Do you know the book called, "The Monster at the End of This Book"? Maybe there are more than one,but I actually bought a book by that name for my kids before I even knew of this episode. It is a Sesame Street book with Grover.He basically goes through the book going, "don't turn the page! there's a monster at the end of this book and I'm scared!" and he does everything he can to stop us. Building a wall with wood, bricks... but it's a book so it doesn't do any good right? Of course we turn the page, and he's getting more and more desperate as the book progresses. The words go into caps and yeah... it's quite funny. At the end of the book, he and we all find out that the monster is actually Grover himself. Haha! and Grover is a nice monster so...that's not scary at all! The End.
Our Supernatural episode of the week is about Dean trying to stop the pages of destiny from being turned. He does everything to stop it from happening because he is scared that Sam will become a monster at the end of it. Of course he can't stop destiny from playing out, but he finds out that it was not the dire situation with Sam that he had imagined.
It is also an episode where the boys are actually interacting with the world of their fans/author, like in the Grover book. Grover is constantly aware of the reader and begging us not to turn the page. Sam and Dean are also constantly aware of the readers, but most of all the destiny that God has set for them.
Now, I have to talk about God in Supernatural a bit more. When I first talked about this episode with others and found out about what Kripke said and how Chuck was most probably God, I was astounded. I hadn't known about Kripke's interview and I had never thought of Chuck in that way. He was always the prophet. But then I started thinking. Of course. *headpalm* Kripke is the author of the Supernatural universe. HE is the one that created this story from nothing. From the view point of people in the story, he. is. God. With a capital G. Just as we all are The Gods of the various stories we write.
So God/the author decides one day that he was going to put himself in the story. WHY? What is the meaning of something like that? This is what I think. All you writers out there... I'm sure you've come across a time when the characters in your story took on the life of their own and started to resist the destiny you had planned for them. What does a writer do in such a situation? Keep forcing them into the story you had in your head? OR give it over to the characters to see where they take you? And if you do give it over to the characters, are you not essentially giving up your powers as creator? as God? What if Kripke/Chuck/God felt that this story, Supernatural, was taking on a life of it's own and he could not and did not want to force it's destiny? What if he let go of his creative powers and decided to come down as a powerless human being within his own creation... because he loved it so much that he wanted to experience those choices with them? I think we've seen that in Chuck through Season 5. And what we know of "God" through Joshua indicates this as well.(Wow... I'd always thought there was no Jesus in Supernatural... but there he is...)
I think I'm finally ready to get on with the story itself. Just wanted to put this first because that is my premise. Chuck is God. God relinquished his powers as creator and gave it over to his creation, coming down to be a part of it as a human being, and as a "prophet."
"Leave All This Behind" by Sonny Ellis(plays while Sam and Dean discuss Lilith in the diner)
(If anyone has a link to this music, please share!)
The episode starts with Chuck having one of his dreams - this time of Sam and Dean and of himself in with them.
Then we cut to Sam and Dean going into a book store - a comics store - asking about cold spots and rat sounds in the walls. And the clerk thinks for sure they are LARPing. (When is the FBI interested in a rodent problem, aye?) "What's LARPing?" the boys ask. Live Action Role Play - you know, when you pretend to be the characters in your favorite show or books? And the clerk also knows off the bat that they are pretending to be those guys from the Supernatural books - although he has a hard time remembering their exact names.
CLERK: Two guys, use fake IDs with rock aliases, hunt down ghosts, demons, vampires. What are their names? Uh... Steve and Dirk? Uh, Sal and Dane?
SAM:Sam and Dean?
AND we have a lovely scene of Dean reading all the Supernatural books on the bed while Sam searches around on the internet.
AND they find out that the books are not very popular but there are fans.
SAM:They're pretty obscure. I mean, almost zero circulation. Uh, started in '05. The publisher put out a couple dozen before going bankrupt. And, uh, the last one – "No Rest For The Wicked" – Ends with you going to hell.
Check it out. There’s actually fans. There’s not many of them, but still.
This reference to the minor nature of the show - a minor TV station and with minimal circulation - and how even so there ARE fans of the show - Dean!girls and Sam!girls and slash-fans, which I'm assuming is a reference to Wincest?
DEAN:There are "Sam girls" and "Dean girls" and – what's a "slash fan"?
SAM:As in... Sam-slash-Dean. Together.
DEAN:Like, together together?
I did not know of the various pairings until I came to LJ and found it veeeery interesting :P But Sam sounds impressed with the fact that despite the 0 circulation there are actually fans. Which to me kind of expresses the writers' gratitude to us as fans.
