Monday, October 29, 2012

Supernatural - 8.04 - Bitten - Recap

Note - This episode sucked out loud. It had everything I hate about other shows on the CW and no recognizable Supernatural. I did like the special effects and the fact that the supreme annoying one died. It also had one classic line. Other than that, nada. Worst episode of the entire show. The only way I can see people liking this episode is if they liked the three main characters (none of which were Winchesters) or at least found them remotely interesting. I did not.

With no previouslies, we pan to a blood covered room with at least 2 bodies on the floor and generic, non-classic, non-rock music playing in the background. Dean and Sam seem to kick in the front door in broad daylight for no real reason - nobody screaming, no fire, etc. They apparently know something's wrong since they have guns at the ready. Sam goes to the bodies; Dean heads upstairs. Thankfully Dean dislodges the iPod and gives the all clear. Sam: "Uh no idea on this one. Um and no clue who is painted on the walls." Dean: "Well whatever happened, looks like we missed it." Sam: "Yeah, great." Don't worry guys, that Play Me sticky note will catch you all up. I however roll my eyes and say, "Looks like whatever happened in this episode, the PTB missed the point. Great! Brothers as wallpaper still sucks." I agree with Dean: "What the hell?" The computer says, "This should have never ended this way." The writers are setting me up today. I completely agree, although I would add it never should have started this way. To be honest it never should have gone beyond the writers' room trash can. The title card flashes Supernatural and that's the last proof you'll have of it for the next 41 minutes. Bye SPN - I missed you this week.

Two people, either in college or high school, look for a movie idea. One is AV club president. One may be a jock. They are best friends in an awkward nerd and the cool kid way that exists primarily when TV needs it to. They videotape females at a café with snarky dialogue from AV you know he'd never have the nerve to say anywhere but on camera. It's proven when one approaches them and AV hands the camera to Dude (that's what AV calls him). Since this episode is filmed in the shaky handheld camera style popularized by The Blair Witch Project and overdone ever since, lovely shots of walls, ceiling, and tables ensue. I hate this style, especially when even more immaturely handled than Ghostfacers. An extended shot of the woman's boobs and Dude's abs is my first massive sigh of the night. Not close to the last. Dude wears a Bad Trip tee with a horse on it. I would have died laughing if it had said Bad Horse. Someone needs to make those stat. Since the woman has no name yet, she's tagged Blonde for now. Blonde's a camera nut too and asks about firmware. Obviously she's smitten with Dude but has more in common with AV. AV thinks she's hot but she's going to date Dude. That's it, her name is now Bella. It won't be the last time tonight I think Twilight and want to run. Cameras get handed off so we get shaky cam visuals again. I sigh and refuse to recap all these annoying visuals anymore. Bella says the settings are off as AV gets up the courage to speak to a real girl and says he likes the color that way. Dude tosses off a cheesy pick-up line but apologizes for taping her. He might not be the cool, studly jock he looks like. Bella flirts back.

10 seconds later Bella spends the night, walking around in Dude's tee while AV does computer work right outside Dude's room. Blech! Who listens while their roommate has sex? AV has issues. Take the laptop to your room or put music on buddy. AV glances longingly at Bella as I throw up a little. For the first time, Supernatural can be confused with typical CW shows. Self-absorbed, emoangsting, teen love triangles are best left on other shows. Could I please have my Supernatural back? Please! Oh and by the way, who can afford to live in a house with just 2 people in college anyway? Bah! Moving on. Back in the café Bella and AV pretentiously talk indies and lenses, while AV undercuts his best friend with digs at his video skills. Bella rose-eyes her studmuffin boyfriend who joins them with a froufrou coffee drink. Can I call him Francis now? AV looks away as they kiss. However he proves his douchiness by videoing himself on the computer at the house while Dude and Bella lounge on the couch talking about where they'll be in 5 years. This reminds me of a very lame Reality Bites. Bella wants to be a green lawyer; AV wants to work for Michael Moore or HBO. Dude calls them both hippies. I call them pretentious college kids and decide I am far too old for this episode. Dude wants to live on a boat in the ocean so he's probably the rich guy whose parents set them up in this huge house. The couple kiss some more and AV now looks like he's throwing up.

