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Season 2, Episode 3:
Dean: I can't talk about this to Sammy. You know I've got to keep my game face on. But the truth is, I'm not handling it very well. I feel I have this...
Gordon: Hole inside of you? And it just gets bigger and bigger and darker and darker? Good. You can use it. Keeps you hungry. Trust me, there's plenty out there that needs killing and this'll help you do it. Dean, it's not a crime to need your job.Written by Sera Gamble.Directed by Robert Singer.Airdate: October 12, 2006.Dean and Sam meet another hunter, Gordon Walker, while hunting a nest of vampires in Red Lodge, Montana. Dean appreciates Gordon's tactics, but Sam urges Dean to scrutinize the situation.
Sam and Dean hear about cattle mutilations and beheadings and take off in the completely repaired Impala for Red Lodge, Montana. They examine one of the severed heads, and discover retractable vampire fangs. They track down more vampires only to discover that this nest of vampires has reformed and are living off cattle rather than killing humans. However, their hunt brings the brothers into contact with Gordon Walker, a particularly zealous vampire hunter who doesn't believe the vampires' claims of reform. Gordon tortures Lenore, the leader of the vampire nest, by cutting her with a knife covered in dead man's blood. Sam and Dean realize Gordon knew that the vampires were not hurting anyone, but still was hunting them down because they were not human and therefore must be evil. They manage to stop Gordon and leave him tied up while the vampire nest escapes. However, the Winchester brothers realize that not all supernatural beings are pure evil, and this leads them to question their roles as hunters. They also realize that their father did not tell them about many aspects of the hunting community.
Body count:For this episode = 2 vampires.For the series so far = At least 149 humans; 11 ghosts; 5 vampires; 1 demon; 1 god; 1 rakshasa; 1 rawhead; 1 shapeshifter; 1 shtriga; 1 wendigo.
Tropes appearing in this episode:
- Badass in Distress/Distressed Dude: Sam, who is ambushed in the motel room and then Bound and Gagged by the vampires.
- Black and Gray Morality/Black and White Morality: Gordon believes hunters are engaged in a righteous struggle against a purely evil foe, while the Winchesters have a more complex view of themselves and those they fight.Gordon: It's all black and white. There's no maybe. You find the bad thing, kill it. See, most people spend their lives in shades of gray. Is this right? Is that wrong? Not us.Dean: Not sure Sammy would agree with you, but, uh...
- Blindfolded Trip: Sam's trip to and from the nest.
- Blood Lust: While the vampires seem to have this under control, the same cannot be said for Gordon.
- Bloody Murder: Gordon tortures Lenore by cutting her with a knife covered in dead man's blood.
- Casting Gag: Amber Benson as a Friendly Neighborhood Vampire, given her previous role.
- Cat Scare: The crow that startles the vampire in the mill before Gordon attacks him.
- Chupacabra: Gordon tells the brothers there's one two states over.
- Cold-Blooded Torture: Gordon does this to Lenore when he captures her.
- Continuity Nod: During the opening scene with the brothers in the Impala, "Back in Black" by AC/DC plays, recalling the pilot.
- Cynicism Catalyst: Gordon's sister was attacked by a vampire, causing him to become a hunter.
- Deconstruction: Of the role of hunters, with Gordon serving as a foil to Dean. Both Gordon and Dean want to rid the world of the types of creatures that destroyed their families and find a sense of purpose in these acts of revenge, but Dean is motivated by the desire to help and save people and is dismayed to realize that some of the beings he has hunted may not have deserved to die.
- Fangs Are Evil/More Teeth than the Osmond Family: The brothers discover the retractable teeth when examining the severed head in the morgue.
- Fantastic Slurs: "Big-ass fang", "fang", and "filthy fang".
- Fantastic Racism: Gordon operates under the premise that if it isn't human, it has to die. He especially hates vampires, though.
- First Law of Resurrection: The Impala is back, and Dean is as relieved as the fans.
- Friendly Neighborhood Vampire: Conrad, the worker in the mill; Eli, the bartender; and Lenore.
- Gory Discretion Shot: The blood splatter on Dean's face when he cuts off the vampire's head with the electric saw.
- Hassle-Free Hotwire: Justified Trope, with Dean having just rebuilt the 1967 Impala.
- He Who Fights Monsters: Gordon, Dean, and John.
- Hooks and Crooks: A sickle is used to behead the woman in the teaser.
- Hollywood Satanism: Dean suggests to the sheriff that the cattle mutilations and beheadings may be "Satanic cult ritual stuff", but the sheriff doesn't buy it.Sheriff: Because there's no such thing as cattle mutilation. Cow drops, leave it in the sun, within forty-eight hours the bloat will split it open so clean it's just about surgical. The bodily fluids fall down into the ground and get soaked up because that's what gravity does. But, hey, it could be Satan. What newspaper did you say you work for?
