SPNA – the Alter Ego

Welcome to Supernatural Saturdays! (or uh… Sundays) For animation summer, we’ll be solving those hiatus blues by savouring the SPN anime.

J&J are kind enough to provide us with an intro to this episode claiming (along with the DVD insert) that this first episode of the anime is based upon Skin from the first season.  Well they lied!  Sort of.  Let’s just say, if you did a drinking game of all the times the animation deviates from the original, your liver would file a restraining order.

But that doesn’t make this a bad episode, and it gives us a clue as to where this falls in canon: we are looking at a similar, but alternate universe of the boys.

Heh.  They totally need to do that for season 8.  Let the boys jump to another parallel dimension and end up animated for an hour.

Anyway it isn’t too surprising a lot of changes were made since the anime runs for half the time as the regular show.  An interesting choice though it can lead to the show feeling a bit rushed at times. (I’ve never understood why many shows seem so wrongly timed.  Justice League always had two part episodes, meaning they had the material for at least an hour segment – while Louis & Clark was 15 min of material packed into an hour show.)

So in this episode we don’t get a college friend of Sam’s calling for help, but just a newspaper headline summoning the boys.  Instead of the friend Becky, we get a police investigator (reminiscent of Diana Ballard from the Usual Suspects) playing the girl this time.  We also get to watch the shifter change looks and its true, disgusting form (I have a feeling the usual descriptor for seeing these things will be “ew”).  Also, when Dean confronts the shifter, we get some some straight up kung fu shit showing how these kids must be descended from Jubei.  After the house scene, oh that’s when things get straight up real.

See, up until now, the show’s been different, but not too much from the original.  Well Dean escapes from the house by dressing as a S.W.A.T. officer (yes, just like Nightshifter) and meets back up with Sam.  Then the show just goes right off the rails.  While riding along in the Impala, the guys suddenly start pointing guns at each other and accusing each other as being the shifter.  See, if you know the source, you’re very confused as thisnever happened, and for once the audience is completely in the dark.  Is one of them the shifter?  Through the whole thing I honestly wondered if neither was and we were about to watch one of the most tragic (yes funny) cases of mistaken identity ever.  Which one is it?  Which?

Then we see Sam stumbling in from the middle of nowhere and stumbles onto the freeway (like a boss).  We watch him take aim down a lane, ignoring all the cars zooming around him and BANG – headshot on doppelgänger!Sam, making Dean break an inch from his brother.

Stupid and impractical?  Yeah.  Bad ass?  Oh HELLS yeah.

And that’s pretty much all you need to know about the anime.  It looks to be the id of the writing staff unleashed without any pretense of realism.  You know what?  That’s ok.  Somedays, it’s just fun to let realism be damned.

A good showing, should be fun to see where this goes. No graphic anime pr0n in this, but a lot of blood.  Not recommended for the young or squeamish.

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