Anyway, the boys decide to go to the publisher so that they can find out where this "Carver Edland" lives and go and talk to him. Figure out how he is getting their story - from the racist ghost truck to Dean's full frontal (hee!)
PUBLISHER:I mean, the best parts are when they'd cry. You know, like in – In "Heart," when Sam had to kill Madison, the first woman since Jessica he really loved. And in "Home," when Dean had to call John and ask him for help.
Gosh... if only real men were so open and in touch with their feelings.
PUBLISHER:I mean, no offense. How often do you cry like that, hmm?
DEAN:Well, right now, I'm crying on the inside.
Awesome scene again. I could totally see myself in that publisher (except for the tatoo :P Did she put it on her bum, I wonder...) And Sam and Dean trying to prove they are fans by answering her quiz questions! This is where we find out Dean's favorite songs ...
...as well as Sam's GSAT scores, and their birthdays... all these tidbits that make us fall more madly in love with them, and they even show us some some skin again...fan service!
Chuck's house, I love how the boys introduce themselves -
first as Dean and Sam, then finally as Dean and Sam Winchester - which is when Chuck finally starts to believe that they really are who they say they are because he hasn't told anyone their names. Dean introducing the inside of their trunk "real fake IDs" and Chuck's "You really are my number one fans...."
Sam and Dean also find out that although the books end at Dean going to hell, Chuck has continued to write to the present day.
CHUCK:Oh! Oh, you're still there.
CHUCK:You're not a hallucination.
DEAN:Nope. I love those one word answers! and the way he says them! totally reminds me of Rufus :)
CHUCK:Well, there's only one explanation. Obviously I'm a god.
SAM:You're not a god.
CHUCK:How else do you explain it? I write things and then they come to life. Yeah, no, I'm definitely a god. A cruel, cruel, capricious god. The things I put you through – The physical beatings alone.
And this conversation takes on a different meaning when you are on the premise that he actually IS.
And about the bugs and the ghost ship he adds:
CHUCK:I am so sorry. I mean, horror is one thing, but to be forced to live bad writing... if I would have known it was real, I would have done another pass.
(Which is again hilarious because Kripke did not like these episodes did he?! So as a writer he is actually apologizing to the characters for the stuff he put them through - including bad writing!)
Well, they come to the part that Chuck remembers that he had just been writing himself into the story...
CHUCK:The, uh, latest book? It's, uh, it's kind of weird.
CHUCK:It's very Vonnegut.
DEAN:"Slaughterhouse-Five" Vonnegut or "Cat's Cradle" Vonnegut?
CHUCK:It's, uh, "Kilgore Trout" Vonnegut. I wrote myself into it. I wrote myself, at my house... confronted by my characters.
Do people know what Dean is talking about here? I didn't. I thought "vonnegut" was some kind of word for "strange" LOL. But I had to look it up because Dean clarifying and the exchange between Sam and Dean was really bugging me. And I found that it's actually the name of an author: Kurt Vonnegut. Don't laugh at me, guys. There are plenty of people out there that don't know this. I asked every English speaker and even my husband, thinking they must have read a book or seen a movie (Slaughterhouse-Five was made into a movie aye?) but no one knew who Vonnegut was. They'd maybe heard of the titles of his books above - especially Slaughterhouse-Five: "Hey, was that a movie?" but not the author. I looked this guy up and he really looks interesting so I'm going to be reading those ASAP. The point I'm trying to make here is... well there are two things I thought were really neat. One, that Dean knew that all of these books were written by Vonnegut, and Sam maybe didn't? Or he was very surprised that Dean did anyway. Another was that Kilgore Trout is actually a book named after Vonnegut's friend and colleague Theodore Sturgeon (sturgeon being the name of a fish = trout). And this Kilgore Trout seems to pop up in Vonnegut's other works too - which has made people think that it is actually Vonnegut's alter-ego. Which is why Chuck mentions his situation as being "Kilgore Trout" Vonnegut. So anyway, that was one mystery solved and a few new books on my list of books to read in this rewatch :)
Anyway, Dean gets a copy of this new book Chuck is working on and they leave to think their situation over, I assume. Might as well get some washing done while they are at it. Sam has some gigantic whites to wash LOL
DEAN:I’m sitting in a laundromat, reading about myself sitting in a laundromat reading about myself. My head hurts.
And I had to get at least part of this exchange on gif because I just adore Sam's facial and bodily expressions here and the close up of Sam with Dean in the back is just awesome! so here it is.
Now, while they are doing that, Chuck is busy writing another chapter and he calls the boys over because he thinks they should know that Lilith is coming for Sam. And he reads him that passage...
