TVLine's Performer of the Week: Supernatural's Jensen Ackles

Jensen Ackles Supernatural Soul Survivor

A weekly feature in which we spotlight shining stars

THE PERFORMER | Jensen Ackles

THE SHOW | Supernatural 

THE EPISODE | “Soul Survivor”

THE AIRDATE | October 21, 2014

THE PERFORMANCE | You know you’re in for a ride when Supernatural‘s Dean and Sam have a big confrontation — and they’ve had a lot of them over the years. But nothing could have prepared us for the chilling malice that Ackles brought to Tuesday’s demon Dean vs. Sam battle.

It all started with Sam injecting Dean with the cure, eliciting animalistic growls from Ackles that made us want to offer him a glass of water for his sure-to-be hoarse throat. There were moments of proud self-satisfaction as Dean questioned Sam’s actions, goading his little brother with a small smirk as he asked, “Which one of us is really a monster?”

Then Dean pulled out the Mary Winchester card, attacking Sam where it hurts most, and things got really ugly. “Maybe it was the fact that my mother would still be alive if it wasn’t for you. That your very existence sucked the life out of my life,” Ackles said, his voice laced with venom (and pent-up truth?).

But it wasn’t all just nasty words and gut-punch insults. The face-off evolved into a terrifying cat-and-mouse game – expertly directed by Ackles – through the dark hallways of the Men of Letters bunker as the red lockdown lights flashed. Ackles was truly frightening as Dean, hammer in hand, sought out to kill his brother with unnerving determination and eagerness. We hate to say it, but he seemed downright excited to destroy Sam. With every “Sammy!” that he bellowed, we became more scared.

“Personally, I like the disease,” Dean declared, Ackles giving off just the right amount of glee and crazed eyes. And we certainly appreciated the actor’s small touches, like Dean running his hand through his longer demon locks after he finally hacked his way through the door, evoking Jack Nicholson in The Shining.

The power and versatility of Ackles’ skill were magnified when the old Dean, cured of his demon state, returned. Gone were the malevolence and disdain, replaced by guilt and worry. If “lean, mean Dean” equals an even-more-awesome-than-usual Ackles, consider us hooked.

POTWEVCHONORABLE MENTION | In promos for Revenge‘s fourth season, Victoria Grayson bellowed, “Emily Thorne, I’m coming for you!” But it was Emily Thorne who came for us — and our heartstrings — this Sunday as she stood face to face with her presumed-dead father in a police lineup. Like a true dramatic pro, Emily VanCamp managed to condense the immensity of the moment into a single tear that silently screamed down her cheek until she was forced to speak. That final shot of Emily’s face, lip quivering with a mix of shock and devastation, was nothing short of haunting. (Kudos as well to Revenge‘s music department for providing the perfect swelling soundtrack to Ms. Thorne’s utter heartbreak.)

POTWJSHONORABLE MENTION | It’s not often that we see anyone on Sons of Anarchy expose their vulnerable side. That’s why it was especially moving to watch Jimmy Smits’ Nero — one of the most unflappable men in an ensemble of tough guys — break down at the idea of leaving Charming for good. As Nero begged Gemma (an also-stellar Katey Sagal) to join him at his uncle’s farm and abandon the SAMCRO lifestyle, his hardened exterior gave way to utter desperation as he pleaded, “We deserve something better, Gem.” It was a heartbreakingly quiet moment in a season filled with so much death and destruction.

POTWKBHONORABLE MENTION | American Horror Story: Freak Show really socked it to poor Ethel this week. In response, Kathy Bates delivered one knockout performance after another. First, she spoke volumes with the way she delivered the bearded lady’s stoic response to her terminal diagnosis: “Well, s—,” she said, as if surprised to find out she wasn’t indestructible. Then, we cried right along with the veteran actress as she allowed Ethel to break down not because she was dying but because her doctor was kind. By the time the so-called freak began settling her affairs (starting with pushing away beloved son Jimmy), the MVP had reaffixed her character’s game face. But the worst — and best — was yet to come. As if she hadn’t had a rough enough day, two-faced Edward Mordrake insisted that she recount the awful story of Jimmy’s birth. The bogeyman wasn’t moved enough (or something) to add her to his “coterie of companions,” but we were so impressed that we fully expect this Honorable Mention to be but a precursor to Bates’ second AHS Emmy win.

