15 February 2013

Review: Supernatural 'Trial and Error'

Dean: You like?
Trial and Error was written by Andrew Dabb and directed by Kevin Parks. It was a hard act to follow, but Andrew Dabb succeeded in the emotional exchange of dialogues between the brothers. After two weeks of introducing the story of Men of Letters, Trial and Error took us back to the other important element of the season -- the tablets. Director, Kevin Parks, is best known as Second Unit Director or Assistant Director since the beginning of season one of Supernatural. Kevin did an awesome job in directing his first episode for the show, especially the Hellhound scene.

Before I continue, I just want to mention something. Fans need to stop flaming the brother relationship as a war and look at it as a matter of team work and family business. I get that there are Dean girls and Sam girls and there are slash fans, but I honestly cannot read any of the stuff from other fan forums. Whatever you fancy, the show is not written for fans to go to war with the 'who is a better brother to complete the trials' or the 'who is more special to complete the trials' debate. 

A lot of things are arguable, I guess -- who is the 'chosen' one? However, Supernatural isn't about which brother or their stories will get more air time. This is a show with a lot of maturities, layers and depth. What this episode did so well was to highlight the choices the brothers made and how they made these choices. In the end, it didn't turn out the way they planned it, it was meant to be! And for this, I think this was a very good episode to show the show's maturity and layers. If you are looking for another blog that support the views of 'Sam vs Dean', this is not for you. Ever!

The writers have a point to make about the brothers. From the writer's point of view, Sam perhaps has a lot to prove, he has been struggling with life, hunting and everything else he's been through. Some of the choices he made before were bad, but he learnt from his mistakes and I think little brother Sammy is growing up. It is time for Sam to shine! 

From the story perspective, I don't see Sam was positioned as the 'chosen' one because of how things turned out in the episode -- it was just meant to be! Dean chose to do the trials because it was dangerous and because death was Inevitable. He wanted Sam to live and to become Men of Letters, become a husband and a father. But it turned out, in the process of saving Dean from being the Hellhound's chew toy, Sam ended up passing the trial by killing the Hellbound -- it was meant to be Sam! Moving forward, it will not be a Sam-only journey. You have got to know that! Sam cannot go through with the trials without Dean, and the brothers will continue to watch each other's backs and work as a team. In the show's myth, I truly believe God put hope in this family should crap happens.  

The best thing about this episode was that there were plenty of character stuff. This episode reminded us Dean as the big brother, who will always and I mean ALWAYS put his little brother first before anyone and anything. Dean is good with the hardware, the shoot first question later, his forte is the field work -- but he is smarter than he can process! When it comes to danger, he always puts himself forward and makes sure his little brother lives. This has always been his job ever since he was five. And you cannot hate Dean for it. Dean wanted Sam to live, have a family, grow old and have kids. To Dean, in time of danger the 'traditional' way was to sacrifice himself for Sam. Dean is selfless. Sadly, Dean can only see death at the end of the tunnel, because history taught him that. This is his only happy ending.
“I’m a grunt, Sam. You’re not. You’ve always been the brains of this operation. And you told me yourself that you see a way out. You see a light at the end of this ugly-ass tunnel. I don’t. But I tell you what I do know is that I’m gonna die with a gun in my hand. Coz that’s what I have waiting for me, and that’s all I have waiting for me." ~~ Dean
This episode also reminds us Sam as the little brother, who is always protected by his old brother, but he learns to grow up and watch his brother's back. Sam, a great hunter, but he is also very good with research and his books. When it comes to danger and saving his brother's ass, Sam does not hesitate. Good for Sam for getting an idea across to Dean -- Sam sees light at the end of the tunnel and he can take Dean there. 

God's trials are not going to be easy -- have you watched Indiana Jones? It must have crossed Sam's mind about dying, despite what he told Dean. But I like the new thinking -- who says death has to be the end game? How about not dying and they both go home after this and have a beer and watch a game? But having said that, if one of the brother does die at the end of the series, you know fans will be going to therapy for life! This is Supernatural, and we know the best happy ending the brothers can have may not be a pretty one. But I do see the Harry Potter kind of ending, Sam is not alone, and Dean and other friends and allies will come to provide their assistance in time of need. 

