Nothing Ever Really Ends: Thoughts On The Final Season of the TV Show, Supernatural

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Season 15 will be the final season of Supernatural. It’s the final year. The final page to this chapter of this story. There has already been so much final talk. It’s final this and final that, and as a fan, I wonder how I will take another nine months of this.

It’s already been an emotional year.

Im March I was at the Supernatural convention in Las Vegas. The first convention after the final season announcement. There were tears. On stage and in the audience. It’s not that the fans asked the questions, it was that stars, Jensen Ackles and Jared Padalecki gave the answers. Like they needed to talk about it, and we were the first group of fans they’d seen since announcing they were hanging up their boots.

I attended Jensen’s meet and greet and cried. It was always going to happen. Talking about his character Dean Winchester’s journey, and both of us being so thankful for it…how could I not tear up. How could Jensen not tear up? That meet and greet was all about the end. But once again, that was Jensen. Like he needed to talk about it.

I was at the Chicago convention a couple of weeks later, and thankfully, the subject of the imminent final year barely came up! That convention was full of another kind of emotion. There was a freak snow storm and flight cancellations. I was on a rollercoaster. I was on my own and exhausted from a long holiday. Then my flight out of Chicago got cancelled, meaning I couldn’t make my flight home to Sydney. In amongst this trauma, Jensen and Jared decided that this would be the convention they’d call me by my name. It only took meeting them 20 times! It was Amy this, Amy that. I nearly laughed out loud when Jensen greeted me at his autograph session with a hollered, drawn out, AMYYYYYYYYYYY. The fact that he blew me a kiss and told me he loved me just kind of ended me. I was already on the edge. His kindness pushed me over. I cried a lot in my hotel room that night. About my show. About my guys. About who I’d be without this thing in my life. About being stuck 9000 miles from home. About the friends and strangers who reached out to help and comfort me.

In May I was in Melbourne when the boys came here for the Australian convention. Yes, I asked Jensen and Jared a question about the end. Sorry. They tortured me over it. Poking fun at me mercilessly. Thanking me for bringing down the mood. It went on and on. Bless their hearts. But they answered honestly. Eventually. I hugged them every which way I could that weekend, because I feel the need to hang on to them right now. Hang on tight. Like they’re slipping away from us….

In July I was in San Diego, at Comic Con for the final Supernatural Comic-Con panel. I was anxious all weekend. I was terrified something would happen and I wouldn’t be there. I was stressed and fretting. I don’t know how my friends put up with me. But they did. And there I was. In amongst the nearly 7000 people. There to celebrate this thing we all love so very, very much. I cried. A lot. When the cast came on stage. When they cried. When they couldn’t talk for crying. When my friends were crying. When the cast got a standing ovation. When they left that stage for that last time. I cried. So many tears. Then my friends and I all went for food. But mostly drinks. And we all cried some more. I think we were crying sad tears for the loss of something so monumental in our lives, and how scared we were about what that means, but also happy tears, for ever having had it, and for having each other. In that moment, one of the shiniest moments of my life, my gratitude just kept running down my face. I will always be thankful for that day.

Now I sit in my home in Sydney, reading the quotes from the last Supernatural Television Critics Association panel. It’s final this and final that, and I wonder how I will take another nine months of this. But then I think about what Jensen said, “This is a long journey that I don’t think is ever going to be over…”

It is a long journey. It’s the best of journeys. From that Monday night in 2006, when Supernatural first aired in Australia, to now and on into the future. The best of journeys. A journey through a story that has both lifted me up and crushed me. A story that has led me all over the world. On road trips through Texas, up Mount St Helens, down the waterways of Chicago in freezing sleet, up mountainsides in Vancouver, to the beaches of Hawaii, and next year, the grandeur of Rome. A story that has brought into my world so many friends. The best of friends. The kind that understand me on a level most people never will. The kind that reach out to me when I’m hurting, even if we’ve never met in person. The kind that will forgive me when I rant, will hold me when I cry, will make me laugh until my drink comes out of my nose. The kind that knows how to sit silently with me, because we don’t need words to connect what’s between us.

