'Supernatural' S10E22: The Prisoner

★ ★ ★ ½

Charlie’s death has pushed Dean to a whole new level. The Stynes were a very boring family to watch, except for the youngest, and, so, watching Dean kill the lot of them wasn’t exactly the most thrilling of moments. A Marked Dean should always be more of what we saw this episode, especially since he just goes back and forth instead of simply worsening.

The moment that stood out the most was Dean reprimanding Sam at Charlie’s funeral. It’s a little disappointing that that was the only conflict we saw between the two. Instead, we got a really good scene where he almost killed Castiel, but him doing that to Sam would have been much better.

The thing is that’s odd about Dean’s character since his de-demonizing is that he worsens and then recovers and then worsens again in a very sporadic manner that doesn’t reflect Sam’s or Castiel’s views. Now, this episode gave viewers an opportunity to see just how bad Dean is actually getting. It’s really great that the Styne kid was developed before meeting Dean, that way you got to see just how innocent of a life he was taking. In that moment, Dean became an actual threat.

Supernatural S10E22

Sam’s definitely in no position to help him out anymore. The once counselor/babysitter relationship is gone (thankfully) and now he’s focusing on finding Dean a cure. Rowena, who’ll hopefully find her purpose on the show one day, got Sam to go after and attempt to murder Crowley. The Winchesters have certainly forgotten how much of a threat Crowley used to be. He wasn’t just there for his sarcasm and "snark", he was an actual villain. Sam’s failed attempts revealed that. Although having him change back into his King of Hell side was a good turning point for Crowley, the scene itself was devoid of the emotion that should have been there. Instead of dwelling on how he was betrayed by someone he trusted, Crowley made a "snap" judgement to go bad.

The point on him trying to maintain what humanity he had was hinted, but it wasn’t an effective moment in the scene either. Since it wasn’t completely outright, you had no chances for the emotional trauma from trying to get there and failing to show. Throughout the season, it focused more on his relationship with his mother and his reign in Hell, but did little to support his want for humanity. Sure, he has definitely softened up, but other than that there were no changes in Hell that were seen and there wasn’t enough development on his character for the scene with Sam to become more effective.

It is really a pity that Charlie’s death was a real one. It wasn’t sad, it was a pity. There was so little time devoted to her death scene that, in the long run, she was made out to be just a plot device. Kevin’s death was far more emotional than that. Charlie was such an important and well-liked character in the show that just showing a cliff-hanger snippet didn’t do her any justice whatsoever. There weren’t any emotional breakdowns from Sam too. Dean raged out, but he didn’t seem to mourn her death. Neither one of them did. Sam went straight back to work and Dean enacted revenge.

"The Prisoner" could have been an emotional rollercoaster, and it really should have been. The potential within this episode was squandered. There were so many scenes that could have been taken further, but none of them did so. Charlie’s death was almost meaningless and emotionless, Crowley should have had more of an emotional moment having been betrayed by Sam after all, and a Dean/Sam fight would have been much more traumatizing and effective than a Castiel/Dean one. On a final note, would there have been much of a difference between having Deanmon vs. having a Marked Dean this season? Seems like they could be interchangeable.


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