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All Along The Watchtower – Supernatural’s Season 12 Finale

May 23, 2017

I was so exuberant over Supernatural’s penultimate episode of the season that I went into the finale episode already an emotional wreck – in the very best of ways. I honestly sort of wanted a while to just savor all those wonderful warm feelings, but of course Show just couldn’t let me do that. I barely had time to grab another glass of wine before the familiar notes of Carry On Wayward Son were making me even MORE emotional. There are so many things that happen that are special when a television show has been on this long and had this much impact – even the band Kansas, who recorded that classic, tweeted about the season finale, knowing that every single fan was going to go nuts when Supernatural’s unofficial theme song was played.

The recap took us through a season of ups and downs, through a lot of episodes that were painful to watch and a few story lines that didn’t work for me like I think the show intended, and ultimately ended up where the last episode left off – a Winchester family hug.

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Supernatural 12.22 – This Really Is “Who We Are”

May 22, 2017

I feel like I’ve been waiting all season to write a review like this one – one where I unequivocally enthusiastically at-the-top-of-my-lungs want to scream from the rooftops that THIS IS MY SHOW AND I EFFING LOVE IT! I’ve already regaled writer Robert Berens with all the reasons why he can never leave Supernatural, so he’s probably regretting writing this masterpiece, but honestly, I can’t help it. There were quite a few episodes this season that were disappointing, last week’s especially, so the reminder of why I fell for this Show and just how incredible it can be felt like the very best sort of relief. At least half my live tweets were in all caps, and that hasn’t happened since the last Robbie Thompson episode. I’m incredibly grateful to be able to return to that kind of enthusiasm for my favorite Show.

I’ve been watching Supernatural live since Season 2, so it’s been over a decade of season finale nights, but the mix of anticipation and dread that I feel leading up to every one has never diminished. All day, I kept an eye on the clock. I left work early, made sure I had all the necessary supplies – a little wine, some good take-out, a little pie for dessert. And of course, tissues. Lots of tissues. I tweeted Berens a few hours before the show aired, asking just how many boxes of tissues I would need, and he tweeted back that there were not enough tissues in the world.

Let’s just say that didn’t do anything to calm my nerves. There was mostly anticipation for 12.22, since Jensen had told me this was the episode I would love and I figure he pretty much knows what I love at this point. If he said I was going to be a happy fangirl, I was fairly certain I would be. Which also means tissues. At the same time, I had nothing but feelings of foreboding about 12.23, amped up by all the rumors about Mark Sheppard leaving the show and by Misha Collins’ tweet of an ominous (and emotional) video celebrating Castiel’s 100th episode.

Finale nights are full of lots of nail biting, but they’re also nights when the entire Supernatural fandom comes together. All over the world, thanks to streams and downloads as well as broadcasts, fans sit down “together” to watch, sharing our reactions and trying to support each other through the ups and downs of the episode. You can almost feel the tension across the globe as those final minutes tick by, as everyone waits to find out – literally – who will live and who will die. It’s been like that since the Kripke days, and this season was no exception.

And boy, were we right to be emotional – both the anticipation and the dread turned out to be well founded.

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Celebrating Supernatural Season Finale Night — with a Chat with David Haydn-Jones!

May 18, 2017

Supernatural –“Who We Are” — SN1222a_0183.jpg — Pictured: David Haydn-Jones as Mr. Ketch — Photo: Diyah Pera/The CW — © 2017 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved

So who’s ready for tonight?? Hands?? Anyone??

I’ve done this many times now, but the mix of dread and anticipation and exhilaration that is Supernatural season finale night never gets old. I’ve stocked up on tissues, have a nice bottle of wine, and we’ve ordered pizza – maybe I’ll get some pie to go with it too. But no matter how many times I do this, or how prepared I am, I’m still unable to sit still. Too many emotions! So what better way to get ready for the finale than by posting my recent chat with this season’s most fascinating villain, Mr. Ketch?

When you decide to interview someone who plays a villain on your favorite show, you’re never entirely sure whether it’s going to be a conversation that makes you laugh or one that makes you grind your teeth. I was in the midst of grading a gigantic stack of papers when I took a break a few weeks ago to chat with Supernatural’s David Haydn-Jones, so I really wasn’t in the mood for any more teeth grinding – and frankly, I sort of needed a laugh. Luckily, despite playing Mr. Ketch, who’s not very funny, Jones himself proved to be a lot of fun. Also, not British.

Lynn: You’re giving me a break from grading papers, so thank you.

David: Good! Any time you can have a break from grading papers, that’s a good day.

Lynn: I’ll say. So, I’ve got a few questions. The reception to your character has been much more complicated than usual – at first, everyone hated the notorious Mr. Ketch. Then you invested him with so much charm that some people started to sort of like him. Then he slept with Mary and shot Mick and now he’s about to torture Mary, so most people are back to hating him. How have you negotiated that roller coaster?

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Wait, Is That Eileen?? Supernatural 12.21

May 18, 2017

The past week has been a whirlwind, much of it Supernatural-related, and now I’m writing this from family vacation, so my review of last week’s episode is influenced by the context in which I watched the show and the fact that right now my feet are up and it’s a sunny spring day in San Francisco. And that’s probably a good thing, because – like the majority of Supernatural fans – I had a lot of issues with last week’s episode.

