The Road So Far: “Bitten” Review

WARNING: SPOILERS BELOW! READ AT YOUR OWN RISK, IDJIT!

Despite the fact that this post is probably pretty short I am having a terrible time writing it. Why? Because I’m having an internal conflict between Professional Geek Girl and Fangirl Geek Girl. Basically this is what happens every time I try to talk about this week’s episode:

Fangirl Geek Girl: OH MY GAWD YOU GUYS THAT WAS SUCH A GOOD EPISODE!!! IT WAS THE BEST EPISODE EVER!!

Professional Geek Girl: You have to be professional, analyze the episode, talk about the good and bad elements of the episode.

Fangirl Geek Girl: IT WAS ALL GOOD! DIDN’T YOU WATCH IT!

So, here is an attempt to take the Fangirl aspect of my personality and combine it with the Professional aspect of my personality, and write a coherent review….

So without further ado let’s talk about “Bitten.”

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The Road So Far: “What’s Up Tiger Mommy” Review

WARNING: SPOILERS BELOW! READ AT YOUR OWN RISK, IDJIT!

Wow, just wow, I was so impressed with yesterday’s episode that I thought Ben Edlund wrote it. Edlund is my favorite Supernatural writer and usually if after I watch an episode I say, “That was amazing,” and then check who the writer is, it’s him, but this time it surprisingly wasn’t.

It was actually written by Andrew Dabb and Daniel Loflin, who are usually hit or miss for me lately. They have written awesome episodes like, “Yellow Fever,” “Dark Side of the Moon,” and “Plucky Pennywhistle’s Magical Menagerie.” But then they wrote two of my least favorite episodes of season seven, namely, “The Girl Next Door,” which killed yet another interesting female character for the hell of it, and “Season Seven, Time for a Wedding,” which forever ruined Becky for me. Surprisingly, the thing I hate about those episodes–their portrayal of female characters–is what I loved about this one.
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The Road So Far: Supernatural Season Eight Premiere

WARNING SPOILERS AHEAD!

The boys are back in town and ready to hunt some monsters and save the day. Well, they might be. Dean’s got a new monster pal, Sam’s got a dog, and Cas is trapped in Purgatory. Hmmm… the way things are shaping up you might actually want to go to Kevin Tran to solve your monster problems.

Anyway, I’m getting ahead of myself. Let’s talk Supernatural!

As those of you who have read my past Supernatural reviews know, I wasn’t overly found of season seven. Certain episodes were good, but the overall plot and lackluster villain was just uninteresting. Despite that, after hearing more about the season eight plot from SDCC interviews I was actually pretty excited about season eight.

So what do I think about the premiere? Well, I’ll tell you.

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Web Crush Wednesdays: Jensen Ackles and Steve Carlson

It’s that time again ladies and gentleman, prepare your ear drums for this week’s Web Crush–Jensen Ackles singing!

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Web Crush Wednesdays: Meanwhile Misha

It’s Web Crush Wednesday again! Let’s talk about this week’s Web Crush: Meanwhile Misha!

Those of you who have read my posts about Supernatural know that while I am hard on the show, sometimes it is still my favorite TV show right now. And though it may not be obvious on this blog I’m not often obsessed with celebrities (the exception probably being Felicia Day). Oh yes, I go into phases were I love one actor/actress more than any other, but it usually fades after all and I usually tend to not care about their day-to-day life. Don’t get me wrong; If my favorite actor/actress is getting married or something and I hear about it, I think it’s nice for them, but I tend to get more obsessed with characters than the celebrities that play them. The thing is, I just don’t know these people in real life. I never wanted to conflate a character with their actor, and I never wanted to be let down if an actor/actress ended not being nice at all. But then there was Misha…

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The Road So Far: A Supernatural Midseason Review

A lot has happened to our merry band of heroes since we first took a look at season seven’s premiere episode. Now, before you all settle down to watch the show tonight, let’s take a look at how our boys have fared so far.

WARNING SPOILERS!!!

