raloria - Screencapping Goddess (raloria) wrote,
raloria - Screencapping Goddess
raloria

"Bloodlines" Take Two

After spending the past several days reading all kinds of reviews and tons of comments from other fans, I decided to give SPN 9x20 "Bloodlines" another look. Tuesday night I'd only watched it once and based my First Impressions Review on that alone.



I also wanted to time how long Sam & Dean were actually in the episode, since that's been speculated about quite a bit. You'll note the times when they enter and leave a scene marked with the time code from the video and several *****. And while I was at it, I did a thorough run-down of the episode itself, much like my reviews usually are.

I've interspersed some thoughts within the re-cap.

++++++++++++++++++++++++

Ok, that is def not Vancouver. Nice to see Chicago on display.

Very different music from SPN - jazzy.
So we have Ennis and his pretty girlfriend out a fancy restaurant. He's about to pop the question via ring in a glass of champagne.

So the materdie is Maurice, who blows off Ennis to greet Sal Lassiter and his companion, Marv, who is def not human as Ennis sees his ugly face reflected on the wall.

Well apparently this "other" part of the restaurant is where things are really happening. Love the blue lighting on the arches.

Blonde Mindy liked Sal as one as well…so he changes his hair color with a swipe of his hands….just for her.

Ok, Julian totally could be Tom Cruise's double. It's eery.
Him and Sal are obviously old enemies.

For those keeping score - Sal is a shapeshifter and Julian is a werewolf.
Fight! Fight! Oh, it's over already. That wasn't much.

Big steely claws open the circuit box and plunges the restaurant/club into darkness.
Ok, Mindy's forked tongue is kinda cool. What the heck is she though?

Wolverine dude (with the claws) comes into the club and starts slicing and dicing.

Ennis drags his GF to a ferry stop…which I here from people who live there, Chicago doesn't have. Ooops. Cute story about how they met there in 5th grade though. But this tender moment is rudely interrupted by Sal staggering down the stairs with a bloody stomach wound. Sal in his delirium seems to think Ennis his someone called David and he apologizes to him, that he didn't have a choice.

Then Wolverine dude grabs the GF (why? she wasn't even in his way?) and throws her against a rolling metal door. He then attacks Ennis and finishes killing Sal. Ennis is in tears over his dead Tamara.

So why is she dead? Wouldn't she have instinctually put a hand up to brace herself from hitting the door? And would she really have left a blood stain? The door was bumpy but not sharp. People have mentioned that Sam & Dean get thrown up against walls all the time on SPN and get right up again…or soon after. True, but usually that's wood or plaster walls and this was metal. But still…I get their point a bit. But this was a young girl, too.

We're at North Chicago University….also fake.
A professor enters his office, except his assistant is wondering why he's there when he and his wife were supposed to be away. He then gets a call from Margo, which he ignores. He shapeshifts into David Lassiter and he's just stolen the math final answers and plans on selling them.

Margo calls again and this time he takes the call. It's about Sal…their brother who's dead.

Ennis is being drilled by a cop, Costa. Told him about the face he saw reflected and the guy with the claws but the cop's not buying it. Ennis's dad Nate left him at an early age.

7:35 **** Sam & Dean enter the room as FBI agents Bonham and Peart. I do love how Dean gets Costa out of the interrogation room…

"Listen, uh, Detective…Your, uh, perp fits a certain profile. Now, I could go into detail, but I'm -- I'm not going to."

They wanna know Ennis's story, but he thinks they'll just call him crazy too.
He relates his story to them, breaking up when he gets to his GF being dead. Sam tells him there's nothing he could have done and Dean says "There's no such thing as monsters." and they leave him at that.

8:47*****

Costa goes to visit Margo and she wants to know if the ghouls are with them. He says maybe, which doesn't set well with Margo. The families have concerns, but Margo wants it known that she's running the family now. Well isn't she just a piece of sunshine.

David appears and Costa offers his condolences for Sal's death. Margo blames Julian for Sal's death and "he will bleed for that". Well her goons have plenty of firepower, that's for sure. Costa urges David to talk some sense into her. She's going to war and if he doesn't like it he can talk to their dad.

Dad's not doing too well, all hooked up to machines. David's been away for 3 years. Margo's not letting Sal's death go. She's out for blood but David's not so sure. Then Margo drops the bombshell that David's old ex, Violet, is getting married. Apparently it's an arranged marriage with some New York werewolves to seal some deal. David says he doesn't not wanna fight, but Margo should learn the truth of what happened to Sal first. She reminds him he ran away to be a human, has a soft spot for them (and what does that have to do with their conversation???) and since he's out he should stay out.

