Time to resume the countdown of our Favorite 100 Supernatural Episodes! This week we begin releasing the TOP HALF of the list - out top 50 favorite Supernatural episodes of all time!
How did we choose which episodes deserved to be on the Top 100 list? Rankings were determined by a group of rag-tag-war-torn fans who spend way too much of their time studying and writing about Supernatural! Specifically, participants in this ranking challenge included administrators and writers from The WFB, admins from the website Fangasm, and admins from Super-Fan-Wiki. Each individual’s rankings were tallied to create a consolidated list of our Top 100 Favorite Episodes - and by “tallied” I mean my computer-expert hubs took the excel spreadsheet and applied his math-genius skills, resulting in a formula that weighted and ranked the final results. Details about this epic project were described in "The Road So Far" introduction. It’s all about the Math, and say it with we – Math Don’t Lie. So let’s get to this week’s countdown!
#50 "Do You Believe in Miracles?" (9.23)
Sam, Dean and Cas desperately try to stop Metatron from becoming the new god, and the consequences are… um… hmmm… ok, so I don’t really have words for this. Full disclosure – I’ve only watched this episode once, the night it aired. It left me physically sick. And I can’t watch it again. Believe me, I’ve tried to watch it. But I just can’t. Yes, yes, Dean has died before, many times before, but this time, it was just so graphic, so painful, so Real (insert every ugly crying gif here. Yes, all of them).
Fortunately, the other participants were able to find words for this episode. Alice called it “an emotional tearjerker that had you screaming at the closing reveal!” Journalbookbinder said, “Metatron kills Dean VERY bloody and it just about killed me…one of the few where I actually cried.” Kate38 added, "The final seconds of this finale left me devastated for about a week. I still can't watch Dean's eyes turn black. I just can't. I always stop my rewatch or avert my eyes before it gets to that shot. Unfortunately, that shot is preceded by one of Mark Sheppard's best moments in the entire series. I love Crowley's monologue there, so it's viewing ecstasy followed by agony for me. Every time."
Again, with the crying. I'll just drop in a few gifs and then try to pull myself together.
Meanwhile, Cas is in Heaven, on his mission to destroy the Angel Tablet, and we are all rooting for him to destroy it in time.
Gail said, “I think I held my breath this entire episode. I recently re-watched it, and couldn’t believe how much it affected me, even though we know what happens now, in hindsight! Boy, oh boy, do I hate Metatron. I loved that Cas stormed Heaven, using the old “prisoner” ploy. Cas actually smashed the Angel Tablet to save Dean, his friend. Think about that for a moment. The Angel Tablet. And then, Cas exposes Metatron, for all of Heaven to hear on the PA system. Fantastic.”
One thing that really stands out about this episode is Curtis Armstrong. He is absolutely phenomenal as Metatron. He completely convinced me to hate him. He was smarmy and snarky and sneaky and snaky – and every second of it was pure gold.
Metatron to Cas: Oh, that's right - to save Dean Winchester. That was your goal, right? I mean, you draped yourself in the flag of Heaven, but ultimately, it was all about saving one human, right? Well, guess what. He's dead, too.
In all fairness, the fight scene between Dean and Metatron in the abandoned building near the homeless camp is a truly great scene. It does everything that great filmmaking should do – it is visually stunning, with the red lights dully shining throughout the scene, hinting at the bloodshed to come… the fight itself is expertly choreographed, and nerve-racking and nail-biting and edge-of-your-seat intense… we are all rooting for Dean to win this fight.
And we are rooting for Sam, who desperately wants to stop Metatron, to save Dean, and we desperately want him to get to Dean in time… and he’s too late. He arrives too late. He arrives just in time to watch Metatron sink his Angel Blade into Dean’s chest, killing him.
When Sam carries Dean, bloody and dying… and Dean stops, and says that line to Sam… and then Dean stops breathing, and Sammy starts crying… ok, listen, I just Cannot.
