Nevermore
 
With a four month summer hiatus ahead of us, the question arises, how do we get our needed dosage of the Winchesters? For me, I read, and have found the tie-in novels for the TV series really fun to get lost in. I read for the same reason I watch TV, relaxation, entertainment and escapism, and the novels do not disappoint. Currently, there are five in the series and a sixth, War of the Sons by Rebecca Dessertine and David Reed, is due for release in August 2010. Keith R. A. DeCandido has written three of the Supernatural tie-in novels Nevermore, Bone Key and Heart of the Dragon. The first of his novels is the gist of this review.
 
When I first heard about the books, I was hopeful, but cautious. From what I've seen, media tie-in books run the gambit from great to unreadable. I was very pleasantly surprised with Nevermore. Published in August 2007, Nevermore was the first in the series, and involves a ghostly haunting and a series of bazaar murders based on the stories by Edgar Allen Poe. 
 
 
Set in the second season between episodes Crossroad Blues and Croatoan, Dean and Sam head to the Bronx to help out Manfred Afiri, Ash’s friend, and every bit as colorful as Ash himself. Manfred is a local rocker whose house is haunted with a lovesick blond apparition in a '80s heavy-metal T-shirt. But that’s not all they find. A far more macabre crime catches their attention. Not far from the house, two university students were beaten to death by a strange assailant. A murder that's bizarre even by New York City standards, it's the latest in a line of killings that the brothers soon suspect are based on the creepy stories of legendary writer Edgar Allan Poe.
 
Set in the Bronx, and written by Bronx native Keith DeCandido, the novel brings forth a knowledge and emotion of the city that adds richness to the story. The great historical facts mixed in with the tale give it a very non-fiction feel.
 
Keith DeCandido is no stranger to Sci-fi novels either. He has authored more than 40 novels most of them in media universes such as Star Trek, but has also written tie-ins for other popular sci-fi and fantasy series as well, such as Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Doctor Who, Andromeda, Farscape and now Supernatural.
 
He is also a professional music and his love for the art and Dean’s love of rock music are really brought to the forefront in the book. At the back of the book, DeCandido added a list of songs he listened to while writing the novel, and recommends it as a listening soundtrack while reading, including the Supernatural favorite AC/DC’s Back In Black. I found this a really fun and enjoyable addition to the book.
 
Another nice addition is the ability to be able to see the action from the perspective of the other characters, including a ghost, something which the time constraints of a television show doesn't allow. Another other nice touch, the author gave a tip of his hat to Jim Butcher's ‘Dresden Files’ by mentioning  a female cop named Murphy, in Chicago, who happens to be part of the inner circle of paranormal secrets. And I loved Dean’s little dig about CSI, and how there were better things to watch on Thursday nights. Yep.....the joke about CSI started way before Changing Channels!
 
This book is the early Winchesters is all their glory. It is 352 pages of a fast-paced, action-packed supernatural murder mystery complete with blazing shotguns and secret incantations. From Dean’s frustration with driving in the Bronx (so Sam did it), and the ‘hunter knowledgeable’ Detective McBain (a friend of John Winchester), to Dean’s reading the Poe stories and Sam’s Latin spells, the story never gets dull. The plotline is engaging and full of bantering between the boys. 
 
Throughout the book, the dialogue and rapport between the two were so vivid, I could actually
visualize Jensen Ackles and Jared Padalecki acting the scenes out.
 
Sam: I’m a little freaked out.
Dean: C’mon, Manfred’s an okay guy.
Sam: It’s not Manfred, Dean, it’s you. It’s like we’re in Dean Disneyland in there with Fillmore East posters and the amps and the record collections. I’m worried we’re never gonna get you outta there.
Dean: Dude, I can focus.
Sam: Hope so. ‘Cause we got a spirit we know’s gonna show on Friday night, and a murder that we know’s gonna happen Monday night, and we’re staying with a guy whose house is full of illegal narcotics when we’re both wanted by the feds.
Dean: Anybody ever tell you you worry too much, Sam?
Sam: You, about four times a day.
Dean: Then consider this number five.
 
Priceless, huh! The book is filled with them. Sam’s deliberate hassling of Dean when he’s in his ‘womanizing’ mode results is a playful retort that ends with Dean threatening to pour a beer over Sam’s head. Oh, and FBI agent Hendrickson makes and appearance, just to further complicate things for the boys.
 
‘Nevermore’ gave me many laugh-out-loud moments. And even though it is set in season two, is it still a wonder to read.  It’s like a step back in time for Supernatural fans, a lost episode and just as enjoyable (but no commercials!). Even a non Supernatural fan would enjoy this story. It’s a good way to spend a lazy summer afternoon and a good way to get a much need ‘fix’ of our beloved brothers during this ever long hellatus! 
 
