Then...Season 3 Supernatural
"I got a year to live Sam, I'd like to make the most of it."
*SPOILER ALERT* This is an overview not a review
This season is darker then the previous two seasons but still relatively the same as the Winchesters continue hunting the things that go bump in the night. It is darker in tone however because of the deal Dean made in the season two finale where he offered up his soul to a crossroad demon to bring Sam back to life. The crossroad demon gave Dean a year to live, and the entire third season is one full year. The other problem that they have to deal with his the army of demons that was let out of the devil's gate at the end of last season. Many of the demons that came from the gate are much more powerful then what they have fought so far. Dean also has hanging over his head what the yellow eyed demon said to him about Sam and how can he be certain that what he brought back is "one hundred percent pure Sam". His worries are warranted as through the season we see a slightly more ruthless side of Sam in a few episodes. Sadly this season was also cut short due to the writer's strike but it didn't affect the season to bad as it still ended the way the writers envisioned it. The season was cut down to sixteen episodes as opposed to the normal twenty two episode format.
The season starts off with Sam doing what ever he can do to find a way to break Dean's deal while also allowing Dean to mostly do what he wants which for the most part involves women. Bobby tells Sam about a possible job in Nebraska and the Winchesters quickly head over and meet Bobby there. They run into some old hunting friends of Bobby, Isaac and Tamara, as they are also working on the same case but don't want to work with the Winchesters. Isaac admits that he doesn't want to work with the fools that brought about an apocalyptic war. Dean, Sam and Bobby begin to follow a man who they believed to linked to the mysterious murders in town and he leads them to a bar. They manage to kidnap the man and he reveals himself to be Envy, one of the seven deadly sins and all the others at the bar were the other six. They also learn that because he was taken prisoner the others would be on their way. Dean tries to tell Bobby and Sam to get a head start and leave while he holds them back. Sam explains to him it's suicide, and is upset by Dean's carelessness of his own well-being since making the deal. The three of them and Tamara hold up to fight the coming attack. Bobby kills sloth and makes a Animal House reference, Dean kills Lust and Sam gets outnumbered until a mysterious blonde haired woman comes in and saves him with a demon killing knife.
The three of them then salt and burn the bodies left behind while Sam makes a disturbing comment about how if they let out the seven deadly sins, what else could they have let out of the devil's gate. Bobby drives off back to his place and Sam tells Dean of a witch doctor in Louisiana that can possibly end his demon deal. Dean says no and explains to Sam that if they try to wiggle their way out of the deal, Sam dies. He also says that he feels liberated by making the deal and that hes tired of the job. While it is just Dean's tough exterior refusing to show how he is truly terrified of the idea of going to hell but he also can't live without Sam. Dean then tells Sam that he has a year to live and would like to make the most it.
The next few episodes are for the most part monster of the week episodes, in fact alot of the season is, but they still have some important scenes in them that advance the story. The Winchesters deal with a few new monsters such as a changeling in Cicero where Dean also reconnects with an old flame, Lisa Braeden, who Dean really holds a high torch for but that is revealed later. In the same episode, the mysterious woman that saved Sam surprises him at a restaurant. She knows of Sam's psychic abilities and has a surprising amount about the Winchester family to which she tells Sam to look into his mother's friends. He does and finds that they all have died. He asks her who she is and what he is as that is way to much information for one hunter to know. She says her name is Ruby and also reveals herself to be a demon. Sam lets her live once she says that she can get Dean out his deal if he helps her and allows her to be his "little guardian angel".
The next episode also introduces a new character, Bela Talbot, who is a thief that takes items and sells them to hunters or whoever for a great price. Her character throughout the season was an honest waste of time, but also could have been due to the writer's strike. Gordon also makes a couple of appearances and early in the season he persuades one of his hunter friends, Kubrick, to look into Sam. When he finds that Sam was at the devil's gate when it was opened he goes after Sam and shortly after what he believes to be a sign from God on how he found Sam, believes Gordon's claims of Sam being the anti-Christ.
