Oh man, I don’t even know how to begin writing a review for “Houses of the Holy.”  This is such an intricate, deeply emotional and technical episode trying to tackle in just one short hour the concept of faith and believing in something bigger than ourselves.  This is a masterpiece with direction, set decoration, cinematography, VFX as well as acting.  The visual storytelling in this episode is magnificent, but given this a Kim Manners outing, no wonder.  That was his gift, knowing how to pull extra emotion out of every scene, making the impact of the story stronger than it already is.  The theme of this episode is divine intervention and boy did they sell it.  The use of lighting to show something ethereal at work is spectacular, making this one of Serge Ladoucer's best efforts, as well as the VFX team with their bright white light encounters.  

Just the subject matter alone takes "Supernatural" in a wildly different direction, the belief in angels.  Remember, this was when Kripke was still on his “no angels” bender.  This is a season and a half before Castiel’s grand appearance in the season four opener.  Still, the episode had us guessing, are angels for real?  Is there something else out there beyond this crappy world full of monsters, demons and generally bad people looking out for the boys?   It did make me take pause to consider.  It also showed how both brothers were on opposite ends of the spectrum in this matter yet somehow came together in the end. 

Pick your favorite alter ego of Sam Winchester. Possessed Sam? Demon Blood Sam? Evil Sam? Mind-Controlled Sam? Discussing the many faces of Sam sounded like an easy topic for my latest Con-tinual panel of Supernatural media professionals... until I started listing the many times and ways that Sam wasn't the brother we all know and love!

Odds are that the same one or two images come to mind for all of us when we think of days when Sam "wasn't himself." But when challenged to really consider how often Sam had to fight for control of his body, mind and soul, I discovered that Jared Padalecki played an alternate version of Sam Winchester in at least one episode, and often in several episodes, in nearly all 15 seasons of Supernatural. That's a lot of faces for Sam!

Supernatural Weekly World News 

All the latest announcements, releases, interviews, podcasts, cast appearances and more
 
 
We are retiring Supernatural Weekly World News for the time being.
 
You can still find the latest updates on Supernatural and its primary cast members on the News page, the Walker page (Jared), and the eventual The Boys page (Jensen and Kripke).

If a Supernatural prequel or sequel happens, we may reinstitute SWWN in the future.
 
Until then, if you will keenly miss our weekly reporting of good news related to the spnfamily cast, producers, and crew,
we invite you to apply to join our staff as a SPN news editor!  Be a part of the team that supports the cast and brings the latest updates to the spnfamily! 
Click on link for more details

Pick your favorite alter ego of Sam Winchester. Possessed Sam? Demon Blood Sam? Evil Sam? Mind-Controlled Sam? Discussing the many faces of Sam sounded like an easy topic for my latest Con-tinual panel of Supernatural media professionals... until I started listing the many times and ways that Sam wasn't the brother we all know and love!

Odds are that the same one or two images come to mind for all of us when we think of days when Sam "wasn't himself." But when challenged to really consider how often Sam had to fight for control of his body, mind and soul, I discovered that Jared Padalecki played an alternate version of Sam Winchester in at least one episode, and often in several episodes, in nearly all 15 seasons of Supernatural. That's a lot of faces for Sam!

What is the best way to do justice to all the versions of Sam we witnessed over the years? We could revisit Sam's journey chronologically. That would recreate the way he experienced his life being hijacked by supernatural forces. It's a bit more interesting, though, to look back at 15 years through the lens of accumulated memories. How many times was he possessed? How many times was he broken down by supernatural powers? All those traumas compounded each other. They could have insidiously perverted who he was as a person, yet, somehow, he chose to forge his trials into a more authentic, stronger, more compassionate Sam. No wonder he inspires so many of us. 

So, I've chosen to group Sam's experiences into the categories of forces that overpowered him - both supernatural and human. Let's see how many I found, then you add the ones I've forgotten! Part 1 covered the times when Sam was truly a monster, by all the definitions that matter to a hunter (possessed, cloned, turned, etc.). Part 2 will explore the faces of DemonBlood!Sam! Soulless Sam will continue the chapters in Sam's life in Part 3, with Parts 4 through 6 covering how the "Trials" affected Sam, how many ways he was "Broken" to the point of death, and how many ways Sam was "Conjured" by the supernatural! 

“Four Stones in Hand” is a phrase meaning you’re on the offensive even before you’re sure you’re going to be attacked. This episode was all about how people solve problems. Even problems that aren’t their own.

The title of this week’s episode supposedly refers to anticipating being attacked—which can be prudent, or overly defensive, depending on the situation. Oddly, I couldn’t find any history on the saying, even when I searched Mexican dichos. So I don’t know whether it’s just obscure, untranslated, or was made up for the episode.

Can I just say that the entire Walker clan would be better off with grief counseling? Because they’re not doing a bang-up job healing on their own. At least this week, everyone finally admitted they weren’t okay, which is progress.

The Morning After

“Four Stones in Hand” is a welcome exploration of how people deal with trauma, and often struggle to redefine who they are at their core when their reality becomes unbearable. This character driven story was written by Paula Sabbaga, the same writer who penned the enjoyable “Bar None” and “Tracks” episodes, so it has believable character growth and storyline continuity in common with those earlier stories. Its distinguishing characteristic is the strength of individuals' narration of their new understanding of self (i.e. it had great speeches of “a ha” moments!).

Episode 15.  So what now for Cordell Walker and company?  Seems that it's Micki's turn for a little drama.  There's plenty for the others as well too.  

Here is the official synopsis of episode 1.15, "Four Stones in Hand," courtesy of The CW:

WALKER TRIES TO HELP MICKI FORGIVE HER MOTHER – Micki’s (Lindsey Morgan) real mother, Mercedes (guest star Leticia Jimenez), tries to make amends with her daughter but Micki doesn’t want anything to do with her. Walker (Jared Padalecki) steps in to help and lands in a heap of trouble. Meanwhile, August (Kale Culley) suffers from PTSD after what happened at the Ranch.Tessa Blake directed the episode written by Paula Sabbaga (#115).  Original airdate 6/24/2021.Every episode of WALKER will be available to stream on The CW App and CWTV.com the day after broadcast for free and without a subscription, log-in or authentication required.


This preview clip shares what that heap of trouble might be for Walker.  Can't keep a good lawman down! 

(Read More...)