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Destiel Is Even More Canon … in Spanish?

Te Amo. Yo a ti.

Dean and Cas look moody and attractive

It’s always fun when the internet loses it over Supernatural … a show that ended its televised run a week ago. Since the finale episode, the Supernatural fandom has been processing its grief in all sorts of ways. Trying to deal with the fact that there will never be new episodes of Supernatural on their screens to fix anything (at least, not until the inevitable reboot in five years). But worry not, we now have the Spanish dub of the show to send you into a new meltdown.

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Last night, a clip hit Twitter of the Spanish version of Castiel’s final confession of love to Dean. In the original English version, Castiel tells Dean “I love you,” and by saying that, experiences his ultimate moment of happiness. This triggers the deal he made with the Empty in season 14, where he would be taken to the angel afterlife if he ever was truly happy. The Empty is summoned and also gobbles up Death, thus Castiel’s love saves Dean’s life. Very romantic and tragic and great (and it wasn’t a “bury your gays” according to Misha Collins).

Dean’s reply when Cas says “I love you” is “Don’t do this, Cas.” Because, well, he doesn’t want Cas to die. But the Spanish version shared across Twitter last night goes much further. Cas says “Te amo.” Then Dean says “Yo a ti, Cas.” Which translates, essentially, as “me to you” or “me too,” and in the context after “te amo,” means “I love you too” and “I feel the same way towards you.”

(Super)naturally, the internet lost its goddamn mind. Tumblr literally crashed for a while and the memes came fast and furious. Destiel trended worldwide again. It was a return to the bygone era of twenty days ago when everything was Destiel and nothing else mattered.

This is all fun and I love the Spanish version. There’s definitely a lot to be said of the dramatic punch of the Empty only coming in once Dean said “Yo a ti,” and Cas heard it. It’s a confirmation of what Jensen Ackles’s perfect freaking face has been telling us since season five, that Dean is in love with Cas too. And hearing that, even in another language, is really cathartic, even if it wasn’t what the original script said. It makes sense and it’s romantic AF.

But on the other hand … that’s not the original intent of the scene. The whole point of the scene we all saw in English is something Cas says before the confession: “Happiness isn’t in the having, it’s in just being. It’s in just saying it.” And that’s really important because it means that just loving and also, in a way, just being out and open is the ultimate happiness. And so Dean replying right there undercuts that in a way.

That’s the big clue that this dub was not based on some secret version of the script that was cut. Also the subtitles of the scene match the English version, not the Spanish. Sources tell me that dubbing is not overseen by the studio or writers, so this does not reflect some sort of hidden, extra gay to the scene. Dubbers work independently from with the show as it’s broadcast in English, not with the script. There’s no conspiracy here to deny by the CW to silence anyone or erase a character and I want to be as clear as possible about that.

Fans have a right to be upset or lobby for better representation, but blaming The CW for not getting more Destiel than what we got is not the way to do it. Mainly because the CW is the most inclusive and LGBTQIA+ positive network on broadcast television by miles. The CW has given us a multitude of queer characters and stories, including the first trans superhero, multiple bisexual lead characters, the first lesbian title character, and the first Black lesbian title character. Castiel’s queerness and Dean’s open to interpretation response is something we likely would never have even seen on another network.

The conspiracy theories around Supernatural have been one of the more unfortunate results of a finale that left many fans more than a little dissatisfied. I understand they are fun for some folks, but in a world where fake news is still a problem, anything that separates us from reality is … not great. We got more than most of us ever expected in these final episodes, and it was a hard-fought win. Castiel’s confession was written by an out gay man, Robert Berens. So the fandom responding to this miracle with accusations and conspiracies is not a good look overall, but it’s also not surprising given the extremes of online stan culture nowadays.

“Spanish Desitel saved the world” is a wonderful thing, but other responses to the finale have been less fun, like endless IMDb review bombing the finale, and angry tweeting at the writers, crew, and even the cast (Jim Beaver, who plays Bobby Singer deactivated his Twitter the day after the finale because the onslaught was so bad). On the other hand, fans angry about how they feel Castiel’s queerness was underserved have raised over $50,000 for the Trevor Project, which is amazing. Fans have also raised money in honor of Sam to support foster youth, and Dean to support suicide prevention.

And that’s what I hope fans continue to do, because everyone has the right to feel whatever they feel about a show, but it’s never okay to use hurt as an excuse to hurt others—especially when bullying is already such a huge problem online. Let’s just focus on the fun and doing good as much as we can.

Because pain is temporary … pero Destiel es siempre.

(image: Dean Buscher/The CW)

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Jessica Mason
Jessica Mason (she/her) is a writer based in Portland, Oregon with a focus on fandom, queer representation, and amazing women in film and television. She's a trained lawyer and opera singer as well as a mom and author.

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