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      March 9, 2021 at 12:46 pm #5767

      I liked this episode for even bringing up the subject of racial injustice and prejudice. I liked that it established that Dean has no one “type” of woman he likes…he’s equal opportunity. I loved getting an insight into Dean’s past – discovering it right along with Sam. I was surprised that on rewatch, I didn’t think Cassie’s acting was as good as I remembered, but I still liked her and the banter between Sam and Dean was priceless. There was a lot of Jared coming through in this one, but I liked it.

      Kate, you crack me up. Dean could be a serial killer and it would be hard to let go of someone that pretty. 🙂

      I always thought that was a particularly gruesome “dead makeup” job on the mayor who was run over by the truck. I liked it. It’s still gruesome by SPN standards. He looked run over!

      Good point, Kate, on abandoning the “hallowed ground” idea as the series progressed. That is one of my very favorite Sam and Dean moments though…when Dean can’t believe that Sam was just GUESSING that drawing the truck into the church yard would work! One of Dean’s best reaction moments ever.

      I really wish we had seen Cassie again too. She was busy being the medical examiner on CSI Miami for awhile, I think I recall. She seemed to have had too big a role in Dean’s life to never go back to! Like you said, Kate, the ONE PERSON he told their secret to. There was something special about her!

      Yes! Cassie’s mom was SO CONVINCING as an actress! The look she gives Sam and Dean when they ask why she didn’t just call the cops back in the 60’s when her husband killed a white man was PERFECT!

      The sex scene was nowhere near long enough and throughout the series, our chances to ogle Dean’s gorgeous body were too few and far between when compared to our chances to ogle Sam’s gorgeous body. Nicely choreographed sex scene though.

      Sensitive issue. So many sensitive issues in American history and I hate that. It’s REALITY. Glossing over it doesn’t fix anything. I hate that some seem to think that recognizing facts somehow diminishes this country. I think it makes it stronger IF the injustices can be righted. So far, that hasn’t happened.

        February 17, 2021 at 9:50 am #5138

        It really is one of Supernaturals’ best episodes. I LOVE all the gray areas! There is SO MUCH internal stuff about Dean here too; how we really start to see that he does not want special treatment; that he does not seem himself as special at all. If anything, it’s the opposite and he believes he should die instead of someone, anyone else. It’s so touching. Sam’s just excited that Dean is better; willing to take it and not question it much, then kind of begrudgingly admits that Dean is right; something bad is going on here.

        I love that Roy got to be innocent. He seemed like a sweet person who really wanted to do good and I was glad that it was not him with the agenda that his wife had; to punish those she saw as immoral by taking their lives to heal the people coming to see Roy.

        Leila was so very compelling. The ending of this one is amazing. How she basically accepts her fate; has truth faith; and is not mad at Dean in the end of surviving when she will not. It’s like Dean can barely comprehend that kind of forgiveness and it’s SUCH a great scene.

        I have always wished they kept this reaper model. Old man with all the makeup and creepy grin. I guess non one ever wanted to go through the makeup in future years…they pretty quickly made reapers human-looking (Tessa) at least to other humans like Dean when he died; Tessa chose to appear that way. But she was more like a ghost in her real form. I kinda wish they’d chosen a type of reaper and stuck with it. By the end of the series they were just all regular-human-looking people!

        PigNaPoke: Implacable; good word!

        Amen, Dean, on his quote about half the people who think they’re doing God’s work! I’d up the percentage a bit, personally.

        Yes; their contrasting views of faith are great. Sam reasoning that good exists if the bad does, Dean wondering why bother when there’s so much bad.

        Jensen was just so damn good in this one! That scene where Leila is about to be healed and he has to stop it; he even has some misgivings in the car with Sam right before…I know that NOW they know that it’s not a good thing; that some innocent person will die so another can live, but it’s a bit hard-assed of Sam to make Dean go through with stopping Leila’s healing (acting like there is no moral question there; they have to stop it) when he would have done anything to save Dean, including, I believe, going through with Dean’s healing even if he knew it was killing someone else. Then Dean has to stand there in the tent and it’s just such a good scene of him being tortured over having to do this.

