I caught up with the first 4 seasons of Supernatural last year and I couldn't believe what I'd been missing! I had seen odd episodes late at night on ITV over the years and had enjoyed them, but hadn't really been motivated to search out any more if I didn't stumble across them (and with the scheduling here in the early hours of the morning that was always the case!). Believe me, you need to catch up on all of the seasons, this is without doubt one of the best shows on television!
I think that a lot of people have a pre-conceived notion that Supernatural is light weight, teen-oriented fare - not true at all! Although it has to be admitted that the two leads are exceptionally easy on the eye (no point in even attempting to deny it!), they are also great actors playing complex, layered characters on a consistently clever, well-written and entertaining show.
From the initial 'monster of the week' focus at the beginning of season one, the writers have built up the mythology of the show really well to encompass demons, angels, destiny and the apocalypse. The most important aspect of the storyline, however, is the relationship between the two brothers - this is what packs the emotional punch and really makes you care about what happens to these characters. In this, the writers and crew are helped enormously by the great on-screen chemistry between Jensen Ackles and Jared Padalecki.
Season 4 sees Dean Winchester return from hell and we begin a new story arc involving angels and possibly even God (I'm really hoping that Supernatural doesn't do a Battlestar Gallactica in season 5 and decide to confirm the existence of an all-powerful creator...please writers, think more Philip Pullman's 'His Dark Materials' - or anything! - than Judeo-Christian orthodoxy).
This season can be quite dark in tone, as it involves a shift in the brothers' relationship - they have taken divergent paths and there is a loss of their previous absolute trust in one another. Dean is trying to cope with the trauma of his time in hell and Sam has been changed by failing to save Dean and by having to carry on the fight without him. The writers do really well in developing this theme throughout the season to its dramatic conclusion, and Jensen and Jared are really brilliant in their respective roles. Misha Collins also proves to be an inspired choice in the role of the angel Castiel, and Jim Beaver is as ever great in the role of Bobby Singer.
Just in case you think that all is doom and gloom, however, please rest assured that Supernatural is also one of the funniest shows on TV. The ability to blend shocks, drama and laugh-out-loud comedy (often in the same episode) is one of the real strengths of the show - if you don't believe me, have a look at the clip from season 4 on You Tube involving the suicidal teddy bear, genius!