Well, Supernatural fans — the wait is officially over. Tonight's premiere episode, "We Need To Talk About Kevin," [sort of] explained what happened to Dean in Purgatory, set the trajectory for the next several episodes, and introduced a unique crack in the brothers' relationship that won't heal overnight. Hollywood.com screened the episode on Monday with producers Jeremy Carver and Robert Singer, and naturally we had approximately 19,393 questions after the show. Carver and Singer were kind enough to answer a few of them, and what they had to say has us even more excited for what should be a dark (but fun!) Season 8.
First off, we needed to clear something up — why on earth should we never accept a joint from a guy named Don? "That's just one of those life-isms that I think that we all can agree to," Carver explained with a laugh. He was quick to add that Don is not an actual person: "I think Don is representative." So... that clears that up?
We were also dying to know if, since a major arc this season will be Sam, Dean, and Kevin trying to close the gates of Hell forever, this would ultimately mean no more work for Sam and Dean. Carver was quick to negate that theory. "I think it might be overly sweeping to think that no demons means no hunt," Carver said. "There's so many other monsters in this universe."
Gotcha! Still, closing those gates will be a difficult journey, and having Crowley hot on their trail certainly won't make things any easier — just ask Kevin's poor safety-schooled girlfriend. "Crowley is poised to be somewhat of the main antagonist this season," Carver explained. "Closing the Hell Gate is meant to be a season arc. But the questions that come up in this quest, and the series of reveals and discoveries [along the way]... that will be explored in future seasons."
Many of these reveals and discoveries will arrive via flashback — since Sam and Dean are keeping their year apart close to the vest, viewers will get some insight on what happened to the brothers during that pivotal year while the main plot still moves forward. "Supernatural hasn't spent a lot of time on relationship stories, and [flashbacks are] a nice mechanism to do that without imposing on the forward momentum of the other stories that we're telling," Carver explained. "A lot of times on this show when we talk about going to Hell or going to Purgatory, the instinct in the writers' room is to say, 'We're never going to give a Hell or a Purgatory as good as people's imaginations.' So the instinct is normally not to go there. We went the other way this year. We said, 'We are going to go there,' because there's a really strong character thing going on down there."
We witnessed some of the aforementioned "character thing" tonight, when Dean and Benny had their initial meeting in Purgatory. Their complex relationship will play a major role throughout the season, as Dean must come to terms with having a monster as a friend. "You'll see Benny playing a pretty important part with his physical presence, and his psychological presence," Carver said. "The idea of Benny hangs over our brothers pretty heavily, certainly as the year goes along. He's a guy who has a tremendous bearing. It's a really complex character, and adds a really interesting wrinkle onto our brothers' relationship this year — how they deal with something like this."
Of course, the brothers are also dealing with the resentment Dean feels for Sam, since Sam didn't look for him (and lived the simple life) during his year in Purgatory. Fans of Winchester brotherly love probably didn't enjoy tonight's tension, but Carver swears that it's all for the greater good — and that Sam's punishment won't last forever. "Dean talks about it in episode one," Carver explained. "[He said] 'We've always ignored the advice we gave to each other.' What happens if someone actually [takes] it? How long is Sam going to pay for this? One of the things we really like about the first 13 [episodes] is the way we're playing with perception. Right now, Dean is piling on Sam for this. What happens as these brothers start to discover more about what they've done in their past year... those tables turn in terms of who has to answer for what. Everyone will get their licks in. Nobody is going to be a beaten dog for too long."
Heavy stuff, right? Thankfully, Carver was also able to tease some upcoming stand-alone comedy episodes, which sound pretty damn spectacular. "We're doing one a little bit later that is dealing with what happens when you find yourself living in a cartoon universe," he said. But don't worry — you'll still get to see Sam and Dean's live-action hotness. "It will not be animated," he continued. "It deals more with cartoon physics in the real world." [ASIDE: Hollywood.com was on set during the filming of this episode, and can confirm that it looks really awesome.]
But wait: It gets better ("You know I'm not gay, right?" cries Kevin). This season, the boys will tackle something weirder than they've ever faced before: LARPing. (Live Action Role Playing, for newbs.) "We will be doing an episode that deals pretty heavily — and fun-ly — with the LARPing universe," Carver said. (Raise your hand if you want to see Dean dressed as an elf!)