When A Fandom Love Becomes Dysfunctional

This is about the CW network series, Supernatural.

I love Supernatural.  I love the Winchester boys.

Or rather, I love the boys but the series’ writers and producers–also known as The Powers That Be (TPTB)–have become lame-ass.

Supernatural finished its 12th season this past May.  It wasn’t all that thrilling.  The same can be said of everything after season 5.  The only improvement was Crowley and his witch mom but they (TPTB) cocked that up royally.

The show actually started downhill in the 4th season when the wonderful formula of music-inspired episodes began to disappear.  By the 5th season, the second to last episode no longer had a musical intro.  And the finale’s “Carry On Wayward Son” musical intro became the only mainstay.

The musical intro/recap for each seasonal premiere began to die of relevance at the beginning of season 5.  And during most episodes, there was no classic rock overlay for transitional moments of importance.  That was a series’ plot requirement, as we see during seasons 1 and 2.  Starting in season 3, it died down, and by season 5, it disappeared.

Why?  Changing of the guard, that’s why.  Creator Eric Kripke and Exec Producer McG disappeared.  The people who came on board after had absolutely no damn idea how to run the show.  They tried, but they fucked up season 3 by bringing on two women semi-regulars.  One was pivotal to the plotline and the other wasn’t.  In my opinion, TPTB did this because they were bored with the episodic themes and they changed the tenor of the show from supernatural creatures preying on humanity to a bizarre hell-vs-heaven theme show.

While I enjoyed a lot of season 4 and, in later seasons, the inclusion of God (Chuck) and Amara (God’s sister), I seriously missed the music and I absolutely HATED Ruby’s actor replacement and I’m not a fan of Castiel.  Many are, and saying I’m not is probably a form of series’ blasphemy, but c’mon, people.  He was better in season 4 than the others that followed.  Now, he’s just a gag prop.  The same can’t be said of Crowley, but he’s only marginally better after his intro season.

So then there’s seasons 5+.  They all run together.  There’s no continuous plotline that makes sense.  Just new angles and curve balls that are intended to make sense but don’t (like that crap with Sam’s soul and plot-offense Grandpa Campbell).

The best bits are when Sam and Dean have their dysfunctional issues and emotional war games as they fight each other and themselves but the brotherly love and devotion always wins out in the end.  But that formula was messed with, turned against them, and then later, they’re brought back together again as if this would fix the fuck-up TPTB caused by splitting them up to begin with.  Yes, there’re episodes during these seasons which I like, but they’re nowhere near the favorites of seasons 1 and 2.

Over the years, I’d forgotten much of what I’d talked about above.  I’d always download an episode (shut up), and then had it on hand for marathons.  The Winchesters have also aged wonderfully and are extremely hot men–and sadly, that’s now the series’ saving grace.  I remember the first time we saw Sam shirtless and many people, including the guys I’d turned on to the series, were surprised by how damn muscular he was(is).  By season 3, he was sizzling.  Now, it’s all about the changing hair style and perpetual need of a shave.

Sadly, for seasons 10, 11, and 12, I’ve actually stopped eagerly anticipating the next episode and I’d stopped watching religiously.  Instead, I played catchup for about six episodes, then I’d start that all over again.  This last season, 12, I did the same except that from ep 14 on, I skipped the rest and played catchup about a month after the finale.  And even now, at this moment, I actually can’t recall WTF the season was about.

This is ghastly.

This last week, I’d decided to do a huge Supernatural marathon on Netflix, starting with episode 1.  By season 5, I started skipping episodes.  Now I’m at season 8 and I’m skipping more episodes and instead I’m reading synopses on TV.com in order to remind me what’s going on.  I’m now only interested in pivotal episodes–and they’re getting fewer and fewer.

I suspect that TPTB know they’re in trouble.  It’s why they brought back Mary Winchester.  But I’m sorry.  It’s too little, too late.  The only save for this series is if Eric and McG return and fire everyone else.

As I said, I love my boys.  And I’ll keep watching until they die (or the series does), but it’s no longer an anticipation.  It’s not even in the same universe of anticipation that I apply to Game of Thrones, and it’s not on par with my new love for Lucifer.  Secondarily for Gotham and the new MacGyver.

There’s one show I sincerely miss and wish it had been picked up by the CW: Constantine.  NBC killed it after 13 episodes (2015) and they did so because they were a) cowards, and b) they fucked it over by placing it on Friday nights so it was doomed from the get-go.  MacGyver/Hawaii Five-0 can handle that day slot.  A show about a demonologist/magician with a lovely bad attitude just couldn’t, never mind a 10 pm time slot.

If there’s ever a time for Supernatural to get exciting again, it would be if they met up with John Constantine for a full or half season then spun that off into a new Constantine series.  Matt Ryan, BTW, was *perfect*.  I can’t say that for Jared and Jensen anymore and it breaks my heart.

As for the post title, it refers to me watching something I no longer particularly love except for my love for the main characters (I suffered this for Stargate SG-1 too), and it also refers to Constantine but not the show–it’s toward NBC’s dysfunction toward anything supernatural.  (I will also apply that to CBS and their cancellation of Moonlight, which deserves a reboot somewhere, starring someone else as Mick St. John.  How about Karl Urban? Yum)

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