Wednesday, October 9, 2013

After Thoughts - Supernatural

Supernatural is back!!

My Boys are back on the air with the Supernatural season premiere last night (finally!) and I have to say I really liked it.  Couldn't say that last year when season 8 started.  It helps that the season finale last May left us with a terrific cliffhanger - all angels expelled from Heaven, Sam dying, Cas newly human, Crowley nearly demon-cured and the Winchester's prisoner.


We jump back into the action with Sam (Jared Padalecki) lying in a coma, very near death (he;s seriously physically damaged as a result of last season's trials to close the doors to Hell forever) and struggling within his own mind whether to fight to live or choose to cross over.  If the latter, it wouldn't be the first time ... these guys die A LOT.  They also come back a lot. 

But I appreciate Sam - in a face-to-face conversation with Death (the Horseman) himself (Julian Richings) - making sure that cycle, which has had major consequences and tragic results, stops once and for all:

SAM:  "If I go with you, will you promise that this time it will be final?  That if I'm dead, I stay dead. Nobody can reverse it, nobody can deal it away and nobody else can get hurt because of me."
DEATH:  "I can promise that."

Up to this point, Sam's inner psyche came to him in the forms of Dean (Jensen Ackles) as the Sam that wants to fight and Bobby (Jim Beaver - welcome back!) as the Sam that is ready to let go.  Bobby's argument is that Sam has done so much, sacrificed so much and saved the freakin' world, so it's okay to go.

BOBBY:  "What you call dying, I call leaving a legacy."

I like here how Sam - even though speaking through Bobby - finally takes credit for the good he's done.  So much of the long run of this show has had Sam swimming in guilt over the bad things he's done and mistakes he's made.  But here he finally lets himself acknowledge the hero he also is, and it's nice to think he'll end up in heaven when it is indeed his time.

Of course Dean is having none of this, both inside Sam's head and out.  The real Dean is again in a position where he might lose Sam forever, and despite everything they've gone through, all the past deals and death-cheating, he still refuses to let his little brother go.  He's not selling his soul this time.  This time his course of action directly violates what Sam would consciously want or agree to:  angel possession.

After Dean puts out a planet-wide prayer for help, the angels come running, mostly to get revenge against Cas (Misha Collins) ... more on that in a minute.  The angel that gets to Dean first is Ezekiel (Tahmoh Penikett, Battlestar Galactica), a seemingly good angel who only wants to help.  He can do so by healing Sam and himself from inside Sam.

Therein lies the problem.  Sam has been possessed before - lost a whole week and even killed someone during it. He was also inhabited by Lucifer himself, and that led to 150 years of personal torture by the Devil's is his cage in Hell.   So to say Sam would NEVER agree to being possessed - even to save his own life - is an understatement.

Ezekiel (He's gonna become Zeke, you just know it) also blocks some of Sam's memory, which is reminiscent of the Wall Death put on Sam after his soul was returned to him (I know:  if you don't watch the show, a lot of this is out-of-context.  I highly recommend getting caught up!).  So he's not going to appreciate the mind-sweep either. 

Suffice to say, when Sam finds out what Dean has done (even though technically Sam said yes to this plan in his mind, thinking it was Dean asking when it was asking Ezekiel masquerading as Dean), the s**t's gonna hit the fan. Dean did wrestle with the decision to proceed, hesitated momentarily, but ultimately it's as it has always been:

DEAN:  "There ain't no me if there ain't no you."

I wish this plot point wouldn't come to pass ... again.  They have split the guys apart so many damn times because of secrets, betrayals, outside players, bad choices ... enough!  We FINALLY had them back as brothers, working together, having each others' backs in the second half of last season and it felt like classic, great Supernatural - two against the world.  To divide them yet again ... ugh.  It probably won't happen till right before the winter hiatus, and I have my theories about details, but I won't look forward to it.  I want them to stay a team, dammit!

In the meantime, Ezekiel apparently is able to take over Sam at any time, so look for that to happen.  I'm sure Dean is gonna regret his plan to some degree, knowing it's not at all what Sam would choose for himself.  I will say that Jensen was terrific as always, portraying the torment and conflict and fear of loss to perfection.

As for Cas, he's human now, having had his "grace" stolen from him.  He gets hungry, he can bleed and he needs money.  He also has a new mission: to help all his fallen brothers and sisters find their way.  Trouble is, they're pissed.  REALLY pissed.  They were expelled violently from heaven and they blame Cas.  So look for him to be dodging a lot of bullets (or the equivalent of angel bullets).  But we finally get Misha into some new clothes!

Ultimately, I'm very happy with the kickoff of the new season and look forward to future developments concerning Crowley (Mark Sheppard) and the boys' new mission, which is always based on ridding the world of evil.
  • Loved that Death gave respect to Sam and came to collect him personally.
  • Acting by all was terrific, but it always is.  Jared had one of his best runs at the end of last season.  Looking forward to more.
  • Loved seeing Bobby again.  Hey, if there's any show that can kill you and bring you back again and again, it's Supernatural!
  •  Interesting that a show that started out focusing on demons and monsters has become so much about angels.

Here's to a thrilling new season!

Supernatural airs Tuesdays at 9 p.m. on the CW.

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