For You, Supernatural – As You Start That Last Ride

For You, Supernatural – As You Start That Last Ride

Tomorrow Supernatural returns for its final seven episodes, leading up to the series finale after fifteen glorious years. Most of the fandom is feeling a lot of conflicted emotions right now – anticipation, elation, pride in what the show has accomplished and what it has meant to so many. And at the same time, anxiety and sadness knowing we’re about to lose it. Over the past year, the actors and fans pulled together their thoughts and memories of the show and how it has changed their lives. How Supernatural has inspired them, gotten them through tough times. Has helped them figure out who they really are and become that person. Has created lifelong friendships.

The result was the book There’ll Be Peace When You Are Done: Actors and Fans Celebrate the Legacy of Supernatural. There are chapters from Jared Padalecki, Jensen Ackles and a dozen other Supernatural actors, plus a special message from Misha Collins to close out the book, and from twenty fans. The hope is that the book will be something we can all hold onto, to remember forever how special Supernatural has been and will always be –and to help get us through its ending. Everyone talks about what Sam, Dean, Castiel and the other brilliantly written and acted characters have meant to them in their chapters, whether they portrayed that character onscreen or were inspired by that character in real life. These characters have been incredibly real, and incredibly important, to so many of us.

So now, as Supernatural’s fictional characters prepare to jump in Baby and try to save the world one last time, we wanted them to know that they’re not alone – we’re all here with them, cheering them on, right up to the end. The title of the book is a wish for those fictional characters we love. The beautiful original song and video are too – it’s our message to the Winchesters and Castiel, the boys’ “angel over us”.  It’s what we wish for them, after all they’ve given us – the peace they so richly deserve.

All the kudos to the incredibly talented Eloisa Parton, who created an amazing video, and J R Wyatt, who wrote a song that makes me cry every time I listen to it. That’s a high compliment.

LYRICS:

Take up the fight

In the family business

Don’t pretend to be something you’re not

And in the end

We’ll drive Baby toward sunset

‘Cause, Brother, we’re all that we’ve got

To hell and back

And all that we’ve been through

It’s been quite a road so far

On a path

That ain’t easy to stick to

Just never forget who you are

We’ll dance with the devil

With an angel over us

And you’ll always keep fighting

Next to someone you can trust

Together we’ll carry on

Just a couple of wayward sons

And, Brother, just remember

There’ll be peace when you are done

Save each other

Save the world

Together into the unknown

Face whatever 

Comes our way

Let’s take those boys home

At the end of the day

I’m always proud of us

But when the time comes to leave here

We’ll put Baby in drive

And leave this place in the dust

We’ll dance with the devil

With an angel over us

And you’ll always keep fighting

Next to someone you can trust

Together we’ll carry on

Just a couple of wayward sons

And, Brother, just remember

There’ll be peace when you are done

So, Brother, just remember

There’ll be peace when you are done

About the Book

There’ll Be Peace When You Are Done has chapters from Jared, Jensen, Richard Speight, Jr., Shoshannah Stern, Lauren Tom, Julie McNiven, Andrea Drepaul, Carrie Genzel, Todd Stashwick, David Haydn-Jones, Adam Fergus, Tahmoh Penikett, Rick Worthy, Chad Lindberg, Gabe Tigerman, Lee Majdoub, Brendan Taylor, Hugo Ateo, Lee Rumohr and writer Davy Perez, as well as twenty fans of the show. The very personal chapters talk about the characters we’ve come to love and the experience of portraying them, and thoughts on what the legacy of Supernatural will be. The book benefits the important work of charities Random Acts and SPNSurvivors. You can find more information at peacewhenyouaredone.com

About the Vidder

Eloisa Parton was born in Italy, but is currently studying Visual Effects in Vancouver. She started casually making videos and uploading them on her youtube channel in 2012, but only in the summer of 2014 did it became a full-time hobby. Around that same time, she started watching clips and videos of Sam and Dean Winchester and immediately fell in love with the characters and their relationship, even without knowing anything about the show. She started watching Supernatural in May 2015, and the show and her love of the characters (especially her favorite, Sam Winchester) gave new life to her channel, inspiring her to make more and more videos and bringing lots of new subscribers. What was a small channel with just a few hundred subscribers now has over 16k subs, largely thanks to her Supernatural videos.

