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4.13 After school Special: I’m looking for The Brutal, Funny, Maybe also Painful Truth Ghost high institution bully cd driver nerds to revenge top top jocks; Sam sees with brand-new eyes. Illustration Summary Taylor, a nice high institution girl ostracized together a slut through the renowned crowd, pass on the humiliation by lashing the end at April, a level girl who had tried to offer sympathy. The next day, April assaulted Taylor in the girl’s bathroom and drowned her in a restroom – and also ectoplasm leaked indigenous April’s eyes. Sam interviewed her in a psychological institution, and also she said him that she thought she’d been possessed, because she could see what she was doing yet hadn’t been able to protect against it. She revealed none of the other tell-tales the demonic possession, however; no sulfur, no black smoke. Dean observed that kids could be vicious and also there could not it is in a demon involved, but Sam claimed that they might as well check out the college – Truman High in Indiana, i beg your pardon the brothers had actually attended for around a month back in 1997. In flashback, the brothers to be dropped off at the school by John. Laid-back Dean, in ~ 18, was contents to understand that they’d only be in ~ the institution for two weeks while man was off on a hunt; reluctant Sam, still tiny for his period at 14 and also sick of constantly being the brand-new kid, to be disgruntled that this was already the 3rd school they’d remained in this year, and also it was just November. Their experiences were instantly different, v cocky Dean disrespecting his woman teacher, attracting interest from Amanda, the quite blonde sitting near him, and also dismissing his lack of books as irrelevant provided his expected quick tenure and also subdued Sam not wanting to tempt attention but ending up being an instant target the Dirk, the class bully, when he reacted to Dirk tormenting Barry, the obvious class geek. In existing day, Sam, in his guise together a janitor, discovered no evidence of demonic activity, and also he and also substitute gym teacher Dean decided to leave. Prior to they could go, however, the college jock, pressuring an additional student in a house ec course to let him copy his Algebra homework, obtained his hand grabbed and also shoved right into a food processor by his would-be victim. Arriving on the scene, Sam found the boy unaware that what he had actually done and also saw ectoplasm leaking indigenous his ear. Stating the rarely instances that ghost possession, Sam to be bemused by the absence of any type of EMF proof at the school. Breaking into the principal’s office, Dean reported just one death in the school: Barry Cook, the young Sam had befriended and defended, who had later committed suicide in the bathroom wherein April murdered Taylor. As soon as Dean inquiry if possessing nerds to attack bullies would have actually been Barry’s M.O., Sam remembered how Barry had been picked on in high school, and also was just enduring it while waiting for the possibility to escape to college. Flashbacks to 1997 continued to show the distinction in the brothers’ high school experience, with Dean, necking through Amanda in the it is provided room, emphasizing the great things about his life – no curfew, one out-of-town Dad, and all the rental comforts of living in a motel room – just to discover her troubled in ~ how far from common those things were. Sam, defending Barry however refusing to fight Dirk the bully, gained punched in the face, and also earned an granting nod native his teacher, Mr. Wyatt, that arrived to prevent the fight and also report Dirk. Regretfully, Sam joined Dean in digging increase Barry’s grave and also burning his bones. Dean do the efforts to persuade Sam the the boy’s self-destruction wasn’t his fault, stating that the coroner’s report noted that Barry had actually been on multiple antidepressant medications, and also had been handling the breakup the his parents and the bullying at school. Dean claimed that he’d been glad they’d left the town since he’d hated the school, and also when Sam said that that hadn’t to be so bad, Dean asked just how he might like it after what happened to him … which triggered yet another flashback come teenaged Dean reaction in security anger come Sammy’s bruised face, and also asking why Sam hadn’t protected himself and fought back, understanding that he could have taken the bully. Sam countered the he didn’t want to be viewed as a freak. Questioning if taking a beating to be normal, Dean walk on come say that Dad had actually called and also said the the task would take it at the very least a week longer, much to Dean’s discomfort, due to the fact that Amanda to be wanting that to satisfy her parents. Meanwhile, Mr. Wyatt dubbed Sam on what he had actually written in his essay assignment around his many memorable family members experience, due to the fact that Sam had written about his household killing a werewolf. Gently teasing the Sam had actually known the the assignment was an alleged to be non-fiction, Wyatt said that the still had provided him one “A”, and also