“That song is a classic. I hear you, I do […] but it sure is catchy.”
“You know I can hear you, right? […] every word, crystal clear.”
Metatron has been the perpetual author stand-in since Metafiction, if not before. He’s always told us about the story, told us how the story was gonna go, and told us what to look for in the story.
So TPTB are letting us know that they love telling this story, and there’s a way they’ve always told this story, but they hear us and are taking us into account.
I myself have been guilty of snarking at the Supernatural twitter account. When they said, “How far will Sam go to save Dean?” I was like, “OH GEE I WONDER, probably far enough to get into enough trouble that fixing Sam will comprise the season eleven arc, and if they get renewed Dean will go to unimaginable lengths to save Sam so that we can get a season twelve arc!”
But they hear us, kids. This endless cycle of “How far can you go?” was subverted by the show even as Sam descends into partnership with Rowena. Because every single member of Team Free Will was asked, “What’s your endgame?”
Dean’s is retirement and creature comforts and oddly gender-neutral romance, Castiel’s is undefined but his usual plot points (saving heaven, tracking down rogue angels, everything that’s kept him busy since season five) were ridiculed and ruled out.
Sam was a little different in that he got asked what brought him here as opposed to where he was going, but he’ll get there too.
So let’s let Sam get past his last sacrificial plot arc, and concentrate on Dean and Castiel for a second.
They BEGGED THE QUESTION here. Begged it. Metatron goaded Cas about what the hell his purpose was, ruled out his usual purposes, and the only thing left was Castiel’s “Save Dean” arc. The only thing left, for Castiel, is Dean. He’s exhausted all his excuses.
They begged the question so hard that I genuinely stopped breathing because I thought they were going to say that outright, but they presented us a math problem and asked us to solve for x. I won’t truly be satisfied until the math becomes a simple English-based declarative statement, but until then I’ll be over here on tumblr solving for x.
And Dean? Dean is done. Dean is tired. Dean wants to relax on a beach with gender-unspecified partners and booze, and by god he’s earned that. Will he get it? Lord only knows, but at least we have confirmation that he wants to semi-retire and not die.
And what do we have? What has this episode given the viewers?
In short, it’s given us a promise.
“We love this story, this is how we tell this story, but we see what you’re saying and we’re getting there. Look at these characters talking about endgame. Look at the narrowing down from humanity to Dean. Look at Dean’s lack of a death wish. These are all key for the thing we’re trying to do for you, just be patient and let us get there in a way that’s authentic for these characters. We found a way to make ‘Charlie sitting at the table in the kitchen of the bunker playing Fortune Tellers with Team Free Will’ canon, LET US GET THERE.”
For the first time, I am not throwing out caveats. I am not saying, “If XYZ happens and ABC doesn’t happen, this could happen.” I’m not saying, “This is the story I’d tell.” I’m not saying, “This is how you tell a story, why aren’t they following through?” I’m not saying, “This is likely but heteronormativity is a hell of a drug.” I’m not saying, “This is my analysis of what’s probably going on.”
I’m just saying, flat out, that we’ve gotten the message from TPTB. Be patient, let them get there, let them tell this story the way the Winchesters deserve, but we’re going there.