Tonight marks the 200th episode of Supernatural. Titled Fan Fiction, this episode is a Love Letter to the fandom that made this show such a massive hit, for ten years. One could argue that I’ve been a fan of this show since before it aired, and I’m surprised and delighted, that it’s lasted as long as it has. Most of the shows I fall in love with, don’t last nearly this long.
This is also the very first TV show I’ve ever geeked out about, that got me involved in fandom. I’ve loved a lot of shows over the years, (Now and Again, The Invisible Man, Farscape), with the Original Star Trek being my first love, but even that didn’t get me to reach out to others about it, or start a blog. The solitary reading of books about all these shows was as far as I was willing to go. So, the existence of Supernatural is, inadvertently, responsible for this review.
When I first heard that the episode would be a musical I was initially very excited, but then I heard, it would also be based on a musical stage play, and since I’m not a fan of Glee (I have Teenager Trauma) or stage musicals, (because when I hear the music, all I can think is that the performers are messing up perfectly good songs with their inadequate warbling,) I was a lot less enthusiastic to hear that. I hope, even if I hate the music, that it brings the fee-fees and sets the course for the remainder of Sam and Dean’s relationship for the rest of the season.
Unlike a lot of fans, I’m not watching this episode for what I don’t see. Just like everyone else, though, I have hopes to see certain things, but I will take what’s given to me by the creators and look at it from a positive angle, rather than what I feel I should have been shown. What I expect, is for it to address a couple of issues, make me laugh or cry and move the brothers story forward, and so far this show has not failed in that regard. Not for ten years. It’s why I’ve kept coming back.
We open on a rehearsal and the young actresses are fighting about being inaccurate in their portrayal of Sam and Dean. Apparently, there’s too much drama, in the Drama Department. The teacher who made that statement, is doing some more bad mouthing of the truth of Supernatural on her way home and, of course, she gets eaten by trees. (Serves her right. Don’t sasstalk the show!)
It’s really nice seeing Dean fixing up baby outside the motel. Baby has been neglected for a while, and one of the most disturbing traits about Deanmon, was his lack of concern for her. His theme song is Sundown by Gordon Lightfoot, who is not my favorite singer, but I do love that song. The song choices this season, have been alright. Dean tells Sam, he needs to work, that he’s found a case. That it’s his only normal. Sam goes along with this.
Alright! We got the FBI suits back from the laundry and there’s banter. We’re already off to a good start.
Sam and Dean arrive at the school and witness, yet another, awful rehearsal of a badly portrayed Bobby, Castiel and Azazel, although the singing isn’t as bad as I thought it would be. The young lady playing Dean can carry a tune, fortunately. Sam and Dean are flabbergasted. That’s the only word to describe their reaction.
Right away, Dean goes off about the music. There should only be classic rock in Supernatural. I agree. Sam is intrigued by the director’s interpretation but Dean is incensed. Sam thinks all of it is perfectly charming. Needless to say, Dean does not.
While showing Dean around the set, Marie explains the Wincest subtext. Dean ain’t for that. Sam’s host, on the other hand, is completely disinterested in showing him anything. She’s also completely disinterested in him. Marie explains about transformative works to Dean ( i.e. fan fiction) with spaceships, robots and a little crack!fic, gender swap. When Dean tells her what really happened after season five, it’s hilariously short, sweet and also some of the worst fan fiction she’s ever heard. She laughs in his face, and to top it all off, she throws in some Destiel action, vis a vis the actresses, who are an actual couple. She keeps calling all of it, erotic subtext. Sam, intrigued, wonders why not “Samstiel” and Dean says he needs to shut the Hell up and get in the car. I can sort of understand his reaction. I’d be more than a bit discombobulated, to find out someone was writing erotic fiction involving me and a member of my immediate family. Sam just thinks all of it is funny, though.
That evening, Maggie, another actress, threatens to shut down the play, because some things just aren’t canon. She gets grabbed by a monster and dragged away. Marie chases after her but she has disappeared. Apparently, anyone who bad mouths the show is in trouble.
The next day, Sam and Dean find a purple flower near the scene. Marie confesses that Maggie was leaving the show and says she saw a scarecrow drag Maggie away. She now believes in ghosts and beasties. Sam and Dean confess who they are and once again get laughs in the face. (I’m not sure how I feel about this mirth.) Of course, there are some scarecrow legends in the town and the play might have created a Tulpa. Killing the creature’s symbol, should kill the monster. The prop for the scarecrow is in the boiler room.
Sam believes there’s a connection between the scarecrow and the flower, while Dean asks to see the boiler room. Dean finds the prop scarecrow and burns it only to have Sam say, it’s not a Tulpa . It’s a god named Calliope. They’ll have to kill her to save Marie, who will be eaten by Calliope at the end of the show. Marie, of course, has a panic attack about being eaten. Who wouldn’t? Sam leaves Dean to deal with the emotional young women, while he gets some supplies, from the car. Dean rallies Marie to fight and she turns out to be a Sam- girl. Dean is disappoint.
It’s showtime. Marie’s wig, as Sam, is horrible, the girl depicting Castiel is just adorable, the young woman playing Dean, is suitably scruffy and Dean is speechifying the cast and it’s a great speech… from Rent. Instead of telling everyone to break a leg, the cast all yell/whisper , “Ghostfacers”, with hand gestures.
Now, we’re all disappoint.
While the play is on, (and the music is not too bad, probably because these are all original songs), Sam and Dean hunt around the set, in case Calliope shows up. Sam finds her when she snatches him. He also finds Maggie and the teacher with Calliope, waiting for her cue, in the basement.
But, Calliope plans to kill both Sam and Dean because she recognizes the two of them as the true inspiration behind the play, not Marie. So really, it’s Sam in danger…again. Why do I find that funny? Well, at least he’s not tied to a chair. While Sam distracts the goddess, the teacher and Maggie scheme to kill her and Dean fights the scarecrow onstage. But it’s Marie who slays the scarecrow when Sam stabs Calliope. The audience, covered in blue goop from the exploding scarecrow, does that slow clap cliche and …intermission. Afterwards, the show goes on uninterrupted.
Sam is told he’d make a good Deanif he cut his hair. (Okay, that sound girl, needs to take all the seats! Need I speak on disappointment? ) Dean and Marie reach a detente about the Sam and Dean story and she gives him the Samulet prop. ( You can see that Dean has no idea that’s what it’s called and says he doesn’t need it to symbolize how he feels about Sam. Aawww!) I think she knows it’s really Dean Winchester, because when she calls him “jerk, his “bitch” is automatic. During the BM (Bro-ment) scene of the play, Sam and Dean start to have a BM scene, just before they stop and notice what’s going on, which I find entirely too funny.
During the real BM moment on the actual show, Dean takes the Samulet prop and hangs it from Baby’s rearview mirror. Nice!
And Chuck, who has made a delightful, surprise appearance, sums up all my feelings for this particular episode.
Yeah, I loved this rendition of “Carry On, My Wayward Son”.
And yeah, I cried.