Thursday, 31 October 2013

Review: Supernatural 9.04 "Slumber Party"

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Aww there’s no place like home…. *wibble* I must admit to getting a little misty eyed at the end there. Me being me, I really hope that was Sam going, “Well, maybe.” He’s such a thoughtful guy, he would’ve considered what Dean said and why exactly he’s not thinking of the bunker as a home…but I’ll get to that!

There was so much to enjoy in the super fun “Slumber Party”. Writer Robbie Thompson managed to, once again, balance the light-hearted moments with the tension and pathos…including some stomach-ache inducing angst! This is what Supernatural does best. Blending humour, horror and hurties. I know of no other show that can mix-up such a range of emotions…in me! It’s one of the things I love about the show the most…the whiplash of feels!

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The stiff, black and while flashbacks to the original Men of Letters had a lovely vintage style, cadence and language, which captured the period perfectly. It also helped to reinforce what the MoL were once like and how Sam and Dean are so very different. The long dead secret society where there was nothing worse than adventure! Can you imagine the Winchesters being brought up to live in that world? I can’t. Somehow I think, no matter how they were raised, adventure would always find them.

I’m not a fan of the movie The Wizard of Oz, but I’m pretty familiar with it. I thought the script integrated and updated elements of this much-loved story brilliantly. References to characters and how the reality was vastly different to the children’s classic was cleverly told and helped make what could have been a pretty ridiculous concept, feel grounded. 

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The Wicked Witch of the West was even creepier than the original witch! Cutting out her tongue (how hard core was that), made her scarier somehow, as did the fact that she couldn’t talk, she could only hiss and make growly noises – except when she let out that cackle, which made me clap my hands! Literally. The black stuff around her mouth reminded me of Danny DeVito’s The Penguin. It was gross. She was gross! I totally dug her.

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Dorothy was a cracker. A real Amelia Earhart type and while I think that the actress sometimes looked a little out of her depth, I liked how they revisioned the character and worked her into the Supernatural Universe. I like a kickass chick. I like someone who is unapologetically his or her self.

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That’s the reason I love Charlie. She is who she is. She’s funny and geeky and original and makes no excuses for that. But she’s also real. She’s not defined by her individual elements; she’s a whole of many parts, which makes her feel fully fleshed out. She’s brave, but also scared. She’s independent, yet craves family connections. She has a tragic past, but she rises above it with sass and a smile, both of which show her true vulnerability. She’s brilliant and she knows it, but still can’t help but smile to herself when she’s called the smartest person in the room. 

When Charlie’s around the boys, they soften. We see a different side of them. Sam seems to take a great deal of glee in her and is more trusting to let her take risks if that’s what she wants to do. She’s going to Oz? Sam’s all beaming at her because he knows she’ll be excited. I feel like Sam and Charlie are kindred spirits in many ways. I feel like if she stayed for a while, they’d become great friends. Dean goes into mega-big-brother mode around Charlie and wants to protect her. He’s softer around her. He tries to be his gruff self, but he’s just not. He treats her like a little sister. I think he’d let her get away with just about anything. She sees right through his crap and calls him on it and he knows it and I think he secretly digs it.

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Charlie helps to reflect the Winchesters back at themselves. Seeing Sam and Dean through her eyes, we see them just a little differently. She draws out of them conversations that they probably would have got to, but somehow she manages to get them there sooner. If for no other reason (though there are plenty of other reasons), this is why I love Charlie. This is why I love having different characters in the show, because having different people around Sam and Dean gives us a chance to see different sides to them. Plus Charlie loves the Winchesters. They don’t have a lot of people in their lives, let alone people who champion them, who tell them they can do anything when they work together, who most obviously thinks they’re awesome. They need that. A little validation never goes astray, especially for a duo that chronically self hate and self doubt like they do. Charlie has definitely become one of my favourite characters from the Supernatural series. I simply like her. 

Okay, favourite subject time.

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I positively got the warm and fuzzies when Dean came in with take out and season 1 of Game of Thrones. I like nothing more than thinking about the Winchesters having a night off, watching TV, sitting in the comfort of silently being with the one person you’re closest to. Two of my favourite scenes ever were the scene in “Swan Song” when we got to hear about what the guys did during their down time…ball games, watching the stars, normal things; then the scene in “Death’s Door” when they were bickering over liquorice on Bobby’s sofa. Ordinary moments that brothers share in their extraordinary life. The thought of them kicking back in the MoL bunker and watching a movie fills me with bubbles of joy!

Speaking of which, we finally got to see Sam’s room. I don’t know about you, but I had no clue that was coming!

I wasn’t really surprised by Sam’s room having a less comfortable vibe than Dean’s, regardless of how he thinks about the bunker and home. 

Dean is a creature of comfort, Sam is more pragmatic. Just look at what they eat. Dean eats junk food and pie – the kind of foods that are bad for you but make you feel good. Sam eats salads, they’re healthy, they may not be emotionally satisfying (at least not for me) but they do the job they’re supposed to do.

In their rooms, Dean has a squishy mattress and Sam has a utilitarian one. Dean has his records, posters, vintage porn; all the things that make him feel comfortable. Sam’s room’s filled with files, books, things of necessity…including a big-ass TV! 

I think their rooms not only demonstrate how differently they feel about the notion of the bunker as home, but also what different men they really are. I think Sam’s room probably is his style. 

What Sam said about home made perfect sense, but I think there’s more to it than that.

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People may question what a four year old would remember about home. Dean was traumatically ripped from his home at such a young age, but he was with his father. His father who would remember home and Mary and his boys as a family, (even if idealised) and I’m sure, at least in the early years, would talk to his eldest son about that. By the time Sam was the same age as Dean was when Mary died, Dean would have had years of his father’s recollections, grief, anger, yearning for the past. So though he was very young when his mother was taken from him, he was not too young to have his father talk to him about her and their life together. Sam was. The brothers have a different relationship with home.

