After a long hellatus, Supernatural is back! True confession, peeps. Over the summer I realized that, for me, season eight had inspired a total change of heart about this show. And by that I mean that Jared Padalecki converted me and now I am a card carrying Sam girl. What can I say? I loves me some Moose. That just means more Dean for the rest of you, right? YOU’RE WELCOME!
In the premiere, Dean had his work cut out for him. A mortally weakened Sam decided to give up the fight and finally allow Death to be his own personal reaper. Cas began life as a fragile little human–one who needed to protect himself from his fallen brothers and sisters *and* had to do his own laundry. The new (and hot) angel Ezekiel came to heal Sam and ended up hitching a ride in his meatsuit instead. And Dean? Well, Dean will never learn. He decided to try and keep a huge secret from his brother, and take his chances by allowing Sam to be possessed. What could *possibly* go wrong?
Here are the top ten moments that caused me to shriek, shout and cry.
1. The New Title Card
HO. LY. CRAP! The burst of black angel wings, ignited into embers. The keening sound of an angel’s true voice. The title of our beloved show bursting into flames. It sets the whole tone for the season. Easily the best title card the show has ever had. It made me cheer out loud.
2. Dean Tells Sam He’s Dying
Our boys in the Impala, wondering what the hell they’re going to do now that angels have fallen to earth. Except, they weren’t. Sam and Dean and everything else were in Sam’s head, deciding whether Sam wanted to fight for his life or finally seek his long overdue rest. The real Sam? In a coma, with a devastated Dean by his side, praying to Cas, and then to anyone who would listen.
3. BOBBY FRIGGIN’ SINGER!
In the battle in Sam’s head, Dean was the manifestation of his passionate desire to fight. His desire to let go and finally be at peace? Represented by none other than Bobby, who lovingly reassured him that he wasn’t giving up, he was leaving a incredible legacy. That he had amply earned the right to let go. Of course, for this he earned a symbolic knife to the gut by imaginary Dean, who wasn’t about to let Sam go that easily.
4. “I’ve got the king of hell in my trunk.”
The incomparable Mark Sheppard wasn’t available for the premiere, but the King of Hell would not be denied. Apparently Crowley is, as was said in the preview for next week, “the junk in Dean’s trunk.” A nice comedic moment in an emotionally wrought episode.
5. The angel Ezekiel
Dean’s heavenly cattle call brought angels deadly and friendly running to his side. Cas personally endorsed the arrival of the angel Ezekiel, who tried to heal Sam, sadly to no avail. Bonus? Ezekiel is played by sci-fi legend Tahmoh Penikett who is eminently squee-worthy all by himself. An interesting question: a badly injured Dean manages to make the angel banishing sigil in his own blood, sending the fallen angels that are out for his head to God knows where (probably literally.) So why didn’t it affect Ezekiel who was merely one broken wall away?
When a Winchester dies, no mere reaper comes to collect: Death himself is the one who performs what he considers an honor. Julian Richings is such a presence on the show, even in just a couple of scenes, and his quiet words for Sam were incredibly touching. In a heartbreaking moment, Sam tells Death he wants to stay dead, so that no one can ever be hurt by him again. And in my very favorite moment of the show, Death finally acknowledges all that Sam has done. Has given. “I try so hard not to pass judgment at times like this–not my bag, you see–but you?” he says gently, with respect, “Well played, my boy.”
7. “There ain’t no me if there ain’t no you!”
Sam makes it clear to Dean: he’s done. He’s ready. He wants to die, and he doesn’t want any dealing to make it not stick. Dean, in an impassioned speech, convinces Sam to fight to stay with him by telling him that there is no Dean if there is no Sam. Sam, looking back and forth between the peace he longs for and the brother that’s been his whole life, is torn. In tears. He finally hearkens back to the finale where he asked Dean for help in stopping the trials, asking for help once more. “What do I do?” he says, in a small voice. “Is that a yes?” Dean asks. “Yes,” Sam agrees. And Dean, who is actually the angel Ezekiel, brings Sam back and possesses him in a plot to save his life. He wipes his memory of the hospital, the inner turmoil, and his possession, in a secret deal Dean is bound to regret.
Jared Padalecki won my heart with the incredible acting prowess he showed in the last half of season eight. (Well, that and his infectious, dimple-filled grin and shoulders of steel, but I digress.) He channels this talent again playing what I call Samzekiel, Sam’s body as the vessel for the newest angel in town. He adopted Tahmoh Penekitt’s voice and mannerisms so thoroughly it’s like they were the same person. I look forward to seeing this new incarnation of Sam as the season progresses.
9. Human Cas and the Laundromat
Where has Cas been? He’s been human, and that means he’s been bloody and thirsty and sweaty and all of the unpleasant things a human can be. He’s also discovering that angels are out to get him–either to kill him or use him. He meets the angel Hael who wants to vessel-snatch him, and ends up having to dispatch her, realizing that he is about to become the catalyst for another angelic war, this time to be fought on our home turf. But most important? Cas has to do his laundry for the first time ever, which means CAS IN HIS BOXERS. Hallelujah! Praise The Lord!
10. “We got work to do.”
How do you end an episode this fantastic? Let the viewers know to get ready for a whole new adventure that will honor the Winchester’s history that we hold so dear? You end as you should, with the boys in Dean’s baby, hitting the road to fight the good fight. You end with Sam saying the same final line of the pilot, reminding Dean and us all of the never ending battle against the darkness that lies ahead. Before we cut to black, you end with Sam saying, “We got work to do.”
What were your favorite moments, SPN fans? Tell us in the comments. I’ll see you next week, for episode two of season nine, “Devil May Care.”