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Supernatural

Season 6 Episode 13

Unforgiven

10
Aired Tuesday Feb 11, 2011 on The CW
SUBMIT REVIEW

Episode Fan Reviews (19)

9.0
out of 10
Average
451 votes
  • Sam's the smart one?

    1.0
    It was made clear to all involved that soulless Sam was an extremely cold and efficient hunter that admitted to Dean just a few episodes ago that he killed innocent people amongst all the many other 'bad' things he did.

    So you know what would be a good idea? lets retrace soulless Sams steps -with only fragments of memories triggering as you go and using the same alias (and face lol) -what could possibly go wrong?



    Dean speaks about hunters not returning to towns they have already worked because they often leave a mess behind, so where a non meat headed person would have handed it to another hunter or sent Dean alone to scope out the sheriffs office to find out what happened last time and whether Sam's cover was intact -meat head 1 and meat head 2 blindly stumble around town until they create more problems for themselves.



    It's a given that Dean rode a slightly shorter school bus than most -the whole saying that you are a FBI agent/art dealer/whatever and then proceeding to act nothing like a FBI agent/art dealer/whatever aka being a childish ignorant moron is a dead giveaway but Sam -as we were told repeatedly is supposed to be the brain of the outfit (remember who did the research, memorized Latin rituals, etc?), all in all if the writers didn't dumb Sam down -this specific episode would have never have happened.



    Dumbing down characters or otherwise making them act out of established parameters without a good reason or cause beyond poor writing will; from now on automatically get a 1 from me.
  • Sam vs. Sam

    9.0

    I thought that this was a great episode for you to see how different Sam with a soul and without was, as well as showcase Jared Padalecki into a great actor with the nuances of how much Sam cares about others. Well, Sam with a soul cares.


    The best part of the episode is that you learn that so many of the actions have consequences, and that sometimes, it may indeed be a better thing to not have feelings to deal with what comes up.


    And then end, with Sam remembering burning... makes the next episode a "can't wait!"

  • Sam meets himself, and it's not pretty

    8.0
    I mentioned in my commentary for the previous episode that the season arc was coming together more quickly than anticipated, which gave me great hope for the second half of the season to match the strength of the first. And sure enough, this installment continues the string of surprises. Did anyone see the warnings about Sam's mental block coming to fruition so quickly?

    This is what I love about this show. It takes a simple enough premise (Sam runs into a location that forces him to remember something he shouldn't), but it spools out the revelations over the course of the episode, taking the audience on Sam's journey of self-discovery. In the end, the consequences are much worse than anticipated, though I suppose we can assume that this is just a taste of what might come.

    I also mentioned in the review for the previous episode how Sam's restoration revealed just how talented Jared Padalecki has been this season. It's almost as if this episode was designed to demonstrate how well he managed to portray these two versions of himself. (It's very similar to the exceptional job that Anna Torv has been doing with the two Olivias on "Fringe".) This plot thread only works if Sam is convincing in both soulful and soulless forms, and Padalecki deserves the kudos for making it happen.

    Another nice aspect of the episode is how it indicts Soulless Sam by demonstrating how the cold, calculated approach to Hunting can go horrifically wrong. It's fairly clear by the end of the episode that Soulless Sam ran the numbers in his head and drew the wrong conclusion, essentially spreading the monstrous contagion instead of stemming it. What it says is what might have been previously implied: Soulless Sam may get short-term results, but the long-term consequences tend to be much worse.

    More than that, some of the things that were played up for laughs earlier in the season (such as Soulless Sam's lechery and self-centered hedonism) come back into play, but in a much less comedic light. His casual dismissal of the feelings of others, all designed to satisfy his own goals, speaks volumes about how much Sam needed that soul back. It also, in retrospect, reveals just how damaged Dean was earlier in the series, given how strong the parallels were established.

