Saturday, 14 October 2017

Review: Supernatural Season 13 Premiere - 13x01 Lost and Found


So close, no matter how far
Couldn't be much more from the heart
Forever trusting who we are
And nothing else matters

Never opened myself this way
Life is ours, we live it our way
All these words I don't just say
And nothing else matters

Never cared for what they say
Never cared for games they play
Never cared for what they do
Never cared for what they know
And I know, yeah!

My goodness…13 seasons in and my anticipation for this show’s return continues to increase season on season! I was super pumped for Supernatural’s epic season 13 premiere, on what for me was Friday the 13th! I had to wait way too damn long to watch Lost and Found though…having to work of course (stupid work getting in the way of fangirl stuff), but then also having to go out at night! So I didn’t end up watching the first episode of the new season until about 1am in the morning! It didn’t matter that I was exhausted, there was no way in the world I was going to sleep without watching my boys…they had been on my mind for hours (oh who am I kidding, they are always on my mind!) So I got some cookies - nothing like a long past midnight snack - and settled in….

The Road So Far was a really interesting precursor to what we were about to see and feel. It one hundred percent focused on the people Sam and Dean had lost, and I loved that. There were all the hugs, hands helping each other up, everything that represented the family Sam and Dean had clawed back into their lives - yes, even Crowley - all of whom have now been torn away from them, yet again. It wasn’t so much a montage of what happened last season, as a montage pointing to the brothers’ new painful reality. Of what they fought for, and have lost. Of course they have each other, and when push shoves, that’s what is the most important thing and what always gets them through no matter what, which the amazing Metallica song we had accompanying The Road So Far perfectly captured… “Forever trusting who we are, and nothing else matters”, but that doesn’t mean this series of losses isn't absolutely cataclysmic...

And then as if no time all has passed, we join Sam and Dean exactly where we left them, Dean outside kneeling over the dead body of Castiel, and Sam inside, facing the son of Lucifer.

I liked this episode a lot. I liked that it gave us a chance to be shattered alongside the Winchesters. We weren’t rushed headlong into the next big bad thing, we were brought into the Winchester’s circle of pain, and even though the episode still moved at a pacey pace, and the brothers’ mission and focus was to find Jack, the insta-grow son of Satan, the overwhelming story layer that sat heavy across the entire hour, was grief, that gut-wrenching, shocking, hurts in your bones, grief. The kind you never saw coming. It rested like a weight on everything. It nestled in every corner of both Sam and Dean’s faces…I’m pretty sure it’s taken up permanent residence on Dean’s beautifully, tortured face. Every movement, every action, every conversation seemed to be pushed through a bubble of sadness.

Dean, of course, is feeling all of this tragedy right down in the core of his being. So much is gone. Just like that. In one, big, catastrophic event. Through the years we’ve got to know Dean we’ve seen over and over how vitally important that sense of family is to him, that sense of belonging. He’s become much more open and empathetic, he’s laid his emotions on the line in the most profoundly honest ways - something that was not always easy for him to do - and he’s gathered these people, friends and even foe, into this ragtag family unit that he’s built up around Sam and himself. He seemed to take pride in this family the brothers built. He definitely took comfort. He felt lucky when he had those people around him and Sam, he thought they had it all, as he said in Who We Are. He’s even admitted that he has people who love him. Dean’s emotional journey through the people who have touched his life and become a part of it, has been one of the most compelling and complex aspects of the Supernatural story and Dean’s character arc over the last 4 or 5 seasons. 

The brothers have always had to fight tooth and nail to get and hold on to anything good, but they really did start to build something stable, and that manifested in a shifting level of comfort, with each other, their world, their jobs. The bunker, Cas, Jody and Donna and Alex and Claire, even with Crowley and Rowena, and eventually with Mary. This allowed both of them to own their place in the continued existence of the world. Even Dean was able to say, we save the world, we kick-ass, a huge step for him. But now with two of the most important people in his world gone, and a couple others who were important in other ways, Dean feels gutted, and stripped of that security. No matter what they do, how hard they fight, how much good they accomplish, how many times they save the damn world, the Winchester brothers always end up losing, and not just losing the fight, but losing what they hold dear. 

