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We've almost cracked the top 10!  But before we get there, we still have to discuss our choices for number 11.  And you're in luck because here they are!

Ardeospina's #11:
 

"Lazarus Rising"

 

Why:  To me, this is the best season opener the show has had.  The pilot is pretty amazing, too, but not better than this episode.  Because I watched the first four seasons on DVD, I was still reeling from the fact that the show had the balls to send Dean to Hell.  The way they brought him back was inspired.  (And as an aside, I'm really, REALLY glad I didn't have to wait an entire summer between seasons 3 and 4.)  Bringing the angels into the equation really hammered home the shift in the show from being about hunting monsters and saving people to being about something bigger, something cosmic, apocalyptic.  It raised the stakes and changed the game, and none of us has looked back since.

This episode also gave us an amazing brotherly hug, a hug from Bobby, angel true voices, hell flashbacks, Sam doughing up the Impala, Ruby 2.0, Dean crawling out of his own grave, and semi-shirtless Dean!  Who doesn't like semi-shirtless Dean?  We were also introduced to two fantastic characters, Pamela Barnes and Castiel.  It also marked the beginning of Dean and Castiel trying to outgrowl each other.  The winner in that contest?  The fans.  Yum.

Favorite quote: I'm gonna have to go with one of the most iconic lines of the entire show:

Castiel: I'm the one who gripped you tight and raised you from perdition.

Favorite scene: To probably no one's surprise, I'm going with Castiel's introduction.  What a badass.  The first time I watched the episode and he walked through that door, sparks flying, I was like, "who IS this guy?"  Castiel's introduction ties Death's as the most badass.  And then the dialogue between him and Dean!  Castiel is just so confused about why Dean doesn't think he deserved to be saved.  We wouldn't know for some episodes yet why in particular Dean didn't think he deserved it, but knowing Dean and his self-esteem issues, we all knew it would be angsty.  Deliciously angsty.

(On page 2, sweetondean's #11)

Comments  

EILEEN NEGRON
# EILEEN NEGRON 2013-01-06 19:52
I'm like a crazed teen over this show! I just love the way the characters evolve. They come and go as the writers see fit and it always seems to work so far. I AM REALLY ENJOYING IT! :D :-* ;-) :P :D
TexasGreatGrams
# TexasGreatGrams 2013-01-06 20:44
Eileen, I agree with you. The writing is amazing and the acting is absolutely fabulous.
EILEEN NEGRON
# EILEEN NEGRON 2013-01-09 20:14
Totally, Texas. It filled me up in some way where I am less unfulfilled. It's weird but I think it is the sense of sibling loyalty which mirrors that of my sister and I. And I am the light featured like Dean and she is the dark featured like Sam, except I am the younger of the 2. I love it and I hope it goes on for as long as they can hack it.
Grace232
# Grace232 2013-01-06 20:04
Loved all of these episodes - and Point of No Return is right near the top for me - probably number 2. The line you did not mention that gets me every time is when Dean asked Sam why he was taking him with him, and Sam said, "you're still my big brother."

You all have inspired me - I am trying to get my favorites down to the top 15. Trying, at least.
Kimberly Farrell
# Kimberly Farrell 2013-01-06 20:45
All amazing episodes, and all on my top 15 as well! It's funny, once I finally decided my top 15, I have a hard time justifying one over another. Really, it's not just that they are all great episodes, but that they are great for such different reasons, and which reasons are more important changes with my mood. Love your analysis of these episodes, too. I hadn't really considered how well "Point of No Return" balances between all the characters before, but it's very true.

At #11, I have "Death's Door". Great storytelling and a brilliant idea to have the reaper in Bobby's dreams and use his desire to escape as a device to delve into his past on various levels. We got to learn a lot about Bobby along the way, not to mention seeing how much the boys meant to him. Sam and Dean trying to cope in the hospital definitely tugged on the heart strings a bit! So maybe this should be higher; I'm kind of kicking myself now. But it's done, and this isn't a list of which episodes are the most well-written, it's a list of my favorites, which means sometimes a better episode slips simply for being full of sadness.

