Time for Part 3 of our Nashcon coverage – the last Supernatural con of 2021!
We left off post Saturday Night Special and me falling asleep despite Kim having all the lights on as she stayed up far into the night editing the gorgeous photos that grace all these Nashville posts. Guess I was a little tired.
And then it was Sunday!
That meant the traditional J2 gold panel to kick off the day. Jared came out onstage wearing a rather striking shirt, and let us all know that it was a gift from Jensen. Apparently he couldn’t resist because it has moose and squirrel all over it.
Jensen (pointing) There’s the squirrel!
Jared (smiling): Right over my heart.
Jensen had to replay the gift giving because it more or less consisted of him gruffly announcing “got you somethin’” and then tossing the shirt across the room to Jared. Boys. Here’s my tweet of that little moment:
A fan asked what has brought them joy recently and Jared talked about his baby girl Odette – who apparently dotes on her daddy.
Jared: Jensen warned me about baby girls…
Wrapped around their little fingers, it seems.
Seems Misha is not the only one who has A LOT of stuff from the Supernatural set. Jared said that he and Jensen share a storage unit full of stuff they brought back from Vancouver.
Jensen: I pretty much raided the props and costume department…
I am so intrigued!! Share, boys, share!
As always, the panel was entirely happy making because Jared and Jensen invariably just start having a great time being back together and cracking each other up.
Much to my great joy, this panel had a lot of Supernatural questions. Both of them said that they appreciated both the Season 5 finale and the season finale when Dean killed Death, because in both cases the Winchesters were able to overcome outside control – with some reminders from their brother.
I am always so tickled by how often Jared and Jensen seem to talk about Supernatural when they’re not onstage. They love it as much as we do, and I love that.
Jensen: Jared and I were just talking about how saving people and hunting things kinda characterized the whole show.
One of the best answers was about their own comfort with being physically and emotionally affectionate, something that is always evidence in their panels – and something that is so needed in our culture, and for every one of us raising someone who will grow up to be a man.
Jensen: I feel like it’s more acceptable now to be an affectionate man. Less toxic masculinity. I played a character who could show affection too.
Indeed he did. One of my favorite things about Dean – and about Sam too.
Jensen to the fan raising a son: Have your son watch this show about two brothers. They act tough but they show each other affection.
Yep. One of the things I love most about Supernatural – and something so exceedingly rare in television and film.
Jared: This was never a show about the supernatural. It’s about relationships. They cared for each other.
Damn it, I’m all emotional again, missing my Show and these characters.
There were a few finale questions, including whether Dean tried to contact Miracle’s owner or just basically stole the dog.
Jensen: Probably Sam was like, we should try to find Miracle’s owner, and Dean was like, you snooze you lose!
They know their characters so well!
(Not sure how Kim survived that one – is he staring into her soul??)
After the morning gold panel, I took a few breaks from the vendor room to catch some of Ruth Connell and Alex Calvert’s panels. Ruth gave out some good advice, including “be the most unique you that you can be.”
She also talked a little bit about how the industry has changed at least a little – in a good way.
Ruth: When I got the job on Supernatural, there were nine jobs for men for every one job for a woman.
Rowena is one of my favorite characters, and the scene where she and Sam bond over their shared traumatic memories of Lucifer is one of her best.
Ruth: I envisioned the scorched earth, Rowena was that badly burned (by Lucifer). That’s what abuse can do. And that’s when you start to see redemption for her. It was important.
Ruth said she really enjoyed filming the scenes when Rowena was snarky as well as the scenes with a lot of emotion.
Ruth: I love the snark. I get paid to say this shit to Mark Sheppard? The feeling scenes are harder, but I do love them.
My other favorite Rowena scene is the one in which she admits to Crowley that if she didn’t hate him, she would love him. Ruth talked about how Rowena came to care about Crowley, especially after what she went through with Lucifer.
Ruth: I think she was proud of him.
Ruth’s pretty sure Mark was jealous of her antlers and light up nose in Rowena’s dream with Crowley in a onesie, though.
Ruth’s panels always have some just plain fun to them too. She let her hair down and took some videos of the audience to switch things up a bit.
And she had some great news – she’s filming a pilot over the holidays! And of course look for Ruth as the Night Nurse in Steve Yockey’s new script. SPNFamily keeps sticking together and I love that.
Ruth: It’s a Supernatural miracle that I’m going to get to be the Night Nurse. It’s something Steve Yockey has been working on for years.
We got a little bit of flirty Rob and Ruth as she left the stage.
Rob to Ruth: Are you any warmer? Because you look hot!
In his panel, Alex Calvert was asked what his expectations were for the role of Jack.
Alex: Uhh, don’t get fired? Try to fit in with the cast, and to bring out different things with the character.
Fan: I loved Jack when he was introduced!
Alex (deadpans): So, you liked the naked guy…
If Jack brought everyone back to life at the end of Supernatural?
Alex: Well, there would be a big party…it’s a catered party though and I’m not cleaning up after it. And there’s mandatory disco dancing.
Okay I wouldn’t want that finale necessarily, but everyone disco dancing? I’d watch that!
A fan shared a theory that in the end that wasn’t really Jack, but Chuck looking like Jack.
Alex: Well, there’s your answer!
He said he had never heard any plans like that, though.
Alex seemed content with the finale and certain that Jack would not have intervened.
Alex: Jack was a hands off God, and it was Dean’s time – even if you guys didn’t like that!
I’m so glad Alex is coming to more conventions, his panels are always both fun and interesting and every conversation I’ve had with him has been thoroughly enjoyable.
