We’ve seen many versions of Dean over the years of Supernatural. On the 10th day of Dean-mas, we’re ranking the versions from worst to best.
We’ve seen many versions of Dean Winchester over the years of Supernatural. Some of these versions haven’t been Dean, but they’ve given Jensen Ackles a chance to show off his acting skills. As part of our 25 Days of Dean-mas, we need to rank these different versions. After all, we did it for Castiel and for Sam Winchester.
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Dean tends to get a lot of attention, and we’ve seen him go dark, struggle with ghost sickness, and more. Like with previous rankings of other characters, we are considering roles that were played by Jensen Ackles but weren’t necessarily Dean.
Here’s a look at the ultimate ranking of the different versions of the character.
While not technically Dean Winchester, this is a noteworthy form of the character. In Season 7, the Leviathans tried to make life for the Winchesters as difficult as possible. It was clear they saw the brothers as their biggest threat. Because of that, they took on their forms and carried out crimes that matched their first cases.
However, they were also laying a trap for the brothers. They made the Winchesters think that a place was next to get the Winchesters caught. We got to see a slightly darker side as a Leviathan pretended to be Dean Winchester.
In Supernatural Season 6, Dean was turned into a vampire. We saw Dean fight against the bloodlust, knowing that just one bite would make him a vampire forever.
During the transformation, Dean went to see Lisa and Ben for the “last time.” It was supposed to be a goodbye, knowing that the hunter’s life was too dangerous for them. When he attacked them because of his bloodlust, he knew as a human that it was time to walk away.
One great thing about Vampire!Dean was the chance to see him stronger but still focused. Dean didn’t lose a part of who he was but gained the vampire abilities and bloodlust. He was still one of the strongest hunters around and became one of the strongest vampires, taking out an entire nest.
I wanted to put Deanmon higher on the list, but there’s one reason it was impossible. The character was never utilized as it should have been. Instead, we got two episodes of him getting drunk in a bar and getting in a few bar fights, instead of being the evil character that he could have been.
However, the potential was there. And while watching the first two episodes of Supernatural Season 10, it was certainly fun to see Dean get rid of the weight on his shoulders.
Like Leviathan!Dean, this was technically not a version of Dean. However, a shifter took on Dean’s form and, for a while, we were left guessing whether we had the right version or not.
This version did give us a chance to get to know Dean a little more. We got to know Dean’s insecurities a little more very early into the series.
We never thought it would happen, but the Supernatural Season 13 finale gave us Michael!Dean. Dean Winchester said yes in an attempt to save Sam and Jack from Lucifer. It was the only option at the time.
However, Michael never kept his end of the bargain and used Dean’s vessel. That gave us the chance to see Jensen Ackles completely take on another character. We got to see him becoming this Peaky Blinders-looking archangel who was able to kill with just a glimmer of his eyes. It was exciting, especially when we got to see Dean and Michael go up against each other in Dean’s head.
6. Future Dean
In an alternate future, we got to see what could have been. Zachariah showed Dean what would happen if Sam said yes to Lucifer but Dean refused to accept. Well, we got a battle-hardened Dean.
It’s not hard to believe that this is the type of character that we could have eventually seen had things played out like that world. We got this character that was willing to sacrifice anyone and everyone to protect the world. Sadly, that wouldn’t work out.
5. Dean Smith
In another alternate world, Zachariah made it clear that Sam and Dean needed to play their parts. Again, it was an attempt to get Dean to play the role of Michael. In this world, we met Dean Smith.
Dean had the chance to play a businessman focused on health and fitness. He was nothing like the Dean that we had come to know, but we did get to see Dean develop an understanding of the hunting world. In fact, he and Sam Wesson spent time watching Ghostfacers videos to hunt a spirit.
No matter what would have happened, what Dean’s life would have been, this version was an exceelent sign of what would happen. It made it clear that Dean was always supposed to hunt.
4. Mark of Cain Dean
One of the strongest versions of Dean Winchester we’ve come across is the Mark of Cain version. Yes, he certainly struggled with the lust to kill that the mark gave him, especially when joined with the First Blade, but we also saw the inner strength that Dean possesses.
This was a chance to see the type of hunter Dean is. The Mark of Cain version gave us a side that would always want to fight, but would always want to try to do what was right. He turned to Sam and Castiel when it got too much, especially after dying and becoming a demon. Eventually, he knew his limits and the version gave us some character growth.
During Season 9, we got to see a moment that we never thought possible. Dean Winchester took on the traits of a dog. This was all to gain information from a dog who was the only witness to a monster attack. Little did the Winchesters know but the spell to speak to a dog would give Dean the traits of a dog.
So, we got to see him stick his head out of the window of a moving car, “bark” at the mailman, shout at the pigeons, and play fetch with the trash. He just couldn’t help himself and it offered the humor that we needed for this role and episode.
2. Teenager Dean
During Supernatural Season 10, the series gave us a throwback to Teenager Dean. This wasn’t Jensen Ackles, but we did get to see Dylan Everett take over the role again after already proving to be a great teenage version of the character.
We got more depth to the character as he was able to relax a little. Despite going through puberty all over again, he felt free and happy. Some of the weight of the world was off his shoulders, and part of him wanted to remain a teenager.
However, like he’s done in the past, Dean had to make the sacrifice to be an adult again. He needed to make a change, and we got to see that excellent development because of this version.
1. Dean Winchester
Naturally, the original version of Dean Winchester is the best out of all those that have also turned up. Without our version of Dean, there wouldn’t be any of the others. There wouldn’t have been a character to develop.
Our version of Dean has developed considerably over the years. While there are certain elements to his personality that understandably have to remain the same, there are parts of him that have changed. He no longer sees the hunting world as black and white. Monsters don’t necessarily have to be evil, and humans aren’t always innocent.
We’ve watched him make sacrifices for the world, including leaving the wish world the djinn. He’s given up his life to make sure his brother could live, and he’s given up happiness for the sake of others. This is a man who will protect the world with his life, and has done on more than one occasion. There’s no doubt that he’s the best version possible.
Which version of Dean do you rank as the best throughout the years on Supernatural? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
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