fight for my music

literally hamilton is always there at the back of my mind like I can’t even hear someone start a sentence with “meanwhile” without interrupting them with “mADISON IS GRAPPLING WITH THE FACT THAT NOT EVERY ISSUE CAN BE SETTLED BY COMITTEE”

How SPN Romantically Codes the 10x22 Dean/Cas Fight Scene

So I just watched 10x22 and something really stuck out about the fight scenes in the final section of the episode. First is the fight scene between Dean and the Steins, and then this is followed by the Dean/Cas fight scene.

In tv and films, audio is incredibly important, and its importance is clearly seen within fight scenes where there is a whole load of extra sound production for these scenes. Each punch is an audio file added in, the sounds of people crashing against walls is an added sound. So the amount of intradiegetic audio (sound whose source is visible on screen) that is produced to finalise these scenes is vast. There is also non-diegetic audio (sound not visible on screen or out of shot such as mood music) in fight scenes. 

In the first Stein/Dean fight the non-diegetic music is the classic drums/tension/fast paced music one would expect from a fight scene. As seen here;

This background music tells the viewer that the scene is stressful, a classic fight scene between enemies, and fits in with all the other fight scene tropes one would see on screen.

But now, listen to the music playing when Dean and Cas fight;

The music during this fight scene is slow, wistful, sad, i.e. not your classic fight scene music. It’s the soaring violins and slow cello sounds which is used in many of the emotional moments in SPN. This music is used for the moments when Sam and Dean are opening up about their feelings, 

It’s similar to the music in this scene where Dean tells his mum he loves her (at 3:45 the cellos come in and it sounds very like the 10x22 Cas/Dean fight scene);

Also, if we compare the music in the 10x22 Cas/Dean fight scene to the 8x17 Cas/Dean crypt fight scene, we can see that the 8x17 music changes from normal fight scene stressful music to the slow cello violin music once Cas takes control over his mind. Therefore it moves from normal fight scene to an emotionally coded scene;

This makes sense that it moves from fight scene to emotionally coded, however the 10x22 fight scene doesn’t even have the fight scene music to start off with. It uses emotionally coded music from the start. These two fight scenes are normally paralleled, but watching them side by side and paying attention to the music really shows how there is an emotional progression between the characters. The 10x22 scene is never a normal emotionally void scene, from the start it is underlaid (or musically overlaid) with emotion. Whilst the character’s emotional relationship could be put to one side for a bit in the crypt in order to code the scene as a fight, in 10x22 the emotional relationship is inescapable and is a priority over any fight scene audio coding.  

So overall, by placing the two fight scenes in 10x22 next to each other and changing just the music, SPN shows that the Cas/Dean fight scene is an emotional scene charged with love. The music it uses is the same mood/even the same piece as the show uses in the heartfelt scenes, the times when the brothers open up about their emotions. This music makes the Cas/Dean fight scene so romantically coded which makes it stand out from other fight scenes. This fight isn’t about Dean letting the mark of Cain ruin him, it’s about his relationship with Cas and why fighting Cas makes this scene very emotional. Moreover, by comparing the music in the 10x22 scene to the 8x17 Dean/Cas fight scene, we can see that the emotional relationship between the characters is a priority over any other musical coding.