Recap: Supernatural S 08 E 11 LARP And The Real Girl
Recap of Supernatural Season 8, Episode 11
LARP And The Real Girl
"Smell you later, bitches." —Charlie to Sam and Dean
here, and if you guys are here, monsters are here. Why do I have such bad luck? What am I, some kind of monster magnet
Is there such a thing as a monster magnet
Written by Robbie Thompson.
Directed by Jeannot Szwarc.
Air Date: January 23, 2013.
Garth sends the brothers to Farmington Hills, Michigan, to investigate the death of Ed Nelson who was ripped limb from limb in his locked bedroom. They discover that Ed was a LARPer
in a game called Moondoor
. Ed's friend and fellow LARPer, Lance Jacobson, dies in police interrogation after a tree shaped mark appears on his arm. Dean and Sam research the Moondoor
website, and find that the Queen of Moondoor is none other than Charlie Bradbury
Dean and Sam find Charlie, and she agrees to canvas among the other LARPers with Dean once he changes into a more appropriate costume. Sam goes to the tech team to research other accidents that happened to Moondoor LARPers, including one player being hobbled and another beaten up by his own mace.
- Acceptable Professional Targets: The LARPers are accountants, an insurance claims adjuster, and a lawyer.
Dean: Sam, I think we can take care of a bunch of accountants with foam swords.
- Actor Allusion: Some of the guys in the technical tent are playing Dragon Age II—specifically, Mark of the Assassin◊. We can see Felicia Day, who plays Charlie Bradbury, as an Ink-Suit Actor portraying Tallis.
- All Gays Are Promiscuous: Charlie makes eyes at quite a few maidens.
Dean: I'm noticing a lot of these maidens checking you out.
Charlie: What? I can't shut this down.
- All Work vs. All Play:
Dean: Maybe we should take the night off. Go see a flick. Hit a bar or two. Have some fun. You remember fun, don't you, Sammy?
Sam: Working a case. As long as we're waiting on Kevin, that will be our fun.
- Anachronism Stew: The medieval clothing and weapons in the modern world.
- The sign on the tech tent reads "Beware: this is a gateway to the future."
- When Gerry sees Dean using a cell phone, he says, "Has this oaf attempted to harm you with his blasphemous metalworks?"
- Artistic License - Medicine: Poisoning by belladonna causes dilated pupils, blurred vision, flushing, dry mouth, confusion, hallucination, and convulsions. Lance did not exhibit any of this and went from being fine if a bit emotive to having blood squirt from his mouth and eyes and then collapsing.
- Ask a Stupid Question...: "Do you mean magic wands?"
- Badass Gay: Charlie.
- Badass Longcoat: Sam and Dean wear them while impersonating FBI agents.
- Becoming the Mask
- The Big Board/Model Planning: Charlie's map with the red, blue, green, and black figurines representing the different armies participating in the tournament.
- Big Damn Kiss/Smooch of Victory: Between Charlie and Gilda.
- Black Cloak/Malevolent Mask: The initial appearance of the fairy.
- Black Mage: Grayfox the Mystic, aka Lance Jacobson.
Sheriff: [reading text] I am a mage. I will destroy you.
- Blood from the Mouth/Tears of Blood: Lance.
- Breather Episode: No one is murdering angels or forsaking someone they love forever.
- The Bus Came Back: Charlie Bradbury, played by Felicia Day, who first appeared in "The Girl With The Dungeons And Dragons Tattoo" (S07, E20), returns.
- But Now I Must Go: Much to Charlie's disappointment.
- Calling Your Bathroom Breaks: Gerry told Monty to stomp thrice if he needs to use the chamber pot.
- Closed Circle: When Charlie tries to leave the tent through the door, she finds herself right back in the tent.
- Closet Geek: Dean. Despite being frustrated by the hardcore LARPers, not only does he comment that it looks fun but, when Charlie shows him the map of the upcoming Battle of Moondoor:
Dean: You know, if you move the archers back and your broadswordsmen to the west...
Charlie: Flank the warriors...
Charlie: Hey, good call.
Charlie: What about the southern wall?
Dean: Yeah? Right! Sorry... [moves a trebuchet and nods to Charlie]
- Cover Identity Anomaly: Gerry realizes Sam and Dean have fake IDs. He just assumes they're FBI LARPers trying to do a genre crossover.
Sam: These aren't fake badges.
