Supernatural Season 8

  • "Sacrifice": A Visual Review, Part 1

    Now that we've all had a chance to mostly forget what we saw in "Sacrifice," I figured it was the perfect time to revisit the episode and take a look at all the pretty.  And let me tell you, there was a LOT of pretty in this episode.  So.  Much.  Pretty.  In fact, there were so many great shots that I had to split my visual review into two parts because it would have been insanely long otherwise.  So let's delve into part 1 of my visual review of "Sacrifice" and see what we can see, shall we?
  • "One Theory To Rule Them All: Our Explanation of Season 8"


    Okay, ladies and gentlemen, after a fantastic chat with fellow WFB author Bookdal, we have come up with an extra-special Theory about the entirety of Season 8.  We think we've found a way to explain all manner of inconsistencies and strangeness that's been happening this season.  Not only that, but our theory even redeems Sam's early-season behavior!  Not possible, you say?  Read on and see what you think after you've heard what we have to say.
  • "Supernatural" 8.01 - "We Need To Talk About Kevin" Review by Far Away Eyes

    Like riding a bike, Carver returns to "Supernatural" as if he had never left. He seamlessly slips these characters---and a few new ones---onto his canvas and tells the story of the Winchesters with witty dialogue, poignant emotion, and the gritty flavor we've come to expect from the series. With echoes of the "Pilot," "Lazarus Rising," and "Exile on Mainstreet," Carver sets the stage for the fresh, new season brilliantly.

  • “I’m Sorry, Have You Met Me?" I'm Nate!

    Too much time passes and old friends seem like strangers.
    Not enough time can make strangers stay strangers.
    With this in mind, it's time to POP by for a visit with our Contributing Staff at THE WINCHESTER FAMILY BUSINESS.

    The WFB Writing Staff was challenged to select eleven questions to answer from an extensive list. 
    When you are done reading, we would like to challenge you to answer a few of the questions that our staff member answered.
    Long-time visitors or new ones, we'd like to get to know you better, too.

    Welcome another brave writer who accepted the SEASON ELEVEN/ ANSWER ELEVEN CHALLENGE!

  • “I’m Sorry, Have You Met Me?" I'm Percysowner!

    The best way to get to know someone is to have a little heart to heart chat.

    With this in mind, let's have some fun getting to better know our Contributing Staff here at The Winchester Family Business.

    The entire writing staff was challenged to select eleven questions to answer from an extensive list. 

    When you are done reading, we would like to challenge you to answer a few of the questions that our staff member answered. Long-time visitors or new ones... We'd like to get to know you better, too.

    Welcome our next courageous writer who accepted the SEASON ELEVEN/ ANSWER ELEVEN CHALLENGE!

  • A Deeper Look at Supernatural Season Eight Dean Winchester, Part One

     

    Oh, thank you season eight!  Way to bring the word "character" back to Dean Winchester.  For a guy that's been through so much, he was finally able to take many steps forward in his growth, and the end result is someone I believe in again.  

    For anyone that read my "Deeper Look at Season Seven Dean Winchester," I was pretty damned annoyed over the butchering of his character by the end of the season.  Of course they didn't so Sam much justice either, but with Dean, it was a guy I didn't recognize.  Here's an excerpt from that article that has particular impact on my season eight analysis:

    I so wish I could say that season seven continued in this same vein, with Dean finding enough of his fighting spirit and love for his brother to handle the numerous obstacles that came his way.  Sadly, Dean spent a majority of the season apathetic and depressed, going through the motions without any fire or desire to carry on the family business.  He certainly didn't open up to his brother, which rendered the once tight brotherly bond stale.  We waited all season for him to finally get the kick in the pants he needed and slip out of his funk, but he never did.  

    I bring that up because I everything that I wished for in season seven Dean happened in season eight.  Now this is the Dean Winchester I remember!  He wasn't a sorry drunk that was depressed and going through the motions.  It got personal, and Dean reacted with a new resolve and commitment to who he is - a hunter and a loyal brother.  There's no doubt about it though, this is not season one Dean.  He is more mature, grounded, and focused.  