The whole thing just sucked away all of our air, leaving us completely incapable of taking a single breath while it played out. We couldn’t breathe, we couldn’t move, we couldn’t look away. So I’d like to give a big Kudos to the writers, the director, and all of the actors in this fight scene – Job. Well. Done.
Lynn said, "The scene that stays with me isn’t the death scene. It’s the quiet, tender scene that we only half saw. Sam carrying his battered, broken brother back to the bunker, back to their home. Laying him gently on the bed, wiping the blood from his face. There aren’t that many times when television or film portrays loss in a way that hits you almost too hard, in a way that makes your throat tighten painfully as you blink back tears. It doesn’t matter that I know there’s a Season 10 or that Dean won’t stay a demon forever. In that moment, Sam Winchester has lost his brother. And I’m crying with him. Maybe the miracle is that this Show can still make me believe."
Let us not forget that final scene. Sam, overcome with pain and sadness and trying to bring Dean back… he goes to the dungeon, to summon Crowley. However, Crowley is already inside the Bunker – he’s in Dean’s room:
Your brother, bless his soul is summoning me as I speak. Make a deal. Bring you back. It's exactly what I was talking about wasn't it? It's all become so... expected. / It wasn't until you summoned me, no it wasn't truly 'til you left the cheeseburger uneaten... and I began to let myself believe, maybe miracles do come true. / Listen to me Dean Winchester, what you're feeling right now is not death, it's life. A new kind of life. Open your eyes Dean, see what I see, feel what I feel. Let's go take a howl at that moon.
And then this happened:
#49 "Two Minutes to Midnight" (5.21)
Sam and Dean, along with Cas and Bobby, try to collect all the rings of the Four Horsemen. It starts with Pestilence and, like, no. Gross. I might throw up.
Elle agreed, saying, “I’m mixed on this episode, because while I think Matt Frewer is brilliant, Pestilence is just so disgusting to me it’s a real turn off.”
However, Nate Winchester was not grossed out, in fact, he loved this episode! He said, “This episode is stuffed! Death! Pestilence! Crowley! Bobby walking! Sam kicking ass! Cas kicking ass! Dean eating pizza! Wait... About the only complaint one can make of this episode is that it has too much going on (which is a good complaint). So many character arcs concluding while Death itself shows up and puts everything in perspective? Just amazing. Julian Richings and Matt Frewer both turn in memorable performances, making you wish this episode was about a half hour longer.”
Kate38 added, "WOW! This was an epic episode! I normally don't like it when the brothers are separated, but I didn't mind in this episode. There's such amazing chemistry between Jensen and Mark, and Jim Beaver, Misha, and Jared that I thought the team-ups worked really well."
(*for bonus Easter Egg - see end of article)
Memorable Scene #1: Bobby sells his soul to Crowley in exchange for Death’s location, and yes, he did in fact seal the deal with a kiss.
Bobby: Why'd you have to take a picture?
Crowley: Why'd you have to use tongue?
Nightsky said, “These scenes with Crowley are priceless. He was smart, sarcastic, witty. I miss this Crowley.” Same, Nightsky, same. #LongLiveTheKing
Memorable Scene #2: Death’s Epic Entrance! The song, “O, Death.” And the slow motion. And the swagger. Bravo, Julian Richings, Brav-O.
Kate38 said, “OH Death! Julian Richings embodies power and quiet menace from his very first appearance on that street in Chicago. His every breath is threatening.”
Elle added, “Death? Amazing. Nothing can be said that hasn’t already been said about his entrance and the pizza parlor exchange. Simply phenomenal characterization.”
Memorable Scene #3: Dean prepares to face Death at a pizzeria. Kudos to both Jensen and Julian for their performances in this scene. Julian is perfectly creepy and scary and terrifying. Jensen is perfectly uneasy and hesitant and terrified. Their entire exchange drips with doom and gloom tinged with the slightest sliver of hope.
Nightsky reminded me that in this scene, Death said, “Oh yes, God will die too, Dean.” And the Nightsky said, “Interesting line that might define S15.” Ok, no. Just no. Nope. Not gonna think that line has anything to do with the upcoming f… fi… ffi… I can’t do it. I’m not ready for that f-word yet.