What performances rocked your TV set this week? Sound off below and let us know!

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Shaun says:

    Bleh,I think I would have chosen Clive Owen.

  2. rachelb says:

    thank you for mentioning emily & kathy! but what about jesse l. martin or even danielle panabaker for the flash!? they were so fantastic and endearing

  3. Donnarie2 says:

    I’d give another honorable mention to Tom Mison in Sleepy Hollow. Poor Ichabod Crane went through hell this week, first with the death of his friend, then thinking Abbie had died in his arms, and finally being faced with another lie and betrayal from his wife, this time one he could confront her with face-to-face. In a show that often doesn’t allow the actors much time to convey their characters’ emotions, Mison is always spot-on, and never more so than this week. The scene where he’s cradling Abbie in his arms, helpless to do anything because of course he doesn’t know about CPR (“Oh no, no, no, no, Abbie!”), was absolutely gut-wrenching.

    • JenE says:

      Agreed. He is great!! Loved the scene where he told Katrina off. That was the first real emotion I have seen in his scenes with her. And his scenes with Abbie are always beautifully done. Also enjoyed his scenes with Caroline. They were really sweet, too bad she got killed off.

    • Angela says:

      Wholeheartedly agreed. I was really feeling for the poor guy throughout last week’s episode. I liked seeing him finally venting his anger and frustration-obviously the revelations about Katrina had upset him in and of themselves, but you also got the sense that some of his anger was just the culmination of all the stress he’d been under throughout the episode itself as well, and the information about Katrina was just the final straw. I actually cringed on her behalf when he started confronting her about the stuff with Mary.
      This column spreads the love around to various TV shows, of course, and that’s totally fine-there’s lots of talented actors and actresses out there worthy of weekly attention and praise. But yeah, the cast of “Sleepy Hollow” are a very talented bunch, so I’m all for them getting more attention as well.

    • Dani says:

      I agree Tom Mison was outstanding this week. From Caroline’s death, Abbie’s near death, another of Katrina’s secrets being revealed to Mary’s ‘death’ Ichabod was put through the ringer. The heartbreaking look as he held Mary that morphed into anger at all the secrets Katrina continues to keep from him was so amazing to watch.

  4. Tran says:

    I would’ve given the nod to Elizabeth Henstridge as an “honorable mention”.

  5. Dakota60 says:

    Cudos to Jensen especially since he was also directing the episode. He did a fantastic job on both fronts.

  6. Sintia says:

    Yes for Jensen Ackles! That was an outstanding performance.

  7. Jensen was brilliant. The way he acts as Deanmon is fantastic and I will miss his demonic alter ego.

  8. Brittney says:

    Thank You for recognizing Jensen Ackles. He is a truely great actor who doesn’t get enough recognition!
    And he is masterfull as Demon!dean. Plus the shot of his face when he realized he’s cured was heartbreaking.

  9. JC says:

    I was hoping Amy Acker and Michael Emerson from Person Of Interest would be noticed this week.

    • Coal says:

      You and I are in the same boat. The Root character is usually in “robot” mode, but this week she showed a vulnerability I’ve never seen before and it made me worry for her.

    • lk says:

      Me too. I feel like this season of POI is being ignored by this site. Shame, the last episode was really good and was praised by critics who took the time to review it.

    • Lauren says:

      Acker was good, tho I feel she won this at the end of last season maybe. How soon is too soon? Kevin Chapman won too, and Taraji when Carter died. TVline actually one of few legit sites that do care about poi.

    • Sophonisbe says:

      Amy Acker was wonderful in this week’s POI. She’s my choice too!

  10. iMember says:

    All the awards for Emily VanCamp! Brilliant performance from start to finish.

  11. dude says:

    Emily VanCamp is such a pro!

  12. Coal says:

    I have to admit, I’m kind of bummed that Amy Acker didn’t get. I’m still catching up with this season of S.O.A., but judging by what I’ve seen so far its just deserved. I really can’t comment about Supernatural and AHS, because I don’t watch either of those shows.

  13. tvgeek says:

    It’s about time someone recognizes Jensen Ackles for the amazing performer he is. His DemonDean is wonderful.

  14. Couldn’t agree more with your choice of Ackles this week. He and Jared play off of each other which makes for good theater.

