Supernatural: The Purge

"What, we got a Thinner sitch here?"

Was this whole episode a metaphor for how diets don't work?

I thought at first that 'The Purge' was going to be funny and gross. Frankly, it wasn't that funny, and it was only somewhat gross. But at least we got Jared Padalecki in a tank top. Couldn't we have gotten Jensen Ackles in a tank top, too?

I did like Larry and Maritza, especially since they were using her fat-sucking demonic power for good, and I was actually sad that she lost him. It sort of didn't make sense that her brother Alonso went rogue and that she starved him to keep him in line. With all that fat right there for the taking? Even though we're getting a lot of the "some monsters aren't evil" message these days, I suppose some monsters can't break that killing habit. If they could, the Winchesters probably wouldn't be hunting them. Instead, they'd be finding them jobs as bag boys at Wal-mart. (That sounds like a quote. Where did my subconscious pull it from? Buffy the Vampire Slayer?)

Of course, this episode wasn't really about demonic fat-sucking. It was about one sibling betraying another, and I really wish the episode hadn't ended with Sam being such a jerk to Dean. Sam thinks that Dean wouldn't let him die because he didn't want to be alone? If it had been Sam, Sam would have let Dean die? Dean didn't take that revelation well, and I don't blame him. I guess that leaving Dean in Purgatory made it not a surprise, although I certainly don't like it.

Maybe Sam just has a serious case of the little brother blues. I certainly get what the commenters on last week's review were saying, that Dean has overreached way too often and can't seem to let Sam make his own decisions. But attributing selfish motives to what Dean did just doesn't work for me. I hope they're going somewhere with this brotherly conflict that is dramatically sound.

Just a couple more comments. The hot dog eating contest in the opener made me think of the horrible pie eating contest scene in Stand By Me, which was from a novella written by Stephen King. And then we got the cheating hot dog champ Wayne dying horribly by fat-sucking and I immediately thought of another novel by Stephen King, Thinner. Funny that I thought of Stephen King twice. Ripping off other material is something Supernatural does now and then and they usually do it well, but it doesn't always work for me.

And it was hard to be worried about the Winchesters getting sucked by Alonzo the fat-sucker in that final scene. The two of them don't appear to have an ounce of fat on their bodies.

Bits and pieces:

-- I thought at first we were getting a Rom plot, what with the "pootsie: bags. I'm sure I spelled "pootsie" incorrectly.

-- "Bacon makes everything better"--Bumper sticker. Except your cholesterol. And that doesn't apply to the pig.

-- Caramel pudding? Come on, Dean, you do not steal food in a place where monsters are on staff. Even I know that.

-- Nice performance by the cop talking about how she wound up preferring food to her husband (hey, some guys just suck. Pun intended), and I liked that the Winchesters treated her with sensitivity. Even Dean, who has been known to be insensitive.

-- Apparently, competitive eating is big in the Great Lakes region. I don't even want to attempt to address the possibility of "deep fried butter" because the very thought makes me gag.

-- At least Dean smiled in this one. And ate donuts.

-- This week: Stillwater, Minnesota. Sam was "agent Freeley". The motel room featured clashing patterns highlighted by red striped wallpaper, plus a green fridge.

-- Cupping? Nice touch, but didn't that kill Tchaikovsky?

-- We're getting a break. Next episode airs Tuesday, February 25.


Guy: "Gypsies are all the rage on TV. My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding? Gypsy Sisters? Keeping Up with the Kardashians?"

Sam: "I'll stay."
Dean: "Ain't gonna happen."
Sam: "Why?"
Dean: "Because you're weird around girls."
Sam: "What does that mean, 'weird'?"
Dean: "Awkward. Weird. Sam-weird. Sorry, man. I'm just being 'honest'."

Maritza: "And you boys are both certified personal trainers?"
Dean: "Personal training brothers! Like Hans and Franz, but less German."

Dean: "Nice shorts."
Sam: "Nice hair net."

Sam: "You're not the only one who's dated someone bendy."

Dean: "Do you think I want to end up in a bathtub with my kidney carved out… in Chechnya?"

Maritza: "I'm a Pishtako."
Dean: "A fish taco?"

Sam: "Alonso wasn't a big fan of portion control, was he?"

Sam: "I want to keep things strictly business between us. But I still have a heart."
I'm starting to wonder.

Two out of four tank tops,

Billie Doux is the founder of Doux Reviews and has been reviewing her favorite shows for quite some time. More Billie Doux.


percysowner said...

If it had been Sam, Sam would have let Dean die?

