At the end of Ben Edlund's satisfying, but gut-wrenching "How To Win Friends, and Influence Monsters", three questions were burning through my mind, repeating like a bad case of acid reflux.
- Oh My God!!! Is Bobby going to die?
- Is Ben Edlund a vegetarian?
- If the saying "You are what you eat" is true, how is it possible for Dean Winchester to look so damn good?
I searched drugstores and grocery stores, and internet spoiler sites, for a mental antacid that would give me some relief. Sadly, I couldn't find any. So I concocted my own. I mixed a little fact, with a little whimsy and a few memories from my youth. It bubbled and frothed, and soothed my troubled mind.
So, if you find yourself similarly unsettled, I offer the following formula.
I'll tackle the number one case of nervous stomach first - "Oh My God!!! Is Bobby going to die?" No, I tell you. No. I think TPTB realize that killing him off is just too permanent. It's the kind of hole that is almost impossible to write out of. There would be only so many times he could be brought back in dream or spirit form. Bobby has become a crucial character, because of the way his story illuminates the characters of Sam and Dean. I believe Season 8 is in the works, and if you kill Bobby now, where's the drama for next year? Plus, wouldn't he get a bigger send-off than a bullet to the head? Although dying from something normal, everyday and civilian, like a heart attack or stroke (a la John Winchester in WIAWSNB) would be an intriguing twist. They are just men, after all.
I'm predicting Bobby will be in a long, medically induced coma, allowing his brain to heal until later in the season. It keeps him out of commission, reduces the boys' allies to practically nil (unless you count Crowley), yet doesn't remove him from the board entirely.
But here's where the addition of a few drops of childhood memories come into play. Remember that really, really bad season of Dallas? The one they explained away by Pamela seeing Bobby in the shower and realizing it was all a dream? Here's my suggestion. If, heaven forbid, Bobby Singer is killed, TPTB could always get around his unfortunate demise with another Bobby-shower dream scene. Only instead of seeing Bobby Singer in the shower, we could see Sam or Dean!
See!!! Perhaps there are perks to this storyline after all!!
Stomach settling down? Good. Let's move on to question #2, "Is Ben Edlund a vegetarian?"
I don't know how many of you were pondering this question, and we'll probably never know the answer. But, like reaching for that second helping at Thanksgiving, I just couldn't stop myself from thinking about it. That's because to me, the episode could have been ripped from the pages of "Fast Food Nation" by Eric Schlosser.
The book details our society's reliance on fast food, and how that dependency has changed everything from our dining habits to our physiques, to the way our meat is raised and butchered. I read it years ago, and still get queasy thinking about some of the examples he gives. Let's just say there are now several fast food chains I drive right by, no matter how hungry I am.
HTWFAIM is a brilliant look at our current reliance on processed food, and how vulnerable we are because of it. For instance, let's examine Dean's delectable Turducken Slammer. It's not enough that it's a sandwich designed to turn the world into one giant factory-farm, with people as the contented, complacent livestock. No. It's also a sandwich made from the meat of a chicken inside a duck inside a turkey. As Bobby said, "Bunch of birds shoved up inside each other. You shouldn't play God like that."
I know layering meats together is not a new concept. It's a cooking technique that's been around for centuries. But at the very least, the serving size is way too big. That's enough protein for about 6 meals, not one! Not to mention it would be loaded with sodium and other chemicals. And of course, the Leviathan-doctored "grey goop" sauce, aside from all its deleterious DNA affects, was probably incredibly fatty.
I also find it a strange case of synchronicity that HTWFAIM, which takes a swipe at how easy it would be to infiltrate the food supply and distribution system, aired within days of McDonald's announcing a switch in egg suppliers, due to allegations of animal cruelty against the company. Kind of spooky the fortuitous timing on this episode.
And by the way, the word "faim", as in the last four letters of HTWFAIM, is the French word for hunger. J'ai faim equals I'm hungry. The whole episode is about hunger "“ of the stomach, and the spirit. Un peu bizarre, oui?
But, back to Ben Edlund's eating habits. Perhaps I'm curious as to whether or not he's a vegetarian, because I used to be one. I slowly moved away from meals of strictly beans and lentils when I married a man who is an excellent cook, and a guru of the grill. Then our kids arrived and family life got too busy for preparing separate dishes. But I confess, my enjoyment of plant-based proteins continues, and I find myself drifting back to my meatless ways. (We had homemade mac & cheese tonight. It was awesome!)
