Lost Limey Watches Supernatural #40 – “Hollywood Babylon”

A quick note by way of introduction may be required here. For quite some time now, certain members of the Richmond WriMos have been trying to persuade me to watch the CW show Supernatural. I  have relented and am now embarking on watching Supernatural via the wonders of Netflix. This series of posts will simply be my first impressions, almost stream of consciousness style, presented in the form of the time elapsed in the episode and my thoughts expressed as bullet points. It’s effectively live tweeting the episodes except I don’t have to stick to 140 characters or fewer. So without further ado here’s my take on:

Season 2 Episode 18 – “Hollywood Babylon”

  • 00:20 – Another episode that skips the previously on stuff and goes directly to the teaser. Said teaser is very much like a random scene from any number of horror/slasher movies. Given the episode title, I’m assuming that this will be a movie scene done as bait and switch.
  • 01:31 – Yup. Bait and switch. And the actress’ acting scream is pretty terrible. I think that’s deliberate. We might just be having a lighthearted comedy episode, which I need after the rather downer ending of the last episode.
  • 02:06 – The guy playing the director is super familiar to me. I recognize him from the pinnacle of highbrow entertainment that is Dog with a Blog.
  • 03:10 – Rehearsing screaming on a stage that the slightly weird production guy (who has Brent Spiner’s Independence Day hair) has claimed is haunted is probably not the smartest thing to do in the world of Supernatural, Tara.
  • 04:09 – Weird production guy became Inevitable Teaser Death and is now bleeding in front of the actress. She let’s out a mighty bellow of a scream. Cut to director: “Now that’s what I’m talking about!” Hee.
  • 04:51 – The brothers are taking one of the studio backlot tours. Apparently if they’re lucky, the might catch one of the stars of Gilmore Girls. Sam ditches the tour at the mention of this for some obscure reason.
  • 05:32 – Deans reasonings for coming to LA aren’t to work but for a vacation with “Swimming pools and movie stars.” I’m fairly sure he’s a closet Beverly Hillbillies aficionado.
  • 06:05 – Dean dissing Sam for being ignorant of his cultural heritage for not knowing the rumors about the movie Poltergeist being cursed.
  • 06:37 – Okay, I like that Dean is a fanboy of the actress from the teaser, who’s a minor league screen queen. In this universe she was in Feardotcom and Ghost Ship. In real life, nobody in Feardotcom was worth remembering. it’s a terrible, terrible movie. (I haven’t seen Ghost Ship.)
  • 06:55 – Hey, it’s Gary Cole! And he’s playing a studio executive type giving the horror movie crew notes. This one is saying that it could be “a little brighter.” Somehow, I suspect Kripke and company have heard that from The CW in regards to Supernatural…
  • 07:06 – The director is names as McG, who executive produces Supernatural, I suspect we’re descending into a self-referential ouroboros of an episode.
  • 07:20 – Exec thinks Dean is a P.A. Nice cover.
  • 07:38 – Dean:”What’s a P.A.?” Sam: “I think they’re kind of like slaves.”
  • 09:30 – Dean’s discoveries include that there’s no sign of ghostly EMF, being a PA sucks and that the food is amazing, including some miniature cheese steak sandwiches that do look fantastic.
  • 10:49 – Curious as to why they would specifically call out Boogeyman as having a terrible script? Turns out it was written by Eric Kripke, the creator and showrunner of Supernatural…
  • 12:04 – Seems no on set actually knew the Inevitable Teaser Death guy.
  • 12:38 – Turns out the Inevitable Teaser Death isn’t actually dead. Nor was he a stage hand. He’s a minor league actor.
  • 13:13 – It was the producer’s idea to have the actor fake his death to create buzz around a haunted fim set. clever way to promote a horror movie on that there internet thingy.
  • 15:31 – I like Gary Cole’s studio character. Here he’s complaining about how hell-bound ghosts could hear the Latin chanting that summons them. Again, I suspect this is something that’s been said to the Supernatural crew before…
  • 16:14 – Gary Cole encountering what I strongly suspect to be the actual spirit of a black & white film era starlet. Of course, he assumes it be a special effect and complains that the neck wounds won’t read on camera.
  • 16:45 – Gary Cole’s following the spirit up to the rafters for some implied coitus type action. It’s a bold strategy, Cotton, let’s see if it pays off for him.
  • 17:01 – It didn’t pay off. Gary Cole’s dead, and his body just crashed into the film set after being hung from the neck. Now I’ll never know what his character’s name was supposed to be.
  • 18:38 – Actress is complaining about ghosts being afraid of salt. Oh, Supernatural, you so meta. Meanwhile, looks like Dean has taken to the P.A. position like a duck to water judging by the headset and his crippling craft-services addiction.
  • 18:59 – “Maybe shotguns?” “That makes even less sense than salt.”
  • 20:12 – I just noticed that Dean’s wearing a crew t-shirt. He’s going native!
  • 21:38 – The boy’s see a shot of the black & white spirit on the dailies. Dean naturally goes for the Three Men & A Baby comparison. To me the fact that Spock directed it is a weirder fact about that movie than the ghost myth.
  • 23:16 – Sam recognized the ghost lady from his research, so naturally the Winchester brothers are working the literal graveyard shift tonight.
  • 25:23 – The boys do their salt’n’burn thing. Meanwhile, another spirit with a tremendously gnarly face is attacking one of the producers.
  • 26:36 – Death by high powered rotary fan is a hell of a way to go.
  • 27:33 – The episode returns with a trailer for the movie. It is gloriously cheesy.
  • 28:21 – Fairly sure I just saw the actual McG in the background while the fake McG was giving his speech.
  • 29:31 – Sam: “Y’know, maybe the spirits are trying to shut down the movie because they think it sucks.”
  • 30:01 – Apparently the Latin summoning ritual in the movie is an accurate one…
  • 30:24 – The boys are, naturally enough, investigating the writer. Which makes sense, as clearly writers are evil.
  • 31:07 – And apparently he’s not even the original writer, that’s a dude named Walter who’s been hanging around the set like some kind of grumpy P.A.
  • 31:39 – The original script is both better than what’s being filmed and effectively a how to summon ghosts manual. I think we may have discovered the villain of the piece.
  • 33:26 – Walter’s using a ghost to try and drag the credited writer (who is kind of a massive jerk) into a big ol’ electrical fan.
  • 33:33 – Lucky for jerkboy, Dean’s packing the rock salt shotgun and so the ghost is temporarily dismissed before the s*** hits the fan.
  • 35:15 – Walter’s going all out with a multi-summoning. Somehow, I think this isn’t going to end well for him.
  • 37:14 – Walter just smashed his summoning talisman on the basis that “now, no one can have it.” That’s a dumb move because I’m pretty sure that means he’s gonna get eviscerated by the various vengeful spirits he’s summoned.
  • 37:54 – Nailed it!
  • 39:26 – The walking away into a fake sunset was the perfect capper to this episode.

Enjoyed this a lot. I figure the show kind of needed a light hearted episode considering both the way the previous episode ended and the fact that we’re getting closer and closer to the season finale where I’m assuming some serious stuff will go down. I liked the little in-jokes the show managed, and the Hollywood setting let them integrate the comedic elements pretty organically with the more typical ghost story/monster of the week elements of the show without being a disservice to either. It was fun, and that’s the bottom line.


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