About the Singer/Songwriter

J.R. Wyatt believes in the American songwriter’s dream enough to bleed for it. Music has been flowing through him since he first picked up the drumsticks at age three and then never stopped exploring new instruments, the most important of which was the pen at age twelve. Drawing influence from musical heroes like Bruce Springsteen, Kurt Cobain, Jason Isbell, Gregory Alan Isakov, and Jeff Tweedy, Wyatt learned to bear his soul whenever he put pen to paper. After becoming a staple at local bars and clubs in the small Maine town he grew up in, he decided to take his guitar and his dreams to Nashville. Starting with no contacts, job, or money, Wyatt found a kindred group of songwriters and musicians to collaborate with and self-released his first full-length album, Staying Gold, in 2016. Four years later, he’s back with his sophomore record, I’m Still Here, which demonstrates new levels of confidence as a songwriter and ambition as a producer. J.R. Wyatt’s songs acknowledge pain from the past so we can learn to live better while we’re still here, a perfect fit for the story of Supernatural.

Enjoy! (Or cry with me, which is what I do every time I watch the beautiful video…) We love you, Supernatural – and we’ll miss you like crazy. But we’re wishing our favorite characters ‘peace when you are done.’

Watch the video here (and have tissues ready):

There’ll Be Peace When You Are Done

— Lynn

There'll Be Peace_Preorder Graphic_Banner_v4

Supernatural Returns in Four Days – And I’m Not Ready!

Supernatural returns for its final seven episode run in four days. Less than a week. The countdown has been in my head every day, especially over the past week as it draws closer. In keeping with my determination to record what happens with the show and in the fandom in these last months of the show airing, here’s my wrap up of the last full week before Supernatural returns. With all the requisite feelings.

The week started out with another Kings of Con podcast featuring a Supernatural guest star, this time the delightful Jake Abel, filmed when Jake and Rob were in quarantine in Vancouver about to go back to filming. Richard asked when they were ‘free’ and Jake laughed.

Jake: I told Jared, Jensen and Rob yesterday, hey guys I think we’re free on Sunday, and Jared called me a saboteur!

Rich: That is so the pot calling the kettle black – didn’t you tell me they had to chain him to the apartment, Rob?

Somehow this is not hard to believe.

I loved hearing Jake talk about the short film he made (Jake And Quarantine) and how many people thought he really was in a haunted apartment – including me for the first day! If you haven’t seen it, check it out on Jake’s youtube – Jake is an incredible storyteller.

Also, Rob and Jake were quarantined right above each other, and apparently figured out a way to use a rope to transfer things between apartments via kitchen twine!

Jake on Kings of Con

They were also doing lots of zoom calls with Jared and Jensen.

Rob: Jensen and Jared have been doing this show for fifteen years, so they deserve it, but Jake and I are in these identical studio apartments. Then we do these zooms with them and they’re in apartments that are very nice, right on the water, great views…

Jake: Jensen’s sending us pictures of him literally basking in the sun the other day.

Rob: Yeah he’s like, how about this sunset? I’m like, I’ve got buildings around me…

Rich and Rob always make me laugh, but they got serious near the end and made me tear up.

Richard gave Jake props for his awesome performance in the episode that Richard directed, and Jake gave him props right back for the vibe he creates on set when he directs.

Richard: It was a pleasure directing both of you, and I’m sorry to see the show come to an end but it certainly has chalked up a lot of great experiences for all of us.

Me: tissues!

Richard has a beautiful, emotional chapter in There’ll Be Peace When You Are Done that traces Supernatural’s impact on his own career and personal life, as well as what he feels the legacy of the show will be. I think he pretty much hits the nail on the head.

We also got some beautiful photos of Jensen on horseback (on a 19 hand giant of a horse!) taking JJ on her first trail ride. She’s hooked – how could she not be? It runs in the family. I can relate, remembering my first forays into riding when I was about her age. I still think horses are one of the most beautiful animals, and there’s few things that compare to the feeling of galloping across a field with the wind whipping your hair back. I’m once again so appreciative when the actors share a peek into their lives. Jensen and horses? Lots of beautiful.

