Abandon All Hope...
Written by Ben Edlund.
Directed by Phil Sgriccia.
Air Date: November 19, 2009.
Sam and Dean track down Crowley to get the Colt back. Lucifer is working a ritual in Carthage, Missouri to raise the Horseman Death. Sam, Dean, Ellen, Jo, Bobby, and Castiel join forces to try to stop him. Jo and Ellen die trying to buy Sam and Dean enough time to get to Lucifer before he completes the ritual. Sam distracts Lucifer and Dean shoots him in the head...but it turns out that Lucifer is immune to the Colt. Death is raised.
Body countFor this episode = At least 18 humans, at least 9 hellhounds and at least 16 demons.
For the series so far = At least 352 humans (of which 6 were witches), 55 demons, 32 ghosts, 11 vampires, 9 hellhounds, 6 changelings, 4 angels, 4 gods, 3 shapeshifters, 3 zombies, 2 ghouls, 2 werewolves, 2 dogs, 1 crocotta, 1 djinn, 1 rakshasa, 1 rawhead, 1 reaper, 1 rugaru, 1 shtriga, 1 siren, and 1 wendigo.
- Action Girl: Jo's come a long, long way from the Faux Action Girl she was in Season 2.
- Action Mom: Ellen ain't no slouch either; she joins her daughter on the hunt for Lucifer, rifle in tow.
- Artistic License: Carthage has a population of 14,000 people. All the able-bodied men are at most a dozen?
- Back for the Dead: Jo and Ellen appeared earlier this season (eight episodes ago, to be precise), but before then had been absent since Season 2. We last saw Jo in "Born Under A Bad Sign" (S02, E14) and Ellen in "All Hell Breaks Loose, Part Two" (S02, E22).
- Belligerent Sexual Tension: Castiel and Meg.
- Boom, Headshot!: Dean attempts this when he shoots Lucifer in the head with the Colt hoping to kill him. Unfortunately, Lucifer shrugs off the attempt after being temporarily stunned.
- Chekhov's Gunman: Enter stage Crowley, a future Big Bad in the series.
- Commonality Connection: Lucifer invokes this twice, trying to make the good guys develop Sympathy for the Devil. First, he explains to Castiel how alike both are in rebelling against Heaven. Later, he tells Sam about his conflict with Michael, making it sound awfully similar to Sam's problems with Dean. (See the page quote.) However, both Castiel and Sam reject his attempts at bonding this way.
- Continuity Nod:
- When they first met in "Everybody Loves a Clown", Dean thought he could disarm Jo no problem, and paid the price with a punch to the nose. A demon thinks he can overpower Jo here and finds out she still packs a mean punch. The Winchesters at least learned their lesson and trust her to be able to handle herself against demons.
- Jo is also bait again, just like in "No Exit" and "Born Under a Bad Sign". It's not stated but considering how Ellen felt about the idea in "No Exit" and how protective she is, presumably Jo being bait wasn't the original plan and was Jo's suggestion.
- Dean's attempt to bed Jo the night before they all expect to die fighting the Devil is reminescent of Anna bedding Dean the night before she thinks their plan might fail last season in "Heaven and Hell", with Anna kissing Dean and suggestively saying, "You know... Our last night on Earth and all that." Dean comments she's stealing his best line. Here, he actually tries getting laid with the last-night-on-Earth speech, Jo immediately calls him out on it, and then fakes him out by leaning in for a kiss before telling him, "Sweetheart, if this is our last night on Earth, then I'm going to spend it with a little thing I call 'self-respect'." Anna had been revealed as having been something of The Hedonist, having fallen to enjoy human emotions and earthly pleasures, including sex, while Jo's annoyance with being seen as easy went all the way back to her debut in "Everybody Loves a Clown", mentioning that hunters hit on her and try to get in her pants all the time and respecting Dean more for not doing it. At this point, they're already good enough friends that she just laughs it off now that he does try it.
- Meg is controlling Invisible Monsters again after using the daevas in Chicago in "Shadow" back in Season 1. This time though, it's Hellhounds and she taunts Dean about having been killed by them back in Season 3's "No Rest for the Wicked".
