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21 February 2010 @ 10:31 pm
About Supernatural Season Six ...  
About Supernatural Season Six ...
 
What follows is my purely speculative take on possibilities for season six of Supernatural. I have absolutely no inside track on the show; all I’m going to do here is weave the gossamer threads of my imagination with ideas spooled out of interviews with Eric Kripke during the last half-year to produce a nebulous tapestry of what might be in the end of season five and the new course of season six. I’m also going to look back for perspective to things we’ve heard from Kripke throughout the entire run of the show. If you want to avoid any potential for possible spoilerage based on interviews Kripke has already given combined with my guesses and questions, do not click on the cut-link to read the rest of this post. Otherwise, click and come on in! 
 
I’m going to start this off by saying that seasons five and six may be totally different from what I’m spinning here, and that would be just fine by me. This is not my story to tell: it belongs to Eric Kripke and Sera Gamble and Robert Singer and the Winchester brothers. I’m a fan, here, not an author. I’m just an observer, not part of the story or of the creative team behind it. I have no right to the Winchesters and I’m not entitled to have their lives turn out the way I might choose. While I comment on them and do occasionally enjoy abusing them in fanfic, I didn’t create them, they aren’t my characters, and I don’t know their futures or any more of their pasts than we’ve been shown. And that’s as it should be.
 
If you still want to keep on reading, just bear all that in mind and don’t take this discussion too seriously. In other words, if you hate it, don’t bash me about it; just shrug it off as indigestion and go elsewhere. And if you happen to like it, for heaven’s sake don’t invest in it and blame me later for destroying your enjoyment when it doesn’t play out this way! Just enjoy this for what it is:  moonspinning.
 
Before I start, let me say I love Supernatural, and I love Eric Kripke. I particularly love his enthusiasm, his humility, and his generosity. What’s not to like about a guy who rubs his hands in glee not as a theatrical gesture, but because he literally can’t contain his delight; who cheerfully gives credit for some of the show’s best ideas to the others on his team who came up with them; and who goes out of his way to track and respond to fans’ concerns? I had the great joy of meeting him at the L.A. convention in 2008 for a grand total of about a minute, just long enough to thank him for Supernatural and get a picture taken with him, and I’m grateful. I always will be.
 
Season Five
 
In a gloriously long, chatty interview with Mo Ryan of the Chicago Tribune posted back in August 2009, Kripke had this to say about season five and the series as a whole (please pardon the really long quote!):
 
And so they both have their stories. But I always say that it's about them coming together, because the story is really not about one or the other; it's about the bond between them that's called brotherhood. It's about this connection of the two of them. The two of them being one unit is for us really what the story is about. 

And people online, they get furious – alternately furious and upset – or they throw their arms up because they think we're focusing on one brother or the other, and some people are Sam fans, and some people are Dean fans. And in my mind, anyway, you know, they're both on completely equal footing because the story is about the two of them being intertwined. For me, the story is about, "Can the strength of family overcome destiny and fate, and can family save the world?"

If I had a worldview, and I don't know if I do, but if I did, it's one that's intensely humanistic. [That worldview] is that the only thing that matters is family and personal connection, and that's the only thing that gives life meaning. Religion and gods and beliefs – for me, it all comes down to your brother. And your brother might be the brother in your family, or it might be the guy next to you in the foxhole, it's about human connections.
 
What you'll find as the mythology of the season unveils, it's this massive, Byzantine mythology of angels and demons and what they want and their destinies for the world. But it's basically about two red-blooded, human brothers giving them all the middle finger and saying, basically, "Screw you; it's our planet. If you want to have a war, pick another one." 

 
Kripke’s humanistic, family-driven attitude has been evident from the start, and it’s the cornerstone of my belief that, however bloodied, Team Free Will is going to trump Team Destiny at the end of season five. So how do I think this season may play out?
 
Sam and Dean won’t give in to destiny. Even if by some bizarre twist of the story they willingly say “yes” respectively to Lucifer and Michael (which I personally still don’t believe they will), it’s not going to play out the way the angels expect. That pre-scripted angelic brother throwdown will get a Winchester makeover.
 
Sam and Dean will do – something – that puts the apocalypse back in the box. Given the way this show has always woven its story into the background fabric of our real world, I fully expect the dénouement of the season to avert the end of the world with the vast bulk of the world none the wiser. Oh, there will have been some freak storms, accidents, viral outbreaks, and insufficiently explained weird phenomena scattered around that killed a fair number of people, but nothing that the majority of the population would ascribe to a close brush with extinction. Hunters will know the truth, and some of the civilians caught in the skirmishes will have been exposed to it, but apart from the confused vocal religious fringe, no one else will say, “Hey – did you catch that apocalypse going by?” Maybe it will still be left out there to happen sometime in the future, or maybe the Book of Revelation gets edited out of divine scripture – doesn’t really matter. The last chapter will be closed and left on the shelf for the time being, perhaps to await the heat death of the universe. And the world will go on much as it has up to this point.
 
