Supernatural: The Complete Fifth Season [Blu-Ray]

Supernatural: The Complete Fifth Season [Blu-Ray]
Somewhere around the third season of the WB's surprisingly dark and violent Supernatural, the demon-of-the-week format changed a bit to integrate season-long arcs and fatalistic prophecies, giving things an ideological construct and built-in mythology. Since then, the ongoing road trip trajectory of Sam (Jared Padalecki) and Dean Winchester (Jensen Ackles) has become increasingly engaging and complex, integrating some of the nastier bits of Judeo-Christian beliefs in a race towards the apocalypse. As Sam has a bit of demon in him, acting out emotionally with rebellion, he is an ideal vessel for Lucifer (Mark Pellegrino), while the more grounded, soldier-like Dean falls into the saviour category. This dichotomy between the brothers ultimately spelled disaster at the end of season four, leaving this, the fifth season, to follow them as they try to stop the world from ending by stealing rings from the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. The battles are gritty and nasty, spreading throughout the season in places where you would least expect them, while the angel Castiel (Misha Collins) fills in any blanks left in storytelling. It's quite a compelling season of television, mixing up some shocking episodes — one wherein two recurring characters are brutally killed by hellhounds — with those more light-hearted. "Changing Channels," for example, has the Trickster (Richard Speight Jr.) transporting the boys to a television world, which in theory sounds like a retarded version of that John Ritter movie, Stay Tuned, but in actuality is one of the funniest things to happen to TV during the 2009/2010 season. After doing a bang-up mockery of the shitty Grey's Anatomy and CSI, they dive into Knight Rider, with Dean awkwardly looking in Sam's trunk after he's transformed into the talking car. Furthermore, people are stabbed in the head and ripped to shreds while angels hook up with prostitutes, drink and kick the crap out of each other. It's beyond inappropriate and I'm actually surprised that it gets away with what it does, knowing how the religious Right would respond to such impropriety. There's even an interview with a Reverend on the ambitious interactive special features. He discusses the Four Horsemen in detail, while some creative cult videos and candid interviews with creator Eric Kripke elaborate on the religious detail and external theories of the projected end of the world. Also included is an extended gag reel where Ackles alludes to Collins giving blowjobs on set and other gay jokes abound. (Warner)