This is an episode I haven't liked very much in the past. Maybe because of the lighting, and all the black and whites, and maybe because I was just so frustrated with and so sad for Sam and Dean - Sam who thought he had to make things right, not taking his brother's warning seriously enough and walking right into a trap, Dean who just can't say no when Sam says, "But you'd do the same!" but is sooooo worried that something might happen. And then it does :( This whole angsty bit made me rate it at Great this time around because I was hurting soo bad the whole episode. I couldn't even enjoy that sex scene because holy, I'm thinking of Sam and dreading how these memories were affecting him. The look on his face after each of these flashbacks :(
The title I think is named after a western movie by Clint Eastwood. The movie is about some killers who retired and were living a normal "good" life but went back to kill some bad guys who had disfigured a prostitute. They are going back to do good, but they end up suffering for it.
The title I assume means a person who cannot be forgiven, and is talking about Sam. The ep actually reminds me a lot of All Dogs Go to Heaven, in that Sam tries to apologize to the sheriff's wife Brenna and is rejected. In the sense that Brenna saves them and helps them kill her husband, the story is also very similar to Chris Angel is a Duchebag. In both these other eps as well, the character does what is right, and suffers for it - just as Sam does what is right and ends up suffering for it, not just by not being able to end the case happily or be forgiven but by making a hole in his wall.
No music this episode :(
We start the episode with what happened on a hunting trip between Sam and Samuel during the year that Sam was soulless.
The beginning only shows Sam mercilessly killing a whole bunch of people in front of Samuel and Samuel unable to look while he does so. Then they are driving away when they are stopped by one of the police officers and Sam beats him up so they don't have to answer difficult questions.
Back to the present. Sam is catching up on the news and talking with Dean about Mel Gibson being possessed (LOL) when he gets mysterious coordinates on a text message on his cell phone. He looks it up and finds that it is the coordinates of Bristol, where several women have gone missing.
Dean's instinct says leave it. Coordinates from an unknown person is totally suspicsious. But Sam points out that he and Samuel must have done many jobs and got to know many other hunters while they were working together and that maybe it was a fellow hunter who sent the coordinates. In any case, there seemed to be a case there, and missing women. Since when did they ever leave something like that?
DEAN:You got mysterious coordinates from a mysterious Mr. "X," leading to a mysterious town? That doesn't throw up red flags to you?
SAM:I don't know. Maybe. But that doesn't mean we can just ignore a bunch of missing girls. Right?
Interesting that Sam's instinct is not really working very well here... or maybe working too much. Maybe he has a feeling that this is important already. Maybe the name of the city is tickling his memory - his wall-and he wants to scratch it.
So they are on their way, and Dean has that grim face again as he drives. Sam sees the sign welcoming them to Bristol and he has a flashback of coming with Samuel but he doesn't tell Dean because he knows Dean will want to turn back and Sam just wants to SCRATCH!! (Sammy nooooo :()
They arrive and are at a restaurant getting dinner while looking at the missing persons leaflets.
DEAN:Well, freak's got a type—brunettes. Whoa. This one's got a little bit of a wild side. It's all in the eyes, Sam. See it?
SAM:All right, well, aside from your little deep insight there, these women actually have nothing in common—different jobs, different friends, different everything. So, what's the connection?
This is actually funny, because Dean has got it on the nail. It IS the types that they should be looking at. It's the type of girl that soulless Sam would go out with, which makes the talk about "a wild side" quite meaningful. Funny to think of how Soulless Sam is much more like Dean with his "live life to the fullest/enjoy life" motto.
Dean then decides he's in need of the "poop deck" and leaves Sam alone for a bit. While he's there, he exchanges looks with a girl which reminds me of what he says about "cougar-eyes" later to Sam (and what soulless sam was engaged in at the "poop deck " a year previously LOL )
He also stops to look at the birthday pictures there as well, and sees Sam and Samuel in the background of one picture.
While Dean is gone, a woman comes up to Sam who seems to know him from before and has guessed that he has come because of the missing girls.
When Dean comes back to the table and hears the question about where Sam's previous partner was, he has a funny answer:
WOMAN:Where's your partner? The big bald guy? Agent Wynand, right?
SAM:Agent Wynand, of course. Well—
DEAN:Sex rehab. Yeah, you've heard of plushies, right?
I had no idea what "plushies" were, so just in case there are others who don't, here's a definition: "A plushie is someone with an interest in stuffed animals. In some cases, this is manifested in a sexual attraction, although this is more the exception to the rule." LOL Hilarious!! I like that Dean chooses "sex rehab" for Samuel's absence as well.
