Secondly, my review from Thursday's SPN episode, which I wrote partially yesterday but didn't finish because, well, birthday. Hello. ;p But here it is.
Supernatural 5.06 "I Believe The Children Are Our Future"
The boys investigate a series of strange occurrences which the victims are being attacked/killed by classic urban legends such itching powder making you scratch your brains out, electrocuted by a handshake buzzer, mixing pop rocks and soda, and so on. This trail leads the boys to a little boy who, unknowingly, makes these legends and tales come true if he believes or thinks of them as true. Soon they discover that he was born as a half-human, half-demon hybrid, and Castiel says that the boy must die due to his powerful nature as the embodiment of the Antichrist. Unfortunately this leads to a conflict of morality in the situation, and winds up having Castiel turning into a doll and a demon approaching the young lad, hoping to convert him to the demon side of the war. However, things take for an interesting turn when Sam starts explaining the truth to the little boy, and instead he banishes the demon from the house. The end leaves the Winchesters giving the boy making up his own mind what he wants to do, now understanding his true nature.
This episode was a homage to Good Omens, a cleverly constructed episode at that, and it also continues to go along with the theme of choices versus fate and how one can defeat the inevitable by creating their own destiny based on the nature of those choices and decisions.
Sam and Castiel: "I Can't Take That Chance"
I'd like to get into this first and foremost, because it seemed to have risen a lot of interesting meta and discussion and furthering comments about a certain precious angel of ours from fandom since the episode aired. I will say I am biased with the latter, because I adore him, however I am with Dean on this one. I am not taking sides, because I can see both sides of the argument and I understand where both characters are going from with the words that were exchanged, mostly from Castiel's end, but also with Sam towards the end of the episode when he was talking to Jesse.
What Castiel said to Sam was clearly in the heat of the moment. It was an impulsive reaction and it was his own defense mechanism based around his survival instinct upon the situation at hand. He's presented this kind of behavior before several times throughout these passed two seasons. Hell, he lashed out at Dean in 5.02 "Good God, Y'All!" remember? In the same context too, he wasn't necessarily placing the blame on Sam or Dean but putting the acknowledgment that they had failed to stop the Apocalypse. He doesn't hold any resentment or animosity towards Sam at all, but with his past actions from last season and such this was just adding fuel to the flame and it seemed slightly hypocritical in that sense, hence why Castiel reacted the way he did.
Castiel has his flaws. There are these flaws that make him understand and learn about humanity and what is happening around him, because he has no orders to follow by he is making his own choices, his own judgments. Was this a bad judgment to make, about Jesse and about lashing out at Sam? Perhaps. But the key thing here is that Castiel is learning. He looked deeply regrettable in the end of the episode, even when he was confronting Jesse he seemed conflicted over what he was going to do. Realizing that despite the kid's half-demon nature he was also half-human. Dean was correct in saying that Castiel was "confused", because he was. He's still morally struggling with these decisions and trying to decipher what is right and wrong in situations, because even though he's been cut off from Heaven that is still his home, the angels are still his family, and having this threat that a child could wipe out the entire Host of Heaven with a simple word...it's terrifying and he needed to do something. Even with the rationalizing the boys were doing in trying to save the kid, Castiel was also giving his own reasoning of not engaging in such action. He certainly felt like he couldn't take that chance with the possibility that the boy could be convinced of his nature; they had no idea what he was capable of, just the wrong thing said could set him off and destroy everything.
I'd like to parallel this to Laura Roslin in Battlestar Galactica when she wanted to terminate Sharon's pregnancy because she was carrying a half-human/half-Cylon hybrid child and felt that, since this child was deeply important to the Cylons and their plan it would mean disaster for humanity, so she felt it was best to kill the unborn child. To eliminate that threat to their entire race's survival. When presenting a threat to your entire race, it's certainly personal and Castiel was treating this as such. He understands that the boys aren't comfortable with the idea of killing a child, but when explaining the consequences if they did not it was very convincing of how he felt about the entire issue. Same with Laura Roslin, understanding her reasoning of survival even though it is morally wrong.
In any case, Sam certainly took the correct route because honestly, the kid didn't understand what was going on and what kind of power he held. The best was of handling the situation was getting there before the demons did, explain the situation upfront and allow him to decide where to go from there with that knowledge. Now yes, that was taking a massive chance, but Sam did right by telling the kid the truth. Although the kid is definitely going to need lots of therapy, having that good heart in him, that humanity. Much like Sam. Now perhaps Sam had that all along, or maybe it was prompted by Castiel. Either way, it worked. Because Sam did not want Jesse to end up like him, to make the wrong decisions because of his nature, in going down the wrong path like he did.
