So I Finally Finished Season 7 of Supernatural

/ TV /

And all I can say is…meh.

Don’t get me wrong, I really like Supernatural. I would actually consider it one of my favorite shows, right up there with Firefly and Lost, but Season 7 was a definite step down.

Season 1-5 were all outstanding. The finale of Season 5 saw the conclusion of a story arch that had been building since the first season and, in my mind, the whole thing paid off. As a result, I was pretty concerned that Season 6 wouldn’t live up, but the writers surprised me and managed to put together another solid season. Perhaps it wasn’t quite as outstanding as the previous seasons, but it was still really good.

And then there was Season 7… From the start, Season 7 was clearly a full step down from Season 6 and it just never got better. There were so many reasons that the previous seasons were so amazing, but it really came down to one thing: great writing. Unfortunately, I can’t say the same for Season 7. It was like the entire writing team was replaced with 11 year old boys.

There were just so many problems, but perhaps the biggest issue was that the villains were terrible. Let me break it down a bit.

  1. The leviathans looked really stupid with those giant teeth exploding out of their faces.
  2. A leviathan is a giant sea beast, not a shape shifter. Everyone knows that, right? Why reuse a term that just doesn’t fit?
  3. The leviathans’ plot to take over corporate America was A) really boring and mundane and B) not something that two Hunters could really fight, despite all of their talents and resources. It just didn’t work. Nobody wants to watch Sam and Dean fight an enemy that is taking over the world with tainted corn syrup. Seriously. Stupid.
  4. The leader’s name was Dick. Ugh. I lost count at how many times I cringed at the horribly juvenile dick jokes that seemed to be required in each episode. Of all of the offenses, this is the worst in my opinion. I have come to expect better writing than that.

Sadly, I could go on. About how Sam and Dean are getting stale as characters. About how they are no longer developing at all and just seem to do the job out of habit. About how uninspiring it is to watch characters that don’t really care anymore. About how all of the good secondary characters are dead or were missing for the majority of the season (they did at least resolve that near the end to some degree). About how all of the comfortable elements of the show were missing–Bobby’s house, the Impala, classic rock.

The bottom line is that I was pretty darn disappointed. But I wouldn’t be this disappointed if I didn’t care. I’m disappointed, because the show has been so good in the past, but Season 7 was just so bad. I almost quit on it several times. As it was, I had the finale on my DVR for well over a month before I got around to watching it.

Despite my love for the show, I don’t think I can continue to put myself through another season of that kind of torture. I’m giving Season 8 five episodes and if it isn’t a significant step up, I’m done. I hate to say it, but that’s how it has to be. Here’s to hoping that Season 8 is a huge upgrade!

What’s Going On With Supernatural?

/ TV /

I discovered Supernatural on Netflix as the sixth season was airing on television. By the time the seventh and current season premiered, I was already caught up to season six. I quickly devoured that season as well and I’ve been able to watch most of this season as it aired.

That’s been nice, but what would be even better is if the show was worth my time. Seasons one through five were all great and the story really came to a pretty neat ending, but they decided to bring it back for a sixth season. I was skeptical, but it was actually pretty solid. Not as good as the first five perhaps, but not a huge step down.

Season seven, however, has been a huge disappointment and it’s for more reasons than I can ever hope to identify in one blog post, but here are the main points:

  1. The villains suck. This season’s baddies, the leviathans, are totally lame and the CG that goes with them might be even more so.
  2. The story sucks. The plot just doesn’t work. The villains are so “sophisticated” that Sam and Dean don’t have any idea how to bring them down. That’s really nothing new, but this time it’s more like they are trying to fight a global corporation. How can two hunters combat that?
  3. The writing sucks. The last episode (the one with the real estate agents) was so bad, I almost turned it off. This season has been full of one-shoot episodes (which is normal), but they lack the creativity and wit that we saw in previous seasons. I mean, the episode with the clowns…what were they thinking? And all the “dick” jokes are horribly cringe-worthy.
  4. There’s no suspense anymore. Sam and Dean have died so many times now, you never worry that they won’t pull through.
  5. Sam and Dean are miserable. They’ve seen it all and they are both clearly sick of their situation, but can’t find a way out. Their despondence is so tangible, it transfers to the viewers. There’s no hope for a happy ending any more.
  6. There’s nobody left. The writers have killed off every single decent secondary character. No Castiel, Bobby, Rufus, Jo, Ellen. Sam and Dean are just depressing. I need some other characters to insert some comic relief or at least take the focus off the protagonists for a minute.
  7. There’s no fun. All of the things that made the show awesome are gone. The Impala’s gone. They no longer play rock music each episode. Even Bobby’s house was burned down. There’s nothing left and it’s depressing as hell.