The next few episodes are heavy monster of the week episodes with no real story advancing moments. Dean gets stuck in a basement with a demon who reveals to him what the yellow eyed demons name and plan was. His name was Azazel, and he planned for Sam to lead the army. Since it didn't take its been nothing but chaos as there has been no order. While Sam and Dean were dealing with that issue, Ruby helped Bobby create more bullets for the colt. In the following episode the Winchesters deal with the Brothers Grimm bedtime stories coming to reality and in the end of the episode Sam confronts the crossroad demon that made the deal with Dean. He pulls the colt on the demon trying to get her to back down and break the deal, she reveals she doesn't hold the contract as someone much higher then herself holds. Sam then shoots her with the colt, killing her. The next episode they deal with a ghost ship with Bela, which may go down as one of the worst episodes of the series. They even make fun of it later in the series.
The following episode Gordon breaks out of prison and contacts Bela for the location of the Winchesters. The Winchesters were off fighting vampires and are about to attack the leader of the pack until they are interrupted by Gordon and Kubrick. They are able to escape and Dixon, the vampire leader, kidnaps Gordon and turns him into a vampire. Gordon when he wakes up kills the entire nest and sets his sights out on the Winchesters. He has them meet him at a location which they do as he explains if they don't come he will murder a woman.When they arrive, Gordon seperates the brothers as Dean if left with the woman who was a recently turned vampire that Dean kills with the colt and Sam kills Gordon with a razor wire.
In one of the later episodes in the season, Malleus Maleficarum, introduces witches into the mythology of the series. It is presented early in the episode that the four women had created a tiny coven and maybe committing murder. It is revealed that one of the four women had actually been possessed by a demon that she claims was the being that the coven had actually been preaching to. Sam and Dean attempt to fight her but are quickly pinned to the walls and are helpless. The demon explains to Sam how he is no longer the one that the demons look up to as their leader, as a new leader has risen up by the name of Lilith. Ruby comes in and tries to fight the demon but is overpowered. The lone remaining witch begins casting a spell to provide a distraction on the demon which gives Dean enough to be free from the demon's telekinetic power and quickly grabs Ruby's knife and kills the demon.
At the end of the episode Dean goes for outside his hotel room and sees Ruby. Ruby explains how she needs his help to make Sam stronger for when he is gone, and if he remains the way he is, he'll die. Dean all along had been very hesitant to trust Ruby seeing as how she is a demon but because of how much she has helped, his stance against her lowers slightly. She also tells him that she's helping because she remembers what it was like to be a human and explains that hell turns you over time into a demon, as she was once a human. He asks if there is anyway to save him from hell to which she finally admits that there is no possible way.
The following episode "Dream A Little Dream of Me" reveals alot about where Dean's head is at. Dean gets stuck into a dream where he has to confront his fears and also Lisa pops up. She pops up in the beginning of his dream as she set up a picnic and he wishes that he could have a live with her and her son Ben. She quickly disappears, and gets stuck in a room with himself. Here is a video of the powerful scene:
Dean vs. Dean
The end of that scene with Dean seeing himself as demon becomes a big reason on why his tough guy exterior begins to fall. As the year on the deal is coming to a close, he realizes he really doesn't want to die and he is afraid of hell. Also at the end of the episode, Bela manages to steal the Colt from the Winchesters when they were asleep which sets up the next important episode, "Jus In Bello". Sam and Dean go guns blazing in search of Bela and break into her most recent hotel room but it is empty. As soon as they are about to leave they get stopped by the cops as Bela had set up the brothers by tipping off Henriksen who had still been searching for them. Henriksen throws them in a jail cell and one of the agents in the prison reveals himself to be possessed by a demon and shoots Dean in the shoulder. Before the demon can do more damage, Sam exercises it but they realize that more demons are on their way.
The brothers try explaining to Henriksen what happened, but he still doesn't believe their claims about demons. FBI agents arrive in a helicopter to take the Winchesters but are quickly killed by demons and the helicopter is destroyed. Henriksen in the process also gets possessed and attacks the Winchesters, but they subdue him with holy water and the demon leaves his body. Henriksen finally believes that demons exist and let the Winchesters out of their jail cell. They quickly realize that the entire police station is surrounded by demons.
Sam and Dean quickly begin setting up the devil's traps at every door and pour salt at each door and window to keep the demons out. Ruby gets in however due to one door not being salted and tells the boys that she knows of a spell that could send the demons but would come with price. The price would be that of sacrificing the secretary at the station, Dean refuses and instead they fight off the demons as best they can. They open the doors and let them in and turn on a recording over the loud speakers of Sam reading the exorcism rites and expelling every demon in the station from their human hosts. Sam and Dean thank Henriksen as they head out and check into a hotel room nearby. The following day Lilith arrives at the station looking for the Winchesters and destroys the station in a big blast of white energy.
