has always been his family.  And it always will be.  Now we know this season is going to be the ultimate test of that and it’s going to be fascinating to watch Jensen work through that.  I have always appreciated his acting but now I’m seeing all the extra little expressions that he throws in that make Dean so reachable, so understandable.  I’m not saying Jared doesn’t do that for Sam, he definitely has moments, but it’s Dean that I’m drawn to and I’m going to notice more of the little things with him.

The memory of failing to protect Sam haunts Dean.

The memory of failing to protect Sam haunts Dean.

Something Wicked was one of the more powerful episodes of the season that really brought my Dean love and Sam anger into focus.  That’s the episode where the shtriga is taking the life force out of children and it comes out that it came after Sam when he was a kid.  Dean got tired of watching out for his brother and left him alone to go watch video games and came home to find the thing attacking Sam.  He froze and before he could get off a shot his dad was there to scare the thing away.  He took Sam into his arms and gave Dean hell for not protecting his brother.  That’s quite a lot to lay on a 10 or 12 year old, isn’t it?  And he’s had that on him since he was 4.  Dean kept the story from Sam for most of the episode and finally told him toward the end when Sam was giving him attitude over having to risk the older brother to catch the thing.  Sam finally seemed to grasp at that moment just how much Dean had always cared for him and how that one instance of not protecting him had weighed on him for 15 or 20 years.  He actually realized just what Dean had carried with him.  I wish he hadn’t forgotten.  He also thanked him in Salvation…where’s that knowledge these days?

So, really, that’s what makes me love and adore Dean Winchester.  That sacrifice.  Sam didn’t have a normal growing up experience but Dean did his best to make sure that he didn’t have as bad a one as Dean himself did either.  From giving him the last of the Lucky Charms to stealing Christmas presents for him, Dean always took care of Sam.  I can’t help but love that.

I don’t know when I’ll do the season 2 rewatch, football gets to return to my life for glorious draft weekend next week, so it’ll be sometime after that.  I can’t help but wonder if I had watched this before season 4 started if I’d have the same resentment for Sam as I do now?  Probably not to this level, but it sure has influenced my viewing this time out.  Maybe season 2 I’ll be less irritated.  Probably not, but I’ll try.  It’ll still be good to revisit the early Supernatural and watch the evolution of the brother’s relationship.  I want, more than anything, for Dean and Sam to get back to a good place with one another, not for me, but for Dean.  You know that’s what is most important to him and he deserves whatever little bit of happiness he can get.

All photos from SupernaturalSeries.com.

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