Memorable Scene #4: Bobby’s conversation with Dean about Sam.
Bobby: Look, I'm not saying Sam ain't an ass-full of character defects. But...
Dean: But what?
Bobby: Back at Niveus? I watched that kid pull one civilian out after another. Must have saved 10 people. Never stopped. Never slowed down. We're hard on him, Dean. We've always been. But in the meantime... He's been running into burning buildings since he was, what, 12?
Bobby: Look, Sam's got a... darkness in him. I'm not saying he don't. But he's got a hell of a lot of good in him, too.
Dean: I know.
Bobby: Then you know Sam will beat the devil...Or die trying. That's the best we could ask for. So I got to ask, Dean. What exactly are you afraid of? Losing? Or losing your brother?
Nightsky said, “I absolutely love that conversation! It was an unthinkable choice, an unthinkable sacrifice for both of them.”
#48 "Tall Tales" (2.15)
The boys investigate strange happenings on a college campus, and as they try to solve the case, they become increasingly cranky with each other. They call Bobby for help, and he identifies the culprit – The Trickster!
Elle said, “Aliens! Alligators! Tricksters! Bickering and slightly skewed event recounts! What’s not to love? This is always atop my rewatch list when I need a laugh.”
Kate38 said, "I really loved the moments between the brothers in this one. We got to see glimpses of them getting on each other's nerves - as brothers often do. That probably happened a lot when they were on the road. I liked it because it was sort of harmless, unlike when they fight for real."
Nate Winchester said, “Just pure hilarity gold. Gotta love any episode with the Trickster. Still, what makes this stand out is not just the pranks he pulls, but the opening act where we get to see Sam and Dean from the other's perspective, which gives Jared & Jensen a chance to put in some of their funniest performances ever with Jim Beaver providing the excellent straight-man role. This was an episode that proved SPN would take things seriously - especially when poking fun at itself. Oh Trickster, you always left us wanting more.”
And perhaps one of the most memorable lines from the entirety of the Show:
Lynn said, “The brilliant thing about this ep is it's all about the brothers' relationship - living in each other's pockets, their differences grating, sibling rivalry and fierce love and loyalty all clanging around together, played out in endless motel rooms.”
Alice added, "The alien slow dance is still the best scene I’ve ever seen."
#47 "Red Meat" (11.17)
Notice: This episode may require a trigger warning. Gentle reminder - please do NOT take any medical advice or lessons from this episode.
How do I even begin to recap this episode? I'll keep it short, but I do so with much hesitation. In a nutshell - Sam is shot during a werewolf hunt. And he dies. And Dean is devastated, broken.
Lynn pointed out that Dean left the lamp on for his brother. His dead brother. She said, “That was it. I was wrecked.”
It should be over, right? No, it’s not over yet. Because Dean. Dean Winchester. He knows he has a job to do – he must save the others inside the cabin, get them to safety. In spite of his complete and utter heartbreak, he finds his own strength to do the job, to carry on.
Kate38 said, "There were some great moments in this one. I remember being SHOCKED when Sam got shot in the opening teaser. WHAT?!?! And Dean's sorrow when he thought Sam died was palpable. Of course, I also love the way Sam fought his way back -- literally from the brink of death - to save Dean just in time."
Elle added, “Oh man. Tears. Again. Incredible episode. We know they won't die….but the drama and suspense is there all the same. The journey back to each other and the obstacles - yup, it’s (another) tear-jerker episode. The brothers' relationship never, ever gets stale or falls short. And this is an episode that shows exactly how strong it is.”
And then Dean chokes down a handful of pills in an attempt to contact Billie, hoping to make a deal with her to bring Sam back.
Billie: That's what I thought. It's cute though You pretending to save Sam for the greater good, when we both know you're doing it for you. You can't lose him. But even if Sammy could win the title bout, the answer would still be 'no.' The answer will always be 'no.' Game's over Dean. No more second chances. No more extra lives. Time to say bye-bye to Luigi, Mario.
