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Supernatural S09E15: "#THINMAN"

Oh glob, so torn. On one hand, I love the Ghosfacers and I love parallels and I love when the Winchesters get smacked in the head with the Startling Realization stick. On the other hand: That was some really ham-fisted paralleling, yo. 

Supernatural's ode to Slender Man began with the worst selfie session ever and ended with yet another bromance on the outs, but where Harry and Ed are just starting their long journey toward not being horribly co-dependent and destructive in the name of love, watching the walking punchlines of the hunter world fall apart in front of them seemed to nudge Dean and Sam toward something resembling reconciliation. Almost. Maybe we'll get there next week, but probably not, and perhaps we shouldn't. This conflict has been stretched out so far (without turning the entire season into a mope-fest) that to simply have the Winchesters cave to one another because freaking Ed and Harry broke up would probably feel rushed and a little shallow. Season Fine has repeatedly made it clear that this is the fight to end all fights between Sam and Dean. It's not as big as the apocalypse or that time Sam banged a demon while his brother hung out (literally) in hell for a few months/decades or even as big as the implied trauma that Stanford was all those years ago. It's all of that plus a generous portion of deepest fears, busted coping mechanisms, and likely chemical imbalances. For as big a deal as the Ghostfacers' self-destruction is, it's got nothing on nine seasons of steady Winchester meltdown.


Maybe that disproportionate scope is the reason why the focus on Ed and Harry's conflict—which tried so so hard to mirror the one between Sam and Dean—felt so condescending. By some miracle, Ghostfacer Harry, who I've always found to be the least tolerable of the two, managed to find himself a girl who actually seemed to like him and make him happy. It's true, she didn't much care for Ghostfacers, but eh, you can't win every battle, and as with the rest of the team, Harry's enthusiasm for the project seemed to be waning and the allure of a more boring life was calling. In an effort to save Harry from making a terrible mistake, Ed created the entire mythology of the Thinman, watched it spread across the internet and even took the responsible steps of tweaking details from blog to blog to make sure they didn't accidentally create another Tulpa. What Ed didn't account for was two unhinged losers selecting Thinman to be the face of their revenge-killing spree. Oops. 


So Harry dumped his ladyfriend for a wild goose chase that got him stabbed and forced him to kill an actual human (a crappy human, but a human nonetheless) to save his conniving bestie. Understandably, Harry was a little bit unhappy when he learned the truth about Thinman. The Harry = Sam, Ed = Dean comparisons were front and center the entire time—and they were good parallels, sure—but using Ed and Harry's problems as a stand-in for Dean and Sam's also inadvertently simplified the hell out of the Winchesters' problem. Dean's fear of abandonment certainly drove him to keep Sam alive at all costs, even horrifying costs that played on every single one of Sam's own deepest fears—losing his agency and losing his humanity. These fears have evolved over nine seasons of shared horrors and a roving, isolated childhood that has repeatedly been implied to have, well, sucked. The Ghostfacers just don't have that kind of history influencing their actions, or if they do, we haven't been made privy to it.


Initially, Sam and Dean's bittersweet nostalgia for that one time Sam dressed up as Batman and jumped off a shed bothered me because it seemed implausible on the surface. When did they have a shed to jump off of during their various stays in seedy motels, slumlord specials, and abandoned houses? In what reality did uber-survivalist John Winchester cart a bike around in the Impala's trunk next to the doomsday arsenal? Season 5's revelation that Dean Winchester played with LEGOS just like every other kid ever was mind-blowing enough, and it's these little glimpses of Sam and Dean's shared experiences, I think, that go further to explain the guys to each other than any similarities to any other hunting partnerships we've seen on the show. Regardless of where or how John Winchester's child soldiers found the opportunity to dress up like superheroes and pretend they could fly (I assumed Bobby was involved) it's that sort of simplification that holds the key to their reconciliation because it's their experience, not someone else's. 

Dean got all nostalgic for driving a probably bawling six-year-old Sam to the ER on his handlebars. Sam gave him that knowing look. They're gonna be fine. They've been damaged and they've changed. Harry's (overused) rant about empty rocking chairs was accurate for both his conflict with Ed and what's currently going on between Dean and Sam because you just can't go through life with blinders on to the rest of the world. At their cores, Sam and Dean are six and nine years old, leaping after one another off of rooftops, breaking bones along the way. Stanford, hell, the apocalypse, purgatory, the trials... none of it has changed who Sam and Dean are to one another, but it has damaged who they are to themselves, and sometimes those images are incompatible. 


CASE NOTES

– I laughed so hard when they got tazed. I'm not sorry. 

– "We're gonna need snorkels because we're gonna be swimming in so much—" Classy.

– Can we get back to the Mark of Cain stuff, plz? Thnx.

– Do you think we'll see the Ghostfacers again ever? Is there hope? Do we care? (I care a little.)


Previously Aired Episode

AIRED ON 2/16/2017

Season 12 : Episode 12

Next Episode

AIRS ON 2/23/2017

Season 12 : Episode 13

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Can I just say I was a little terrified of this episode because it's so real? Like the 'monster' was just people murdering, and the people that died did everything right - hiding in the closet with a wall to her back, looking at the security cameras instead of going outside - and they still died. Kind of made me want to curl up into a ball and cry.

On the matter of symbolism, I think what happened with Ed and Harry - while being hella forced - was necessary. It's hard for me to look at the Winchester's relationship clearly without drowning in all the confusion of previous seasons and situations, so I can only imagine how it looks through their eyes. So no, I don't agree that Ed and Harry's issue was condescending in it's simplicity because it kind of gave the brothers an objective distance that I feel is crucial to understanding their situation and getting to a place of forgiveness. If they keep looking at each other through the lenses of brotherhood (which I'm sorry Sam but it's really impossible not to) they're never going to be able to see it clearly enough to fix it without falling into the same patterns. It's like that thing Sam said that one time "what we had before didn't work". They can't help it. They're family and comfort zones are a powerful thing.
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I am a passionate fan of the Ghostfacers, supported the idea of spin-off for them, etc. Some of the Ghostfacers episodes were my absolute favorite SPN episodes. For a time the Ghostfacers were even my computer wallpaper. :-) (That my brother was a reality TV ghost hunter for a few episodes made the whole farce of the Ghostfacers even more appealing).

