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9. Hollywood Babylon
Why it's on the list: This one almost got eliminated from the "standalone" criteria, because it's so thick with inside jokes. Once I looked at the inside jokes though, a lot of them were making fun of Hollywood and pop culture in general. For example, it's possible anyone seeing this show for the first time would crack up over Sam Winchester being bothered by the prospect of seeing Gilmore Girls cast members. That was a very popular show and many would know Jared. They probably also knew McG too and his stellar contributions of the Charlie's Angels movie series (ha!). Ditto with the shallow demands from the studio suits who don't like that a horror movie is so dark and depressing, the writer who needed to add some "jazz" to the page, and that Dean Winchester really does make one hell of a PA. I remember many critics adoring this episode even if they didn't get the stuff like why salt deters ghosts or why the weather was "practically Canadian." The bottom line, the references and slams against the shallowness of Hollywood and the people there were so plentiful and so freaking funny it all sticks with you forever.
Favorite scene: This is really hard for this episode, because every scene had a hidden reference or line that made it a must see. I'll go though with the end, starting with Sam watching shooting of the newly written scene copying everything he and Dean did during their ghost encounter, Dean stumbling out of Tara Benchley's trailer very smitten while she declares he's "one hell of a PA", and Sam and Dean walking off together with the fake sunset as their backdrop.