  15. Amabel says:

    Not to be unkind or rude, but . . . My god . . . Jensen Ackles is just about the worst actor on tv! The notion that you, or any critic with a lick of sense and formal education, would place Kathy Bates BEHIND Jensen Ackles is absurd.

    • bjxmas says:

      Congrats, you managed to do both!

      Jensen did double duty this week with both acting two very distinctly different and nuanced characters, but also directing the hell out of a suspenseful and pivotal episode! He deserves all the accolades for not going over the top, instead perfectly modulating his performance to be truly menacing in a calm and deadly manner. He gave us what we wanted in a way that was totally unexpected and fresh! Jensen is one of the most thoughtful, skilled actors out there. He can do it all!

    • Joey says:

      Extremely rude comment from someone who most likely did not see Ackles’ performance this week. I’d like to think that when Team TVLine sits down and thinks about their Performer of the Week awards, they like to, as they say, highlight actors who normally get looked over. Also try and take into consideration the amount of work each actor has put into a character. Yes, we can expect someone like Kathy Bates to be given a character and immediately do wonderful things with them, as she did this week. Ackles, however, has been building up Dean’s character for ten years now, and it really showed in this episode. He’s been turning in solid performances for years, and although Supernatural will never get any really good accolades, this was a very well-deserved reward for him.

      • Lola says:

        Not buying it for a minute. My guess — a jealous Jared fan. They show up at every article that praises his co-star. Too bad because the Js are great friends and I’m sure Jared would not appreciate such a comment but that’s never stopped his fans before so why start now?

        • RowdyBug says:

          Preach girl! And I agree! Although I don’t understand how you can love one bro and hate the other? Why watch then?

        • lily says:

          why its has to be a jared fan? how can you assume that? i dont think its right to shame jared fans like that…but obviously exists those annoying fans but how can you know this is the case?

    • orchardist says:

      Haters gotta hate

    • Dan says:

      LOL, congratulations at managing to be both.

    • Lance E. Gehring says:

      I agree with you 100% about Jensen Ackles, but you didn’t have to insult the writers! Either Bates or Smits would have been a choice much more to my liking.

    • Of course you mean to be unkind. This wasn’t the only critic to note Ackles performance in this episode. That he directed as well made it more noteworthy.

    • Lily says:

      Wow, your comment is both rude and unkind and totally uncalled for if you have watched him in this episode which I am guessing you did not. He was calm yet terrifying and on top of that he pulled a double duty.

    • boopsahoy says:

      What show have you been watching? OH you don’t watch Supernatural do you?

    • lily says:

      you probably dont watch supernatural or you arent a great fan because jensen ackles is one of the best actors on television!! he is a great actor and since seson 1 he has made great performances! you dont have to be rude..

    • D. Summers says:

      I believe that you meant to say that Jensen Ackles is just about the BEST actor on tv… then you’d be absolutely correct! He was great and gave an awesome performance.

  16. Ella says:

    Jensen Ackles was FANTASTIC. Glad he was recognised. NOT glad that Demon Dean was cured so soon, this was their most innovative storyline in years and they ended it in 3 episodes?!

  17. Elly says:

    The fact that Kathy didn’t take the top honor means the thing is rigged. the freak birth thing, ugh.

    • Donna Carman says:

      Nah, it’s not rigged–it’s just a difference of opinion. I agree with you about Kathy Bates though. She and Jessica Lange are seasoned professional actors at the very top of their game. Kathy was awesome this week!! I never thought Jansen Ackles was much of an actor at all. John Kubicek, the Senor TV Critic over at BuddyTV, had nothing good to say about his direction in this episode..

      • Lola says:

        I see the Jared stan bat signal went up. Good job losers.

        • Jaime says:

          I find really hilariously hypocritical how you who has in previous Tvline comments shown to be an extreme Jensen/Dean fan who does not like Sam/Jared (or Gamble) are now acting all preachy and superior. Not to mention that you are the one trying to start versus wank by accusing Jared fans when you have no proof whatsoever. Good job, loser.

      • CJ says:

        John Kubicek is the only critic I’ve seen criticise Jensen’s directing, everyone else had high praise and since the guy has a problem with Jensen and has directed personal insults towards him in the past (not about acting but inferring he’s a sex addict in real life) I don’t think his “professional” opinion is worth anything when it comes to Jensen or any fans with jealousy issues for that matter.