Sam and Dean will teach Heaven and Hell about the importance of family, love, compassion, redemption, and forgiveness. Without Hallmark card moments, thank you very much. I think arrogant angels may get their comeuppance. I don’t know whether God will be in his Heaven and Satan in his Hell, or whether all the decks will get shuffled and humanity will be told to make its own way while father God moves on to other things and Hell acquires a new hierarchy (Zachariah would look good down there, don’t you think?). All I’m sure of is, free will and human connection are going to matter a crapload more than any prophesied destiny.
 
Sam and Dean will go on. Even if they sacrifice themselves in the process of shutting the box on the apocalypse, the brothers will somehow be around again when the dust settles. (As I firmly believe they would have been even without the season six renewal, by the way: no way to my mind is the story Kripke has been crafting all along going to end in the death or final breaking of the brothers. No going down in a blaze of futile glory. Why do I think that? See the Kripke quote above. Also think of how he has sometimes grinned at the thought of maybe doing a film feature once the series ended. Hard to do that if you permanently killed off or rendered irredeemably evil one or both of the Winchester brothers.) Good and evil will both also still be around, and even if most of the escaped demons are returned to Hell along the way, there will still be people to save and things to hunt. And the brothers will be brothers, jerk/bitch and all. I would bet money that last bit won’t have been accomplished by some cosmic reset button wiping out the trials and travails of the past five years, either – that’s a cheat I can’t imagine Kripke and his writing team resorting to, not after all their care and investment in developing the complexity of these characters. Everything that happened will still have happened, with all that means for our two heroes. A compassionate force might blur some details a little to make them more livable – Dean’s forty years of torment in Hell comes to mind – but I’m sure the brothers are going to remember all they did to and for each other, the good and the bad. And they’ll be the stronger for it, but also finally comfortable enough to tease each other again.
 
Season Six
 
In a January 15, 2010 interview with USA Weekend Who’s News (scroll on down when you get there; the site doesn’t let you link to individual stories), Kripke fielded a couple of questions about the then-potential season six: 

If there’s a sixth season, how do you top the apocalypse?
Well, the trick is to not go big but go intimate – at least those are the initial conversations we’ve had [if the show is picked up for a sixth season]. We always set up this five-year storyline, because in my heart of hearts, I just never imagined we’d actually go five years, much less beyond. We are going to climax the storyline and really wrap up the story of Satan and Michael and the apocalypse. The big question is, how do you follow that? We look at this as a unique challenge but also an opportunity to really launch a new storyline next year. We’re almost looking at it as the sequel to a movie. Rather than as a lot of genre shows do as they get on in years, becoming so convoluted and almost collapsing under their own mythology and getting to the point where you just can’t follow any of it anymore, we’re really looking forward to the opportunity of just sweeping it all clean and starting over with something else. We talk about returning to a stripped-down version of the show that’s almost similar to season one, in which the mythology was just as simple as finding their father and finding something that’s really personal and meaningful to Sam and Dean. One of the things that’s hard about the end of the world is sometimes it’s hard to have your characters emotionally connect with it, because it’s so big. But if their emotional storyline for, say, season six is to save a loved one, then that’s something you can really understand and get behind and actually have some really emotional storytelling that takes you through a lot of the scary episodes.

So you think about what you’ll do in the next season — how about who you’ll do it with? We don’t know yet if Sam and Dean will survive the end of the world. Are they in your plans?
Oh, absolutely. The one thing I can say is there's no Supernatural without Sam and Dean. If they’re not driving the bus, then I’m not sure there’s a bus to drive. Maybe they’ll survive this year and maybe they won’t, but we’re at the point where, hilariously, death on our show for our main characters has now basically become an inconvenience. [Laughs] Even if they don’t survive, they’ll certainly be back for a season six. I just don’t know how to tell this story without Sam and Dean.

I really like Kripke’s idea of not trying to top the apocalypse, but instead bringing the story back to its very personal core of the brothers and the people and things closest to their hearts. And while that will lack the epic stakes of the current storyline (“We’ve got to save the world! If we fail, everybody dies!”), I think it will be much more approachable and relatable, and has the potential to be even more personally compelling.
 