Actually Dean asked about the exact same circumstances and Sam said that in the exact circumstances (AKA Dean dying and the only way to save him is to violate his wishes) Sam would honor what Dean wanted. Remember season three? Remember Doc Benton the Frankenstein Zombie? Sam wanted to take Doc Benton's formula to keep Dean alive forever and keep him from Hell. Dean said he wouldn't cross that line.

So Sam didn't sneak the formula into Dean's coffee and start looking for people to provide needed body parts when the time came. He accepted that Dean had things he wouldn't do to stay alive. At the time did you say Sam didn't love Dean because he honored his wishes? When did going against the natural order and against your brother's stated and (in this case the wishes were stated when Sam knew he was in a coma and dying) when did going against those wishes become good?

They made a point that Dean recognized roofies. When Sam asked how, Dean made it clear it was for his own protection, which makes sense. So DEAN doesn't want anyone to put something inside of HIM and then make his body do things against his will, but if Sam states that he won't let Dean become a puppet for an angel only to keep him alive then he's the bad guy? Is it really love if you force someone to stay alive not only against their will but by using methods they find abhorrent?

When Sam asked what the upside of his being alive was, all Dean could say was that the hunt together. Nothing about Sam being worth something outside of Dean's brother. So I can see why Sam believes Dean only wants him because Dean doesn't want to be alone. He didn't save Sam because Sam wanted to be saved. He didn't save Sam because he wanted Sam's personality, Dean was fine with "Zeke" taking over whenever he felt like it. Dean was willing to override Sam's wishes and have Sam's body become a puppet, something that has happened to Sam before, so yeah, Dean did a lot of it because he didn't want to be alone.

sunbunny said...

I agree with percysowner, but less emphatically…Dean was wrong to let Zeke into Sam's body without his permission. His reasons are understandable but I think he really crossed a line this time. Obviously, Dean had no way to predict the consequences of his actions and I wish Sam would let him off the hook for that at least. Dean has enough on his shoulders without his stalwart belief that he killed Kevin.

It's obvious to me that Sam's depressed and lashing out at his brother, which isn't fair to Dean, but Dean has done the exact same thing to Sam. I really don't like the way they're dragging out the conflict between the brothers. I like it when they're working together, in sync, and not at each other's throats. It's seriously upsetting me.

Jess Lynde said...

Well, I stated my case on this one last week and then Sam pretty much said everything to Dean that I said in my comments, so I clearly agree with Sam and percysowner here. But I hate that it feels like taking sides. Because I really do understand that Dean was not capable of making a different choice. I think Sam might even understand that, too, but what irks is that Dean can't see it for the selfish choice that it was with this set of circumstances. (We'll just have to agree to disagree on that point, Billie. :) ) I think Dean being able to see it from Sam's perspective, and not acting like Sam's being a big jerk for feeling that way, would help considerably with repairing their rift. Ultimately, I'm Team Winchester --- not Team Dean or Team Sam --- and I want them to find a way to a healthy relationship.

On another note: I'm perplexed by Dean's constantly shifting attitude on the "some monsters aren't bad" front. Didn't he kind of get over that hurdle after all the Benny business? He let the girl from the Chronicle episode go. Last week he let Garth and his new family live (the wife and father-in-law, at least). And yet this week he just wants to kill the doctor monster that was trying so hard to co-exist peacefully (and doing a good job of it)? It feels very inconsistent to me.

Heather1 said...

I agree with many points... Sam is too hard because he was just a baby when Dean was put under enormous pressure to take care of Sam no matter what... that Dean doesn't understand that he crossed a line... but let's face it... this episode was just BAD. I adore Supernatural... but I don't think this episode added anything to anything. So I will ignore it after this comment.

ChrisB said...

Not only Stephen King, The X-Files did a similar monster of the week back in the day.

Unlike sunbunny (sorry, my friend), I like the fact that this conflict between the Brothers Winchester is not going away. This time feels different from the others and a quick resolution would negate how serious this conflict is.

Each is hurting and each is lashing out at the other. Dean is being passive-aggresive; Sam is saying things he knows will hurt Dean. If they had used the word "honest" once more, I was going to scream. I don't believe they're being honest right now, at least not completely. At this point, they are just out to wound.

robinhelene said...

Each is hurting and each is lashing out at the other. Dean is being passive-aggresive; Sam is saying things he knows will hurt Dean. If they had used the word "honest" once more, I was going to scream. I don't believe they're being honest right now, at least not completely. At this point, they are just out to wound.