Overall, I’m just really disappointed with this season. One of the things that made me fall in love with the show was the writing. For a long time, it was fantastic. The writer’s had an excellent sense of humor, but also knew when it was time to be serious. Now, all that is gone.

I guess I should have seen it coming. I mean, what show in its seventh season is still as good as it was in the past? There are some (Seinfeld maybe), but not many. Most fall apart well before then and get cancelled.

I don’t think there are many episodes left to the season so I’m going to stick with it. But if the show comes back for an eight season, it better step it up or I’m done.

Supernatural Is My New Favorite Show

/ TV /

Okay, this is old news if you’ve been following the blog, but I’ve been meaning to write up my thoughts on my new favorite show (Supernatural obviously) since I finished watching the fifth season in March. Yikes, I can’t believe it’s been that long.

Now, for those that aren’t up to speed, there are currently six full seasons of Supernatural. The sixth season aired this year and a seventh has been green lit for next fall. At this point, I’ve seen only the first five, because I didn’t start watching the show at all until this year and I’m waiting until the sixth comes out to DVD to catch up.

What I’m going to do now is basically just reflect on my favorite moments, characters, and other various awesomeness from the first five seasons. Spoilers ahead!

The Good Guys

Overall, I think Dean is my favorite character, but this is a bit of a tough one actually. Yes, I understand that there are only two characters (Sam and Dean) that have appeared in every episode of the series so there are really only two likely choices here, but may of the minor characters are also phenomenal. Some of my other favorites include Bobby Singer, John Winchester, and Chuck (the prophet).

However, for me, Dean is the obvious choice between the two brothers. I really do like them both, but Dean is easier to relate to. He’s pretty much a normal dude stuck in a shitty situation. He loves classic rock, cheeseburgers, cars, and the ladies–really a man’s man, if you know what I mean. He’s really pretty hard NOT to like.

The Bad Guys

The show obviously had some awesome villains. Yellow Eyes, Lilith, Lucifer. They were all great villains that you just loved to hate, but I think old Yellow Eyes was my favorite even though, on the grand scheme, he was, perhaps, the least important. The early story that surrounded the death of Sam and Dean’s mother and the acquisition of Sam’s powers was really compelling and Yellow Eyes, having orchestrated the entire nightmare, was the most perfectly evil bastard.

The Story

I’ve tried to pick my favorite season, but I really can’t decided which is the best. I mean, they each have their great episodes and their okay episodes. I’m not even sure if I can really think of any that I would consider to be bad. Early on, there were a lot of “monster of the week” episodes, but that’s not really a criticism as most of the one shot episodes were still really good.

The show didn’t really embrace the larger, underlying story in a significant manner until towards the end of the first season and that’s what really propelled the show forward. That’s what made me want to watch episodes non-stop. That’s what pulled together all of the random bits and odd comments and united them into a cohesive story that had its roots in the ground from the very first episode. It was really amazing to see this detailed, season-spanning story unfold. So yeah, I liked all of the seasons equally, or pretty damn close.

Beginnings and Endings

It’s pretty much impossible to pick just one episode in the entire first five seasons as my favorite, but there are definitely some that stand out. All of the season finales, for example, were fantastic. If I had to pick just one as my favorite, I would probably have to randomly select one of the finales and just call it good enough. However, the season premiers were also very good. In fact, the premier episode of season two where Dean spends some time with a reaper stands out in my mind as a particularly excellent episode.

Humor

One of the things that I was surprised to find about the show was just how funny it could be–I mean some of the episodes were literally roll-on-the-floor hilarious. Among them, the episodes featuring the Jester or the Ghostfacers were probably the most hysterical. Seriously though, almost every episode had at least one comedic moment and I really appreciated that. It was nice that, despite how dark and serious the show could get, there was always a one-liner to disperse the tension.

The Writing

The writing was phenomenal. I don’t think I can fully describe how much I appreciated the quality of the writing. The characters, the plot, the dialog, the humor…it was all so well done. Kudos Eric Kripke and team.

One thing in particular that I loved about the writers was how they would, quite literally, tease their own fans. I mean, Sam and Dean end up having novels written about them in the show and have their own fans. The devotion of those fictional fans, I’m quite sure, was a direct parallel to the show’s actual fans and it was very amusing. Many of those episodes included Chuck (the prophet/author) and I found him to be a great character. In particular, I loved the episode that took place at a Supernatural convention!

Other Awesomeness

At this point, I feel like I’ve done a pretty good job identifying why I love Supernatural so much, but there are still so many things that have been left unsaid, so many tiny little details that helped make the show what it is. This is where I’ll tip my hat to some of those things, because this article wouldn’t be complete without at least mentioning them.

The Impala. The Colt. John Winchester’s journal. The motels. The awesome music. The episode titles. Castiel. Ruby. Jo. Helen.

