'Supernatural' Season 9 scoop: Mark Sheppard on the 'possible humanization of Crowley'

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"Supernatural's" Team Free Will has already gotten the spotlight, so now it's the King of Hell's turn. The CW just released this behind-the-scenes photo of Crowley (Mark Sheppard) from the upcoming Season 9, and we've got to wonder ... why on earth is he smiling?

When we last saw Crowley, he certainly didn't have much to be happy about -- he had just been put through the third task of closing the gates of Hell by Sam Winchester (Jared Padalecki), which meant Sam had to cure Crowley of being a demon. But when Dean Winchester (Jensen Ackles) found out that finishing the ritual would end up killing Sam, they stopped just in time. So where does that leave Crowley -- is he still a demon, or has he been cured?

"The best explanation is this: while Sam tried to humanize Crowley with the supposed cure, while they didn't complete that cure there are certainly residual effects from taking that path," Sheppard tells Zap2it. "There is definitely a residual effect. Whether Crowley likes it or not, there is a residual effect. So I don't know if I'm going to be quoting more HBO series as we go along."

While it is certainly hard to compete with the final shot of the Season 8 finale (seeing the angels falling from the sky will forever be burned into our eyes), fans recall that Crowley's "Girls" monologue was one of the highlights of the season. Watching the almost-humanized King of Hell profess his desire to be loved -- and his love of the HBO series -- was certainly a bizarre sight to behold. "[The speech] was from the mind of [executive producer] Jeremy Carver," Sheppard says. "'You're my Marnie, Moose, and Hannah just needs to be loved. We all deserve to be loved!' I was giggling so hard. The first time I said 'You're my Marnie, Moose,' Jared lost it. Snot came out of his nose. The fabulous thing about it was that the tone at the end of the season was very sad. It was a very emotional way of showing what was happening."

The choices that Sam and Dean made during the season finale will have major repercussions for everyone on "Supernatural." "It's the first time you see the boys pick not the task, but each other, and that really worked," Sheppard says. "We filmed that intense scene for three days in that little church and we never stopped. He was fantastic, it was some of the best work I've seen Jared do. A lot of people were crying."

And now that the brothers finally picked each other instead of the mission, the two characters that will be most affected by that choice are Crowley ... and Castiel (Misha Collins). "We've got the humanization of Cas, because obviously his grace has been removed," Sheppard reveals. "And possibly the humanization of Crowley. So it should be an interesting season."

"Supernatural" Season 9 premieres on Tuesday, Oct. 8 at 9 p.m. ET on The CW.

Photo/Video credit: The CW
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