Episode 9.7

“Bad Boys” Review
By Annie Kenney

This episode of Supernatural made me cry; it was so emotional and so touching and it made me love Dean a whole lot more than I did!

How fantastic to see the brothers back together. I’ve probably mentioned (more than a few times) that I started watching Supernatural for the Winchester brothers and, although it has become so much more over the years, Sam and Dean fighting ghosts or monsters is what the show is, primarily all about.

This episode showed us, not for the first time, how much Sam means to Dean. Obviously we have seen in the past what Dean would do for Sam (sell his soul for one, shove an angel inside of him for another) but sometimes we as an audience forget just how much Dean has always done for Sam. A lot of fan fiction concentrates on Sam and Dean as children and illustrates that Dean was both brother and surrogate father to Sam when the brothers were growing up. Bad Boys illustrated this perfectly and it was both touching and sad.

Dylan Everett – the actor who played young Dean was absolutely faultless. He was so believable and had obviously worked hard on Jensen’s ticks and mannerisms. He was that perfect Dean mix of vulnerable and cocky and you felt for him from the moment he appeared on screen. He WAS Dean from the clothes that he wore right down to the amulet that Sam had given him a few Christmases before (and hands up who misses that particular piece of jewellery.)

The flashbacks merged effortlessly with the action in the present day. Sonny was a good, if not slightly clichéd character and little Timmy was absolutely sugar sweet. The ghost wasn’t exactly the most scary one I’ve seen on Supernatural (that honour must go to the Usual Suspects!) but it really didn’t matter as the ghost story was just a plot device to get Dean back to the home again.

Seeing the brothers do all those familiar Winchester things like dig up graves and salt and burn corpses was really nice and made me feel nostalgic for the old days. It is always good to see Dean with kids too. His scenes with Timmy were touching and real and illustrated just how well he must have cared for Sam when the two of them were younger.

The final few scenes bought tears to my eyes particularly the one where Dean chooses to go with his dad rather than stay at Sonny’s. His anguish is written all over his face and, again, I have to say how impressed I was with young Dylan. I could barely see through my tears as I watched Dean watch Sammy and it was clear then just how much Dean had sacrificed for Sam.

What touched me the most though was the very last scene between Sam and Dean. Wonderful and understated acting by both boys bought yet another lump to my throat. Sam’s soft ‘Thank you’ to his brother and Dean’s cocky rejoinder serve to remind us just how close the Winchester’s are. These touching moments are made even more painful by the knowledge that, soon, Sam is going to find out about Ezekiel and the brothers are going to be at each other’s throats again. The Supernatural writers are particularly good at these sorts of scenes, scenes that touch us and yet fill us with apprehension, a serious foreshadowing of what is to come.

So you might call this a filler episode with no mention of the present day mythology but with plenty of nostalgic moments. This episode didn’t move this season’s storyline on at all but it did act to remind us just how much the Winchesters mean to each other. It was really enjoyable, enormously touching and very bittersweet.

I sort of wish there were more episodes like this…