So here are my thinky thoughts....
Wow... this ep was nicely done... but left me so sad. :(
Both boys had some touching, emotional moments with their parents. I was so glad to see Sam finally meeting Mary and seeing John as Dean did in In the Beginning. The way he reacted upon seeing them both just broke my heart. :( More on that later.
Okay, I have to say I almost hated Anna. I saw the spoilers that there would be a major character death in this episode, and I figured it had to be her. Although, in a way, you could almost say that Sam was, too, even though he was brought back by Michael.
Let's go back to the beginning...
Ah, another look into Dean's dreams! HA! "Cherry Pie" and the angel and devil girls....LOL! The look on his face is priceless. I saw those pics leaked about a month ago from this scene but I didn't know they were from this episode. Anna appears to him like Cas did in The Rapture and ruins the fun. Turns out she was in prison and Cas turned her in. She tells him to meet her somewhere. But before he can, Cas shows up. Ooh, it's nice to get a little badass!Cas instead of ComicRelief!Cas for a change... there was a bit of that in the ep, but it was sparsely used. Cas clearly doesn't trust her. He sees the knife she's holding and asks her what it's for. It looks like a demon-killing knife and she says that "Sam Winchester has to die."
Okay I immediately started getting a Gordon vibe from her.
Anyway he has to die because he's Lucifer's vessel. Cas won't allow it though because Sam is his friend. Wow, he was defending Sammy there. Nice to see.
Anna transports herself to 1978. Nice touch with the huge Grease poster. That brings back memories (okay, so I was only born in '78 but I watched Grease as a little kid a few years later).
Cas tells the boys about what Anna intends to do - go back and kill Mary and John so that they're never born, thus preventing the apocalypse. He wants to stop Anna but Dean insists that he and Sam go back with him; it's their parents.
Back to what I said in the beginning.... Sam's reaction upon seeing John and Mary just broke my heart. The look on his face and the way he held his grip on John's hand after their handshake. The way he said to Mary "you are so beautiful". *sniffle* Of course we could tell from the moment she first sees them that she remembers Dean and really doesn't want him to stay there. Can't blame her, after what happened with the YED and her parents the last time she saw him.
Anna disguises her voice to lure John. Ugh, I am so hating her now... But John does get the upper hand at one point, before the others show up.
Woo-hooo!!! Badass!Sammy makes Anna go bye-bye! He does the blood sigil thing like Dean and Cas have done in the past. Go Sam!
Hee! Totally love the image of the four of them in the Impala: Mom and Dad in the front, Sam and Dean in the back. Awww :)
More heartfelt (but heart-breaking as well, IMO) scenes. John asks Dean about the blood sigil. As Dean tries to tell him what exactly it is, John wants him to cut to the chase and asks him what it did (or where it sent her, can't remember). Dean tells him "you remind me of my Dad."
I really appreciated the scene between Sam and John. You can tell how different John was then, before he became so driven to find the YED after Mary was killed. He thinks it's awful to raise kids as hunters, and who would do something like this. Sam actually defends Dad. He says that he was trying to protect them, and he died trying.
This was what really made me tear up, though. Sam says John died before he got to tell him he understands why he did what he did. And that he loves him.
Such a lovely scene done so nicely by Jared.
The scene with Dean and Mary also made me tear up. He keeps trying to convince her that they're in danger, and he just comes out and tells her he's her son. At first I thought what was he doing, is it really a good idea for him to tell her this? (guess it was a knee-jerk reaction from watching the Back to the Future movies and all that "they can't know who you are" thing) But the way he tries to prove it to her: she made tomato and rice soup for him because her mom always made it for her, and how instead of a lullaby she sung "Hey Jude" to him because it was her favorite Beatles song.
She's upset that her kids are raised to be hunters, but Dean tells her that John raised them that way - that the YED killed her. He repeats to her what he said in In the Beginning, not to go into the nursery that night in '83, but Sam says it's not that easy. He tells her she has to leave John. Which ends up in Sam and Dean never being born, of course. She tells them she can't leave him - it's too late because she's pregnant (with Dean).
John tells them the blood sigils he made are now smudged and who do we see again (after the angel "greeting")? Uriel. His younger self, presumbly. The battle royal ensues, and Sam gets stabbed by Anna. NOOOOOOOOOOO!! :(
John gets flung out of the house when a bright light engulfs him and he's obviously being possessed by some kind of angel. Who turns out to be Michael. Whoa. He kills Anna and makes Uriel disappear.