Sunday afternoon, as always, was the main J2 panel – they’re still game for the traditional semi-synchronized jump when they come onstage with Louden Swain accompaniment.
The afternoon panel was even more full of laughter and shenanigans than the morning one.
There were also, as always, secrets. Like this one.
Jared: Do I have hot chicken in my teeth?
There was much brotherly ribbing because Jared and Jensen are a little bit Sam and Dean sometimes.
Jensen told the story about how Gen gave Jared a picture of a bear for Father’s Day (knowing full well that Jared’s got a fear of bears)
Jensen (grinning): Gen is twisted – and I love it!
Neither of them stands a chance against a teamed up best friend and spouse, I don’t think.
Jared: He’s Team Dean from Gilmore Girls.
Jensen: But I’m Rory curious…
I don’t know the context of this other funny moment, but it prompted Jensen to say “I’d never had whisky balls” and Jared to whisper some retort that was clearly not G rated.
As often happens in J2 panels – but we never get to hear the good stuff!
At some point Jared re-enacted a fan’s question, except the question was just “Where’s Jensen?”
Uhhh he’s right beside you…
At another point, Jensen announced that he’d be Big Bird for some reason.
Jensen: And you’d be my Oscar the Grouch.
Jensen (thinking about it a little more) actually the opposite would be so on brand…
He added, ‘why haven’t Sam and Dean been on Sesame Street?’
Excellent question. Let’s bring them back everywhere, shall we? No? Damn.
There were some strange competitive conjectures about what animals they would be, with Jensen ending up a bowlegged eagle. Yes, of course he had to demonstrate.
The most hilarious moment of the panel was when a fan tried to apologize for her hoarse voice as she was asking a question.
Fan: I’m sorry, but Matt Cohen did a number on my vocal chords the other night…
Jared and Jensen: O–o
I did way too much laughing during this panel.
There were plenty of serious and emotional moments too, however.
Someone asked about who they want to work with and have learned from, and Jared turned to Jensen.
Jared: Every time I work with this guy, I’m a little better the next day.
Jensen reached over and patted Jared’s leg in unspoken gratitude and back-at-ya.
Jared: I’d never tell him this, but there’s this bowlegged guy I’d like to work with again.
Jensen: [Points to self and mimes, ‘me?’ Stands up and looks down, bowlegs? Check]
Jensen had just as many emotional things to say about Jared; it’s clear just how much they miss each other and miss working together.
Jensen: I miss our shorthand that we had. It’s rare. I don’t miss Jared leaving his gum on my counter though…
They both talked about knowing each other so well and being able to trust each other and how they miss that.
Here’s my tweet of that moment:
Someone asked what storyline they would change if they could and Jensen said that would be soulless Sam for him, because it was so difficult.
Jensen: I lean into the relationship between Sam and Dean, and we have that shorthand.
Though he added that Jared killed it with his portrayal; it was just very difficult for Jensen not to have the familiarity of playing Dean with Sam that he was so used to.
Jared said that while he loves the actress who played Amelia, Liane Balaban, he wished that Sam and Amelia hadn’t gotten together.
It was no surprise to me that he felt this way, as we’ve discussed it before, but I so agree. Liane was great and Amelia was actually an interesting character, but that arc didn’t make sense to me. It just didn’t seem like Sam; in fact, I was convinced for half of that season that it was some kind of grief-induced hallucination.
All too soon it was time for the last question, which always brings a little bit of Rockstar Jensen with it – and some Robsen for those who favor it.
A little snippet of Rockstar Jensen:
In response to the last question about odd fan encounters, they also told an amusing story of leaving their hotel to go out to eat the night before, and Jared started talking to a fan who recognized him. Then she turned around and Jensen was there too and she just exclaimed OMG!
I mean, understandable.
And then it was goodbye, with arms around each other and hands on hearts. Just seeing them standing there shoulder to shoulder again, so very Sam and Dean, made me emotional.
The last Supernatural convention of 2021 and the last time we’d see the boys onstage in this year too. It’s been such a tough year for pretty much everyone that it felt extra special to have one thing back that’s been important to so many of us.
I finished up the day back in the vendor room so I didn’t get to see the final panels or Louden Swain do their traditional “It’s the end of the con as we know it” but I sang along from outside the ballroom at least!
Kim and I got some takeout delivery to our room so she could start going through her 10,000 photos and I could sneak glimpses of her screen over her shoulder and exclaim some not G rated things when she took photos like this. What do you expect??
It’s now about to be 2022 as I write this, and who knows what the next year will bring in terms of conventions with Covid cases exploding everywhere – but I’m grateful we had these Supernatural cons in 2021 to finally reconnect with each other, both fans and actors. It felt incredibly healing to be able to hear directly from the cast again, whether you were listening in the ballroom or watching the videos and tweets and posts shared online – something Supernatural fans badly needed after the show ended, the pandemic worsened and the fandom fractured post-finale. The joy these actors find in each other, and their genuine appreciation for the fans, felt so good to witness once again.
You can read many of the actors’ personal accounts of what Supernatural and the fandom have given them in the two books written by the cast and fans themselves – Family Don’t End With Blood and There’ll Be Peace When You Are Done. Jared, Jensen, Misha and many more contributed their thoughts – which hopefully will provide solace and inspiration to the whole SPNFamily as we begin a new year.
Wishing you a happier, safer, healthier 2022!
Incredible photos throughout by Kim Prior, who really outdid herself at this con. So grateful for my talented partner in crime!
You can find FDEWB and There’ll
Be Peace When You Are Done at the
links on the home page banner here