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And yes, in the past Sam has tried to create a home and each time it has been devastating for him. Jess and Amelia. But also to an extent, Bobby and Dean. Both of these men represented home to him too and both have been torn from his life. Yes he has Dean back, but I think part of Sam’s reluctance to reconcile himself with the notion that the brothers may now have a home as opposed to a base, is because he’s scared to go there, not just because of Jess or Amelia, but because the recent loss of his brother is still raw and what if he did relax just a little and make the bunker his home, what if they did find comfort there and what if in letting down that guard he was devastated by loss again? How would he survive that? I think there’s a hell of a lot to why Sam is unwilling to call the bunker home and I do think it’s unwilling as opposed to simply not seeing it as such. I think to allow himself that small level of contentment is just too scary, because the cost could be too great.

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Of course in reality, as ham and cheese as it sounds, wherever they both are, it’s home. Car, cabin in the woods, crappy motel room, epic bunker, as long as they're together it’s home. They are each other’s home and I think on some level, they both understand that.

For Dean the bunker represents more than comfort it represents safety. This is a somewhere they are safe. This is a somewhere his brother is safe. But beyond that, this is somewhere his brother is happy. He saw what discovering the MoL meant to Sam. How that gave Sam a sense of place. For Dean, that would make the MoL bunker somewhere to treasure and that would most certainly affect how he feels and interacts with it. Sam is kinda happy in the bunker. Sam’s happy, Dean’s happy. 

He’s a freakin’ marshmallow on the inside that Dean Winchester. Tough, snarky, flirty, badassed…but he was always the caretaker for his family. So yeah, it makes sense his room is nice, he cleans the kitchen, he cooks, he alphabetises his porn. I love how each little reveal and odd little layer makes his character that much richer. Just… Bless.

Except… yeah, then there’s the other stuff going on. 

I was a tad concerned when Sam said he was going to get the computer to act as an angle alert. The damn thing would be going off the whole time that Sam was in the bunker! How would Dean cover that one up? Badly I’d say. He’s one hell of a sloppy liar. Oh yeah…all the lies. I need him to come clean. I hope that happens soon. Not that I think he’s going to sit Sam down and say, “Sammy, I need to talk to you about something…” more that Sam’s going to figure it out. He's already on his way there. Dean keeps telling shockingly, wobbly lies. Sam keeps waking up after being conked out and Dean goes…”Oh yeah the thingamabob got you, Sam.” Um. Okay. Sam’s questioning what’s going on around him and why Cass is gone and who the hell Zeke is. I can literally seeing the cogs in that great big brain of his turning and putting it all together. It’s coming and it’s going to hurt.

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Last week I squirmed when Dean called on Zeke to help him find Cass, pushing Sam to the back of himself. This week I squirmed even more when he called on Zeke to heal Charlie. Yeah, had to happen and I get why they did it. For a start, Charlie can't die, (nope) but also Zeke had to be too weak to kill the witch or prevent the witch from influencing Sam’s mind (it’s getting crowded inside Sam). But… Hey Dean, what did I say last week? STOP THAT. It’s one thing to agree to let an angel into your brother to save his life, it’s another to keep asking that angel to pop out and lend a hand. Slippery slope, my pretty. Slippery slope. One that he’s sliding down at a great rate of knots. The whole thing is breaking my heart. For Sam and for Dean.

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Personally, I think Sam’s going to be okay with the angel thing. He won’t be thrilled but I think he’ll be okay with it. But the lying? Uh-uh. And like I keep saying, I get it. I get why Dean’s lying. He’s scared to tell Sam, in case Sam reacts differently to how I think he will and instantly expels Ezekiel and consequently dies. Dean would be living in absolute fear of it all going south like that. But Dean is getting deeper and deeper into the lie and he’s getting deeper and deeper into Ezekiel’s debt. Which I think is the point. Two dead friends in two weeks with Zeke’s magical angel power being able to resurrect them. But every time he does something like that, Dean is indebted to him and every time he does something like that, Zeke’s weaker again which means he has to stay longer in Sam. Zeke says he doesn’t want that. I’m desperate to believe him. I still feel in my guts that Zeke is going to be on the up and up…not that there won’t be some drama around him beyond the taking of Sam as his vessel, but I still have no reason to doubt him other than I’m a fan of this show! Of course, bottom line, Dean wouldn’t be able to live with Cass’ or Charlie’s death on his hands. He had a powerful being available who could fix that, so he got him to fix it. Yeah, we get it Dean…but…just…stop. 

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Essentially though, I loved everything going on with the brothers in “Slumber Party”, including the stuff that gave me a frowny face. The take out and DVDs, the arguing over the hang in there kitty poster, the talk about home, Sam questioning Dean and Dean tap dancing like freakin’ Fred Astaire and especially the, "There's no place like home" moment between them at the end, which I think was Sam giving a little something to his brother, to help make him feel better. Just… Bless.

Other stuff I loved, like a lot…

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The awesome bunker of awesomeness…the kitchen, the magical computer, Sam’s room, the garage, THE GARAGE. THE.GARAGE. Honestly, I think the bunker is like the Tardis; it operates on the fourth dimension!

Giving Crowley a crayon! Smarty-pants Winchester move that one. I love that they have him locked in the basement while they’re watching TV in another room. How truly bizarre.

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The VFX. Especially the witchy green smoke, the two glimpses of Oz and the flying monkeys.

The ruby slippers. I loved the line “Seemed kind of tacky wearing a dead woman’s shoes.” Indeed!

The reference to the books and to Becky (Winchester 176). At least she's not samlicker81 anymore!

When Dean just pulled out his Colt and shot Crowley. “I think you’re aired out enough.” That was wicked hot!

The scene on the bed as they all ate popcorn, drank beer and watched Game of Thrones. Adorable. ADORABLE. (Invite me next time.)

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And Sam’s little smile to Dean at the end…

*sigh* Even when they hurt…they hurt so good.

Thanks for reading!


Tuesday, 29 October 2013

SUPERNATURAL - They love us, they really love us. (Even after everything.)

This is part of the special title card from episode 9.04 "Slumber Party"

Jared posted a video of it this morning.

In the left hand corner is a dedication to us… The fans…

"This is for the SPNFamily whose dedication and love drive us to continue creating this wonderful world. Keeping up the Family Business."

That’s for us. After everything. 

This show… This is why I will always love this show. It's special. And we're damn lucky.