And I love the very idea of it. I want to see the writers play with what happens after you’ve saved the world (and no one knows it). How do you make ordinary life matter again, after you’ve lived the extraordinary? How do you readjust from the epic to the normal? (Well – as normal as life would ever get for a hunter ...) In particular, and most relevantly for me, how do you come back to relative civilization after you’re been raised to and embroiled for years in a brutal, horrific war, and how do you relate to people who can’t ever imagine what you’ve been through and what you’ve done?
 
Giving the brothers a personal cause to invest in to bring them back into the world seems exactly the right approach to me. I could see the knock-down, drag-out fight at the end of season five leaving them almost the last men barely standing with a virtually pyrrhic victory that cost them nearly everything they had but left them knowing and supporting each other – and then I could see them picking themselves up again to go to the aid of a friend, maybe one hurt by that war. (Bobby, perhaps? Castiel become human? Don’t know, won’t guess …) And while they embark on that quest, saving everyone they meet along the way, as ever, I could see them rebuilding themselves. As that continues, I could also see them starting to question whether there’s another way to live; whether hunting has to be all there is, or whether it might be possible to have and enjoy the trappings of a normal life while still helping the people no one else could help. Could Dean ever learn to control his obsessive need to save everyone enough to find a balance in his life with the other things he’s wistfully begun to desire despite always believing he couldn’t ever have them? Could Sam learn to forgive himself enough to feel he didn’t need to hunt as penance for the rest of his life and rediscover other dreams, other ways to help people, even if they aren’t the same as the older dreams he lost?
 
I think that could make a very satisfying concluding arc to the Winchester brothers’ story, allowing plenty of opportunity for struggle and conflict (and horror and gore!) along with humor and brotherly bonding. A quest structure framework for their primary mission would provide lots of options for standalone adventures along the way even as they all figured into the overall emotional arc of the brothers’ post-apocalypse/war development. And for those folk worrying about things going romantic or Pollyannaish – I’m not saying that story has a sappy happy ending with white picket fences, 2.5 kids, and weekend hunts in place of ball games. It could break in all kinds of ways, and some of them could break my heart. But I would be very content at the last if I could see Sam and Dean in my mind’s eye continuing on somehow in lives I could still picture after the series ends.
 
All Good Things Must Come To An End
 
A number of people oppose the idea of season six precisely because Eric Kripke has long spoken of having a five-year story to tell in Supernatural, and they want to see it go out on its pre-planned high note. They fear it will lose momentum and direction and drop in quality as time goes on until it becomes a painful embarrassment, and they understandably don’t want to see that happen. I don’t want that either, but I also don’t think it’s doomed to happen if the show goes on to a sixth season. I do think it unlikely the show would continue for a seventh season, for reasons I’ll explain as this goes on, and I believe this team could pull off a single season story arc to bring things neatly to a satisfying close.
 
I think many people are putting too much emphasis on Kripke’s five year plan, especially since (a) it didn’t even exist in the beginning; (b) Kripke himself has laughed that he said that because he never actually expected to make it to five seasons; and (c) the series has constantly reinvented itself over its run, all the while never straying from Kripke’s vision of how he ultimately wanted it to end. Let me explain.
 
I don’t think I ever heard Kripke talk about a five-year story arc until February/March 2008, when they were shooting strike-shortened season three. In earlier interviews – for example, in a TVGuide.com interview posted on October 19, 2006, early in season two – Kripke referred to wanting the show to be a “six/seven year player,” while expressing concern about whether it could pull the audience numbers it would need to do that, particularly after moving from the WB to the then brand-new CW. During the CW Winter 2007 Press Tour in January 2007 (scroll down to the transcript), midway through shooting season two, Kripke said they had started with a two-and-a-half or three-year plan of the mythology reveals they wanted to have, and were cruising along on schedule. In an interview with IFMagazine.com on January 25, 2007, Krikpe and Singer talked about having enough urban legend material to easily run for five or six seasons. In the beginning of season three, during an interview posted September 28, 2007 with TVAddict.com, Kripke said they always had a rough outline of the show’s mythology, usually about two seasons’ worth, and that at the time they knew the story through about the mid-point of season four. The epic mytharc clearly was an always-evolving thing, and the “end after five seasons” idea definitely wasn’t part of the original vision.
 
