I know Eric Kripke always cringes at this episode….I don’t know why? I LOVE IT!
Maybe it’s the Wendigo itself? Ok, maybe….kinda rubbery and awkward looking, but I thought they did a good job hiding it in half light and fast movement.
I, for one, am a sucker for Native American legends and mythology and I remember I was excited back in 2005 that they used such well known creature early in the series. SADLY other than in “BUGS” that was it for many seasons, which I am still sad about. There’s such wealth of folklore and myths that they could have played with.
But back to the positive.
Creepy camping in a far away location – always a good start. HA. I am with Dean : I HATE camping!
Especially with monsters in the woods and no Winchesters on speed dial.
To my point from last week, again, great guest actor casting – shout out to Alden Ehrenreich and R.I.P. Corey Monteith – all around.
So between the set up, the monster, the outdoorsy nature, which to me always translates into no protection and vulnerability, I like the episode a lot.
Aside from all that we learn a lot new things about the brothers! We hear from Dean that Sam is not behaving like is usual self – Sam seems to be more hot headed and and charge-in-first-ask-questions later at the moment, which sets up future character development nicely, because we see Sam already in two possible ways.
In this episode it becomes even more apparent that Dean is the concerned, protective big brother. First in the car after Sam wakes up from the nightmare (establishing the BRO-MENT in the car concept!!) and especially through the talk by the camp fire where one of our most central catch phrases is coined (“Saving people, hunting things, the family business”)! Yes, he comes across as cocky and a little devil-may-care at first, but we see already in espisode 2 of 327 that there is a big heart and selfless willingness to help and sacrifice of himself behind the facade. That is great writing AND incredible acting so early on.
We also learn about the importance of John’s Journal and Dean’s view of “the job” and his duty to fulfill it.
We see Dean’s love for PEANUT M&M’s – another thing I agree with him on!! hehehe
We find out that Sam might be upset and anxious to revenge Jessica’s death and find his dad, but when it counts he is smart and resourceful and when the chips are down he is just as focused on saving the people in his care and getting the job done as Dean is.
I loved ALL of that.
To me the episode keeps up it’s tense feeling all the way through. The woods seem spooky, the labyrinth tunnels of the mine are oppressive, the monster is menacing especially because you DON’T see much of it.
The score also helps a lot to get your heart pounding and worry for our boys and their charges.
AND this episode marks the first real SAVE for the Winchester Brothers. In the pilot they destroyed the ghost, yes, but they didn’t directly save a person. HERE they do BOTH. It’s feels great at the end that they were able to at least save the brother and keep the siblings together even if all involved are a little worse for wear at the conclusion.
I noticed before when rewatching the series that in the early seasons the focus is sometimes off. Like when you have a close up of a person’s face and only the ear or shirt or something other than the face is in focus. I often wondered if that was on purpose? It’s weird.