Eight years ago today, a certain show premiered on the dying WB network only to move to the combined CW network the following season. If you're on this blog, you can probably guess what show I'm referring to. (No, not "My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic")
I'll be honest, at the time I had NO expectations for the show. I joked at the time that they just decided to redo "The X-files" with two pretty boys this time.
When it first aired, I wasn't able to catch the premiere because I was in the hospital. I was, however, able to catch the next episode, "Wendigo." I was prepared to make a lot of jokes about the show. Being an old MST3k fan, I found bad TV to be just as entertaining as bad movies (I once wrote a lot of humor recaps for the Surface). So there I was, prepared to laugh and make a lot of jokes at the show's expense.
Only... it was good.
I mean, for years I would stay up late on Fridays & Saturdays watching long blocks of sci-fi/fantasy shows like "Star Trek," "Stargate SG-1," "GR's Earth: Final Conflict," "GR's Andromeda," "Mutant X", "The Invisible Man," "Hercules," "Xena," "The Outer Limits," etc etc. (actually not much "X-Files," however) SPN had obviously come from that long pedigree, but it was a slightly different flavor. I couldn't believe it, I liked this show! (that I love the woods and the episode timing probably helped a lot too) It was certainly one of the most manly yet family-oriented shows I'd seen in a long time. The brothers were entertaining and we got to see them use both their brains and brawn in fighting.
What I liked even more - especially compared to the very "wendigo-esque" episode of the "X-Files," Detour - was that the guys actually won! Was it a perfect victory? Nah, but in the end the boys did improve the world. It was much less... nihilistic than "The X-Files," which is why I kept watching.
However, my house didn't get a good signal from the WB so I missed most of the first season (ironically, I seemed to catch every good episode and miss every bad one, I didn't realize some of the dreck S1 had till I got the DVDs). When the channels combined into the CW, I could get that channel a lot better. So I was able to catch all of season 2 and I was hooked.
Couple of years later, a new job had me move to another city, and I was staying in temporary lodging. While the places are often great, they do have a knack for encouraging home-sickness. Thankfully, I had... SPN season 4 premiere to look forward to! To this day I can still remember watching it in that cramped little room and the emotional roller coaster it dragged me on.
Four years later, I'm still not sure if I accept anything from the post-Kripke years, but I'm can't stop watching anyway. Heck the RPG is still my most favorite RPG and I still introduce new fans to the series all the time. (I mean, how often do you get to watch Satan be shot in the face on Television?)
Why? Because, weird as it might sound, it was there for me in some rough times. Because it's a reminder to hold onto family and keep fighting the good fight.
But mostly... because it's awesome. Happy Birthday, "Supernatural."