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Supernatural: How to Win Friends and Influence Monsters

Dean: "I think you pissed off my sandwich."

Was this a Thanksgiving episode? It featured an emphasis on family with the three of them on an actual hunting trip, childhood reminiscences, heart-to-heart talks, and an evil turducken, which is certainly the Frankenstein monster version of a traditional Thanksgiving meal.

I wanted them to get back to the Leviathans, but you know what I just realized? So many of the monsters on this show have really scared me, but Leviathans are just too over the top to generate terror. Did they go too big and weird with the Big Bad this season, perhaps? Or is making the entire world their playground and fattening up the human race for slaughter too hard to swallow, pun intended?

Not that I didn't enjoy this episode, because I loved nearly all of its component parts. Dean, Sam and Bobby living literally off the grid. The super creepy moment in Biggerson's when Bobby and Sam realized that everyone, including Dean, was eating the same sandwich. The very cool borax assault on the warehouse. They did some great gross-out, too. The dissection scene was uncomfortably hilarious; I was expecting them to pull a license plate out of the guy's stomach. And I really liked the scene preceding the dissection when the very Walking Dead zombie-like cannibal came off the table and all three of them unhesitatingly emptied their guns into it. Not a lot rattles our guys.

Dick Roman is a winner, as well. Smarmy, cool, clever, a motivational speaker, evil to the core, and I loved that he was considered to be the perfect Republican candidate. And the scene in Dick's office when Bobby faced death with such sangfroid and managed to steal the Leviathan plan for global domination out of Dick's desk was great. We even got private talks between Bobby and each of the boys. Although that was another massive hint that Bobby is about to die.

I've spent several seasons worrying about them killing off Bobby, and a lot of this episode could be taken as build-up to a farewell. The next episode is the fall finale, and we've lost continuing characters on fall finales before. Come on, people! Don't kill Bobby, too! Seriously. After we just lost Castiel? I'll be superly, majorly, mondo-ly pissed.

Bits and pieces:

— Great opener with the "glampers." What's the point in camping if you take all the conveniences with you? And let me add that I hate camping, and if I had to live in the rough, I'd want every possible convenience. I just don't see the point of having fun going rough without the actual rough.

— Sam is still getting Lucifer hallucinations ('Luci Hallucies'), but he's okay with it. Are you ready for a terrible pun? It's literally the devil he knows.

— Newspaper headline: "Camping High Season Harshed by Human Burrito." Television caption: "The Rise of Dick."

— Again, Jensen Ackles got the eating scenes. He always gets them. I wonder how he feels about that?

— We saw someone get "bibbed." Poor Doctor Strangelove. I'm glad they didn't show it. It would probably have blown out their special effects budget for the year.

— This week: Wharton State Forest in the Pine Barrens, and Hammonton, New Jersey. I grew up in South Jersey and we used to go picnicking and swimming on a lake in the Pine Barrens. It's a beautiful area, and it doesn't look at all like the Vancouver woods.

— This episode felt a bit like "Wendigo." And I seem to remember an X-Files episode with some of the same elements.

— The next episode, the fall finale, airs December 2. It had better not be the end of Bobby, dammit.

Quotes, and there were so many candidates that I didn't transcribe at least ten of them:

Dean: "What if the bus wants to go over the cliff?"
Sam: "You think the world wants to end?"
Dean: "I think that if we hadn't taken its belt and all its pens away each year, then yeah, the whole enchilada would off itself already."
Actually, I think Dean is assigning his own suicidal feelings to the entire world.

Bobby: "I took a look at the cadaver. What's left of it. Not a happy camper."
Groan.

Brandon the angry waiter: "Sidewinder soup and salad combo goes to Big Bird. TDK Slammer to Ken Doll. A little heart smart for creepy uncle."

Bobby: "You don't shoot Bambi, jackass. You shoot Bambi's mother."
Another hint that Bobby is going to die.

Bobby: "Damn thing's eating Rick."
Dean: "Damn. I like Rick."

Bobby: "There's some funky chicken in the TDK slammer, isn't there?"

Dean: "Don't go all Sigmund Freud on me right now, okay? I just got drugged by a sandwich."

Bobby: "You die before me, and I'll kill you."

Politician: "Roman is ruthless, but good looking. I think he'll make a great candidate."

Dean: "You remember when Crowley was going on and on about hating Dick? I thought he was just being general."

Dick: "See, I asked for complacency. Not complacency and a .03 percent margin of hyperadrenalised cannibalism."

Bobby: (watching the bibbing) "And now I have officially seen it all."

A perfect storm of your top three out of four edible birds,

Billie
---
Billie Doux loves good television and spends way too much time writing about it.