CHUCK: "Lilith patted the bed seductively. Unable to deny his desire, Sam succumbed, and they sank into the throes of fiery demonic passion."
And Sam just bursts out laughing. And Dean can't help but be worried. And Chuck thinks they are bothered by the wording "fiery demonic passion" and is mumbling, "It's just a first draft..."
I've been watching Season 5 ahead of this rewatch and I've got to say that this is a very important part of Season 4 and 5. Dean being unable to trust Sam. Of course there are things that Sam has done and will do that makes it hard for Dean. And there is just that fact that to Dean, Sam has always been the "snotty-nosed baby brother" that he is supposed to keep on the straight and narrow, while Dean is the older brother that feels that he has to do everything himself. All I can say is, I am amazed by Sam's steadfastness in this and future episodes, which may be despite Dean's doubt, or because of it in some ways - his desire to prove himself to Dean.
So Sam and Dean are in the car, Sam reading the next part of the story they got from Chuck (because Chuck knew Dean was going to ask for it). They can't believe that Dean would be wearing pink bandaids or driving around with a black tarp on the back of the impala.
Sam is thinking hey, if Lilith is coming, this is our chance to kill her, while Dean is thinking they are not strong enough to fight Lilith. Dean is scared for Sam and his dad's warning. He tries to get them out of town, but the bridge is out and they are stuck.
So he decides they are going to have opposites day. They are going to do everything opposite of what the story says. (Which totally reminds me of Mystery Spot...)
SAM:This whole thing's ridiculous.
DEAN:Lilith is ridiculous?
SAM:The idea of me hooking up with her is.
DEAN:Right. 'Cause something like that can never happen.
SAM:(starts to scowl, then controls himself.)
Dean, for the first time, we have warning that Lilith is close.
SAM:So... we've got the jump on her. If we know when she's coming, we know where she's – this is an opportunity.
DEAN:Are you –
(trying very hard not to get angry)
It frustrates me when you say such reckless things.
Well, it frustrates me when you'd rather hide that fight.
I love how they try to avoid arguing! and of course how Dean's tofu burger ends up being a bacon cheese whether he ordered it or not. Dean should have seen there that what he was attempting was almost impossible. The Toreador motel they check into turns to the "RED MOTEL" when the lights die,
Dean goes to park the car, but he ends up driving around all day after teenagers try to break into the car and he gets hit by a mini van, sees stars (on the earrings of the lady that hit him) and peels off the pink bandaids that her daughter put on his face.
The only thing he can change is what was supposed to be a black tarp... to a white tarp LOL!
(yeah, he's pissed with someone... :P)
Sam has called Chuck over to talk. He's got to know if Chuck knows about the demon blood.
CHUCK:Yeah, come on, Sam. I mean, sucking blood? You got to know that's wrong.
SAM:It scares the hell out of me. I mean, I feel it inside of me. I... I wish to god I could stop.
CHUCK:But you keep going back.
SAM:What choice have I got? If it helps me kill Lilith and stop the apocalypse –
CHUCK:I thought that was Dean's job. That's what the angels say, right?
SAM:Dean’s not... he's not Dean lately. Ever since he got out of hell. He needs help.
CHUCK:So you got to carry the weight?
SAM:Well, he's looked out for me my whole life. I can't return the favor?
CHUCK:Yeah, sure you can. I mean, if that's what this is.
SAM:What else would it be?
CHUCK:I don't know. Maybe the demon blood makes you feel stronger? More in control?
SAM:No. That's not true.
CHUCK:I'm sorry, Sam. I know it's a terrible burden – feeling that it all rests on your shoulders.
SAM:Does it? All rest on my shoulders?
CHUCK:That seems to be where the story's headed.
Again, we are reminded that Sam is not necessarily using the demon blood for Dean, "to return the favor." It is an addiction ... and yet one that Sam thinks he has to use in order to kill Lilith and stop the apocalypse (herein lies the irony).
Chuck gets home to find Dean waiting for him and as Dean gets a bit threatening in his helplessness, Cas appears. Dean finds out that Chuck is actually a prophet and that an archangel is always on call to protect him from harm. When Dean accuses Chuck of knowing this already and keeping it secret, Chuck answers,
CHUCK:It was too preposterous. Not to mention arrogant. I mean, writing yourself into the story is one thing, but as a prophet? That's like M. Night-level douchiness.
Dean asks Cas about how they can change the situation. Stop us from turning the pages if you will... but what is written cannot be undone. (There lies the key... what hasn't been written can be changed. )
Dean hurries back to Sam and demands they leave but Sam is adamant that he is going to stay.
