Amara and season 11 just don’t work without Destiel
Based on my thoughts and seeing a lot of others thinking the same I went through and rewatched season 11 focusing heavily on Amara’s scenes, in the end putting them back to back to really look in detail and wowzers, that was eye opening.
As well as all the huge amounts of subtext throughout the season as usual, if you watch all of Amara’s screen time and follow her interactions with Dean and her overall storyline (which is the whole of season 11′s overall storyline, just saying) it just does not function without Dean and Cas’s bond. Without Destiel this whole season just… doesn’t work.
So, just looking at the obvious parts (I won’t go into too much detail as I wrote a whole other post about Amara as an exposition for Dean’s feelings here….).
The real ‘upping the game’ in the exposition of Dean and Cas’s feelings towards each other and, coincidentally, the overall arc of the season, comes from THIS POINT, where Amara is textually and visually put forward as a love interest for Dean. There is a clear parallel of Dean/Amara and Dean/Cas throughout the season 11 narrative and it is from THIS point that both Amara and Cas are portrayed romantically, directly mirrored and used in each others’ narratives. This is not a coincidence.
If it were more referenced beforehand perhaps I may be a little more forgiving and allow more of a ‘platonic profound bond’ reasoning but it is precisely because of this clear move into a love interest role for Amara that Cas and Amara are then clearly portrayed as ‘good bond/love’ and ‘bad bond/love’. One is forced on Dean against his will and he clearly rejects it, one is at its core based on free will and he clearly is doing everything he can to save Cas, even going up against Amara to do this, a very well done full circle of parallels leading into each other… *ahh narrative tie-ins and mirrors - sighing with contentment*.
SO… Since the midseason finale and this scene:
We have the Amara/Love monster who tells us textually that she can “feel the love that you feel”, she uses the particular and relatively precise and uncommon word ‘longing’ which we all now clearly associate with Cas and praying, she talks about his feeling shame… Then moves onto Amara, reminding him of Dean’s way ‘out’, of the ‘bliss’. For me although this isn’t Amara, the love monster does actually use the words “who I am doesn’t matter” and therefore it’s clear that the information she’s giving us is what is important. This is a clear exposition.
Dean then clarifies to Sam that “to call it desire or love…it’s not that”. So the love monster from Love Hurts - who was talking about Dean’s love and longing and shame… She uh, wasn’t picking up on love for Amara as Dean has explicitly told us that is not what he is feeling. So…. who might it have been referring to?
The attempting expelling of Lucifer. Is just so much Destiel and has been covered so many times. All I’m going to say here is that despite “God’s freaking sister”, one of the two most powerful beings in the universe, being right there, Dean’s main concern is Cas to the point that he calls out for him in front of everyone else and reveals his weakness, not a particularly restrained or smart move for a trained hunter. Amara and Lucifer both notice this and we are meant to notice them noticing. Why is this important? To clarify that Dean’s bond with Cas and his worry for him outweighs his bond with Amara.
The longing scene. Again, much meta-d. Basics being, Dean is longing for Cas (while actually muttering ‘where are you Amara’ clearly worried for Cas as it is Cas not Amara he is talking to Sam about around this scene. Amara has an actual real, substantiated ‘bond’ with Dean through the mark, sure, but it IS NOT AS STRONG AS HIS BOND WITH CAS (which as far as I’m aware doesn’t actually have any real basis unless the hand mark or something has a role but hasn’t been touched on for 8 years so I’m going with no), ergo Amara has to use Cas to find Dean. Then yes, she totally manipulates him into coming to rescue Cas/Lucifer because Dean is such a good friend.
After this we get another very interestingly subtextual scene where Dean and Sam are interviewing Donatello and it is only once Sam mentions the word ‘Angels’ that Amara again immediately finds and comes to Dean.…
Again proving that Dean’s bond with Cas is stronger than his bond with Amara.
I particularly love the near-finale narrative, after she expressly tells Dean she cares for him and wants him to be happy, to have bliss - the sandwiching of Mary and Cas in her story which is so relevant to season 12 - how Amara shows that she is capable of just de-materialising Metatron in an instant because she is attacked and angry, she then notices Mary’s picture, she then is again attacked and angry but ‘saves’ Cas, essentially ‘resurrecting’ him from Lucifer’s control, then of course resurrects Mary.
( #Narrative parallels and tropes are a thing is one of my favourite tags).
These are all writing/directing/production choices that were made to show these scenes one after the other and revealing her choices here. Are we not supposed to wonder why she made these choices?
Are we not supposed to wonder why Amara, all powerful being, is incapable of contacting Dean without going THROUGH CAS (who Dean expressly states is “small fry” in comparison to her), or having a conversation with him where Cas isn’t in some way referenced once she is herself portrayed as a love interest?
Or why the writing/directing/production team made these choices?
There is a clear narrative being told here.
If you watch all of Amara’s screen time throughout this season it is just so clear what she is exposing, what her interactions with Dean are based on, how her storyline does not function without Dean and Cas’s bond. I’m not saying her story is pointless, it clearly isn’t, just that it rests on their bond so this shows how extremely important to the whole story their bond is.
