Something old - something new - something borrowed - something blue


Did you know that there is an animated version of Supernatural? Several people showed interest in learning more about Supernatural: The Animation so I was thinking that during this hellatus I could pull back the curtain a little bit on the series as I have watched all the episodes.

This is the first part of five articles about the animation. In this article I will briefly introduce the characters and their backgrounds. First, though, I will start by defining animation.
 
Animation is the process of creating motion and shape change illusion by means of the rapid display of a sequence of static images that minimally differ from each other. The illusion—as in motion pictures in general—is thought to rely on the phi phenomenon. Animators are artists who specialize in the creation of animation.

Anime, also informally romanized as animé, is a term used to refer to Japanese animated productions featuring hand-drawn or computer animation. The word is the abbreviated pronunciation of "animation" in Japanese, where this term references all animation. The meaning of the word anime can vary slightly, definitions include animation from Japan or, alternatively, a Japanese-disseminated animation style often characterized by colorful graphics, vibrant characters and fantastic themes. Arguably, the stylization approach to the meaning may open up the possibility of anime produced in countries other than Japan. For simplicity, many Westerners strictly view anime as an animation product from Japan. Some scholars suggest defining anime as specifically or quintessentially Japanese may be related to a new form of orientalism.
Supernatural: The Animation combines western and Japanese animation characteristics in one special package. You can see the influence from both. The anime's first season consists of 22 episodes, which last about 20 minutes each. If you are used to the normal 40+ minutes it will feel quite fast but the episodes are structured for the accelerated pace. While the story line covers seasons 1-2 of the live-action series, it also includes original stories exploring the Winchesters, expands stories with secondary characters and introduces new characters. Most of the characters have gotten a makeover in the anime. Here are the short introductions of the main players.

DeanSPN1

Dean Winchester

The anime version of Dean hasn’t changed much. As the story portrays Dean in seasons 1-2, he is slightly more carefree and gives more a feeling of how Dean used to be. Also the brothers are the focus of the series - they are front and center. With Dean we also get new Weechester stories to what his, Sam’s and John’s lives were on the road. They have tried to closely copy Jensen’s outlook on his character.

SamSPN1

Sam Winchester

Like Dean, the anime version of Sam has not changed from the show version and just like Dean we get some background stories from his younger years. Otherwise the story closely follows seasons 1-2. Jared’s outlook was also copied on Sam the best they could. Since Jared does the voice for Sam, the animation character truly reflects the heart of Sam.

JohnSPN1

John Winchester

The first character that is not directly the same as in the show is John. We do see him more, once even with his own case. He is a true professional, revenge driven and pretty bad ass in the anime too. He also shows his compassion and fear of losing the boys. His outlook on the other hand is very different and this is where the anime roots kick in. He wears a different type of clothes, has a clean beard and the top of his head has a bald spot. His also really towers over the boys.

BobbySPN1

Bobby Singer

We don’t see Bobby a lot in the episodes but he is there. The character looks very different from the show version - he looks like an Italian old school Mafioso from the movies! He doesn’t have a beard, is more round and his cap is gone so he is not very recognizable. Without the name the character could be anyone. Only the characteristics have stayed. He still cares a lot about the boys.

MissouriSPN1

Missouri Mosely

Luckily we get to see more of Missouri in the anime but she also looks different. She looks like an nice old lady with a bit of a shamanistic outlook. She reminds me of Whoopi Goldberg actually. Missouri is even more mysterious in the anime than she was in the series. She works with Bobby and the brothers.

YEDSPN1

Yellow Eyed Demon, Azazel

The yellow eyed demon is also shown more in the anime. "He" possesses different bodies, but mainly he uses a man that slightly resembles the show version in his looks. He has a definite creep factor when he appears! His scheming is shown in many hunts.

JessicaSPN1

Jessica Moore

In one episode of the anime Jessica was shown as a past story. Sam actually met her while protecting her from a monster. John and Dean were on the same case. Her outlook is fairly different than it was in the show. I watched anime a lot when I was young and Jessica is cut from a clear "cute schoolgirl mold" that is usually seen in anime. The episode was a flashback and it was nice to see Sam and Jess before all the trouble.

MarySPN1

Mary Winchester

The anime doesn't start the same as the show so we don't see Mary flashbacks until later in the series. She appears in an episode named "Home" that is mirrored from the show. She doesn't look like Mary from the show but her characteristics and personality are still there as well as her love for her boys.

MegSPN1

Meg Masters


There is also a story behind Meg so the anime deepens our knowledge about her backround. It is really different from the show. Her past and present day don't go at all the same way. She does look like first Meg but her character is mostly in the sidelines. The story of how she became a demon is really sad.

JakeSPN1

Jake Talley

In the anime we do get more background about Jake and what kind of a man he is. He looks like the character in the show. We also see more of his motivations and the influence of the YED on him.

