I was going to type up a twitter response to SPN 14.03 (and season so far), but I'm not good with that thread stuff so I thought I'd dust off my poor, neglected LJ and type up some responses here. :)
Hey all!! Hope you're all doing well. xx
So. S14 eh? Incredible really and I still find it weird that a show I fell in love with 14 years ago is still going. Maybe not going as strong, but wow...still going.
I'm still watching and I'm still (mostly) engaged and interested in the stories. No where near the level I used to be, but I'm still drawn to it like a moth to a flame.
The overwhelming feeling I have so far is simply one of weariness. There's certainly some things I'm enjoying but I just feel that the stories feel a little tired - there's nothing especially dynamic or really that new or interesting. That's not to say it's bad - the acting and directing is still solid and the writing is pretty strong. It just feels a bit, well, tired...
I'll try to unpack that a bit.
I accept that it must be extremely difficult to come up with new ideas and stories this far into the series - especially when it comes to giving Jared and Jensen some new and interesting challenges. I thought Dean being possessed for the first time held some promise. And indeed Jensen did an admirable job of being "other". I especially thought his 14.01 performance was outstanding. He was so clearly *not* Dean - the change of cadence in his voice was particularly noticeable, as was his vocal pace and change in body language. I didn't feel he captured that so well in 14.02 and 14.03, but it was still pretty damn good.
I think I'm just a bit disappointed that there was nothing more interesting in the aftermath of it all. I know it's only early, so maybe there will be more yet, but Dean feeling guilty and remembering being possessed and lying to Sam and saying he didn't etc etc just felt... idk....tired? Done before? Same old? I'll reserve my judgement on this as I feel (maybe hope) that there's more to all this than meets the eye. I think it might be interesting if Michael is still actually in there and subtly manipulating Dean and over time we might see some changes in him (though, that would be pretty much what they did with the Mark - so, hmmm... not sure where they can go with this that hasn't already been explored). Also, Dean was kind of a dick at times (hey, he acknowledged that himself!) and I'm not sure what to do with that. I feel like I'm passed feeling sorry for him (and even Sam for that matter - especially when they've done questionable things).
I absolutely ADORED in charge Sam in the first episode. The command he had over the demons!! Kill me now! That was awesome and I was rather hopeful we'd see more of this. But... alas. Sam reverted to being almost ashamed of his leadership skills in front of Dean. I know Sam is being careful and considerate around Dean now that he's back, but he just seemed to lose all that confidence when Dean returned. Again, we've seen this all before so it was just a bit, um, tiresome.
It also seemed like the perfect opportunity for the brothers to connect over a truly shared experience - angel possession. With a simple "I know" from Sam we could have seen Dean acknowledge Sam's past experiences and share the bond of surviving it. (I won't even start on the, still lingering, bitterness I feel about them allowing Dean to have an angel possess Sam without his consent in S9 - but how amazing would it be for that to be acknowledged. Yeah. It know it will never happen, I just have to accept that).
I felt 14.03 was a "tying-up" of the Wayward Daughters attempted spin off. I don't begrudge Berens for doing that, he seemed pretty invested in it. I'm glad we got more info on what happened to Kaia. The spin off was doomed to fail really - they just don't seem to get what it is about Supernatural that makes it work (hello - TWO BROTHERS WHO KEEP DOING STUPID THINGS FOR EACH OTHER BECAUSE THEY LOVE EACH OTHER THAT MUCH!). I appreciate they want to capture the magic that's kept SPn going for 14 years but it's pretty tough. My thought is they introduce a new Sam and Dean type characters (brothers or best buddies etc) and go back to telling hunting urban legend stories).
I still really like Jody. I like the relationship she was with the boys. :)
As for all the others? I don't know. At times I'm interested, but mostly I don't care so much. I know the show has to include them all to give the Js time off but unless the focus is on them I'm not particularly engaged. Their on screen chemistry is still amazing and I hang out for those moments.
That all said, I don't mind the idea of the bunker being a hunters headquarters. It makes some sense - especially as it's been breached so many times and SO many people have visited it now anyway, it's hardly a secret. I wonder where they are all sleeping though? Or maybe it's just a drop in spot. I think Dean will eventually shoo them all away at some point though.
I keep saying (and hearing) that it would be great to move on from the angel and demon storylines but I think it's time to accept that this is what Supernatural is now (and has been since S1 really, but just not has all encompassing as it is now). With the wings in the title card there's certainly no escaping it. Hopefully there might be at least one or two episodes this season that have Sam and Dean, on the road, in a weirdly decorated hotel, fighting a monster together.
I am enjoying not being so invested in the show now I have to say. I like not getting truly upset when it's bad (oh yes, there have been real tears in the past), but still feeling satisfied when it's good. :)