The name Dude fits this character because he's a complete slacker. He sleeps through a lecture and now I'm completely confused. I thought this was college and it looks like an extremely small lecture hall, but they study the firmly high school novel Lord of the Flies and the teacher tells them to raise their hands. What kind of school is this? We zoom in on the teacher's lapel pin and find we're in First Year English Lit. I guess it's college for dummies. After class, Dude asks if AV taped the lecture he just missed. AV: "Who loves you?" Dude: "I wish I could quit you." I wish I could quit this episode but I can't do the podcast or recap with just 5 minutes of viewing. It feels like it's been on for 20 minutes and nothing's happened yet. An even douchier guy runs into them causing the camera to fall. They posture but nothing happens. Still. On the way home they see a crime scene and hallelujah, it's the Impala. The first 10 minutes is saved. One Wincest joke later and I'm done with this episode already. Just done. Dean snarks to the cop who exposits animal attack as the kids tape the conversation. Well that was exciting. I know what we should do to make this episode better…head back to the house where AV videotapes while brushing his teeth. Bella mentions the moral dilemma of being more excited about having a film topic than sad that a neighbor died. Nice of you to notice. Thankfully Dude puts in the song from the opening and café scenes which coincidentally was playing when they first met. How nauseatingly romantic. He may be the only non-douche tonight. More kissing before AV reminds Dude they are taping tonight. Bella calls him on it but Dude says he's AV's only friend so he has to help him and offers a raincheck. Aww. Outside AV does stupid stuff in a tree. Dude's right about Dumb and Dumber.

They happen upon Dean and Sam interviewing and spy on them. Dean is a jerk to Sam and they fight about if there's a case. Yep, cause when Dean and Sam are in an episode for 6 minutes, I really want 2 of those to remind me of the brother rift. Good call, Robbie Thompson. Wincest joke #2 - things just get worse and worse. Luckily we cut to Douche, who knocked the camera over earlier, forcing himself on a random girl. They tape him getting shot down and AV clumsily makes their presence known - not hard when hiding behind a chain link fence. In all honesty Dude has the muscles to take Douche down but instead they run into the woods, splitting up. Dude yells about paying Douche fair and square, which makes no sense to me. Plus I know when I run from a bully my first thought is to turn on the camera's night vision and film it. Right? Bah, this idiot deserves to be eaten. The camera picks up animal noises and glowing eyes and then he's running through the woods from the animal while taking time to turn the camera back on himself. Running while videotaping yourself - as dangerous as texting and driving. AV comes back looking for Dude and sees he's been bitten. As logic dictates, AV takes Dude back to the house instead of a hospital since he was bitten by a strange animal. Remarkably the bite has healed already and Bella thinks they're pranking her. They eventually take him to a doctor who confirms there's not a scratch on him. AV shoots for comforting but lands on creepy.

As Bella and AV sleep on the table, Dude awakens and pulls off a door. In stunningly bad acting, Bella and AV wake up. Dude now has super strength and practices lifting his girlfriend over his head with one hand. That scene is kind of cute. Bella theorizes that an alien bit Dude and thus the FBI. AV says mutant. Dude: "Am I a superhero now?" Sorry no radioactive spider bit you. You're the least annoying of the trio though so that's something. AV celebrates by putting cameras all over the house, including the bathroom, a la Big Brother. Dude is going to be AV's movie. Bella protests but superhero origin story is too big a temptation. Dude: "Kind of creeping me out man. Seriously. Nothing superheroic to see here, just a delicious bagel." It took that long for your roomie to creep you out? He's creeped me out for 10 minutes now. Even more so when he tells Dude he wants to get bitten too. Jealous much. Dude, the rational stoner of the trio, says he's crazy. AV: "I don't want to be Piggy anymore." I don't want to watch anymore but since you won't go away your new name is Psycho. We've now entered the "jealous of your best friend and about to go nuts" portion of today's episode, brought to you by even more obnoxious handheld video. Dude says nothing's wrong with Psycho. He just needs to find a goal and go for it. Or massive therapy. Psycho thinks being bitten will help him have sex with girls and throws a baby fit when Dude won't go. Perhaps growing up would help with that girl problem Psycho.