More beautiful came from Misha Collins, who shared some photos from his trip with son West and the gorgeous scenery they enjoyed in this beautiful country.

When did West get so grown up??

A video interview that Jensen and Jared did before they went back to Vancouver to film (from Warner Bros. Japan I believe) was shared on youtube mid week – which meant we got to have yet another glimpse of quarantine hair!!! It’s like the gift that just keeps on giving, and I’m very grateful.

The boys were already feeling pretty emotional about getting ready to film the end, so it was an emotional interview. Here are a few excerpts that made me emotional too. The interviewer, a fan, must have said that the show has changed her life, though we don’t hear that part on the video.

Jared: Being a part of Supernatural has taught me a lot. I’ve had some time selfishly to reflect on just how massive it’s been. I just had my 38th birthday, and I think when we did the pilot, I was 22. So that’s a long time to be on one TV show. I don’t know many that have done 15 years with the same two characters all along, so I’m really grateful for it. And I’m going to be proud of it until the day I breathe my last breath. I’m grateful it’s having an impact on other people all over the world as well.

Jensen: You say it’s changed your life – it’s certainly changed our lives in so many ways. It means the world to us. We’ve been through so much during these last 15 years, both on and off set, but there’s always been a real constant, and that’s been this show and the love we have for it and the effort we put into it. It’s a blessing to know it means something to you and all of that wasn’t for nothing, but know that we truly do cherish our experience and these characters and this show–  which is why we always wanna do it the best we can.

Read more

Happy Birthday to Supernatural Actor – and Director – Matt Cohen!

 

Today rounds out the trifecta of birthdays that happen in the month of September – Richard, Rob and Matt, otherwise known to con-goers as R2M!  So, in the spirit of this being the last year of the little show that brought the three of them together being on the air, a look back at what makes Matt Cohen so special, and such an integral part of Supernatural.

Kathy and I first met Matt ten years ago at his first Supernatural convention. He didn’t really know what to expect, so he just went with his instincts. That is, he attempted to hug every single person who wanted a hug from him. I remember turning to Kathy and saying oh, we need to interview this guy, he really knows how to interact with fans (And also? He’s gonna have to not keep hugging every single person or he’s never going to get anything else done ever again!)

We sat down with Matt for the first time shortly thereafter, and found out that he was in fact every bit as warm and genuine as he seemed – and just as appreciative of the fans as his hug policy had suggested. In those early days, when Matt was onstage with Richard Speight, Jr. he was the quieter one. Richard’s quick wit and ability to riff off the cuff had to be intimidating – for anyone! But little by little, Matt developed the same ability, and soon he was keeping up with Richard and making us all laugh.

I have enjoyed all our thoughtful chats, and a few times when we weren’t all that serious – what were we doing this day?? I can’t remember but it was undoubtedly fun!

When Rob joined Richard and Matt onstage at cons, the kinetic energy between the three of them onstage was incredible. I don’t think I’ve ever sat through an R2M panel without laughing so hard there were tears in my eyes. They are hilarious together, and at the same time, the depth of their genuine affection for each other is always clear. Who knew I’d be missing Matt’s traditional leap off the chair onstage that kicks off every R2M panel so much right now?

As some of the few ‘regulars’ at the early Creation conventions, Matt and Richard also were the natural options to revamp the convention karaoke. When they realized it wasn’t as egalitarian as they wanted, they recreated karaoke and made it something amazing – something no other show’s conventions had. They had costumes, they had themes, we all dressed up and got silly together, and they played all the songs we loved from the show.

Read more

The Time In Between – Weekly Wrap Up of Last Week’s Supernatural Happenings

This is such an unusual time to be in the Supernatural fandom. I feel like we’re suspended in this bubble that’s about to break, acutely aware that the show is returning in less than two weeks but also that it’s already filmed its last scenes and wrapped for good. I’m both full of anticipation to see those last seven episodes, and dreading seeing those last seven episodes – because they will be the last.