Nice Djinn tats! We're back with…Julian the werewolf. Sheesh. Already having a tough time keeping track of all the names. The Djinn wants to know if the shifters will make a move. Before we get an answer from Julian, Violet comes in and needs to talk to him. She just learned of Sal's death and wonders if Julian killed him. He denies it and says Sal died quick from the look of his body. He knows Margo is gunning for him over Sal's death and Julian's not going to tell her any different. The shifters have been chipping away at the werewolves's territory and insulting them…he's ready for war. He needs the Djinn on his side. Violet tries to speak out against the idea but Julian attacks her, saying her job is to be pretty and silent, that she doesn't get a vote.

Ennis goes home and opens a trunk of his dad's things, including a revolver and bullets that are marked. Ok, now how long as his dad been dead? And he's just finding these stranger bullets now???

It's the next day…I guess? Ennis's clothes have changed. He's checking out all the commotion at the crime scene and uses his dad's lockpick gun to get inside the restaurant and the club. He finds claw marks on a table and blood. Maurice comes in to clean and Ennis hides behind the bar, but Maurice can smell him.

Ok, so Ennis rises up and shouts that he's Chicago P.D. Is he really a cop or just pretending since he's got his old man's revolver and he was a cop? I'm really confused because Ennis honestly looks too young to be a cop. More like a teenager barely out of high school.

Anyhoo…Maurice shows his teeth and does some snarling and then Ennis shoots him several times which only makes him more mad.

16:39*** Ta-da! The boys show up just in time to slice off Maurice's head.

Nice little joke Dean makes here about Maurice looking better with a little taken off the top. Then he tells Ennis to run, but the kid's not leaving.

Dean: "Alright Sammy, give him the talk."

Sam gives him the cliff notes on what they do….their the Winchester brothers and they hunt and kill monsters, etc. Dean says the thing Ennis told them about sounds new…"or Freddy Krueger". LOL! And it turns out Dean was totally right! :P

Sam gives a quick lowdown about how some things show their true faces in a mirror or a camera and you kill them by beheading or with a silver bullet. Meanwhile, Dean's finding some bloody delicacies in the cabinets. Love the package labeled Susan. And they know Sal Lassiter was in this place.

Dean: "So, what, we got monsters killing monsters now?"

Is this really a new concept for them?

They need to see Sal's body and Ennis wants to come, but again Dean tries to discourage him. Sam tries to empathize with Ennis, telling he understands, but what they do is "messed up". It's best if he stays out of it.

19:05*****

Ennis is researching Sal Lassiter….he was VP of Trinity Plasma.

Costa is at the door…wants to know more about what this thing was that Ennis saw kill his GF. But Costa's acting weird…going over stuff he should already know. Then Ennis says his dad will be home soon, would like to see Costa. Then he checks him out with his cell phone camera, claiming it was an incoming text. Glowing eyes! Then Ennis mentions his jacket that got slashed and wants to show it to Costa. He points the gun at Costa and he finally comes clean, revealing himself as David Lassiter. He's just there to find out what happened to his brother.

David says Ennis is in way over his head. Well, duh! :P
He then gives him the whole setup…Chicago is divided up between 5 monster families and they own the police. The werewolves run the Gold Coast and the Djinn run the South Side. They want to keep a low profile so they keep the peace and human casualties to a minimum. The alternative is war - human and monster blood in the street. He's the only one trying to stop it.

David notes the cuts in Ennis's jacket are flecked with silver. So Julian Duval couldn't have killed Sal, since he's a werewolf. David then flings the jacket at Ennis and gets away. Ennis then does a search online for Julian Duval but we never see what the results were.

23:51**** The boys are outside the Duvall house and Sam is reporting to Dean that Julian dropped 3 grand to see Sal's corpse. Meanwhile, Ennis is sneaking around and hears/sees them and skulks away.

24:10****

Violet leaves the house and David is there. He knows Julian didn't kill Sal so he's hoping he can get him and Margo to sit down and avoid this whole war thing. Violet says Julian wants the war and what they want doesn't matter.

Apparently David and Violet were going to run away…Union Station. They wanted to live a normal life. David showed up but Violet didn't. Then Wolverine drops down and attacks David. Violet runs. Wolverine goes after her but David tackles him and they struggle until the claws burn David's skin. Ennis fires a shot and…

26:17*** The boys hear the commotion and come running. Wolverine dude is scared off, but then Violet screams. The boys catch up but it's too late, Wolverine dude has taken Violet. They all decide to get out of there.

The 4 drive up some street in the Impala and get out. Love how Dean even tells them all to get out. LOL he then repeats what he's just learned…that 5 monster families run Chicago.

