Dean’s soul buys Sam’s life.
“We’ve got work to do.”
There’s no way that a three-line haiku could capture the full heart of the second season finale of Supernatural. This was a satisfying masterpiece of character and story continuity, one that answered questions while asking more, simultaneously providing the full-circle closure of the first complete chapter of the book of Sam and Dean Winchester and a tantalizing teaser for chapter two. While the title line of my blog was spoken by Sam, it was lived by both brothers, demonstrating why we care about them. And if you’re planning to read this whole commentary, better pour yourself a tall one and settle back, because this is anything but concise.
With Sam lying dead in an abandoned house, empty, shattered Dean pushed Bobby away and wrestled with the demons of his own perceived worthlessness, ultimately going to a crossroads to summon a demon and sell his soul for Sam’s return to life. Negotiating from his abject need for Sam, Dean accepted deadly terms: only one year of life before his soul’s debt would come due, with Sam’s life as the forfeit should Dean attempt to escape the deal. Knowing the drill from Cross Road Blues, Dean sealed the deal with a kiss, and Sam awoke to life, confused, in pain, and troubled by the scar on his back. Overjoyed to have his brother back, Dean glossed over the details and tried to persuade him to take the time to rest, heal, and be safe, but Sam, knowing that the yellow-eyed demon’s endgame was in play and appalled by the news of the destruction of the Roadhouse, insisted on going to help Bobby figure out what they needed to do.