In September 2005 I had just started high school. On Tuesday, September 13, I think I had an orchestra rehearsal, if I remember right, but there was this new show premiering on the WB that I was super excited about because I loved (and still love) all things paranormal. So I set up my VCR to record it—unfortunately the episode ran five minutes over so I missed the ending, but it didn’t matter, I was instantly hooked on this story of two brothers searching for their missing father and hunting ghosts and demons as they went.
With an array of “monsters of the week” that drew from urban legends and folklore, two extremely handsome leads, and a killer classic rock soundtrack, Supernatural felt like someone had reached into my brain and pulled out my dream TV show. I was immediately obsessed, but none of my friends at school were very interested. I turned to the internet to find people to discuss it with, and found so much more.
The Supernatural (or “SPN”) fandom was huge and sprawling and unfortunately over time gained a reputation as one of the worst-behaved audiences out there, but at its start it was just an excited group of fans on Livejournal and later Tumblr sharing theories and debating which brother was better-looking and creating backstories for minor characters and making friends. I delved deep into the fandom—I even wrote fanfiction (and it was pretty popular! no, I will not share it with you).
Through SPN, I met some of my closest friends. We watched episodes together over Skype, edited each others’ fanfic, and in some cases took our friendships into the “real world” by meeting up, hanging out, and of course watching the show. My most memorable moment was spending an entire night in line at San Diego Comic-Con to get good seats in the famed Hall H, where the SPN panel was taking place the following day. I wouldn’t have done it by myself, but surrounded by friends from around the country who all met up for that exact purpose, it was more than worth it. Some of us have grown apart, but many I’m still close with to this day.
Over time, my interest in Supernatural waned, as the show stretched on year after year. I stopped watching sometime in season 8. Today the stars announced that the show will end next year, after a staggering 15 seasons. My Supernatural-watching friends and I used to joke about how another WB/CW show, young-Superman series Smallville, was going to run forever. Smallville finished after season 10. For the first few seasons, SPN’s renewal was never a given—I’m pretty sure it wasn’t even renewed for a second season until after the first had already finished. It grew and grew in popularity, however, and the CW wasn’t exactly brimming with content, so in later seasons the renewal question was no longer “if” but “how many more.”
Hey #SPNFamily here’s a little message from @JensenAckles @mishacollins and me. I’m so grateful for the family that’s been built because of the show. Excuse me while i go cry. pic.twitter.com/QDXDsAyIfK
— Jared Padalecki (@jarpad) March 22, 2019
I’ve always said that when the series finally finishes I’ll go back and pick up where I left off, but 6+ more seasons is a big commitment. Maybe I’ll never get around to it. But I’ll always be grateful for the friends it brought into my life, because they’re here to stay.