One thing I’m grateful for is that this interim time has not been quiet in terms of my favorite show. As the crew and production office continue the rather depressing work of taking apart the offices and sound stages, some of them posted along the way, including this lovely post by one of the women in the costuming department as she prepares to start work on a new show. For most of them, as for us, I don’t think there will ever be a show quite like this one.

There was also a brief video of workers dismantling the Men of Letters bunker, which I could only watch once and then had to put aside. I was only there once in person, but that set was so real and so important to so many of us – because it was so important to the fictional characters we loved – that it literally hurt to see it being destroyed. Knowing it was home to them made it, in a weird way, feel like home to us too.

Shortly after, my friend Alana King posted a Tik Tok saying her own goodbye to the bunker and Sam, Dean and Cas, and the combination singlehandedly resulted in me going through half a pack of tissues in one morning.

Alana said she’s sorry, but she’s not. (And ultimately the video was validating and cathartic for me too). I’m sorry I told you to go to your room, Alana. (Kinda)

We’ve also been blessed by lots of content from the cast, which lets us know how they’re doing (Yes, I worry about these things). Last week we got video interviews with both Jared and Jensen, and although Jensen’s was not new, it was still a helluva lot of fun.

Richard Speight, Jr. and Rob Benedict have had a podcast for some time, as most of you know, but they kicked off their new name and format (a return to Kings of Con) with special guest and good friend Jensen Ackles on Tuesday.  As is the tradition on the podcast, everyone fixed themselves a drink before they started, and that made for a fun and laid back video of their chat. (Jensen tweeted the day after the video “Not gonna lie….I was pretty drunk”, shocking exactly no one). He also dressed like a train engineer and somehow made that ridiculously attractive anyway.

Richard: We’re going right down the shitter from here. There’s nobody we know that’s gonna show up with a hat-shirt-kerchief combo that matches their throw blanket and their background….

gif justjensenanddean

As the video begins, Ackles realizes his spotless Vancouver apartment has the bedroom door open.

Jensen: Let me close my bedroom door, nobody wants to see that!

Everyone watching: Umm…

Jensen insisted he’d gained the Quarantine Fifteen but got the word at the end of May that they’d be back to shooting in August, so had two months to ‘clean it up’ and work out. Whatever he did, looks like it worked out fine.

Jensen and Rob apparently had some epic zoom calls during their quarantines in Vancouver, hanging out for 5 or 6 hours with their computers propped up while they talked and made dinner, and there was some talk of them doing music together, which yes please.

cap amyinsydney

Jensen also talked about how odd it will be to film with the Covid regulations (the podcast was filmed before he went back to the set), with everyone in a color coded group and not allowed to “cross pollinate”.  In his chapter in There’ll Be Peace When You Are Done, Jensen talks about the unique closeness of Supernatural’s cast and crew, and he said that’s what would make it difficult.

Jensen: This is a crew that’s so intertwined. Most shows, the grips show up, they do their work, and camera, sound, then actors and hair, makeup. But the camaraderie that has grown on this particular set is unlike most, so it’s gonna be really tough. These are friends that we talk to on and off set quite often. People I’ve spent my birthdays with, celebrated life achievements with. To now have this barrier between is us gonna be weird and sad.

Cap justjensenanddean

They all agreed that not being able to shake hands with someone you meet will be weird if that custom doesn’t ever come back, saying that they were taught that by their fathers, that it’s a cultural thing.

Jensen: That physical connection is so ingrained in me, I can’t imagine meeting someone and not shaking their hand. With people you know, I’m hoping that hugging will still be, because we all hug each other, whether it’s the bro hug or the full bring it in.

Honestly, I love that about this cast. They’re all demonstrably affectionate with each other, and the feeling is clearly genuine.

Read more

Happy Birthday Rob!

Today is a special day in the Supernatural fandom – the birthday of Rob Benedict!  There are few people who are more integral to the SPNFamily than Rob. His character, at first seemingly the mild mannered Chuck, became so much more as Rob himself became a fan favorite – first a stand in for Eric Kripke himself and later, quite literally, God. Albeit not exactly a benevolent version. The part Rob has played in this show has been as important as the role suggests, and he’s been there right through until the end in the last few episodes.

