Kim Takes On: SUPERNATURAL Season 6.1 "Exile On Main Street"
Published: September 26, 2010 - 5:00am
Let me just begin by saying that, overall, this was a very good episode and opener to season six. It never felt as though anything was really different, except for the new season intro being used instead of the "Road So Far" opener. Being a devoted fan of this series for five years (going on six), I really found myself sad not seeing the familiar montage of the previous season to the styling of Kansas' "Carry On Wayward Son." It was always something that got me pumped and ready for the new storyline to begin.
It's a year later and Dean (Jensen Ackles) has given up hunting and is living with Lisa (guest star Cindy Sampson) and her son Ben (guest star Nicholas Elia). Mysteriously freed from his cage in hell, Sam (Jared Padalecki) finds Dean and tells him he needs to rejoin the fight and introduces Dean to a world-a family-he never even knew existed: the Campbells, his mother's family, lead by none other than their Grandfather Samuel (Pileggi). Phil Sgrricia directed the episode written by Sera Gamble.
Season six picks up one year after the events of the season five finale. The beginning montage shows Dean has been living the "normal apple-pie" life he promised Sam he would live. While it shows scenes of him working construction, making scrambled eggs for Ben, Lisa, and himself and going to barbecues they would also show flashback scenes of when he was a hunter as a way to compare how his life has changed for the better... or maybe for the worst? I say this because, to me he didn't seem very happy to be doing any of these new things. I don't know what it is they find so appealing about making Dean so miserable or such a "Debbie Downer." I miss the Dean that was a smiling, waitress chasing, smart ass. This new Dean makes me feel like I need to take a Prozac every time he gets any camera time. I understand people will say he's matured since the series started, but to me, it wasn't in a good way.
The episode featured the return of Fredric Lehne as Azazel or as many know him as, The Yellow Eyed Demon. Though his presence was merely an illusion in Dean's mind caused by the poison of a Djinn it was still exciting as hell to see the old villian and Fred Lehne, of course, delivered the same creepy, evil goodness we the fans loved about him in the first two seasons.
As much as I try to fight it, I can't help but like Lisa and honestly, I agree with many that she is perfect for Dean. She is also one of the best ladies to be on Supernatural that is still alive. She is totally understanding of who Dean is and what he did his whole life. She also was willing to let him go "hunting" when he was beginning to have some suspicions something was wrong in the beginning of the episode. I also appreciated when Dean tried to tell her he's been a burden on Ben and her and tries to tell her they would be better without her, she replies with, "You're an idiot," and "This has been the best year of my life." Unfortunately, I am sensing some dismal foreshadowing when it comes to Lisa.
The reunion between the Winchester brothers was not as satisfying as I thought it would be due to the obvious tension felt between them. Writers please note that this scenario of the brothers not trusting each other, constantly bickering or fighting is now being overplayed since you have been playing it out since season four. Please bring them back together and let them be happy to be brothers again. You said it yourself at the end of season five, it's about family so please make them a family again.
There was something odd about the reunion between Grandpa Campbell and Dean, especially since the end obviously hinted there's something not trustworthy about the Campbell clan. Sam seems to be in the same boat with them, and I'm curious as to why Samuel was resurrected. Here's hoping we actually get to see exactly how Sam and the Campbell clan found each other.
I had mixed feelings about Dean choosing to stay with Lisa and Ben rather going with Sam. Although it's obvious he'll eventually go, it bothered me in the sense that this is a show about these brothers; how they are willing to do anything for each other, which includes going to hell to protect the other. Dean even talks about how he was looking for every possible way to get Sam out of hell; but when everything was said and done he chose a girl and her kid. At the same time it was very admirable of Dean to make that choice as I'm sure it was a difficult one.
It's nice that they are somewhat going back to the original storyline of hunting monsters, but the added twist of the creatures acting irregularly (such as werewolves shifting on the half moon, nocturnals coming out during the daytime, etc) was a nice surprise.
The season six storyline is looking very promising even with it being only one episode in. Though there have been some minor changes, Sera Gamble and crew have managed to keep the same tone and aspects overall that originally drew me to the show week after week.