Mental health discourse amongst Supernatural fans.

For the sake of preserving mental clarity in all of my readers, I am not and will not share pictures actively taken from the finale episode itself. This is a behind the scenes picture that was taken that I liked a whole lot.

So many people still complain about how triggering Supernatural‘s finale was for some people, claiming that The CW “shouldn’t have been responsible for their mental health”, that they “should have known better before watching it, especially because it’s Supernatural” and an assortment of other things that almost a year later aggravate me to this day. Without going into extraneous detail to respect the mental health issues that fans of Supernatural and my readers may have, I’d like to say a few things about that, which I’ll get into.

First of all, I absolutely think that the rating of the show should have been raised for the finale alone and quite possibly the episode titled “Despair”. As it stands right now, Supernatural is TV-14, meaning that anyone fourteen years of age or older can freely and legally watch it… and if adults were so triggered by the events that occurred in the finale, one can only imagine how distressing and triggering this might have been (or in some cases, must have been) to the teenagers that happened to be tuning in. Being as vague as possible for the sake of this post, this involved a major character death in a particularly… bad way, and I don’t think that people should have been allowed to just walk into that with no warning. I think it was wrong of The CW to provide no warning that… the events I’m describing actually happened on air. If you’re going to make this to where teenagers can watch this, you need to be more responsible. End of. Except not…

My second point: Jared Padalecki has made bank off of his “Always Keep Fighting” campaign in honor of spreading awareness about depression and erasing the stigma, so to say that “people should have known better before watching this” is erroneous because Supernatural is known to have viewers who are mentally ill, which is made up of the bread and butter of mental illness (hence Jared’s campaign), and that spreading awareness of this campaign via the various items that he sells or that are sold on his behalf are helping Jared make bank. It’s incredibly hypocritical to say that “people should have known better before watching this since it’s Supernatural” given Jared’s investment in spreading awareness about depression as it directly relates to the show itself. I mean, the phrase “always keep fighting” was intentionally dropped in the finale.

To be perfectly honest, I haven’t watched The CW since this aired. I have a lot of other, better things to do.

But as we stand as a society, we need to do less gatekeeping of those with mental illness from things that they would enjoy in the appropriate capacities, giving warnings when necessary and raising ratings when necessary. It’s the least we can do. We shouldn’t leave those with mental illness to “fend for themselves”.

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