oh god sorry but that's a clusterfuck of promo video, we have a new jenny klein in the writers team reducing dean to a gross frat boy, and as a dean fan i'm seeing red, if the whole episode is like that they're making a disservice to dean's character, can't they go for intelligent humor instead of dumbing down characters for comic relief?
I think… that’s actually the point of this episode though? The entire conceit of it is that THERE IS CLEARLY SOMETHING WRONG WITH DEAN HERE.
He’s under a curse? That is making him act this way? And that is literally the point?
And I really, really, REALLY don’t think the point of it is for “comic relief.” This is gonna hurt like hell.
Dean is losing himself, his memories, and it’s not “funny” at all.
I was talking with *spends five minutes trying to remember who I talked about this with and of course it’s lizbob…* So anyway we were saying that it seems like this is the first time Sam’s seen Dean since the previous night (we saw in one of the other promos that he gets blasted with a weird light in the woods, and then wakes up curled around a bunny… still in the woods). Sam finds him in a diner where he’s gorging himself on TWO huge plates of waffles with syrup and whipped cream and chocolate and berries and… wow that’s weird even for DEAN.
And Dean seems REALLY out of it. Really kind of… uncaring. Forgetful. And Sam’s first thought is that Dean went on a bender, got drunk, and passed out ~somewhere~ and that he might STILL be drunk…
Because that’s Sam’s read of “performing Dean.” Not that he’d actually been snoozing in the woods curled up with a bunny rabbit after being CURSED BY A WITCH OR SOMETHING LIKE THAT.
THIS IS SAM’S FIRST ASSUMPTION of what’s “wrong” with Dean.
Especially since they seem to be working a case involving ~weird circumstances~ like this. And when Dean normally realizes his phone is broken, his first thing he usually does is find another means to contact Sam… NOT TO GO TO SOME DINER AND GORGE HIMSELF ON SUGARY PILES OF WAFFLES.
(have I mentioned that waffles have a similar standing to El Sol beer in the visual language of the show, in that they are sort of a PG rated version of DECEPTION? Whenever you see waffles on spn, LOOK FOR THE LIES! Just like when you see El Sol).
no really I have a list of every waffle ever on this damn show:
They are a red flag that THIS IS NOT AS IT SEEMS! YOU ARE BEING TRICKED SOMEHOW! PAY ATTENTION HERE!
And I think the trick this time is SAM’S MISUNDERSTANDING OF DEAN ON A FUNDAMENTAL LEVEL.
Sam has always, as much as Dean could manage, received a Sanitized for Sammy version of the truth. Think 9.07 and “the story became the story.” Sam sees Dean’s swagger and his performing mask and STILL believes that it’s at least a LITTLE bit true to Dean’s personality.
Heck he’s so wrong.
But Dean has worked his entire life to maintain that mask for Sam, like a PARENT would hold that mask up for a child, because that’s what parents DO for their kids. They protect them from the harsh realities of the world. They tell them placating lies. They try to let their kids just be kids… (and no, I’m not saying this is a healthy thing to do, but the shit that Dean had to keep from Sam when they were kids– often on John’s orders, such as don’t tell Sammy about the hunting– when DEAN WAS ALSO JUST A CHILD HIMSELF… I mean there are miles of essays written about this stuff… )
And I watched that promo and thought, WTF SAMMY HOW CAN YOU NOT SEE SOMETHING IS SERIOUSLY NOT RIGHT WITH DEAN? And Sam just sat there befuddled and assumed Dean was “still drunk.”
I think this is going to be an excellent way to shine a little bit more light through the cracks in the codependency. Not only is Sam going to be confronted with the horrific truth of Dean’s situation (that he’s not drunk and fucking off on the job, but LITERALLY A VICTIM OF THE MotW), but his own long-held misperceptions of who Dean truly is as a person, and how hard he works to keep that mask in place.
Not to mention the fact that with Dean’s memory loss and seeming childishness here, SAM is going to be forced into the role of “parent” or “caretaker” in ways that even Dean’s PHYSICAL regression to 14 or so in 10.12 didn’t even come CLOSE to touching on. Because this isn’t a physical regression. This is gonna HURT.
Also, remember that we don’t actually have any context for this scene yet, aside from trying to piece it together with little hits from other promos, interviews, and our own meta theories.
tl;dr? THERE IS ABSOLUTELY NOTHING INTENDED TO BE FUNNY IN THIS PROMO VIDEO. EVERYTHING HAPPENING HERE IS A SYMPTOM OF THE CURSE DEAN’S BEEN SUBJECTED TO AND SAM HASN’T EVEN NOTICED IT YET BECAUSE DEAN SPENT HIS LIFE BUILDING THIS “STORY THAT BECAME THE STORY” TO PROTECT SAM AND NOW IT’S COMING BACK TO BITE THEM BOTH IN THE ASS. AND IT’S GOT BIG POINTY TEETH.