        I also thought that Leila’s mom; though harsh, was very realistic.

        I said last week that Scarecrow was my favorite season 1. I can’t choose between that one and this one. This one is just so good too. One of the best.

          February 11, 2021 at 11:13 am #4944

          I thought that too about Dean’s call with John…by the time he got the phone, it was only orders and I too felt bad for him there.

          Hmmmm…Meg also wondered why she had not been allowed to “just get both of them” and it must have been a larger plan (Sam eventually leading the chosen children Army?) and she was called off. At first I thought she was trying to lure him to CA to separate him from Dean and Dean’s protective influence. Or to make him MAD at his family (Meg trying to downplay his ties to Dean and asking Sam why he would even talk to him) so he would do something even more rebellious that Azazel wanted.

          You are right, Kate, Sam chose to stay with Dean every time. It was always his choice.

          Bah! I didn’t notice the boom being moved!!!!

            February 3, 2021 at 1:03 pm #4639

            LOVE LOVE LOVE this one. I think this was the first one that REALLY hooked me. I was all-in after this.

            I am also kind of fond of episodes where Sam and Dean split up for awhile. I enjoy the angst and Sam just being a defiant almost-teen. They make their differences clear here. It’s incredible from the start where the phone call from John is just SUPERB – Sam all glad to hear from him at first. Asking a bunch of questions. But when John starts giving orders, you can see Sam start to boil and Dean just grabs the phone away and starts to talk to John with concern, but instantly switches into “soldier” mode and obediently writes down the names John wants them to follow up on. This scene is SUCH ACTING GENIUS and sets up the entire rest of the episode as well as making the differences between Sam’s feelings and Dean’s feelings about John so stark and apparent.

            I also liked the kind of surprise reveal later…Sam blows up…Sam leaves…takes off walking…but then just has to try to call Dean from the bus station. And then…it’s like it slowly grows. Then he’s TALKING to Dean while Meg sleeps and it’s like nothing is wrong. Like he didn’t blow up. He’s back in “solve the case and help Dean” mode and Dean gives him his blessing to follow his own heart and life elsewhere and Sam’s surprised. Makes me wonder how much of Sam wanting to leave was him perceiving that Dean wanted him to stay? Just to “not do what you tell me to do”. Because once Dean tells him it’s okay with him if he goes after a different life, he comes back.

            I loved the MOW. The “old world Norse” connection (and the Smoking Man from X-Files as the professor!). Speaking of X-Files, there is one scene here taken DIRECTLY from X-Files; the umbrellas-from-above scene is shot EXACTLY the same in an X-Files episode about high school teachers who worship Satan. You can tell that a bunch of the crew came from X-Files and I love that.

            The scarecrow is creepy as hell. Made from the skin of all his victims and the fresh addition of the arm tattoo that Dean notices is just gross and effective as hell!

            I loved ANOTHER strong female could-have-been-a-victim-but-refuses-to-be role in the girl who is chosen for the sacrifice with Dean. When she torches the “mother tree” at the end without any regret that it will cause the town to die, I cheered. No regret! I WAS a little surprised that Dean felt the need to point out to her that this would cause the town to die, but I guess that was just to make it all the more effective when she did it.

            The “too nice” townspeople are creepy…luring tourists in. I love how they are nice to the tourists but not to Dean. Dean telling the one unfriendly cafe owner with all the sarcasm, “Scotty, anyone ever tell you you’ve got a smile that lights up a room?” still makes me laugh.

            The rifle butt to the face after Dean met with the professor shocked me; I’d forgotten that.

            Love that Dean is never really afraid of the scarecrow. The whole time it’s like he’s trying to find a way to outwit it instead. Love that he gets CLOSER to look at him and is more curious than anything.

            Of course I love that Sam comes back to get him. Great break-up and make-up! Sam’s decision to stay at the end, spelled out so well, it carries the entire next 14 seasons that it’s them, together, no matter what. Dean’s “Hold me Sam, that was beautiful” – so sarcastic. So deadpan. SO PERFECT!!!!! Then Sam swats at him like a brother would. PERFECT!