So yeah, I think Supernatural is a fantastic show. I can’t wait to catch up on season six and dig into season seven. If you haven’t watched the show (and somehow made it through this article) and you enjoy The X-Files or Buffy or just good television, you should get on that pronto.

Random Thoughts

/ Geek Stuff, TV /

I’ve been trying to think up an excuse for not posting for two weeks and, well, I haven’t come up with one yet. I’m pretty sure that I’ve just been lazy. Yeah, that’s not a great excuse, but that’s life for you. Sometimes, I just don’t feel like writing; I just want to go to bed. Is that too much to ask? I hope not.

Anyways, during the last couple of weeks or so, I’ve thought of a whole bunch of geeky things that I really need to post about, but instead of actually posting about any of those things now, I’m just going to post the list of things that I will post about later. (And you thought I couldn’t get any lazier).

  1. Supernatural – Jinkies, Supernatural is one awesome show. My brother and I have watched the first five seasons on Neftlix and I still can’t get over how much I enjoyed it. We just demolished the series. I really wanted to tear into season 6, but that’s proving difficult. Sad face :(
  2. Warehouse 13 – After we finished Supernatural, we were looking for something else to watch. I had watched the first few episodes of Warehouse 13 season 1 back when it originally aired and found it to be a pretty fun show. Then I attended the panel at Comic-Con and decided that I needed to catch up. Now, I’ve finished season 1 and I’m just waiting for season 2 to come out on DVD.
  3. X-Files – I’ve been watching season 1 of the X-Files on instant watch (through Netflix) in between discs. I’m about 3/4 of the way through and I’ve found it to be pretty interesting despite one horrific theme song/intro.
  4. Castle – Now I’ve moved onto Castle. Not sci-fi so much, but it does have Nathan Fillion and I think that makes up for anything else it lacks. Very enjoyable so far!
  5. The Wise Man’s Fear – I finished The Name of the Wind a few weeks ago and loved it. Even though I have a bunch of unread books sitting on my bookshelf right now, I decided to skip them and go straight for the sequel. Review forthcoming!

Ooooo. The last thing I wanted to mention was that I came across a sweet set of action figures today that I don’t think I can pass on buying. I haven’t bought an action figure since I picked up The Man in Black and Jacob (from LOST) at Comic-Con, but I think it’s time to make another $20-some splurge. That’s right, Scott Pilgrim action figures.

Sure, they only have Scott (poor Ramona), but both figures look really sweet and I think they’ll look even more amazing on my desk!

The best deal I’ve seen is at Entertainment Earth. They have the pair for $24. Not bad.

Happy Halloween

/ Geek Stuff /

With Halloween falling on a Sunday this year, that left two nights for costume parties and a rather busy fun weekend indeed. I tried out two costumes this year, one on Friday and one on Saturday. On Friday, I dressed up as a Buy More employee from Chuck. I did this one on the cheap and, as expected, no one knew what I was supposed to be, but there were some pretty close guesses. On Saturday, I went with the old standby: Marty McFly from Back to the Future. I’ve used this costume for the last three years and I feel no shame for it is pure awesome.

As I mentioned, this weekend was pretty busy and I didn’t have time to comment on a few news items that I found interesting. So I’m just going to insert some brief comments about each and feel better about myself.

Caprica is Done

I can’t say I didn’t see this one coming. The BSG prequel was getting pretty awful viewer numbers and I can’t blame Syfy for pulling the plug. I am a little surprised that they are holding off on airing the final episodes until 2011 however. I guess it just tanked that bad.

I had actually been watching, but, after every episode, I wondered why. I didn’t really like any of the characters or the story and it didn’t really feel like it was going anywhere. I can’t say that I’ll really miss it.

The Hobbit is Actually Moving Forward

This movie has had more problems getting started than I can realistically hope to list, but lately there has been some pretty positive news. There have been several casting announcements, including the confirmation that Martin Freeman will be playing the part of Bilbo Baggins, and that the movie will stay in New Zealand. I’m just happy to hear that things are moving in the right direction and I’m hoping that it’s a sign that we’ll be treated to the quality film that we are all expecting.

Supernatural

I just finished watching season two and, I have to say, this show is great. I really enjoyed the first season and the second may have been even better. Sam and Dean are such amazing characters and the acting is really superb. I’m a little disappointed that I haven’t been watching from the beginning, but it is awesome being able to watch at my own pace too. I may do a full post devoted to season two, but I just wanted to sneak in a quick comment.

Okay, I think that’s enough for one night. Happy Halloween all.

Supernatural: Season One

/ TV /

Over the course of the summer, I have been working my way through the first season of Supernatural and I just finished watching the final two episodes. When I first started watching the show, I wasn’t completely sold. There were a lot of horror elements that I just wasn’t that into, but as the season went on, I got more and more wrapped up in the characters and the underlying plot and found that as soon as I finished watching an episode, I was ready to watch the next.