I just watched this episode and boy am I disappointed. Half the team was missing, then they intentionally break up the two remaining ones (nearly killing one) just to make a ham-fisted parallel? Ugh.

This just didn't have the humor and fun of a GF episode at all. It was sad and depressing. Coupled with being the 195th filler episode in a row, I'm beginning to feel that the upward spike in SPN quality is beginning to drop again. Every season since Dean sold his soul has been... some major problem is revealed in the first one or two episodes, then we get fillers, then one or two episodes that involve chasing a MacGuffin. Then the guys decide there's nothing left to do but wait so they go on random cases (that all follow the same pattern). Then Bobby/Kevin/Castiel/whoever appears to give them a clue to advance the story, then back to several more episodes of waiting, then it's in the final three episodes of the season that they suddenly remember they're supposed to be saving Dean's soul/stopping the Leviathans/killing Abaddon/whatever and they get back to the story.

I'm sorry to say the entire plot we've had for season 9 so far would have been condensed into three episodes of The Vampire Diaries. :-(

I'm just really bummed about this episode and really bummed that this season is spinning its wheels and going nowhere. At this point I'm not sure the main plot will even be resolved this season. They really should have:

1) Closed hell the last season; Crowley becomes a weepy, nice guy and rides shotgun with the guys and a human Castiel.
2) They never should have brought up Purgatory a few seasons back (I forget which season; I try to block the Leviathans out of my mind).
3) This season they should have sealed the angels up in heaven.
4) Finally, in season 10, they would tackle Purgatory, the source of all the monsters in the world. They'd seal that too and save the world once and for all. The hunters could FINALLY live happily ever after. End of series.

Better to go out on a high note. Now it seems they're just going to drag the same recycled story on forever (how much Winchester fighting can we watch?) while killing off/sending to Oz any other interesting characters the show produces that give us hope it could evolve and grow and thus stay interesting. :-( :-(

I was a huge advocate of the show continuing after Season 5, but now I'm not sure it was a good idea. It's almost completely paint-by-numbers by this point. And as they kill off Jo and Ellen and Ash and Rufus and Bobby and Kevin, ship off Charlie and break up the Ghost Facers it's like they're stubbornly refusing to expand the forumula/concept (with the notable exception/massive retcon of the Men Of Letters).
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I liked the clever homage to the Slender Man phenomenon/meme - I wonder how many people looked that up for the first time after watching this episode...and also went down the rabbit's hole into the Something Awful forums haha.

I also loved that they used "This House Is A Hotel" by The Wind + The Wave during the selfie scene scene when she notices that there appears to be someone standing behind her in one of the photos, the song really added to the eerieness in a weird way, kind of like in Silence of the Lambs when the girl is singing Tom Petty's "American Girl" before being abducted.
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Winchester Radio: Kind of along the same line there - this season, we’re seeing a colder versions of the brothers. Dean, in particular, with his reaction to Sam and Sam’s curtness…we also saw Dean really coldly kill a guy in the last episode, Thinman, and also Dean’s room looks less homey now, which on twitter Jerry Wanek hinted at - it was a deliberate choice. So, are these actions related to the Mark of Cain, you think, or just the brother’s problems, or everything all-together?

Jensen:
Yeah, that’s all kind of a nod to the Mark of Cain and what it’s doing inside Dean and what it’s doing to his psyche and his emotional and physical self, he’s becoming less uh - what’s the word - he cares a lot less about the humanity aspect of what he does, which is why he was able to take an actual human life as opposed to knocking the guy out and dropping him to the police station to be tried for his crime as…I think past Dean would have. Instead, he was just like, hey he’s a bad guy, he’s got to go. So I think the line between black and white is becoming…almost dangerously clear. The grey areas are becoming less and less, as far as Dean is concerned. Dean’s always kinda been a black and white kind of guy - but there’s always been a touch of civility as far as what to do with humans who are bad. Um, and I think, because of the Mark of Cain, because of where this season is heading, and the tension between the brothers, all kind of leads to Dean going ‘you know what, if you’re on the wrong side of my gun, then I don’t care if you’re a monster or a bad guy, you’re gonna die.’
http://bittercasgirl.tumblr.com/post/79203240484
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Wow, xxSupernaturallover, thanks for shining light on this! I think a lot of people suspected, but it's nice to have confirmation. It also restores some of my faith in the SPN writers. Not only are they moving the story along, but this has been a really subtle way to do it. I had some doubts about this season, but I'm looking forward to the rest of it now...
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About the Mark of Cain: I actually wondered if it might be influencing Dean a little - he seemed awfully comfortable with killing that human... I mean, he's done it before, he'll do it again - but it's usually a bit less cold-blooded.
That was pretty cold - even for Dean, is all I'm saying. (Not that the guy didn't deserve it, being a murdering, raging psycho.)

Also - I agree, the parallels were ham handed and HEAVY handed, and made me wince at times with the amount of OBVIOUS it heaped on top of the story.