        • Pkendall says:

          John is also a HUGE Jared fan, his profile pic was of him posing with Jared for ages and yes he often puts Jensen down, it’s sad that even Jared fans writing professional let their personal bias and jealously get in the way of objectively reviewing a show and giving credit where due. I accept people have different opinions but sometimes when you know the source you have to take what they say with a pinch of salt.

          • Donny Lamb says:

            Please list the critics who had positive things to say about Jensen’s directing and or acting.

            There were/are scant few who have ever had a positive thing to say.

  18. connie says:

    I very much agree with Jensen Ackles. For years he’s been tirelessly and mostly thanklessly raising the game on that show, taking what he’s been given and adding layers of complexity and subtext through his acting. Way back in Season 1 episode 5, Ackles played the dual role of Dean Winchester plus a shapeshifter pretending to be Dean Winchester and that shapeshifter is to this day the most haunting one they’ve faced, though others came after. His Demon Dean was truly chilling without being a caricature, his facial expressions, the look in his eyes still contained the sort of complexity he’s always brought to his characters and then some, just applied to a demonic creature instead of sympathetic character or a “bad boy”. He used a very different sort of body language too. Dean always holds himself in a confident way(whether he feels it or not), he’s a natural leader but Demon Dean had this sort of casual confidence and something almost reptilian about him.

    I will say I agree Donnarie2 Tom Mison deserved an honorable mention. Ichabod Crane went through a wringer this week on Sleepy Hollow and he was really brilliant in how he portrayed it, from his devastation at the loss(Caroline his “colonial re-enactment” pal) or near loss(Abbie his co-Witness partner whom he clearly adores) of his friends to his sense of betrayal at realizing just how much his wife Katrina had lied to him over the course of their relationship. He doesn’t get a lot of attention in an acting sense but he’s got a tough job each week because in the hands of the wrong person a lot of the lines he needs to spout would be utterly unbelievable and laughable, in a bad way, but he always manages to make it real and believable coming out of Ichabod Crane’s mouth and his expressions and body language are spot on.

  19. rowan77 says:

    Jensen really did kick ass this episode, both in front of and behind the camera. I don’t think he gets enough credit for his talent.

  20. Scotty says:

    You and i must’ve watched different versions of ‘soul survivor.’ i thought it dragged badly and there was just no intensity to the bunker scenes. i have watched spn since it came out but it’s time to cut it loose. the bad acting, even by tv standards, doesn’t bother me as much as the repetitive plot devices. Demon Dean was the most original idea the show has had in years and they resolved it in three episodes? That was really stupid. And even though the idea was original, it tended to showcase Ackles’s lack of acting chops. Frankly, I don’t think Ackles is quite as bad as Padalecki, but he’s close. I’m sure my comment will be ripped to shred by the SPN Fandom (incidentally, where are they at ratings time??), but I couldn’t be more surprised by your choice this week. Oscar winner Kathy Bates is continually superb on AMH and Jimmy Smits is one of the finest actors on TV. But Jensen Ackles??? Wow. Just . . . well, wow.

    • orchardist says:

      If you think they are bad actors why on earth would you spend nearly 10 years watching?

      • Peach Mango says:

        i watch a lot of shows that i think have bad actors on them! it’s like reading escapist literature. it just easy entertainment for an hour.

    • Jake says:

      I’m late, just getting to the DVR. I have to agree. I am also a Supernatural fan and have seen every episode from the beginning. In general, I find Jensen to be the stronger actor of the two, but his demon acting was one-dimensional and disappointingly bad. Every line had the same subtext. I guess he thought he had to stay consistent so you could see the change at the end, but it just comes off flat. Even exceptional actors can be weak in some areas, and by also being the director, he may not have had the perspective on his own performance. He’s had his weak moments before (Dean acts like animals, anyone?) Understand that I still think he’s a good actor, so this is just good old fashioned critique. I’m happy they cut this arc short.

  21. Mare says:

    Thank you so much for recognizing the phenomenal but under appreciated Jensen Ackles! He’s always amazing but he’s really had a chance to stretch some muscles with this Demon Dean story! Just wish it had gone on longer!

  22. LAwoman says:

    Kathy Bates and Jimmy Smits were both wonderful!

  23. cassie says:

    about time someone recognises jensen’s talent. being saying for years that this hall tactic of constantly dropping his arcs, holds him back as an actor, cause he can’t prove what he really is capable of. to many missed oportunities, hell, pstd, angel vesel/michael, purgatory, pstd, & now demon dean makes the list of dropped arcs. bet moc will have the same fate.

