I think it's no secret, your WFB editor-in-chief has a few strong opinions when it comes to Supernatural. That's why every season I give my "Editor's Choice" awards, looking at the finer points of the season gone by, offering either a scathing commentary or a fit of fangirlish glee for categories that have no real significance whatsoever. Okay, maybe there are a couple of important things in there. After all, Sam's hair is important, right?
Anyway, without further delay, here are my choices for season 13, in no particular order.
Best Appearance of Sam Winchester’s Hair
"Various and Sundry Villains"
Two Words. Wrestling scene!
A flying fluff bonanza! My dreams come true.
Most Disappointing Appearance of Sam Winchester’s Hair
(Tie) "Good Intentions" and "Beat the Devil"
I can't give a "Worst Appearance" award this year. I give the hairdressers and directors credit, there were no memorable hair disasters this season. The attention that has been given to the coif has introduced a ridiculous new standard of perfection, and we all have gained plenty. HOWEVER, the were two slip-ups that I just cannot ignore.
First, "Good Intentions." If you recall, Donatello gave Sam a rather healthy bonk on the head. He even had the ice pack and shiner to prove it! Then why oh why was there not a single hair out of place? What, did Sam go fix his hair after putting away Donatello in the dungeon and before he fetched the ice pack?
Then there's the dramatic, gruesome scene of some vamp snacking on Sam's jugular before he's dragged away to be a nice rotting piece of meat deep in a cave that somehow cannot be penetrated by two powerful angels (still scratching my head on that one). Then he wakes up thanks to Lucifer covered in his own blood, yet his hair looks great? Who knew angel healings fixed hair too?
Oh wait, I think Castiel already taught us that one in season seven...
Ah well, at least the hair came out fabulous. Never mind, we all win.
Most Outrageous Dean Winchester Line
There were a few I had to choose from. I scoured through the quotes on Supernatural.wiki and came up with a few. First there's "Advanced Thanatololgy":
Dean: Okay. Look, I-I've been down this road before. I fought my way back. I will fight my way back again.
Dean: Same way I always do -- bullets, bacon, and booze. A lotta booze.
Ah yes, quintessential Dean. But then I found this one from “Good intentions”:
Sam: Don't you think you should, uh, take it a little easy on the nitrates?
Dean: Dude, if bacon's what kills me, then I win.
Hmm, bacon. Dean seems to have a theme, huh? But our winner ended up coming from the very last episode of the season, “Let the Good Times Roll." Now this is how you put down an archangel!
"Well, as Shakespeare once said, eat me, dickbag."
There's the Dean Winchester we know and love!
"The Bad Place"
Why? It doesn't beat around the bush. It jumps straight to the plot, Jack contacting a dreamwalker to reach the alternate universe. A story is always better when they jump straight into it...even if it fizzles later (freaking King Kong?). It also wasn't the typical cliche of innocent victim of the week faces the blood spatter of doom. I have to cherish these moments you know!
I know, we pretty much beat down "Wayward Sisters" in our Fan Choice Awards, but this beginning is just so wrong! Claire Novak in full Mary Sue mode storming in alone against a bunch of bad monsters to save a little girl? Complete with Dean Winchester bravado? Come on, it was clear that they were trying too hard. It made me cringe enough where the rest of the hour was pretty much doomed.
Barthamus - “Scorpion and the Frog”
The new Crowley. Swarmy, smart, has that touch of gallows humor that was a little too on the nose and he was the ultimate slick salesman. Honestly, I wish he hadn’t died, but then again, what would the new Crowley have done if they ran out of ideas for the old one. He at least avoided that fate.
If there’s one thing this writing crew has proven since season six, they’ve been terrible with developing villains. When the Princes of Hell idea was introduced in season 12, it seemed for one brilliant episode that this idea would hold water. Alas, it would never come to be, as our annual mustache twirler ended up being a bad stereotype in a white suit. So bad, he earned the rightful nickname of "Evil Colonel Sanders." Tell me again why southerners are evil? It seems to be a popular stereotype of a couple of writers that shall remain nameless, the ones that introduced this character in the first place. Asmodeus' death in the end was as pointless as his existence and once again, I can only imagine what could have been while at the same time wishing this guy plenty of good riddance.
The ‘Oh Hell No Moment” of Supernatural Season 13
"The Thing" and "Bring 'em Back Alive"
Dean and Ketch go to the other world? Ketch???? INSTEAD OF SAM???!???? You know, this guy, the OTHER HALF of the Winchester Brothers?
Couldn't Castiel handle Gabriel alone? He's a big angel. I was as mopey as Sam was.
Most Gruesome Injury
You would think it would be Sam's brutal and fatal neck massacre, right? Well, yes, but "injury" seems to indicate that you eventually bounce back from it. Angel resurrections of Winchesters no longer count!
There's Dean's gunshot wound in "Bring 'em Back Alive" but that wasn't really that gnarly. It was just a setup for some odd bromance that I just don't want to think about.
Honestly, there's only one other injury that I really loved. That goes to Shaggy, the "philistine" with the talking dog for a best pal. It's the best injury ever. A cartoon character has a broken limb? How? They even put something clever into the illustration to drive home the point. What's even better, Shaggy got a Castiel healing later! That's a new one.
"What? That's not -- I have jumped out of a biplane in a museum and was fine! How did this happen?"
Episode Where I Can’t Remember a Damn Thing That Happened
I mean, I really tried. I know it started with a lackluster reunion with Castiel and there’s a scene with Dean and Castiel in cowboy hats, otherwise I’m at a total loss. And this is an episode I actually watched from beginning to end. I must have been doing laundry, or painting nails, or teasing the dog. Whatever happened there were no memorable lines and didn’t make an impact either so it will always remain in the category of nondescript filler for me. Here's a picture I found in our archives that's kind of cute.
