There’ll Be Peace When You Are Done – Lynn S. Zubernis

Make sure there are no breaks in your salt lines, grab some pie and settle in for some love letters, Supernatural style.

There’ll Be Peace When You Are Done highlights the impact Supernatural has had on the lives of both actors and fans over the past fifteen years. Whether a specific episode made fans feel seen, sometimes for the first time, or if they’ve been superfans from the beginning, this TV series has grown into something I don’t think anyone ever expected.

Supernatural leaves behind a fundamentally changed group of people, inspired to do good, be weird, and be kind.

Fans have made lifelong friends, changed their career, been inspired to write and create, and found family. Online communities have sprung up, interactions at conventions have solidified friendships and so much money has been raised for charity.

Supernatural does not sugarcoat the painful aspects of life

Reminding us to ‘Always Keep Fighting’, regardless of our circumstances, and encouraging us to leave the world better than we found it, Supernatural has been one hell of a road trip.

As we watched Bobby Singer face his physical limitations, we also watched Dean Winchester struggle for psychological healing after trauma, and we also saw Sam Winchester battle his addiction.

This book includes photos of the cast, fan art and quite possibly the best Supernatural shirt I’ve seen, “Sam and Dean Winchester – Keeping gay girls just a little bit straight since 2005”.


This book has demonstrated to me just how limited my Supernatural fandom has been compared to others. I’ve never been to a convention. I’ve never made Supernatural artwork. I’ve never written fan fiction. I’ve never connected with my favourite actors on social media.

But I have loved this show. I’ve laughed and cried through episodes. I’ve watched favourite characters die, and sometimes come back. I’ve worn my Represent shirt less than I’d like to, so it doesn’t wear out too soon. I’ve read every interview of Jared’s I can find where he references mental health. I’ve drooled over my fair share of cast photos. I’ve reused my 2018 calendar for the second time this year because I like the pictures in it more than recent ones.

I also have the benefit of having loved and lost many TV shows before this one. I know the joy of rediscovering favourite episodes and finding new ones years after I first watched them. Supernatural is not the only beloved show I’m losing this year (2020 just keeps on giving) but I have fifteen years worth of Winchester binge watching at my fingertips. Sam, Dean and all of the other characters I’ve welcomed into my fiction family over the years aren’t really going anywhere; they’ll be there whenever I need them.

So, this is how I suggest we say goodbye to Supernatural. Let’s go back to the beginning and rewatch it all. Let’s continue the conversations and keep the fandom alive. Let’s continue to support each other and follow the future endeavors of all who created Supernatural for us, and with us. Let’s refuse to dwell on endings, but instead embrace this as a new phase of the fandom.


Thank you so much to NetGalley and Smart Pop, an imprint of BenBella Books, for the opportunity to read this book.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Once Upon a Blurb

Fifteen years. Two brothers. Angels and demons. A story like no other. And one of the most passionate fan bases of all time. 

That’s Supernatural

There’ll Be Peace When You Are Done: Actors and Fans Celebrate the Legacy of Supernatural is an emotional look back at the beloved television show Supernatural as it wraps up its final season after fifteen unprecedented years on air.

With heartfelt chapters written by both the series’ actors and its fans – plus full-colour photos and fan illustrations – There’ll Be Peace When You Are Done traces Supernatural’s evolution, the memorable characters created by its writers and brought to life by its talented actors, and the many ways in which the show has inspired and changed the lives of both its viewers and cast.

Both a celebration of Supernatural and a way of remembering what made it so special, this book is a permanent reminder of the legacy the show leaves behind and a reminder to the SPN Family to, like the series’ unofficial theme song says, “carry on”.

Including contributions from: 

  • Jared Padalecki (“Sam Winchester”)
  • Jensen Ackles (“Dean Winchester”)
  • Richard Speight, Jr. (“Gabriel”)
  • Andrea Drepaul (“Melanie”)
  • Carrie Genzel (“Linda Bloome”/”Linda Berman”)
  • Julie McNiven (“Anna Milton”)
  • Tahmoh Penikett (“Gadreel”)
  • Shoshannah Stern (“Eileen Leahy”)
  • Brendan Taylor (“Doug Stover”)
  • Lauren Tom (“Linda Tran”)
  • And many more, including a special message from Mischa Collins (“Castiel”).

Edited by Lynn S. Zubernis, a clinical psychologist, professor, and passionate Supernaturalfangirl, There’ll Be Peace When You Are Done is the ultimate send-off for this iconic show that has touched and changed the lives of so many fans across all walks of life. 

Monsters of the Week: The Complete Critical Companion to The X-Files – Zack Handlen & Emily Todd VanDerWerff

Illustrations – Patrick Leger

The first X-Files episode I clearly remember watching was Squeeze. I was wedged into a beanbag on the floor of a darkened lounge room. Behind me was an open door leading to the kitchen which, like the rest of the house, was dark and Eugene Tooms creeped me out enough that several times he had me looking over my shoulder. My love of the weird and the wonderful and all things spooky began that night and I’ve been an X-Phile ever since, collecting episodes on VHS and then DVD and an assortment of books and memorabilia.

