Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Supernatural Vs. Castle

Vote Vote Vote!

Monday, December 27, 2010

News for the Last Week of 2010

In the order I discovered them:

TV Guide's interview with Misha. Nothing really new, but he's as funny and adorable as ever.

I'm not sure if we mentioned this before, but Richard Speight Jr. is on Twitter as @dicksp8jr. He calls us "Twicksters." How adorable is that? :) He provided a link toPepsi Max behind the scenes and Snoop Dogg's Christmas story, featuring Richard.

I think this is the same promo we saw at the end of the last episode, but just in case you didn't see it...

Check out Spoiler TV's2010 awards. Supernatural won best returning show! Jensen Ackles won best lead actor in a drama, and Misha Collins came in 3rd for best guest star.

For some info (read: spoilers) on the show's return, and a clip from episode 6.12, check outTV Overmind.

The BIG NEWS (or rumor): Dawn Ostroff is reportedly leaving The CW when her contract is up in June. First article I saw was this one from The New York Post. Official word is expected next month. What will this mean for Supernatural, reportedly an Ostroff favorite?

When I prepared this, Supernatural was LOSING to Community over at the E! Online poll. WTF?! Voting continues through tomorrow 11:00 PST.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

We Can Beat Community!!!

Supernatural is up against Community in EW's Best Show of the Year. Vote!


Monday, December 20, 2010

Slow News Day

But I found this one, that as a San Antonio native, I thought was fun.

And have you seen the new promo pictures?

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Surviving the Hellatus

It used to be—or at least it seemed to me—that the hellatus mainly applied to Supernatural. I could get through it because, as long and lonely as the six to eight weeks off in midseason are, that wasn't universal. The other TV shows I watch used to be all staggered. Some started late in the season, so they went longer. Early cancellations mean shows finish out their run, maybe when they normally would have gone into repeats, and new shows premiere early.

This year, though, I seem to be facing a bigger entertainment desert. Almost all the shows I watch are finished and not coming back until late January. So I need to find some ways to fill in the gaps. Here's my plan:

1. Spend time with out-of-town family!
My brother, sister-in-law, and three-year-old nephew are coming to town for a few days next week. That will fill a few evenings! :)

2. Finally catch up on The Event.
I like Sean. (I think that's his name.) I want to see why he's such a target. Otherwise, there isn't another character on the show I really care about. That's the main thing missing. On FlashForward, I cared about almost everyone, even when they were bad. Anyway, I'm six or seven episodes behind at this point, so I'll have time to catch up.

3. Doctor Who!!!
For the first time, I'll be watching a Doctor Who Christmas special live, or close to it. He's smack in the middle of the Supernatural hellatus, and will be a welcome diversion.

4. Catch up on other shows
I'm mostly caught up, but Undercovers piled up a little, and there are a few shows I watch with my husband that we haven't been coordinated for.

5. Return of Leverage
Leverage only has three episodes, but that's an evening and a half covered! :)

7. Give The Cape a try
I wasn't too excited about this when I first read the synopsis back in May. But Summer Glau has a regular role, as does someone else I read that I now can't remember or find. Huh. Anyway, loving an actor doesn't make a show worth watching (Ref. No Ordinary Family), but it makes it worth trying. :)

8. Rewatch Season 5
I usually start at the beginning and rewatch all the seasons during the summer, but I started late this year, and ran out of time before this season began. I'm through season 4. Season 5 will keep me from going into withdrawal. :) Rewatching every episode so many times might seem excessive, but I love seeing little things—lines, actions, symbols—that feed into what goes on down the line, whether they were intentional at the time or not. Like Dean talking about the hole inside him after hell, and how that connects to Sam's decision not to seek his soul's return.

9. Put Netflix to its intended use
I had the DVD for Love and Basketball for more than three months before I watched it. I've been a little better with Entourage. After that, I really don't know what's in my queue. I'll try to burn through a lot of disks and Wii streaming during the break. Boost my stats for 2010 and get a good start to 2011.

10. Reading
I never stop, but during hiatus, I'll spend more evenings just reading, a cup of hot cocoa at my side and a kitty on my lap.

