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The great 'Supernatural' Wendigo watch of 2005

Season 1 | Episode 2 | “Wendigo” | Aired Sept 20, 2005

“The Story So Far” Rating: Skippable but fun.

Aren’t montage refreshes at the beginning of an episode the best? I love the “Previously on Supernatural” (which is the precursor to “The Story So Far”). It totally sets the mood.

Now that we’ve given anyone who hasn’t seen the pilot the quick rundown, we find ourselves in Blackwater Ridge, Colorado, where three boys are camping and clearly roughing it while playing video games (one of the boys is Cory Montieth, which made me both smile and feel sad). When one goes outside to answer the call of nature, he hears a growl and then we hear a scream. Shadows on tents, lots of growling, a slash of a clawed hand, and it looks like all of the boys are toast.

clawsStill kicking, the Winchester brothers are on the road. Since we last saw them, Sam has been having nightmares about Jess, and both of them are on the search for their dad with the coordinates he left them. Those coordinates lead to—what a coincidence—Blackwater Ridge, Colorado.

Once they arrive, they quickly figure out that their dad’s last known whereabouts are smack-dab in the middle of a missing-persons case. It seems one of our boys from earlier has a sister named Haley (Gina Holden), and she’s worried about her brother Tommy (Graham Wardle). (BTW, that was him up top with the seashell necklace.)

haleyThe talk gets them a little info. Tommy was sending pictures and videos, but nothing for a couple of days. Oh, and she’s going to look for him. Dean can relate. Dean also thinks she’s hot.

hotYou know what this means. Research time!

Whatever is going on up at Blackwater Ridge, it’s been happening for a while now—every 23 years, “just like clockwork.” No survivors, save for one, and he’s about to get a visit.

donnellyMeet Shaw (Donnelly Rhodes). Shaw survived an attack in ’59 that killed his parents. Whatever this thing is, it actually unlocked the door to the cabin before dragging them out. It also left him a scar that both boys almost seem to recognize. He tells them there’s something evil in those woods—some sort of demon.

One of my favorite things about Supernatural is that when someone says they see something like a demon that can open doors, the first reaction is to figure out what it is. The boys weigh the details. Can’t be a ghost or demon because it needed to use the door. It’s “corporeal” (Sam’s word, and Dean ribs him for his fancy talk), which means they can kill it.

The plan is simple, as Dean sees it: Go with Haley into the woods, protect her, find the monster, and kill it. Sam, on the other hand, is pissed that they’re not just going to look for Dad. (For the vets, that dichotomy caught my attention. I forgot about that.)

Dean wins and Sam looks moody as they meet up with Haley, her other brother Ben (Alden Ehrenreich), and Roy (Keith Callum Rennie). For those of you following along in the “Spot the Canadian actor” game, we have a BSG double in this one!

royRoy is not what you’d call thrilled about the boys coming along, but they’re going, which is a good thing because we discover that Tommy is still alive. Bad news is, he’s hanging in a cave somewhere like a ham, and the creature that took him picks his friend and eats him. Looks like Tommy is the only snack left.

ben hangingIt becomes clear to Haley as everyone’s trooping through the forest that Dean and Sam aren’t what they say they are. They have a little heart-to-heart, and before long, the group reaches the coordinates John Winchester gave the boys. No sign of Dad, but they do find Tommy’s campsite.

It looks bad. Whatever came through here really tore it to shreds, but they don’t have much time to register anything before they hear a cry for help in the distance, and they’re off into the woods.

Sadly, it was a trick. Whatever they’re after took all the stuff they dropped when they ran to help, and now they’ve got no way to call for help. What the heck is this thing?

wendigoCue Dad’s journal. What we have here, ladies and gentlemen, is a Wendigo. (Side note: Thanks to this episode, I was yelling “Wendigo!” at the TV during a certain episode of Hannibal. The more you know.)

The brothers get to drawing Anasazi symbols for protection, and Dean wants to know what’s up with Sam. Sam is never this … volatile. What the hell, man?

What’s bugging Sam is the fact that they’ve seen no sign of their dad. Like he’s never been here. Dean, agreeing, has a theory: Their dad didn’t give them a location to find him. Instead, he gave them directions to a case and his most prized possession: his journal.

John Winchester is telling the boys it’s time for them to get to work doing what they do.

the family business

Sam wants to find their dad because he wants to find whatever killed Jess. Dean totally gets it, but he also tells Sam that he’d better get that anger under control because this search is gonna take a while. If he lets it burn t0o hot, it’ll kill him. (It amazes me how prescient this is.)

How does Dean deal with it? Helping people like Haley and her brother. Oh, and killing as many evil sonsofbitches as he can.

This Winchester Brothers Deep Thoughts Moment* is interrupted by a cry for help. Everyone stays in the protective circle except Roy, who thinks the “magic circle” is a crock. He’s the first one to go running out of it when he thinks he’s shot the creature.

roy attackBad idea.

Come morning, it’s time for a talk: The brothers clue Haley and Ben into what a Wendigo is, that Tommy is being stored as food, and that they don’t have much time to track this sucker down and torch it.

Great plan, Dean, but people make plans and Wendigos laugh.

Those nice, helpful, distinct marks the boys have been following were a trap. Before you know it, Dean and Haley have been taken.

Luckily, Dean had some Peanut M&Ms that were carefully product-placed earlier, and he leaves those as a trail for Sam and Ben to find them.

grandmas houseWell, hello, scary abandoned mine. How are ya? We get a few minutes of flashlights in dark tunnels before some old floorboards break and Sam and Ben literally drop in on Haley and Dean. They’re hung up and beaten up but alive. Whew.

Bonus: We found Tommy.

We get some running around, Dean and Sam split up so Sam can get the Collins kids out of there. The Wendigo cuts them off. Luckily, Dean found a flare gun. Yay!

wendigo flambeNothing left to do now but let the Collins kids tell the cops the story of their terrible “grizzly” attack, and give Haley and Dean a moment to say goodbye before we’re back to just the two Winchester boys against the world.

impalaSee you next time!

Winchester Authority impersonation count: Federal marshals (from last week), park rangers.

*Trademark mine.

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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