'Supernatural' E.P. Sera Gamble on Misha Collins' return, Dean's Season 7 secrets, and more

spn-mtnb-misha-death-jpgIt's hard to believe that we're only two episodes in to the seventh season of "Supernatural," given how much has happened in such a short time. Friday's episode saw the Leviathan go on a killing spree before burning Bobby's house down. The monsters, who have been trapped in Purgatory since the beginning of time, have now infested the hospital where an unconscious Sam ( Jared Padalecki) and a very vulnerable Dean ( Jensen Ackles) are headed.

The real question on everyone's minds, though, is not about the Leviathan, but about Castiel ( Misha Collins).

In the final moments of the season premiere, Castiel attempted to make amends for his rather uncharacteristic power-trip, but after casting the souls back into Purgatory, he was overtaken by the Leviathan. The beasts, which consumed Castiel's vessel briefly, simply said that Castiel was "gone" before taking a swim and invading the town's water supply.

That said, "Supernatural" has a tendency to bring characters back from the dead... all the time. Zap2it spoke with Executive Producer Sera Gamble on Monday to find out whether or not Castiel will be back in Season 7.

"As of now, we hope to continue to work with Misha," she says. "We have some ideas."

Go ahead, breathe your sigh of relief -- but don't expect to see Castiel back on your screen any time in the near future. "Right now, a huge part of the story on the show is Sam and Dean dealing with Castiel's death and the loss of Castiel."

spn-dean-season-7.jpgWe will see some degree of on-screen mourning from the Winchesters. "We had that little moment with the trenchcoat, and I think that's sort of their eulogizing of him, in a way," she says. "The repercussions of that loss are felt long beyond Episode 2. There's so many aspects of this that they have to deal with, in terms of losing their friend and someone that was helpful to them. It's about seeing the impact that had on our characters."

Given how close he was to Castiel, it's no surprise that the loss has the most profound impact on Dean. Fans have written in to Zap2it with concerns about whether Dean's storyline in Season 7 will focus solely on Sam, but Gamble tells us that Friday's episode, "The Girl Next Door," will plant the seeds for Dean's journey this year.

"What happened with Cas takes a toll on Dean in terms of his ability to trust people and assess situations," Gamble tells us. "His core instincts as a hunter are called into question. He's been rocked on a pretty deep level. You pair that with his really grave concerns about his brother's mental health, which I think are warranted given that he had a gun waved in his face like fifteen seconds ago, and he's got a long road. A situation will come up on Friday that will test him in what kind of choices that he's going to make, given the circumstances. It'll set the ball rolling for his story this season."

The writers' decision to remove Castiel from the story -- whether as a friendly angel or as a god -- has certainly been a controversial one among fans. It wasn't something that they took lightly in the writers' room, either. "We talked about the angel storyline as a whole, which was a huge part of Season 4 and 5 and, more off-screen, Season 6," Gamble says. "Any time we could showcase Castiel was good, and we were really interested in giving that character his turn and evolving that character, because the story that he had been brought in for was finished. On our show, a lot of times, the only way to take a character to the next level is to kill him, frankly."

With Bobby's house burned to a crisp, the Winchesters and Bobby find themselves adrift over the first half of the season. "It's about taking away home base and the feeling that they have of a place they can return to," Gamble says. "The stuff they've relied on they can't rely on anymore, starting with Castiel. Now the only place they have that's felt anything like home for most of their lives is gone. Things are getting difficult in new ways for them. It really takes a toll on the three of them."

What did you think of the first two episodes of Season 7? How do you hope to see Misha Collins return? Weigh in below in the comments section!



Photo/Video credit: The CW