Gerry: Uh, yeah, they are, and they're very good, but, um, well, the I.D. number shifted to 10 digits with, uh, two letters mixed in at the end of the year, and, uh, the seal's from last month. Really good work.
- Cruel and Unusual Death: Drawn and quartered.
- Dedication: Spoofed.
- Distracted by the Sexy
- Dress Up Episode
- Dude, She's A Lesbian: "I don't think you're her type."
- Duels Decide Everything:
Lance: I though he broke protocol, so I called Ed after game hours and accused him of cheating. And then I challenged him to a duel.
Sam: A duel?
Lance: Wands and swords at dawn.
- The Dung Ages: Averted Trope, as we see a sign pointing to the "privies" in the opposite direction of the dungeon.
- Enhance Button: Sam is able to zoom in on the surveillance video so that they can see the tattoo on Lance's forearm clearly.
- The Fair Folk: The fairy injures and kills people, even if she does so against her will. The Disneyfication of fairies is lampshaded.
Maria: Wait. Fairy magic can be bad?
- Fairy Sexy
- False Teeth Tomfoolery: Monty with his slurred speech, who loses his fangs while in the stocks.
- Fantasy Character Classes: Ed/Thargrim the Difficult was of the Fighter Class and Lance/Grayfox the Mystic is of the Magician Classes.
- Faux Symbolism: Lampshaded by Charlie.
Charlie: Wait, I've seen this before. It's a Celtic magic symbol. At least, it was in my favorite video game.
- Fictional Geneva Conventions: Moondoor involves playing by the rules, just ask Gerry, but Dean does not fully appreciate this.
Dean: Well, there's no laptops in Moondoor. There's no Geneva Convention, either.
- Fictional Media: The Moondoor universe.
- Geeky Turn-On
- Getting Crap Past the Radar: Charlie calls the Shadow Orcs "total d-bags".
- Girl on Girl Is Hot
- Gory Discretion Shot: The blood splatter on the bedroom wall when Ed is pulled apart in the teaser.
- Green Rocks: Silentium in the Moondoor universe, which is represented with bean bags.
- The High Queen: The queen of Moondoor.
- Heterosexual Life-Partners:
"He was Lancelot to my Merlin."
- Hollywood Nerd: Ed Nelson (Thargrim the Difficult).
- I Just Want to Be Special
- Insane Troll Logic: Using real money is cheating, but using real magic isn't.
- Insistent Terminology: Gerry, who prefers "interactive literaturist" to "LARPer".
- I Uh You Too: This is a Call Back to Charlie's conversation with her co-worker in "The Girl With The Dungeons And Dragons Tattoo" (S07, E20) and a Shout Out to the dialogue between Princess Leia and Han Solo in The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi.
LARPer: I love you.
Charlie: I know.
- I Will Tear Your Arms Off: Lance's "YOU WILL PAY FOR THIS" text may have been unrelated, but Ed still has his limbs ripped off.
- Knight in Shining Armor: Charlie Bradbury.
- Lady and Knight: Defied Trope, with Charlie calling Dean her "handmaiden" and proving she is a knight as well as the queen.
- Land of Faerie
- LARP: Moondoor.
- Letting the Air out of the Band
- Let's Split Up, Gang: First Sam goes to do research, and then Dean and Charlie split up.
- Love Is a Weakness: Dean tells Charlie about Sam losing Amelia and reveals he is still upset about not being there for Benny.
Dean: Yeah, well, now he's more committed than ever, so there's that. But, trust me, this life—you can't afford attachments. You just got to...let go.
- Magic Wand:
Dean: Now, when you say wands, do you mean magic wands?
Lance: No, unmagic wands, agent. Because what I really want in a duel is an unmagic wand. Yes, fake wands! It’s a game.
- Major Injury Underreaction: Justified Trope, as they are only imaginary injuries delivered during a mock duel.
Charlie: [to the defeated LARPer]
Take your leave to my medical tent and attend to your...severed limbs
- Man Child: Dean takes boyish glee in making mock battle plans, dressing up, and giving a rousing battle speech.
- Marked to Die: The tree of pain, a dark symbol of a leafless tree with roots that appears on the forearm.
- Medieval European Fantasy: The setting for Moondoor.
- Mission Control: Garth assigns hunts based on cell phone GPS location.
