Why I Love… is a feature where I talk about the things I love – some bookish, some not – and why I love them. Today I’m talking about why I love Supernatural.
I’m a late addition to this fandom, I admit. I didn’t start watching the show until the winter of 2012, when I started watching via Netflix.
In high school, I was a huge fan of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and later, Angel (in fact, I prefer Angel to BtVS for REASONS that will likely be explored in a future post!), and have always been drawn to stories about the paranormal. I was definitely aware of this show when it began back in 2005, on what was then the WB (is anyone else out there old enough to remember that?) and has become the CW. But for some reason, I didn’t watch it.
That fateful winter day when I put on episode one of the first season, I knew I was going to be sucked in. The mystery, tense relationship between brothers Sam and Dean, the darkness of the show, and – I can’t deny it – Jensen Ackles as Dean all captured my attention, and had me wanting to watch the next episode.
I quickly made my way through every episode on Netflix. Then, to my delight, my husband decided that he wanted to watch the show too. So what did I do? I watched the entire series again, with him. We are now caught up and, following the devastating season nine finale, are eagerly awaiting season ten!
I love that Supernatural is a show that my husband and I watch together. We both get into the plot and the action scenes, and it’s the only show that we watch ‘live’ as it airs, rather than DVR-style.
Now, some of you may be thinking that a television show about hot brothers hunting demons, monsters, ghosts, and other creatures would be too dark and scary, but let me assure you that it’s all wonderfully balanced out with humour! This show is so funny, and in so many ways, including running jokes (they get better the longer you watch) and meta humour, where the show good-naturedly makes fun of itself, in a nod to the fans.
I also love the family dynamics of the show. I’m a middle child, and have always been interested in sibling relationships – and boy is the relationship between the Winchester brothers complicated! They love each other and would do anything for the other, but as anyone with a sibling knows, as much as you love each other, you can also drive each other totally nuts! In addition, their relationships with their parents, extended family, and friends (some of whom act as surrogate parents), are complex.
Sam and Dean have different memories of, and relationships with, their father, who is a major figure in the early seasons. I love seeing how their interactions with their father differed, and how that may have shaped their behaviour and attitudes.
Aside from Sam and Dean, the show has introduced so many wonderful, memorable characters, including:
The show does not shy away from killing off characters, which breaks my heart every time and yet I love when it goes there. The stakes are high on this show and it needs to communicate that to the viewers. What better way to do so than killing off beloved characters?
I also love that the show is really light on the romance. This is not The Vampire Diaries (which I also like)! I watch for the characters, the action, and the humour. And given the somewhat nomadic lifestyle Sam and Dean live (always on the road, traveling from job to job), long term relationships are probably not in the cards.
I can’t talk about this show without mentioning the fandom. Supernatural fans are passionate, and I absolutely love all of the memes and gifs on Tumblr (where the joke is that the Supernatural fandom has a gif for everything – and I totally agree! There is even a Tumblr specifically about that subject, but SPOILER warning if you click it).
If you like having The Feels, this show will give them to you big time! There are no happy endings, and characters you love have terrible things happen to them, with tragedy all around. Yay!
Personally, I think the story arc of the first five seasons was the best (the most compelling, moving, and unpredictable), but I’ve loved seeing where this show has taken the story and its characters since then. There’s no word yet on whether season ten will be the final one, but if it is, I hope the show gives its fans some sort of resolution (not that I have any idea what that would look like or what I would even want!). All I know is, I will watch this show as long as they continue to make it!
And now, for fun, here is a list of my top ten favourite episodes, in chronological order (this was originally a top five but I couldn’t narrow it down):
1. Crossroad Blues (season 2)
2. Tall Tales (season 2)
3. Bad Day at Black Rock (season 3)
4. Mystery Spot (season 3)
5. Ghostfacers (season 3)
6. The Monster at the End of This Book (season 4)
7. Changing Channels (season 5)
8. Swan Song (season 5)
9. The French Mistake (season 6)
10. The Girl with the Dungeons and Dragons tattoo (season 7) – Felicia Day!
Tell me – are there any other Supernatural fans out there?? Let me know in the comments!