Dean: "What is this, "The Godfather" with fangs?"

Ennis says he's gonna need help and Dean admits the kid doesn't quit. David says Violet isn't answering her cell. Then the other 4 learn that she's not a shapeshifter, but a werewolf and Ennis and Dean say "awesome" at the same time. What is this supposed to be, some kind of a bonding moment? Bleh.

Ennis: "If she has her cell, we could trace the signal."
Sam: "Yeah, you might be right."


WTH??? Like the boys don't do this every Tuesday. Why did they have to dumb down this moment just to make Ennis look smart?

David won't give up her number unless he can come along, with Ennis objects to. Dean says something about having to work with bad guys to get the worse guys.

David: "Dude. I'm right here."
Dean: "Yeah, I see you."

LOL

Then they all get in the car and drive off again! o.O
Yeah, 'cause that made sense.

And don't give me that stuff about them not being able to film that conversation while they were all in the car because it was a fan's car and they couldn't take the top off like they do with their own Impala. They could have worked out a way…shooting through open windows or even through the windshield part of the time…the rain drops on the window would have added a touch of realism. Don't tell me it couldn't have been done…things can always been filmed inside a car. I've been on a film where it was done several times.

27:56****

Violet wakes up all chained up in a dark room somewhere. There's pics of a young boy on a board nearby. Wolverine dude comes in and reveals he's not a freak or a monster, but just a man. He still kinda looks like Freddy Krueger though.

29:11*** Nice drive up of the Impala with the city in the background. Ok, so Dean opens up the weapons trunk and Ennis doesn't even bat an eye. WTH???

Instead Ennis and David have a little heart to heart over the Impala about who've they've each lost and Ennis tells about how Sal mentioned David at the end.

Dean: "Alright, you guys can kiss and make up later. We got work to do. Come on."

You tell'em, Dean. :P

30:05***

Wolverine dude is torturing Violet with his silver claws. His son was killed by Sal & Julian, even though the police said it was a wild animal. He's going to kill Violet, too. She concludes he wants to start a war.

Wolverine Dude: "When freaks start killin' freaks…we win."

Violet tells him that if a war starts more children are going to die.

31:43*** The 4 are searching the tunnels.

Dean: "Alright, you're with me, Romeo."
David: "Sounds good, Buffy."


Now I'd like to point out they gave David a friggin' shotgun! They just met this guy, and he's a shapeshifter…since when would the boys trust a monster with a weapon that they'd just met????

And Dean's leading, with only David behind him…Sam's not even there to watch his back! No…no, way is this right.

Then David is attacked by Wolverine and disappears.
Dean even calls him "kid" first and then "David". Hee!

32:56****

And now David's tied up next to Violet. So he knows about the two lovebirds and tortures David until Violet wolfs out and attacks him. What was with the slo-mo flying leap anyway? LOL

She's about to kill the dude, but David breaks free and stops her.

34:22*** The boys show up with Ennis and Wolverine dude says he knows Ennis and is sorry about his girl. She got in the way…the other two are the monsters.

Ennis: "I only see one monster here."

And he shoots the guy dead just like that.

Now considering this dude was human, shouldn't they have just hauled him off to jail? Killing is just a tad extreme and I've seen plenty of fans voice this same opinion. We don't even see Sam & Dean's reaction to this, but I'm wondering why Sam at least didn't try to stop him?

35:08***

Now we get talk between David and Violet as they return to a house…which one I'm not sure. Her's, I guess. He tells her about Sal's last words and apology, which he doesn't understand because Sal never did anything to him.

Then it's flashback time! Violet is at Union Station and runs into Sal and learns David isn't coming. He convinces Violet that the two of them running away together is a bad idea, that it'll ruin the purity of the bloodlines and cause a war. He then threatens to kill her.

But instead of telling David all this, she plays dumb and says she doesn't know why he got the apology. And then they passionately kiss before she walks away. Did she just bite him? Kinky.

David visits his bed-ridden dad who tells him, Margo wants a war and he has to stop him. Uh…tell us something we don't know. Sheesh.

David presents he claw to Margo, telling her the killer was a messed-up guy that the Duvals are clean. He says he's back into the family now and is embraced by the other guys in the room. Margo feigns happiness as she hugs David, but she's clearly not letting this war thing go.

39:20*** Another nice dive up by the Impala. They bring Ennis home and find out his sister's on the other side of town, his mom's "out of the picture" and his dad died in the line of duty a long time ago.

Dean gets a call on his cell…it's time to leave.

Sam: "Dean, this city is crawling with monsters."
Dean: "Cas has a line on Metatron. This is what we've been waiting for. This is our shot, Sam."