- In another reference to "Born Under a Bad Sign", the last episode to have both Jo and Meg, Jo is left bleeding to death from a demonic entity while trying to help a Winchester. In "Born Under a Bad Sign", Meg taunted Jo by claiming that Jo's father Bill got mauled by a monster on a hunt with John Winchester, saying "Bill ... was all clawed up. Was holding his insides in his hands." When Jo faces the reality there's no hope for her and starts setting the rest of them straight, she mentions that "My guts are being held in by an ace bandage." To make things worse, Meg is indirectly responsible for Jo's fatal injuries, having set the hellhounds on the group in the first place.
- Cute Bruiser: Jo slugs a demon in the face just like she punched Dean back in "Everybody Loves a Clown" (S02, E02).
- Daddy's Little Villain: Meg, again. Interestingly, though, she's serving Lucifer and calling him her father now, instead of Azazel.
- A Death in the Limelight: Not so much Ellen, but Jo certainly got focus on her Character Development.
- Decoy Damsel: Jo acts like a helpless lil' lady whose car just broke down. Demons smell blood in the water and come out to drag her into Crowley's mansion for an unexplained but likely unpleasant time together, kicking and screaming if necessary. It turns out not to be necessary since Jo, Sam, and Dean kill them.
- Defiant to the End: Cas has been captured in a ring of holy fire by the Devil and still refuses to join him and says he'll oppose Lucifer's plans. Made more effective by the fact that Castiel is clearly terrified the whole time.
- Deus Exit Machina: Castiel gets separated from the main group right after they arrive in Carthage, presumably so that he doesn't simply smite all the hellhounds or zap everyone away to safety when they run into trouble.
- Died in Your Arms Tonight: Jo dies in her mother's arms.
- Downer Ending: Ellen and Jo are dead, the Colt can't kill Lucifer, Lucifer successfully raises Death. There's a reason this episode is called "Abandon All Hope...".
- Drinking Game: For their last night on Earth, Castiel and Ellen decide to engage in a lighthearted bit of competition.
- The Easy Way or the Hard Way: Meg offers the hunters the choice between letting her take them to Lucifer or getting dragged to Lucifer by hellhounds. They chose neither.Meg: Your choice. You can make this easy or you can make it really, really hard.[Beat]Dean: When have you ever known us to do anything easy?
- Enemy Mine: Crowley gives the brothers the Colt in hopes that they'll defeat Lucifer.
- Evil Laugh: Meg when she sics her hounds on Sam, Dean, Ellen, and Jo.
- "Facing the Bullets" One-Liner: "You can go straight back to Hell, you ugly bitch!"
- Fallen Angel: Castiel's powers are shown to be continuing to lessen the longer he's cut off from Heaven. He can't even smite Meg when he has the chance.
- Fantastic Racism: Lucifer is revealed to hate demons.
- Fatal Family Photo: After their party, Cas, Bobby, the Winchesters, and the Harvelles take a photograph. Both Harvelles die.
- Faux Affably Evil: Angels know each other by name; archangels Raphael and Gabriel instantly recognized rank-and-file angel Castiel and vice versa. Lucifer has to ask Castiel's name before going on his We Can Rule Together spiel, showing exactly what he thinks of his low-ranking siblings.
- Foreshadowing: Lucifer warns Castiel that as soon as he's out of the picture, Castiel will become Heaven's new public enemy #1.
- Good is Not Nice / Kiss Diss: For a moment it looks like Castiel will kiss Meg, only to throw her onto the holy fire and walk over her body.
- Grim Reaper: The hunters realize that Lucifer is trying to summon Death itself. Since Big Daddy Reaper's coming, dozens—if not hundreds—of Reapers show up in town. (Alastair was right; they ARE like lemmings.)
- Hope Spot: Dean shoots Lucifer in the head with the Colt, who falls down and appears dead. Dean and Sam looks at each other for ten seconds, with Sam jumping nervously in celebration. And then Lucifer breathes in and gets back up.
- Iconic Sequel Character: Crowley makes his first appearance and becomes a major Big Bad in later seasons.
- Kicking Ass in All Her Finery: Beautiful Jo gets dolled up in a Little Black Dress and wears her hair in a loose bun in preparation for killing demon bodyguards and breaking into another demon's hideout.
- Killed Off for Real: See you on the other side, Harvelles.