As soon as I saw Monsters of the Week I knew I had to have it. I loved the picture of Mulder and Scully on the cover and the title called to me. I suspected immediately that reading this book would lead to an overwhelming urge to binge watch the entire series (again!) but the reason why I need to surprised me. I’d expected to binge read this book and then slowly reread it as I rewatched each episode but in my rush to get my hands on this book I somehow missed the critical part of the subtitle.

There was always going to be some disagreement between myself and the authors; you can’t be this invested in a series for so long and not have strong opinions about it. While the writers shredded some episodes that I count amongst my favourites, most of their comments were a fair balance of the good, the bad and the creepy. However, sometimes the criticism was so critical that it had me wondering at times if this pair even liked The X-Files. My stubborn has kicked in so my upcoming binge will now be about confirming to myself that the episodes I always loved are still worthy of my adoration.

I adored Patrick Leger’s cover artwork and the illustrations accompanying each section of the book. There are several of these that I’d love to have framed. I do appreciate how much time and effort has gone into this book. Besides watching or rewatching 11 series of TV and two movies between them, Zack Handlen and Emily Todd VanDerWerff have tackled all of the monsters and mythology in a fair amount of detail; ranging from half a page to over three pages of commentary per episode. The authors also really like footnotes; most pages have several, ranging from really interesting extra information to seemingly random.

As a huge fan I wanted this read to feel as passionate about the series as I am and it was to a point. There were some quotes I loved:

Mulder’s defining trait is his willingness to charge headlong into danger if he thinks he will find the answers he seeks, and Scully’s defining trait is her willingness to ultimately trust her partner, even when she doesn’t believe him.

The X-Files is a cop show, yes, but it’s also one in which you could wake up in a safe, standard reality, then turn the wrong corner and end up becoming a thing that goes bump in the night. No one is safe, and any given door could lead to madness.

this isn’t a show about aliens as much as it is about our need to believe in something, lest the night become too dark and terrifying. There’s so much darkness in the night sky, but there are also so many stars. And maybe one of them is looking back at us.

If Deep Throat was a cheat code to the quest for the truth, X is a walkthrough written by somebody who doesn’t want to share his secrets, doesn’t like you, and might not even be playing the same game.

While I loved most of their take on the first few seasons I found the book became a bit of a slog to get through towards the end as it became more focused on the negative when discussing the later seasons:

The mythology episodes would come to feel more and more poorly motivated, and eventually, you’d start to wonder how Mulder could believe in any of this bullshit.

you won’t just be wondering why you decided to watch this episode; you’ll be wondering why you decided to watch a show that could produce an episode this bad at all.

Other people die, but those deaths don’t have any weight, and the point the episode tries to make is too unwelcome and backward to really care about.

Like nearly everything else in the episode, there’s no real joke here, just a joke-shaped hole where comedy could have theoretically existed.

The X-Files has been reheating its leftovers for several seasons now

The X-Files is frantically trying to find a new reason to justify its own existence as it circles the drain.

But then I’d find sentences like these and know they understood after all:

we wouldn’t still be talking about the series if it didn’t hit more than it missed.

“The Sixth Extinction,” parts one and two, are ridiculous television, but dammit, they’re our ridiculous television.

I acknowledge that had I written this book most reviewers would be commenting on how annoying it was to keep reading, “This is one of my favourite episodes!” almost every time they turned the page. It was a really nice trip down memory lane and it reminded me of so many episodes that shocked, horrified, intrigued and amazed me. I’d forgotten or maybe never realised that the Lone Gunmen made their appearance before Skinner did. I did keep waiting for the commentary about how each time Mulder pulls his gun on someone he loses it but sadly it never happened.

I had some objections when criticisms were made based on what is or isn’t acceptable today without consideration for the time that the majority of this series was made, when we thought computers were going to do some really scary things once the clock stuck midnight at the end of 1999. In particular the embarrassment the writers supposedly felt by being two white men critiquing a TV show written predominantly by white men irked me. By focusing so much on the gender, racial and cultural inequalities of the show they missed the obvious; Scully, being such a strong lead, inspired so many women to study and go on to work in STEM.

If you’re not already a fan you probably won’t pick this book up anyway but if you are just beginning your journey to find the truth out there I’d definitely recommend watching each episode prior to reading the commentary about them to avoid spoilers.

Thank you so much to NetGalley and Abrams Press for the opportunity to read this book.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Once Upon a Blurb

In 1993, Fox debuted a strange new television show called The X-Files. Little did anyone suspect that the series would become one of the network’s biggest hits – and change the landscape of television in the process. Now, on the occasion of the show’s 25th anniversary, TV critics Zack Handlen and Emily Todd VanDerWerff unpack exactly what made this haunting show so groundbreaking.

Witty and insightful reviews of every episode of the series, revised and updated from the authors’ popular A.V. Club recaps, leave no mystery unsolved and no monster unexplained. This crucial collection even includes exclusive interviews with some of the stars and screenwriters, as well as an original foreword by X-Files creator and showrunner Chris Carter.

This complete critical companion is the book about The X-Files, the definitive guide whether you’re a lifelong viewer wanting to relive memories of watching the show when it first aired or a new fan uncovering the conspiracy for the first time.