            And Meg. The first demon we see besides the flashbacks of yellow eyes. Sorry to Rachel Miner, but THIS Meg was the best Meg. Cute. Trying to tell Sam what he wants to hear about how it’s not wrong to live his own life, empathizing with him. It all makes the reveal at the end more shocking. They seemed to not use the “bowl of blood to call up Lucifer” much in future episodes and I REALLY liked that. The creepy way the blood forms into little spikes in the bowl…sound waves maybe as she “hears” Lucifer? Whatever it is, I like it. It’s kind of our first inkling that there are bigger forces interested in Sam and Dean.

            And I have to talk for a minute about how drop dead gorgeous Jensen is in this episode. The camera just loves him and there are so many great closeups with his gorgeous long eyelashes. A more perfect-looking man has never been created.

            Sam’s still a bit young for me to think of him that way here, but he’s ADORABLE and so sincere with Meg. I didn’t mind the closeups of him either!

            One thing…that’s the weirdest-looking orchard and I wonder if it was really an orchard? In the U.S., orchards are pruned to within an inch of their lives so there is ONE TRUNK on each tree with horizontal branches above that. This looked more like an orchard full of bushes, but okay, I’ll let it go. Maybe it’s different in Canada but I’ve always wondered if that was a real orchard and, if not, what was it?

            I HOPE YOUR APPLE PIE IS FREAKIN’ WORTH IT! That line lasted for the next 14 years too.

            Best episode of season 1 so far for me. Hands-down. I have NOTHING bad to say about it. It’s one of those near-perfect ones for me.

              February 3, 2021 at 12:40 pm #4636

              I am also a sucker for those episodes that happen every so often where one of them is possessed by something and the truth comes out and it’s harsh. This is the first one of those aside from getting a bit of what Dean’s thinking from the Shapeshifter in the earlier episode.

                February 3, 2021 at 12:39 pm #4635

                Director Guy Bee said that place was a challenge to shoot in.

                I quite liked this one. CREEPY! My wife even jumped with the Dr. grabbed Sam.

                I thought the shock of Sam willing to shoot Dean was VERY effective. I loved that whole scene actually…Dean obviously testing him and learning a “truth” about how Sam feels. I DO think it was amplified by the possession – not “really” Sam in his right mind. I agree with Kate that it amplified the anger.

                I think this was built up effectively with Dean and Sam’s conversation earlier about John and following orders.

                Loved that the GIRLFRIEND was the one who took the shotgun! Loved the bits of humor too. Jensen was superb with his reactions to everything in this one.

                I also thought that scene where the girl was locked in with the ghost and had to try to face his disfigured face and listen to him was really interesting an effective.

                I could just SEE Dean filing away the way Sam had been willing to shoot him under “useful information” in his mind.

                  January 28, 2021 at 10:11 am #4491

                  Opposite opinion; I LOVE Missouri! I see it this way. Yes, she was harsh with Dean and more mothering to Sam. (that last scene with her talking to Sam on the step was very sweet). I think that she IS a good psychic BECAUSE she could sense what each one would be respond to.

                  Dean WOULD be the one rebelling as opposed to Sam (being told to help clean up, etc. – just part of his early bad boy image he likes to show the world). I don’t know that Dean would have been receptive to her sympathy.

                  Dean wanted his dad in this case and I don’t think he would have accepted Missouri as a substitute.

                  Sam had issues with John and would not have had the instinct to call him like Dean did – Sam was more open to comfort from Missouri so I think she sensed the vibe of both brothers exactly right.

                  I feel that she dealt with each one in the only ways they were capable of being dealt with.

                  I had forgotten what I truly good episode this one. My wife watching it for the first time with me commented “This one is exciting!”. It was really good. Hard to figure out. Creepy. Suspenseful. SO heartbreaking with Dean’s reluctance to go back there (ugh; such good acting on Jensen’s part in that motel room scene where he’s tortured about the idea of going back AND thrown by learning about how Sam’s dreams sometimes come true like visions). SO MUCH GOOD STUFF in this one! And the surprise reveal of John at the end STILL gets me!!!! The first time we see him present-day.

                  Now, how did Sam recognize Mary? When she was an indistinct burning form? Could he “sense” it was her? Could he “see” her face and recognize her from pictures? I always wondered that.