The speeches by Dean and Sam were so brilliantly written. Dean's determination or stubbornness in this episode took us back to season three when he was dealing with his demon deal. But Sam is bringing something new to the table -- "I want to do this, but I also want to live." Whereas Dean is always like "I'll die to get this done. I'll go down swinging." What would Ayra Stack say to Death? -- Not today! Sometimes Dean is so stubborn, he is so obsessed with keeping his brother alive and saving people, but in time like this, Sam can step up and reminds his brother, "It's ok, Dean."
“I see light at the end of this tunnel. And I’m sorry you don’t. I am. But it’s there. And if you come with me, I can take you to it.” ~~ Sam
Dean has got to start thinking like "Nobody is dying! We stop the apocalypse, we stopped the Leviathans, we can do this! We will go home to have a beer and sleep on our own beds!" Sam obviously will carry a lot of weights on his shoulder from now on because he is stuck with the trials. But he is a giant, he can do this! Hunting is a two people job. It is about the brothers getting this done. They are both selfless and they are both heroes, and I respect that.

Trial and Error was a good episode with the brother's relationship. The first trial as seen in this episode was like the first installment of a trilogy -- The Fellowship of the Ring was good, you knew the ultimate epicness was to be seen in Return of the King. So, I can't wait to see what the other two trials are and how the brothers will handle them as a team, as a family. 

As you know, I am a little obsessed with the Men of Letters and their bunker. We finally get to see Dean's room, which is something he hasn't had…ever! So this is Dean's room huh? I love how he decorated his room and I love the fact that he still has a picture of him and his mother in his wallet after all these years and he put it under the light. I love that a lot!! I love the Clark Kent thing with Dean. It's funny because Jensen was so close of being cast of Clark Kent in Smallville. Jensen looks super hot in those glasses! I don't blame Ellie doing an Anna, but it wasn't meant to be, girlfriend!  

I wonder how Sam's room looks like? I love that Dean cooks Sam a burger, even Sam can't believe it! Dean has experience in the domestic kitchen after spending a year with Lisa and Ben. And I love that Sam loves the burger! *Smiley face* I would love to have a proper tour of the bunker. And you know what? I was thinking the other day, if I haven't mentioned this before -- all bunkers have secret tunnels. Just saying…I want to see secret tunnels… 

A Day in the Life of Kevin was awesome! The season eight DVD has got to make this into a special feature! Osric Chau is getting so good at playing Kevin and I love it when Sam encouraged him to take a day off and take care of himself. And I love it when Dean gave Kevin a bear hug, which is infectious being on the Garth's save boat. Poor Kevin, he is a mess! THe brothers need to move him to the bunker NOW! 

The Wall of Weird!
I don't care so much about the selling the soul storyline and the farm setting kind bored me a little as it was a bit predictable. But the important thing was to pass the trial. I thought the Hellhound was awesome and it was the first time we actually see a Hellhound. There was some very very good special effect there.

Overall, Trial and Error was a good episode that introduces one of three God's trials, and establishes some really important mindset that helps the brothers to prepare psychologically as they go through more trials later on. 

Next week's episode looks like a filler, and feels a bit like Hammers of the Gods, which I like! The preview clips looks funny with Sam and the dog (or not). Cannot wait!

8.15 Man's Best Friend with Benefits: DEAN REALLY DOESN’T LIKE WITCHES — A police officer named Kevin (guest star Christian Campbell), who turned to witchcraft after working a case with Sam (Jared Padalecki) and Dean (Jensen Ackles), is plagued by nightmares in which he murders innocent people.  However, when the murders actually happen, Sam and Dean are called in by Kevin’s 'familiar' (guest star Mishael Morgan) to help — but the brothers aren’t sure they want to save a witch. John Showalter directed the episode written by Brad Buckner and Eugenie Ross-Leming.


