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Tuesday marks a key episode of “Supernatural,” mostly because this is the one to leave us hanging for a little while before the holiday season whisks us away to a magical land of repeats and syndicated episodes. That can occasionally be a fun place to visit, but it’s far easier to appreciate the “Now” over the “Then.”
So what could we see unfold in next week’s “Holy Terror”? When it comes to the idea of angels waging war on one another, this is the most anxious that we have been since … well, watching the new episode of “The Walking Dead” on Sunday night that featured all of those crazy deaths. (That is all we will say to keep the Internet from calling us the most terrible person ever for spoiling anything.) There are a number of the directions that the show could go in based on what we have seen so far, and these are just the angles that we’re hoping to be explored.
1. Castiel – Can he finally come back and party with the Winchesters again? We feel so bad for the guy, having to go and work at gas stations and get taken advantage of by women who want him to be the babysitter. This is all probably pretty fun for Misha Collins to play, even if it could just be a montage of Cass’ worst month ever.
2. Ezekiel – This sort of goes hand-in-hand with Castiel, but can this angel finally leave Sam’s body? Does he have ulterior motives? Is this entire bullet point going to be questions?
3. Crowley – He claims to be playing the long game at the moment … and he is playing the REALLY LONG game. There is no reason to believe that this guy is going to do anything to help Sam and Dean.
4. Abaddon – We mostly just want to see her come on and tear some s*** up again. We always find things to be way more fun when there is a psychotic Queen of Hell candidate on the loose.
5. Sam – When he does eventually realize what Ezekiel is doing to him, how is he going to react to Dean? The guy has been lying to the point of being a reality TV supervillain these days, and that’s got to come back to haunt him. Source
Hey there, Supernatural fans! I’ve got a special treat for you in this week’s Supernatural Chat. Last weekend I was lucky enough to attend Creation Entertainment’s Salute to Supernatural event and got the chance to chat with Misha Collins behind the scenes, along with some other members of the press. Collins talked to us about his preparations for his first directing job on the show, as well as shared some of his insights about Castiel’s journey this season.
Castiel’s Heavy Question
Collins was asked how he compared Castiel’s trip to humanity this season to the end of Season 5 when the angel went through a similar journey. Though Castiel’s struggles may have been show as somewhat comical this season, Collins said there is something much more serious behind them.
“In Season 5, when Cas lost more of his angel powers and started grappling with a lot of human-ish stuff, it was darker. He was dealing with a darker side of things. Now it’s more mundane, but I wouldn’t actually say that it’s light. I think that the stuff that he has been dealing with is how to brush your teeth and how to feed yourself and how to make sense of what your purpose on the planet is. But that’s kind of a heavy question. Like ‘is this satisfying in and of itself?’”
Preparing for the Director’s Chair
Later this season, Collins will be directing his first episode of Supernatural and is looking forward to working with the crew in a new capacity.
“I think that, for the most part, the crew is going to be supportive and helpful – at least for the first day or so. Once they see how badly I’m botching things they might throw their hands up in disgust and stop helping me. It’s nice going into my first big directing experience with a crew that knows me [and] that I know, [and] that I’m not going to feel like a fish out of water,” Collins revealed.
As for his two costars, Collins had a different idea of how they might treat him as a director.
“Jared and Jensen, generally speaking, are pretty respectful of first-time directors on the show. They kind of give them a wide berth and certainly give them a fair shot. I’m not going to have that experience so that’s too bad,” Collins joked.
But one of the jokesters, one who has directed a couple of episodes of the show himself, has actually given Collins some good advice.
“I’ve talked to Jensen about his directing experiences,” Collins said. “He’ll deny it, but he actually gave me a bunch of advice that was helpful. I’ve basically grilled every director that has come along and asked them for their input. [I have] a cloud app that I’ve been storing all of my director input on.”
One big question about the upcoming episode is whether or not Castiel will appear in it and, if so, what will it be like for Collins to direct himself.
“If I am directing myself, I think for the most part the direction I’m going to be giving is ‘That was awesome. Great work. Way to bring it’,” Collin joked, adding, “In a perfect world, I think I would be very light or not in it at all because it’s just more to think about.”