As for the Winchester's childhoods, it's been quite clear that it varied a great deal - sometimes, they'd settle in for a few months at a place, the boys would go to school, make a couple of friends, do what kids do, then next time they'd spend a few weeks in a shitty motel with no money for food while Dad was off on another hunt.
They also spent periods of time with different hunters - I believe it's been established that they lived with John's friend "pastor Jim" for a while, and also at Bobby's.
Either way, tying a piece of fabric around your neck and saying "I'm Superman!" doesn't really require anything more than a towel, and a lot of places - even some shitty motels - have sheds. So no, that didn't really surprise me.
The bike? Guessing a cheap second hand one would be useful for Dean getting to and from school when John was busy.
Anyway - their childhood SUCKED, no doubt about it, but they DID have SOME of the "normal" things kids have, enough so that they recognize them when they come across them, or can fake it convincingly.
(Sometimes I catch myself comparing them to Jarod from The Pretender, who never had a normal childhood and is endlessly fascinated by exploring all the things he missed. Sam is a bit like him, dreaming of perfect family dinners and holidays and the like.)
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I agree with most of your post, specially the Mark of Cain thing. Sam looked more affected, even when it was Dean who did the actual killing.
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I give episode 8/10
The return of the Ghost facers excited me, but I do agree, there shouldn't have been so much 'chick flick moments' and drama. I always thought as the GF's as funny people that add some spice into strong storylines, but they kind of ruined it by adding so much paralells with the Winchesters. Other than that, I liked their return believe it or not. Nice to seem some old faces in the series again...
Second; Dean and Sam's argument moments. A few episodes ago when I read reviews, people would say "Wow, we all know they're going to get over their arguments. They ALWAYS forgive eachother after an episode or two," and now that they are having a hard time 'connecting,' everyone is throwing tantrums about it. Seriously?! Can't you all make up your mind? Yes, I want them to get back their bromance and stuff, but I didn't say before 'Next episode they will forgive.' and stuff. I do think Sam is starting to forgive Dean, but Dean seems hard damn guilty now. Sam had that sad face on many times throughout the episode, his 'I'm sorry' look even. Dean had his guilty and painful face. I noticed many people say saying "Sam is probably mad Dean convinced him to stay alive.' CONVINCED. C-O-N-V-I-N-C-E-D. Don't you get it? Sam is crying that he wanted to die, but if he truly wanted to die, he wouldn't get 'convinced' by Dean. He WANTED to live.
Third; Dean. Okay. The Mark of Cain is doing something to Dean obviously. I always remembered him not wanting to harm humans and if he killed a human when exercising a demon or something, he was so guilty. But when he killed that psychopath dude, he seemed... different. He had the most coldest gaze, almost lifeless. Almost like a demon.
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I have always said that Sam's issue isn't that he wanted to die so much as (1) Dean tricked him and having someone you love and trust trick you like that is not a happy experience and (2) he ended up possessed again. Sam has now been possessed three times and each time he was used to kill people so that's not a happy experience either. Dean has never been possessed and can't understand how it must feel. I would also throw in that Sam was exactly right when he said Dean didn't do it for him but because he can't stand to be alone. So for totally selfish reasons he lied to and tricked Sam AND allowed him to be possessed and used by an unknown angel who (shock, shock) turned out to be bad news. I certainly don't expect this to just go away anytime soon and frankly it would cheapen the whole thing if it did.

Dean was never the one who had an issue killing people, in fact it was normally his first reaction when dealing with people using the supernatural to kill. It was Sam who used to have issues but stopped as the show went on and be became more hard hearted.
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Dean never actually fully out killed a guy. He even said he doesn't like killing actual people- if their possessed, that's different.
If you watch that fight scene again, you'll see that Dean was almost 'having fun.' He is pretty much bigger and stronger than that psycho dude, he had the advantage to stab him instantly, but Dean was taking his time when moving the knife to that guys stomach. You could see he had no struggle, he was doing it as if it were a casual thing.

You have to admit, Dean doesn't kill people for kicks. Especially with such an icy glare. If you got the time, read that article- it changed my view in almost everything:: http://samanddeanbrothersinarms.wordpress.com/
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No he doesn't generally enjoy it but if he hadn't had Sam with him in season one alone he would have killed Roy LaGrange, he would've tried to kill Max Miller and those are just the first one to jump to mind.
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No he doesn't generally enjoy it but if he hadn't had Sam with him in season one alone he would have killed Roy LaGrange, he would've tried to kill Max Miller...


True, but Dean is not the same person he was in seasons 1 and 2. Since he got back from hell, he hasn't felt the same about killing humans. In Family Remains (season 4) he felt guilty that the cellar-dwelling cannibals had to die. In later episodes, like the serial killer in Repo Man, (season 7) he clearly felt guilty when he had to kill a human, which he doesn't do often.
The biggest clue for me in the current episode was that Dean didn't have to kill this psycho. He could very easily have gotten the weapon away from him and knocked him out. Dean killed this guy because (it seems) he wanted to, and that's unusual for him. I personally think it's the Mark of Cain, but I'm willing to wait and see how things evolve...
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True that, I don't remember Max Miller though.
But I also remember him not wanting to kill humans. Guess he changes his mind a lot
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By the way, the episode getting released on the 25th, after Blade Runners, it said Dean starts to experience side effects from the Mark of Cain and tells Sam to go on a hunting trip without him and Crowley tests Dean when he's alone or somethin.
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they so overdid it,that i was cringing the whole episode sure I love parallels but this was a bit to much that it sucked all the fun out of the episode,I kind of think this is one of the worst episodes in season 9,I mean we all know the problems going on between sam and dean we didnt need them to recap the whole thing!!!
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It was more for the benifit of Sam and Dean I think. Sure, it allowed Sam and Dean to verbably state their postions but also allowed Sam and Dean to see themselves in Ed and Harry and maybe learn a little something themselves.
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But Sam and Dean aren't real people. :-) The show's supposed to be for the benefit of the real viewers. :-)
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oh goody not only do we have Sam and Dean sulking at each other, although there did seem to be some thawing of the current Winchester cold war, we now have the Ghostfacers at it with virtually the same lines as two or three episodes back!!! It packed a punch with Dean and Sam but, for me anyway, it lost a massive amount in the retelling and the Ghostfacers just couldn't carry it off.

For a standalone episode I wasn't all that thrilled with the story line either. What about Crowley and his search for the first blade?? What about Crowley and his addiction to blood?? How about Abby and her quest for Hellish domination and the Mark of Cain and the angels?? Can we stick with what is important and ditch episodes like this that have little to no bearing on the overall theme please.
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It's the Supernatural paint-by-numbers formula we've had for quite some time now. Need a new season? Easy. Start with a ramification from the previous season that threatens to do something to one of the brothers. Toss in a demon/angel/similar adversary. Introduce some MacGuffin that must be found to stop them. Have the boys decide they have no leads and then go on Scooby Doo cases for several eps. Have Bobby/Kevin/Castiel give them a lead that allows them to get the MacGuffin. Now they can't find the bad guy so they decide there's nothing to be done again and go on several more Scooby Doo missions. Have them lie to each other and fight several times over things they've done a thousand times before. Finally, three episodes before the season finale, have them remember what they were supposed to be doing and wrap up the season finale by killing the bad guy and the brothers reconciling to do it. Make a great cost having been needed to be paid (sold soul, died, possessed, damaged, car accident, etc.) to allow for generation of the next season following the same formula.

