As I was looking for a way to pass the quarantine summer doldrums, I saw Entertainment Weekly’s list of what it considered to be the 75 most ‘essential’ episodes of Supernatural, leading up to Season 15. Since any excuse for a rewatch is a good excuse, I figured I’d not only invite my Supernatural "Team Free Will North Carolina" (TFWNC) Facebook group to join me, but I’d also recap my thoughts on which episodes Entertainment Weekly (EW) chose, which ones they skipped, and what was left out.  Music plays such a big role in Supernatural, so I also noted which iconic songs were included and which were missed in the skipped episodes. Reporting on all that turned into quite the project, and The WFB was kind enough to let me share it here! (My snarky opinions are my own and don’t reflect those of The WFB.)

So come on the journey with me! Start with season 1, then follow the links until you catch up with us in season 10! 

If you’ve been keeping up with Jared’s new passion project, Walker, by now you’ve seen the first two episodes of the Walker, Texas Ranger reboot. Walker’s premiere episode “Pilot” debuted Thursday, January 21, with the follow up story, “Back in the Saddle” airing last night. What do you think of it so far?

Texas 5-Point-Star Perfection

Overall, I’m loving the new series, but I have to confess that’s largely because I’m elated to have Jared Padalecki front and center on my television screen for a full hour each week. At the risk of seeming to objectify the guy, honestly, he’s jaw dropping handsome in every scene! The haircut draws you into his cowboy persona, topped off by the expected Stetson ranger hat. Then his two belts/ holster, cowboy boots and casual confidence deliver the fatal blow. His hazel eyes are piercing in a way that has me wondering if the network is enhancing photos simply to intensify his blue steel stares.   Am I the only one whose heart pounds a little bit faster watching this man?

So, our first vote went a little...haywire you might say. I wasn't able to use our usual polling application, and the free version I had to use caused some mayhem.  As a result, I'm redoing the vote to reflect how we've done it in the past.   

For one, I'm able to go back to using our regular polling application.  That means that I can conceal the results of the vote.  In past years, I have never allowed a vote result to be shared until the voting was closed.  Knowing the results tends to skew the outcome, motivating people to vote numerous times to get their desired result.  When that happens, results tend not to reflect overall opinion.  When the voting was done the first time, I didn't feel that the results had accurate outcomes.  

There were also comments of bias in our questions.  The Fan Choice Awards always compiles options based on fan nominations.  Apparently, our nomination process this year failed to get enough variation that made all fans happy, probably because it ran during the holidays.   As a result, I have allowed some extra nominations and have added new options to most of the categories.

 Here are other changes to our voting:  

- Best Episode, Worst Episode, Episode with Best Ending, and Episode with Worst Ending now have all episodes from season 15 to choose from.  That way, no one can claim bias!  
- The voting is setup where everyone can only vote once a day.  The vote will last 1 week.
- As mentioned before, results of the voting will not be shared until after the voting is done.  

Voting is open until February 3rd at 11:59 am ET.  

I'm really hoping that all these changes will lead to a more accurate vote.  I still want this to be fun but it also needs to be fair.  So, let the vote begin! 

Reflections on Dean Winchester's Birthday

Today is Dean Winchester's birthday.  I'd like to think he was celebrating it in the bunker with Sam and Miracle.  It's a little unclear in canon when the vamp hunt that ended his life actually went down.  Some think it was their first hunt after defeating Chuck since the episode didn't show anything besides a normal morning in the bunker.  I prefer to believe that he died a few months later, giving enough time for the brothers to drive the back roads together that we saw in the montage at the end of 15.19; a chance for the brothers to get back to hunting together without the threat of Chuck and his manipulations. 

SPN1519 HLC 1280

After all, the final episode went ahead in time to show us Sam as an old man with a grown-up son so, if time passed then, why couldn't there have also been a passing of time before Dean met up with the rebar in that barn?

So yes, I had to tune in.  I was very curious to see what Jared's new project was all about.  I know it's a little too close to the end of "Supernatural," but then again it wasn't supposed to be that way.  "Supernatural" was supposed to end in May and "Walker" premiere likely in January.  Well, COVID 19 had other ideas.  Jared has been a very good friend to us and I wasn't about to miss this passion project of his.  So, was it any good?

This is a pilot, which means we’re just meant to get a glimpse of Cordell Walker and his universe.  Most of the episode was just a mere intro to characters and a setup for what’s to come, which means it’s heavier on character exposition and drama and less on the action and plot. Still, I walked away with a feeling of some good potential.  

Ah, “The Usual Suspects.”  This is one of my happy episodes.  This is “Supernatural” at it’s finest.  An opener that caught our attention from the word go, Smart Sam, cocky Dean, a brisk plot, a mystery that kept us guessing until the end, just so much goodness.  It was a standalone, having little relevance to the mytharc other than it continued the events from St. Louis in season one’s “Skin.”  Remember the days when the writers built new plots based on existing ones that were actually effective, entertaining and made sense? Okay, I concede, keeping up continuity is a little easier in season two of a series. 

"“You didn't need a weapon at all when you were born one.” ― Sarah J. Maas, Heir of Fire

My fifth tribute to Supernatural characters is to two of Supernatural’s fiercest and most absolute archangels, Alternate Universe (AU)Michael and Raphael. Even though this Michael is the AU version, he quickly took his place in the long line of known, terrifying archangels who came before him. Both characters have been played by multiple actors, but AU Michael took the cake by possessing the most vessels.