- Humans Are the Real Monsters: Eli's point of view.Eli: We choke on cow's blood so that none of them suffer. Tonight they murdered Conrad and they celebrated.
- Impending Doom P.O.V.: The camera shot of Sam from behind the trees at the motel.
- Imposter-Exposing Test: When the Winchesters meet Gordon, they check his upper gums for fangs.
- Improvised Weapon: The telephone used to knock Sam out in the motel room.
- In Harm's Way: Dean's preferred setting.Dean: Got my car, got a case, things are looking up.Sam: Wow. You hear about a couple of severed heads and a pile of dead cows and you're Mister Sunshine.
- Insistent Terminology: It's "Sam", not "Sammy", although he seems to have accepted that he can't change Dean. Also a Call Back to "Pilot" (S01, E01) and "The Benders" (S01, E15).Dean: You all right, Sammy?Sam: I'm fine.Gordon: Well, lighten up a little, Sammy.Sam: He's the only one who gets to call me that.
- I Work Alone: Gordon. How much of this is by choice and how much because other hunters don't like working with him is a matter for speculation. Ellen indicates that he's got a reputation.Gordon: Thanks, but, uh, I'm kind of a go-it-alone type of guy.
- Jumped at the Call: Dean tells Gordon about the first time he knew he was a hunter.Dean: ...So. I pick up this crossbow. And I hit that ugly sucker with a silver-tipped arrow right in his heart. Sammy's waiting in the car, and, uh, me and my dad take the thing into the woods, burn it to a crisp. I'm sitting there and looking into the fire, and I'm thinking to myself, I'm sixteen years old. Most kids my age are worried about pimples, prom dates. I'm seeing things that they'll never even know. Never even dream of. So right then, I just sort of—Gordon: Embraced the life?Dean: Yeah.
- Kill the Ones You Love: Gordon reveals he killed his sister after she was turned into a vampire.
- Meaningful Name: Lenore is the name of a ballad by Gottfried August Bürger, which was cited in Dracula by Bram Stoker.
- Mutual Masquerade: The Winchester brothers learn more about the hunter community, which their father never told them about.Gordon: Word travels fast. You know how hunters talk.Dean: No, we don't, actually.
- New-Age Retro Hippie: The Barker farm.Gordon: Just a bunch of hippie freaks. Though they could kill you with that patchouli smell alone.
- Non-Malicious Monster: The nest of vampires.
- No OSHA Compliance: The large electric saw in the mill with no safety guards.
- Only in Florida: In response to a conversation about some satanists in Florida, Dean says "So much effed-up crap happens in Florida".
- Removing the Head or Destroying the Brain: Vampires are killed by beheading.
- Sacrificial Lion: John Winchester.Dean: Yeah, you know. He was just one of those guys. Took some terrible beatings, just kept coming. So you're always thinking to yourself, he's indestructible. He'll always be around, nothing can kill my dad. Then, just like that [snaps] he's gone.
- Scary Black Man: Gordon.
- Dean has Sam check the beheaded woman's mouth for anything inside, like the moth in The Silence of the Lambs. Dean then quotes "Put the lotion in the basket." Later, when Sam asks Ellen about Gordon being a good hunter, she says, "Yeah, and Hannibal Lecter's a good psychiatrist."
- Gordon calls Sam "Chachi".
- Gordon toasts the death of the vampire by saying "another one bites the dust".
- Soft-Spoken Sadist: Gordon torturing Lenore.
- They Call Me Mister Tibbs: Dean gets to call Sam "Sammy". Gordon most definitely does not.
- This Is for Emphasis, Bitch!: "Dead man's blood, bitch."
- Thwarted Coup de Grāce: When Sam pulls Gordon from the saw and Dean attacks the vampire in the mill.
- Vampire Advocate: Sam.
- Van Helsing Hate Crimes: Not all vampires are pure evil.Dean: What if we killed things that didn't deserve killing? You know? I mean, the way Dad raised us...
- Vegetarian Vampire: This nest survives on cattle blood.
- Weekly World News: When the brothers are in the Sheriff's office, they claim to be from the Weekly World News.
- What Measure Is a Non-Human?: Though the vampires were once human, Gordon now only sees them as monsters.Sam: Well, decapitations aren't my idea of a good time, I guess.Gordon: Oh, come on, man, it's not like it was human. You've gotta have a little more fun with your job.
- Wide-Eyed Idealist: Despite two of her friends being killed by hunters, Lenore wholeheartedly believes that Gordon and the Winchester brothers can be reasoned with.