Sam tells Ennis they'll pass the word along to some pro-hunters about the whole monster situation. Ennis still wants to help out. Sam again, urges him to stay out of it.

Sam: "You get into this too deep, there's no getting out."

And the boys leave.

40:50***

Then we get this weird voice-over by Ennis, saying he couldn't walk away, that it's his fight now (WTH?). So we see him checking out Wolverine dude's wall of pics and articles, with his dead GF's was-to-be engagement ring around his neck.

He then gets a call from an unknown number on his cell. It's his dad's voice on the other end.

"If you start hunting, the monsters will kill you."

---------------------------------

By my rough count, Sam & Dean were only in this episode for 10 minutes.

Has my opinion of this spin-off episode changed? No. It was still a poor hour of television in my book, whether it's associated with SPN or not.

The Good:

*** David Lassiter - Not only is the actor good, but he was the only likeable character in the entire episode. He got some good and funny lines tossed his way, so that counts as a plus.

*** Chicago - It was nice to see the show was actually filmed there and not recognize Vancouver streets trying to pass for somewhere else.

*** The Impala - That is one cool fan car there. I couldn't tell the difference between the real deal. *drools*

The Bad:

*** The acting - Overall, it was very bad and too over the top. Ennis and Margo especially were bad.

*** Ennis - If he is a cop (then where was his badge?) it wasn't made clear and he looks far too young to be one. In fact, the actor looks too young for this role.

*** Shapeshifter Lore - This is not as big a deal for me as it is for a lot of other fans, but I can understand why they're upset. But then I'm getting used to SPN breaking it's own rules, I guess. And maybe it can be explained by the families being more pure bloodlines than your typical monsters.

*** Monsters in Chicago - I still say this is very improbable that a major city would be run by 5 monster families and no hunter would've found out about it by now.

*** The dumbing down of the Winchesters - So we have them not knowing about the monsters in Chicago and not knowing about tracking a person through their cell phone. o.O

*** Ennis as a killer - The guy shot a human in the pilot episode! That does not bode well for his decision making skills. Kid's a loose canon in my book. And how is he going to be a hunter with nobody to show him the ropes? Silver bullets alone are not going to save this guy.

*** What was the point? - This whole thing was thanks to a human seeking revenge against monsters for the death of his son. Ennis got his revenge and it didn't involve the monsters at all, so what's with him suddenly wanting to kill them? I don't see the motivation outside of wanting to avert a monster war that he has no proof is even going to happen.

*** Too many characters - After the 2nd viewing it got a little easier to pick everyone out, but that might have been because I was taking notes. I think it would have been far better to only introduce a few characters in the pilot. It was hard keeping track of them all.

*** Too confusing - This goes with the too many characters. The SPN pilot worked because it was basically just Sam & Dean...and the monster (Woman In White) and her husband and a basic case while wondering where dad was. Sometimes simple does work best. You can't do everything in one hour.

*** Quit trying to tie it to the Winchesters - Did we really need for Ennis to have a girlfriend who died? She didn't even die a worthwhile death. Did David have to be a shapeshifter to broke away from the family to be human? And then there's the whole absent father for Ennis...who mysteriously calls at the end. Bleh.

*** Timing - Why air this at the end of the season? There's so many story arcs to deal with this season and only 3 episodes left. I think this ep would have been better received (maybe) if it had been shown mid-season.



Btw, here's an interesting interview with the writer of "Bloodlines" Andrew Dabb: http://insidetv.ew.com/2014/04/29/supernatural-bloodlines-andrew-dabb/

Two points that stood out for me was that Kripke himself was in on the creation of this spin-off and that the 5th family isn't vampires (as so many have guessed), but sirens. They're purposely staying away from vampires, though they will be in the show if it's picked up.

I love SPN, and I respect it's creator and writers, but I hope "Bloodlines" is not picked up by the CW. A lot of it is because I watch SPN because of Sam & Dean and Jensen & Jared. They captured my heart and soul from day one, this episode did not. If they wanted a proper spin-off they should have done something with Charlie and Dorothy and their adventures in OZ or with the history of the Men Of Letters. Lots of potential in both those ideas and they've already been featured on SPN. IMO striking out in a totally different direction was not a wise decision because these are characters we don't even know and have no relationship with. I found them to be boring and uninteresting and I've read so many other fans have said the same.

Ultimately even after a 2nd viewing, I still think that this spin-off is a horrible idea. All I keep thinking is that this is going to be the one episode I never watch on my DVD set. That's sad.


Tags: episodes, links, quotes, reviews, supernatural
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