The Winchesters, currently airing on The CW, tells the story of Mary and John Winchester. However, the popularity behind this prequel is due to the beloved Supernatural original series.
This popular series had fifteen seasons that followed Sam and Dean Winchester through a dangerous battle between good and evil. While later seasons were more personal for the Winchester brothers, the first season captured audiences who have become devoted fans of this longtime series. However, many aspects of the first season are unrecognizable by the end.
Ghosts as an obstacle
In the first season of Supernatural, there are several episodes in which the brothers have to fight ghosts. During those early years, the ghosts were much more of a chore than they later became, with Sam and Dean having to fight harder to overcome the apparition.
Ghosts were much less common after Sam and Dean had to start battling gods, demons, angels, and even the Devil and God. Although they did occasionally deal with a ghost, they either found it much easier to fight these undead, or there was a unique twist on the same ole to make them more fearsome.
Fight the demons
There were plenty of powerful demons on Supernatural who were either serious threats to the brothers or surprising allies. However, in the first season, the brothers were very afraid of demons and had to use very different tactics to kill them (or send them back to hell).
Before killing demons with knives and bullets, and Sam and Dean had faced dozens of demons at once with no problem, demons were a more formidable conflict. The brothers used the word “Cristo” to make a demon show its true form, and they had to perform an exorcism to send the demons back to hell. In later seasons, they don’t use any of these methods, and the demons are dismissed as mere nuisances instead of dangerous villains.
At the start of this story, Sam was not interested in the family business and wanted to live a normal life after going to college. However, over time, he showed less interest in pursuing a “normal” human life.
In season one, Sam only agrees to return to hunting after the demon Azazel kills his girlfriend Jessica the same way it killed his mother. While he could have returned to school after defeating this demon, he continued to fight with Dean and stop the dark forces from invading the world. It’s only after Dean’s death in the finale that Sam finally decides to settle down and build a happy life.
Dean’s Dedication to John
Dean and John Winchester share many personality traits in Supernatural, making the eldest son much more devoted and connected to his father. While Sam is the rebellious son, in the first season, Dean is the one who wants to obey his father’s orders no matter what.
In later seasons, however, Dean begins to wonder how his father raised them and what kind of effect it had on him and his brother. While season 1 Dean is blindsided by wanting to impress his father and win his love, older Dean understands that their relationship was actually quite toxic.
Sam’s Unique Gifts
In the first season, Sam has unique abilities due to the demon blood put into him when he was a baby by the demon Azazel. In this first season, he has some presentiments that allow him to foresee people in danger. Although concerning, it was also a gift to help the brothers hunt.
This demon blood inside Sam is a major plot point for a few seasons. However, after a mysterious force (later revealed to be God) drives the brothers away from Lucifer, Sam loses his demonic powers. Although it is a major plot point in his storyline, he never regains his abilities and is rarely talked about.
One of the biggest criticisms of previous seasons of Supernatural is the portrayal of women. They were either viewed misogynistically or as villains for most of the early episodes, keeping the focus on the two main male characters.
In later seasons, there is a lot more female representation and in a more positive light. The brothers form close relationships with important figures like Charlie Bradbury, Jodie Mills and Donna Hanscum. These female characters are not only useful secondary characters, but valuable team members who are just as good at hunting and fighting as the male hunters.
One thing fans love about Supernatural is the complex relationships within the Winchester family. In the first season, Mary Winchester is only shown in flashbacks and in an episode in which they encounter her ghost haunting their old family home.
For most series, Mary is something that pushes brother revenge and started his family business of saving people and hunting things. However, after being brought back to life in season 12, she is very different from what the brothers ever imagined and it also changes viewers’ perspective on this much talked about but never seen character.
One argument Supernatural fans often have is whether Monster of the Week episodes or Mytharc seasons are better watches. Although the first season saw the Winchesters hunt the demon that killed their mother, there were more side cases in this season than later ones.
Over the seasons, the show focused less on rescuing people and hunting things down and more on rescuing the world and hunting down evil villains. While later seasons still had chase episodes, the overall conflict took up more screen time than at the start of the series.
Fear of death
Although the Winchester brothers are still in dangerous situations that could lead to their death, they feared meeting their end much more in the first season than in later plot points. However, as they encounter more powerful villains, death has become something they have come to terms with.
After the brothers both meet death, go to hell, and lose countless loved ones, they seem far less concerned about their own demise. By the end of the series, and the brothers have defeated the greater forces of evil, they no longer fear their own death.
The soundtrack changes quite a bit throughout the series. While the show mostly plays popular and classic rock music, there are very few songs that the showrunners have used multiple times throughout the series.
However, there is a song that is played in the first season which becomes the unofficial theme song for the show. “Carry On My Wayward Son” by Kansas, is played in the penultimate episode of the first season and at the end of each subsequent season. Besides this iconic song, the music changes throughout the series.