11. Okay, okay, I'll probably write, too.
After four years of working at home, I had my day structured nicely, and evenings were always for relaxing. Now that I have an outside day job plus freelance work into the early evening, my brain decides I'm done around dinner time. Writing late is problematic. But if I have no TV enticing me to just lie down on the couch and chill, maybe I'll increase the word count on my works in progress.

How about you? What will you fill this hellatus with?

Monday, December 13, 2010

No news?

I scoured through some Google Alerts (and, dude, a few of them were flat messed up) but found precious little news to report--maybe because of the hiatus and approaching holidays. Have you guys heard anything new you'd like to share with fellow fans?

In personal news, my younger sister just had a baby boy. But she totally rejected my suggestions to name him Dean, Sam or Cass. (Sheesh, I was just trying to be helpful!)

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Appointment in Samarra

The episode opens with the Impala pulling in front of a Chinese food market. Inside, Dean is directed to a back hallway where Freddy Kruger greets him by name! Okay, he’s actually Dr. Robert and he’s stitched up Dean’s daddy more times than he can count. Money changes hands and Dean is noticeably nervous. If something goes wrong he wants a letter mailed to Benjamin Braeden, not Sam. Okay, just what the heck is Dean there for? He looks perfectly fine. The doc’s assistant, Eva, who looks like someone out of Kat Von D’s tatt shop, unceremoniously shoves an IV into Dean’s arm. Biatch! Doc then administers an injection and tells Dean he’s got 3 minutes.______ Flatline_____. The doc freakin’ killed Dean! After peering at his lifeless body, Dean’s spirit walks down to the shop and calls out for Tessa, our favorite reaper. Dean wants to talk to her boss. Death promptly shows up. Hmm, he showed up awfully quick and willingly. Dean asks the creepy old dude to get both of his bros outta Hell. Death tells him to pick one. Naturally, Dean picks Sam. Death warns him Sammy’s soul will be “Flayed to the raw nerve.” Dean wants to know if Death can hack the hell part out. Back in Kruger’s clinic, paddles shock Dean’s heart. Death tells Dean he can’t erase Sam’s hell, but he can put it behind a wall in his memory. Tessa warns it’s not permanent. In exchange for retrieving Sam’s soul Death wants Dean to put his ring on and be him for one day. Take the ring off before the 24 hours is up and Dean won’t get back Sam’s soul. Why does Death want Dean to do take over for a spell? Because…GASP…Dean comes back to life and we don’t get the answer.

Dean tells Sam and Bobby his brilliant plan. Predictably, Sam isn’t happy and Bobby wants to know what the catch is. Sam says he doesn’t want to take the deal because it’s not a permanent solution and he could still end up as pudding. He takes off in a huff, presumably to wrap his head around things. Instead he goes looking for Death’s ring. Sneaky Sam. Dean catches him and swears he won’t let anything bad happen to him. Sam says fine, he’ll trust Dean. Big bro doesn’t buy it—neither do I— and tells Bobby to keep an eye on him.

Dean slips the ring on. Tessa pops in and lays out the rules for his new job. She’s got a list. Dean will touch those meant to die. She’ll reap them. Easy peasy. Don’t go getting any other ideas. Riiiight. This is Dean we’re talking about.

Elsewhere, Sam’s calling on Balthazar. Uh oh. This can’t be good. Sam wants to know what he can do to keep his soul out forever. Really, I can’t say I blame him. Who wants to cope with that kind of damage? But at the same time we all want our Sammy back. Balthazar says he’ll help Sam for free, just to screw with Dean and put Sam in his debt. To stay soulless Sam needs to scar his vessel by committing patricide. Since his dad is gone a father figure will do. Eep!

A punk robs a convenience store, threatening to kill the owner’s little boy. The father draws a gun from under the cash register and shoots the robber. Dean is all too happy to see the punk off to hell, even allowing for a little extra suffering. Next comes an overweight man chowing down on pizza. Heartattack hits. When he asks Dean “what it all means?” Dean responds with an unsatisfactory, but hilarious “everything is dust in the wind.” Next Dean faces down a 12-year-old girl with a heart condition. She’s in the hospital with her single father. Dean says there’s no way he’s killing her. Tessa argues with him, but he says he’s Death so it’s his choice. The girl’s heart then miraculously heals. How’s that going to backfire?

