Supernatural Favorites, Season 1

[Can you tell what my favorite episodes are from the screenshots?  Without checking below the cut!]

Detailed analysis of season 1 data indicates my favorite episodes are not normal.  According to a compilation of IMDB and ratings, the six favorite season 1 episodes, in rank order are:

  • First place:  Home
  • Second place tie:  Pilot and Faith
  • “Fourth” place 3-way tie:  Scarecrow, Provenance, and Devil’s Trap

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Best of Supernatural Season 1, Part 1

Jensen Ackles has said that season 1 is his favorite.  It’s what launched the juggernaut; and it’s what brought the cast and crew together.  Let’s look at the top ranked episodes,based on ratings from IMDB,, and me.  (Remember, the stars are my ratings only.)

1.  Home (109)

This episode gets 5 stars.This may be the only mid-season episode written by Eric Kripke.  So it must be special, right?  Sam and Dean return to their old home in Lawrence, KS, to investigate one of Sam’s visions.  Reviewed here.

– Written by Eric Kripke; directed by Ken Girotti
– IMDB rating 8.6 (out of 10); rating 9.2 (out of 10)

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Supernatural: Southern Route Trap

Do the post title mash-ups help indicate which episodes are discussed?  E.g., Route 666, Devil’s Trap, Southern Comfort.  Not so much?  Yeah, I was afraid of that.  (But that doesn’t mean I’m going to stop.)

Route 666 (113)

This episode gets 2 stars.

A truck approaches a car from behind.

Nothing says “scary” like a racist ghost truck.

One of season 1’s worst episodes, unlucky #13 had a lot of problems, not the least being written by the team many consider Supernatural‘s weakest writers.  Initially set to take place in Mississippi (or Alabama?), unseasonably cold and snowy weather in Vancouver, Canada (where the series is filmed) forced the setting to move further north, to southeastern Missouri.  Exploring racism in the turbulent ’60’s was a worthy topic, but making the evil spirit a racist ghost truck was rather preposterous.  Even Sam, reminiscing about college, noted “I miss conversations that didn’t start with ‘this killer truck.'”  Casting beautiful but wooden Megalyn Echikunwoke as Dean’s implausible love interest did the show no favors, either.

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Supernatural: Fundamental Brother, Man

Reading Is Fundamental (721)

This episode gets 4 stars.I didn’t pay much attention to this episode initially.  Was I so damned tired of the Leviathan story line I tuned out?  Or had I come to just not care about the series?  Either way, now that I’ve been fully rejuvenated by season 8…

Wow!  “Reading Is Fundamental” deftly set things in motion for season 8, while being action-packed and interesting on its own.

As the Winchesters unearth a stone tablet with strange writing on it, a teen from Michigan is struck by lightning, Castiel wakes up from his Sam-induced coma (from “The Born-Again Identity“), a storm covers the entire continental U.S., and thousands of babies are born.

Teen-aged Kevin Tran can read the stone tablet.

Meet Kevin Tran. He’s in advanced placement.

The teen of course is one Kevin Tran.  When he wakes from his lightning-induced coma, he goes in search of the tablet, although he has no idea why.  Not only does the broken tablet mend in his hands, he’s able to read its writing, albeit with difficulty.

The new, kinder, gentler Castiel has a sense of humor; but he’s also a bit philosophically wonky, which drives an irritated Dean nuts.

But even a wonky angel is useful.  He explains the tablet is the  word of God, written by God’s scribe Metatron.  (Interestingly, it’s Sam, not movie-obsessed Dean, who confuses Metatron with Megatron, the evil transformer.)  Castiel also tells us that Kevin is a prophet.

None of this meant much to me in mid-2012.  But now that we’ve actually met Metatron, it’s canon.  (Plus, I’ve since seen Transformers, so I have a point of reference.)

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Supernatural: ‘Wicked Trial’

[This review was originally posted the week of June 8, 2013 at the New Stream of Conscience.]

What an terrific week of Supernatural viewing!  Four excellent episodes, including two of my all-time favorites.

