Supernatural: Dream a Little Dream of Me
July 6, 2021 12:20 PM - Season 3, Episode 10 - Subscribe

When Bobby Singer is discovered comatose in a hotel room bed and his doctors can't explain why, Dean and Sam follow the trail of evidence to a college student who enters people's dreams in order to destroy them.


Evil Dean: Dad knew who you really were. Good soldier; nothing else. Daddy's blunt little instrument. Your own father didn't care whether you lived or died. Why should you?
Dean: Son of a bitch! [shoves Evil Dean] My father was an obsessed bastard!
[Dean kicks Evil Dean against the wall, hits him with the sawed off shot gun and pins him with it.]
Dean: All that crap he dumped on me about protecting Sam, that was his crap. He's the one that couldn't protect his family! [hits Evil Dean again] He's the one who let mom die! Who wasn't there for Sam! I always was! It wasn't fair! I didn't deserve what he put on me and I don't deserve to go to Hell! [shoots Evil Dean, killing him instantly]
EvilDean: [wakes up with demon black eyes] You can't escape me, Dean. You're gonna die. And this. This is what you are going to become!

Dean: Dude, you were out. And makin' some serious happy noises. Who were you dreaming about?
Sam: What? No one. Nothing.
Dean: Come on, you can tell me. Angelina Jolie?
Sam: No.
Dean: Brad Pitt?
Sam: No!

Sam: [calling out as Bela leaves his and Dean's motel room] Nice to see... Seeing you... Bela.

Dean: I take it we believe the legends.
Sam: When don't we?

Sam: Dean, are you sure you don't want me to drive? You seem a little... caffeinated.
Dean: Thanks for the newsflash, Edison!

Sam: How'd he get in there in the first place? Isn't he supposed to have some of your hair or DNA or something?
Dean: Yeah.
Bobby: Yeah. Before I knew it was him, he offered me a beer. I drank it. Dumbest friggin' thing.
Sam: [Realizing he also drank a beer with him] Ah, I don't know. It wasn't that dumb...
Sam: Dean, you didn't.
Dean: I was thirsty.

Sam: So what's Bobby doing in Pittsburgh?
Dean Winchester: Unless he's taking an extremely lame vacation...

Dean Winchester: Should we dim the lights and synch up Wizard of Oz to Dark Side of the Moon?
Sam: Why?
Dean: What did you DO during college?

Sam: Hey, when did it start raining?
Dean: [Opens the curtain] When did it start raining upside down?

Sam: [They are about to drink the tea made of African Dream Root] Wait, wait! Wait. Can't forget this. [removes a small envelope from his pocket, removes something from it] Here. [He puts some in Dean's hand]
Dean: What the hell is that?
Sam: Bobby's hair.
Dean: We have to drink Bobby's hair?
Sam: [puts some in his own drink] That's how you control whose dream you're entering. You gotta... drink some of their, uh... [swallows in distaste] some of their body.
Dean: Well. Guess the hair of the dog is better than other parts of the body.

Dean: [He and Sam are inside a pretty house] Okay, I don't know what's weirder. The fact that we're in Bobby's head... or that he's dreaming of Better Homes and Gardens.


The original premise of this episode was to have Jeffrey Dean Morgan return as John Winchester, appearing in Dean's dream. But Morgan was too busy filming Watchmen (2009), so the writers chose to have Dean encounter himself in the dream instead, and John is brought up in the conversation.

Charcot Wilbrand syndrome does not generally mean an inability to dream, rather, it affects your ability to remember or visualize images from your dreams after awakening.
posted by orange swan (6 comments total)
Sam's erotic dream about Bela was that of a naïve young boy: a mix of porn and sweet dreams teen romance. It's hilarious that Sam and Dean are so physically attracted to Bela even though they don't want to be. Though they are both generally quite confident with women, she throws them off their stride. To give Bela credit, other than that one proposition to Dean, which she made because she was affected by the sight of him in a tux, she is not dealing with them in any sort of flirtatious way or making any effort to manipulate them sexually. She doesn't need to resort to such tactics when she has plenty of other more reliable ones, and of course in this episode she outmaneuvered them yet again and helped them with Bobby in order to get a chance to steal the Colt without so much as noticing Sam's schoolboy crush on her.

Something I find interesting about Bela is that she's not just some well-connected wheeler dealer in supernatural artifacts; she has skills. She can communicate with the spirit world through a Ouija board. You'd think this was a tool Sam and Dean would want to explore, but I don't think we ever see them use a Ouija board other than the one time when Dean is dying after the Winchesters' car accident at the end of season 1.

The first thing Dean says to Evil Dean is "Well, aren't you a handsome son of a gun," because of course it is. Cocky bastard.

Dean's dream encounter with the evil version of himself was the closest he's ever going to get to therapy, and told us more about how he really feels than the entire show has so far. Outwardly he's always been the selfless good soldier his father wanted him to be, looking after Sam and saving lives, and revered his father, believing in his absolute authority and rightness, but while he genuinely sees value and has found his life's purpose in those things, deep down he's full of repressed rage with his father for his failure to take decent care of him and Sam, for the heavy weight of responsibility that was placed on him far too young, and for the level of self-sacrifice it has always entailed and that is about to hit a whole new extreme now that he faces a one-way trip to hell for saving Sam's life. Less rationally, he blames his father for failing to save his mother, and also fears that his father's expectation that he would be Sam's keeper meant that he was the one his father loved less, who mattered less, whose goals and plans were irrelevant.