For the sake of moving quickly and efficiently through this midseason review, I’m going to save some episodes (“The Girl Next Door”, “Defending Your Life”, “Season Seven, Time for a Wedding!”, and “Death’s Door”) for the end of the review, mostly because there is either some controversy surrounding these episodes that I feel the need to address or because I just have some particular gripe with them.

And now for the review:

Hello Cruel World: I’m going to be honest. When going back over the various episodes of season seven, I completely forgot about this one. Which seems odd since it sets up all the successive episodes. Cas takes a dive in a lake, allowing the Leviathans to start possessing people. We see that the Leviathans’ first priority is to a) learn more about the world through their hosts, and b) eat! Preferably humans. Gross!

Meanwhile Dean is pretending to be okay, while Sam is having a hard time figuring out what’s real due to seeing Lucifer all the time, and Bobby is being the best dad ever, worrying about his boys.

Yeah, I love Bobby!

As I said earlier, this episode mostly sets up for later ones. We are reintroduced to Sheriff Mills and we get see how the Leviathans work and function.  Sadly, Bobby’s house has been burned down, Sam nearly shoots everyone, and we have a brief scare where we think Bobby is dead but he turns out to be fine.

This episode was okay. Not exceedingly memorable. Only three things really stand out: Cas’s swan dive, which has become iconic in the fandom now, Dean’s voice mail to Bobby showing the complete emotional instability that Dean is experiencing, and finally and my favorite, Lucifer. In a very dark episode, Mark Pellegrino made me laugh at Lucifer’s equally dark humor.

“Seriously, guys, hell wasn’t that bad. I should be over this in about a day.”

My only criticism would be that after one episode, the ‘Sam sees Lucifer’ thing is pretty much dealt with. Despite everything Sam supposedly went through in hell, he seems to have gotten off pretty easy. Yes, it is referenced a lot throughout the series that Sam has Satan Vision 24/7, but we never see Pellegrino again nor do we see Sam really having trouble with this. The attitude seems to be that he pretty much has this problem under control. Dean spends all of season four recovering from hell. Sam spends time with Lucifer and he has it under control? Yeah, I’m not buying this one, writers.

Shut Up, Dr. Phil: Perfect! I have no complaints about this episode. James Marsters and Charisma Carpenter were golden throughout the whole episode! Sam and Dean trying to council the insane couple at the end was absolute win! Perfect! Perfect! Perfect!

Is there anyone who doesn’t love these two?

Oh, and there is some plot-related things about a Leviathan hunting Sam and Dean that James Marsters’s character temporarily incapacitates for them. For the most part, not much plot is in this episode, but an awesome bit of filler and seeing Buffy alumni is always a plus in any TV show.

Two thumbs way up!

Slash Fiction: Let me say this—Curse you, Supernatural writers, for deceiving us about the nature of this episode!!! Grrrrr!!!

Sorry, no guy loves this episode

Okay, now that any slash fan complaints are out of the way… this episode was interesting but did repeat some things we have seen before. The whole ‘Sam and

Dean are wanted by the law again’ thing. (RIP Hendrickson! I miss you!!) I mean, haven’t we seen this already, like a lot?!

Honestly though, with this new twist that it was actually the Leviathan versions of Dean and Sam drawing attention to the brothers, that they had to go so deep undercover that their usual standbys (such as Sam’s computer, the rock IDs, and even the Impala! *gasp*) were taken from them, could have been really interesting and awesome… if the writers committed to it.

But Leviathan Sam and Dean are killed at the end and once again the real Sam’s and Dean’s deaths are faked, making you wonder what this hunted by the law and changing their old habitats was really for! Despite getting rid of their old IDs and the Impala, the boys are still caught almost immediately, and everything still works out right away at the end. If it wasn’t for the scenes with Bobby, this episode, while amusing, would have been redundant.

Bobby’s plot line does finally tell us how to kill the Leviathans though. It’s with cleaning supplies.

No, seriously.

I know this twist caused some fans to scoff, but personally I liked it. It reminded me a great deal of the season two episode of Buffy called “Innocence”. The villain, an ancient demon who proudly states that “no weapon forged can kill [him],” so of course he is defeated by modern weaponry. It makes sense that only something more modern would kill the previously ancient and unkillable Leviathans.

