zhadrani: (Default)
[personal profile] zhadrani
...By some standards, perhaps I'm completely unqualified to remark upon the last episode in Season 5 of Supernatural, "Swan Song". In October of last year I got frustrated with the online fandom and aspects of the storyline and, without making any particular decision about it, quietly stopped watching. The last episode I saw before tonight was 5x04, "The End", which I enjoyed a great deal.

So I've missed whatever problems that I've heard the edges of, that fandom had with the rest of the season. Monster-of-the-week hunts in the middle of the Apocalypse, too much heated strife between the brothers, the twists and turns and reveals of the myth-arc, etc. I also missed the impassioned, highly polarized, and by turns euphoric and venomous opinions of the individual fans as the episodes aired. Their understandable preoccupations with certain characters, the squeeing, the dissecting of every scene.

And, naturally, the details of what happened.

However. By and large, I consider this to be a good thing, and regardless of my own qualification to speak on the matter, I'm going to say a few words about "Swan Song", having watched it clear-eyed, blank of the layers of bright colors and emotions of immediate context, save for a quick Wikipedia look-up for the episode summaries of the span that I'd missed. I went into it with no expectations on my mind other than, "I want to see how this ends. I want to see what the boys do. I want to see who they are, at the end of this."

That said.

I loved it—with a quiet, steady, aching love, much as I love both of the boys. God, I can't believe I'd almost forgotten the feeling. Because it's the boys' story. The boys, their bond, their Impala, their home, their family. If the episode, and the entire show, the whole run of Supernatural, had ended on that shot, pulling away from that house, I would have been satisfied, and I would have felt that as a story, as a narrative, as an epic tale, it would have been complete.

Not precisely happy, oh no, one can't step into Dean's shoes for any of those final moments and imagine that he was happy, but. But...I could imagine a moment. Many, many years later. A moment when Dean is old and gray, when he's sitting on his porch with a blond-haired granddaughter babbling quietly on his knee, with the Impala's black hood shining in the afternoon sun in the driveway before him, his grandsons skateboarding in the neighborhood street like hooligans—a moment when he looks at all the world around him, full of people and color and life, and knows that all of it is there because of Sammy. His little brother. And regret that that little brother wasn't grey-haired and next to him, where they could clink their beer bottles together and rumble laughs about old times and old aches, but. Eventually. Eventually, he would be okay.

Sam. Oh Sam. How could Dean ever be okay with leaving him in Hell, you might ask? I don't know. Perhaps I come across as not in Sam's corner, as unsympathetic to his sacrifice—but god, that was what it was, a sacrifice. A willing sacrifice, breaking the cycle of ages, from the depths of his soul, standing poised over his brother for the final blow, his brother beaten bloody and nigh unrecognizable by his own hand, his brother who kept turning his face back and looking him in the eye and saying, mumbling only, "Sam. Sam. I'm here, I won't leave you." And he stopped. He stopped, and he looked at Dean, and the Impala, and he remembered Dean and the Impala and their lives and he stepped back into the Pit. It was beautiful. The strength required for that, the goodness and love, and the tragedy—all over again, I love Sam for that. He's in Hell. God only knows how far being Lucifer's vessel will protect him. He chose it. For Dean, for the world, for Dean. He chose it. I love him.

I did not need, on the most basic level, for the boys to drive off into the sunset together. I didn't need them to go out in a blaze of glory together, either. I know that there are people who won't be able to stand the idea. The notion that the boys could end up apart, one in Hell, and worse, that it might be...okay, in the grand scheme of things. Perhaps if it ended on that note, they'd prefer Dean to remain broken irreparably, forever, a lasting testament to his love for Sam and the fact that they need each other. That might make a beautiful, achingly tragic end...but I prefer the beautiful, achingly hopeful one. Where the lasting testament of Dean's love for his brother would be obeying his final wishes, and living out a happy life.

And yes, ahahaha, yes, I do fully realize that Supernatural is returning for a sixth season. No, I did not miss the final thirty seconds, I'm not denying them, nor am I free of curiosity for what they mean. I'm not sure why I've written this looking at the episode as if it were the true end, except for that it could have been, nearly was, perhaps it did end that way in another world. And oh, if it had, I would have been alright with it.

I don't have room in me to talk about the rest of the episode right now. About Bobby and Cas, and Adam and Michael, and Lucifer, and Chuck, and God. I didn't miss a bit of it. There wasn't a thing I hated, nor even disliked, not even the deus ex machina resurrections. "I wish we didn't have to do this. We can just walk off the chessboard. No one dicks with Michael but me. You got what you asked for. Which would you rather have. Peace? Or freedom?" No, I can't talk about it. All of those things were there, all of it contributed, wove into the whole, but for me, it comes down to Sam and Dean.

When I have the time, I think I'm going to go back and watch the entire season. And then I may re-watch the first three seasons that I have on DVD, and go out and buy the fourth so that I can do the same with it, as I always intended.

I loved the episode.


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