The show we’re watching now bears very little resemblance to the story Kripke set out to tell in the beginning. He’s told the tale of the show’s creation in dozens of interviews and at the March 2006 Paley Festival appearance, so those facts are not in dispute. He set out to make a horror story anthology exploring American urban myth and legend. When his initial premise of a Night Stalker, Kolchak-style reporter being the engine to introduce the stories got shot down during his pitch, he followed up with the other framing idea he’d jotted down just before the meeting: making the narrative characters a buddy team, better yet, a pair of dissimilar brothers roving the country. He came up with the horrific image of Mom burning on the nursery ceiling to set them up with a personal reason to know about and hunt the supernatural, but when he wrote that scene, shot the pilot, and started shooting the series, he had no more idea than the rest of us how or why she died that way, because it didn’t really matter to what he wanted to do. The brothers and their classic car were just meant to carry us into the stories, not to become the story.
 
Kripke admitted at the Paley Festival panel and in many interviews since that Robert Singer, the experienced writer/director/producer Warner Brothers insisted Kripke team with since he had no track record in television production, was the one to point out around the fifth episode of season one that the real story was the relationship between the brothers, and the show started to hit its stride about halfway through the first season as the brothers’ issues began to dominate. From that point on, the brothers’ story became the core of the show. In that Mo Ryan interview, Kripke talked about the gradual transition between early seasons, saying they used to start breaking the stories by talking about the monster they wanted to use, and then instead started with what they wanted to put the brothers through and found a monster plot that would let them do it.
 
I’d love to get the chance someday to ask Kripke and Singer to walk through when and how each of the various elements of the central mythology we’ve all now come to take for granted – Mary having been a hunter who made a deal for her husband’s life, Sam having been fed demon blood as a baby as the outcome of that deal, the reason for the whole setup being to produce a fitting vessel for Lucifer to occupy on his escape from Hell, the brothers confronting the apocalypse – actually developed and made their way into the show’s writers’ bible. That mythology didn’t really start to develop in a significant way until season two, and we know it kept changing as time went on. For example, in a BuddyTV.com interview posted on February 5, 2008 during season three, Kripke credited Ben Edlund with having come up with the idea that all demons were once human, with all that would mean for Dean’s journey to Hell. As late as the first Supernatural Creation convention in L.A. in March 2008, Kripke noted the show had about a 15-page bible describing the overall story arc, and said he always knew as part of it that we wouldn’t see Lucifer. That was the same occasion he said we’d never see any of that sappy Touched By An Angel stuff in his show, but did allow that if there were down and dirty versions of angels, then maybe … He laughed that he’d learned never to say “never,” however, and that stood him in good stead when he and the team came up with the idea of hard-nosed Book of Revelations angels during the hiatus between seasons three and four. That obviously changed the season four game plan in dramatic ways, and also altered the season five plan to include Lucifer. Creation is a continuous, organic process, and nothing demonstrates that better than the way Supernatural has constantly grown and changed since Kripke conceived the original idea.
 
I don’t dispute that in the last couple of years Kripke came up with a specifically defined arc to close the whole apocalypse storyline at the end of season five and wrap up the massive mythology the show has developed over its run. I think there were several things in play there. One was undoubtedly Kripke’s often-voiced statement that he never wanted the show’s mythology to collapse of its own weight, or to become so dense that viewers couldn’t join the show at any point and have a good time watching even without understanding all the intricacies of the past. Kripke has always been good about giving enough answers to enough questions to keep his viewers satisfied, even as he came up with new questions to tantalize their minds. Another contributing factor in the plan, I believe, was Kripke’s own contract terminating after five years; I don’t think he wanted the show to continue without him, perhaps departing from his vision, and he began to sow the seeds well in advance to encourage people to accept the show’s end when it came. I can appreciate him, as its creator, wanting it to end on his terms and on his watch. I approve. And I’m delighted Kripke is sticking to his guns and promising to wrap up the epic apocalypse story with the end of this season.
 
At the same time, I was not dismayed to hear about the show’s renewal for season six, not when I heard Kripke and Singer would still be actively involved and that Kripke’s replacement showrunner would be Sera Gamble, a trusted member of his team from the entire run of the show. As I indicated above, I see a lot of potential for where the story could go in season six because I don’t think ending the apocalypse ends the story of the Winchester brothers. My point is simply that, notwithstanding its most recent arc, the show has never really been about the apocalypse. It’s never been about angels or demons or God. Only recently – as in, just before season four – has it even incorporated angels, so it was never really about the brothers becoming the earthly avatars for a showdown between Heaven and Hell in the forms of Michael and Lucifer.
 
Kripke has said from the very beginning that he’s always known the final scene of the series; that he knew precisely how the entire show would end even before he shot the pilot, and that the show has always remained on course to bring about that final scene. I believe him. And knowing how the show has grown and changed over time, what that means to me is the final scene has never had anything to do with Heaven and Hell, Michael and Lucifer, demons and angels. It’s always been about the only ones who really mattered: very human brothers Sam and Dean being there for each other and for us, saving people and hunting things.
 
