Jared Padalecki Interview: ‘Supernatural’ Season 12 and the Return of Sam and Dean’s Mom

Supernatural star Jared Padalecki
Jared Padalecki from ‘Supernatural’ at Comic Con 2016 (Photo © Richard Chavez / Showbiz Junkies)

The CW’s Supernatural starring Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles returns for its 12th season on October 13, 2016. The upcoming season promises major changes are in store for Sam and Dean Winchester with the resurrection of their mother, Mary (Samantha Smith). In our interview with Jared Padalecki at the 2016 San Diego Comic Con, Padalecki said fans of the series can expect big changes for Sam as he adjusts to being around a mother he doesn’t know but that Dean remembers. Padalecki also discussed the Men of Letters, whether Mary will be a hunter, and if he’d like to see Jeffrey Dean Morgan also put in a return appearance.

Jared Padalecki Interview:

Is it going to be interesting to play more of the brotherly dynamic along with their mother this season?

Jared Padalecki: “Yeah. I think one of the things that got me into Supernatural originally was the family dynamic in kind of fantastical circumstances, extraordinary circumstances. It was always kind of a mixture of fantasy but how relationships exist within a bizarre universe. One of the things we’ve never really saw Sam get to be…we’ve seen him be a human, we’ve seen him be a hunter, we’ve seen him be a lover, we’ve seen him be a friend and a brother, and you could argue we’ve kind of seen him be a son but I don’t think so. When we saw Sam with John, it was contentious. It wasn’t like, ‘Hey dad,’ you know, like, ‘I love you.’ It was like, ‘Dad, how dare you?’ you know? ‘How could you do this to me and Dean?’ They never got on. He didn’t have that with Mary. He doesn’t know his mom but he loves his mom anyway. He hasn’t gotten to know her, but he’s going to want to protect his mother and vice versa. I feel like it’s going to be a neat side of Sam that I haven’t been able to explore yet.”

Can you tease what’s going on with the Men of Letters and Sam and Dean?

Jared Padalecki: “Yeah, they don’t know… It was kind of an unfortunate miscommunication. Sam thought his brother was dead so he was upset and pissed and sad, and the British Men of Letters didn’t exactly put their best foot forward. I think Sam probably figures, ‘Aren’t we all on the same team? This isn’t the way we should have started.’ But the Brits think they know some things about us that they might be mistaken about, some things they might be right about. But I think the Brits are trying to figure out why we’re not run the way they are. But we’re not legit Men of Letters. I mean, we’re legacies so I guess you could argue we’re kind of Men of Letters, but we weren’t initiated. We didn’t study the things they studied. They are much more regimented and structured and are trying to figure out if Sam and Dean are just lying and they actually do have ulterior motives. Sam and Dean don’t really answer to anybody. They have a car and a bunker, and they kind of travel around staying in motel rooms. They’re not used to having higher powers to answer to. So, we’re going to see worlds collide.”

How do you think Sam’s story arc will change this season?

Jared Padalecki: “I think for me most of it’s going to be about experiencing Sam as a son. We’ve seen him as a brother but seeing Sam, he’s been through so much and he wants to make the world a better place, but now getting to see him be a son and love and protect his mother… You know, Sam lost his father and he already lost his mother once. Mary’s a hunter and she was a hunter and so I’m sure Mary’s going to want to hunt. She’s back and she’s not just going to want to sit around, ‘Hey guys, I’ll see you when you get back.’ I’m sure she’s going to want to be part of it, but Sam’s going to want to protect her because it’s his mom. Meanwhile, Dean has a relationship with her as well so it’s going to change the Sam and Dean dynamic. Usually it’s been like we only have each other. We’ve had Cas and we’ve had others like Bobby who want to help, but now we have mom, too. We get to fight with each other, we get to fight with her, and we get to figure out how we can trust each other. There’s kind of a feeling or sensation that if you want to protect somebody, you have to hide them away. But sometimes the best way to protect somebody is to let them do what they do.”

Will there be scenes of Sam and Dean trying to explain this new world to Mary since she’s been dead for so many years?

Jared Padalecki: “Yeah. The writers have done a good job of playing the reality of it because if you died in 1982, cell phones and Skype and internet was…not even Back to the Future had come out yet. ‘I guess maybe they’ll have cool shoes in the future’ – they had no idea of what we’re going to know now. And so we play that without getting too cheesy about it. […]We’re not making her stupid; we’re just making her like she’s in a new world.

What’s funny is I thought about that before I read the scripts, going I hope they don’t make it (jokey) and they didn’t. She’s a strong woman, you know? She’s a mother and she’s a daughter and she’s a hunter so she’s not completely oblivious. But, there is some funny moments. That being said, there is some comedic fish-out-of-water moments we’ll have for sure.”

If they can bring back your mom, should they be bringing back Jeffrey Dean Morgan too?

Jared Padalecki: “Well, he’s Walking Dead right now. Yeah, you know what? I love JDM and I think the feeling’s mutual. As far as I’m concerned he can be in every scene I do for the rest of my life. That having been said, I think it disrupts the Sam and Dean dynamic because so much of what made Sam and Dean Sam and Dean is that that’s all they had was each other. They had to make it work with each other come good, come bad. That’s why even though we’ve got all of these characters we love – the Charlies and the Bobbies and the Joes and Ashes and Rufuses and Castiel, obviously – it’s tough to get a character that the boys have to rely on. It’s nice to have help, but if Jeffrey Dean was back and he wasn’t in every scene it wouldn’t make sense because he’s our dad, right? He’s the one who taught us how to hunt even though Mary was the original hunter. So, I love him. If they can find a way for him to come back and it doesn’t change the story too much…but that would be really hard and difficult. I’d love to see him back.”

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