Supernatural’s Finale: Why It Works

Over my life span, there are few pieces of art, good or bad, that have shaped me in the way of the CW original Television program, Supernatural. I have rewatched the show in its’ entirety probably 10-15 times. I love it all, the characters, the world, its use of “Carry On Wayward Son,” but most of all, that sweet 1967 Chevy Impala. When I heard the show was ending it was somewhat of a relief. For a show that was supposed to end at season 5, by the end of 15 seasons, it was clear they’d been running out of ideas for quite a while.

I didn’t have access to television at the time, so in order to watch the new episodes, I downloaded the CW app. This is in no way an endorsement of that app, as my experience with it was terrible. More than once it wouldn’t register when I would try to tap the pause button, and as it went on, even if it offered what I loved, I was kind of done with it. This, was much like my experience with Supernatural, by the end of its run. Yes, as I said at the beginning, I love the show, but maybe it was time to move on. 

If you’re not familiar with the lore, I’m sorry, this article will be highly confusing and full of spoilers. Fair warning. 

With most things I’m actually interested in experiencing, I avoided spoilers surrounding its final season. While it’s nice to say that now, it doesn’t really help the show’s case. With season 14’s finale, the show could pretty much go in any direction, introducing that God was the villain all along, and killing off Jack?? Well-written or not, it opened the door of almost endless possibilities. But that leads to a problem; now what? 

While that may be fun for an audience to think about, and then go back to their daily lives, for the writers, this is their daily lives. It shows, oh man, does it show. Throughout most of this season, they had no idea what they were doing. They have zombies and ghosts, and the ghosts of previous villains, but not really memorable villains. And that’s just in the first few episodes. 

There’s a lot I really like, don’t get me wrong. My favorite thing this season brings is Dean and Castiel finally making up after 2-3 seasons of fighting. It was so satisfying to see these characters in dialogue that wasn’t Castiel saying “Why are you mad?” to which Dean responds, “Because the show needs conflict.” But… every moment with them that was great, there’s the writing behind it. In episode 9 titled “The Trap,” there’s this part where the 2 heroes get ambushed in a forest, and Castiel is taken! Then maybe 5 or 10 minutes later, he just shows up again, no scars, nothing like that, and is like, “Hey, what’s up? So glad I was able to escape off-screen. LMAO haha.”

Decisions like this show how conflicted the writers were with giving fun fan service or doing what’s best for each character. This is best shown with the incredibly debated series finale. After defeating God in the previous episode, the Winchesters are on a case, and in the middle of a fight against vampires, Dean is killed. That’s right, it wasn’t Death, Lucifer, or even God that killed him, it was a no-name grunt. It’s a decision that will forever be discussed with fans. Most hated it, even I found it weird that this is how they decided to kill him off. 

That said, the more I thought about it, the more I loved how the show ended. The episode before it wraps things up nicely, to be honest. God is killed with Jack (who is alive again) now taking his place, Sam and Dean sit in the bunker while flashbacks of the two over the years play, and even Lucifer makes a cameo appearance. Maybe that’s what I like about the finale so much, that it didn’t care how the fans wanted to show to end but instead went where the writers felt each character was headed. 

I like how Dean is killed. There it is, I’m just gonna say it. It’s cool from a writing perspective because it’s something different than having him die in a 100-million-dollar budget way. There are a few ways to interpret his death, one is that it showed with all the big threats being eliminated, Dean’s purpose was complete, and didn’t “need” to be alive anymore, but there’s another one that I like even more. It’s the idea that to have Dean die to a nobody is because to him, every case they went on, and every monster they killed was just as important as those world-ending baddies. 

Maybe they could have written his death a little better, but there’s something about that idea that really stands out to me. A hero isn’t someone who dies for others because he has to, but because every life is equally important and worth saving. 

There was a point in the show’s history when the writers realized their audience was 14-year-old girls on Tumblr and made the show into a chick flick. Following these characters for so long, bad writing didn’t really matter to me though, as hypocritical as that might be. 

We live in an age where Twitter and tomatoes decide whether or not the entertainment we choose to consume is good or bad. No one should be able to bully you into you loving or hating something. Supernatural hadn’t been good long before it ended, but there’s a point when you love something so much, the faults just don’t matter. For a show that was supposed to end at season 5, it was cool that its series finale was able to take a chance, and strive to honor these characters so that they might stay with us after the credits roll, and carry on.

*As of “Supernatural’s Finale: Why It Works” being published, I have officially been posting articles on MooCow Entertainment for 1 year. I’ve really enjoyed writing here, and have no plans to stop! Thank You.*

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