16 October 2011

Review: Supernatural 7.04 Defending Dean

Because you're worth it.
7.04 Defending Your Life was written by Adam Glass and directed by Robert Singer. Adam was the writer for Mommy Dearest, Like a Virgin, All Dogs Goes to Heaven and Two and a Half Men, and Supervising Producer for tons of other Supernatural episodes.

I'll get to the point. I don't care so much for the Egyptian God storyline. Supernatural isn't known for using costumes, their approach in the wardrobe department is very modern -- even Evil Santa wears a simple cardigan, Baldur wears a suit and no angels wear wings, and Clowns are Clowns. I am not sure if Osiris fits into the Supernatural-urban-legend norm. But then again it's Supernatural, the sky's the limit. I do like the ghost dog idea and the fact Sam watches The Good Wife!

Guilt, is a very important element of the show and it is this week's theme. I've been thinking about the whole guilt thing. But you know what, enough is enough... I am going to turn this around and call it -- supernatural bullying. I have enough of these monsters and supernatural creatures giving Dean shit.

Dean is a hero, his life is all about saving people, hunting things, protecting his little brother. Dean has been carrying a lot of crap on his shoulder since he was five! Supernatural things like monsters, creatures and spirits have been bullying Dean forever -- Famine, Zachariah, YEDJohn and DemonDean basically said to his face, "You're nothing. You're worthless." They, and others, said things to devalue my hero. It doesn't matter how strong you are, stuff like that really messes your mind. We don't live in a perfect world, there are more bullies than heroes. They will always find a way to push you and kick you when you are down, just to make themselves feel more superior and important. That's pretty much how I feel after I watched this episode.

Dean feels crap most of the time, he has a hero syndrome -- he just doesn't think he is awesome! Dean's heart is pure. Why? Because Dean is selfless, he is not a bully. He helps people unconditionally. He never ever has any agenda or evil plan to harm people. Dean doesn't kill for thrills, he doesn't kill to survive, he doesn't kill to make himself feel important. He kills supernatural things because they harm people, they may have a reason or two sometimes, but they kill people. If you're a human and you kill humans for whatever reasons, you go to jail. If you're not a human and kill humans, you get Dean Winchester.

Dean reminds me so much of Jack Bauer -- everyone he'd ever loved or known, died in bad situations. Was it Dean's fault that Jo die? Was it his fault that John die? Was it his fault that everyone die? No! They died because Kripke liked killing off characters! Oh wait.. what? As for Sam, how hard was it for Dean when he had to prevent anything bad from happening to Sam, especially after John told Dean that if he couldn't save Sam, he had to kill him? How hard was it to see Sam to go dark side, and Dean felt helpless for not being able to do anything? Even if Dean didn't 'dragged' Sam back into the hunting life, everything would still happen. Dean isn't the other guy who was killed by the ghost dog, he isn't those dicks in Yellow Fever, and he certainly isn't those jerks in The Benders. Nobody should judge Dean the way they judge anyone else. Dean feels guilty because he cares about what he does, he feels crap because he still has a heart and it's a big one.

So, Osiris, dude, you shut your pie hole!

What I LOVE about this episode is the Dean and Jo moments. It's no secret that I am Team Jo. I have always loved their on-screen chemistry on the show. Jo wasn't exactly a love interest (I know this comment is debatable) and her character certainly had the potential of being a love interest but It wasn't like that. I think the right words were used to summarise Jo's feeling for Dean -- Jo idolised Dean, and she has a massive crush on the guy. (Who doesn't? Right?) I love how much Jo had matured as a character and how much Alona Tal has grown as an actress. She was so so good in this episode, Alona totally nailed this! Her compassion and sorrow were seriously moving. Her scene with Dean was so amazing, I wished she'd never left the show and continued to be there for Dean and Sam.

I am all Dean! I will always defend Dean... like, he jumps I jump. And sometimes, I almost feel like this.. when it comes to the nuts and bolts of character development of Dean Winchester, they should leave it to Eric Kripke, Sera Gamble, Ben Edlund and Jeremy Carver. Don't let anyone else to 'have a go'. If something isn't written perfectly, people will get the wrong idea. Long time fans get it, even if something isn't crystal clear, we always get it. But other fans/ viewers won't get it, they see what's in front of them.. they'll be like, "Oh is Dean is a killer?" Oh shut up! I mean, why is that even a question?

I shall conclude with this: Certainly some very important Dean scenes should have been written better under the pens and fingers of Andrew Dabb and Daniel Loflin, like the death of Amy Pond, I get why Dean has to do it, I get why this secret is killing him, but the scene, the secret and the situation could have been designed better to get the message across to the viewers. Adam Glass did an ok job with Defending Your Life, but it should be more meaty if you know what I mean?

The Dean stuff requires much attention and justice. I know why I am defending Dean, not only because Osiris is a load of crap, I know Dean deserves better. I know Dean is not a bully. I know Dean is a hero.

And do I even have to explain further when it comes to Jensen Ackles's performance? Give the man an Emmy already!!

