Because Kim Manners directed so many great episodes, naturally there are a ton of amazing moments to be found within them.  I wanted to make a Top Ten list of moments in Kim Manners episodes, but I had such a hard time cutting it down to ten, I just decided instead to expand it to fifteen.  Even that was crazy difficult.  My first off-the-top-of-my-head draft had like 25 things on it.  Making this list was like trying to pick the winner of a cute puppy contest: they're all cute!  It can't be done!  Instead, here are my favorite fifteen moments or scenes from Kim Manners episodes.

Honorable Mention - Best use of a Kim Manners photo - Jump the Shark


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This was a fun little tribute to Kim Manners.  There he is on the Sunny Buono Lounge ad!  And the giant K and M are a nice touch.


#15 - Father/sons reunion - Shadow

 
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Sam and Dean have been searching for their father all season, and they finally meet up with him in Shadow.  Of course Dean was happy to see his father, but the highlight of the scene was Sam and John.  There was a sort of tension there where you knew they were glad to see each other, but at the same time, you weren't sure if they might start fighting again.


#14 - "I hope your apple pie is freaking worth it!" - Scarecrow


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Dean's been tied up by townspeople as a sacrifice to the vanir, and that is what he has to say for himself?  Brilliant!  I will always laugh at ridiculous things like this.  It's just so outlandish and amusing and so Dean!


#13 - Gordon loses his head - Fresh Blood


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Gordon was a pretty intimidating foe, and I'm glad he got an appropriately awesome death.  Sam decapitates him with razor wire.  Razor wire, people!  The whole thing was gruesome, what with the blood spurting and Gordon's lips moving when they pan down to his severed head on the ground.

#12 - Sam prays - Houses of the Holy


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These two have seen horrific things in their lives, and how they have interpreted those events is so fitting to their characters.  Sam still believes in God and angels and everything, despite what he's seen.  Dean doesn't because of what he's seen.  That disconnect is summed up perfectly in this little moment when Sam tells Dean that he prays every day.  Dean had no idea, and he was pretty surprised by that revelation.



#11 - The secret - In My Time of Dying


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John and Dean have just had probably the best father/son moment in Dean's life, and John has to go ruin it by telling him...something.  We don't know what it is until Hunted, but judging by Dean's horrified reaction, it's not good.  And that's the last thing John ever says to Dean.


#10 - Devastation around Dean's grave - Lazarus Rising


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Dean's just pulled his way out of his grave.  We see his huh? face but not what he's seeing.  Until they pan out.  Then we see that dozens of trees have been felled in a concentric circle around Dean's grave.  What the heck is powerful enough to do that?  This shot was amazing, and set us up for the great reveal at the end.


#9 - Rock, Paper, Scissors - Heart


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This was such a great brother moment.  Dean always throws scissors!  Sam knows and exploits this!  And even when Sam tells Dean about his propensity for scissors, he still throws it!


#8 - Ouija board conversation - In My Time of Dying


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Due to Dean's coma, the boys have to find alternate means of communication.  Enter the Ouija board.  Though Dean is skeptical, it works, and he's able to tell Sam about the reaper that's after him.  I love how this scene was shot.  The way the camera circles around the brothers, with Dean being there and then not being there, really adds an ethereal quality to the whole conversation.  Not even a coma can keep those two apart.


#7 - The car crash - Devil's Trap


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The Yellow-eyed demon has just possessed John, almost killed Dean, took a Colt shot to the leg, and evacuated John's body.  That has to be the worst of the episode, right?  Not so fast.  Enter one possessed truck driver and a speeding semi, and you get one massive and amazing car crash.  That scene was just brutal.  It was a great cliffhanger and an excellent way to end season 1.


#6 - Enter Castiel - Lazarus Rising


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Castiel made two attempts to contact Dean before he realized he needed a vessel.  He finds Jimmy, a "holy tax accountant," and meets up with Dean in an abandoned barn covered with occult symbols.  He pops light bulbs, he puts Bobby to sleep, he's fairly menacing towards Dean, even though he's the one who pulled him from hell.  And then wings!  Best introduction ever.


#5 - Dean's last words - No Rest for the Wicked


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"Keep fighting. Take care of my wheels.  Sam, remember what Dad taught you, okay?  And remember what I taught you."  Oh.  Oh, Dean.  His final words to his brother were heartbreaking without being sappy and held so much more meaning: "Remember what Dad taught you," meaning hunting and survival skills; "remember what I taught you," meaning how to live and how to love and how to take care of himself.


#4 - The ending - Heart


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This is just devastating.  Sam is just so upset, and Jared really kills it in this scene.  But what I think I loved the most about the whole thing is that after we see Sam take one more reassuring look at Dean, he steels his nerves and walks out of frame.  We're left with Dean's reaction and how the killing affects him, not Sam.  We know this is breaking Sam, and so does Dean.  Hearing the killing instead of seeing it makes it that much worse, too.


#3 - Dean's many deaths - Mystery Spot


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If it's wrong to laugh at Dean dying so many times, I don't want to be right.  He's survived so many things that would kill an average person, but he's felled by: tacos, a sausage, the shower, axe-wielding Sam, his razor, etc.  And though the deaths themselves are played for comedy, clearly they are causing Sam enormous amounts of pain.  Which leads us to...


