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Old May 11 2012, 05:08 AM   #1
Joe Washington
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Where's Sam Winchester's character arc? (Supernatural) SPOILERS

I just realized today that Sam has had a lack of a character arc through Season 6 and Season 7 unlike the first five seasons which had Sam organically change and grow over time. I get the feeling that instead of undergoing genuine character development these days, Sam has had complications thrown at him one after the other like being soulless, having a wall placed in his mind to keep back the Hell memories, and suffering from Lucifer hallucinations. Though those situations have been interesting to watch, you don't get the sense that Sam has further developed as a character. He seems to be stuck between who he was at the end of Season 5 and who he could be if the writers actually let him loose. I remember someone on the Supernatural site mentioned taking Sam down the road of someone who is free of a destiny that has trapped him since the day he was born and finding freedom in that. I would much prefer that over the road of random mishaps for poor Sam.

What do you guys think?
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Old May 11 2012, 05:48 AM   #2
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Re: Where's Sam Winchester's character arc? (Supernatural) SPOILERS

Sam spent the last couple seasons dealing with a) not having a soul and then b) going crazy from having the soul back. He's been healthy for about four episodes now. Character development takes time.
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Old May 11 2012, 07:04 AM   #3
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Re: Where's Sam Winchester's character arc? (Supernatural) SPOILERS

He actually had a rather profound change in character.

Once his century plus of being tortured in Hell and his year plus of being soulless on earth, and all those memories got processed, he actually got over his guilt for his actions.

Now of course that mind set was over shadowed by his "Wall" falling down. But the show made many references to how much healthier Sam was living. More full of life, then what Dean had ever seen him (after all when Dean came back into his life, Sam's life has been a huge bloody mess). He no longer hunts because he must atone, he does it because it needs to be done.

Of course between showing those good moments the show was building the arc of his wall's falling down and the insanity creeping in.
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Old May 11 2012, 11:38 PM   #4
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Re: Where's Sam Winchester's character arc? (Supernatural) SPOILERS

As much as I LOVE the show I personally think they MAJORLY dropped the ball on Sam's stay in hell. I mean the "drive him crazy" from hs time in hell is the devil talking to him non stop? Sooooo blase and certainly not a convincing take on what the experience and memories of being tortured in hell would be IMHO. It's actually rather lame.
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Old May 12 2012, 12:29 AM   #5
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Re: Where's Sam Winchester's character arc? (Supernatural) SPOILERS

I don't think they "dropped the ball" on Sam at all. Wasn't it Kripke's decision that the series was only going to last the initial 5 seasons? I think we were supposed to watch Sam "grow" from being someone that never wanted "The Life" into someone that made the ultimate sacrifice for it...How they decided to change that plan is what we got.
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Old May 12 2012, 03:10 AM   #6
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Re: Where's Sam Winchester's character arc? (Supernatural) SPOILERS

Othello wrote: View Post
As much as I LOVE the show I personally think they MAJORLY dropped the ball on Sam's stay in hell. I mean the "drive him crazy" from hs time in hell is the devil talking to him non stop? Sooooo blase and certainly not a convincing take on what the experience and memories of being tortured in hell would be IMHO. It's actually rather lame.
Or being burned alive, watching everyone turn into desiccated corpses. Seeing your environment transform into a dungeon where you have been tortured.

Afterall he is in hell for about 150 years or so. His only torturer would have been Lucifer. SO based on the shows Lucifer, I would certainly expect not only just physical torture but mental as well. SO we see Sam having not only a Lucifer talking to him (which was part of it), but a Lucifer who tortured him, times where he is burning in flames, where he is getting severe visual and auditory hallucinations (seeing rooms of torture, corpses everywhere,, to doubting his entire reality.

So why so many of those just with Lucifer talking to Sam...Well let see. Why would a show on the CW not have the budget to show scenes of torture in all those episodes, (let alone for long scenes to showcase Sam's mental state).

Its called no budget. Show those more visual elements a few times during the season to show that they are also occurring, then use a really good actor for the majority of the scenes.

Heck they were able to show one, and only one scene of Dean's 3 months in Hell. They cheated for every other hell memory by hearing screams and flashes of red. I had no problem understanding the fact that yes, Dean was being tortured on later, actually being the one who is causes the torture on some other.
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Old May 16 2012, 03:46 AM   #7
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Re: Where's Sam Winchester's character arc? (Supernatural) SPOILERS

I'm concerned in the lack of overall "Winchester" arc together, as brothers. I think S7 has had the worse character development for the brothers yet. There seems to be a lack of focus this season on the brothers, which is not good for the show. S6 was ok, a lot happened, Sam had a lot to deal with. But S7? Not so much, and Dean, nothing either, just reactionary as you state.

Overall, S7 is turning out to have the least amount of character development for the boys.
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Old May 16 2012, 05:20 AM   #8
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Re: Where's Sam Winchester's character arc? (Supernatural) SPOILERS

I am not sure what you mean by "together", the show has almost never had the brothers on the same page.

Even when working together, they are often doing things for completely different reasons and motivations.

Whats driving each character through the seasons:

1: Sam loss and seeking Vengeance, Dean trying to pull his family together (something Sam isn't motivate in doing).

Season two (probably the closest in keeping a somewhat similar goal). Both dealing with John's Death (but it two very different ways), Dean trying to keep Sam , Sam. Sam trying to force his damnation into salvation.

Season three: Dean how to live his last year, and how to insulate Sam from that lose. Sam how to Save Dean.

Season 4: Dean trying to survive with his hell memories, Sam Vengeance to Lilith for what she did to Dean, and embracing his power.

Season 5: Dean living a lie, going through the motions for Sam. Sam trying to earn redemption for his accidental freeing of Lucifer.

Season 6. Soulless Sam Live at any cost, Dean Dealing with a stranger, trying to teach a Sam to want to have his soul back (And earlier and in bits of the season trying to suppress what he sees as his true self). Second half. Dean trying to shield Sam from his last year, Sam trying to make amends and discover what he did for the last year.

Season 7: Sam trying to hold himself and Dean together. When not having breakdown living much healthier life. Dean bearing his feelings (or drowning them). Dealign with loss (again, in different ways). But actually working as a team better then many of season.

They dont really share the same way of looking at things, or how they process events and emotions.

And often use lies to hide ow they feel, or what they are actively trying to do. This season, I think they lies have actually been a lot less then previously. The only thing they still often lie about is just how they are actually feeling. Ie how are you (I am fine, I am dealing,e ct). But their motivations for most episodes have been closer then in several.
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