But Sam isn’t dead. Oh no, not at all. In fact, he’s back at that cabin, struggling to get up, to find his way to Dean, to save Dean from Corbin, a werewolf, who is following Dean.
Lynn said, “Jared deserved all the awards for how he portrayed a terribly injured Sam determined to get to his brother anyway. Sam is so clearly in agony – once again, Jared portrays his pain and determination vividly. I HURT watching him. He moves like every movement costs him, sweating and shaking as he lurches around the cabin.” She then added, “I let out a whoop of accomplishment when Sam finally got to the Impala – you can FEEL his relief at just making it back “home”. He throws himself against the car, leaning into her and letting her hold him up for a moment and just relishing that sense of security she gives him.”
Let’s not forget the Show’s motto: ‘Saving people, hunting things, the family business.’ Yes, Sam and Dean hunt things, and yes, they save people… but listen, nothing - Nothing - will stop these brothers from saving Each Other. Can I get an Amen?
#46 "The Born-Again Identity" (7.17)
There’s so much happening in this episode! Sam is incessantly tortured by hallucinations of Lucifer, pushing Sam to his breaking point, and ultimately he is locked in a psychiatric ward!
Lucifer: Narcissistic personality disorder. Okay, now this one I could have.
Meanwhile, Dean’s efforts to find a way to help Sam lead him to a healer named Emmanuel - and it’s actually Cas! Cas has no idea who he really is, so Dean treads lightly in revealing too much information.
Dean and Cas make their way to the hospital to heal Sam, and when they stop for gas, Meg shows up. The trio then travel together to the hospital, which is surrounded by demons. Dean and Meg discuss their options, and Cas overhears them. Meg tells him who he really is.
Ultimately, Cas regains his memories, smites all of the demons, and upon reaching Sam, he shifts Sam’s hallucinations to himself. Now Cas is locked in the psych ward, with Meg as his nurse.
Kate38 said, "This is one of my all-time favorites! Castiel comes back from amnesia to save Sam just in time, we get to spend some time with saucy Meg, and Dean - as usual - moves mountains to try to save his brother. The most poignant moment for me was when Dean showed Castiel his raincoat, which he'd been keeping in the Impala since Castiel "died" earlier in the season. I love what that moment said about their friendship. I also love the little, early hint we got in this one that Bobby was going to come back (when the datebook fell on the floor)."
Gail said, “I’m letting my Castiel flag fly, here – I was thrilled when Dean found him as Emmanuel! He realized how badly he had erred, and his mind compartmentalized, repressing the worst of what he had done. That’s the way I see it, anyway. I felt badly for Sam, of course, but I was so mesmerized by the return of Cas and what was going to happen with him next that I couldn’t concentrate on anything else. Then, Meg comes along. Yipes! It was so cool when Cas smited? Smote? What’s the proper usage? those Demons. And then, the sweet moment when Dean pulled Cas’s trenchcoat out of the car. Then, Cas absorbed Sam’s insanity into himself, to atone for his own mistakes. Wow.”
Nate Winchester summed up the episode: “You never realized how much you missed Castiel until his triumphant return here. Though I think what I love most about this episode is that it's so small and personal. There's no world at stake. No lives to be saved. The only thing to be saved is just the mind of one of our characters. And Sam reminds us why he's worth saving by saving a person even while he's dying. Sometimes a simple, quiet win can be more satisfying than a big, loud one.” Well said, Nate, well said.
"The Man Who Would Be King" (6.20)
Castiel is working with Crowley to open the doors to Purgatory, and he is struggling with that choice. As he struggles, he reveals details of his backstory. Meanwhile, Sam and Bobby believe Cas is somehow working against them, but Dean isn’t convinced.
