This review written by Stoutlimb and his significant other.
Jensen Ackles as Dean
Jared Padalecki as Sam
Mark Sheppard as the demon Crowley
Osric Chau as Kevin the Prophet
Ty Olsson as Benny
Liane Balaban as Amelia
Lissa Neptuno as Channing Ngo
Directed by Robert Singer
Written by Jeremy Carver
Original Airdate: October 3, 2012
Dean comes back from Purgatory and reunites with Sam and the Prophet Kevin. Kevin reveals a way to banish all demons forever.
The emotional reunion of Dean and Sam. The main characters are what make the show, and it’s good to see their acting in it’s prime.
Dean coming back from Purgatory at the beginning of the season. That part of the story arc felt more like a re-run from a previous season than anything original.
This beginning episode smells like another premieire where Dean escapes from Hell at the beginning of the season. The stage is quickly set for what promises to be a season-long story arc about banishing demons forever. Sam’s love interest seems worn and predictable. Dean’s alliance, and possible friendship with a creature from purgatory seems unlike him, and might take this season in a new direction. We give this episode a 2/6 for originality.
While not blockbuster special effects, they were high quality. Dean’s glowing arm, and the bowl of blood being high points. The only low part that disrupted our suspension of disbelief was the depiction of purgatory. While expecting a fantastical place like when Dean went to Hell, we were given a plain old forest. The combat scenes in the forest mostly made up for that though. We give the special effects a 5/6.
The story is the low point of the episode. With the exception of Dean’s unholy alliance, it seems like a worn and predictable redo of what we have seen before. It’s like they ran out of ideas so just cut and pasted old ideas into a new season. We were bored by this episode, so we give it a 2/6.
The acting between Jensen and Jared is superb as usual. Their characters are what drive the show, and the tension right after reuniting is what keeps this series going. Also, Mark Sheppard (Crowley) is an amazing actor as usual, and it’s great to see him back for season 8, though it would be nice to see some development for his character. Osric Chau as Kevin the Prophet is a good addition as a young sidekick. We are looking forward to seeing what he brings to the show. We give the acting a solid 5/6.
Because of the story giving the feel of a retread, the emotional response to this episode is a yawn. There is the joy of a new season ahead, and the exception was the reunion of Sam and Dean, with Dean’s bitterness shining through an otherwise apathetically written episode. We give it a 2/6.
The production of this show is consistent with previous episodes, nothing felt out of place except for purgatory. We give it a 5/6.
This is probably the weakest season premiere in memory. We give it a higher 4/6 because of our joy that there is in fact, an eighth season and it’s good to see our favourite characters solidly back in the saddle.
We give this episode a 25/42.