Sunday, 27 October 2013

Here’s a new Women of Letter’s podcast.

This week I talk with Jules from SuperWiki about the recent Armageddon Expo in Melbourne, Australia with guests Kim Rhodes, Rick Worthy and Ty Olsson. We also chat about episodes 9.02 and 9.03.


You can also download via iTunes.

Saturday, 26 October 2013

Team Free Will Pop! Vinyl Figures!

Finally! Some new Supernatural merchandise!

Pop! Vinyl Dean, Sam and Castiel figures!

These will be available from December 2013 and can be preordered now at Popcultcha!

How could you not get a complete set...look how adorable they are!

Review of "Supernatural" 9.03 - "I'm No Angel"

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Let me start off by saying..... I am so thankful that the makeup this season is not all golden and overdone – or as a friend said to me – all Malibu Ken tan! It’s so lovely to see Dean’s freckles. Another friend of mine once called them “school girl freckles”. The way they speckle over the bridge of his nose – like tiny dots of perfection. It’s really kind of adorable. This big, gruff guy with the cutest darn freckles! I’m also thankful for the amount of puppy dog eyes going around this season. Cass was practically one of those pound puppies in this ep, with big, sad, blue eyes the colour of – I don’t even know….BLUE in uppercase. And Sam seems to puppy-dog-eye-it every time Zeke bugs out. He looks all… “What happened?” Mostly because he’s usually on the ground having been knocked about. Sam could break the hearts of an entire nation with one puppy dog glance. Also, his hair was awesomely apooft with angel awesome… 

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Yes, I’m leading with this…freckles, puppy dog eyes and awesome hair. These things are important.

I was worried about this episode, because I’ve been enjoying/fretting over/enjoying/fretting over the Zeke/Sam/Dean triangle and I didn’t want to get drawn out of that story (no offence Cass.) But I was happy to discover that I wasn’t, because I got that particular spectacular trinity, but I also got a story about Castiel that made me want to run and hug him within an inch of his life! Even when he was all wet and drippy. Actually, especially when he was all wet and drippy…

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Naw Cass. This was a Castiel that I could get on board with. I’ve had issues with Cass in the past in relation to the writing of his character. He started off as this epic and powerful being and somewhere down the line, he became comic relief. There’s fish out of water funny and then, well, there isn’t.

I get it. They wrote themselves into a corner. What on earth do you do with an angel? How do you have him around without having him fix everything? So they made him fall – exploded him - resurrected him – made him duplicitous – stuffed him full of Leviathan – exploded him – resurrected him – married him off briefly – made him crazy – sent him to Purgatory – brought him back as a pawn in an angel war – had him break Heaven and  all the angels and then stripped him of his Grace…which is where I thought they were going to go all along. Because really, it’s the only way they can continue to have the character in the story and continue to put the Winchesters in real peril without having an angel at their beck and call.

Where they go with Cass next is yet to be seen, um, obviously. I was chatting with a friend at work today about what his journey might be. We decided (and we were kind of happy with ourselves) that he should be faced with a choice… Remain human – which we think he’ll end up digging – and remain with the Winchesters, or sacrifice his newfound humanity and happiness, along with his friendship with Dean and Sam, to regain his Grace and rebuild Heaven, as he was partly responsible for destroying it. Of course, Cass would choose the later. He is an angel after all and a good intentioned one, regardless of his missteps. He also learnt about sacrifice from the masters of sacrifice. The sacrificial Winchesters! If this is where the story went, I wonder what that would mean for the character’s future. Would his return to Heaven be the end? Would ET finally go home? But of course, this was just us writing the show for the writers! Which I never condone. But we did feel rather clever!

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Human Cass is funny, but in the most endearing way. You can’t help but giggle at his discomfort around urinating, around his confusion over how difficult it is to sleep, around his sudden realisation that there are boobs passing him by on the street, or that all of a sudden he’s awash with hormones that make him put out for the first chick that comes along! It was all smile inducing, but at the same time deeply touching as he struggled with all of these things that he has seen, but never been thrown into quite so completely. What was beautiful was that though he was very much alone, he was never really alone because so many human hands reached out to help him and offer him advice, food or a place to rest – even if it was in an old bus under a bridge. He may know the truth about what’s really going on upstairs, but he also saw how great humanity can be, how powerful faith can be and how pretty gosh darn awesome being a human can be. I mean the sex alone…he finally got to put his Pizzaman learning’s into play. I hope he didn’t spank the Reaper (sounds like a euphemism) though I guess she did deserve it.

Cass was also kick-ass, which he should be! I liked that he got to kebob the pharmacist vessel. He’s always been a warrior, so I was happy to see he wasn’t shown as inept, now that he’s no angel. I like this Cass a lot and though I hunger for the Zeke/Sam/Dean dynamic, I was happy to spend some time getting to see the setup of what Castiel’s journey will be this season. I probably would have taken him home too…in fact no probably about it…

I have to say I tittered with glee when Cass spilled the beans to his Winchester buddies, about having the sex with the Reaper. Sam and Dean’s reactions were priceless. Did he have protection? Yes, he had an angel blade! Ha! Sam: “errm ah.” Stop it, Show! That’s damn hilarious! Also the brother’s faces when he told them they would be good teachers. I so enjoyed that scene it was so fun...and then it wasn’t. 

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GAH! Dean got manipulated into sending Cass away. I wasn’t surprised, because push/shove Dean will always choose Sam. Remember nothing past or present has ever been put in front of him. Dean thought Sam might be in danger of dying or something equally not good, if Zeke split. For Dean in that moment, he could see no other choice but to protect his little bro. He’s being driven by fear of pretty much everything right now. It's all over his lovely face. I do hope that we get to see what he says to Cass, I’d like to see how he explains that one. Sam’s also going to be asking tricky questions and Dean’s going to have to spin another story. Hell, Cass may even ask questions. Let's pack for another guilt trip for Dean. 

Poor Cass. His face. One of the saddest faces ever. Misha Collins imbues Cass with such depth…he did a lovely job. They all did a lovely job, Jared zipping back and forth between Zeke and Sam and Jensen conveying every single emotion, ever known to man or woman, on his face. His subtle and nuanced performance is a thing of true beauty...just like him.
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Which of course brings us to the trinity of hotness!