Sam had issues with his father too, but because he was open about them and stood up for himself and insisted on doing what he wanted, even though that came at a heavy cost, he's in a better place emotionally and developmentally than Dean. He has always challenged the Winchester status quo and reached out for better things, while Dean embraced and doubled down on it. It is satisfying to see Dean stand up to Evil Dean and, for what is probably the first time in his life, insist on his own worth and his autonomy despite his own worst feelings and his sense of duty.
posted by orange swan at 12:55 PM on July 6, 2021 [2 favorites]

When I mentioned the Red Hood/Dean Winchester parallels in a post about an earlier episode, I referenced the "good soldier" line. Well, this is the episode I was thinking about. The exchange orange swan quoted above shows just how loaded that phrase is for Dean and it's an equally strong (if not stronger) trigger for Jason. Both child soldiers have legitimate issues with their respective fathers.

Sam's dream about Bela really struck me the wrong way. I'm not sure if it's because I don't appreciate seeing Bela like that, or the fact that most of the one-on-one interactions she had with one of the boys was with Dean (and the only indication that she was attracted to either one of them came during the Dean-in-the-tux scene) so it feels like the wrong brother is dreaming about her, or if it's just that Sam is lusting after someone who isn't attracted to him (someone who seems to have a preference for his brother).
posted by sardonyx at 6:59 PM on July 6, 2021 [1 favorite]

I think we're into the episodes that weren't finished when the writers strike happened, there are...some rough spots and weird plot cul de sacs, it's really hard to know what on earth they were going for with spending a bunch of time on Sam's sex dream about Bela. (I mean I don't know what the excuse of the other 311 episodes of rough spots and awkward sex scenes is supposed to be but fwiw)

Legit thought the punchline to Flagstaff was going to be that Bela and Bobby slept together. The actual outcome was much better though it's interesting that Bobby apparently does some legitimate-ish business with Bela (Sam and Dean are leaving good money on the table here.)

The obvious difference between Dean's dreams of partnered domesticity here vs What Is and What Should Never Be, aside from the obvious that Lisa Braeden didn't exist as a character yet, still doesn't totally resolve for me how much he regrets that particular relationship vs. mourning a version of his life that had space for a wife and child. But all the stuff with his demon self, that he's needed to get off his chest for at LEAST half his life. "Daddy's blunt little instrument" is still a good line, though.
posted by jameaterblues at 8:20 PM on July 6, 2021 [1 favorite]

I guess Bela just needed some legitimate-sounding excuse as to why she showed up, when in reality she was just there to steal the colt (and if it helped keep one of her suppliers alive, that was just a bonus).

Dean absolutely needed to get all that off his chest, and he equally needed to come to terms with the fact he wants to live and to avoid Hell. That's a pretty big realization for him and one that both he and Sam needed to hear spoken out loud.

I think a big part of his hurt and anger about how his dad wasn't there for him is tied up in how we wants to be there for a child. No, he can't really see himself giving up the hunt, but that nurturing part of him that has been instilled into him since day one (protect Sam, protect the small helpless child) really needs and wants an outlet and it's that outlet that drives him to be so good with kids and to really regret that Ben isn't his.

On a completely different note, I don't know if it's the cut of his jeans or just Jensen Ackles' own physiology but in that shot where he and Sam are walking down the hospital hallway, it's hard not to notice how bow-legged he appears.

That aside, the one really strange line that strikes me as bad characterization in this is when Dean admits to understanding what a bad acid trip is like. We've seen plenty of evidence that he likes his liquor, but we don't see much (if any) evidence that he gets stupidly drunk. Additionally, given his general paranoia about things that go bump in the night, I can't see Dean wanting to be so out of control that he couldn't protect himself or his family for the length of time he was under the influence. I also have a hard time seeing that kind of behaviour meeting John's approval, so again, it seems odd that the good soldier would rebel so hard. Also, Dean doesn't really have a lot of friends, so who is he going to trust to watch his back while he's strung out?
posted by sardonyx at 9:01 PM on July 6, 2021 [2 favorites]

We've seen plenty of evidence that he likes his liquor, but we don't see much (if any) evidence that he gets stupidly drunk.

I agree with this but I also kind of put in the same category as how no one ever smokes, or swears more than you could get away with on the CW at 9pm, or how a character who's nominally just shitfaced at all times only acts drunk on screen if they need to be drunk on screen. Dean was pretty happy to find Andy's giant bong though we never see anyone use it, and there was that one equally weird comment from when Sam was possessed by Meg about how smoking and drunkenly throwing bottles at people sounded more like the kind of thing Dean would do, but we never see him do anything like that.

I could actually buy Dean having some kind of mild acting out phase that played out differently from Sam's because it was 1) coming from Dean, and 2) meant to renegotiate boundaries that could be looked the other way on without fucking with the underlying dynamic. (Telling Cassie about hunting comes to mind but I bet also sex in general since Dean was probably pretty young. Smoking anything would not fly but is also not fundamentally threatening to John in the same way as, like, the soccer team. Maybe there was a Dark Side of the Moon carve-out.)

But all that being said, yeah, on multiple levels Dean does not strike me as a hallucinogens guy.
posted by jameaterblues at 10:18 PM on July 6, 2021 [1 favorite]

It's not the jeans; Jensen Ackles is definitely bow-legged. You can see it in the scene where he's wearing shorts because he's posing as a gym teacher. It's always very noticeable in scenes where he's shown walking towards the camera. Jared Padalecki has publicly teased him about it on several occasions, such as this one. It's almost a relief that Ackles has a few physical flaws: the legs and that little bend at the base of his nose (it was probably broken at some point) being the only ones I've seen so far.
posted by orange swan at 5:46 AM on July 7, 2021 [1 favorite]

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