Thankfully Dean and Sam show up. Dude hides the bong and I laugh for the first time. Special Agents Rose and Hudson ask random questions and hand out their card. Psycho knows nothing and the brothers talk on the porch about Mayan gods for no reason. Dude returns with the bong. Psycho: "The FBI are looking for what bit you. Are you an X-File?' Dude misinterprets the Maya comment as him being a god. He now goes full douche by filming himself in the bathroom mirror, but luckily wolves out instead - eyes, teeth, claws. It's pretty nifty special effects but freaks him out. He touches a sleeping Bella with his claws then heads out for food. Douche happens to be there on animal patrol, faux gangsta style. He also has a camera because apparently it's the cool accessory every douchewad carries these days. Douche chases Dude in the woods and makes the mistake of threatening to rape Bella. Dude hulks out and one Douche dead. One down, at least 6 to go. Meanwhile, Bella and Psycho film Bella's fascination with hot werewolf action. TMI. Dude walks in covered with blood and they naturally take the conversation on camera into the bathroom while he showers and confesses to murder. Bella realizes this may be a legal problem and demands the cameras go off. No worries though because they tape the post-shower inquisition so we still hear what we just saw. Bella defends Dude's actions as self-defense. Psycho flips out that she still loves Dude more than him. My eyes roll so hard I'm dizzy.

Even 10 seconds of Dean and Sam at a new crime scene can't save us now. Douche is shredded, his heart half eaten up the road. Psycho films the scene and rushes back to the house to confront Dude about his new diet. They push each other and Bella defends Dude again. Psycho: "Eating a heart is self-defense? Who are you trying to convince Kate, me or yourself?" Dude tells Psycho to back off Bella and punches him into the kitchen. This freaks out Dude, who starts cries in his room. Bella gives him the "you're still you and I still love you even though you are a monster" speech. Psycho leers outside the door taping them. Later he grabs his camera to tell Bella they need to go to the police. He lingers on her boobs far too long as she tells him she loves Dude and he's not getting in their way. Bella wants answers so she tapes Dean talking to the coroner. Sam comes in, "What did I miss. Anything?" No Sam you really haven't. Dean: "Not unless you want to put an APB out on Rocky Raccoon." Sam went through county records and found another attack 10 years ago. Briefly I'm interested when he says it's the wrong time of month for a werewolf. My interest wanes when Dean says, "Time to hit the books and feed the monster." It's back to the Terrible Trio. Bella wants to follow them. Dude wants to sulk. Psycho followed them by the GPS on their phones. I'd change his name to Stalker but I don't care anymore. They all creep each other out. They bore me.

Psycho hacks the restaurant security and they all spy on Dean and Sam at the diner. Dude sits a few tables away with the camera focused on Dean and Sam for sound. Sam and I marvel at Dean eating 2 burgers. Dean: "Hey, I didn't eat at Big P's for like a year okay. Clear eyes and clogged arteries. Can't lose." First off, BWAAHHH!!! Love the Friday Night Lights reference. Second off, huh? Dean didn't eat the entire time he was in Purgatory. We finally have something I'm interested in. I hope we hear more about the physics of Purgatory. Did Dean need to sleep while there? I assume he had a physical body and was not dead but how did being undead in Purgatory change things? These interesting questions are put on hold to retcon werewolves. Apparently AlphaWolf has special powers, which is sort of canon given the other Alphas, but he transfers those special powers up to the fourth generation. Maybe he hated that 5th generation wolfkid and decided no superspecial powers for you. However, since werewolves age and die the 4th generation should be long gone by now. Just saying. Anyway, four generations after a pureblood can control when they turn and can eat animal hearts instead of human to stay alive. They also don't blackout during the transformation so I call liar, liar on Dude's "I don't remember" speech. Maybe he's fifth generation. Sam: "So what? We're hunting a werewolf with a pedigree." Dean: "Awesome. Let's hope he has his papers." Sam: "And that silver can kill him." Sam exposits that "Best in Show" (ha!) ganked a woman 10 years ago and stayed. Dean: "Yeah. Comes for the human hearts; stays for the co-eds."