I think we’ve actually seen variations on Kripke’s prophesied final shot twice already, on the two occasions when Kripke most feared he’d never get the chance to tell all the stories he wanted the Winchesters to share with us. And I’m betting we’ll see it twice more:  once at the end of season five, and then at the end of the series, whether it happens as I expect at the end of season six, or later. And I’ll love it as much then as I do now, if it’s what I think it is: Sam and Dean tossing weapons into the Impala’s trunk, acknowledging to each other that they still have more work to do.
 
I said earlier that I don’t expect the series to continue beyond season six. My reasons for that are mostly practical ones. We’ve known for a while that Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles were signed to contracts for six seasons. Continuing beyond that contract term would require new contract negotiations, no doubt requiring substantial salary increases if the actors were even interested in continuing. Beyond creative fatigue, one of the main reasons most established shows don’t typically go on and on is simply that they become too expensive as production costs – including salaries attractive enough to retain key people who could otherwise move on to other lucrative opportunities – keep going up. Unless the show is also bringing in higher audience numbers justifying charging more for advertising space to bring in higher revenues, the increased costs outstrip the anticipated return, and the network doesn’t consider the additional investment worth it. And while the producing studio can make additional money from DVD sales and merchandise licensing, the network typically doesn’t share in those. New productions are always cheaper to pursue, and the CW is the smallest and most cash-strapped of the broadcast networks. I also think all the producers, writers, and actors agree that going out on a high note would be preferable to being zombified. For Jensen and Jared, there are additional concerns. Working in Vancouver nine months out of the year takes them out of contention for other roles and new creative challenges, and keeps them far from home. They need to consider new opportunities and different career directions once their current contract commitments expire.
 
I would like to see a planned end for Supernatural, a high water mark that all the cast and crew could work toward. We know now that won’t be season five, but if the production takes the practical course and decides in advance it will be season six, that could re-energize everyone involved, solidify the story arc, and produce a resolution that would make us all smile through our tears. I could invest in that.
 
And in the meantime, we’ve got work to do. 
  
 
 
 
Current Mood: contemplativecontemplative
Current Music: "Carry On Wayward Son" by Kansas
 
 
 
ErinRua: Storyerinrua on February 22nd, 2010 05:20 am (UTC)
All I have to say is "Word." I absolutely ADORE how you've gathered links and quotes to so many pertinent older articles, and equally adore how you remind us of the extremely organic nature of SPN's evolution.

Brilliant, brilliant article. I love your thinky, journalistic mind. Thanks for sharing this.

Season Six? Bring it on! :-)
bardicvoice: Kripke & Ibardicvoice on February 24th, 2010 03:27 am (UTC)
Thanks, Erin! Glad you liked it!
Danipinkphoenix1985 on February 22nd, 2010 06:43 am (UTC)
Mary- I agree with everything you've said.

Although, I have to admit that I do suffer a little from "tunnel vision" in that at the moment, I'm finding myself overwhelmed with the angel storyline and just wishing that it could be simple again.

If S6 is honestly a post-apocalypstic season focusing on the boys and their issues- I'll be so happy!
bardicvoice: Kripke & Ibardicvoice on February 24th, 2010 03:28 am (UTC)
Thanks, dear! I hope we all are happy ...
(Anonymous) on February 22nd, 2010 07:00 am (UTC)
... is LOVE
Hi, pittiger here.

I enjoyed your article very much and it's exactly how I would love to see SPN continue.

You. said:
" It’s always been about the only ones who really mattered: very human brothers Sam and Dean being there for each other and for us, saving people and hunting things. "

Yep. For each other and for us.