Some people object to Sheriff Mills discovering the Leviathans’ weakness when cleaning up for Bobby, stating that it was a poor and sexist use of a good character. I can see what fans are saying, but at the same time I don’t feel like that’s anything too bad. I will be disappointed if this is the last we see of Sheriff Mills. If she fulfills her cleaning purposes and then conveniently disappears, I’ll have to agree with them on this but until then… well, I guess it’s better than the violent death that most Supernatural women get… *sigh*

Come to the Dark Side. We have muffins!

We also meet the leader of the Leviathans in this episode, a politician named Dick Roman. We’ll see him more later.

Best moments in this episode: Dean singing, Leviathan Sam and Dean analyzing the brothers, Crowley bringing muffins to Dick Roman, and of course, the kiss between Bobby and Sheriff Mills.

The Mentalists: Sam and Dean have split (again) after Sam learns about what Dean did in the episode “The Girl Next Door” (more on that later). The boys meet again on the same case in Lily Dale, the most psychic town in America. They fight a bad guy having a creepy affair with a ghost—seriously, it’s very creepy—and the boys make up by the end of the episode… because apparently Sam is very forgiving and the world is very black and white for hunters (more on this later too).

The episode has its problems, but those will come up more when we talk about episode four, “Defending Your Life”.

Overall, the psychics were amusing, but probably the most memorable thing for me in this episode was Dean’s issues being brought to the forefront (kind of) when Ellen (God, I miss you!) speaks to Dean through a psychic.

Dean’s emotional turmoil is reaching a fever pitch this season, but if you didn’t know before, this episode really spells it out for you. Dean is not okay, and it’s just getting worse as the season continues.

How to Win Friends and Influence Monsters: To me, this episode is way less fun than the title makes it sound. The episode starts as a simple hunt for the Jersey Devil, but it’s then discovered that the Leviathans are testing a drug on humans to make them good and complacent food for them. The only problem is, about one percent of humans became violent and start killing people. God! Someone rent the Leviathans Serenity. This is like classic sci-fi mistake 101.

Reavers, anyone?

This episode introduces us more to Dick Roman, and can I just say, I’m very underwhelmed by this character. When we were introduced to the Leviathans in episode one still possessing Castiel they seemed much more fun. They seemed crazy, intelligent, and funny, as well as scary. Where did that go? Aside from Leviathan Sam and Dean, I don’t think I’ve seen one that has that same insane quirkiness that was reflected in that first episode. I’m not saying that the Leviathans are bad as they’re portrayed now, but the first episode promised me something that hasn’t been delivered yet.

I will admit, the Leviathans being ordered to eat themselves by Dick when they screw up may be the scariest thing ever on Supernatural (other than Lilith, that girl was terrifying).

What happened to you, Leviathans? You used to be cool.

The episode ends with Bobby being shot in the head by Dick Roman. Which come on, Dick, being fascinated with humans, making weapons like guns I understand, but why would he use that more than, oh I don’t know, his massive teeth, super strength, etc? It just seems like a fancy excuse not to add more stunts or effects to me… just saying.

Now to talk about the more controversial episodes, “The Girl Next Door”, “Defending Your Life”, “Season Seven, Time for a Wedding!”, and “Death’s Door”.

“The Girl Next Door”, “Defending Your Life”, and “Season Seven, Time for a Wedding!” all have a similar problem—women.

The Girl Next Door: This episode introduces us to Amy Pond, an old childhood crush, and a kitsune, a monster that feeds on brains. On a side note, Madame Ace would like me to inform all of you that kitsune are actually Japanese fox demons and do not eat brains. We looked it up on Wikipedia. What did you do Supernatural writers? Anyway, Jewel Staite—who is very famous, at least in geek circles—plays Amy Pond, and her involvement in this season was really played up at SDCC. But she dies. At the end of the episode.

Oh fuck you, Supernatural!

Amy is a good monster, only eating the brains of dead things, but when her son gets sick he needs fresh meat, so she starts killing people for her son. Sam tracks her down, she explains her situation, Sam sympathizes and lets her go. Well, Dean finds out and kills her. Why, because she’s a monster and killed people.

