Supernatural: Are You There God? It's Me, Dean Winchester
July 14, 2021 4:20 AM - Season 4, Episode 2 - Subscribe

The Winchesters and Bobby Singer encounter the murderously angry spirits of people they couldn't save.

Quotes:

Bobby: Solid iron. Completely coated in salt. One hundred percent ghost-proof.
Sam: You built a panic room?
Bobby: I had a weekend off.

Dean: See, this is why I can't get behind God.
Sam: What are you talking about?
Dean: If he doesn't exist, fine. Bad crap happens to good people. That's how it is. And no rhyme or reason, just random horrible, evil. I get it. Okay? I can roll with that. But if he is out there, what's wrong with him? Where the hell is he while all these decent people are getting torn to shreds? How does he live with himself? You know, why doesn't he help?

Dean: I thought angels were supposed to be guardians. Fluffy wings, halos -- you know, Michael Landon. Not dicks.
Castiel: Read the Bible. Angels are warriors of God. I'm a soldier.

Dean: Ronald. Hey, come on, man. I thought we were pals.
Ronald: That's when I was breathing. Now, I'm gonna eat you alive.
Dean: Well...come on, I'm not a cheeseburger.

Sam: [on the phone with Dean during a supply run] Yes, Dean, I'll get chips.... Dude. When have I ever forgotten pie?

Dean: [rummaging through the grocery bag that Sam brought back from his supply run] Dude?
Sam: Yeah.
Dean: Where's the pie?

Trivia:

The episode's title is a reference to the Judy Blume's novel Are You There, God? It's Me, Margaret.

The twin girls who haunt Bobby look just like, and are clearly a tribute to, the twins in The Shining, who had dark hair and wore blue dresses. In the episode, their first appearance is marked by giggles and a bouncy ball, reminiscent of play.

When Dean hears about the apocalypse, he says "Road Trip! Grand Canyon, Star Trek Experience...Bunny Ranch." The Bunny Ranch is one of the only legal brothels functioning in the United States, in the desert of Nevada.

The poster in Bobby's panic room of a blond woman in beaded braids and a pale yellow bathing suit is actress Bo Derek in Blake Edwards' 1979 comedy 10.
posted by orange swan (10 comments total)
 
That panic room really was pretty freaking cool. Bobby's house has such good bones. It's a shame it isn't fixed up the way it could be.

On this rewatch, I am very struck by how much Castiel's character changed over the series. He seems so much more humanized by the end, while in the beginning he was so cold, ruthless and cryptic -- more like the other angels in the series. I'd forgotten he was ever like this.

After all the lives hunters save and all the sacrifices they make to do it, how awful to be confronted and taken out by the ghosts of the people you failed to save.

Dean's argument as to why there is no God resonated with me, because it's one of my arguments too. The standard answer as to why God doesn't stop terrible things from happening is that he allows us free will and we're the ones who created all the problems, but my response to that is, if God exists and is an omnipotent deity as is claimed, he would have been able to create a world where there was both free will and an absence of such terrible suffering, and why wouldn't he have done that?
posted by orange swan at 4:32 AM on July 14 [4 favorites]


Dean's argument as to why there is no God resonated with me, because it's one of my arguments too. The standard answer as to why God doesn't stop terrible things from happening is that he allows us free will and we're the ones who created all the problems, but my response to that is, if God exists and is an omnipotent deity as is claimed, he would have been able to create a world where there was both free will and an absence of such terrible suffering, and why wouldn't he have done that?