SPN is LOVE. :)
bardicvoice: Kripke & Ibardicvoice on February 24th, 2010 03:29 am (UTC)
Re: ... is LOVE
Thanks! Glad you liked this ... *grin*
deangirl1deangirl1 on February 22nd, 2010 07:10 am (UTC)
I agree with virtually everything you've said here. You've followed exactly the threads I have to reach the same conclusions. I've thoroughly enjoyed the ride to now - with the odd freak out... I like to think I've grown into my trust for Eric Kripke. I may have stumbled along the way, but I've always trusted him to bring it home for us. It's never entered my mind that he would let us down - he has always remained true to his vision of these two wonderful brothers. Which brings me to my one divergence from what you have written here. I've been a strong supporter of a season 6 and beyond storyline, trusting that Kripke could do it again - find new and interesting things to tell us about this journey. My faith in that journey without him is shaken to the core, however. The role being assigned to him and Bob Singer is about the same level of involvement that we saw from McG after the pilot - in other words, they will be names on the screen at the beginning of each episode - I firmly believe that neither of them will be involved in any meaningful way. Will I stop watching? Unlikely. And I will even go on record here to say that I will keep any negative comments or feelings to myself. Not that I am arrogant enough to think that any of my comments or fics will be missed, but I doubt that the Supernatural fandom will hold the same lure for me after the end of this season. I will still have five wonderful seasons to cherish and many, many wonderful friends who have joined me on this journey and who I hope will continue on past the end of it...
bardicvoice: Kripke & Ibardicvoice on February 24th, 2010 03:34 am (UTC)
I'm not twitched about Kripke's role being reduced. Mind, I'm waiting to see interviews with the man himself, but I would note that there is no single job description for "executive producer," and there are a lot of EPs who are MUCH more hands-on than McG has been with Supernatural. Being freed of showrunner responsibilities may actually give Kripke more opportunity to play in the fun things of writing and directing. Technically, Bob Singer has been an EP all along ... just a point.

I hope we all keep loving this show ... :)
chiiyo86chiiyo86 on February 22nd, 2010 09:34 am (UTC)
I’m going to start this off by saying that seasons five and six may be totally different from what I’m spinning here, and that would be just fine by me.

And now that's just what I like about you. :)

I agree with all your predictions. I think they make sense given what we've seen about this show over the seasons. I hope like you that the brothers won't say yes to the angels, or if they do, that it will be with a plan in mind and not because they're too tired to keep saying no.

I can relate with the fear that the show will loose its quality if it keeps going too long - God knows it happened to many shows. But I don't think there's any need to be too pessimistic yet. As you said, there are way to keep telling the show's story, since it's always been about the Winchesters and not about the apocalypse.
bardicvoice: Kripke & Ibardicvoice on February 24th, 2010 03:35 am (UTC)
Thank you!

I always believe in looking on the bright side ... *grin*
galathea_snb: s&d make me smilegalathea_snb on February 22nd, 2010 10:05 am (UTC)
Well said, Mary. I basically agree with most of what you said here. Although nowadays I am wary about interviews Kripke gives pre-season, because often things don't actually play out the way he lays them out beforehand, I think this season will end with the brothers standing up to the angels and forge their own destiny. I am irritated by people who instantly say 'how do you top the apocalypse'. I mean, when did we decide that bigger is automatically better? I think to focus on what happens after a war is won, is just as valid a story basis as the events leading up to it. Not many shows actually deal with the aftermath, and I think it's a great storytelling opportunity.

Plus, if I look at the brothers now, they deserve some quality time to recuperate from the heavy burdens of the last years. Personally, I will welcome the return to a smaller, more intimate scale of the story greatly. I've grown tired of angels and demons and would love to see the focus back on the brothers and watch them connect to the people they set out to save in the first place. Saving people, hunting things, the family business.

My only concern with Sera taking over as showrunner is that it is very likely that she will have less time to actually write episodes. I love her writing for the show and would really be sad if we'd only get 1-2 episodes per season from her, as we did from Kripke while he ran the show.



Edited at 2010-02-22 10:05 am (UTC)
gunznammo2gunznammo2 on February 22nd, 2010 10:32 pm (UTC)
THIS: '...I've grown tired of angels and demons and would love to see the focus back on the brothers and watch them connect to the people they set out to save in the first place. Saving people, hunting things, the family business....' Perfectly stated. It's what got me to love this one obsession in my life - Supernatural. Those two brothers and their relationship struck such a chord in my heart, I've never gotten over it. :)
(no subject) - galathea_snb on February 23rd, 2010 10:23 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - bardicvoice on February 24th, 2010 03:36 am (UTC) (Expand)
borgmama1of5borgmama1of5 on February 22nd, 2010 12:02 pm (UTC)
Great analysis!

I love how you always put my unfocused thoughts into concise words :)

Seriously, we have such a similar viewpoint on the show and on Kripke's vision that it is kind of scary!
bardicvoice: Kripke & Ibardicvoice on February 24th, 2010 03:37 am (UTC)
Thank you! We share a zeitgeist ... *grin*
The Rogue Bitch.: demon!sam 1roguebitch on February 22nd, 2010 01:12 pm (UTC)

I always enjoy your thoughtful analyses, and I agree very much with the fact that I'm happy with wherever it goes, regardless.

I think I Twittered, after the news broke about S6, that knowing that the show was renewed was the biggest spoiler of them all. ;-)
bardicvoice: Kripke & Ibardicvoice on February 24th, 2010 03:40 am (UTC)
Thank you!