15 comments:

Your Modest Guru said...

Same, once they all started having deep conversations, I knew Bobby wasn't gonna make it (though I hope he does; Bobby's awesome). It was especially notable when Bobby talked about Dean finding a reason to get his head back in the game.

I find the Leviathans kind of interesting. They first appeared to be scarier, destructive, psychotic beasts. That's still there, but a bigger focus is on their industriousness. They seem as close to taking over the world as Lucifer. And Dick Roman is a great villain so far, kinda fitting for the times.

Keeping my fingers crossed for a miraculous recovery next week...or, at the very least, a coma.

Sam B said...

"Keeping my fingers crossed for a miraculous recovery next week...or, at the very least, a coma."

Me too!!

God, if they kill off Bobby I am going to fly to the states and pop a cap in Sera Gamble's ass!! I really couldn't take it.

I think Dick is a fabulous character - lots of fun and I like the premise of the Leviathans generally. It will be interesting to see where this goes.

With all the talk of Dean not having his head in the gaem, Sam coping with the Lucifer halucinations etc I'm wondering if we are working up to the shows end at the end of this series? Six and seven are a bonus anyway, as we know Kripke only planned a 5 season arc, and I wonder how much more they an do with it

Anonita said...

Dullest episode of the season for me. Nothing actually happened in this episode until Bobby got shot. Looking forward to the next episode, though!

But let me get this straight... you'd be majorly pissed about Bobby getting killed off? On Supernatural? The show that does nothing but kill it's own characters? At this stage killing off Bobby makes sense. The brothers are already teetering on the edge and this'll send them both over. (I personally can't wait to see the fall out from this.) That, and the actor playing Bobby wants out.

Anonymous said...

Well Billie, first of all I'd like to thank you for "sangfroid." New words are always a good thing.

I wish I could pick up on clues and foreshadowing the way many others do. Then all the cool hunter Bobby and badass unflappable Bobby and heart to heart with each brother Bobby would have tipped me off to what would likely happen at the end. But I was very surprised and on the edge of my seat at first because I thought Bobby was a Leviathan. Then I realized he was shot and I still don't know if that's better or worse.

I agree that I still don't really "get" the Leviathan. At first I thought they might go for a Men In Black bugs kind of thing. Now I'm thinking a Matrix-like (or To Serve Man-like) turn the world into food thing? That could be a pretty good way to go if they are clever enough to pull it off. I'm still in wait and see mode.

Overall, this episode is a winner for me. 8.5 of of 10. (Oh, and I'm not really nervous about Bobby because HE WILL NOT DIE!!)

RoseCompose

Anonymous said...

I might be the only one to get Serenity vibe from the grey goo. Complacency and barbarism.

Anonymous said...

I am very tempted to rant out my probably misdirected Fan Rage, but I'm going to try not to.

I'll start with the Leviathans. They don't exactly scare me, but I think their over the topness works to some degree. They're almost amusing to watch, especially Dick. For some reason, he gives me an almost Lucifer vibe, and it completely works. I can reasonably see him taking over the world.

I absoultely loved Dean when he was high on his sandwich, and the moment when Sam and Bobby figure out that everything is becoming addicted to those things. That was a big highlight for me. Although I was quite sure what it actually was. A chicken inside of a turkey inside of something else? I just can't find that actually tasting good.

I don't want Bobby to die. I really, really don't. And I know people who will seriously stop watching if we lose Bobby too, especially so soon after (possibly) losing Castiel for good. I honestly don't know where the showrunners' heads are at, but as long as it moves the story along... But hey, at least we know that people don't really stay dead on Supernatural for good, right?

Anonymous said...

We can't lose Bobby. I know some folks are tired of the brothers turning to him for help when they used to figure things out for themselves, but for me, Bobby is the only person left in their lives to turn to for love, a father figure and sanity. His talks with Sam and Dean did smack of finales, unfortunately, but I'm hoping that was just to throw us off and make us worry until the finale. I'm hoping Bobby pops up in the back seat, grabs his cap, and snarls, "The hole's in my hat, not my head, ya idiots!"

Love,
Robin

Dr. Alice said...

I don't want Bobby to die either. I love the character. However, from a storytelling perspective, his death is pretty obvious. Dean said something in the episode about being at the bottom. Not quite, Dean. If the writers are trying to get the boys to THE bottom, then they have to take EVERYTHING away from them. So far, all that is left is Bobby and each other. :(

Jess Lynde said...