I don’t like the feeling of Zeke popping in unannounced, (though I did like Dean saying, yeah well my brother is helpful too, so bugger off and check your emails and let my brother back in control of his body) and I really did not like Dean calling on Zeke. That's a slippery path my lovely…a very slippery path. This kind of thing is something that I think Sam will have great difficulty forgiving, he's going to be horrified when he finds out. I optimistically hope he understands the rest and that this was his brother’s reaction out of fear and love and that he momentarily considered Sam’s feelings, even if in the long run, he went with something he knew Sam wouldn’t like! I hope Sam understands all of this because he understands Dean and he's happy to still be beside his brother, but I think this calling on Zeke and shoving Sam to the back of his own brain is…well, it’s icky and not good and…ooooooo my aching tummy. I know Dean was desperate and of course I understand his motivation, but he needs to not be doing that…’kay? ‘Kay Dean? Don't do that.
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What got really interesting was the lies being heaped upon lies. It’s obvious Dean can no longer keep track of it all and it hasn’t even been that long! He’s forgetting who said what to him and responding to Sam about things Zeke and him discussed! Oh boy! It would be so damn confusing, talking to his brother, who is his brother, then not his brother, then is his brother… I was sweating with him every step of the way. Not only that, he’s got Sam and Cass looking at him as he tries to cover up a whacking great big lie with humour. Damn. Nice tap dancing there Dean! You may have fooled the two people who know you best, but you won’t fool them for long. I said last week that I figure Sam will sooner rather than later, see that something is amiss with Dean and start to get suspicious. Well now it’s becoming obvious that it’s probably not just going to be Dean’s emotional changes that flag that something fishy is going on, it’s probably going to be that Dean’s simply not making sense sometimes, because all these plates are hard to keep spinning. Oh what a tangled web we weave yada yada yada.

Dean breaks my heart. I can’t help it. He's got himself into such a bother. He did this for (what I think anyway) was the best of reasons. I totally understand why. For Sam to die after the trials, having been stopped from dying to complete them would have been pointless. Not that Dean could tolerate Sam dying in any way, but dying then would have seemed even worse. Now the whole thing is snowballing and he’s got no one to turn to. I don’t blame him for not sharing the Zeke/Sam information with Cass, regardless of whether Cass vouched for Ezekiel or not. I’m pretty sure Cass would tell Sam. I’m pretty sure Dean would think Cass would tell Sam. So Dean’s alone. Dancing as fast as he can and he’s already starting to lose his footing.


And what about this Zeke character? What the hell with the ultimatum, dude? Why are the other angels after him? Yeah…that whole scene made me squirm something shocking. Here Dean was having a fun moment with brother and his buddy and then he turns to his brother to share a laugh and BOOM, Ezekiel. It made me so sad for them both and so worried and so squicked out. I went from hoping that Zeke may be an okay guy to instantly not trusting or believing in him. Ultimatums never come from a good place. Plus when Dean asked why the angels would be after him, Zeke evaded like a son of a bitch. You know that Dean would have gone to his room, dropped on to his mattress that remembers him and let that whole thing gnaw at his bones. Because, what can he do? He doesn’t know how Sam is doing on the inside. He and his brother are essentially being held for ransom by a freakin' angel. How is that going to turn out anything but bad? Dean said way back at the end of season 3 that the brothers are each other’s weak spot and the evil sons of bitches know it...well add to that the angels. Sam is Dean’s weak spot and he will do anything to save him – for good or bad – and Zeke now knows it and he’s got Dean over a barrel. FRACK.
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When Sam was Sam, it was so wonderful to see him looking well; smiling and laughing, being all Sam-like, getting his brother a greasy breakfast and worrying over his brother’s consumption of Leviathan food. That was probably my favourite scene…

Sam: Look at these chemicals! Do you even read the label?
Dean: No, I read pie, the rest is just blah blah blah.

Did Dean actually get some pie? Sweet lord of the rings! Sam and Dean’s interactions were lovely in this episode. This is how I like to see them, working well as a team, being smart, teasing each other, laughing together, being brothers. It would be all so adorable and wibbly if it wasn't for that hitchhiker listening in on everything they say and popping up at any inopportune moment. That, nup, I do not like that…but I kind of love it…but I don’t…but I do… Ack! This show toys with my emotions!
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Oh and Dean baby? Don’t feel bad you didn’t know who Clarence was…I had to Google him when Meg first said the name. I’ve never seen that movie either! I still didn’t realise he was an angel until Sam told Dean (and me)! So obviously Dean and I watch something different to everyone else at Christmastime!

As much as this whole storyline around Ezekiel is giving me heartburn, I’m really loving it. It’s going to explode in an epic fireworks display of feels. I can see it coming. It gives me a lump in my throat and my stomach and a knot in my delts...

I don’t want either brother to suffer. I don’t want their brotherness to suffer. I want them to stay on the same page. I don’t want them going down the angry paths of the past. I’m loving the unity that we get when Sam is Sam. (Admittedly, I also like it when Sam is Zeke…he looks even taller somehow, which seems ridiculous in its impossibility!) I don’t want Dean to live to regret a decision born of love. I really don’t. But I bet he does.

The road to Hell is paved with yada yada yada.
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I honestly do love this god damn show. It hurts so good. The brothers – the car – the pop culture - the angels and demons and all the creatures in between – the random people exploding – or dancing their feet off – or getting caught in a photocopier – or getting chopped by a garage door – basically, the blood and gore – the morally grey areas and the places they take us as we all discuss their ins and outs - and of course, the pretty pretty. It’s fun. It really is a fun hour of TV. And did I mention the pretty? *whispers* freckles.

Next week looks awesome. Like okay, awesome. AWESOME. Eeeee! It’s Robbie Thompson and Charlie and more bunker and seriously, if I don’t hear “I’ll get you my pretties…” Right? Right!?
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Thanks for reading!


Review of "Supernatural" 9.02 - "Devil May Care"

Spoiler alert: I loved this episode.

I thought maybe I should just get that out there because I may squee a little (even more than usual).

