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Supernatural - Castiel fresco

December 2010

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Supernatural - Impala love

Supernatural - a fannish love letter

You know, I have been watching this show since February of 2006. I have lived so many changes over the course of these seasons that I can't even believe that it's only been four years. I feel like I've lived eons since I started watching, but it's been such a short time in the episode count. I have lived and loved and bled with these characters so many times that I can't even tell you how much this show means to me. I have watched every episode since Hell House live, and loved every minute of it. I have a fucking alarm built into my cell phone that goes off every Thursday at 8:13pm to let me know that I need to get home to see my show.

I will drop everything for my show because this story is more universal and amazing than any other and I can't not watch it. I have gone off to college, met people, lived my life, graduated college, and begun anew all over the course of this television series. This show has grown as much as I have and I can't begin to explain my love for it, but I'm gonna try.


The reason I started watching this show was for the slash fic. I'm a die hard slasher, and the first two seasons of Supernatural are like a slasher's wet dream. The Sam/Dean tension is so palpable everyone knows about it. EVERYONE. Later on the show becomes more rocky and although my love for the Sam/Dean pairing has never ceased the boys relationship became rocky and so did the fic.

In the last couple of months I've been very anxious about Supernatural fic. It seems like no one has been writing good Sam/Dean and I've been so longing lately for the old-school, feel-good, tension-free, wonderful, creative and beautiful stories that made me love these characters so deeply.

Although I have begun to read more pairings than just the obvious, I still yearn for the OTP of Doom. This show and these two people have this kind of palpably iron clad love that I can't begin to describe. The message over the course of the show has always been family and doing what's right, believing in yourself and your family and that is never more evident than in fanfic. We spend hours and hours and hours writing, reading, researching, and investing ourselves in these characters so that we have trouble remembering where we end and they begin.

This show has done more for me than any other story, ever.

I have learned to believe and love and hope through these characters and the fandom that believes in them as much as I do.

A lot of people talk about how there are a lot of misogynistic points of view on the show, but I never really felt that way, because I love it so much. We are all human and the characters on this show are all human (well besides Cas), and having these messages in the show doesn't really surprise me and if I had my choice I probably wouldn't remove them. The writers know the show and they know the fandom and more importantly WE know the show and the fandom. This show was not built on the amount of press or air time it got, but on the backs of it's fans. This show has grown and become amazing because of us and our love for these simple, sweet, righteously glorious characters. We have spent so many hours believing in our show and passing the word on that we have not only kept the show going, but expanded it for more and more and more seasons.

I have watched Supernatural for a very long time and if I had my choice it would never end. I would literally watch Dean or Sam live out a boring ass life every Thursday till the end of time because I love this show and these characters so much.

I am a Dean girl. I am a Dean girl like chocolate goes with peanut butter or the sky is blue. I am a Dean girl and I will never NOT believe in Dean. He is what I would want to be, if I lived his life. He is funny and brash, brazen and annoying, emotional and more than anything he is loyal and loves his family and his brother more than he loves anything else. My love for his dedication and soul-crushing secretly-hopeful self will NEVER waiver. I am a Dean girl and I have seen Dean go through life, shit being thrown at him left and right and he takes it. He takes it because of his love for his father and his brother and his belief that helping people and doing what's right are more important than himself.

Dean's love for life and freedom have only ever been topped by his love for Sam. He went to hell for forty years because he wanted his brother to live for all the things that he loves in life and continue on because he didn't want to see a world without Sam. The season five finale is like an emotional mind fuck for me because the sheer amount of love in the scenes shown during Sam's life-flash literally bring me to tears. Dean has only ever lived for Sam. Whether a familial duty or not Dean's life, hell his place in heaven, is with Sam.

Now as for Sam, well, I have watched Sam grow from an angry grieving kid in the Pilot into a brave and righteous man. He has gone through trial after trial until in the final moments of his swan song he becomes the person he was always meant to be. Sam grew out of this awkward little kid with weird hand me downs and a too-smart brain into a guy who believes in good so much, that even when he's been blinded into making bad choices he has the fortitude to keep on keeping on and try harder than anyone else to make up for those choices and do what's right.

Sam is a hero in this story, an every-man sort of hero that has lived as we all do with love and pain and hope and anger. He has believed in God and agreed with devils. Sam has literally fought his own demons time and time again to overcome his downfalls. He motherfucking DEFEATED SATAN! This character, this man is so wonderfully human that I cannot express how much he means to me. His life is a testimonial to the idea that we can triumph over anything, including evil.