    • Jo says:

      I totally agree. Jensen Ackles is incredibly talented, meticulous in his preparation of characters and nuanced in his performance. I just wish he was given more opportunities like DemonDean to shine….

  24. orchardist says:

    Excellent choice on Jensen Ackles. He was truly terrifying in last weeks episode. When he literally snapped at Sam during the first shot I thought ‘DON’T EVER DO THAT AGAIN’. It was inhuman (which was apropos). Finally the heartbreaking transformation back to ‘old’ Dean was outstanding. A very layered performance.

    Thanks for recognizing the talent of this actor.

  25. nikki says:

    Jensen Ackles and Kathy Bates for the win!

  26. JenE says:

    Hell yeah!! Love Jensen, he is an awesome actor who doesn’t get his due often enough since he is on a genre show. Thank you for recognizing him!

  27. ninamags says:

    Thank you for recognizing Jensen!!!! He was amazing in this episode for all the reasons already mentioned.

    Plus, the fact that this was going to be the VERY FIRST time that he played DemonDean! makes it even more amazing. The episode he directed was the first one filmed of this season.

    He was fantastic.

    Thank you TVLine!!! :)

  28. Carrie says:

    Jensen always does a fantastic job. I love that you could easily tell the difference between the demon and Dean by the small changes in his expression alone. He didn’t even have to speak. He’s wonderful.

  29. Joe says:

    I actually consider myself a fan of Supernatural. It’s mindless entertainment and I’ve watched it for a long time. I also think of myself as a huge television junky! I watch a lot of TV and read your site religiously, so I am always a little surprised when people begin to talk about Jensen Ackles having all this under-appreciated talent. I guess it just shows how subjective things like this can be because I’ve never been one to view him that way. In fact, I tend to think of Jensen as more fortunate than anything. Were it not for his looks, I personally don’t think he would have had the level of success he’s had. Not to single him out, though, because there are many very successful actors out there who are in the same boat, and they all manage to entertain us just fine, Jensen included. Sometimes I think a lot of folks are hard wired to find that better looking people are somehow more skillful actors. For example, I’d pay to watch Gary Oldman or Sean Penn read the frickin phone book because I know that given the enormous depths of their talent, they will take that phone book and turn it into an astounding performance. On the other hand, someone like Jensen Ackles could have the very best script and the very best direction and still only be capable of delivering something mediocre. He may look nice while doing it, but it’s still mediocrity. He’s been playing this character for almost ten years, and that low, deep voice he growls out as Dean every week just sounds affected and painful. Usually I can see where you guys are coming from with your Performer of the Week, but not so much this time. Maybe I’ll give the episode another watch. Thanks for all the work you guys put into this site. It’s one of my favorites!

    • Lola says:

      Obvious sockpuppet it obvious.

    • michaela says:

      Lol Funny given Jensen has been raising the level of Supernatural,’s often lazy&crappie scripts for years. They’d be even worse without him. And when he is occasionally blessed with a good script , he more than does it justice.

    • WhiskeyAndMascara says:

      omg i agree w/ u 100% about that voice!!! its so fake and distracting. lots of people think that good looking = good acting and i think most of the spn fans fall into that category. i also think its the same people posting multiple comments on sites like this. spn has terrible rating s but wins lots of online poll things. its mostly young girls posting over and over. kathy bates was spektackular this week!!!

      • boopsahoy says:

        SPN gets GOOD ratings and has been going for 9 years. They moved it from Fridays because it was doing so well in the “death” spot. Jensen Ackles is fantastic as Dean Winchester and really knocked it out of the park playing Demon!Dean. He deserves the award.

        • tigermaple says:

          spn get LOUSEY ratings. it almost always finishes last in its spot. on any other network it woudda been cancelled long long ago.

          • CJ says:

            It’s getting good ratings for the CW and is their 2nd or 3rd rated show, that’s all that matters ratings wise, for a show in it’s TENTH season it’s doing well.