Gail: “I can’t begin to express how much I loved this episode. When he looks directly at the camera and says ‘Let me tell you everything’ and then he tells us that he has been around since ancient, Biblical times! How the writers managed to combine Christianity and evolution, in the same thought – ‘Watch out for that fish. We have plans for that fish - brilliant! Cas goes on to explain things from his point of view, and as a viewer, you can completely understand, and sympathize. He’s agonized, wondering if he made the right call. The story from Sam and Dean and Bobby’s point of view. The way Dean was trying so hard to be loyal. The moment of realization that Cas is hiding something. We know what he’s doing is foolish, but we can understand why he feels he needs to do it. The double smiting at “Demon Bobby’s” place (a much-needed moment of levity). The entire episode was just brilliant!”
Kate38: "I always love the Castiel back story episodes! Cas has been here for so many centuries and has experienced so many things we never hear about. I'm happy for any glimpse behind his curtain. I also like the slow unraveling of what had been happening behind our backs (and under our noses), as far as Cas' deal with Crowley and how that whole thing evolved. The one scene that always grabs me by the heart is when Dean - who is the LAST to believe Cas betrayed them - finally hears Cas slip up. There's a look that crosses Dean's face when he realizes he's been tricked. OUCH."
Bobby: If there's a snowball of a snowball's chance here, that means we're dealing with a Superman who's gone darkside, which means we've got to be cautious, we've got to be smart, and maybe stock up on some kryptonite.
Alice called the episode, “The most honest, revealing, heartbreaking examination of Castiel ever done. Perfectly written and directed by Edlund.”
Nate Winchester said, “I'm not the biggest fan of S6, but even I have to admit that this episode is a master piece of writing that puts in a solid effort to make all the different threads worth it in the end. Did it succeed? I'll leave that debate in the comments, but even I won't argue against Misha & Mark putting in excellent performances playing off of each other.”
Castiel: Sam, I am the one who raised you from perdition.
Sam: What? Well, no offense, but you did a pretty piss poor job of it.
Castiel: You don't understand. It's complicated.
Dean: No, actually, it's not, and you know that. Why else would you keep this whole thing a secret, huh, unless you knew that it was wrong? When crap like this comes around, we deal with it, like we always have. What we don't do is we don't go out and make another deal with the Devil!
Castiel: It sounds so simple when you say it like that. Where were you when I needed to hear it?
Dean: I was there. Where were you?
Lynn: “Cas is having a real crisis of conscience. This is a painful confrontation between the Winchesters and Castiel. Cas had such good intentions, but made such bad decisions. And it kills Dean, who tried so hard to stay loyal.” Perhaps, on some level, Cas’ struggle kills us all.
Sam and Dean go to Oregon to look into the meaning behind one of Sam’s visions, in which Dean kills a man possessed by a demon. What they find is a small town seemingly wholly infected by a demonic virus known as Croatoan. They go to the local medical center to search for answers, and they end up locking themselves inside the facility, along with the others who were already there.
A nurse, infected with the virus, attacks Sam, exposing him to the deadly disease. Dean rushes to Sam, but the other guy pushes Dean away, saying, ‘She bled on him. He's got the virus.’
Lynn said, “My heart broke as I watched Sam reaching for Dean to help him after he's been attacked, and the other guy pushing Dean away. When Dean replies, ‘You make a move on him, you'll be dead before you hit the ground, you understand me?’ I got CHILLS… Oh God, and the family theme starts playing as Sam begs Dean to save himself and Dean says no... One of the most emotional scenes in the series imho.”
Several of the participants referred to one specific scene, which they called “the fence conversation”:
Dean: I'm tired, Sam. I'm tired of this job, this life... this weight on my shoulders, man. I'm tired of it.
Dean: Right before Dad died, he told me something. He told me something about you.
Sam: What? Dean, what did he tell you?
Nightsky said this is one of her favorite episodes, and Alice added that it had “fantastic brotherly moments.”
Kate38 said, "Good episode, and a pivotal one for season 2 - especially the very end, when Dean begins to reveal what John told him about Sam."
Nate Winchester said, “A sign of a great episode is one that improves when rewatching. Croatoan is one of the best in this regard as it not only foreshadows Dean's emotional failure at the end of the season, but also the 5th's season story of the boys vs the world. The acting is great here as we see Jared & Jensen growing more comfortable with their characters, and I love the moral challenges the episode presents to us, making us think about what would be the right choice.”
