Chevrolet Impala 1967 Supernatural | Automotive Views

30 Aug 2014 | Author: | Comments Off on Chevrolet Impala 1967 Supernatural | Automotive Views
Chevrolet Impala

Automotive Views

Cars TV – “Supernatural”

1967 Chevrolet Impala (the “Metallicar”)

(Dedicated to my dear friend Keisha, a big fan of the show and of the Impala)

Departing from the last article’s tendency, this time I’ll refer to a very popular show. It was “way” back on September 13th 2005 that the North American audience was introduced to Jensen Ackles and Jared Padalecki as Dean and Sam Winchester on Supernatural. Ever since the pilot episode, Supernatural has been extremely popular.

  Unlike many other shows that have tried to follow similar formats and failed, Supernatural has gripped the audience with original story lines, very nice special effects and perhaps most importantly, good acting. Brothers Sam and Dean drive all over the US fighting ghosts, demons, and pretty much every other nasty supernatural entity you can think of.

But it’s not all shotguns loaded with rock salt and exorcisms, the show approaches serious issues that anyone can relate with, especially when it comes to family ties. From the start, the audience has seen how the two brothers clashed, worked out their differences and clashed again soon after, even actually throwing some punches occasionally.

The Winchester brothers were raised by the father, John, to hunt nasty supernatural things all their lives; Dean, a good rebel, strong minded, loyal to family and dedicated to his cause. For most of the show’s (until now) 7 seasons, Dean has carried the responsibility of watching over his brother “Sammy”, who managed to escape the family “trade” for a while, but was forced to go back after the death of his girlfriend and that has since dealt with serious doubts and issues.

However I’m not here today to explain the plot of Supernatural in detail, I’m here to talk about the show’s third star, the one lovingly named by the fans as “the Metallicar” (due to Dean’s love for the band Metallica), the 1967 Chevrolet Impala. After Ackles and Padalecki (that have, naturally, legions of female fans), the Impala has also created quite the buzz around itself.

It’s absolutely impossible to imagine Supernatural without the Impala; it really is as much a character of the show as the two brothers. A gift from John to Dean, the Impala has been around from the very beginning and it will probably never leave the show; on the season one finale, it even gets crushed by an eighteen wheeler and still, Dean “rebuilds it” and it’s back on the screen in no time.

Having the Impala on Supernatural is a won bet from the show’s developers because it just fits right in. First of all it has an amazing presence, 67 was definitely the best design year for the Impala, it just gives the “bad boy” vibe, it’s black, it’s menacing, it has extremely aggressive lines, the front grill resembles teeth ready to bite a chunk clean right out of anything in the way…The Metallicar is just violently appealing, announcing its arrival with that beautiful rumble of the V8. Sure, the characters could move from A to B in a modern sedan, or even an exotic of some kind, but a late 60’s American V8 brings about every conceivable feeling of liberty, of distance from mundane questions, its pure glamour.

Now I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one who thought back when Supernatural started about why wasn’t another version of this devilishly (sorry about that…) handsome machine used for the show? Why not a sporty Coupe, an SS, the exclusive 427 for instance? Well because quite simply it wouldn’t work well as a family car.

Remember, the Impala was meant to be a suburban “family-mobile” and nothing more, so it had to be a practical sedan and not some tire shredding traffic lights kind of dragster.

Chevrolet Impala

On the outside the Impalas (yes, more than one but I’ll refer to it as a single) used on the show are essentially stock; some things do change occasionally like the badges, sometimes there’s “Chevrolet” on the front grill, sometimes is missing, but that’s something normal on the television world, not every detail is always there. Other than that, the little applications next to the headlights are usually (not always) painted black on this trim level but on the Metallicar they’re opaque like the ones on the Super Sport Coupé; the front and rear bumpers are property of the 427 (although I’ve seen them on sedans, they’re much more common on the “top” model of the 67 lineup) and until a few seasons ago, there were also police cruiser like spotlights, but have since been removed, a shame because they looked amazingly good. Regarding rims, the Impala is equipped with, believe it or not, one of the cheapest sets you can find; the brand isn’t even clear in any source because many companies produce very similar rims, but the closest thing around are the Cragar Super Spoke.

So where was this star born anyway? What’s the background on the car that has its own fan and Facebook page? Well, Nicholas Knight, author of “Supernatural, The Official Companion Season 2” quotes Jensen Ackles that spoke about it at the 2007 San Diego Comic Con; apparently there are 5 (or 6, sources differ) Impalas, currently 2 are reported to be in use for different kinds of shots in the show.

The original is called “Hunter” and it’s equipped with a 427, skid plates and stabilizing bars…what more can one ask for? Bought from the Kelley family of Farmingdale (New Jersey) in 2005, “Hunter” was originally painted in…baby blue (yeah, something had to be done about that…); the Kelleys bought the car from the original owners who got it new back in 67. The original Metallicar, “Hunter”, is now reportedly retired but still property of the show.

Its original license plate (on the show), KAZ 2Y5 was a direct reference to Kansas, the home state of the Winchesters and to 2005, the year when the show first aired.

These days apparently it’s “Civilian”, the newest Impala to be prepared for Supernatural that fulfills the duties of picture car and “Hero” does the stunts; according to the information provided on the website, “Hero” is equipped with full protective skid plates underneath and some time ago had double brakes (stomp brakes) in order to control the front and rear brakes separately.

Of course it’s always nice to know a bit more about what’s behind the fantasy, but in this case is the “Metallicar” concept itself that’s important, it brings something to the story that moves with the emotions of car fans and everyone else alike, it’s a unification point, a thing of beauty that has taken a life of its own, basically, it’s what every good car star should be, an icon for the ages.

Looking for one yourself? I wish you the best of luck, the show has made these highly desirable and increasingly difficult to find. Plus, often you’ll find low quality at a high price but…if you happen to come across a nice one, it goes without saying…worth it every penny.

Chevrolet Impala
Chevrolet Impala
Chevrolet Impala
Chevrolet Impala
Chevrolet Impala
Chevrolet Impala
Chevrolet Impala
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