    • Pam says:

      Jensen has been working non-stop since he rolled into LA at 18 years old. Granted, he may have been initially noticed for his looks but he has never relied on them to get him by. Critics liked his live theatre in “A Few Good Men”. His part in Dark Angel was so popular that the show runners created a new character for him to return after the demise of his first character. He has made a name for himself by working hard and showing good work ethics. He has been a good student of his craft and I believe he has shown growth as an actor and now as a director. He has that something that many mainstream actors lack and that is… charisma. The genre and network that he has chosen to showcase his talents is not widely appreciated and that is why he is not a bigger name. Sometimes I re-watch scenes just to see a subtle expression that speaks volumes. He is definitely a good actor. Don’t hate him for being beautiful he can’t help that. I have no doubt that after he finishes with Supernatural he will pursue his acting career and be successful on a mainstream level.

  30. cheryl wright says:

    You could not have picked a better episode or actor. Jensen Ackles rocked it this week

  31. Kate says:

    Not a main performance, but Virginia Kull is nailing it as the bereaved mother in Gracepoint.

  32. Raz says:

    Enjoyed watching Demon Dean. Like an alcoholic that dried out, the addiction (Mark of Cain) is still there Will be interesting to see how they deal with it. Castiel is also back to square one. He has another angels grace that just delayed his death for a little while longer.

  33. Etiel says:

    Thank you for recognizing the talent of Jensen Ackles as an actor and director. would like to see it go further …..

  34. edna rain says:

    amy acker is under appreciated, not the guy who plays dean winchester! my goodness, that guy is so bad of an actor. he belongs on soaps. he doesn’t do anything but squint his eyes and purse his lips and occasionally rub the back of his neck. THAT isn’t acting in my book. epic fail!

  35. Great performances all around and though I don’t know how you list the honorable mentions but I would put Kathy Bates on top.

  36. Sara says:

    I cannot begin to state how under rated Jensen Ackles is because of the genre thing. I don’t care. He rocks my world as Dean Winchester-demon or not-and if you’re not interested, it’s your loss.

  37. zac says:

    How bout Sara Ramirez from Grey’s for an honorable mention. That last scene on the couch was amazing.

  38. Kat says:

    Thank you so much for recognizing the awfully talented Jensen Ackles!! He is a very under-rated actor! Jensen conveys with his words but even more so with his eyes and body language. Jensen is quite the talented director as well! Thank you again so very much for this!!

  39. RowdyBug says:

    Yay Jensen! He sooooo deserved this just for the difference in facial expressions as Demon Dean and Dean! He didn’t have to utter a word at the end when he was cured I could tell right away he was and Dean had returned! Also kudos on the directing as well the recapper on Buddy TV pissed me off by saying this epi was boring and the cat and mouse game lame and blamed Jensens directing for it! It was all fantastic!

  40. Katie says:

    I knew, the minute I saw Jensen Ackles’ performance in Soul Survivor, that I needed to keep an eye out for y’all’s Performer of the Week, because he absolutely blew me away. I honestly don’t know what the other comment-ers are talking about, actually saying he’s a bad actor, because he is actually flat-out phenomenal and he’s been phenomenal for a while now, since season five, I’d say. Just because your name is Kathy Bates doesn’t mean that you automatically get a pass, and this week specifically Jensen upped the ante to a point that he doesn’t typically get the option to reach. Just because he’s on Supernatural doesn’t mean that he isn’t a serious actor, or that he’s undeserving of respect. George Clooney was on ER, wasn’t he? Meg Ryan started out on a soap. Every great actor starts out somewhere, and, in this case, Jensen started out on a CW show that never gets recognition, and always gets talked about with derision. (And newsflash: to everyone that felt the need to come onto an article highlighting the great job one actor did, just to say that he didn’t deserve it or that it’s ‘rigged,’ you are ten times more immature than the Supernatural fandom.)

    • Johnny Kirkman-Thomas says:

      Not everyone voicing their surprise this week, myself included, is doing so with the express intention of raining on Mr. Ackles’s parade. Many of us follow this site weekly. Moreover, this area is for comments–the good the bad and the ugly–not merely congratulations. What seems far more immature to me is the notion that you and your fandom immediately label anyone who disagrees with you as a “hater.”

      • Mo says:

        I think people are always surprised when TVLine picks anyone from a CW show, not because of bad acting but because of the perception of bad acting in CW shows in general. But as Katie commented, just because you’re Kathy Bates or another well-known, often- acknowledged actor on an Emmy-winning show, it doesn’t mean you get an automatic pass. I happen to think both performances were worthy of recognition this week. I’ve been a fan of this site since its inception, years before I watched an episode of Supernatural, and I’ve noticed that ANY article about the show brings out the haters. So it’s not a matter of disagreement with fans of the show… it’s the fact that every article brings on some sort of war in the comments.