:-(

This season's bone is the MacGuffin, the Mark of Cain is the price, Crowley's the errand boy, etc. In other seasons it was the Colt, Sam's powers, Bobby, etc. It's like Supernatural Mad Libs.
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I get the brothers fight and have tension b/t them season to season. It's what makes them and their relationship real. This latest rift is so drawn out and the tension and anger now just feels forced. You can actually feel how over it Jared and Jensen are when your watching these scenes. This ep. especially. The only time things didn't feel forced was when they were saving each other and esp the superman/batman story. Enough already, I really miss their brotherly banter.....
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I was thinking, Dean never killed a human being on Supernatural. A least, I think. And on this episode he did. What's going on ? The brothers are not out to kill humans. Is this the Mark of Cain that's coming out on from Dean ? Or was this just a first for Dean, because as this comment was said on the show, " Sometimes humans can be monsters ".
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Not for lack of wanting to, Sam useally talks him out of it. Remember all the way back to season one when he wanted to kill Legrange and Sam talked him out of it? When Dean wanted to kill Gordon but same arranged for him to get arrested? There a ton of other examples as well.
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Dean wanted Gordon dead because Gordon was a threat to Sam -- that trumps everything. Dean also knew he was going to die and if he didn't kill Gordon before he died, that would leave Sam to deal with the situation alone.
Later in the series, since season 4 and later, Dean has been much more reluctant to kill humans. I think it happens very rarely, now. He's not the same person he was in seasons 1 and 2.
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Oh and I just saw "Repo Men" again on TNT and Dean shot the serial killer guy three times in the back while he was trying to get away with no hint of emotion on his face.
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Thank you season nine of Supernatural for pounding me over the head with the parallels in this episode! And could you bring back the annoying Ghostfacers guys who are an insult to geeks who actually know stuff and aren't nerds trying to get girls? Sheesh. Forgetting this ep.
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LOL! I couldn't have said it better, hopitopia :)
At least the Batman-Superman anecdote was cute...
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It was cute but also hitting me over the head about their situation. We've had SOOOO many Dean v. Sam spots now that it's overkill. Do or do not now. We've seen try. (To misquote Yoda)
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of the fillers, this was one of the weakest this season. And on top of it was a scream ripoff with no real ghost or whatever. I think this show could've been better off with 13ep seasons so they can focus on the actual plot. There's the angel factions, abbadon, crowley. With 3 plots to choose from, there shouldn't be a reason to have totally unrelated episodes with throw away lines about their issues or such just to tie it in this season.
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Except I've seen shows like that and the main plot useally goes stale before the season is over.
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I've seen the Vampire Diaries, where (except for the first half of current season 5) they have what would have been 2 or 3 seasons of Supernatural condensed into one! They also have... shock... more than one thing going on at the same time! I know SPN tried to imitate this with the Leviathan season where the first half was about Purgatory and the second half with Castiel but that was also an awful season for other reasons. VD will also end almost every single episode with a cliff-hanger or a shocker that leads into or sets things up for the next ep. SPN tried this once, again in the Leviathan season where the ambulance turned out to be going to the same hospital the Leviathans were at.

This is what helped turn VD into my favorite show despite having been SPN obsessed for years (had all the books, recorded every show and watched them all over again in the summer, etc.). VD was able to create a big cast/world whereas Kripke seemed to want to kill off every other character he created. VD could juggle several plots at once during the same episode with its large cast and have more than one main plot in a single season. Supernatural just began to feel stale and paint-by-numbers in comparison. :-(

Now they've killed off Kevin and shipped of Charlie. They've gotten rid of Bobby and Rufus (now that would have been another awesome spin-off show!), killed Joe and Ellen and Ash and their bar, broken up the Ghost Facers, killed the Trickster.... it's like they systematically eliminate anyone/thing that could be used to break the same worn-out formula for the episodes. The only sign of anything different is the Men Of Letters lair, and who knows if that will end up blowing up by the end of the season....
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true, but some of these fillers now aren't even related to the plot. They are stuff that would've been covered in the earlier seasons or nearly similar. The only thing it does is have a few lines or scenes that mirrors what is going on with the brothers. I get it, they have problems with trust, but it's getting old. They have an up and down relationship, but in the end they still have to work together.
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There was this dream I had about this show. Dean was shot, Sam was sad. The end. That was the end of Supernatural in my dream. Then it switched to The Walking Dead, where a gay vampire brainwashed Rick and some other guy into also being gay vampires. Seriously, that was way more entertaining than anything I've seen in Supernatural since Gabriel was alive
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Whatever you're eating or drinking before bed, I would stop. :)
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I have dreams like this when I read Price Peterson's recaps of Vampire Diaries or American Horror Story right before bed. It happens so consistently when I do this I've named them "Pricemares."

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LOL :)
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I liked this episode although it was not as fun as the one where dean teamed up with Crowley , the sam and dean conflict is getting tiresome and needs to be resolved. This episode was better then the Doctor Who fan like episode with James Corden which was shit . Dean snipes at the nerds was funny as hell and that just about saved it. Hopefully next week we be back on track with Crowley and Abbandon
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let's all pretend this episode didn't happen
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Worst episode of the season by far . When analogies are so obvious they stop working .
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"That was some really ham-fisted paralleling, yo."

You know who else thought it was hammy...this guy

And if Ham Rove thinks something is hammy, you know you've got a problem.

Seriously, by the time the final credits rolled, I felt like I'd been beaten about the head and body by some sort of pig appendage. "I get it. Sam and Dean are looking into a funhouse mirror version of themselves...enough already!".

The problem wasn't so much that the parallels were sloppy...they were unnecessary and ultimately useless. They've had actual adult conversations. Sam knows why Dean (thinks) did what he did and Dean knows how Sam feels about it. Sam knows why Dean actually did what he did and Dean does too. What revelation was gained by watching the Ghostfacers go through the same thing? Listening to Harry during the drive home, did they suddenly realize that breaking up for reals is hard? {cue Neil Sedaka}

"Sam and Dean's bittersweet nostalgia for that one time Sam dressed up as Batman and jumped off a shed bothered me because it seemed implausible on the surface."

Not to discount it, but plausibility aside, this was eye rolling in that through 9 seasons, I can probably count on one hand the number of fuzzy memories Sam and Dean have shared about their childhood. This was just more hamfisterie.

"Can we get back to the Mark of Cain stuff, plz? Thnx."