The words exchanged were harsh, the tension and intensity of what happened between Castiel and Sam, even for that moment in that one scene, and neither were completely right or completely wrong. There was truth in that moment and we know that, and I'm actually glad that the show isn't making it seem like everything is okay because of what happened last season, it certainly is not. I do wish they weren't like this, that there could be a common ground between them and weren't at odds end with each other, but much like the struggling trust between Dean and Sam, that will have to take its time.
"You're the Antichrist, Jesse!"
Okay, who else thought that this kid was absolutely freaking adorable? I just wanted to take him home with me, he's so cute.
I have to say the entire episode was phenomenal and not just because of it being a direct connection to Good Omens, but because of how well they incorporated the Antichrist storyline into the entire mytharc of the season. Granted yes, there are still some questions as to what will happen now and so forth, but I thought it meshed rather well all things considered. And it was a sweet story, for anyone familiar with Good Omens the Antichrist just wants to live like a normal boy, not be involved with any big thing that's happening. And that's precisely what was happening with Jesse. He didn't understand what was happening to him, and although there were some red-herrings in the beginning, he was just a kid.
That's the saddest part, though. He's just a kid. A kid having all of this information being dumped onto him at once, from being a half-human and half-demon hybrid, being in the middle of the Apocalypse and having both angels and demons gunning for him, it's a lot to absorb. Especially with the decision of leaving his home now that the demons know where he lives, and what he's going to do with this knowledge and how he's going to handle it all. It's a lot to take in, and it certainly reminds me of Harry Potter in that way. Finding out he's something he didn't realize he was, being able to do extraordinary things with just a mere thought, and then realizing he's part of something bigger. I mean, how does a kid handle something like that? It's going to be tough for him, knowing the truth of the harsh reality he's a part of. Also, I liked that despite their attempts at talking to him like a kid at first, Sam took the initiative and started talking to him like a person, not a child, even though he is still a kid, he had to know the whole truth no matter how painful it was.
But I do believe he's going to do great things with his powers, maybe learn to control them. Now understanding the huge risks and not being influenced by the demons after Sam had talked to him man-to-man, he can use his powers for good. Plus using the human side of him to resist the forces of darkness that want to convince him to join his side. I could sense that towards the end, realizing that he just wants to live and be like a kid. I liked that, with how we saw him just all sad!faced about leaving his home, his parents, going into hiding. Seeing him flop onto his bed, just that little moment, was so painful because he knows this is what he has to do. Oh, the poor dear. But still, I think he'll be okay and that the boys did the right thing.
However, there are some questions I have in regards to the entire storyline that have gotten me thinking.
The thing I'm confused about is a demon possessing a woman to conceive a child. Naturally you would assume that the hybrid would be Lucifer's child, but instead it seems like this was just a low-level demon that had done this. If this happened, could all low-level demons use this technique to conceive half-human/half-demon hybrid and produce multple Antichrists? Or was this specifically done in time for the Apocalypse? How could the YED couldn't have done this for those "special children" he needed (and God, how twisted would that be if instead of just Sam having demon blood he was actually half demon himself?) Also, being half-demon how does that work out for little Jesse? See, these are things I contemplate about.
Nonetheless with those little things, I liked the message about choices in the end, about going against what your supposed destiny says and creating your own destiny. Even though the repeated theme of "all paths lead to the same destination" as Castiel mentioned last season, maybe there is hope for others who get there before it's too late. Like Sam convincing Jesse about the good he can do if done wisely, unlike the choices and things he did with his own powers last season. He wanted to make things alright for this little boy before anything else could taint his decision-making, making him believe things like the demon was trying to do before Sam revealed the truth. Also the morality message between Dean and Sam and the little lies adults tell children, to protect them from the horrors and monsters of the outside world. It's bad enough that Jesse is now growing up too fast (ex. cooking for himself at such a young age, being at home with his parents out at work all day), but having this knowledge is definitely something to shatter his vision of the world. Hopefully things will be alright for him.
Choices and decisions, morality, fate and destiny, the strength and power of humanity over the forces of evil; Supernatural has always been about these themes, and I'm hoping that Jesse returns at some point to help fight alongside the Winchesters in this war.
