Previously on Supernatural… the boys are back in town.
Having survived the rough pilot process with flying colors, episode two is where a show can truly begin to develop. S.1 E.2 of Supernatural starts to see the series throw itself completely into its’ early monster of the week format.
This week, Sam and Dean (fresh from Sam’s trouble at Stanford) find themselves hot on the trail of a Wendigo. At least (according to friends with an expertise in this subject matter) a CW friendly version of the monster legend. The brothers find their way to a sparse area of wilderness somewhere in Colorado, where a group of collegiate campers have gone missing. The events (according to Sam’s research) coincide almost directly with disappearances in this same region which have happened every twenty-three years.
The episode is a strong one for Sam, who’s dealing with a tremendous amount of heavy character turmoil. Padalecki acts his butt off in the episode, covering a wide variety of emotional territory in a short period of time. Sam’s emotional fragility (which is a hallmark of the caracter, especially in the early years) serves to begin the narrative heavy lifting required to build the brothers’ relationship, which has long been touted as a strength of the series. There is a fairly lengthy scene roughly midway through the epsiode where viewers watch Sam and Dean talk in a dark campsite. There is no action, and very little happening visually other than the conversation between the characters. Even at this early point in the series, it’s easy to tell that Dean would do anything for his kid brother. They are going to be together through thick and thin. This is Supernatural at its heart.
The episode is very light on effects, with much of the suspense coming from the fear of the unknown. (The monster likes to hide in dark woods and dark caves). When we finally see the Wendigo, it is little more than a man in a costume before we see the scene plunged into a moment of almost comical special effects.The epsiode proves to be much scarier the less they show.
My Opinion: 🌟🌟🌟🌟
Fun Fact: This is the first episode to feature the line: “I think he wants to pick up where he left off. Saving people. Hunting things. The family business.”
Another Fun Fact: Keep an eye out for a crazily young Alden Ehrenreich as “Ben” in the episode. The actor (who was roughly 16 years old at this time) was recently announced to be Disney’s new Han Solo.