Written by Robbie Thompson.
Directed by Phil Sgriccia.
Air Date: November 11, 2014.
A teacher in Flint, Michigan disappears while acting as faculty adviser to a play. Dean thinks this is their new case, although Sam doesn't see any supernatural connection. Both are surprised when they get to Flint and learn there's a Supernatural connection: the play is based on Carver Edlund's books, and hence on their own lives. And the muse Calliope has taken an interest.
For this episode: 1 god.
For the series so far = At least 1110 angels, 1055 humans (of which 8 were witches), 172 demons, 58 vampires, 49 ghosts, 36 Jefferson Starships, 22 gods, 19 zombies, 12 werewolves, 10 hellhounds, 7 skinwalkers, 6 changelings, 6 shapeshifters, 5 djinn, 5 reapers, 4 dogs, 4 ghouls, 4 Leviathan, 2 Amazons, 2 arachnes, 2 kitsunes, 2 rugarus, 2 Thule, 2 vetalas, 1 cat, 1 crocotta, 1 deer, 1 dragon, 1 fairy, 1 familiar, 1 Khan worm, 1 lamia, the Mother of All, 1 okami, 1 phoenix, 1 pishtaco, 1 Purgatory creature, 1 rakshasa, 1 rawhead, 1 shojo, 1 shtriga, 1 siren, 1 Titan, 1 wendigo, 1 whore of Babylon, 1 wicked witch, and 1 wraith.
- The Alcoholic: Mrs. Chandler went through a bad breakup the year before and now, according to Marie, spends most of her time either sipping her "grown-up juice" or passed out, "in that order".
- All Part of the Show: Sam stabs Calliope, which makes the scarecrow explodes onstage. The audience claps, thinking it's part of the musical.
- Approval of God: In-Universe example as well as a literal one. Chuck enjoyed the play.
- Arbitrary Skepticism: The girls are willing to believe that the ghosts and monsters exist, but think that the Agents Smith being really Sam and Dean would be too silly.
- Aside Glance: Done by Dean to show his disbelief at the musical based on his and Sam's life. It was improvised by Jensen Ackles.
- Big Brother Worship: Invoked. The high school musical production of the books based on the boys' lives has a song sung by Sam about Dean, basically stating that Dean is an amazing human being who doesn't appreciate himself nearly as much as he should, and not as much Sam does. There are shades of this in the show proper since Sam consistently has to manage Dean's Chronic Hero Syndrome and crippling self-image issues to remind him that he is, in fact, worthwhile outside of being a soldier.
- Breather Episode: To the point where there's only one person who dies and it's the villain.
- The Bus Came Back: Chuck Shurley, aka "Carver Edlund", gives Marie his approval at the end of the episode.
- Cassandra Truth: Dean tells Marie that he and Sam are the real Dean and Sam Winchester. She doesn't believe them, despite accepting that ghosts and monsters are real. That said, near the end she calls him "Dean" and gives him the "Samulet" replica and tells him that he should never have thrown it away, implying that she may have come to believe him.
- Continuity Porn: Many references to previous episodes.
- Cringe Comedy: From a fan who states she likes Sam more, to Dean's face, to the brothers mistakenly believing their on-stage counterparts are having a "bowel movement scene", this episode revels in it.
- Deadpan Snarker: Marie.
- Discontinuity Nod/Self-Deprecation:
- Dean tells Marie most of the major events that have occurred since season five chronologically (skipping a lot)—although, for some reason, he leaves out all of the search for Purgatory aside from Sam's soullessness and the angels being expelled from Heaven. She scoffs at it as "the worst fan fiction I've ever heard."
- Sam and Dean hate meta stories.
- Foreshadowing: Chuck's cameo for the return of God next season.
- Forgotten Fallen Friend: Hilariously lampshaded when Marie reminds Sam and Dean that their half-brother Adam is still in the Cage.
- Homoerotic Subtext: The actresses playing Dean and Castiel are a couple in the show's real life. Also, Marie "explore[s] the nature of Destiel in act II".
- Marie directly calls out the subtext between Sam and Dean in a fangirl monologue.Marie: You know, the scene where the boys get together, and they're-they're driving, or leaning against Baby. Drinking a beer, sharing their feelings. (The Americana theme is playing, while Dean is looking at the B.M. scene.) The two of them. Alone. But together. Bonded. United. The power of the brotherly-.Dean: Why are they standing so close together?Marie: Hmm... reasons.
- Marie directly calls out the subtext between Sam and Dean in a fangirl monologue.
- Oh Crap, There Are Fanfics of Us!: And as usual, Dean really doesn't like it.
- Portmanteau Couple Name: "Destiel" is name-checked in-universe, with Sam wondering if "Deastiel" would be more appropriate. Then he starts spitballing other ship names, to Dean's intense annoyance.
- School Play: Sam and Dean are in town investigating the disappearance of the local high school drama teacher. This requires them to work with her students who are preparing for a musical.
- Marie is a prep school playwright and theater director who wears a red beret and horn-rimmed glasses, pretty much making her a female Max Fischer. According to Robbie Thompson, the resemblance is intentional.
- The drama teacher wanted them to do Godspell.
- One of the cast members wanted to do Wicked instead.
- Maggie thought that they should do The Outsiders, probably referring to the books written by S. E. Hinton in the '60s but possibly a reference to the 1911 play by Charles Klein.
- Sam says that there's nothing strange going on except for "the Charlie Kaufman of it all".
- The X-Files:
- The X-Files-esque title card from "Clap Your Hands If You Believe..." (S06, E09) is briefly seen at the beginning of the episode.
- One of the characters says "I want to believe", which was The X-Files' tagline.
- Sam and Dean in their FBI disguises are called the "real-life X-Files".
- Dean reminds us that Sam was in Our Town in high school and calls Oklahoma! a "crappy musical". Sam retorts that Hugh Jackman got cast off of Oklahoma!, so Dean calls him "Wolverine".
- Small Name, Big Ego: Marie is this In-Universe.
- Special Edition Title: All of the regular season title cards except for season 7's, all of the special one-episode title cards except for the ones from "The Monster at the End of This Book" (S04, E18), "Changing Channels" (S05, E08), and "Plucky Pennywhistle's Magical Menagerie" (S07, E14), and a new card with the word "Supernatural" in Broadway-style lights play during the title sequence.
- "They've Come So Far" Song: The musical includes the song "The Road So Far Song" that summarize Sam and Dean's life up to the end of the Apocalypse.
- Title Drop: Dean says "so, it's fanfiction" in response to Marie's...embellished ending. When he tells Marie a short version of what actually happened after Chuck stopped writing, she calls it "the worst fan fiction [she's] ever heard".
- Wham Shot: Chuck appears at the last minute.
- Yaoi Fangirl: Just about everyone involved with the production, much to Dean's discomfort.
- You Look Familiar: John DeSantis, who played the Scarecrow, previously played Freeman Daggett in "Ghostfacers" (S03, E13) and the Golem in "Everybody Hates Hitler" (S08, E13).
- Your Costume Needs Work: Sam is told that if he cut his hair shorter, he'd be a pretty convincing Dean, implying that he's not a very convincing Sam.