#43 "Frontierland" (6.18)
Sam and Dean travel back in time to find Samuel Colt. And when I say they traveled back in time, I mean waaaay back, as in all the way back to 1861! Dean finds an entry in (grandpa) Samuel’s journal about Samuel Colt killing a phoenix on March 5, 1861… geez, so many Sams in this, my head hurts. Anyway, the boys need the ashes of a phoenix in order to defeat Eve (that evil ‘Mother of All’), so they decide to travel back to that date so they can scoop up those ashes. Makes sense, right? Time travel, man, freakin time travel.
Kate38 said, "What's not to love in this one!? Jensen got to be in a western like he always wanted, we got to see a Phoenix, we were introduced to a new and interesting monster, and we actually got to meet Samuel Colt! I also loved the music in this one."
Elle added, “Any episode that indulges Dean’s fan love of the wild west is great to enjoy! And of course, the end with the ‘package mailed through time’ was classic, plus meeting Samuel Colt all kind of make this work.”
Alice agreed, perhaps saying it the most precisely: “Who didn’t love watching Dean play a cowboy?” Same, Alice, same.
Lynn: I love the scene between Sam and Samuel Colt. The entire episode is so beautifully done in terms of set dec(oration), and it is beautifully filmed, and gorgeous music! Everything about the showdown scene is so well done.”
Sam: You Samuel Colt? My name is Sam Winchester. I'm - I'm a hunter from the year 2011.
Colt: Prove it.
[Sam shows Colt his Blackberry]
Colt: All right.
Sam: A-all right? That's -- uh, that's it?
Colt: Well, when you've done this job as long as I have... a giant from the future with some magic brick doesn't exactly give you the vapors.
Meanwhile, Cas is injured, and he must figure out a way to bring Sam and Dean back to the present. (Because there "Ain’t No Time Like the Present"… sorry, I just couldn’t resist doing a little Louden Swain shout-out) Anyway, Cas has basically alienated all the other angels, so his only option is to find some other soul to drain of its power. Alas, poor Bobby. He is Cas’ best chance at bringing the boys home.
Gail said, “I’ll tell you something; I really dislike westerns, but there was just something about Jensen and Jared and their acting skills in this one that drew me in. The horse poop, the saloon girls looking a little different than Dean thought, the ‘blanket’ – it was all comedy gold. Cas was a hero in this one, too, and so was poor Bobby, of course. Then, at the end, when they thought the ashes were lost, a messenger comes along. Yeah, maybe it’s hackneyed, but I liked it anyway.”
Nate Winchester said, “This episode is dumb, and headache-inducing for canon. . . and I absolutely love it! 100% guilty pleasure here as I loved Samuel Colt ever since they hinted at the man he was back in season 2's finale. Getting to see him in action just makes me wish we had another spin off of an old west hunter. Is it a bit of a cop-out for a solution to the season's problem? Who cares! I got a hat and duster ready to put on and join the Winchesters at sundown.”
At the end of the episode, and now back in the present time, Sam receives a package from Samuel Colt. Inside was a note that read:
Dear Sam, I got this address and date off your thingamajig, and I thought the enclosed might come in handy. Regards, Samuel Colt.
Then Sam pulls a bottle full of ashes from the package. Ashes, as in, the ashes of the phoenix. Okay, seriously, what a cool ending.
#42 "Jus in Bello" (3.12)
Sam and Dean are trapped inside a sheriff’s office with Agent Henriksen, while a horde of demons are circling outside. Dean comes up with a plan – they will lure all the demons inside, then lock all the doors, trapping them. Then they will play an exorcism, pre-recorded by Sam, over the office’s PA system, sending all the demons to hell.
Oh this isn’t gonna end well.
Elle summed it up like this: “There is so much to say about this episode. This is a vintage Supernatural piece, before there were angels and gods mucking about and the FBI were players in the game. Hendrickson goes from enemy to ally in fantastic way. The boys arm the station and ward off the demons. And in the end? Lilith shows up and flashes those white eyes! It’s both fantastic and tragic.”