 
Season 4 is a lot like Season 3 in that there are several episodes to choose from, notably In The Beginning, I Know What You Did Last Summer, On the Head of a Pin and Monster at the End of This Book, not to mention the fact that Dean was brought out of hell by none other than the Angel Castiel following orders from God! So there was a lot of awesome stuff happening in Season 4 (yes, and Sam broke the final seal and set Lucifer free) still I was able to find one episode that packed so much into it that it just set it head and shoulders above the rest [there is a pun there, folks.]

So, we’ll do a quick review of the rules and then I’ll present my case for my choice for Season 4’s pivotal episode.




Rules for pivotal episodes:

As I’ve learned from Alice, rules are necessary when embarking on such an adventure. Thus, I have some rules regarding how I decided upon the pivotal episode of each season.

First off, it must add to what we know thus far, either for Sam or Dean or for the storyline as a whole

Second, it must be built upon in future episodes and events.

Third, the episode as a whole must be strong, this is the pivotal episode, not necessarily the most powerful episode of the season but in no way can it simply have a pivotal scene while the rest of the episode is flat or uneven or even forgettable.

 

On The Head of a Pin:

 

There is so much packed into this episode I’ll just pick a starting point and move on from there, it is in this episode that we open on Castiel thus heralding a much bigger angelic involvement henceforth. Castiel and Uriel kidnap Dean to torture the information out of Alistair as to who is killing angel. Not only are we given some backstory on Dean’s time in hell as we watch Dean torture Alistair and witness their interactions but we learn that Dean broke the first seal and that without the first seal being broken none of the rest could. That’s pivotal.

What happens next is Alistair escapes his bonds, how, well because Uriel is a rogue angel and he’s the one who has been killing the angels who won’t join him. Uriel wants Castiel to join him and he wants Dean dead; add rogue angels to the ever-growing list of Winchester enemies.

Sam calls on Ruby for assistance because he no longer believes Dean capable of doing the job; Ruby not only provides Dean’s location but provides the necessary ingredient for Sam to win the day, demon blood. It is here we learn that Sam has been drinking demon blood to hone his exorcising skills and not only that, now Sam can kill - and he does. Also it is here we see what the demon blood is doing to Sam, it is slowly taking him over as his eyes transition to black as he drives to save Dean.

Anna returns and proves herself a valuable ally as she saves Castiel and slays Uriel, Anna also is a catalyst in Castiel beginning to question his orders. It is after this that Castiel helps Dean save Sam in MATEOTB by pointing Dean to the perils of anyone presenting possible danger to a prophet; up to now Castiel had been toeing the company line.

The events unfolded in this episode directly lead us to the next episode where Zachariah arrives to teach Dean that he is a hunter and that it is part of who and what he is and that he’s born to it. It’s a Terrible Life would not have been necessary if not for the utter brokenness of Dean after OTHOAP and from this Zachariah reveals himself and we know what a grand manipulator he was now a full season later.

In addition to all the above goodness OTHOAP introduces us into what will become a valuable addition to the Winchester arsenal, angel swords. There is a lot of discussion out and about that Dean must somehow be “special” because he was able to kill Zachariah in Point of No Return but it is all the way back in this episode that the answer is found. 

When Uriel confronts Castiel and admits that he’s trying to raise Lucifer, he states that only an angel can kill another angel. What’s important here is not just what is said but what occurs as the words are being spoken; from his sleeve he releases a sword, the kind of which we have never seen before. It is because only angels carry these swords that angels are able to kill angels; however, should anyone else get a hold of said sword then all bets are off.

I back this up with what Gabriel told Dean in Hammer of the Gods after Dean wondered how it was Kali didn’t kill him. Gabriel told Dean that he “allowed” Kali to lift a fake sword because there was no way he’d let her have his real sword that would kill him. Again, it’s the weapon, not who holds it that’s important. 

In Point of No Return Castiel heads to the spot where “something is happening” - we know this to be Adam being reconstituted from ash - encounters two rogue angels and dispatches them with the sword he has carried since Uriel was slain. Castiel brings back not only Adam but the two swords that he prominently places on Bobby’s desk. Later in the episode Sam and Dean go with Castiel to Van Nuys to rescue Adam and both brothers carry the swords that Castiel delivers. We see that Dean goes in to rescue Adam and distract Zach so that Sam can come up behind him; Sam is carrying one of the angel swords; Dean the other. The swords are the key.