Yes please! Please! For the love of God, please! Or at least check in on Cas' angel recruitment project. And as far as I can tell, Mark Sheppard doesn't have anything else going on at the moment, so can we bring Crowley back? PRETTY PLEASE?
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I never really enjoyed the GhostFacers' episodes. I guess it s not my kind of humor. I prefer the crowley/dean "bromance" or Sam with Ruby.
That episode was ok though. A giant bitch slaping for Dean.
Hoppefully a step toward a better future for our Bros
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As pallarels go, that wasnt THE ONE!!.
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Awsome episode...honestly this is the spin off the should have made..Ghostfacers...while Sam and Dean have become "too big" for just ghosts and all that jazz,Ed and Harry can easily work with that stuff. they could work from silly cases to no cases at all and I'd watch it. There would be no need for 22 epsiodes per season,but 8-13 would work perfect.
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They actually did try to spin off the Ghost Facers a few years ago, but CW didn't go for it. :-(

The Ghost Facers (all four of them) were very funny... I'd also bring back the ghost of Corbin to serve as the "Slimer" for the team. :-)

I'm still smarting over what they did to the Ghost Facers for this episode... breaking up the GF is right up there with killing Bobby for me....
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I would watch it!
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Ghostfacers were again awesome...was nice to see those guys back...
It was also nice, how the writers made this episode about those two, but all they went trough, Dean and Sam were already going through...
But i have to say, i really hope this fight between Dean and Sam is soon done...as we have another season coming up...don't want to see them non stop arguing about brotherhood, loyalty, things that they do to each other ( in name of Love)....
Get past that....there are nasty angels that needs to be dealt with...
Missed crowley...
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Rewatched the scene where Dean stabs the psycho. The psycho has a hold on the hand that is holding the knife and is struggling to push Deans hand away. That may be why it looks like Dean is doing it so slowly. He's getting resistance.
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Rewatched the scene where Dean stabs the psycho. The psycho has a hold on the hand that is holding the knife and is struggling to push Deans hand away. That may be why it looks like Dean is doing it so slowly. He's getting resistance.

You made me curious, so I rewatched the scene, too. Dean is a pretty good fighter and he's clearly bigger and stronger than the psycho, and Dean is standing behind him. He could very easily have gotten the weapon away from the psycho if he had wanted to. The few flashes they show you of Dean's face show a cold, relatively flat expression. Even after the guy is dead, Dean doesn't look particularly upset. Maybe I'm wrong, but I think there's something going on here...
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Can't believe all this surprise. In season one he was all about killing Roy LeGrange when they thought he was controlling the Reaper. Dean has never been shy about killing people if they're bad. It was Sam who always talked him out of it in the end.
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Dean could have disarmed the guy, but chose to kill him instead. That's a departure from normal for him, i think.
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Not really no.
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Ugh... this episode was the absolute worst. What is it with this season? Every character associated with comedy episodes (Charlie, Garth, the Ghostfacers) have been given AWFUL curveballs that completely ruin the image I have of them. Charlie DIED (though Gadreel resurrected her) Garth got a bad case of the Winchester Guilt for abandoning Kevin, and the Ghostfacers are now having a Winchester moment! Isn't there an episode that we can have some pure comedy with no soul-crushing Wangst? Something like "The French Mistake," "LARP and the Real Girl," or "Wishful Thinking?"

And the fact that the Slenderman expy was not a real monster but rather two psycho losers further added to my frustration. I was honestly hoping for another Tulpa episode (we haven't had those since season 1) but nope, Ed made sure they could never release another Tulpa after the last one that terrorized them.

Season 9 is getting to be really disappointing. The mythology episodes are so-so, but the stand alone Monster of the Week eps are getting on my nerves. Especially with all the false advertising. The dragons are supposed to return, the monster is a goddess. We supposedly get a comedy episode about fat-sucking monsters, it ends with the most depressing Sam/Dean conversation ever. Snookie and Crowley are supposed to show up in an episode, we get Ghost Kevin. We supposedly get a pure comedy episode with the Ghostfacers (who were admittedly funny in their web series.) and we get ANGST ANGST ANGST! Come on, Supernatural. Season 9 is supposed to be BETTER than season 8!

Hopefully next ep will have Abbaddon in it. I miss her!
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I think what's with this season is that Eric Kripke siphoned off Robert Edlund for Revolution. Now the quality of Revolution significantly improved and Supernatural seems to be falling into a rut again.

I agree they're on a tear killing off or shelving any character that can give us unconventional or non-formulaic episodes.
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"Revoultion" is still a thing? I had no idea.
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I don't think the ton and nature of this season would support a full comedy episode. Just wouldn't work.
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But haven't we had enough torture porn? Wasn't that literally a thing with the last show runner? This season isn't dark and gloomy. Dean kept a secret from Sam. Big deal. Happens all the time.

Season 3 gave us "Dream a Little Dream of Me" with Dean facing his fears of going to Hell followed by "Mystery Spot", the super-funny Trickster-themed episode.
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Given how much people complain when they do a story not about the main plot, throw in a pure comedy episode and they will really hit the roof. :)
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The Leviathan saga was arguably the darkest chapter of Supernatural, and they showed "Plucky Pennywhistle's Magical Menagerie," a pure comedy ep, which was aired AFTER Bobby died. We gotta have at least ONE pure comedy episode to give us a breather from all the angst angst angst this season is giving us.
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I've got it! Comedy ep of the campaign war between Crowley and Abbadon down in Hell. Best episode idea ever, yeah?
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Yes that would be great!
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This is still shaping up to be a fantastic season, but we need a break from the constant angst. I was so looking forward to this ep because I thought we would finally get little break from the depressing angst with a nice comedy romp. Wrong! Instead, they doubled down on the angst. You're right about Garth. They ruined him. And now they have ruined the Ghostfacers.
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I'm surprised to see so many people comment on here that they liked this ep better than past appearances of the Ghost Hunters....seriously?? I thot this ep was weak, heavy-handed, and anticlimactic.. Sure it was nice for nostalgia's sake to see Harry & Ed...but their forced storyline was terrible.. I can't believe anyone would prefer this to the Tulpa ep...that was a classic! It was so wonderfully cheesy..
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This episode was just...bad. If the writers want to establish how different this particular spat is between the brothers compared to the fights they've gotten into in EVERY SEASON, then they need to do a better job. Right now, Sam is coming across like an idiot, and it's making me really hate how far Supernatural has fallen since season 5.
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Anyone else notice any time a normal psycho needs killing, it's always a non-Winchester doing the killing? Back with the crazy people-hunting rednecks, it was the cop. With the crazy inbred-thought-they-were-a-ghost, it was the family Sam&Dean were protecting. If it's a human controlling ghosts, the Winchesters just turn the ghost/spell/monster back on the killer. I'd have to go back and look, but the Demon-that-recruited-the-serial-killer episode last season, I think it was someone else that killed the psycho. Hell, even if it was a human using shaman magic to juice up, it was a pack of dogs that killed him.