    Season eight was a tale of two seasons.  The first and second halves were dramatically different, but each had a major importance to Dean's overall character growth.  As I've done with each "Deeper Look" segment, I'm going to go through the episodes and show Dean's progression through the season.  Overall, it's a lot more refreshing and satisfying than what we've seen in a while.  However, there's so much goodness to examine this year, that for the first time I'm breaking up this study into two parts.  Part one looks at the first half of the season, part two will look at the dramatically different second half.  

  • A Deeper Look At Supernatural Season Eight Sam Winchester, Part One


    Sam has always been an inward person, taking in with little protest all the horrible things that have been dished out at him.  Yet in season seven, it all got borderline ridiculous.  Forget borderline.  The wall in his head came down, and suddenly he had to live with psychosis.  Yet this is Sam Winchester, the teflon hunter.  It all got better with just a little hand grab.  After one psychotic (and oh so gripping) meltdown, Sam was fine for most of the season, until it all caught up with him.  But instead of taking advantage of Sam's breakdown and exposing those dark inner layers, he just sat there and took it, waiting to die.  That angst lasted long enough for Castiel to magically take it away, even if he took on the burden for a small bit.  Do over!  This is exactly why this time last year I was primal screaming over the total wasted opportunity of showing Sam to be something more than a very pretty piece of toast.  

    What a difference a year makes.  As I said in my "Deeper Look Season Eight at Dean Winchester," Sam Winchester, much like Dean, in season seven was unrecognizable to me.  My wish was for him to be humanized, and season eight delivered big time!  We finally got to see those inner layers and exposed vulnerabilities, and they were relevant to the Sam we've gotten to know the entire series, not just who he was this season.  It tied together so many things, and suddenly this is the best we've ever known Sam.  He's finally a relatable character.  

    Just like with Dean, this is a tale of two seasons.  Sam in the first half was not Sam in the second half.  Sam spent the first half of the season trying to ease back into a life he abandoned a year ago, and it wasn't easy, especially with a big brother that was more supercharged than ever for the job.  But it was more than that.  In Sam's year, he found his identity, something that he hasn't seen most if not all of his life.  It was ground breaking and character defining, and long overdue.  It was also boring as hell.  But, when put together with the second half of the season, it made sense.  

    Going through each one of the season's episodes, the progression of Sam's behavior and actions makes a lot more sense when put together.  Sure, there were a few head-scratchers (Amelia?) but it all did lead to something.  Since the first and second halves were so drastically different, I'm breaking down Sam's analysis into parts one and two, just like I did with Dean.  The first half covers Sam from episodes 8.1 - 8.11, and the second part is episodes 8.12 - 8.23.
  • A TALE OF TWO BROTHERS by Dickens Winchester

    A TALE OF TWO BROTHERS: by Dickens Winchester

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    It was the best of times. It was the worst of times. It was the age of wisdom. It was the age of foolishness. It was the epoch of belief. It was the epoch of incredulity. It was the season of Light. It was the season of Darkness. It was the spring of hope. It was the winter of despair. We had everything before us. We had nothing before us. We were all going direct to heaven. We were all going direct the other way.

    - Charles Dickens. A Tale of Two Cities


  • A Visual Review: "Sacrifice," Part 2

    We've already taken a look at the pretty in the first half of "Sacrifice," so now it's time to finish off the episode and ogle the pretty in the second half.  There will be falling angels and profiles.  Lots of both.
  • A Visual Review: "Supernatural" 8.12, "As Time Goes By"

    It's been a while since I've done one of these, but it's time once again for a visual review!  I've taken some of my favorite/most interesting screencaps from "As Time Goes By" and put them together in one place.  Come see what I've chosen!
  • A Visual Review: "Supernatural" 8.13, "Everybody Hates Hitler"

    It's time to take a look back at all the pretty in "Everybody Hates Hitler," and there was a lot to choose from, let me tell you!  This episode marked the directing return of "Supernatural" veteran Phil Sgriccia, and it was a very welcome return!  All right, on to the pretty!
  • A Visual Review: "Supernatural" 8.14, "Trial and Error"


     

    Wow, I got a little behind on these visual reviews.  But hey, a hiatus is a great time to catch back up, right?  So here's my visual review of "Trial and Error" for your viewing pleasure.  This episode was directed by Kevin Parks, so let's see what he had in store for us.

