It’s a pretty remarkable feat for Supernatural (or for any television show) to reach 200 episodes.
It’s been a long road full of twists, turns, the good and the bad from characters viewers have loved to stories viewers just can’t stand.
So for Supernatural Season 10 Episode 5 to pay homage to the show in a charming, tongue in cheek and classic Supernatural way was fitting for that 200th commemoration but also for fans of the show who have found a way to love and appreciate the series no matter what version or take away they’ve gotten from it.
In that self-awareness of the series as a whole and the fandom associated with it, the move to go meta with a Supernatural musical ended up working out.
I’ll admit, I was initially not really on board with the concept and worried it would become too silly by the end. Yet, Supernatural has found success in going meta with an hour like Supernatural Season 6 Episode 15, “The French Mistake.” In fact, the series has always seemed to find a way to take aspects a totally different route and make it work for the show.
Really, and in a way fitting for its ending, I immediately thought of Supernatural Season 4 Episode 18, “The Monster at the End of this Book.” It was that outside-looking-in component for Sam and Dean in all its serious manners with respect to their situation about getting back to “normal” after all the fighting and emotional problems the two have had.
It made for that sentimentality of Sam and Dean essentially watching themselves talk about working together saving people and hunting things, all set to a very touching version of “Carry on My Wayward Son.” To think, that’s the first time the brothers have gotten to hear that sort-of theme song for themselves.
Of course, going meta in that way also proved to have plenty of humor and plenty of great Dean expressions and reactions. From the discussion about fan fiction to Destiel (or is it CasDean?) to subtext to the whole concept of the BM, there were so many little nods to the show and the fans.
Even a scene like Dean talking about what happened after the books stopped (the end of Supernatural Season 5) was both a nice recap and funny as to the girl’s reaction about disliking it.
I couldn’t help but love the callback to Adam still being trapped in the cage with Lucifer, along with Sam and Dean’s facial reactions to that character being in the play.
I rather liked that the show wasn’t inundated with guest stars and cameos. The mentions of Bobby, Jody Mills and more were just the right amount to remind us of the massive collection of characters, moments and mythology, while sticking to the focus on the core characters that began the show: Sam and Dean.
Even Calliope, which fit perfectly with the play and the general story of Supernatural, felt like an old school monster of the week; just another thing for Sam and Dean to take out. At least it wasn't a robot, right?
Of course, to have it end with Chuck himself showing up was a nice final touch.
This could have easily been a crash and burn type of episode -- it did take me a bit to get into -- but that first “idjit” exclamation and Dean reaction really got the ball rolling. By the end, “Fan Fiction” worked in bringing that self-awareness to the series and the fans, the humor, the action, the heart and, of course, Sam and Dean back on the road together as a team.
Carry on Supernatural's wayward sons indeed.
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And here's your first look at Supernatural Season 10 Episode 6, "Ask Jeeves."
Sean McKenna was a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. He retired in May of 2017. Follow him on Twitter.