    Once again we see an episode that might have been substandard raised to a completely different level by the talented writers and actors of "Supernatural". With the future of the series still very much in question, I can't help but wonder how the writers intend to approach the season finale. This season has the potential to allow the series to go out on top of its game, so it would be a shame if they planned for a seventh season and didn't receive it. This is one show that doesn't deserve to end unfinished.
  • Unforgiven

    9.0
    Unforgiven was a superb episode of Supernatural. This episode sets the tone for whats ahead in regards to Sam dealing with his inner demons from his time in Hell. I thought the story of this episode was entertaining, well thought, and played out well. It was cool to have a minor piece of greek mythology play a part. I enjoyed watching Sam and Dean argue over how to handle the situation. It was cool to see the flash backs of Sam's first time in the town of Bristol. The end of this episode left me in suspense and I look forward to watching the next episode of Supernatural!!!!!!!
  • Bloody Past

    9.0
    Unforgiven-When Sam starts to have flashbacks from his year as a soulless hunter before he contacted Dean, the brothers receive a message leading them to a small town where Sam spent time working on a case with their grandfather, Samuel. Wow, considering this episode centered around Sam's soulless self, I'm surprised how great this episode. The new Sam we got in the first half of this season wasn't really likeable and most fans were put off by this harsher, heartless version of the Sam we all loved. But if those episode were anything like "Unforgiven", I'm sure that those fans, including myself, would have enjoyed the character more. "Unforgiven" doesn't exactly make that version of Sam sympathize, if anything, it just furthers how cruel and evil Sam was. What makes "Unforgiven" work is that the writers craft such a brilliant plot around what Sam was up to before he reunited with Dean at the beginning of the season.

    I really enjoyed the flashbacks in the episode. The black and white tint mixed with some clever cutaways to the past really added a lot of intrigue and intensity to the story. What's interesting about the the episode is Sam is essentially the hero and sadly the villain of the story. You can't help but feel sorry for Sam returning to that old town and not remembering what he did there. Of course we knew it was something terrible, but the build up to that revelations never felt forced or predictable and the pay off was chilling. Who would have thought Sam would kill a group of innocent people, not to mention how defenseless they were when he shot them down. Jared Padalecki really gives an excellent performance as both the old Sam and the menacing one. The confusion and drive to find out the truth from normal Sam to the merciless Sam who was out for blood was beautifully contrasted by Jared. I really felt bad for Sam at the end of this epsiode, in more ways than one but I will get to that later. As much as I've come to hate Samuel, I liked the position he was put in this episode, watching in horror how out of control Sam's decisions were. Great work from Mitch Pileggi! I also enjoyed the other guest stars like Miranda Frigon as Brenda, who really conveyed a genuine sense of her and Sam having a history right from her first line and Joe Holt as the Sheriff and Brenda's husband, who Sam brutally murders, only for him to come back as the monster he thought he defeated. Those were some creepy make-up job they did on him and while the Spider-man webbing was kinda lame, he certainly looked menacing enough. With such a strong episode, the ending was like a cherry on top. Sam suddenly falling to the ground and convulsing as he begins to remember his time in Hell was frightening and I really felt for Dean at that moment not knowing what to do. Such a great cliffhanger! All and All, a stellar hour from the Supernatural team with well crafted story and some fine acting work from Jared as well as all the guest stars.
  • I loved it, specially when I get to see both bad Sam and good Sam in one ep.

    8.5
    I don't have much to say as there isn't much is happening really... but these the thoughts that came to my mind

    I know Sam's memories are a good soil for writing episodes but would they play something in the story arc or just be a side story. I wouldn't seeing bad Sammy at all, I enjoyed watching it.

    Sam's seizure came too soon which means some hot stuff are coming and I can't wait to see them.
    Because, I feel like Supernatural cooled down. It doesn't feel like midseason. It's like we're starting all over again. May be this's because jumping from one story to another. First, Sam's mystery; then the quest for having Sam's soul back and Crowley's purgatory and now the mother of all. or may be it's the long hiatus.

    I agree with the idea of Dean being too easy with Sam on letting him work in such environment that could easily crack his wall

    Good to see bad Sam and good Sammy alongside. Seeing them both proves how much Jared worked on them and how talented and underappreciated he is. I LOVE YOU JARED.

    Amazing job everyone at SPN. THANKS
  • 613

    9.2
    An incredible episode of Supernatural tonight. We got an amazing amount of substantial development, and the interactions between the brothers have officially returned to form. We even got an intriguing cliffhanger, Supernatural seems to be kicking it in to high gear, I was skeptical about this season at first, but now I know, season six was definitely no mistake. The writers still have bright ideas like the "don't scratch the wall" line from Death, something that happened in this episode.

    The flashbacks couldn't have been done in a better way, the cuts, the editing, it was just perfection how Sam kept on going back to the past year. The monster of the week was a bit strange when it came down too it, but it still brought us a lot of development. From the mysterious coordinates to Sam's soul burning alive at the end, this was a superb installment.
  • Best episode of the season.

