First, allow me to apologize for the lateness of this review. My life has been undergoing some significant upheaval in the last little while, on top of midterms, no less. Thank you to Alice for her patience with me. I just touched on the main points that stood out to me in this episode, apologies for the shortness of the review as well. I promise next week, when life has stabilized again, I'll make a more decent contribution to this fantastic site.
Okay, let's dissect this episode:
Thoughts on "I Believe the Children Are Our Future"
We're back to SOP this week: set up with the teaser and then onto the fake badges and agents to match. Right away, the first thing I notice is that our boys are totally back in sync. Unlike Fallen Idols in which I thought the characterizations were off despite the return to the original formula, Sam and Dean are jiving in all the right ways this time around. The prankster, ribbing, brotherly chemistry was felt in I Believe more than it has been in a long, long time. Several times in this episode were reminders of days gone by: such as when Dean showed Sam his hairy palm and proceeded to grin devilishly when Sam warned against using his razor to correct the palm in question. Everything feels much less tense than it did only a few weeks ago. The strain of unspoken accusations, guilt and grief doesn't hang so heavily over every conversation.
Sheesh, only six eppies in and already a break. Sure I could whine about it but that won’t change anything so instead I’ll just ramble a bit. Let’s try to figure this whole thing out, 22 episodes to watch in a 35 week ‘season’…odds are we’re going to have a lot more repeats coming our way.
 
Some argue that last year the CW really made a mess of how it scheduled Supernatural, I disagree. â€˜Course I disagree on a lot of things…like this being a Sam/Jared site only. Sure there is a fixation on Sam’s hair and Sam’s shirts but that doesn’t make this a Sam Site and Dean is Doormat Site, it simply means that Sam’s hair has more to comment about and frankly he does have some fairly cool shirts…like that white one with the pattern underneath that you only see when he rolls up the sleeves. That must be one of ‘those’ shirts for which the wardrobe department only has perhaps one because we only ever see Sam wear that shirt when he’s sitting and talking – WIAWSNB and AVSC comes to mind. It’s not a shirt that gets food or blood or dirt on it, must be one of a kind.
 
I digress…yeah, that happens a lot. Last year the CW gave us ten in a row, seven repeats, four in a row, four repeats, four in a row, two repeats and the final four. Good bye to season 4. Honestly, that’s not too bad. The first ten were awesome; face it, ten Thursdays in a row of nothing but new, who can complain about that? Sure, the next seven Thursdays of repeats weren’t much fun but since Kripke has stated it takes about four weeks post-production to complete an episode, by the time we watched Heaven and Hell they had only just finished filming the 11th episode perhaps two to three weeks earlier, it wasn’t ready.
Normally by Wednesday I like to have the recap up, but this week has been one extraordinary circumstance after another.  I at least started the recap for "I Believe The Children Are Our Future," so that's a start.  I've been meaning to do this for a while, but I thought I'd share why I started writing recaps, even though they involve days of intense work. 

My first fandom was The West Wing. I found the best community ever on a new upstart site called "Mighty Big TV."  The discussions were intelligent, fans were respectful to one another, and their full length recaps couldn't be beat.  Their mantra was "snark" which was intended to be fun sarcasm.  They loved the show, but when something was just hideous, it would be brought out in a funny "what were they thinking" way.  These recaps were long, thorough, very funny and thought provoking and I easily killed an afternoon each week at work reading them.  That ended up often times being the highlight of my week.  That went on for several seasons.

Well, something else happened.  "Mighty Big TV" evolved (if you want to call it that) into "Television Without Pity."  Subtle snark suddenly became poisonous, and when checking out other shows recaps they became mean spirited and negative.  So did the forums.  Why would anyone recap a show that they weren't a fan of?  How does that appease the fans that come to check out the site?  I'm not looking for cheerleading, but I don't want brutal nitpicking either.  Once The West Wing ended the site was unbearable. 

I never found a site since then that gave me recaps that I enjoyed like with The West Wing.  So, naturally, when I came into the Supernatural fandom, I started writing them.  They weren't good at first.  As a matter of fact, my season three collection (when I started these) is bad and needs to be completely redone (except "Mystery Spot," which I rewrote in pretty awesome fashion).  In season four I found my groove though and I even get to do more than I got from reading others because I can do screencaps.  Having flexibility with your own site is pretty fun.  

So, this is the problem, but it's one I usually look past for creative reasons.  The recaps on this site are the articles that get the lowest number of hits.  With the exception of "Yellow Fever," which for some reason I have yet to figure out is one of the most popular articles on this site, they're all in the basement of site traffic.  