A lot of people get uppity because they say that Dean killing Amy is out of character. I disagree. Dean sees a lot of the world in very black and white terms. Furthermore, he is worried about Sam’s wall being broken and is nervously waiting for Sam to break down. I see him killing Amy as a way to take back control of a life that is slipping out of his grasp. He rationalizes it and tries to justify it, but in the end he knows he did something wrong and feels guilty about it.

So Dean’s characterization doesn’t piss me off. It’s Amy’s death that bothers me. At SDCC it came off, to me, as if Jewel Staite’s character was going to be a new recurring female character, as the show has been criticized for its lack of diversity, but Amy dies after one episode.

Jewel Staite’s too cool for this show anyway.

Imagine this, Amy lives, and becomes a recurring character. This allows the writers to address how the monsters can be good, which has come up before in Supernatural, but has never been something that the show fully explored. This juxtaposed with the very dangerous Leviathans could be very insightful, showing good and evil monsters overcoming primal animal instinct and/or submitting to it. On a much more human level you would also have issues such as Amy being a single mother, and having a connection (and potential relationship) with Sam, which would further force Dean to face his own protectiveness over his brother and trust issues with people.

(Lady Saika says: And and and! On top of all that, Doctor Who had an Amy Pond first!! Seriously, why would they use a name so well-known from a show that’s basically the same genre as Supernatural? It just blows my mind.)

Karen Gillian says: Oh no you di’in’t.

Defending Your Life: The Egyptian god Osiris puts guilty people on trial, their own guilt is what condemns them in the end and allows Osiris to punish them… yeah, he kills them.

So who do we know that constantly feels guilty and blames himself for everything and recently killed someone against his brother’s wishes? If you answered Dean Winchester, well then, gold star for you! Dean gets put on trial, Sam defends him, and Jo shows up…

“Jo, is it true that Supernatural hates women?”

Jo’s return was also herald at SDCC. Now I don’t know about the rest of you, but when I heard that Jo was coming back I assumed she would be resurrected much like Dean, Sam, Bobby, Castiel, or even Samuel. Nope, she is just a ghost. Bringing Jo back as a ghost for one episode is not Jo coming back, writers. *grumbles*

I said we’d talk more about the episodes “The Mentalist” and “The Girl Next Door” later. Well, it’s now later. The witness that condemns Dean in “Defending Your Life” is never actually called to the stand. Yep, it’s Amy. He feels so guilty about what he did that Osiris doesn’t even need to call her to the stand. But later in “The Mentalists”, Dean tells Sam to get over being mad at him for killing Amy because he did the right thing, and by the end of the episode Sam agrees. What starts out as Dean feeling guilty for murdering a woman in order to make himself feel better is now transformed into a noble act. No, that’s not total bullshit at all!

Season Seven, Time for a Wedding:  For the most part I liked this episode. It was funny, kind of, but once again the portrayal of the female characters is potentially problematic. Though this one was the least upsetting to me, that didn’t make me any less disappointed in Becky’s portrayal. Becky has always been the crazy fangirl, but she was also resourceful and helpful at times. Elevating Becky to the level of creepy stalker was just the straw that broke the camel’s back for me. Sure, you can argue that Becky thought the potion would just bring forth any desires that Sam already had for her, but even in the world of fanfiction, this episode would at least get labeled dubious consent, especially when Becky realizes the potion is wearing off and doses Sam again.

“Silly, Sam, men can’t be sexually asaulted.”

There is also the issue that what’s happening to Sam is portrayed as funny. While Becky’s actions aren’t condoned, Sam being kidnapped and forced to love Becky is clearly shown as being something laughable. The episode is meant to be funny. This shows a dramatic double standard with men and women. A man being stalked and forced into a sexual (though it didn’t reach that level in the episode) situation is just as serious as when it happens to a woman and should be treated as such.

Overall, this episode ruined Becky’s character for me, which makes me all kinds of sad.

Finally we come to the mid season finale “Death’s Door”. For the sake of those of you who decided they didn’t care about spoilers and started reading this article, I’m going to say once more: MASSIVE, MASSIVE SPOILERS BELOW!!

