A Summer of ‘Supernatural’

Posted on Oct 6 2013 - 12:25pm by Kels Mejlaender

By Kels Mejlaender, Senior Copy Editor

When I look back on the summer of 2013, I may think about my job, the class I took and the new house I moved into — but I will always recall the friendships I forged watching The CW’s “Supernatural.”

It began with a simple suggestion from my then housemate Jessica Welch, a senior, to watch the show with her on Netflix. With one week of my summer class on Islam remaining, I naively assented to watch, unaware I would shortly deteriorate into a rabid fan incapable of thinking of much else.

The show centers on two brothers, Dean and Sam Winchester, who travel around America fighting spirits, demons and other supernatural monsters. The show introduced a complex mythology of angels to complement its demonic aspects in the fourth season.

Their jobs, as older brother Dean Winchester states in the opening episode, involve “saving people, hunting things — the family business.”

My other housemate Malena Goerl, a junior, watched with mild interest at first, but quickly joined me in the vortex of extreme fandom.

On a good week, we could watch four to five episodes every weeknight, hitting double digits over the weekend. With eight seasons and 172 episodes to power through, completing the available episodes before summer’s end — with full-time jobs — was a bit of a trial.

The story, however, provided a combination of plot, character and humor we were incapable of resisting.

“Supernatural” boasts some of the most colorful lines of dialogue on television, with gems like “cram it with walnuts, ugly” and “text me when Sparkles here retrieves his memory.” We even transformed the whiteboard in our house into a “Supernatural Quote Board” for the summer.

The characters that spout off these lines have had more than enough time to develop over eight seasons. My favorite is Castiel, an angel of the lord who eventually becomes a close friend of the Winchester brothers, particularly with Dean. Not familiar with the more minute aspects of human culture, Castiel is often a source of unintentional comedy.

For instance, when Dean Winchester jokes they can try looking for God in New Mexico because he’s heard he’s on a tortilla, Castiel replies earnestly, “no, he’s not on any flatbread.”

As engaging as the show is, coordinating our schedules to watch together proved difficult, and when Jessica moved out she told us to carry on without her. Within two weeks, Malena and I had finished the eighth season.

Despite scheduling challenges, “Supernatural” brought Malena and I from mere acquaintances to addiction buddies. Jessica and I further solidified the friendship we had built as housemates the year before.

There’s something about experiencing a story together — about sharing that fun and commitment — that creates some of the strongest bonds. You scream together, you laugh together and you share more insides jokes on Facebook than your other friends can stomach.

It doesn’t hurt when the story itself is particularly remarkable.

Season nine of “Supernatural” premieres on Tuesday at 9 p.m. on The CW.