Any why? Why are we being shown all this, why are we being encouraged to question all this? I was just reading @charlie-minion’s excellent overview and loved this post with great insight: “The question in season 9 was “who do you love?” Whereas I think the questions in season 10 are “what kind of love do you feel?” and “whose heart are you gonna break?”.
There is a clear and ever evolving question about Dean’s feelings throughout the seasons which has now kept on into season 12. I think these questions have been more or less answered now, the questions for season 12 and moving forwards are “is this love reciprocated”, which has already been answered textually, “will you be able to admit to this love” and “what are you going to do about it”…
It still looks like the same show, but it doesn’t feel like the same show.
It’s like a copy. It’s not complete or whole right now, because it’s missing something. That’s why it doesn’t feel like the show I’ve known and loved all my life.
And for me, that’s exactly what it’s missing; emotional attachment.
Or what has always been at its heart - intricate and sensitive character-driven stories allowing the emotional depth which plot-driven drama for the sake of drama just isn’t capable of achieving.
Because this is what’s happening - over the last few months at least - Emmerdale has ceased to be the one soap which has always had the characters at the heart of its stories and driving them, and instead become a plot-driven mess creating drama for the sake of drama, to the point of sometimes even feeling gimmicky and farcical in places (e.g. weekly desperate attempts at forced, unauthentic comedic plots in an attempt to break up some of the sheer utter misery in the name of drama).
What we’ve been seeing lately is a regular pattern of characters’ backstories or previous plot-points being forgotten / neglected and creating this feeling of out-of-character moments, while also being given huge plot-points which are rarely followed through and given any aftermath.
How many characters have been killed off recently? And how much actual grieving have we been allowed to see? Remember Holly? Remember James? Do you remember the immediate aftermaths with the Bartons? How it affected all of the characters? Did we see it impact on Pete and his depression? Did Ross suddenly stop feeling guilty for not being there when his dad died purely because he admitted this after James’s funeral?
And then there’s Ashley. Why does Laurel need something to do immediately, regarding Emma and this video? Why can’t we just see her grieving? Why are we expected to believe that one dream has suddenly cured her of her illness regarding alcohol and that there’s no longer any struggle? Why isn’t that struggle - and her overcoming it - worth telling? Why aren’t we getting to see more of Sandy coming to terms with the fact that his child has died before him? Why - for a show that has frequently praised and valued the feeling of community among the characters - are we not seeing conversations with other characters? Why not have Sandy and Bob discuss having to be a parent watching your own child die before you? Why not have Carly turn to Laurel about Billy in light of Daniel? Why not follow through on the conversation between Aaron and Laurel about that place by Wylie’s? Why was Gabby blaming Bernice for the fact that she wasn’t there when Ashley died pitched as though it were its own plot-point when it actually lasted two episodes before she went on holiday with the very person she blamed? Why isn’t grief a worthy storyline in its own right?
Why has the narrative become so staccato, jumping from one plot-point to the next and never allowing us to see, or appreciate, the journey between them? I’m not saying this is the case for the whole show, and the grieving storylines are just one example of my point - that we are being shown very little follow-through in the majority of storylines these days, in favour of the big plot-points which guarantee the reaction. Ultimately, the characters aren’t being given the time to be human. And it was this authentic and poignant ability to mix light and shade believably, the consistent exploration of the complex spectrum of human emotion, that has always made Emmerdale different to all the other shows. This was its strength. This was the very essence of Emmerdale, at its core - its heart - but right now it feels like they’ve lost sight of that.
As you can see, my problem right now goes much further than Robron and their current storyline. It extends to Emmerdale in general. Because my issue right now, and my disappointment, is with the show as a whole and all of its storylines. Unfortunately, the backlash over this particular Robron-related storyline has become somewhat blurred with the character hate of Rebecca, and that is what the crew and media are choosing to focus on rather than distinguishing between the two. And this is where my issue lies and what I’m choosing to address.
By choosing to focus on a handful of tweets, and tarring the whole fandom / audience with the same brush rather than acknowledging the complex spectrum of humanity and the individuality of identity, they’re essentially missing the point. My issue with this particular storyline is not the storyline itself. I mean, of course I was never going to like a cheating storyline with Robron. But we’re not supposed to like every storyline. What we are supposed to be able to do is believe it, understand it, and appreciate it. Which I could have done - while disliking the content of the plot - had it been executed well. And that’s where the problem lies. The fact that it feels like there has been a distinct lack of care and effort in portraying this storyline. And I would extend this point to almost every storyline over the past few months.
Of course, we’ve been able to give the show the benefit of the doubt by putting some of the blame onto the character of Rebecca and her lack of identity because it’s never come across onscreen. And this is why we’re now reading quotes telling us what’s going on in Rebecca’s mind, and how we should feel about her and the storyline - because until now, we’ve never been shown her perspective in the narrative. You shouldn’t have to tell your audience how to feel, nor should you try to narrow their interpretations. The very essence and beauty of fiction is that it can be interpreted in so many ways. That’s what makes creating it so fulfilling. All artistes - including writers, actors, directors, producers - are enabling the freedom of creative expression. And that means opening the audience’s mind, not restricting it. If you want the intention of your story to be interpreted a certain way, it has to come across in the narrative. The fact that it doesn’t to so many, however, goes to show the lack of care in this storyline.