- Mix And Match: Gerry assumes Dean and Sam are dressed as FBI agents as part of a genre mash-up (High Fantasy + Cop Show).
- Moment Killer: "Dudes! If the tent is rockin', Don't Come A-Knockin'!"
- Nerd Glasses: Ed Nelson.
- Nerds Are Sexy: Charlie, Maria, and, by the end, the Winchester brothers.
- Nerds Are Virgins: The Sheriff has this viewpoint.
He lived alone, which is a real shocker, considering this place is full of toys
- The New Rock & Roll: Texting.
These kids today with their texting and murder
- Oh My Gods!:
Lance: Oh, ye gods, Thargrim the Difficult has fallen! [sobs]
- Otaku Surrogate: Charlie Bradbury.
- Our Fairies Are Different: This one is the wing-less human-sized humanoid, but Supernatural has given us a variety of different types of fairies.
- Pop Culture Pun Episode Title: A play on Lars and the Real Girl.
- Proud to Be a Geek
- Refusal of the Call: Charlie at first plans to take off when she sees the Winchesters, but stays to help them when she realizes fellow LARPers are being hurt and killed.
- Rescue Romance: Invoked, though it doesn't work.
- Royals Who Actually Do Something
- Royal "We":
Charlie: The Queen needs some royal we time.
- Rustproof Blood: The blood covering Ed's bed and walls.
- Samus Is a Girl: The armor-covered knight is victorious in a sword battle, and the helmet is removed to reveal Charlie Shaking Her Hair Loose.
- Seen It All: Surprisingly, the Sheriff seems less fazed by a guy getting drawn and quartered than Sam and Dean are.
- Serious Business: Subverted with most of the LARPers, who are willing to break role or acknowledge it's a game. Played straight with Gerry, whose seriousness borders on psychopathology.
Sam: But the medical examiner said his body showed clear signs that he was killed by belladonna.
Charlie and Dean: The porn star?
Sam: [long pause] The poison.
- Charlie wants the Shadow Orc to tell her "what the frak" the symbol is.
- Charlie's "I'm just an IT girl standing in front of a monster" speech is a parody of a famous quote from Notting Hill.
- We know that Charlie is a fan of the Harry Potter, and stabbing the spell book is very reminiscent of the scene where Harry stabs Tom Riddle's diary in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.
- The speech Dean gives at the end is from Braveheart. (It's the only one he knows, according to Sam.)
- Two references to Dragon Age. The aforementioned Actor Allusion to Dragon Age II as well as one of the banners at the festival depicting the heraldry of the Grey Wardens.
- Strange Minds Think Alike:
Sam: The medical examiner said his body showed clear signs that he was killed by belladonna.
Dean and Charlie: [simultaneously] The porn star?
Sam: [long pause] The poison.
- Suddenly Shouting:
"My name is BOLTAR THE FURIOUS!"
- Taking Up The Mantle: Dean seems to have changed his attitude about Garth stepping into Bobby's role.
- Themed Aliases: Stephen King Character + Science Fiction Writer. Charlie Bradbury has become Carrie Heinlein.
- This Is for Emphasis, Bitch!:
Charlie: I'm dropping my sword and walking off the stage, bitches.
- Tracking Device: The Winchesters are "Garthed" when he hacks into their cell phones' GPS to determine their location.
- Unlucky Every Dude:
- Ed Nelson, a 31-year-old insurance claims adjuster who lives alone.
- Lance Jacobson, an accountant in his 30s who also lives alone.
- Unusual Euphemism: The Sheriff tells Sam that the "twig and berries" on Ed Nelson's body is still intact.
- Weirdness Magnet: Charlie, the "monster magnet." This is the second time a case has involved her.
- The Wiki Rule: Referenced In-Universe when Charlie says she needs "the full Wiki" on where the guys have been.
- Woman in White: Gilda after she takes off her long black cloak and skull mask.
- Ye Olde Butcherede Englishe
- You Are Better Than You Think You Are: Dean does this for Charlie.
Charlie: It's not just that, though. It's an escape. I mean, here, I'm queen, a hero. Out there in the real world, I'm just hacking out code and chugging coffee all day long.
Now, wait a second. If it wasn't for you, we would have never been able to take down Dick Roman
. Out there in the real world, you are
- You Look Familiar: Andrea Brooks, who plays Maria/Gholandria, also played Katie Burns in "No Exit" (S02, E06).