As the couple leaves, the wife touches Sam's shoulder and Sam suddenly has another flashback. This time to some damn hot sex in the "poop deck."
Dean notes that the woman "cougar-eyed" Sam on the way out (like Dean's looks exchange with a girl previously?) and this also reminds me of Dean pointing out that one of the missing woman had a "wild side."
As can be seen from the gifs above, looks like Mandy had a "wild side" too :P
Sam tells Dean that he thinks he and Samuel worked a case here, and Dean then shows him the photo he found.
DEAN: You think?
So they quickly go back to the abandoned house they are holing up in. Dean is getting ready to leave. He tells Sam that they can call Bobby and get another hunter to deal with it.
SAM: We can deal with it.
DEAN:Are you serious? Sam, there is a reason that hunters don't hit the same town over again—'cause we have a habit of leaving messes behind.
SAM:Right. I agree.
DEAN:One of dad's rules -- you never use the same crapper twice.
SAM:Everyone uses the same crapper twice.
DEAN:Not us. You know what I mean.
SAM:Okay, look—this creature is still walking around 'cause of me, right? I mean, I let it go. Dad also said, "you finish what you start." Okay, I get it.
SAM:Yes. You're afraid I'll stroll down memory lane and I'll kick this wall in my head so hard, Hell comes flooding through, right? And then all of a sudden, I'm some drooling mess on the floor.
DEAN:It's not a joke.
SAM:Okay. I know. But listen—what's happening here right now—it's because I messed up somehow, in some big way. So every person who gets taken, every person who dies—that's on me. I have to stop it. And you'd do the same thing.
I love this conversation for how desperately Dean is trying to disuade Sam from continuing this hunt by using dad's rules, then how Sam disputes everything using dad's rules and finally - "You'd do the same thing." Again, and Dean can't say anything because he would. It didn't matter if he died. He'd try to make things right. I love Sam's and Dean's expressions here. Sam pleading, and Dean biting his lip because he knows there is nothing he can say.
So, Dean decides to go and talk to the people who knew the girls that went missing to try to get some clues as to what was the common denominator. He tells Sam to go find out what he can from the cops.
When Dean goes to talk to the roommate of the girl he told Sam had a "wild side," Nicole, he finds Sam's name card in her room. It seems that soulless Sam had been there. He asks Nicole's roommate about Sam's visits further and gets an idea of how it might have been. (I wonder if Sam told him about having sex with that other wife later on or he kept it a secret?)
DEAN: And how would you...Characterize their relationship?
NICOLE'S ROOMMATE: Relationship? No, they weren't having a --
DEAN: just the -- the -- the tone or the nature of their conversation.
NICOLE'S ROOMMATE: Well...Loud. And...Athletic.
I like that Nicole's roommate doesn't characterize it as a "relationship." Wild side indeed!
While that's happening, Sam is getting arrested by the officer he beat to a pulp as soulless Sam. Sam has a flashback as they are talking and he remembers what he did to the officer. Another part of the wall crumbles.
Then, as he is being held in a cell, Brenna, the former Sheriff's wife, comes in and demands to know what happened to her husband, telling Sam that she knows what he really does.
Sam is surprised to say the least, but he has another flashback and remembers going to their house and talking about it with the Sheriff and his wife along with Samuel. Soulless Sam at that time had rather bluntly questioned the fact that the Sheriff's wife was in on this conversation but had been told by the Sheriff that Brenna also worked at the police station and she should know everything he did.
Sam somehow convinces Brenna that he really doesn't remember being here before or what happened and that he wants to find out just as much as she does. Although it sounds unbelievable, it makes sense since if he had had any memory at all he would not have come back.
Brenna lets Sam go, saying that they need some rope to pretend that he tied her up in his getaway. I wonder exactly how that worked. Sounds like a loose end to me, but lets go on with the story.
Extra scene. The woman that came up to Sam in the restaurant, Debbie, who seems to be an alcoholic, gets caught by the Arachne-Sheriff as she goes down to get some more wine.
Sam gets back to the hideout and hears sounds outside. He thinks it's the cops or someone has found him and he goes to the door ready to shoot anyone who came in - but it's Dean.
DEAN: Hey, Sam. So, how does it feel to be a fugitive again? Hate to say "I told you so."
SAM: You love to say "I told you so."