                  Also just LOVE the scene where Dean thinks fast and upends the table as the knives fly into it. Love seeing Dean so smart in a fight or thinking on his feet.

                  I think I’d have to say that, so far in season 1, this was the best.

                    January 28, 2021 at 9:57 am #4490

                    I’m super late to comment, but I’m commenting anyway!!!!

                    Yes; my wife did a lot of “why would you reach in there/go in that hole???”

                    This was a GOOD one! Definitely not one of the worst! I wonder if Kripke was disappointed with the need for some of the fake-y CG bugs? But the STORY is really good.

                    Best part as was said already is all we learned about Sam and John and just how in tune Dean is to all of the family dynamics. I TOTALLY agree that John and Sam were at each other’s throats because they were ALIKE. I LOVE this uncomfortable dynamic in the Winchester family and wouldn’t have it any other way. It’s super-interesting with the tension and the history and Dean’s role; I love it all.

                    Carrie Genzel said in a recent Discord book club discussion on There’ll Be Peace When You Are Done (where she has a chapter) that it took an ENTIRE DAY in a shower built on the soundstage for the shower scene! And that that is not her favorite thing to do – quite understandably!

                    Also very glad they used actual Native American actors for the reservation scene. I still love the elder cutting through the bullshit and identifying Dean as a liar.

                    I did not mind the heavy-handed son/father parallel here.

                      January 14, 2021 at 4:28 pm #4309

                      Bah! No one wants to comment on Hook Man? I admit, I didn’t rush to comment. It’s a nice one; very much in the horror movie genre (the dragging hook reminded me of Freddy Krueger movies). Good message about the dangers of being holier-than-thou. The case wasn’t as straightforward as it first appeared. And it was quite sweet how much it looked like Dean wanted Sam to kiss the girl at the end…wanted Sam to have something good again. Of course he DID kiss the girl earlier when Dean wasn’t there; but told her he just couldn’t do it because he was still in love with Jess. I really felt how much Dean cared about Sam at the end of this one.

                        January 4, 2021 at 11:06 am #4278

                        Perhaps the first big inkling about how incredible an actor Jensen is. Wow. Totally believable as both Dean and some creature (what a pitiful creature!) pretending to be Dean. Just – amazed me to see it again. He’s so incredible. Always. I loved how Sam knew immediately that Dean wasn’t Dean (but played along with the shifter until he could get a weapon on him). Sam’s so smart!!! Though did get tied up in this one – I too thought it was the first “Sam gets tied up” but it was very far from the last!

                        I had no problem with all the lying. 🙂 It’s the job. Good point Kate that it seems Becky would have trusted Sam already.

                        I also agree with you, Kate, on the details – the dog was interesting and all those little bits of lore just got ignored later; if only they had stuck with it and built on it more than they did!

                        The monster was so sad! Crazy, yes, but it was interesting here to see a monster that wanted to “talk it out” with a human a bit (when he was trying to get sympathy from Becky) – only going off the rails when she rejected him (sadly, all too often a real-life problem when an unstable person is rejected). It made the monster more interesting than “just” a vengeful spirit, etc. I loved the hint at monster complexity here.

                        And Jensen was just SO DAMN GOOD. I missed the “ick” factor of Supernatural in the later, more glossy years. Loved the piles of skin and all the gross stuff in this one (it really was gross). The super close-ups of the shifter changing were great and disgusting. BTW, it seemed like the shifter shed its skin between being Dean and…being Dean – did I miss something? I wanted the pile of skin with every shift and something didn’t add up for me with that in-depth shifting scene. It was Dean…then it was still Dean?

                        Anyway, a good one.

                          December 23, 2020 at 10:25 am #3986

                          Out of the first 4 of S1, this is my least favorite. It just didn’t really DO much for me.

                          Yes, that slow pan up Dean’s sleeping body is glorious and has been posted a trillion times on Twitter and everywhere else ever since.

                          HA! – PigNaPoke – never noticed the taking the lid off the coffee thing! Is it caution? Or waiting for it to cool down?

                          I also didn’t like the use of the EMF detector (????) if they knew they were looking for a demon. That’s only for ghosts!