Meanwhile, Sam returns to Bobby’s. They play a poker game, but there’s some very tense subtext going on as they watch each other warily over the cards. Bobby offers Sam a beer and when he reaches into the fridge to get the bottle Sam grabs something out of a toolbox and tries to clobber Bobby who in turns grabs a pipe out of the fridge and clubs Sam. Ha! You gotta love that Bobby keeps a weapon in the fridge. Sam hits the floor. Bobby goes to get some rope and when he turns back Sam is gone. That’s not good. Shotgun loaded, Bobby searches for Sam, saying, “let’s not do anything hasty.” Then—WTH?—he locks himself in a closet. Sam starts to axe through the door like Jack Nicholson and—ROTFL—Bobby says, “Don’t say ‘here’s Johnny.’” Sam tells Bobby he’s got to do this and he shouldn’t have cornered himself. Bobby says he didn’t and pulls a trap door trigger that sends Sam dropping to the basement. Ah, that makes more sense. The surrogate father and his soulless son talk through a “reinforced steel core, titanium kick plates” door that Sam can’t break down no matter how hard he tries. Sam finally explains that he doesn’t want his thrashed soul back in him and a spell cast with Bobby’s blood will ensure that doesn’t happen. He believes Dean just wants his little brother Sammy back at all costs and he’ll kill “Sam” to get that other guy back. Bobby tries to reason with him, but it suddenly gets very quiet. Bobby bravely goes down to the basement to find that Sam’s escaped through a grate in the panic room. Why would there be an escape route like that?

Back at the hospital the butterfly effect kicks in. Because Dean let the young girl live her nurse was sent home early. She in turn got into a car accident being somewhere she wouldn’t have otherwise been and she needs the heart surgeon that’s no longer there. Dean takes the nurse so he won’t start another chain reaction, but she was meant to live for many more decades and have children and grandchildren. Tess then tells Dean he has to restore the natural order of things and also take the girl he spared, the girl who is now happily planning a vacation with her father. As Dean watches out a window he sees the dead nurse’s husband leaving a pub drunk and climbing behind the wheel.

Bobby goes searching for Sam in the junkyard. Geesh, psycho Sammy is making me jumpy. And thwack, the idjit knocks Bobby’s out.

Dean has hopped into the car with the grieving husband. The guy is clearly on a suicide mission, speeding up and trying to plow into a bus. Dean tries to shout warnings, but the guy can’t hear. Dean yanks off the ring and steers the guy clear of death, saving the guy’s life and costing Sam his chance at having a soul. Now Dean better hurry and help Bobby. But wait, he feels like he has to clear up unfinished business. He returns to the hospital with Tessa and kills the young girl. He figures no one really skates by and now agrees there’s a natural order to things, even if that is stupid.

Sam’s got Bobby bound to a chair in the basement. And even though Bobby pleads for his life, Sam is getting ready to stab him to death when Dean shows up and punches his lights out. Let me go on record now as saying that I officially hate soulless Sam.

An unconscious Sam’s now handcuffed to a cot in the panic room. As Dean looks at him through the peep hole he tells Bobby he can’t keep doing this anymore. What’s he going to do keep tying Sam up everytime he tries to kill someone? Poor guy doesn’t know what to do anymore. And neither does Bobby. So sad. Sam opens his eyes and I find myself hoping Death gave him back his soul because Dean went back and killed that young girl when he didn’t have to.

Nope. Dean goes back upstairs and Death’s waiting for him at the dining table. Guy really seems to like food. Dean confesses that he sucked at being Death. Death says Dean got a rare look behind the curtain. “The human soul is not irreparable. It’s vulnerable, impermanent, but stronger than you know. And more valuable than you can imagine.” Hmm, where are we going with this? Whoa! Death is going to retrieve Sam’s soul because, although he and Dean keep coming back and disrupting the natural order of things on a global scale, they’re on to something with their investigations…something having to do with souls. Dean asks him Death last question. Will the wall really work? About 75%, he answers.