DEAN: Actually, you're right -- I do love to say "I told you so." So, I found out something on, uh, "crazy eyes McGee." Turns out you two knew each other.
DEAN: Biblically. I just spoke to her roommate. I got to say, man -- you really got around. I mean, soulless or not I'm actually kind of impressed.
Hehe! Love these little bits of humor scattered along the way! But now I'm thinking that Sam probably did tell Dean about Debbie at the restaurant or Dean just guessed somehow from the "cougar-eyes" and Sam's admission that Samuel and he had worked there.
Then they get an incoming on the police scanner regarding Debbie and Dean's on his way, warning Sam to stay put. But of course he doesn't. And seriously. I wish he'd take his brother's advice just once. And I guess this is all due to him having a soul as well. He's stopped caring about himself like he did soulless, and cares more about "fixing things."
So he goes and sneaks into Brenna's house and scares her to death when she comes home. Somehow convincing her that he has nothing to do with the new case and telling her that he just wants to help, he gets her to bring over the files for last year.
While that's going on, Dean is leaving a message in Sam's phone.
SAM'S PHONE: This is Sam. Leave a message.
DEAN: Sam, answer the phone, damn it. I found the connection between the missing chicks. They all banged the same dude -- You. It's you, Sam. The texts, the victims, all of it -- it's a trap for you. Call me back.
The sofa in Brenna's house brings back the memory of sitting there with Samuel talking about the hunting life.
BRENNA: So, you guys just travel all the time? I mean, you just pick up and go? Doesn't that get hard?
SAMUEL: Not when you're young -- it's great. Once you got a family, it's a little tougher. Deanna got pregnant, and we didn't know what we were gonna do. But Mary was...She was a blessing.
In the memory, Samuel gets up to get more beer from the basement, and Brenna asks soulless Sam about his family -
BRENNA: He misses her. You know, at least you two have each other.
SAM: Well, Samuel wasn't really around when I was a kid. We have more of a, uh, business relationship.
BRENNA: Uh, do you have any other family?
SAM: Family just slows you down.
I never paid much attention to this conversation since it doesn't pertain much to the story here, but there is a hint here about how the Campbell family got started and how soulless Sam feels about Dean at this point.
The Campbell family itself actually wasn't planned. Deanna happened to get pregnant and they didn't know what they were going to do, which is an interesting tidbit. Brenna and the Sheriff also see how much Samuel misses Mary by the way he talks of her. I guess he already talked to them about how she died.
Sam, on the other hand talks of his relationship with Samuel as a business relationship, and says how family just slows you down - which gives us an idea of why he didn't come to get Dean in the beginning and why he spent a year hunting alone with the Campbells. Hunting with the Campbells wasn't because of some loyalty to family either. It was a business relationship.
Anyway, once Brenna brings down the files she had upstairs, the evidence gives Sam more flashes of what had happened. He remembers talking about the arachne with Samuel at the restaurant and how Sam thought of the idea of using the sheriff as bait.
Sam is having a hard time taking in all these memories. He asks Brenna if he can take the evidence home for a few hours and she agrees, but she has a final question for him.
BRENNA: Um, okay, I guess. You really don't remember Roy, do you? He was a good man. I've made peace that he's dead. I have. But I just want to know what happened.
SAM: I'm sure he died a hero.
And I had to put this in because this talk about dying a hero comes up again.
Sam walks out onto the porch, and as he listens to Dean's message, he sees a bit of spiders web wafting in the breeze to the right. Then suddenly he senses someone and turns around with his gun to find that it is Dean... again.
DEAN: Whoa. Whoa.
SAM: I almost shot you...Again. What the hell?
DEAN: I figured you'd come and talk to her. I told you to stay home, man. Did you get my message? Come on. We got to get you out of here. Let's go.
So they go home and Sam tells Dean how he remembers that the monster was an arachne and this spooks Dean again. Dean urges Sam to leave.
DEAN: We're leaving.
SAM: No, we can't.
DEAN: We are not the only hunters on the planet, okay? We can call Bobby. He and Rufus could come and wrap up.
SAM: How? Like you said, it could be anybody, we got jack for leads.
DEAN: We know that it hates you.
DEAN: I don't think you get the risk here, Sam.
SAM: Yes, I do.
DEAN: Really? You get that every time you scratch that wall, that you are playing Russian roulette?
SAM: Dean, I get you're worried, okay? And I know what you think is gonna happen. But you know what? It will or it won't.
