Time for Part Two of my look at Supernatural: The Animation! In Part 1 of my Closer Look series, I introduced the characters of the anime story and outlined some of the similarities and differences between the live and anime versions of the show! In this installment I will look at each episode in detail, introducing episodes 1 – 6 and giving a few words on what I thought of them. I also have surprises in store! In Part 1 of my article, Nate shared links to his blog reviews of the anime series, so I have added his review links to my introduction of each episode. Give them a peek! Also YellowEyedSam contacted me and offered to create custom, brand new videos comparing scenes from the show to scenes from the anime version. I thought it was a great idea so some of the episodes will have those videos for you to see! So, thank you Nate and Y.E.S.!
1. “The Alter Ego”
“There is a face beneath this mask, but it isn’t me. I’m no more that face than I am the muscles beneath it, or the bones beneath that.” ― Steve Moore, V for Vendetta
The Winchesters head to Missouri to solve a strange case where four people have been murdered. The killer is a shapeshifter who kills the victims by taking on the shape of the people they love. The brothers meet with a witty and strong woman detective who seems to be a friend of the person that was recently murdered, then they interrogate a Mister Evans about the murder. The shifter changes bodies a few times before the episode is through. Sheading the skin is actually as disgusting in the anime as it was on the original episode! You can see the scene comparison below.
“Alter Ego” is a remake of the episode “Skin” and it is the pilot for the animation. In this version, though, the brothers did not go to help Sam’s college friend. It was just a random case. The details of the live show’s original pilot are shown in a small clip where Jessica dies.
I loved “Skin” and the fact that this episode was also able to put a little twist in the end.
Detective Catherine Boyle
Dean: Davis and Martin, Miss. We are Federal Marshals.
Sam: We would like to talk to him about the murders if we could. Is he around at all?
Catherine: You are looking at him. Detective Catherine Boyle, what can I do for you Marshals?
Dean: Good to meet you.
Catherine: So, have you two always been monster hunters then?
Dean: Yeah, pretty much.
Catherine: How did you get into that?
Sam and Dean: Family business.
Catherine: Of course it is.
Dean: And you’re a cop. Aren’t you going to take us to some dingy room and interrogate us?
Catherine: No, I always play the good cop.
The Alter Ego review by Nate Winchester
“Letting go doesn’t mean that you don’t care about someone anymore. It’s just realizing that the only person you really have control over is yourself.” ― Deborah Reber, Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul
The brothers investigate fourteen accidents on a dark mountain road. They almost drive over Molly who insists that she and her husband David had just crashed their car. When they arrive at the scene, her car and David are missing and things get worse from there. Jonah Greely holds a grudge against Molly. His wife Marion hung herself. Nothing is as it seems, though, in the end.
This second episode is also a remake of a Supernatural episode with the same name, “Roadkill”. Like with the first, I enjoyed and liked this one too. The twist gave it a nice push to make it feel like new.
Sam: Look at this Dean.
Sam: I think his wife may have planted that tree in his memory.
Dean: Why would she do that?
Sam: It was a custom, a token of her love.
Sam: Believe me. I know how hard it is to let people go. To leave a loved one behind, but you just have to hope that they are off to a better place. That is what I choose to believe.
Molly: Thank you Sam, you’re sweet. And it sounds like you know what it’s like to lose someone.
Sam: Yeah, I do.
“There is no greater warrior than a mother protecting her child.” ― N.K. Jemisin
Sam has gotten his first vision, telling him that he and Dean need to visit their childhood home in Lawrence, Kansas to save a woman called Jenny and her two children, Sari and Richie, before it is too late. A supernatural force is terrorizing the house and they need to put a stop to it. All seems lost until they get help from an unexpected source.
This is another remake of a live episode of the same name. This episode follows the original pretty well so there is not much to tell about the differences. Missouri, Mary and John do look different (see part one of these articles for pictures and details about the differences).
Sam: I wanted to play soccer but dad takes the ball away and says: “Soccer is not for you Sam”. What you should be concentrating on is improoving the bow and arrow.
Dean: Don’t take archery lightly.
John: Dean go! Take your brother and don’t look back.
Wee-Dean: Okay Dad…
John: Hurry, run! Run as fast as you can.
Home by Nate Winchester
“We are products of our past, but we don’t have to be prisoners of it.” ― Rick Warren, The Purpose Driven Life: What on Earth Am I Here For?
This is the first anime original episode and it’s pretty good!. It does resemble the “Route 666” episode but it is much better. Sam and Dean are traveling through New Orleans when they are stopped by the police and arrested. They think the Winchester boys are responsible for the accidents that have happened on the road. The surprise is that the one doing these is also driving an Impala. They get help from Michael, who is the brother of one of the police officers.
The story in this episode was really inventive, and the resolution in the end was epic. The episode also had very good characters that grew during the 20 minutes. That is no mere feat.
Sam: Dean, give it a rest, will ya? We’ll pick up the car when we finish the job.
Dean: Okay, fine. Just can’t stand the thought of what those barbarians are doing to my car. If I find even one scratch…
Sam: Dean, get over it. Its a car.
Dean: Its more than that. Its the closest thing I have to a girlfriend.
5. “Savage Blood”
“If you cannot get rid of the family skeleton, you may as well make it dance.” ― George Bernard Shaw, Immaturity
This is the second anime-original episode. The boys head out to a small town in Colorado. They see another hunter named Jason who specialises in killing vampires. Dean prevents some boys picking on another boy and he teaches him some self-defence. The brothers learn there have been some cattle mutilations and the beasts have been drained of their blood. Something fishy is going around there – not all is what it seems. Sam and Dean need to protect those that they usually hunt, in this case named Gale and his son Ryan. The mother Miranda died many years ago.
This was a a good episode but I am not sure the twists to vampire lore worked. At least that is my point of view. Otherwise the story was not that bad but this is not one of my favorite episodes in the anime.
Dean: I don’t know what the hell that was. Your emotions are getting in the way.
Ryan: I don’t want to be like my dad. I want to get stronger.
Dean: Ryan, listen to me. I understand what you’re saying, but hating your dad is not gonna make you any stronger.
6. “Till Death Do Us Part”
“When you stop chasing your dreams, your dreams start chasing you.” ― Dez Del Rio, The Lipstick Killerz
This is the third anime-original episode. The whole episode is a flashback to the time Sam was in college. We see the first time Sam meets Jessica. She is mixed up with a monster hunt that seems a lot like Bloody Mary. Jessica has a secret with her childhood friends. Dean and John are trying to solve the mystery yet stay hidden from Sam at the same time. The monster is trying to kill Jessica and her friends. The question is who saves the day in the end?
I really loved this episode. It had a Supernatural feel through and through, and it had a story that really felt like it could have happened in the past. Also the imaginery scenes were over all pretty beautiful, showing the cemeteries and campus. I also did like the original Bloody Mary as a monster so that might lift the grade a bit. The resolution was exiting and also inventive.
Dean: Bloody Mary, you’re kidding? Since when did you start believing in urban legends?
John: Read this.
Dean: Gruesome Co-ed murdered. Could this be the curse of Bloody Mary?… This thing is a rag. You can’t take papers like this seriously Dad.
Sam: Sorry for it taking so long Dean. What’s the matter?
Dean: I just got a call from Bobby. He’s got some information about Dad’s whereabouts.
I hope you’ve enjoyed my summaries and reviews of these episodes. If you’ve seen these episodes, do you agree with my assessment of them? What did you think, comparing them to the live version of Supernatural? Watch for Part 3, when I continue with my closer look at the next several anime episodes!