It's like they don't want to get Sam and Dean's hands dirty with human blood, because that'd be too much of a gray area.
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Didn't Dean kill the skinny psycho?
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If heroes become too dark, they stop being heroes. We allow heroes to be flawed and troubled, but if they cross too many grey lines we no longer see them as heroes. We all know that soldiers sometimes have to do things that are morally ambiguous, but we prefer not to think about that because soldiers are heroes (and rightly so) to us. The Winchesters are the same.
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How killing a psychopath human is worse than killing a vampire for example?
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The show has always made a clear distinction that "Monsters aren't people with fangs, they are Monsters; being human MEANS something". Nice monsters are very rare and treated with immense skepticism and prejudice - look at what they did to the Peruvian monster. She didn't kill anyone, she lost her brother, she was helping people, but not only did Dean want to kill her just because of monsterness, but sparing her meant she had to be kicked out of the country. Or the kitsune that was killing CLEARLY BAD PEOPLE in order to feed her dying child - doesn't get more sympathetic and gray than that.

So Supernatural's argument is, killing a human psycho is worse than a vampire because a human psycho is HUMAN, which makes it totally different. You don't kill humans, you protect them. (Unless they're possessed by a demon and you kill them with your kill knife, killing the human INSIDE the demon, but hey that's inconvenient).
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alcalde, not sure how that would work exactly.
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I'm not sure it is totally different though. I'd like to see an ep with a human who hunts down hunters who indiscriminately kill supernatural creatures. Surely if there are humans on one side of this secret war there may be some on the other side?
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Well, they've also said that the way demons treat their meat suits, they're likely to die anyway. Remembering the old exersism episodes it seemed they died more often than not.
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I understand the logic but I think it's kinda hypocritical.
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This wasn't my favorite episode, but it was kind of fun. Can't wait to see the next one. I love Crowley.
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Wait... No Supernatural next week? After this??
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augh, really? I hate this stop and go season shite everyone's doing.
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I know it's corny but maybe this show needs to insert some romance (but not like the boring ass retrospective love story Sam's arc had to suffer through last season). I feel like both these boys need something to break up their dynamic and the festering fest they seem to be stewing in at the moment. Too much bromance can be a bad thing...

Sorry I just honestly can't see another way out of this endless feuding circle.

Also good shout out to the Mark of Cain story, where the heck did that plot line go? I really liked Cain's character, more of him please.
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Such a thing would have one result: dead lady.

Aside from "everyone in proximity to the Winchesters gets axed", the obsessed fangirls get threatened whenever Dean or Sam gets paired with a girl. See: Jo.

What would be nice would be a recurring character who puts in some sexual tension. Like Bella.


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Hey I was all about Bella when she was on and I got all shouted down and told that she was a horrible character and had to die. Still, I'm glad she's on "Walking Dead" now so I guess it worked out in the end.
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I may be optimistic but I hope they are on their way to reconciliation..
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Next episode will feature addicted Crowley and some more Mark of Cain stuff! Who else is psyched for the hottie Crowley was seen with?!
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This is one of the worst episodes ever. It was like I was forced to watch every conflict Sam and Dean had, ever, for an entire 45 minutes. I'm so disappointed that they felt the need to drag that on the entire episode. It was physically painful to watch.
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I honestly disliked the Ghostfacers before, but this one kind of made me like them. No idea why. Because the parallells they basically shoved down our throats in this episode were so damn heavy-handed that I wasn't sure whether I should laugh or cry - it was just poorly done. I felt like this cheapened the conflict between the brothers.

The Thinman plot could have been pretty awesome - it's one of the rare occasions when it's humans being total psychos, which is always interesting. Dean and Sam are used to dealing with monsters, but when the monsters turn out to be human they're a bit out of their depth (as evidenced by them being tazed by the deputy). It was overshadowed by the conflict between Harry and Ed and all the side-glances from Sam and Dean, and that's a pity.

I sincerely hope they get back to the Mark of Cain and all the other good stuff (like Abaddon and Crowley) soon.
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Can we get back to the Mark of Cain stuff, plz? Thnx.

Amen to THAT!!!
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ROFL @ the in-my-face parallel drawn between the Ghostfacers duo and Sam & Dean. It was SO heavy-handed that I thought at the end, Dean would make some sort of meta-joke about how obvious the parallel was. But nope, Sam & Dean just keep making side-glances at each other as the GF-duo keep repeating almost the exact same dialogue the brothers did in previous episodes. BLEH.
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So how much longer before Dean goes full blown dark side? Or turns into a demon? Isn't the consequence of the Mark of Cain mean whoever bears it becomes a demon?
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Hope not, unless it was for only a couple episodes.
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"Do you think we'll see the Ghostfacers again ever?"

I hope so. I really do.

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Never kept an eye on the time so much during an episode. Almost didn't see it through to the end. I actually enjoyed the ghostfacers but the overdone parallels ticked me off. Please, please, please can we get back to the bigger picture and away from stand-alone's!
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Aside from the angst issue, the Thinman plot was very good. It was well done and scary. As for Sam and Dean seeing themselves in the Ghostfacers, I don't think it will make them reconcile. Just the opposite. It will reinforce their feelings/views that they can never trust or believe each other ever again. Just too many lies and secrets over the years. Even if they did reconcile, we all know it wouldn't last more than one episode before one of them lied or hid secrets from the other one again.
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They went too far with the parallels, especially since what Ed did cost Harry both a job and a possible wife. What Dean did cost Sam his agency, but he didn't really ruin his life the way Ed did with Harry. Also, Ed indirectly created two villains with his actions, whereas it could be argued that Gadreel was already bad.
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Yeah but Dean gave him a body AND enabled whatever he might have done behind Dean's back. As for who got it worse I would say Harry's situation is as close to Sam's as you can get in real world terms.
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Dean saved Sam's life; Ed screwed up Harry's. Despite the beat-us-over-the-head-with-it, I didn't see there being a direct parallel.
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Well, there is that neither Sam nor Harry ASKED for their help and they did what they did all on their own and because they couldn't stand to be alone. Really, they did what they did for themselves and didn't really care what the other person wanted at all.
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DId you say Ghostfacers?!