Luckily for Collins, the show apparently doesn’t put too tight of a rein on new directors.
“I think Supernatural, probably more than a lot of episodic television, gives directors a fair amount of leeway and allows them to do their thing,” Collins revealed. “We don’t have a director/producer up on the site. A lot of shows that shoot out of LA, where the writers and executive producers aren’t around watching what’s going on in production – will have a point guy. [That is] a producer/director who will direct maybe five episodes in the season, but will also keep an eye on the production and make sure that the guest directors that are coming in are doing things the way that they are supposed to be doing.
“We don’t have that on Supernatural so sometimes people come in and totally f*** stuff up,” Collins added with a laugh.
On a more serious note, Collins attributes the show’s variation in tone to the amount of freedom directors are given on set.
“There’s nobody there who’s saying ‘No, no, no. We don’t do that’ and I think it probably gives the tone of the show a little bit more variation than a lot of episode television has. It’s not all the same. But we also have the same cinematographer and wardrobe department and a lot of key department heads who are giving a consistent tone to it – that helps even it out.” Source
We’ve said this a few times in the past when it comes to “Supernatural” even before season 9, and that is that this show has some of the best episode titles in the business. It understands that it’s a heck of a lot easier to say things like “Devil May Care” than just “902? when talking about some of your favorite episodes, and it also throws a lot of humor into them at times.
The bad news for this article is that when it comes to some of the great titles that they have come up with over the years, the two that we have for you below are actually a little mundane. There’s nothing that is going to stand out from them based solely on the names themselves. However, they’re still worth pointing out.
×14, “Old Friends” – Previously, this title was “Nowhere To Go But Down,” but it has been changed over the past week or so. We like the new title better, if only because it suggests a much greater likelihood that there will be a visit from someone from the show’s past. We’re always down for the opportunity to bring back a returning guest star or two! When you have nine years of history, there are always familiar faces from the past we want to see come back.
9×15, “Back in Black” – Leave it to this show to carve an “AC/DC” reference into one of its titles. The problem here is that it’s hard to really predict much from this one, either. Black typically is a color associated with death and evil, two things that the Winchester brothers are sadly very familiar with at this point. Source
Anastasia can’t help but be disappointed by this week’s Supernatural. Here’s her review of Rock and a Hard Place…
This review contains spoilers.
9.8 Rock And A Hard Place
I think we might seriously have another contender for the worst Supernatural episode ever.
I’ve been becoming progressively more disenchanted with the season after the first couple of episodes (which were excellent). After that, a few were entertaining without being particularly memorable, but more than a few were genuinely sub-par. The biggest problem I’ve been feeling, however, is that the season itself is a little all over the place: after its strong start, it’s alternated a little too much between deep, character-driven episodes and superficial funny episodes to have any sort of coherency. However, I was more than pleased by last week’s episode, with its focus on Dean’s character, which led me to be more than disappointed that Rock and a Hard Place had to be another episode to add to the rather terrible pile.
I’m not even sure where to start criticizing it. With the plot, perhaps? If there was one, for the most part, it felt like just the bare bones of the plot were masquerading as a fully fleshed-out version of one. It’s like watching a play and being unable to concentrate on the story because all the rigging, costume changes, scenery changes, backstage areas, and special effects are so transparent that you just can’t see beyond the things that make the story to the story itself.
The first few scenes I can allow, start like the typical Supernatural episode, and there’s no crime in that. The rest just doesn’t work: for one thing, the Winchesters do very little investigating. They show up, are presented with convenient connections by Sherriff Mills, and plunge into the first lead that comes to mind, riding along on the coincidences that keep popping up. They join a chastity group, after which the episode moves to a painfully awkward sex scene, whose sole reason for existing was to advance the plot through the kidnapping of Dean and his hookup of the episode. This was followed by a few scenes out of a B-horror-movie, as the kidnapped victims attempt to turn on each other in a horror movie cliché. Then, Dean conveniently finds an extra phone, conveniently gets that one bar of service, there’s a train passing by conveniently just as he’s calling, and Sam and Jody conveniently manage to find who’s behind all this by doing some googling. It’s all just so… convenient, with very little that is actually supernatural in all of this. In fact, the only indication that it’s an episode of a supernatural show and not the kidnapping episode of CSI is Vesta’s glowing fingers, which, I must admit, are pretty weak.