asked if he’d offered thought to going right into writing. Sam responded that he had to enter the household business, and when Wyatt asked him if the was what he want to do, Sam stated that no one had ever before asked him that before, and admitted that an ext than anything, he didn’t desire to carry out that. Wyatt recommend him that he didn’t need to do anything the didn’t want to, and also said that there might be 3 or four big choices that shaped someone’s totality life, and that Sam needed to be the one to make those selections for himself. Remembering Wyatt’s advice, Sam stopped at the school prior to leaving town to thank the man, however he was struck by an earnest young female student who dubbed him by name, stabbed the in the chest through a protractor, kicked him approximately with unnatural strength, and also observed the he’d gained tall. He forced salt into her mouth and also expelled the ghost. As the brothers tried to figure out what was going on, due to the fact that the ghost clear wasn’t Barry, Dean noticed that every one of the ghost-possessed students had actually ridden the exact same bus to institution every day. The brothers guessed the the ghost to be somehow top top the bus, however that if it own a kid, it might ride the child off the bus. Check the bus, they uncovered EMF proof of a spirit, and also Dean discovered that the bus had actually a new driver who had started just before the very first possession occurred: the father of Dirk, the bully from Sam’s class. Sam mental the day the Dirk had lastly pushed him too far, once he’d intervened to safeguard Barry and used his hunter-trained skills to fight ago after Dirk referred to as him a freak, leaving the bigger boy bloody ~ above the soil in front of the school. Sam dubbed him “Dirk the jerk,” a name taken up by various other students delighted to check out the bully carried down. Visiting Dirk’s father, castle learned the Dirk had passed away when he was 18, evidently indigenous alcohol and drug abuse. The check out they acquired was really different from what Sam remembered, because the boy’s father recounted that other children had choose on him, calling him “Dirk the jerk.” he revealed that Dirk had been taking care of his dying mother earlier when he was 13, other Sam had never known, and that all the fury of his helplessness and his family’s poverty had actually caused him come act out. That reported the Dirk had been cremated, however that he’d maintained a lock the the boy’s hair, which was in his scriptures on the bus. The bus, v a substitute driver own by Dirk, was taking the institution team come an task when the Winchesters stopped it through puncturing the tires v spike strips laid throughout the road. Tie the ghost-possessed driver with rope soaked in salt water to avoid the heart from escaping, Sam held him if Dean, pretending the his stint as a gym teacher was in reality a cover because that him gift a cop, went looking for the lock of hair in the bus ~ above the pretext the the bus driver was dealing drugs. The hair wasn’t in the Bible, and also Dirk’s heart taunted the they wouldn’t discover it. He called them bullies, saying the they were constantly the popular jocks, and also said the they were evil sons that bitches who would finally get what to be coming to them. Sam responded the he wasn’t evil, but that Dirk hadn’t been, either; that every one of them had actually just been scared and miserable in high school and had take away it out on every other. Sam claimed that things got much better later and also that he was sorry neither Dirk no one Barry had actually lived to view that, but Dirk, enraged, claimed that naught would ever before get better for him. He broke the ropes and also charged Sam, who shot the driver with rock salt, and Dirk’s soul abandoned the driver to take it over one of the jocks on the bus. The jock attacked Sam, and when Dirk’s spirit didn’t leave once Dean shoot the jock v rock salt, Dean desperately tried to find the lock that hair, detect it surprise in the fallen driver’s boot, and burning it to ruin the ghost. Ago in 1997, the brothers’ insignificant at the school ended as differently as it had actually begun, through Dean kissing another girl and being caught by Amanda, who dismissed him as a sad, lonely small kid desperately trying to convince anyone he to be cool. He protested that he saved lives and also was a hero, yet the kids who observed the scene just shook their heads and also walked away. Sam, meanwhile, to be hailed together a hero for having brought down the bully. Man arrived to choose them up and also Dean couldn’t wait to leave, when Sam waved sadly back at Barry, watching lock go. In the aftermath, Sam thanked Wyatt for his advice. He stated that he had controlled to do his own thing because that a while and thought he had actually gone to college since of Wyatt, and also while people grow up and responsibilities intervened, Wyatt had taken an interest in him, and also that had actually mattered. Wyatt observed that the just thing that really mattered was that he be happy, and also asked Sam if he to be happy, a question Sam couldn’t uncover the right words to