                          I was charmed by Sam always talking Dean down. Again; the brother trust is there from the very start. Dean actually gets on the plane because Sam talks him into it in spite of being terrified of flying. Sam keeps his cool – which seems nuts when they aren’t even sure if the exorcism will work and they KNOW they will die in a plane crash if it doesn’t!

                          I did like the shocking moment of the demon possessing the pilot talking directly to Sam about Jessica; knowing that the “things”/creatures KNOW stuff about him is really chilling.

                          There were some good things about this one; good shots; challenging. But overall it did not grab me.

                          The final scene where they realize that John has put a permanent “forward to Dean” on his voicemail is really touching as neither of them know what it means; if he’s dead, doesn’t want to be found, etc. Sam teared up hearing it.

                            December 8, 2020 at 11:04 am #3864

                            I keep marveling at the dark look of season 1 and remembering how I fell in love with it right away. You could see the X-Files influence and I really love it.

                            This one shows yet another sweet side of Dean (I sure remembered him being more of a cocky jerk in season 1 – no wonder I fell in love with him so hard – he’s not a jerk at all!). He can’t leave the situation alone even when the sheriff threatens him and Sam with arrest. He has to turn around and go back to check on Lucas (just in time for Sam to save Lucas’ mom from death in the tub!). Even if Dean doesn’t love kids, he remembers what it was like to be one; to be scared; and he can’t let poor Lucas suffer. Funny that compassionate Sam is the one ready to take off in this case (as he really wants to find John). I love that the mom here was also not going to take any bullshit or bad pickup lines.

                            The father who ended up dying in the boat “explosion” (that was a big effect!) was truly great here, portraying a grief-stricken father with nothing left to lose who doesn’t care about anything anymore with his family dead.

                            The ghost child in the water, just barely peeking above the surface with his hair plastered down was truly terrifying. Also, the shot of the Sheriff flailing as he was dragged down was pretty arresting. Dean got a kiss from the grateful woman (again; same as from the sister in Wendigo last week). It was all very g-rated and sweet.

                            It’s kind of a long-standing Supernatural theme that “the truth will come out” and it was on display early here. Bad things haunt you until they are resolved.

                            BTW, that was the easiest-to-unearth bicycle in history! If it had been buried for that many decades, it would have been much more difficult.

                            The thing that got me the most in this one was Dean caring about Lucas – remembering himself at his age and Mary’s death and how traumatic that was. THAT early it was the first time we (and Sam) saw that Dean was not okay even though he tried to always appear that he was okay. These early ones are sad. They do NOT save nearly everyone. There’s a lot of pain. It’s really compelling though.

                              December 6, 2020 at 5:16 pm #3853

                              I didn’t know this episode made Kripke cringe. I think it’s really good! (I know Kripke regretted Bugs.) And I have the advantage of watching these with someone who has not watched SPN early on. She was cheering for Dean to outsmart the monster (which he did). I think this one is good and creepy (and I actually like camping) and there is so much insight into Sam and Dean and their personalities and dynamic for only being the second episode!!! I had forgotten how Dean was, right away, verybtuned in and caring towards Sam and Sam listened to Dean trying to give him caring advice. Peanut M&M’s are gross. I’d be dead, unable to leave a trail.

                              And yes, sad seeing Cory Montieth.

                              Even here, Dean seemed badly injured and kept going. I too am trying not to think about the finale, but there were some similar “pain” expressions used by Jensen even way back then. Very effective. And he let Sam drive. I remembered him as much more of a cocky jerk early on – he was caring – about the family of orphans, about Sam.

                              Even though Sam was dead-set on avenging Jess’ death, I loved how he always got a bit lost in research and figuring out a case.

                              Sam was so level headed and protective of the brother and sister they were trying to save.

                              There was also some fun, cocky dick waving from the backwoods guide and I thought the effect of the Guide getting grabbed by the head by the monster was a good one.

                                December 1, 2020 at 10:15 am #3703

                                YES! About the acting! I also never questioned them being brothers though they looked nothing alike because they acted like brothers from the very start. I remember thinking that even the widower (husband of the woman in white) was great casting back then and did a great job in a small role. They have always been great with casting!