Voices

Jared did the voice over for Sam for the whole 22 episodes but Jensen only did the last two episodes due to scheduling reasons (Not the Japanese version). The characters of Sam and Dean were also drawn to resemble Jared and Jensen.

Other voice overs were:

Andrew Farrar, Annakin Slayd as Dean Winchester
Harry Standjofski as Bobby Singer
Alain Goulem as John Winchester
Angela Galuppo as Jessica Moore
Lucinda Davis as Missouri Mosely
Erin Agostino as Meg Masters

Even though for me it wasn’t a necessity to have Jared and Jensen voice acting Sam and Dean, the fact that Jared did the whole season and especially when Jensen joined for the last two episodes really did make a difference. Both give their voice acting the same emotions that they give on screen.

Episodes

1. The Alter Ego
2. Roadkill
3. Home
4. Ghost on the Highway
5. Savage Blood
6. Till Death Do Us Part
7. Temptation of the Demon
8. Everlasting Love
9. The Spirit of Vegas
10. Moonlight
11. Nightmare
12. Darkness Calling
13. What Lives in the Lake
14. Reunion
15. Devils Trap
16. In My Time of Dying
17. Rising Son
18. Crossroads
19. Loser
20. What Is and What Should Never Be
21. All Hell Breaks Loose: Part 1
22. All Hell Breaks Loose: Part 2

Supernatural: The Animation is not a children's animation/cartoon because of the atmosphere that fits Supernatural. They tried to give a western feel to the story and the monsters clearly have Japanese influence. They are really freaky sometimes and some of them do go way over the top. Even though they were quite strict to keep it "in canon", they also introduced twists like a demon possessing a vampire or a vampire child that grows up. These stories were not shown in the real show. I am not even sure if it's possible (canon-wise). It made me think about the Darkness, though, and what if it can possess monsters and make them stronger or something?

DeanSam2 1

I bought the Blu-ray version but I think the DVD has the same specials inside. Jensen and Jared introduced every episode if you wanted that option. The story and every episode ended to "Carry On Wayward Son" with credits which belongs to Supernatural as its unofficial theme song. I wouldn't want it any other way.

Supernatural 'The Animation' - First Exclusive Engl. Trailer [by TV - Guide]
Have you seen the animated series? What do you think of its portrayal of the characters? Strengths? Weaknesses?

Upcoming next: Part 2, the story so far... and PART 3
 

Comments  

YellowEyedSam
# YellowEyedSam 2015-08-08 06:17
When I first saw the title I teared up and placed a hand over my mouth. Could it be? Another season of the anime? No. I felt saddened but then I perked up with surprise! I couldn't believe someone made an article on the anime!

Quote:
Since Jared does the voice for Sam, the animation character truly reflects the heart of Sam.
*nod* To me the voice is the life of the character.

Quote:
The yellow eyed demon is also shown more in the anime. "He" possesses different bodies, but mainly he uses a man that slightly resembles the show version in his looks. He has a definite creep factor when he appears! His scheming is shown in many hunts.
That voice in the anime is so bad-ass and creepy. Its certainly the voice of a leader.

Quote:
There is also a story behind Meg so the anime deepens our knowledge about her backround. It is really different from the show. Her past and present day don't go at all the same way. She does look like first Meg but her character is mostly in the sidelines. The story of how she became a demon is really sad.
I agree on the tragic part. More tragic by the fact demons in the anime actually SEEM like demons so its like she's possessed by a mindless monster.

Quote:
Even though for me it wasn’t a necessity to have Jared and Jensen voice acting Sam and Dean, the fact that Jared did the whole season and especially when Jensen joined for the last two episodes really did make a difference. Both give their voice acting the same emotions that they give on screen.
I started the anime first so who did the voices wasn't a concern to me. I was quite surprised to find out the actor for Sam voiced all 22 episodes. I found it unusual for an American actor to do that. You don't see the same level of commitment as Japanese voice actors.

I thought Andrew did a great job as Dean and personally if there was another anime I wouldn't mind if he continued that role. I felt more connected to Sam when I did find out Jared voiced him and would be really gutted if another anime came around and he couldn't voice Sam.

Quote:
Have you seen the animated series? What do you think of its portrayal of the characters? Strengths? Weaknesses?
As I said before I saw the anime first. I loved it enough that I decided to try out the live action. Bearing in mind I don't watch TV and the last series I saw was likely Power Rangers Lost galaxy! So the moment I snuggled into my seat and watched the pilot I couldn't help but think "this is so weird", but I gradually became engrossed and two and half months later was caught up. Thank you SPN Anime for introducing me to the show!

I thought the portrayal was fine. Dean was more different than Sam in the anime from the live action. But I didn't mind.

Strengths? The budget makes SPN anime what the live action could do had it unlimited budget. Another would be the story; Its different enough yet loyal to the show to be good.

