Yes, I am sad. Yes, I am frustrated.
But if I think about where it comes from, I realize: It’s in parts my own fault. Because I hang on to meta, read and write it, like the next fan. I let me give it hope, let it reassure me that what we want, what I want, what will become the truth, canon.
But I want you to understand one thing:
All fanfic, metas, theories and interpretations are NOT the reality.
If were are right with what we think, think to see, we are lucky. But it rarely ever has something to do with what the writers of a show actually intended.
You know, back in school I hated literature class because of said interpretations. I hated that teachers and literature professors always wanted to see some 20 layers of meaning behind every single word. Because, well, there is not.
Writing, for the most part, then and now, is just sitting down and doing it. Creating a story that flows, putting words and ideas out as fast as your mind provides them without missing something good or important. It is not considering every word carefully, every theme and picture, and how it can be a call-back to some tiny thing that has happened years prior.
Maybe it’s what we do in fanfic, all these little nudges and winks, because we have the time, and we love that one or the other reader will squeal in recognition. But professional writers, especially those for TV shows, rarely ever have that time. Oftentimes, they will not even have this thorough and profound knowledge of even the smallest things; even less when a show has been running for as long as SPN has.
So as good and believable and hopeful all those metas that were written in the past days, and over the years, may have been – they are just interpretations of people who are so involved in watching the show and hanging on to every last little hint of something they want to see, that it gives false hope.
And this is the result. A broken fandom. A fandom in mourning not because their favorite show has ended, but because it didn’t end the way we all expected solely because of meticulous meta.
Once I thought that this show would end with both Sam and Dean dying and going into heaven in the last couple of minutes, and that would be it. Everyone who has seen the show however knows that so far heaven wasn’t a good place.
So did the writers. And they took the time to show us that heaven is a good place now. That it has changed; has been changed by Jack and by Cas.
When you talk about last night’s episode, you have to look closely. You have to take into consideration that they only had some 42min, that they shot it during Covid, and that this is and always has been essentially a show about two brothers. No one negates the importance of Misha/Cas especially, or anyone else in general. They squeezed in a mention of Donna, they heavily implied that Jack and Cas are running heaven now and therefore that Cas IS back from the Empty, and if you ask me, that woman in the background may very well have been Eileen (why choose a black-haired woman when so far Sam’s significant girlfriends have been blond). They brought in Jim Beaver, who has not been any less important to that show.
And if we are interpreting, well, then I would almost go as far to say that they also sort of gave us Destiel. As I wrote in my fanfic from last night, my interpretation is that angels are supposed to stay in heaven now, because of Jack’s new rules, which is totally fine and long overdue. And he can’t make exceptions, not even for Cas. So bringing Dean to heaven is the logical step, because it’s the place they can be together. My headcanon definitely is that they are.
Last night I saw many tweets of people thanking the show and while not entirely happy, still praise it, including the ending. At first I was angry about that, but then it hit me – and I have in fact said that a few days back – the show is not made for us few here on Tumblr. There is a gigantic fandom out there, and we are only a small part. This show is not made for us – it is made for everyone.
Did I want a happy shipper ending? Duh, of course. But it is not about what I want, or our Tumblr niche. It’s about serving everyone. Everyone who has ever watched the show, and still does.
You may say now that killing Dean, letting Sam live alone, isn’t serving us, who are a part of the fandom. Yes, maybe you are right.
A few years back, when I was last active in Tumblr, people were complaining about the codependency between the brothers. How unhealthy it was etc etc. Thinking about that, killing one off and letting the other live a full life doesn’t seem so strange or wrong then. Saying that Sam wasn’t happy the rest of his life is not correct. He had a family, a son. Of course he was sad; he had lost his brother, and with him the one human being he had had the most intense relationship with for 15 years. If you are that close to someone, and go through literal hell, death and apocalypse, something none of us will ever be able to relate to, with them, you are bound to form a bond that goes beyond everything that is known to men, and it will naturally make you feel the loss even more acutely. But we didn’t see Sam give up, live out his days alone, or become reckless and suicidal.
Yes, I wanted to see Sam and Eileen together, as well as Cas and Dean, all of them on Earth, all of them as a big family with the occasional visit from Jack, all of them living their lives to the fullest and happiest until they died of old age and reunited in heaven.
But while Supernatural has always been about family, it never has been about cheesy soap stories. Drama has ever since the beginning a defining theme of this show. To me, this ending felt much more like Supernatural as anything that would have served us fans. Don’t get me wrong, the above mentioned I would have embraced wholeheartedly. Nevertheless I am able and willing to accept what we have been given as the more realistic story to be told by this show.
And therefore, while sad and still crying a random tear or two, I am also strangely content.
Listen, let me tell you this. I have been a TV show nerd for more than 20 years, which is the better part of my life. I have over a hundred shows on that list, and I have loved many of them fiercely and passionately. And I assure you — not many ended the way I wanted them to. Some disappointed, some had a nice enough ending I could live with, even if it wasn’t perfect in my opinion. A handful were perfect (Farscape, The Mentalist, TVD come to mind).
What I need all of you to make peace with is the fact that at the end of the day, and no matter how much it has changed our lives, it is just a TV show, created and written to reach the biggest possible audience and earn a lot of people money.
Let us all enjoy our perfect little meta, fan-fantasy world; that’s totally fine, and absolutely legitimate. But every once in a while, stop and remind yourself that this is not a gift to us, but commercial programming.
The real world out there is not perfect, it never will be. And as long as we remember that, we’ll find peace and happiness in what we are given.
We are the Supernatural Family, after all – the greatest and most special fan community that has ever existed. Let us be proud of that – and let us be proud of the show that gave us that.