answer. Commentary and also Meta Analysis Understanding the truth behind appearances is a vital theme in Supernatural, and also this episode served it increase in spades. We experienced other characters seeing the concealed truths the both Sam and also Dean in the past, with really different consequences; Sam discovering that what he remembered about the course bully wasn’t the complete story; and also both brothers remembering things long hidden that nonetheless spoke to that they had become and why. And we saw, in the space of a single episode, a reversal in roles in between Sam and also Dean in the past that echoed v all the reversals we’ve checked out from season to season across the food of the series. It’s all recorded up in what I decided as the title because that this review: a line delivered in the background by Mr. Wyatt, describing the essay assignment he offered to Sam’s class to write 3 pages on their most memorable family experience. In both your memories and also their existing experience, the brothers turned up brutal, funny, and also painful truths. That’s High School The function reversals between Dean and also Sam in this episode were fascinating to watch. Initially, in the existing time, Sam showed up to be neutral on returning to Truman High if Dean to be negative. Our very first flashback automatically put them into reversed positions: young Dean was normally upbeat and really didn’t care about Truman High one method or the other, learning that they would only be there for two weeks, when young Sam was already anticipating the dreaded uncomfortable of being the brand-new kid in yet one more place, a feeling only exacerbated by knowing that they’d shortly be repeating the suffer at yet another school. Dean exuded confidence and assurance, when Sam sullenly tried to stay below the radar. As their continue to be at the institution extended, we observed the brothers’ positions start to shift. Sam uncovered his place, very first accepting Barry’s tentative sell of friendship, then defending Barry, attracting Mr. Wyatt’s interest and approval both because that his attitude and his work, and also ultimately fighting back versus Dirk, mirroring himself come be all of sudden physical and strong, and also winning the accolades that others because that making the bully the thing of ridicule. By the moment he left Truman High, the had an ext than found a comfort level; he’d winner a place and also become accepted, and saw the rewards of gift normal. Dean, top top the other hand, shed his place, since the longer they stayed, the much more uncomfortable he came to be with the skepticism of John’s extended absence on the hunt and the more Amanda could see with his façade of bravado come the sad truth beneath. No matter exactly how he make the efforts to put a happy face on his life situation, she cut to the terrible core truth: Don’t you miss your Dad? as soon as she recorded him kissing another girl and struck earlier by exposing her expertise of that in front of her friends, the corrosion of she pity attacked not just the picture of cool he projected to others, yet the photo of self-sufficiency he clung to in bespeak to defend himself. Dean’s hate for Truman High wasn’t because that Sam having actually been bullied and beaten increase there, or even for Amanda having struck earlier at him v such perfect aim: it was for having had the pathetic core of his life laid bare not simply to others, yet to himself. Hunting, conserving others, to be the just thing he could claim that gave his life value, but it wasn’t a worth that everyone else might see or credit. The reversals didn’t end there, however. Shifting into the present, Sam’s normally positive memory of his win at Truman High turned to dust very first through his realization that Barry had committed suicide at some point after that left – a self-destruction he might have been able to prevent, had actually he to be able come stay and also grow the friendship they’d begun – and second through discovering that Dirk’s situation was more facility and tragic 보다 he’d viewed as a kid, and that his actions and also Dirk’s tardy of them had been the catalyst because that Dirk becoming an angry spirit. Dirk’s hard case of living in poverty and taking care of his dying mommy didn’t pardon his an option to become a bully and also torment Barry and others in order to get his own back versus the unfairness the life, yet it did raise the question of how different things can have been if someone had realized his situation and also reached out to him the method that Wyatt reached out to Sam. The brothers’ reactions and also approaches to high institution reflected the differences in between them. High college was mainly irrelevant to Dean due to the fact that it was irrelevant to hunting, and also given the method he was raised, searching really to be the just thing to which that aspired. It to be all component of the very same thing: saving people, protecting Sam, and being with his Dad. I suspect that Dean never had actually a Mr. Wyatt, but additionally that that wouldn’t have actually mattered if the had. I would posit the Dean internalized his mission in ~ such