I did, however, have a good time the night I watched it anyway. That’s because the book release party for my new book, Family Don’t End With Blood: Cast and Fans on How Supernatural Has Changed Lives, happened the night before at The Study Hollywood in LA. It was an amazing, inspiring, emotional night, where actors and writers and producers and fans all came together to celebrate this amazing show that we all love. The next night, a group of us gathered in our hotel room to watch the episode together. It was the first time most of us had watched together an episode of the show that made us friends, so it felt very special. We ordered Grub Hub, shared some delicious nachos, and waited with a mix of anticipation and trepidation for the show to begin. Literally sitting on the edge of our seats (on the hotel beds…)

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Ouch! Supernatural Gets Emotional with Twigs & Twine & Tasha Barnes

May 7, 2017

Sometimes it’s downright painful being a Supernatural fan! But I don’t mean that as a complaint—this is part of what the Show has always been. Two weeks in a row that were painful is tough to take, there’s no doubt about that, but there was a lot to appreciate in this week’s episode. Even the painful was just done so well! Grudging admiration, Steve Yockey, for the writing, Richard Speight Jr., for the directing, and all the actors for conveying the pain so brilliantly.

Before I do an actual recap, here are some of the reasons for my grudging admiration.

First, I love when an episode is a mirror for the Winchesters. This is a tradition going back all the way to the beginning, something Kripke liked to do and made work extremely well. Sometimes the mirror is a little too large and obvious, but in this case, I didn’t think we were too pounded over the head with it – or maybe I just enjoyed the pounding. Which sounds really wrong.

Max and Alicia, the witch twins, were immediately seen by fans as a mirror of Sam and Dean in their first episode. Their closeness, the way they talked at the same time and finished each other’s sentences, the way they squabbled but clearly always had each other’s backs – all of that reminded us of the Winchester brothers. Sibling pairs often are used in the show as a mirror for the brothers, so that wasn’t a surprise.

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Dean Winchester and the Terrible Horrible No Good Very Bad Day – Supernatural ‘The Future’

April 30, 2017

It has taken me another 24 hours to figure out why I had such a strong emotional reaction to this episode – and to give the episode more props for where it intended to take me even if I didn’t enjoy the ride. The thing is, I loved the last major Cas-centric episode, as my reviews loudly proclaimed. I’ve empathized with Castiel’s painful sense of not belonging anywhere, because there’s nothing in the world more painful for humans and sometimes Cas is just as human as the rest of us (thanks to Misha’s ability to invest the character with emotional nuances). I was moved by Castiel’s near death and his need, in what he thought were his last seconds, to make his feelings clear to Sam and Dean; I was moved by their reaction too, that powerful moment when they each clasped a hand and pulled him up. I had to gush to Misha about his performance in that episode repeatedly (sorry, Misha) and to Richard about his directing (sorry, Richard) but that scene really worked. That scene was Team Free Will re-established.

And it wasn’t one way. Sam and Dean also took down their barriers and made themselves vulnerable in their relationship with Cas; not as explicitly perhaps, but Jared and Jensen are so good at what they do that we could clearly feel it and see it. Castiel was accepted as family. So that’s the lens with which I viewed ‘The Future’. That the bond between the three of them was close and tight and important. That made the things that happened in this episode very painful.

I’ve felt the same way when one of the Winchesters lies to the other(s). It’s such an extraordinarily painful thing when someone you love and trust is deceitful, so it hurts to see it. As much as Dean is repeatedly angry in this episode, it’s clear that underneath that anger is hurt. He allowed himself to love and trust Cas, so perceived betrayal hurts like hell. Hence my frequent use of OUCH in this review. It HURT.

That said, perhaps that’s exactly what Show wanted me to feel. That last episode did such a good job of setting up the emotional connection between Cas and the Winchesters, and sometimes that is exactly what this Show does when it’s getting ready to punch you right in the heart. It’s a bit of a Supernatural tradition dating back to Kripke, and it’s most definitely been the cause of entire lost days of my life railing and screaming and generally shaking my fist. That’s because I care – a lot. I care about Cas and Sam and Dean and I care about how they care about each other.

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A Chat With Shoshannah Stern –Bringing Kickass Hunter Eileen Back to Supernatural

April 26, 2017

I’m not alone in loving the return of Eileen Leahy on Supernatural a few weeks ago, so I couldn’t wait to interview Shoshannah Stern again. She’s crazy busy right now (with all good exciting things) but still took the time to answer my questions – which just proves all over again how awesome she is.

In her most recent Supernatural episode, the character of Eileen gets to flirt with Sam Winchester, prove what a badass hunter she is by singlehandedly taking out a demon, fire the Colt, and accidentally kill a particularly annoying British Man of Letters, for which she needs a Sam hug. As you do.

Lynn: Eileen was a fan favorite by the time that first episode in Season 11 (Into the Mystic) was over, and fans—me included–were so excited to have her back. What is it about the character that you think has clicked so much with fans?

Shoshannah: I know that for me, when I got the first draft of the script for Into the Mystic, Eileen leaped off the page and into my heart. There were just so many dimensions to her. I love that both of her episodes so far haven’t really been about her taking down monsters, but the different sorts of emotional baggage that’s left behind in their wake. There’s a side to her that’s hard, and I think that’s the side you see first, but then there’s another that’s vulnerable, and it’s kind of surprising. I also love that she can take some things seriously and take the piss out of others. And yeah, she’s deaf and shoots a Colt. None of these things are exclusive.

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