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Supernatural: Paper Moon

"All right, so what? You want to nuance this thing?"

For every Supernatural fan who loves to see Dean and Sam work through their crap together, here's an entire episode of Dean and Sam working through their crap together. With an extra added werewolf metaphor.

Kate and Tasha were Sam and Dean just a short time ago, when Sam was trying desperately to save Dean from his plunge into evil, but had to face the fact that it might not succeed and he'd have to kill his brother. I didn't care much for "Bitten," the found footage episode in which Kate was introduced, but I did like Kate herself, and I'm glad they brought her back. I was also glad that she made it to the end, although life is going to be tougher for her after killing her sister.

Supernatural has become a lot more about the shades of gray, the boys themselves attaining different levels of evil, the monsters not always so monstrous. Kate managed to control the beast inside of her, but her sister Tasha didn't even try. The title of this episode is "Paper Moon," an old song that goes: "It's only a paper moon sailing over a cardboard sea / But it wouldn't be make believe if you believed in me." Sam believed in Dean. Kate had to give up on Tasha.

Do I have more to say about this episode? Probably not. I enjoyed it, because I always enjoy watching the boys work through their crap together. The Winchesters are why we watch, after all. After the demon thing and the extended Mark of Cain estrangement, all the lies they've told each other, we needed to see the brothers connecting again by doing the job together, and telling each other the truth. It didn't feel like Dean was "back" at the end of the previous episode. But it does now.

And I absolutely loved the opener of the two of them on vacation at the lake, kicking back on lawn chairs with beer and sunglasses right next to a sign that said "No Hunting." These guys just can't take it easy and relax. They need to work.

Bits and pieces:

— The roadhouse intro set to "Werewolves of London" was fun.

— Kate and Tasha had matching broken moon bracelets, reminding me of the long gone and much missed Samulet. When Kate went on without Tasha, she was wearing both bracelets.

— Hearts were eaten, which also happened in this week's Sleepy Hollow. I've been referring to Supernatural parallels a lot in my Sleepy reviews, so now I'm referring to Sleepy Hollow in my Supernatural review. Isn't it a bit weird that there was heart-eating in both shows that I review, in the same week?

— Tasha called Sam "Paul Bunyan" and the boys "Mary-Kate and Ashley."

— Appropriate that there was no Castiel or Crowley in this one. Even though I love them.

— This week: Durham, Washington, most notably at the Panheads Roadhouse. And that lake again that we've seen so many times in shows shot in Vancouver.

— Dean and Sam were Washington State Game Wardens. I think that was the first time they were game wardens, although I could be wrong.

— We're getting an early break. The next episode airs November 11, and it's going to be their 200th. That's a lot of episodes.


Dean: (about Sam's sling) "You've been kicked, bit, scratched, stabbed, possessed, killed. And you sprain your frigging elbow?"

Dean: "That sling come with a slice of crybaby pie on the side?"

Dean: "Where do we start? What, with logging?"
Sam: "Ice caps?"
Dean: "Bitcoin, yeah? Obama?"
Is that what they said? I absolutely did not get this exchange. What did it mean?

Dean: "I'm just saying that crazy might not be as half as crazy as you think."

Sam: "Guess she likes bad boys."
Dean: "Well, wait till she gets a load of us."

Dean: "This fleabag looks like she ain't done chowing down on Sons of Anarchy just yet."

Kate: "It's not like anybody gave me a handbook on how to be a werewolf."
Dean: "You're doing a pretty good job so far. Break some hearts, then you eat them."

Sam: "Can we take it somewhere else?"
Dean: "Yeah, sure. Go grab some coffee, maybe some bear hearts, let's party."

Sam: "How can you possibly blame Kate for fighting for her sister? We do it all the time."
Dean: "Yeah. And it's worked wonders for us."

Dean: "Tasha's in too deep. You don't ever come back from that. Ever."
Didn't Dean come back from being in too deep, though?

How would you all rate this one? How many slices of crybaby pie out of four?

Billie Doux has been reviewing Supernatural for so long that Dean and Sam Winchester feel like old friends. Courageous, adventurous, gorgeous old friends.


  1. Just loved it.
    The supernatural I found in love with "killing things, saving people, the family buseness" and that I missed so much these last seasons.
    The brothers did their job, talked, they didn't need to be rescued by the guest star. They were good hunters and brothers.
    I was worried because I really hated the episode bitten but this time I liked Kate. Just wish they would have introduce her to Garth and his family or at least gave her his address.
    Thanks Adam Glass to remember what spn is about.
    It was so refreshing to have no angel ou demon.

  2. Considering I don't like werewolf episodes and didn't like "Bitten", I was also surprised that I quite enjoyed this, though it's never going to be a favourite. But I agree with audrey, why didn't they call Garth for werewolf-related help?

    Billie, thank you - I wondered why I kept expecting to see Jack O'Neill fishing all through the opener! Or a lake monster...

    Doesn't Dean have to keep killing or he gets sick and goes demon again? I guess he doesn't want to admit that to Sam.

    And I love him, but only Dean Winchester could manage to sound holier-than-thou (pestering Sam about Lester) one episode after literally being a demon!