                                I also loved how considerate Sam finally had enough and just told the woman in white “I’m taking you home” after the attack and drove the car into the house (which still surprises me even though I know it’s coming).

                                I also thought long ago that this pilot story was pretty depressing – the children basically getting revenge on their own mother. I thought that was different because it was so dark. And my wife, watching it this time for maybe the first time was actually quite creeped out by it for about a day – the image of Mary and Jess burning on the ceiling; kind of bothered her and it’s so “normal” now to Supernatural fans after all these years – but it was so arresting it’s what got me to start watching from the first promo before it even aired. It still, apparently, sticks with people.

                                  November 28, 2020 at 10:42 am #3576

                                  I was supposed to watch the pilot last night – exactly one week after the last-ever new Supernatural
                                  episode.  I couldn’t do it.  I have been so sad about Dean’s death and Sam’s long life without his brother
                                  that I just didn’t know if I could do it.

                                  But my wife who has been a patient victim of my SPN obsession for 15 years said she’d like to watch it with
                                  me from the start.  So I watched the pilot with her tonight.

                                  I’ve only watched the pilot about 4 times over the past 15 years.  In spite of my week of crying over the
                                  finale, I immediately fell in love with Sam and Dean.  They were magic right out of the gate.  I did not, as I
                                  feared, keep thinking about Dean’s death the whole time.  How could I when these two incredibly young
                                  guys were showing me these incredibly interesting, fully-formed characters with all kinds of intriguing
                                  suggestions about backstory and this electric, compelling, brother relationship?  

                                  Of course I watched it differently in light of the recent comments about the pilot as it informed the finale –
                                  from wardrobe to lines to Jared’s thoughts about Sam’s choice to reunite with Dean being the happiest
                                  moment of his life (though it admittedly did not look that way in the pilot with Sam seeming more
                                  interested in his life at Stanford than in getting dragged back into the life of hunting with Dean).  But
                                  Dean’s love and need for Sam was there at the very beginning.  Dean always felt they were better together
                                  and even though he did a lot of putting down Sam’s ambitions, now it looks to me like someone trying to
                                  hide his fear of being alone – not being a cocky jerk (though Dean could be a cocky jerk at times back

                                  Sam’s so smart figuring out the case and Dean’s so clever escaping every tight situation.  The importance
                                  of family is there with Sam being touched that John kept a photo of the three of them in his motel room.  I
                                  think I even saw that very old photo of John and Mary in this episode that appeared in the room where
                                  Sam died in the finale (so no, I could not get the finale entirely out of my mind).

                                  The classic rock and the gorgeous dark look of the show (something I wish they had kept throughout) and
                                  the truly sad and scary woman in white…the destruction of Sam’s happiness in his life with Jess – there
                                  was so much packed in to this first episode that I can’t believe it was under an hour long.  Like Swan Song,
                                  there were no wasted scenes.  The cinematography was gorgeous.  The light and dark on their young faces
                                  (young Jensen, more androgynous than he is now is truly just flat-out beautiful and young Jared smart,
                                  sweet, approachable) and they just seem to UNDERSTAND each other and their characters so well.

                                  I was happy to find out that the finale did not wreck my enjoyment of the first episode I’ve watched since
                                  they said goodbye just over a week ago.  Not at all.  In a way, they are so much younger here and Sam
                                  and Dean’s story was so different at this point than where it ended up that I did feel a bit like I was
                                  watching a different show than I was last week during the finale, but I could also see all the threads – the
                                  start of all the very Supernatural touches that did carry all the way through.  It’s all there and it’s magic.

                                  Maybe the only cure for my Supernatural depression over the finale is – Supernatural itself. I’ve always
                                  turned to this show for relief, distraction from life, to get me through and give me a break and maybe it will
                                  still be able to do that, even when the thing I need saving from is my sadness over this very show’s finale.  
                                  I watched the pilot and thought about how they had no idea what this would become. They were just doing
                                  the new job they had been hired to do. They had no idea how incredible it would be and neither did I.  
                                  When I first watched it in 2005, I only knew I wanted to watch the next one and I’ve felt that way for 15

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