The Ending Of ‘Supernatural’ Has Queer Fans Extremely Pissed Off
Welcome to the 'I Emotionally Invested In This Show For Years Only For The Finale To Suck' club, Supernatural fans.
Fellas, is it homophobic to make a character gay then send them to Super Hell?
Supernatural has been on television for 15 seasons and as many years. Yes, Supernatural fans, there are students in high school born after it began airing in 2005. The series follows the Winchester brothers, Dean and Sam, as they travel across the USA as a “family business” fighting demons and monsters. Throughout its 15 seasons, the brothers have been joined by many companions, but arguably none more loved than the fallen angel, Castiel.
Okay, confession: I stopped watching this show a long time ago, but if being on Tumblr for 10 years qualifies me to say anything about this show its that one of the big reasons Castiel was so loved in fandom was because many fans believed he was queer and in love with Dean.
"It's deep and meaningful. Is it love? Probably. What does that mean? It's a million different things."
~ Misha Collins about Destiel, NJ ON 2013
Now we know it's LOVE. We know it's romantic (for Cas). But it's still so much more. It's profound. pic.twitter.com/XbuFGZCtLT
— Drula loves Cas 💙 (@CasIsLoved) November 11, 2020
In Supernatural’s third to last episode, Castiel’s love for Dean was confirmed to be romantic. Well, sort of. In the scene, Castiel confesses he loves Dean because he is about to sacrifice himself to save Dean by sending himself to what many fans refer to as Super Hell (yes, Super Hell).
— gray cat 2.0 (@graycat201) November 7, 2020
A big moment, right? Well, for many longtime fans it definitely was, but for a lot of others the whole scene gave off, shall we say bad vibes.
Supernatural has long been accused of queerbaiting, a practice whereby creatives of a piece of media deliberately create queer subtext between two characters to profit off queer fans without actually making the characters queer. Essentially, false advertising, but homophobic.
i havent watched #Supernatural for like 5 years but making #destiel canon and then immediately killing cas is the biggest homophobic power move ever and i am losing my fucking mind rn pic.twitter.com/hKZPOvx6mG
— illegally blonde (@portabible) November 6, 2020
To make matters worse, killing Castiel after having him confess his love for Dean (and the show essentially never mentioning him again) strongly aligns with the homophobic ‘bury your gays’ trope. It’s a narrative trope that sees many LGBTIQ characters killed, often to further the plot for non-LGBTIQ characters.
Castiel was the last Supernatural character to fall victim to the ‘bury your gays’ trope, he was not the first. Charlie, played by Felicia Day, was a lesbian character who appeared in series 7, but she was killed shortly after she fell in love with a woman in the series’ 10th season. Many queer Supernatural fans feel cheated and humiliated after so many years of loyalty to the series, only for it to let them down again.
"cas helped" that's the only mention of castiel spn's third lead for the last 12 years and their canon queer character and after 12 seasons of queerbaiting lgbtq+ fans they just didn't even mention deancas cwspn fuck you and your horrible ass show #Supernatural
— ًhal | still on rt limit (@wlwmish) November 20, 2020
If you’re interested in a more in-depth analysis of the Supernatural fandom’s grief from someone who has actually seen the show all the way through, Kat Trenbarge’s Insider piece has the tea.
— Katie (@surlybobbies) November 20, 2020
While I can honestly say Supernatural and I never really clicked, even as someone horrendously addicted to Fantasy TV, I can always sympathise with the particular grief of being a dedicated longtime fan (especially a queer fan) of a show, only for the show-runners to throw the finale in your face (yes, I’m GLARING at you Penny Dreadful, and Game of Thrones).
Welcome to the ‘I Emotionally Invested In This Show For Years Only For The Finale To Suck‘ club, Supernatural fans.