This week’s episode is another that’s pretty light on the Sam and Dean interactions and development, but we do learn more about Benny and Amelia.
So what’s the verdict? Are Benny and Amelia good characters, or are they boring characters doomed to be killed or written off the show?
Well, after this week’s episode I can safely say that I like Benny with his Cajun accent and suspenders (I love that he wears suspenders). Benny has a couple things going for him: his friendship with Dean is well-written and interesting. You really get a war buddy sort of vibe from the two of them. Furthermore, Dean doesn’t get close to people often, which make sense for the character but can get annoying, storytelling-wise, simply because fans have seen it so often. With Dean and Benny we have the convenience of watching Dean learn to trust Benny in Purgatory, while still getting to enjoy their actual friendship in the present. It makes the whole thing less tedious. Benny’s past also makes him interesting. He gives up his murdering ways for love—awww! Furthermore, he had no intention of turning his girlfriend into a monster, which I liked.
But probably the biggest thing Benny has going for him is he saved Castiel this episode. Before season eight fans seemed to be worried that this newfound friendship with Benny would drive a wedge between Dean and Cas. However, the writers have been good about continuing to show how close Dean and Cas are while seamlessly weaving Benny into the group instead of putting him in opposition to the group. Benny even seems to refer specifically to Cas when mentioning to Dean about how loyal he is to his friends.
We are seeing the relationship between Dean and Benny develop more, but I personally would like to see more of a relationship develop between Cas and Benny as well. At the beginning we see that Benny and Cas aren’t exactly getting along, but after Benny saves Cas from a Leviathan its seem like something like respect starts to develop. If Dean, Cas, and Benny are basically like war-buddies, then it would be interesting to see Benny regard the loss of Cas in Purgatory as something similar to an admired fellow comrade and friend. It’s something that would cement Benny as part of the group and not just some random outsider that happens to know Dean.
I also keep hearing that Benny is Dean’s Ruby (but without the sex), which I personally think is the worst thing the writers could do. For Benny to turn out evil would be really lame as it would follow the same pattern as Ruby and seem almost like the writers are just recycling an old plotline. Furthermore, having Benny around gives the show something it sorely needs: insight into the monsters that try to be good. We have seen a few here and there throughout the seasons, but it is not something that has ever really been explored, and Benny’s character along with last week’s episode is letting us see that more and more.
Now I do take issue with one thing in Benny’s storyline. His beautiful girlfriend turned vampire died. I know it was supposed to show how she was corrupted. She was willing to kill people to the point that she had worked her way up through the vampire ranks after all, but I really wanted her to not end up being evil. She was supposed to be contrasted to Benny, who gave up killing for love, but she couldn’t. It shows how hard it is for the monsters to fight their urges, but there aren’t many ladies on this show… as it is.
Speaking of ladies, let’s talk about Amelia. Amelia has endeared herself to me somewhat as she pointed out that Sam was creepy. Despite being very attractive and smooth with the ladies, Sam and Dean always do or say things, that I think, would set off most warning bells for women. However, none of the women have picked up on this. Amelia did to her credit at least partly because she is similar to Sam, with ties to anyone or anywhere, and no idea where she is going.
I really want Amelia to not just be a normal person. This episode hinted that there was more to her than that she is some random veterinarian, and I would love it if she used to be a hunter, or is something supernatural, because really, the fans aren’t going to care about a normal person. Lisa was a sweetheart, and she had Ben, which helped make the dynamic between her and Dean interesting, but fans ultimately want Sam and Dean on the road hunting monsters, so a normal relationship isn’t going to work.
It’s one of the reasons fans like female characters like Jo, Anna, Meg, and Bela (I’m told many fans actually didn’t like Bela, but those fans are stupid). There was something interesting about those characters. They are from the same world as Sam and Dean in some ways, which helped to make them fit easily into various plotlines and actively participate in what Sam and Dean were doing.
Now that’s not to say that you can’t have a normal character learn the ropes and become a bad ass. Clearly, the show has done that with characters like Sarah, Cassie, Mrs. Tran, and Charlie, but for some reason those characters never stick around. Despite that though, we haven’t seen a female hunter (as a long-term supporting character) for a while, and it would just be wonderful if Amelia filled that role.
However, this episode was more about Benny so we’ll have to wait to see what happens with Amelia, if or when she shows up in Sam’s life again.
This was another episode that, while it featured Sam and Dean heavily despite the fact that they weren’t the focus, still had some great Sam and Dean moments. I think this is because Jeremy Carver promised more of a supporting cast this season (that hopefully won’t all be killed off this time) and he is trying to set that up with these episodes, which I think is excellent. And it’s not like the writers are ignoring are main me. If the promo is anything to go by, it looks like next week’s episode will be chock full of Sam and Dean goodness. Oh, and Garth is coming back!
Until next time SPN fans!