I completely agree with you here. Sam is finally telling Dean the truth, but in a pretty cruel way--so yes, he is trying to hurt Dean because he's angry with him over the Gadreel-Kevin debacle. These two are MANLY men who have probably never had an intimate conversation outside of the church at the end of season 8--and we have to wonder about the relevance of THAT in light of current events.

Throwing something out here--does Sam seem to be acting kind of Crowley-like all of a sudden? He possessed him for a while, bit him last season--could there be some King of Hell in Sam, too? Trying to separate the brothers?

Sam and Dean will ALWAYS save each other's lives. Trust me.


sunbunny said...

Jess - Excellent point about Dean's inconsistency towards friendly monsters. That was a real writer slip up.

"Team Winchester." What a perfect concept. "Team Look Boys I Love you Both Just Get Some Therapy and Pie." I blame a lot of this on John Winchester who taught Dean from a very, very early age (i.e. 4) that his main purpose in life is keeping Sammy safe. So, so much of Dean's self worth is based in the well-being of his brother and, I'm sorry fans of John, that's his father's fault.

Sam doesn't understand that because he was too young when it was being drilled into Dean's head that what he's good for is keeping Sam alive. If the two of them would just talk like the ADULTS they are…ugh and now I'm upset again. Stupid writers. Let my boys be happy!

Can I just add that I really hate the episodes where the writers pretend that Cas ceases to exist? I understand Misha can't be in every episode, but did we not have time for one throwaway line about him being at the bunker?

drnanamom said...

My reaction to this episode has everything to do with being a big sister with younger siblings who were often my responsibility. It is very easy to say that you shouldn't be bossy and overprotective when you are the youngest and never had to feel totally responsible for someone else's life. Sam has always had the privilege of going his own way and doing things like deciding to die for the greater good. He doesn't worry about leaving Dean alone because Dean has never been his responsibility the way he has been Dean's. So yes, I understand Dean and think Sam is being a pompous ass. Dean didn't do anything that would change Sam permanently, he asked an angel to heal Sam. He checked out the angel's credentials. He did his best in an emergency and maybe he made the wrong choice in the church but I doubt most of us would make the right one, even Sam.
Ps. If nothing else this story arc has made for great discussions.

Emily Ecrivaine said...

This episode felt to me like a slightly lamer rip-off of Doctor Who's Partners in Crime...minus the cute Adipose babies and campy humour.

As to the whole Dean-Sam thing...I can see both points of view.

Dean: As an elder sibling myself I kind of get where he's coming from. It's been hammered into him since he was four years old to "Look after Sammy" and "Protect Sammy"...a mentality that Hell and everything has only strengthened. So yes he wasn't really thinking and yes he was probably wrong, but the first thing Dean's stressed, panicked, and grieving brain processed was "Find a way to cure Sammy". And it isn't like he didn't check with Cas about the angel's identity and character first. It was Cas who screwed up and Gadreel who lied.

Sam: After the trauma of having Lucifer possess him, torture him in the Cage, and then drive him half-mad with hallucinations I can certainly see why he views the whole Gadreel affair with such chill and anger. He is tired of life, tired of the fight, and tired of Dean feeling like he has to make drastic choices for his little brother. Sam is just lashing out in general, but Dean's perceived betrayal is giving him a focus for his frustration and anger.

It's just a shame that the writers are taking this route. At the end of the last series I felt like the brothers were the closest and most open they've been since Season 3. I had hoped that the drama this season could come from the whole Angels on Earth and fallout of the Trials...not from fraternal bickering and betrayal. *sigh*

Marianna said...

I've been thinking about the Sam/Dean problem, and I agree with what others have said that Dean's actions stem from the fact that he was trained from a young age to think that protecting Sam was more important than anything. However, I think it goes beyond that. I think Dean has an addictive personality. The concept of moderation isn't really something he is capable of when you think about his behavior relating to alcohol, food, and sex. In addition to those, I think he is also addicted to Sam. I don't think Dean is capable of living without Sam (or hunting for that matter). While of course you would expect a person who lost a sibling he is close to to have a hard time, that person would eventually find a way of coping. Even when he seemed to have his life together while he was living with Lisa and Ben, my impression was that he was never really happy and was going through the motions because that's what Sam told him to do and because he didn't think he could hunt without Sam. And both Dean and Lisa said that he drank a lot during that year. I think it would take A LOT of work for Dean to get over this pattern and not feel the need to control Sam's life, so for right not the best thing he can do is try to show Sam he understands his feelings and is trying.