"Idjits." - Bobby
PENNY JAIME
# PENNY JAIME 2013-01-06 21:48
OOOHHH! All 3 of these are amazing. Lazarus Rising was epic for the series. (although I wish they would have left in the deleted part with Cas & Dean).So many amazing parts in that one.

The Christmas episode. I tear up when they give each other those AWFUL presents, that mean so very much to them both! The look on jensen's face when he tastes the "really" spicked eggnog. So great.

Point of No Return. Just, WOW! The scene you mentioned is so good to me, because Jensen is silent. He says more with his facial expressions than most actors say with pages of dialog.
PaintedWolf
# PaintedWolf 2013-01-07 01:48
Hi all, still loving your picks!
I loved that for their 100th episode they didn't blow their budget to do something extra special. They kept it low-key, and as they often do in this show, when it matters most, they take it back to basics, to the heart and soul of SPN-family. And the scene in the Jupiter room is just another example of how Jared and Jensen can say so much, without a single line of dialogue. I don't think I've seen another pair of actors that do that on TV.
AVSC is without a doubt the best (anti) Christmas special I've ever watched.
Lazarus was totally badass, although Death definitely takes my vote for best character introduction.
Sylvie
# Sylvie 2013-01-07 08:10
I agree with you Alice (about Bobby), every time I watch an episode with him, I can't help but wail in utter derpair :cry: that we don't get to see him or hear his wisdom anymore. He would be shaping our boys out in season 8, that's for sure.
Hades
# Hades 2013-01-07 11:27
Oh can we do a top 15 Sam episodes list too next? So many of my favourite episodes are Sam centric and I wouldnt mind discussing some of those episodes in regards to Sam and Jared with some of my fellow Sam/Jared appreciaters.
Sylvie
# Sylvie 2013-01-07 11:36
That's actually a really good idea. The possibilities are endless. There could be a top 15 Dean episodes, mytharc episodes, angel episodes, MOTW episodes! You think our lovely administrators are up for it next hellatus? ;-) They do such a great job, wink, wink, nudge, nudge, say no more! :lol:
Bevie
# Bevie 2013-01-07 14:32
As much as i LOVE "Lazarus Rising" (and it is in my top ten) it was the beginning of all the cosmic apocalyptic stuff that, to me, made the show just a leetle more unrealistic. I could believe monsters, demons and angels but war with Heaven and Hell and all to do with the brothers? Not so much. Also, it was the beginning of the great rift in the relationship that is my favourite reason for watching and loving.

A Supernatural Christmas is my number one. (Along with 5 or 6 others) :P Perfection! And I bow down to Ben Edlund if it is because of him the young Winchesters were in it. Sammy giving Dean the amulet was heart swelling and brought instant tears and Dean coming through the door to find Sam made Christmas for him, wearing that same amulet --- Just guh! sweetondean, how can it be so far down on your list? :sad: That final scene through the window with the snow and the lights on the Impala and knowing Dean is heading for hell just brought forth big sobs from me! :cry:

Alice, I couldn't agree more about Bobby! An awful awful awful awful AWFUL decision to kill him off! How Sera could have done that I don't know. As wonderful a writer as she is, this will always be a blot in my mind. :-x As good an episode as it is, and what a great acting job from Jim Beaver it was, it was not worth losing that terrific character from the show. Boooo!!

So sad to see Dean packing his meager belongings up in the box. Is that the second to last time we lay eyes upon THE JACKET of DOOM? So glad to see Sammy who brought along Cas to sort Dean out. Wasn't sorry for Cas to beat up my hero. He needed that! And he showed all his badassery in the way he scammed old Zach and got the chance to gank him just like he promised in "It's a Terrible Life". So sad poor Adam was so slow going out the door. He could have gone while Dean was dragging up Sammy from the floor. Ah well! Drah-mah!

Loving reading your choices so far! :-)
suzee51
# suzee51 2013-01-07 20:35
Wow! Is this true?

http://celebritybabies.people.com/2013/01/07/supernatural-jensen-ackles-expecting-first-child/