And that’s my problem, that’s why my eternal enthusiasm for the show in general is faltering. Because it feels like they have become complacent. They still have some truly great moments, of course they do. But that’s just it; they’re moments. Right now it feels like the only thing Emmerdale is actually being consistent in is its lack of consistency. And again, I say this in regard to all storylines.
For me, they’re asking too much of the audience while also refusing to challenge our minds and thirst for entertainment. Some aspects of the plots at the moment could resemble a paint-by-numbers, while others stretch the boundaries of our suspension of disbelief into oblivion. And that saddens me more than any storyline ever could. Because this show means so much to me. But right now, it doesn’t really feel like the same show anymore.
And that’s where my disappointment lies. Because I know what this show is capable of - including Super Soap Week which wasn’t so long ago and I’ll forever rave about - but it feels like they’ve forgotten.
And that’s why I’ll keep rooting for the twists and theories, and I’ll acknowledge the fact that quotes can be taken out of context and edited to fit the angle of the story the press are trying to spin. I am rooting for them, and willing them to prove me wrong on this. To root for themselves.
Because essentially, I don’t need - or want - platitudes or explanations in interviews.
I just want Emmerdale to feel like Emmerdale again.
i dont think i’ve commented before on how fucking glad i am that babs’ storyline on s3 had 0 to do with jim, like, yeah he showed up here and there when he needed help and stuff but (1) she was the one who had the upper-hand in like 90% of their interactions and (2) she had an entire, well developed arc that was about Her, and her relationship with tabs and it was super well done ((even if heartbreaking)) and it’s hella refreshing. i mean, sure, he’ll likely always be a presence in her life, and maybe they’ll end up married, but that’s all secondary now. she’s her own character with her own goals and flaws and i love her so damn much.
In trying to come to terms with the writing for 6x15, I thought I’d try to rework some detail aspects of it. This has been turning around in my head for the past couple of days, of a way to keep the same basic premise of the last episode but just adjusting some plot points and character beats that would’ve improved it’s overall reception and retain Emma’s character progression.
More than anything I just needed to get this out of my system. If you’re tired of reading my thoughts on this, feel free to skip it. This is lengthier than I had intended, and as expected has some salt sprinkled throughout, so yeah, here goes:
What are your thought on Bran storyline? Not just some part of it but the whole arc. How do you think it will end? How being 'probably-the-most-powerful-being' will change his personality?
Bran’s the protagonist. That’s not just his role in the story, it’s the driving force behind the imagery, themes, and struggles of his chapters. The costs that come with being The One are always at the forefront; Bran has to reconcile being the most important person ever with being, y’know, a person. A child, specifically, one who has suffered greatly in both body and soul, and who doesn’t fully understand his powers. I don’t think accessing greater power will in itself change Bran’s personality, but the challenges along the way will certainly shape him. As for endgame, I think he goes home, and either be King in the North or a religious/magical type figure.
Until my Feet Bleed and my Heart Aches was honestly hands down the best Viktuuri fanfiction I have ever read and I cannot wait for @kazliin‘s next story which will be called Of Bright Stars and Burning Hearts which gives us Viktor’s point of view through this all. If it is anything like UMFB&MHA, it will be one hell of a roller coaster ride of feels and emotions and I am totally on board for the long ass hull.
@kazliin - thank you for one hell of a story for us Viktuuri and YOI fans. It has brought me to tears and made me laugh until my stomach hurts more than once. It also is such a great turn around to what their story could have been like in the sense of the turn around you gave at the very beginning.
If you haven’t read the story yet and are a fan of Yuri!!! on Ice, HIGHLY suggest it. The whole story is brilliantly written and gives such great attention to detail that every YOI fan should read it. It has everything you could ask for - angst, smut, love, heartbreak, laughter, tears, emotions, the feels. It has it all. Also the soundtrack and the music she has found to fit around the whole storyline - wow. JUST GO AND INDULGE.
This whole storyline is heartbreakingly believable. Everytime something like this happens irl, it’s one more time than is acceptable.
It’s incredibly well acted, and very well put together. And does it not shy away from real and extremely upsetting scenes. I’ve cried a few times in earlier episodes but the final one literally had me gasping for breath because I was sobbing so hard at certain scenes.
I would say that everyone should watch this show or read the book but I also don’t think everybody is ready to.
If you are going to watch this then take the warnings posted at the start of the episodes seriously because they are very serious.
It’s seem weird to say that I enjoyed this show because it almost feels like I shouldn’t have.
I guess I’ll say I enjoyed the emotional roller coaster.
i realized why i liked todays episode. not because of any storyline. just the whole episode was just Robert in different parts of the village. our personal tour as he says goodbye to his old life, and hello to mill cottage and aaron, all aaron.
to be honest my whole opinion on this storyline is that I’m just bored by it all. like genuinely, exhaustingly bored by it. if this was the route they were ~~ determined ~~ to go down, they could have written it in a way that still felt interesting and engaging (to me at least)