Yeah. I'm in. I think they are good comic relief.

I liked the episode, but way more than finding empathy in the relationship of the GF is needed to repair Sam and Dean. I will say - their back and forth was much lighter in tone this week. I liked it.
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I think the main problem with the current angst is that Sam is wrong. Or at least incomplete in his argument. Yes, Dean probably saved his life for selfish reasons. As well as to help Sam. One doesn't exclude the other.

Does anybody (including Sam) really think that if Dean had a nice comfortable life set up, or even a buddy/pal to hang out with as a Hunter, that Dean would have let Sam die? That Dean only wants Sam around for company and to share the angst?

Sam seems to be expecting Dean to act out of pure love and devotion. Which is nice, but seems to be an unrealistic expectation.

Plus, as I've noted before, Sam doesn't want to want to die. He spent most of season 8 saying he didn't want to die, and ever since he's been doing what he can to stay alive.
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Again, I think there's some misunderstanding in what Sam is really mad about. Maybe the writers are stating it properly or maybe Sam doesn't even fully understand but to me it's that Dean lied to him (again ) and tricked him. It's also that Dean got him possessed again AND lead him to be used to kill and who knows what else that we don't know about. I've been trying to not use this analogy because it's going to be controversial but possession, in a way is like rape. Sam's been possessed twice and Dean tricks him into being possessed again and lies and hides it. That kind of violation is bad and doesn't go away overnight. You're right that saving Sam for his own selfish reasons and to help Sam isn't mutially exclusive but lets face it, it was mostly because Dean can't do alone and the fact that he trusted some random angel (knowing that 99 percent of them are trouble) just shows how bad off Dean really is. He has to learn to let go and build a life for himself.
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Perhaps. But after nine years of possession, you'd think Sam would understand that what someone does when they're possessed is in no way up to them. That's not to diminish the grief and guilt, but it seems an odd time for someone to start blaming themselves fr what they do when possessed. Or someone for lying and convincing them to be possessed, when their life is on the line and it's the only way to cure them.

As you say, I think the emphasis is wrong. To me it's the whole "I want to die" thing Sam keeps saying. Remove that, and I'd be fine with it. But with it, Sam comes across as suicidally depressed, willing to take Dean with him ("I'd let you die"), and not in his right mind. Which diminishes the possession/rape argument.
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I agree with you 100%. Sam's death wish seems clinical and thus he's not in a position to make a rational decision about it. Dean did the right thing. And in the end Sam did consent to the angel on his own; Dean just kept him in the dark about it for his own safety.
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writers PLEEEEASE listen. we all love the show. we want our sensible sam back.not this twisted, selfish, blaming-dean-for -all his- woes sam. when is this conflict ending????
enough already.
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By their 'Sam was ready to die' logic, Sam should have just killed himself the moment he came back to his senses. "Welp, that was an awful delay in all that dying I'm so keen to do." *blam*
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I think the main problem with the current angst is, it's STILL GOING ON. I already didn't care that much about the bro-fighting to begin with, because there were other more important fish to fry (angels, demons, Crowley, Abbadon, Cain, etc.) but I was completely and utterly done caring whether Sam or Dean was right or wrong the second ghost!Kevin told them to get over it. That's all I needed to hear. So to have another whole episode devoted to an issue I'm already utterly bored with... was not entertaining. There's some incredible potential for action, adventure and badassery in the Supernatural world right now-- let's see those stories, please!
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Well, yeah. But that just proves that Sam is being a dick. Dean was willing to fulfill his promise and do what Kevin made him promise to do.

Sam wasn't. Way to honor a dead friend.
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Yeah, easy for Dean to get over it when he's not the wronged party.
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js12, welcome to Winchester hyprogrosy. They all do it and they all kind of stink for it.
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jjkrock: At the end of the day Sam CAN and has lived just fine without Dean (when he left to go to school, when he lived a year without him, soul notwithstanding, and when he lived with that chick in Kermit, Texas) but Dean can[t stand to be without Sam for any length of time and that's always going to be an issue because Sam isn't going to always want to be around doing what they're doing now. Anyway, as I said I think it's more the lying and the feeling of violation at being tricked by Dean into being possessed again. I was thinking about it again last night and I think what Dean SHOULD'VE done was be honest and let Sam choose for himself. He didn't do that because he didn't care what Sam wanted he wanted Sam period.
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(see below) However, it's interesting to note Dean kinda did the same thing when Sam was in the cage (sure he tried but he DID give up and play house with Lisa) and not only did it NOT bother Sam but he encouraged it AND left him alone for a year to do just that.

Dean only went to Lisa because Sam made him promise to. And it's not clear that Dean ever gave up trying to save Sam from the cage. All we know is that he was unsuccessful. He never stopped salting the windows and thinking like a hunter, so he may have continued to work on freeing his brother, too. As soon as Dean learned that Sam's soul was still trapped in the cage, he instantly started trying to find a way to free him.
Also, I'd argue that Sam didn't care about Dean leaving him alone for a year because Sam didn't have a soul at the time, so he didn't really care about anything -- including Dean and Lisa. He left Dean alone because Dean would have interfered with Samuel's plan to capture alphas, so Sam wanted him out of the picture for strategic reasons - not personal ones.
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js12, gonna need more context than that I'm afraid. :) jjkrock, in Sam's eyes he was just following their agreement. I happen to agree it was a pretty *bleep* thing to do and Dean did get his digs in about it throughout the season. However, it's interesting to note Dean kinda did the same thing when Sam was in the cage (sure he tried but he DID give up and play house with Lisa) and not only did it NOT bother Sam but he encouraged it AND left him alone for a year to do just that.
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Not to put too fine a point on it, but if lying is such a big deal to Sam, he shouldn't have said "yeah, of course" when Kevin asked for a promise from him and Dean. Or is lying OK when he does it?
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Yeah, easy for Dean to get over it when he's not the wronged party.