Weaknesses? I don't know! I love the live action and anime equally. I have no complaints I can think of.
Lilah_Kane
# Lilah_Kane 2015-08-08 08:39
Thank you for reading and giving so detailed comment back! I am surprised that you found Supernatural this way but also glad that you did. We rarely hear how we found the show and you had totally different starting point of view to the anime and the show. I watched the anime after season nine with a friend. He is also an anime lover and likes the show. You are probably glad to hear the next four articles will focus on the episodes in detail but will not tell more about that yet.

Sometimes I ponder what my life would have been like if I had watched the show when I first saw the pilot. It was the first time it aired in my country. I loved Dark Angel and hear Jensen was doing another show. I remember I really loved the pilot but I was at school and I missed some episodes after that and Supernatural was forgotten. Years later hubby's brother suggested the show to us and he was really giddy. Like "Watch it, WATCH it, WATCH IT!!" And in that time we just said "Yeah, yeah, we will". But we didn't have a way to watch the episodes. Not from the pilot and in our tv the series was already in season six or something.

So, then Netflix came and I could watch it when I wanted it and as much I wanted. Needless to say I caught up pretty fast and I could join live for season nine. Rest is now history and I am doing a lot things that I never dreamed of. That also made me buy the animation and watch it.

- Lilah
Nate Winchester
# Nate Winchester 2015-08-10 16:21
Quote:
Did you know that there is an animated version of Supernatural? Several people showed interest in learning more about Supernatural: The Animation so I was thinking that during this hellatus I could pull back the curtain a little bit on the series as I have watched all the episodes.


Yes, yes I did. ;)

1. The Alter Ego ("https://natewinchester.wordpress.com/2012/06/10/spna-the-alter-ego/")
2. Roadkill
3. Home ("https://natewinchester.wordpress.com/2012/06/24/mega-episode-recap/")
4. Ghost on the Highway ("https://natewinchester.wordpress.com/2012/07/01/spna-ghost-on-the-highway/")
5. Savage Blood ("https://natewinchester.wordpress.com/2012/07/08/spna-savage-blood/")
6. Till Death Do Us Part
7. Temptation of the Demon ("https://natewinchester.wordpress.com/2012/07/22/spna-till-death-do-us-part-temptation-of-the-demon/")
8. Everlasting Love
9. The Spirit of Vegas ("https://natewinchester.wordpress.com/2012/08/05/spna-everlasting-love-the-spirit-of-vegas/")
10. Moonlight ("https://natewinchester.wordpress.com/2012/08/14/spna-moonlight/")
11. Nightmare ("https://natewinchester.wordpress.com/2012/08/18/spna-nightmare/")
12. Darkness Calling ("https://natewinchester.wordpress.com/2012/08/26/spna-darkness-calling/")
13. What Lives in the Lake
14. Reunion ("https://natewinchester.wordpress.com/2012/09/09/spna-what-lives-in-the-lake-reunion/")
15. Devils Trap ("https://natewinchester.wordpress.com/2012/09/16/spna-devils-trap/")
16. In My Time of Dying ("https://natewinchester.wordpress.com/2012/09/22/spna-in-my-time-of-dying/")
17. Rising Son
18. Crossroads
19. Loser
20. What Is and What Should Never Be
21. All Hell Breaks Loose: Part 1
22. All Hell Breaks Loose: Part 2

Wait... I seem to have never reviewed the last 6 episodes. I swore I did. :(

Feel free to reference or link any you want and disagree with me too (uh, on the episodes I reviewed). :D

There's also a group on youtube that did a Supernatural Anime "abridged" that can be quite hilarious if you get all the canon jokes they pull.

Looking forward to your other parts!
Lilah_Kane
# Lilah_Kane 2015-08-10 16:30
You did? Do you have links to your old reviews/article s? I would like to link them also as I am writing about the anime. More the merrier.

- Lilah
Nate Winchester
# Nate Winchester 2015-08-10 18:32
lol Links do not show up well here.

Roll your mouse over the episode names I listed in my previous comment. Should be something clickable there. ;)
Nate Winchester
# Nate Winchester 2015-08-10 18:33
Though since it seems like I forgot to review the last 6 episodes, let me know when you get to them and I'll toss in my 2 cents.
Lilah_Kane
# Lilah_Kane 2015-08-11 12:46
Now I feel silly that I didn't notice they were links but will do! :)

- Lilah
YellowEyedSam
# YellowEyedSam 2015-08-14 05:08
Review those last episodes! :)
sylvia37
# sylvia37 2015-08-10 23:10
My husband bought them for me and we really liked it. It's definitely a mixture of the core of the show and Japanese sensibility. I look forward to your articles.
Suzkatoon75
# Suzkatoon75 2015-08-11 03:42
Didn't know there was an animation. I might give it a try. Looks interesting.
YellowEyedSam
# YellowEyedSam 2015-08-13 19:17
You should DEFINITELY give it a try ;)