I mean, I really enjoyed the premiere, I thought it was super strong and a rocking set up, full of the emotional conflict and heartbreaking issues that made us think and dissect and debate…but this, this episode “Devil May Care” was SUPERNATURAL baby, and it was everything, everything I adore about this show.

This is how excited I was. I watched the episode and then sent a stream of babbling voice messages to my friend Hazel that kind of went…”and…and…and…AND”, then I went to start writing and I thought…whoa there Amy, you need to put a bit of distance between your over exuberance and your review – because no one wants to read a couple of thousand words punctuated by OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD, which was pretty much all that was coming out of my brain. 

So…because I didn’t know how to handle my squee…I cleaned my kitchen. HA! I needed to expel a bit of energy!

Then I watched the episode again.

Then I watched it again.

I’m still going OH MY GOD OH MY GOD OH MY GOD!

So you’ve been warned!

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Let me just kick off by saying, Andrew Dabb wrote a knockout script. One filled with everything “Supernatural” has always meant to me. Great action, fantastic heroics, bravado smattered comedy, smart brother moments, fabulously villainous villains, snappy dialogue, poignant emotional speeches and conflicted feels. HUZZAH! 

I am beyond pleased that Dabb and Loflin stopped writing as a team, because their episodes became better after they split up. I have no idea why they started to write independently of each other (though I’m sure they probably still gave input to each other – creation is collaboration – there is no creativity in a silo). Maybe because the “Supernatural” writing team was a little on the slight side in season 8 and Carver felt they needed to split to cover more eps? Maybe they wanted to give not being a team a shot? I don’t know…if you know, please tell me! But I’m happy that this is how it rolled, because both of their work was better for it. (Dan Loflin has moved on from Supernatural - thanks Jules of the Wiki for letting me know.)

Dabb has a tendency to let witty dialogue and pop culture references punctuate his episodes to the point that it’s at risk of trivialising what’s happening on screen and how the characters deal with it…but not this week. The balance between the sharp lines, the humour, the pathos and the lovely pop culture prods was perfection. Agents Stark and Banner. AGENTS STARK AND BANNER. I’m pretty sure I know which was which! (Agents Stark and Banner…I’m still giggling.)

Everyone was spot on. Every character reaction felt true. Every word packed a punch. Every emotion made me put my fists to my face and emit a small noise. I nearly jumped up and hugged my TV.

If the premiere put the show into gear, this episode sent it roaring down the track. Dean’s sports analogy thing must be rubbing off on me!

I spoke last season about how happy I was that the Winchester Universe was expanding once again, away from the claustrophobia of season 7. A spattering of new people, friend and foe, have been finding their way into episodes and it’s something I greatly appreciate. I yelled out…YES…when we were introduced to new hunters. Admittedly 2 died and one was dressed rather inappropriately, but it’s always something that has stuck in my craw, the fact that the brothers rarely bump into, or call on other hunters. These guys are the Winchesters and they knew Bobby for a really long time and look what Bobby did. I feel like they must know the hunter network even if they, for the most part, keep separate from it. My gripe here is that the 2 male hunters snuffed it, which means we won’t be establishing any kind of relationship there or any kind of care. I’d like to meet a hunter that lives, so that if we ever come across them again, we have some kind of emotional connection. I’m not talking a Garth like character, just one that crosses the brother’s paths. 

One thing that I appreciated about the girl hunter, Tracy, was that even though she was most obviously a hottie in her cut-off shorts, there was never any mention of that or even any appreciation of that (except from the vamp, but I think he appreciated her blood not her bod). Once upon a time, throw a chick like that in front of Dean Winchester and there would be no way he wouldn’t have at least pulled some smirk or popped out a sassy, flirty comment. I was in love with the fact that he just treated her like any other hunter. That showed fabulous growth and maturity in Dean’s character and recognition of where he is emotionally and the gravity of the situation they were all dealing with. I love flippant Dean, but I love this Dean more.

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I am so very; very happy Abaddon is back in her snarky, incredibly sexy meat suit. I’m not sure what spell that demon did, but I love him for doing it! There she was, emerging from the bath, in the buff, with tinges of charcoal and…. absolutely perfect red lipstick. I LOVE HER. As a red lipstick-wearing gal, I appreciate that no matter what, red lippy must always be perfect, even through resurrection! 

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She’s tough and smart and super hot and I hope they keep her alive as long as possible. The scene between her and Dean was AWESOME. Sweet lord of the rings! I mean I have to agree with her 100%, I’ve loved that body since the moment I saw it too…and he does give a girl all sorts of nasty ideas! The chemistry was so amazing between them. It was so wrong and so right all at once. And I’ve never thought that all a demon would have to do would be mark or break or peal off the brother’s anti-possession tatts. Youch and interesting!

Yes, I love her. She’s a keeper. Long live the Queen indeed!

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Crowley was also in fine form. How Mark Sheppard can be strapped to a chair and still manage to steal every scene is beyond me. The man is a master and Crowley is a master manipulator. 

The idea of leaving him alone to stew was a brilliant one. That demon needs an audience and of course with the leftovers from the trials still swirling around in his melon, stewing is not something he would want to do. How much he is still affected and how much he can’t control remains to be seen. As does how long he’s left in the dungeon! It’s all too delicious, just like him.

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I think Kevin now knows to leave Crowley well enough alone. I was not crazy about Kevin when we first met him, but he’s grown on me. This week I felt like he really hit his stride. He does feel like part of the team, part of the family. I loved Dean’s speech to him and I don’t feel that it was Dean manipulating him for the Winchester’s gain. Family is the most important thing in Dean’s world and the fact that he has people other than Sam to rely on and trust is a revelation for Dean and for us. He professed to Sam that Sam was, always has been and always will be his number one, I’ve never doubted that and I never will, but I believe Dean genuinely feels for Kevin and I believe Kevin has earned that. The kid is all right. If you had told me I’d end up feeling like this when we first met him, I would have thought you crazy!

Which brings us to actual family. Sam.

