sam & fuzzy

Seven Things About Supernatural: 12x06 - “Celebrating the Life of Asa Fox”

So apparently we need to take everyone down to the Hot Topical for Supernatural merch.  How do you get this many hunters together and only one of them has anti-possession mojo? 

(Also, someone please notify our hunting team that ice is solid water.  Oh, and I don’t care how much character that Pentacle of Mars has, nobody has time to draw a fucking scorpion in ashes with a scoop.) 

  1. So this whole ep is beautiful, but I’m really taken with the way the show handled the exposition required to make an story centered around a dead stranger work: Mary tying up loose ends, Asa being inspired to take up the hunter’s mantle, the montage of his life, and the abrupt, terrible shock of his death.  It’s exquisite storytelling, done in minutes, and damn.  Just damn. 

    I smiled at the ways Asa’s unique, smiled at the ways he’s like Dean, was warmed by his determination and joy at the work, even though it’s difficult and scary, loved the way he wrote to Mary, who only exists to him as the hunter who saved him, and as a blurry Polaroid from 1980.  

    It’s so smart, because it shows us that not all hunters have traumatic loss origin stories, reiterates that hunters bear a special responsibility to hunt because someone has to, and places Mary – who is retiring and doesn’t want her kids to hunt – into the position of being Asa’s inspiration to become a hunter.  
  2. And hey, let’s look at Mary in this ep.  She passed the work down to Asa, even if she didn’t intend to or realize it, just like she did with her sons, and then Asa dies on a hunt not long after she returns not only to life generally but the life.  In her scene with Asa, she is already Dean’s mother, but she also mothers Asa before sending him back inside by helping straighten up his hair and clothes.

    When Loraine confronts her in the kitchen about her role in Asa’s choice to hunt, some of that is mother v. mother conflict.  Loraine is Asa’s rightful mother, who brought him up and stuck around, while Mary is mythic, a Mother of Hunters, whose influence was so much stronger.  They ultimately reconcile – which, holy chickens, is a personal manifestation of the overall reconciliation of Mythic Mary with actual Mary – but I think we can agree that Mary’s crisis mid-ep is pretty justified.  

    She didn’t ask to be this person.  She tried to be the opposite.  And yet, like Sam points out, it’s an inextricable part of who they are.

    (Also, can we take a moment to stand in awe of the scene where Sam and Mary are talking over Asa’s body and Randy’s blood drips down from the ceiling onto his face?  Because holy shit, this is a terrible, shared horror, and I’m not sure Jael could have known, or orchestrated it so perfectly.  When it happened, though?  Holy fucking fuck.)  
  3. The inclusion of Jody in this story is wonderful – calling the boys out on – but particularly great because she’s such a crucial bridge for the boys.

    She’s the reason they attend Asa’s wake.  They’re a relatively isolated pair – John kept them separate, they were hunted for a while, etc. – but they care about her and want to support her.  She helps bridge the emotional gap for them as an informal maternal figure who is now adjacent to their actual mother.  She’s also a bit of a bridge for Mary toward the boys at the end, helping complete the circle.

    All of the character stuff – the way she’s like FUCK YEAH NETFLIX AND BOOZE, her whole you stink/here eat this thing with the boys, confirmation that her life without them is increasingly interesting/full, Sam outing Dean’s hentai habit, etc. – is also fantastic, and Kim Rhodes was fucking fantastic with red eyes.  

    Also, how is Jody getting home?!  She rode in with the boys.  Please tell me they all go to breakfast together. 
  4. So Sam and Dean are surprised that people tell stories about them, but uh, guys, there are whole books about you.  

    (Gods, can you imagine some random hunter stumbling across the books?  Can you imagine them finding the fan fiction?  Oh, and did we mention Dean killed Hitler?  We did?  Because that happened.)

    So yeah, 12x06 adds hunter lore as another layer to the story within a story within a story thing that the show has.  We’ve got reality prime, created by but ultimately independent from Chuck.  We’ve got the books, which exist in tandem but aren’t 100% in synch.  We’ve got myriad forms of in-show fan reaction/interpretation.  And, just to be difficult, we have the implication that show canon itself isn’t quite accurate given differences in the way Sam and Dean speak and act in the reality show footage in 3x13 (and possibly even the student film/video letter left by Kate in 8x04). 

    I have to wonder what the hunter lore about the Winchesters is like.  It seems like we’ve come a long way from like Gordon Walker, Kubrick, and Creedy, moving on from “let’s murder them in their beds” to “let’s be awkward at Sam about Lucifer.”  It’s another big part of bringing them into a new place as characters, and I like it. 

    (Bucky, on the other hand, is fucked.)
  5. One of the things I especially liked about this ep is that Loraine didn’t turn out to be the big bad.  I went in expecting a Ten Little Murder Victims story – the Clue ep that isn’t The Clue Ep, so to speak – with the Wronged Party acting out revenge in a fit of psychotic grief.  