But be it turkey or tofu, beef or beans on my plate, all I can say is I would like to have Dean's metabolism because what else would allow him to eat the way he does, and still look the way he does?
Of course I refer to question #3, and the old adage, "You are what you eat." There was such a focus on food during HTWFAIM that, aside from craving saturated fats by the end of it (chips"¦ must have chips!!!), I was also thinking about the food choices Dean, Sam & Bobby make, and what foods would best help them in their current predicaments. So, if you are what you eat, this is what I see on the serving tray of our favourite hunters.
SAM aka Big Bird
Funny that Brandon, the angry soon-to-be-cannibal waiter, called Sam "Big Bird". For such a large man, Sam really does eat like a bird. I'm sure that he occasionally scarfs down a slice or two of pepperoni pizza, and I have no doubt he's bitten into more than one burger. But since Season 1, he's been shown to exist mainly on a diet of salads. However, it's a well-known fact that peppers alone don't give you pecs. Sam is so big, and so firm!! This year he's also shown himself to be so strong and resilient that I believe he's consuming lots of lean proteins, and they're helping to maintain that mental muscle mass. It's a wise dietary choice.
But I wonder what else he's eating as a side dish? Could he be consuming too many mushrooms ("¦how to put this delicately"¦) of the magical variety? Could they be adding to his hellucination woes?
And let me just say I'm concerned that we may discover Sam has been eating too much Jello. It's such a deceptive dessert. It looks so solid and substantial. But, put it under stress and then watch it wiggle. See it jiggle. The illusion of strength is gone.
I'd recommend Sam up his spinach intake. He already has Popeye's "I am what I am" attitude. (It should really be said, "I yam what I yam" but it just doesn't look right!) I'm sure Sam could also adopt Popeye's tune "I'm strong to the finish, "˜cause I eats my spinach!" A little more of this particular leafy green could only make Sam stronger, and I suspect he'll need his strength in the coming days.
Dean aka Ken Doll
Dean. Dean. Dean. Not only is he a vessel for the Archangel Michael, and a poster child for resurrection, I'm thinking his liver and kidneys must be supernaturally enhanced. I doubt the internal organs of mere mortals could detoxify that much alcohol and grease, and leave that much beauty behind.
For seven seasons, we've seen Dean surviving on burgers, bacon and booze. That's a lot of empty calories. And what is Dean at this point? He's empty too "“ not of emotion. He's full of that. He's empty of the necessary fuel to tackle all of life's issues. He's missing his passion, his spark, his raison d'etre. Dean is missing his heart. It's what has guided him in the past, and given him the strength to fight incredible odds.
So to remedy the situation, I recommend he increase his consumption of heart-healthy foods like blueberries and oatmeal, especially oatmeal, because it really stays with you. We know Dean has abandonment issues, so something that would stick to his ribs, near his heart, could only be a good thing.
Bobby aka Creepy Uncle
Based on what we've seen, Bobby has pretty good eating habits "“ stews, chilis, salads and even peach cobbler when he gets the chance! He seems to be including most of the food groups. Good job!
A closer look at Bobby's diet reveals he seems to be eating plenty of potatoes and carrots. His eyes see the truth, even in the dark.
However in my opinion, and other Supernatural nutritionists might disagree, he could up his intake of corn. Specifically, he needs more cobs or "ears" of corn. His hearing is excellent, but I'm not sure he's always listening to what's really being said. Sometimes, there's kernel of truth I think he's missing.
My biggest recommendation for Bobby though is to eat more salmon. Lots and lots of salmon. All those Omega 3-Fatty Acids are very good for your brain. And I'm worried his brain is going to need all the help it can get.
I know I've offered the boys a lot of advice, but I hasten to add that a healthy diet doesn't have to be dull. The key is moderation, so that every now and then you can indulge your favourite food fantasies. So, if the fellas were looking for recommendations of new things to try, I'd recommend a drink called the "Hop, Skip and Go Naked", and a dessert known as "Sex in a Pan."
Oh, sorry. You're drooling again. And I had hoped my home remedy would make you feel better.