As a little extra gem I get out of this episode is that I can now fully appreciate Sam’s comment back in Metamorphosis: “I’ve got demon blood in me, Dean.”Well, yeah, Sam, you do but it’s because you’re drinking it. Blood cells only last four to six months before dying off and being filtered from the body as they are replaced so what was dripped into your mouth at six months’ of age wouldn’t really have a whole lot to do with who and what you are 22 plus years later; drink the stuff like Kool-Aid however and see what we get.

So much is unveiled in this episode that what came before and what still is coming today hinges off the events and revelations here.

On the Head of a Pin is Season 4’s pivotal episode.

Thanks for reading, Elle2

God, who?
 
 
‘If there is no God, everything is permitted.’ Fyodor M. Dostoyevsky once wrote. We have been wondering, watching our favourite show, where God has been. Castiel has looked all over for Him and we know that He doesn’t speak to everyone, well…

 
Michelangelo, Fresco at the Sistine’s Chapel
Greetings fellow Hellatus survivors! I'm remiss in getting this article out - it's much later than I'd intended but a friend and I took a trip States-side to the Big Apple in honour of our graduation - if there are any New Yorkers here - you have an incredible city! Anyways ,while putting together the Guests feature in honour of the hundredth Supernatural episode way back when, it was increasingly difficult to choose a mere 100 from the many, many faces who have appeared on our great show in the last 104 episodes. Hence, we have what I'm calling the Bonus Round. I am going to try, to the best of my ability, to include every person who has ever guested on Supernatural as I put together this list over Hellatus. Once again, there isn't really a rhyme or reason to the order in which they appear. (Thanks to SupernaturalWiki for suppying the pictures!)
Supernatural's Pivotal Episodes: Season 3, by Elle2

Here we are, four weeks into Hellatus and all is well, right? Come on, we're doing fine aren't we? The site is rocking with articles, games, daily motivational posters and soon there will be a clock, you know the kind of clock I'm talking about; the one that counts down to the beginning of Season 6. It's coming soon, the clock that is. Also, casting spoilers will soon be up since filming begins July 1st which is just three short weeks away.
So, I'm very sorry for getting so behind with these! I'll make it up to you, readers, by...finishing the rest, I guess. Anyway, on to webisode 6. This one clocks in at 2:59 and picks up right where we left off in webisode 5, which was... Right, let me check real quick. Yes, Ed was getting attacked by the ghost of Janet Meyers.

Webisode 6 starts off with Ed screaming in the background as Spruce races into the main theater to see if he's okay. Harry and Maggie arrive shortly after, and they are all quite worried about Ed, rightfully so. And they're worried about him because Janet cut him on the arm!
100 Favourite Moments of Supernatural 
Season Five
 
  
The decisive season , the one that will give our beloved characters more heartbreaking choices to make and keep us on edge. With the Lord of Hell unleashed, Sam and Dean Winchester have to find a way to get back together on the same page and conquer their fears, their anger, their sadness to be brothers again in the truest sense and rise from the ashes of their pains. only to bring the greatest sacrifice a soul can give.
 
 
Plus: our show celebrated its 100th episode in this season, a triumph only the occasional show reaches. It's a testimony of the fantastic acting we have noticed from the very beginning, the amazingly creative teams in front of and behind the camera, the high quality scripts, and. as helplessly vain as that may sound , of its faithful fans who have kept watching Supernatural, thereby making sure that 'the suits' would deem it worthy of investing money and keep this exceptional show on air. Furthermore , we are looking forward to a sixth season.

To see the awards given thus far, here's part one and part two.



Most Awkward Winchester Family Moment


This is one of my favorite categories this year, for every time I think about the winner it makes me smile.  First though, there is an honorable mention.  This moment goes to a place we never thought Sam and Dean would go, even with their always close quarters. Dean is caught doing an "act" in a place where urban legends come true and has the hairy palm to prove it. If that's not funny enough, Sam with one eye roll manages to top that. "You could go blind doing that too." Wow, did that just happen? "Seinfeld" set a precedent I guess. 

(Part One can be found here)

Special Presentations
 
Supernatural has produced four title sequences for very special episodes; "A Very Special Christmas" (3.08), "Monster Movie" (4.05), "Monster at the End of this Book" (4.18), and "Changing Channels" (5.08). Each is very unique.
 
A Very Supernatural Christmas (3.08)


 
The title sequence is preceded by a version of the old CBS Special Presentation Indent. Sleigh bells are heard and a cheery bright yellow Christmas ornament appears and then explodes in a red/yellow inferno. The text appears and, while the traditional colors of Christmas are red and green, the show keeps the cold color of blue for the title, and red for the remaining text. The "Very" flickers in and out like an old motel sign, and then eventually disappears. The askew Santa hat landing classic ... gives us the feeling of a comic child-like story. However, very few Christmas stories include exploding ornaments, reminding us that we are in the unreality of the Winchester world.