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Supernatural: So I've been thinking...

Ackles-Padalecki.jpgWhat an ending!

The longer I think about the finale ending, the more I like it. Rumor is, Kripke thought they may not get reviewed, so he had 2 different endings filmed. One was a cliff-hanger, the other not. So this was the not. How would things have worked out if the series had to wrap up?

I'm guessing there would have been a lot less agonizing from Sam over the decision to drink the blood. I'm also guessing there would have been a lot less waiting around by Dean. I think it might have thrown the pacing off a bit, there didn't seem to be as much action as usual.

But this ending was big for Sam and Dean, and I'm here to tell you why.

First though, an update on my last guessing post. Stelladore made a good point - Dean riding around with a possibly evil Sam is just too much of a rehash of the last 2 seasons. I agree, though when you think about it, pretty much any way they go, there's going to be a bit of a rehash of previous seasons. It could be different, because before Dean was worried that Sam might turn evil. In my scenario. Dean would know Sam was evil, but at some point, he'd know he would have to kill Sam. It would be a natural rising action to a climactic scene in the series finale, where Dean had to actually do the deed or give Earth to Lucifer.

On the other hand, now I think it's not going to happen that way. With the demon blood burned away by killing Lilith, Sam's character arc seems destined to come full circle back to normalcy. I'll explain more below.

What the ending meant for Sam

It's looking like Sam has burned all the demon blood from inside him - any powers he had are gone, baby, gone. That's a good thing. Let's get back to the dynamics between the brothers. Here's a story arc for you, emerging late in Season 4: a younger brother not only trying to emerge from his brother's shadow, but also trying to make his own life and his own destiny, breaking the cycle of a doomed and dysfunctional family.

Sound familiar? That's because it's a lot like Season 1. Sam has almost come full circle. He started out on his own, doing well, but succumbed to his family's need. Unfortunately, what developed out of that was tragedy, not triumph. Sam came to the aid of his family, only to discover that he was special, destined for greatness, or rather, infamy. Rather than fixing the Winchester family, making it whole, Sam's return, broke the family - John dead, Dean doubting himself, Sam bringing doom to the world.

But his destiny is fulfilled now. Clearly he can't go back to what he was, not in the same way. But he's been purged. He's normal again. If the world goes on, he can pick up the pieces and start over as a normal person, which is all he ever wanted to begin with. Out of the tragedy is born the possibility of a fresh start.

Just that one little detail to clear up first, named Lucifer. Sam has to redeem himself for his mistake before his character arc is complete.

And Dean?

What about Dean?

Well, his arc isn't cyclical like Sam's. His is more heroic. Story's got to take a character some place. Sometimes it's just on a journey that takes you back to the start, maybe sadder, maybe wiser, maybe just changed for better or worse.

And then sometimes the character is lifted from their starting state, and dropped to tragedy or lifted in triumph. This is Dean's arc.

See, that's what Dean always wanted. He wanted to be like John, saving people, a hero. But along the way, he found out that John was a flawed hero. A hero, no doubt, but with clear, visible warts. Dean's destiny is to become what John should have been. That is what will fix the Winchester family. And Dean is close. He's fixing John's flaws one by one. He's already realized that sometimes you have to let go, and sometimes you have to reach out. He knows the difference. He knows that sometimes the price of hunting is too high. He recognizes John's flaws, and I believe he forgives them.

But Dean still has a way to go. He hasn't yet found the balance between faith and disobedience. Clearly, that's the final step he has to take. And once he becomes the hero he's always wanted to be, his character's journey will be complete.


Bobby is going to be out of the picture soon. I don't mean he'll be dead, though he could be. But he's the mentor, the one who acts as the father figure for the Winchesters. The classic story arc says he has to be out of the picture so the Winchesters can fulfill their destinies on their own.

That could mean he dies. Or it could mean he's captured, incapacitate, possessed. Or, it could just mean they get beyond his ability to help. Hope it's the last one, but nothing is guaranteed.


Castiel doesn't have a grand arc. He's destined to learn to understand humanity better, but whether that leaves him an angel, or if it means he becomes human in the end, I just can't even guess.


So how's the Lucifer think going to play out? Well, I still think Lucifer needs a vessel, and I still think he'll need to find his Grace. I'm not sure how that's going to work, though. I can't see a rehash of the last 3 seasons. Riding around trying to find Lucifer in his new vessel is an awful lot like riding around looking for Lilith in whatever vessel she was in at the time.

No, I think we're going someplace new. The Winchesters will be on the run, because both angels and demons will be after them. They'll have to watch, dismayed, from afar as Lucifer begins his reign of horror on Earth.

Late in the game, they'll find out his Grace is about to be delivered to him, giving him nearly god-like powers and cementing him as ruler of Hell on Earth, so they'll make one final, suicidal attempt to kill him, or destroy his Grace, at whatever place Lucifer has chosen to crown himself.

And hopefully, they'll succeed.

Then what?

Sorry if this has seemed a little mystical, and little too much 10th grade English Lit. I always get excited about where the show is going after I see the finale.

I've been worried that the end of the Winchester family story was destined to be tragic. Now, I'm not sure. Even should Dean or Sam die, they will die having achieved what they wanted out of life. In a way, even in death that can be a happy ending.

But now I can also see a way out, a way for the Winchesters to live. Which is nice to think about.

So now I'm out for the summer, but I'll still be posting the occasional tidbit of news or rumors as I hear them, so check ever so often.

And have a great summer. See you in September!

Posted by Miller on May 22, 2009 7:51 AM
Permalink |

Excellent movie...esp the climax! I was tracking the movie off tvfodder and

-- Posted by: Jacky at May 22, 2009 12:00 PM

I loved your article...
I hope you're right about Sam and Dean, but wrong about Bobby... ;)

-- Posted by: Shaula at May 22, 2009 8:11 PM

So, Dean's destiny is to be the ultimate hero and Sam's destiny is to be an evil failure, and then a nobody?

Great. Just what I wanted to see happen.

-- Posted by: Sarah at May 22, 2009 11:39 PM

Not at all, Sarah. Sam's destiny is to end up with what he wants - to be normal.

But like I said, first he has to fix his mistake. And that will take heroism.

So he becomes a hero just like Dean. But his heroism LETS him return to a normal life.

There ARE 2 heroes in this story - at least 2. They just have different ideas of what they want afterward, and maybe different ways of achieving heroic status.

-- Posted by: Miller at May 23, 2009 12:43 AM

"any powers he had are gone, baby, gone"

Good article!
But i hace a question do you think Sam is not going to have his powers the next season?

because If you say that for the last scene in the season finale I thought he hadnt the energy for his powers when he tried to kill Ruby, because he used all his energy killing lilith but drinking more blood I thought he was going to have his powers again

-- Posted by: maguie at July 14, 2009 2:55 PM

Yeah, I think his battle with Lilith, and the arrival of Lucifer, has drained him for good. But it's certainly not clear if that's true.

The biggest reason I think that is because I think they're done with the is he / isn't he a monster theme. It's been determined - yep, he made himself into a monster.

Now we get the reconciliation - both Dean and Sam have done the unthinkable, and become monsters, though of different kinds. They will have to come to grips with that within themselves, and within each other, next season.

-- Posted by: Miller at July 17, 2009 6:55 AM


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