I hate to be a "if such and such happens, I will never watch again" person, because that kind of attitude usually ticks me off. But ... I'm pretty seriously considering being done with Supernatural if Bobby dies. They've turned Sam into a nutter, Dean into a suicidal drunk who's an overbearing jackass most of the time, and if Bobby goes, they (and we, in many respects) have got nothing left. The relentless drive into mental and emotional oblivion has just about become too much for me. Add in some fairly choppy story-telling over the last several years, and it has reached the point where I'm actively searching for reasons to watch most weeks. If the boys are on the path to the most unhappy ending ever and we've got no Bobby (or Castiel), then what the hell am I supposed to tune in for each week? Where's the hope? The silver lining? I love me a dark show, and I often love a tragic ending, but when you've dragged me along this far, you've got to give me a hint of something to hope for. Dick is a delightful villain so far, but he's not enough to keep me entertained when the characters I used to love are being destroyed or constantly killed off.

I get that the whole hero's journey requires the wizened elder/father figure to fall by the way side, so the hero can find his own way, but I just can't get on board with that here. They (and we) have lost too much already.

Wow. That's pretty ranty. I think my frustration with this show has just been building and building this season, and the prospect of Bobby's death is the straw breaking the camel's back.

Anonymous said...

The episode pretty much telegraphed what was going to happen to Bobby, whatever happens in the end.

What I hate is that they did it in such an incompetent way. So the boys and Bobby are together when he shoots Dick, but somehow they have time to get to the car, start it, sit, put on the belts, and Bobby STILL isn't out the door?. In a building full of leviathans?.

And Dick does the I'm going to get you slow-walk, and then fires the gun, when I'm sure he could have gotten Bobby anytime if he wanted?.

Please! To whoever took us for idiots thinking that would make the scene more poignant in an episode that was mostly meh, screw you!. Terrible writing like this is the kind that turns people off TV shows.

I know I'm thinking dropping it.

PS.- Edlund wrote this?. Really?. What a disappointment.

MischievousNinja said...

Wouldn't worry too much - they've already shown several times that they won't kill Bobby until episode 21 of the final ever season. (probably 10, knowing the CW)

Personally, I'm sick of all 3 of the characters. Bobby used to be cool, now he's super-human and irritating. He's around all the time and knows everything about everything. There's no suspense when he's around, he's just become an excuse for lazy writing.
Sam and Dean are mental and depressed......they talk about it a lot, but where does it ever go? At the end of season 5, Dean finally accepted Sam as his equal and Sam sacrificed himself to save the world, redeeming himself for all his past mistakes. But the writers seem to have a compulsive need to make Sam look bad so Dean can keep being the tortured hero. It's beyond ridiculous now. Why bring the show back if you're just going to cover old ground all the time? Dean doesn't trust Sam, Dean proves himself to be the untrustworthy one, Sam apologizes.

The Leviathans, for about 20 seconds, looked like they were going to be a nice change of pace. I, for one, was starting to get tired of seeing the smug bastard demons every episode. As of episode 2, the Leviathans are incompetent, smug bastard demons :(

I've now become one of those "fans" who can't see anything positive to talk about anymore. Season 5, like Buffy, ended at a point where you can stop watching without missing out on anything. I think I'm done with the show now, but I'll always have my 1-5 boxset to enjoy time and time again.

Anonymous said...

I liked this episode a lot. It was tense and exciting and even though I don´t want Bobby to die, I think he should die just to give a shock to the brothers, the show, the season and the viewers.

JK said...

Jess hit the nail on the head here, I reckon. While I doubt I'll quit watching even if Bobby kicks the bucket, I'm forced to admit that my continued viewership is based mostly on a combination of morbid curiosity and inertia at this point, and losing Bobby would take away one of the last things I genuinely love about this show.

At least we'll still have Crowley...

(Occasionally.)

ChrisB said...

Bobby: "You die before me, and I'll kill you."

As soon as Bobby said this, my heart sank. I will be devastated if he dies. He is the solid center of this show. And, like Jess, seeing the boys the way they are now just makes me sad.

PS -- Anonymous asked, "A chicken inside of a turkey inside of something else?" It's a duck inside a chicken inside a turkey. A few years ago, it was all the rage at a pub near my house and, I'm here to tell you, it was the perfect storm of poultry. Delicious.

Suzie_B said...

Great review, as always, Billie!

I just want to say that my daughter's dad and I took her out to a seafood restaurant for her birthday recently, and they had this dish that was shrimp stuffed inside mahi stuffed inside tilapia. Well, both her dad and I are big fans of Supernatural, and he pointed this dish out to me and called it the turducken of the sea. And that's how he ordered it, too. It was so random and hilarious. Just wanted to share. :)