Well, I guess there was some plot advancement. That was something.
Let me give you a little background about the title of the episode, “Legend of a Mind.” It comes from a pretty trippy Moody Blues song from 1968. Without digging too much in the metaphysics, the song is about Timothy Leary, an American psychologist that advocated the use of LSD to experience a spiritual path of liberation. That led to a book called The Psychedelic Experience. In a nutshell, take psychedelic drugs like LSD and experience various stages to spiritual rebirth. It all starts with an “ego death”. Once that happens, one can begin a journey into a metaphorical rebirth experience. If you could imagine this whole journey put to music, then “Legend of a Mind” does the trick! There’s even a wicked flute solo in the middle that screams an attempt to channel all that eastern mysticism, with the mellotron in the background helping take it there. It’s always one of those songs I pull out when I just want to get lost for six and a half minutes. But I digress, this is about the episode.
Bottom line, I think that’s what this episode wanted to do with Mary, at least when the script was first drafted. Take her on that metaphysical journey, triggered through an Akrida fueled brain drug, forcing her to confront all that’s holding her back, in a sense letting her old self die while allowing herself to be reborn with a new spiritual awakening. The chance to sell all this with spooky and stunning visuals was huge, creating something that could have gone really far in terms of digging deep into the psyche of Mary Winchester. It was a bold idea, one that had huge potential, and one that fell drastically short.
Mary’s awakening all fell on this one statement, to her old self, "Mom and Dad told me not to be scared, but I am scared. It's okay to be scared. In fact, it's good to be scared. You can't be brave if you're never scared. It's gonna be okay. Not in this moment; not today. But someday. I'm gonna find a way to open all the doors that were closed for you. I promise.” Okay, are we to expect a new, reborn Mary going forward, one free of guilt and pain? Was that the “ego death”? Or is this one of those things like she said she was leaving hunting in the beginning but oh boy, after her spiritual journey, she is so leaving hunting now! How is that happening though when she went back at the end to sleuthing with the Scooby gang? Does this mean she has taken Ada’s advice and following her heart with John? I’m not sure, because I really couldn’t tell at the end where her heart was. We only got hints in the beginning.
I know that Nightsky and Nate Winchester both commented the lack of emotional connection during Mary’s dream and I would agree, that really killed any impact or selling the message they were going for here. Remember when Supernatural tried this with season three’s “Dream A Little Dream of Me?” Now that’s digging into a psyche! It had a huge impact and really delivered a haunting glimpse to Dean Winchester. Now…meh.
Speaking of the Scooby gang, I’m sure the Roxy the Akrida lady at the end wondered what took them this long to figure all this out! No wonder she had to give them a practical map of clues this time. She’s getting bored, like probably all of us. Now they know that all the monsters they’ve been killing means they’ve been helping the Akrida. Great, this means that from now on…they’ll still keep killing monsters? Or are they going to finally follow Carlos’ advice and go after the Akrida from now on?
I’m not going to quibble much about the left turn with djinn lore, other than we were dealing with a half human djinn, so everything is off the table I guess. Either that or I'm still lagging from vacation and don't have a lot of time to catch up. But how is he not a dream walker? Is it he needs to feed off the dreamers and a dream walker doesn’t? I’ll figure it out. Ada really sold her pain and backstory and the introduction of her son was an interesting new dynamic. The fact he and Latika are keeping in touch means this is likely not the last we will see of him. I'm cool with that.
So, a funny thing happened when I went on vacation to Arizona last week. Turned out, the Official Supernatural Creation Con in Phoenix was happening at a hotel less than a mile from where I was staying! I haven’t been to a Creation Supernatural Con since 2016. I swore I was going to go to two different ones this year within driving distance and my busy life conflicted with me attending those. I noticed that this Phoenix con didn’t sell out and tickets were available for Sunday, so I grabbed a COVID test and headed off to the Sunday festivities.
The convention itself was the same old same old. Nothing has changed in the format in the six years between my attendance. But I’ve always gotten a lot out of connecting with the fans at these events, not necessarily the panels. So, overall, it was a worthwhile experience and I had the opportunity to catch up with some old friends and meet a few new ones. There were a lot of first timers at this con, ones that had waited a few years to attend since the Phoenix con kept getting put off because of the pandemic. Many were choking at the price but decided that this was going to be their only opportunity for a while, if ever. They were right, as Creation announced that they weren’t returning to Phoenix next year. I heard through the grapevine sluggish ticket sales was the reason.
Anyway, in my discussions with these fans, we only briefly talked about The Winchesters. The reactions I got from all was unanimous, they liked it, but they didn’t love it. The overall grade so far…Okay. I heard one comment that coming from Robbie Thompson and Jensen, they were expecting more. There wasn’t that enthusiasm, that spark, compared to when they talked about Jared, Jensen or even Misha. I even had a couple wildly enthusiastic conversations about The Boys, which was a big hit with most everyone. A few were even excited about Walker actors being part of the conventions next year, even if they agreed that the show wasn’t the best. Obviously, the characters were selling that show for them.
So what did I learn about my experiences? The convention itself was the same old same old and nothing had literally changed in the format in the six years between my attendances. Overall, it was a worthwhile experience and I’m wondering if expanding to ‘J&J Projects’ next year will infuse some life and interest in these events. The biggest realization I got though is that given all the new shows, it makes me appreciate more how much Supernatural was lightning in a bottle. It’s a phenomenon that isn’t translating in the spinoffs and new projects, even if there are some desirable new actors to emerge that will get to be part of the con circuit in the future. It’s a magic that is impossible to recreate. There was talk at the con, even by Jensen, that The Winchesters could possibly find new life on streaming services if The CW isn’t interested. Personally, I think the show needs to get stronger before that talk happens.
Of course, I should also note that Jensen teased us all in the J2 panel by using the words "...when the Supernatural reboot happens...". So someday, it might all be back for us.
Overall grade of “Legend of a Mind,” a C. Bottom line, I agree with everything Nate said. The direction was pretty dope on this one and some decent setup was done in the plot. The rest just fell flat.
And now…the preview for episode 1.06.
Preview - Season 1 Episode 6
Here's the official synopsis per The CW of the episode, titled "Art of Dying":
CALL FOR HELP – Mary (Meg Donnelly) gets a call from an old family friend who’s looking for some help but when the team arrives, they learn that some crucial details were left out. While Latika (Nida Khurshid) struggles with being a Hunter and questions her future with it, John’s (Drake Rodger) eagerness, and commitment to the Hunt worries Mary. Carlos (JoJo Fleites) finds himself in a situation he’s never experienced before and doesn’t know what to do with himself. Geary McLeod directed the episode written by Jess Kardos (#106). Original Airdate 11/22/2022. Every episode of THE WINCHESTERS is 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.
There are only six preview photos this week. A lot of nondescript poses from our cast!
Here's the preview clip, courtesy of The CW. It's the "someone is possessed" bit again:
How are you enjoying the season so far? Would you just call it "okay" or do you think there is something more? Or is it worse than that? Share your thoughts in the comments, and/or just watch the episode and share your reactions here afterward.
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