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2011’s Most Memorable Episodes: Supernatural “The French Mistake” 

Photo Credit: Frank Ockenfels 3/The CW

When I started thinking about the one episode of Supernaturalthat thoroughly entertained me above all others this year, I first narrowed the 21 episodes down to a group of five: “The French Mistake,” “Frontierland,” “The Man Who Would Be King,” “Death’s Door” and to a certain extent, “Slash Fiction” (everything except that ending). None of these episodes were perfect, but they were the standouts for me. Out of this group, two really blew me away – “TMWWBK” and “The French Mistake.” It took me a while to figure out my choice because these two episodes couldn’t be more different.

Photo Credit: Jack Rowand/The CW

“The Man Who Would Be King” was Cas-centric. The great Ben Edlund wrote this heartbreakingly magnificent hour of television. We got to see things from a perspective that had been missing the entire sixth season. We got to find out how in the world Cas would end up making an alliance with Crowley of all beings. After all, Cas was a servant of the Lord while Crowley was the self-proclaimed King of Hell. In essence, Edlund penned Cas’ break-up with the Supernatural universe, with Sam and Dean Winchester and we learned how everyone has it in them to do some questionable things even if they’re for the right reasons. It was achingly sad and brought to an end (for now) a friendship that I had adored for the last three seasons – the one between Cas and Dean. And since I’m entirely way too into this show, I did have to mourn this loss. I’m still feeling its absence. “The Man Who Would Be King” was simply stellar thanks to the writing, the acting and the emotion of it all. Everything clicked.

Photo Credit: Jack Rowand/The CW

In Season 6’s “The French Mistake” – an episode also written by Edlund (me thinks this is not a coincidence) – the mythology was okay. It was the entire adventure that ruled. In a season where darkness ruled the show more than ever, this episode made me laugh hysterically and it was much appreciated. A lot was asked of Jensen and Jared. They were playing Sam and Dean Winchester who traveled to an alternate reality where they were forced to play actors Jensen Ackles and Jared Padalecki who were filming a TV show called Supernatural where these actors play Sam and Dean Winchester. It makes my head hurt just thinking about it but it totally worked. When I first heard that this super gigantic meta episode was going to be unleashed on us, I had my concerns. Turns out I didn’t need to have any because it was some of the funniest stuff I had seen on the show in a long time.

So you see my dilemma. These are two great episodes for much different reasons. In the end, I could only choose one. So I went for the comedy.

Supernatural’s Most Memorable Episode of 2011: “The French Mistake”

Photo Credit: Jack Rowand/The CW

I’m sorry but Sam and Dean acting like Jensen and Jared playing Sam and Dean Winchester was hilarious. We got to see how this alt reality version of the actors lived their lives. Jensen had a pimped out trailer that included dailies being shown on a loop, a huge aquarium and some mondo-sized model helicopter. I mean, why would he even need that in his trailer? Bonus for showing us a clip of the real Jensen Ackles during his soap opera days. He was such a fetus back then, don’t you think? I loved Jared’s monster-sized mansion with the oversized pictures of himself and his petite wife Genevieve (Jared’s real life wife who used to play Ruby on the show), their pet alpacas and their cause du jour. I couldn’t get enough of our Sam and Dean’s reaction to the silliness.

The best reaction came from that scene on the lot where the brothers talked to Misha Collins, who plays Cas on Supernatural. Dean, of course, wondered where they all got their silly names. And Misha was all confused then thought he was being pranked. That’s when he wasn’t busy tweeting his followers, the Mishamigos (as opposed to Misha’s Minions. Brilliant.). It was just ridiculous.

But the most ridiculously awesome scene of all was when Sam and Dean were forced to shoot a scene of the show. I’m going to take a page out of alt Misha’s twitter book and say I was ROTFLMAO during the entire scene. I had to keep rewinding because I kept missing stuff. There was Sam’s awkward loose-y goose-y gestures and his looking at the camera and then trying not to look at cameras. Dean kept up this whole deep-throated voice thing (because that’s what Jensen does) and he had this permanently fixed blue-steeled look (because that’s what Jensen does). It was just genius. When Misha mouthed “what the hell” to a crew that included Brian Doyle Murray as Robert Singer, it was such a freakin’ fantastic moment. I’m laughing right now just remembering this scene. Bad Acting Sam and Dean were awesome to watch. And Jared and Jensen (the real life versions) executed it all brilliantly. Kudos to Misha as well – he provided tons of opportunities for laughter.

It was all such beautiful mayhem and it really could have been a disaster. But it wasn’t. Instead, the episode bared re-watching immediately and many times more since it aired. Jared and Jensen — and the whole entire Supernatural crew in front of the camera and behind the scenes — were really good sports. I’m glad this super duper meta spectacular event was a success.

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