So, I thought I would do a little pleading, since there are a couple of these recaps that are my personal favorites that haven't been getting the attention they deserve.  One of the lowest viewed recaps for season four is "When The Levee Breaks," which I find very odd since this is one of my personal best and personal favorites.  So, if you need to kill an afternoon at work and are eager for a hiatus time waster, please check this out.  Warning though, make sure you can control your laughter at work.     

http://www.thewinchesterfamilybusiness.com/supernatural/7-episode-recap/850-recap-qwhen-the-levee-breaksq.html

It should also be noted that a mediocre or bad episode actually sounds better through a recap.  It's that snark again.  Check out my recap for "Family Remains."  It involves something I've only done once, vigilante recapping.  Again, another one of my favorites.  You might notice there are less screencaps in this one.  That's because it was too dark and I couldn't get many good ones. 

http://www.thewinchesterfamilybusiness.com/supernatural/7-episode-recap/240-recap-qfamily-remainsq.html

The lowest viewed recap BY FAR for whatever reason is "After School Special."  I read it again and it could just be my personal bias, but I didn't think it was half bad.  I thought it was good actually.  I laughed.  Why don't you read it and tell me if I'm wrong. 

http://www.thewinchesterfamilybusiness.com/supernatural/7-episode-recap/330-recap-qafter-school-special.html

Okay, that's my pitch for now.  If there is a particular reason you like or don't like the recaps, send some feedback my way.  Maybe it is foolish of me to keep putting in the work it takes to do these things, especially when I'm trying to go back and write ones for season one and two. 

Nah, I love writing them too much.  I always have had this philosophy that if I can get at least one person to read something, then I've succeeded.  Actually I can get two.  Sure, that's the hubby and the dog, but it works.  

Thanks, and new recap coming soon! 

Granted it went out at 11:45 last night, but I did finally get my review out of "I Believe The Children Are Our Future" out on blogcritics.  I'm really proud of what I came up with this review, far more than "Fallen Idols."  I even wrote in under miraculous circumstances, in between the Chinese fire drills going on at work these days and the fact that Halloween is next week and the temporary insanity has already kicked in with my children.  So, enjoy it, and please tell me either there or here how full of crap I am. 

http://blogcritics.org/video/article/tv-review-supernatural-i-believe-the1/

Also, I'm thrilled to link to Mo Ryan's review in her The Watcher blog.  It seems this site got a very positive mention and a link to the Sam Fans vs. Dean Fans article.  I wrote that after the fighting broke out in her blog, so I really appreciate the mention.  Even though I've gotten many accolades and appreciate them all, this is the first time a member of mainstream media has recognized this site and my work as a blogger.  I'm truly honored. 

http://featuresblogs.chicagotribune.com/entertainment_tv/2009/10/supernatural-children-future-winchesters.html

Also, Sablegreen provided the link to Buddy TV and their speculation about season six.  While I agree wholeheartedly with the analysis, I was pretty vocal on this subject this summer and then put it to rest, but I'll give my two cents. 

Season six is a done deal.  The economics are too good, ratings decline or not.  This comes from my knowledge of the business.  If a show makes money (no matter what the network), it isn't going anywhere, especially if it is made by the studios of one of the network owners.  Now, it might not be unheard of that it ends up on Fridays with Smallville (which is likely also getting a tenth season) or in place of that show should it be determined to be too expensive to renew. 

The CW can finally claim that it has a hit on its hands in The Vampire Diaries.  It's big in demos and ratings, something a home grown CW show has never done before.  Their prior successes have all come from the old WB and UPN networks.  No matter what the hype, Gossip Girl is not a ratings hit. They have some bold new ideas in development that are more reminiscient of the old WB.  Teens are still king, but rich teen skank shows are not.  They know they have to phase out the old shows.  Smallville must go first and the one show in the biggest jeopardy right now believe it or not is America's Next Top Model.  It is not an in-house show and the contract with Tyra Banks' production company expires this year.  It's already getting very expensive and it's losing ratings.  If it's not cost effective, they will cut it loose.  One Tree Hill isn't getting any younger either and eventually the cast and crew will want to call it quits.  However, it still has some shelf life.  

So, given that and holes created by The Beautiful Life and the likely death of Melrose Place, there's still plenty of room for a solid performer like Supernatural in the lineup.  Especially since the only show that could possibly take the crowded competition of Thursdays at 9pm is The Vampire Diaries, and that would get clobbered by the shared demographic of Grey's Anatomy.  The show creatively is doing well too, which means plenty of International and DVD opportunties for Warner Brothers.  

http://www.buddytv.com/articles/supernatural/the-pros-and-cons-of-supernatu-32004.aspx

Of course I agree with John Kubicek, it's way too early to be talking season six.       

That's all for now! 
Okay, I had a silly moment today where I started putting this stuff down off the top of my head.  I do it all the time at work, it's called "Fun Facts Day," but I've never done a Supernatural one before.  Anyway, here's the results, in no particular order.  It isn't much, but Mondays are the best days for silliness. 

Supernatural Fun Facts
Eric Kripke figured out about the seventh episode into season one that the urban legends idea wasn't going to work for the rest of the series. Or the rest of the season. The chemistry between Jared and Jensen was too great, so the emphasis switched to the brothers. He also picked an Impala over his initial idea of a 65 Mustang because with an Impala, "You can put a body in the trunk." 
Ever wonder why Kripke Enterprises is Scrap Metal and Entertainment? Simple, the original Kripke Enterprises, based out of Toledo, Ohio (Eric's home town) is his dad's scrap metal business. When Eric got into TV production, the business expanded. That scrap metal arm of the business still exists today in  the second dirtiest city in Ohio, next to Youngstown. (I'm from this state, I'm allowed to kid!)
Sam and Dean both have died on May 2nd, Sam's birthday, which proves that Sam has had some pretty sucky birthdays. We won't even talk about what happens around Halloween. 