It’s not only the part he’s played on the show itself that makes Rob so important to this fandom and this family, though. Early on in the now long history of Supernatural conventions, Rob brought his talented band, Louden Swain, to play at the conventions on Saturday night. I remember going to one of the first concerts and bringing Richard Speight, Jr. with us; we all sat there going WOW. (I feel like that was part of the spark of something else great and memorable in Supernatural history that eventually became and now is again Kings of Con). Having a band like Louden Swain made the conventions so much more fun, and did their part to keep the cons going and the fanbase passionate.

Those Saturday night concerts became special in a deeper way after Rob had a sudden stroke at the Toronto Supernatural convention in 2013. It was the closeness of the Supernatural cast that saved his life that night and the love of the SPNFamily who helped him fight his way back. Rob wrote a heartfelt, incredibly powerful chapter that takes you moment by moment through that night and the long recovery that followed in Family Don’t End With Blood: Cast and Fans on How Supernatural Changed Lives. I remember when he sent me the first draft, how I read it with my heart in my throat, even though I knew he was okay – it was that compelling a chapter and his story is that compelling.  That year, the Saturday Night Special, while Rob couldn’t front the band, carried on without him – in his honor. When he returned to Louden Swain and the SNS, there were tears of joy and gratitude that were unstoppable. We had all learned, when we almost lost him, that Rob and the band are truly the heart and soul of this SPNFamily. And we would never forget it.

I’ve had many long chats with Rob as we’ve gone on this journey with a little show on the CW that turned into so much more. In a weird way, I feel like Rob’s journey with Supernatural and my own are oddly intertwined. I was on set the same day he was on set for the first time – introduced as Chuck in ‘The Monster At The End Of This Book’. I sat there and watched him film some of his first scenes with Jared and Jensen, little suspecting that he would become such a big part of the show and the fandom and my own life. I was on set again in Season 11 when Rob was back on the show – I didn’t know at the time that he would be there and squealed so loud when he got out of the van to say hello, “ROBBBBBB!” that Jensen reminded me “hey, I’m here too.”  Anyone who knows me at all knows that is REALLY saying something! (This is not me dissing Jensen, I knew he was there but Rob was a wonderful surprise).

I’ve been so thrilled to watch Rob’s success over the years — with Louden Swain and in so many acting roles, in Kings of Con the show, and now on Kings of Con the podcast.

I’ve traveled across the country to see Louden Swain play live more than once. I am more likely to have Louden Swain playing in my car than just about anything else, with Radio Co. the other top contender.

I am forever grateful that Rob and Billy and Mike played at the book release party for Family Don’t End With Blood at the Study in LA – and Rob did a reading from the chapter he wrote, to my great delight (as you can see…)

Rob reading from his chapter in Family Don’t End With Blood

Like so many Supernatural fans, our love of Rob Benedict and Louden Swain has enriched our lives in countless ways.

Clearly I’m a big Rob fan, as most of us are. But my partner in crime, photographer extraordinaire Kim Prior, is a Rob girl through and through. So here are her happy birthday wishes for Rob, along with of course some very pretty pictures…

KIM:

Listen, I could probably write an entire book about all the wonderful things about Rob Benedict… and while many of you might appreciate that book, I should probably keep this short and sweet instead. I’ll start with a few of my favorite photos.

The thing about Rob is, well, he’s Real. He is real, and genuine, and sincere. It’s the way that he brings his true self to his podcasts with Richard Speight, Jr. – from his full belly laugh at the things that are said, to the way that he gets frustrated when he stumbles over his words or can’t find the right words to explain something – it’s like eavesdropping on an actual conversation between long time friends. It’s the way he really listens to the questions during his meet & greets at conventions, and in the way he puts thought into his answers, in the way he gives us his truth. It’s those little moments on stage during a convention, when he is listening so intently to someone else speak, the flash of a sparkle in his eye when someone is telling a funny story and he is enjoying their moment with them. It’s the little wave that he gives to a fan as he sings during the Vendor Room Jam. It’s the hug that he gives during photo ops, as if each and every one one of us are an old friend that he hasn’t seen in awhile. In every way, in every moment, Rob is sincere and genuine and Real.

Read more