Haters Gonna Hate!

Death’s Door: Bobby’s in the hospital and on death’s door, get it, ha! The entire episode shows Sam and Dean either trying to deal with or denying the possibility that Bobby might die, while Bobby desperately tries to navigate his worst memories in order to come back from his coma and tell Dean and Sam what he learned about the Leviathans. We gain a lot of insight into Bobby’s past, as well as his familial relationship with Sam and Dean. We get to see Rufus again, one of the few black characters on the show. Too bad he is a ghost/memory, which much like Jo’s return was a disappointment. And of course, Bobby dies at the end of this episode, leaving Sam and Dean alone.

Now it’s not made completely clear that Bobby actually dies. The episode leaves it open for interpretation or maybe it’s left open in case fan reaction to his death is so bad that they are forced to bring him back for the sake of the ratings, but I doubt that will happen.

Idjits.

While shocked that they actually killed Bobby, I do think that he is actually dead, and no, I don’t think he’ll be resurrected, but I don’t have a problem with his death. It was well done, giving the character the respect he deserved. Bobby went out in a dignified way and on his own terms, which if Bobby has to die it’s how I would want him to go.

My only problem with his death is… now this is pure speculation on my part, so don’t take it too seriously. Castiel “died” at the beginning of the season, but most people knew that he wasn’t really dead. I think most fans have realized that Sam, Dean, Castiel, and Bobby are never going to really die. So I have to wonder: was Bobby’s death used as a way to prove to us, the viewers, that they, the writers, would actually kill off some of their main characters. This tactic has been employed by TV shows before, and since now it has been revealed that Misha Collins is returning to the show (though we don’t know in what form yet), Bobby’s death could be viewed as a way to keep audiences on the edge of their collective seats with worry for their favorite characters.

So far the newest season has not been without its problems, but like always the Supernatural writers have put out good episodes that will keep us coming back for more. I know that I’ll be watching the newest episode tonight!

Though all this talk about the female and black characters this season made me think, there really is a lot of sexism, racism, and homophobia in Supernatural. Keep tuning in to Lady Geek Girl and Friends to read about the sexist, racist and homophobic issues in Supernatural.

Until next time SPN fans!

The Road So Far: A Supernatural Review: Meet the New Boss or In Defense of Sera Gamble

Season seven of Supernatural is officially here and excited fans want to know: is the premiere of season seven any good?

WARNING: MASSIVE SPOILERS BELOW!!!!

The first episode of Supernatural season seven premiered this past Friday and fans have been online talking about it ever since. What’s the consensus? Well, while browsing the web I saw a lot of hatred for Sera Gamble, the episode’s writer and executive producer, mostly coming from Destiel fans, but also from general fans of the show. The reason for this anger seemed to be Dean’s reaction to Castiel’s dip into the evil pool.

Everyone stay calm and trust in Chuck

The battle cry from the fans seems to be: DEAN’S OUT OF CHARACTER! Though, this cry is followed closely by: BRING BACK CASTIEL!

But we’ll get back to both points later.

Overall, fans seemed to enjoy Death, Crowley, and Bobby’s characterization and reappearance throughout the episode. With this I have to agree, especially with Death, who fit in with the plot so perfectly it almost makes me think they had this episode planed since season five. It’s a testament to good writing.

Then we have Sammy, who is going crazy. This had me proclaiming, “Sammy’s in

Crazy!

trouble again, must be Tuesday.” I don’t mean that the show is becoming predictable necessarily; the Winchester boys are always in trouble and if Sammy came back from Hell without any consequences I would have to cry bullshit, but it might be nice at some point for the boys to deal with their problems in a way that wasn’t always lying and trying to protect the other from their problems. Though, I will admit that Sam’s reasoning of wanting to give Dean one small break from everything else was a really legit and in character reason for Sam to still be lying to Dean, despite how well that has worked in the past.

Sam’s here for you Cas.

