Dean and Sam: "Me, too."
I know that not everyone loves the meta episodes. But is there any other show that can get away with re-imagining their macho all-guy monster-killing tour de force as an all-girl musical?
There was a lot to love about this 200th episode. It was an outright love letter to the fans, and all of the little references to the past were quite touching: Harvelle's, the scarecrow, "Hell House", Ghostfacers, Castiel with his cell phone waiting on the road for Dean to need him. I especially liked the trunk POV shot with "We got work to do", a direct callback to the closing shot of the pilot episode.
And there were some bits I just adored. Like Dean giving Marie a concise summary of what happened in the past four seasons after "Swan Song", Sam all perturbed because he hadn't been slash fictioned with Castiel, and Sam and Dean fighting the scarecrow onstage behind the emotional musical number, all wonderful. And I especially loved it when Dean embraced the whole thing and started giving the cast a pep talk on subtext.
But honestly, some of it was a bit too cringe-inducing meta, even for a huge fan of the show like me. I found the first two musical numbers (especially the single man tear) a little embarrassing, and I'm glad they didn't get to the robots and space tentacles. But the girls doing "Carry On Wayward Son" actually made me cry a single womanly tear, the ending with the scarecrow exploding purple goo all over the audience was hilarious, and I especially liked that no one died for a change, because somebody always dies.
With all the references to the books and "Carver Edlund", I should have expected Chuck to show up at the end. But I didn't, and it was a lovely surprise. Although I've resisted the idea, the producers and writers of this show keep referring to Chuck as God, so I guess he is. And you know, the Samulet was originally supposed to lead the boys to God, and it sort of just did. Dean hanging it from the rear view mirror as the boys continued on the road was pretty much perfect.
Is there a deeper meaning to this episode? Maybe it's just that Supernatural is a class act. It still resonates because it has an emotional center in Dean and Sam. The show writers never forget what it's about. That's why I'm still reviewing it, ten years later.
Bits and pieces:
-- "Then" was a single typed page with "Supernatural: Pilot, created by Eric Kripke". The title card was the word "Supernatural" in lights. And then they gave us nearly all of the opening title cards, including the special ones. (Thanks to the Supernatural wiki title card page for this one).
-- The saddest moment in the episode was that mention of Adam Winchester still trapped in the box with Lucifer, and a shot of the boys' faces. They haven't forgotten. They just can't do anything about it.
-- Marie and Maeve are kids, yes, but how could anyone look at J and J and think they're too old? (I also liked that Marie wanted Dean to be Sam, and Maeve wanted Sam to be Dean. Very cute.)
-- And btw, gold acting stars for Katie Sarife as Marie. I also loved Joy Regullano as Maeve. They were terrific.
-- The villain, the muse Calliope, was only briefly in the episode, although she certainly looked cool and I liked the flowers. The scarecrow was effective, too. Loved Marie's totally non-scary version of the scarecrow.
-- No Misha Collins or Mark Sheppard in this one. But there really wasn't room.
-- Jared is finally out of his sling. I hope he's feeling better.
-- This week: Flint, Michigan. The boys were both "Special Agent Smith", no relation. Die Hard reference.
-- "Supernatural200thEpisode" was still trending on Twitter this morning. That's awesome.
Quotes, and this is a long one:
Mrs. Chandler: "Why couldn't they just do Godspell like good little skanks? Instead, it's this awful, unbelievable horror story. Like that stuff really happens. Theater is about life, truth. Where is the truth in Supernatural?"
Sam: "Oklahoma? Hugh Jackman got cast off Oklahoma."
Dean: "You ran tech, Wolverine."
Sam: "Shut up."
Dean: "There is no singing in Supernatural!"
Maeve: "This is Marie's interpretation."
Dean: "Well, I mean, if there was singing, you know, and that's a big if, if there was singing, it would be classic rock. Not this Andrew Floyd Webber crap."
Sam: "Andrew Lloyd Webber."
Dean: "I don't blame her. I'm gonna need fifty Jell-O shots and a hose down to get this stink off me."
Dean: "What are they doing?"
Marie: "Oh, they're rehearsing the BM scene."
Dean: "The bowel movement scene?"
Marie: "No, the boy melodrama scene. You know, the scene where the boys get together and they're driving or leaning against Baby, drinking a beer, sharing their feelings. The two of them, alone but together. Bonded. united, the power of their…."
Dean: "Why are they standing so close together?"
Marie: "Uh, reasons."
Dean: "You know they're brothers, right?"
Marie: "Well, duh. But subtext."
Dean: (to the actors) "Why don't you take a substep back there, ladies?"
Dean: "There's no space in Supernatural."
Marie: "Well, not canonically, no. But this is transformative fiction."
Dean: "You wrote your own ending? With spaceships?"
Marie: "And robots. And some ninjas. And then Dean becomes a woman."
Marie: "We do explore the nature of Destiel in act two."
Dean: "Sorry, what?"
Marie: "It's just subtext. But then again, you can't spell 'subtext' without S E X."
(Jensen breaks the fourth wall and looks directly at the camera.)
Marie: (putting on a Sam wig that looks exactly like her own hair) "I used this for my one-woman Orphan Black show last year. Writer, director, actor, I'm gonna Barbra Streisand this bitch."
Dean: "I want you to put as much sub into that text as you possibly can. There is no other road, no other way, no day but today."
Maeve: "Did he just quote Rent?"
Marie: "Not enough to get us in trouble."
Calliope: "Supernatural has everything. Life, death, resurrection, redemption, but above all, family. All set to music you can really tap your toe to. It isn't some meandering piece of genre dreck. It's epic."
Supernatural is indeed epic. Ten years later, and I still love this show because it does episodes like this one. Four out of four Samulets,
Billie Doux is the founder of Doux Reviews and has been reviewing her favorite shows for quite some time. More Billie Doux.
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