    10
    I don't know what it was about this episode, perhaps the fact that Puppydog-eyed Sammy is back. I honestly haven't seen a Sam that innocent and empathetic since season 1 or 2. I was so happy that he was genuinely good again. In any case, I was glued to the screen, every moment captivated me. I definitely didn't expect the ending to this episode, but true to SPN form, the writers throw us a curve ball and a cliffhanger leaving me wide-eyed and open-mouthed. I hope Sam is okay but at the same time I can't wait for what's coming next.
  • Sam's memories return...

    9.0
    I think I should mention, sort of, my slight dissapointment with the main villian of the season. It does make a nice change to have a woman instead of a man but I've always thought that you can't do hot and sexy with terrifying and threatening. The Mother we saw last episode was unbelievably hot...
    Still, the other main theme of this entire season of course has been Sam's soul. It really is like a breath of fresh air seeing ensouled Sam back; I agree with other reviewers that he's like season one Sam again, and not the blood addicted Sam we saw in later seasons. Its keeping with his charactor that he wants to set right what Robo Sam did, even if it causes harm to himself.
    The monsters were sidelined here but that's what I've enjoyed about season 6 overall; each episode adds a little bit more to the overall story, which is something Supernatural has been weak with in the past (season 2 is a prime example here, with the main story arc only being addressed in around 8 episodes of the whole season). Seeing Samuel again was good. The guy really isn't that bad. He was as appalled by Sam's actions as we were.
    It's the ending that really stands out, though. Sam is remembering hell. How much of it will they actually show, with a limied budget and all? I would love to see Lucifer again, and Michael, and Adam. I'm guessing it'll just be flashes; after all we never did get to see Dean on the rack.
    A very good episode overall in an extremly strong season. Kudos to Sera Gamble. I'm loving her vision of the show.
  • Sam's quest for redemption begins by following his nose and a few carefully laid clues back to a hunt he did with Samuel. Once in the town again, his past endeavor comes back to haunt him.

    9.5
    This was a really excellently done ep all the way around. The writing was solid, the boys were in character the whole time,even during the beautifully done flashbacks with soul-less Sammy going to town beating the crap out of the cop, and getting some kinky cougar ya ya's, ahh love that heady debauchery. With regards to the cop, I gotta wonder though why Samuel wouldn't have tried to stop him. I mean he IS the grandfather, he IS the hunter with 'more experience' and he's supposedly the leader. Instead he stood there like an inept bump on a log and watched Sam beat the stuffings out of a cop and leave him laying in the road. Are we sure Samuel was brought back in tact? Anyway, Loved that the writers brought in some Greek mythos! (maybe that ties in with the Mother of All Monsters?... a bit of foreshadowing perhaps?) Jared's come a long way since this series started, and Jensen's consistency is comforting. The boys we know and love are back with angst aplenty and a big -bad on the horizon that's going to push them to grow even more as hunters and brothers. I hope that perhaps because of Sam's "special design" or whatever genetic advantage having been Lucifer's vessel gifted him with, will enable him to get past the knowledge of what his soul suffered in hell. Dean manages to deal with what he did and suffered, why should we think anything less of Sam and his coping ability? I can't wait to see how this all plays out! This is the kind of writing and acting I've come to expect form Supernatural. And it was wonderful! To the Kast and Krew... thanks for all your hard work on our behalf! Jensen, Jared, Special love and gratitude boys for all you do for us!
  • some enlightening in Sam's life from the year hunting alone

    9.5
    It was a nice episode and even if it's not for 9.5 I rate it that hight cause I love this series so much.

    I have some objections though with the way the whole stuff -Sam's soul back- is dealt..
    Like other reviewers I agree that we see a season one Sam again, who acts like having erased from his memory not just the last year and a half but all the others from his long hunting life with his brother where he gained so much experience and learnt so many lessons. It's just so unbelievable that Sam after all he's been through all these years now to feel sorry for having done some bad stuff he doesn't even remember..

    And what about Dean? it seems he makes the same mistakes as in the past.. Ok, he advices Samie not to recall his memories cause it's dangerous, but seems to be willing to take the risk and stay solve thie case just to please his bro who feels remorse!?.. Well, what a cr@p! He turned upside down the universe to save his brother and now he "worries" that much that he agrees so easily to stay and risk the wall to be cracked?

    I hope they both will be more responsible in the future episodes and act the way they should act after all the lessons they have taken from their long life experience!
  • Oh, no. No, no no no no... And then s%!$ hit the fan.