an early age that he could never have seriously thought about anything else even if it had actually been offered. Having actually lost so lot when his mother passed away – comfort, home, Mom, and also even the gentle and happy Dad he’d recognized – Dean was content with really little, so lengthy as that little included the protection of having actually his brother and his father. With his father eliminated from the equation for longer than he had been told come expect, he began to fray in ~ the edges and had a harder time keeping up the façade. In the present, with his father gone, his sense of me violated by his guilty memories of Hell, and his brother on the line, the hunt is every he has actually left, and he can’t watch it ending happily or well. Sam, ~ above the other hand, had actually been protected longer 보다 Dean, and from his much more secure position, might perceive how tiny he had compared to the plain kids approximately him. School represented all the points he didn’t have and also thought that couldn’t attain: stability, friends, education past just what was valuable in the hunt, creativity, opportunity. As soon as Mr. Wyatt asked the what he wanted to do, and he realized the no one had ever asked him the before, it said a lot about what John’s single-minded emphasis – and Dean’s automatic acceptance of that focus – had actually done come his own outlook. Wyatt’s concern planted the seed the nurtured Sam’s resentment of the life he’d been forced to live and grew into his college rebellion. It actors his life in a various light, making it, because that the very first time, something that he might control and also shape. In the end, Sam’s desires were brutally overtaken by other forces set in motion long before by the yellow-eyed demon, yet I would bet the Wyatt’s mental advice and also his final question – room you happy, Sam? – have just reinforced Sam’s desire come confound destiny and escape again. Appropriate now, with every little thing that he and Dean face, joy seems unattainable – but if there’s a means to win, a means to placed an end to all of it? This illustration may have seemed years and also worlds away from critical week’s Criss point of view Is A Douchebag, but I think it’s much closer and much more on allude than it may have appeared. Production Notes New authors this season Andrew Dabb and also Daniel Loflin, who formerly collaborated ~ above Yellow Fever, impression me a lot an ext with this episode. The emotionally beats in between the brothers, both grown-up and also as teenagers, were beautifully done. The illustration played top top a regular theme in superordinary – that things and also people often aren’t what they appear to be on the surface – and served it up in multiple methods at the exact same time. Personality reversal in between Sam and Dean is a function of the show, yet I don’t recall any other episode where we got to see a complete reversal within a single episode, and I particularly applaud them because that pulling the off here. Having actually teen Dean and also present-day Dean react to an strike on Sam with precisely the exact same line was funny symmetry. There to be a few things that made me tug on mine earlobe – the boys endangering stays by blowing the end the tires ~ above a loaded bus for one (although, through a driver possessed by a ghost who had actually it in for jocks, something negative was likely on the menu anyway), everyone continuing to be quiet and also on board the bus throughout all the gunfire and shenanigans with the driver for another, teen Dean’s final outburst around being a hero because that a third, and the overwhelming vocal assistance for tiny Sam top top his final walk through the 1997 high college for a fourth – but they didn’t in the the very least interfere with my enjoyment of the episode. And also I chuckled for the historical accuracy and political incorrectness of the Truman High athletics teams being dubbed the Bombers. Adam Kane is a first-time director on the show, and also based on his work-related here, ns hope that the crew liked him and that we’ll see him again. He has actually a cameraman’s eye that found new and interesting ways to shoot places that the show has already used many times – I’m thinking specifically of the Riverview asylum and also the Lu Lu Island trestle bridge – and also made them show up different. The walking 360 shot the intercut young Sam with contemporary Sam go into and also through the school and also running his hand through his hair was pure delight. So to be the high crane shot recording the final dissipation of the ghost and the jock’s “full cowgirl” sprawl on top of Sam. Kane’s previous credits many notably encompass being cinematographer and also director the photography ~ above a couple of episodes that Grey’s Anatomy and also the pilot episode of Heroes. His jump right into the director’s chair is recent, but his resume is currently respectable and indicative of a fresh and creative eye, offered that it includes directing illustration of the visually unique Pushing Daisies. I really liked the means he visualized and then realized scenes in this episode, specifically as he change