One could argue that abandoning Dean in purgatory was an equally serious betrayal, but Dean was able to walk past it -- even without an apology from Sam...
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If I stop my SO from killing themself, sure, I'm doing it for selfish reasons. But I'm also doing it because I love them and don't want them to die.
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I don't think it was the act, it was the method.
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Well, the act seems to bother Sam, too. Thus his "I'd let you die" comment to Dean.

I think we understand that yes, Dean lied to him. Although if Sam is suicidal, he's arguably not in his right mind. People staging an intervention lie to get the person there: do we blame them for lying?
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A bit of a waste of the Ghostfacers for me - considering that this is possibly their last appearance, the way the writers used them to parallel Sam and Deans woes was a bit heavy handed.
Its a pity their final appearance is in an episode that wasn't too memorable.
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The plot seemed to really force them in. Yeah - I didn't like the way they were used at all. We have enough Bro angst with the Winchesters. We don't need the GFs issues to shine a light on it. WE SEE IT JUST FINE!
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It also detracts from the whole 'Fallen Angels, Heaven is closed and Hell is in turmoil' arcs
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EXACTLY! Enough on the plate to have comic relief. And I enjoy the GF...but not like this.
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"In what reality did uber-survivalist John Winchester cart a bike around in the Impala's trunk next to the doomsday arsenal?"

Well, it's not canon, but the Anime has them settling down in a house for at least some time. And that was based on the DC Wildstorm miniseries "Rising Son."
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"In what reality did uber-survivalist John Winchester cart a bike around in the Impala's trunk next to the doomsday arsenal?"

Maybe the boys kept their bikes at uncle Bobby's house. Bobby did take Dean to play catch during a flashback in season 7, so maybe he helped the boys with other kids stuff, too.
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I thought this issue of them having a home before going on the road was laid out in the pilot when their Mother got fire-plastered to the ceiling?
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I thought this issue of them having a home before going on the road was laid out in the pilot when their Mother got fire-plastered to the ceiling?


They did have a home, but that ended when Dean was four and Sam was an infant. The Batman-Superman event happened when Dean was 9 and Sam was 5 -- their home and mother were long gone by then.
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Was there anyone else who got a biiiiiit creeped out when Dean just slowly pushed the knife into that psycho? I mean sure, the guy deserved it... But I dont remember seeing Dean so cold :O
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I was creeped out so much, i thought he was gonna let him live.
I was also pretty creeped out by Dean's stoic face when he was about to be killed, he didn't seemed scared at all when he was gonna have his throat cut and he didn't seemed relieved when he didn't.
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Was there anyone else who got a biiiiiit creeped out when Dean just slowly pushed the knife into that psycho? I mean sure, the guy deserved it... But I dont remember seeing Dean so cold :O


Maybe it's the mark of Cain turning Dean into a better, colder killer? I was a little surprised that Dean killed the guy at all, considering he was human. That doesn't happen often.
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Well, in the past it didn't happen often because Sam talked him out of it but there were plenty of times even as far back as season one where Dean WANTED to kill people.
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Good point.
Having been bogged down with the brothers relationship woes, I@d totally forgotten about the mark
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Yes, very astute! I did a double take. That's gotta be Mark of Cain Mojo at work!! Good catch!
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Yep
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It's not a bad episode but more like a feeler episode when you know at the last stretch of the season brain juice are kinda drying up. I don't hate it but it's so-so. something that will not survive the second trip to the water cooler conversation the next day.
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And, as far as the Ed/Harry and Dean/Sam parallels??

I realize that we were supposed to make that comparison, but com'on!

The only similarities between Ed/Harry and Dean/Sam is that there are 2 males of the species and one deceived the other..

That's about the ONLY parallels one can draw...
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It's as close as they can get without going into the Supernatural and I would guess they wanted Ed and Harry's situation grounded.
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I wonder if we're being primed for Sam and Dean's eventual split..........
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Gods, I hope not.... I HATE it when Dean and Sam go their separate ways...
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Me too.......it still feels like we were being primed for something. Or perhaps Sam and Dean were being primed????????????????????
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This episode scores as the most homoerotic yet. There was so much exposition on feelings (rocking chairs, WTF!) I thought I'd 'inadvertently' gone on pay per view.
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Actually, in spite of all the "I'm questioning your manhood" kind of jokes between the characters this week, Dean seems weirdly non-responsive to it all-- like he genuinely could not give even a single **** if the others think or imply he's "a girl." Last week, I felt this was a positive development for Dean, like maybe he's finally feeling more secure in his manliness. But this week Dean's flat affect started to seem creepy to me-- like maybe we're supposed to think that he is somehow not himself. Some have speculated maybe it's the Mark of Cain affecting him, but unfortunately we can't know that until the plotline turns to addressing that part of the story.
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Dean's never been the deepest of souls and, like he said in the ep, he's all at sea with what to do for the best. I think that the writing for Sam has been very poor of late and so I'm less inclined to blame Padalecki per se - after all he's being directed too. Whereas Crowley has been given better writing as Dean's occasional wing man. Not to mention how Crowley has always been some what of a whimsical character, which makes for lighter viewing. Sam's arc is simply not working for most.
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OK, it's official....

GhostFacers are the Ferengi of SUPERNATURAL.

At best, mildly amusing but overall extremely annoying...
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I was anticipating not liking this episode. But the episode was much better than I thought. I did like it. Not the normal fill in episode. Might have been a bit boring for maybe most views. I liked the fact that the brothers saw a much more smaller version of the similar dispute that the ghost facers are having with their relationship. Sometimes, someone from the outside looking in can see much more clearly what's going on, than the two people directly involved in the dispute. This episode might have given Sam and Dean a bit more clarity to why each of them ( Sam towards Dean and Dean towards Sam ) did. Looking from the outside in is totally different than being the ones involved.
I know you can't compare the Ghost Facers to the Winchesters. Thank God for the chemistry between Jared and Jensen. They even make a mediocre episode worth watching. I agree this episode was much better than the episode with Garth. I am really hoping that the writers can pull the show back together again and leave the fans ,media and Jared and Jensen with another season 5, at the end of SPN's 10 year run. Writer's for me bit off a bit more than they can chew in the last two seasons.
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