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I can’t tell you the excitement with which I sat down to watch the season opener of Supernatural, which I still claim has the best storyline on TV right now. And it delivered–which isn’t to say it was unbridled awesomeness, because it was still a little stilted and uneven, but overall it was well done, a good reintroduction from a difficult place, and had some really touching moments. It also set the season up with all the questions it needed for motivation: Why is Sam back? Why is Grampa back? Is Grampa evil? (I’m calling that one now, in fact: yes.) Why is Sam so aloof? What is up with the whackadoodle monsters?

As usual, the AV Club recap is excellent, particularly in this section:

This is all well and good, but what really sold me on “Exile” is how the episode treats Lisa and Ben. These are characters begging to be written off. They get in the way of giving us what we want, holding Dean down when he should be out racing the roads and shooting monsters in the face. Also, it’s not like this is a series with a history of treating its female characters well.

Check out the whole post here.