SUPERNATURAL Recap: Frontierland - Give Me My Remote : Give Me My Remote

SUPERNATURAL Recap: Frontierland

April 23, 2011 by  

Right off the bat, things were looking very promising with the super cool new SUPERNATURAL opening credits. I recognized the concept, but had to do some research to determine that it was an homage to the old ‘Bonanza’ credits, which I’d never actually seen. I should also point out that apparently this episode was very similar to ‘Back to the Future Part 3’, which I’ve also never seen, so if you’re wondering why I don’t address it, there’s your answer.

The concept of the episode was really fun, but the story in terms of mythology was extremely simple. Basically, through research (in a hilarious book-reading montage backed by sultry blues guitar for some reason), Team Hunter determined that they needed the ashes of a phoenix in order to kill the Mother. But where to get these ashes? Well, Dean found Samuel Colt’s old journal, which luckily detailed the exact date and time that he shot and killed a phoenix with his gun, which I guess wasn’t called the Colt back then, because that would make Samuel pretty narcissistic.

Deciding that they needed to go back in time, they called Doc Brown Cas to ask him to use his invisible angel Delorean to whisk them away to the 1800’s. Except Castiel sent a lady angel in his place, and I could practically hear the curse-filled screams of the hardcore fangirls immediately. Truth be told, I was a little disappointed not to see the Trenchcoated One, because he is awesome and Cas sightings have been in short supply this season. But, I needn’t have worried, because the second Rachel (lady angel’s name) started laying into the brothers about their sense of entitlement and habit of treating Cas like a really helpful booty call, he arrived to calm the waters and do as the boys asked.

I don’t know if this was intended, but Bobby’s comment that where the brothers were going they didn’t take plastic reminded me of Doc Brown’s line, ‘Roads? Where we’re going we don’t need roads’. I may not have seen part three, but I have seen part one about twenty times, so the references aren’t totally lost on me. Once we were in Sunrise, WY, things just turned into pure entertainment. For example, even in 1860 people assume Sam and Dean are a couple, this time due to the fact that their clothes were too clean. Something tells me that the gays of the era were probably just as filthy as everyone else, and that cowboys weren’t casually throwing around gay jokes back then, but we’ll go with it since it’s a joke the show has been doing since the beginning.

They didn’t fare much better at the saloon that Dean was so excited to hang out in – poor guy just wanted to get drunk with the patrons and check out the local talent, but he didn’t account for the poor hygiene and medical shortcomings of the time. I thought this was a bit of genius actually – how many times do shows and movies remember to account for the real conditions of what it would be like before modern medicine and conveniences like showers? Back then, there was no Herpexia (remember Sam’s herpes commercial in ‘Changing Channels’?) to take care of unsightly and highly contagious cold sores and oral hygiene was questionable at best.

Once they had the lay of the land and realized that a convicted murderer that had been hanged in the town square was back and burning people alive, Dean decided to stay and take care of him while Sam hunted down Colt to get the ashes. Dean was soon the only lawman left in town, and it was hilarious that the town barkeep had the authority to just pronounce him as the new sheriff – one thing the old west had going for it was a stunning lack of bureaucracy.

In the end, Sam talked to Samuel and got the Colt, which Dean used to kill the ghost/murderer, who turned out to be the phoenix (and also not a murderer, so that was a bit of a moral gray area). Alls well that ends well…except, they didn’t have time to retrieve the ashes before Cas pulled them back to reality. Lucky for them, a package arrived at the door sent by Samuel Colt himself, containing a bottle of the ash. Oh, and in Cas news, he and Rachel fought over her shock at his plan for the heavenly war and she almost killed him with an angel dagger, but he took her out before she could.

I love whenever SUPERNATURAL uses a genre or wacky concept to stage a funny episode, so I don’t know if I’m complaining per se, but I’m starting to get a bit worried about the fact that we’ve got three weeks left in the season and there’s just not a whole lot of life or death drama built up yet. I get that the Mother is super bad news, but we’ve barely seen her or felt the impending doom the show wants us to feel about her. Same with the celestial war – we hear about it a lot in short, Twitter-style updates from Cas, but it feels like a very far away concept that has little impact on anything other than Cas’s sanity. He might as well be dealing with really annoying houseguests or something. Each remaining episode is going to have to be intense in a major way in order to earn a season finale that feels like it really means something; let’s hope it works out.

There were lots of great lines and fun references (many of which I surely missed, given that I’m not a big fan of westerns), but here were my favorites of the night:

• “That’s Samuel Colt’s journal?” Let me see it.” “Get your own.”

• “We’ll ‘Star Trek 4’ this bitch.” “I only watch ‘Deep Space Nine’.”

• “The answer to your question can best be expressed by a series of partial differential equations.” “Aim lower.”

• Is it customary to wear a blanket?

• Marshall Eastwood, Clint Eastwood. This here is Walker; he’s a Texas Ranger.

• You know me; I’m a posse magnet. I mean, I love posse.

• “The sheriff’s tough as nails; he’ll be here.” “Oh my god, the sheriff’s dead!”

• When you’ve done this job as long as I have, a giant from the future with a magic brick doesn’t exactly give you the vapors.

• We’ve got less than an hour before you pick up the kids at Frontierland.

• We can’t just leave those idjits stranded in Deadwood. (I kind of wished Bobby had gone with them just as a treat for the Deadwood fans, but I guess someone needed to take care of Cas.)

• I didn’t get a soulonoscopy for nothin’.

It looks like next week will in fact be much more intense that last night’s effort – I won’t spoil any details, but it looks like an edge-of-your-seat episode with a little emotional torture thrown in for good measure. Check out the promo:

What did you think, SUPERNATURAL fans? Did you enjoy “Frontierland”? Are you, like me, starting to worry that the stakes for the end of the season just don’t feel like they’ve been raised enough yet? Are you more interested in the Mother or Cas’s war going into the home stretch? Share your thoughts in the comments!

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3 Responses to “SUPERNATURAL Recap: Frontierland”

  1. John on April 23rd, 2011 6:31 pm

    This was a fun episode.

    I agree with your review, especially the part about the lack of time left in the season and the low tension level.

    My guess (and I have no spoilers to support this) is that the guys will gank (“What is gank?”) the Mother with no more than the usual troubles and the season ending cliffhanger will involve Sam’s wall coming down.

    I have no idea what is happening in Heaven and its civil war, except that Cas is getting his hands awfully dirty.

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