I’ve seen the season 2 premiere some time Friday afternoon and OMG, I think I still haven’t recovered entirely. Totally blew me away. This episode actually had a somewhat more mature impression on me if that's even possible :) and there was a lingering suspense from the character's point of view carried throughout the whole episode that totally gripped, and weighed down on me. The season premiere sure kicked ass.
At first, I was worried about the reaper story line since it had been done on Faith already. But well, they managed to surprise me in a good way. They did a great job on subtly weaving this (super)natural story arc into the rather plot-heavy episode.
And I think what got me most about that interpretation of the reaper was that 'Tessa' actually wasn't evil like the malevolent kind, you know? She just played her part in the act that is life which presumably ends with death. Even better, she put quite an effort into actually talk to Dean and trying to take him by the hand to wherever the next step would have taken him. Considering their line of work and what events so concisely shaped their lives, she did good in trying to get him to understand what he will become if he stays inbetween the one world and the next.
But a big yay for Dean’s determination to get back to the world of the living. How he said that his family will die while he rods in the ground just about explains his character. Oh Dean, you keep fighting for them!
As he started to seriously consider going with Tessa, however, I was breaking for him a little. It’s tragic, really. He’s fought for his family all his life only to have it end like that? The only thing that got me going was the feeling that he still has that important job to do that LeGrange was talking about. Assuming that the guy didn’t lie to him then, of course.
Another thing I deeply enjoyed was the appearance of THE demon. Amazing casting there too. I wonder in what form this deal John made will catch up with the whole family because, seriously, there are always consequences, right? And more shocking, what exactly are those plans THE demon had (still has?) for Sam? What kind of link is it between him and all the other children? Is it a psychic connection solely? Is it a blood relationship? Is it something supernaturally caused? Will he be used as a host for some evil spirit? Is he some kind of human-demon hybrid?
Well, actually (and I’m sure it’s so uber cliché) I find the idea of Sam walking the line between good/evil quite interesting. He turning a little dark side…oh, please, give us at least one episode that deals with that. Pretty please?!
And John, whatever ghost whispering you thought only Dean had the right to hear, it better be for the good of the family. Somehow, I don’t think it concerned John’s sacrifice for Dean. Well, at least not exclusively. More likely, he gave away significant information they need to have for what lies ahead of them.
The fact that John had sent Sam away could be because he thought that Sam wouldn’t let him leave after he gave away his little secret(s) or because it really was information about Sam and his destiny. I’m so intrigued about the whole thing though, I only hope that the writers won’t drop that issue and dredge it up again whenever they think it’s appropriate. They better give us some clue as to what burden John put on Dean’s shoulders this time! Man, this is bugging the hell outta me!
But looking at the possibilities of what that secret could mean for them makes me all anxious for the next week and beyond. Keeping secret is never easy, rarely stays undetected and it sure as hell will challenge the brother's relationship. Can't wait to see what they'll come up with in that direction.
One of the times the episode made me cry was during that scene where John is sitting at Dean’s bed side who, still in the spiritual form, is pouring his heart out to his dad.
--You haven't called a soul for help. You haven't even tried. Aren't you going to do anything? Aren't you even going to say anything? […] I've given everything I've ever had and you're just going to sit there and watch me die?! And what the hell kind of father are you?--
The pain, the disappointment, how lost he sounds there - I think that one broke my heart good. Even though John can't hear him, in some way, it's the first time Dean actually stands up to his father defending not his family but himself. It also drives me mad, because just as THE demon pointed out, why can't John just tell his children how much they mean to him? Just a few reassuring, encouraging words to Dean to hold on? Come on, John, you can do better than that.
Speaking of John, I do love him anyways.
--Half the time we fight, I don't know what we're fighting about.--
Damn, that guy always gets to me ^.^ and Sam’s reaction to that was so heart breaking. The way he looked at this father then, like he knew there was something brewing underneath it all and he just couldn’t grasp it. Gosh, it amazes me every time anew just how much Jared can put into that eyes of his.
Not sure though I like the fact that John sent Sam away with nothing more than telling him that he always did the best he could, knowing that it will be the last thing he said to his youngest. Oh, Sam will be so pissed.
As for John’s speech to Dean in the end, he pretty much scared me as much as he did Dean. It was the right thing to do though. Dean needed to hear that from his father after everything demon!daddy threw his way during Devil’s Trap. It’s bad enough Dean can’t remember what happened during his out-of-body experience and how Sam fought for him. He and Sam still have time to sort things out but for John, it was his last chance.
And what a terrific job did Jeff do in his performance? Lips quivering, tears, breaking voice. *whimpers* But why on earth do they kill him off in every single show he appears on?!
Well, I just cling to the hope that somehow they’ll include flash backs or find some supernatural way to get John back. I mean, in Buffy they pulled quite a few folks back from hell, so I just hope they consider what Buffy would do in a situation like theirs ;D
There wasn’t so many scenes of the brothers together here but the few we got sure were beautifully done. The ouija board scene was one of them. How happy Sam was to get some proof that all is not lost. But oh, you could see how devastated Dean really was about the whole reaper thing. It’s like some bad déjà vu to the last time he cheated death. Dean’s had some very close calls by now. Let’s just hope he didn’t use up all nine lives yet. There are only so many devils you can make deals with.
Also, kudos to Kim Manners once again. This episode did get on well without a lot of visual ado. And as extremfefangirl pointed out, there were a lot of scenes shot in circles reflecting the circle of life. Good observation and it's those small, subtle things what I love so much about this show.
As for now. I’m off doing some graphics to keep going until Everybody Loves a Clown. And to let you in on a secret, I was always scared of pantomimes *creepy* but after seeing the preview clip for next week's ep, clowns come right after.