Opposite opinion; I LOVE Missouri! I see it this way. Yes, she was harsh with Dean and more mothering to Sam. (that last scene with her talking to Sam on the step was very sweet). I think that she IS a good psychic BECAUSE she could sense what each one would be respond to.
Dean WOULD be the one rebelling as opposed to Sam (being told to help clean up, etc. – just part of his early bad boy image he likes to show the world). I don’t know that Dean would have been receptive to her sympathy.
Dean wanted his dad in this case and I don’t think he would have accepted Missouri as a substitute.
Sam had issues with John and would not have had the instinct to call him like Dean did – Sam was more open to comfort from Missouri so I think she sensed the vibe of both brothers exactly right.
I feel that she dealt with each one in the only ways they were capable of being dealt with.
I had forgotten what I truly good episode this one. My wife watching it for the first time with me commented “This one is exciting!”. It was really good. Hard to figure out. Creepy. Suspenseful. SO heartbreaking with Dean’s reluctance to go back there (ugh; such good acting on Jensen’s part in that motel room scene where he’s tortured about the idea of going back AND thrown by learning about how Sam’s dreams sometimes come true like visions). SO MUCH GOOD STUFF in this one! And the surprise reveal of John at the end STILL gets me!!!! The first time we see him present-day.
Now, how did Sam recognize Mary? When she was an indistinct burning form? Could he “sense” it was her? Could he “see” her face and recognize her from pictures? I always wondered that.
Also just LOVE the scene where Dean thinks fast and upends the table as the knives fly into it. Love seeing Dean so smart in a fight or thinking on his feet.
I think I’d have to say that, so far in season 1, this was the best.