Season 1, Episode 3
Dead In The Water
"You're scared. It's okay, I understand. See, when I was your age, I saw something real bad happen to my mom, and I was scared, too."
Sam: "Kids are the best"? You don't even like kids.
Dean: I love kids!
Sam: Name three children that you even know.
(Long pause, Dean scratches his head, Sam starts to walks off)
Dean: I'm thinking!
Written by Sera Gamble and Raelle Tucker.
Directed by Kim Manners.
Airdate: September 27, 2005.
Sam and Dean investigate mysterious drownings in Lake Manitoc
Sam and Dean investigate a series of mysterious drownings in Wisconsin, after coming across the obituary of an 18 year old girl Sophie Carlton, who was a varsity swimmer that drowned in the lake. Her brother then dies by drowning in a sink, and they realize that the drowning victims are all related to Bill Carlton. They meet the Sheriff Jake Barr and his daughter, Andrea, and grandson, Lucas. Lucas has not spoken since his father, Bill Carlton's god-son, died on the lake, but he has started drawing pictures. Dean asks him to draw what happened, and Lucas draws a picture that they realize is Bill Carlton's house. Bill Carlton drowns in the lake before the Winchesters can question him. Dean asks for more help, and Lucas draws another house next to a church. Dean and Sam find this home and an older woman who lives there tells them about how her son Peter Sweeney disappeared 35 years ago. When the Sheriff finds out that Dean and Sam are not the Wildlife Service officials they pretended to be, he tells them to leave town. However, Dean is unwilling to leave town without making sure Lucas is okay, and when they reach Lucas' house they find that his mother, Andrea, is being attacked by something in the bath water. Sam manages to pull her out of the water. Then Lucas leads them to a buried bicycle. Dean sends Andrea and Lucas back to the house as the dig up the bike, but Andrea returns when she sees her father the sheriff approach with a gun. The Winchesters confront the sheriff with killing Peter while he holds them at gunpoint. The sheriff confesses when he sees his daughter, and admits Peter's body sunk into the lake. In the meantime, Lucas has wandered to the side of the lake and reaches into the lake to get an army man. Peter Sweeney's ghost
grabs Lucas by the wrist and pulls him down into the lake. At this point, the sheriff sees Peter's ghost, and while Dean and Sam are diving to find Lucas, Sheriff Jake climbs into the lake and offers himself to Peter. The sheriff is pulled down, and Dean eventually emerges from the water with Lucas.
For this episode = 4 humans
For the series so far = 10 humans; 3 ghosts; and 1 wendigo.
Tropes appearing in this episode:
- Adult Fear
- The Bechdel Test: Failed, although Andrea Barr does represent another Supernatural woman who actually survives an episode.
- Big Dam Plot: The lake will no longer exist once the dam is destroyed.
- Bonding Over Missing Parents: Dean and Luke.
- Chekhov's Gun:
- Lucas' drawings (the red bike, the boat in the lake, and the house).
- Lucas playing with army men, which are later found in Peter's home and one lures Lucas to reach into the lake.
- Also, a gun that will only be fired four seasons later: Dean mentions in this episode that he used to love army men. It was an army man that Dean rebuilt into the Impala that caused Sam to remember their childhood good times and fight over Lucifer's control of his body in the season 5 finale.
- Continuity Snarl: Sophie is said to drown the week before the Winchester brothers start investigating, but her memorial in the obituary Dean circles is for August 12, 2005. Yet the brother did not start working together again as hunters until November 2, 2005.
- Creepy Child/Cute Mute: Lucas
- Deadly Bath: Andrea takes a "relaxing" bath.
- Deadly Prank
- Deadpan Snarker:
Andrea Barr: Must be hard, with your sense of direction, never being able to find your way to a decent pickup line.
- Deggans Rule: Failed.
- Disappeared Dad: Both Luke and the Winchester brothers are dealing with this.
- Elective Mute: The kid doesn't even talk to his mom until around the end of the episode.
- Fan Service With A Smile: Wendy the Waitress in the restaurant. Lampshaded by Dean.
Wendy: Can I get you anything else? [Dean looks up and grins around the pen he's chewing on.]
Sam: Just the check, please.
Dean: You know, Sam, we are allowed to have fun once in a while. [He points to Wendy.] That's fun.
- Foreshadowing: An early line about how the initial drowning victim was as safe in the lake as in her own bathtub.
- Friend to All Children: Dean, although he can't have had much practice.
- Ghostly Goals: Peter's spirit seeks revenge, but is also still a child and wants playmates.
- Girl of the Week: Andrea for Dean.
- Heroic Sacrifice
- Hey, It's That Guy!:
- Guest-starring Amy Acker as the resident mom, Andrea Barr, also played Dr. Claire Saunders in Dollhouse, and Illyria in Angel.
- Hollywood Drowning: Averted, but Discussed Trope.
Sam asking Sophie's brother about her drowning: So, no splashing? No signs of distress?
Will: No, that's what I'm telling you.
- Impending Doom P.O.V.:
- The shots of Sophie swimming seen from someone under the water.
- Kids Are Cruel: Jake and Bill bullied Peter by holding him under the water.
- Meaningful Echo: The clue that the Monster of the Week is targeting Bill and Jake's children.
Bill: My children are gone. It's...it's worse than dying.
Peter's mother: Losing him, you know, it's...it's worse than dying.
- Making a Splash
- Mangst: "We don't have to hug, do we?"
- Never Found the Body: Subverted Trope for Sophie and the other victims who are Killed Off for Real. Peter is also dead, but his vengeful spirit has become connected to the lake where his body lies.
- Nightmare Fuel Coloring Book: Luke's black spirals and pictures of figures in water.
- No Guy Wants an Amazon: Defied Trope.
All these workouts, Soph
, I don't know. Guys don't like buff girls.
- "Psycho" Shower Murder Parody: The Bathtub Scene.
- Reasonable Authority Figure
- Redemption Equals Death
- The shots of Sophie swimming shot from lower in the water recall the first scene of Jaws.
- Sheriff Jake Devins points out no large carnivores live in the lake and jokes that it might have been the Loch Ness Monster. Sam later rules Nessie out as a suspect.
- Andrea refers to Dean talking to her son as a Jerry Maguire thing.
- After the Sheriff says he can lock them up or they can leave town, Sam says, "Door number 2 sounds good".
- Dean teaches Lucas about Led Zeppelin.
Dean: Alright, if you're goin' to be talking now, this is a very important phrase, so I want you to repeat it back to me one more time.
Lucas: Zeppelin Rules!
Dean: That's right, up high.
- Sins of Our Fathers
- Smooch of Victory: Andrea kisses Dean at the end to thank him for saving her son's life.
- Take Me Instead
- Themed Aliases: Agent Ford and Agent Hamill are a departure from the typical guitarist/rock-star aliases, and are the start of many shoutouts to Star Wars. Eric Kripke has said Sam and Dean are based on Luke Skywalker and Han Solo.
- You're Insane!