Source - TVLineA weekly feature in which we spotlight shining stars
THE PERFORMER | Jensen Ackles
THE SHOW | Supernatural
THE EPISODE | “Soul Survivor”
THE AIRDATE | October 21, 2014
THE PERFORMANCE | You know you’re in for a ride when Supernatural‘s Dean and Sam have a big confrontation — and they’ve had a lot of them over the years. But nothing could have prepared us for the chilling malice that Ackles brought to Tuesday’s demon Dean vs. Sam battle.
It all started with Sam injecting Dean with the cure, eliciting animalistic growls from Ackles that made us want to offer him a glass of water for his sure-to-be hoarse throat. There were moments of proud self-satisfaction as Dean questioned Sam’s actions, goading his little brother with a small smirk as he asked, “Which one of us is really a monster?”
Then Dean pulled out the Mary Winchester card, attacking Sam where it hurts most, and things got really ugly. “Maybe it was the fact that my mother would still be alive if it wasn’t for you. That your very existence sucked the life out of my life,” Ackles said, his voice laced with venom (and pent-up truth?).
But it wasn’t all just nasty words and gut-punch insults. The face-off evolved into a terrifying cat-and-mouse game – expertly directed by Ackles – through the dark hallways of the Men of Letters bunker as the red lockdown lights flashed. Ackles was truly frightening as Dean, hammer in hand, sought out to kill his brother with unnerving determination and eagerness. We hate to say it, but he seemed downright excited to destroy Sam. With every “Sammy!” that he bellowed, we became more scared.
“Personally, I like the disease,” Dean declared, Ackles giving off just the right amount of glee and crazed eyes. And we certainly appreciated the actor’s small touches, like Dean running his hand through his longer demon locks after he finally hacked his way through the door, evoking Jack Nicholson in The Shining.
The power and versatility of Ackles’ skill were magnified when the old Dean, cured of his demon state, returned. Gone were the malevolence and disdain, replaced by guilt and worry. If “lean, mean Dean” equals an even-more-awesome-than-usual Ackles, consider us hooked.
It's so awesome to see Jensen get the recognition that he so deserves.