I came in to this episode with average expectations. From what I saw in the preview it seemed like it would be a fun, filler episode in the typical monster of the week format. Someone dies, Sam and Dean take the case, find the monster and kill it. I like this format a lot. In fact, some of these episodes are among my favorites.
But what I was expecting is not what I got. What I got was an intriguing, well-constructed, awesomely entertaining monster origin story. “Bitten” completely broke form and I loved it. "Supernatural" does this kind of thing every now and then and it always catches me off guard but it’s always a refreshing change of pace. We’ve seen it before with episodes like “Weekend at Bobby’s”, “Ghostfacers” and “The Man Who Would Be King”. All of which I loved. And “Bitten” is no different.
I understand that this episode probably isn’t for everyone. If there was one flaw with the episode it was that there wasn’t nearly enough Winchester. But personally, I’m ok with that for one week if it means we get something as fun as “Bitten”. Watching the transformation of these three characters provided such an interesting and unusual perspective. Not only did they physically transform which, by the way, looked awesome; but they also went through a lot of emotional changes which was interesting to watch. Was I the only one shocked by how selfish Brian was? It was easy to see his insecurities from the beginning of the episode. He was jealous of Michael’s relationship with Kate and jealous of his new “superpowers” but I did not expect him to kill for them. What a character transformation!
In the past we’ve seen episodes where the story had us empathizing with the monsters Sam and Dean were hunting. Season two’s “Bloodlust” had us feeling sympathetic toward vampires who resisted human blood. Season four’s “Metamorphosis” had us rooting for a man destined to transform into a rugaru. But none of these episodes took us through the transformation process as intimately as “Bitten”.
When the episode started we knew it would end bloody but we didn’t know much more than that. We got to know these three friends before we figured out who would become the monster in the story. So by the time Michael was bitten I was already invested in his friendship with Brian and his relationship with Kate. I was able to feel real sympathy for him in his ignorance of what he was becoming. And I was surprised to find that while Michael was bitten, the real monster in the story was Brian who chose this life for himself.
What I really enjoyed about the structure of this episode was that Sam and Dean went through the same discovery process that we did. Granted, they already knew that they were dealing with a werewolf situation. But they learned the origin story alongside the audience. They got to know the people behind the monsters the same way that we did. So when they ultimately decided to let Kate go, I understood why and I didn’t question the decision. I was rooting for her too. I wonder if there’s anyone out there who thinks Sam and Dean made a bad call? Should they have tracked Kate down and killed her just in case?
It’s been a while since we’ve seen an episode about werewolves so I was a little rusty on werewolf lore. But from what I remembered they are wild and unable to control their urges when they transform. So the idea that being up to four generations removed from the alpha can give the werewolf the ability to control itself was very interesting. It also meant that the werewolves could transform regardless of the lunar cycle. In a way, it felt more like they were hulking out as a response to being provoked. It was a very interesting change to the typical werewolf lore and I liked it. But I’m not necessarily a purist when it comes to werewolves so I’m wondering if any of you were unhappy with the lore change-up?
Ok, I think I’m done gushing about this awesome episode now. You get it, I loved it. Now I want to hear what you think. Sound off below! I don’t know about you, but I think I’m ready to get back into the main story arc stuff now. These last two episodes were the breather I needed. Now I’m looking forward to getting to know a little more about our new vampire friend.
There were some really funny quotes in this episode but let me know if I forgot any!
* “This should have never happened this way.” Any Chuck fans out there? Was I the only one who thought Sam and Dean were about to become intersects?
* Starsky and Hutch
* Rizzoli and Isles.
* “Is it just me or are you getting a workplace romance vibe from those two?”
* Michael transforming in front of the mirror was way too cool.
* Katie: “I’m pretty sure FBI agents don’t say awesome that much.”
* Brian: “You were probably right about that whole office romance thing.”
* Dean: “Hey Sam? Do I really say awesome a lot?”
* This is just a thought but I found myself wondering if Dean was willing to give Kate a chance because of his friendship with Benny. He’s been quick to kill as a precaution in the past but not in this case. Is it just because of the different perspective he got on this case or do you think his friendship with a Benny has anything to do with his change of heart?
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