#2 - OCD Sam - Mystery Spot


When Dean dies on Wednesday, he's gone for good.  And Sam becomes something entirely unrecognizable.  He goes so far over the edge, and it's terrifying.  The part that hurts the most for me is that he lays out a plate of food for Dean at mealtime.

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#1 - Dean breaks down over his brother's corpse - All Hell Breaks Loose Part II


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This whole sequence is as fine a tribute to Jensen's acting and Manners' directing as you'll find in the entire series.  Dean is so broken.  He just absolutely cannot bear the thought of life without his brother, so he goes and sells his soul to bring him back.  It was monumentally stupid, but if that's not love, I don't know what is.  I loved how they kept cutting to show Sam lying there, like Dean was willing him to answer back.  That was a cool way to set up the scene.  And Jensen is so understated here.  I know he's crying and breaking down, but in a less-capable actor's hands, this scene could easily have veered off course.  That, too, is a tribute to Manners' directing.

So what's at the top of your Manners moments list?  Did I neglect any of your favorites?

Comments  

Supernarttu
# Supernarttu 2010-01-25 15:40
Ardeospina, you're on fire girl :-) I love your picks, they're great. I dunno how you could pick just 15, I bet it was pure agony.

I agree on many of them, especially the first one. That is the top1 Jensen perfomance for me. He broke my heart, and then ripped it to shreds and then salted and burned it, and then finally with that crossroads -scene he just grinded it into atoms. That one scene alone should have earned him an Emmy, Golden Globe, Oscar, hell throw in a Grammy if you like, it was that amazing.

On #11... I was always so sad that Sam never got to "say goodbye" to John in any way. He got some vague apology that he was a little vary of, but then left when asked. And then I started to think about what Dean got. I was so devastated when the amazing praise he had been waiting for (for his whole life maybe) had to be ruined with the last words, that the LAST WORDS of his father to him were about 'killing' his own brother. I mean, John, I love him, he was a good man who did a (mostly) good job in bringing up his boys, but the way he just left them with 'nothing' was just the most heartbreaking part. And then he went to hell for his eldest. The man was so complicatedly (un)sympathetic . I have this love-hate -thing with John, and I think I ain't the only on.

Ok, my own fave scenes to add...
- Scarecrow: The fight- and the phoneconversati on -scene btw SamnDean. I love the tension and later the appraise that Sam didn't expect.
- Shadow: When Dean tells Sam he wants them to be a family again. It seemed liked I was watching right into Deans soul. And the way Sam was in that scene. I couldn't be mad at him, he was right in a way. And boy, has he changed since then. "This is not gonna be my life forever" is still ringing in my head...
- Devils trap: The YED!John -scene is awesome. I get chills over how well JDM is playing it, esp. with Jensen. I was really rooting for Sams TK to kick in but the way it actually went down was way better... Dramatically I mean, in "reality" it really was the tragic downhill point for them all. And the sadness is even more haunting now, after all that has happened since that night at the cabin. The consequences of that one choice were sadly catastrophycal, and still ripple on 'till this day.
- Children shouldn't play...: the end scene. It's haunting.
- Houses of the holy: Sams desperate speech in the end. The way he says: "Its' so damn hard, doing what we do...there’s so much evil out in the world, I feel like I could drown in it." He just seemed so lost. Man, I wish it had really been an avenging angel. For Sam.
- Magnificent 7: I actually like this ep, it's not that bad. The scene where the guys are getting ready, loading guns and just stop and look at each other. *chinwibble* Also Deans "What's in the box?!" was so unappropriate and awesome, I love Se7en.
- Mystery Spot: The end scene. The hug and then the suffering last look of Sam made me a blubbering mess. And there weren't no words!! Jared blew me away with the whole eppie but the ending just crushed my heart. Oh Sam.
- Jus in bello: "I shot the sheriff" + "but you didn't shoot the debuty" + Sams face = AWESOME. This eppie is great.
- No rest for the: The end. Dean shredded. Sam crying. Me = a total wreck. Bring on the semi now why don't ya!?
- Metamorphosis: The fight -scene. That scene is pure gold. I love it to bits.

Yep, this is why I don't do top-what-have-y ou's for it would be a top500 with equal amount of pages ;-)
Jasminka
# Jasminka 2010-01-25 15:55
Ardeospina, the woman just feed us some more... I loved what you compiled here.... I'll get into it more later or tomorrow. Getting through this was was an emotional roller coaster in a way, and I had not expected that.

Not only because of remembering this brilliant man, but because it brought a lot of personal stuff up I thought I had locked down. So, I need a break from sadness and will be back, soon.

Thank you so much for this great list. Yeah, it is great, great, great! Love Jas
Supernarttu
# Supernarttu 2010-01-25 16:27
Ok, Jus in Bello wasn't directed by KM, sorry my bad.
CandyMaize
# CandyMaize 2010-01-25 16:36
I don't have anything to add, but feel the need to mention how easy it is to take Dean's last words to Sam in 'No Rest for the Wicked' and have them read like something from Kim to the cast and crew regarding the show itself.

At least, that's what ran through me when I was reading the words I've heard Dean so say many times .. and yes, had to grab another kleenex.