Sam has been known to take massive beatings. (Lifted straight from supernatural.wiki. I love that!). 
Hmm, it smells like a Thursday...looks like a Thursday...acts like a Thursday, it must be Thursday!!  Oh, and it's one of those magical 22 Thursdays each year we are blessed with.  Yes, I'm talking about episode night.

So, after you see the episode in whatever time/space you're in, take a few minutes to share your reaction.  If you're like me, I'll be watching it more than once, so multiple reactions are allowed.  Heck, even one word comments like "great" work. 

Rules, no fighting, no disrespect, no wishing someone dead, and NO COMMENTS about Sam and Dean and their apologies thing.  If you're still having issues with that, please go to the Sam Fans vs. Dean Fans article. 

Okay, happy episode everyone.  See you later this evening!
Then: Sam and Dean fight. Dean calls Sam and they’re back together.

Now: Oh boy, this must be a "Monster of The Week" episode. We’re starting with two tools that have “about to die” written all over them. One very enthusiastic guy has something to show the other guy. He uncovers the sweet looking Porsche, but I don’t “ooh and ah” over it like these guys because I’m not a big foreign car enthusiast. I would have been more impressed with a classic American convertible. You know, James Dean might still be alive if he was driving a longhorn Cadillac. Think about it.

Anyway, it’s Little Bastard, or one damn good replica. The one guy is now a puddle of goo over it. The other guy admits he paid a lot for it, but the numbers match. He gets in the car and we so know he’s about to become toast. Bloody toast. The other guy fetches the video camera and while he does he hears and engine revving and squealing of tires. He goes back in with camera rolling and his friend is dead like James Dean, head smashed in high impact into the corner of the broken windshield. Blood rolls down the logo “Little Bastard,” which makes no sense to me since that’s the back of the car and the dude was bleeding all over the windshield. Hmm, I smell a title card coming.

Sam and Dean are in the Impala and this is where I have to mention I’m really pissed at my local affiliate. Yes WWHO channel 53 in Chillicothe, Ohio, I’m talking to you. For three weeks now, we’ve had nothing but problems with the HD feed with both The Vampire Diaries and Supernatural. The Vampire Diaries has been so bad I’ve had to watch it online later because the sound is out for most of the episode. As for Supernatural, no HD, and this week an annoying “Flood Warning” that has obstructed my already squashed view of the Winchesters. No wonder these local stations are swimming in red ink. You’re encouraging us to go online for our viewing! Which I totally did BTW. Screencaps today are courtesy of Amazon Video on Demand and their incredible HD streaming. I highly recommend going this route for all your Supernatural episode needs. When ordering, make sure to click the Amazon advertisement on this site so I get credit for the sale. Proceeds go toward my lunch money.

 

Thoughts on "Fallen Idols"
Every television show has those episodes that viewers are able to watch without needing to know too much background information or analyzing for subterfuge and foreshadowing. Supernatural has a few of these episodes "“ they're the ones I turn to in first thing in the morning to put on in the background as I'm getting ready for work or tidying up before heading out the door. "Fallen Idols" wasn't an instant classic nor did it build the already epic myths of Supernatural, but all in all, it was light entertainment and it will probably see me out the door one day in the future.
First things first: Paris Hilton wasn't awful and actually, I kind of liked her. I was not one of the fans up in arms about the idea of having Ms. Hilton on the show; I thought the idea of Paris Hilton showing up to the apocalypse fitting, actually. Besides, if our boys have to get tossed around, it's always the most fun to watch when it's done by a tiny blonde in heels half their size. Hilton seemed to be a very good sport in making fun of herself and the meta-humour that Supernatural employs is always enjoyable.
I've decided not to submit my review to blogcritics this week.  It's a pretty light review (to go with a pretty light episode) and one that just didn't need to be shared on that forum.  So enjoy this rare exclusive review from me here!

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In a long twenty two episode season, one or two are bound to be "throwaways", aka the episodes that are light on story yet still have a few key moments to keep fans engaged. I've felt cheated by such episodes in the past but I found myself strangely enjoying "Fallen Idols." It’s the Winchester brothers with the training wheels on and I didn't mind the reduced pace one bit. Maybe because Kripke and company managed to put my psyche through a shredder with the previous four episodes of the season. 
 
The whole episode meant to show the brothers coming to equal ground. There were all sorts of hints that went along with Sam pointing out to Dean that they need to be on the same level. Both have their own laptops now (so cool!). Sam gets to harass Dean at the end about being wailed on by Paris Hilton after Dean earlier makes an offhand comment about Sam’s worship of Gandhi. Sam drives them away in the Impala.