I thought this was powerfully displayed in the fact that when the sheriff asked Dean if he was a superhero he said he was just a guy doing a job. Not that I’d ever expect him to say anything different, but the hopelessness and resignation that he said those words smacked of a Dean we hadn’t seen for a while, the desperately sad, broken down, all is lost, what’s the damn point Dean. The Dean who tells a civilian about the monster world with absolutely zero care. 

Then there’s the nightmare of his mother burning again on the ceiling, her disappearance making him relive her original death. He can’t dare hope that she would be alive, because to have to then go through the pain of her actually being dead would be too much to bear, so Dean chooses not to hope, he chooses instead to be resigned to the crushing void he sees around him.

Dean’s prayer to God was particularly heartbreaking, partly because Ackles’ command of those emotional moments is so gobsmackingly good that he makes you ache in places you didn’t even know could ache, but also because, not only has Dean lost all hope through the destruction of his family, his tribe, but also because this, once again, makes Dean lose all faith in God/Chuck…and that was a relationship that had pretty much healed after so many years of Dean being furious with God’s abandonment of humanity. Now Dean’s belief that God/Chuck may have cared about them, is gone once again. If he cared, if he was listening, why would he not intervene? If he's not listening, why has he left them again? Chuck told Dean the world would be okay because Sam and Dean where in it, and as Dean said, it’s not…so Dean’s carrying that too. Just a clusterfuck of dark, sad, angry, hopeless, guilt ridden emotions. So much so, he just had to hit something, to get the anger out…to feel something other than grief…to hurt himself because he thinks he deserves it… His head hanging low from the weight of despair and defeat.

How this scene made me think of the moment in Home when Dean walked around a corner to call his dad for help... How much more powerful is the likeness of the scenes when you recall how Chuck told Dean not to confuse him with his dad. How much more heartbreaking is it that Dean would still, in this moment of complete agony, reach out to God.... A last ditch plea... One last hope.

Oh Dean...

The first word said by Jack was father, but not only was this his first word, it was the first word of the new season. Family has always been the most important thread in this show. The notion of family don’t end with blood, and just because you’re blood don’t make you family, is something that all our characters have had to grapple with, from the Winchesters, to Cas, through to Crowley. Jack knows that his mother is dead, she told him that his father would look after him…but she told him, as we find out later, that the father he should seek out is Castiel. Cas is someone Kelly could see would be a good father figure, regardless of the fact (or in this case because of it), that he is not Jack’s biological father. Kelly had a connection with Cas, and knew that Jack did too. She could see that Cas was good and would be a good guide for her son. But with Cas currently dead (currently dead, what other show can you write that about…many times!), the Winchester brothers are going to be stepping into that parental role. As the EPs have explained, last season the boys were figuring out how to be grownup sons to a mother they didn’t know, this season, they will have to figure out how to be parents.

I thought newcomer Alex Calvert did a great job as Jack. He infused him with just enough mystery. He was innocent, lost and scared, and had very new feeling, but with a flash of the eyes - and not even when they flashed yellow - you're instantly not sure what and who he’s going to be and where the character is going to land. Like many before him, he wants to be good, but will that be his fate, or will his blood lead him to the dark side? It’s Supernatural’s free will versus destiny argument, with a helping of nature vs nurture.

Sam, of course, wants to believe that there is good in Jack and that they should give him chance. Sam at one point also saw himself as a monster and was scared that he was capable of terrible things. All he wanted was someone to believe that he was more than just his destiny. Sam had Dean to believe in him, Jack, it seems…until Cas comes back…will have Sam.

Sam reaches out to Jack (and thankfully asks about the talking thing because I wondered), and tries to reassure Jack. He’s gentle and understanding, even though he's scared. You can see Sam's trepidation, stuck in a cage with Lucifer's son - of all things and places to be. I liked Sam and Jack straight away. I could see so much of Sam in how Sam was relating to him. It was a peak Sam moment, if you know what I mean.