SAM:You think I'll do it, don't you? You think I'll go dark side.
DEAN:Yes! Okay? Yes. The way you've been acting lately? The things you've been doing?
Oh, I know. How you ripped Alastair apart like it was nothing, like you were swatting a fly. Cas told me, okay?
SAM:What else did he tell you?
DEAN:Nothing I don't already know. That you've been using your psychic crap, and you've been getting stronger. We just don't know why, and we don't know how.
SAM:It's not what you think.
DEAN:Then what is it, Sam? 'Cause I'm at a total loss. Are you coming or not?
Which reminds me of Time is On My Side. Dean leaves the weapons and goes out.... but he doesn't have a plan so he prays. And Cas comes.
Dean begs Cas to get Sam out of there. Drag him out. But Cas can't do anything to stop the prophesy. Just as Dean turns away telling Cas that he won't do anything for Cas if Cas can't help him now, Cas gives him a cryptic hint on how Dean can change the story without challenging the prophesy.
CASTIEL:If anything threatens a prophet, anything at all, an archangel will appear to destroy that threat. Archangels are fierce. They're absolute. They're heaven's most terrifying weapon.
DEAN:And these archangels, they're tied to prophets?
DEAN:So if a prophet was in the same room as a demon –
CASTIEL:Then the most fearsome wrath of heaven would rain down on that demon. Just so you understand... why I can't help.
and Dean's off to find Chuck.
DEAN:All right, listen to me. You have an archangel tethered to you, okay? All you got to do is show up and boom! Lilith gets smoked.
CHUCK:But I-I haven't seen that yet. Th-the story –
DEAN:Chuck, you're the only shot that I've got left.
CHUCK:But... I'm just a writer.
DEAN:This isn't a story anymore, man. This is real! And you're in it! Now, I need you to get off your ass and fight. Come on, Chuck.
Important - the fact that Chuck hasn't seen this part of the story yet. So it can be changed. Also hilarious how Dean tries to convince Chuck to come with him... but it doesn't work so in the end he ends up threatening him with a gun!
While that's happening, Lilith has come for a visit, and Sam has failed to trap her in the devils trap or kill her with his power. Lilith, it seems, wants to talk a deal.
LILITH:You can end it, Sam. Right here, right now. I'll stop breaking seals, Lucifer keeps rotting in his cage. All you have to do is agree to my terms.
SAM:Why would you back down? Why now?
LILITH:Turns out, I don't survive this war. Killed off, right before the good part starts.
So we find out here that it isn't to "turn Sam" that Lilith comes. It's to make him a deal. Because she realizes that she is going to die. That she is going to be killed off. (And she probably knows by whom as well) She wants to stop the apocalypse so that she can go on as she was - sort of like Crowley's reason later on aye? In a way, Lilith is hinting that if she doesn't die... there is no apocalypse. Too bad Sam didn't catch that.
SAM:And what do you want in return?
LILITH:Your head on a stick. Dean's, too. Call it a consolation prize. So what do you say, Sam? Self-sacrifice is the Winchester way, isn't it?
SAM:You really think I'm stupid enough to fall for this?
LILITH:I make a deal, I have to follow through. Those are the rules, and you know it. Are you really so arrogant that you would put your life before the lives of six billion innocent people? Maybe it's all that demon blood pumping through your pipes. Man after my own heart.
Lilith tries to goad Sam into agreeing, but Sam agrees only to keep her there and have his chance to kill her with the knife. As he goes into the kiss, he grabs the knife. But she stops him. and here Dean barges in with Chuck. I loooove Dean in this scene. Putting the fear of God into Lilith!
CHUCK:I am the prophet Chuck!
LILITH:You've got to be joking.
DEAN:Oh, this is no joke.
You see, Chuck here's got an archangel on his shoulder. You've got about 10 seconds before this room is full of wrath and you're a piece of charcoal. You sure you want to tangle with that?
Driving away, Sam tells Dean all about what Lilith had proposed. Dean asks if Sam had not once considered taking the deal and Sam's like are you kidding? You told me you didn't want me messing with Lilith! and anyway she's scared so we have the upper hand. I wonder if he is lying? Probably not. He wants to kill Lilith too bad.
SAM:...She was telling the truth about one thing.
SAM:She's not gonna survive the apocalypse. I'll make sure of that.
Meanwhile, Chuck has another one of his visions...
and Zach basically threatens Chuck into not telling the boys what he saw, telling him he'll just bring him back if he tries to kill himself.