Heh - I didn't see the renewal as being a spoiler, I guess since I always figured the brothers would win and survive to go on to that "we've still got more work to do" end I think Kripke has always envisioned. (Need that lead-in for the film version, after all!)
percysownerpercysowner on February 22nd, 2010 01:33 pm (UTC)
Great analysis of where the show might be going. The only thing that is a bit shaky is that there is a chance the series will go beyond season 6. A few weeks ago, there was an article over at TV By the Numbers that basically said that even though the CW will probably never make money as a network, it will probably not die. That is because the W part (Warner Brothers) is making so much money in DVD's and international licensing of the shows that they really are making a tidy profit. Supernatural fans are fairly rabid. We buy the DVD's the comic books, the tie ins. So Warner Brothers may well be willing to offer the J's raises and maybe some development packages to keep the show going. They have managed to keep Smallville going with a larger cast that still has several of its original actors going strong. So I wouldn't write season 7 for Supernatural. It's an outside chance, but it is a chance.
bardicvoice: Kripke & Ibardicvoice on February 24th, 2010 03:47 am (UTC)
Thanks!

I think the potential for season seven - assuming six goes well - would rest most with Jensen and Jared. There's always a tension between a known paycheck with a happy company that's regrettably far from home and the uncertain potential for new and creatively exciting things that would be far less grueling and time-consuming and would give more time for home and family, and might wind up being more lucrative in the long run. People who crave security don't go into acting.

But I'll wait to see how they cross that bridge when they come to it. For the time being, we know we'll be seeing Dean and Sam in our homes for another season, and that's enough for me!
Ann Tara: Brothers 4ann_tara on February 22nd, 2010 01:34 pm (UTC)
I think we've actually seen variations on Kripke's prophesied final shot twice already, on the two occasions when Kripke most feared he’d never get the chance to tell all the stories he wanted the Winchesters to share with us. And I'm betting we'll see it twice more: once at the end of season five, and then at the end of the series, whether it happens as I expect at the end of season six, or later.

I have wondered about that final scene, especially as this is pretty much verbatim what Amy Sherman-Palladino said about Gilmore Girls, then she and WB had a falling out and she bolted before the final season. Thus her prophesied final shot - or in her case, the final words/line - was never realized and will always be a source of frustration for fans. It didn't help matters that in her hissy fit with WB, she scorched the series earth before she left the building, much in the same way Sorkin did when he left The West Wing.

So I am highly relieved that Kripke and Singer would supposedly stay hands-on and aren't being pushed out due to some fight with the network. While I'm high and low on Sera's writing given the script in question, and she drives me batshit in interviews, I do think - or at least, hope - she has the series and Kripke's vision's best interest at heart. Plus, again, if Kripke is just giving up the day-to-day grind, I'm hoping that means he's more freed up to do writing while working on his next potential project at the same time.

I've had my ups and downs with some of the story-telling and characterizations on this show, as with any show. But at the same time, there are few series I've stuck with this long, and intend to stick with until the end, that I still feel overall has stayed true to itself. I firmly believe season six will be the last for all the reasons you laid out, and I hope the producers go into it with that goal in mind. I really don't expect either of the Js to want to continue after six, and without Dean and Sam, there is no show, period. And that's the way it should be.

I definitely think there's a lot they can do with this final season after the Apocalypse which, I agree, as with every other story they've told on this show, is going to come and go without the vast majority of the world knowing it ever happened. That's really the only way they can tell valid stories on this little show that could; and they've done a good job with that aspect over the years, and an even better job evolving their mytharc to fit what came before and turn it into something they never initially envisioned.

As this fifth season started shaking out, I had become more and more convinced that they actually needed that sixth season to truly repair the most crucial element of their entire series, and that's the brotherly bond. Right now it seems inconceivable to me that they could get close to repairing it in the 8 episodes they have left given the seeming disconnect that continues to loom large over everything - which makes it mind-boggling right now that they could come together in time to avert their cursed destinies and stop the Apocalypse. We'll have to see how the last 8 episodes shake out; but up until this point, I have felt this season wasn't as tight as last season, for instance, and that the story-telling was suddenly in need of one more season to wrap it all up. So for that reason, among others, I am relieved and looking forward to seeing what comes next.
bardicvoice: Kripke & Ibardicvoice on February 24th, 2010 03:51 am (UTC)
I'm with you in thinking they need that sixth season to fully return the brothers to comfort with each other. Broken trust takes a lot to mend, and while I think it likely the events of season five will see that begin to happen, I want to see them solid again.

