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Number nine, number nine, number nine, number nine... yeah, just messing.  So, ready to see what the brain trust has come up with today?  As usual, we're all of different choices, but we're all in agreement that all these episodes rock.  Do they line up with your choices? 


Alice's #9:  

"Home"


 

Why?:  I must confess, there's a lot of season one I won't watch.  It's not a bad season, but it's really light compared to some of the things that happened in later seasons.  It feels rough to me.  Plus I find Sam's bangs distracting.  However, there is one season one episode I will watch again, and again, and again, and again, and again, and one more time (yes, "Tall Tales" reference).  That's "Home."  I absolutely love this episode.

When I went through the DVDs the very first time (having found the show in season three), come the moment that I finished with "Hookman" and "Bugs," I was about ready to give up on this show, or at least jump straight to season two.  Then I saw "Home" and was sucked right back in, like I was with the Pilot.  This is truly the first episode of the series that not only gave the Winchester brothers deeply emotional material, but sold it in a major way.  It seemed to be the point where everything finally came together. 

The amazing score, done by Chris Lennertz, is one of the best of the series and really brings out all the big emotional beats.  The premise is gold, coming home again for the first time since the fire.  It wasn't just the house that was wounded, the brothers were as well.  Dean was haunted by the memories of losing his mother and his desperate call to his father for help marked the first real sign of deep vulnerability with his character.  Sam was haunted by changes inside of him, namely the premonitions and psychic dreams.  They scared him.  Even though he was having these dreams in "Bloody Mary," he still chose to keep all that secret.  This time, he couldn't ignore it and had to come clean with Dean.  No, big bro didn't take it well.

Once the boys arrive and realize that Sam's psychic dream is true and something supernatural is in their old house, watching their emotional struggle over what's happening is such a powerful change from the previous episodes when they attacked the case with their usual flair.  Here they try, but realize there's a bit more to this.  Dean even tells Sam how he carried him out of the house the night of the fire.  Wow, that never came up before?  It must really hurt Dean that bad for him not to say anything for 22 years.  

Eric Kripke did in this script what miserably failed in "Hookman" and "Bugs." He made it scary.  This was a real thrilling ghost story and the fact that this time it was personal made it that more compelling.  The real genius though was the character Missouri Mosely, a genuine psychic who not only established there were two spirits haunting their old house (one being a very evil poltergeist), but that Sam actually had some very powerful abilities.  That's why the ending scene with John was so significant, why were they manifesting now?  John wasn't coming out of hiding until he found out.  After the major surprise of Mary's ghost appearing a few scenes before, seeing John was the other big "gotcha" that no one saw coming. 

Favorite Quote: 

Dean: Dad? I know I've left you messages before. I don't even know if you'll get 'em. But I'm with Sam. And we're in Lawrence. And there's somethin' in our old house. I don't know if it's the thing that killed Mom or not, but, I don't know what to do. So, whatever you're doin', if you could get here. Please. I need your help, Dad.

...wibble...

Favorite Scene:  This scene happened in season one and I still tense up and get a teary when I think about it.  Sam is trapped in the house by the poltergeist and getting tossed around like salad in the kitchen.  Dean is out of his mind trying to get in and uses an axe to furiously chop his way through the front door.  Dean arrives just in time to defend his baby brother from the burning ghost, but suddenly Sam can tell who it is.  The flames clear away and it's Mary Winchester! 

She's exactly like she was the night of the fire, wearing the white nightgown, all ghostly and heavenly.  Both boys are completely stunned, and the emotional impact is huge!  Dean wells up, and Sam cries when he talks to his mother for the first time.  She smiles at them both and then her smile fades in front of Sam.  "I'm sorry," she tells him.  "For what?" he asks?  Guess what?  We don't flipping find out until the early part of season four!!!  Talk about leaving the fans hanging.  The only consolation was when the reveal did happen, it wasn't disappointing.  Then Mary takes on the poltergeist in defense of her sons and they both burn away.  No!  Mary!

Actually, there's another scene that kills me just as bad (you knew I wouldn't stop at one).  It's the very end.  Dean looks at photos of them as children that Jenny found in the house (no one noticed them before?) and a despondent Sam sits on the front steps.  "What's happening to me?" he asks Missouri.  OMG Sammy!  It's amazing in retrospect what's yet to come for him.  It makes me cry just thinking about it. 

...wibble...

(On Page 2, Ardeospina's #9)