  1. I loved this episode Tiny, like LOVED. I didn't think I was interested in the tablets anymore after the whole MoL thing. But this episode brought me right back on board.

    I love this concept of the trials, though it scares the shit out of me. What the hell are the rest going to be and what will it mean for Sam's well being and what's Dean going to do when he finds out this is making his little bro suffer.

    For me, these kind are arguments and disagreements are ok, because they come from a place of love and not hurt.

    As for which brother got to do the trials? This is arc symmetry. Sam is Lucifer's vessel, Sam opened the gates initially, Sam needs to put all of this behind him. It had to be Sam not because he's the chosen one but because this is his opportunity to atone - to himself - for what has happened in the past in connection with Sam and Hell. Demon's have been manipulating his life since he was a chid. Time for payback. Also, this gave Sam the opportunity to do something he couldn't do way back in season 3, save Dean from a Hellhound. How is that for story continuity?!

    Why people don't see that is beyond me. The Sam v Dean bullshit is simply immature postering. I don't know what show they're watching, but it's not this one. This "trials" thing is a journey for them both to take, regardless of whom sticks the blade in at the end.

    Of course, with there being an angel arc surrounding Castiel running concurrent to this arc - they will eventually intersect - that is where Dean will land. At least that's what I think. Dean will figure out the Castiel thing and he will help to restore his little buddy.

    These brother's biblical destinies were Heaven and Hell - to have them connect with those places again in season 8 is genius.

    I've come to the opinion this whole season is genius. I thought it was great before, now I think it's spectacular planning and writing.

    Thanks for a great read Tiny - as always, you and me are on the same page...just like the Winchesters are again!
    - Amy

    1. Thanks Amy! Thank you for bringing up the idea of symmetry, and the show is connecting the biblical destinies (and family legacy) together. I think things will come full circle. I think Jeremy Carver's vision is a genius one. How can you top the apocalypse? But JC has this vision of connecting everything together for the ultimate ending. No many TV shows can still be good at their 8th season (Smallville was one..I can't help it!) and Supernatural does not do crap and expect viewers to just suck it up and watch it. The show is everything to me, and I am sure to you too.

      Thanks Amy!


  2. Short commnet, but I loved your review, brilliant as always. I thought the epi was pretty awesome, even when the deal stiryline was kinda boring. It was so well written and the whole I see a light a the end of this tunnel and I'm gonna take you there was a nice twist. Nice to know sam still have hope. And i loved it, really loved it howmany times Dean said Sammy during the episode. There's nothing that I enjoy the most than having these two idjits acing like brothers. And speaking of Bobby I can't help but think how much BObby would have loved the bunker. Anyway, thank you tiny for anothe wonderfull review!!!

    1. Thanks sweetie! Great to hear from you!

      Yes, the farm thing bored me too, and the housewives thing was so lame. But I can forgive because the highlight of the episode is the brothers. LOVE the brother stuff!!

      I miss Bobby!

      Thanks hun



  3. Great review, Tiny! I love that we're on the same page as to where the brothers are at and how we feel about them :D
    I loved what you siad about this show being about maturity, layers, and depth. Unfortunately, that maturity doesn't seem to be mirrored within most of the fandom.
    I loved everything about this episode. I kind of want to give Kevin a hug though! Poor kid.

    1. Thanks Shelley.. I want to hug Kevin too! I think it was a GREAT GREAT thing to show Dean and Sam care for Kevin as a 'little brother/ friend'. I love how Sam said thank you. I think Kevin could've easily been forgotten, but his character has growth and he is awesome. Please don't kill him!

      I am staying away from those fans, honestly, the Supernatural story deserves more respect. It's super sad to see some fans start bitching about everything based on their misinterpretation or misunderstanding the point of the story etc. Ah.. it drives me crazy.

      Anyway, glad you girls feel the same. I feel blessed.

      Thanks love.



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