Something Wicked (118)

This episode gets 5 stars.Perhaps I’m overly fond of “Something Wicked” because it’s the first Supernatural I watched.  But I don’t think so.  I’ve now seen 172 episodes, many of them several times, and “Something Wicked” always stands out for several reasons.

Dean and Sam walk towards Michael, who couldn't protect his little brother.

Dean identifies with Michael, a boy who’s trying to protect his younger brother.

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Supernatural: ‘Home, Tiger Mommy’

Home (109)

This episode gets 5 stars.Man, I wish I had Eric Kripke’s creativity.  And writing ability.  How does he combine tenderness and pathos with comedy, and then throw in a bloody horror scene?  Even now, after many years and several viewings, I still want to fast-forward through the infamous evil cymbal monkey/garbage disposal scene.

Dean tells Sam what remembers about the night their moither died.

Brotherly love: “I remember the fire…the heat. And then I carried you out the front door.”

Compare that to the affectionate brotherly exchangeat the gas station.  Sam asks Dean what he remembers about “that night.”  When Dean replies he was the one who saved Sam, Sam is genuinely moved.  It shows us how strong their bond is.

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Supernatural Memorial Week Two-fer, Part 2

Dead in the Water (103)

This episode gets 5 stars.It’s not just one of my season 1 favorites, but one of my all-time faves.  I have no idea why it got such a low rating at IMDB, and a less than “usual” one at Television Without Pity.  (TWoP’s “usual” fan grade is B.)  Sure, there were some incongruities, but the character development, spookiness of the monster of the week, and sheer drama more than  made up for it.  Plus there was that “money shot” of Dean emerging from the lake with Lucas.  (Which also happens to be one of Jensen Ackles’s favorite scenes.)

Dean rescues Lucas from the lake.

Season 1’s money shot

Sam seems terribly emo at the beginning of the episode.  But if you put it in context, this was very early in the series, and Sam was still mourning Jessica.

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Supernatural March Madness Preliminaries!

Yes, Supernatural March Madness is nearly upon us again!   This year, we need to ensure only the best episodes are in the tournament, so we’re holding  preliminaries.  For the next two weeks, you’ll see polls here to vote for your 5 favorite episodes from every season.  The top 32 episodes will move on to the Supernatural March Madness Tournament of Episodes.

Let’s get this party started with season 1

Supernatural March Madness preliminaries, season 1

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The best of Supernatural season 1

Since “best” is the theme for NaBloPoMo this month, I thought I’d list some of my favorite things from Supernatural‘s first season.

  • Best episode.  I always thought it was a tie between “Faith” and “Something Wicked.”  But over the years, I’ve found myself rewatching “Something Wicked” more often.  Interestingly, it’s also the first Supernatural episode I ever saw.
  • Best song.  “Can’t Find My Way Home” by Blind Faith/Steve Winwood from “Route 666.”  I won 2 tickets to a Steve Winwood concert once.  But the song would still have won had I not been, like, the 6th caller.  😉
  • Best scene.  The diner scene in “Hell House.”  Dean is tormenting a pissy Sam with the Laughing Fisherman.   Only it turns Sam has the last laugh. Hee!
  • Best guest star.  I’m going with Bobby Singer.  I’m one of the few people who recognized his awesomeness before season 2.
  • Best girl of the week.  Layla from “Faith.”  I was rooting for the “good girl” and the “bad boy.”  But they just sat on the bed.
  • Best monster of the week.  The daeva(s) from “Shadow.”  In a season of creepies, the ones you couldn’t see were the scariest.
  • Jensen Ackles’ Emmy reel.  “Dead in the Water.”  It confirmed what I discovered in “Something Wicked”—this pretty boy is a damn good actor.
  • Jared Padalecki’s Emmy reel.  “Asylum.”  Our first look at “bad Sam” and his psyche.

And in honor of my awards, here are a few shiny little squares (aka icons or user picks at LiveJournal) commemorating some of my picks.

So, what were your favorite moments from season 1?