Down in the panic room Death gets ready to reinstall Sam’s soul. He says he’s going to put a wall up and it’ll itch, but Sam shouldn’t scratch at it because he won’t like what happens if he does. As Dean and Bobby watch on, Sam begs not to have his soul replaced. It’s sad to watch, but the way he ignored Bobby’s pleas makes me less sympathetic. The episode ends with him screaming as we—fingers crossed—get our Sammy back.

Whew! I’m glad we’re going into the hellatus (Show returns Jan. 28) on a hopeful note. I thought this was a great episode, but missed the sharp one-liners. Weren’t too many of those. However, I won’t miss Soulless Sam. The moment he tried to kill Bobby he crossed an unforgiveable line. Are you glad to see Soulless Sam go and how long do you think it’ll be before Sammy scratches that itch?

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Castiel and What the Heck's Going on in Heaven?

My husband started talking about Castiel over breakfast the other morning. My husband has become a fan over the last two seasons, even watching without me :)

So he mentioned that he sees Castiel as a knight, as someone who's fighting on the side of right, on the side of God's will, instead of being out to serve himself, as it seems Raphael is doing. This made me wonder, then. Why does Castiel have so few allies/followers? Because it seems like he's getting his ass kicked up there. Is Raphael promising the other angels something so they'll fight alongside him? Is he offering them something in the future if the war comes out in his favor?

If God has abandoned heaven, and the angels are fighting against Castiel, who wants what's right, how much better is heaven than hell? (I know, the tortured souls and all that, but....who wants to die and go to a place in the midst of a civil war? Which also makes me wonder about the souls who are in heaven, like Ash. Are they aware of the war? Might they join in the battle? Castiel has come to humans for help before, even raised Dean from the dead. Might he convince some of the souls to fight on his side? And could they?

So yes, this started out being about Castiel and ended up with my mental ramblings, but to me the fight in heaven is as fascinating as what's going on with Sam's soul in the cage.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

This Just In!

Remember all that voting everyone did for the TV Guide cover? Well, guess what? Supernatural won!

I'm not sure how I feel about the cover. I mean, how often do we see a sky that blue on the show? But there's a fun video of the photo shoot, with interviews with the guys.

And our show gets its profile raised at a pretty critical time. You know, when it goes on hellatus. *sigh*

So what do you think?

Monday, December 6, 2010

Supernatural News

Oh, don't those Winchesters ever learn? One of them is making a deal on the mid-season finale this Friday, in the episode titled "Appointment in Samarra." Check out the details here.

A few tidbits of Jared talking about Sam's missing soul.

Ever wonder what some of the former writers for Supernatural are up to? Find out here.

Friday, December 3, 2010

"Caged Heat" Recap and Impressions

Photo © The CW

Good evening, and welcome to Machiavelli's Supernatural.

First off, let me confess. I'm coming off three nights in a row averaging 4.5 hours of sleep. My work schedule this week was enough to leave me in tears. Tonight, my husband's company Christmas party meant I'm closing in on midnight. Put it all together, and it leaves me with a pretty sluggish brain. I just finished watching "Caged Heat." My intention was to watch it a second time, recapping and commenting. I mean, there were so many great lines in this episode! But I don't know if I can make it through another hour. So I'm going to stick with random impressions of the biggest stuff. I encourage (read: beg) you all to load the comments with all the stuff I miss!

Funniest Bits

"We're not supposed to talk about it."

Okay, maybe in the midst of a war he's losing, being pressured to help Sam and Dean with some pretty serious stuff, it's a bit of a stretch that Cas would be distracted by porn. But then again, he's kind of in a human body, he was almost completely human for a while, and even soldiers in real wars take breaks. So that whole scene killed me. I was really glad I wasn't watching with my daughter, though, when the boner line came up. (Ha!)

Extend that to the kiss with Meg. Poor, naive Castiel, thinking with his downstairs brain and letting a demon take his angel knife. Looks like his return kiss was pretty potent, though.