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When Zeke popped out to stop the demons from killing Sam and his broken, burnt and moulting wings were revealed…holy…shite! I think I screamed. In the very best way. I had seen Jared tweet the revised poster (nice work CW marketing department), but I thought that the image was simply a representation of what was now happening to Sam’s character, I didn’t think for a moment that Zeke/Sam was going to flash us his wings. Wow! This might rub some of you up the wrong way, but something in that image felt so right. I have never wanted Sammy to be an angel or anything other than human and in reality, I still don’t. I want Sam to be Sam. But seeing him sprout wings – even if not his – felt somehow appropriate. I liked it. I loved it. It was really, really hot. As were his glowy eyes and smiting light. It suits him! 

What to make of Zeke. I want to believe in him and trust him and maybe if I was a fan of any other show, I would, but I’m a fan of this show and I know better. Having said that, he’s yet to do anything that I think seems shady, but now he’s inside of Sam, will he want to get out? Sam’s an awesome vessel. One of the most powerful ever created. Powerful enough to contain Lucifer. Powerful enough to defeat Lucifer. The only other vessel that might be as powerful would be Dean, created for the archangel Michael. These two are the vessels to end all vessels. Of course every angel and redheaded demon would want them.

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I think it’s going to be interesting to see how Dean and Zeke communicate and relate to each other moving forward. Zeke knows what Sam is thinking and is telling Dean what he needs/wants to hear. That Sam knows Dean stopped the trials out of love. Of course it’s true, we know it’s true, Dean knows it’s true, Sam knows it’s true, but is that why Zeke told Dean, or was it to get Dean onside? I want to believe in Zeke so bad, because I kind of dig him and after the whole wings thing, I kind of dig the idea of him and Sam working as one…for a little bit. I guess Zeke’s a wait and see. Maybe, for one time only, we’ll be surprised and what appears to be a good guy will actually be a good guy!

What is it with Dean and angels? Cass, Anna, to some degree Zach and Gabe, now Zeke. Even Lucifer said to Dean that he got what the other angels see in him. Dean’s an angel magnet! It got me wondering if that was because he was created for Michael and so there is something in him that draws the angels in. Maybe the same reason they are drawn to and relate to Dean is the same reason they don’t seem to be drawn to, or as easily relate to Sam. Angel bigotry? It was just a random thought as watched Zeke and Dean talk.

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How uncomfortable for Dean. How weird and awkward. To be talking to his brother but to be not talking to his brother. Like he said, the things he was talking to Zeke about would be the things he would normally discuss with Sam. One thing though, Dean could barely look at Zeke when talking to him. Jensen’s performance was a magnificence of subtly. Dean would glance up and then look down. He was edgy, shifting on his feet, so obviously uncomfortable. The emotion that he’s not at ease with sharing, along with the guilt of the choice he made and the situation he now finds himself and his brother in. It was wonderful and so very sad to watch.

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It was a similar reaction in the end scene when Sam said that he felt better than he had for a long time. What should have been happy broment, once again was tinged with Dean’s doubt and guilt. Was that Sam talking or was that Sam talking because Zeke is making him feel better. I’d like to think Sam genuinely feels better and that it’s not Zeke acting like a mood altering drug. For a start, Sam’s felt pretty crook for a while now, so even just feeling healthy again would probably make him feel happier. He has the love of his brother and he knows it, because Dean told him. They are in a good place. They have a roof over their heads. They have people who care for them. They have the King of Hell on lockdown. Why shouldn’t Sam be feeling good and we should be feeling good right alongside him…and I am…except for that nagging Zeke thing.

Oh my gosh what a tangled web this show has weaved. It’s absolutely fan-freakin-tastic!

This whole episode – the last two episodes – have me heavy breathing for Wednesdays (it’s on Wednesday for me). I’m itching to know where this is going. How long is Sam going to have Zeke riding shotgun inside of him? Will Zeke leave? Will he try and stay put? Is he good? Is he bad? How long before it all starts to show on Dean’s pretty face. Because I have a feeling, before Zeke reveals himself to Sam, Sam’s going to twig that something’s not right with Dean, because try as he might, Dean is a crap liar. His responses – whether his drinking or just his emotional awkwardness – always end up giving him away. Sam knows his brother and it never takes him long to figure out something’s not right.

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And speaking of pretty faces, I’d like to personally thank Guy Bee and Serge Ladouceur for one of the prettiest episodes in a long time. Oh my stars, how do these guys get better and better looking? Come on! It’s starting to seem cruel! Remember last season when they were all Tanny McTansalot? Isn’t it wonderful that this season they don’t look like they’ve just stepped out of a George Hamilton look-a-like contest? Jensen’s pale skin and freckles is a thing of beauty and Jared has that lovely flush to his cheeks. They looked so naturally gorgeous I was swooning left and right.

I make no excuses for this poor attempt at being objective. I loved this episode pure and simple. Loved it. Season 9. Season fine. Season divine. Season sublime. Whatever you want to call it…it’s sure started off with a kicker. There’s a vibe happening here that feels so familiar. There's a maturity to the writing and the characters that feels so right.

God bless this show. After 9 seasons it’s getting better and better. How is that possible?

I’m so bloody excited.

I’m off to Armageddon this weekend in Melbourne to hangout with Ty Olsson, Kim Rhodes and the wonderful Rick Worthy. I will be there with Jules from SuperWiki and we’ll be doing a podcast post the event. So keep a look out for that!

Until next week my friends!

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Review of "Supernatural" 9.01 - "I Think I'm Gonna Like It Here"

Okay, so I’d only just got back from an epic adventure in Texas and I was kind of depressed about the holiday ending and I was kind of tired after 20 some hours of travel… but that was really emotional, right? I mean, I had a pained, weepy, frowny face for most of it…and I don’t think it was jetlag!

Man, it’s good to have the show back. Even when it hurts. Which is always. And season 9 certainly kicked off with a bang and in my case a wibble!


The whole grounded angel thing. The whole who’s going to be an ally, who’s going to be an enemy. The whole Cass learning about his human shortcomings. It was such a great set up and a very exciting start to the new season. We even got to visit a bit with Bobby. Nawwwwwww.

And then of course, delivering another big emotional punch to our guts, Sam and Dean, with a new nightmare befalling them...and us. 

Once again we faced the horror of one of the brothers losing the other, with a morally dubious, but understandable solution reached. All the greys. This show is all the greys! The anxiety and angst this is going to cause us in the coming weeks. I’ve been pondering it solidly for days!


