Sam’s Going Crazy. Well…Sort Of. As we leave behind the stellar aspects of season 7, I think it’s time to turn to some issues that fans have with the season, because nothing is perfect. The first is the present state of Sam. Alice summed it up best when she said “I, for one, came into this season most intrigued over the idea of Sam’s wall breaking inside his head. All those memories of a hundred plus years of intense torture in Lucifer’s cage in Hell, all those memories of what his soulless self had done during that year and a half, it surely had to wreak some serious havoc on the younger Winchester’s psyche. It has, but so far there has been very little payoff in that department. ‘Hello, Cruel World’ was a brilliant depiction of his psychotic break, and then it all went away too easily.”
To be perfectly honest, I can understand the dilemma the writers must be facing with regards to Sam’s storyline. Because the truth is that there is no ideal way to handle the situation that would please everyone. Sam’s wall broke and it is a horrific thing. But you cannot have him act like he did in “Hello, Cruel World” in every episode. If he was questioning reality at every turn and acting as a danger to himself and others it would make no sense for Dean to let him ride around in the Impala and work on cases. At first, his behavior in episodes 7.03 to 7.05 seemed a bit too neat in terms of what he must have been going through. His struggle to deal with these memories seemed more prevalent in “Death’s Door”. But in some respects I can understand Sam’s ability to deal with the Hell memories. After all, Sam has been a “freak” for most of the time we’ve known him. He’s dealt with visions, demon blood addiction, and the power to psychically exorcise demons. In each of these cases, Sam was able to take the thing that made him different and temper it down to a facet of his personality that he was able to deal with on a day to day basis. I’m not trying to suggest that the wall breaking is comparable to his visions from earlier seasons, but this is the way that Sam deals with things. That being said, I would personally like the writers to revisit Sam’s memories in the second half of the season. It needs to be dealt with a bit more conclusively than saying Sam is using exercise to deal with his trauma. I think there’s a resolution to be reached in this case and I have hope we will see it.
Bidding Adieu to Castiel. This is a tough issue to examine. I know that many Castiel fans are still disappointed by his exit from the show. In particular, some of them are upset that he didn’t really get a proper send-off. While the season opener belongs to Cas – and was a stellar episode – his final moments before walking into a lake and disappearing were far from the send-off the character deserved. Particularly when you compare it to “Death’s Door”, which may have served as a lovely farewell to Bobby (more on that soon). Cas didn’t really get a worthy redemptive arc, which I know many fans were hoping for. In addition, Tina rightly pointed out that writing out Cas after destroying “the friendship and camaraderie between Dean and Cas” has made some fans sad.
I thought I could live without Cas on the show, although I have to admit that I’m missing him far more than I thought I would. It’s not that I believe Castiel is the only reason one should watch Supernatural, I just believe he added something to it. Much like Bobby and the other recurring characters add a little extra spice to the show, as do the Winchesters’ relationships with these characters.
Laura believes that the show may have “missed a big opportunity to bring Misha Collins back as the Leviathan majordomo instead of Dick, not to mention how much more emotionally resonant Dean’s trial would’ve been had Osiris called Castiel as a key witness, either instead of Jo or in addition to her. When a character has made such an impact in both the lives of the characters and the fans, it seems wasteful to squander a resource like Collins.” Laura’s point about having had Cas as the main leviathan could have been a good one. In particular, it would have made Sam and Dean’s fight against the leviathans more emotionally resonant. I’m not sure, though, how Castiel fans would have responded had the angel turned out to be the big bad for the season (much like Angel became Angelus in season 2 of Buffy) or how that storyline could have ended. In any event, I do hope – and would like to see – Castiel return in some form before the end of the season. I hold out hope that this will happen and would be very happy if it did.
I think that a lot of what fans were saying over the summer (and which I captured in an earlier article) concerning Castiel still applies. You should all take a look at our previous article on how and why the fans want to save Cas after reading this review.
Updated: Warner Brothers has just announced that Misha Collins will appear in three episodes of season 7 towards the end of the season. Review some (scarce) details here.
The Decision to Kill Amy. This was certainly one of the more dividing issues of season 7 so far. From the beginning, I personally didn’t see anything wrong with killing Amy (at least in terms of Dean’s decision). However, I think casting a less sympathetic and beloved actress might have resulted in a different feeling from the fans who thought Dean had done the wrong thing. In any event, some of the Amy situation did feel like a deliberate roadblock to Sam and Dean’s renewed relationship and one that wasn’t entirely necessary. Alice believes it got more attention than was necessary, while Laura thinks that the opportunity presented by the situation was overlooked: “I’m all for exploring a character’s morality, especially in a show like Supernatural that deals so deeply in shades of grey, but we didn’t get that exploration; we saw Dean killing a character who was a protective mother and had been built up to be sympathetic throughout the hour. Regardless of whether or not Dean was justified (which the show later decided he was), the episode would never have sparked such controversy among fans if the characterization had been more consistent, or if Dean’s motivations had been explored more clearly in the following episodes.”
Dean’s reactions to the Amy situation turned out to be more about his guilt over lying to Sam than his guilt over killing Amy. I don’t really see anything wrong with that, because I personally don’t think what Dean did was terribly inconsistent with his characterization (although it did seem a bit cold). But I can appreciate that it did seem like a road block that wasn’t wholly necessary. In any event, the situation is over and I don’t think it’s worth rehashing it further.
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