Revisiting/remixing SPN 9.20 "Bloodlines"

I just recently rewatched "Bloodines" with two questions in mind: "Why didn't it feel like an episode of Supernatural?" and "Would it be possible to fix that without throwing the episode out wholecloth?"

In answer to question one: because it's missing almost every single trait of Supernatural.

  • All the monster stuff is almost completely unnecessary. Change it from "monster families" to "mob families" and you could run the exact same plot. Exactly the same plot. Seriously.

  • None of the ‘guest’ characters have any non-plot-related dialog, or anything to make them seem like actual people instead of stock TV characters. Contrast almost any other guest character from pretty nearly every other episode—even the dumb college kids from “Bitten” were more believable than this. Contrast Sam and Dean in the pilot: halfway into the episode and they're strong enough characters to walk off the screen.

  • Returning to the first point, you could remove the Winchesters from the episode entirely and it wouldn't actually affect the plot at all. They're basically exposition for people who haven't watched any other episodes of Supernatural, transportation, and weapons as needed. And there's only a single line of dialogue that actually sounds like them. I didn't notice it the first time, but on rewatch it's pretty blatant. No wonder Jensen is so sarcastic about the episode!

  • The one thing it does have in common with the rest of Supernatural is that it's very pretty.

In answer to question two:I think so.

“Salvage Job”

Keep opener with Ennis proposing to girlfriend, but cut the monster nightclub. Instead, they wind up in the middle of the attack on Sal. Girlfriend isn’t killed, but winds up with concussion; at worst, coma. Sal’s heart was almost carved out.

Replace/remove professor-impersonation intro of David. Should he be a red herring?

Ennis is a cop (perhaps), but that’s not really a plot point. The interview happens at the hospital; Ennis doesn’t want to believe he saw a monster, but can’t come up with an alternate explanation. (Can tie this in with “#THINMAN”)

Remove monster families except werewolves; the whole Margo-takes-over-shapeshifter-mob scene doesn’t happen. Also obviously, Ennis doesn’t find his father’s silver bullets. (Perhaps move Margo and Sal to werewolf pack.)

Isn’t Ennis who investigates the club, but David. (Also, break-in scene is awfully convenient as written) Also, isn’t club, but crime scene. (Also also, how the heck did the Winchesters know to go to club?)

David tries to con info out of boys, not Ennis; at this point they still think victim and related people are all human. And David, when outed, swears up, down, and sideways that they are. Dean wants to kill David on principle; Sam stops him. Touch on skinwalker from “All Dogs Go to Heaven”

Not sure whether boys tell David to clear out of town, or to remain where they can find him. Either way, he’s changed his mind and is trying to get Violet to leave with him when they’re attacked. Attacker uses something like the deadman’s blood injections to subdue Violet; shots from boys create enough of a ruckus that the attacker is able to remove her from scene. (In ruckus, does Dean wind up killing anyone?) David and Sam pry Dean away to pursue Violet (Sam’s the one who suggests tracking her phone, because, y’know, he’s done that before).

Have it be the antagonist’s daughter who was killed: gives him a reason to go after Violet. Except Violet is scorned by her family (why are other werewolves misogynistic? Could simply be that they think she’s ‘squeamish’, doesn’t show proper loyalty to family. Violet wants to run away; David is biding time—likes ‘belonging’, even though no one knows he’s faking being a werewolf)

Sidenote: coming off of “AAAA”, maybe the theme for Sam and Dean is Sam trying to salvage his brother from turning into just a monster-killer. (Crazed killer puppy)

Not sure yet of ending. Who kills bad guy? Dean maybe wants to; sign of MoC continuing to corrupt him. Pretty sure Violet doesn't burst her chains, but maybe she should shoot him or something (gun instead of claws means she's still controling her wolf; wants to be normal human).

Return to werewolf mob lair--everything's been cleaned out. Maybe send David and Violet to Garth’s  surviving in-laws?

Question: how to handle POV?

Relevant episodes:
·         Skin
·         Monster Movie (shapeshifter impersonating other monsters)
·         All Dogs Go to Heaven
·         Sharp Teeth
·         #THINMAN (not actually a monster as bad guy)
·         Annie Alex Alexis Ann (Dean increasingly bloodthirsty)

Written up *while* watching the episode, so apologies for any typos/insanity.

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