  • A Visual Review: "Supernatural" 8.15, "Man's Best Friend With Benefits"


     

    It's time to take a look at the visuals from "Man's Best Friend With Benefits."  This review is a little shorter than usual because the episode was so dialogue-heavy, and when episodes are really dialogue-heavy, that means the screen caps are a lot of faces and not a lot of other stuff.  But that's okay.  The less tiime spent with this episode the better!

  • A Visual Review: "Supernatural" 8.18, "Freaks and Geeks"


    "Freaks and Geeks" was directed by John Showalter, and there are some great visuals in this episode.  Come and take a look!
  • Auld Lang Syne: Farawayeyes' Favorite Reflections on Supernatural

    This profile is about one of my all time favorite Supernatural writers, Robbie Thompson. It was an honor to write about his various writing prior to Supernatural, all of his episodes, and to capture what makes his writing pop for us fans. Getting the chance to connect with him via Twitter for an impromptu interview made the whole article even better---it's even more special now after the meet and greets I've had with Mr. Thompson since then.
  • Auld Lang Syne: Nightsky's Favorite Reflections on Supernatural

    I hope you've enjoyed our Auld Lang Syne series! The Winchester Family Business staff has certainly enjoyed sharing our favorite articles with you throughout this holiday season. Since I helped pull together all the articles in the series, I thought it was fitting that my reflections be last.

    It wasn't hard to pick my favorite reflections. There are a few that mean a great deal to me personally for reasons I will share below. The challenge was limiting my choices to the top 5!
  • Elle's Review: "Supernatural" 8.17, "Goodbye Stranger"

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    It's been a while since my last SPN review here at the Winchester Family Business, and boy is it good to be back! So, without further ado let's talk about Goodbye Stranger. It was an odd mesh of characters, old and new themes and a good send off for some characters and mini-arcs even as it laid more key ground work for overall season storylines. 

  • Far Away Eyes' Review - Supernatural 8.11 - "LARP and the Real Girl"

    Mages, orcs, elves, and queens populate Moondoor---but what it really needs is a hero. Supernatural has always dealt with the reluctant hero. Each brother has begrudgingly accepted this mantle at one time or another. Every hunter is really a reluctant hero. There are really only two options: run from it or embrace it. That hero is lurking somewhere inside, waiting for the right moment. The trick is to recognize when that time has come. In "LARP and the Real Girl," we see several characters choose to embrace that moment. We see them go from being reluctant hero to willing hero.

    Being a hero doesn't necessarily have to mean fighting off real monsters or saving the world from impending doom. Being a hero can take on the form of making someone else's day, inspiring a child to learn, or by standing up for another. It can be a small gesture, a moment of vulnerability, or recognizing the truth. The grand concept of hero can make it seem daunting, and yet every single one of us can become one in our own way. 
  • Far Away Eyes' Review, Supernatural 8.12: "As Time Goes By"



     

    Building upon the willing hero theme that "LARP and the Real Girl" examined, "As Time Goes By" delves into that of legacy. Sam and Dean have inherited a great hunting legacy from their maternal side, the Campbells. They have descended from a long lineage of hunters that have faced the supernatural throughout the centuries. Now they learn about the legacy their paternal side, the Winchesters, has left them---one that was hidden from even their father, John. 

    Legacy. It is a word with weight. Many spend their lives attempting to define what theirs will be. Legacies are our way of telling the world "Hey! I was here! Remember me!"  Kings build monuments, wage wars, and shape culture to stand as a testament that they reigned. People build up institutions or causes, passing them from parent to child. The mark one leaves upon the world is the legacy that outlives us all. In many ways, that legacy is found in our children---as it is here. Henry Winchester sums it up best, "You're also Winchesters. As long as we're alive, there's always hope."


  • Far Away Eyes' Review, Supernatural 8.13: "Everybody Hates Hitler"

    Using the foundations both "LARP and the Real Girl" and "As Time Goes By" built, "Everybody Hates Hitler," adds another layer to being the willing hero and that of legacy: that of knowledge and power. "LARP and the Real Girl" showed us why moving from reluctant to willing hero could be satisfying and fulfilling, and "As Time Goes By" demonstrated that doing it for family is reward in and of itself. Here we learn that knowledge is empowering and taking action is freeing.