    We still got something in that vein – a locked house with a killer inside – but the way it plays out is so much more satisfying than another variation on a bad old trope about predatory women.  It’s so much smarter the way it plays out with Jael, the even more obvious big bad, being…well, more or less an attendee.  A disruptive, murderous attendee with a score to settle, but an attendee nonetheless.  
  6. Billie.  BILLIE.  She’s such a great antagonist, and Lisa Berry is amazing, and I was very concerned at the end when she tries to collect Mary as payment for letting Dean into the Fox family home through the warding.

    Actually, I’m still kind of concerned, because owing Billie is probably not going to be great in the longer term, even if she was bound by the rules not to just collect the Winchester Of Her Choice without their consent.  

    Then again, she really just needs to be patient.  It’s not like she won’t get to collect all of them eventually…  
  7. I’m really enjoying this longer arc of Mary processing on her own terms, and how difficult it is for Dean.  He’s still pretty heavily locked into (toxic) ideas that John taught him about how families work, and so Mary’s independence is terribly hard for him to process.  

    He’s afraid, he hurts, and it’s not a terribly good or productive look on him, not least because there’s no good way for Mary to answer to him.  On some level he’s still trying to be proprietary about Mary, but now that she is living and real he can’t be in charge of her memory.  He’s so used to hanging on to her that when she needs to be a person, he loses it.

    Jody’s talk with him at the door is so important.  She’s someone who has lost family and would take them back in a heartbeat, but it can never be the same as it was.  She speaks directly to his fear and makes sure to leave the door open.    

    We’re seeing him get better about this, but we also see him have one of his old, bad dark moments about the hunting life ending in violent death, so we know the work is still in progress.  I’m glad it is taking a long time, because when he gets there it will mean something.     

    Mary is also modeling how to process things a an individual, which is pretty remarkable in terms of parental influence on both of the boys.  Her actions are difficult for Dean, but they’re entirely healthy and reasonable, and I love that she makes her own choices without caving.  

Bonus Thing: Holy crap, I think this may be one of the few episodes with near-equal gender representation.  Our active players are Sam, Dean, Max, Bucky, Elvis, and Loraine, Mary, Alicia, Billie, and Jody.  Jael takes a body of each.  

Randy and Asa skew the totals, but Randy dies early and Asa is…well, he’s pretty much dead for the action of the ep.  

Bonus Thing: I love Max and Alicia Banes so much.  I want them to come back.  I want them in on Wayward Daughters.  I want to read a dozen books about them.  Also, I think Max was coming on to Sam before Elvis interrupted them to ask awkward fanboy questions, and this delights me.  

Bonus Thing: Between the bacon and the “I’m fine,” Dean and Mary are so related.  It’s neat, too, the reversal that’s happening with Sam having to play voice of reason/peacemaker between them after Dean had to do that with Sam and John.  Bacon is the Winchester olive branch.

Lady Ramkin stood there, magnificently.
Vimes was vaguely aware of a brilliant blue dress that sparkled in the candlelight, a mass of hair the color of chestnuts, a slightly anxious face that suggested that a whole battalion of skilled painters and decorators had only just dismantled their scaffolding and gone home, and a faint creaking of that said underneath it all mere corsetry was being subjected to the kind of tensions more usually found in the heart of large stars.
‘I, er,’ he said. ‘If you’d said, er. I’d, er. Dress more suitable, er. Extremely, er. Very. Er.’
She bore down upon him like a glittering siege engine.  - Terry Pratchett, Guards, Guards

This beautiful illustration was created by the amazing and talented Xenia @ofpaintedflowers as a commission that I have wanted since I first saw Sybil and her boys (https://www.etsy.com/ca/listing/476892113/sybil-and-her-boys-discworld-print?ga_order=most_relevant&ga_search_type=all&ga_view_type=gallery&ga_search_query=sybil%20ramkin&ref=sr_gallery_1). Please check out Xenia’s work at http://ofpaintedflowers.tumblr.com/

Post-Noel

This Squealing Santa fic is for destiel-fiction-we-are! The prompt: “Sabriel – wings, teasing, Sam as the victim.” HB!anon had also asked for some Christmassy tickles for Sam, and I’m a big fan of two-for-one efficiency. :)

(This is also an unofficial counterpart to Morning Fuzziness, though they’re separate events.)

Words: 830

———

When Sam’s eyes fluttered groggily open, he had to suppress a groan of discomfort. He’d hoped a good night’s sleep would calm the ache that found its core in his stomach and seemed to ooze out into the rest of his body. But the reality was that five hours didn’t count as a full night, and Gabriel had forced far too many cookies on him the evening before.

