Supernatural- Season 4

Overview:
“Resurrection. After enduring unspeakable torture, Dean escapes from Hell, rescued by an all-powerful creature he’s never seen before: an Angel. This warrior of God recruits Sam and Dean in Heaven’s battle against Hell, amid whispers that a certain Fallen Angel will soon be freed from his prison deep in Hell: Lucifer. If Sam and Dean can’t stop it- if Lucifer walks free- he’ll bring on the Apocalypse. Meanwhile, the Winchester brothers reunite and hit the road, battling the supernatural wherever they go. They encounter demons, spirits, Dracula himself and even a drunk, heavily armed 7-foot-tall teddy bear. All the while the ultimate war draws them into it’s horror.”

Plot Rating: 6/5
Any “Supernatural” fan can tell you Season 4 and 5 are the best so far. The show exploded into popularity with it’s new story arc (nicknamed “Angels and Demons” by fans), and actually makes a transition from a show with an overarching storyline but lots of filler in actual episodes to a more story-based show you need to watch in order. This only intensifies the appeal, however, and the story feels stronger than ever before. On a personal note I absolutely LOVE the Season 4 opener “Lazarus Rising” and it is hands-down my favorite episode thus far.

Acting Score: 5/5
Sam is no longer the puppy-eyed brother, and Padalecki plays that expertly. He still does the care-and-share routine with humans, but around Demons he is a cold blooded killer. Ackles faced extreme challenges of playing a very emotional Dean scarred from what happened during his 4 months in Hell (in the show they say that time there passes differently, so for him it was 40 years) and trying to find a way to pull himself back together again. Ackles cites season 4 as one of the most draining and emotionally intense seasons he has had to act in, but he pulls it off perfectly. Comedy to drama to horror, Ackles and Padalecki perfectly portray every emotion in every scene.

Castiel tries to convince a skeptical Dean that he is, in fact, an Angel

While Jim Beaver as Bobby Singer becomes a stronger character and appears in more episodes two new recurring actors join the cast. Misha Collins makes his grand entrance as the angel Castiel, who fights his way into Hell and resurrects Dean on God’s orders. Collins plays Castiel as a comically awkward and serious man, the butt of many of Dean’s jokes. Taking up the mantle of Ruby is Genevive Cortese (nicknamed “Ruby 2.0” by the fans as she is the second actress to play this part). Her Ruby is much more personal. While Katie Cassidy’s Ruby was more snappy, Cortese’s is snarky and willing to butt heads with Dean any chance she can. Both new actors bring an intensity to the season that no doubt played significantly in the explosion of ratings and viewership “Supernatural” saw.

Dean trapped in Hell before his escape

Age Rating: 15+
There are a few more sex scenes this season than usual as Sam’s relationship with Ruby takes on more sensual tones. The language also increases (Dean’s favorite nicknames for angels always seem to include “Dick”). Outright horror is still a big part, and some episodes will send chills racing up your spine, so as always parent’s should preview the show before allowing young audiences to view it and make your decision based on the maturity of your own child.

Fun Trivia

Misha Collins was told when he auditioned that Castiel was a demon. After the audition he was informed Castiel was actually an angel and slightly adjusted his performance to fit. He has since become a beloved character and joined Jim Beaver in holding the title of “Series Regular”. He attends every “Supernatural” convention and is known for his wit as well as his snarky attitude.

The Prank War, started by Padalecki and Ackles early on in Season 1, never ended, and Misha Collins became Padalecki’s personal plaything. While doing Collins’ coverage (in which the camera is solely on him, but Padalecki and Ackles are still on set delivering their lines for him to act off of) Padalecki learned that by making strange faces or dancing he could get the angel to break out into hysterical laughter. Ackles saved Collins during a particularly impossible scene (which Padalecki had already made him laugh through many times) by telling him to just focus on Dean instead of Sam. When Collins tried this Ackles licked his lips and made kissing faces, causing him to lose it again. During some scenes Collins had to send the duo out of the studio in order to successfully finish them. Padalecki and Collins have also told numerous stories about their own personal Prank Wars which range from putting nearly two thousand dollars worth of change in Padalecki’s trailer (which was reciprocated with $650 in change being dropped into Misha Collins’ car) to Padalecki placing his foot (or any nearby stick) in Collins’ crotch during close shots where the movement cannot be seen. Padalecki’s torment of Collins’ has made it into the blooper reels for seasons 4-6.

Sam fights a demon under the supervision of Ruby

The height difference between Genevive Cortese (5’4″),  Jensen Ackles (6’3″) and Jared Padalecki (6’7″) was so great that in order to fit her into shots the production team had her stand on boxes or platforms and even needed to shoot some scenes from higher up, or else she simply couldn’t make it into the frame. During fight scenes with Jensen Ackles she would have to jump into the air while swinging punches to come close enough to land them. Ackles and Padalecki, needless to say, enjoyed teasing her about this.

Sam and Ruby aren’t the only love line in Season 4. During the show Padalecki and Cortese grew close and by the end of the season were a real-life couple. The two were married in 2010 after Season 5 finished filming and Padalecki announced in late 2011 via twitter they were expecting their first child, a boy, in March of 2012. Thomas Colton Padalecki was born March 19.

Season 4 was dedicated to Director and Executive Producer Kim Manners, who took part in 78 episodes between Seasons 1 and 4, and who died from lung cancer in the middle of the season. After references to him can be found throughout the second half of season 4, including motels, restaurants, and characters with the initials K.M. and, in one scene, a picture of him hangs in the background.

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