Another aspect of the episode I really loved was Sammy being the one not to give up on Castiel, instead of Dean. Yes, Dean and Castiel have always been closer than Sam and Castiel; they “have a profound bond” after all, but Sam and Castiel can relate to each other better in this instance. Sam’s good intentions lead him to being addicted to demon blood and starting the apocalypse. Castiel’s need to protect the Winchesters and make things in heaven better lead him to becoming addicted to the power the souls of purgatory offered him and caused him to unleash the Leviathans. The correlation between the two characters is easy to see and I certainly hope that this is something the writers focus on more as the series progresses.

Now let’s get back to Dean, whose characterization is the reason most people are hating on Sera Gamble. Well, I’m going to defend Gamble because I actually thought the episode was very well written and that Dean’s characterization was pretty perfect in this episode for several reasons.

Dean’s been through a lot. He has dealt with a lot of betrayal and abandonment from the people he loves. Though his relationship with Castiel was shaky in the fourth season, throughout the fifth season Castiel was a constant support and ally. This remained true in the sixth season until the reveal that Castiel had betrayed them by working with Crowley and finally declaring himself God. Dean’s angry and hurt. Many comments online seem to imply that fans were annoyed that Dean was so angsty. Dean’s drinking and watching animated Asian porn isn’t exactly out of character for him. If Dean can’t actively do something, he drinks. It’s how this character copes and has been throughout the seasons.

Furthermore, many fans criticized Dean’s abandoning Castiel and simply wanting to kill him. I admit that at first I felt this was out of character. Dean always seems to never

Dean’s not giving up on someone who looks at him like that.

give up on those he’s closest to, but after I thought about it I realized I was wrong. Dean almost abandons Sam in season four. It takes a verbal lashing from Bobby to knock some sense into him. In this episode, it’s Sammy who tries to reach past Dean’s feeling of hurt and betrayal to get him to help Castiel. Then there is the issue that what is happening to Castiel was not necessarily something Dean can fix. As stated in this very episode, what’s happening to Castiel and how to stop or fix isn’t in any book. There is nothing here for Sam and Dean to research. This is new and no one really knows how to fix it. If anything, Dean calling on Death to help kill Castiel makes sense for his character. If he can’t get Castiel back, then he won’t watch him turn into a monster, so death is really the only option left. Once that option is taken away and Dean thinks there is no hope he goes back to his old standby of drinking and watching porn. He even becomes angry at Castiel and blames him for everything, which is also something many fans criticized, but again fits his character. If he is angry at Castiel, that makes it easier for Dean to stop Castiel, as well as keeping him from blaming himself. Dean clearly still cares for Castiel. That is all the more evident at the end of the episode when he thinks Castiel is dead and again when Leviathan takes Castiel over completely. So to all the other Supernatural fans out there, give Sera Gamble a break. She knows Dean Winchester and she’s going to keep him in character, so don’t worry.

All hail Godstiel!

Next we have Castiel, and can I just geek out about what an amazing actor Misha Collins is for a second. As a friend of mine pointed out, Misha Collins has played, throughout the course of the show, Castiel, Jimmy Novak (Castiel’s host), 2014 dystopian future Castiel, Godstiel, and now the Leviathans, and he played them all well. Misha Collins is a beast! And now so is Castiel! No, seriously. Monsters called the Leviathans that God created at the beginning of the world now possess him. They were supposed to stay in Purgatory, but we all know how that played out. Many fans are freaking out because the Leviathan proclaimed that Castiel is dead. This may be a clever trick on the part of the writers, kill Castiel, but find a way to keep Misha Collins around, but I doubt that. The writers have already said at SDCC that the season was going to focus on redemption and Castiel has already promised Dean that he will redeem himself to him. It seems safe to say that Castiel isn’t going away just yet. Though I’m sad Castiel will probably be missing from the show for awhile, I am excited to see more of Leviathan, who seems like he will be both terrifying and hilarious.

So stay calm, Supernatural fans! Sam, Dean, and Castiel may die… a lot, but they always come back. I’m confident we’ll see Castiel again. In the meantime, let’s just enjoy Leviathan, Misha Collins’s amazing acting, and Sera Gamble’s awesome writing.

Until next time Supernatural fans!