Yes, we’ve been down this road before and that got me to thinking... How can it ever been any other way? These brothers will continually be put in peril, it comes with the turf and if put in peril, chances are one is probably going to end up near death, or to quote one of my favourite movies, mostly dead and the other will always make the same choice, to try and save his brother how ever he can. It’s swings and roundabouts, again and again. The same problem. The same choice. The same problem. On and on. Over and over. It’s not so much already covered ground as the ground the brothers will always cover. Because there is no other option for them. It’s become a common theme throughout the series and each time we see it, it has new twist, a new pain, for them and us. 

One brother can’t live without the other – at least not very successfully – and judge me if you will, but I totally love that about them! It’s why I watch the show. It’s for their all-consuming love (and chronic co-dependence!) Geesh, that last part makes me sound awful, but I take solace in knowing that I’m not alone…right? RIGHT???! 

So once again, we find ourselves looking down the barrel of a dicey situation where either answer is going cause grief. Being a hero totally blows!

Let’s get straight down to the nitty gritty shall we? Dean’s decision...

I mean, obviously Sam has to be fixed somehow, there’s no Dean without Sam, there’s no “Supernatural” with out Sam & Dean. So Sammy had to come back to the land of the living and that meant Dean had to make another choice…and because we know how this show rolls, we know how that’s going to go! Our poor babies…

In season 8, Sam got a new lease on hope. He’d got a taste of what life might have the opportunity to offer him one day. He saw that there might be a light after hunting. This light was so strong for him that he vowed to take Dean along with him and lead him to it. 

Even as Sam got more physically and emotionally damaged, there was still that glimmer of hope shining out of him, because he started to believe he was being purified and that something wonderful waited for him beyond the pain and exhaustion of the trials.

It was only in the final throws, when he was beaten down, sick and weary after eight hours of injecting his own blood into Crowley and fighting to get the spell done, that he started to give up on the thought of living. When he was broken by looking deep within to confess to what ached in his heart the most - how he believed he let Dean down and how he believed Dean perceived him. It was only in those dark, final moments, tired and sad and desperate that he thought to give up. But not to give up for nothing, to give up to get the job done, to sacrifice himself and put an end to so much suffering in the world.

Sam’s hope had touched Dean and Dean, as always, fought to ensure that Sam lived. He stopped Sam from giving in and giving it all up to close the gates of hell. He helped Sam see beyond the pain, sadness and exhaustion to life and love and a reason to keep going. Sam asked how to stop it. Dean told him to let go. So Sam let go…

So what changed? Where’d that light at the end of the tunnel go that Sam so eloquently spoke of in “Trial and Error”.

When people are desperately sick and worn down by the struggle for life, they sometimes want to give up and have done with it. But when push comes to shove, so often they continue to battle on regardless, because that’s the human spirit, that’s the fight for survival, that’s what’s in our evolutionary make-up. I’ve seen this personally. I’ve heard the words, I don’t want to go on and then I’ve seen the fight lift up again and again because the alternative was not what was really wanted – it just seemed like an escape from the pain of the present moment…

So I was left wondering…did Sam truly want to die, was he truly done, or was he just so sick and tired he could no longer muster the resistance to death - kind of like when he was sleep deprived - or lift, what has always been his ever-present hope, out of the gutter and look once more for that light. 


I heard his words, if he was going to go, this had to be the last time, there could be no more resurrection, no more ongoing consequence to his life being pulled back to this world, no more suffering for anyone caught in that jet-stream. But I couldn’t help but wonder, was this Sam saying I’m ready or was it Sam ensuring that if he did die, nothing weird would happen that would reverse his death, because we all know how that goes. Was he making sure that Dean couldn’t do anything that would harm himself – like say, sell his soul – in order to bring Sam back? Was he really giving into Death forever, or protecting those he would leave behind with a guarantee.

You see, I’m struggling to understand why Sam, of all people, Sam who always fights, Sam who always tries to show his brother that whatever the case, life is worth living, Sam who would rather face the horrors of his time in hell rather than leave his brother alone in the world, would suddenly say, I’m done, enough, I’m going to have a cold one with Bobby, no matter how tired he was from his life of eternal toil. Especially after all the, I see the light at the end of the tunnel, a life beyond hunting talk from last season. 

Did Sam really want to die? Or was he just too tired to fight?

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Dean was almost going to let him go too, not because he thought Sam was ready, but because he believed Sam wouldn’t want the alternative on offer. But mostly, I don’t think Dean believed for one single second that his brother wouldn’t find a way to fight back, wouldn’t find a way to pull himself from the brink, until he saw what Sam was actually thinking. 

Then that old panic set in.

Here’s the thing, if I had the chance to stuff an angel inside my dad and fix him from the inside out, even without him knowing, I would have done it in a heartbeat. So, there is no way I can’t give Dean all the understanding in the world. We all take our own baggage with us as we travel the “Supernatural” road.

But beyond that, why are any of us surprised? Dean will always throw himself under a bus to save Sam. It’s the ultimate representation of his Deanness. He will always try to protect Sam. He’s said it over and over; it’s who he is. For better or worse, no matter how much he tries to let go, there are certain things he is incapable of letting go of and Sammy is his number one certain thing. He was going to die alongside Sam in “Croatoan”. He sold his soul to resurrect Sam. He stood his ground and got beaten to a pulp by Lucifer so that Sam wouldn’t die alone. He knows, from past experience, that his brother will more than likely not understand, or will be furious with him, or may even walk away – again – but he did it anyway, because he’s Dean and that’s who he is. And we know it. 

Sure, some people may say, typical selfish Dean act, not respecting his brother’s wishes. But was it really selfish, or selfless? Because Dean knows the probable outcome will not go well for him, but that doesn’t matter, he doesn’t matter, because Sam will have another chance to live…


Like us, Dean heard Sam’s hope-filled words. Dean wanted to do the trials to ensure that his brother got the chance to possibly live the life he had always dreamed of. Yes, Dean can’t stand the thought of a life without Sam and of course part of his motivation was that over-powering love for his brother, but surely that love can also be seen as his way of ensuring that Sam’s life didn’t end in the sorrow of the trials, that Sam might have the chance to have that much dreamed of happiness, or at least still have the chance to hope for it? I want Sam to have that chance again and if I do, you can be sure Dean does.