perspective in between past and also present characters. While I’m talk direction, I additionally have to point out one little bit that really caught my eye and made me sad. Mind, this is no reflection on Kane or ~ above the manufacturing as a whole, yet it is a commentary on the very restricted budget that the CW has listed for this show. All television mirrors reuse clip to save money on shooting, especially when it concerns stock-type footage; simply think of all the times we’ve watched a lengthy shot that the Impala on part wide-open, north road, and then counting how plenty of of those shots were actually the very same shot, just closely treated in post production to differ the color, the light, the tone, or the sky. This episode, however, is the very first one I deserve to remember wherein the show reused a item of actual emotionally dramatic clip in something various other than an illustration recap, a memory flashback, or a tiny activity clip (by i beg your pardon I mean something favor the “Sam hunting alone” montage in mystery Spot, because that example). The step in which Sam and Dean burn Barry’s skeletal – from shaking the salt and spraying the accelerant v Dean light the book of matches, dropping that in, and also both guys watching the flames leap up in the open casket – is in reality the complete scene from Hollywood Babylon in i beg your pardon the boys burn the starlet’s bones, just flipped to turning back the image. I could not have noticed, except that that struck me on a rewatch the the boys’ hands to be wrong – that Sam was shaking salt v his left hand, and also Dean’s silver- ring was all of sudden on his left hand as well, and he was making use of his left to light the matches. Reusing a shot conserves the substantial money the the display would otherwise have had actually to invest on setting up and shooting a brand-new version of the scene. If that specific piece that reuse enabled Kripke and agency to buy the civil liberties to use Foreigner’s “Long Long way From Home” in the scene where John to reduce the guys off in ~ school, then I certainly applaud the production’s financial creativity. Hell, ns applaud the creativity anyway – however I deplore the factor for it, because I would have liked to view Jared’s existing take on offering Sam’s reaction to having actually to burn the skeleton of a young who, however briefly, had been his friend. Flipping the image aided to disguise its origin (I didn’t notice it the first time around), however it couldn’t store it hidden. The acting in this episode was peak notch all around. In existing time, this to be Jared Padalecki’s show, providing us a look within Sam’s heart and memories. The conflicted watch on his face at the finish of the episode spoke an ext eloquently than any type of dialogue around Sam’s feelings; “happy” is so not in it, however there space no words the Sam can use also to method explaining come Mr. Wyatt the state of his life and the complexities neighboring his choices. His reaction very first to finding out that Dirk was much more than what he had showed up to be, and also later come Dirk’s accusation the he to be evil and a bully was additionally heartbreaking; his an initial “I’m no evil” was confident and direct, yet his second, “I’m not” sounded as if he was trying to persuade himself. Colin Ford as young Sam was pure perfection. He nailed small Sam in A very Supernatural Christmas, and also he an ext than did it again here. The dangerous leaf he provided to Sam’s solution to Dirk’s bullying was brilliant, from the direct difficulty of his willingness to volunteer to take Barry’s place as the target of Dirk’s malice, to the simultaneously calculated and also physically violent rage of his solution to being called a freak. This to be a side of young Sam that us hadn’t checked out before, the maturing of anger the would eventually lead to Sam walking out on John, and a foretaste of exactly how deadly and vicious he might be as soon as he was thrust to his limits and also beyond, and Colin offered it absolutely. In ~ the exact same time, he preserved the yearning innocence that still lurks within adult Sam, and showed us the very first flowering that Sam’s dream of make his own decisions and abandoning the family business. Brock Kelly had a bit of a more difficult time with teenager Dean, given that the was play a personality closer in physics age and appearance to Jensen Ackles’ Dean, but he did an extremely well. Physically, the made a convincing 18-year-old Dean, still cultivation into John’s leather jacket, and he certainly pulled off the cocky attitude and also the protectiveness. His voice missed the accent, yet nailed the vocal range. Watching his young Dean coming to be steadily more uncomfortable as the time wore ~ above was very effective; we experienced how quickly Dean could readjust to a instance he expected, however how the expectations of normality chafed top top him as the escape he expected was deferred. He portrayed those cracks well, and if his vulnerability in the last scene with Amanda and the surrounding teens to be a tiny strained, i think that more of that belonged come a little issue through