        • Amy Q says:

          Yes, but that “war” is still steeped in nothing but “Supernatural is the best thing sliced bread, and if you disagree you’re a ‘hater.” Or it’s a war between who’s better, Jensen or Jared, or whether Misha Collins should be a regular. I’m about to finish my master’s in Film and Media Studies so I read a lot of these sites and it’s always the same thing whenever Supernatural is mentioned. One negative word in a comment and you’re attacked; there’s never any room for any discussion. I’ve never understood it, or the appeal of the show. Everyone I know, my fellow students, my professors, etc., all feel the same way I do.

          • CJ says:

            Oh come on, there’s disagreeing with the choice, there’s criticism, there’s thinking another actor deserves it more but comments saying Jensen is “the worst actor on TV” is over the top and just sounds petty and bitter. Of course fans are going to be happy Jensen is getting some rare recognition after directing and upping his game acting wise for this episode I don’t think they are the ones being immature here.

          • Mo says:

            I agree that most of the comment wars are actually fandom infighting. But there is also a significant amount of people who come to those articles on all the sites just to talk about everything they hate about the show. And, as CJ pointed out, there is a difference between disagreeing with a choice and calling that actor “the worst actor on TV.” Whatever its shortcomings (and there are a lot) Supernatural is a show that has somehow managed to survive and thrive into its 10th season on what is generally agreed to be the worst network. I never understood it either until I finally gave in and watched.

    • Jo says:

      I agree with all you’ve said:) And as a passionate Supernatural fan I kind of feel amused being called “immature” in some comments. I’m almost 42, two kids, happily married and – obviously – young at heart:))) Love Jensen Ackes, who can make me laugh uncontrollably or sob dramatically at will…. I am sure that when he goes “mainstream” he will be widely recognised by critics, as he already is by fans.

  41. jai says:

    I love Jensen, he’s a wonderful actor. Definitely agree with all the honorable mentions. Team TVLine gets it right every time.

  42. Matt C. says:

    I’m surprised nobody from Scandal was mentioned this week. Kerry Washington was amazing as she slowly unraveled over the course of the episode, culminating in that final scene with Abby. The scene between Tony Goldwyn and Bellamy Young was fantastic as well. I was on the edge of my seat at how intense Fitz and Mellie’s conversation was.

    But very happy to see Emily VanCamp and Kathy Bates get honorable mentions. Both performances brought me to tears!

  43. KC says:

    Jensen Ackles? Really? No way!

  44. Scarlett says:

    Couldn’t agree more with Jensen Ackles & Kathy Bates!

    Jensen really put in a stellar performance in the last two eps of Supernatural, and some beautiful layered acting as he transformed from demon back to normal Dean (though damn those writers for doing that way too quickly in the season!). Jensen being performer of the week is well deserved and it’s great to see him get some recognition.

    Kathy also really shined in this week’s AHS and was quite heartbreaking… another well deserved shoutout.

  45. amber glass says:

    I haven’t been more surprised since 1992 when Marisa Tomei beat out Judy Davis, Vanessa Redgrave, Miranda Richardson and Joan Plowright for the Best Supporting Actress Oscar! I really thought you’d go with Amy Acker or Kathy Bates this week. Gotta say I’m bummed you didn’t. You forecast another Emmy nod/win for Kathy Bates but then pick Jensen Ackles??!!

  46. No honorable mention to Sara Ramirez for her portrayal of Callie in Grey’s Anatomy? Damn, that last scene was so powerful, I almost forgot she was acting!

  47. Dan says:

    Completely agree about Jensen Ackles. Great performance both, acting and directing wise!

  48. Kudo’s to Jensen Ackles! Well deserved!

  49. Ron Doyle says:

    agreed Jensen deserved this – honorable mention to Jared too though. The pair were excellent and to see the conflict and the challenge after 10 seasons – kudos to the team what a great episode. Glad we can move on now and looking forward to the long story and some meta episodes – bring back Felicia Day!!!!!

  50. Nicolle says:

    YES. Jensen did an amazing job at directing and acting! He was creeping me out but it was fantastic to watch.