Back at the house Dude freaks that he's a werewolf but since he was sitting right there, I'm not sure why he didn't hear the original conversation. By the way, nice job being stealthy Winchesters. Let the waitress see the werewolf books and anybody hear the conversation. That's covert. Bella knows Dean and Sam are not FBI. "Alright I'm pretty sure that FBI agents don't say awesome that much and they definitely don't hunt and kill college kids." Ha! Score one for logic. Then Robbie Thompson ruins it by throwing in 3rd Wincest comment. Gah! I hate, utterly despise, and pretty much detest all things Wincest. It is the worst thing in the fandom and in this fandom that's a lot to choose from. Shut up Robbie! I take back all compliments I ever gave you. Kate infers that the brothers are looking for the pureblood who bit Dude. Dude storms off, Bella follows, and Psycho checks video footage. He finds a clue proving the pureblood is the Prof. Dude and Bella are sick of his third wheelism so Psycho goes to find the lapel pin the Prof had in the lecture. He then rigs a not-so-hidden camera in Prof's office. When Prof comes in, Brian says he knows he's a werewolf and reveals the pin. Prof denies it but Brian goes after him with a silver knife. If he's really a werewolf, why can't he overpower this nerdy kid. Psycho still wants to be a werewolf because…um, he read too much Twilight and wants to imprint on babies? Who knows? Prof tells a sob story about falling off the wagon and needing a hunter patsy. That's why he bit Dude…and because Dude sleeps through his lectures. Ha! Take that slackers! Prof asks who would miss Dude and Psycho says he would. Aww, whatever. Prof tries to talk Psycho out of his werewolf fantasies, but he's called Psycho for a reason. He wants to be Ralph instead of Piggy. I think he missed the point while reading Lord of the Flies one too many times.

Psycho goes to give Bella the good news only to find her packing to leave with Dude. He says he took care of the problem. He reveals via camera of course that he too was bitten. Bella is unimpressed. Dude finally gets that he's Psycho when Psycho says to be grateful. He shows a 23 second clip of Dean and Sam killing Prof before Sam finds the not-so-hidden camera. Psycho congratulates himself on being so smart but Dude reminds him the Winchesters will trace the camera back to them. Pretty sad when stoner Dude is smarter than AV geek. Psycho rants about being in his shadow and tells Bella he's equal to Dude now so she should love him best. Can't wait for this delusional genius to die. More importantly, I can't wait until this third-rate, CW paranormal romance trash, love triangle is over. Gah! What did they do to my Supernatural? Dude tries to reason with Psycho and says he would never hurt him like that. He admits to remembering eating the human heart and doesn't want his friend to feel the same way. Bella tells Psycho she'll never be his and Psycho grabs her. Dude goes wolf and the two fight. Bella screams a lot. End result, Dude is knifed in the heart and dies after telling Bella he loves her. Bella grabs the silver knife and stabs Psycho. He thinks that after he bites her, she'll see his love is true. I vomit. Bella stabs again. At least she has more spine than Twilight's Bella. Sadly, Psycho still bites her as she keeps screaming. Do they not have neighbors?

Later, Bella locks herself in the bathroom crying while Psycho actually believes she'll love him now. Are you kidding? Even deranged people see you didn't have a shot before turning her into a monster. Why would she feel anything but hate towards you now? Psycho: "I'm sorry. I didn't mean to scare you. We can fix this. Just let me in okay?" Bella tears up the bathroom and films herself because all college kids have video cameras permanently attached to document life's little quirks. (Eyes haven't stopped rolling in 30 minutes.) She tells Psycho she's coming out while filming her creepy smile. At the very least I better see her ripping his heart out for sitting through this crummy episode 3 times. She talks about understanding; he beams at her. All I get is predator filming prey before the slaughter. She hands him the camera before wolfing out and killing him. Except this we don't get to see. Really? Really! I mentally curse that I sat through this junk and don't even get a pay-off by seeing the prat bite it. Foul! Foul on that play! Instead weepy Bella covers Dude's body and finishes this terrible movie - to the comforting sounds of that original annoying song. Bella: "I didn't finish Brian's movie to justify what happened. To be totally honest, I'm not really sure if I even understand it all. I just wanted you to know that…that Michael wasn't always a monster. None of us were." Um, not sure about that. I think Psycho always was.