I agree that this season has definitely not been as narratively tight as season four. They've always done better, to my mind, when they've been pulling the story together, though, so I have pretty high hopes for the remainder of this season.
(Anonymous) on February 22nd, 2010 02:22 pm (UTC)
Amen to that, Mary!!!

Thank you!

Vicky
bardicvoice: Kripke & Ibardicvoice on February 24th, 2010 03:52 am (UTC)
Thanks, Vicky! Glad you enjoyed!
historylover29historylover29 on February 22nd, 2010 02:39 pm (UTC)
Here's my fear about season 6, and why I'm not entirely happy at its renewal--

I'm invested in the mytharc. The scaled back stories in seasons one and two aren't all that appealing to me (especially season one, when the show was trying to figure out where it was going to be like.) And, although I hope you're right--that humanity (Team Free Will) will somehow triumph over the angelic battle between good and evil, I'm wondering how you go back to simple ghost hunts and a brotherhood storyarc after going grand like the apocalypse.

Also, if it goes back to the smaller stories, what will happen to our favorite angel? I love Misha Collins and Castiel. If it's the brotherhood angle (boy, try to write "angel" and "angle" in the same paragraph and see how many times you have to correct yourself!) then, I guess that may work. But, if the apocalypse ends, and Cas is still an angel, I don't see him sticking around.

Maybe they'll find a way to do small-scale and make people happy, but with Kripke no longer being the showrunner, I'm not sure how they will.

My worst fear is that Supernatural will drag on, no end in sight, like Smallville. 9 years and counting, and Clark Kent is STILL not Superman. I'm worried that if Supernatural goes on, it will be like that.

Although, honestly, if Supernatural doesn't continue to impress me with upcoming episodes (I've enjoyed the last few episodes of the second half) and it still wants to do unfunny meta episodes (like the first half of the season, which I think season 5 has been the worst season. I know. Unpopular opinion), I might not even be back for season 6. I have to be amazed at the remaining few episodes. If I am, then bring on season 6. If I'm not, well, hopefully Fringe will still be on air.

Still, I like your speculations. And I hope you're right. And I hope that I'm blown away by the upcoming episodes so I can say "Bring on season 6!"

Kat
bardicvoice: Kripke & Ibardicvoice on February 24th, 2010 04:09 am (UTC)
I hope we're all blown away by the remainder of this season, Kat! It definitely hasn't been as strong as season four was, but I still have hope and trust.

I'm waiting to hear from the man himself on what his role will be. I'm happy he's been so obviously involved in planning what might be thus far, and I'm hoping that being freed of the onerous duties of showrunner might give him more opportunity to play with the fun aspects of writing and directing.

I find the personal easier to get into than the epic. What has made the epic work in the show so far for me is precisely that we are seeing it through the very personal lens of Sam and Dean.

I don't know what plans they have for Castiel and Misha, and I'm hesitant to speculate. He/they are definitely popular - I certainly appreciate them! - and who knows; maybe Castiel's technical disobedience gets him assigned to Earth without angelic powers to complete his education, and the brothers' mission turns out being to help him. I haven't the foggiest notion, and I'm content to wait and watch. I guess we'll all be waiting to see how season five finishes off, and to learn whether Misha gets contracted for another season.

I doubt the show will continue on, because the vibe I get from both principal actors is that they would like to have the chance to do more and different things, and to be closer to home. It may come down to the competition between security and opportunity ... and people in search of security don't generally become actors. But we'll see.

I hope you recover your joy!
mrsr58mrsr58 on February 22nd, 2010 04:16 pm (UTC)
hi there - excellent writeup! while i have my own druthers regarding the conclusion of this particular mytharc, i have full confidence that season six will be equally awesome - how could it not!
thank you for sharing this and cheers!
bardicvoice: Kripke & Ibardicvoice on February 24th, 2010 04:09 am (UTC)
Thank YOU!
My name is Ancastaancastar on February 22nd, 2010 05:29 pm (UTC)
This was incredibly detailed and thoughtful and I enjoyed every minute of reading it. Thank you.
bardicvoice: Kripke & Ibardicvoice on February 24th, 2010 04:09 am (UTC)
Thanks! Glad you enjoyed it!
iwwfwiwwfw on February 22nd, 2010 05:33 pm (UTC)
I <3 your brain. This is so much better than the dozens of emotions I ran through when I heard that S6 was a go.
bardicvoice: Kripke & Ibardicvoice on February 24th, 2010 04:10 am (UTC)
*blushing* Glad you enjoyed this, and thanks for telling me so!