Best Visual Effect
Jack, you can wrap your wings around me anytime. Hey, I mean that in a benevolent way!
Best Use of Misplaced Optimism that Fell Apart an Episode Later
“Exodus” and "Let The Good Times Roll"
Remember the party at the bunker in the end, and this rousing speech from AU Bobby?:
"All right, listen up. We made it. Don't know much about this place, but it's a place without Michael, so that's a turn for the better. I don't want none of you goin' soft on me because we are going to get ourselves ready and go back home and set our people free...
While we're celebrating, let's not forget our brothers and sisters who didn't make it. They will never be forgotten, and we will do right by them. And now a toast to our new brothers -- Sam and Dean Winchester. Thanks, boys. Welcome to the family."
It was a sweet ending to a rather perplexing episode. Kind of got you excited about what was to come, right? After all, they brought all those people back to plan a counter attack. Yeah, well Andrew Dabb looked at that setup and made his executive decision. "DO OVER!"
They all get an inaccurate current SPNVERSE update from Sam and then go scatter to enjoy their new lives. Even Bobby in a clear shipping moment tells Mary he doesn't want to go back! It so reminded me of "Monty Python and the Holy Grail" when they spent the whole beginning part of the film getting to Camelot and when they got there they realized it was a silly place and went off on another quest. Why wasn't this turnabout as funny? Or why didn't we at least get a fun song and dance out of it?
Best Character to Return from Death
I'm very stunned to say this, but Arthur Ketch. This is a guy who had long worn out his welcome for me last season. By the end, I rejoiced his death with the most spastic and awkward happy dance imaginable. It scared the cat.
Honestly, even his season 13 storyline was clunky. He was revealed to be a mercenary for Amosdeus, meaning he was clearly not on the level with the Winchesters. Instead of me hating him though, I smelled redemption arc! Why? Well, it was a season theme, wasn't it? Supernatural does love its confliced bad guys. I even forgave the freaking easiest and most ludicrous jailbreak ever when he broke Gabriel out of his dungeon and delivered him to the Winchesters. So his reward was he got go to the alternate universe AND he just happened to have the perfect antidote for the doctored bullet that hit Dean in his backpack? Why was he so insistent to go to the alternate universe? He was bored?
Nevertheless, despite his strange motives and even stranger actions, I liked him this year. He hit some sort of potential that was blown to bits last year by bad writing. I actually think he can contribute to storylines next season. I could also be cursing his name again and spitting at the writers for this clearly short sighted error in judgement but for now, he's in good standing.
The only reason she's a runner-up is because we knew they would find a way to bring her back! She's been resurrected before and Ruth was spotted on the set. What's better though is her plots were richer this season and made perfect sense! I love that she and Sam have a big bond now. It's just hard to give a return from death award to someone you expected to be there.
Worst Character to Return from Death
Everyone else. I mean geez, did they go a bit overboard on the resurrections or what? I'm not even counting Mary and Bobby, who were essentially brought back last season. Here's a few of the more notable ones...
If we have to endure another contrived Charlie death for the sake of a sensational plot that ended up being the worst in history, I'm turning in my SPN membership card.
Best Character to Return and Wish He Were Dead
Castiel bascially rendered him a soulless vegetable? Ouch. Why wasn’t he just slaughtered like the rest of them? Oh right, we’re not ready for a new prophet yet. I think alternate Dontatello has been made a prophet in the AU since alternate Kevin Tran is now dead. At least he has a soul there. This might end up being a win for him after all.
Best Character Twist
"Advanced Thanatology" - Billie is the new Death
If there is one thing that has NEVER sit right with me, it's the death of...Death. After all, one big lesson we learned in the season two opener, YOU CAN'T KILL DEATH!!! While I was hoping for Julian Richings to pop out of the shadows again at just the right moment to reinforce that very solid fact, I think introducing the lore that when an "incarnation" of death is killed, the next reaper to die becomes the new death, is pretty damned brilliant. I love her long leather coat! Her attitude certainly fits the part. She can also see the future now and suddenly Death's fascination with the Winchesters makes loads of sense. I hope Billie's prophecies go somewhere or...well...I'll just bitch about missed opportunities again. It wouldn't be the first time.
Funniest New Characters that Were Not Meant to be Funny
Oh yes, I stole this straight from a discussion on our Fan Choice Awards. But it's so true! The winner goes to Misha Collins in a segment I call - creatures with bad accents.
Your friendly neighorhood Cosmic Entity - "The Big Empty"
AU Nazi Castiel!
Wow, so bad it's fu- No, it's pretty damn bad. Ah well, new fodder against Misha at conventions I guess.
Best Pleasant Surprise/Saving Grace of the Entire Season
Jack Kline, played by Alexander Calvert
I don't think I need to remind everyone but introducing new characters is tough in this show. Just when fans get around to embracing someone, they are killed off and sent off to that special Big Empty for dead characters, only to return in really weak plots. The fact that Jack won our hearts from episode one in S13 and continued to knock it out of the park through the entire season, which he did not die in BTW, well, I call that a "supernatural" miracle. Those wins have been so few and far between and it's just so damned nice to see it happen so late in the series. I can't wait to see what season 14 has for our favorite half human/half angel/little misfit who fits right in with Sam and Dean's offbeat adventures.
So that's all I have! What choices do you have that I missed? I'm sure you all have your own opinions to share in the comments! It's what SPN fans do well.