Supernatural: Love Hurts

Filed under: Recaps & Reviews

It's Supernatural meets It Follows in this week's episode, Love Hurts.

In Hudson, Ohio, Dan and Melissa Harper are getting ready to go out for dinner when the babysitter, Staci, arrives. Staci's a bit late and almost wakes the baby but things get a bit more interesting when she kisses Dan in the living room. The two of them are having an affair and Staci wants Dan to leave Melissa but Dan thinks it's too mean on Valentine's Day. After Dan and Melissa leave, Dan returns later on only to literally rip Staci's heart out. The Winchester's arrive the next day to investigate and talk to the Harpers. Dean suspects that Dan had something going on with Staci and he gets him to confess later on in his office. Dan was planning on being honest with the pseudo FBI and give up his 'missing' nanny cam footage but he wanted to erase the part of him and Staci kissing first. He shows Dean and the footage clearly shows him killing Staci but Dan was with Melissa all night and everyone could vouch for that. Dean believes him but takes the footage to show to Sam. Sam watches it and thinks they have a shapeshifter on their hands. Later on that night, Dan is visited by none other than Staci and she wants his heart just as bad. The boys show up at the crime scene the next day and after confirming the murderer was Staci, they suspect Melissa but after giving her the silver test they come up with nothing. Melissa is by herself later that night when she hears a banging at the door. It's Dan. She runs for her life to the motel where Sam and Dean are staying and begs them for their help. Melissa has been keeping secrets of her own.

They can't all be winners and Love Hurts is a perfect example. Borrowing heavily from the recent horror movie, It Follows essentially took the Supernatural spin on the STD curse that It Follows did so much better. While I'm not the biggest fan of the movie, it used teenagers and sex as the way that the curse was transferred from one person to the next. The kids were generally powerless to do anything about it and all they could do in the end was run and be diligent. Being a Wednesday night primetime show, Supernatural opted for the kiss instead of sex and had Dean take the curse from Melissa to keep her safe. Though it was selfless and heroic of Dean, he didn't seem afraid for his life in the slightest or unconfident that he and his brother wouldn't be able to stop it. The result was an utter lack of tension as to what would happen to Dean and a relatively dull plot.

Supernatural meets It Follows may have been a good idea but Supernatural meets flat guest stars was not. Neither Jim Thorburn or Luciana Carro fit the roles of Dan and Melissa Harper as they came across as stilted due to flat writing and on the nose dialogue. Fear is one of the hardest emotions to convey on film and Thorborn and Carro weren't able to sell those moments when fear was all their characters had. On the other hand, the characters did mention that they had a baby named Teagan but Melissa ran out the door when the Kareen (I made that spelling up) came after her without so much as a glance behind her or a mention of her child to Sam and Dean.

We may have gotten an explanation but the motivations for Sonja killing husbands and wives was just ridiculous. Sonja explained to Sam that she first started killing men for wronging their wives and then started killing both because the wives were foolish and took the men back. But what does any of that do for her? Besides satisfaction, what does she gain? The problem with having a villain that isn't a mindless monster that functions on urges and desire is that they need a reason to do the things they do. Having an ancient monster means that stuff can be explained away in a line of dialogue but Sonja is just a witch that kills people for nothing.

In the grand scheme of season eleven, Love Hurts will be looked at as a forgettable misstep. For an episode that lacked any tension and did nothing to drive the plot forward at least we can say it's over. Hopefully things will pick up next week when Castiel (now Lucifer) returns in The Vessel.

Tags: Supernatural, Dean Winchester, Sam Winchester, Jensen Ackles, Jared Padalecki

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