    9.0
    After receiving a TXT with coordinates and being WARNED by Dean that the whole thing could not get more fishy, Sam still felt the need to poke the proverbial bear and go fetch whatever trouble was waiting on the other line. The moment he stepped into the town, flashbacks begun, and soon it became clear that on the previous hunt with Samuel, they were after arachnid - humanoid version of spider. Btw, I just loved Dean's spidey sense pun. Very much appropriate, and I am a huge fan of Dean's daily (ok, weekly, but daily sounds better) you-just-got-serv(ing)s. So, Dean and Sam were joined with Brenna, wife of a sheriff who helped Sam and Samuel on their previous visit and then went missing. She also helped Sam break out of prison, when the (we all saw the promo)angry deputy-made-sheriff put him behind bars due to the unfortunate encounter in the past. Also, did anyone else think that Sam killed the dude after watching the promo? Sure looked like he did... But Sam did, however, kill both the arachnid AND her victims, saying that the latter were dying a slow and painful death anyway. The first with beheading and the victims with a bullet between their eyes.

    Well, as it turns out, the arachnid they were after the first time did not snack on her victims, but changed them into her own spidey people. And Sam shooting them down did nothing but left a mark on their complexion. And what was left behind was one changed and seriously pissed-off arachnid ex-sheriff, who was also the one who texted Sam in order to get revenge. Sam, always listen to what your big bro tells you...

    After a short fight, we all know who wins, Sam and Dean are back in their room, getting ready to leave.

    Sam has a speech about not knowing what remembering does to the wall, but that he has a feeling that he was a bad boy in the previous year and that he has a soul now and needs to correct the "wrongs" he did. And then he collapses, basically has a seizure, and we all knew what just happened...and then, voila - we see a vision of him, burning in Hell. Well, folks... The honeymoon is over. Damn, I wished it lasted longer...
  • Sam's "wall" begins to erode.

    8.8
    It's only a matter of time before Sam's "soul wall" is torn down and he's ravaged by his memories of hell.. I just didn't think it would begin this early. This was another great episode of Supernatural that was clever in its use of flashbacks. We get a glimpse at just how vicious Sam was without a soul and tie it in pretty cleverly with the present, where he does have a soul. It's a pretty interesting paradox that's created: by having a soul, Sam immediately puts it at risk by remembering things he did without a soul. It's almost as if he can't have one without the other, and the "other" will destroy him.

    Anyways, Sam and Dean get reports of girls missing in a town in Rhode Island. When they get there, Sam starts getting some vague memory of him and Samuel being there some time ago, hunting the same creature who was stealing men instead. I must say, it was pretty clever the way the episode unfolded. You get your typical format, and typical flashback episode, but the way everything connected and unfolded was fun to watch. Also, you get another cliffhanger ending that will likely carry into next episode a little bit.

    Nothing really to complain about here. Most Supernatural episodes this season have been solid, and while this one may not have exactly advanced the "Mother of All" plot forward, at least it gave us some more great interactions between the Winchesters
  • I am so happy the boys are back to being the boys!

    10
    Dean is once again all bossy, protective, take charge and kick ass. And Sam is once again all caring and compassionate and guilt-ridden. The juxtaposition of souless Sam and resouled Sam highlighted what a great job Jared has done with this challenge; there was a really stark contrast between the shark eyes and the puppy-dog eyes. (I'm really glad to see the puppy-dog eyes again! It just isn't Sam without 'em.) I loved seeing the interaction between the brothers in this episode, Dean all determined to protect Sam, and Sam all determined to right his wrongs. This produced both a clash of wills and a coming together of hearts. (I wouldn't normally use a mushy word like hearts; I'm gonna blame that on Valentine's Day...)

    I'm also very impressed with how they are fitting this season together; the ideas are clever and the pacing is spot on. Last week advanced the mytharc of the monster uprising with the timely arrival of the Big Bad Monster after half a season of building up to it. I love how they borrowed from real-world dynamics to continue the mytharc out of the apocalypse: when two big armies take each other down, and one is defeated and the other is either distant or in disarray, then more disparate evil will rise up to fill the vaccuum, like the rise of the Russian mafia in the wake of the fall of the Soviet Union at the end of the Cold War, or the rise of the warlords in Somalia after the U.S. pulled out and the government collapsed in the Somali civil war. So I think it's pefect that the monsters have jumped on the opportunity to fill the power vaccuum left by the angels and demons because that's the way things happen in reality. And every monster of the week fits this new world order, with creatures like the Arachni suddenly resurfacing after having been dormant for 2000 years.

