Wednesday, March 21, 2012

CW's "Supernatural" and the Curse with "Out with the Old:" A Television Review

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Director: John F. Showalter.

Writers: Robert Singer & Jenny Klein.

Shades of CBS television's "Friday the 13th: the TV Series" can be found in the latest episode of CW's "Supernatural." "Out with the Old" is a good variation on a familiar concept. While the brothers go chasing down cursed objects, like pink ballerina shoes, that were once locked up in a special magical container, the Leviathans decide to surface again like the whales they are. And this time they are unsure if they should cash in on the bounty that is on the Winchester's head.

But as for which story is more important, the obvious choice is with Dick Roman's many associates. They run numerous subsidiary real estate companies, like Bicklebee Real Estate, who are in the market of serving some secretive agendas. Throughout most of the United States, they are buying up mom and pop businesses. As for why, nobody knows. The answers the Winchesters find are still cryptic. This season's story-arc is finally getting some more movement. Too many episodes are spent in showing that a considerable amount of time has passed. One simple title would have been enough to say six months have passed since than to drag one story-arc out.

The sub-plot of the brothers chasing down all these cursed objects is not all that well thought out. There are times where the the tease is great, but the explanation is confusing. The best example is in where Sam manages to break in to a home and stop an object from causing another death. Had the episode spent some time in seeing them worm their way out of these break in situations, some fun could have been had. Last week's episode with Lucifer was fantastic. Sam is still being tormented and fortunately, viewers are not treated to the Devil's upteenth time singing "Stairway to Heaven."

Maybe the writing team for this series has decided that one appearance of Mark Pellegrino is enough. If he was to play more of a Robin Williams style of an evil character, audiences will eventually get tired of it. Since nothing works to silence the devil, maybe Sam Winchester needs to wear a tin foil hat. The possibility that Lucifer is simply transmitting from afar is still possible.

Back on the Leviathan front, the subplot of real estate agents buying up small town operations becomes the real focal point of this episode. The cursed objects become yesterday’s news, but the brothers uncover Roman's plot to "cure cancer."

The best guess is that the facilities that Dick Roman plans on building may be a cloak and dagger operation so more Leviathans, namely those who have not taken a mortal body, can possess humans. The episode title is very telling because something old will have to be tossed out so something new can enter.

Joyce Bicklebee (Mary Page Keller) is ruthless in her tactics and she represents an old social order. But George (Bryan Cuprill) is young and inexperienced. He does not like his boss. He ensures that his encounter with the Winchesters goes in their favour. He may be the new "In Crowd" that can dispose of Dick Roman.

Keller and Cuprill do a great job in making their in-character relationship as loathsome as it seems. Also, this episode reveals that even the meek can be intimidated and to see George plot to overthrow his boss is the highlight of this episode.

But when this simplistic Leviathan decides to side with the Winchesters, viewers will have to wonder if George survived? While the brothers have no love for any monster, viewers are left guessing if he was killed. The early episodes finally start to have some meaning. Assuming that George was not killed, the Winchesters may finally have an insider in the ranks.

This peon can certainly grow some backbone before the series end or infest a new host body. There are seven more episodes left, and unless this season ends with a few surprises, the wait for the final showdown is getting very frustrating.

With a few clues about supposedly deceased characters making a return – which includes Castiel and Bobby Singer – what some viewers need is more than a recap. It should be a PVR full of episodes so the series can be watched in one massive run. At least the Mother-of-All plot from last year was quick and painless.

Overall: 6 out of 10.

"Supernatural" at the CW:

Supernatural's Homepage


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