The Ends Justify the Means
I think Machiavelli might have been a little tame compared to these guys. Sam and Dean work with demon Meg, who works with angel Castiel, to try to take down Crowley. Sam bites into his own vein to bleed ink and make a devil's trap. Dean once again uses the "owe me" card to get Cas to help them, uncaring of what's going on in heaven. And Samuel...Samuel sells out his grandchildren, something Dean just can't fathom.

What else falls into this category?

  • Sam lies to Cas about finding the Ark of the Covenant, of all things

  • Sam threatens to kill Cas

  • Dean threatens to kill Samuel (though would we expect any less?

  • Demon!Christian tortures Meg, and the implication is of some pretty horrifying things

  • That's a lot of ugly means.

    Relative Complexity
    Sera Gamble et al have proven to be as unreliable (or deliberately misleading) as Eric Kripke when it comes to describing the show. We were told it was back to monster of the week, but that has been weak at best, the monsters serving only to feed the main storyline. They talked about exploring the Campbell side of the family, learning about hunting generationally, getting to know Grandpa. That was disingenuous at best.

    But I'm not complaining. I'm kind of loving how this has developed. Dean never really trusted Samuel. Sam seemed to put all his trust in him, just because he's family. In retrospect, we can say maybe it was that simple, but in a logical, rather than emotional way. I was annoyed that Dean was so oblivious to Samuel's motivations. I thought it was obvious Crowley either had Deanna or Mary, though Samuel actually succumbed to promise rather than threat. Crowley wasn't saying he'd harm Mary, just promised to bring her back. I can understand Samuel wanting that, but being willing to serve a demon indefinitely, for such an ephemeral promise?

    I know to Samuel, Mary is 17 (or however old she was), a child, rather than the adult she really was when she was killed. So he's operating from a different perspective than Dean has. To Dean, Mary has always been a powerful figure, despite the way she was taken, and despite the things he later learned. And Samuel saying Dean's a stranger, being willing to sacrifice Mary's sons to bring her back, even knowing there's no way she'd welcome that kind of outcome...well, it says a lot about what kind of man he's become.

    NOOOOOOOOO! Not Crowley!
    Okay, Crowley had become detestable. Not just an "oooh, I love to hate him!" character, but an antagonist with too much power, too much threat, doing too much damage to our boys. But I was still unprepared for what happened. At first, when Meg stepped into the devil's trap, I was all, "It's time for Crowley to die. But he can't die. They won't kill such a delicious character." (Ha! What show have *I* been watching for five and a half years?!) I was pretty sure they'd find a way for him to wiggle out of this. And sure enough, he got the best of Meg pretty quickly. And then along comes smoty Cas, with dem bones, and with a flick of the wrist (or a snap of the finger?), Crowley's toast. Or maybe roast.

    RIP, Crowley. And thank you, Mark Sheppard.

    Random question: Did anyone else think that demon looked like Kurt Evans, the actor who played Henricksen's partner, Carl Reidy? I'm talking about the demon who took the rugaru from Sam and Dean in the beginning.

    The Sam Problem
    Way to up the stakes, Supernatural writer's room! It was bad enough that Sam was wrong. Horrible that he has no soul, and completely gone is the compassionate, sensitive, puppy-dog Sammy who I was completely convinced was not capable of going dark side. This is 100% Dark Side Sammy, and it was hard seeing him thinking he didn't want his soul back, didn't want the conscience getting in the way, and suffering all the...suffering that Dean said was what life was all about.

    Can it get any worse than this? Dark Side Sammy is unendurable. Unacceptable, given the preview (more on that later). But, yeah, it can get worse. How about a tortured, mutilated soul that Sam-the-meatsuit might not be able to tolerate or survive?

    "When angels and demons agree? Call me crazy, but I'm inclined to listen."

    This twist is solid and logical and fully motivates Sam's choice to walk away from the goal. The part of me missing Puppy-Dog!Sammy hates it. The writer in me, and the fan fascinated by a seemingly insurmountable obstacle, thinks it's genius.


    A quick glimpse at next week...

    Death's back! Awesome!

    Robert Englund! Fantastic!

    Death wants Dean to take over? Freakin' fabulous!

    Sam wants to kill Bobby! WHAT?!

    Is it next week yet?