This has been one crazy week with going to Chicago, and being at another amazing ChiCon and then getting stuck in Chicago for two extra days because of Hurricane Sandy... So here I am getting my Supernatural review up late.  I will be writing up a little something about my ChiCon experience, too...Which hopefully will happen while I’m on this twenty hour train ride!
 
 
Bitten aired last Wednesday night, and after seeing the promo, I really could not wait for the episode.  Aside from the lesser amount of Sam and Dean than usual, I thoroughly enjoyed it.  I haven’t seen any of the Paranormal Activity movies, but I know this was filmed in a similar fashion.  To me, it reminded me of a cross between Blair Witch Project and the X-Files episode “X-Cops” that was a very cool X-Files/Cops “crossover”.  We got to see Sam and Dean from other peoples’ POV.  We also got to see students interested in film experience supernatural things for the first time.  To me, this felt like our Supernaturalverse meets our normal world--how would we really react if Sam and Dean showed up and started investigating near where we lived?
 
 
The writer of the episode was someone whose scripts I always seem to love--”The Girl with the Dungeons and Dragons Tattoo”, “Time After Time” and “Slash Fiction”. Robbie Thompson really understands Sam and Dean.  Even though we saw relatively little of them in the episode, we see a story that is part “Lost Boys” and part the Sam and Dean show, meanwhile we learn a little more about post-Purgatory Dean...and maybe a little more about post-Amelia Sam, too, in the process.  There is a lot that can be gleaned here, even from the limited time that Sam and Dean are in front of the camera. Sure, this episode was a filler ep, but usually the filler episodes are more about character exploration and development.  We can see this here by the simplicity of the type of monster used.  We don’t want to waste our time with all the story needed around a complex new monster or demon story.  The “evil” was kept basic and easy to understand so as to focus on other things...
 
 
The director was Thomas J. Wright who has directed episodes of NCIS and Castle, in addition to having directed my favorite Dark Angel episode, “The Berrisford Agenda”, episodes of The X-Files and beaucoup episodes of Millennium. He also directed “Repo Man”. All his work directing the X-Files and Millennium really shows through with his work here.  Especially since the filming was done in such a different way from the usual way we see Supernatural.
 
 
A college student, Brian Wilcox, has to make a movie.  He decides to make his movie about the strange things going on to his roommate and best friend, Michael Wheeler.  Michael seems to have it all--looks, popularity, even the girl of Brian’s dreams...But something happens to Michael one night when he and Brian are out looking for something good to film.  Like everything else in Michael’s life, Brian romanticizes what happens to Michael.  Michael, however, sees it as the curse that it is…
 
 
And on to the analysis…
 
 
“In a world where nothing is what it seems, one brave, shockingly handsome virile young man, and his faithful, learning disabled, robotic manservant, must battle through waves of cybernetic asshats in order to sexually liberate the women of…”
 
 
Huh.  Remember when someone else was referred to as a “virile manifestation of the divine?” Kind of wondering if that is how Sam is feeling right now.  Is Sam feeling a bit of the “Brian” vibe? Maybe Sam feels he has always been like that--the person tagging along behind the hero, trying to find his own way.  Did Sam give up hunting because he can’t be Dean?  Does he just feel like the tag along here?  He doesn’t see what Dean sees.  Dean just knows things without needing to look them up…
 
 
But then, there is the possible imagery of the Kate and Michael storyline.  Michael did not understand what was happening to him, why he had those powers.  He was unable to control the new “powers” he had. Kate wouldn’t see her boyfriend as a freak.  She admitted that his powers were a little scary at first, but she refused to see him as a killer. It wasn’t his fault what was happening to him.. She made excuses for him even when others wouldn’t. To me, this sounds a lot like what was going on in Season Four when Sam was scoffing down demon blood.  As scary as it was, and as unwilling as Dean was to see beyond black and white on evil, he wouldn’t see Sam as evil, only as needing his help.  Here Kate wants so badly to help Michael and to figure out how they can fix this.
 
 
On the surface level of what was going on, I was so happy to see a little difference from the Season One Dean that seemed to get out of Purgatory.  Dean was willing to give Kate a chance.  I get the impression that Dean isn’t going to be watching for her either, like that hunter tracked down the rugaru in “Metamorphosis”.  Dean seems to see a gray that he didn’t see before. I wonder if seeing Purgatory, knowing what it is like to be there, has made him more hesitant to send others there.  He knows where monsters go when they die.  He knows what will happen to them there.  Any monster he kills he is sending to a war zone.
 
 
I liked that we see a fresh take on the supernatural phenomena.  We see educated kids with no prior dealings with the creatures that Sam and Dean deal with on a regular basis.  They stumble into this life and it is more terrifying than they can imagine--well, for two of them anyway.  Michael initially thinks it is cool but as he learns more, he becomes alarmed at what he can do and what it means.  He just wants to go back to his normal life.  By the time Brian bites her, Kate knows from seeing what happened to Michael how horrible this is.  She knows that she is turning into a werewolf and she knows what this means.  She doesn’t want it any more than Michael did.  Brian, feeling weak and wanting power, cannot help but want to find a way to make himself powerful.  He sees this werewolf power as being like a superhero.  Mistakenly, he thinks that this is something he can control.   
 
 
I can see Sam qualities in both Michael and Brian as far as reaction wise to various elements...But maybe in a sense all three of them represent various aspects of Sam’s behavior...In the end, Kate becomes resolved to finish this, leave it behind and begin anew, repressing her inner beast.  I wonder if in some sense, this is what Sam has done as well--made peace with his inner monsters and just set out on his own. His brother, the person he loved that would have been his reason for staying and fighting, was gone and so he just took off. I still haven’t gotten to the point that I am o.k. with Sam not looking for Dean, But I think here we can get some understanding as to what may have been going through Sam’s mind.  
 
 
Meanwhile, I am all ready for some mythology episodes.  I’m particularly excited to find out more about what happened to Dean in Purgatory.  I hear we will be learning more about how Bennie feels about Sam and Cas and I’m excited to find out more about what was going on with Sam for that year he spent with Amelia!
 
 
Sorry for the shorter than usual review!  Between my fangirl Saturday staring at Jensen and my lack of train for a couple days leaving me with the parentals I just didn’t have the time to do as in depth an analysis as I wanted to do!  Let me know what you thought about the episode and what similarities you saw in the Brian/Michael/Kate storyline and our own Sam and Dean tale!  And how cute was Dean asking Sam if he really says "awesome" a lot?
 
 
Thanks for reading!  Screencaps from http://homeofthenutty.com/supernatural/screencaps

 
 

Comments  

CJ
# CJ 2012-11-02 10:29
Nice review. I really liked ur take on the whole thing but more importantly I think its great that u took the time to do this. It must have been difficult with the schedule, travel, Sandy etc. So thanks. Am not adding much here cos I guess I have already given my views on prev reviews and dont want to sound like a parrot :-)
On a separate note I wonder if you could write about ur con experience? If u find time maybe u could write abt how it was meeting/seeing Jensen, the photo op et al. I've never been to con (yet) and rely on such reports to get by.
nicole murray
# nicole murray 2012-11-03 02:18
thanks for reading! I hate getting stuff out so late! I am going to get something together for a con report. hopefully getting something up this weekend!