The rest of the season is mostly filler episodes up until the finale. The episode before the finale "Time Is On My Side", wraps up Bela's character as she is killed off. It is revealed that as a child she made a deal with Lilith ten years ago in exchange for the murder of her parents. At the end of the episode Dean calls Bela and she explains how the Colt and Sam's death were all parts of were the only way out of her deal, but they didn't take. Dean hangs up and Bela is seen looking off into the distance as a hell hound's growl is heard.
The finale is titled "No Rest for The Wicked" and it follows Sam and Dean trying desperately to get Dean out of his deal and they only have thirty hours. Bobby tracks Lilith to New Harmony, Indiana. Sam, in secret, summons Ruby for help against Dean's wishes and asks for her knife. Ruby says its not necessary as Sam's psychic powers are still dormant within him and they could very easily kill Lilith. Dean shows up however and fights Ruby briefly while managing to swipe her knife he also tricks her into a devil's trap. The brothers leave her in the devil's trap and head to New Harmony. Dean pleads with Sam and asks him to promise him that if they can't break the deal, to not martyr himself for Dean. He realizes that the demons have been taking advantage of the Winchesters and their weakness for how far they would go to keep their family safe. Dean tries to keep Bobby from coming with them but Bobby explains to the both of them that they are like his kids and that they work together. He also explains how Dean is fighting wounded as he is having hallucinations because he is so close to being sent to hell. Dean is able to see the true faces of the demons, even when they are possessing a human host, which provides to be extremely helpful as they get pulled over by a cop who was possessed.
As they arrive in New Harmony, Dean points out how every "human" around the house that Lilith is in, is possessed. Sam, Dean and Bobby manage to "ninja" their way past them, taking out a few with the knife up until they are stopped short of the house by Ruby asking for the knife back. Bobby stays back to provide cover as he put holy water in a sprinkling system that keeps the demons at bay, as Ruby, Sam and Dean enter into the home where Lilith is present.
Sam finds the child that Lilith possessed and struggles with the idea of killing the child that Lilith has also possessed but right before he does it, they find out that Lilith is no longer in the child. They stay in the house mulling over ideas and then look at a clock to realize Dean's time had run out. He tells Sam to keep hunting and to take care of the Impala. He then hears the growls of hell hound and looks in the other room and sees one walking closer.The three of them escape into a closed off room, closing the one door behind them and laying salt below it. Dean then looks at Ruby and realizes that she isn't Ruby as Lilith somehow managed to take her human host. She flings Sam up against a wall and Dean on a table. She explains how she sent Ruby far, far away and begins to toy with the brothers for awhile.
After having her fun, she lets the hell hounds in who viciously attack Dean and kill him in front of Sam. Lilith then turns her sights on Sam and attempts to use her white energy power on Sam but it has no affect as he is seemingly immune. He picks up Ruby's knife and is about to attack her but she leaves the human host right before. Sam drops the knife and picks up Dean and begs for him to come back. The season ends with a shot of Dean strung up in hell yelling for Sam.
Recap of Season 3 before Finale
I'll never forget the feeling I had after watching the finale to the season. It stunned me how the writers left it to chance to end the season that way with one of the main characters dead and even without being confirmed for the fourth season yet. Dean's death was also one of the most brutal scenes shown up to that point. As for the overall season, however, it was up and down. The heavy amount of monster of the week episodes were kind of upsetting, but understandable due to the writer's strike. Due to the circumstances, I think they did a great job with the season though as it introduced a new bad, and also managed to end the plot point on Dean's deal. It's refreshing to see that they made it last only one season as some other shows would have likely made it last over two or more seasons.
The new characters, Ruby and Bela, were not bad on the eyes but average characters. Bela may have been underdeveloped due to the writer's strike as I mentioned before but even then the character didn't have much going for it. As far as Ruby goes, she was very interesting but portrayed poorly. Katie Cassidy did a better job of playing Lilith in five minutes then she did playing Ruby for five episodes or so.
The main actors, Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles, continue to do a great job in their roles and always have great chemistry. Their chemistry manages to make even the worst of episodes moderately watchable, it also helps that more of a comedic element has been introduced, for an example watch the episode Mystery Spot. Ackles also does a fantastic job with the more emotional aspects of his character while also having that tough guy act to mask it. Padalecki continues to improve upon his acting as he continues to get more and more comfortable in his role.