They call Dean the righteous man in this story but Sam is the most noble, the most realistic, and the most relatable. The one who has changed and fallen and re-proven himself time and time again. Sam is not perfect and he will never be, but he only does what he can, just like the rest of us and that's all anyone can ask.

Sam has proven himself more to me in the way he's given in to temptation or grieved for Jessica or researched a case because he's just like us, he's human. Sam loves, and works, and learns, but most importantly Sam lives. He lives with Dean, on the road, helping people and hunting things. We've been told from day one that Sam is the archetypal protagonist, and as dumb as that sounds, it's true. He is what we all are, flawed with good intentions; human.

But this is not a letter about just Sam and Dean, this is a letter about the show, about the writers, the fans, the cinematography, the plots, the mythos, the bitching, the fic, the love, and the belief in Supernatural.

I have been in fandom for 11 years. In 11 years I have been privy to more than 20 different fandoms. Whether they have been TV or movies or books, they have all been different and unique. I have been in the Supernatural fandom since the first time I watched the pilot, and I am extremely glad I took the time to watch that episode.

I gained a LOT of friends online through this show, although I am sad to say real life has made me negligent of those friendships I cherish that I once had them.

There are no other fans on this Earth, no, no other people on this Earth, who understand what it means to be a fan like those in the Supernatural fandom. Whether you read or write fanfic is beside the point, because everyone likes to squee over the latest episode or debate the latest mytharc. This fandom is so strong and so believing in our show that we have moved mountains. Whether it was postcards to the cast or word-of-mouth to family, bugging online friends or posting on forums we expanded our fandom and made the show's fanbase grow.

We actually kept this show moving, kept it runnng, and drove it past season one, through season two, we fucking survived the writer's strike, and came back to the plate hungrier than ever to love our show even more. The creator of this show only envisioned five seasons but we demanded more because of our love for these characters and this writing. We are an epic force and even though we maybe aren't the largest fandom out there we are like the Spartans in our ferocity, tenacity, and belief in what we hold dear.

I am so proud to be in this fandom and I can't imagine my life without it.

The writing in this show was inspired by a man's idea, which was budgeted by studio execs who cast two fabulous actors who work with a great crew who are all supported by a fandom that works harder than any other group of people I know. We may not work on the show, or live in their universe but we're there. They listen to our feedback and work in our ideas (bodyswap!), they know about fanfic, and have stories about the more eccentric member's of our group. They go to cons to talk to us and thank us, they believe in us as we believe in them. Supernatural may be made up of hundreds of workers, crew members and such, but it's really an idea and belief that extends beyond just simple people, it is a love in a shared enjoyment of watching forty-two minutes of television each week, and spending another gazillion hours thinking about said 42 minutes.

This fandom could not exist without Supernatural, and Supernatural could not exist without fandom. We are mutually exclusively cyclically wrapped up together and as a member of the fandom side of things I can't express my love for the show more. Some people would consider all of the hours I've spent watching, reading, and thinking about Supernatural a waste of time, but I would not be the person I am had I not had those moments of thought, or creativity. If I had never been a part of Supernatural I would be a different person with different experiences and different beliefs. The messages on the show are only part of it, the ideas from other fans, and the ideas in fanfic, have also impacted me in ways I will never know.

Earlier this evening I watched the season five finale and was soul crushingly moved by it. I was stunned and shocked and my core was shaken that a show could invoke such emotion from me. I am an emotional person and Swan Song did a number on me. Even though I was unbearably upset, I am happy I felt as I did, because I could never have felt that way had I not loved this show as I do. I began thinking about my tears and hopes, my beliefs and I realized that this is all because of us, the show, the fandom, the ideas, and the 1 hour nine o'clock time slot are all because of the love that we all feel towards our show.

We are the Supernatural fandom who could not exist without being fans, and I am just a fan in love with a show.

Comments

I'm crying again. This was absolutely beautiful. What you said about Dean, and what you said about Sam (I'm a huge Sam girl, and what you said touched my very soul), and what you said about fandom... My life has changed because of this show, in ways I don't even recognize. This isn't just a show to me, nor is it just a show to the rest of the fandom. It's become part of who we are. I wish everyone that works for Supernatural could read what you wrote and realize, even just a little, how much what they do matters. It's changed lives.
I know! Swan Song kind of made my emotions crazy and my brain went poof because even throughout all the sadness it's like holy crap I'm upset about this show because I love it so much and really to feel those kinds of emotions you have to love something.

