There we go!  That’s much better.  The "award winning" Supernatural returned tonight with a new episode and it was a good one!  It was no secret that I was in the camp with Ardeospina that thought that “Adventures in Babysitting” was a disappointing return.  “Time After Time” fixed any doubts I had from that!  
 
The fact remains, there has been a lot of filler and absence of sharp writing this season.  Robbie Thompson, a rookie writer for Supernatural, in two scripts has delivered action packed, sharp dialogue filled, very exciting episodes that remind us of the days of one Jeremy Carver.  
 
No, “Time After Time” wasn’t an episode that revealed a lot of answers or moved the Leviathan story forward any.  It was just good old fashioned fun.  Sam and Dean both had some great moments, even if Dean got to live out another boyhood fantasy.  It seems that Dean loves the movie The Untouchables and thinks Elliot Ness is a hero.  He quickly learns Elliot Ness in real life isn’t exactly like the one in the movies.  In my mind, he’s even better!  
 
Nicholas Lea, known to us X-Files fans as Mulder’s foe Alex Krycek (and yes, the subject of all those Mulder/Krycek fics), was incredible as Elliot Ness!  Cool, calm, funny, looked great, and the whole idea of the supernatural didn’t freak him out one bit.  He wasn't scarred for life or bitter, although he did take up a small drinking habit.  
 
This was Elliot Ness later in his career when he lived and worked in Cleveland (even though the setting was Canton), after the days of the Untouchables.  He discovered hunting when he caught vampires turning people in Cleveland.  Dean has certainly needed a pep talk lately, but the one he got from Ness had to be the best one he’s ever gotten.  He sold me!  “Are all hunters as soft as you in the future?  Everyone loses everybody and then one day, boom, your number’s up.  But at least you’re making a difference.  So enjoy it while it lasts kid cause hunting’s the only clarity you’re going to find in this life.  That makes you luckier than most.” 

Jason Dohring as Chronos was good too, although that ending shot of him telling Sam and Dean about their future, so wonderfully chilling.  Nice job!  

Another great guest appearance came from Kim Rhodes, aka Sheriff Jody Mills.  How great was Sam and Sheriff Mills together again?  I always loved their working together in “Dead Men Don’t Wear Plaid.”  I love how she threatened using the mother voice to Sam.  She sent the moose to bed!
 
There was also our token time clue for the week, convincing me that all these time references are leading to something.  Sheriff Jody said it after finding the bottle of Johnnie Walker Blue from Rufus.  “It’s weird, huh? It’s like their life’s a big puzzle.  Just keep finding pieces of it scattered all over the place.” 

There were as expected several Back to The Future references again.  Kind of unavoidable with time travel episodes huh?  Needing to do the spell at the exact day and time and finding out through a message from Dean in the past when that was definitely ripped from those films.  I liked it anyway, especially Dean figuring out where to leave Sam the message.  I guess he was glad Sam won Rock/Paper/Scissors after all!
  
We already saw how yummy Dean looked in a zoot suit and Fedora from the previews, brandishing a tommy gun, but man did it look wonderful in big screen HD.  And Sam, did anyone catch that he was actually in the car eating a burger?? Sam???  I asked Jim Michaels through Twitter if that was in the script and he said yes.  Will wonders never cease.  As I also said on Twitter, Sam’s sideburns are going to need their own zip code soon. 
 
Then there were the great lines.  It was so good to see Sam and Dean ribbing on each other again:  

Dean:  It is called Anime, and it’s an art form.
 
Sam:  Looking at more Anime or are you strictly into Dick now?  - That further supports my theory that Richard Roman was created just for the writers to work in their dick jokes.  Bill Hicks would be proud. 
 
Elliot Ness:  How does that fill you with awe? 
 
I love how Ezra Moore was the equivalent of a Bobby Singer.  She even called Dean and Ness “idgits”.  
 
Ezra:  The Chicago way?  
Ness:  Who talks like that?
 
Dean:  Talk to me.
Ness (confused):  I am.  
 
Ezra:  You stick this end in his heart.  Miss, he has you for supper.  Make sense?
 
All in all, it’s great to have an enjoyable one going into the three week break (Supernatural will be back on February 3rd).  It reminds me again everything I love about this show.  
 
So, it’s time to speculate.  What did you all think?  Are all these time references leading to something?  Did you love Elliot Ness as much as I did?  And Dean in a Fedora and zoot suit?  How many fan girls had to pick themselves up off the floor from that?  How many are freaking out over the shirtless shot of Dean in the promo?  It's time to share. 
 
