Supernatural: #Thinman, Review

The Supernatural team chases an online urban legend.

The Supernatural team brings back fan favorites Ed and Harry of Ghostfacers to verbally spar with the Winchesters. Unfortunately the viral video duo the Ghostfacers get to town first and prime all the locals with their suspicions of the supernatural Thinman being the culprit, while plugging their aptly named yet no less stupid book, “The Skinny on Thinman.”

As the title suggests, #Thinman was full of Internet pop culture references, including when Harry complains that nobody cares what the Winchesters think, because they don’t even have a Twitter account. Facebook, Dr.Phil, and even memes get a mention in this episode. Harry and Ed survive off the internet. Of course their lingo is rife with it. And it all played into the monster being an Internet meme as well.

“#Thinman” had some actually scary moments, while being interspersed with the humor that surrounds those prone-to-failure Ghostfacers. The Thinman was good at using a horror movie cliché of appearing behind the character that’s about to be killed, first appearing on the girl’s cell phone in the intro, and later appearing on surveillance footage in the diner.

The monster in this case, was a mashup of past hits and internet obsession. At first it looked like Sam and Dean were dealing with another Tulpa, the creature they discovered the first time they met the Ghostfacers. A tulpa is a creature brought to life through belief in its existence. Instead we’ve got crazy people doing all the dirty work. The first episode time crazy people were the culprits was in the season 1 episode, “The Benders.”

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The Thinman was clearly inspired by the internet’s urban legend Slender Man, started via photoshopped photos showing a faceless man in a dark suit and later becoming an indie game sensation. Like Slender, Thinman was created by Ed to keep the Ghostfacers in business, but in their case someone took a liking to the legend and decided to take on the role.

The Ghostfacers were completely themselves this episode, trying to call themselves investigators and claiming they don’t need Sam and Dean’s help when their hunting skills are woefully bad. There was a fun Blair Witch reference as Harry stalks the woods looking for the Thinman. He comes upon a pile of sticks in his path and remarks, “Here is a formation of sticks in the shape of…a pile.” Everything right down to their “Ghostfacers” hand signal was so perfect for their characters, and it was great seeing them in another episode. A little bittersweet, I might add, given how the episode ended for them. Never thought I’d feel sad about Harry and Ed breaking up their little Scooby Gang.

There were two blink-and-you-miss-it pivotal moments for Sam and Dean. At one point, Sam catches himself saying that secrets ruin relationships, and Dean gives him an almost accusatory stare. Later, after the Ghostfacer breakup, Harry’s ending monologue is meant to resonate with Sam and Dean on the issue of bringing Sam back to life. Harry mentions how he’d always pictured literally growing old with his buddy, and now that wasn’t going to happen.

A good episode, fairly good twists, and fan favorites. What’s not to like?

Den of Geek Rating: 4 Out of 5 Stars


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4 out of 5