Comments  

aelaine
# aelaine 2013-01-08 23:12
Gosh, you three have a hard job! I have been reading and enjoying all of them, not sure I could pick top 10 or 13, could probably pick the bottom 13 though, just so many good ones.love this show, no other show comes close to matching it's awesomeness!
PENNY JAIME
# PENNY JAIME 2013-01-08 23:56
Three more good picks. Home makes me tear up every time. I love the new season so I have no problem with them in your top picks.
Jus in Bello was a wild ride. Henriksen would have mad a great hunter
Grace232
# Grace232 2013-01-09 00:41
Thanks so much for doing this. I confess that none of your 9s or 10s are on my top 30 list (still working on getting down to 15) but after reading all your tributes, I remember how much I liked them and I want to go back and watch them all - with one exception. Dark Side of the Moon is still too hard for me to watch. It just makes me too angry and sad. I am sure that is a sign of how good it is, but there you go. Also - with the exceptions of the bugs and ghostly truck, I loved all of season 1 - that is when I was hooked. Looking forward to the rest of the countdown. Thanks again.
sylvia37
# sylvia37 2013-01-09 02:45
Great Choices. I'm with you, Grace. I can't watch Dark Side of the Moon, either. It's not even just the end either. It's the whole episode. Just thinking about it makes me tear up and not for a good reason.
Kimberly Farrell
# Kimberly Farrell 2013-01-09 03:52
Interesting! All three solid episodes - especially "Hunteri Heroici". Hunter Cas was a humor goldmine, and how great was the detective? I lol'ed when she called Dean "Scully"! This one made my top 25 for sure. "Home" and "Jus In Bello" are good too, but for me they weren't as engaging as some other dramatic episodes. Maybe they were just too grim for me! But speaking of "Home", anyone else keep hoping that they bring Missouri back? Loved her.

Coming in at #9 on my list is "The Monster at the End of this Book". This episode makes me smile a lot, that's why. It also makes me sad a lot, and that's also why. Sad, because it underlines how deeply everything is working against them, whether it's the angels or destiny. But it also introduces Chuck, and has Sam explaining what a slash fan is! (Confession: I actually did not know when I first watched this one.) Also, so proud of Castiel for helping, even though he wasn't allowed to help - it seemed like a turning point toward his eventual decision to support Sam and Dean against Heaven. Plus, did I mention Chuck?

"I'm sitting in a laundromat reading about myself sitting in a laundromat reading about myself... my head hurts." - Dean
PaintedWolf
# PaintedWolf 2013-01-09 04:06
I'm with you, as someone who hopes they bring Missouri back, I loved her! Nice pick on TMATEOTB-I was laughing so hard the 1st 15 minutes or so, I think I almost missed everything else.
Sylvie
# Sylvie 2013-01-09 08:37
Great choices for # 9, but I put "Home" much higher on my list, like top 5 for sure. It's just such a great episode. I loves Missouri Mosley, I would love to see her again. And good for you Ardeo that you put episodes from season 8 on your list, they would not make my top 15, but hey, this isn't my show to run! :lol:
mer
# mer 2013-01-09 08:39
Maybe it's me but I totally don't get what is meant by the left arm reference .. he cops it? Please enlighten me..
Amy
# Amy 2013-01-09 12:26
Edited by Alice - Sorry, NO Sam vs. Dean has been a big rule on this site on day one. I give comments like this some latitude on Let's Discuss threads if it's relevant to the discussion, but they have no place here when we're taking time to recognize the best and the brightest times of the show.

Plus, I have picked tons of Sam scenes for favorite. A lot of my episode choices are Sam centric ones. So go pick your fight elsewhere.
Sylvie
# Sylvie 2013-01-09 12:44
I disagree with that statement. "I Know What You Did Last Summer" is one of my favourite episodes and it's Samcentric to the core. In fact season 4 was very much Samcentric. It's my favourite season. I know a lot of fans don't care for it because they thought that Sam acted very unSam like, but to me it really showcased Sam, and Jared's acting abilities.

These picks are very personal, and yours maybe would include more Sam episodes. These episodes wouldn't necessarily make it to my top 15 either, but as I've stated before, I'm not the one making these lists. And season 8 is not halfway done yet, so let's see what happens.
Bevie
# Bevie 2013-01-09 15:03
Your choices are all great choices!

I love Jus in Bello for all your reasons, sweetondean. It is in my top five bulging list, along with Home and many others. And a lot of them are from season one, which I love beyond saying. Faith (this could very well be number one for me), Dead in the Water (where Sam learns more about his brother than he ever knew before), Scarecrow (a particular favourite and a brotherly fight), Something Wicked (Dean's lack of self esteem began here with his dad reaming him out), Provenance (really creepy painting, Dean smartassing Sarah's dad, gutsy Sarah), Hell House (I LOVE Ed and Harry, a fun fun episode), Dead Man's Blood (dad and vampires and Sam & dad fights), Shadow (dad arrives and leaves again), Devil's Trap (could be my number one at times) and even Bugs and Route 666 have wonderful brother moments to be cherished. Sorry, it just makes me sad when I see season one being dissed. :sad:

Anyway, to each his own and I'm loving this top 15 from you three. :-)
Sylvie
# Sylvie 2013-01-09 15:45
We are of a same bind, I love all the episodes you've listed. Actually, "Provenance" is my favourite of the ghost stories on SPN, that little girl was the creepiest. I go back to season one the most often, maybe because there was a certain innocence back then. We (and the Winchesters) didn't really know what was in store for them, all the heartache to come. :cry:
LoveMeSomeDean
# LoveMeSomeDean 2013-01-09 17:13
Gona go with sweetondean for this pick. There are so many great one liners in this episode. So much action and so many surprises. I think the final scene when Ruby goes to the boys hotel room and tells them what happened is very emotional.

The introduction of Lilith...was priceless, I love this episode.