Supernatural 12×11 Review: Regarding Dean Winchester, The Hero

Part of me still doesn’t understand how Supernatural has the power to make us laugh, cringe, cheer, and cry all in one episode. ‘Regarding Dean’ did just that. Again. After 12 seasons. This ability to balance such complex genres has been what’s kept this show afloat for so long.

The writers of this show dispel the idea that heroes just have to sit in a corner and brood over their existence while saving the day. (There’s some brooding, cuz ‘heroes’, but not as much as you’d expect.) They also dispel the idea that a show can’t branch out and show that life is a complicated tapestry full of comedy, drama, mystery, action, and a touch of the weird.

In ‘Regarding Dean’ all these genres fall seamlessly together and prove to any naysayers that this show still knows how to write compelling, complex, and hilarious TV!

Who is Dean Winchester?
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Admit it, at first Dean’s situation was hilarious. He couldn’t remember sleeping with a beautiful woman, riding a bull named Larry, and was adorable watching Scooby Doo. It also felt like the weight of the world was lifted off his shoulders and we were thrust into the past, to a Dean that wasn’t as damaged by the life he’s led.

In true Supernatural fashion, ‘Regarding Dean’ took a turn for the deadly and revealed what lays at the heart of Dean Winchester, a hero. (I know a lot of you already know this, 12 seasons and all, but work with me here.) With his memories in tatters, Dean still knew that he had to get out of that car and help that brown haired giant with a love of plaid, who definitely owns a blow dryer.

He couldn’t even remember that Sam was his brother and he still helped a stranger out. It’s as if deep inside, he had this inkling, this feeling, that helping is the right thing to do. The right thing he should do, always. I’ve got to believe that Dean gained as much perspective about himself as we did when he got his memories back.

No matter what the Men of Letters may spout about Dean and his brother in the coming weeks, because you know they like to downplay the Winchesters actions and write them off as irresponsible jerks, the truth still holds that Dean is a hero. He is a kind, sassy, and pie loving man who connects with people and does the right thing by them.

Unlike the British MoL, Dean’s not in it for the money, the fancy clothes, or the complicated spells. He’s a hunter because he knows that the right thing to do is to step up for people that can’t protect themselves from the things that go bump in the night.

Dean Winchester is a hero. Always has been. Always will be.

P.S. Thanks for making me cry Jensen Ackles. It felt like you were looking into my SOUL during that bathroom scene! *shiver*

Helpful Little Brother, Sam Winchester
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First of all, playing a joke like the one Dean did at the end of the episode, was a jerk move. We were all Sam in that moment, heart full of so much joy that our brother was back but ready to shove a boot up his ass for playing with our hearts.

Watching Dean go through losing his memory was painful for Sam because he wasn’t just losing his partner, he was losing his brother. He was losing the one person who sacrificed himself for Sam over and over, that took care of him as a boy, and who in many ways is more of a father to Sam than John will ever be.

Dean is Sam’s world and this gentle giant couldn’t do anything to save him in ‘Regarding Dean.’ He had to ask for help and hope that Rowena, a person who has worked against them countless times, was actually going to pull through and save the most important person in his life. His weapons and countless skills, accrued throughout the years, were of no help, and that hurt Sam.

Cas might be their best friend and Mary might be their mother, but at the end of the day, Dean is Sam’s ‘person.’ (AKA The one who’s always got your back, knows you like the back of their hand, and that you’d destroy the world for.) The Winchester brothers relationship is at the heart of the show.

You Know What’s Sexy? Support!
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Sam called Rowena because this was a witch problem and they needed a witch. But that didn’t mean that he couldn’t call Cas, the best friend, and Mary, the mother. Both brothers have this propensity to go all lone wolf when things get serious. Well you’re not alone and the people who love you would appreciate it if you gave them a ring when you’re in trouble.

“But they’ll be calling them all the time!” you protest while wilding waving your arms and putting on another episode of Scooby Doo, because Scooby and the gang really are the best. Hands down, Mary and Cas would rather have Sam and Dean call them than enter a situation without proper backup. Every. Single. Time.

Believe it or not, support is sexy. With the Men of Letters there, Mary and Cas in their lives, the Winchesters have an opportunity to build something that isn’t just solely dependent on them doing EVERYTHING and putting their lives at risk ALL THE TIME.

Part of me wants to blame the writers who continue to bring strong and capable people into their lives to only kill them when the time is right. Support might be hard for the Winchesters because they don’t want to care for people and have them die at their side. But isn’t that the challenge we all face, every single day? Isn’t trusting and taking chances, part of living?

For too long the Winchesters have been stuck in this loop where they trust people for episode long arcs until they disappear off into the night or the next adventure that pops up. We don’t need that anymore and it’s getting kind of boring. I’m not saying do like Arrow and bring in a bunch of newbies we frankly have a hard time caring about.

I’m saying, give the Winchesters support that lasts longer than an episode and easies the weight of the world these two brothers carry. Suffering and sacrificing themselves for each other can’t carry this show anymore and was the stuff of early seasons.

Give them support.

Additional Notes:
  • Love what we learned about Rowena in this episode. She’s been a scrappy fighter for longer than expected and we look forward to learning more about what makes this witch tick.
  • Part of me doesn’t care to know the name of the blonde witch that attacked Rowena. She’s Wannabe Caroline Forbes and that’s all you need to know.
  • Scooby Doo is way better than Busty Asian Beauties. No matter what age you are.
  • Footage of Dean watching Finding Dory is needed.
  • While we’re at, we also need the extended BTS cut of Dean riding Larry the Bull.
Favorite Scene from ‘Regarding Dean’:

Even with his mind in tatters, Dean Winchester recognized and craved for the grenade launcher. Writers, stop toying with us and Dean. Give him a monster or a crazy scenario where he can whip it out and use it! (That came out dirtier than expected.) #NoRegrets #LetDeanUseTheGrenadeLauncher2017

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Check out the trailer for next week’s episode of Supernatural, Stuck in the Middle (With You):

Supernatural airs Thursdays at 8/9c on The CW.

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