- Lame Comeback: Poor Dean:Crowley: It's called — survival. But I forgot — you two, at best, are functional morons—Dean: Yeah, you're functioning... morons. Mor... [stops talking]
- Last Kiss: Dean gives a platonic but heartfelt one to Jo when she is dying.
- The Last Dance: Fully expecting to die, the Winchesters and the Harvelles have one last party before heading off to Carthage.
- Little Black Dress: Jo disguises herself to lure Crowley's guards out of Crowley's mansion, and help Sam and Dean in.
- Locked Out of the Fight: Castiel goes to investigate the proliferation of Reapers in town, since Cas is the only one who can see them. He is subsequently trapped in a ring of Holy Fire which kill him if he tries to cross over the flames. This effectively separates Castiel, the only supernatural/ superpowered member of the team, from the rest of the crew, leaving the others to fight on their own in another part of town when Cas could have simply transported them out of the fight to safety.
- Major Injury Underreaction: Lucifer after being shot in the forehead by the Colt, which would have killed all but four other supernatural beings.
- MacGyvering: The brothers build a bomb out of whatever they can find in a hardware store.
- A Man of Wealth and Taste: Crowley lives in a beautiful mansion, collects art, and dresses in well-tailored suits. He's portrayed as more sophisticated than Lucifer and since he enjoys his lifestyle, he's willing to help the Winchesters.
- Never Gets Drunk: Castiel downs a half-dozen shots in a row and calmly says, "I think I'm starting to feel something," much to Jo's amusement.
- No-Sell: Lucifer isn't killed by the Colt even when shot in the head at point-blank range.
- The Nth Doctor: Averted with Meg, who's possessing the same young woman from "Sympathy for the Devil" (S05, E01), even though she was seen leaving her and vanishing.
- Oh, Crap!: The kill-anything plot device of the first three seasons fails to work.
- Pre-Climax Climax: Dean tries to talk Jo into a one-nighter since they all may be about to die. She shoots him down hard.Jo: Sweetheart, if this really is our last night on Earth, I plan to spend it with a little something I call self-respect.
- Psychopomp: Carthage is filled with Reapers.
- Senseless Sacrifice: Ellen and Jo; while their sacrifices keep the hellhounds from getting to Sam and Dean, the dynamic duo subsequently fail to kill Lucifer, making the Harvelles' deaths all the more tragic.
- Shoot the Shaggy Dog: The whole quest to kill Lucifer with the Colt was pointless, since he turns out to be immune. This came at the cost of Ellen and Jo, who sacrificed themselves to give Dean a shot at killing Lucifer. Additionally, an entire town is annihilated and Lucifer completes his plan to raise Death, who will wreck further havoc across the world. The episode ends with the remains of Team Free Will looking distraught at the picture of the six of them burning in the fireplace.
- Crowley refers to the Winchesters as "The Hardy Boys".
- Also, a demon named Crowley wants to stop the apocalypse from happening. Where have we seen that before?
- Cas downing six shots of liquor in front of Jo and then admitting that he's "starting to feel something" echoes the drinking contest between Legolas and Gimli (with a near-identical comment from Legolas) in The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King.
- Skewed Priorities: The banking executive is more upset by the fact that he has to kiss a man to sell his soul, than the fact that he's selling his soul. There's some implication that this is exactly why Crowley is doing it.
- Sympathy for the Devil: Attempted, but you'd think Lucifer would have noticed it never works for him.
- Take That!: A banking executive makes a Deal with the Devil to bail out his company and fix its "ridiculous incompetence".
- Taking You with Me: Ellen and Jo sacrifice themselves to take down the hellhounds and buy Sam and Dean time to escape.
- We Can Rule Together: After Lucifer captures Castiel, the fallen archangel offers his younger brother to join forces with him against the Heavenly Host. Castiel flatly refuses.
- Wham Episode: Sam and Dean's first major confrontation with Lucifer ends in failure, Ellen and Jo are both killed, and Crowley makes his first appearance.
- Wham Line: "Oh, hello, Death."
- Wham Shot: Lucifer getting back up after having been shot in the head with the Colt. It’s a sign that the Colt, which can kill just about anything, doesn’t work on Lucifer.