For some stupid reason we recap of the Terrible Trio's future plans AGAIN. Bella says she won't kill anyone, living off animal hearts instead. She's leaving and pleads for the Winchesters to let her live. She reminds them that she hasn't killed a human. "I didn't choose this. Please. Please give me a chance." The camera pans out to the brothers' reactions. They're stunned. So am I….that this story ever made it to shooting and airing. The beginning credits role as the brothers decide which dead body is which. Not sure it matters but okay. Sam says that Bella has a half day head start but Dean's surprisingly quiet. Sam: "Are you alright?" Dean: " Mmm hmm." Sam: "Look Kate's right. She hasn't hurt anybody. Well anybody human at least." Dean: "Yeah she didn't…she didn't choose this. Let's give her a shot." Sam: "Seriously." Dean: "Yeah, yeah." Sam: "And look if…if Kate pops back up, I mean if she strays then no questions asked. I mean we do what we've got to do and um…we take her down." Although it's far too late to add humor to this episode, Dean asks if he really says awesome a lot. I don't laugh. Nothing about sitting through this is funny. I've disliked other Supernatural episodes before but they always had something to hang on to - a scene, a line. This one - nada! I want my wasted time back. Dean says awesome once more as the brothers depart. Before leaving the house though, Dean puts the iPod back. So yep it's the same music back and brother fingerprints all over a crime scene again! Seriously guys, use those fake credit cards and buy some gloves. As we pan out, Kate walks down a lonely road to find her new lair. I clap. Because it's finally over.

I hate this episode. For the first time in my Supernatural career I found myself wanting to change the channel halfway through. I've been bored by SPN before. I've hated some storylines. But I've never felt I could turn an episode off and not miss a thing. This episode is a travesty to Supernatural's legacy. I actually don't care that the brothers were barely in it. I loved Weekend at Bobby's and they weren't in any more of that one. I care that Supernatural writers took what was unique about SPN compared to the rest of the CW and shot it all to hell. I challenge you to take any other CW show and not find a love triangle. Any of them. Birkhoff lusts after Nikita even though she and Michael are together. Arrow has Oliver, Laurel, and Oliver's best friend. All others are love triangle central. But look at Supernatural. They killed off all love triangle potential when they killed Jessica. For them to now make a love triangle front and center even with guest characters on a standalone episode is an affront to me as a longtime viewer. If I wanted love triangles I'd watch the Vampire Diaries! People say I hate this episode because it didn't have Dean and Sam. That's not true. I hate this episode because it didn't have Supernatural in it. It was self-absorbed tripe about 3 whiny, emoangsting characters I'll never care one jot about. I'm disappointed in this season but this is the worst. Jeremy Carver needs to get his act together and give me back my show. I want brothers, not at odds, killing monsters. Not that hard. For the first time I wonder if Supernatural is destined to be my #2 show this year when it's been by far my favorite since 2005. Even thinking it makes me sad. I still have high hopes for season 8 but it's getting harder to be positive. I need an episode to hit it out of the park and fast!

Grade: 5- (this may be the worst episode of the whole show)

Scorecard - Here's how the rankings break down in my scorecard.

1 = One of the best episodes in all of Supernatural, or in all of TV for that matter.
2 = A great episode when judged against other Supernatural episodes.
3 = A good Supernatural episode, which means it's better than almost anything else on TV
4 = An okay episode when judged against other SPN episodes, meaning still better than most TV.
5 = A poor episode, meaning only better than some TV.

Screencaps by Home of the Nutty

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  1. I didn't like this ep mainly because it wasn't a Supernatural ep. No Sam and Dean = not SPN for me. But I didn't hate it as much as you, and my son loved it. So it is certainly dividing opinions.

    The bigger problem for me is s8 overall. I totally agree with this "Jeremy Carver needs to get his act together and give me back my show. I want brothers, not at odds, killing monsters. Not that hard."

    So far JC had stomped all over my favourite show. We have;
    - zero brotherly bond
    - a totally ooc Sam who we are expected to believe - in the face of all the evidence of the last 7 years - didn't even look for Dean, and who doesn't even seem pleased he is back
    - the prospect of separate storylines (Purgatory and Amelia) which I don't care about, told in flashbacks which is a device I hate, after a time jump which I also find lame, lazy storytelling
    - new characters (Benny and Amelia) which appear (certainly re Benny so far) to be getting more onscreen character development and writers attention than Dean and Sam
    - more lame brotherly angst that I am soooooo bored with

    Please can we have just one moment of genuine emotional connection between Dean and Sam, that shows how much they care about each other and that isn't one of them being angry/bitter/disappointed with the other?

  2. This appears to be one of the most divisive episodes in SPN history.  I too am very disappointed with Jeremy Carver's vision so far.  I still have great hopes for this season and the pieces are in place for a good season but they must fix the brother rift immediately to do that.  It's tired and boring after occurring so often in the past.