 

Comments  

rmoats8621
# rmoats8621 2012-01-14 01:20
Wow!!! I LOVED this episode. It was great! Dean in a fedora and suit....man, he looked yummy!!! I loved Sam and Sheriff Mills working together. She is so smart and a wonderful asset for the boys since she has that law enforcement edge. So, with her around, they don't have to lie to get through the door because she holds a legitimate badge! Love it! However...note to the show....DON'T KILL HER OFF!

BTW - The next episode looks great too! Dean an actual dad!!! WOW, again! This seems to be the year of weddings and kids on Supernatural.
Ginger
# Ginger 2012-01-14 07:59
What a fun, enjoyable episode to watch.

I, too, thought Eliot's boo, hoo speech to Dean was just perfect, but I don't know if it was meant to bring Dean's depression arc to a close and focus on the revenge thing or not. I know I'm ready for Dean to start kicking some evil butt once in a while, and I know this was just an enjoyable episode all around to watch.

Kudos to the set designers, costume people, lighting guys, and the music people. Everything fit well together in this one.

The one really awful thing in it all was that atrocious Dean-is a-daddy-and-his -daughter-shows -up-at-the-fron t-door fanfic promo for the next episode. A real splash of cold water in the face after 40 minutes of pure enjoyment.
NOLANOLA
# NOLANOLA 2012-01-14 08:21
I LOVE THIS ERA. THE CLOTHES,MUSIC,M AKE-UP, A LOT.

I LIKED THE WAY THE LANGUANGE WAS APPROPRIATE. THE ONLY MAYBE FLAW WAS NESS SAYING I DONT KNOW WHAT YOU ARE TALKING ABOUT. INSTEAD MAYBE WHAT ON EARTH DO YOU MEAN?
HE SAID LETTEUCE FOR MONEY INSTEAD OF TODAYS, CHEESE, PAPER, CABBAGE. (ONCE I SAW NAZIS ON A U BOAT SAYING BACK IN THE DAY. NO NO. WAY BACK WHEN.
JUST MY LITTLE QUIRK.
GOOD EPISODE, REMINDED ME OF AN X FILES WHEN MULDER WENT BACK TO THE 40S AND WWII.
I HAVE BEEN SO IRKED BY THE PCAs & COMMENTING ON THAT UNTIL I FORGOT WHAT THIS ALL MEANS. TO ENTERTAINE US. MAYBE TEACH A LITTLE TO, BUT ENJOYMENT. THANK YOU ALICE :)
Paulathe Cat
# Paulathe Cat 2012-01-14 09:06
So great to have some fun! I can appreciate angst and drama, but it is so much better when they can be reminded, from time to time, why they struggle... the world is a mess; without some fun, why try to save it (again). It reminds me of Dean and Castiel sitting on a park bench watching children play. That was the reason to stand and defy Fate. With all that sorrow and defeat, we need an episode (the guys need it, too) that reminds us of the reasons they stand.
Plus... *giggle* Dean in that suit left me salivating. *fluttery sigh*
MisterGlass
# MisterGlass 2012-01-14 10:25
This episode wasn't bad. I very much enjoyed Sheriff Mills's return, still fighting the good fight. She is a good complement to the boys, and manages to remain hopeful in spite of her personal losses. I think she's a wonderful addition to the show, and hope she will continue to kick ass with the brothers.

The final speech from Chronos was nicely chilling. The 1940s setting was interesting, and it was nice to see one hunter who did not enter the game because of personal loss.

However, this episode managed to make time travel feel oddly routine, despite Dean's protests that it is uncommon. I think it may be because I'm a little worn out on Supernatural's stunt episodes. It seems like there have been so many time shift/au episodes in the last couple of seasons. Or maybe because there have already been so many sudden time jumps in this season.

It feels like things are being glossed over when they deserve more consideration. If this is a device that will come to make sense later in the season for a currently unforeseen reason, so be it. I'd like it to be for a reason, though, because it feels like the passion and intensity in events is being sucked out by skipping over consequences.
nancyL
# nancyL 2012-01-14 13:09
I loved this episode.

I loved how even though Sam and Dean were separated by over sixty years, they were still thinking as a team.
But, Ness and Dean made a good team as well. Ness' good cop to Dean's bad cop was fun to watch.

I didn't like the slick look on Dean though, it made him look like a little boy on his first day of school. :lol:
Am I the only one that thought that Ezra was supposed to be a relative of Bobby's?

I thought that Dean leaving the message for Sam was more 'Frequency' than 'Back to the Future'.

