Season 6 is probably one of the most controversial seasons in supernatural. The opinions go through all the range: from great to terrible and everything in between. I found season 6 to be one of the most painful season supernatural has ever produced. Despite the many plots that were summarily discarded (I’m thinking of the alpha monsters and Eve, but also of the Campbells), I think it was one of the most coherent narratively speaking.
I’m going to look at it through a specific lens, and for this reason I will not expound too much on the motivations of the characters – it would make this write up longer than it already is.
As a disclaimer, please know that I understand where each character comes from and the motivations behind their decision, there is no intent of condemnation. The characters in Supernatural are often backed in a corner and even though that doesn’t act as justification for bad choices, I understand – and like – that sometimes a different one than the ones they made is simply hidden from sight at that particular moment. This is true for Sam, it is true for Cas, and is true for Dean.
For the sake of this write-up, I will focus on Dean because that’s what interests me right now, and because I believe what happened in that season is pivotal in understanding Dean’s characterization post season 6 and up until now.
I haven’t read yet a write up of Dean in season 6 and I needed that perspective out. (For full disclosure, while the season was airing I did focus a lot on the nature of soulless!Sam and Castiel’s motivations. But I have never stopped and written exhaustively about the effect on Dean of the events in season 6 – probably because I needed the detachment of time to properly talk about it.)
Often, when referring to Dean, the word regression is used, but the causes of that regression are not always analyzed. This is what I’m going to attempt.