  3. That scene of the boys trying to vacation by that "No Hunting" sign by the lake is one of my favorite images ever.

  4. Unlike you, I didn't really like this episode very much.

    I mean the plot was fine, Kate was okay, the scenes between Sam and Dean were pretty good, and I liked the way they worked together.
    I liked that they were both willing to deal with what happened. That's a nice change from all the times when one of them (often Dean) shut the other out and refused to deal with the current issue.
    And like Audrey, I also liked that they went back to the good old "saving people, hunting things" which made me love this show ten years ago.

    But I'm really starting to have problems with this type of episode. You know, the kind of episode with Dean being all "It's a monster, we kill monsters, so let's kill it, even if it hasn't killed anyone".
    I like when they explore the shades of grey with monsters, but why does Dean always have to act like that? After everything that happened, after Benny and Garth and all the others, I think it doesn't make any sense. We've been through this too many times already, hasn't he evolved at all?

    On a completely different note, during the opening scene in the bar, did anyone else notice that we never actually heard the "London" in the lyrics? There was always a big noise covering it. For some reason I found that absolutely hilarious.

    (pssttt! This is my first comment! I've been reading reviews here for ages, but never took the time to comment...)

  5. Raya, congratulations on posting your first comment!

    Dean really wanted it to be a "milk run", no ambiguity, let's go kill a monster, because that's very much the old Dean. But he knows that's not the case so much any more. He's just slow to change, I think.

  6. What did it mean?

    "You fellas must see this stuff all the time .... I've seen raccoons in recrooms and bears in swimming pools, but this? You tell me." (waits expectantly)

    Dean smiles and nods. "Yeah"

    Officer keeps waiting expectantly. Wants an answer. Sams sighs and smiles. They haven't done this in so long they've forgotten to get their story together. Officer keeps waiting expectantly. Boys have to come up with something. What has been in the news lately? Anything will do ....

    Dean: "Where do we start? What with logging, ice caps, bitcoin ...." Officer isn't buying it. Dean assumes he's a typical redneck ... "Obama ...?" Still not working. They've really forgotten how to do this.

    Sam jumps in and saves the day. "Well, maybe you can walk us through the attacks."

  7. Hi pucklady -

    I think that was a reference to the fact that Sam and Dean were pretending to be rangers. Nature experts. So they needed something that would make it seem like they knew what they were talking about. But I have to say, it did feel rather awkward...maybe that was intentional? Because they're still getting back in the saddle?

  8. I'm watching Season 4, Episode 18, "The Monster at the End of This Book"... and a thought just occurred to me. Before the angels fell and heaven was closed, why didn't an archangel protect Kevin from Crowley? I'm at the point in this Season 4 episode where Castiel tells Dean that if Chuck were in the same room with Lilith, an archangel would come and protect him. And the question entered my head: why did this not happen for Kevin? I understand that once the angels fell, an archangel might not have been able to quickly come to Kevin's aid... but even then, when Sam was in his coma, angels heard Dean's call.

  9. Heather1, there are only four archangels, and they're all dead. That's why they didn't rescue Kevin.

  10. Aaaahh, I see. Thanks for clearing that up. It was bugging me last night because I really hated losing Kevin.

  11. No problem, Heather1. Actually, I must confess that I said much the same thing you did in a review, and someone kindly reminded me that the archangels were all dead. Thank you, someone. :)

  12. I wasn't fond of this episode; I detested "Bitten" and didn't want any reminders of that episode. That said, at least it only went to the "I wasn't fond" level. It seems as though the writers have lost their thread -- I can sympathize; it must be difficult facing such high expectations, but I really hope that this show lifts itself back up to its previous level. The premise is wonderful, and the writers are clearly superior.

  13. I, too, like the episodes where the Winchesters work out their crap. The parallels, however, between the pairs of siblings, were a bit too on the nose for me. Not the usual subtlety.

    I wasn't a fan of "Bitten" either, but I didn't mind seeing Kate again. It's always nice when the brothers meet someone again -- especially someone they have helped.

  14. I recently discovered Supernatural and have almost caught up. To the fourth episode of Season 10. Love the show and the stories and your reviews.
    My one complaint is that sometimes I wish though they would treat the brothers stories equally. It feels like they give Dean all the meaty emotional stories which Sam is left with just a line or an expression. Season 8 finale was so awesome because Sam finally opened up and really told Dean (and us) how he felt. And Dean reciprocated.
    This episode at least tried to tell us Sam's point of view. He saw his brother die and that drove him a little obsessed. Dean does need to come off his high horse a little bit. :)
    I hope they show more episodes where the brothers talk and work out their issues; and not just Dean lecturing Sam. And can we have more Sam and Dean as youngsters episodes?

  15. I liked this episode it was nice to have Kate back. I was annoyed thought with deans whole, last I checked we killed monsters thing. In some eps he lets them go and other he kills them even thought they haven't killed anyone. I did feel the episode was predictable as when it showed the bracelet I figured 2 people were linked in to what was happened and I knew Kate would kill her sister. But I did like the Parallel of Kate and Tasha to dean and sam As kate would do anything to save her sister, until the end of course.

  16. I too wasn't thrilled about this episode. I liked the Sam/Dean talks, some of the conversations but over all, I really only liked Kate and how sad she was to be unable to save her sister. It felt like tired retread for me.


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