I have to agree with Ginger regarding the next new episode. Dean finally gets some loving and it turns into a knock-off of an episode of 'Angel'?
Sylvie
# Sylvie 2012-01-14 13:26
Oh, yeah, now that's what I'm talking about! After watching the episode again this morning, I said to myself, finally a writer worthy to replace the hole Jeremy Carver left. So I was glad to see you mention him. Robbie Thompson, you're my hero.

Loved seeing Sam working with Sheriff Mills. They actually talked about Bobby and missing him. Dean would have been all, "We're not having this conversation Sam!". Besides all the "Back to the Future" references, Dean mentioned one of my favourite screw with your mind time-travel movies, "Twelve Monkeys". Thank you for that Robbie Thompson. Nicholas Lea as Eliott Ness, perfect casting. I loved him as Krycek, loved him as Ness. And what can be said for Dean in a suit and fedora carrying a tommy-gun, but oh my. Drop dead gorgeous!!!!

So, yeah, I loved this episode in so many ways.
Bevie
# Bevie 2012-01-14 15:48
Loved it! Loved Dean, his new duds, his fanboying Ness. Loved Lea and Sam with Sheriff Mills.

Loved the dialogue. Love Robbie Thompson.

Loved the smooch the lady Bobby laid on Dean. Get it while you can girl!

Did I mention I loved it? ;-)
sylia91
# sylia91 2012-01-14 16:55
I liked this episode as well. The boys seem truly together again with banter in place. Another cute moment was Dean basking in the glory of hacker skills acuired from Frank enough to make Sam jealous. I also liked how it showed the brothers in completely different eras coming to the same conclusion about the MOW. In some ways there were too many good guest stars in this episode. I really wanted to spend more time (pun, heh) with the sheriff, Ness and Chronos. Such high quality actors would have been great with more expanded interaction time. Dean seemed to be drinking less in this episode as well or at least they didn't dwell on it as much. The dirty diaper comment was a nice reference to their childhood and Dean back to taking care of Sam and now vice versa.
Pragmatic Dreamer
# Pragmatic Dreamer 2012-01-14 23:40
Hi Alice,

LOVED this episode (although I have to watch it again because my 10-year old talked through the whole thing. Although double-the-dapp er Dean... Who's complaining? Not me!)

All elements worked - acting, writing, casting, lighting, sets and directing. The editing was especially brilliant. And I wish there was a way to bring Eliot Ness into the future. Good chemistry there. Also, Ezra planting one on Dean's kisser?! Mature women rule!! (And now my fantasies don't look so silly. I think she's older than me.)

I like how Dean tried to switch up his usual throw of scissors, and still lost. And I adored that we got some Smart!Dean and Teasing!Sam. “You gonna look at more anime or are you strictly into Dick now?” Bazinga! But I think my favourite was "Sweet merciful awesome!" I've used it several times already.

I'm not a fan of the tough love/suck it up advice that Bobby and Frank have been dispensing to Sam & Dean. But I think it worked here. It's 1944 and there 's a World War happening. Many people are dying and losing loved ones. Ness has seen a lot and is kind of jaded. Besides,t the word "metrosexual" hadn't been invented yet. In 1944 men did not emote; there was no One Single Manly Perfect Tear of Pain.

His perspective - hunters make the world a safer place so be proud of that - makes sense. I think Dean heard that.

Please, please can Robbie Thompson write another one? He really understands the characters, and can write action, emotion, humour and drama.

I am waiting for Sam's sideburns to get mentioned in the credits a la Monty Python - "Jared Winchester's sideburns groomed by...

Sweet merciful awesome, that was fun.

Pragmatic Dreamer :lol:
Amara
# Amara 2012-01-19 14:14
Alice, what were the previous "time" clues? Maybe you wrote about it in a previous article and I just missed it...anyone able to clarify? Thanks!
Alice
# Alice 2012-01-19 21:03
Two of our very clever writers have written articles examining the references to time throughout the season. They've got a compelling case that there's something else happening behind the scenes that we are not aware of yet. The most plausible theory is this season so far is in Sam's mind. Here are the links:

www.thewinchesterfamilybusiness.com/archive-articles/72-season-seven/16742-inside-sams-grapefruit-speculations-on-season-7-of-supernatural-.html

www.thewinchesterfamilybusiness.com/archive-articles/72-season-seven/16741-its-about-time-that-dean-slept-for-36-hours.html

I'm also writing a deeper look article at the time references in Time After Time. They really do support the cases in these articles.