Memorable Moments from the Episode
++ CASTIEL SITTING ON WHOOPI-CUSHION AND TURNING INTO AN ACTION FIGURE = PRICELESS!
++ Castiel putting the verbal bitch-slapping onto Sam was great, and as stated above he did have a point. I just wish they could hug it out and not have that rift between them. I did like that Dean wasn't picking sides, he was on the sideline facepalming with this "OMG WHY ARE MY BROTHER AND BOYFRIEND STILL FIGHTING? CAN'T THEY JUST GET ALONG ALREADY?!"
++ GOOD OMENS FOR THE MOTHERFUCKING WIN! \O/\O/\o/
++ Jesse = adorable. ♥ Also, who else thinks that when he disappeared in the end he transported himself to someplace fun, like Disneyland and is now living in the castle? Hey, if I were a kid and I had to escape or go into hiding somewhere, that's where I would go.
++ Now I keep thinking, with his ability of having what he believes to become a reality, what if Jesse had believed unicorns were real? Think abouot it, a unicorn would just walk right by the boys and Sam would go "HA! SEE DEAN! TOLD YOU UNICORNS WERE REAL!" XD XD XD And also, wouldn't it be kinda sweet if the boys asked Jesse to find God? I mean, that would be adorable if Jesse would be like "sorry for turning you into a doll, so I found God for you" and Castiel would be all O_o. Haha! THERE WILL BE FICS OF THESE SCENARIOS PPL, MARK MY WORDS!
++ Going along with that, I want a fic where Jesse meets up with Hera and they share stories about being special hybrids and how everyone is trying to either kill them or kidnap them. While having cupcakes. Aww, how cute would that be?! ♥ ♥
++ Okay, enough gushing over adorable kid. I really enjoyed the integration of the funny and hilarious moments with the serious mytharc of the season; going back to urban legends and fairytales which is something some fans have been complaining there aren't enough of anymore now with all this stuff with the show moving along with the big damn plot. I like it when they mix the lolarious with the serious business, it makes for a great episode since it has something for everyone.
++ Dean making that scary/funny face = OMGWTFLOL! He looked embarrassed to have actually done that. And the same with the hairy palm after masturbating thing, lol oh my God the show actually went there. Too funny.
++ The woman's story about being possessed and the flashback to her giving birth? That was incredibly well done, and well-shot. She was totally traumatized by that experience, yet smart enough to know what to do via those flashbacks when we see her downing salt to get the demon out, overpowering it. Also another theme: despite knowing what the child was, she didn't have the heart to kill it. She put him up for adoption. Once again humanity prevailing. I feel sorry for her, too, after all she went through and had to go through again, nobody's life is the same after being possessed. This is was a nice followup after seeing other people being possessed, because I do wonder how they live their lives knowing a demon was inside of them.
++ I loved Sam's expression when Jesse was taking control of his powers so quickly, so adaptively, especially when he told the demon to shut up and sit down and expelled the demon from his mother. You could totally see Sam being perplexed and go, "hey, no fair, how could I didn't get something like that?" and pout mentally.
++ Did anyone see the theme for the boys' motel room this episode? Stephen Colbert would be proud. *nods*
++ Stalker!Castiel is kinda scary, and also a turn on. OMG WTF SELF?! IDEK
++ DEAN BEING ALL GENTLE AND AFFECTIONATE WITH AF!CASTIEL, CALLING HIM HIS "BUDDY" AND EVERYTHING. AWWW! I LOVE MY OTP SO FUCKING MUCH. ♥ HE WAS ALSO TOTES THUMBING CASTIEL'S CROTCH ONE TOO MANY TIMES, LOL. XD
Overall: I absolutely enjoyed this episode, loved it actually. I'm surprised that there are some that didn't, and it makes me sad because this was the most talked about and anticipating episode because it was a homage to Good Omens. I thought Kripke handled it quite well. I also liked the mixture of the urban legends with the larger picture, the tension between Sam and Castiel, making light that not everything is A-Okay between them after everything, and just from Jesse and the choices and everything, I love what they did with it. I'm happy with this episode and I do hope to see Jesse again at some point, they did leave that window open for the possibility even though it was more for his safety to leave and stay in hiding. Somehow I think Jesse will find a way to do something good with his powers, and I like having that optimistic view in such dire times. I also liked that they didn't kill the poor kid. That is one line the show won't cross.
Hiatus for a week? Boo.