This story, this epic story has changed my life and the trajectory of my life in ways that sometimes I can’t even fathom. This spectacular story. It has opened my heart and my mind. It has brought a world of diversity into my world. A world of charity. A world of creativity. I am better for this story. In every possible way.

So how do I say goodbye? How do I say goodbye to the defining experience of my life? How do I ever let it go? I don’t. Because there are no goodbyes. These characters, they will always be with me. In my mind. On my TV. Alive in my soul. Their hearts beating in mine. These friends, they will always be with me. They are lifelong friends. They are forever. These actors, they will always be with me. I will follow their paths, where ever it takes them. I will champion them until the end of my days. Because they deserve that. Because they gave me so much. These memories. These beautiful, rich, and magnificent memories, they will always be with me. They will carry me through my future, with the downs it’s bound to bring, and the ups that will come along with them. Golden, emotion dripped memories. The memories that are still being made.

I have learned so much in the last 14 years. About myself, about people, about love, about loss, about the world, and one thing has been ingrained into my very being… Endings are hard, but then again, nothing ever really ends, does it?

We’ll carry this precious cargo with us every, single day.

It’s going to be a tough year of final this and final that, but I feel so blessed to feel so sad about this au revoir.

Supernatural Season 15 - The Final Season airs from October 10 2019.
Listen to Amy's thoughts on Supernatural, along with Jules Wilkinson
from the Supernatural Wiki, on The Women of Letters Podcast, available
on iTunes.

 

 

The Ups and Downs of Expat Life

straw hat and paper lantern placed on bamboo pole
Photo by Jimmy Chan on Pexels.com

Tahlia had always wanted to return to Hong Kong. She was born in the bustling territory and spent the first 15 years of her life growing up in a thriving expat community. “My dad was a civil engineer,” says Tahlia. “And went over there because the work was much more interesting and paid better, and they wanted an adventure, him and my mum.”

At 15 Tahlia headed back to Australia to attend boarding school, but over the years the city she’d spent her childhood in continued to fascinate her. “It’s a really interesting city culturally,” she says. “It’s kind of east meets west. I’d always had the itch to want go back.” Then as fate would have it, Thalia’s partner was offered a job in Hong Kong. So, she packed up and went with him.

At first everything was new and exciting, but the reality of setting up life in a foreign country soon set in. Though Tahlia had grown up in Hong Kong, she never learnt the language which made finding a job hard. She was out of work for nearly a year and this impacted her socially. Without a job Tahlia found it difficult to establish friendships. Though there’s a large expat community in Hong Kong, it’s predominately based around playing sport. “I’m not particularly sporty,” Tahlia laughs. “I found it really hard to make friends.” For Tahlia, those first months were often lonely.

Ironically, when she finally landed a job, the subject was the sporting world she’d previously shunned. Tahlia ran community engagement events for the Hong Kong Sevens Rugby series, even meeting the odd celebrity like American TV star, David Hasselhoff. The job turned out to be a lot of fun. She started to make friends and finally settle into her life.

Though at times living in Hong Kong was tough, it did have perks. Tahlia and her partner got to discover more of Asia. “We did so much travel. I’ve been to so many amazing places.” The pair visited Cambodia and Borneo, making multiple trips to Vietnam. Tahlia adds: “That’s probably one of my favourite places now.”

These days, Thalia is back home in Australia about to start a new stage in her life. “I just got a new job today,” she says. “I’ll be working on Nike as an Account Manager.” While living and working overseas is an experience she’ll always be thankful for, it also made her grateful for the life we have in Australia. “The work life balance is just incredible compared to there and our standard of living is so much better.” And though she’ll never regret her Hong Kong adventure, she loves being back in Melbourne with friends and family, living close to her mum and with her cat, Persephone. “The experience was great,” Tahlia says. “I don’t regret it. But I think people think living overseas is definitely all fun and games when it’s 100% not. I’m really, really glad to be home.”

 

(c) Amy Hutton