Kate38 put it this way: "Sigh...poor Victor Henriksen. I liked him from the very first time we met him - even though I knew I wasn’t SUPPOSED to. I was sorry he died in this one. The way he reacted to learning about demons, monsters, and hunting, I thought he'd have made an excellent hunter. I liked the creativity of this episode in many ways. Sam stealing Nancy's rosary so they could use the toilet water as holy water was pretty quick. And Dean's idea to lock all the demons inside so they could exorcise them en masse was also brilliant. I love it when the show reminds us how intelligent and resourceful the Winchesters are."
Dean is his typical sassy self, until Henriksen says, "Take a good look at Sam because you'll never see your brother again." Then Dean is just pissed.
Nate Winchester added: “This episode is not just one of my picks of the season, but of all time. Why? Agent Henriksen. He'd been around a bit by then, played a low-level antagonist for the Winchesters, and then? His closing episode the writers went and gave us a fully realized, 3-dimensional character that single-handily added nuance and shading to the SPN world. Turns out here's a guy that really thought he was doing the right thing - and when he learned there was more information that changed contexts, he turned around and did the right thing without hesitation or a second thought.”
Ruby tells them about Lilith, “and she really, really wants Sam’s intestines on a stick.”
Dean: Open the doors, let them all in, then we fight.
So Dean’s idea to trap all the demons inside actually worked! And Henriksen told the boys that he would lie to the authorities and tell them they died in the explosion! But, um, you do remember that I said it’s not gonna end well?
After Sam and Dean leave, a sweet-looking little girl shows up, looking for the boys. Yes, I said a sweet-looking little girl, because, honestly, she does look sweet but she’s actually Lilith! She destroys the sheriff’s office, killing everyone inside… and I mean Everyone, from the sweet virgin Nancy to our newly-minted hunter Henriksen.
Ruby catches up with Sam and Dean at a hotel, turning on the TV to the news, showing them what happened. She tells them this is what happens when they don’t behave appropriately under the jus in bello, aka the “laws of war.”
Journalbookbinder said, “Trapped in a prison and improvising survival through an epic demon battle, then BAM; we learn the people they saved died anyway after they left – ouch.”
Nightsky added, “I loved this episode because it didn’t take long for the mayhem to take hold, vindicating the boys and convincing Henricksen they were the 'good guys.' Then all the demons gunning for Sam was so intense, with a surprise, heartbreaking twist at the end.”
Lynn said, “The twist ending of this episode pretty much destroyed me. ‘One's really tall and one's really cute...’ and then it all goes to hell. I remember being traumatized for a week, it seemed so unfair for them to die after all that.” Ouch. Traumatized. Indeed.
#41 "Yellow Fever" (4.06)
Sam and Dean investigate a series of deaths involving "yellow fever", aka ghost sickness. When Dean is infected, making him afraid of everything, the hilarity begins!
All of our participants agreed. Journalbookbinder called the episode “incredibly funny!” Kate38 added, "This one was fun! It seemed like Jensen had fun filming this episode and behaving in very UN-Dean like ways!" Lynn said, “Kudos to J2’s comedic talents – it’s off the charts in this ep!”
Let’s take a quick look at some of those funny moments:
Dean, as Sam tries to hand him a gun: Oh I’m not carrying that. It could go off. I’ll man the flashlight.
Gail: “I think that one particular, iconic moment will go down in the annals of TV history as one of the most hilarious ever witnessed! Let’s face it, the long, expressive, extended scream when the cat comes out of the locker, and then the “That was scary!”? Where the heck are the Emmys, anyway?!”
Nate Winchester: “The spring-loaded cat is a very old horror staple - so old that trope & movie sites have been referencing it for years, even before tvtropes actually existed. Leave it to Supernatural to not only bring up this classic trope, but to turn it into one of the funniest single moments of the show. And somewhere among all the laughs, we got some heart in the episode too, with Dean hugging a bible and the audience getting its first hint that the horrors of Hell aren't the worst thing that happened to Dean in there. Plus it's only fitting that in the end, it's Baby that helps save Dean's life.”
