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I rewatched "Threads" last night. I know that due to the network the show is on, SPN has limitations, simple as that. But, I couldn't help thinking anyway that Ruth Beckett's ordeal makes Dean, Sam, Cas and Bobby all come off like total pussies complaining and crying about their (non)apocalypse (which is, as per usual in SPN, 90% bro-angst. Just like "Titanic"! The maudlin love affair more important than the thousands of people dying horrible deaths!). Shit, Ruth makes Future!Dean come off like a pussy. At least there was still companionship in 2014 and not everyone dying of radiation sickness or starving to death around him. Still some sort of structure from the previous, since-collapsed society. Ruth had... a hobo campfire and a newborn baby to take care of when she wasn't tilling the dead, irradiated land for any morsel of food.

I might rewatch "Children of Men" now, just to make me extra disappointed about SPN's apocalypse-that-wasn't. *sighs*
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Dark confession time: So, season 6 is confirmed. I sort of want 5x22 to be SPN's equivalent of "Dr. Strangelove" and Lucifer drops the bombs (or unleashes Croatoan or whatever) before any possible kicking of the bucket. Then every other episode, at least the second half of S6, is pretty much like "The End". Except maybe not quite as bad. Dean isn't some cold, apathetic hard-ass. Sam's still Sam and around. Cas isn't some tragic over-sexed and over-doped Last Man. Dean doesn't strip the Impala, etc.

Homebase eventually becomes Camp Chautauqua and they're still driving around fighting as many demons, Croatoan zombies or whatever other nasties while the gas holds out (hence the possible likening to S1/S2). Maybe also helping Cas try to find God. All the while holding it together as this dysfunctional, but still very real sort of family and the last bastion of hope for whatever humanity remains. Also leaders for whoever willing to believe in the supernatural and fight against it. Thus, Dean, Sam and Cas as the leaders of this small (but growing) band of human survivors. With the old religions fading and dying with the old world, here are also the first seeds planted for the future of the Winchester Gospel.

SPN gives us the post-apocalyptic story, even if they couldn't (or wouldn't) give us Apocalypse every ep.

But then I remember they have no monies and they can't do that. *sighs*
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I'm half-awake, so I'm going to blame the codine if this sounds stupid or weird.

I was having a depressing discussion with [livejournal.com profile] luminare_ardua earlier on how well SPN's S5 stands up when critiquing it from an apocalyptic fiction standpoint. Bottom line: Not particularly well.

It got me thinking how different S5 would have unfolded if they made a bigger statement with Lucifer in 5x01. Really big. Like maybe Luci persuaded some of those in control of the Big Red Buttons O' Doom and start, but not fully complete, MAD. Basically made the season like "The Road Warrior" with monster fighting meets "Jericho". Which, tbh, this season as it currently is (hence, the budget) wouldn't have needed that much tweaking to make it that way. It would be pretty much as it is now (though likely less funny eps), except the people they meet more panicky/upset/desperate due to immediate problems like avoiding fallout and communication breakdown. Topped off with whatever supernatural crisis the victims were facing. Gave a deeper personal emotional resonance to the story, even if the victims are strangers. Then increased the tension of every place they go until it hit boiling point in the finale (when food, meds, gas and *le gasp* toilet paper start getting scarce) and they're about to make that final showdown with Lucifer. Though - due to that considerably increased conflict - every case would have had to have a more direct connection to the Apocalypse/stopping Lucifer and as soon as possible, most likely. Which... would have been really welcomed, actually.

I'm not as versed on apocalyptic fiction as some folks I know, but I always thought that the core of most apocalyptic storylines is the human condition. How does one survive in such a horrific situation. The journey either being tragic, an agonizingly slow collapse until the inevitable dark end (Threads or Level 7) or hopeful in the face of incredible adversity (Alas, Babylon), sometimes a jarring mix of both (Children of Men). SPN's S5 is still about the human condition, but, to me, in not a particularly different way than it has been since Kripke had realized the humanistic story is where this show's strength lies (way back at the end of S1). So, for a basic SPN season, S5 hasn't been terrible, but as an apocalyptic story, something that I thought should have considerably upped the ante on the humanistic story already in place? Eh.

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June 2010

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