I'm glad you agree, I think there are so many people, as I have experienced myself, that have probably been changed by fandom, especially SPN. I will never not love this show or this fandom.
In the last couple of months I've been very anxious about Supernatural fic. It seems like no one has been writing good Sam/Dean and I've been so longing lately for the old-school, feel-good, tension-free, wonderful, creative and beautiful stories that made me love these characters so deeply.

That's interesting to hear. I'm still reading fic as often as in seasons past but very little of it is Sam/Dean. And until you said that I hadn't been wondering why but I think it's because I almost always read from recs and what has been recced has often been coda fic. I'm rarely interested in reading codas because they tend to be both brief and quickly Jossed.

I suspect, though, that there will be less and less of it written. This has to do with canon, but also fandom tendencies. Because from what I've seen, at least 70% of any pairing fic written tends to be "first time" fics. Those types of stories tend to spring from moments in canon. And especially lately, canon hasn't been giving many openings for that sort of fic. I think if more established relationship fic was the norm, the amount wouldn't be decreasing as it is.
Oooh you've got some good points there.

I was thinking along the lines of the fact that the show hasn't been very pro Sam/Dean but now that I look at it, it seems to me to be a combination. I think the non-Sam/Dean-ness plus the fact that the show has been very heavily central to the mythos as opposed to fun MotW type episodes have prevented really good, creative, positive fics. Like you said, there haven't been a whole lot of openings or places where we can see Sam and Dean together. It's kind of like the writers weren't writing pro-Sam/Dean plus the fact that a LOT of the episodes were darkly ongoing within the myth arc it just doesn't leave much room for fun, creative ideas.

There has been a lot of Dean/Cas and Sam/Gabriel fics popping up lately and I think that's because Sam and Dean have had their awkward relationship plus the fact that the stories are darker because of the boys actions.

It would be interesting to go more into detail on the whole Dean/Cas Sam/Gabriel instead of Sam/Dean thing, but I think that's for another time, especially since I'm pretty sure the tide will be turning towards Sam/Dean again.

Anyway, great thoughts, once again you've made me expand my own thoughts on this subject and I totally appreciate it. ♥

P.S Friending you if it's cool.

Edited at 2010-05-16 04:09 am (UTC)
Absolutely, always welcome :)

I think the growth of Dean/Cas fics has been interesting to see. It took off incredibly quickly, but I suspected that this had less to do with Castiel, specifically, and a lot to do with other factors. For one, he's an angel, which means anyone who is into wingfic is going to fall on the character ravenously (see also the Gabriel fics). Also, super powered characters always tend to get more fic written about them, so that would also be an incentive. And, of course, in this fandom it's an opportunity to pair leads who aren't related to one another.

But the other factor is the one you mention, which is that the storylines favored writing Dean/Cas and worked against writing as much Sam/Dean.

I hadn't realized there was a lot of Sam/Gabriel out there. It didn't strike me as a particularly obvious pairing.
Yes, I think your right about the supernatural characters getting more stories written about them in general, and I think that SPN is in a unique position because of the way the writers were basically shoving Dean away from Sam and at Castiel.

The Sam/Gabriel fics threw me for a loop because like you I didn't really see it. I was out of the fanfic aspect of fandom for a while and when I jumped back in I kept running into Sam/Gabriel, but after my first 'WTF? What is wrong with you fandom!?' reaction, I realized that Gabriel was a way for fic writers to bring those light and fun storylines that we had been missing back into the game. The Trickster aspect of his character has kind of inspired this fun atmosphere to the dense angsty darkness of the show and I guess that's why I(after an adjustment period) and others find it refreshing to add him into the mix.

Huh! Yes, I could see that, and you're right about how he could really add something more whimsical. It's just that given their canon history, I would expect Sam to want to stay as far from him as possible. But I guess that's not the point, because at this point there's probably been as much angst as most people can take.
Yep, pretty much.

Personally I couldn't see Sam/Gabriel like AT ALL until I actually read some fics and then it was kind of like season 2 or 3 Sam, back before he became so bogged down in emo that he was afraid to laugh, being paired up with Gabriel.

Most of the Sam/Gabriel fics I've read are kind of like big old AUs where it's just a fun humorous plot that has nothing to do with what was/is going on in canon.
Came here through spnnewsletter. And I just have to say that this is beautiful. :)
Well thank you! I love our show!! :D