On Supernatural

Dean Winchester: Bad-Ass...or Soccer Mom?

By Tanya Michaels

This is humiliating. [I] feel like a freaking soccer mom.

–DEAN (driving a minivan), “Everybody Loves a Clown,” 2-2

Even casual viewers of Supernatural are familiar with Dean Winchester’s black Chevy Impala, a classic car he loves that was given to him by his father. Symbolic of Dean’s life and how he sees himself, the Impala is practically a character in the show. However, after the car was nearly destroyed in the first season finale, a subsequent episode found Dean temporarily–and hilariously–behind the wheel of a minivan. While we equate Dean with his Impala and the classic metal rock always blaring from its cassette deck, the incongruous minivan is surprisingly reflective of who he is deep down.

Deep, deep down. But trust me: it’s there.

When grown brothers Sam and Dean Winchester were introduced in the pilot episode, the audience was clearly meant to accept that Sam is the good brother and that Dean is the rebel/screw-up. Within minutes of meeting Sam, we knew that he had a steady girlfriend and that he was a successful Stanford student with an important law school interview scheduled. Our first look at adult Dean? He broke into Sam’s apartment in the middle of the night, making a wiseass quip about looking for beer, and stopped just shy of hitting on his brother’s girlfriend. (In the later “What Is and What Should Never Be” (2-20), which imagined an alternate reality for the brothers, Sam accused Dean of hooking up with “my prom date … on prom  …

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