Sam and Dean are playing very traditional Sam and Dean roles in this episode, Sam being so Sam, trying to take it slow and work through the problem, look for hope and light in the darkness, even turning to his older brother for reassurance when he asks if Cas is truly dead - there was something so small in that moment. Sam places hope in someone he sees needing both hope and help... and Dean...well he's being good old shoot first Dean - he just wants to kill Jack, for being Lucifer’s son, and for what he sees as Jack’s part in the tragedy that unfolded around his birth. He just needs to make something pay for this latest crushing blow, and he's convinced that Jack will be evil, because when does something not bad happen for the Winchesters *sigh*. In the end, the brothers agree to take Jack home where he can do less damage - for the time being reaching an agreement. By the way, I noticed that Dean used the word home whereas Sam used the word Bunker. Just his use of the word home in that moment, telegraphed the importance Dean puts in what he and Sam have created there. That word home, kinda killed me.

Then we ended with Cas’ funeral pyre and I cried my eyes out. Of course, we all know he’s not forever dead, that ain’t no spoiler anymore, but man, Sam’s soft words, choosing to tell Jack what you would say, rather than saying the words in any form of eulogy, because that would be just too much for him. It can feel impossible to say farewell, there are no words or emotions that truly allow that and Jared showed Sam's heartbreak so perfectly in that moment. I thought this was a super clever and super powerful way to convey the difficulty of facing what the brothers were now facing. Dean just says goodbye, squares his shoulders and tosses the lighter into the pyre (he needs to get some disposables), he’s just so horribly sad and hopeless by now, he seems numb, and then we see their faces…and Dean’s is pure anguish. Jensen gave a barely contained, boiling performance, everything seething inside, spilling onto his face and colouring the tone of his voice…only knowing Dean the way we do, would you see that the almost calm around him was masking a raging tornado of emotions. Well done, Jensen…you are a master.

Every character we met in Lost and Found was great - the boys at the Pirate Pete's Jolly Treats - particularly the sheriff’s son who gave us some lighter moments, the sheriff, the weird drunk angel - everyone was great. We saw a definite split in the angel world too, with one saying Cas deserved what he got, while the other saying he deserved better - heaven is still in turmoil by the sounds of it. And drunk angel wants Jack so that heaven can use his powers…whatever they may be. Speaking of Jack’s powers, the anti-gravity energy bubble he creates is something else! Super cool. It’s going to be interesting to see what other tricks he has up his sleeve.

In many ways, Lost and Found felt like a very different season premiere, because we didn’t seem to rush straight into a new season arc. We met Jack, and we were given time to absorb who and what he might be, and we were given time to feel our feels, and feel for our brothers, and feel our feels for those we lost. It was beautifully acted by absolutely everyone. Jared and Alex have great chemistry and I can't wait to see more of them together. It was a lovely script by Andrew Dabb, with a wonderful cinematic air to the production  - that shot of the boys driving the car while talking was fantastic! And we got Metallica. An all around, absolutely kick ass start to our 13th season

This is what Supernatural does best. Heart and horror is what this show is, it’s deep and heartbreaking and thought provoking all to the sound of whacking great big emotional thunderclaps with the Winchester brothers soundly in the middle of it all. And even through the despair, through their disagreement, they are very much together, they were talking through the problem, not fighting but discussing, and looking to each other and out for each other every step of the way...just as it should be. They've come so far.

I’m simply thrilled to have our show back, I'm simply thrilled for whats to come.

Thanks for reading! Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!



  1. Loved this 1st episode. Some great acting from all cast especially between Jared and Alex. I hope the writers keep this Sam and Jack connection going as I think it would give Sam a purpose to keep going and fighting to find Mom. Loved the scene by the funeral pyre with Sam explaining to Jack what to say when someone you love dies. Jensen was great at the angry and despairing Dean and loved that when things were going to hell in a hand basket at the Sheriffs office his 1st thoughts were for his Sammy. Hope the season keeps this up as I love it when the brothers are together for each other despite their disagreements. Look forward to next week.

    1. I hope we get more of Sam and Jack too, I liked that chemistry and the symmetry between the characters stories. Thanks Julie!

  2. Yep all the feels! I could not have asked for a better 1st episode, for all the reasons you touched on. I found myself liking Jack a lot as it went on and the dynamics between Sam and Jack are something I look forward to seeing more of. And there this Dean. OMG Jensen has that knack of just pouring the angst out all over and making us feel his pain ten-fold. That man needs to get his Emmy/Oscar damn it!!! Great review Amy as always. It is something I look forward to after each and every episode. Glad we are all back.

    1. Thanks so much, Sue.

      It was such a great ep and everyone in it was amazing. Jensen rocks the emotional stuff hardcore!