Sam stopped short of finishing the trials so that he could live; not die. He looked at Dean, heard his words and chose to live. So…then he goes and dies anyway? What a waste that would have been. He might as well have locked the gates of hell then, if he was going to die anyway. What would have been the purpose of any of that pain and suffering? What would have been the damn point to it all.

What Dean chose to do, he chose out of desperation – from an exhausted and broken place himself. You could see he didn’t want to go that path, until he saw that Sam was actually thinking about moving on. 


I was incredibly moved by the fact that the part of Sam’s mind that wanted to fight, was seen to him as Dean. I thought that spoke volumes about who he believes his brother to be, his protector, the one that will always fight for him and how he sees that similarity with his brother inside himself. I’ve always seen the Winchester brothers as two parts of the same whole and for me, that’s what Sam’s brain was seeing too.

Dean eyes were full of tears when Ezekiel said that they couldn’t tell Sam, because Sam may eject Ezekiel and die. That wasn’t a lie Dean wanted to perpetrate against his brother. Until Ezekiel said that, Dean was all for being honest with Sam. And the memory wipe – of that day in hospital and I assume, those thoughts of death inside Sam’s melon - was also something that you could see ate Dean up. His beautiful face had every conflicted emotion written across it. Ugh! The agony of it all!

Death said to Dean, (I’m going with it was Dean and Dean’s words and Ezekiel just jumped in there at the last moment, because I’m sure Death can tell an angel when he sees one), it’s Sam choice and Sam looked to Dean and said, “What do I do?” Yes, he didn’t have all the facts...but he handed the reigns of his largest life or death decision to his big brother – just like he did in the church in “Sacrifice” when he asked how to make it stop.

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When Sam didn’t think Dean had a plan, he saw no other option than to move on, but when Dean said he had a plan, Sam was willing to stop and listen and then – without even asking what it was – put his faith in Dean and give it another shot. He didn’t even ask Dean how. He just said, yes.

These brothers pull each other back from the edge over and over, not just literally – as in back from death – but out of the pit of despair. Their driving force is to fight and when one wants to throw in the towel, the other picks him up and shakes him by the scruff of his neck. Mostly over the years, it’s been Sam shaking Dean. Now Dean, in his round about way, shook Sam.

A desperate man in a desperate situation. A desperate act from a place of love. 

Oh gosh I adore these guys and their epic flaws. 

My one great and stupid hope is that this time around, maybe Sam might understand Dean and his motivation. Maybe his understanding of who his brother is and how far they have come together, will allow him an understanding of the situation. Maybe he’ll be thankful for a second chance at hope and a second shot at the life he’s long dreamed of. But I know he probably won’t. This is “Supernatural” after all and there are no happy endings. Sam will most likely be mad. Feel betrayed. The whole thing will explode in Dean’s face and it will tear at their hearts and souls and my heart and soul and it will rip at the very core of what makes them awesome, being brothers. Most likely...

But wouldn’t it be nice if we were all surprised. Wouldn’t it be nice if Sam said, “You know, Dean…I don’t agree with how you went about it and you shouldn’t have lied to me because you know I hate that, but I get it because it’s who you are and you’re my brother and I love you (boop) and thanks for giving me another shot at life. I’m glad to be here.” 

Excuse me while I laugh out loud at myself!

Of course, that’s absolutely not how it’s going to go! But I can’t simply believe that Sam would or more to the point should after all these years, only be mad at his brother. Man, I would love it if he were actually kind of glad that he’s not dead! If he could see that maybe the means justified the end.

This is not a judgement on Sam by the way; because I believe Sam has that understanding in him…I’m just not sure the writers always see him the same way as me! Ha!

But maybe, just maybe, I’ll be surprised…

I really don’t want any more lies. I don’t want either of the brothers to feel that kind of hurt again. Is that too much to ask? Yeah, probably…

Don't get me wrong though...I love this whole thing! What on earth is wrong with me!

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And I know some of you may see all this as typical sweetondean, making a case for Dean Winchester, (because I do loves him so), but it’s not just about that. It’s not just about defending my man! I’m pretty sure we all know and to some extent understand, why Dean went this road. I’m just saying how I read it and how it impacted upon me. Like an angsty knife to my Winchester brother loving heart! Oh the ecstacy of the agony!

So was I shocked? I kind of was and I kind of wasn’t. Was I sad? I kind of was and I kind of wasn’t – leaning more towards wasn’t because I want Sam alive and kicking, thanks very much! Was I angry? No, I can’t be. Did I get it? Yup, totally. Am I cool with it? Um – yep. Like I said, a living Sam is a good thing and you’ve got to admit it’s as fascinating all hell. Do I think it’s going to end up being a bummer? Err yep; I’ve watched this show for 8 years! Do I find it intriguing? Hellz yes. I’m totally onboard to see where this goes! Do I wish there wasn’t an angel all up inside Sam? Sure. But then the alternative is no alternative is it? 

What I really see here is a show that at the end of its eighth year knocked me on my ass with the angels falling surprise and now at the beginning of its ninth year, knocked me on my ass again, because I saw Dean making some kind of deal, but I sure didn’t see this. The fact that this show continues to side swipe us after so many years is pretty damn amazing.

There was so much to love in this season opener – even through the hurt. I loved that we revisited the, “We got work to do” line. One of the things I enjoyed the most about season 8 was the nods to the past. The fact that the season 9 opener had this classic line made me one happy fan. 

Oh and…the title…”I Think I’m Gonna Like It Here”, it has a dubious ring right? Is it the angels that have fallen who are gonna like it here? Or is it Ezekiel, liking it inside Sam. Only time will tell if this “good soldier” is to be trusted or not. I kind of what him back in his own vessel because his vessel was kinda hot! Oh and also to get him out of Sam…of course! 

So here we go people. A rockin' start! Now strap yourselves in, remain seated and keep your arms inside the carriage at all times. Supernatural is back and it looks like another awesome ride!

So happy!

Thanks for reading.