So, I finally got around to rewatching the episode again, and alas I still don't have much to say about it, though I do have a few things to add to my previous thoughts, but very few really
. However, apparently something may or may not have happened in the parts of the episodes I'm no longer watching (because every time Sam has a flashback something there will piss me off, so I have finally started skipping those), because I've read some other people commenting about those things, but nothing of such that makes me think I should watch them, so for me the episodes are getting shorter.
Mostly though this episode just reminded me (or at least the scene where Cass comments on John's handwriting) of a fanfic I read once where Castiel decided to make Dean's (and Sam's) childhood better by going back in time to sleep with their dad. The theory was, of course, that a John that got laid would be in a better mood. Most of said fanfic was spent with Cass (in his own very Cassy way) trying to convince John Winchester of the merits of sleeping with him. John finally gives in, and after Cass goes back to a totally unchanged future, and Dean threatens (in a funny scene) to sleep with Cass's dad. I think the moral of the story was that getting John Winchester touched by an angel really changed nothing for John, Dean, or Sam, except you know to give Dean a very serious wiggins.
Overall that fanfic was more amusing/interesting than this episode.
But otherwise after a rewatch my thoughts are still the same - the only thing that keeps this episode from ending up in the discard pile is the cartoony stuff. And I can still feel Carver speaking to me, but apparently I don't speak Carver because I still can't work out what he's using his voice in this episode to try and say.
Perhaps if I cared more about Sam's bullshit story, or Cass's fucked up angst (fucked up) because apparently Cass feels terrible about what he did in heaven, but doesn't seem to give two shits about all the mayhem and death he caused to Sam personally and on Earth in general.
On the other hand, I may be biased (and maybe even the cartoony parts suck), because I love that FINALLY Sam and Cass do something together - jumping inside the guys head. And since the cartoon parts lead to that maybe that's why I can't hate the overall episode.