Yesterday, I posted the top five episodes that should have earned Jensen an Emmy. Today, in honor of Sam’s birthday, here’s Jared’s (IMHO) top five:
1. The Born Again Identity.
Jared knocks this one out of the park in so many ways. Sam’s losing his mind, Lucifer will not leave him alone, there’s a car accident, and boom, he’s locked up. He’s falling apart, hallucinating, yet still manages to help a girl get rid of the ghost of her brother. No matter what’s happening to him, Sam always puts others first.
Jared does such a good job of showing Sam’s gradual breakdown, with the exaggerated movements, and the staggering walk, and the blank, empty stares.
2. Born Under a Bad Sign.
Man, what can I say? This is the first time we get to see Jared playing someone else, and he’s amazing. No holds barred, he just blows me away. He’s so damn evil, attacking Jo, shooting Dean, then the whole screaming exorcism. It’s AMAZING. God, I love this ep so much.
3. The End.
He’s barely in the episode, but that performance resonates to this day. When he turns around and sees Dean, you can tell, before he’s even said a word, by the facial expression and his eyes, that THIS IS NOT SAM. It’s unreal, it’s such a completely different character, and he OWNS it.
4. Mystery Spot.
Jared takes Sam from bewildered and upset, to angry, to heartbroken, to ragefully driven, and back to upset and heartbroken again. He’s forcefully faced with what a life will be like in the aftermath of Dean’s death, and he proves he’ll do anything to save his brother, even if it means ending someone else’s life. It’s an interesting glimpse into just how far Sam will go, what he’ll do for what he thinks is right.
5. The Man Who Knew Too Much.
The many faces of Sam Winchester. Regular Sam, the guy we know and love; Soulless Sam, sassy and obnoxious, and driven to survive; and Hell Sam, broken beyond belief. Jared pulls them all off convincingly.
The best part of this episode, for me, is when he confronts Soulless Sam and wins. Just friggin’ amazing.