Christian theodicy always produces unsatisfying answers because the real question, underneath the specifics, is "how can a person have total power while also having zero responsibility?" and most people, even people who want an answer to that that justifies God, will find answers to that question unsatisfying or unsettling.
posted by Pope Guilty at 5:50 AM on July 14 [2 favorites]


Incidentally, the Emmy 2021 nominee lists came out yesterday. Jared Padalecki was submitted for consideration for Best Actor in the Drama category for his work on Walker, but he didn't make the short list. Unsurprisingly when you look at who did: Sterling K. Brown (This Is Us), Jonathan Majors (Lovecraft Country), Josh O’Connor (The Crown), Regé-Jean Page (Bridgerton), Billy Porter (Pose), and Matthew Rhys (Perry Mason). Genevieve Padalecki was submitted too for her work as Emily Walker, but also wasn't nominated. It's, er, being said on the net that Padalecki submitted himself, though I haven't been able to confirm or disprove that, and I suppose it could have been the showrunners. And to be fair, it is common for actors to submit themselves. But I still find it cringeworthy that Padalecki thought he had a shot. Walker really isn't anything outstanding.
posted by orange swan at 1:54 PM on July 14 [1 favorite]


Bobby's place is solid. I wonder if its a soundstage or someplace that's staged up?

Even though they're shooting salt, that's still going to do a lot of damage to the walls/ books/ curios.

Why not salt batons?
posted by porpoise at 5:44 PM on July 14


Bobby's house is so huge that until this episode I don't think I realized it was all one building. That living room should probably be full of holes but I'm pretty sure salt would be destroying the guns on the regular.

I wondered about the real Meg Masters and it was nice to have her for a little bit (that they didn't want to make the actress get a haircut so they made her S1 short hair the demon's idea is hilarious to me.) Meg spent the last thirty seconds of her life helping Sam and Dean find their dad, not asking them to find her family or say goodbye to her sister or anything else, and it was rather heroic and she earned herself some asskicking.

I've always been kind of confused by the idea Dean articulates, that the shittiness of the world disproves the existence of God, because it seems to start from a premise that God's nature and God's existence are at all related, and I don't get why that would be. Dean does eventually get a pretty comprehensive answer to his unanswerable question of "if God exists what the fuck is his problem" but he for sure will not be happy about it.

This is going to make it sound like I don't like Dean or Castiel, I like them both very much, but Castiel offering to throw Dean back into Hell for rudeness is maybe my favorite Castiel moment in the whole series. (But when they're talking to each other it's pretty striking how much the actors are deepening their voices and a) their poor vocal cords and b) guys. guys. cmon. and c) oh they really did not expect to have to keep that up for eleven more years.)
posted by jameaterblues at 9:13 PM on July 14 [1 favorite]


The episode's title is a reference to the Judy Blume's novel Are You There, God? It's Me, Margaret.

And maybe also to The Venture Bros. episode Are You There, God? It's Me, Dean.
posted by The Tensor at 11:36 PM on July 14


Yes, I also thought the haircut avoidance workaround was really funny: "Let's blame that horrible shag hairdo on the demon so that at least wan, vengeful Ghost Meg can enjoy better hair in the afterlife!" God knows I'd love to ascribe some of my tragic hair past on demonic possession.
posted by orange swan at 4:58 AM on July 15 [2 favorites]


God is not omnipotent.
posted by jenfullmoon at 7:47 AM on July 15


Despite having an interest in all things automotive, my eye really isn't that good when it comes to spotting paint defects. Normally, it takes a lot for me to notice them. In this episode, however, Baby's badly abused and scratched-up paint job is just screaming at me. Apparently Sam didn't take very good care of the car while Dean was in Hell.

Speaking of cars, in an earlier post, I mentioned something to the effect of Bobby's yard wouldn't be a very good spot for Dean to scavenge parts from, as most of the inventory looked like late (or late-ish) models. In this episode, however, there are a lot of older donors that originated in the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s.

(Yes, I know, I'm not supposed to be watching this show for the cars, but that kind of thing is just baked into my DNA.)
posted by sardonyx at 10:40 AM on July 15 [2 favorites]


We actually do find out the answer to "how can God be both omnipotent and benevolent and yet evil still exists?", at least for the Supernatural universe. In season 5, I believe.
posted by Pope Guilty at 12:13 PM on July 15


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