Mark Watches ‘Supernatural’: S06E01 – Exile on Main St.

In the first episode of the sixth season of Supernatural, WHAT THE FUCK IS GOING ON, EVERYTHING FEELS WRONG, WHAT THE HELL. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to watch Supernatural.

I have so many questions. I HAVE SO MANY OF THEM! THIS IS WILD, WHAT THE HELL. I mean???? This was such an incredibly jarring opener to me and I don’t know what I’m feeling at all. I cannot figure out if the weirdness I picked up here was intentional. Is this to signal a new tone for the show post-Kripke? Is it a sign of something else? Why does it all feel so off? Was that on purpose? Am I missing the big picture and I’ll just understand this one day?


SO HOW GREAT IS THE MONTAGE IN THE COLD OPEN? I mean, it’s great to bask in my wrongness. That’s always fun. While there are signs of Dean’s past in his new house with Lisa and Ben, he’s basically assimilated into a life completely free of hunting. It’s genuine. He’s not sneaking out at night in order to do secret hunts. He honored Sam’s request. And like I said on video, my intention with the prediction about Dean wasn’t to say that Dean would just immediately defy Sam. The idea I wanted to convey was that he would be pulled back into that world, and I figured the first episode would detail how that had happened. In a sense, it does show us that, but not at all like I expected. Dean did it. He lived a life with Lisa and Ben for a year. You know what the most soul-crushing part of that opener is?

Dean looks undeniably happy. hahaha I am not crying at all.

And then it all goes wrong. Initially, that “wrongness” is easy to track. I assumed that something had come to get him, and I wondered if it would be revealed to be Sam, pulled out of Hell. Whatever was causing Dean’s paranoia, I figured that this was Supernatural, it was a some sort of creature, Dean would fight it and kill it, and –

You get the picture. There’s certainly a lot of tension as Dean sneaks around his own property and the neighbor’s place, tracking some sort of thing that leaves claw marks and smears of blood. But I should have realized that the Yorkie was a huge clue. When was the last time we saw a Yorkie? “Yellow Fever,” where Dean imagined something hellish in a Yorkie’s place while he was infected. This wasn’t real. BUT I BELIEVED IT WAS REAL. I assumed that Sam had to come back this episode, so when Azazel came back first, I bought his story. Something pulled him out of Hell after the Apocalypse was averted, and he had finally found Dean. (Dean still has the Enochian symbols on his rips, right? That would explain this!)

Even when Sam showed up, I wasn’t horribly shocked. I WAS VERY EMOTIONAL BECAUSE OH MY GOD HE IS BACK, but come on. I knew this was gonna happen!


It’s from that point on that “Exile on Main St.” repeatedly fucks with my brain. CAN WE DISCUSS THIS?

  • Sam has been back for a year.
  • Sam has been hunting with other hunters that he refers to as “more like family,” and it’s revealed that he found some of Mary’s relatives, INCLUDING SAMUEL CAMPBELL. WHO WAS DEAD. WHO SHOULDN’T FUCKING BE HERE, BUT THERE HE IS. (Mitch Pileggi should be in all things, for the record. Let’s not kid ourselves.)
  • Samuel was resurrected from Heaven while Sam was resurrected from Hell.
  • I can’t do this. AND IT’S JUST THE START.
  • The reason for Dean’s paranoia? A group of djinn are trying to get revenge for their dead father after the events of “What Is and What Should Never Be.” See, Dean can’t escape his past in MORE WAYS THAN ONE.
  • What the shit in goddamn hell, Sam has been in contact with Bobby almost the entire time he’s been back.
  • And something is causing supernatural creatures to act in opposition to their natures, which makes no sense at all to me.
  • On top of that, the Campbells and Sam are clearly up to something in their little base camp. Why do they kidnap that djinn and take her with them before Dean finds out???

This is all child’s play to Sam Winchester. Sometimes, it was subtle, and other times, it was obvious. But something is wrong with Sam Winchester. He is… remarkably less emotional than I expected? However, I have to admit that my expectations don’t dictate what’s best for the character. And that’s what is so intriguing and unsettling about what happens here. I can’t ever tell if what I’m seeing is flawed or off because my own interpretation is off or because this was done on purpose. But that whole bit where Sam tells Dean he wishes Dean would come with him… I don’t get it. That is… like, wildly out of character for Sam? He tells Dean that because Dean cares about others and Sam, he always rushes in to try and make an effort. “I wouldn’t even think to try,” he says.

EXCEPT. YOU DID??? LIKE ONE EPISODE AGO? Wasn’t your whole fight with Lucifer about giving one good try even if you know you can’t win????

There is something wrong here, and I’m so worried. I know I predicted that Sam would be different coming back from Hell, but this is a lot more subtle and insidious than I anticipated. It’s entirely possible I’m wrong, and it’s because Sam has actually grown as a character in the year he’s been hunting with Bobby and the Campbells. Both of them are credible theories, and I’ll be EAGERLY WATCHING to see how close I am to the truth.

Plus, turns out I’m wrong about Dean and Lisa. Dean refuses to go hunting with Sam out of a responsibility he feels to Lisa and Ben. It’s noble of him, and I also think it’s a fascinating subversion of the trope of leaving loved ones behind because they might get hurt. Dean knows this, and that’s precisely why he stays. So… Dean and Sam are going to hunt separately for the time being? How is this going to work? HOW?

This is clearly a new chapter in the Supernatural mythology, and you better believe I’m nervous just thinking about it.

A note about a thing! It wasn’t until I read the comments for “Swan Song” that I realized that the final image of that episode confirmed that Sam had already come back from Hell. I TERRIBLY misread it as some sort of metaphorical thing? I DON’T KNOW. I’ve left this review as it is, since I wrote it not long after watching “Swan Song.” I just wanted to keep it as-is, despite that I understand what actually happened. WHOOPS.

The video for “Exile on Main St.” can be downloaded here for $0.99.

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About Mark Oshiro

Perpetually unprepared since '09.
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