Then comes what I was expecting since I found out it was Michael: the talk with Dean. Interestingly it's not just one person who can be his vessel. It's a bloodline stretching back to Cain and Abel. It's in Dean's blood, his dad's blood, etc. Dean holds steadfast and doesn't want to give in to him, but Michael blathers on about the whole destiny thing. Basically that destiny is in control...every choice Dean makes leads him closer to his destiny. Nothing is random. So Dean will say "yes" to him. He says he will scrub John and Mary's minds so they won't remember any of this. And of course all the future events will still happen (Mary going into the nursery, being killed, etc.). He sends Sam back home, safe and sound, and then Dean. And he tells him "I'll see you real soon." *cries*
So back at the hotel, Sam and Dean are having a drink. Dean dubs them "Team Free Will." Aw. But the way he says it sounds almost half-hearted to me, like deep down perhaps he is resigned that destiny may actually end up playing out anyway no matter what they do. Or maybe he's just overwhelmed by all that happened. Not sure. Sam is worried, though. He remarks that both Michael and Lucifer keep telling them they'll say yes. Dean is getting tired of hearing that from them. Sam asks what if they're right. Dean says that they're not, but Sam says that Dad said yes to Michael to save Mom, and would Dean have done that to save her.
The very end shows a very pregnant Mary with John in what looks like Dean's future nursery. They're staring at something that Mary says she got at a garage sale. She says she likes it; she's not sure why, but she likes it. John says that if she likes it, then he likes it, too. It turns out to be an angel figurine. Dean kicks her inside and she tells him that angels are watching over him.
Okay, so if you want to get into symbolism, Dean kicking her inside could be like him being forceful, wanting to be in control of his own destiny, but her telling him that angels are watching over him pretty much tries to put a damper on that... that no matter what he does, this whole plan is inevitable. Or something like that. Eh, I think I'm getting too deep into it. *g* Sorry.
Anyway, final thoughts... This episode left me so sad, pretty much the way Abandon All Hope and Free to Be You and Me did. The boys basically being told that you can't change destiny. The look on Dean's face as Michael was saying all this to him at the end bothered me so much. So what are we in for now? Are the boys going to try and fight this as much as possible, but we're still going to get this outcome with them both saying yes? Are they going to resign themselves to the fact that it will happen no matter what? Gosh, I really hope not. But I'm worried.
Again I liked seeing more badass Cas. There were some funnies with him, especially when talking about Anna and Dean mentioned her being like Glenn Close and Cas saying he's unfamiliar with that reference, but he wasn't all comic relief.
I really really disliked Anna in this ep, so her death didn't really upset me. I understood why she felt she had to do this, that killing John and Mary would avert the apocalypse (although her saying that Sam must die still pisses me off... *holds Sammy tightly*), but I wasn't too upset to see her go.
Again, I really liked the heartfelt scenes both boys had with their parents. The Sam/John scene probably a bit more. Everyone did such an awesome job with those scenes.
So, Dean again trying to tell Mary not to go into the nursery. Is he really trying to change history/destiny? Maybe think that this way they can avoid the apocalypse? It seems that both boys were trying to prevent it in different ways. Both would lead to Mary still surviving, but in Dean's scenario, both he and Sam would be around. In Sam's, neither of them would be born. Hmm.
The way Mary said at the end that she liked the angel thing even though she wasn't sure why. She had her memory scrubbed of this whole thing by Michael, but the fact that some inkling remains ... does this tie into the whole destiny thing? Again telling not-yet-born Dean that angels are watchin over him, it's quite literal. We heard her say this back in the early seasons and it wasn't until season 4 that I understood why. But this just emphasizes it.
Very nicely done ep, but it left me sad in that this whole thing seems inevitable. I would hope that the boys would work together to really try and overcome that. But if it does happen and one ends up killing the other, the prospective season 6 can't have them both dead, so I guess there's nothing left to do but wait and see what happens.
As for Burn Notice, who did I see in last night's episode (no spoilers, honest) but the guy who played Mr. God in A Very Supernatural Christmas! Spencer Garrett I think was his name? That was so totally him that I saw... really cool. :)