The show definitely got better as the season progressed. In the pilot, we were presented with the backstory that frames the main plot for the entire season, but many of the early episodes didn’t focus too heavily on that story arch. Instead, they were one-shot, monster-of-the-week type episodes, somewhat reminiscent of the first season of Buffy. However, as the season progressed, the episodes became more and more engrossed in the central story line and just got better and better.

Probably the best part of the show for me was the characters. Sam and Dean are two brothers that have a lot in common, but have pretty different personalities. They have a great chemistry, a camaraderie that only brothers can share. But then, they really had to be perfect in order for the show to work. Sam and Dean are the only characters to appear in every episode so if the chemistry was off or one of the actors wasn’t great, then it would have been very easy for the show to have failed early on.

Another thing that I really liked was how the show was geared around the concept of family. Sam and Dean are fiercely loyal to one another. They have very different relationships with their father, but it is clear that no matter what happens, they love each other and will stop at nothing to keep their family together. Family really is the primary theme throughout the show and it worked really well as a backbone to the plot.

Despite the macabre elements, the show had enough lighthearted moments to take the edge off and gave me a few good laughs. I also liked the use of classic rock. I’m pretty sure that every episode featured at least one classic song. I’m a big classic rock fan so I was always eager to listen for the song and find out what they decided to use. Sometimes, the song was very fitting and would be played at a critical moment (Don’t Fear the Reaper comes to mind), but often, they would just sneak in a song while Sam and Dean were driving.

Overall, I really enjoyed season one and I can’t wait to start in on season two. The finale ended with quite the cliffhanger and I’m dying to find out what is going to happen next.

Honestly, I would recommend this show for anyone, but especially fans of the paranormal or horror, or fans of Buffy or Angel. The first season definitely had a lot in common with those shows, so if you liked either of them, I think there is a good bet that you would like Supernatural as well.

Summer TV: Supernatural

/ TV /

I recently started watching the first season of Supernatural after hearing good things about the show for awhile. At this point, I’ve watched the first four episodes and I have say that I’m enjoying it so far. I’m not really huge into the whole horror scene, but I’m not that concerned about that as I’m also not a huge vampire fan and yet and I love Buffy and Angel.

I think the main thing that has drawn me in so far is the characters. Sam and Dean really just feel like normal guys, like real, down-to-earth people, despite the fact that they are hunting demons for a living. Maybe they are a little one dimensional at this point, but I think we are going to see more layers as the story progresses.

I also like the background story that helps string together the one-shot episodes. Only four episodes in and I’m already dying to find out what is going on with their father and find out what happened with their mother and Sam’s girlfriend.

Lastly, I dig the music. I like how they use classic rock to set the mood of a scene and it seems to work pretty well. Sometimes it seems a little forced, but I love classic rock and I’ll give them a pass. I mean, anyone that uses Rush in a TV show is okay in my book.

New-To-Me TV

/ TV /

This summer, I have been trying to find some TV show to fill the void left by LOST, Heroes, Dollhouse, and 24 (which all ended or were cancelled this spring). I think the only shows that I watch that are returning this fall are Chuck and The Office. I also watch Caprica, but that won’t return until the winter. Netflix has been my biggest ally in my quest. Here’s what I’ve tried out so far:

Veronica Mars – I’ve watched the first four episodes and I’m still on the fence. I like the mystery aspect, but I’m not into the whole teenage angst stuff so much. I may continue to feel it out for a few more episodes before I decide whether to stick with the full season or not.

Farscape – I have heard so many good things about this show, but it wasn’t exactly what I expected. The whole puppet element threw me off to say the least. I’m only three episodes in, but I’m still on the fence with this one too.

Eureka – I caught the Warehouse 13 / Eureka panel at Comic-Con and it inspired me to check out the show. I have watched two episodes from the fourth season and it’s just good fun. I think this is a show I could enjoy and I think I’ll continue watching. I also want to catch up on Warehouse 13. I watched part of season one and liked it, but dropped the ball and stopped watching.

Supernatural – I’ve watched the first two episodes and I think I’m getting into it. I’m not a big horror guy, but I like the characters and I dig the classic rock. I’ll think I’ll be sticking with this one.

Arrested Development – This may be the funniest show since Seinfeld. I think its even funnier than The Office. I’m about halfway through season two and I’m sure I’ll finish the series before the summer is out. This is the best new-to-me show I’ve discovered this summer. I just love it.

I’m also thinking of checking out Dexter and The X-Files, but I haven’t had time yet. They may have to wait until I whittle down this list a little. They have been more than enough to keep me busy.

Well, I’m out. Godspeed.