Sam never would have guessed that spending Christmas with an angel would be so draining. Gabriel had been an unstoppable force of merriment the entire day, practically terrorizing the whole bunker with hearty renditions of Christmas carols, some of which were completely unfamiliar and in languages Sam didn’t know. It was the least problematic when Gabe was belting them out by himself. Far more distracting was when he’d conjure up unseen choirs of hundreds of voices that rattled the windows with every crescendo. Everything had been extravagant, and though they’d managed to talk Gabriel into keeping the gifts simple, nothing had been able to stop him from providing the most indulgent spread of food Sam had ever laid eyes on.

Now, the day after, with the excitement depleted, all Sam wanted was a quiet day of recovery. And when the blankets rustled and a lump of warmth aligned itself at his back, he thought he might actually get it.

Keep reading

Steve Rogers tends to collect Bucky Bears.

This is mostly accidental.

To be honest, the actual Bucky Bear related things that he bought for himself were the keychain which now had his motorcycle and apartment keys and a small Beanie Baby version that sat on his desk.

The others were definitely presents, starting with the one sent by that sweet little girl who observed that he “looked so sad” and correctly deduced that it was because he missed human Bucky.

And after that, everyone he knew somehow ended giving him something Bucky Bear related or the other.

Tony was totally responsible for the Bucky Bear t-shirt that was Steve’s favorite sleepwear.

Natasha was the one who got the Bucky Bear fuzzy slippers.

Sam got him the mug.

See? All totally not Steve’s fault that he was friends with a buncha wiseasses.

Okay, so Steve did sleep with the original, repaired Corporal Bear. It helped. Nightmares. Sometimes.

Shut up.

When he was finally reunited with human Bucky, the latter was a bit nonplussed at all the Bears. However, since he now had his Stevie wrapped around him, giving him snuggles and sugar on the regular, Bucky Barnes was content.

Also, Steve nuzzling and kissing him in that spot just below his jawline made human Bucky purr more like a cat than a bear. Steve also could make him rumble and growl too but the two of them HAD to get out of bed sometime, right?

Okay, so Corporal Bear got a new Bear sibling from Coney Island. Bucky was pretty much defenseless in the wake of Steve’s sunshine smile.

— 

The Bucky Bear Collection, Steeb and Bucko

Because greenbergsays inspired me. Again.

5

A Very Sam Christmas Special, PART EIGHT.

Part One | Part Two | Part Three | Part Four | Part Five | Part Six | Part Seven|Part Eight | Part Nine | Part Ten | Part Eleven | Part Twelve | Part Thirteen | Part Fourteen | Part Fifteen | BONUS

Seven Things About Supernatural: 1x03 - “Dead in the Water”
  1. Ah, yes.  The days before scanner apps and other useful software.  Newspapers in diners and…wait, how did Sam find Internet in a shitty hotel in 2005?  (Answer: there are all kinds of ways to do this, though it’s possible he’s had to stoop to using a phone line.)
  2. What’s that?  Sam’s laser focus (and anger when things get in the way of it) making an appearance?  Yup.  Some of this is down to how the brothers have experienced the hunt: Dean’s been second-in-command on what killed Mary for years, while Sam mainly wanted no part of it.  Now that Sam is in John’s position, he’s not coping well.  This may also give us some insight into how John might have acted early on.  
  3. If last week established Sam as capable of protecting Dean, and re-integrated him into the world of hunting, this week establishes Dean as vulnerable and emotionally complex in ways Sam did not give him credit.  It’s possible Sam was too close before to see some of this – we rarely see these things in our parents at 18 or 20, and Dean was certainly parentified – but we also see Dean doing a fair amount of emotional distancing with most people, including Sam.  Dean likely didn’t give Sam the opportunity to see some of these elements of his personality.
  4. When Sam asks Dean to name three children he actually knows, Dean counts to one.  My guess is that the kid he’s thinking of is about 6′4″ and around 22 years old.   
  5. Lucas has been surrounded by adults who either don’t know how to listen to him or try to connect to him in the wrong way.  Dean succeeds because he approaches Lucas as a peer: a survivor of childhood trauma caused by a supernatural attack.  Dean re-experiences some of his trauma, I think, seeing Lucas in that state.  Ultimately, this may be a positive corrective experience for him in that he’s able to save both Lucas and Andrea.  Somewhere in his head he’s saving himself and Mary.  It’s not a magic fix-it – “Watching one of your parents die isn’t something you just get over,” as Dean says in the ep – but it’s something. 
  6. Dean might call Sam his “geek brother,” but I’ll bet a shiny nickel that Dean’s the one who came up with Ford and Hamill.  Also, he falters a little with Hamill; he’s not used to working alongside Sam yet.
  7. If you are ever tempted to characterize S1 Dean as being innately crass with women, watch the end of this episode and how flustered he is with Andrea.  

Bonus Thing: Nice underroos, Sammy.