Thursday, February 14, 2013

My Love For Supernatural Revived: Thank You, Andrew Dabb

Credit: Diyah Pera/The CW -- © 2013 The CW Network.
Supernatural has been a show unlike any other for me. It's the only show I ever watched over and over, both during the season and on DVD. The only show that drove me to seek like-minded fans, to follow the stars on Twitter, to pay a buttload of money to go to a convention all about the show. Twice.

As relationships do, this one changed. With a new showrunner, the narrative went in directions not everyone liked. I think I would have enjoyed those directions more if we hadn't had the magic that came first. But my watching experienced diminished less than my community experience did. I wanted to look at reasons to like it, not ways to bash it.

I was hopeful when Jeremy Carver took over as showrunner this year, but disappointed by some of the choices in the relationship between the brothers. But finally, FINALLY, they have corrected it. Goodbye, Dean the Dick. Goodbye, mopey Sam! Hell-O, unexplored territory!

I've loved the last three episodes. LOVED them! Stripping away everything the boys relied on was all very well and good, but it also stripped away the chemistry of the show. I can imagine the writers sitting around the table saying, "Where haven't we gone yet that's still in keeping with the characters and world we've established?"

How about European legends? Yes, please!

They've tried, but never succeeded in having a home. Let's give them one together. Ohh, good idea!

And give Dean his own room. Hell, yeah!

We've looked at the Campbells pretty hard, what about the Winchesters? So poignant and sad, but also healing and hey! More new mythology!

Now we're on some familiar ground. Kevin has given them a goal. The trials are cool, giving us slightly new ways to look at old tropes and a natural conflict between Sam and Dean based on the realities of their personality (I'll save the world—no, I'LL save the world!)

Even better, Dean has grown up. Back in season 1, he was devastated that his brother would return to a non-hunter life once the demon was killed. In season 5, Sam's heaven being anywhere but with Dean, when Dean has lived his whole life for his brother, was a knife to the heart. Now, while Dean still sees himself as so unworthy that he's fine with sacrificing himself for his brother, he *wants* Sam to have the happy ending he envisions.

Even more better, Sam won't allow Dean to make that sacrifice. He's going to save him right along with the rest of the world. I'm sure I wasn't the only person thinking of the end of season 2 when they watched those two mini-speeches. But unlike then, when we had an entire summer to get through before we saw the aftermath of those decisions, we still have 8 episodes to go!  

Your turn! Do you agree with me about the show returning to some of the things we loved, and incorporating new stuff in great ways? Or did it lose you so completely you can never get the love back?


Arts said...

Oh hey, my favorite blog is back. I'm a long time lurker and very occasional commenter, and always enjoyed reading your recaps of the shows. I've enjoyed the show regardless of what direction it took, but I've gotta say it was nice to see them make a home in the Men of Letters underground headquarters. I am hoping they get to keep this one and don't lose it to a freak demon attack or something.

Natalie J. Damschroder said...

Hi, Arts! Thank you so much for commenting! :) We're not back for good, but you might see more one-offs like this from time to time. :)

And YES! They'd better keep this for a while! I have an awful feeling it might be a casualty in the final showdown of the season (I don't have any info to feed this feeling, just show history) but I really hope they keep it through next season. They deserve something good for a little while! :)

kp said...

I woohooo'd so loud I scared my my kids when I saw Supernatural Sisters show up on my blogroll. Any SS is better than no SS at all!
I couldn't agree with you more about this season. In fact, all I've done is rave about how this season seems written with me in mind. I just adore it.
I agree about the trials feeding into the season finale but now with the renewal, they've got to be writing with S9 in mind. So yes to cliffhanger & NO to epic, devastating, end-of-the-world snivel-fest. Please.

Natalie J. Damschroder said...

*hugs kp* So glad you came by! :)

Very well said. X on the snivel-fest! LOL

MJFredrick said...

Grandpa Winchester was a turning point for us. We'd started to let the show languish on the TiVo, but like you, the last three episodes have brought us back.

Natalie J. Damschroder said...

Yep, that episode was definitely it. I'm so glad to hear you're liking it again!

Anonymous said...

This episode was everything I love about SPN. I felt like the show returned home after a long, wayward vacation. And I love the boys' bat cave and pray it stays around. Seeing Dean enjoy it warms my heart. Nat, I went out of my way to find the writer's name too, because I felt like he'd given me a gift. :)

Natalie J. Damschroder said...

I felt like the show returned home after a long, wayward vacation.

Yes, exactly!

Dabb's been involved with the show a lot longer than I thought he was. So I have to temper my surprise that he "gets it" so well. LOL

Natalie J. Damschroder said...


Never mind.

I was disappointed in last night's episode. As a non-mythology ep, it was fine. Not the best, not the worst. I liked the concept of the familiars and James looked like a young Ryan Reynolds. I was fascinated by his eyes and that dimple.

But WTF with the trust thing all of a sudden? For 7 years Dean has been saying they're stronger together than apart—or at least rediscovering it every season. After Sam overcame Lucifer to drag him into the pit, you'd think he'd have learned it for good. Why do we have to suffer through the "you don't trust me" ridiculousness? Sure, the part about "it's not that you don't trust me, it's that you can only trust yourself" was a nice insight, but when has either of them EVER not gotten the job done?

So then we get a little hope that this stupidity is going to be done with at the end of the episode, until Sam coughs up blood. And hides it.

Because when they LIE TO EACH OTHER is what we love best said no Supernatural fan ever.

What do you guys think?

kp said...

Seconded! How hard is it to say - "Whoa - I'm coughing up blood here" ? I'd probably tell my brother that and I haven't been hucked against a wall in the past couple hours....
otherwise I liked the ep more than 2/3 of season 7 eps.

Natalie J. Damschroder said...

Well said, kp. LOL