DEAN: Sam --
SAM: --look, I'm starting to think that -- that I might have done some bad stuff here, Dean. And so I don't care if it's dangerous. I have to set things right, 'cause I got a frigging soul now, and -- and it won't let me just walk away. I'm staying here. And I need you to back me up.
DEAN: All right. Why not? Well, let's "memento" this thing, shall we?
So they start making the map on the wall and connecting stuff with string. As Sam looks at the wall, he remembers everything.
He remembers how he let the sheriff get taken - maybe on purpose, even though he tells Samuel it was his "backup plan." He remembers Samuel calling him "as cold as they come."
He remembers finding the arachne's lare and the sheriff as well as the other men, all wrapped up in the spider's web, how Samuel was unable to kill the arachne with a gun but Sam was able to kill it through decapitation and how he "killed" the sheriff and the others with a shot to the head, telling the Sheriff that he was a "hero" and telling Samuel that they were "putting them out of their misery." And then, he burned the place down just to be sure.
So here's the similar phrase about dying a hero. Both Soulless Sam and Soulled Sam try to comfort the sheriff and his wife by saying that he was dying a hero's death. But in actuality, he didn't, did he? Soulless Sam and Samuel let the sheriff be turned by letting him get caught in the first place, then they were not thorough in finishing it off.
SAM: I know what happened
I wonder if he knew here that he had actually not killed the men, and that they had already turned into arachne? Or he just knew what he had done. Probably the latter.
While that's going on, Roy, the Sheriff, is reacquainting himself with his wife.
Sam calls Brenna to make sure she is alright and she tells him she wants him to come over. Sam can tell from the manner that she is in trouble and they hurry over.
When they get there, they see the light in the garage or barn or something apart from the house. They go in and find Brenna with tears running down her face and she just has enough time to ask Sam if it was true, what he had done to the Sheriff when Roy attacks Dean, flinging him to the other side of the room, then grabs Sam by the throat.
ROY Answer the question, Sam.
Roy ties them up with his web and then proceeds to tell them how the bullet and fire had not killed any of the men because they had already turned to arachne, how Roy had barely survived despite the lack of food with his thoughts of revenge. When Sam asks about the women he took, he tells Sam that he had made arachne out of them.
ROY: You killed one monster, you made so many more. Congratulations. The only question is, do I kill you...Or turn you?
So, not only did Roy not die a hero's death, he actually made more monsters because of the mistake Soulless Sam had made.
While he is talking, Dean is getting all mean because Sam is in danger. I love that glare he has for just that occasion! He somehow gets to his knife under all the webbing and cuts himself free. But he's no match for Roy and Roy's got him by the throat. Then Brenna moves. She calls out to Roy to stop and when he doesn't, she cuts Sam loose with the machette. Sam rushes over and decapitates Roy.
Next scene, Sam is taking Brenna back to her home and he tries to apologize, but she cannot accept it. Sam's left on the porch in pain for her and unable to reconcile himself with the outcome.
Back at the house, Sam admits that they shouldn't have stayed. It could be because coming back and fixing what he did wrong himself did more harm than good. It would not have been so painful for Brenna, maybe, if it hadn't been Sam but someone else.
This time, Dean doesn't say I told you so. He knows Sam is feeling bad, so he tries to cheer him up.
DEAN: Well, you did kill uh...spider man.
SAM: So, you're suggesting what I did back there was a good thing?
DEAN: I'm just saying --
DEAN: Sam, y-y-you got to understand that all that crap last year -- all of it -- none of it was you.
SAM: Let's be crystal clear, okay? It was me.
The most important part of this conversation to me are the bottom two lines. For Dean, Sam's only true family, it is easy to dismiss all that happened with soulless Sam as "it wasn't you." Sam knows though that for everyone else, it WAS him. Brenna knew he was a hunter. She was in the position to understand. She knew that Sam didn't remember anything from when he was there before. But that didn't matter. She still felt worse for Sam coming back and could not accept Sam's apology.
DEAN: Well, can I get you anything?
SAM: What are you now, my waitress?
DEAN: I'm just trying to make you feel better. Don't be a bitch.
SAM: Yeah, I'm fine.
DEAN: Yeah, you look fine. All I'm saying is everything's gonna be okay.
Oh Dean *heartache* Always the older brother, telling yourself and Sam that everything is going to be OK... when you know it's not :'(
Sam's just about to answer that he must have done many other terrible things as soulless Sam, when he collapses into a fit and we see Hell.