Next week, 7.05 Shut Up, Osiris! Oh.. sorry.. it's 7.05 Shut Up, Dr Phil, featuring Buffy's Charisma Carpenter and James Marsters. Is it just me or do you secretly wish Joss Whedon was the writer and/or director of this episode?


  1. I love you Tiny. This is perfect. Dean is perfect and they, including the Supernatural creatives have to all stop trying to drag him down. My bug bear with this and last week's ep was the writing and a big part of that was the translation of Dean. No one but the senior creatives on the team should be allowed to write deep character exposition. There should be a rule against it, because they screw it up, and when it comes to Dean, that's not the kind of screwing we're looking for ;D Seriously, the guy really needed to get it on with that bar tender, it would have done wonders for his self esteem!
    Really lovely write up Tiny. GO TEAM DEAN! -Amy (not the dead monster one)

  2. Thanks Amy -- who isn't Amy Pond. For us who give a crap, really want others to stop giving Dean crap. Dean is our hero. He should know he is awesome!


  3. U forgot how AWESOME MY SAMMY IS ((((rofl)))..
    well written hun...except for the minor ommission!!!::DDDD

  4. yes Tiny! you are so right! I think we all need to let Dean know how wonderful he is! I did love the Jo moments, and Jensen's acting was so amazing he was heartbreaking. But I need for Dean to find a place where he can be comfortable with who he is. Dean is in a dark place right now. he needs a real win! I know you aren't a fan of the egyptian god thing, but I have to say I was happy for a non judeo christian entity in the supernaturalverse that is truly immortal! usually the gods are so easy to kill! this was a nice change. thanks as always for sharing your thoughts Tiny!

  5. Its funny how this episode became such a character discussion on Dean, but I don't think this episode really developed the character of Dean.
    Anyone who has watched Supernatural for at least more than one season knows that Dean ALWAYS feels guilt. (battered children often do... but Johns parenting skills, or lack there of, isn't the point.) This episode kind of felt as if we were going over the same thing, its like Dean keeps getting banged over the head saying 'Stop feeling guilty' but that's just like asking him to stop feeling hungry, its part of his nature.
    The most interesting part of this episode was the fact Sam doesnt feel any guilt. Excuse me? So you were Lucifer's bitch in the pit so what? You know you (I am talking to Sam here) killed innocent people while you were soulless and so on. I think him feeling guiltless is kind of disturbing but it just goes to my belief that Sam see's himself as the victim.
    MARY made the deal.
    YED gave him the yummy demons blood.
    DEAN took him away from Jess.
    RUBY tricked him.
    CAS raised him from the pit without his soul. None of the buck really rests on him. And I know a lot of season 5 was about Sam's guilt, but I just think its too easy to say Sam has no guilt. A little guilt is healthy, it means you wont repeat the same mistakes again.
    Dean, poor Dean. We have known Dean has had to be the glue that kept his family together (Dark Side of the Moon when he hugs Mary and tells her that he loves her and John loves her and everything is going to be ok) It seems to me Dean feels as if he has to protect everyone which is why when cant save someone AKA Jo and Ellen it hits him harder than it should.

    So this episode to me just went over the same thing, Dean needs to learn, and I am sorry Sam Fan girls, Sam needs to take responsibility, a little guilt never killed anyone... unless you ran into Osiris.
    Also about Amy, I really think Dean needs to tell Sam and tell him quick. At this stage of the game they really shouldn't be keeping things from each other. (And then hopefully Sam will realise killing Amy was the right thing to do- just because he was too gutless to do it himself doesn't change anything.)

    Anyway I swear I love Sam but the last scene of this episode just angered me. And Tiny AWESOME review like always :D

  6. Hey Kara, exactly! And I don't see Sam as a victim. I know this is probably a matter of opinion, but you gotta know drinking demon blood is wrong, trusting a demon instead of your brother is not right, Dean died for him! Dean has to put up with a lot of crap, but he still loves Sammy. And Sam is always the one who is like "So, Dean, say something, anything.." or "So, are we cool Dean?" or "I was 14.. that was my first thanks giving.. oh.. but I love that random dog"..
    But it's never going to be cool and easy. And yet, it's always a bit too easy for Sam. But for Dean, it always comes down to this, it isn't so much about guilt -- for Sammy or Dad, the things he's willing to do or kill...it scares him.

    I think Sam has the little brother syndrome and Dean has the big brother syndrome.


  7. Great thoughts from both of you! I know a pair of siblingsnavfew years apart andvthe young brother's road had been much easier. Maybe Sam feels lessor apparently no guilt because he's had Dean there making the tough calls, killing the unfortunate clubbing vampire chick, the mother in Croatoan, torturing Bobby to get rid of the worm, killing Amy. Dean is willing to do this, he sees it as his responsibility and I think a large part of that is protecting Sam. His conflict between being a trained killer and being the caregiver for just about anyone who crosses his path is starting grind Dean down. How can those two things, one of which had been a very recent and profound part of his life, coexist. I agree Kara, there was no learning for and no depth to this so called exploration of his guilt. Dean deserves better. He deserves to feel good about himself. He deserves to have his brother tell him it's not all his fault. He deserves a special cuddle.... Great points ladies!


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