And then there’s Dean’s whole speech to Sam, when he decides he’s just done:
Dean: I mean, come on, we hunt monsters! What the hell?! I mean, normal people, they see a monster, and they run. But not us, no, no, no, we -- we search out things that want to kill us. Yeah? Huh? Or eat us! You know who does that? Crazy people! We...are insane! You know, and then there's the-the-the bad diner food and then the skeevy motel rooms and then the truck-stop waitress with the bizarre rash. I mean, who wants this life, Sam? Huh? Seriously? Do you actually like being stuck in a car with me eight hours a day, every single day? I don't think so! I mean, I drive too fast. And I listen to the same five albums over and over and over again, a-and I-an-and I sing along. I'm annoying, I know that. And you --you're gassy! You eat half a burrito, and you get toxic! I mean, you know what? You can forget it.
Funny moments aside, there is actually a ghost that needs to be dealt with in this episode. That ghost is Luther, bullied because he was different, killed because he was an easy target for those bullies, murdered by being dragged behind a truck through a parking lot, over and over and over again. His spirit is still tied to the old mill, to the town, to the people who bullied him and killed him. Take a moment and let that sink in – Luther is actually a victim, a nice guy who is literally bullied to death.
Not gonna lie – part of me is cheering for Luther. You go buddy, you haunt those idiots, and infect them with ghost sickness, and you make sure they feel so scared that their hearts stop and they die too. My heart hurt for Luther’s spirit when Sam and Bobby decide to kill his ghost by dragging him through the parking lot of the old mill, just like the way he died in the first place. I’m not saying that Sam and Bobby are like Luther’s bullies, not at all, in fact, they are doing what they have to do to save Dean and the other folks in town. But that knowledge doesn’t make it any easier to watch.
While Sam and Bobby are killing Luther, Dean is inside a hotel room, literally praying that they succeed in time. He hallucinates, seeing Lilith in the room with him, taunting him, ‘Ka-boom! Ka-boom! Ka-boom!’
And then that short, quick little moment at the end, when Sam asks what Dean saw while he was hallucinating… and Dean turns to look at Sam… and for the quickest second… Sam’s eyes flash yellow. YELLOW.
As Elle put it: “Funny, but chilling at the same time. This episode is a great example of how subtle Supernatural is at delivering information: when Dean sees Sam’s eyes flash yellow? Brrr. All the humour falls away and his darkest fears are understood absolutely.”
Ok, ok, so that might be the end of the actual episode. But we all know that isn’t really the end. God bless literally everyone on set that day for giving us that most precious outtake, that gift of Jensen Ackles lip syncing to “Eye of the Tiger”. Can anyone in the SPN family hear that song and NOT see Jensen climbing out of Baby’s window?!
Lynn said, “What makes that Eye of the Tiger vid so perfect is the crew's laughter and appreciation throughout, and their burst of applause at the end, and how soft Jensen’s expression goes when he hears it. Nothing will ever be like this show.” Amen, Lynn, A-MEN.
So that’s episodes 50-41 in the Top 100 Favorites list! Did any of these make it onto your list? Any surprises? Let us know in the comments, and be sure to join us as we continue the countdown with episodes 40-31!
Twitter: @MamaPrior or @PriorStudios
Staff Writer, https://fangasmthebook.com/
Staff Writer, https://thewinchesterfamilybusiness.com/
See the whole list of our Favorite 100 Episodes from the beginning! You can find them all with the tag Top 100 Episodes!
Need a little help compiling your Top 100 Favorite Episodes? Karen and Nightsky are sharing their Top 10 episodes of each season, to coincide with the #SPNSummer2019 Hiatus Rewatch. You can find those lists, and all of WFB's Top 10 articles in WFB's Article Archives!
*In a rare (maybe accidental), coordinated publication, this is the scene for this week's CaptionThis challenge! Pop over and have fun with it!