The characterisation was equally poor. Dean hardly felt like Dean; he had the maturity of a horny teenager and the depth of a piece of cardboard. First, he decides to go undercover at a chastity group (yeah, okay), where he quickly proceeds to decide that the best way to go undercover and gather information about what monster they’re hunting is to talk about how much he likes sex in a chastity group and make it as clear as possible that he does not belong there. After ingratiating himself with the members of said chastity group, he proceeds to attempt to ingratiate himself with the group’s leader, so that, apparently, he can forego investigating in order to pursue a hookup. Yes, there’s a monster on the loose kidnapping and possibly killing people, but all Dean Winchester is interested in is talking himself into going home with a hot girl and trying as hard as possible to do anything but gather information. Because the Dean Winchester we know always puts sex before saving people. Oh, and add to that conveniently ignoring phone calls from Sam, because they don’t have a monster on the loose and one of them might not be in danger. After the depth and complexity with which Dean was portrayed last episode (where he had desires and regrets and personality and, dare I say it again, complexity), this Dean is… well, he’s not Dean.
In fact, he doesn’t feel like Dean because he feels shallow, but also because he feels creepy. No, he didn’t coerce chastity counselor Suzy into sex, but inviting himself over to her place (an idea she didn’t seem particularly amenable to), going through her things, insisting on bringing up a past she was trying to leave behind, and ignoring her desire to put it behind her, is outright disturbing behaviour. It’s not the Dean we know, who is interested in protecting people, and generally has respect for them as people rather than idealized objects. Plus, that sex scene made about as much sense as a porno, with a dialogue that also sounds like it came out of one. One minute, Suzy’s a character with depth, who has a past she actually made a choice to leave behind because it was, likely, traumatizing (the porn industry is not a nice place), and the next she’s jumping into bed with the first man who comes along because he threw some frankly cringe-worthy lines at her. It’s a one-eighty degree turn that quickly speeds her from being a character to a plot device.
In fact, Suzy is just one of the prime examples of the way this episode was spectacularly good at using people’s life choices as a source of ridicule. In the Supernatural world, sex is cool and sexy (this is the CW, I guess, what can you expect?); ergo, anyone who rejects the “sexiness” of sex gets, by definition, ridiculed. A former porn star apparently can’t actually be interested in leaving behind a former career; an adult woman not interested in sex cannot be anything more than petty or ridiculous. It’s, frankly, disturbing.
In fact, the only aspect of this episode that I’d call in any way likeable, layered, or just more than an obvious plot device, is the interaction of Sam and Jody, as well as their individual characters. Sam’s always had a great rapport with Jody – in the same way that Charlie has always been more of Dean’s friend than Sam’s (they geek out together), so Sam has always been on the same wavelength with the sheriff. And, considering how few friends Sam seems to have, he really needs this one. They have some heartfelt conversations of the kind Sam’s been lacking for a while, which is followed by Jody shining bright as the star of the episode. There was a lot of worry that she’d been killed off in Sacrifice, and I am more than relieved to have her back, alive, witty, and badass. In fact, she’s pretty much the definition of badass: in this episode, she got stabbed, threw some sassy one-liners at the monster, pulled a stake out of her chest, and stabbed said monster with it. (Minor nitpick, though: one does not walk away from a wound like that without medical care. Then again, this is a show where a character barely flinches after getting shot).
The ending scene was another piece of excellence – in fact, it had the potential to be a redeeming feature if there was anything to redeem in this episode. It seems that, finally, Sam has caught on to the fact that something’s not quite right with him – though, tragically, Sam Winchester blames it on himself. The boy with the demon blood, the boy with the guilt, thinks there is something wrong with him, and it is more than heartbreaking to watch Dean torn between the need to keep Sam alive and the need to not cause him emotional pain. It’s a scene that makes it clear that what started in the first episode with the whole Ezekiel endeavor is finally being unravelled (about time), and it looks like the next episode (the mid-season finale) will finally deal with this particular thorny problem of the brothers and the secret angel. I just hope that it’s better-executed than this one. Source