Tuesday, 1 July 2014

Supernatural Season 1 (2005)

I've seen this show compared to the X-Files on a few occasion (not actually a positive association in my mind), but I think it is better approached as 'Buffy for boys'.  For one thing, it's a show explicitly about hunting and killing monsters.  That's much more Buffy's thing than Mulder and Scully's.  They were more about unresolved sexual tension and discovering the secret truth that is out there (whatever that secret truth is this week).

I say 'for boys' for a number of reasons.  First there is the use of dual male leads, as opposed to a female lead with an ensemble in support.  Second, because it eschews Buffy's "I cannot be with the one I love" angst for Batman-esque manpain.  "This thing killed my wife/mother/girlfriend, and I must soothe my soul with vengeance!".

Then there's the sound track.  My word, this show has a soundtrack that could have been chosen by a teenage boy.

Finally, and most blatantly, there's the way the camera - especially in the early episodes - frames so many shots around an attractive woman's ... attractive attributes.  It's not quite as bad as the way Miranda's butt became the centre of attention in almost every Mass Effect 2 cut scene she was in, but it's definitely noticeable.

So while the show can certainly be watched by women, I definitely think there was a deliberate attempt to make it appeal to young men.

I guess the question you really want me to answer though, is 'is it any good?'.  And the answer is that it's not bad.  Like any weekly show, there are good episodes and not-so-good ones, but on the whole there are more of the former than the latter.  I liked that (at least so far) the show hasn't seriously broken the consistency of its mythology, and I liked that they did a 'change of pace' episode or two in there.

There's nothing especially deep or innovative about Supernatural Season 1, and it definitely doesn't measure up to Buffy at its best, but it is solid enough light entertainment.

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