    When this episode delved back into the year neither we nor Sam or Dean have any knowledge of, it just struck me as being the perfect follow-up to the episode where Sam gets his soul back. Sam now has a conscience but no memory of what he did without a conscience, so it was so fitting to bring that to a head by confronting him with past actions. All the pieces just fall into place and fit together.

    And as usual, the show continues to do what it does so well, and left me feeling gut-punched as the credits rolled. Now I can't wait for next week to find out what happens to Sam now that the wall is crumbling. Final note: I was nurturing a tiny ember of hope that the title of the episode meant we'd finally be getting some Metallica--especially since Unforgiven is my favourite Metallica song. Of course, it was not to be. But at this point, I'd be happy with any classic rock at all. Bring back the tunes!
  • Not too shabby at all...

    8.0
    Supernatural has been a bit all over the place this season. Setting up a story line about working for Crowley and then just sort of saying "oh, well, erm, let's move on," and then heading further toward the cost to Sam of the loss of his soul. With the "real" Sam now back things are taking a nice turn for the better. This episode actually propelled the plot of the last couple of episodes further and gave us a nice platform for the second half of the season. The hunt of the episode was a reasonable whodunnit told in an interesting way with the flashback sequences and the ending set up potential for even stronger episodes to come with the emotional as well as physical consequences of what Sam has gotten up to coming home to him. Overall, a pretty nice episode, one of the better of an up and down season with promise for the second half of this series to get better and better.
  • New Day In Old Town: A Sam Memory Lane Visit

    9.5
    This week offered us a splintered narrative of the accounts of a hunt that Samuel and soulless Sam were on a year ago. When Sam receives a mysterious text telling him to go there his memories begin to come back from his experiences there. He and Dean must find the creature they were hunting and why it wants Sam out of the way. My only real complaint about the episode was the ending where the creature is ceremoniously done away with is rather abrupt and could have used a little more time to be taken. This episode took a lot from "Born Under A Bad Sign" from Season 2 and did it one better, and it's nice to see the season arc revolve around Sam and not Dean now that his soul is back. But what with the wall being knocked down I don't know where this leaves Sam and Dean at all.
  • shocked!

    9.5
    Someone was shocked at the end, what the hell was that! dude, was not having fun when it cas said that the soul of Sam was devastated, imagine the horrible things that sam went through it. But this reality check the eps was good, was good to know that soul back to sam, because the sam's cyborg was really bad, which makes me wonder if part of the sam is not bad and who holds the sam for good is the dean. But in the end I think the past always come to sam and samuel anger behind him and already knew that Sam was not his real grandson. ops, yes to story monster spider, it was not those things, but there has tud the monsters want to multiply, perhaps a plan of the "mother of the things. " Waiting for the prox! kiss cau
  • oh my gosh what an episode jared and Jensen did a fantastic can't wait for more poor Sammy bcause he is remembering what he did for the last year he scratched the wall wonder what will happen next week did this hurt sammy in any way lucky dean was there!!

    10
    Wow what an episode supernatural is an awesome show sam took a big risk finishing this case because it caused him to scratched the wall and it wasn't pleasent for him I'm afraid for sam I have a feeling that wall is gonna come crumbling down and then who knows what will happen to sam if that does happen can't wait for more jared and Jensen fantastic as always missed seeing misha and bobby tonight hopefully we see them soon maybe dean was right they should have left and let bobby handled it but dean backed up sammy and because of it sammy scratched at the wall hopefully he leaves well enough alone with the wall but I have a feeling its gonna come down and their is nothing dean can do about.
  • Sam begins to remember some of the actions he did while not having a soul.

    9.0
    Very good episode. Actually enjoyed this a lot more than "Like a Virgin". That episode was ok and introduced the new twists about Mother of All was a little subdued. This one I loved because it felt like they were going more all out here. The tone was dark pretty much throughout the whole episode while "Like" had a couple of humorous moments, this one clearly was gunning in a different direction.

    It's always fun to see the darker sides of the characters come out than the good ones. It also gives the episode more intensity and suspense as well.

    Here we continue with the storyline about Sam's memory and gaps slowly being filled.

    Early on we think Sam is a murderer, but we see there's more to the story than what anyone thinks.

    A lot of good storytelling done here all the while keeping you guessing about what Sam has done. My favorite shot though probably was the last shot with Sam's soul burning in hell just like Castiel alluded to in last episode, he really was being skinned alive.

    I really hope after watching this that they continue going all out with darker stories.
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