the script. The story gave Amanda an ext maturity and also insight than I might generally buy in a teenaged girl finding out her boyfriend canoodling v someone else; Amanda uncovering and publicly exposing Dean’s defense mechanisms and daring to pity him rather of simply dumping anger anywhere him to be simultaneously much more insightful and more viciously calculated than I would have actually expected of a teen. That an extremely unexpected strike was the just reason I can come up through that would account for teenager Dean’s protestations of heroism; I’d have expected the to avoid with the “You don’t know anything about me” line. Ns was also a tiny bothered by Dean’s arrogant insouciance towards his instructor, offered that no attracting fist was component of the Winchester family members motto, yet I guessed that his will was to acquire his teachers to compose him off as incorrigible and also then disregard him, and that attitude certainly appeared to work. Ns loved Brock in all of his scenes v Colin, because his big brother vibe came throughout loud and also clear. I proceed to love every little thing that Jensen brings to Dean. His worry for Sam’s sadness and guilt very first over Barry and also then end Dirk was quiet real, and his flashing anger end anyone or anything that would hurt Sam is just one of the traits that provides Dean irresistible. At the very same time, his horndog nature and also social awkwardness – evil his unreasonable coach persona, his checking on the legal periods of the cheerleading squad, and also his clumsy interrogation of Dirk’s father – produce the equally irresistible advice to smack that upside the head. Something i enjoy around Jensen’s performance of Dean is precisely that he portrays every one of Dean’s facets equally, both the sterling characteristics that make him admirable and the failings and also weaknesses that make the reprehensible. In the end, Dean come off as being totally human, and that’s a mix of the writing and also the performance. I specifically enjoyed the subtlety the his early on distaste for returning come the school, which played on the surface ar as anger because that what taken place to Sam there, and also only later was revealed together discomfort for what Dean had lost when Amanda stripped his cool illusion away. Among the guest cast, i also specifically appreciated Canadian gibbs Chad Willett, that played Mr. Wyatt. He came off as the perceptive and also caring teacher every one of us wish us had, and some of united state – consisting of me – are lucky enough actually to remember. He and also the assembly crew go a lovely task of depicting Wyatt in timeframes nearly twelve years apart. Having the rock music back for the opened flashback sequence to be a joy; we’ve been missing that standard rock a lot, and again, that’s a role of the budget. I additionally loved the plaintive piano underscore by Jay Gruska during Sam’s retrospective moments. In the production end, I favored the shade saturation difference that set the past scenes except the present; every one of the scene in 1997 had a heat tinge come the light that contrasted v the harsher light of the present day, and also subtly reinforced both i m sorry time period the story was in, and also the relative innocence of the earlier time contrasted to the stark and painful present. The only thing absent from the full experience was what Jeffrey Dean Morgan would certainly surely have carried to also a brief appearance together John, but I’m certain that budget considerations and also JDM’s very own schedule precluded us acquiring that particular treat. Postscript The episode closed through two “in memoriam” notices appended come the finish credits: one because that Christopher F. Lima, and one because that Tim Loock. Ns wasn’t acquainted with your names from the show’s credits, and also went looking. Follow to tv.com, Mr. Lima was a rigging electrician, and also Mr. Loock to be an online editor. Ns don’t recognize the situations of their loss, however I prolong my condolences to the Supernatural production family. I knew around and grieved the death of director and executive producer Kim Manners, but hadn’t well-known that the production had lost two added crew as well. Every lose is hard; three in a quick span of time is brutal. Yet sad, this was additionally a salutary reminder that the show’s credits tell only component of the story: the takes a lot more people whose names we never ever see to make an episode, and also every solitary one of castle – from the technical film crew to the chauffeurs to the civilization who keep the paperwork in order and also the office running – counts in what we ultimately see ~ above screen. Prior to I miss the possibility with everyone else, permit me take this minute to thank everyone in the superordinary production household for contributing to the happiness that this show brings me. People, you absent – and also what friend have produced in this present is walking to it is in remembered. That’s what happens v brutal, funny, and even ache truths. (I"m sorry this is so late ... Work life is right now imitating a vaccuum cleaner and also sucking mightily.)