I've already stumbled upon a mistake in the Supernatural Timeline that I usually use, so I'm quite happy with my decision to keep track of days in the series. It means though that there is TONS of unaccounted for time between episodes, also the weather doesn't make any sense. Basically episodes 3-5 take place between November 14th and February 27th, yet we never see any snow (even though episode 5 takes place in Ohio, where I'm pretty sure the leaves wouldn't still be green and there should be snow on the ground :P).
Anyway, I'll explain more under the cut....
The boys spend about 5 days investigating the Bloody Mary deaths in Ohio, including a short trip to neighbouring Indiana (I had to look this up on google maps, my US geography is not very good).
Oh Canada - The boys are actually in a library when they go to the library. You can tell, because it says Bibliotheque in giant blue letters on the doors behind them...how very American. :P
I love this exchange:
Sam: Why'd you let me fall asleep?
Dean: Because I'm an awesome brother....What did you dream about?
Sam: Lollypops and candycanes.
I love how Sam's voice is all rough and sleepy...man, gets me all the time. I guess I have a thing for sarcastic sleepy people.
I also love it when Dean takes down those two cops in seconds. I love Outlaw!Dean.
Oh man...important lines that you don't realize are important unless you come back to them: Right at the end of the episode, Sam says "You're my brother, and I'd die for you, but there are somethings I need to keep to myself..." and right after he says "and I would die for you" there's this flash cut to Dean, who gives this LOOK...and I guess it's a credit to the Jensen, because it's not like he would know what was coming either, but he obviously had worked out that that wasn't something that Dean wanted to hear. Sam says it so flippantly, but you can tell that Dean takes it seriously and doesn't like it...or at least, that's what I interpreted from the look. At the very least, he isn't happy about it.
Ah Jess...this is actually the first and only time we see her "haunting" Sam. I'm not sure what the symbolism is. If it was a goodbye, or what...I mean, he doesn't exactly stop having nightmares, does he? Now I can't remember. There's none in Skin, anyway. I love the song they play. Good episode.
This is the episode that doesn't fit into the timeline over at the Winchester-Journals (linked above). Winchester-Journals says that the brothers attended Shoemaker's funeral on November 21st, but that's implausible considering the time spent on the other cases and the known dates. Plus, the paper says "a short service will be held on ...ber 31st at 2:00pm" meaning, either October -before the series even starts -or December - but I doubt anyone would hold a funeral service on New Years Eve. The last known date before this episode is November 14th, if you accept my counting that Dean and Sam spend 4 days hunting the Wendigo after spending a week in Palo Alto after Jess' death. Then they spend a total of around 10 days on the two cases between Wendigo and Bloody Mary...taking them well past the 21st, especially considering that there are usually "lost-days" between episodes that we never see.
Plus, if we take into account the dates given for events in the next episode, there would be almost three whole months between Bloody Mary and Skin, if Bloody Mary occurred in November. I think it's more likely that Bloody Mary occurred sometime in January possibly February, and we'll just ignore the weather, and we'll assume that Sam only checks his emails every two months.
Sadly, no DVD extras.
So, the death of the Shapeshifter at the end of this episode is given as March 7th in The Benders. Rebecca sent the email on Dec 5th (most likely just when they filmed the episode, but since it's there in the email Sam reads, I might as well take it as canon). They are on their way to Bisbee Arizona when Sam finally checks his email. The show itself gives tells us that it is a week between Sam reading the email and the cops chasing Shapeshifter!Dean, which means that this episode takes place over 8 days (including 2 days of the boys driving to St. Louis from Arizona that we don't see). So, this episode takes place between February 28th and March 7th.
I'm quite impressed with myself over this timeline stuff.
The beginning of this episode gets me every time: The music, the SWAT time, the look on Not!Dean's face, makes my heart pound. It's so well done.
More little things I like: When Rebecca takes them to the crime scene, she is all grossed out by the blood, but Sam and Dean don't even flinch. Dean's pretending to be a cop, so that makes sense...but it's cool how Sam forgets that his friends are supposed to think he is normal. I just think that although Sam has tried very hard over the years to appear normal, he doesn't quite know how to do it, there are still things he doesn't pick up on....like "a bloody murder scene should turn your stomach"...If the boys cringe at a murder scene, it's usually only because of the smell.
I like Dean giving Sam a hard time about still trying to keep his friends, and his belief that lies of omission are still lies. The Shapeshifter tells Sam that Dean was jealous that Sam got to go to college and Dean had to stay with their Dad. But I think Dean is actually just jealous that Sam had/has friends that aren't him, because Dean really is all alone and Sam really has been the only friend he's ever had. Dean telling Sam at the end that Sam isn't the only freak, that Dean's a freak right there with him...that basically sums it up - Dean is fine with being an outcast of society, just as long as he has Sam with him. When Sam joined regular society by going college, I think that's what really set Dean's abandonment issues into motion. The Shapeshifter pretty much confirms it when he says "He has tons of issues with you" and "sooner or later everyone will leave me."
This is actually the last time we see any of Sam's college friends, I think. I think for Sam this case is sort of a goodbye to normal. I think it's what he starts to realize when he sees that picture of him, Rebecca, and her brother, on the fridge...that that's not him anymore, and that maybe it never was - because of his line at the end, when he admits to Dean that even though he tried, he never really fit in at Stanford. I know Sam still harbours thoughts of going back to school after they find their Dad and kill the YED, but I think this is the beginning of him accepting the fact that he's never going to really be normal...that he can't cut off his past like it never happened. Mind you, these days he has absolutely no choice in the matter.
And I might add: Shapeshifter!Dean was so right when he told Sam that he should appreciate his brother more! That's one thing that irks me about the first two seasons (but mostly the first) - Sam is such a take-Dean-for-granted guy.
Sadly, no DVD extras
Quick note on Accessories: I've noticed that Dean wears a group of bracelets in the S1 so far. I've also noticed in the promotional pictures for S4 that Sam isn't wearing his leather band (but I haven't gone back and confirmed with the episodes)...so I'm thinking that bracelets are just something that come and go with the boys...and they don't have any meaning besides, oh hey...a bracelet. Maybe it's just because with their lives, they can't have many personal belongings, so they purchase bracelets from time to time because they are small things - but give them a chance to have something that is theirs. It could be as simple as that, anyway. The dudes just might like bracelets is what I am trying to say, I guess.